I will provide a video on my Atacx Gym Capoeira Youtube Channel visually displaying the exercises in the combat drill portion of this blog in order to help you more properly perform the exercise. As always, please be sure to acquire medical clearance and proper physical assessment prior to engaging in any rigorous activity, including anything written in suggested by or inferred by anything that THE ATACX GYM does. Safety, health, happiness and fulfillment are paramount. Okay? Okay!

Now with THAT out of the way, here's the link to my Youtube Channel and my Google+ page. Please subscribe and support us; we need to keep dialogue like yours and ours alive and vibrant or else this, too, shall pass (as Mestres Bimba and Pastinha feared it might and strove all their lives to ensure that it won't).



Today's blog deals with probably the core and most recognizable aspect of capoeira...the Ginga.

Now, my research on this matter includes a number of excellent books including the works of the illustrious Nestor Capoeira. In his second book [CAPOEIRA: ROOTS OF THE DANCE FIGHT GAME] Nestor cites a wide variety of sources but primarily the notes pictures and works of two European artists (the French Debret and the German Rugendas) and the very knowledgeable scholar Muniz Sodre as proof buttressing his claim and nowadays confirmed as very likely fact unassailable that the union of dance and fighting technique in Capoeira had not occurred until AFTER 1834...nearly 400 years after Kipura/Capoeira was being used in Brasil to fight slavery circa 1580 or so. The union of dance ritual play etc that is the formative aspects of today's most popular noncombative, non "real Capoeira" expression started around 1900, after the destruction of the Maltas circa 1890... [ and this destruction of the Maltas occurred with the increase of racist persecution and government sponsored targeting for destruction of the Capoeirista; immediately after slavery was abolished in 1888 ]. It is not the purpose of this particular blog post to delve into the many vitally important socio-politico-economic events and occurrences and the truly extraordinary and potent personalities that had the highest magnitude of impact upon capoeira at that period in time. Instead I wanted to focus on the fact that the ginga neither was birthed simultaneously with capoeira's inception nor has it remained the same as time has passed.

 I want to invoke a crucial and widely accepted aspect of capoeira at this time: capoeira then now and always has been the epitome of the hyperadaptible, chameleonic, supersmart trickster. Capoeira is the incarnation of guile trickery cleverness dissembling deception etc. frequently adapting itself in such a way as to look like one thing [ some thing that capoeira is not ] while always hiding cultivating and maintaining capoeira's essential soul, core continuity and expressions.

For the purposes of honoring and maintaining the viable self-defense and martial art aspect of capoeira? The very first thing that has to change is the general prohibition against combat functionality extant in faaaarrr too many capoeira organizations practices rodas etc. The first expression of that change should be that self defense training is central to every Capoeira class, and mandatory contact and mandatory martial technique application is required. Skillful blows throws holds weapon use training methodology etc etc that can and will stand equal to any tech from any martial art anywhere needs to be reinserted IMMEDIATELY directly into the very heart of the practice of capoeira.

The first area that needs a complete and total overhaul is the capoeira ginga and concomitant fighting stance.

A truly excellent example of what I mean can be shown by Anderson "The Spider" Silva. Go back through his illustrious UFC career and watch his fight with Patrick particular the footwork and elusiveness and utterly superb dominating ring generalship that he displayed in his first and second round vs Cote. Anderson vanished on Cote, who was utterly frustrated by his complete inability to touch Anderson no matter how he tried...whereas Anderson drilled Cote with flying knees, punches, kicks, takedowns, and anything else he wanted to do at virtually any time that he wanted to do it. The utterly uneducated crowd was wholly baffled by Anderson's untouchability, and instead of being completely and totally bowled over by a man showing that he could fly in the ring like some MMA reincarnation of Besouro? The brain dead crowd boo'd Anderson. They were expecting the human wrecking machine who'd mercilessly destroyed Leben and Franklin etc. Instead they were presented with the near perfect Titan of technicians whose blows carried the destructive might of a demigod...and they didn't know what to do. They didn't appreciate and thrill to what was in front of them. But we will have a better result because initially all who see us will be adherents of and devoted to the ginga.

