One time I got to help my instructor as he taught a seminar on some basic techniques in our style, Presas Arnis.
The seminar attendees were all from empty hand styles, mostly tae kwon do and variants of karate. If they did any weapons at all on a regular basis, they mostly did tournament-style performance weapons or they were learning the version of kobudo our organization teaches (and that I was studying myself).
I love working with people completely unfamiliar with my style but are relatively experienced martial artists. It's so fun being able to help them connect up what we do with what they do.
For example, we were working on a disarm. The motion involved, once you got the stick in position, is nearly identical to what they know as a "scoop block". This is what I'm referring to:
It's not 100% identical, but it's close enough for them to understand the basics of how the disarm we were teaching them worked. Once we oriented them into how this works, all the light bulbs went off in their heads, and you could see them making the connections, almost physically.
It's always so cool when that happens.
We who study Modern Arnis are quite familiar with our founder Remy Presas' statement that "It is all the same." The longer I study, the more I see that it is true - that we have more in common across styles than differences.
Sure, you can't just pick up sticks and start doing karate with them and call it "arnis" (or even "hanbo"). But, there's no need to throw out everything you know when you pick up a weapon, either.
We make this point with experienced martial artists who start studying with us all the time that they don't have to abandon your "core" martial art in order to do our style, and do it well. In fact, there's plenty of times where you can insert things from your core style into what we do.
I mean, if you can kick somebody in the head, why wouldn't you do that after you've disarmed somebody? Go for it!
Recently, Jesse Enkamp made a video that caused quite a stir, but fundamentally, he, too was pointing out that IT IS ALL THE SAME.
I bet those connections must be there when you cross train in other styles, right? I would like to know what you've spotted when you've cross trained. What have you noticed?
Let us know in the comments!