What Are The Differences Between Pekiti Tirsia and Pekiti (Dekiti) Tirsia Siradas? Frankly, They Are Not What You Think.
Martial Artist and Owner of School Of Arms Media.
The politics of F.M.A. (Filipino Martial Arts) are annoying, counterproductive, and always shifting sand at best.
I am not writing this article to anger anyone, but to clarify some history. Much has been written about the differences between the method of my teacher, Grandmaster Jerson "Nene" Tortal, and his Pekiti (Dekiti) Tirsia Siradas, and the method of his Nephew, Grandmaster Leo T. Gaje, of Pekiti Tirsia. Both claim that their respective systems of escrima represent the "true" system of the Tortal family. However, I will let them argue about that, and I shall lay out the facts as I know them.
First, why the differing system names? Prior to the political split, both teachers used the term Pekiti Tirsia freely to describe their methods. Nevertheless, when it came time to register the name with the Philippine SEC, Grandmaster Gaje registered the name first. Years prior to this, Grandmaster Tortal had already been using the name Pekiti Tirsia, but now because of the legal rules in the Philippines, he had to come up with a differing name to register; hence, Dekiti Tirsia Siradas. Simply put, Grandmaster Tortal had used the term Pekiti Tirsia at the same time and even before Grandmaster Gaje did; to state otherwise, is a distortion of history, and at best, calculated misinformation.
Second, Why do both systems move somewhat differently? I will borrow from Guro David Gould of Lameco Eskrima, whom trained with both teachers. Guro Gould said, "They move differently because they are two different people." Bottom line, both men have differing experiences that influence how they teach and apply escrima.
Third, is there such a thing as the art of the Tortal family? Now in answering this question, I am giving my opinion which will probably anger many. So, be forewarned this is my opinion and mine alone; the answer to this question is Yes, it is found within the sword methods associated with the Tortal Family.
It should be noted that no matter whom you train with, very few people have been taught these methods. It is also my opinion, that Grandmaster Jerson "Nene" Tortal, is the encyclopedia of these methods. This is the other reason these two men and their respective systems move differently. No matter whom claims what, in my opinion, Grandmaster Jerson "Nene" Tortal is the true Master of the sword.
I have given my opinion and it is up to you to believe what you want. So, as always, what do you think?