DISCLAIMER: Martial arts can be dangerous. I suggest you practice courteously, safely, legally, and ethically. Use common sense. I am not responsible for how you implement information on this site.

Martial arts are systems, schools, studies, teachings, crafts, traditions, etc. about combat: conflict resolution via physical and violent means. While I will include war and military information in this section, the emphasis will be on the martial arts. See also Length, which has a definite martial slant.

The English word "martial" is derived from Middle English martialle, which in turn was derived from the Latin martialis "of Mars", and of course Mars is the Roman name for the god of war which has roots in the Greek god of war Ares. The word fencing is derived from "self-defense". The word "military" comes from the Latin militaris, which in turn comes from milit- = miles = soldier.

Wu (武) is the Chinese word for "martial" or "military". The wu pictogram is composed of zhi (止, to stop, to cease, to end) and ge (戈, spear, lance, javelin, i.e. weapons in general), hence wu means "to stop weapons or end their usage". Wuyi (武夷) means "martial arts"; The Wuyi Mountains of the Chinese Fujian province is a World Heritage site. Wushu (武術 = wusu) means "martial techniques". Gongfu (Kungfu) is made up of gong (energy, work) and fu (time), hence gongfu is something which takes effort and time, i.e. a serious study. San shou is sparring. Quan (拳 = kwan = kwon = guan = quon) means "gate" and is sometimes used like the more prevalent Tao = 道 (Chinese) = Dao (Pinyin Chinese) = Do (Japanese), which means "The Way", a taoist principle.

Bu (武) is the Japanese word for war, warrior, fight, fighter. Budo (武道) is The Way of the warrior, The Dao of the warrior. Bujutsu (武術) means martial techniques and are the same characters as the Chinese wushu and Korean musul.

Thaing is the Myanamar/Burmese word for martial arts.

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See also my blog posts on martial arts. Feel free to modify the URLs as needed.

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