Okichitaw is an Indigenous martial art that is practiced both armed and unarmed; when unarmed, students learn hand positioning and attack techniques as though they are armed. Okichitaw uses force to meet force, and therefore demands a high level of athleticism from its practitioners. The gunstock war club and long knife are the most commonly used weapons, although the tomahawk, short lance, and long lance are also used. Okichitaw also includes the practice of basic principles that are expected to be followed inside and outside of martial training, namely the Seven Grandfather Teachings and the Medicine Wheel and Four Directions. The Seven Grandfather Teachings are love, respect, humility, honesty, wisdom, bravery, and truth. The Medicine Wheel and Four Directions, which are used during training and battle, are: the identification and response to an attack, which requires balance, confidence, and creatively (East); the challenge instigated against the opponent, which requires strength, focus, and success (South); the control of the opponent, by surprise or force, which requires courage, energy, and knowledge (North); and the takedown of the opponent (West).
What are the origins of the activity abroad and in Canada?
Who takes part?
When does it occur / How often do you take part?
Are there any organized clubs, groups, organizations or leagues?
OKICHITAW Indigenous Martial Arts
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Native Canadian Centre of Toronto16 Spadina RoadToronto, ON M5R 2S7
Riverdale Martial Arts Centre838 Broadview AveToronto, ON M4K 2R1
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