Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Warming Up the Mind for Martial Arts

One of the most basic but often heavily neglected parts of martial arts training is the warm up. It should be a time when one is preparing there bodies physically but also there minds mentally to do battle with themselves. After all, it is during training that one develops there skills and tries to surpass the plateau they are currently on.

Some people may be thinking to themselves now, that a warm up is simply a way to heat up there joints and muscles etc so as to not cause injury to themselves. Although they are correct in thinking this, a warm up can be so much more. Whilst performing physical movements like stretches and light callisthenics, one should be thinking about what they are about to undertake, the level they are currently on, and ways in which to improve it.

Before a fight, many fighters try and picture ways in which the fight could possibly progress. They have studied there opponents style of fighting, they have trained in order to capitalise on there weaknesses, and during the warm up prior to partaking in combat with them, they think about all of this and try to form some sort of strategy in order to be successful.

This type of mental preparation or “warm up” should also be used by each and every martial artist prior to training. Although they may not be training for competition, hopefully everyone plans on bettering themselves during training. During the time taken to physically prepare themselves, they can also mentally prepare by thinking about what there focus should be placed on during the training session. Using more body movements on punches, keeping the guard higher, twisting the head more with throws, trying to gain more leverage with each submission etc.

These, plus much more are all general things which martial artists train to improve with each and every session, and having a mental picture of them can help improvement greatly.

Thinking about all of these things helps the martial artist warm up the mind as well as the body and should be carried out by all. By taking the time during physical warm ups (usually about 10-15 mins) to think about ones abilities and ways in which to improve them, one shall find that there mind and body shall be better connected and prepared to learn and improve from the training session. They shall find that by thinking more, they are able to move better and overall, will be able to train much smoother.

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TheMartialartsReporter said...

So true.
Warming up correctly and long enough offers
a lot of benefits.
The older I get the longer I warm up, especially hamstrings, but I'm not complaining.
It seems to be working.
Thanks for the post = reminder. Always appreciated.

wagli01 said...

Great article. Very informative and helpful. I will use this in my own school. Graf's ATA Martial Arts

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