The Art of Combat: What, How Old, and Everything You Need to Know About Self-Defense

The art of combat has been around for many generations. Since the dawn of war in ancient civilization, there has been a rise in the number of methods that tackle various aspects of combat. It is no surprise that without combat, the world as we know it wouldn't be what it is today.

The thing about combat is that it promotes the protection of oneself and of others as well. Plenty of tactics have been taught and used in the past but there are various strategies that have only been introduced lately. As time passed by, the ever-changing conflicts around the world called for new and effective ways to enforce protection and victory. Eventually, this came to be known as "Self-Defense" by people of the modern world.

As mentioned before, self-defense is the term used to define combat that protects oneself from danger. Over the years, it has taken on various forms, each form suiting a specific person's personal need for safety. However, before this merits further discussion, it is important to ask, what is combat and how long has this been around?

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What is Combat ?

Throughout the years, the world bore witness to numerous counts of violence and other conflicts that have come to fruition. Each and every one had a profound effect on people's lives, especially since plenty of them threatened the lives of millions of people. Usually, these conflicts in previous eras took place for different reasons - territorial disputes, political wars, and even set duels between two parties. That is how the concept, which is known as "combat", came into place.

Combat, as it is defined, is the act of fighting between two or more forces. Whether it be armed or unarmed, this form of enforcement has guaranteed peace throughout numerous lands, albeit with some degrees of bloodshed at the cost.

Throughout history, the term has taken on various new forms, ranging from the standard hand-to-hand combat and sword fighting to military artillery and the utilization of knife fighting. Actually, knife fighting in the Philippines has become a staple in modern combat.

As various aspects of different societies change, the need for protection undergoes constant intensification. The world of combat has taken over the world of fighting. In order to have a concrete knowledge of the concept, one must know how far this art dates back.

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The Various Histories of Combat

As combat has been around for multiple generations of the millennia, it also has its roots for people to trace back and learn from. This makes the notion an even greater form of study in both physical and mental aspects.

In prehistoric times, the art of combat was seen mostly on a battlefield. It is undeniable that the times back then were a dark period, with all the conflicts that are present in that era. With the goal of defending their country, the men of that era proudly drew their swords and charged into battle. However, when one nation is on the brink of war, it was and still is considered imperative for soldiers to train to prepare for battle.

When one talks about Martial Arts, a portion of Combat, it actually dates back to the early days of China. As the country is known for their martial arts, Shaolin monks actually trained in the forms and disciplines of the art known as Kung Fu. Their training regimen included a multitude of methods such as one-finger pushups, balancing themselves on high-altitude locations, and enduring massive amounts of pain inflicted upon them. In the end, it all paid off as they eventually grow to master the art and use it with such precision and perfection on every strike and every parry. Today, Kung Fu is considered as one of the pioneers of hand-to-hand combat and is also considered as one of the world's deadliest form of martial arts.

It is not just China that has a rich history of fighting. In fact, if one were to look further back in the history of combat, Ancient Greece is often considered as a pioneer in hand-to-hand combat as well as their form of wrestling.

While the art of wrestling is commercially well-known due to various wrestlers mingling in with the entertainment world for their fans, it was actually considered a noble sport back then. It involved two men in a ring attempting to grapple the other to submission. It was also seen as a training regimen for Greek soldiers who are preparing for battle and, most especially, as a well-known sport in the Olympics.

Wrestling eventually made its way to the Romans after their victory over the Greeks. They then adapted it into their own style, eliminating much of the brutal natures affiliated with the sport. Though the Romans were able to make the style their own, there are some hints of Greek-style wrestling that remain with the form, hence becoming known later on as 'Greco-Roman' style wrestling.

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Eventually, upon the dawn of industrialization in the late 19th century, numerous wrestling competitions have been held for athletes of the sport, which in turn made its way to popular culture. The way wrestling is seen today is a mix of classical and modern. Actually, many of the moves adapted from the old Greco-Roman style are still being practiced by today's practitioners. However, an abundance of new moves has been introduced as well, all with the goal of inflicting bearable pain and ensuring victory over one of them. This just goes to show that when history is on the table, nothing beats the classics and everyone can take inspiration from these relics of the past world.

Besides China, Greece, Rome, and other countries that have a rich history, the Philippines should not be forgotten. With the country's history of different colonizers and ways of life, it is no surprise that martial arts are one of many things of importance.


Combat in the Philippines

Nowadays, when one mentions martial arts in the Philippines, aside from Libre Fighting, one is bound to think of Arnis. Read on to know more about this. However, the country is also known for a lot more than relics and events. Read on to know more.

In the Philippines, the earliest known martial art to come to fruition is none other than Eskrima. When it comes to Eskrima, there is no other form that is well-known to many in the Philippines than Kali or Arnis. While it Is seen as a historical art in terms of combat, there was only one family who made the art as it is today - and that family is none other than the family of Illustrisimos.

