Traditional Martial Arts vs. Modern Martial Arts

Insightful article by Shifu Longfei Yang from the International Xin Wu Men Martial Arts Association.


In the modern era, Chinese martial arts have, via many different kinds of media, been publicized and spread across the world. Martial Arts is now a household name. Many different tournaments have emerged one after the other, attracting martial arts enthusiasts from around the world. But many people are not clear about the differences between traditional and modern martial arts.Here we can provide a simple explanation. Traditional martial arts have a history over five thousand years long, as old as the Chinese civilization. They developed in harmony with Chinese moral beliefs, philosophy, and healing practices. The result was an abundance of highly developed and practical martial arts systems. These systems have been passed down through the generations.Modern martial arts however, only have a history of a few decades. They originated between the 1950s and 1970s. They were created as a means to widely popularize martial arts, while establishing a set of uniform regulations by which all these new styles could be judged. The Chinese Communist government had some famous accomplished martial artists compile sets of traditional movements of different difficulties. These were still based on a foundation of traditional martial arts. But later, since they were only concerned with performing these sets of movements (forms) for competitions, more and more people started to further change the movements. Thus it came to be that the most important points in the appreciation of martial arts deviated from the central principles. It became about practicing these deviated forms, rather than the true traditional things. They placed importance on the external, not on the internal. The complexity and difficulty of the movements also increased. Now we often see martial arts that more resemble aerobics or acrobatics than the true, traditional things. . . see the rest of the article here.

64 views0 comments