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Thread: Who Switched from External to Internal Martial Arts and Why?

  1. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by wenshu View Post
    pretty much
    It's not easy being an embarrassment. But there again, an embarrassment is not the worst thing that I could possibly be in this martial arts world.

    Regardless of which, what really matters is whether the ideas hold water for people who are genuinely interested in wushu.

  2. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by Miqi View Post
    what really matters is whether the ideas hold water for people who are genuinely interested in wushu.
    What ideas? All I see is meandering pseudo philosophical self indulgence.

  3. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by wenshu View Post
    What ideas? All I see is meandering pseudo philosophical self indulgence.
    Actually, all I've said is that we should rely a bit more on thinking about what we do, because with a bit of thought and intuition, we can make a lot of adjustments to our practice, and thus progess a lot faster, much as, for example, breakdancers and freerunners do. And I've used that to suggest that maybe strictly formal schools and styles could be preventing people from following that method after a certain point, and maybe retarding what the actual training process should reallly be like, by having students endlessly copy the instructor, ot style's set movements which are themselves not necessarily working for either the instructor or the students - when in reality, a good coach should actually work to encourage us to achieve our personal potential, play to our strengths, and unfold our own peculiar understanding of an art, albeit within clear sports science parameters.

    In which case, what you 'see' is not really the arbiter of what was really there. As I've said probably three or four times in this thread, what I'm saying is actually obvious to the point of banality. But llike the economist Paul Sweezy once said, sometimes the obvious is just so obvious that people don't stop and think about the implications. For example, the implication this has for schools where students are paying to become ever more perfect clones of their teachers - i.e. most CMA schools. I guess it is, in some ways, self-indulgent to say such an obviously true thing, and then negotiate the tidal wave of denial and personal attack. After all, one needn't.
    Last edited by Miqi; 03-06-2014 at 01:59 PM.

  4. #124
    Quote Originally Posted by Miqi View Post
    The average judo player is far and away a superior martial artist to the average taiji player. At the 'highest' level, however, I would say that a different principle comes into play - my coach said once that at the highest martial art level, there is no difference between styles, because 'highest level' implies that an individual has achieved a significant ability to use their system. It might be that a partucular system produces no such indivduals, or few, as in taiji, or many, as in judo - but that is a problem with training methods in the case of taiji, not a problem with taiji per se.