In the Philippines, the Illustrisimo family is well-known for their expertise in the art of Kali. With their training regimen as intense as it is, they are able to deliver swift and fatal strikes to their opponent should they wish or need to. Their expertise on the art is something that is considered as unrivaled in terms of precision, strength, and wisdom. However, one individual in the family really stood out and it is none other than the Grandmaster himself, Antonio Illustrisimo.

Antonio Illustrisimo, best known as 'Tatang' by many of his pupils, is a grandmaster in the art of Kali and a true force to be reckoned with. Born in Bagong, Bantayan, Cebu, this promising martial artist trained regularly with his father and uncles. At the age of nine, he showed such a courageous drive and an adventurous spirit when at that time, he decided that he wanted to travel to the United States by stowing away on a boat without his parents' knowledge. But the boat did not take him to America. Instead, he settled in Mindanao where he reunited with a childhood friend who, in turn, introduced Ilustrisimo to his adoptive father.

This event in his life did not hinder his training and by the age of seventeen, he has mastered the art of the "barong", or a leaf-shaped sword that is able to deliver a swift and fatal strike to an opponent's limbs. At that time, the young Ilustrisimo was out having a beer with some of his friends when another Muslim man accosted him, which led the two to draw their swords at one another. With one swift strike, Ilustrisimo had beheaded his opponent. In fact, some say that when his opponent was decapitated, his body didn't realize what had happened and so ran around frantically before finally collapsing in death.

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After the incident, Ilustrisimo was exiled back to Cebu, where he would be reunited with his family. Since then, he had continued honing his skills as a martial artist and then eventually, passing his skills on to others. By the time of his death in 1997, many of his students have taken his teachings to heart and, until now, the art of Kali has spread nationwide. It has, until now, ensured its own spot in the hearts of Filipino martial artists everywhere.


Fundamentals of Combat or Self-Defense

The art of fighting is a no laughing matter. That is one of the most important lessons one should learn, especially when it comes to Libre in the Philippines. When danger strikes you and your family, it is important to have a basic know-how on dealing with the threat that comes your way.

Combat is regarded as a foundation for anything that has to do with dealing with threats, especially one that targets your life. In today's age, crime has become an all-time high and more and more people are being threatened every day for various reasons. For this reason, the notions of self-defense becomes even more important.

If you are to find yourself face to face with threats, one thing is for sure, they are not to be underestimated at all costs. To help you deal with this situation, here are some things you should know when it comes to self-defense:

Out of everything you are about to read, this may be one of the most important rules of all. Whether you own a knife, a club, an item that generates a certain amount of damage (e.g. stun gun), or even a firearm, one thing you should never do with these items is to play with them. That way, you will be able to avoid harming yourself and others.

This is one thing in combat that should also not be taken lightly. When you are in direct contact with a threat, things can happen in a flash to the point of surprise. The best way to prepare for this is to expect the unexpected. Besides training your reflexes for a quick response, train your eye as well to do the same. That way, you will be able to read your opponent like a book and anticipate their move before they can even make it.

This is another basic rule to follow at all times. Knowing your weapon and how to use it will grant you an enormous advantage in combat. Make sure that you familiarize yourself with your weapon in order to have the full control on it when the time comes that you will be using it.

However, when it comes to knowing your weapon, there is another thing that should be taken into consideration: knowing your form.

When it comes to handling short-ranged weapons, one must know what suitable form to use to defend oneself from harm. For handling a knife, there is Libre Fighting. For a baton or a sword, there is arnis, eskrima, or even Wushu for Chinese practitioners. When used together in great combination, this and the aforementioned rule above, will surely grant you the skills that are lethal enough to strongly incapacitate your opponent.

While self-defense can grant you amounts of advantages, there are also some disadvantages such as height, weight, and even physical mobility. However, though one can be afflicted with these disadvantages, they are not enough to hinder them from ultimate protection.

With enough knowledge of the human body, practitioners on any form of self-defense can know which area to deliver the fatal strike. So, if you feel that you have a disadvantage in any way, all you have to do is to carefully study the human body. By doing that, you will be able to inflict pain on your opponent long enough for you to strike back and/or escape.


There is no limit to what you can gain from combat. As long as you know how to use them, you will be able to survive any physical manifestation of harm that may come your way.

Key Takeaway

Combat is one thing that will both keep you safe from and inflict harm. No matter how great the threat may be, it is always important to never let anything falter. Be as lethal and swift as you can be, as shown by the guys of Libre Knife Fighting.

A modern form of self-defense known around the world, Libre is all about swift strikes which are sure to be lethal towards your opponent. All you will need is your knife and an ample amount of training, and in no-time, when danger strikes, you will be able to let your blade do the talking.

Given these, if you are an aspiring martial artist who wants to learn more about this sport and how it works, Libre Knife Fighting Philippines will be conducting a public seminar at Elorde Gym, Sucat, Paranaque City on March 10, 2018. They will be talking about the art of knife fighting and will be giving out freebies such as free resin knife and a free shirt. Tickets are now available for Php 8,000.

If you are interested in the art of Libre and what it can do for your safety, contact us. now!

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