Do you ever notice the difference between really good martial artists and beginners? And do you notice that the difference is non-linear? What I mean by that is that a master is not simply twice as good or three times as good – a master is orders of magnitude more proficient than beginners.
The most noticeable difference is the amount of power in techniques. It takes a while for students to understand how to have “snappy” techniques – as in, how can they get their uniforms to make as much noise when doing punches or kicks as a master?
It is difficult for me to put my finger on exactly what this is, but the easiest way to get to this point is to do your punches, kicks, and other techniques fast. I don’t mean to rush through whatever you are doing, but rather to get your fist from your hip to the target as fast as you can. This will necessarily at least get your uniform making noise due to the quick movement.
And I think that the more you execute techniques in this manner, the more you’ll get the idea that your punches, kicks, and other techniques need to be done in such a way as if you are striking a real target, but in reality, you are striking thin air.
1 other point to make here in this bit of advice is that not every technique should be done as quickly or robustly as possible. There are many places in advanced forms where your timing varies greatly. Some techniques are done quickly, while at other times, you are purposefully doing what is called dynamic tension, or slow techniques with deep breaths out and lots of muscle tension in your arms or legs. Then, when you explode outward for quick techniques, the difference is highlighted even more and your power is that much more noticeable.