Is this system really an original system thought by Native Ametrican Indians from generation to generation or it's just a system artificially developed by Robert Redfeather http://apache-knife.com/redfeather.htm ?

It seems to me like a copy of other knife defense systems,

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    As has been noted in references to other martial arts, there are only so many combatively feasible motions a human body can make. Therefore, similarities among different combative systems from different cultures. That said, I find the historical authenticity of so-called Native American martial arts to be questionable. Anything re-packaged to sound more exotic sells better than plain old knife fighting. Apr 21, 2014 at 14:58

2 Answers 2


The history to this is through the Apache "survival" and "fighting". The knife, tomahawk, bow and arrow, and then later guns were utilized as they served the needs of the people. The knife was a primary and savagely utilized weapon of Native American's in general, the Apache tribe as well (scalping, skinning animals, close combat, main tool in many tasks). These skills are indeed passed down through generations and as similar to other tribes "verbal stories" is the primary method vs. writing them down.

Thus yes this was passed down through the ages of Apache warriors, however, as with any culture many warriors vary and some are not warriors at all. Apache has some militant history which increases the number of warriors and thus would provide a more rich lineage on fighting techniques and styles to a more domestic focused tribe. Strong beliefs and a fervor to survive and prove oneself often are the best ingredients to creating a solid fighting system as well as passing it on to others.

That being said though, Robert Redfeather is the main one who took general tribal training and developed a "system with a label on it". It is also recognized by the masters/grand masters as valid and thus you can say it was passed down through the generations and also developed by Robert Redfeather. Before he, for lack of a better term, "patented" it you could call it fighting techniques that were passed down from generation to generation in the Apache tribes. At this juncture you can also see that Robert Redfeather defined it specifically and thus it's hard to say if there were past "grand masters" of the art or if in the past it was merely practical and depended on individual skills with the need to utilize it in combat.

Frankly though most all martial arts comes from the same general areas in each distinct culture:

  1. Need of ability in self defense and offense in combat
  2. Harnessing discipline of the body, mind, spirit
  3. Maintaining fitness, prowess, and skill to ensure effective readiness when the need arises

You can read about the Apache culture and warfare in general on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apache

As you can read the Apache tribe as with many Native American tribes is rooted in spiritual beliefs and it would be out of those beliefs and culture that the knife fighting system of Robert Redfeather is born. I would suspect there would be mixed opinions among Native Americans if the system really represented the true heart of the teachings or if it was turned into more a commercialized style.

P.S. Also note that Robert Redfeather also is into martial arts in general and I doubt the style is 100% just Apache instead of adopting useful body mechanics and custom styling from his experiences to enhance the core Apache teachings.


I did not add any martial arts to Apache Knife fighting. I think it’s very funny how people make their own decisions without talking to me first without seeing it for themselves that’s all. You need to ask who people been to the seminars, they can speak for themselves, thank you.

  • I have tried to cleanup your answer. Please reedit it if I have accidentally changed the meaning.
    – mattm
    Oct 5, 2017 at 2:23
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    Hello Mr. Redfeather, welcome to this site. It would be very nice if you have explained your system a little bit, so that the visitors have an overview. Because you are a first-hand source to gain information, and that's a very good chance for us all.
    – Endery
    Oct 5, 2017 at 6:56
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    Robert, your answer doesn't appear to actually answer the question?
    – slugster
    Oct 5, 2017 at 7:17
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    I would add my voice to those wanting more details. Provided that you are who you claim to be (that remains to be seen), it would be very useful if you took the time to expand this answer. Oct 5, 2017 at 7:22

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