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  • New Posts

      • 2
      Karate ka at a BJJ open mat
      Last week me and two of my karate students went to a free BJJ open mat for some cross training. It was an open event intended for cross training between BJJ schools , so they were surprised to see us but welcomed us.

      Some key experience points:
      No one got me to tap out
      I survived against white,blue, and purple belts
      I got one white belt to tap out with an ankle lock
      People were very impressed with my flexibility, and i was a bit surprised BBJ practitioners arnt more flexible
      People were suprised by Goju gripping and grappling
      I had a general lack of technical knowledge that made things a bit difficult
      Also by ability to work on top but i knew that already
      It was more difficult than i thought to resist striking lol

      Some things i didnt care for:
      how much people were in guard and mount
      all the gi ripping, and pulling peoples gis open, it got annoying
        • 1
        Dave Magliano Yep, some of us non-BJJ folks do know a little about grappling.
        • 1
        Will - Black Belt Wiki "Resist striking". Ha! I probably would have gotten numerous penalties if someone was trying to tie me up in a knot in this tournament (as I would have gone into automatic self-defense/survival mode... and attack various "illegal" parts in order to escape). :)
      • 1
      Opening a Dojo
      I have helped my sensei run two dojos one in the state of Tennessee and one in the state of Florida.
      But I hung up my belt and stopped training for years. Due to family problems as well has personal problems.
      I have picked up training again and have the knowledge of martial arts that I have learned over the years I have spent training. I started Martial Arts when I was a child and stayed with it for close to 20 years. I loved what it has shown me and can show others.
      I am thinking of opening my own small school to help others build themselves up both physically and mentally. I am just not sure of how to start after 8 years of being out of the business.
      Any help that can be given to me would be greatly welcome. I am looking for all the advice I can get.
      Sincerely,
      Benjamin
        • 1
        Benjamin Neff Thanks for all the advice.
        • 1
        Richie Look to see if your City or other community center has classes. I have gotten the last three years of instruction this kind of set up. My current Sensei uses the dues for trips, uniforms, and touney fees for kids. From my experience, it can be hard getting adults in.

        There is no overhead as well as free advertising and exposure since you will be invited to community events.
        • 1
        Christopher Adamchek design a good curriculum and stick to it is very key
        gather a few students now and train them up (intensely)
        that way when you open you will have bodies in the school (no one wants to join an empty dojo)
      • 2 more comments
      • 1
      Supplemental classes to Armored Combat League
      Hello! So I am in the Armored Combat League and am fairly new to that. For those not familiar, they're real armor and live steel weapons. Full-contact. Lots of grappling and take-downs. Various weapons you can choose from. So it really is pretty varied.

      We're in the process of building my armor, but meanwhile I am looking to train up in preparation to fight on the field. I was looking into joining a local dojo to train in some different fighting styles so I could apply my knowledge to armored fighting, but there are so many options that I am a little lost! Any recommendations on what might be good or what I can rule out as potential candidates?

      FYI - If it helps in determining anything, I'm a female at 5'8" and just under 140 lbs. A lot leaner than most of the people I'll be fighting!

      Thanks!
        • 2
        ChuckD Sounds pretty cool. My gut reaction since you said there would be take downs and grappling would be find a local judo or BJJ school and fill in the weapons portion with a HEMA group.
        • 2
        Will - Black Belt Wiki Hi Cecily

        Since I hadn't heard about the Armored Combat League, I did a quick internet search and came up with this - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEDBuQVez_o

        Hopefully, this video gives others some ideas on how to help you.

        Curious, I see a lot of weapons strikes that would kill a person even in armor but nothing seems to happen. How are things scored or people eliminated in this tournament?

        Will
        Black Belt Wiki
        • 1
        Superamazingbadgerman I would say learn half swording and thrusts to teach them to not get close enough to grapple, but that's actually quite dangerous and should only be done in a more controlled form of sparring (even with the full plates and chainmail, as it was generally depicted as a way to defeat armor).

        See if you can learn some aikido or jiu jitsu or bjj or shoot fighting. They probably won't instantly make you some martial arts wizard, but aikido and jiu jitsu and shoot fighting as they are generally taught improve your balance and takedown abilities and bjj and wrestling improve your ground game.

        If you can find one, you could also try a Systema school. People sometimes aren't impressed by those at first, but they tend to be interested in developing your ability to see and act on the big picture over your ability to recreate a certain technique. If there is no solution to your problem, you make one; and you do that from day one (while being hit and put on the ground in a puddle of your own sweat, blood, and tears by people you didn't know were in the drill...).

        For conditioning, I would suggest you run for two months for 5-10 miles at an 8-7 minute pace every day. Then, do it in your armor once per week. Perhaps usr a 30-40 lb weight vest every other week. You NEED to be able to work encumbered like that, so don't underestimate the value of such training.

        Strike a post a few hundred times every day or every other day with a heavy sword analog (maybe wood or a steel bar?) and weight on your arms.
        This was something they actually did back in the day to get good at holding a weapon for an extended period of time and striking with it effectively. If you get good at striking with proper technique with different grips and different kinds of strikes, it should make you a technical fighter as well as a strong one.
      • 4 more comments
      • 1
      3 year old Tai Chi "master"
      I wish that I had her balance!

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
      • 3
      Preparing for first grading
      Osu!

      I have my very first grading coming up in 5 days time (Orange belt).
      I've been working hard on fitness, I'm moderately confident with Kihon, I have the three kata locked down and kumite.....well it is what it is.

