Master Archibeque

Archie at 62
Archie at 73
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In the Pacific Northwest, Master Isidro Archibeque is a figure larger than life.  He has been actively teaching in Western Washington for as long as anyone can remember, and today, though in his 60’s, he remains a figure larger than life.  “Archie”, as he prefers to be called is best know for his mastery of the Iron Hand.  His feats have included driving nails through boards, breaking countless bricks, carrying a refrigerator up three flights of steps, penetrating sealed plastic soda bottles with his fingers, breaking rocks, bricks, boulders, get the picture!  Once, to commemorate one of my promotions, he brought a 12”x12” piece of plywood, 1” inch thick (that’s 9 layers of veneer!).  It took two hits for him to do the break.  I have never seen anyone else even attempt this.

If that were not enough, “Archie” is equally well known for his mastery of pressure points, joint locks, and fighting strategy.  His art is a philosophy, requiring that each student return to nature, and develop a personal understanding and awareness of his or her  integral package of instincts.  His teaching is modeled on the psychology, behavior, and movement of animals...a return to the original inspirations for Martial Arts, as he would say.  The name he has given to this philosophy is Gun-Fu, Animal Fighting Styles.

“Archie’s” greatest fame came as a teacher to “teachers.”  Starting in the late 1970’s, ranking Black Belts, and senior students from other styles began to seek “Archie” out, many choosing to stay and undergo an apprenticeship with this force of nature.  Some of those persons are now recognized masters in their own styles, and freely acknowledge their debt to Master Archibeque.  Whether you’ve heard of him, and want to learn more, or if you’re simply curious and would like to take a peek at the pinnacle, relax for a moment and browse through these articles.

Master Isidro Archibeque (5/12/1933 - 1/9/2021)

It is with great sadness I must report the passing of Master Archibeque on the evening of January 9, 2021.  He was 87 years old.  COVID was not a factor.  He just wore out.  He is survived by his beautiful wife and family, and his legions of students sworn to continue his legacy into the future.  We will never forget him, or his magnificent talent.


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