Tag Archives: kickboxing

Cooking the perfect dish

If the title already got you thinking what’s cooking got to do with a martial arts blog, read on.

Cooking a great meal doesn’t happen right away. Unless ramen is your idea of one.

Even before you actually start you already have a somewhat concrete idea of the ingredients to be used and how they fit in.

Then you got to manage the right timing of adding spices, salt, sugar along with boiling or frying.

You have to be alert about maintaining a consistent level of heat. You just don’t turn the burner on full blast right from the beginning.

You might be continuously engaged in stirring or you let it be for a while and keep it simmering. Obsessiveness with the process ruins everything.

In 30-45 minutes, you cooked yourself or your loved one a great meal and swear to God, it tastes amazing. Much better than the 120 seconds instant noodles.

Why does your approach to martial arts, personal safety, fitness and health have to be any different? You can’t drive-thru at your local gym with a fat annual membership plan and feel entitled to become fighting fit.

If you are new to this, relax and leave yourself to a scientific training process that takes care of routine, intensity levels, recovery and anything else that might crop up. If you are not a doctor, you don’t self medicate. If you don’t know cooking, you ask for help. Don’t be stubborn with self-training when it comes to martial arts and fitness as well. We all start somewhere and contrary to the image in your head, the better training standards a martial arts center has, the more are your chances of getting help from the instructor and training partners.

Take a look at the blog posts. Go to the youtube channel  and see for yourself the all rounded experience you will have in our training sessions.

Make the walk to our centers in Pune and cook up the perfect lifestyle of health, safety and fitness for yourself.

Fitness benefits of training in kicks

Functional core strength

Martial arts strikes focus on producing power through arms and legs in the most efficient way. The core is not just the ‘six pack’ when it comes to martial arts. It includes the trunk, belly and the legs. Anatomically the following major muscle groups are involved

  • rectus abdominis, the six pack
  • transversus abdominis, crisscrossing set of muscles that connect with the diaphragm
  • obliques
  • psoas, the longest muscle from the ribcage to the thigh bone
  • vastus medialis, the inner thigh muscles (a part of quadriceps)

Practicing kicks target all these areas which translate into further benefits.

Improved posture and relaxed spine

Take the example of a roundhouse kick. There is a twisting power generated that involves the obliques, psoas and inner thighs. When practiced correctly, it opens up tight hips, releases tension from the lower back and builds obliques that holds the spine in place. Once the muscles are developed functionally, extra load is removed from the spine which returns it to its natural relaxed S-curves shape.

Reduces tightness in the thighs and calves

Kicks work on engaging the major leg muscles: quadriceps, hamstrings, calves etc. In a front kick, both the hamstrings and quadriceps are engaged and relaxed alternately. As awareness of these muscles increase with repeating the kicks, the muscles become supple and toned.

Strong glutes

The gluteus maximus, the ‘butt muscle’ is the largest muscles in the body that powers lower body movements. A sedentary life at a desk weakens this muscle along with tightening the psoas (see above) that can cause lower back pain.

With the right kind of training in kicks, these muscles can be re-activated that allows for relaxed walking, running and general comfort. Consistent movement that re-educates these muscles are the safest way to correct imbalances that arise from weak glutes. So show up in training and keep at those kicks.

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poster-yellowbelt

ANNOUNCEMENT: Yellow Belt Training is on!

To Register, Call 8308252872

What is it?

The yellow belt training is a 12 week certificate course in mixed martial arts, functional fitness and exercise knowledge.

What are the benefits of training?

  • Builds lean muscles, burns out the stubborn fat
  • Improved digestion and increased metabolism
  • Get in touch with your natural instincts
  • A state of physical and mental peace
  • Regulates hormones
  • Closer bonding and more fun as you workout in a group

…and many more than you will ever get from training alone in isolation!

How is the course structured?

Click here to import this calendar  to your device

Each of the 12 weeks in the course has a special focus topic that is repeated in all classes through the week. So make use of the opportunity and drill in the knowledge through practice.

You can join us on any week as this course continues in a cycle. For eg. if you sign up while week #4 is ongoing, you'll go through training week #4 - week #12 and then week#1 - week #3 as the cycle restarts.

Every class includes

  • functional fitness workouts from martial arts, yoga, calisthenics, parkour i.e.the best of disciplines
  • shadow boxing and partner drills
  • breathing and relaxation training
  • healing and massage techniques

Weekly breakdown

  • Week 1: Kickboxing stance and footwork. Hand strikes: Punches
  • Week 2: Footwork, short range hand strikes, leg strikes: kicks
  • Week 3: Short range leg strikes, strike combos
  • Week 4: Strike combos contd…
  • Week 5: Wrestling stand up basics
  • Week 6: Wrestler’s yoga, throws
  • Week 7: Throws, takedowns, hand strike and leg strike combinations
  • Week 8: Ground wrestling basics
  • Week 9: Ground wrestling escape/evasion with strikes
  • Week 10: Wrestling joint locks and submissions
  • Week 11: Wrestling joint locks and submissions contd…
  • Week 12: Qi Gong for health and healing

Power packed 30 minute MMA workout for beginners

Here is something that I put together today morning for those who have recently started training martial arts or want a taste of it at home.

