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Old 04-08-2007, 03:51 PM   #7
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Dojo: Aikido of Northern Virginia
Location: Stuttgart, Baden Wurttemberg
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 4,376
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Re: Internal strength in bowling, fencing, golf, etc.

Justin,

While I think you and I might see things slightly different...I would tend to agree with your basic premise that there is no such thing as external and internal being separate and distinct....there is only correct movement...some more efficient than others..I am told differently by some that this is not so, but my experiences to date have said that this is the case.

I have read some books by internal guys, ones such as B.K. Frantzis, which admittidly, Mike Sigman says..."he doesn't get it".
B.K.F along with most of these guys follow the traditional line of thought of labeling things like karate, tae kwon do, judo as external, and things like aikido, ba gua, Hsing I, Tae Chi as internal.

I used to agree with this, but now a days see it more semantical in nature. I did Traditional Karate for years, clacking arms and shins against each other..looking for that one solid shite or reverse punch..then I found aikido..and said..."Wow!" ohhhhh...Karate...external. Aikido....internal!

I improved leaps and bounds in my karate once I understood a little about center and what not...very empowering!

I thought...wow..this is it! Internal is where it is at. Yea...all those external guys are wasting their time hitting the makawara and grunting etc.

I dismissed BJJ for years because I saw it as more of an extension of external.

These days though, I would say there are people that train properly/correctly...and those that don't.

Karate trained properly can be very internal, however I'd say most have earned the reputation as external. (external being defined as incorrectly trained).

These days I have also discovered that methodology is very important, more so than what labeled art you study.

Many would say that golf is not internal. Frankly I am confused by this, to me it is the same logic as saying golf is not a car! What does it mean.

The best golf players must learn to control a great deal of things mental, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. They practice meditation, as defined as visualization.

I was a successful pole vaulter back in my High School and college years, many years ago. I had a coach that was amazing. We did things that were considered to be cutting edge at the time. Visualization, breathing drills, rope work, balance and posture exercises...all kinds of things that I have also done in martial arts. When the pole hit the box it as the endstate of alot of things being in sync and in line.

Back to methodology though. I do believe that it is possible to isolate out and enhance aspects of your training. We can teach our bodies to do amazing things with the proper training and proper methodology. My wife is a yogini. When I actually have time, she has shown me how to relax anatgonistic muscle groups so I can actually touch my toes!

Personally, I think much of this conversation concerning internal versus external to be semantics, but I am told from many that have experienced things which are new to them, that I am not correct. So, until I study with them that put things in the pots this way...I can't say for sure.

I have another thought which I will carry on another post...Arm Wrestling....

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