“Take the strength out! Take the strength out!” the old Chinaman kept yelling at his young pupil in training as he easily whipped the strong young man from pillar to post..
In the old days the “soft stylists” of China were feared. And with good reason. Their opponents usually died.
Why this? Why take the strength out? And when? The when is in training so you can discover efficiency, ki, unity and centre.
Why? Because if you don’t you will continue to move crudely and merely mimic form without gaining understanding.
People who’ve never seen an emergency then make the assumption that in real combat you remain a feather all the time. Once this assumption is made, the weak link breaks and the art goes down the gurgler.
In a real situation all that training does is to augment the other 4.6 billion years of survival evolution locked in your genes.
The ancestors don’t muck around. If it’s not your time, when the survival instincts unleash, it will be intense. So much so, it can make you sick if you fail to resolve the biochemistry. That’s why old warriors had meditation, the tea house the sweat lodge and other, post battle detox mechanisms. Otherwise they became drunks and ruined their health in a downhill journey to a miserable and slow self-inflicted death.
People who don’t train have no, this life, point of reference. So they either freeze or struggle inefficiently and work against themselves.
With proper training we learn to get out of our own way.
We unlearn the clutter that gets in the way of moving and interacting most efficiently.
Hence the Ai of the Do of Ki.