Martial arts are intense body contact physical activities - for most folks. But then you hear stories and occasionally meet nearly crippled old men who can barely move but still have seemingly magical ability.
As young men, we don't want to do martial arts like old men - even though we do want to eventually have similar magic.
As young men, we want to be vigorous and strong. But the old men assure us that if we would reduce the intensity a bit, we would sustain less damage and stay young and capable longer. These are the same crippled old men that used to be vigorous, intense hellions when they were young.
Sometimes, you see old men who still exert like young men - geriatric supermen. But realistically, how many of us think we won the genetic jackpot that would allow us to be that vigorous that long?
I guess the best plan for dealing with the Old Man Paradox is do the best you can for as long as you can and don't feel bad about choosing to practice with either intense power or with delicate finesse whether you are young or are old - and hope that you can still do both power and finesse when you are old.
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