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Bando: Burma's Art of the Boar
Part 1: Bando--A Fearsome Fighting Art
Bando is one of those martial arts that a lot of people have heard of, but don't really know what it's all about. In this feature, we'll discuss bando's origins, major precepts, and combat effectiveness.
maunggyi_bamboo.jpg (18242 bytes)
Dr. Maung Gyi, credited with introducing bando to the USA, demonstrates a bamboo staff technique while training a group of US Army Rangers. Gyi is currently under criticism for allegedly exaggerating his military record. For details, see Page 3. Photo by U.S. Army, Fort Benning.
 More of this Feature
• Part 2: Animal Forms
• Part 3: Controversy
 Related Resources
• Martial Arts: Bando
• Martial Arts: Muay Thai

The nation of Burma, now known as Myanmar, borders India, China, and Thailand, and as a result possesses a rich martial arts heritage. As with the fabled Shaolin Temple of China, Buddhist monks from India introduced the martial arts into the country a thousand years ago. Later, Chinese styles filtered their way south, merging with earlier influences to form the martial body of knowledge collectively known as thaing. Thaing includes both unarmed arts, of which bando is the most widely known, as well as arts of the sword, staff, and spear. Other unarmed arts include naban, or wrestling, and lethwei, or Burmese boxing. Naban, derived from the strong heritage of Indian wrestling, and Burmese boxing, considered more powerful than Thai boxing, were both powerful arts. So why is bando more widely known today?

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