Bigger is Not Always Better

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A bit rich coming from me you might say. At 6 foot 2 and nearly 16 stone (1.87 and over 100kg in new money) – it’s not too difficult for me to generate a lot of force – I don’t really have to try too much. My training and education has been very western despite training in Japanese and Chinese martial Arts: Martial Arts training in the west is very muscle-power focused.

One of the things I noticed many years ago is that many of the Martial Arts were developed by smaller people for smaller people. In the days prior to better diets, Eastern people had not only relatively smaller bodies, but specifically less muscley upper bodies. Out of necessity they needed to use, or revert to, using whole body power instead of more isolated upper body power.

The imbalance of bigger people using external power against smaller people using external power puts a lot of people off in the early stages of their Martial Arts training. A shame – because they miss out on the real power in the Martial Arts – internal power and whole body power.

As you get older, the importance of muscle power naturally diminishes and this is where learning internal and whole body power also comes into its forte.

So if you are relatively small, getting on, or want to improve your game massively, internal power should be of great interest to you. It’s not too difficult to learn – it just requires an open mindset and some targeted learning and practice.

The stages are:

– deep body and energy awareness
– learning that mindfulness is a lot more that meditation: it’s being able to intuitively map your body with your mind
– breathing awareness and intuitive mapping
– intuitive understanding of how your body structure functions at its best
– intuitive flow, pacing and rhythm
– integration of all the above

Intuitive crops up a lot, and what it means here is learning something the right way and to such an extent that it becomes a habit.

Reading through this you’ll have got a pretty good idea that you have to start somewhere and if you get it wrong the rest is not going to be much good. Here’s the sting in the tail – you can learn all of this yourself if you have one thing – awareness. Once that is in place everything else can follow. But it’s going to be easier with some guidance.

So how can you learn body and energy awareness?

Here’s a start –

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