Eddie Goldman is the host and producer of the No Holds Barred international podcast, the publisher of the No Holds Barred blog, and a senior contributing editor at the ADCC News.

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Sunday, April 01, 2012

No Holds Barred: Joel Resnick of RUFF, Martial Arts and MMA in China, World Martial Arts Show Rocks the Bronx 

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman discusses the successful World Martial Arts Show in the Bronx on Saturday, the connection between traditional martial arts and mixed martial arts, and the link of all of these with China, and interviews Joel Resnick, president and co-founder of the MMA company RUFF, based in Shanghai, China.

The World Martial Arts Show and Battle of the Dojos Extravaganza took place Saturday, March 31, at the famed Paradise Theater in the Bronx, New York. After martial arts tournaments during the daytime, the activities in the evening featured a martial arts, music, dance, and fashion show, as well as the presentation of the Life Arts Award to martial artist and actor Michael Jai White. Among the topics commented upon are how the mainstream media ignored this well-attended event, how it was enthusiastically received by its largely African-American and Latino audience, the fashion show which included a wearing of hoodies in tribute to slain African-American teenager Trayvon Martin, the different styles of striking and grappling on this show, the remarks by Michael Jai White, the relationship this event showed between the traditional martial arts and MMA and boxing, and, first and foremost, its importance to the youth.

Many of the organizers of this event are also involved with the practice of Chinese Shotokan Karate. Thus examined briefly is some of the history of how karate originated in China, the relation between traditional martial arts and MMA in China, including the practice of shoubo, a form of no-holds-barred weaponless fighting some 23 centuries ago, and more recent developments in the People's Republic of China.

This leads us into our interview with Joel Resnick, the president and co-founder of RUFF (Ranik Ultimate Fighting Federation). We recorded it by Skype last Tuesday Shanghai time (Monday New York time).

"In a couple of years, the best fighters are going to be coming out of China," said Joel Resnick in this interview. "Like every other sport, when they get behind it and they really want it, they're going go get it."

We discussed how he got to China from Canada, why they just want to focus on running events in China, how RUFF is the only professional MMA organization sanctioned by the Chinese government through the Wushu Administrative Center which is the governing body of Chinese combat sports, why they adopted the North American unified rules, prefight medicals and fighter safety issues, their plans for a series of fights leading to title fights to crown China's first MMA national champions, their plans for TV and video, and much, much more.

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