      What does everyone else do to prevent cramps, exhaustion, dehydration etc during grading. I'm told it's 5 hours plus of intense excertion.

      Any advice gratefully received.

      Osu!
        • 2
        Aaron Bennett Thanks for advice folks. I passed!
        • 1
        Tracy Congratulations!
        Was this really your first grading as a beginner or was this the first grading of a higher level? I can't imagine testing for 5 hours unless you've been doing this for years. But I haven't been exposed to any MA other than my club.
        So what tricks did you end up using that helped you with the cramps, exhaustion & dehydration?
        Thanks [217372,Kim] for your advice to me. I'll definately try these things with my next test.
        • 1
        Kim That sounds tough. Our color belt exams aren’t that long- they perform their curriculum, it is stressful, but it usually lasts 2-3 hours and they don’t work the entire time (the higher your rank, the more you have to do). There was a lot of sitting while other ranks perform each segment, which to me was worse than my parts of the exam. Our black belt exams are different, and you do work very hard for two days.

        As to how to survive it— for a black belt exam, I train for months because there is that much material to polish plus physical training to prepare for. You don’t have months, but it sounds like you’ve been training hard to prepare. During a long exam, I need to stretch well before hand and pace myself once it begins. Nerves & excitement will be very strong at the start and if you go full out from the beginning, without knowing what’s coming other than “hard stuff”, you will run out of steam. It’s not a race and if you fly through the first 100 push-ups or whatever, you could struggle by the time you get into sparring. I try to drink mainly water for a couple weeks before my exam, too, and on exam day, I have water & Gatorade and some sweet and salty snacks and a banana in my locker in case I need it during the test. During black belt exams we take breaks because we’re there for hours. Color belt exams, you get water or go to the bathroom when you gear up to spar (I’m sure you could ask to go to the restroom when it isn’t your turn doing forms, etc, just never seen anyone do it).

        Best advice I can give for a beginner is accept that you will be nervous, accept that you’re going to probably make a mistake or that your instructor will find some things for you to fix- you won’t be perfect, and answer up. If your exam is that long and demanding, they will want to see how you keep working even when you’re tired and struggling- don’t give up. It is more about perseverance than perfection. Your instructors probably aren’t going to smile or look happy, but they really are hoping you’ll do your best (they will push you more and more, though, the higher you advance). They wouldn’t have allowed you to test if you weren’t ready. Good luck.
      • 4 more comments
      • 0
      Form
      Hi, I was wondering if anyone has a video of bassai so for tang soo do.
        • 1
        ChuckD I use kata videos as a general reminder as to how forms are performed. Details can and are different from dojo to dojo (or dojang :)) So just keep in mind your teacher might do it slightly different.
        • 1
        Keno Ogara having found many variants for Bassai Di, Sho and other Kata dependent not only on the style but also the Originator on the internet, look on BlackBelt Wiki then on the various internet sites until you find the correct one, I was lucky to find this site as it has virtually everything and if I can't find it then I can ask and Karateka from all over will help, I hope you can find the one you need.
        • 1
        Will - Black Belt Wiki Michael

        Here is the wiki page with the Tang Soo Do Bassai form page - http://www.blackbeltwiki.com/world-tang-soo-do-association-forms

        Stupid question of the day - Are there different Tang Soo Do Bassai forms? Or is Bassai the same as Bassai So?

        Will
        Black Belt Wiki
      • 3 more comments
      • 1
      Fighting With Aikido 2
      Another class demonstrating how one may use aikido principles outside of normal kata practice.
        • 1
        Dave Magliano Thanks Christopher...all the same family, really. We just come from different houses:)
        • 1
        Christopher Adamchek Nice
        It was cool how the first part was reminiscent of kali moves and second part reminiscent of karate and tegumi moves
      • 1
      While practising, is kicking in the air safe on knees??
      How safe is it??
        • 2
        dtaylorbrazil David Petrie is spot on with his comments!
        I would add the following. Know your body, know your limits, and know your capabilities. Now in my forties and with injuries -nothing is "safe!" I am adjusting my technique based on my capabilities and limits. Only in kata, shadow boxing, or in slow practice do I ever "hit" the air. If I am sparring or demonstrating a technique, I try to have an impact zone. I spar and roll with guys in their twenties, but I have special parameters in place. I look for timing a strike or kick to land on my opponent. For me, I'd rather have someone check my kick than for me to miss and kick the wind. But a twenty-year-old might be able to launch a kick vertically in the air and immediately stop it. Know your body, know your limits, and know your capabilities.
        • 1
        David Petrie Well, as usual, you guys have me thinking.
        I know this original thread was about kicking the air, but something else occurred to me that I'd like to add, and I think it expands on what dtaylor said. When sparring, be careful not to make the kick "target dependent." I remember doing this at first, and I got a little sore from hyper extension. What this means is, when we have a target, we want to hit that target. Sometimes we have mistimed our kick, the target moves away, and we extend to hit the target even if it's too far away. The concept of dynamic tension goes out the window, and we let centrifugal force take our foot to the target. Of, course the target is too far away, and we end up hyper extending. Try to kick within yourself. This means, establish the distance for your kick's effectiveness, and practice not going beyond that. This takes a great deal of distance training. Get the opponent within your range; don't try to extend just to make a hit. If he's not there, follow up with another technique.
        I hope that helps!
        • 0 1 vote
        • Reply
        • 1
        David Petrie I was trained that there are no locked joints in karate. You must learn to stop the kick just before full extension to avoid hyper extending the knee. At first, students try to "sling" the kick up ( I refer to Mae Geri as the example) in kind of a "Rockettes" fashion which can cause a bit of hyper extension. Separating the kick into 4 parts, lifting leg, extending leg, retracting leg, lowering leg needs to be practiced extensively. On the leg extension, you learn when to apply dynamic tension to keep the leg from over extending. After a while you develop muscle memory and no longer run the risk of hyper extension. Develop this until you can slowly control the kick without needing to sling it to get it there. I use ankle weights and practice lifting, extending, retracting and lowering. You may have to hold on to something for balance at first, but use as little help as possible. Make the leg do the work. Be sure that the supporting leg is properly positioned and bent, with the supporting foot at a 45 degree angle and flat on the ground.Get a grasp on this, and you should have no knee problems. Kicking to air is safe as long as you don't hyper extend.
        I hope this helps! David
      • 4 more comments
      • 2
      Kicking the air in class
      Most classes the students in my class stand in lines and execute our kicks in the air. It has been brought to my attention recently that this is very hard on the knee joints. My instructor has admitted that we should be doing less of it for this reason. Do I have the right as a concerned-about-my-health student to bring this subject up with him? I'd essentially be asking him to consider changing the structure of his class and spending money on targets. Is it enough health-wise if I don't ask him but rather make sure to always use resistance at home? I attend 3-4 hours of classes per week. Have you heard of other clubs that do most of their kicking in the air?
        • 2
        Dave Magliano Kicking or punching a target with poor form is more dangerous to your joints than kicking or punching the air. You learn form, control and correct execution by hitting the air slowly, allowing for your nerves and muscles to learn the technique. This is a long process known as neuroplasticity. Over time (a lot of time) your bones, muscles and nerves learn how to coordinate the intricate movements without damage to your joints. It's like making a rope, one strand at a time.
        • 1
        Rachel DS We do both air and target.....and each other. Same with punches blocks etc.

