Tense to relax!

Many ideas work.

Many ideas do not work at the same time. 🙂

Our job is to find and make up what works for us right now and see what does not. But further, We must understand why things do not work so we can learn from them. Only then, we can move past them.

If you feel your movement does not continue, if you feel tense when confronted with resistance, You need to make friends with your tension.

Begin with a solo practice of shadow fighting. Imagine being attacked and move to handle the situation but with your body slightly tensed on purpose. This allows us to further understand the tension and as you repeat this practice, you can increase the tension until you are fully tensed up but still moving. Keep breathing calmly though to keep the practice healthy and then you can move on to add partner work.

Have a partner attack you lightly and move with them using light tension. Do so with care and listen to your breath at all times. Make the drill about being tense in the body and relaxed in the mind and thus you can progress to the next level of tension and more until you can move fully tensed.

Next tense just a part of yourself and move in solo movement and then with a partner while maintaining the tension. Change body parts from time to time and enjoy the imbalance as it will bring you within yourself faster than a balanced practice. It is poison fighting poison to a degree.

Making friends with fear and tension is not an easy or short task to undertake. It is however, a very beneficial practice and it will give you many gifts over time.

Hard contact

There is a buffer between real violence and training and there has to be one to allow progress both mental and physical.

Many martial arts today rely on padded surfaces and body padding. This allows for higher throws in practice and greater force exerted in contact in striking and impact.

There is however also negative in this sport application. It is we do not know how to move our bodies on hard surfaces and most do not know how to strike and get struck with no padding. Bone and flesh.

Give yourself the gift of the hard floor and the wall.

Learn to place your body from standing up to laying down on hard ground first slowly and then with awareness and smoothness it will become faster naturally and you will gain a real world ability.

Stand in front of a wall ( A good one. Many crumble) and place your hand and then fist on it. Learn to push first and to sink second and allow the entire body to become one.

There is no limit except what we place on ourselves and hard contact allow us to open new awareness and ability inside us.

Start slow and start now.

An inclusive take on everyday training

Time is the true commodity. Here are eight drills that hide within daily actions to sharpen and hone the movement ability of us all.

1.Slowly increase the distance you take to throw the trash into the trash bin (Be extra careful with weird shaped objects, they fly differently)

2. Walk up the stairs at night without turning on the lights and use the soles of your feet and your skin sense of air movement to measure where you are.

3. Write your notes on paper without looking at it while you are moving the pen on the paper. Give yourself time and if you are a doctor, practice this first on something that is not a prescription.

4. Once a day, Guess the number of steps it will take you to go from A to B and see how close you were to the mark. Improvement comes from conscious experience.

5. Look up every night and note the state of the moon, stars and clouds. Guess what will present itself the following night and with time your senses will hone themselves to the weather.

6. Teach yourself to write with the other hand (apologizes if you come from combat engineering and it does not apply) Wiring your brain to be ambidextrous is a great gift in the long run.

7. Find actions you perform with a brace and a breath hold. For example: opening the bottle of Coca Cola after the weight lifter of the office closed it and find a way to do it with minimal muscle tension and continuous breathing.

8. Use your nose to smell your food before you start eating and your car before you turn it on. Using your sense of smell can help your stomach prepare the right activation for a healthier digestion and also avoid some car bombs and driving with a leaky car.


Ice is a healer – a month of cold immersion

The only true commodity you have in your life is your time.

One of the best and easiest ways to protect and enhance your time on earth is to go towards the cold with open arms and a bare chest.

In one month,

One can

  1. Increase their control of themselves
  2. Develop a healthier body and mind
  3. Learn to enjoy doing “hard” things
  4. Learn better breathing patterns which affect everything

Start by taking a cold shower once a day. Open the water on COLD at full strength and walk in and stand there for just one minute.

There is a bit of a shock from the cold so focus on breathing the tension out by exhaling more than inhaling and mind how deep you breathe to avoid getting in more than you want at the moment.

Increase the time after a few days to two minutes and establish a breath tempo that allows your body and especially the muscles around the lungs to move and feel relaxed.

Increase again and again until you reach ten minutes a day and add the focuses as the minute count increases.

  1. 1 minute – Once entering the cold – focus on exhaling the tension from the change in temperature. Avoid inhaling more than you need.
  2. 2 minutes -Focus on letting a calm tempo of breath emerge once the shock is past. mind how the breath affects your torso tension.
  3. 3 minutes – Focus on inhaling and direct the power of the breath to your upper back and the heat generation there.
  4. 4 minutes -Focus on letting your heart beats and breath sync in tempo.
  5. 5 minutes -Focus on spreading your awareness to your toes and fingers.
  6. 6 minutes – Focus on feeling the amount of air you take in and how this increases and decreases the pressure in your lungs.
  7. 7 minutes -Focus on spreading your awareness to your arms and legs and the feeling of blood flow in them. The blood moves the heat the body generates and directs it.
  8. 8 minutes -Focus on your hips and shoulders and place them so the blood can flow better and your inner heat will maintain what is needed with only the energy required.
  9. 9 minutes -Focus on moving your limbs with the breath as tempo and letting the breath channel through the entire body.
  10. 10 minutes – Focus on moving on your feet in tempo with your breath and remaining calm and relaxed.

