Kapu Kuialua

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Lua
Hawaiian lua (1899).jpg
Also known as Kapu Kuʻialua, Kuʻialua
Focus Joint manipulation
Country of origin Hawaii Kingdom Of Hawai'i
Descendant arts Danzan-ryū
Olympic sport No

Kapu Kuʻialua; Kuʻialua; or just Lua; is an ancient Hawaiian martial art based on bone breaking, joint locks, throws, pressure point manipulation, strikes, usage of various weapons, battlefield strategy, open ocean warfare as well as the usage of introduced firearms from the Europeans.[1]

History[edit]

Origin and ancient use[edit]

A caste system and various martial arts were introduced to the Hawaiian Islands by Tahitian colonists, who arrived in the 1300s. The Koa warrior group are credited by Black Belt magazine as the creators of the martial art of Kuʻialua.[2]

The name "Kuʻialua" literally means "two hits". That name was subsequently given to the god of this martial art. Only those associated with the aliʻi (nobility), such as professional warriors, guardsmen, and members of the royal families, were generally taught Kuʻialua. During times of warfare, the makaʻāinana (commoners) were also instructed in the basic movements and functions of the martial art.[citation needed] The old warriors of this art would coat themselves with a thin layer of coconut oil and remove all of their body hair in order to be able to slip away and avoid being grappled in battle. The word for Lua masters, ʻōlohe, literally means "hairless".[citation needed]

The Koa helped Kamehameha the Great unify the islands in 1810. Lua was only to be practiced by the king’s honor guards, and others were forbidden to learn it. [2] The word "kapu," meaning "forbidden", is a part of the old name.[2]

Modern times[edit]

While living on Oʻahu, Kamehameha established three Lua schools (called pā kuʻialua) to help prevent extinction of this art. One was instructed by Hāhākea, another by Nāmakaimi, and another by Nāpuaʻuki and his assistants. This last, probably the most prominent one, taught 24 boys, including Kekūanāoʻa and John Papa ʻĪʻī of Kamehameha's court.[citation needed]

Some of the techniques used in lua were incorporated into danzan-ryū karate, which was developed in Hilo by Henry Okazaki in the 1920s.[2]

Introducing the sport to America in 1963,[2] Õlohe Solomon Kaihewalu brought the sport public in the 1960s, a controversial act, as previously the martial art had not been taught to outsiders.[3][4][5]

Style specifics[edit]

Hawaiian wrestling matches during Makahiki

The style of the martial art is based on bone breaking, joint locks, throws, pressure point manipulation, strikes, usage of various weapons, battlefield strategy, open ocean warfare as well as the usage of introduced firearms from the Europeans.[1]

The modern form of this art has been adjusted to suit modern times; however, the traditional spirit of the art remains intact. Weapons used by natives of the Hawaiian Islands may have been focused on primarily in the art at one time, as it is said the fighter who loses his weapons should then resort to the hand-to-hand stylings of Kuʻialua.

Training methods[edit]

Training methods include spear catching, training in the surf, and focus of "mana" or life force. This energy is described much like chi or ki in Chinese or Japanese martial arts. Exercises are used to focus this energy much like the exercise of chi kung.[6]

Weapons[edit]

  • Hoe - Canoe paddle
  • Hoe Leiomano - Paddle, shark tooth weapon
  • Ihe - Short spear with barbed edges or straight point (up to 9 ft or 2.7 m staff)
  • Kaʻane - Garrote (strangling cord)
  • Koʻokoʻo - Staffs (long and short)
    • Koʻokoʻo Loa (6 ft or 1.8 m staff)
    • Koʻokoʻo Pōkole (4 ft or 1.2 m staff)
  • Kuʻekuʻe Lima Leiomanō - Knuckle duster weapon
  • Leiomanō - Shark tooth weapon
  • Maʻa - Sling
  • Maka Pāhoa - Double-edge (eye) dagger
  • Newa - Short (small) club
  • Pahi - Knife
  • Pāhoa - Single-edge dagger
  • Pāhoa Koʻokoʻo - Cane double-edge dagger

Modern references[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Discover Lua, Hawaii's Martial Art". Black Belt magazine. 2011-03-21. Retrieved 2011-04-08. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Kapu Kuialua Techniques | Lua Hawaiian Martial Arts Training | Self-Defense Styles – - Black Belt". blackbeltmag.com. Retrieved 2017-02-14. 
  3. ^ "Discover Lua, Hawaii's Martial Art – Black Belt Magazine". blackbeltmag.com. Retrieved 2017-02-15. 
  4. ^ Frank, B. (2013). WHFSC Grandmaster's Council: a compendium of the world's leading Grandmasters. LULU Press. p. 301. ISBN 9781300575672. Retrieved 2017-02-14. 
  5. ^ Black Belt. Active Interest Media, Inc. p. 36. ISSN 0277-3066. Retrieved 2017-02-14. 
  6. ^ Warriors, History Channel program, aired: 21 August 2008

Further reading[edit]