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GJ "Courage comes from suffering"

Solo Practice
  1. Shadowboxing
    You can always work movement and technique either with or without a mirror, the key is visualizing an opponent and what both you and they do. Shadowboxing is a relative term, any technique you do can be practiced, e.g. shadowwrestling, shadowgrappling (although both these look even dorkier than shadowboxing) or more isolated sprawls, shooter's walk, and shrimping.

  2. Bagwork
    Find a bag and the appropriate protection, visualize as above.

  3. Attribute Development
    Working on the physical, mental, and emotional aspects that are not specific to being a fighter but are important for making better fighters. Weightlifting especially corework and cardiovascular conditioning fall under physically developable attributes. Reading books and watching videos from instructional or fights can also be productive. Blauer Tactical Systems has a strong history of working on the emotional arsenal.

  4. Training Journal
    Simply reading this isn't enough, try keeping your own training journal highlighting the aspects you need to work on. You'll be surprised how 15-30 minutes of review over a piece of paper or keyboard can clarify and cement things in your mind.
For our second practice of the semester we had almost 80 people in attendance. We started with a light warm-up and stretching. We then worked into elbows first the horizontal ("scratch your back") and then the vertical ("fix your hair"). Each pair had one pad, one sided did 10 elbows and then switched, working both sides. Everyone was encouraged to both practice the "cutting" and "clubbing" elbows, using proper upper and lower body dynamics.
Next we switched to straight knees, forming groups of five with one set of Thai pads. One holder worked with one hitter, delivering one minute of straight knees to the thai pads. Meanwhile everyone else worked skip knees on the wall. It is important for the holder to place one thai pad horizontally across the body, with other pad running parallel to it, creating a seam where the hitter delivers their knees. The holder should remain upright and push into the knees. Fighters should deliver knees parallel with floor, driving with their hips while firmly controlling the head with both hooks -- do not interlace fingers. Holding for knees teaches you how effective a weapon the knees can be, I have yet to find someone who would want to be kneed after holding the pads.
Next we worked into the standing guillotine choke, we used a similar framework from last practice, using the SPEAR to intercept the attack. A deep knee causing them to bend over avails the line of the neck, thus allowing them to sink the choke. Drop the arm next to the head deep before bringing the forearm across, make sure only the neck is trapped between your arms, then grip the blade of your hand and gently arch as you pull your arms superiorly.
Defending the guillotine is fairly easy, don't get caught, that is never let the person get a hold of you and force your head down. However as they secure the choke you can still defend by using the same side hand grab the forearm across the windpipe, and throw the other arm over the shoulder, pulling the person laterally (a defensive Combat Chiropractor) while angling your body 45o in the direction of the non-choked side.
It is important to note that techniques are situational not sequential, that is, they happen as needed not because they were necessarily trained in a specific order. Always take moves as they are given not as you expect them to occur.
I then dismissed the beginners and started with 3 minute pad rounds for the advanced group:
  1. Walking the Body
    Per Miyamoto Musashi "The Book of Five Rings" (Miyamoto Musashi), it is axiomatic that you should be able to throw strikes from any position. In combat sports no-one does this better than boxers. When they deliver a low line punch, they return to their "fighting stance" with a another punch, allowing the natural body mechanics of returning to equilibrium to generate and deliver another shot. Some prime examples we use are:
    • "Walk The Body 1" -- Body Jab-Rear Uppercut-Lead Hook-Cross
    • "Walk The Body 2" -- Jab-Body Cross-Lead Uppercut-Cross
    • "Walk The Body 3" -- Jab-Cross-Lead Body Hook-Rear Uppercut-Lead Hook-Cross
    • "Walk The Body Rip" -- Jab-Rear Body Hook-Lead Uppercut-Cross
    We introduced the italicized ones in practice.
  2. Sprawl, Fall, or Follow
  3. G n' P Practice
    Last practice we worked on punching with a powerful, rapid extension style of MMA superstarFedor Emelyaneko. The man punches harder on the ground than most people do standing up. Aside from doubtless genetic gifts he uses a technical full extension to deliver his power. This extension should provide his opponent's with opportunities to submit him, but by punishing them with a barrage of brutal strikes they cannot access his arms to do so. With this in mind we worked this round with the head down, controlling the biceps of our holder, from here pop-up and way creating a enough room to throw either three long straight punches (maximizing the linear path for the generation of energy) or two extended hooks (maximizing the deliverable torque). The holder either holds a V for the straight punches or a midline pad for the hooks.
  4. Conditioning (Four Count Sprawls)

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