QI – part 2

Qi as ”efficient biomechanics”

Defining Qi as a kind of  biomechanical efficiency

is somewhat unique to the martial arts. In this way, Qi is viewed

as a quality possessed by a living system, a kind of biological efficiency.

When used in martial arts in this way, Qi refers to the result

of a certain alignement within the human body. Proper Qi results in efficient

movement and the optimal and maximal use of force.

Therefore ”proper Qi” is the optimal skeletal alignement and most coordinated

use of the muscular system for the purpose of generating

the maximum amount of force with the minimal amount of effort.

Put more simply, maximum force with minimum effort.

In a biomechanical model, proper body alignement focuses on three fundamental

elements: first, using the body as a complete and integrated unit

with the waist as center; second, correct interplay between relaxation

and contraction of the muscles; and third, alignement of the skeleton

to transfer or receive force.  Oftentimes when Qi is used to mean

biomechanical efficiency, the term Qi is replaced with ”Jing” , a technical

term used to refer to specific manners of applying force.

It can be best defined as coordinated energy for a specific function.

The difference between the biomechanics model of Qi

and the ”life force” model lies in the fact that the latter  model Qi is viewed

as a separate ”thing” that moves through the human body

like a current of electricity or some fluid. In contrast, the biomechanics model

of Qi as a quality like ”efficiency” or ”coordination” means that Qi

is not some separate ”mystery substance” but rather a  ”state of being”.

– to be continued –

~ by pinoro on September 1, 2012.

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