        Each requires a different level of power and or restraint / control. I used to find I would hurt my elbows more than my knees in my first 6-12 months of training as noone had explained how to do it safely is not completely locking out or hyperextension. I attended a fair few classes with tape on and my second instructor (who's been my Sensei now for nearly 3 years) got wind of what was happening and showed me how to fix it. I rarely have issues now....I still fear bag work with kicks and strikes though as if I don't get it right I really hurt my wrists or feet. Again it's mostly technique but harder to control at full power I suppose.

        Oh and hi [171668,Will - Black Belt Wiki] and [171807,Andy] ....sorry it's been a while.....lot going on here.
        • 1
        Will - Black Belt Wiki I have to agree with everyone that the major risk to air kicks (esp. air roundhouse kicks) is hyperextension problems. When doing your air kicks, don't do them at full power. Do them a little slower and work on the correcting the mechanics of the kick.

        Also many instructors are (should be) open to discussing a technique after class especially if you say it is bothering your knees.

        Will
      • 9 more comments
      • 2
      Happy Thanksgiving
      To everyone in America (or anyone else overseas who celebrates turkey day), I want to wish you & your family a Happy Thanksgiving!

      Anyone training on Friday after the feast? Or will you be too "stuffed" from the turkey & side dishes to even move? :)

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
      • 2
      Masters in the Arts
      I have a question for you martial artist, I recently came across an advert for a martial art class advertising the main instructor was a( Purple belt master), I am a 5Dan judo and a 1Dan Karate and still training in both and have done for 35 years and as far as Im aware in traditional arts you have to be the min of a 4Dan to be a master,so the question is do you know of a martial art where a purple bet is a master?
        • 2
        Dave Magliano I went to a seminar almost 30 years ago and the guy was some jujitsu "master" from Bulgaria. He wore a purple belt. My personal opinion: Some one who makes a point of saying they are a master at anything typically is not.
        • 1
        Dave Hi thanks guys for all your comments in reply to the question, In reply to Richie I have trained in many arts over the years and find it best to be up front about your grade so your sensei and his other students know what experience in the arts I have, it would not be fair to other students do free stile Kumite if they think you are a beginner and really your a Dan Grade , if I go to another discipline the sensei can explain to the other students my experience in the arts but have on experience in there's if he wishes, I have in some cases been asked to wear my black belt and a white belt at the same time to show the fact.
        Thanks again for your comments.
        • 1
        Keno Ogara As far as I'm aware a purple belt is normally a Kyu grade though as some of the other posts say it may be a non traditional style and they have there own grading system, I remember some clubs in the 70s having Brown belt instructors but never lower than that.
      • 6 more comments
      • 1
      Toe injuries tips...
      What is the best way to treat toe injuries and how long to rest before starting training again?
        • 2
        Richie That is a tough question to put on a board. You kind of need your toes and the injury can be 1 - 10 in severity. Ask your doctor....
        • 1
        Rachel DS I have had 2 broken toes....one through karate. I'd been training about 12 months when it happened. I wrote a blog on it.....it actually got me started blogging funnily enough.

        They hurt like hell at first but I was in denial when it happened and just taped it and finished the class. I didn't actually take any time off training I just modified things a little and kept it taped. Initially I had it taped all the time but by about 4-6 weeks I could walk more or less normally and I only taped to train and do long walks and then weaned off at 10-12 weeks. It probably hurt (mildly) and looked a bit mishapen for 10-12 months but more joint pain ...it's gone now.

