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Thread: ARMA anyone

  1. #1
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    ARMA anyone

    Are there any ARMA members out there, does anyone know if this is a group that can truly help me better myself in the study of WMA.
    Valhalla awaits

  2. #2
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    I'm not a member (Japanese Sword Arts), but I know one who thinks very highly of the group. Their website is an amazing repository for information. They were featured in a History Channel episode - Modern Marvels: Axes, Swords, and Knives. Pretty amazing fencing with all sorts of swords. Take a look through the site and check out some of the seminars, meetings, etc. Some very interesting stuff.
    Ron

  3. #3
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    Go on to their webasite: www.thearma.org and read all you can. Visit their forums and ask around there if there is a study group near you.

  4. #4
    Arma is a controversial group.
    1

  5. #5
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    Originally posted by George Hill
    Arma is a controversial group.
    As are many other respectable groups and organizations.

    I don't recall any recent issues with them though. Also I think that one of the main reasons that ARMA is considered "controversial" on this forum is because there are a lot of Chicago Swordplay Guild members here, which is a group that broke off from them with no shortage of resentments on both sides.

    I've never seen WMA uglier than when there's infighting between different groups.

    I say let sleeping dogs lie. Mr. Hall, if there's an ARMA group near you, then by all means look into it!
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    -Benjamin Franklin-

  6. #6
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    Caleb,

    Precisely how does your speculation about ARMA and the CSG qualify as "letting sleeping dogs lie"?

    Christian
    Christian Henry Tobler
    Selohaar Fechtschule

    The Chivalric Fighting Arts Association

    Freelance Academy Press: Books on Western Martial Arts and Historical Swordsmanship

    Author, Captain of the Guild, DVD: The Poleaxe, In Saint George's Name

    "Though I love the stout blow and the cunningly placed thrust, my greatest joy when crossing swords lies in those rare moments when Chivalry herself leans over and takes one into Her confidence."

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by Christian H. Tobler
    Caleb,

    Precisely how does your speculation about ARMA and the CSG qualify as "letting sleeping dogs lie"?

    Christian
    I'm providing context for why people on this forum often assert ARMA as controversial.

    Also, it's not speculation that CSG was once a branch of ARMA and broke off, I learned this story the hard way when I tried to become a member of both. To be frank, it saddened me how catty the whole bit between them is. WMA's tough enough without the politics.

    Why are you automatically assuming that it's speculation? I find it ironic that you are speculating that I am speculating.

    Feel free to PM me if you don't believe me.
    Last edited by Caleb Hallgren; 04-30-2006 at 08:43 PM.
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    -Benjamin Franklin-

  8. #8
    Originally posted by Caleb Hallgren
    I'm providing context for why people on this forum often assert ARMA as controversial.

    Also, it's not speculation that CSG was once a branch of ARMA and broke off, I learned this story the hard way when I tried to be a member of both.

    Why are you automatically assuming that it's speculation? I find it ironic that you are speculating that I am speculating.
    Caleb, there are other reasons it's controversial. I will not go into detail here. The reason for that is that I have been politely asked not to by the moderators. I will respect their wishes and do everything I can to avoid the flame wars I accidently lit during my first week or two here.

    What always happens is that someone asks about ARMA. If anyone has anything to say that isn't good, a flame war will start. In order to prevent flame wars, those who do not agree that ARMA is wonderful will say something quiet which gets the point across that ARMA does not enjoy universal respect.

    At that point it moves into private messages, and flame wars are averted, and everyone can make their own choices free from screaming and comments about parentage.
    1

  9. #9
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    Originally posted by George Hill
    Caleb, there are other reasons it's controversial. I will not go into detail here. The reason for that is that I have been politely asked not to by the moderators. I will respect their wishes and do everything I can to avoid the flame wars I accidently lit during my first week or two here.

    What always happens is that someone asks about ARMA. If anyone has anything to say that isn't good, a flame war will start. In order to prevent flame wars, those who do not agree that ARMA is wonderful will say something quiet which gets the point across that ARMA does not enjoy universal respect.

