Monday, 30 May 2011

How kungfu learnt

In your first class, you will be faced with a great deal of new information. In addition to exercises for stretching, muscle power, and vital energy, there are the actual movements of Long Fist. Each movement contains many physical components: movements of the feet, legs, trunk, arms, hands, eyes, and breath. There is also an underlying mental component of each movement. Every movement has a specific purpose, and it is up to the teacher to develop each student's understanding of that purpose, so the student can extract maximum benefit from practice.
Some who teach martial arts are not aware of the underlying purpose of each movement, and simply expect students to follow them through a series of unfamiliar and meaningless movements. Other teachers expect that students fight or work with advanced students on the first lesson. Learning Kung Fu at our school is different.
In your first class, you will begin learning how to condition your body. After your first month, you will feel a difference in the strength of your arms and legs, an increased ability to concentrate, and an improvement in your overall health.
After your first six months, your increased strength and concentration will enable you to perform a set of basic Kung Fu movements, and you will feel energy such as you have never known. Progress without unnecessary frustration or injury is possible because, as teachers of Chinese martial arts, we understand the underlying nature of the movements, their true purpose, and how to teach them systematically to beginner students.

How hard is kungfu to learn????

Its only as intense as you and your instructor wants it to be. Some martial arts school students I see hardly gets up into a sweat after every lesson while others come out with big bruises all around their fingers and limp away because their legs are too tired to walk properly.

However, I would suggest that you don't prepare for it except warm up a little before a lesson and remember to bring a water bottle and a towel to wipe sweat away with! There is no need whatsoever to be so nervous though, buddy! The Instructor will know you are a beginner, and you would start off with the basics. It may be a little painful or overwhelming at first (at least it was to me) but you will get through it and enjoy it.

Learning kung fu can take you a life time (literally) as there is so much to master and perfect and there is always people who can or who has the potential to beat you in a sparring match. If you've got grading at your school though, then a typical black belt(or whatever equivalent to that) will take you around 3-5 years? It depends on your ability though and the timeframe might be shorter or longer. I know some people who got their black belt in two and a half years time. Likewise, I also have a friend who is into her 7th year of taekwondo and is still a red belt (two grades away from black). However, if your future instructor tells you that you can master something under a year, then you may have landed yourself in a macdojo/mcdojang.

Ask your neighbours/friends/family and see if either of them do kung fu. Its nice to go to a gym and already know someone. If no one does, just walk around  the district and search the web.


Friday, 27 May 2011

How to learn martial Arts "Pressure Points"

One of my friend asked me what are pressure points?, That why i m writing these notes in case of some students have to learn them. and remember following techniques are very dangerous in applying. so be careful. 

Master Adeel


The traditional definition of a pressure point is a point that, when pressure is applied, produces crippling pain. This is learnt in a chinese martial art called Dim Mak based on accupuntual pressure points,but this art is very restricted and needs and understanding of chinese accupunturual points.Because of this I can only provide information on on fragile areas that we'll call 
vulnerable points. This is used to exploit a weakness or vulnerability in the human body to gain an advantage over an opponent. When using these pressure points one must be particularly careful as it is easy to kill someone accidentally, such as a friend or even an enemy. At that point, you enter the legal system, which generally does not know if you were really defending yourself or were actually the aggressor, and in some cases, that may not even matter. This leads to the point that, more important than the technique, is the mindset that you use in training, which is, of course a personal philosophical decision, but one which requires much thought and consideration of when what you practice must be put to use.

  1. Steps
    Very vulnerable areas
    : These are things everyone knows. The eyes, the testicles, the shins, etc. Use kicks that use the wide of your foot for the shins (if you know them) as they will make it harder to miss. Pull your foot back quickly when kicking to the groin so your foot won't be caught. The nose is easily broken with any strike.

    : Striking the flat of the forehead forces the head back with little resistance and will actually rock the brain within the skull, causing a concussion, or worse. Beginners should use the heel of their palm, rather than a fist. The same holds true to the back of the skull, just below the horizontal ridge. (The front has one too, above the flat.) The ridges are strong enough to be used as weapons in their own right, so avoid them.
    : You are looking for the collar bone, once located jab fingers behind bone and force to the ground (this needs to be performed within about 1/4 second in an actual assault). Some people drop like a rock while others just look at you like you're an idiot.
    : The easiest way to strike is probably with a knife hand (karate chop) turned up side down. A fist will have trouble fitting between the jaw and collarbone. You can also grab and squeeze the throat, and even give it a good yank to dislocate it and make breathing impossible. That is, of course, quite lethal and should be used only as a last resort when there is no other alternative.

    Under the jaw
    : Grab the neck on the front and reach under the jaw. Squeeze while pressing upward.

    TMJ: Support the head with one hand. With the other, follow the jawline to the highest point, just under the ear, where it meets the bump in your skull. Apply pressure inward and upward towards your ear. This is painful and makes speaking very difficult. If possible, a person will try to move away from it, hence the supporting hand. A single-knuckle punch (the second middle finger knuckle) to this spot could dislocate the jaw.

