Is systema just a taiji rip off?

Discussion in 'Internal Martial Arts' started by stevieb8006, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. RobP

    RobP Valued Member

    I understand and appreciate your concern. Of course not everything will work in every situation, which is why we tend towards principle approach rather than specific technique. We have experienced grapplers in the class, or people who have come in on other occasions to help out. In any case groundfighting is just one aspect of what we do, personally I tend to favour stand up work, but that's just me. We try out a lot of things, it's one advantage of having people with solid prior experience in the class

    As far as actual incidents go - the vast majority have been stand up. The most recent was one of the guys getting pushed over and put into a headlock. He told me he escaped by relaxing his shoulders, squeezing the other guys throat til he let go, then hitting him. I don't remember that we ever practiced that as a specific technique, more likely he came up with it on the spot.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
  2. RobP

    RobP Valued Member

    I largely agree, though their is some "background" to Kevin's articles.

    Techniques should be an expression of principle and neccessity, not something you learn as part of a syllabus. By the same token people need some guidance in refining principles
  3. PointyShinyBurn

    PointyShinyBurn Valued Member

    Precisely the problem, you don't understand grappling principles, the responses you produce are therefore bad.


    Then why sell DVDs about it?

    Specific defences to the headlock exist and might well have worked better, of course.
  4. RobP

    RobP Valued Member

    We'll just have to agree to disagree :)

    To give people some ideas of the basics that we practice, it fits in alongside the other titles, falling, ground mobility, fear control, etc

    In any case teaching isn't about what I favour, it's about developing people - if neccesary bringing in other people with different areas of expertise

    Worked better? He got the guy off him and escaped without injury. Yep, there are tons of specific defences, but that was what came out for him and it worked fine. Another person, another day, they may have done something else
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
  5. PointyShinyBurn

    PointyShinyBurn Valued Member

    Well, that's every decent grappler in the world on my side and on your side so far there's you.

    Hopefully not, because the things you show are incorrect and the actual basics aren't present.

    Then why not bring people who know what they're talking about to teach that part?

    Half of everyone "wins" a fight. In fact most times both parties escape without serious injury and will, in the pub, claim victory. "He didn't use anything I taught" isn't an advert for your teaching.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
  6. RobP

    RobP Valued Member

    But that's not what I said or implied. He did his work exactly as we do in class, something that a lot of the people who use it have said - "it was just like training"

    I'm glad if other other guy escaped serious injury, sounds like it was just some random idiot. Andy wasn't boasting or "claiming victory in the pub", just telling us what happened. It's all good feedback we can put back into the training - learning to deal with things that actually happen to people
  7. Dead_pool

    Dead_pool the merc with the mouth MAP 2017 Moi Award

    Thanks for the reply.

    Could you gives us a brief rundown of the systema branches and how they came to be?

    Im aware of two major streams

    1) Ryabko - as also taught be Vladimir Vasiliev

    2) Kadochnikov - systema

    3) ROSS?

    Also there is a wiki page -
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
  8. PointyShinyBurn

    PointyShinyBurn Valued Member

    So what does the story prove, again? I'm sorry, but you're still teaching something you have no idea how to do. He wasn't mounted, and he didn't use the escape you teach or the "principles" from that escape.
  9. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

    ROSS's history was always told to me as this:

    And that was from Matt Clempner and Steve Crutchley. It isn't a school of what we know as "Systema"
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
  10. Dead_pool

    Dead_pool the merc with the mouth MAP 2017 Moi Award

    cheers, after a while all those Russian names and acronyms look alike!
  11. Hannibal

    Hannibal Cry HAVOC and let slip the Dogs of War!!! Supporter

    Happy to oblige ;)
  12. MadMonk108

    MadMonk108 JKD/Kali Instructor

  13. inthespirit

    inthespirit ignant

    I’m not a systema practitioner but I will take a stab at this.

    Firstly, I highly doubt there is any “official documentation” available on the web stating that so and so is an official system of a speznaz unit X, Y, etc.

    Secondly, “systema” in Russian just means “system”.

    You, me and pretty much anyone else can say, I train this, this is my “system”. I really don’t think “systema” is a specific system, more like a general term. So anyone’s “system” or “systema” if you like, is just that, their own system/systema.

    Also, I would guess that each unit will have its own “system” to train for whatever they wish to emphasise and/or is emphasized by the unit and/or head of unit. I’m pretty sure there is no one pervasive “systema” used by the numerous speznaz units which normally have varying roles, and even if it was (or wasn’t), why would any of this be in the public domain? What purpose would that serve?

    If Ryabko was a speznaz guy(?) and used his “system”, well that is his system and the one he used to train his unit at that particular time. I don’t really see what the problem is. I highly doubt these things are static, more likely they are constantly evolving and being revised.

    For example, this is (supposedly) the official site of the Saturn detachment of speznaz troops.

    It states as follows:

    Which translates as:

    Note: they use the word “system” to refer to their training, but again, “system” just means “system”.

    I think the question you should be asking is was Ryabko a speznaz soldier, and in what capacity? Did he train the troops in his unit to use his specific system? or was he taught a certain system in that specific unit? Is the system he teaches now the same as what he was taught/or he taught within speznaz unit X? As regards to evidence, I think the closest you may get is a confirmation that Ryabko was indeed a spetznaz troop of unit X. Though, if you do find out what unit he was in, I can have a look online to see if there is any official statement on the "system" that specific unit used.

    Anyhow, maybe RobP has some more concrete answers for you.
  14. Dean Winchester

    Dean Winchester Valued Member

  15. 47MartialMan

    47MartialMan Valued Member

    I hate to quote wiki:
    There is no historical "real name" for these arts, a fact which can lead to some confusion. In a sense, the name "Systema" (the system) can be thought of as a generic title comparable to "kung fu" ("one who is highly skilled" or "time" and "effort").[4][5] The most likely version is that the name Systema was taken from the name given in Russia to a similar martial art before that, the Systema Rukopashnogo Boya (System of hand-to-hand combat)

    A interesting link:
  16. Dead_pool

    Dead_pool the merc with the mouth MAP 2017 Moi Award

  17. MadMonk108

    MadMonk108 JKD/Kali Instructor

    The questions I am asking are direct responses to the statements made by Ryabko Systema practitioners in this thread and elsewhere. If they make the claims, they must provide the proof.

    You won't find any information one which Spetznaz unit Ryabko was in, because Ryabko was never in Spetznaz.
  18. Giovanni

    Giovanni Well-Known Member Supporter

    that website is bollocks. no one should be quoting or linking to it at all. just an advert site for some "real self defense".
  19. inthespirit

    inthespirit ignant

    That's sounds plausible. I don't think if you mentioned 'systema' to any native Russian speaker they would understand it to mean anything specific. Certainly means nothing other than 'system' to me. Plus, it seems in Russian at least, each 'systema' as a martial art is usually in connection with some specific individual and his specific teachings.
  20. 47MartialMan

    47MartialMan Valued Member


    But as Madmonk is trying to point out, I think, is if you state/claim that you train a special/elite force, you need proof of that claim

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