These arts have originated from the very wide scope of fighting traditions practiced by traders traveling through the Philippines, as the locals always kept an open mind to effective ways of fighting. The resulting art focused on stick and knife fighting.
Although Filipino Martial Arts (FMA) has a tight learning curve, especially regarding the sticks, it’s definitely one of the most potent arts I have ever practiced. The knife fighting is ever developing since new ways to cut and defend with a knife are constantly incorporated into the syllabus. They even have legal live knife fights to the death in the Philippines.
FMA’s hand-to-hand fighting follows the principle that the same stick techniques can be applied without the stick since the stick is only an extension of the body. Although the resulting techniques are not too bad, I have seen better.
The main focus of this art is the sticks and knives, and since a person can find some form of a stick or carry a knife around almost anywhere, this martial art is suited for self-defence on the street.