Tag Archives: tai chi chuan

Unique Method of Martial Arts Strength Training

Suspended Strength Training in the Martial Art…

And Who is Ernie Pyle?

Before I get into a rather interesting discussion
of real strength in Martial Arts,
and offer a different viewpoint
and training method
for strength training in the martial arts,
let me offer an anecdote of good wishes
and quality of life for this Thanksgiving.

how long does it take to get a black belthow to kill bookNot many people know who Ernie Pyle was,
but he was a war correspondent during WW2.

Now,
try this one,
Ernst Hemingway.
Everybody knows who he is.
and many even know
that he was…
a war correspondent during WW2.

Now,
bear with me,
Ernst Hemingway
wrote about drinking ancient wine
in hallowed corridors,
invading
and living the life.
Midnight samplings,
caviar,
a conqueror’s dreams come true.

Ernie Pyle wrote about people.
He’d talk about lone figures in a line,
marching into the dust,
half of whom wouldn’t come back.
He’d talk about starving soldiers
sharing their last ration with him
sitting in a foxhole,
heating the ration
in a steel helmet
with a candle.
Rubbing his hands together to keep warm
and seeing the look
in the eyes of the soldier with him–
just glad to be alive
and with another human being.

So
caviar dreams,
or humanity.

Well,
Hemingway blew his brains out with a shotgun.

But the soldiers Pyle wrote about
went on to create
the greatest country
in the history of this planet,
a country that believed in and shared
freedom.

And,
for all my friends in other countries,
bushwah aside,
that’s all us United Statians want,
freedom for all,
not because we’re better,
but because we can all be better,
and I hope that this thought,
my Thanksgiving thought for this yar,
can be shared by the world,
next year.

So let’s talk about martial arts.
and Suspended Strength.

The guy who can lift the most
is the strongest.
Grrr!
He wins.

Well,
uh…
have you ever heard of time?

Let’s say a guy lifts a hundred pounds.
He’s a young kid,
and this is a good lift for him.
But,
when you measure the time it took him to lift
he lifted 100 pounds in two seconds.
One second up and one second down.
so,
200 pounds.

Now,
let’s take his twin brother
give him 20 pounds,
and have him lift it 12 times.

Hmm.
240 pounds.
He’s stronger.

Oh,
you don’t like my math?
Well,
I’m just starting.

Let’s take that evil twin brother,
you know,
the one who cheated to become stronger by lifting less,
and let’s have him lift 20 pounds,
but take take 30 seconds to do it.
15 seconds up and 15 seconds down.
Do the math…
15 times 20…
300 pounds.
He’s stronger.

Not only is he stronger,
but because he didn’t stress his body
there is less chance of injury,
pulled muscle,
or even fatigue.

And,
I’m going to tell you something weird,
his strength is going to improve on a sharper curve
than the two second boy.

Now,
you think I’m talking Tai Chi here,
right?

Well,
sort of,
but sort of not.
Other arts than Tai Chi go slow.
And,
hate to say it,
guys who get old or injured
slow their stuff down.

The point here is that
power comes in different speeds.

Yes,
there is explosive power,
great stuff,
recommended if you want your art to work.
But there is also suspended power.
You won’t lift the most,
but you’ll lift longer,
last longer,
not have injuries,
be able to rehabilitate injuries.

I use to work out at karate hard,
an hour felt like eight.
But,
I can’t do that anymore.
But,
I can work out for eight hours
and make it feel like one.

I just do my forms slower,
and work on suspended strength.

Oh,
WARNING!
be careful when doing kicks or extreme positions slowly,
suspending the leg because you could throw out your back.

When you explode,
you see,
you only use part of your leg,
part at the beginning and part at the end (to stop it).
When you go slow you use all your leg,
and this puts stress on body parts
that never knew stress before.

Okay,
if you want to learn slow,
get stronger than an ox who’s been eating good,
then check out the Five ArmyTai Chi Chuan,

Actually,
there’s three systems on the course.
An easy basics system,
an intermediate system that just sort of explodes on the cerebral cortex,
and then there’s the classical eight animals.

Think about it,
three systems,
a book,
the ability to age gracefully,
a complete art,
only ten bucks a disk.
Whoa,
that’s a Fng deal!

