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Break Things
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WHY DO MARTIAL ARTISTS BREAK THINGS? 

Those people that have attended martial arts demonstrations know that board breaking and numerous other destructive practices are always a prominent part of the action. Is there some reason for this, beyond impressing the spectators? 
The answer, of course, is yes. 

On the physical level, breaking is a means of testing one's techniques. A good break requires good balance, speed, accuracy, power and control. One can train endlessly but without actually applying techniques against a real object it is difficult to know whether they would be effective. If the technique works against a stack of boards or bricks, however, one is reasonably assured that sufficient power has been attained.

In most breaks, however, power is not the limiting factor. In fact, almost anyone is physically capable of splintering several pieces of lumber in a single blow. The reason most people could not actually do it is one of attitude and concentration. Breaking requires mobilization and coordination of both the limbs and the mind. To learn and to know that one will be successful is the purpose of breaking exercises. 

Attainment of this level of coordination and confidence is no simple matter but it is within anyone's reach. Once it is attained, however, there are few limits to its application. To be sure, there are always more difficult challenges but the principle remains the same. 

Ultimately, one should be able to apply this skill to all facets of life. In doing so, one transcends the sport‑like or physical aspect of training and begins to understand what martial arts really are and why it means so much more than breaking bones.

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