The added benefits of this cold protocol are (higher water bill non standing) better metabolism and immune system, better heat generation and awareness using breath and body awareness and greater calm due to taking yourself on and removing the excess.

Stay chill 🙂

Podcast 1 – Questions and Answers

Here are the topics

  1. What is falling down and why we need never practice it
  2. Training around injuries
  3. Remaining calm under pressure – why should we
  4. How to build a training program – imbalance creates balance
  5. Should we cross train – give example of a joint class with sifu (teacher) Jonathan Bluestein
  6. What physical tools I use in my daily training

The obstacles are the learning

Any movement and any activity can bring on new lessons and learning.

Here is a simple movement exercise and obstacles on the way to further the learning gained from them.

One can repeat a movement ten thousand times and learn nothing.

One can hone a movement ten thousand times and learn everything.

The smart gorilla drill:

Start by walking on your toes and fists.

Walk forward and back, Walk with your body slightly aimed to the side, Walk with your stomach to the floor and walk with your stomach to the skies, walk with your behind close to the ground and with it high in the air.

Now the learning begins.

  1. Hone the breath – movement connection – Make it so each contact with the ground happens on an exhale so your body mechanics aid in keeping the contact contact and not impact.
  2. Hone the touch – Make it so each contact is silent both on the outside in your ears and inside in your body so there is local increase in pressure on one joint or area.
  3. Hone the eyes – Make it so you look around you with every movement and let the top of the spine articulate and limber under the pressure of the position.
  4. Hone the mass – Make it so the center of the body shifts to better sway the limbs like a wave instead of ticking like a clock from placement to placement. Think of walking as swimming and it will make sense.
  5. Hone the floating center – Make it so a partner or more push and pull on you as you move on the ground. Shift your center of movement and move where you are free under the changing and surface conflicting vectors.

Our progress depends on our focus. Our focus depends on our purpose.

 

Morning breath work

Many wake up and jump out of their bed.

Here is a protocol to prepare the body for a smoother entrance into the day using breath and awareness.

Remember – Take care of the mechanism

First – breathe and listen for the pulse (placing your hand on the side of the neck or just being aware) Coordinate the breath to rhyme with the pulse and extend your inhale and exhale to encompass more heartbeats but without pressing. With time, it will release tension held in the body and psyche.

Second –  Breathe and tense a body part on the inhale, Release the tension once you begin the exhale and repeat for the entire body. With time, it will increase awareness to excess tension and you will let go of it without fighting yourself. Awareness wins.

Third – Exhale and hold your breath using the least amount of tension in the throat (tip from a diving coach) and diaphragm. Count heartbeats until your body tells you to inhale and wait a bit more before you gently inhale. With time, your psyche will connect and interpret body signs with greater clarity and your range of calm under pressure will increase.

 

With all things use moderation but keep plowing ahead.

One simple push

Complicated things are made of simpler and simpler things ? Let’s assume they are all the same and see how this works. Avoid learning how to open all keys and instead learn how a house is made.

Let us take a push to the back of the head and play with it and see if the situation changes or does it simply require the same approach in different ways.

Start with standing straight. Keep yourself straight and have a partner push your head and walk around you to push from all sides and angles. Keep your awareness on how your body creates a path of tension to keep you in place and add speed (not force) to the game to create and release the tension without delay.

Now, reverse the push point of view and lean on your partners hand from different directions and again feel the tension your body creates to keep you straight.

Now, choose a shoulder and start moving your body the moment your head is touched by your partner. Switch your start point every four pushes and go down the body until you reach the feet.

Now, push your partners hand with your head from all angles and have them work to push you where you are not active (paying attention) as you try to navigate the hand in your own direction. Move without snaps to keep yourself healthy and focus on breath first and contact second.

Now, have your partner circle you walking (initiating the predator pray mindset) and push you from your blind spots. Focus on breathing continuously and if you see it coming, move but not away J from the contact.

Now, walk freely and have your partner walk behind you. This again initiates the predator pray mindset and it is important to keep in mind we are both at the same time. Have your partner push your head from behind as you walk and utilize what you have done so far to:

  1. Keep breathing without pause
  2. Keep moving without excess tension
  3. Adjust and act on the contact when it makes sense
  4. Use your entire body in every move

A fun addition is to grab their clothes as you push the head 🙂

Hang on a branch or bar afterwards to decompress the spine.

Instead of technique – become the air

In this video we follow a wider mindset. Instead of trying to control the situation, we work to be aware and thus control ourselves and further more. Instead of focusing on our motives and moves, we aim to see the reflection of the other within ourselves.

If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles.

Mr Tsu 🙂