12/31/05: I watched Napolean Dinamite for the first time today and I had no idea he was trying to do martial arts with a tetherball. I created Tether-Fu many years ago. My lawyer has been alerted.
All men are glandmasters, but only a few are martial arts grandmasters. A grandmaster is the best of a particular style, and a number have become grandmasters by simply modifying an existing style and giving it a fancy name. I am the grandmaster of Tether-Fu, based on tetherball, more of a training method I admit but I can kick the ass of any inflated ball swung at me with a rope.
There's a martial arts story that goes like this (it may not be true but that's never the point): A farmer in a small village wanted to compete in the region's martial arts tournament, but being poor and busy he had neither the time nor training to enter. He strung a basketball-sized rubber ball chest high between two trees with elastic cords and started punching and kicking it. In time he was able to deliver solid punches and kicks to the ball no matter what crazy angle it came back at him. The next year he entered the contest and won because no matter what moves his opponent made he was able land punches and kicks directly at their heads.
I'm a big fan of self-correcting training devices like heavy and speed bags. I had a small bag one that attaches to the ceiling and floor which drove me crazy, and I failed miserably at building my own wooden dummy. I call these self-correcting because you know right away if a strike or combination doesn't work. Everyone can be a grandmaster of their own style as long as they master self-correcting training devices.
Tether-fu is neat because you have to strike, turn around and strike again. It's like being the poor farmer except you're a rich putz spinning around your backyard giggling like a ninny.