In another thread, Chadderz mentioned the above quote. It seems like an interesting topic. Bluntly, I think the expressed opinion is wrong. I don't have the time tonight to write a proper reply, but I wanted to put something down for the sake of (hopefully) starting some discussion. To begin with, I'd say it's a comment mostly driven by ignorance of history. If you don't accept a division between martial arts and military tactics and methods (which is really a very late concept), it's manifestly wrong. Even accepting that separation, it's easy to find examples of martial arts that have changed dramatically. For example, in my school we practice sword techniques for both armoured and unarmored combat. They are vastly different. Motion, body posture, power application, range, tactics -- there is almost nothing that remains unchanged when going between the two. Historically, the transition from armoured to unarmored styles of techniques happened very rapidly, in the first couple of decades of the Tokugawa period. There's two points that come out of this for me. One Fusen touched on: Rapid changes in martial arts happen when you have rapid changes in circumstances. Pre-Tokugawa, if you were a young badass who wanted to make a reputation, you needed to take heads on the battlefield. Post-Tokugawa, those skills were useless, because reputation came from winning duels. Those duels weren't fought in armour, and if you failed to accommodate that reality into your techniques, then no (good) reputation for you. Similarly, MMA is driven by UFC and its successors. The other point is that everything seems much more significant when it happens to you. The changes between armoured and unarmored kenjutsu are huge to me, because I train them. To an outside perspective? Almost certainly not so much. So the question is: two hundred years from now, when it's the Pan-Galactic Supreme Lightsaber Tournaments where badasses try to make their reputations, are you really sure that people will be able to tell the difference between Chuck Norris and Joe Rogan?