        I guess it depends on how bad your pain is and how much you can come with. I avoided impact kicking on that side for about 12 weeks until I knew the bone was healed but got back into light kumite after about 4 weeks.

        Some people like to use pain medication and that's fine....I prefer to use pain as a guide.
      • 2 more comments
      • 1
      Thanksgiving "Purge"
      Over the long Thanksgiving weekend, I will be deleting members who have not posted since joining or who were active posters in the past but haven't posted in the past two years. I want to keep this community focused on active members and we are only allowed a limited number of weekly notifications (so there is no point sending the weekly email notifications to members who are not involved with the community).

      Any silent lurkers are still welcome to visit the community and read the posts. However, you will no longer get the weekly notifications about new posts, etc. This will be reserved for members in "good standing" (i.e. members who post occasionally).

      If you are a lurker and would like to become an active community member, here is our "Join" page (fyi - membership is free) - http://community.blackbeltwiki.com/sign-up

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
        • 1
        Rachel DS Phew.....I am still here.
        • 1
        Cameron Welsh Oops! I know I haven't contributed for a loooong while, that's pure cos I've been busy so please don't purge me thanks! as John Lennon remarked: Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans. (with terrible irony in his last interview before he was murdered!)
        • 1
        David Cochran You mean the Purge is for real!?!
      • 3 more comments
      • 2
      10 Most Important Stretches
      What do you think are the 10 most important & most essential stretches? They should help flexibility and prevent potential injuries. Moreover, your list of 10 stretches should give a complete "workout" and try to cover all areas of the body that might be strained during a martial arts workout or need extra flexibility.

      For extra brownie points!! - Please explain why one stretch is better than another stretch for a particular area (i.e. "Dynamic leg swings are better than static hamstring stretches because..."). Or try to explain why you need to stretch a certain body part (i.e. "Hamstring stretches are essential because it is easy to pull a hamstring during high axe kicks...").

      Here is our section on stretching if you need names of specific stretches or need to find a stretch that targets a specific critical area (i.e. calf muscles) - http://www.blackbeltwiki.com/stretching

      Please remember to vote up the post with the best list of stretches & reasons why those stretches are important. Reward a member & their great post with a positive vote.

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
        • 2
        Tracy Yay! I've always just guessed with my stretching, so I'm really interested in what these answers will be. Could you also please specify if the stretch should be done before or after a workout or both? I believe that dynamic stretching should be done before and static after, but I'm not sure if this is correct. And should the stretching AFTER a workout be very gentle?
        • 1
        Tracy Since noone responded to this post and I was really looking forward to the responses, I'd like to throw this out there. I have a former hamstring injury going on 3+ years now (got it when I first started TKD), but still bothers me (hamstring is always tight). I always do dynamic stretching before a run or before class (lunges, front rising kick, etc.) and static stretching after running and class. With the static, I do a supine hamstring stretch but I mostly feel it behind my knee - not much above that. I should really look up other stretches for this. Just wondering what you think is the most important or your favourite hamstring stretch? And I imagine I wouldn't really force it - gentle is best with a former injury, correct?
      • 1 more comment
      • 1
      Injuries
      So, I got a swift kick to my ribs while sparing last week. Yowee., that hurts. Just gut it out for how long???

      Now I know about "BBQ Ribs". Keep them elbows in.

      :(
        • 1
        Dave Magliano Like any other bone, ribs take 6-8 weeks to heal, another couple of months for your bone cells to continually lay down new material. Typically, the problem isn't the rib itself, but the junction between the chest wall and the rib. Remember that your intercostals pull on the ribs during exhale and must expand on inhale. There is also a bit of rotation in the ribs at the chest wall to allow for expansion and contraction. It's like any other joint, once you damage the cartilage the joint will always be a little less stable. I took a solid roundhouse to my left rib cage 22 years ago and I still have pain, particularly during grappling. Your best bet is to lay off training, lifting or running for at least 3-4 weeks and let it heal (remember, your rib cage bounces when you bounce). Practice any deep and shallow breathing that your particular discipline uses as this is the best way to retrain your muscles (right now, your muscles are probably restricted). And of course, if you haven't already, make sure you get checked out by a doc. Good luck.
        • 1
        David Cochran In my experience I have had a few intercostal muscle (soft tissue) injuries around the ribs, two cracked and one completely broken rib. If you do not have an evident mark it is like only soft tissue. They really hurt and make lying down uncomfortable. I learned the hard way that, bruised rib/soft tissue injuries hurt worse breathing in than out, an indication of which one you may have. Broken ribs just hurt all the time. However, I think a broken rib heals quicker than a bad soft tissue injury. My Dr. comparted it to a regular bruise vs. a bone bruise. Also, do not wrap your chest as this can easily cause congestion making the pain worse.
        • 1
        Will - Black Belt Wiki Hi Rom

        If it lasts, you may have a cracked rib. Here are some Mayo Clinic comments about cracked or broken ribs - https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/broken-ribs/symptoms-causes/syc-20350763

        Hope you are feeling better. As always, please see a doctor if it really hurts and/or the pain continues.

