Hi, my name is John Mellon and I’m new to blogging, so I hope the blogging community as a whole will bear with me as I learn all about this new communication channel. Any feedback, tips and suggestions from more experienced people in this field would be greatly appreciated by this rank beginner.
My blog is driven by my enthusiasm – okay, obsession – with the martial arts, which I have studied all my life. Over the years of daily training – 55 at the last count – and almost daily teaching – 44 and counting (Lord, I feel old!) – I hope I’ve amassed some useful knowledge to pass along. Along the way I’ve acquired teaching ranks in a couple of dozen arts, master ranking in four, I’m the Headmaster of two systems, the founder of two arts, and the co-founder of two others. I’m a former Close Protection Officer (CPO or ‘Body-guard’) and have trained others in these skills for top agencies.
I tend not to teach most of these arts as discrete systems any more – with the exceptions of Small Circle Ju-jitsu, Kalis Ilustrisimo and Maide Uisce (‘Water Stick’ – a modern systemization of the Irish traditional weapon art of Baittereach – or Stick-fighting – whose signature weapon is the Shillelagh) – having founded Munen Muso Ryu (a conceptual or principle-based art/method of training) in 1980, which I’ve continued to teach and develop ever since.
I’ve been fortunate to train with many wonderful teachers, some of them as famous as they are skilled, such as: the late great Prof. Wally and his successor Prof. Leon Jay of Small Circle Ju-jitsu; Grandmaster Fred Adams – the man who founded and nurtured authentic Hap-Ki-Do in Great Britain, and who has influenced my self-defence syllabus hugely. I have been the official Technical Advisor to the Profs. Jay since the late 1990s, and I am the Assistant Director for Kalis Ilustrisimo Repeticion Orihinal (KIRO) for the UK and Ireland under Guru Shamim Haque, who himself is a direct student of Grandmaster Tony Diego, the inheritor of the system and senior student of the late, great ‘Tatang’ Ilustrisimo, the most feared fighter and accomplished blade-master of the Philippines in the last century.
My personal concerns are with the understanding and teaching of the martial arts and I hope that my personal experience and writing may make some small useful contribution. I hope you find the contents sufficiently entertaining (in the true sense of the word) and interesting to return again and again. A blog is my way of thinking out loud, but I’d rather have a conversation than deliver a monologue.
So if you enjoy this blog or any of the posts, please do subscribe and recommend it to like-minded friends, and do rate and comment – by interacting with myself and other subscribers, you can help to make this a more vital, enjoyable – and hopefully – useful dialogue.