Okay,
guys and gals,
you have the greatest week ever,
and remember
every time you work out
it’s one step closer
to the truth of you.
And,
man,
that truth is grand.

Later…

Al

How to Defend Against Dogs with Martial Arts

Martial Arts Defense Against Killer Dogs

Is this going to be a GREAT week or what?
Eh?
I mean,
the stars are in alignment,
the tea leaves are propitious,
and,
if that isn’t enough…
you get to work out!

best karate kung fu chi training manual

Click on the cover!

Of all them prophetic devices…
only the work out is the sure thing,
so I think I’ll work out twice!

Oinkly doggie.
Let’s leap right into the good stuff,
let’s talking about taking out attack trained,
killer vicious curs called…
guard dogs.

I was ten years old,
was cutting across a neighbors estate on my bicycle
and a big, old weimaraner
who I had known and played with,
attacked me.
Dragged me off the bicycle
and I managed to steer the falling bike
towards the property line,
and I fell into the street.
Off the property.
The guard dog,
who I had known and played with,
petted and wrestled with,
growled and snapped at me,
but was stopped by the property line.

Okay.
Guards dogs gone wild.
you know?

So I was afraid of dogs after that.
Then,
when I was eleven,
my older brother gave me his paper route.
And,
on one of the streets,
you guessed it,
a dog.
Not a guard dog,
but he would run into the street
and chase me.
I would peddle and cry.
And I asked my brother what he did about the dog.
“I kick it.”
It’s got to reach you,
so when it jumps,
I kick it.

I envisioned kicking,
even practiced it a bit,
and,
the next day,
I was delivering papers,
and,
you guessed it,
the dog comes chasing after me!

Man,
I stomped that sucker right in the face.
He yipped and ran.
And,
a half hour later,
I rode past that house again.
I was feeling a bit proud,
maybe even a bit blood thirsty,
hoping that dog would attack me again
so I could nail his face with my
Sunday go to meeting shoes.
(They were the only hard soles I had)

There were teeth on the ground!
I had actually knocked his teeth out!
HAHAHAHA!

And,
over the years,
I think about the A$$whole
who owned that dog.
Cause it’s the owner that should be kicked,
not the dog.
I’ll bet the owner thought it was funny,
his lights were on,
he let the dog out,
laughed when the paper boy ran.

Well,
he was feeding that dog mush with a spoon now!

Okay.
That sets us up.
Let’s talk about Monkeyland.

We have dogs up here.
Truth,
I LOVE dogs.
I hike all over with them.
I throw sticks.
I even swim with them!

Nothing is better than a big, old mutt
with a wet, sloppy tongue.
Nothing.

So we’ve got three dogs.
One is a hundred pound lab.
Big frigging tongue on that boy!
The other two are Mallenois.
Mother and pup.
Mallenois are like under sized german shepherds.
And,
they are highly prized as guard dogs.
My partner brought them up,
introduced the mother,
who was highly trained,
as a killer.

Well,
that’s not really what we’re about at Monkeyland,
but he’s my partner’s,
so now we have a highly trained attack dog.

Here’s the bad news.
The mother is loving,
one of the most loving dogs I have ever seen.
It is…
over loving.
Frantic.
Desparate.
You can’t go outside without the dog leaping on you,
hugging you,
trying to curl around your feet,
prostating itself and
…just wanting love.

The trainer,
you see,
has done a number on her.
Probably a good trainer.
My opinion,
however,
is that the dog will protect instinctively.
Doesn’t need to be trained to harm a human being.
In fact,
I think the training,
to harm another human being,
is a crime.
And what it has done to that poor dog…
Lord.
That poor dog is just out of its mind.

It’s always the owner,
in this case the trainer,
you know?

Anyway,
before I rant on a$$wholes who train dogs,
let’s talk about taking out a dog
that has been trained to harm human beings.

I went out on the front porch to do a work out.
Beautiful out there.
A mile of green valley and blue skies.
High, puffy clouds wafting across the sky.
A hint of breeze to cool off the work out
and let it go even longer.

Paradise,
you know?

BUT,
the dog wants love.
Is desperate for love.
And it crawls under my feet,
tries to jump on me.
So I practice my footwork,
anticipating directions,
and the dog is falling into space,
can’t keep up,
even falling down.