    At that point it moves into private messages, and flame wars are averted, and everyone can make their own choices free from screaming and comments about parentage.
    I can understand that I suppose, I just dislike WMA politics a great deal although I'm sure I've been exposed to less of it than a great deal of people on this forum.

    I think the main difficulty comes when one criticizes a person/group that actively participates in this forum. The same goes for criticism of swordmakers who are on this forum. As soon as one person makes a less-than-friendly statement about a retailer, group, smith, etc. things go downhill fast.

    Perhaps the best policy for people/groups on this forum is "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all", despite the lack of sincerity fostered.
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    -Benjamin Franklin-

  10. #10
    Originally posted by Caleb Hallgren

    Perhaps the best policy for people/groups on this forum is "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all", despite the lack of sincerity fostered.
    Perhaps, but the other side of that is that people get the impression that something is universially held as good due to the lack of dissenting opinion.
    1

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by George Hill
    Perhaps, but the other side of that is that people get the impression that something is universially held as good due to the lack of dissenting opinion.
    True, which makes a plastic-smiley-face policy unnatractive at times.

    The thing about it though is that SFI is here to foster a friendly exchange of ideas. Because people can be very sensitive, sometimes people have to set aside their misgivings in the name of peace. It just happens a lot more in the Pub than the HES forum.
    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

    -Benjamin Franklin-

  12. #12
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    Where?

    Jonathan... There are several very fine groups you could train with in California... It would help if people knew where in California you were.

    Your mileage with ARMA is probably going to vary widely depending on who is running the local group. Persoallyy I have little interaction with them as I am unaware of an active group out here. (The website shows a group formed in Portland last year but I havn't heard anything out of them)

    Anyhow - Tattershall and Scholla St George are the two large active organizations out in California. There is also the Davenriche academy down in the Bay Area. Just to name a few groups.

    There are also a couple of very good WMA groups connected to the faires. Bankeside School of Defense comes to mind.
    Last edited by Jeff Richardson; 04-30-2006 at 10:37 PM.

  13. #13
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    Hi Jonathan,

    I am an ARMA member and I have gained a lot from being one. I feel that ARMA is a great place to train, learn and grow in the study of rennaissance martial arts. As you can see by some of the responces you have received, this may not be the best forum to gain an insight to ARMA and it's members. Without trying to be disrespectful to anyone, I would like to say that in the past there have been disagreements that have led to axes being ground by people on both sides and that bitter feelings still exist with some. If you would like to know more about ARMA, gaining membership, and about the possability of a study group, or starting your own study group. The best place to learn more will probably be over at the ARMA forum rather than here on SFI. Be sure to log in with your full name and lots of us would be happy to help you anyway we can. I do know that there are some members in California, but I am not sure off the top of my head where they are located. John Clements is the one who would know all of that for sure.

    Thanks for your inquiry into our fine organization and if I can help answer any questions you have, fire away.

    Brian Hunt

    ARMA member
    GFS

  14. #14
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    Originally posted by Caleb Hallgren
    Why are you automatically assuming that it's speculation? I find it ironic that you are speculating that I am speculating.
    Maybe the fact that you used these words: "Also I think that one of the main reasons ..."

    When you *think* you know the reasons for tension, and you don't *know*, you're engaging in speculation.

    I'm well aware of CSG's origins (which started independently, and was *briefly* affiliated with HACA, btw). In fact, I know the story far better than you do.

    Your speculation lies in your appearing to know some 'behind the scenes' reasons for tension between the two groups and that this might explain some general climate here. Again, you haven't the breadth of knowledge to say these things, so please don't. It's inflammatory and frankly, broad brush to the point of inaccuracy.

    Postulating *why* there might be unrest is dredging up trouble, not letting sleeping dogs lie. If you can't see that, then I really don't know what to tell you.

    Someone asked about ARMA. Someone else was kind enough to point them in the right direction for more information. The thread could, and should, have ended right then and there.

    Christian
    Christian Henry Tobler
    Selohaar Fechtschule

    The Chivalric Fighting Arts Association

    Freelance Academy Press: Books on Western Martial Arts and Historical Swordsmanship

    Author, Captain of the Guild, DVD: The Poleaxe, In Saint George's Name

    "Though I love the stout blow and the cunningly placed thrust, my greatest joy when crossing swords lies in those rare moments when Chivalry herself leans over and takes one into Her confidence."