    I had a chance once to experience the level of a judo player who had been on Britain's national squad. To look at him, he looked nothing - like a nerd. His strength and speed, however, were phenomenal. Beware appearances!
    I was traveling for a while - thanks for the reply. And I agree that a person's appearance can be very deceiving.
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    "I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times."
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  5. #125
    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Ashmore View Post
    But that was a LONG time ago.
    I started out training Karate when I was eight years old. I took classes at the local community center. I couldn't, not even to save my life, tell you what style of Karate it was. I only remember the teachers first name so that doesn't help any. Not that it matters. I took those classes for a couple of years, eventually earning a "brown belt" but not really learning much in the way of fighting. It was all kata, really, with only enough basic punches, blocks and kicks thrown in to keep us kids interested.
    I only stopped going when the teacher stopped teaching at the community center as I enjoyed it quite a bit.
    I didn't do anything else until I was 13 or so, when a good friend of mine started training in Tae Kwon Do. He seemed to be having a lot of fun so I convinced my father to pay for some classes there. Again, I don't know if there was a particular "style" name for what I learned. I wasn't really all that interested in that kind of thing at the time. Master Yu was very nice but I rarely saw him, I trained with several American teachers in his system, eventually reaching a blue belt status in his system, which did not correlate to the systems I see now so I can't really compare it to anything meaningful. Master Yu was ex Korean military and taught the TKD as he learned it from them, not the "sport" kind. For the record I have no beef with sport TKD at all and neither did he. We sparred regularly with the group down the street and we all had a lot of respect for each other. Military TKD was what he knew so that's what he taught us, along with a healthy respect for ALL styles of martial arts. He tolerated absolutely ZERO disrespect towards anyone, actually.
    I trained TKD with Master Yu until I was 17 which is when he retired and the school closed down. Most folks went to the group down the street after that but I couldn't afford to do so.
    Shortly before Master Yu retired I participated in a tournament where I got my ass handed to me by a guy who came in all by himself and was using what he called "Tai Chi Chuan". I'd never heard of it before, don't know his name, don't know which style he used and it doesn't matter. All I know is he stomped me flatter than a pancake and did it faster than anyone I'd ever been up against.
    I wanted to learn what he knew, however I couldn't find out anything about Tai Chi Chuan.
    This was long before the internet and I was a poor boy with few resources.
    The library had some books that mentioned that art but nothing about it, just that it existed and some very faint details about its origins.
    So I let my training languish for a number of years.
    Flash forward to 1985, so about six years later, I was standing in line at a grocery store. I was bored and so I was reading the fliers posted on the cork board.
    Imagine my surprise to see a flier that said, "Tai Chi Chuan taught in the Tradtional Manner: Wu's Tai Chi Chuan Academy is now taking students".
    That was it. Nothing else but a line of those cut outs at the bottom where you pulled the phone number off to take with you.
    I did and called the number as soon as I got home.
    One training session with Sifu Britt and I was hooked. After I meet Si Kung Eddie Wu and trained with him at my first seminar I was even more hooked.
    That was a LONG time, a whole bunch of personal insight and another whole style of TCC ago for me.
    However, my only real motivation to pick up TCC didn't have anything to do with "internal vs. external" (let's get ready to RUMBLE!!!!!) at all.
    My motivation was much more simple than that:
    The guy kicked my ass in record time. I wanted to learn how to do what he did to me so I could do that to other people.
    Simple as that. No philosophical meaning or deep rooted desire to learn to fire magic chi balls out of my arse.
    Which is good, because I never did learn how to do that.

    Hope this helps the original poster in some way.

    Bob Ashmore
    Wow, what a great story, Bob. Thanks for sharing!

    When I was a teenager, a Wu style Tai Chi master asked me to punch his lower stomach and use elbows to hit his chest. I was doing Shaolin then and thought I was pretty good. It was like hitting a volleyball. At the end, it was not me punching his stomach, but him coming right towards me, stomach meeting my fist in full frontal collision.

    That left me a lasting impression. This is certainly not the reason why I switch, but it convinced me that Tai Chi is a valid martial arts if done right, and some Tai Chi masters can really surprise you.

    Again, thanks for sharing your story!
    Studying Chen Style Hunyuan Taiji under Master Wang Feng Ming
    http://www.worldtaiji.com/

    "I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times."
    --- Bruce Lee

  6. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by taiji24 View Post
    When I was a teenager, a Wu style Tai Chi master asked me to punch his lower stomach and use elbows to hit his chest.
    If you train so called "external" art such as SC or Judo, and you have been thrown down on the ground 200 times daily for the past 6 years, your body should be able to take a full powerful punch as well. It's all about your inside air pressure to balance the outside force. It's simple physics. One time someone asked me to punch his belly (he had a fat beer belly), I told him that I only punch the head and I don't punch the body. As far as the elbow hit the chest, I have not met anybody who would want me to do that to him yet.
    Last edited by YouKnowWho; 03-18-2014 at 10:29 AM.
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  7. #127
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    I am considered a Nutjob! NOTE Truth in advertising
    A few of my friends were talking about traditional vs modern MA so on one conversation I told them that they would only have to spend at least 3 years to learn CMA!
    1. Learn Beijing shi 24 taijiquan
    2. Spend 2 years (at minimum) learning shuaijiao or Mongolian wrestling and even judo
    3. Their art would be as formidable as any art out there per modern training
    4. They looked at me like the Nutjob that I am and as they call me.
    That was the best day of my life so I told them to test it. Their response "dude, you will be a nutjob for eternity'

  8. #128
    the external internal divide is an artificial fence designed by people who want to mind fuk you and take your money.

