I really enjoy drills where you work against your own tension and poor alignment so you must relax and align to succeed. One of those drills is to hold onto your shin or ankle with the same side hand and squat till the knee touches the ground. (careful not to put too much mass on it, keep from harm) Relax and rise up. In this drill put your mind on relaxing and aligning instead of pushing though your own body resistance and making those bathroom faces you see on muscle magazines. The purpose of the drill is more important than the drill itself.
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Mikhail teaches a great drill to get to know your own movement and nature by drawing numbers and letters with your walking, with your hands and feet in the air and I like to give this drill in the push up position and allow the student to feel himself devide over many areas of awareness so he can learn to relax more and be more effective through this. If you want to relax you can do the same at your desk by writing a favorite line using your primary hand and than under it writing the same line with the other hand. This will show you how your body and mind draws the movements of the letters and allow you over time to be more aware and work even if your primary writing hand is broken or burned and so on. learning to clean ourselves from tension involves our habits too. A man once said “First our habits serve us and we end up serving them” Think about it and form your own opinion.

I suggest writing a few lines in lower case and in upper case letters. The movements you choose to form the letters on the page will show you your natural movement and nature.
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Stand on one leg and place one hand or foot on the wall. Push off the wall with your limb (you can use your head or back as well later) and allow the body to move so you remain in place. Slowly increase the push and add direction until you have to move with your ground leg to remain relaxed and aligned. Now repeat this with your eyes closed. It is best to do this with a partner but a wall will do fine. Also you can change the intention of the push. you can push yourself off the support or push through the support and note how your body moves and aligns differently. It is a good thing to recognize. Do the same with hitting and don’t forget to smile.
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Fear can be a good servant. For example it will remind you to keep your gun in your pants if you don’t intend to shoot or to keep it on your body (close) rather than getting it in front of you and hiding behind it (you choose what to fear from and in this case, loosing the gun) Fear and pain will remind you to protect your head when you get up in a low visibility location like underground or if you have a head injury and cannot see well. Fear reminds you to get yourself out of the way of a strike and most of all to look for the next target as you work.
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lie on your stomach and have a friend stand on your body. Now crawl forward and backwards without shaking him off and note how this effects your movement. Now do the same with him sitting behind you and holding onto your feet and than in front of you and you have to roll him forward in front of you. Last have him lie on top of you limp and you have to crawl without him falling off. The best way to do this is uphill but other places will also do.

Now lie on your stomach and put your hands together at your back. Stand up and lie down in ten different ways and than do this with your eyes closed and a friend holding a stick somewhere so you have to move carefully to avoid harm.

To relax your hips and shoulders you can do the sailor walk and the worms:

The sailor walk: Your imagine you are on a rocking ship and as you keep your upper body relaxed and upright and place your forearms accorss the back so you feel of you are tensing your back muscles and tissue. You move the hips and legs as if you are on this rocking surface in all directions and this will relax your hips. After this take a partner and have him push you on all levels and you will move the same with the leg that is already in that direction (as a whole. you might imagine a ball floating on water or just move your body). Do this slow at first so you can learn.

The worms: Lie on your chest and hold your hands on your lower back. Now move the head one way and roll over your opposite shoulder till your head does a full circle around that shoulder and avoiding momentum that might cause you to roll completely. Do this for both shoulders a few times and see how this feels. The idea is to learn how to move in all directions and not how to become strong. Learn to use what you have.
The other worm is when you lie on your back and arch back (you can start by holding onto your heels or placing your feet on the wall) and you do the same roll only arching backwards. This works to release the tension in the spine so don’t try to muscle through the movement puzzle but find the path of least resistance and get to a point where it feels good to move. The goal is to learn your own way of doing things.

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Stand and look around you. Now close your eyes and step 10 paces forward. Turn half way to the right and step sideways 6 paces. Turn half left and take 4 steps backwards. Now still with your eyes closed work back and see if you can reach the place where you started. This teaches how to measure space without sight and can be of help in case you need to backtrack or work in buildings and the like. Another drill in your house can be to walk through the entire house (if there is only one room, you can add obstacles yourself) without stepping on furniture, cats or walk into walls.

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Go up and down a flight of stairs with these directions in mind.
1. With your eyes closed
2. with one leg off the ground and you cannot place anything on it
3. using your upper body with the lower body completely relaxed
4. without use of both feet and hands. They cannot touch anything
5. when you cannot lift anything more than 30 cm off the groung
6. when you carry something heavy with you (a child, a big bag)
7. when you can only use the left side of the body
8. when you can only use the right side of the body
9. with your breath held the entire time
10. Think of one yourself and send it to me too Innocent

And think what have you learned. What will you do to get out of a building if you are injured?
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Stand and shake your hands as if you are trying to shake water off them. Let the motion stay in the hands and forearms and avoid tensing up against the movement to stay in place or keep a form. Now shake from the elbow and down and repeat the aware relaxation in the body. Now from the shoulders and note how this effects your head and torso and legs. Start the shaking or waving from the chest like you are trying to shake a hand or arm off your shoulders and relax the neck without loosing control of it. Now from the hips let the motion move the entire upper body and note how you can relax your feet on the ground. Shake the foot while the heel is still on the ground and than from the knee down and from the hip down. Notice how this effects the rest of you. Now while walking have a partner come and grab you and you will shake him off moving as little as possible. To make this drill more rewarding tense up a part of you like the neck or one leg and see how you can act with this tension. While in a confrontation or just working to get your child out of the car you can tense up and leave the tension there. Many times you will see limbs stuck in frozen poses because of lack or awareness. Become aware of your tension and you will master it.

Another good drill for this is to have a partner walk with a gun or a knife on him and work to get the weapon to your hands without disturbing his walking. At first walk straight and later on any way you like. This is a good drill for humility.
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Place a hand on the wall and push yourself off it so you have to take a step to remain upright or turn. Do this from different angles and heights and do this on the fists and than on the elbows (forearm) and the shoulder. This will help you move as a whole and to let the movement pass through your body relaxed and without resistance to change. Next have a partner place a hand on you and push, This can be down on one shoulder, on the head, neck or knee and your job is to go with the push while you give as much support as you want. To get to know this your partner will let go or change abruptly from time to time and you will learn to think with your body for every moment (awareness) for itself and not cast an image of what you think over it. You can do the same with flowing wrestling that changes into hard tense wrestling from time to time and learn to control your tension and movement. As always Breath leads your movement.

 

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Position yourself in the push up position on your fists and have a friend use a shovel or any other hard tool push and pull on your body from all sides as you move the least possible to keep your form and relaxation. Later have him place his foot on you and try to stand on your body. Feel where his body is going and let it go there as you escort it with yours. Follow the same drill on your fists and your body aligned with your chest facing upwards and maintain your shoulders and hips relaxed as you work
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