Showing posts tagged airbending

Korra and Airbending

Korra had a hard time mastering airbending in season one and Tenzin even mentions that she has not mastered real airbending, but only, as he puts it “Korra style airbending”. 

So, when Korra wakes up on that beach after she’s been swallowed by the green glowing Dark Spirit, and her first instinct is to airbend, what exactly does that mean?

There are two possibilities:

Airbending is connected to the spiritual aspect of being the Avatar.

It could simply be that the contact with the spirit connected her to the Spirit World and the airbending happened due to that connection.

Another (not mutually exclusive) option is that the contact with the spirit took some of her bending.

Korra’s first choice of bending has never been air. She does seem to favor fire and water. 

The spirit glowed green. (And as I’ve pointed out here: I think all Dark Spirits are part of the Avatar Spirit) Green is the color of earth. Did the spirit take her earthbending and the airbending happened as a result of that loss?

Air Bending: Fighting

All Bending Arts in ATLA contain defensive and offensive moves:

When Aang fights with Hi De, On Ji’s boyfriend, he defends himself using Ba Gua Zhang i.e. Wu  Dang style martial arts. This style is famous for its ‘circle walking’ i.e. avoiding the opponents strikes by staying behind their back. Aang demonstrates it rather well in the gifs.


The Bending Arts: Airbending

Airbending is based on Ba Gua Zhang

Bāguàzhǎng is one of the three main Chinese martial arts of the Wudang school, the other two being Taijiquan and Xingyiquan. It is more broadly grouped as an internal practice (or neijia gong). Bāguà zhǎng literally means “eight trigram palm,” referring to the trigrams of the Yijing (I Ching), one of the canons of Taoism.[1]

Look, it’s the creators talking:


Be the Leaf Amon

Here’s something disturbing/interesting I’ve noticed:

Compare how much Amon’s (and the chi benders’) evasive moves match with airbending moves.

I am not saying that he’s an airbender, but what if he had been an air acolyte? They are all non-benders as far as I know. And that Tenzin knows him and might have taught him.

Fun fact: Stalin got kicked out of Georgian Orthodox seminary, he also had scars on his face from small-pox

Airball - Overlap Between Airbending and Firebending


Airbending

Airbending is based on bagua zhuang.

Bāguàzhǎng is one of the three main Chinese martial arts of the Wudang school, the other two being Taijiquan and Xingyiquan. … Bāguà zhǎng literally means “eight trigram palm,” referring to the trigrams of the Yijing (I Ching), one of the canons of Taoism.

The bagua, as a symbol, can also be seen as the mosaic on Air Temple island.

Baguazhang practitioners are known for their ability to “flow” in and out of the way of objects. … Baguazhang’s evasive nature is also shown by the practice of moving behind an attacker, so that the opponent cannot harm the practitioner.

These flowing movements can be seen in airbending, but also in Aang’s fighting style. Further it is a reference to the avoidant part of Aang’s character and his element i.e. like air that flows around an obstacle, Aang prefers to find another way, instead of facing the problem head on.

Airball and Firebending

The poles we see are not used in bagua zhuang, but in gongfu. Why is this interesting? Because firebending is based on Shaolin gongfu.

Firebending is based on Shaolin Gong Fu

Those who practice Shaolinquan leap about with strength and force; people not proficient at this kind of training soon lose their breath and are exhausted.

Of the multitude styles of kung fu and wushu, only some are actually related to Shaolin. Aside from a few very well known systems, such as Xiao Hong Quan, the Da Hong Quan, Yin Shou Gun, Damo Sword, etc. after the loss of records during the 20th Century Cultural Revolution it would be almost impossible for a particular style to conclusively establish a connection to the Temple.

I find the last sentence interesting, since both, Fire Nation Firebending and Gongfu have lost their connection to their source.

Now what could that mean?

What we have here is an overlap in martial arts styles in the bending arts.

Well, a simple explanation would be a goof, but if you want you could read deeper meaning into it: The overlap between bending Uncle mentions (Him learning from the waterbenders) and the deeper interconnection between the elements.

Image source: One

More: Greetings and shows of respect in ATLA

Airbending

Firebending

The Bending Arts: Airbending


Airbending is based on Ba Gua Zhang

Bāguàzhǎng is one of the three main Chinese martial arts of the Wudang school, the other two being Taijiquan and Xingyiquan. It is more broadly grouped as an internal practice (or neijia gong). Bāguà zhǎng literally means “eight trigram palm,” referring to the trigrams of the Yijing (I Ching), one of the canons of Taoism.[1]

Look, it’s the creators talking: