Martial Art And Tradition
By Sam Yang - Get similar updates here
Someone recently asked me this and I had to think about it for a moment. No it's not all from Asia but to many it may seem like it because it's so important in the East.
The West, when a physical event gets popular and people like it, they turn it into a sport. We are now seeing this with Crossfit, rock climbing, and even Ninja Warrior (the ultimate obstacle course event). In the East, though many martial arts have become sports themselves, there is a large contingent that frowns upon martial arts becoming sportive, as sport would eliminate a lot of the cultural heritage and traditions.
The term martial art itself is a Western term derived from the Roman god Mars. In the East, with so many revolutions, Westernization, industrialization, Americanization, Christianity, burning down of monasteries and shrines, martial arts is one of the last ways to pass on traditions and maintain heritage.
The East isn't really a melting pot, so heritage is that much more important.
Sadly a lot of martial arts abandon traditions because they believe it is the only way to make it more profitable. I don't believe this to be the case and I don't believe just because you make it sportive means you must lose tradition. You just have to do it better. Kyokushin karate comes to mind when I think of balancing sport with tradition. It's the rising argument now in the world of BJJ, which still has elements of it's Japanese roots, #osu.
I hope martial arts in all its forms can retain some of its original traditions, as a grooming school to turn young people into excellent adults.
Sam Yang from an early age has been obsessed with connecting the dots between martial arts and efficiency, health, mindset, business, science, and habits to improve optimal well-being. For more info, join his newsletter. You can also connect to Inner BJJ on Facebook and Twitter.