        Will
        Black Belt Wiki
      • 2 more comments
      • 2
      Breaking Down a Spinning Wheel Kick
      There has been a lot of inquiry about spinning kick practice. It got me thinking about how differently they are taught. Describe, step-by-step, how you teach them. Videos are great but for sake of argument, try not to refer to them.
        • 1
        David Cochran Often, I see misunderstanding between the crescent and wheel kick. I am aware of two crescents; inside and outside. Often the outside is used as a spinning kick. Spinning or not the outside crescent strike is with the blade (outside) of the foot. I use the spinning crescent as a closer in kick always going to the outside of the body, over the shoulder to the ear or side of the face/jaw. From a fighting stance the reverse (back leg) crescent is a low percentage kick and it exposes your front side during the kick. However, if you are open stance to your opponent it can be effective. Front leg crescents are weak but can be effective blocking. Wheel kicks (always spinning) are great for the speedster. Very fast, very powerful, an accomplished kicker can hit the wheel faster than most people can throw a reverse kick. And can often kick through a front leg kick still being effective. Very good defensively as they create little opening when done correctly.
      • 2
      Tips for spinning kick training
      I last worked on spinning kicks about 5 months ago. I'm back to learning them again (wheel kick, spinning hook kick, windmill kick) - I will need to know them to earn my next belt. I struggle with dizziness, balance, and being physically able to turn 360 degrees - to end up where I began. I'm always more interested in what's worked for people I know rather than what Google says. Wondering if you have any tips of training suggestions - really breaking things down. Tips to work on how to keep the swinging leg straight, how to avoid dizziness, how to make a full spin, even strength exercises that would help, etc. Or does it just come down to practicing them a million times? Thanks!
        • 1
        David Cochran Will, When Tracy confirms she has my address, please delete it. Thank you.
        • 1
        Hermit As mentioned I think the most important is the "spotting" the target, focus on it before your start your spin and get your head spun around first to locate and re-spot your target. This takes some time to get used to, but will apply to any kick you need to do that involves a spin. The older a person gets the tougher it is for most to handle a spin without getting dizzy. Don't try to practice too many times in a row, it will become frustrating and counter productive. Make sure the base kick for whatever spinning kick (ie cresent kick for your wheel kick) is solid, if you have that kick solid then it's one less thing to worry about, and you can practice (as mentioned previously) just the spin and only chamber that kick until you feel comfortable with the spin motion. Some people will try spinning on their planted foot the full 360deg, lifting their kicking foot almost as soon as they start the spin, if you are doing this try only shifting your stance around at first. Start from a good fighting stance and pivot on the balls of both your feet around 180 deg without lifting either foot, I don't know if your club uses a reverse side kick, but this is the first motion in learning it, once you feel comfortable with this motion you will already be turned 180deg and then it's a matter of continuing the spin while bringing your kick foot up to chamber the kick. It will give the first half of your spin a more solid feel to you and possibly help with dizziness and balance. Many people feel that at first a spin kick it helps them to have their arms fly out to the sides, I find this can hurt your spin, pull your arms in (even if it feels more unbalanaced at first) as you can spin tighter which will help with your balance. Try to time bringing that kicking foot up into chamber the kick at a good time, a lot of newer students will bring that foot up too high and too soon setting their spin off and usually causing the kick to go off target. Don't forget to spot the target first and then release your kick, and also don't forget to breath during your movement.
        • 1
        ChuckD To help with dizziness I would check out how dancers spin. When you spin turn your head quick and look in the direction you are kicking and try to keep your head facing the same way as long as possible in the spin. The helps me some with dizziness.
        Some reference videos.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WefIHqvqxqM
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyKmu_bHDVA

        As said below I always stress spinning on the ball of your foot, if you spin on your heel you might spin faster but typically it will be more uncontrolled and unbalanced. If you spin flat footed, well it might hurt.

        When working with someone new to spinning kicks I will typically teach them a spin crescent kick because you can build up to it. I basically just get them to spin around on the ball of their feet and bring their knee up but not kick (that way it is one less thing to worry about). Once they feel up to I get them to extend their leg and execute the kick during the spin. After that I show them some other spin kicks once they are comfortable. Check out 3:40 for illustration. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsz3B73LnvQ


        good luck!
      • 19 more comments
      • 1
      6 "Useless" Martial Arts Techniques for Self-Defense?
      This PJ Media article looks at "Six Martial Arts Moves That Will Get You Killed" - https://pjmedia.com/lifestyle/six-martial-arts-moves-that-will-get-you-killed

      Do you agree with their self-defense (fighting for your life) advice? They are opposed to things like kicks to the head, spinning kicks, "going to the ground", inside blocks, etc.

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
        • 1
        Richie I only see one which I agree with. There is no next button, poor website.

        From your list, I agree with all of that. The practice of such techniques makes you a better person and athlete though. As for the blocks, there are no "blocks." They are not effective, at least the ones white belts practice. You receive/counter instead of stop a strike coming to you.

        In your training it is all about priorities.

        Bodo- self-advancement and inner strength takes priorities
        Jutsu- Self-preservation and technique goes first

