Place your fists on a partner and do push ups on his body. There are many ways to do this good drill and here are a few:
close your eyes and do push ups on the body traveling one arm at a time.
Go down in the push up and hit your chest to the body part you are working on (though all the body is effected) lift your arms and place them again in different places and rise again. This is good for placement.
Jumping push ups with or without a hand clap.
Go slow on the way down and fast on the way up or the other way and remember to let the breath start the motion
Go down and let the fists rotate on the body so the elbows rest on the body when you finish going down.
Have a partner hold a staff or anything else and place one hand on it as the other does the push ups off the body. This can also be done by holding onto a leg of someone standing close or by any means you find where you are.
Become aware to your partner breathing and go down on his inhale and up on his exhale.
Do regular push ups as your partner to the drill moves you around with his limbs and you work freely to be able to keep doing the push ups. This can be a very funny drill to do and watch.
Do the push ups as someone holds your legs and moves around the ground partner and you work to stay free and mobile.
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Take one wrist with your other hand and pull it behind your back till you have to move the tension to the other joints and tissue to keep from harm. From that point move the held arm and hand so you gain the lead and pull the other way and back again. Change your direction and do this on one leg aswell and during movement squating and walking and see how your body moves together.
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Dealing with emotional hits.Beside the deep hits that release stored memories in us there are hits and contact that raise feelings in us and those can harm us a lot if they get the best of us. To experience this and to learn to breath through it, Place your arms behind your back and have a partner or two start to hit you as you avoid with your movement and hit with your body and legs. Have your partners slap and grab your face, kick your behind literally and drag you around as it is very hard to keep your mobility and your inner calm (relaxation, freedom, your own mind). Be careful as an instructor who you do this drill with. Many are not ready and we are not here to do harm. Give the ones that are ready a moment of honesty till they move freely even when you want to run away of feel the tears welling up inside. Those are feelings and your body telling you it needs to clean or rid itself of things it doesn’t need (just like the need to go to the bathroom when the chopper suddenly looses height or you are being shot at )
Smile and be thankful you are alive.
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A lot of times people brace against a support to gain balance. For example you place your feet against the wall to help yourself gain speed or push yourself off the ground with your hands as you get up. There are times for this method of course and there are times to gain balance from your own motion and structure. For example if you are on your back and want to get up you can roll to the right and with your shoulders spiral your arms one way as you move your hips the other way and this spring will get you up without disturbing the ground. You can use both tension and relaxation as you tense the legs for a second and roll yourself around this base from the hips and than relax and let the body fall into sitting or squating. This comes from understanding and mastering your body through practice. To get there lie on the ground and have a partner push and pull you down as you are getting up. Try not to push through the ressistance and give him support for his structure but flow through the changing levers and pressure you are getting and after a while you will feel your breath throughout your body and use all your parts together. For example if you are pushed in the chest down you relax your chest letting the hands slip to the sides, move your eyes to see how the ground changes around you and shift the weight distribution in your hips so you slide under the body over you. Now you can use the mass of your legs to spiral sideways and escape. This is better felt and seen than read. A good way to do this is to have a partner push and tap you with a heavy stick so you must relax and move to survive. Start slow and keep your eyes free to see everything. this way you will not let fear take over you and with honest work learn what works and what doesn’t for you.
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We usually work on being relaxed and having each part work individually. Here are some ways to make the body come together and deliver better: Sit on your behind with your feet in front of you and rock back and forth from back on the ground to legs on the ground by shifting your breath. This looks like a sea saw and can help you get up after a fall or a roll or to get into firing position (do this after you learn to roll so you remain flat on the ground at the end of the roll). Now tense the body enough so it is aligned on the ground and let yourself be rolled back and forth. This helps you relax within the form and take hits better (use your breath in the stage you are impacted on to survive the impact ). Now stand up and tense only enough to maintain your form and let a partner or more move you like a statue. For example a partner will put his hands on your shoulders and lower you back as you maintain your form, A partner will place his fists on you and push you from one to the other like a metronome and so on. You need to be aware of tensing up in your entire body to be able to keep your form and to be able to be both relaxed enough to move and tense enough to keep your form. Make sure you are aware of your feet the entire time you spend with this drill as you modify and use your intuition to do the work you need to do.
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Have a friend lie in front of you. Sit on your knees and place your hands behind your back or protecting the back of your neck and fall forward on him in various ways. This is a way to learn to overcome or to work through the fear of falling and to learn to deal through breath with heavy impact. After this fall forward with your hands at the small of the back (while you look sideways to protect your head) and see if you learned to give fear a smaller part of yourself.
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Some basic work with a partner or in shallow water or anything that suits you. First stand as your partner lies on the ground and with good posture fall onto him with your fists aligned and forward and store the power of the fall in your tendons so you can use it to push yourself up and back again. This is also a drill to build spirit as you have to learn to accept what is coming at you and continue to breathe. Otherwise you can get hurt. Next lie on top of your partner in whichever way suits both and do straight back sit ups and leg lifts one by one. The uneven and moving sufrace teaches you adjust to what is happening all the time and to work honestly (otherwise you fall off) A nice way to add to this drill is to do one sit up or push up and than roll together and have the partner do one and back again. Now Stand on your partner and do straight backed squats and vary your foot placement. If you have several people you can move from one to another in every suuat and form a chain.
All these ideas are without any worth by themselves. Do them and find the way which suits you, so you get to “know yourself” This way you can move your own way and survive.
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There is a new web site for the Systema groug in Haifa: http://www.systemaisrael.com/
I am glad Systema is growing in Israel and will benefit our nation as it has for many others.
If you seek Systema in that area please follow the link or contact me and I will forward your details to the Istructor in Haifa.
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Sit on your shins (preferably without shoes for more freedom of movement) and slowly go down with a straight back until the head and according to your current status, shoulders touch the ground and up again. Change the hight and form of your arms in each movement so you have to create the right amount of tension and alignment each time to do the work and remember not to overdo this so you can perform well after the drill. You never know what will come next.
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Start whenever you feel stressed or tense and breath in through the nose and exhale through the mouth. Start with a 18.104.22.168 ladder of inhale pause exhale pause and raise it with one step at a time meaning raising the count of the inhale and exhale and after a while raise the pause between them. The secret is to time yourself by using your heart beat. It might seem stressful at the beginning but after a small hump it will relax you a lot.
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