New Martial Art Student and Options

dvcochran

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Well to be fair, if one were to be particular about the etymological definitions of martial and art, then most martial arts would not actually be martial arts. Martial means to do with war, and most martial arts are rooted in civilian self-defense rather than martial application.
There is a small collection of old styles with ties back to early wartimes in their root country. There are a great many variants and yes, "modern" styles cannot say this so in that respect you are correct. But to put too much of a dividing line between the too can easily degrade the purpose because, in reality, much of what you would be learning should be much the same, at least similar. The learning tactics are what will be different.
 
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StellarAevum

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There is a small collection of old styles with ties back to early wartimes in their root country. There are a great many variants and yes, "modern" styles cannot say this so in that respect you are correct. But to put too much of a dividing line between the too can easily degrade the purpose because, in reality, much of what you would be learning should be much the same, at least similar. The learning tactics are what will be different.

While my experiences in Taekwondo and Karate have been similar, those two and boxing and jujutsu have felt very different from one another. In technique as well as training.
 

JR 137

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Thank you very much for your words of wisdom.

I do not know about the other schools, but the Shotokan one is part of a internationally recognized organization. Regardless, I am not in martial arts to win dyed segments of cloth, the training will be there regardless of wether another school would like me to adjust or refine earlier training or not.
This is the best mentality to have. Please don’t lose sight of it.

Regarding Wushu, it’s a performance art, not a combative art. Just like Kung Fu Wang has said. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with training in it, however you stated “practice against a resisting opponent” as one of your goals; it was your second goal listed. To me that implies you’re looking for self defense from it; however much you’re looking for is unclear. If you’re looking for self defense, you’re not going to get much from modern Wushu. It’s significantly closer to a dance routine than it is to a combative art. Nothing wrong with that at all if you’re aware and accepting of it.

Wushu is a generic term that can mean a lot of different Chinese martial arts. Modern Wushu is pretty much accepted as the performance art.

Edit: I don’t know if “contemporary Kung Fu” and modern Wushu are the same thing or not. I believe Kung Fu and Wushu can be used interchangeably, and modern and contemporary can be, so it’s possible they’re the same thing. Maybe not though. I’m not a Chinese MA expert, so I have to defer here.
 
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gpseymour

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The stance and technique of the two martial arts does not seem to overlap, at least in these earlier stages. Doing something like Karate and Taekwondo at once would seem to me, as a beginner, to be more of a problem as there is overlap where it would be easy to use one martial art's striking methods when you should be doing the other.

I do think it's easier where there's less overlap. If both have an L stance, but approach it differently, it can cause some confusion (both of concepts, and in the muscle memory). At the same time, you'll run into differences in approach in any case, but nothing that can't be dealt with. One of my favorite training partners started Aikido and Karate at the same time. He progressed more slowly than most, but no more slowly than I did, and had a better overall competence than most after a few years.

But then again, I could be completely wrong. I worry about only having practice once a week if I wanted to devote myself to Jujutsu however.
And that was my point about frequency earlier. Once a week can work, but it's a slow road, and you'll get less overall benefit (especially fitness and flexibility) that way. So adding a second art to be able to train at least twice a week is, in my opinion, almost entirely positive.
 

gpseymour

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I see. I'm sorry if I am being annoying with my questions.

While I do want a martial art with at least some level of practical application, just because a martial art does not help with fighting does not necessarily mean it is not a martial art does it?

Are not aesthetics, mental discipline, and physical conditioning a part of martial arts as well?
They can be - that's a matter of approach. Some instructors give no attention to aesthetics. Mental discipline is a part of any skill building, so martial arts are certainly no exception - they all require you do things regularly, sometimes when you don't want to, and some of it being boring. And anything that gets you moving will add some to your fitness. The more vigorous the demands of the activity, the more fitness you're likely to gain. In those latter two, modern Wushu probably does as good a job as most combat-applicable martial arts. We could call it martial tumbling or martial dance, and we wouldn't think those would require less discipline or fitness.
 

gpseymour

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Thank you very much for your response. While I enjoyed Taekwondo, I worry about the techniques taught in WTF sparring concerning protecting the head.
The issue to consider isn't the WT(F) rules, but whether that's all they train for. It is my understanding that there are WT-oriented TKD schools that teach the full range of TKD, including the (rather large) body of material that isn't useful under WT rules. If they train specifically for WT competition - and that's their only focus - then your concern is probably valid.
 

drop bear

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There is a small collection of old styles with ties back to early wartimes in their root country. There are a great many variants and yes, "modern" styles cannot say this so in that respect you are correct. But to put too much of a dividing line between the too can easily degrade the purpose because, in reality, much of what you would be learning should be much the same, at least similar. The learning tactics are what will be different.

The old styles like boxing and wrestling?
 

Kung Fu Wang

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It will still take mental discipline to learn those routines,
When people start to use the terms mental discipline, self-cultivation, inner peace, ... I truly don't know what they are talking about.

