Monday, 8 June 2009

Training without Training

Most martial artists wish that they had more time to train. With all the stresses of daily life, including work, family commitments, travelling etc, many do not get the chance to train as much as liked, sometimes not at all for a great length of time. However, there are ways in which one can get in some kind of training during hectic periods, even if it is for a few minutes each day and the greatest advantages is these methods do not require one to change there clothes or to be in gym when doing them.

Some of the training methods include,

Hand slapping – A great kids game which anyone can do. It does need a partner but is easy to learn if you have never done it before. In case you don’t know what it is, hold your palms together as if praying and then touch your finger tips with your partner who is holding his/her hands in the same way. From here your partner must slap your hands with one of his choice and you must simply avoid the slap by moving nothing but your hands away. Your partner keeps slapping until he/she misses, in which the roles are reversed. There are many variations to this game such as circling your hands, slapping with both etc. Be inventive and come up with a few. This is one of the greatest ways to improve ones reactions which is something every martial artist could do with.

Muscle tensing – It’s as simple as it sounds. Either sitting down or standing up, tense your muscles. These isometric contractions are a great way to quickly improve strength and where ways in which Bruce Lee improved his. Bodybuilders perform these isometric holds during there posing routines and swear by them for helping bring out muscle definition and for providing a good workout if done for a length of time. When muscle tensing, tense each muscle group lightly and slowly move towards hard tensing. You can also tense two or more muscles together. Remember to breathe whilst keeping muscles tense.

Stretching – This is something that is recommended during long journeys. Stretches can be done anywhere, whilst seated or standing and do not require much room. Stretch lightly if your muscles are not thoroughly warmed and hold each stretch for at least twelve seconds.

Mind sparring – If you can’t physically train you can still keep your mind active and thinking about martial arts. It is very common for fighters to prepare themselves moments before there match/s by imagining there opponent attacking and them and countering with certain techniques. Mind sparring can be done anywhere. All you need is a few minutes to wander off into your imaginary world where you can spar with one or more opponents. You should notice your actual live sparring improving after performing this exercise regularly.

Media – Along with mind sparring, you can also keep you mind on martial arts by using media. Books, internet articles, blogs, video’s DVD’s etc. Today’s world offers many ways in which one can keep there minds active in martial arts. Techniques, theories, concepts and many other aspects of the martial arts can be picked up through media.

Talking about it – Just by simply talking about martial arts one may be able to learn new techniques in which they can practise when they train. The greatest benefit talking about martial arts brings is that it raises morale and motivation. Talking to someone about martial arts, especially if that person has much experience, with many stories to tell can bring a great sense of motivation and desire to train hard. Imagine if you could chat to Bruce Lee for five minutes, listening to his ideas and concepts. I bet the first thing that would then be on your mind is hitting the gym/dojo hard! For people who have hit boredom in there training, this is invaluable.

These are just a few ways in which one can train and keep there mind active about martial arts without the use of a gym, in the comfort of there own home, on an airplane, on holiday or when they do not have the time to train. There are many other ways and I encourage you to find them out.


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Elias said...

Mind sparring hey...

Sounds like a plan!!

Just as an aside, my instructor recommends using other people (across the room, for example) as targets when shadowboxing, so as to keep each technique in context.

Krista de Castella said...

Did you know that by just watching someone perform an action (if you imagine mimicking them), you can activate neural pathways in the brain used to perform the behavior – part of why I like watching kata clips occasionally before training.

MARKS said...

KRISTA - Yes, I can find that very easy to believe. Many times I have pictured myself performing a technique or combination only for it to automatically happen during sparring/competition

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