Let us revisit what I identify as factors for strength both inside and out.
"Remember these factors for external strength - power, speed, technique, agility, balance, control, endurance. Remember these factors for internal strength - love, hope, faith, discipline, looseness, determination, fighting spirit."
Other teachers and systems may detail more or less factors. Regardless of which factors we agree upon, I believe training should ultimately be difficult and thorough, with an emphasis on realism (self defense), "art" (self expression), and perfection of character (self development). Learning techniques for defense can become tools for violence if placed in the wrong hands. The proper training and coaching will ensure that proper values and discipline are instilled within the student. It is these that will stay with the student hopefully throughout his or her life.
As to the basic factors I list, there are many subtleties. They are all equally important and part of the inseparable whole. For instance, internal looseness alone allows proper power, speed, and so forth in technique. Determination is needed to build physical endurance. Love, hope, faith, and fighting spirit are needed in not only the dojo and self defense but also life in general.
Of course, understanding the factors lead to further refinement of the principles of combat. The thing to remember is that the essence of combat is stillness in motion. This stillness is the singular, calm focus of the mind we have when either practicing kata or sketching a picture on a page. You do not think about the kata or the picture, you simply sketch your movements.
When we investigate this - the art of movement, of expression - we may be reminded of one of many chopstick battles in classic Chinese Kung Fu films, or even Mr. Miyagi's classic fly catching attempts using chopsticks. Even seemingly simple things like these are influenced by the way we incorporate "the martial way" into our lives.
I may sum up the factors into three very basic factors. These factors are physical conditioning, mental discipline, and technical basics. Without rigorous, repetitive, realistic training, we will not develop these three things.
With solid, well rounded physical conditioning we are able to perform at a high intensity for long intervals in hard sparring. Obviously, if you do not have good conditioning, you are likely to "run out of gas" quickly. When you run out of gas, you're more likely to "lose your head" (your discipline / game plan etc.) in hard sparring, and you'll definitely suffer as far as technique. Of course, discipline is needed to carry out your game plan, and having solid "basics"/basic techniques will ensure this.
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