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Old 01-21-2013, 05:11 PM   #9
ChrisHein's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Fresno
Location: Fresno , CA
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,646
Re: "Internal" and "External"

I think often when people speak of internal vs external they are talking about good vs bad to them. Everything they think is bad (clumsy energy, athletes, powerful muscles) gets called "external", and everything that is good (smart energy, clever old people, not having to work out) gets called "internal".

I know because I used to feel much the same way, I would never say "external" is bad, I would simply say something like "it's just a different way of moving, some people like it". I would be thinking in my head, "yeah, only morons would like external martial arts, they are stupid", but I wouldn't admit that. But the more I learned about "internal martial arts" and the more I learned about athletics, the more I realized they were going for the same thing.

Using your body correctly is neither "internal" or "external" it is simply using your body correctly. So I don't understand why when we are talking about internal vs external we always talk about things that are negative (clumsy strength, not moving from your center etc) as being external, and all good things (appropriate strength, moving form your center etc) as being internal.

If there is a difference between external and internal why confuse those things with good or bad? Athletes can push more weight, jump higher, move faster, work longer then non athletes, yet athletics are "external" correct? Athletes move from their center, and apply exacting amounts of appropriate force. So lumping them into "external" and making external sound clumsy or stupid makes the discussion confusing.

We should be talking about the real differences and not adding a slant, either positive or negative to either side.

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