Sherlock Holmes School of Self-Defence
Keep Goons at Bay the Sherlock Way
If you're living in a 'lively' neighbourhood, you may be looking for ways to see a footpad, chugger or cut-purse on their way. Leave the Oriental martial arts to children and health fanatics. Bartitsu is the gentleman's self-defence and can incorporate walking sticks and overcoats to great effect.
Bartitsu was developed by Englishman Edward Barton-Wright in 1898 as a composite of numerous fighting styles. That's right, a Victorian Brit developed the first truly mixed martial art. Sherlock Holmes is described as using a similar technique when doing battle with Moriarty in one of Arthur Conan-Doyle's stories.
Fight like a Victorian - Bartitsu's Back
There's been a revival of interest in Bartitsu in recent years. The Bartitsu Society is active in its promotion and study of Bartitsu, hoping to keep Barton-Wright's name alive.
There's also a book describing Barton-Wright's Bartitsu available from Ivy Press called (big breath) The Sherlock Holmes School of Self-Defence: The Manly Art of Bartitsu as used against Professor Moriarty [Amazon].Learn how to fight with an umbrella or a bicycle (yes, bicycle), just about anything you have to hand really. (Sounds like a home game at Stoke City.)
The book includes lots of nice reproductions of gents in combat positions and some pretty useful tips. Most entertaining.