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Bustillo, A.
27th April 2002, 16:13
We know that the streching, endurance and strength exercises we do in class help us to develop skill.Even so, not everyone can do all the exercises.
When I first entered a dojo, some of the most dificult, for me, were;one arm push-ups, the pike postion on fingertips, one-leg squats -supporting foot flat on the floor--full-splits and a two-finger handstand.
Students should not get discouraged or frustrated. Even now, I tan't do that two-finger handstand, yet, I have a student who can.



www.steadytraining.com

Goju Man
27th April 2002, 16:20
Antonio, those finger tip exercises are great, they can really help you out when folding your gi.:D The most difficult one for me was and still is the full split. I've achieved the front split but never a full side split. Although I still have been able to kick well and high when needed, the full split has eluded me. I still haven't given up though. I love doing weight training exercises but have found body weight conditioning and runing more beneficial.

Kam
1st May 2002, 05:08
I agree not everyone will be able to achieve the same level of fitness. When doing the various exercises its important to put forth effort and try to reach your maximum potential. (whatever that may be)
Not everyone is blessed with great physical genetics,
but we can make the best of what we have.
----------
K.Chai

Senjojutsu
1st May 2002, 10:45
As opposed to criticizing any individual exercise - I would raise the issue of one of elapsed time.

At what point of time does doing these warm-ups and/or conditioning exercises take away from actual MA training? You know, the reason you are there at the dojo and paying the Sensei money for MA instruction.

If for example the stretching/conditioning becomes half the class time, why not just go to the YMCA or local body shop. It is most likely cheaper and has more women to meet :kiss:
Clarification, I am not talking about an individual's overall cross-training and conditioning efforts, I am looking at the acquiring of MA skills.

I once studied at a TKD place that had the most precise, almost choreographed, warm-up and streching routine that started each class. It ran about for-five minutes. Then it was on to fifty-five minutes of TKD training.

Bustillo, A.
2nd May 2002, 03:03
John M.

The issue you raise, although it has merit, it seems you are getting sidetracked.

Your message is about class structure.

The point I made was about 'difficult exercises' and to persist in spite of discouragement.

Senjojutsu
2nd May 2002, 10:42
Then IMHO for most American males in a dojo, my difficulty vote goes to leg flexibility execises as the great humbler, such as splits etc.

The stuff that thirteen year old girls training in Gymnastics accomplish with ease - where we males would end up in traction.

Also A.B., could you please describe further a "two-fingered" handstand, how one sets it up, and what weight training if any could help.

Bustillo, A.
2nd May 2002, 17:39
Two-finger handstand, hell, I can't do it.

I'd think a person needs to develop strenght in the fingers,-- first doing 10 finger push-ups then three etc.-- combined with the ability to balance in a handstand.

j-lane
2nd May 2002, 23:16
Then IMHO for most American males in a dojo, my difficulty vote goes to leg flexibility execises as the great humbler, such as splits etc.


I agree. As a newbie to MA and karate at age 37(!), leg flexibility is the most difficult thing for me. I marvel at the young children in the dojo who can practically wrap their legs around their heads. The side snap kick is the most difficult for me. I can't seem to extend my leg to the side while striking with the outer edge of my foot; I still have to keep my foot perpendicular to the floor and strike with the ball of the foot. Very frustrating! And splits?- fuggedaboudit!

kenshorin
3rd May 2002, 06:13
Originally posted by j-lane
I can't seem to extend my leg to the side while striking with the outer edge of my foot; I still have to keep my foot perpendicular to the floor and strike with the ball of the foot. Very frustrating! And splits?- fuggedaboudit!

Jerry -

Just remember... the most effective side kicks are usually those done low, to the knees usually. :D

Nothing comes immediately. Just resolve yourself to work your way up. I have a student who when he first started, he was so unflexible kicking knee high was a challenge. Now, he can get his leg up to his waist. It just takes time and committment.

Sochin
3rd May 2002, 14:18
RE: "I can't seem to extend my leg to the side while striking with the outer edge of my foot; I still have to keep my foot perpendicular to the floor and strike with the ball of the foot."

At first glance I'd bet the secret is in the hips, not the foot or the knee. Roll the hips forward more without bending forward at the waist. I assume that you can lift your foot straight to the side to a low position,...what you want to do is recreate that position but come from the other knee in a snap motion, ie using the bent knee to open, sending out the foot.

Any help?

j-lane
3rd May 2002, 23:27
Thank you Ken and Ted for your encouragement.

Ted- I tried the hip thing, it helped a bit but I really think it's mostly a matter of flexibility. It's just going to take some time, patience and lots of stretching. I've already seen some improvment in my form and balance- when I started, I couldn't manage most kicks without practically falling over! Now that I've got some of the basics down, the major issues I'm dealing with now are flexibility, relaxation and breathing. I get tense during kata, hold my breath, etc. I guess this is pretty common in the begining.

I'm not impatient. In fact, part of the fun is the journey. I've enjoyed seeing the progress I've made so far, and if Karate weren't challenging it wouldn't be very interesting.

Thanks guys.

Bustillo, A.
6th May 2002, 16:16
Re all kicks.

Imperative, the pivot of the supporting foot. It should turn outward--lateral, not medial-- during kick.

kenshorin
8th May 2002, 08:47
Originally posted by j-lane
Thank you Ken and Ted for your encouragement.

I'm not impatient. In fact, part of the fun is the journey. I've enjoyed seeing the progress I've made so far, and if Karate weren't challenging it wouldn't be very interesting.

Thanks guys.

You're welcome. :)

As to the final part I quoted above, thats the most important lesson... the journey doesn't lead to the destination, it IS the destination. You are far better off understanding that than being naturally skilled.

Best of luck.

the Khazar Kid
28th May 2002, 02:20
The lowest kicks can be the most effective:

www.gutterfighting.org/kick.html

www.savateaustralia.com/skills/low_blow.htm

Jesse Peters

gmanry
28th May 2002, 04:03
I had a friend who asked me how I got my flexibility and maintain it without stretching all the time.

The first thing I recommended to him was that he should use the hip machines at the gym. He said, "the chick machines!!!???"

I said, "yes, the important machines."

The second thing I said was get Thomas Kurz's stuff. Follow his strengthening recommendations. This man understands the dual edge of strength/flexibility.

This will help anyone achieve better flexibility. After I saw my flexibility coach teach a 72 year old man to do splits, I decided that barring horrible injury, limitations are pretty much in your head, but you have to use your head to get past them. There lies the problem.

Hard exercises:

Sit on your butt (where else?) go into pike 90 degrees or whatever you can manage with your body and legs not touching the floor. Hold that for one minute and do three sets. Do this at the end of your ab routine. You will hate yourself.

I have to agree with Mr. Bustillo, one legged squat maneuvers are harsh. I am still working on simple handstands. I met a nice Korean gentleman who was a Ba Gua master (I say he is, he never did). He could do handstands on his thumbs. He could also duck walk at a full run across the floor, and he had this lizard running maneuver where he was completely flat to the floor and ran like a skink (curvy lizard) at an incredible rate. He was in his late 30's or early 40's at the time, AND he could fight too. He embarrassed me constantly by his mere presence while I was training. ;)