- Vadakkan (Northern) Kalari
- Thekkan(Southern) Kalari
- Thulunadan(Tulu region) Kalari
The schools are primarily divided according to the geographical region of Kerala where its practiced. The ola or palm leaves in which the the fighting techniques were written and different families or Kalaris ( training schools ) kept them for generations.
This is prevalent in the northern parts of Kerala. This is regarded as original form of Kaalripayattu. It enables the fighter for physical combat. The spirit behind the competences is that ” Meyyu Kannakanam”. This means ones body should be made like an eye( when a weapon or foreign body comes near eye, it automatically closes. Like that one should be able to recognize an attack on the body fast and react quickly). Lord Parasuram is said to be the propagator of this style of Kalaripayattu
This is usually found in Southern Kerala and Kanyakumari district of Tamil Nadu. Its founder is supposed to be Sage Agastya. It has the influence of Silambattam and Adi murai found in Tamil Nadu.
Its is common in Northern most part of Kerala and Canara region of Karnataka. The region was earlier Tulu region. Its less practiced style