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16.33) ROSS (Russian Martial Art)


This article is from the Martial Arts FAQ, by Matthew Weigel faq@idempot.net with numerous contributions by others.

16.33) ROSS (Russian Martial Art)

(Contributor: Scott Sonnon - amerross@redrose.net)

Russian Martial Art is a system of education in human biomechanics and
the study of human behavior under extreme situations. Students are
guided towards introspection and exploration of their full human
potential. Movement is natural and free, and acquiring skills is
based on the study of Cossack and Russian folk dances, Slavic folklore,
and "Natural Laws."

The ancient Slavic martial traditions dates to the nomadic
steppe-warriors of approximately 5,000 BCE, passed from father to
son in families for generations of pre-Soviet Russia, and then only
among the elite combat specialist subdivisions (SPETSNAZ) of the
former USSR. Scott Sonnon, USA Sambo Team Coach and Trainer and
World Sambo Vice-Champion, was the first foreigner accepted into this
heritage in the attempt to bring the world together in fraternity.
Sonnon imported the art to America in 1996 to improve the quality of
life of his compatriots through the Russian health system, advanced
sports biomechanics, and elite combative preparation. In 2000, one of
the sportive derivations of Russian Martial Art, named Sambo, will be
Olympic at the Sydney Games.

Russian Martial Art derives its name ROSS from "ROSSIYA" which
is the Russian spelling for the word RUSSIA. ROSS, a Russian
acronym standing for "Russian Native Martial Art" was developed by
Commander Alexander Retuinskih, President of the All-Russian
Federation of Russian Martial Art (RFRMA), Chairman of the
International Combat Sambo Commission, Chairman of the Russian Combat
Sambo Committee, officer General of the Cossack Military. In 1991,
the RFRMA was sanctioned by the Russian Olympic Committee as the sole
representative of Russian Martial Art. ROSS is taught to trainers
of Russian Spetsnaz units of the Ministries of Internal Affairs,
Defense and protective services, Russian Marine troops, VDV, OMON,
and Minsk's "Alpha" units in Byelorussia, special MVD units "Vityaz",
frontier troops of Lithuania and many others.

In Russian Martial Art, the main goal of a person is to render the
adversary harmless while minimizing losses for both self and foe:
to work efficiently in any situation. Learning Russian Martial Art,
students acquire great power as fighters, but more importantly as a
human beings, increasing ones value for health and life, for both self
and others. Both in combat and in life, students treat other creatures
with awareness and compassion. When necessary, firm action is issued,
but never in a callous or careless manner, and when all other option
have been considered. "Your life is not your alone; it belongs to your
friends, family and community" (Alexander Ivanovich Retuinskih), or as
is said in the Cossack Cadet Code: "The life of your friend is always
more valuable than your own. You can die yourself, but rescue your

ROSS undertakes training in 8 directions:

1. Russian-Style Close-Quarters Combat and Survival
2. Renovated SAMBO (see FAQ entry on SAMBO)
3. Executive and Close Protection Training
4. Bayonet-Fencing
5. Advanced Sports Biomechanics
6. Acrobatic Dance, Stunt and Theatrical Combat
7. Russian System of Health and Wellness
8. Russian Fisticuffs


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