You can add a lot of fancy terms to make MA look pretty. To me, MA is as simple as "fist meets face" and "head hits ground".

fist-meets-face.jpg


head-hit-ground.png
 

gpseymour

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When people start to use the terms mental discipline, self-cultivation, inner peace, ... I truly don't know what they are talking about.

You can add a lot of fancy terms to make MA look pretty. To me, MA is as simple as "fist meets face" and "head hits ground".

fist-meets-face.jpg


head-hit-ground.png
Discipline is simple. When you train a skill, you have to do boring stuff, on days you don't want to go, at all, sometimes with a partner you'd rather not work with. But you do, anyway.

Self-discipline is a skill...and almost a resource, the way the research is pointing. If you use it, it gets stronger, like muscle. If you exercise it regularly, it becomes easier to maintain. Long-term practice of martial arts, gymnastics, piano, etc. - if done with the kind of repetition and dedication that typically is required to develop skill - exercises discipline and develops the skill.
 

dvcochran

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When people start to use the terms mental discipline, self-cultivation, inner peace, ... I truly don't know what they are talking about.

You can add a lot of fancy terms to make MA look pretty. To me, MA is as simple as "fist meets face" and "head hits ground".

fist-meets-face.jpg


head-hit-ground.png

That is simply wrong. Martial ARTS are a whole approach to protecting body, mind, and spirit. Corny I know, but true. If a person has never been taught the things you mention, and I will include virtue, discipline respect, etc... I can understand that they do not understand, but I do not agree with it. If you want to make anything better, your MA, your family, yourself, the world, these principals cannot be left out. If you want to learn how to fight without a filter that is your prerogative but you have to know there are implications.
 

gpseymour

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That is simply wrong. Martial ARTS are a whole approach to protecting body, mind, and spirit. Corny I know, but true. If a person has never been taught the things you mention, and I will include virtue, discipline respect, etc... I can understand that they do not understand, but I do not agree with it. If you want to make anything better, your MA, your family, yourself, the world, these principals cannot be left out. If you want to learn how to fight without a filter that is your prerogative but you have to know there are implications.
I don't really buy into the idea that the word "art" means that - that's a connotation not originally in the term. That's the "do" in later Japanese arts, but I wouldn't cease to call something a martial art simply because it doesn't overtly operate on those principles.
 

Flying Crane

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This is the best mentality to have. Please don’t lose sight of it.

Regarding Wushu, it’s a performance art, not a combative art. Just like Kung Fu Wang has said. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with training in it, however you stated “practice against a resisting opponent” as one of your goals; it was your second goal listed. To me that implies you’re looking for self defense from it; however much you’re looking for is unclear. If you’re looking for self defense, you’re not going to get much from modern Wushu. It’s significantly closer to a dance routine than it is to a combative art. Nothing wrong with that at all if you’re aware and accepting of it.

Wushu is a generic term that can mean a lot of different Chinese martial arts. Modern Wushu is pretty much accepted as the performance art.

Edit: I don’t know if “contemporary Kung Fu” and modern Wushu are the same thing or not. I believe Kung Fu and Wushu can be used interchangeably, and modern and contemporary can be, so it’s possible they’re the same thing. Maybe not though. I’m not a Chinese MA expert, so I have to defer here.
“Wushu” is the proper term meaning fighting methods. “Kung fu” means skill gained through hard work and training. That skill can be in anything, including the fighting methods or cooking or carpentry or physics, etc. Through a misunderstanding in the meaning, the term has been attached to the martial arts, and in the West it continues to be used in that way.

Traditional Wushu would be in reference to the older methods of combative training.

Modern Wushu was established in the 1950s by the Communist Chinese government as a national performance and competition artform. It is based on the traditional methods of Wushu, but deviates from proper technical application with the goal of impressing an audience.

Modern Wushu folks can be excellent athletes. But it is akin to a martial-flavored gymnastics routine. Fighting skills are not part of the goals of the method.
 

drop bear

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When people start to use the terms mental discipline, self-cultivation, inner peace, ... I truly don't know what they are talking about.

You can add a lot of fancy terms to make MA look pretty. To me, MA is as simple as "fist meets face" and "head hits ground".

fist-meets-face.jpg


head-hit-ground.png

Discipline makes you more effective at that.


But fighting arts as a pathway to better mental health is kind of common.
 

drop bear

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“Wushu” is the proper term meaning fighting methods. “Kung fu” means skill gained through hard work and training. That skill can be in anything, including the fighting methods or cooking or carpentry or physics, etc. Through a misunderstanding in the meaning, the term has been attached to the martial arts, and in the West it continues to be used in that way.

Traditional Wushu would be in reference to the older methods of combative training.

Modern Wushu was established in the 1950s by the Communist Chinese government as a national performance and competition artform. It is based on the traditional methods of Wushu, but deviates from proper technical application with the goal of impressing an audience.

Modern Wushu folks can be excellent athletes. But it is akin to a martial-flavored gymnastics routine. Fighting skills are not part of the goals of the method.

But of course it is not the system. It is the individual. So if you train it hard enough somehow you just gain combative skills through osmosis or something.

The training really does not have to be relevant to the activity. Or even well thought out to be honest. All paths lead to the same place.
 
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