    Neck/sleeper: This is another more obvious pressure point but is very complicated in application. Get behind your assailant and wrap one arm around his neck, using your-radius (forearm bone), apply pressure to the external carotid artery (just to the side of the throat where you feel your pulse), slowly lowering them to the ground as you do so. You can increase the pressure by pulling your arm toward you with the other arm, and breathing in as you do, puffing up your chest. You can also place the hand of the squeezing arm in the elbow of the other arm and push the head/neck forward with that other arm. If they show no signs of weakening a sharp blow to the back of the head will disorientate them giving you a chance to run.
    To counter:
    Turn your head toward the elbow. The crevice will not press on your throat, and you will be able to breath. Circulation will still be a problem, so you must be quick. Grab the elbow with the closest hand and use the pressure point there. This will loosen their grip, but they will likely not give up. Combine pulling down with biting, foot-stomping, head-butting, eye-gouging, bringing your heel to their groin, shin-kicking, rib-elbowing (turn your hips), hair-pulling, and anything else you can come up with.
    : The crevice of your forearm is made entirely of muscles and tendons, so there's lots to work with. Grab the elbow with your thumb on top. Place your fingers on the back of the elbow for a good grip. squeeze the tip of your thumb toward the tips of your index or middle finger. You have to reinforce the thumb with your fingers, or you'll lose leverage. Press the thumb into the middle of the crevice, into either side of the crevice, or into the lump on the outer forearm formed when you make a fist (the brachioradialis). Experiment with this one. It can be rather tricky.
    Back of the hand
    : If you are grabbed, look directly at the hand of your assailant, and with either a regular or single-knuckle punch, strike the bones in the back of the hand. When practicing with a partner, give it one good shot, so you're not doing it all day. It only hurts for a minute.
    : The temples are the thinnest part of the cranium, so a good blow here (one-knuckle punch is ideal) can cause concussion, haemorrhaging, or even death. Do not actually strike a training partner with this.
    : Strike with a single-knuckle to the bone in the middle of the chest. It has no muscle and never much fat, so it is very vulnerable, and if struck properly can break in two down the middle. You can also strike the pectorals like this.

    : Look down at the foot, and using your heel, raise your knee as high as you can, and stomp on the arch of the foot as hard as you can. Because of its structure, it can easily be broken. Do not strike the toes. It will hurt, but you certainly won't break anything. Try each with light pressure and see which hurts more.

    Solar plexus
    : This is a bundle of nerves deep within the center of the abdomen, thought to be responsible for the physical feelings of deep emotions. By striking the area just below the sternum, where the ribs join on the front of the abdomen, you affect this bundle of nerves and cause the diaphragm (breathing muscle) to contract violently. This is "knocking the wind out" of someone. It's a very easy target. This can be countered by flexing the abs quickly at the time of impact, which is accomplished by breathing out or yelling (kiai).

    Love handles
    : Place your hand flat on the side of the abdomen, between the ribs and hips. Roll your fingers in toward your palms. Do not pinch. Pinching does next to nothing. This will work on any body type.

    : The ribs have very little covering, regardless of the body type, and only thin muscle between them. To break them, raise the arm to extend them, reducing their ability to reinforce each other, and step towards them when you strike. A palm-down knife hand works very well for this. Uppercuts also work for this as they seem to be designed to get right up under the arm, which is what you're aiming for. The rib areas protected by the muscles of the chest or back will not be easily broken, if at all. The lowest ribs connect only to the spine and so are especially vulnerable to breaking.

    : When this area is hit, the victim may be rendered unconscious, in some cases dead. This can be achieved using a "phoenix eye" punch which involves extending the index finger (Google it for an image). DO NO ATTEMPT TO USE THIS PUNCH UNLESS YOU ARE IN GENUINE DANGER!!!

    • Practice on yourself and with a friend. Everybody is different and has different levels of pain tolerance. Where one point may be on you could be an inch to the left on someone else. Some don't feel it at all. The more people you can practice with, the better you can be at approximating where a point should be and finding it when it's not there.
    • Tap out: When practicing with a friend, have them tap their thigh loudly to show that you are doing it properly and need to stop. However, they should only tap if it hurts. False confidence doesn't work in a fight.
    • Speed is key in a fight. If you're stuck fumbling with a pressure point, you're going to get knocked in the head. Practice, practice, practice.
    • Practice like you're in a real fight. Start slow, and get the placement down. Then, use all the intensity and speed that you can. You fight how you practice, so if you're practicing slow or sloppy, that's how you'll fight, and you probably won't last long.
    • Yell: In martial arts (Japanese, anyway), this is known as a kiai. It must come from your diaphragm, truly releasing your inner power. It gives you confidence and startles your attacker. By flexing your abs for it, it also protects your solar plexus. This kiai can be the difference between pressure points working or not.
    • If your focus is on speed, breathe normally (Bak Mei Kung Fu). YOUR ARMS CAN MOVE FASTER THAN YOUR LUNGS. While controlled breathing etc. may provide power, it sacrifices the speed of your arms.
    • Using pain pressure points is basically squeezing muscles. Feel around your own body and you can find lots more.
    • Always look directly at your target. If your eyes aren't there, your focus isn't.
    • Use the tips of your fingers and thumbs for techniques using those. This works like a needle, focusing all the force into the very tip of your finger/thumb, multiplying the pressure per square inch (psi). You wouldn't sew with the side of a needle, would you?
    • Move your weight toward the direction you're putting pressure. If you're pressing down, bend your knees. If you're pushing forward, step that way or turn your hips towards it.
    • When striking, twist your hips with it. This is a building block of martial arts. It starts your weight moving and is more often than not the source of power in techniques.
    • Recoil: When striking, once you've made contact, pull back quickly. It's almost like bouncing off of what you hit, except you want to recoil quickly enough to prevent the energy you're putting into the target from coming back into your body part. This keeps the energy in the target and causes more damage, especially in bones. This will increase the chance of breaking bones and reduce the chance of the enemy simply grabbing your foot or hand.
    • Keep your knees bent, at least a little, at all times. More so when doing techniques. This gives you stability and power. Locked knees must be unlocked for you to move, increasing your reaction time. If you're standing straight up, you're like an upright piece of wood, ready to be pushed right over.
    • These are martial arts techniques, so the best advice is to find a real teacher. Be careful not to join a McDojo, however. See How to: Choose a Martial Arts School for help on that.

