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External arts based in the Wudang Martial Art system are widely varied. Although each is specific in its own style, all work together towards the same goal of improving and maintaining the bodies physical condition to a state of more healthy longevity.
External Martial Arts, learned in Wudang and channeled through the American Wudang Culture Center, range from basic empty hand sets to advanced weapon styles. The empty hand sets are complete with beginning level forms, designed to open and condition the body, animal styles, with more detailed experience, and eventually moving on to a few advanced sets that combine and improve on the details of the sets learned before. The weapon styles; broadsword, straight sword, horsehair whisk, staff, spear, and monk spade, each have one specific set (with the exception of the famous Wudang straight sword). Each weapon has its own characteristics and skills that their respective form highlights during its practice.
External Martial Arts, in the AWCC structure, are used to condition and loosen the body to better the fluidity of flexibility and transmission of power of the Internal Martial Arts. Contrary to most styles that start by teaching the change of internal understanding to external coordination, Wudang style starts by using external conditioning to open the channels used to transit internal energy. Through training, the body will become more relaxed and flexible allowing the transfer of energy to become more natural and fluid.
In this sense, the external styles are the starting steps to a bigger understanding of internal alchemy. Each individual art has its own way to promote the body in this conditioning. However this does not mean that external styles must be mastered before learning the internal styles. Because of the long commitment and dedication to the internal styles required, the external styles are used to coincide with and promote an individual to excel in both internal and external styles in unison.
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