  • Warm up the major joints by moving, rolling, spiralling, rotating (neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, spine, hips, knees, ankles) – 5 minutes. Look up Scott Sonnon’s free Intu-Flow videos for beginners to learn more about warming up your joints and making them healthier.
  • 5 rounds of Suryanamaskar10 minutes. I prefer to do it in a relaxed way that loosens up the entire body. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9hSdq-50PG0
  • Shadow box for 1 minute without breaks. This is where you let loose and have fun with jabs, cross, hook, front kicks, roundhouse kicks, elbows. Apply the breathing lessons from this post.
  • Do 10 counts of push ups, squats, sit ups, leg raises for the next 2 minutes. Go to our Basic MMA Skills page to have a look at how to do these exercises in a relaxed way without getting tired.
  • Repeat Shadow Boxing + 10 counts of above exercises for a total of 5 sets.

Once you are done, take the next couple of minutes to bring your breathing back to normal, shake off tension from stiff regions and relax.

This is a glimpse of how the training sessions at Forge MMA progress. Call 8308252872 to sign up for our yellow belt, orange belt or green belt courses in mixed martial arts.

Relaxed striking

There are mostly two ways in which striking is taught in martial arts styles across (now this is a generalization, so relax)

  • Putting the whole bodyweight behind a strike, or
  • Keeping the body parts relaxed building up to a whip like quality in the strike

The first approach can be seen in modern boxing, kickboxing, Thai Boxing, some Japanese schools of Karate etc. Basically the body builds up a spiraling motion starting from a pivot point eg. the foot. Then progressively muscle groups are contracted sequentially to finally release the power through hands, feet, elbows, knees or any other striking surface. See a few examples here

Advantage:  Delivers massive impact due to the build up of momentum

Disadvantage: 

  • This is a hit or miss way of striking. If the surface of striking moves away or changes orientation, the vectors of the momentum being aligned in only one direction can easily cause the person to lose balance, trip over and injure themselves
  • After delivering a strike, the body takes considerable time to recover and bring the spine back to a neutral position. An unbalanced spinal structure is always the first set up for a throw or  takedown.

Applying kinesiology and specifically the concept of kinetic chains does give us a structural idea of the body and the simple mechanics behind a strike. On paper it might calculate out to be  a good strike but adding a human body to the mix changes everything. A human body is both hard and soft. This is where the second approach picks up.

  • Relaxing the hips and shoulders, allowing the spine to rest at a neutral position and length. This is quite close to the state of Sung in taijiquan.
  • Moving muscular tension like a wave along different muscle groups

Such a strike when released allows a better transfer of impact into a body. An alive body reacts very differently to a strike than a heavy bag or board. Depending on the static tension, the available neural pathways, visual cues etc every other body reacts uniquely. To adapt to such uniqueness, the strikes are delivered with natural efficiency and they add up when the body is not constantly recovering from putting too much effort into a single strike.

How do I build this quality of movement in my muscles? It’s simple really. You don’t have to look beyond some basic exercises. Just add some variation in the way you do normal workouts like push ups, sit ups, leg raises or squats. Are you fixed to only one plane of motion? If the ground below you suddenly became slippery, would you feel relaxed enough to adapt in the moment? Want to learn more? Give me a call on 8308252872 to train in Pune.

You can Vladimir Vasiliev showing a similar concept of strikes that adapt fast

What is MMA (Mixed Martial Arts)

Modern idea

The modern idea of mixed martial arts comes from the popularity of fighting competitions like UFC and movies like Never Back Down! Competitions like UFC pit martial artists from diverse fighting styles against each other in an enclosure. At this level, the fighters prepare a comprehensive strategy for training. There are no variables left to chance while training. Broadly the elements of MMA can be broken down into two specific aspects stand up and ground game. Both striking and grappling are allowed whether the fighters are standing or on the ground. A few safety rules specific to competitions prohibit striking of sensitive points and manipulation of joints like the fingers. Such an approach makes it essential for a fighter to be well-rounded, responsive and in top physical condition. Truly MMA fighters are some of the best conditioned athletes on this planet.

Looking back

Even before televised entertaining championships like the UFC and Bellator emerged, Vale Tudo, a freestyle anything goes way of fighting used to be organized throughout Brazil. This was the initial concept around which UFC was organized with minimal safety rules. Rorion Gracie dominated the initial bouts with a style of grappling unknown to most martial artists at that point. This was the first time the world saw how being specialized in one single mode of fighting like karate had drawbacks when faced with someone with a multitude of skills. 1024px-Mixed_martial_arts_at_Fort_Benning

This shouldn’t be a difficult concept to understand if we look back at the origin of battlefield martial arts. The army with a multitude of skilled warriors like cavalry, infantrymen, archers had better options in strategy, attack, defense and maneuverability.  On an individual level, a warrior was expected to be equipped with skills to fight empty handed, with weapons, against multiple opponents and adapt to any situation that might arise. No wonder the Greek soldiers gave rise to one of the earliest forms of mixed martial arts, Pankration. Staying sharp was an utmost priority for them and what better way than to test it out against the best in an army.

The essence of mixed martial arts

Regardless of the history, mixed martial arts embodies the philosophy of life – to be skilled, responsive and prepared for anything that comes. At Forge MMA, expect to be trained in the following broad aspects

  • Strength and conditioning
  • Natural movement by working with partners and animal movement drills
  • Strikes with every possible body part, learn to make your entire body an weapon
  • Wrestling and grappling including Indian wrestling techniques
  • Relaxation, recovery and neural reset techniques with breathing

Call me on 8308252872 to start training in Pune. More detailed posts on the above aspects coming up in the next few days. Stay tuned!