      """ WARNINGS """

      • Be careful. Mistakes result in injury, death, or an upset friend, so always have a partner's permission. When striking in real world scenario, only resort to pressure points when everything else has failed and your life is in immediate threat (for example, the opponent has gun/knife). Hitting grandma on throat and killing her just because she spanked you won't stand in court as "self-defense". That is why it is better to learn martial art like Aikido rather than relying solely on "pressure points".
      • When using striking points, it should be obvious, but do not actually strike your partner, and do not aim directly at your partner. Go to the side of their body to minimize the chance of an accident. The back of the hand and the sternum should be okay, but head, groin, legs, and feet are off limits. Even experts make mistakes.
      • Beware of any pressure point advice that seems "magical". It is most certainly not. Though often based on acupuncture and it's effects, which seem to be gaining some respect in the medical community, they are certainly not effective or quick enough for a fight. The goal of using pressure points in self defence is an immediate result, and it's a simple fact of anatomic physiology that striking someone's arm in a certain way will not stop their heart.
      • Beware of your opponent trying to counter you in certain moves such as the sleeper. Their hands and legs are all free and can be used as weapons or for grabbing you back.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

How to Start learning Martial Arts....

Have you ever watched those amazing martial arts action films and thought, "What if I could do that?"? Well, anybody who is dedicated to changing their life around is able to do this. There are few life changing paths to take that will help you become a martial artist.

Great Master Adeel
Decide on a martial arts style.
You might choose a hard style, such as Muay Thai (Thailand) or Western Boxing, a semi-hard style such as Tae Kwon Do or Hapkido (Korea), a soft style traditional art, such as Aikido (Japan) or one of the many Kung Fu styles (China), or a grappling/ground fighting art, such as Jiu Jitsu (Brazil/ Japan) and Western Martial Arts (Europe). Do you want to compete one-on-one in the ring with opponents who use the same style as you, or study the traditions of a particular culture's martial art, or learn to defend yourself against real-life attackers on the street? The training methods are vastly different, and most martial arts schools focus on one aspect. Any school that purpose to make you the king of the ring plus a fully effective battleground warrior plus healthy and fit plus part of a cultural heritage is heading for "Jack of all trades and master of none" territory.

Recognize your physical limitations

               If you are older or not very acrobatic, Wushu (China) probably isn't for you, but Tai Chi (China) might suit you nicely. Furthermore, recognize that striking martial arts like Karate or TaeKwonDo may or may not be well-suited for smaller physiques. The grappling styles of Judo, Aikido, or Jiu-Jutsu, while being close-combat styled martial arts, emphasize technique and leverage and therefore become more readily useful as you progress. Likewise the combative Chinese styles are all about technique and are less dependent on your being a particular height or weight to succeed.

Consider your cultural interests.
                 If you have a respect for or interest in a certain culture, learning more through one of their martial arts can be a great experience. If that is part of your goal, choose a school taught by a native of that culture, or someone who trained directly under someone of that culture.

3rd-Dan Anjum Iqbal
Consider the effectiveness of the martial art as well.                   
                 For example, a modern martial art such as Krav Maga (Israeli), reconstructed Western Martial Arts such as ARMA or the AES (European) or classes led by experienced soldiers or police officers will place a greater emphasis on the "martial" aspect rather than the "art." This is not to say that traditional Asian arts are less important; It may take longer to learn basic self defense this way as many Eastern arts are about developing more than just basic self-defense skills. If you are willing to spend the time to fully train in many different styles you will ultimately learn to defend yourself much better than if you train at a mixed martial art school. But if your sole concern is martial efficacy and the ability to defend yourself 'on the street', the physical and mental effort required to develop those skills have to be weighed up against the effort required to purchase a can of Mace or become proficient with a small, legally obtained, manageable weapon...

 Sit in as a polite observer before joining a class, if you wish, although for some it is better to just jump straight in there, choose what works best for you.