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M'Benga and Rah, judo fight

Joseph M'Benga and Dak'Rah during a Mok'bara fight


Worf teaching Mok'bara

The Mok'bara, also known colloquially as Klingon Judo, was a form of martial arts. The technique was similar to meditation, as both forms were said to clear the mind. The Mok'bara was the basis of Klingon hand-to-hand combat techniques, and could be practiced alone or in groups. (TNG: "Clues", "Birthright, Part II")

Some of the techniques and forms involved in the Mok'bara were similar to the Human martial art of tai chi chuan. An example of a form common to both was KoH-man-ara, which resembled the crane block. (TNG: "Second Chances")

Lieutenant Worf taught a Mok'bara class on board the USS Enterprise-D. Deanna Troi, Doctor Beverly Crusher, Commander William T. Riker, and Geordi La Forge were some of the many students. Other students included Ensign Gates, Martinez, a female officer, and also the ensigns Sam Lavelle and Sito Jaxa. (TNG: "Lower Decks")



Background information[]

  • The Mok'bara exercises were invented by martial-arts expert (and visual effects producer) Dan Curry. (Star Trek Encyclopedia, 4th ed., vol. 2, p. 49). They were based on tai chi chuan, only instead of slow fluid movements, they used clawed hands, and fast, rough movements. In the script for "Clues", Mok'bara was called the "Klingon Tai Chi". [1]
  • In DS9: "The Begotten", Julian Bashir mentioned that Worf ran a morning exercise class, hinting Worf taught Mok'bara to the residents of Deep Space 9.
  • The scenes for the episode "Clues" were filmed on 29 November 1990 on Paramount Stage 9. The call sheet for this day described the location as "Workout Room". This was reflected in the script, as well, where "Workout Room" was listed in Sets. [2]
  • According to the script for "Birthright, Part II", Mok'bara was pronounced as "mock-ba-RA". [3]
  • Mok'bara was only once spelled as "mok'bara". It was in the script for "Lower Decks". [4]
  • In the script for "Birthright, Part II", Worf spoke of the origin of this martial art. According to him, "This is the Mok'bara... a great warrior called Kahless invented the forms when he went to the underworld in search of his father. Kahless showed him the forms, and his father was able to remember his body and return to the world of the living." These lines were not in the episode. [5]

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