- Mark Twain
Ray wrote:punching a bag and lifting weights do not require a belief system.
I have been lifting weights since I got my first Ted Williams endorsed set from Sears for Christmas of 1968. I was trained in weight training (*not* body building) while a track and baseball athlete at Phillips Exeter. I was further trained by John Gamble - former world heavyweight powerlifting champion, who was formerly Varsity Strength Coach at UVa. (Google him. He has an interesting history.) He helped me develop weight training programs for my (ahem) Uechi Ryu students at University of Virginia. He was also my wife's bodybuilding coach back when women didn't bodybuild because they didn't want to look like "Arnold." I *still* do weight training - 45 years later.
What's your point, Ray? It isn't this or that.
I am all about hitting things, whether it be a heavy bag or a makiwara. But as Bruce Lee might have said "heavy bags don't hit back."
Many things can be called "martial." Most of what you talk about are either sport or - to use the label of Rory Miller in Meditations On Violence, monkey dancing. That's not self-defense. That's not combat. That's not the world of law enforcement. That's not the world of lethal force.
Ray wrote:society has changed and moved on.
"Society" follows fads, and they move on to other fads.
Thomas Jefferson wrote:In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.
Traditional martial arts are about incorporating fighting *principles* into your training regimen. You can choose to learn fighting by learning principles, or you can memorize self-defense cookbooks. Your choice.
Traditional martial arts *can* also be about having fun while you work out, and there's nothing wrong with that. Meanwhile... most who are having fun don't understand what they are doing from a martial point of view. And that's not necessarily a bad thing.
If someone "has fun" lifting weights, go for it. I walk the talk in that regard. But *I* choose not to throw the baby out with the bathwater.