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

Written by: Eddie Goldman
No Holds Barred with Eddie.jpgNo Holds Barred with Eddie.jpg

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldmandiscusses the successful World Martial Arts Show in the Bronx on Saturday, the connectionbetween traditional martial arts and mixed martial arts, and the link of all ofthese with China, and interviews Joel Resnick, president and co-founder of theMMA company RUFF (,based in Shanghai, China.

The World Martial Arts Show and Battle of the Dojos Extravaganza took placeSaturday, March 31, at the famed Paradise Theater in the Bronx, New York. Aftermartial arts tournaments during the daytime, the activities in the eveningfeatured a martial arts, music, dance, and fashion show, as well as thepresentation of the Life Arts Award to martial artist and actor Michael JaiWhite. Among the topics commented upon are how the mainstream media ignoredthis well-attended event, how it was enthusiastically received by its largelyAfrican-American and Latino audience, the fashion show which included a wearingof hoodies in tribute to slain African-American teenager Trayvon Martin, thedifferent styles of striking and grappling on this show, the remarks by MichaelJai White, the relationship this event showed between the traditional martialarts 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 ofChinese Shotokan Karate. Thus examined briefly is some of the history of howkarate originated in China, the relation between traditional martial arts andMMA in China, including the practice of shoubo (手搏), a form of no-holds-barredweaponless fighting some 23 centuries ago, and more recent developments in thePeople's Republic of China.

This leads us into our interview with Joel Resnick, the president and co-founderof RUFF (Ranik Ultimate Fighting Federation). We recorded it by Skype last TuesdayShanghai 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 theyget 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 onrunning events in China, how RUFF is the only professional MMA organizationsanctioned by the Chinese government through the Wushu Administrative Centerwhich is the governing body of Chinese combat sports, why they adopted theNorth American unified rules, prefight medicals and fighter safety issues,their plans for a series of fights leading to title fights to crown China'sfirst MMA national champions, their plans for TV and video, and much, muchmore.

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