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Article 2) Fitness And The Martial Arts

During the Guro Dan seminar at Exeter this year (2007), Guro mentioned the need for physical conditioning and went on to state that Bruce Lee placed approximately 60% of his training on conditioning.
Guro then said that some of today's best Martial Artists place an even higher percentage on physical conditioning.

We will look at fitness in greater detail later, but for now, here are some main components of fitness relating to the Arts.

  •  Body Composition
  •  Nutrition
  •  Muscular & Aerobic Endurance
  •  Strength
  •  Speed
  •  Flexibility
  •  Mental Well Being
  •  Rest

This list covers a very wide spectrum and we should strive to work all areas. Some types of fitness training may be classed as 'sport specific'. This basically means that an individual will maintain a level of fitness specific to the sport or activity they have chosen. For example, a long distance runner may not be able to swim very far and vice versa. For us, fitness for kickboxing is very different to that of grappling.

However, the above components cross over most Martial Art systems and so it is fair to say that in order to ask the very best of ourselves in all areas, we need to be in a conditioned state to be able to perform in those areas.

The results of physical fitness are only positive, not to mention the positive impact it will have on our health.

The last component from the list is of course, rest. Overtraining will reduce the immune system and also increase risk of injury. I will refer to Terry Barnett's excellent write up on his web site in March, titled 'Burn Out'.

Balance is the key. Train hard, train clever, but most importantly stay safe and enjoy what you are doing.

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•  Respect
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•  Muscular Endurance
•  Aerobic Fitness
•  Fitness & the Martial Arts
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