  15. #15
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    Well said, Christian.

    The statement "Also I think that one of the main reasons that ARMA is considered "controversial" on this forum is because there are a lot of Chicago Swordplay Guild members here, which is a group that broke off from them with no shortage of resentments on both sides" is equivalent to kicking the sleeping dog and pouring cold water on his head.

    If I didn't know the story (which I do), I would infer by this that CSG is a petty organization that doesn't play well with others.

    Tom
    Last edited by Tom Leoni; 05-01-2006 at 07:40 AM.

  16. #16
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    Caleb, your speculation is wrong. The reasons why ARMA is controversial have nothing to do with CSG (who were never a branch of ARMA). There is no infighting. There are hundreds of WMA groups around the world that co-operate perfectly and attend each other's events. By contrast, one group, ARMA chooses to isolate itself from the rest of the WMA community which seems to suit everyone just fine. Please do not stir up old issues which you know nothing about and which can only lead to unpleasantness.

  17. #17
    Hello Jonathon,

    My advice when a student considers joining any group is to do some research about the organization and the people involved. Different groups have different cultures and levels of expertise. I also strongly encourage a prospective student to critically evaluate the credentials and behavior of an instructor before making a serious commitment to any organization.

    For example, if an instructor has written a book, you could look over the reviews of the book to see how well it was received. You can google the author's name or try typing it into the search feature of a site like Amazon.com.

    If you would like some assistance finding a group to train with in the Northern California area, feel free to contact me.
    Puck Curtis
    Master at Arms - San Jose Fencing Master's Program

    Spanish Swordplay
    Destreza Translation and Research Project

    Italian Swordplay
    ViaHup.Com

  18. #18
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    Ventura

    He says he is in Ventura California.
    Looking int the groups I named above would be my best advice. They all have websites.

    Jeff

  19. #19
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    Re: Ventura

    Originally posted by Jeff Richardson
    He says he is in Ventura California.
    Looking int the groups I named above would be my best advice. They all have websites.

    Jeff
    Well, Ventura is kind of between all of those. SSG and Davenriche are both up in the San Francisco Bay area. Tattershall and Bankeside are both in the southern and eastern parts of the Los Angeles area. Jonathan is probably closest to the Tattershall folks, who are in the southern L.A./northern Orange county area. As far as I know, there is no ARMA study group in either the Ventura or L.A. areas, though I believe there may be one or two members here. There is a new group just starting up in the North Hollywood area, and they may actually be the closest to him, and they concentrate on German medieval systems. There should be a post about them in the Practice Partner Forum.

    Chris Vivo
    Last edited by Christian Vivo; 05-01-2006 at 01:49 PM.
    Christian Vivo
    Academy of European Fighting Arts

    'The exercising of weapons puts away aches, griefs, and diseases, it increases strength, and sharpens the wits.' - George Silver

  20. #20
    Greetings from Denmark!

    If I we're you I would also do some research on the different groups that you consider joining. Some have a strict hierarchy with lots of "all kneel and praise" and other groups are more loose in this. Some work after the idea "My way or no way", and other groups take the time to talk about new ideas. It is all up to the kind of person that you are. There seem to be plenty of each kind of groups out there.
    But I hope that all the disputes that your question has caused among others do not scare you away from Historical European Swordsmanship.

    Best Wishes

    Claus Sørensen
    Medieval archaeologist
    Member of the studygroup "Laurentiusgildet"
    Denmark