        You need both to be a well rounded MA-est but one will always come first. Personally, I am a jutsu person.
        • 1
        David Cochran Hard website for my old laptop to process with so much ancillary advertising going on. I thought the videos were very good. Sure wish I could still kick like the TKD guy. It seemed the presenter was arguing his point from a singular perspective. In that sense I have to agree. I have done many self defense classes to groups with no MA experience and usually no physical fitness in their daily lives. For a group like that, I emphasize avoidance and awareness. We all know there is no one technique to fit every encounter. I always have the group pick their "attack scenario(s), 2 or 3 at the most. Then I will choose one technique for each scenario and drill on that. KISS is the best acronym I know for SD so try to imprint on a person only a few things otherwise they are just going to forget it anyway. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
        When in class, big things stress: if you get to that point when you have to act, put everything into it. Strike, strike, strike, to infinity. Then get the heck out of there. Call for help.
      • 2
      Martial Arts, a sport or way of life?
      What are your thoughts on Martial Arts as being a sport or a lifestyle? For example, I take Taekwondo and I have read some strong opinions on what the Olympic involvement has done to the art, or "way".
        • 2
        Dave Magliano For me, training is a daily discipline that touches every part of my life. I have not been involved in sport for a very long time but that's me. I've had the opportunity to train with and get to know a few Taekwondo practioners (karate guys also) who were very disciplined, excellent competitors and downright scary. If you practice for sport and put your 100% into it, there will be natural benefits...same for a person who does not compete. Diligence, patience and tenacity transcend art.
        • 2
        Mike It’s a way of life for me. I lift weights, run, do bag work because of martial arts. I try to educate folks about martial art. I’m more disciplined in my business dealing in and in life in general. I don’t pay much attention to the nay sayers, most have never spent the time to be proficient martial artists anyway.
        • 2
        Will - Black Belt Wiki David

        Sorry for the late approval. I was out traveling and this was the first chance that I could log into the community.

        Will
      • 26 more comments
      • 2
      Kata prep for tournaments
      So what are some of the off the wall ways you practice kata for tournaments?

      My old dojo would take turns practicing the kata with various distractions.
      1. Loud music with people yelling (nothing mean, just noise).
      2. Blind folded or eyes closed.
      3. Throwing dodge ball at the person performing the kata to try and break their concentration.
      4. Doing the kata in a different orientation inside the dojo. You would be surprised how many people get put off by this.
      5. Of course we would go through how to bow into the ring and address the judges.

      These were real popular with the kids and the adults tolerated it until they messed up and then would get into it.

      ChuckD
        • 2
        Richie 4 for sure!!!
        Really just practice, don't change anything the week before. I got messed up once. Day of another sensei gave a tweek and I decided to change it, no good.

        Also, mark out the kata. People get messed up if there is to much room and more likely to small space. Last touney, I was at someone miss judged and had to kick over the judges. They were to green to adjust on the fly.
        • 1
        Michael Blindfolded?! 😳. That’s crazy to me. Props to anyone who can pull that off.

        I do 1, 4, and 5.

        We do some serious distractions a little more aggressive than #3 for black belt test, but that’s the only time
      • 2
      How did you discover your kiup?
      I'm currently in my 4th year of TKD and my kiup still sounds really lame - sometimes it's like a girlie yell and sometimes it sounds like a woman trying to yell like a man:) I know the kiup is not supposed to be yelling - it's supposed to be unique to you and represent your spirit. How long did it take you to find and be comfortable with your kiup? HOW did you find it?
        • 3
        David Ianetta From what I've seen, it has do do with letting go and not caring about what others think around you. Most weak kiups I've heard come from people who worry about what others think. Once I let go of that, I found mine.
        • 2
        Kathryn Carson Seven years in and still working on mine. To be fair, since you've had kids, you have probably been told what you sounded like while "in extremis"--and I guarantee you didn't practice that sound, *or* sound silly. You probably also *had to be told* what you sounded like. I know I did. I was too focused on surviving, and bringing a healthy kid with me.

        Yeah, maybe someday we might make sound one of our weapons. But if we punch each time like we mean it, and kick each time like our lives depend on it, the sound we make won't matter a damn.
        • 2
        Jody Williams I once saw a doco on lions hunting, and in one scene the lions roar immobilises the prey stunning it.
        When I've had to defend myself I've used my voice as a weapon, and like any skill in martial arts, you need to practice.
        Be a Lion.
      • 32 more comments
      • 3
      How do you attract kids and teenagers age 6 thru 18 into karate programs
      We started a karate karate program here on our military base and can't get any students considering offering it for free just to see if money is the issue? Black Belt community any views on this?

      Thanks
        • 1
        Hermit Might want to consider a self defence workshop first, the kinda thing that maybe you can organize with a youth drop in center etc to get some kids to try it out for a day or 2 without commitment, you might get some interest from there. Or make it a parent kid workshop, some parents out there may be interested, and want to get their kid into something more active, being able to get those parents out and show them may entice them to sign their kids up (but beware the kids that don't want to be there and their parents just push them in, they can be a bad distraction to others) It seems really tough now days (thanks video games!! lol) to get the kids off their butts to come try something, but if you can get them in, that's when interest may spark. Demonstrations at other events may work as well, but take a bit to organize and you want to make sure you have a good demonstration that can catch and hold a kids interest away from their phone for 5 mins. Also we live in a social media world, (as much as I hate to say it) so maybe getting someone good on that to set up some things for your club may work. With that a few catchy videos or something is a must though, cause the way things are nowdays a bad media page is almost like putting up a stick drawn poster, it may turn away the kids that live in the social media world. But all in all it's an issue that many clubs face nowdays even the ones that have established for awhile, my club has been running about 7 years in my town and numbers are getting dangerously close to the line where the club owner will shut down due to lack of interest and not being able to cover rent.
        • 1
        David Cochran That is a very broad age range. I would make certain to have clearly defined classes for narrower age ranges. I feel 6-9, 10-13, 14-18. Or, if you have the instructors and room you could run classes concurrently. Games can work for the younger group but can quickly become counter-productive, akin to a dog who only does tricks when they know a treat is coming. When I started our middle school/junior high programs I had to create a curriculum to present to the school board. You should be able to get a good example from your school board and/or athletic counsel. In academia the more comprehensive the better. Should also help in the liability and insurance areas.
        • 1
        Will - Black Belt Wiki Hi Claudell

        I am sure that our members will have lots to say on this issue but here are some wiki pages that might help.

        http://www.blackbeltwiki.com/advertising-marketing-martial-arts-schools
        http://www.blackbeltwiki.com/martial-arts-games-for-children
        http://community.blackbeltwiki.com/post/5619221/starting-kids-in-martial-arts
        http://community.blackbeltwiki.com/post/5489764/teaching-small-children

        Also make sure to offer family classes (as you will gain some initial kids with their parents), Karate birthday parties in the dojo, martial arts games for young kids (to attract & retain the little ones who are not too into discipline yet), etc.

