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Fighting For Fun


In the Brazilian martial art of capoeira, a match is like a dance between opponents. Players trick and tease each other with feints before delivering aggressive kicks and graceful flips, all to the rhythm of clapping, string and percussion music.

At no time do any blows land, since dodging is part of the game. Some accounts of the history of capoeira, which is at least 400 years old, say its dance nature was a means to hide its combat potential. African slaves in Brazil originally practiced the art to entertain as well as to protect themselves.

There was a time - around the end of the 19th century - when capoeira was outlawed. In 1920s, Mestre (Master) Bimba set up the first capoeira academy and helped bring about the mainstream acceptance of the art. Combining Brazilian music and dance, capoeira is today an integral part of the Brazilian culture.

T.A.G, Paintball or Crossfire

Why not do something different for this year's office get-together and shoot your colleague to sales? The game is called paintball, and it is a combination of hide-and-seek and tag - but for grown-ups.

Run, hide and leopard-crawl through and around the obstacles as you seek to achieve your mission, while eliminating your opponent from the game with a well-aimed splat from your paintball gun. Those interested can check out either T.A.G. Paintball or Crossfire. The latter offers M-16 paintball guns!

Brazilian jiu jitsu

Brazilian jiu jitsu (BJJ) is a ground fighting art created by Gracie family, descendants of Brazilian politician Gastao Gracie. Proponents of BJJ say it allows a smaller person to overcome a larger opponent, as the techniques focus on areas like takedowns, chokes, joint manipulation and body positioning.

You use leverage, space, weight displacement and technical efficiency to overcome an opponent, rather then using weight and brute strength. Much of BJJ's effectiveness depends on "feel", especially when two people are locked in a tight grapple..

Muay Thai

In Muay Thai or Thai boxing, every part of the body is a weapon. It is the national sport of Thailand, and is also known as the science of eight limbs, since practitioners use body parts like fists, elbows, knees and feet as weapons. Started as a battlefield close-combat skill in the territorial struggles over 500 years ago, it evolved into a sport that kings and commoners alike enjoy in Thailand today.

Modern variations of Muay Thai offer differing emphases on the technique and fitness aspects, and attract people interested in either self-defence or in getting a good cardio workout. It is a great beginner's martial art as the techniques are simple to execute and improve the coordination needed for other martial arts training.


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