Systema The Hague

at SportMindz -

a unique combination


At SportMindz The Hague, we offer a combination of Russian Systema styles unique in The Netherlands, and maybe even the world. In addition to classes given by Maxim Pipotia, the only official Systema Kadochnikov instructor in The Netherlands,  we also offer classes given by different instructors. In this way, SportMindz offers a combination of Systema Vasiliev, Kadochnikov, ROSS and more. This diversity is supplemented by international seminars on a regular basis, with not only the most well known Dutch instructors, such as Jan Bloem and Arend Dubbelboer, but also internationally renowned names, such as Paul Genge and Alexander Kostic. This enables SportMindz to give you the chance to develop your own Systema style, based on a broad basis of Russian styles, and thus keep your body fit and able to defend itself effectively.


The development of Systema


Systema’s roots lie in the traditional Russian war arts. This country has a rich history of fighting styles, because of her enormous surface area and diversity of ethnic groups. In order to bundle the strengths of these different styles, in the 20s of the last century, the Soviet government sent people out to the far-flung corners of Russia as well as other countries with a strong tradition in the war arts. Subsequently, two styles were developed based on this collection of effective forms of self defence: SAMBO and SAMOZ. SAMBO consisted of two forms: a varient for civilians and a military varient (Combat SAMBO). SAMOZ was only available for commandos and other Special Forces.

The modern Russian martial arts build on the styles described above. One of the pupils of the SAMOZ instructor, Spirodonov,  is Aleksey Kadochnikov. Kadochnikov is seen as the spiritual father of the modern Russian martial arts. He did not only study SAMOZ, but also more traditional Russian arts of war and other styles, such as the method developed to fight in the trenches at Stalingrad.


The ‘Systema’ system of self defence


Systema is a system of self defence originating from Russia and developed for survival in all circumstances. It knows no  ranks or positions, no belts or rules. Instead of working with established techniques, Systema is based on general principles. The most important of these principles are breathing, movement, relaxation and structure. Starting out from the belief that it is impossible to train for specific situations, Systema offers the possibility to see and utilize the opportunities in a given situation, by practising the principles on which all fighting techniques are based. In order to defend yourself in the best possible way in every situation, it is important to have a healthy body. Therefore, Systema pays a lot of attention to the development of the body, so that it may move in an effective and versatile manner.

Kadochnikov developed an elaborate survival system. It encompasses survival in hostile environments, unarmed fighting, fighting with firearms and many other military themes. Within Russia, this style is known as the ‘KGB style’, because he worked for the Soviet Union’s secret service.  Kadochnikov’s system is based on a combination of the principles of biomechanics, the laws of physics and traditional Russian martial arts. The practitioner learns how to apply these principles intuitively, instead of using a known technique in reaction to attack or in counterattacking. This style was termed ‘Systema’ (Russian for ‘The System’) for the first time. The term ‘Systema’ is these days used in broader terms to cover various styles originating from Russia.


Different tendencies


After the fall of the Berlin Wall and the disintigration of the Soviet Union, two Russian styles of Systema became available in the West in the first instance. One of these was Rossiyiskaya Otechestvennaya Sistema Samozashchity (ROSS), developed by Genral Alexander Retuinskih. This style was a combination of, among other things, Judo, SAMBO, bayonet fighting, boxing and the biomechanic principles of Kadochnikov.

The other style which spread to the West was Vladimir Vasiliev’s, a former Russian military. Based among other things on Kadochnikov and ROSS, Vasiliev developed his own system, which is now the most well known form of Systema worldwide. Next to ROSS and Systema Vasiliev, other styles based on Russian war arts have developed themselves over time. One example is the school Homo Ludens (‘Playing Man’) of Alexander Kostic. This Serbian pupil of Vasiliev’s combined Vasiliev’s style with influences from the work of Kadochnikov and other styles, such as Storm, ROSS, Skobar, Krav Maga and more. Other styles are, for example, Siberian Cossack, devloped by Andrea Kamirov and IZVOR, by Michael Grudev. Systema, in a broad sense, is constantly in development and this suits the open attitude which practioners of Systema possess: if fit fits effectively within your system, it is always a good thing to learn from different styles.


Systema class The Hague - TRYOUT


The video on this page gives an impression of our Systema class in The Hague.

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