Their motto is "Higher consciousness through harder contact."
"RealContact" is the copyrighted name of their stickfighting style. Their form of sparring takes place primarily between two practitioners who mutually enter into a no-holds-barred sparring match wearing very little protective gear and fighting with single, double sticks, or even a staff or practice knife.
Typical protective gear
The choice of gear is optional with the exception of head protection. Fencing masks are used for head gear. Hand protection can be in the form of hockey gloves, lacrosse gloves, batting gloves or nothing at all depending on each individual fighter. Knee, elbow and groin protection is optional as well.
The format of the fights are such that any fighter can stop the fight at any time, for any reason. All participants sign a waiver beforehand, clearly stating they agree to be "friends at the end of the day" and "no suing for nothing". There are no trophies or prizes, only the chance to test one's fighting skill.
Gatherings of the pack
Gatherings are events organized and operated by the Dog Brothers. Fighters must pre-register in order to participate in the fighting. These gatherings show good response from the Filipino Martial Arts community, and many serious fighters attend in order to test their skills in a realistic format.
During it's inception, the Dog Brothers group formed at the Inosanto Academy, a school in California owned and operated by Dan Inosanto. The three principal FMA systems from which Dog Brothers draw are Inosanto Blend (Guro Dan Inosanto), Pekiti Tirsia (Grand Tuhon Leo Gaje), and Lameco (the late Punong Guro Edgar Sulite). It is also important to mention Silat and the Indonesian system of Bukti Negara Pentjak Silat of Pendekar Paul de Thouars.
They have also trained under the Machado brothers in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, this has had great influence on their art resulting in the use of the terms "Kali Tudo" (a play on words from the term "Vale Tudo") and "Dog Brother Stickgrappling". Carlos Machado teaches a segment on groundfighting on DVD #5 in the Dog Brothers training video series.
Joining the pack
Their motto is "Higher Consciousness Through Harder Contact" (TM). And this motto is indicative of their aggressive style of practice. As fighters progress in the system, they may eventually take a "Dog" name. For example, the organizations head instructor goes by the name Marc "Crafty Dog" Denny.
Some of the better known "Dogs"are :
- Eric "Top Dog" Knaus
- Arlan "Salty Dog" Sanford
- Philip "Sled Dog" Gelinas
- Lester "Surf Dog" Griffin
- Alvis "Hound Dog" Solis
- Mike "Dogzilla" Tibbitts
- Ian "Hair of the Dog" Wilde
- Dave "Wild Dog" Crosby
- Burton "Lucky Dog" Richardson
They have strict rules for members and instructors, and require continued practice and involvement with the organization in order maintain status. This was implemented to prevent misrepresentation and avoid degredation of the art.
At one time the UFC considered featuring fights from the Dog Brothers. In 1995, they turned down this idea, citing that RealContact Stickfighting was "too extreme".