Full-text resources of PSJD and other databases are now available in the new Library of Science.
Visit https://bibliotekanauki.pl


Preferences help
enabled [disable] Abstract
Number of results


2011 | 12 | 3 | 291-297

Article title

Corporeality in Martial Arts Anthropology


Title variants

Languages of publication



The aim of this paper is to discuss the subject as well as the problem of corporeality in the anthropology of martial arts. The authors wish to begin with the concept of corporeality as it is found in the available literature on the subject. The main issues which require additional contemplation are: the anthropology of the psychophysical progress, the humanistic theory of Eastern marital arts and the sociology of fitness culture. Anthropological research on martial arts attempts to explain the place and meaning as well as the significance and value of humans practicing the various psychophysical forms of East Asian martial arts. Therefore, emphasis must be placed on the numerous varieties of martial arts and the resulting examples and cultural values found therein. Through such a perspective can corporeality's place and importance be examined. Among the classifiable models found in somatic culture, one of the most fundamental is the model of asceticism and self-fulfillment. Historically significant and still relevant is also the example of fitness, connected with treating the body as it were an instrument.Within the context of martial arts being used as a psycho-educational form of education, the body fulfills, above all, the role of a tool to be used on the way towards enlightenment and wisdom. It is utilized specifically in spiritual progress. Improving one's physical abilities is therefore an ascetic journey of physical perfectionism and technical accomplishment all towards achieving spiritual mastery. In some cases, spiritual development is described in terms of energy (qi, ki) and connected with the capacity of one's health. Yet, the motivation for participating in martial arts more often comes from the body itself and its psychophysical health rather than moral and spiritual improvement. However, in our era of globalizing and commercializing almost all aspects of culture, some confusion can emerge from the polymorphic treatment of corporeality in martial arts as is now practiced around the world.










Physical description


1 - 9 - 2011
22 - 9 - 2011


  • University of Rzeszów, Rzeszów, Poland
  • University of Rzeszów, Rzeszów, Poland


