It was the mid-1980’s and I was having a conversation with an old guy I knew from another business. He owned a metal shop and the conversation got to fighting. He knew I used to own a karate school and thought I could take care of myself. He told me that he knew karate and was good at street fighting. We went back and forth for a while with our experience and I assumed since I outranked him I could win easily in any kind of fight. Well as you know in a street fight there are no rules. I squared off with Henry and as I was getting ready into my stance – he jabbed an eye-poke at my forehead!!! My ego was great and my counter punch caught him in his gut and I declared myself the winner!


It reminded me of my childhood cap-gun fights arguing who got who first. You see in a real fight it only matters who wins and winning most often is taking an early advantage and keeping it. Fights only last seconds if someone knows how to fight. I could not accept that a man in his 50’s could get one over on me (a fighter in his 20’s). But looking back on that incident the way a real fight would have gone is me temporarily unable to see while the old guy had his way with me.


I bring this up because of today’s topic, “Are the martial arts effective in a fight?” Save yourself some reading and I’ll tell you the answer now… maybe.


First I would like to mention that the martial arts I am speaking of include Eastern and Western martial arts. I am not discriminating here. I have always said fighting is fighting is fighting. No matter what techniques you choose to accomplish fighting – there are only so many ways to do it and everything is known. So I include karate, kung fu, wrestling, boxing, muay thai, jiu-jitsu (Japanese and Brazilian),  judo, savate and so forth… any martial art you can think of I am including in this list.


Check out this short video from a school owner I found on youtube, Fred Mergen, about will MMA work in a street fight to frame the arguments.


embedded by Embedded Video

YouTube Direkt


Full Story »

Today while was reading the news I saw this article, entitled, “In Rough Slum, Brazil’s Police Try Soft Touch.” Apparently in the favela’s (slums) some cops have been working with the youth to reach out with karate! After a little more research I found out about an organization called, “Fight for Peace” were this NGO (non-governmental organization) also reaches out in a favela to offer boxing & martial arts, personal development, youth support services, job training, and youth leadership!

In this post I will highlight the problems, some traditional solutions, and what I think of this organization’s approach, “Fight for Peace.” First here is the movie trailer – City of God.



Full Story »

How to Fight with Martial Arts!

Posted by: John W. Zimmer
Under: martial arts
10 Jan 2010


Before I begin there are some great fights coming tonight in the WEC! Varner vs Henderson should be good to watch plus the two former WEC Featherweight champs (Brown and Faber) are each fighting others to get back in line to challenge Aldo.


The hardest thing about writing this blog is to stay on focus to the chief point I am trying to make or examine. This post is about how to fight using some type of martial art. One might view this topic as overly broad but in my mind it is easy.


I will first talk about martial fighting arts and some popular contests that portray martial artists fights! I will talk about what is fighting and then how one could use martial arts to fight in whatever venue you select. Finally I will wrap this up with how I fight with martial arts. Here is a quick video from the old Kung Fu series that explains how a wise man behaves.



Full Story »

Karate vs Boxing? What is Better?

Posted by: John W. Zimmer
Under: martial arts
19 May 2009


Imagine that you grew up in the 60’s (some of you did) and your dad used to watch boxing! Boxing was an ideal martial art (even though it was not widely thought of as martial arts) because anyone could learn the basics and then defend themselves against a larger attacker! What you might be thinking? Don’t you mean karate? Well karate was in its infancy in the 60’s but boxing had a large audience.


If one knew how to jab, right cross and hook – he could take almost anyone bigger that was just trying to tear your head off and make them look silly! Karate kicked like girls did so it was not too popular with some men at first. Later when pioneers like Bill Wallace, Joe Lewis, Ron Marchini, and Chuck Norris started to make the sport of karate more popular there was still a dominant question at the time, what was better, karate or boxing?


In this post I will attempt to answer that question somewhat but before I do I will go into some history and note the differences between the two martial arts. Here is a video I found of the debate between boxing and MMA for some of the issues. MMA as many of you know is the most popular form of striking and submission sport that is watched today.



Full Story »

Under: karate
15 Aug 2008


I have been watching some Olympics off and on during the last week an even caught some fighting! I was watching some wrestling the other morning before work and I saw this guy (Adam Wheeler) from Lancaster, CA win the Bronze metal! That was cool as I understand because it is the only wrestling win for the U.S. so far. I reviewed a match a while back where a girl beat a boy to win the title. I can only guess that the Olympics is every wrestlers dream. This picture of a 3rd century B.C. Pankratiasten fight was taken by Matthias Kabel.



 I will review the fighting sports that are in the Olympics and how they might be applied to self defense situations. I will also touch on why my favorite sport, karate is not in the Olympics. Let me say in this day and age of mixed martial arts, each of these Olympic fighting sports are important components of many great fighters! Even though there are so many rules (which you need in an effort to make things truly fair), the true competitors still excel!


Full Story »

EuroSport Kick Boxing – Lots of Action!

Posted by: John W. Zimmer
Under: kick boxing
16 Jun 2008


As you probably know by know from reading this blog, I enjoy a good contest. I stumbled upon some kick boxing from Eurosport Fight Club on that featured a match from Eurosport’s Netherlands vs Thailand Kickboxing Series. I’m not sure exactly when this fight took place but it was uploaded to on January 31, 2008.


The series seems to be a national team competition featuring some really great fighters. For the Netherlands, Jimmy Eimmers is fighting and Hansuk is representing Thailand. Take a look at this video below.


[kml_flashembed movie="" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]


Full Story »