Airbending, Firebending style!
^Yeah, this. Pretty much.
Yes okay this is what was bothering me about how she was bending! This is perfect!
This is what first struck me about the opening of Korra vs A;tLA. The A;tLA opening is very calculated, you can see the influence of the martial arts on the bending. Where as LoK opening is a lot more raw and improvisational. You can tell that what was beginning to take place in A;tLA with the different kinds of bending blending into each other (see Iroh using a waterbending technique to redirect lightening) has developed by the time we reach the age in which Korra takes place. Globalization in the bending world is similar to our’s, except we share technologies instead of bending forms.
People have been criticizing how bending is now less serious than in A;tLA. It’s not for defence, or economic development, transportation, etc, there’s now pro-bending, it’s for entertainment as well. (granted there was bending for entertainment in A;tLA as well BUT MOVING ON) Bending is used for a variety of things, serious and less so in the LoK time period just as technology is used for a variety of things today.
Can you imagine the great minds that brought me the ability to use computers, the internet, skype, etc. and how they feel about me using that great power and technology to talk to make silly faces at my boyfriend in real time across 4 provinces? It’s probably how the original great benders feel about bending being used for thievery or entertainment.
So Korra’s style of airbending may be very different from how we think airbending should be, but it’s another way in which bending and the society of the four nations has developed between A;tLA and LoK.