        Will
        Black Belt Wiki
      • 3
      Tournament flops (and how to deal with it)
      I personally always strive for perfection. I pay as much attention to subtle details as possible. The turn of a the wrist, the shift of the hips, consistency of stances, etc. as a result, when I practice for a competition I am aiming to perform my best and let the judges determine how I fair amongst my competitors. No matter where I have placed I have always been satisfied with the results because I know I did my best.

      This weekend, that didn’t happen. Early into my weapons kata I knocked my glasses half off my face in what became a downward spiral of everything that you are NOT supposed to do in a tournament. Being left effectively blind, I focused hard on the kata—so much so, I forgot the first Kia in a very obvious place. When refocusing on my breathing and kias, I suddenly realized that I didn’t know what the last move I did during a segment change, so I didn’t know which part was left. Once I started again the damage was done as the pause was too long to be deliberate showmanship. Lastly, while finishing the kata my last step was too farceful and I visibly stumble to regain my balance.

      I was a white belt all over again and couldn’t have been more embarrassed.

      In the past month, my worst performance for that kata was the only one that mattered. It has been 2 days now and it still pains me to think about it.

      Have you ever had an experience like this and how have you dealt with it?
        • 2
        Kim Had a similar bad day once--missed a break, even after dropping down a board for the final attempt, then messed up my form, went blank, and just started making moves up. Got to the front of the form and could not figure out a way to get back to my starting spot (important in our style). I hope the judges didn't hear me cuss under my breath because that happened, too. My husband, parents, most of the instructors, and all the other adult class students were there, too, and it was really embarrassing. And it was 6 weeks before my first black belt exam (to earn my probationary BB). That tournament was a really bad day, but a really bad day doing something I love, that is fun, and that I'm thankful every day that I GET to do. It helps to keep it in perspective- it isn't life or death, and even as a hobby- I have probably done that form a couple hundred times in practice, class, or exams and not had any problems with it. It was basically one "at-bat" in my TKD career, and I screwed it up. Bad. But it wasn't my only at-bat... I have been able to do a lot more TKD since then.
        I wish there was something I could tell you to help you get over it. That night one of my instructors told me that the same thing happened to him in the same ring at that competition the year before and that everybody messes up at least once and it is ok. That helped and I just had to get back on the horse to get ready to test. I treated it as a humility check and went back to working hard. You will get past it. Keep working. :)
        • 1
        Michael Thank you everyone for your responses. I guess what I was really asking is if anyone has choaked to the point of being embarrassed and how they recovered from that (or even better, utilized that experience to be a better martial artist)

        I wonder watched a video from Jesse Encamp where he stated that no matter how he does at a tournament, afterwards he celebrates with Ice Cream, cause he deserved it.
        • 1
        Richie Tournaments are for your self-growth, learn from every loss and every win. Don't think about the whole event as a mistake and "bad" think about what you need to improve on. If you are going in expecting to be Mr. Badass and rule the day then I am sorry.

        "Just keep swiming, just keep swiming"
        Dory
      • 12 more comments
      • 4
      Should I bow out of sparring cont...
      So appreciated all of your comments/suggestions from before - still have them to refer back to. Hoping to continue the sparring discussion if you're up for it? I'll add comments below.
        • 1
        David Cochran Well said. It is encouraging to hear your sense of loyalty. A necessary component in a successfully, satisfying experience regardless the venue. From experience, there is nothing wrong with learning about other schools/MA styles. It is very eye opening and broadens the learning experience making you a more well rounded, objective person. That said, you sound like a person/student searching for more, from yourself first and from your environment second. Done in the spirit to improve your environment, there is never anything wrong with respectfully introducing other ideas. Especially when you learn that there are things that can be improved. It is part of the growing process. In the adult dynamic between student/instructor it is unusual to see the need to be heavy handed and "my way is the only way" ideology. Everything should evolve.
        • 1
        David Cochran I do not mean to discourage you. I understand the small town dynamic. If you have limited or no other choices, well, you have no other choices. I encourage to continue you MA path. With your athletic background maybe it will help you if you dive into the academic side or your MA (history, lineage, etc....). How would it be received if you started practicing technique, kicking, etc.... with a resistance partner prior to formal class starting? May be eye opening on all accounts. Just a thought. Is liability an issue? If you have the opportunity, go visit another Dojang just for comparison. I would simply say you want to proctor a class. That way no offense should be taken.
        • 1
        David Cochran Your TKD year scedule explains some things. It is still unusual to have a class with little or no contact. Kicking the air can have value in balance and aesthetics but you will not know if your kick is effective. In the early days we used our body as the kicking pad, head excluded. A much more practical way to practice but a lot of wear and tear was involved. Of course you are not taking a ballet class. Are you working out with a child, possibly taking a "children's" class? It sounds like you are getting a lot of theory training but never transitioning to understanding how, where, when it works. MA is very repetitive, but until it is applied in practice repetitively it just doesn't work. I think that is where you are, having worked out long enough to understand the mechanics of some techniques but not the application. Understandably confusing.
      • 21 more comments
      • 1
      How powerful is your palm heel strike?
      Is your palm heel strike technique as powerful as this martial artist who sets a record for smashing walnuts with his hand?

