(BLACK PR WIRE) -- Striking … grappling … and kicking …. These are only three of the moves used during the sport of martial arts. In the past, martial arts were used to either defeat a person physically or to defend oneself from physical threat. Today, martial arts are studied for various reasons including combat skills, fitness, self-defense, sport, meditation, mental discipline, character development and building self-confidence. For many, martial arts bring a deep sense of spirituality.
Many of us may remember when martial arts was featured in a number of movies in the early 1970s, due in part to martial artist Bruce Lee, who caused a rise in the popularity of kung fu. But the history of martial arts goes way back. Africans enslaved in Brazil practiced a martial art now called Capoeira, out of a need to protect themselves in a hostile environment.
Capoeira was and is composed of cat like movements where participants collapse to the ground, use cartwheels, flips, handstands and many other deceptive movements to avoid strikes and injury by opponents. Practitioners use kicks, sweeps, head butts, gouges and punches in order to strike their opponent.
Today, millions of African Americans all over the world study Kung-Fu, Tae Kwon Do, Judo, Karate, or some other form of martial arts. And many of them will tell you that it has transformed their lives. With this in mind, it is likely that books, videos, magazines, television and films will keep portraying the sport of martial arts, especially as African Americans and the world continue getting a kick out of it!