Hey!
This is fun!
BUT,
somewhere in there,
the attack responses are triggered.
The dog leaps at me.

Remember that dog I played with?
And who dragged me off my bike?
Man,
here it as,
all over again.

Not quite vicious,
but the line between love and hate,
usually large,
has been slipped over.
The dog leaps at me,
snapping at my wrists.
I realize that this is one of the devices
that the trainer must have used.
Play,
slap around,
get it to go lightly vicious.
A game,
you know?

But the A$$whole trainer
obviously didn’t know martial arts.

I was doing Tai Chi at the time,
the first move,
ward off.
The dog leaped,
I shuffled back slightly,
bowed my belly in,
and held my arms out,
the dog was in my space,
and I lowered my arm so that the forearm was at the neck,
turned my hips,
and threw the dog.

Man,
you have never seen such a quick and efficient throw.
That dog just flipped on its side.

It leaped at me.
I did golden rooster,
a simple knee,
and the dog bounced off the point of the knee and fell back.
Yipping!

I smiled,
cocked my head,
and held my hand out and motioned to the dog like Bruce Lee.
Come on.

The dog went for the feet.
I was wearing soft shoes,
so I merely stepped in front of my left foot with my right,
then,
when the dog was fooled,
slapped it in the head with a left sole behind the right leg.
Came right out of nowhere,
rocked that momma like there was no tomorrow.

Now,
I was being incredibly soft.
I LOVE dogs.
Even attack trained vicious guard dogs.
It’s the owner,
you know?

But I moved across that porch,
befuddling,
confounding,
confusing,
and threw that dog this way and that.
Didn’t use any force.
Just slipped and turned,
gave the dog the target,
then withdrew it.

And,
after a while,
the dog wasn’t sure what to do.
In the game it had been trained in,
it won,
got a cookie for savaging a wrist or ankle.
Got loving for biting the padded mid section.
Here,
there was no midsection.
And the ankles bit back and were gone.
And the wrists,
oh Lord,
going for the wrists
was a fool’s errand.
That always resulted in a disappearing target,
and a dog body flipped on it’s side,
and a series of Karate punches to the belly.
Soft punches.
And,
grin,
I avoided any of the Tai Chi strikes.
I didn’t want to kill the dog.

So,
that’s how you handle an attack trained
vicious,
killer guard dog.

Karate will work fine,
or any other art,
but remember that it is play here,
and that you are,
in essence,
undoing what the dog has been trained to do.
And,
remember,
it is always the owner.

The guard dog,
any dog,
is just one of God’s critters,
and we are charged with taking care of them.
Not using them against our fellow man,
beyond their natural protectiveness.

And,
it makes me think,
there are a few people I’d like to ‘de-train’
a few politicians.
Hmmm.
Maybe that’s a story for another time,
eh?

Have a great and glorious work out!
And don’t forget to pet your dog,
and play with him every day.
especially if he’s been attack trained.
Grin.

Al

Here’s the link for Matrix Tai Chi Chuan.
That’s the stuff I use,
and I recommend it HIGHLY!

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/2ba-matrix-tai-chi-chuan/

Is it Possible to have Perfect Martial Arts?

Chess and the First Move in the Martial Arts

I recently wrote on article on ‘Beyond Western Muscles and the Martial Arts,’ and in that article I mentioned an idea I had come across many years ago: that in a perfect chess game white will win for the simple reason that it moved first.

This has obvious implications in the martial arts. Two combatants edging towards each other, the perfect gunfight, searching for that threshold of distance wherein they can strike first and without getting struck.

Some people didn’t agree with this. I thought it a simple matter of extrapolating Einstein’s theory of relativity, and the resulting corollaries in subatomic physics, but, alas, I guess I was not…the first to move.

Then I had an interesting email wherein the fellow said that if two tai chi masters fight, the one who moves first will always lose.

Lord! Now I didn’t know what to think!

Except (aha!), if one understands that the perfect state of consciousness (awareness) is to consider oneself the center of the universe, and that everything revolves around oneself, and that there is no proof that anything (or entity) exists, except as is created by the being at the center of the universe.

This theory holds up to the concept that at the center of all motion is motionlessness. This theory finally achieves the concept of perfection in the martial arts, and in the whole universe!

In this realm thought ceases to be motion, and becomes the ultimate no motion.