    25th generation inner door disciple of Chen Style Practical Wombat Method
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  9. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by bawang View Post
    the external internal divide is an artificial fence designed by people who want to mind fuk you and take your money.
    The 'internal external divide', in this sense, just means the swindle of pretending that there is an easy way that comes through slow movement and standing, and some kind of magical way of issuing force that no one can actually demonstrate. In that sense, this is true, and it's therefore not surprising that many people become disillusioned with the idea and fall into the trap of thinking that it's meaningless nonsense.

    There is another way of thinking about it - looking at it in a way that actually makes sense, that is practical, that has benefits for actual training, and that connects training method with practical results. And that is the idea that a mixture of learning from others, and personal experimentation and intuitive adaptation, is what 'external' and 'internal' really means. This is the only explanation that actually makes any sense, that has any practical results, and actually connects directly with the teaching of all the available literature on the training methods we get from the past.

    It's very easy to think that something is rubbish. Not so easy to see that it might just be your interpretation that's rubbish.

  10. #130
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    "If a challenger comes along with a simple alternative to the theory on which they have built their careers, most scientists are not likely to be receptive, since their status will be undermined and their lifelong commitment apparently wasted".

    "A person who challenges the conventional wisdom is likely to be ignored, then dismissed, and then finally, if these responses are inadequate, attacked".

    Brian Martin (1998) "Strategies for Dissenting Scientists" in Journal of Scientific Exploration 12:4, pp606-616

  11. #131
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    agreed.

    There is no such thing as internal and external.

    There is only whole body.

    People that cannot grasp this concept are neophytes who like most westerners buy into that fantasy magical BS.
    Mouth Boxers have not the testicular nor the spinal fortitude to be known.
    Hence they hide rather than be known as adults.

  12. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Dugas View Post
    agreed.

    There is no such thing as internal and external.

    There is only whole body.

    People that cannot grasp this concept are neophytes who like most westerners buy into that fantasy magical BS.
    The opoosite, in fact, is true: as Wang Xiang Zhai said "bound foot grows the least".

    In fact, whole body power is nothing to do with internal and external. In the way that you use all three of these terms, however, internal and external are indeed meaningless, but you have simply replaced them with the equally meaningless 'whole body power'.

    Not that 'whole body power' actually is meaningless - just that, as you use it, it's just yet another magical ability that you can't demonstrate, and has to be believed - and those who don't believe it have to be described as 'neophytes'.

    In other words, you are repeating the argument strategy of the tailors in the tale of 'the Emperor's new clothes'.
    Last edited by Miqi; 03-24-2014 at 12:06 PM.

  13. #133
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    How will you apply your "internal" when you use "foot sweep" on your opponent?

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    More opinion -> more argument
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  14. #134
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    No such thing as internal and external.

    There is only the body which has both components.

    Wang Shifu, I have neophytes on ignore as dealing with their deluded views is tiresome.

    There is not separation of the body.

    The mind commands
    the body responds
    the energy follows

    As I have said before. Whole body=mind, body and energy.
    Mouth Boxers have not the testicular nor the spinal fortitude to be known.
    Hence they hide rather than be known as adults.

  15. #135
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Dugas View Post
    No such thing as internal and external.

    There is only the body which has both components.

    Wang Shifu, I have neophytes on ignore as dealing with their deluded views is tiresome.

    There is not separation of the body.

    The mind commands
    the body responds
    the energy follows

    As I have said before. Whole body=mind, body and energy.
    Saying that one undefined term equals another undefined term doesn't explain anything - much like saying "qi equals energy" or "whole body power equals mind, body, energy". In no way does that define what "whole body power" is. It does, however, rather conveniently make "whole body power" into a metaphysical concept that therefore doesn't have to be demonstrated - it only has to be 'believed'.

    I say, conversely, that whole body power is simply a mechanical way of using the body, which can be demonstrated, and shown to be different to other ways of using the body by clearly showing that more of the total physical machine is used in the technique. The most obvious example would be a jab that comes from the arm only (not whole body), and jab that utilises torque and pressing forward from the back foot, as per yiquan.

    Being physically large and clumisily putting that weight behind a technique is not 'whole body power', however - it's 'whole body weight power' which is something very different - much like just stepping in with a punch.

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