If you add weapons to Anderson's jaw-droppingly dazzling footwork and technical display as well as the concomitant tactical considerations? THIS IS WHAT THE MODERN FIGHTING GINGA SHOULD LOOK LIKE. It is what MY ginga looks like.  I always receive compliments on my footwork, how full of malicia it is and how difficult to even get close to hitting me it is.

My fighting capoeira ginga blends every method of actual fighting and performance oriented combat footwork from boxing to fencing and more,and completely transcends them. With the fighting ginga? You're a flyer--a voador--without ever having to leave the ground (even though you can leave the ground and do so more impressively and realistically than any less functional or dysfunctional capoeirista or martial artist). You literally can't be touched by other martial artists. I hold black belts in many disciplines and I'm a boxing kickboxing and wrestling coach to boot. When I use my fighting ginga and couple that with the knowledge of the kinds of attacks and methodology of other martial artists who DON'T know capoeira? I've literally never been touched with a scoring blow. Whole rounds would pass and nobody could do anything to me. Wrestlers would not only fail to take me down or clinch with me, they for the most part never could sequence their movement and footwork well enough to even hope to set up a shot clinch or takedown. Same with my kenpo, hapkido, judo, taekwondo, tang soo do, hung gar, shaolin gung fu, boxing, kickboxing, fencing, kali, iaido, MMA, and other brethren. I hold a black belt at least and a Coach's rank in almost all of the above disciplines, so I am in no way denigrating them or saying they're inferior. I love those arts. I have blogs and youtube Channels devoted to many of these arts. But without a doubt, Capoeira is the undisputed, undefeated, unequaled, inimitable MegaMaster of Movement...and all martial arts, all sports, even scientifically so far every single scrap of our collective scientific data leads us to posit that all LIFE can be traced to movement in some way.

The full range comprehensive Capoeirista's ginga is either "thee" or one of "thee" ultimate expressions of movement, therefore it's no surprise that it makes us feel more alive

Mastering the combat ginga will unlock amplify and empower your martial arts in ways that you have never ever eeeeveeer dreamed. I'm still on this path myself; I'm still being routinely dazzled by what this study of footwork ,body relating, transitioning, mental fluidity, and perceptiveness offers. My preconceptions and unconscious beliefs in limitations are being routinely atomized by what I discover when I move.  It's a never-ending journey and I will move and groove until I can't move and groove any more.

Here's the bare bones shallow basics conceptually of what I do: I combine my direct experimentation and experiences with the performance methods and sciences of boxing coaches and Olympic coaches dealing with sports mandating movement that correlate to what I am doing and/or what I hope to do, and I even study the works of human anatomy experts...and inculcate them into my own expression. There is a whoooollle loooot going on when I move, and it looks amazingly, deceptively similar to what you see others do. But it's more than that...literally. The combat ginga is everything that you thought you knew about every martial art sport and science that covers and/or impacts footwork plus everything that you don't even know that you don't know. It's the ginga+fighting practical free running+every martial art and sport's footwork+gymnastics+performance science+ psychological spiritual and emotional harmonious stimulation and elevation and more. It's the Rhythm of Life and The Dance of Death. We need to groove to it, move with it, flow with it, fly with it, become it express it transcend it.

If you don't do the combat ginga? If you can't actually fight any and all comers with your ginga no matter what the situation you're in or the martial artist you face? If you can't pull off practical floreio's in a fight or conflict or while evading blows weapons etc or negotiating the traps pitfalls and obstacles of life? Your ginga sucks.

And it's YOUR FAULT that your Ginga sucks. And you know what? Your Mestre's ginga probably sucks too...because neither of you nor any of your classmates focus on self defense training and the spiritual lessons of the TRUE culture of the ACTUAL Capoeiristas, who are the Afrikan Kipura warriors. Therefore you never know how vital the orixas are to literally every emotional physical spiritual tactical strategic combative "Universal/Natural Law" philosophical and even academic expression of Capoeira/Kipura and life itself.

So. Practice self defense with your Capoeira. And stop letting your ginga suck.

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