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Top 5 Crazy Martial Arts Myths

VO: Ashley Bowman
Written by George Pacheco No you don’t, Neo. Welcome to WatchMojo's Top 5 Myths. In today's installment we'll be looking at the 5 myths about Martial Arts that had us chopping wooden boards of bullshit. Special thanks to our user Ashjbow for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest

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Written by George Pacheco

Top 5 Martial Arts Myths

No you don’t, Neo. Welcome to WatchMojo's Top 5 Myths.
In today's installment we'll be looking at the 5 myths about Martial Arts that had us chopping wooden boards of bullshit.

#5: There is a "Death Blow" which can kill with a single touch

You've seen them performed in martial arts movies old and new; the "Touch of Death" which can kill a man with a single blow.
This idea is also referred to often as "Dim Mak," a concept derived primarily around attacking specific pressure points on the body, in order to incapacitate or kill an opponent.
In reality, however, the idea of actually suffering instant death from Dim Mak is one that has no real evidence – only tall tales and pop culture fantasies.
Perhaps the myth stems from the slender martial arts practitioners of old, who could often suffer severe broken bones or internal injuries from a strong, hip-thrown blow known as the "reverse punch."
Of course, it’s possible that throwing a punch at someone in just the right spot there is a chance of them dying, but there’s no one technique that’ll work on anybody at any time – and there certainly wont be any head explosions.

#4: A martial arts master can take any large groups of opponents at once

The practice of anticipating one opponent's move is challenging enough for even the most highly trained martial artist, but fighting against a large group of opponents who all attack at once makes it highly unlikely that even the most skilled fighter will come out on top.
Again, this is a myth, which is probably perpetuated by kung-fu and action movies, many of which depict an invincible hero squaring off against hordes of foes who inexplicably attack one by one.
The fact is that most martial arts focus on a one-on-one competition, and therefore it would be hard to employee into this kind of scenario.
What’s more, there is no code of honor in a street fight because well, it’s a street fight.
And with rules out the window, you’ll be quite lucky if you’re not on the receiving end of a lead pipe.

#3: You can push the nose bone into the brain with a punch

Ahh yes, the classic technique where you shove one’s nose right up their skulls and pierce the brain for a quick, bloody kill.
Well luckily, this one's only a myth, as the human nose is primarily made up of soft cartilage, giving it a malleable texture that is unable to stab through our cerebral cortex from a single blow.
Nasal bones are located within the bridge of our noses and aren't long enough to reach our brains and puncture them, no matter how much pressure is applied by an attacker.
This idea may look cool or effective in books or on the silver screen, but that's about as far as this myth can fly.
So, while many martial artists may get their noses busted in a particularly brutal bout, fear not because it’s not gonna kill’em…if they stop bleeding.

#2: All Black Belts are masters

So you've put in the hard work and dedication to receive your first degree black belt in karate. Time to kick your feet up now that you’re at the peak of martial arts mastery, right? Wrong.
The truth is that a black belt simply serves as the foundation for a lifetime of learning. It's the equivalent of graduating to the point where the mind is open to learning all of the concepts behind one's chosen martial arts discipline, an "advanced beginner," so to speak. There are actually multiple levels and grades of black belt after the first degree, with many martial arts instructors holding true to the idea that it takes at least a third degree black belt to become a teacher, or "sensei" to a group of students. So you have much to learn, grasshopper.

#1: All martial arts come from Shaolin Temples

We've discussed martial arts cinema quite a bit within this episode, and with good reason, for action-packed kung-fu flicks have been capturing the imaginations of fans since they exploded in popularity during the 1970s.
Unfortunately, the popularity of martial arts movies have also led to an abundance of myths behind the art form, with our number one pick being the misconception that the roots of all martial arts can be traced back to the Shaolin Temples.
It's true that the monks from China's Shaolin Monastery were instrumental in developing and exporting martial arts ideas to the world-specifically with regards to staff techniques -but other disciplines such as India's Kalaripayattu and Pankration from Greece possess rich cultural histories of their own, with some even pre-dating Shaolin.
The truth is that different countries developed their own unique forms of martial arts in response to demanded conditions, and as such embrace unique origins which are as diverse as the art itself.

So how many of these myths did you believe? For more Round-house kicking top tens and five-finger death punching top fives, be sure to subscribe to!

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