Martin Hurley started practising martial arts in 1986 with Shotokan karate. By the early 90’s he was on the Irish national karate squad (ONAKAI); had spent six months lving in Japan, during which time he trained with both the Japan Karate Association (JKA) and the Shotokan Karate International (SKI) and had reached the rank of 2nd dan.
However, by the mid 90’s he had started to become disillusioned with what he saw as the lack of practicality in the traditional karate he had been taught, exemplified by a preponderance of long-range linear techniques, a paucity of close quarter applications and the complete absence of any grappling. This was compounded by the fact that the same art contained traditional forms (kata) which hinted at both lateral and circular techniques but of which no one seemed to have any understanding. Seeking to expand his knowledge he started to look outside Japanese karate.
He had been studying the Indonesian art of Pukulan Cimande Pencak Silat when he first encountered Koryu Uchinadi and was struck by the similarities between many of its drills and what he was learning in the south east asian martial arts. In addition KU’s HAPV theory offered a key to unlocking the secrets of the traditional kata as well as presenting a holistic approach that covered the full range of unarmed combat together with teaching the use of several traditional weapons.
He has been a member of the IRKRS since 2001 and was graded to 3rd dan in 2002. He was awarded his Yudansha in Koryu Uchinadi Kenpo-Jutsu in 2010 and both his Shodan and Shidoin level instructor's licence in 2012. In 2014 he received his Nidan which was followed in 2016 by both Sandan in Koryu Uchinadi and Yudansha in Yamane Ryu kobudo. In addition to KU he also has an avid interest in submission wrestling and studied Brazilian jiu-jitsu for four years.