A pankration scene by Pirro Ligorio, supposedly after a Roman coin

After being ill for a week I’m slowly and steadily getting back into a proper training routine (proper depending on one’s idea of such a thing), and as usual, it is difficult and challenging. The realization of how much easier it would be not to train at all is a strange one, but the paradox is that the less I train the more a whine and the more miserable I actually feel. The ‘pain’ in muscles and the body takes away much of the mental pain, and cures all the stiffness and soreness caused by being idle. Still, I always find exercising as something I like, but at the same time something I need to force myself into. It doesn’t come easy, especially at times, but rather it is a fight to get it done. This is for all who wrestle with the same issue – no, it is not easy for anyone. One needs to see some trouble… there are no shortcuts.

Speaking of wrestling, a new essay by John Clements of ARMA, discusses the absence of ground fighting in the historical martial arts literature and the general nature of the grappling methods within. No special news in the essay, but it is a very good read and in my opinion very true. While there is nothing wrong with ground fighting and grappling and BJJ and the like, I think people who are into the historical side of things should think about this matter more. In events like Swordfish, where the unofficial wrestling events were the thickest concentration point of energy, it would’ve been nice to see people practice more ringen or abrazare than BJJ-inspired brawling.

Same goes to the other point expressed by Mr Clements, that the wrestling is sometimes seen as too separate of an aspect from the swordwork, sometimes people either fence with swords or then they wrestle, but the middle ground, the entry into wrestling and an intelligent use of the weapons in closer than optimal range is often overlooked.

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