  21. #21
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    Lightbulb ARMA

    I remember when all the contraversial events started in a "time long ago." I remember some of you, my friends who kept my email tied up with grumbling about this or that individual. First and foremost it is important to understand that many of you on this forum (some ARMA members, some not) were not contributing at the time. NOTE: Some of you Internet Masters were not around either) In fact there were not many of the groups around at all that were as scolarly as today. So some of you are really not informed enough to make anything but heresay remarks anyway, so maybe listen !
    What caused some of the division was intensity of personalities, intrepretation of the manuals, and teaching ethics. Add a dose of feelings that one 'system' is superior to another and the stage was set for some rampant personal attacks on the ethics and methods of certain groups and most of the time certain people. Take that and add a few trolls that always agged things on and you have about 2-3 years with everyone fighting with each other. You might say we took a lesson from some of the Asian Martial Arts and tried to " Eat our own." To avoid this 'killing field' some of us placed our focus on the 18th & 19th Century in order to breathe some fresh air and get away from the '****' slinging . There really was a grand attmept to tie all this together where annually everyone would come together to swap ideas in a team building aspect. Although that symposium is still around it is now a very small representation of what it was intended to have been. Personal agendas and power plays took care of all that. Unfortunately there was an outside influence that really was interested in seeing this whole thing fail because they were losing a market that had been exclusively their's over decades. They still like to 'pee' in the punch bowl. Thoughout all this, ARMA split-off to run their own program and follow thier own agenda. As I told their director one time, you might say they "circled the wagons" and placed their focus on the members. At the time I thought this was a bad idea, but now it may have been the best for everyone. The waters have finally calmed over all this and as you see by the posts on this net there seems to be a sensitivity to not letting this stuff surface again. That is probably good.
    I think ARMA wears their contraversial badge with pride now because when it really boils down to it I would prefer to think of the good things that ARMA has done rather than some of the negative political actions that a few people took to defend themselves. You see I'm being nice in this post and very general because the things that were done and said were far, far worse.

    To help answer the mail: There is an ARMA group near me. They are great people that take their training protocols 'outside the box' and work pretty 'close to the edge' as far as intensity and training safety is concerned. This IS NOT for everyone. You have to keep up your proficiecy up or else you WILL get yourself hurt. Not because they are by nature unsafe but because things are just racheted up a bit closer to reality. Some of it gets risky if you don't stay tuned up. From what I've seen of their programs, if you train hard and consistantly with the ARMA method you will be more than prepared. Don't think you can go once a month to 'Play' Longsword. You are going to get some busted knuckles.
    ARMA has a valid testing program that I've looked at. It is a test! and it is a challange. ARMA is not for everyone. The only reason I do not train with them is because of their Longsword requirements. I just can't stand the weapon. I've got other interests and other martial demands but if I did not I would be over there working with them. I always invite them to my seminars and when it's not a member's only session I usually get invited to theirs.

    BTW to my knowledge CSG was never an ARMA association. Some of their members became ARMA members but CSG has always been a independent far sighted organization that knows how to lead.

    That is about it as far as I remember. Now that there is a measure of 'peace in the valley' it is probably wise to keep those 'flame wars' in the toliet where they belong. We don't need them anymore.

    Best
    Dwight

  22. #22
    Well staying out of the ARMA side of things I happen to be in Ventura and have been looking for training partners out here.
    "I was corrupt before I had power..." Random to Merlin, Trumps of Doom

  23. #23
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    Originally posted by Stephen Hand
    There are hundreds of WMA groups around the world that co-operate perfectly and attend each other's events. By contrast, one group, ARMA chooses to isolate itself from the rest of the WMA community which seems to suit everyone just fine.
    Stephen, you are as guilty of misinformation as Caleb is in the above sweeping statement.
    Europe has lots of ARMA groups who are very much a part of the European WMA scene and there is (as far as I know) no friction here. For instance there are European ARMA groups and members in HEMAC and not in HEMAC.
    Don't tar the Old World with your New World brush please .

    Matt

  24. #24
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    Well, seeing as how Caleb is neither a member of ARMA, or the CSG (for which I am eternally grateful) I'd say his comments as out of line as they were ignorant.

    Jonathan, I would post on the practice partner finder forum here on SFI to find WMA training partners, or if you want info on ARMA specifically, then go check out the ARMA forum.
    Keith Jennings

    Free Scholar, Chicago Swordplay Guild

    Bloodied, but never cry submission.
    Following our instincts, not a trend,
    Go against the grain until the end.

  25. #25
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    We have probably beaten this poor dead horse enough..

    Thread closed.

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