“Unarmed combat” is the literal translation of a Central European martial art form known as Ringen. This “grappling” combat form is said to have originated from Germany under the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, this combat form involves the use of grappling technique which is used as a component of “swordsmanship”. Furthermore, Ringen also known as “kampfringen” is basically a “self defense” based form of combat. In addition, it was during the 17th century that this martial art form was replaced by a new version known as Baroque.
a. History/origin of the Ringen:
Apparently, Ringen was first developed during the beginning of the Renaissance period by an Austrian grandmaster named Ott Judd. Furthermore, Judd is supposed to have made valuable contributions in many combat treatises that were available during the medieval period in Europe. In addition, the system of Ringen created by Judd was then taught by many fencing masters such as Hans Talhofer, Peter Von Danzing, and Jud Lew. However, Ringen gradually lost its relevance over the years with the last book mentioning this combat form being published in Weigel, Nurnberg titled “Leib-beschirmende und Feinden Trotz-bietende Fecht-Kunst”.
b. Weapon used in the Ringen:
The “hands and legs” of the fighters are mainly used as a weapon in this “grappling” style of combat.
c. Technique involved in the Ringen and training availability:
In terms of technique, a fighter basically uses moves such as grappling hold, throw, and submission to overcome an opponent. In addition, moves such as punches, joint locks, elbow strikes, chokeholds, headbutts, and at times kicks are also used in this combat form. As for training centers/schools, there are none available for this “grappling” combat form around the world.