A frenetic form of fitness and exercise activity that emphasizes ‘cardio fitness’ and claims to be inspired by martial arts. It has been described by some of its promoters as ‘empowering’ with the capacity to ‘totally unleash’ the participant, in an intoxicating mix of fighting sports from both the West and the East—with none of the traditional blend of the physical and the spiritual that marks many Japanese physical disciplines, for instance. Body combatants usually train to ‘driving music’, and web images designed to attract participants foreground the aggressive muscular male looking venomously towards his invisible target or opponent. Body combat illustrates the way in which a body culture can seek to make respectable a form of aggression-based physical masculinity that in other spheres of social life would be unacceptable.
Subjects: Sport and Leisure.