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Defining Kali and Filipino Martial Arts

Effective Self-Defense Skills Rooted in History

We are pleased to offer Kali and Filipino Martial Arts at Innovative Martial Arts Academy. The indigenous fighting arts of the Philippines, Kali is a weapons-based martial art that includes hand-to-hand combat, joint locks, grappling, and weapon disarming techniques. In this article, we will take some time to outline the specifics of this effective self-defense martial arts. 


What is Kali and Filipino Martial Arts?

Sometimes referred to as Arnis or Eskrima, Kali is an umbrella term for all Filipino Martial Arts (FMA). With roots in Indonesian Martial Arts and fencing, Kali develops one’s skills with sticks (both long and short) and other bladed weapons. 


Most systems of Kali apply a single set of techniques for the stick, knife or empty hand combat and is referred to as “motion grouping.” Unlike most martial arts, Kali starts training with weapons because it is believed that the weapon is an extension of the body. Therefore, through the same exercises, empty hand combat is naturally acquired with the development of weapons training. 


What Are the Benefits of Kali? 

Kali is one of the most battle-worthy, street-smart and graceful flowing martial arts in the world. Based on centuries of tribal warfare and defense invading forces, the history of the Philippines is seen in the modern Kali style. Based on tactical strategy and survival, Kali has a long history of resistance and resilience, making it a close-quarter combat style conducive to many situations. 


Being one of the most practical martial arts, Kali has many benefits. With physical and mental benefits, Kali can help:

  • Keep your mind sharp with footwork, patterns, and situational awareness
  • Focus your mind through problem-solving and enhanced exercise
  • Learn practical self-defense techniques both with and without a weapon
  • Develop confidence to defend yourself against an attacker 
  • Improve physical fitness 
  • Relieve stress 
  • Build strong bonds throughout the Kali community
  • Improve mental discipline and focus


Want to Learn More About Kali?

At Innovative Martial Arts Academy, our Martial Arts training offers men, women, and children the opportunity to challenge their bodies and minds without the threat of injury and intimidation. Take on the best training in disciplines like Aikido, Kenpo Karate, and Kali, and build your skills one day at a time with the help of our dedicated instructors


We are proud to serve families across Wake Forest, Wakefield and the surrounding area with a rewarding experience that can set you or your child up for success in all aspects of life. If you’re interested in learning about our martial arts program, contact us at 919.562.4663, or visit our website.  


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Our Reviews

William D.
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This place is great! Charles and his team have fantastic programs for kids. When we started our 3.5 year old son, I didn’t know what to expect. He quickly adapted to the classes and now loves going. Our 2 year old son loves watching and will start as well as soon as he turns 3. Innovative Martial arts also hosted their birthday parties. The kids had a blast doing different activities throughout the birthday party. Can’t say enough good things about this place, and what they teach!
Tara H.
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Innovative Martial Arts Academy (IMAA) is the best place to take martial arts. Charles Falk, the owner, and his staff do a great job teaching martial arts to the students and teaching each student to be confident and disciplined. My son has been with IMAA for eight years - he has earned one black belt and is working on his second.
Niko F.
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Not only are the staff amazing, but there is a mix of fun and learning in the curriculum. My 5 year old daughter absolutely loves this school. She has learned respect and many other aspects making her more focused and well behaved. I definitely recommend this school for you or your child.
Janice P.
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Great school with wonderful teachers. My daughter has a great time learning and everyone is friendly. There is even an adult class that allowed me to try to see if I liked it and everyone was very patient with me. I am thankful to have my daughter be a part of the Innovative Martial Arts Academy in Wake Forest and know she is benefiting from it in more than one way. It amazes me how fast she is learning and how hard she is trying. They have her trying to develop at her fullest with her mind, body, and spirit. I would recommend this school to anyone interested in martial arts.
Kristi F.
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Wonderful place for not only skill development but also personal development. Owner and instructors genuinely get to know students and families and care about them. The lessons learned will provide character growth as well as martial art skills. The owner is also a long time student of many different martial arts, he didn't just buy a franchise, and tries very hard to live what he teaches the students. Proud to have been in this dojo family for 6+ years and proud of the friendships we have made there!

Our Reviews