Which brings us to the grand conclusion.

If one doesn’t move first, then one will win. This fulfills the highest goals of the the martial arts, defines the highest attributes of an individual, and results in the cessation of all wars for an everlasting reign of peace on earth.

After, of course, one puts a big juicy, raw steak on his eyeball.

If you want perfection in your fighting abilities you have to matrix your martial arts. Go to Monster Martial Arts and find out what Matrixing is.

If you like martial arts humor you should check out the Case Histories column at Monster Martial Arts.

The Arizona Spiritual Martial Art Workout!

Have a great work out from Texas!

Got here last night,

and immediately did a workout!

The only way to survive the insanity of traveling!

 

So,

I was in Arizona the other night,

and a couple of interesting things to note.

Upper Arizona is beautiful,

trees all over the place,

lots of wildlife.

 

Really gives a lie to anybody who says

we are running out of things.

Man,

there is so much space,

so much lumber,

so much wildlife…

there is no shortage in this world,

just crooked politicos who try to frighten you

by saying there is!

 

But enough ranting,

let’s move on to the good stuff,

let’s move on to that unique universe

of doing the martial arts in Arizona.

 

Lower Arizona is dry and dusty.

Wind blowing everywhere.

At first,

I was discouraged.

Then,

sitting up late at night,

listening to the desert,

I felt it…

 

Listen,

do you know how it feels

when you cram a bunch of people in a room?

100 people in a 20 by 20 room?

People knocking elbows,

bumping into each other,

sooner or late…

there’s going to be a fight.

 

And,

multiply that by ten thousand,

and you have a city.

People packed together like sardines,

not enough room,

everybody getting cranky!

 

So I’m sitting in the middle of the Arizona deseert

and there’s no people,

and I could feel the deep, deep spirituality.

The space.

The vastness.

 

The clouds overhead were surging with life.

I could feel elemental forces moving across the deseert floor.

And then there was me,

a mote,

a speck,

audience to this vast moving play,

this magnificent display of earth and element.

 

It was spiritual.

 

And,

moved,

I began doing my forms,

and I couldn’t stop!

Elements were moving me,

forces were shoving my punches,

nibbling at my stances,

making me feel ENERGY!

 

It was massive.

 

And,

of course,

I had a realization.

In truth,

I have realized this before,

but from different perspective,

which made it all the newer and more potent to me.

 

When you are starting out

it is good to be in a dojo,

to feel the bodies,

to interact with other martial artists.

But,

as time goes on,

you need space.

You are the center of the universe,

you need to look out,

to feel the massive space within which you sit.

 

Look,

your physical body is part of you,

but the real you is as far as you can see,

as far as you can imagine!

And that is space.

That is the true empty in empty hands.

That is the truth of you that is just waiting for you to…wake up to it!

 

Sitting in Arizona,

unable to stop doing forms,

I was in the middle of that realization.

Absolutely spectacular.

 

And,

it goes without saying,

I could see myself,

I could imagine myself,

doing my forms on top of Mt. Nipomo.

Monkeyland.

120 acres,

nearest neighbor four miles away.

Exuding the essence of me through the discipline of the martial arts.

 

Heaven.

 

All the best of modern society,

but isolated,

alone,

with sufficient space

to truly delve into the martial arts.

 

Now,

that in mind,

when you do Tai Chi

the image is often of doing it on top of a mountain.

Alone.

Horzons beyond horizons.

Able to see everything.

 

 

One of the most impressive images I have ever encountereed

was a cheap wookd block carving.

It was a viewpoint of a mountain range…

from above.

 

But how could the guy get above to see that?

How could he see a yin yang in a mountain range as if from hundreds of miles up?

 

By being alone,

by doing the martial arts,

and getting so much discipline

that he was a pooint of awareness

outside of his body

high in the stratosphere.

 

So,

that was the train of my thought,

and how it related to martial arts

and to monkeyland,

and all sorts of things,

as I stood in the desert

and did forms…

and couldn’t stop.

 

So,

here’s the Tai Chi URL,

 

http://monstermartialarts.com/martial-arts/five-army-tai-chi-chuan/

 

in case you want to get started on being alone,

creating space,

finding the purest,

highest,

most elemental level of martial arts you can.

