I am sure some of you all can fact check this How Karate Stole its Kicks video

Its interesting to me, cause largely I believe in convergent evolution when it comes to techniques in Martial arts as opposed to what is being talked about in the video.
However he makes some interesting points and provides reasonable evidence.


Savat, the art of no guard, or so it would seem

Savate developed its own kata, and when it met Japanese kata, material was shared. When you think about it, it’s always the result of a good martial artist recognizing good techniques.

I was pretty curious about this after watching the video, so I found a nice paper by Jean-François Loudcher on the history of Savate. I believe he agrees with the idea of a convergent evolution of martial arts. He wrote that some people say that Savate was based on ancient Greek martial arts or Asian martial arts, but those hypotheses are maybe wrong and cannot be proven anyway. He believes the “Asian origin” theory must have been put forward in the 1960’s during the “popular Asian wave of martial arts”, and that there is documented evidence of the creation of fighting methods in ancient Greece, 18th century Laos and Hawaii, and 19th century Thailand, but no connection can be established between any of those and Savate.

Loudcher’s paper doesn’t talk much about Karate. Maybe he does in a following article, but I couldn’t find any yet. Will post if I find anything.

Anyway, I believe Jesse’s hypothesis makes sense. He should write a scientific paper about that.

You mean other than the Silk Road?

All martial arts originate from Africa.


That’s what Loudcher said. I very much prefer the irrefutable evidence of Chinese kungfu being practiced in medieval England provided in the documentary King Arthur: Legend of the sword, starring Charlie Hunnam and Jude Law.


I don’t know if any martial art can be said to “steal” anything.

On average, your regular martial artists have the same number of limbs that have the same degrees of motion. There’s only so many motions a human body can reasonably make, so naturally there’s overlap with all these arts.

Saying “your art stole from mine” is just posturing.

The video is pretty accurate about the fact that Gichin Funakoshi’s son was a fan of Savate and did adopt and adapt Savate kicks

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Actually they had guards back then its just that they where way diffrent

How does this explain Muay Thai, the art of eight limbs?

Why do people care so much about mostly useless stuff like this?

Limbs upon limbs.

It’s limbs all the way down.

And if karate is thought to have stolen it’s kicks from Savate, and Savate is descended from Jeu de Marseille, which is descended from a game that French sailors played in the 1800s - then karate is descended from whomever the French were doing maritime trade with in the 1800s. Which I’m sure is someone in the Far East. Then karate might’ve descended from itself.

The same problem exists with sumo. Some folks say sumo is just Mongolian wrestling, but if you factor how many wrestlers and Yokozuna have been Mongolian you end up with an endless loop.

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I also read somewhere on the internet that Karate kicks were copied from Savate which is known as french martial art. A Japanese sensei used it to revolutionize Karate.

I also heard that the Japanese were taught Judo by two Cornish tin miners that were shipwrecked in 1739