Martial Arts Training Is Not Just About Being Practical
It's kind of funny to me that often when I talk to other martial artists, some of them care as much about what's practical as what is not.
In one discussion, we were talking about martial arts weaponry, including canes and bo swords.
This fellow commented that swords are not practical as we generally no longer carry swords but sticks can be found anywhere which can replace staff.
This is the same type of person who would discredit elegant movements in many forms of personnel, especially the open and extreme style of weapon forms, as they are not practical for the streets.
Although he is right in all this, he is missing something that will be very relevant for many martial artists.
Although many of the sophisticated movements in both armed and unarmed martial arts forms, as well as impractical weapons such as swords, have very little use in combat or self-defense situations, it should not be forgotten that there are other purposes with these.
Many martial arts techniques and activities, no matter how impractical, can still be done for pure enjoyment.
There is exercise involved, which benefits both physical and mental health. There is the aspect of the show, which entertains the public (and what's wrong with entertaining the public?).
There is the progression of skills involved, which help with confidence levels to do other things in life. This is certainly practical for personal development itself.
There is also a decrease in boredom because a little variety in the martial arts allows people to train and stay interested in the martial arts for much longer.
The evidence in this is for those who take martial arts just to learn practical techniques and nothing else, their past years in martial arts are often relatively short because after learning the practicalities they just get bored.
Yes, we have come a long way in the world of martial arts in terms of realizing what exactly is practical and what is not.
This may have started with Bruce Lee when he pounced on classical and traditional techniques. Of course, he had strengths that ultimately led to mixed martial arts or MMA that are so popular these days.
At the same time, open style martial arts forms became more exciting and extreme on competition circuits and this includes the introduction of Chinese wushu.
These developments may appear to be in complete contrast to the MMA mixed martial arts movement.
These seem like two very different and distant fields in the world of martial arts.
As a result, many martial artists from a practical point of view would be quick to discredit the "elegant" side. But literally, there is no need to do it.
There are many other aspects of martial arts in addition to practical techniques.
It should not be ruled out all the enjoyment that is not practical, that is, the elegant things of martial arts.
Martial artists can train with these other techniques no matter how useless they are on the street just for pure pleasure. Train for similar reasons why people favor to play tennis or golf. For pure enjoyment.