Why martial arts?

My deep connection with the martial arts began during my dance education at the dance academy. Starting to dance at a relatively late age, my body did not develop according to specific aesthetic choices. I found at that point that the classical western dance techniques really did not fit my body structure. However, defined movement technique, providing a clear environment in which the body can follow movement principles, enchanted me.

Being exposed to the physical potential that the martial arts provide, my body felt much more comfortable. The pulling and centering downwards towards earth and gravity, the aspiration to find our roots, the connection between the ground and our feet and the use of this connection to generate movement and flow to the entire body, these felt natural and accurate .

The fighting skills as such did not really interest me. What did interest me was the sharpness and focus which fighting as a technique gives to movement and presence. In a metaphorical way, my life depends on every movement I do. This uncompromising intentionality gives a strong call for the ‘here and now’ and brings to the movement a special quality of unity that binds together the connections between the body parts, the inner presence and the space around.

Another aspect that attracted me to the martial arts was its’ practice, the duration work. Staying with one thing for long time, repeating one exercise over and over again often becomes uncomfortable and helps me recognize my borders and puts me in direct contact with them.

Essentially, the martial arts give me what I also seek in dance; the opportunity to express my own intentionality. It offers conditions and tools but it is the reciprocal relationship, what I bring to the form and movement which makes it happen. It is the practice of continuously dropping myself into the moment.

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