The genesis for this line of thought is not some respectable philosophy paper or classic novel. It’s 100% YouTube videos.
I became interested in fake martial arts through the beneficence of the YouTube algorithm, which oddly but correctly thought that I might be interested in the work of gentlemen such as Rokas Leonavičius, who diligently practiced aikido for years and now uses the term “fantasy-based martial arts” to describe his own former art and practices like it, and Ramsey Dewey, who enjoys pressure-testing dubious self-defense techniques against resisting sparring partners on his YouTube channel.
Here is the fake martial arts situation as I understand it, as a sort of gestalt impression of many videos that are difficult to cite point-for-point individually:
Teachers of fake martial arts, whether they are unscrupulous or pious frauds, teach techniques that are not useful in actual self-defense situations, but sell them under the guise that they are, in fact, useful in self-defense situations. Because of deference-oriented institutional cultures and a lack of testing against resisting opponents, the uselessness of the techniques is kept hidden from students, and sometimes even from the masters themselves. Continue reading “Fake Martial Arts, A Disorientation”