Styles, first introduced in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid, basically indicate the battle styles of mages. Various Styles are the narrative focus of ViVid and ViVid Strike!, despite The MOVIE 1st also has Style information in its supplementary materials.
In the Nanoha magical universe, even hand-to-hand combats incorporate the use of magic. On modern Midchilda, they are mostly practised for sports (e.g. those governed by DSAA) and recreation, but in the Ancient Belkan era, they were used in battles alongside other combat magic. The Styles of close-combat mages generally indicate the school (流派 ryūha) of martial arts (武術 bujutsu) (e.g. Kaiser Arts) or striker skills (格闘技 kakutōgi, lit. grapple/close-combat skills) (e.g. Strike Arts) they practise.
For mages without such school (referred as "non-style" (
In addition, although ambiguous, certain spells may also be "classified" as under particular Styles, such as spells named with particular Styles (e.g. Kaiser Arts "Battering Ram"), or martial art attacks possessed/cast by persons practising the same martial art schools (e.g. Tiger Heart Palm).
Fight Styles, officially introduced in ViVid Strike!, indicate the Striker Championship athletes' close-combat fighting style on the stage.
Only a few styles are known so far: Technical Hitter (Vivio, formerly "Counter Hitter"), Infighter (Miura, formerly "Hard Hitter"), Power Fighter (Rinne).
Traditional martial arts on Leuven are collectively known as wushu (
Whereas no definition is officially given to magical martial arts, it is believed that only the schools/styles of martial arts containing a certain degree of magic handling elements (say shootings and bombardments) can be said to be magical martial arts, similar to the unique case of Hayate Yagami being addressed as Zauber-ritter (魔道騎士 Madō kishi, lit. Magical-knight).
In ViVid (ch.79), Irene Hardin explains that Divine Attack (神撃 Shingeki), the ultimate goal of Wushu, is the technique of knocking out the opponent with a single hit but without aiming at the weak body parts like head or stomach. She also comments that Sieglinde Eremiah's Iron Wrists, Miura Rinaldi's Sword-drawing and Einhard's Dankū have the quality to open the door of Divine Attack.
In ViVid (ch.80), Ray Tundra proves that Vivio Takamachi is already entering the field of Divine Eyes (神眼 Shingan) as contributed by continuous training (of her dynamic sighting ability) and perhaps also Irene's teaching during the quest at the cave. Similar to Divine Attack, it is an ultimate skill of detecting/reading the track of incoming attacks from opponents.