Monday, November 15, 2010

Why you should be terrified of the Russian Government: Unit 4 Blog Post

A few clips of Russian Systema, or Russian Martial Arts. Apparently Systema was created around the 10th century when Russian knights had to defend themselves from countless invaders. It combined aspects of combat, strategy, and the Orthodox faith. It utilizes the traditional punches, kicks, and throws but also combines it with internal ideas such as proper breathing, psycology, and internal strategy. With the rise of Communism Systema lost its ties to the Orthodox Church and was nearly banned. However, the government realized that Systema was a usefull tool to train the elite members of its military. Systema became the martial art of the Red Army and is still practiced by the Spetznaz special forces. Below are two videos. The first is a clip of Systema's grand master: Mikhail Ryabko talking about the principles of Systema (thankfully they are translated into English). He was trained by one of Stalin's bodyguards and serves in the Russian military as a Spetsnaz colonel. The second clip is set to music (rather poorly) and shows other Systema techniques from Ryabko, his best student Vladamir Vasilev, and two soldiers named Vadim Starov and Val Riazanov.

and in honor of Putin appreciation day (Rachel) here's a video of Putin practicing judo, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that Putin is manlier than any of us. Apparently, during his KGB days he rose to the rank of black belt and was the judo champion in his home of St. Petersburg. Yet despite all this he is still modest about his achievements. A quick note: the video claims judo translates as "the soft way". That is entirely untrue seeing as how judo is anything but. A more realistic translation would be "the flexible way"

No comments: