The mother of all martial arts...
Kalarippayattu is the most ancient martial art of India. It appeared more than four thousand years ago in the state of Kerala, related to the sacred writng Dhanurveda. It is Dravidic Art that belong to the Dravidians, the native population of south india. In ancient times it was used by the Raja (Kings) in combats and wars, but also its movement system can be found in the origin of all artistic disciplines of this zone, like kathakali or Bharatanatyam.
The technique that kalarippayattu (Kalari is the fighting arena and payattu is the way of fighting) has developed is the result of the harshness of the specific geographical features of kerala, endowed by many rivers, forests, hills and lakes. It consists in different types and complex patterns of steps ideated to plush up all the capacities of the human body for fighting, paying specialattention in the sudden movement of legs and arms, and in the power of hands and eyes. It includes unarmed combat with two and three people, as well as the use of hand held weapons, such as knife, short stick, long stick, sword and shield, belt sword and fire.
Before staring and finishing of any combat, you must do the Kalari Vand\anam (The kalari is facing to east, because when the time of sun rising the rays will come inside of the kalari, kalari vandanam is started from east and end at west) the kalri vandanam is a form of salute to the earth, sun, sky, guru and lord ganesha and siva.
They are 30 chuvadu movement like animals, squirrel jump (4 cordinal direction) frog jump, duck walk, crocodile, movement of the snake, and monkey. (movement of the Baly route in Ramayana) and variety of animals. Movement called Anga Chuvadu is known as sheenadi, shilath. These are a succession of steps surroundingthe four cardinal directions, and are used to give to the practice strength, stretching, balance precision, suppleness and mental alertness. But this ancient martial art is not just a fighting art, but also a healing art and a spring of knowledge. During the centuries kalarippayattu has developed the marma, the secret science based on the principles of Ayurveda to heal wounds and to stimulate the pranavayu, the vital energy of the body and its 108 and 64 vital points.
Master of kalarippayattu, is tell their thoughts to their students mind to mind. So, a deep relationship between master and his students is also exist.