Tag Archives: warrior arts

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.

Warrior heritage of Yoga

In this context, I mean yoga as the modern physical practice of asana. There is a belief in the growing community of yoga practitioners that the knowledge of this physical practice passed down to them is millenia old and unchanged. This comes from the disconnect between the source of such knowledge and the learners. Currently the context of practicing asana is completely lost or hazy at the best. Some do it to get flat abs, some to cultivate gratitude, to stretch like a rubber band, to feel the energy of the universe and so on. Also there are furious attempts to map every aspect of the physical practice to what’s laid down in Yoga Sutra. Regardless, these attitudes lack a clear roadmap, context and origin of modern yoga and confuse someone who doesn’t participate in the ecosystem of yoga studios and balancing a warrior pose III on a 6ftx2ft mat. It had me confused for a long time too. Till I started going deeper into my martial arts training, especially Indian styles of wrestling.

one of the pages of illustrations from Sritattvnidhi
one of the pages of illustrations from Sritattvnidhi

Turns out, most of the asanas were practiced by wrestlers in Mysore in their vyayamshala (gymnasium) for strength, flexibility and endurance. This practice was sustained by the patronage of the royal palace in Mysore. Such training included equipment like clubbell, ropes, bars and not just bodyweight exercises. I read the book The Yoga Tradition of the Mysore Palace by Norman Sjoman. He unearthed a 19th Century text Sritattvanidhi compiled by the then king of Mysore, Krishnaraja Wodeyar III that had an exhaustive list of postures, exercises and sequences with hand drawn diagrams. These diagrams are included in Norman’s book and it is fascinating to see a definite starting point of a complete system of exercise and health. If you want to explore further down on this path, read this thoroughly researched article on Yoga Journal and learn how this got popularized by the famous icons of Yoga from Mysore: Krsnamacharya, Iyengar, Pattabi Jois.

Coming back to the wrestlers, the tradition of wrestling is a descendant of battlefield training in breaking limbs and skulls converted to a sports format. This had two benefits – the civilian population was able to benefit from the health benefits of physical training and the warriors would be able to continue training while being in society and remain battle ready. The core of this training is a unique series of 20 interconnected sequences that work the body from head to toe and develops muscles, senses, breath et al. It is called Malla Vinyasa or Wrestler’s Sequence. These movements codify tons of wrestling techniques for throwing, joint locks and submissions. I have experienced just the tip of this rich system of martial art and health. These sequences are an integral part of our training. Call 8308252872 immediately and start training. It will be infinitely more rewarding than anything you’d have ever learned.

Hassle free sign up online
Hassle free sign up online

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!