 

Mind you,

don’t give up that hard stuff,

or partners,

or the blessings of living in community of city,

and don’t give up your karate forms…

but,

do your martial arts at night,

alone,

slowly,

creating massive space.

 

Becoming aware of yor true body,

of the true extent of your awareness…

your imagination.

 

Take a hike,

find a mountain top,

exude yourself,

see if you can discipline yourself to greater and greater awareness.

 

Have a great workout,

and I’ll tell you about New Mexico Martial Arts Soirituality next time!

 

Al

 

 

 

Real Aikido and the Fight with Beavis and Butthead

The Case for Real Aikido

I practice real Aikido, and the rest of the world doesn’t.

Don’t you just love a knucklehead statement like that? I mean, the fellow who makes it has broken rule number one: he thinks he is the only one, and therefore he is knee deep in loco.


real aikido
That said, let me give you a rundown on real Aikido, and what the rest of the world is practicing.

If you are learning a tradition with respect, no matter who the teacher is, no matter what the argument is between form and function, you are learning real Aikido. And, hey, while we’re at it, this statement extends to other classical martial arts, such as karate or tai chi chuan, or whatever.

And, to put it another way…are you learning, or are you fighting?

Now, here comes the part where I offend people. The UFCers and the MMAers are fighting, so they are not doing a martial art. They are doing a martial sport.

A lot of people get upset with me when I say something like this, they take it as a personal attack,and then explain how their school is different.

And that is the dividing point, is their school teaching, or is it promoting fighting?

It is a simple question, with a simple answer, and Beavis and Butthead can’t answer it.

You know Beavis and Butthead? They are the fellows with bad grammar who go to forums and sites and drop comments like UR STOOPID! (note the misspelling), and F*** U! (No asterisks)

Brilliant fellows these, and they don’t study real Aikido. They study ca ca humor and eat with their mouth open and it’s really important who won the fight.

But it’s not important who won the fight. What’s important is whethere an individual is actually learning, becoming more disciplined and aware, exploring the manifestations of spirituality that a human being is.

The real fight, you see, is not between the gladiators in the ring, it is between the edification of the human spirit, and the degradation of the human meatball.

That’s why I study real Aikido, and that is the dividing line one must find in their own art if they are to win the martial art war.

Real Aikido and the Fight with Beavis and Butthead

The Case for Real Aikido

I practice real Aikido, and the rest of the world doesn’t.

Don’t you just love a knucklehead statement like that? I mean, the fellow who makes it has broken rule number one: he thinks he is the only one, and therefore he is knee deep in loco.


real aikido
That said, let me give you a rundown on real Aikido, and what the rest of the world is practicing.

If you are learning a tradition with respect, no matter who the teacher is, no matter what the argument is between form and function, you are learning real Aikido. And, hey, while we’re at it, this statement extends to other classical martial arts, such as karate or tai chi chuan, or whatever.

And, to put it another way…are you learning, or are you fighting?

Now, here comes the part where I offend people. The UFCers and the MMAers are fighting, so they are not doing a martial art. They are doing a martial sport.

A lot of people get upset with me when I say something like this, they take it as a personal attack,and then explain how their school is different.

And that is the dividing point, is their school teaching, or is it promoting fighting?

It is a simple question, with a simple answer, and Beavis and Butthead can’t answer it.

You know Beavis and Butthead? They are the fellows with bad grammar who go to forums and sites and drop comments like UR STOOPID! (note the misspelling), and F*** U! (No asterisks)

Brilliant fellows these, and they don’t study real Aikido. They study ca ca humor and eat with their mouth open and it’s really important who won the fight.

But it’s not important who won the fight. What’s important is whethere an individual is actually learning, becoming more disciplined and aware, exploring the manifestations of spirituality that a human being is.

The real fight, you see, is not between the gladiators in the ring, it is between the edification of the human spirit, and the degradation of the human meatball.

That’s why I study real Aikido, and that is the dividing line one must find in their own art if they are to win the martial art war.

Cheesy Internet Ads and the Martial Arts!

Unlock the Inner you through…Martial Arts?

martial arts style

Find the Real You!

Speaking of Martial Arts, I just read an ad, one of those cheesy internet ads, about unlocking the inner you.

You’re only using 10% of your brain, and wouldn’t it be wonderful if you could unlock the other 90%? Continue reading