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During the 1980s and after the fall of Communism the interest in the folk martial arts was reawakened. Through ethnographic study, many new styles based on the folk styles appeared. The two most famous new styles of that era are Russian All-Round Fighting, which is based on the styles of old Cossack saber fencing and on Soviet era styles, and Buza3 which is based on the old local village fights and dances.
Russian fist fighting (Russian - Кулачный бой Kulachniy boy "fist fighting, pugilism) is the traditional bare-knuckle boxing of Russia. The earliest accounts concerning the sport date to the 13th century.4
Sambo (Russian: са́мбо, IPA: [ˈsambə]; САМозащита Без Оружия) is a Russian martial art and combat sport.56 The word "SAMBO" is an acronym for SAMozashchita Bez Oruzhiya, which literally translates as "self-defense without weapons". Sambo is relatively modern since its development began in the early 1920s by the Soviet Red Army to improve their hand-to-hand combat abilities.5 Intended to be a merger of the most effective techniques of other martial arts, Sambo has roots in Japanese Judo, international styles of wrestling, plus traditional folk styles of wrestling such as: Armenian Kokh, Georgian Chidaoba, Romanian Trîntǎ, Tatar Köräş, Uzbek Kurash, Mongolian Khapsagay and Azerbaijani Gulesh.
The pioneers of Sambo were Viktor Spiridonov and Vasili Oshchepkov. Oshchepkov died in prison as a result of the political purges of 1937 after accusations of being a Japanese spy. Oshchepkov spent much of his life living in Japan and training in judo under its founder Kano Jigoro. The two Russians independently developed two different styles which eventually cross-pollinated and became what is known as Sambo. Compared to Oshchepkov's judo-based system, then called "Freestyle Wrestling," Spiridonov's style was softer and less strength dependent. This was in large part due to Spiridonov's injuries sustained during World War I.7
Anatoly Kharlampiev, a student of Vasili Oshchepkov, is often considered the founder of Sport Sambo. In 1938, it was recognized as an official sport by the USSR All-Union Sports Committee.
- Russian martial art history
- Russian Martial Arts
- Russian martial art - Buza
- Russian Fist Fighting. "Летописцы наши говорят об ней, еще в начале XIII в. [Our sources talked about it already at the 13th century.]"
- Schneiderman, R.M. (June 19, 2010). "Once-Secret Martial Art Rises in Ring’s Bright Lights". the New York Times.
- "Once-secret KGB martial art fights for recognition". Time Live. Retrieved December 4, 2010.
- Виктор Афанасьевич Спиридонов (Viktor Spiridonov) – biography at peoples.ru (in Russian)