As my jiu jitsu students from glendora and diamond bar and staff know, I spent this summer traveling to enrich my martial arts and personal education. In may, I went to Italy for a 3 day camp where we focused on spreading Brazilian Jiu Jitsu into Europe. After that I went To Azerbaijan to train and learn the ancient Persian martial arts, Zurkhaneh, or simply known as club bells. This art is very different than Indian Clubs, and older too. I also traveled to Israel to learn Krav Maga. Finally, I came back to the US to learn Kali and Silat which are Filipino martial arts focused on stick and knife fighting.
This article is going to focus on Zurkhaneh, the martial arts I learned in Italy. Zurkhaneh started with the Persian soldiers who found that it was very difficult to train with swords because swords are heavy and can seriously hurt your partner. They switched to clubs in order to improve strength, core strength, and mobility. It was very nice to finally go to Azerbaijan where I had a chance to learn Zurkhaneh.
Training with my Coach Khayyam Orujov
Zurkhaneh actually has 6 different styles or modalities in it. One style uses the Sang shield, another with a bow and arrow, There is another style that uses the clubs/meels and another that focuses on freestyle wrestling. They have team competition as well as individual competitions where the participants have to use very heavy club bells/meels and the men, usually the strongest in the team and sometimes the heaviest, have to do the exercise until they quit.
There is yet another style that includes juggling. Finally, there is another style of Zurkhaneh where the participant performs several spins in the air with his arms open, imitating a fight with many opponents.
Learning about these different styles of martial arts was very interesting. Though Zurkhaneh is very old and different from Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, many things can still be taken from the art to supplement Brazilian Jiu Jitsu training such as its focus on fitness and strong ties to martial arts. I’m really happy that I was introduced to the sport and to bring it to our students so they can learn more.
If you want to be a part of our Sampa family and to learn Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Muy Thai, Kickboxing, Krav Maga, or Self Defense from us, please call (626)335-4971 to reach our Glendora location or (626)977-1050 for our Walnut location.