Tag Archives: kung fu training

How to Become Truly Creative in Your Martial Arts Training!

Newsletter 934

Outside the Martial Arts Box!

I used to ask my instructor
what he did to get better.
What did he work on?
What were his training methods?
He answered me:
‘I just do the forms.’
But he could stick his index finger
through a board and leave a hole.
Obviously,
there had to be something more.
It took me a while,
but I figured out the ‘extra ingredient.’
Going outside the box.

For instance,
I’ve written about his kicking bag.
We couldn’t go to a store and buy a bag back then,
we had to make our own.
I bought a duffle bag,
packed it with sawdust,
used it for a while.
It was a true piece of…stuff.
But it worked,
and I practiced,
and my kicks got better.
He did the same thing,
sort of.
He was able to find the canvas ‘sleeves.
He filled it with sawdust,
and the thing was too light,
didn’t pack right,
fell out of shape after a few hundred kicks.
So he experimented,
going ‘outside the box,’
and packed it with sawdust and water.
It got moldy.
He tried adding bleach.
Got soggy,
and he tried other methods.
His stroke of
outside the box
genius?
He cut newspapers in circles,
and stacked the circles in the bag.
Rock hard,
never fell out of shape,
light enough to hang without bending the rafters,
and so on.
This is true ‘out of the box’ thinking.
He did something totally unique,
nobody had EVER done anything like this,
and likely haven’t since then.
But his kicks were truly…
outside the box.

So,
let me describe the trap you are currently in,
which stops you from thinking outside the box.
I came across a fellow on the net,
and he was talking about if bags get too hard
you can’t kick them.
And he’s going into the physics,
and how it is physically impossible
according to the rules of the universe,
and so on.
If my instructor had ever paid attention to the physics…
he never would have made that bag.
He would have been trapped by,
not the physics,
but the belief system surrounding physics.

I was once told that a bumble bee can’t fly.
His weight is too much,
his wings too stubby,
according to physics,
the bumble bee can’t fly.
Thank god the bumble bee doesn’t know physics.
Thank god the bumblebee has his own belief system.

And we get all these athletes
training by physics,
eating the food,
using the training devices,
following regimens described by people
who know physics.

Before the four minute mile was cracked,
it was considered impossible.
No human could ever do that.
Now,
on the top tier of runners,
you’re sort of a wannabe
if you can’t break the four minute mile.
But the physics didn’t change.
What changed was people’s belief in physics.
Or,
they didn’t accept the physics,
and they went ahead and broke the rules.
Went outside the box.
Did something that nobody believed they could do,
just because,
in their supreme moment of ignorance,
they believed in themselves,
and ignored the idiots.
They went outside the box.

When my instructor kicked that bag,
it was too hard,
he should have broken his foot.
But,
he figured out how to kick the bag a little,
and his foot got stronger,
but more important,
his belief that he COULD kick that bag got stronger.
And,
as he kept kicking that bag,
his kicks slowly improved,
and his belief system,
his idea of what it was possible for him to do,
changed.

So that is how you go outside the box.
You get an idea,
you chip away at it,
you look at it,
and you expand your belief system
beyond the belief system
of those that are trapped by belief systems.

Now,
you don’t have a unique idea?
Yes,
you do.
When the instructor has you do ten kicks in class,
do eleven.
Go home and do a hundred.
I noticed that the fellows in my school
who had the best kicks,
were practicing 200 kicks per kick per side.
So I went home and started practicing
250 kicks per kick per side.
And,
man,
am I glad I did.
I’m 70 now,
and when I practice with these young kids,
my front kick is still faster,
and they really don’t like blocking it,
it hurts them to block it.

And,
what about forms?
Do you do your forms twice or thrice
and then call it?
How about doing your forms ten times?
Or,
have you ever done a form100 times in a row?
It changes you.
It changes the way you think about forms.
It changes your belief in forms.
Something I used to do,
I was practicing Tai Chi,
and I decided to pile stance it.
There are about 108 moves
in the classical form,
I took a full minute to do each move.
Took me two hours to do one form.
But,
Lord,
I was different after that.
My Tai Chi was different,
and I started to really understand
what the old Tai Chi masters were talking about.

Anyway,
I hope this gives you an idea on how to think outside the box.
The only advantage you’ve got is your imagination,
imagination IS thinking outside the box,
so put in a little extra sweat,
and put yourself outside the box.

And,
obligatory ad,
The book,
Chiang Nan,
is definitely outside the box.
I combined Karate and Tai Chi,
and got some interesting results,
results not covered by the fellows spouting their physics.
Here’s the link.

https://www.amazon.com/Chiang-Nan-Al-Case/dp/198767765X

Have a great work out!

Al

Here’s a link for an article about when I first started doing this book on Kenjutsu.
I intended to finish it quickly, but it’s actually been five years!

New Book About the Samurai Sword is Coming

Martial Arts Punch Lines, and a hard truth.

Newsletter 888

Martial Arts Punch Lines (get it?)

Happy Labor Day!
I think I’ll labor at the martial arts today.

A quick word,
I had inadvertently taken my list of courses off the site.
This is the full list,
so examine the left sidebar on the Monster,
everything is there.

Now,
came across these little gems,
thought I would share…

You’re not outnumbered,
you’re target rich.

When people ask me what I do for a living:
‘I teach people how to maim and kill.’

Bruises are really just temporary tattoos.

Kung Fu has been curing ADHD
since 500 AD

For my birthday
I want pound cake and punch.

violence isn’t always the answer,
but it sure is an option

the best part of a joke is the punch line.

Okay.
Nuff frivolity.
Let’s get serious.

It is true,
a picture is worth a thousand words.
and,
that being true,
a video is worth a thousand thousand words.
But,
here’s the cruel truth…
you still have to understand what the words mean.

I remember when Karate first hit the shores,
the Japanese said:
‘it will take an American three lifetimes to understand the martial arts.’
And,
that’s true,
if you don’t understand the words.

For me,
chi was the big mysterious.
Thought about it,
tried to figure it out,
made no sense.
Then I started looking up words like:
energy,
force,
spirit,
intention,
will power,
and so on.
And,
suddenly,
it all made sense.

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=uM1ubDwUxa4

Tell me I don’t understand chi.
Heck,
I can project it outside my body.
You know the funny thing?
I wish somebody had told me
the power of understanding words
back when I was 19.
I would be moving cars,
not just putting out candles.
All my training would have changed,
gone in a different direction.

The power of words.

So,
here’s the whole story…

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2f-matrixing-the-master-text/

How I came up with matrixing,
the evolution,
arts studied,
and so on.
All you have to do is understand the words.
But don’t worry,
I’ve included a few pictures to help you out.
Grin.

Okay,
have a great bunch of work outs this labor day.

And,
BTW
GO TEXAS!
To the degree that people rally round,
to the degree that government sits on the sidelines,
to that degree Texas comes back.

have a GREAT work out!

Al

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2f-matrixing-the-master-text/

http://www.amazon.com/Binary-Matrixing-Martial-Arts-Case/dp/1515149501/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1437625109&sr=8-1&keywords=binary+matrixing

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You can find all my books here!

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/

http://www.amazon.com/Matrixing-Tong-Bei-Internal-Gung/dp/1507869290/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1423678613&sr=8-1&keywords=tong+bei