  • Rymarczyk P., Taking care of body aesthetics within the sphere of norms and duties - an analysis from selected lifestyle magazines [in Polish]. SALOS RP, Warszawa 2008, 196-203.
  • Malacrida C., Low J. (eds.), Sociology of the body: a reader. Oxford University Press, Toronto 2008.
  • Helstein M. T., Seeing your sporting body: identity, subjectivity, and misrecognition. Sociology of Sport Journal, 2007, 24 (1), 78-103.
  • Grogan S., Body Image: Understanding body dissatisfaction in men, women and children. Routlege, London 2008.
  • Weis K., Gugutzer R. (eds.), A guide to sport sociology [in German]. Hofmann, Schorndorf 2008.
  • Cynarski W. J., Impact of popular ideologies on currently dominating theories in the sociology of culture. An outline [in Polish]. In: Andrusiewicz A. (ed.), Socialpolitical research [in Polish], v. 3. WSIiZ, Rzeszów 2009, 116-121.
  • Cynarski W. J., Obodyński K., Self-identification through bodily awareness in contemporary mass culture. In: Bizzaglia G., Ogliotti P. (eds.), Sports, bodies, identities. Book of abstracts, 6th EASS Conference, 27th-30th May, Rome 2009. Lancillotto e Nausica, Rome 2009, 54-55.
  • Brungs R., Postiglione M. (eds.), Christianity and the human body. A theology of the human body. ITEST, St. Louis 2001.
  • Dziewiecki M., The shaping of Christian attitudes towards the body [in Polish]. Available from:
  • Pawłucki A., Personalism for sport pedagogy. AWFiS, Gdańsk 2003.
  • Van der Meer J. M., Interpreting nature and scripture: a new proposal for their interaction. In: Brungs R., Postiglione M. (eds.), Christianity and the human body. A theology of the human body. ITEST, St. Louis 2001, 38-72.
  • Dziubiński Z., Krawczyk Z. (eds.), The sociology of physical culture [in Polish]. AWF, Warszawa 1995.
  • Cynarski W. J., Physical culture in the holistic perspective. In: Kosiewicz J. (ed.), Sport, culture and society. In Honour of Professor Zbigniew Krawczyk. AWF, Warszawa 2005, 196-204.
  • Eichberg H., Bodily democracy: towards a philosophy of sport for all. Routledge, London-New York 2010.
  • Szymańska B., Trzciński Ł., Movement and rest. The body's efficiency in the philosophical problems of the East [in Polish]. In: Lipiec J. (ed.), The logos and ethos of Polish Olympism [in Polish], AWF, Kraków 1994, 119-128.
  • Maliszewski M., Meditative-religious traditions of fighting arts and martial ways. Journal of Asian Martial Arts, 1992, 1 (3), 100-105.
  • Maliszewski M., Spiritual dimensions of the martial arts. Charles E. Tuttle Co., Rutland-Vermont-Tokyo 1996.
  • Cynarski W. J., Towards a new, humanistic science of man. Psychophysical anthropology [in Polish]. Ido-Ruch dla Kultury/Movement for Culture, 2000, 1, 99-103.
  • Cynarski W. J., Theroy and practice of Far Eastern martial arts in a European perspectice [in Polish]. Uniwersytet Rzeszowski, Rzeszów 2004.
  • Cynarski W. J., In the direction of martial arts anthropology [in Polish]. In: Dziubiński Z. (ed.), Anthropology of sport. SALOS RP, Warszawa 2002, 368-386.
  • Obodyński K., The anthropology of martial arts in a scientific reserach perspectice [in Polish]. Przegląd Naukowy Kultury Fizycznej UR, 2008, XI (1), 11-20.
  • Fromm E., To have or to be. The spiritual foundations in modern society [in Polish]. Klub Otrycki, Warszawa 1989.
  • Kiyota M., Kinoshita H. (eds.), Japanese martial arts and American sports: cross-cultural perspectives on means to personal growth. Nihon University, Tokyo 1990.
  • Kim D., Bäck A., The way to go: philosophy in martial arts practice. Nanam, Seoul 2000.
  • Obodyński K., Cynarski W. J., The ascetic pattern of the body culture in the Japanese ways of non-aggression. In: Kosiewicz J., Obodyński K. (eds.), Sport in the mirror of values. PTNKF, Rzeszów 2003, 131-141.
  • Massanari R. L., The Way to Go: Philosophy in martial arts practice (by Daeshik Kim and Allan Bäck). J Philos Sport, 2001, 28 (2), no pagination specified.
  • Szostkiewicz A., Mystery of the young forest [in Polish]. Polityka, 2003, 17 (2398), 100-105.
  • Zowisło M., Spiritual exercise as an alternative thinking of sport [in Polish]. Wychowanie Fizyczne i Sport, 2000, 4, 85-96.
  • Cynarski W. J., Eastern and Western psychophysical educational concepts [in Polish]. In: Dziubiński Z. (ed.), Sport as a cultural reality [in Polish]. SALOS RP, Warszawa 2005, 364-378.
  • Cynarski W. J., Globalization and the meeting of cultures [in Polish]. Uniwersytet Rzeszowski, Rzeszów 2003.
  • Shimizu S., The Body envisioned by Jigoro Kano: Based on his career as a judo master, IOC member and principal of Tokyo Higher Normal School [in Polish]. Ido-Ruch dla Kultury/Movement for Culture, 2008, 8 (8), 29-37.
  • Kalina R. M., The theory of combat sports [in Polish]. COS, Warszawa 2000.
  • Reguli Z., Combative activities. Paido, Brno 2004.
  • Figueiredo A. A., The object of study in martial arts and combat sports research - contributions to a complex whole. In: Cynarski W. J. (ed.), Martial Arts and Combat Sports - Humanistic Outlook. Uniwersytet Rzeszowski, Rzeszów 2009, 20-34.
  • Obodyński K., Cynarski W. J., Between praxeology and ethics of martial arts. In: Kosiewicz J. (ed.), Sport and Values. Theoretical Foundations. AWF, Warszawa 2006, 147-156.
  • Cieszkowski S., Sieber L., Far Eastern martial arts in the perspective of culture sciences. International Journal of Eastern Sports & Physical Education, 2006, 4 (1), 217-226.
  • Ki-jung C., Young-Chul L., A qualitative study on eastern martial arts. PAJSPE, 2009, 1 (1), 130-138.
  • Cynarski W. J., Human in anthropology of martial arts. In: The 20th Pan-Asian Congress of Sports and Physical Education, 15th-16th October, Taipei 2009. Taipei Physical Education College, Taipei 2009, 25-26.
  • Cynarski W. J., Meetings, conflict, dialogue. Analysis of selected areas of physical culture and cultural tourism [in Polish]. Uniwersytet Rzeszowski, Rzeszów 2010.
  • Cynarski W. J., Litwiniuk A., Essential problems of martial arts medicine [in Polish]. Ido-Ruch dla Kultury/Movement for Culture, 2001, 2 (1), 253-263.
  • Cotter M., Henley J., Martial arts marketing. Multinational Business Review, 1994, 2 (1), 79-85.
  • Alter J. S., Somatic nationalism: Indian wrestling and militant Hinduism. Modern Asian Studies, 1994, 28 (3), 557-588, doi: 10.1017/s0026749x00011860.[Crossref]

Document Type

Publication order reference


YADDA identifier

JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.