Mastering Styles used in Martial Arts
When it comes to training so that a person can be ready for any bodily invasion, it’s clearly noted that —
These statements try to explain why people train martial arts. One trains in order to gain the skills (styles) needed to fight. But in fighting one needs to be strong to subdue and use the styles well. Then it all boils down to the use intelligence to subdue an opponent who is both strong and has skills needed. Hence the need for total mastery of the art. In martial, it doesn’t matter how strong the opponent may be because if one engages them with the right skills and mastery then they are more poised to win and conquer.
Martial arts fall in several various categories and they are classified according to two factors:
Styles. These are further categorized using form which details the type of training involved. For instance styles without forms are ‘Internal’ such as Jing, Qi and Shen while those with forms are termed as ‘external’ Martial arts. The forms used in martial arts are intended to train muscles, cardiovascular, bones and the skin to be tough and endure pain.
Tactics which could be soft or hard martial arts. In martial arts, people are trained the styles to use in combat. There are various training methods which may be involved physically. These equip the practitioner with massive and powerful bones, heavy built muscles and so much of strength and spirit.
But all that is external. For such a person to have complete and total mastery of a style, he/she will need to undergo training of hundreds or may be thousands of ‘external’ styles involved, overcome many instances of hard tasks and difficulties, master the spirit required and get all the details and strengths needed in order to master the deep secrets involved. This is the case of masters.
There are different types of martial arts and the most common ones include:
Judo. This technique is more modern. It originates from the Chinese. The most underlying technique in this art mastery of either to throw or takedown the opponent to the ground and disarm them or conquer over them. Styles employed to achieve this includes joint lock, strangle hold, grappling or choking the opponent.
Tai Chi. This is an internal form of Chinese martial art which is practiced for both its health benefits as well as the defense of the practitioner.
Tae Kwon Do. It originates from Korea. The practitioner has to learn a system of blocks, kicks, punches and open-hand strike. Also one is taught several techniques of taking the opponent down, and also styles such as throws, and Joint locks. All these enable one to master and develop speed, strength, balance and flexibility as well as boost the spirit of the practitioner.
Unlike karate which is known for its hand strikes, Tae Kwon Do lay emphasis on kicking strikes.
Karate. This martial art is more common and originates from Japan. It employs styles like punching, kicking, knee strikes and elbow strikes to fight an opponent. It lays emphasis on hand strikes in fighting opponents.
Kung Fu. Also known as Gong Fu in ancient Chinese is a collection of various martial arts which have been developed and practiced in China. The styles vary according to the different reasons adopted to train the styles and also according to the theme which include families, sects etc.
Hapkido. This is a martial art which originated from Korea. It uses joint locks, punches and kicks for striking an opponent. Also weapons can be used such as swords, ropes, nunchaku etc. A lot of emphasis is laid on circular motions, non-resisting movements and total control of the opponent, using footwork and positioning of the body to gain advantage and leverage strength against that of opponents.
Aikido. This art draws origin from Japanese and is performed by flowing with the motion of the opponent instead of counter — attacking it. This helps one gain advantage of the opponent since less physical strength is used. The practitioner leverages on the opponent by entering and turning motions of the opponent momentum and is thus at a better position to attack through joint locks or throws.
Mei Hua Zhuang is a martial art whose techniques employ the use of either ground markings or logs attached to the ground, which are set in a pattern that resembles a plum blossom petal. The pattern used is inspired by ancient Chinese theory or yin-yang and five elements. A person who seeks to learn this art can either train footwork on top of the logs, or can alternatively circle around them with varying movements.
Some styles may involve the mimic of animal movements such as Eagle Claw, Praying Mantis, Five Animals (Shaolin Kung Fu) etc.
There also are styles which are inspired by Chinese philosophies.
The internal styles of Kung Fu mainly focus on mastering of qi while the external styles seek to better muscular cardiovascular fitness.