      For more information, please read this Indian Express article - http://indianexpress.com/article/trending/viral-videos-trending/video-indian-martial-arts-master-creates-guinness-world-records-by-smashing-212-walnuts-4915829/

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
        • 2
        ChuckD In my best karate voice.... Walnut no strike back...
        • 1
        ChuckD So.. Thoughts on using palm strikes on hard targets (hard areas like the head) versus punching. Seems like using palm strikes to those areas would minimize the chance of injuring yourself.
        • 1
        Dave Magliano Wack-a-nut. Sorry, had to.
      • 6 more comments
      • 1
      How are you going to burn off all of that Halloween candy?
      Who ate too much candy last night? Or has too much candy sitting around now at your house?

      How do you plan to burn it off? Hopefully, with increased martial arts training.

      My kids are semi-safe from the calorie monster... as I confiscated all of their candy except for 10 pieces (of course, they attempted to get around this restriction by selecting the biggest 10).

      Now, I have to figure on what to do with this candy bonanza before we all start snacking on it... for the rest of the year.

      Will
      Black Belt Wiki
        • 1
        Richie I still have not done my 100 kata for karate day. It was a crazy week full of sick people in my family.
        • 1
        Hermit Lol, save it to hand out next year... My little guy is pretty sensitive to sugar, so he only gets a bit as well, thankfully cause of that he has never been into getting bags upon bags of candy, (well that and the weather here only seems to allow for maybe 30 min of trick or treating before you freeze something off).
        Liked a post my wife showed me..... "this year teach your kids about taxes.....take 30% of their candy!!!!"
      • 2
      Sorry again :)
      Hi guys and yet another apology for yet another long absence from the community! Also a big welcome to any new members who have joined in my absence (and are probably wondering who the hell I am :) for those of you that do know me and have been wondering where i’ve been for the past few months the answer is that I have been all over the place since quitting my job in July and have been traveling Britain and Europe catching up with old friends (and making some new ones :) I am back grounded here in the UK for the foreseeable future and back on duty here on the community (if Will hasn’t fired me 😆) and will do my best to catch up on all I have missed over the past few months.
        • 2
        Al W Apologies for my lack of comms/jokes

        It's been rather busy lately

        Normal services should resume soon
        • 1
        Hermit wow seems to be a few people took a break for awhile, I jut got back on here after 3 or 4 months, I took the summer off MA, including looking stuff up etc, and then my little guy got himself in pretty big trouble and I grounded him from everything electronic except the TV, so I stayed away from the computers and stuff in my free time as well. Missed this community but I'll tell ya, felt a lot better being away from social media like Facebook and stuff. Found I used to get mad at how dumb people could be every time I was on Facebook. I still think people are dumb... but if I'm not on FB to remind me of that fact everyday I find I'm happier lol. Welcome back!
        • 1
        Andy [245852,Bill Emmes] and [171668,Will - Black Belt Wiki], thanks for the welcome back guys 😀 it is good to know that at least one member (and my good friend and creator of this wiki and community) have missed me!
        Also a big shout out to [212770,Al W] (Who I see more as reinforcement in our joint war on bringing bad British humour to the global MA population than a rival :)) I am still working a few things out at the moment (including getting my new house sorted out which I got frustrated with and abandoned to go travelling!!!) but I promise I will be at full operational strength very shortly! 👍🥋🥋🥋
      • 9 more comments
      • 3
      Top 5 Deadliest Martial Arts Weapons
      Master Ken’s ‘definitive’ weapons guide :)
        • 1
        Andy Here is Master Ken’s ‘defiinitive’ guide to some popular MA weapons 😀 or if you haven’t done so allready you could check out blackbelt wikis slightly more comprehensive guide to weapons http://www.blackbeltwiki.com/martial-arts-weaponshttp://www.blackbeltwiki.com/martial-arts-weapons
      • 1
      Missing topic
      A topic on whether to bow out of sparring generated some interesting comments but is no longer available. Why?
        • 1
        Will - Black Belt Wiki Hi Mitt

        Sorry for the delay in approving your post. I have been without power for about a day.

        Not sure why it is not there. Perhaps, the post author (Tracy) deleted it.

        Will
      • 3
      Hello
      New to the Community but not to MA. Been studying Martial Arts for off and on for over 30 years and now that I am older and would like to live a lot longer to see grand children grow up, I have decided to get back in shape and practice more, now that I have more time. Hope this community can help me not only refresh my memory but give me some new pointers.
      Thanks
      William
        • 1
        Bill Emmes Hello William,

        Welcome to the community! You will find many interesting and skilled folks here willing to share their experiences. At the age of 63, I have been involved in MA almost 36 years now and continue to love it. Regardless of my age, I find so many ways to compensate for any physical differences of younger practitioners. So keep on practicing and enjoy the thrill of learning and sharing your experiences with others.

        Bill
        • 1
        Andy Hi [258767,William R Soulsby] and welcome to the community :)
        • 1
        William R Soulsby Oh, my age? 64 and going strong
      • 5 more comments





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