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Judo – The Gentle Way

Martial art uniforms are basically the same, the same white canvas. Regardless of the type of martial art, whether karate or judo or even tae kwon do, they all use the same uniform.
Judo is a highly specialized form of unarmed self-defense. It is a milder form of jujitsu, a rather violent type of martial combat from which it evolved. The origin of jujitsu is lost in history. Old Japanese chronicles record the development of this skill by Chinese monks living in the twelfth century. Because their religion forbade the use of arms, they devised a method of protecting themselves against personal attack without the use of weapons.
The art of jujitsu was introduced into Japan in the latter part of the twelfth century where it became an important form of fighting among the Samurai warriors. With the breakup of the feudal regime and the emergence of feudal Japan, the systems of self-defense that continued to be taught were many and varied, with no standards of regulations.
In 1882 Professor Jigoro Kano established in Tokyo a school called Kodokan and named his sport “ju-do” or “gentle way.” He laid great stress on the “do” of judo, which means a way or concept of life. He believed that considerable mental as well as physical training could be accomplished, since the competitors had always to be on the alert to discover the weak points of their opponents and were taught to exercise perseverance and a respect for others.
Japanese immigrants introduced judo to the United States. A great thrust was given to its development in the year 1904 when a Mr. Yamashita of the Kodokan visited the United States. He gave public demonstrations and taught the sport, having as on of his students President Theodore Roosevelt.
In 1932 a visit by Professor Kano to the United States resulted in the organization of several yudanshakais (associations). In 1952 Judo was accepted as a sport by the Amateur Athletic Union of the United States. The first national championships were held at San Jose State College in California.
Awards for efficiency are given as follows: as the judoka progresses from the sixth kyu (rank) up through the first kyu, he is allowed to wear belts of different colors to denote his degree of accomplishment. The sixth through fourth kyu students wear white belts, and the third through first kyu students wear brown belts.
With further training the student may qualify for shodan or first-degree black belt. In this black belt division there are ten degrees.…

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Getting Your Head in the Game – Psychology and MMA Conditioning

While getting your body into peak condition is essential for competing in mixed martial arts, there’s a lot more to MMA conditioning than just the physical side.
Like any other sport, the formula to success in mixed martial arts also has a mental component. If you check out the more cutting edge Web sites about ultimate fighting, you’ll see that an increasing amount of attention is being paid to the psychological aspect of the game.
The reason behind this shift in focus is simple: while just about everyone has access to the physical training equipment and services needed to compete in this dynamic sport, not everyone can find someone who can teach them the mental aspect of the game. Those that can become champions, those that don’t become the guys who tap out.
Royce Gracie’s Example
If you keep up with UFC events, you’ll see that the guys who win fights aren’t always the biggest, toughest guys in the sport. Royce Gracie is a fantastic example of this. Gracie is a legendary MMA fighter, but he is by far not a large person. Gracie’s success in UFC and other events comes from the mental preparation that is part of his MMA conditioning.
Gracie understands that to win matches, you have to understand yourself and your opponent. This psychological aspect of MMA is getting more and more press throughout the mainstream and online media.
Know Yourself and Your Opponent
By understanding yourself, you can break bad habits that impede your success in this dynamic sport. You can learn to use your strength, technical skills, and observations about your opponent seamlessly as part of a unified fighting plan.
Understanding your opponent is a part of MMA conditioning as important, if not more important, than any physical exercise. By learning how to quickly assess your opponent — his strengths, his weaknesses, his emotional and intellectual vulnerabilities, you can make use of this knowledge to negate any advantage he may have over you in terms of strength or skill.
Famed Chinese General Sun Tzu once said, “If your opponent is angry, annoy him.” This is an example of the use of psychology to win in combat. By being able to quickly draw a bead upon an opponent’s emotional state, can use your understanding of psychology to goad him, or to lull him into a false sense of security.
The great boxer Muhammad Ali was a master of using psychological warfare to “psych” out opponents.
MMA Conditioning Advice
There are some impressive sports psychology experts who are applying their knowledge to in MMA conditioning. Tapping into their knowledge will, without doubt, deliver a winning edge.…

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Top Tips For Faster Punches

Looking back at the most famous martial arts masters one thing that clearly stands out as being the most impressive is the speed of their punches. It is unlikely you have ever seen any current mixed martial artists competing in the UFC that have any where near the punching speed. Some may argue that delivering combos of many rapid punches doesn’t do enough damage as they may not all be that devastating. However being able to punch faster than your opponent can mean that they never have the chance to strike back. Sooner or later you will deliver a knockout blow and if they canA�t strike you can never get injured or risk losing.
So how to build faster punches? Building faster punches mainly relies on training to punch. Adding resistance to your punch training will dramatically add to your speed. However remember you are going for agile and fast not big an bulky which can slow you down. So stick to resistance that allows you to complete 8-12 reps per set.
What types of exercise and resistance should you use? Begin by sparring and doing punching drills with heavy gloves instead of UFC type gloves as this will work your shoulders more. If you are set on improving your punching speed then add an additional workout session to your training routine just for punches and incorporate it 4 times per week. It should be at least 30 minutes long. 60 minutes is better.
If you can also practice punching underwater in the swimming pool. This offers light resistance and also improves your balance while punching. When in the gym use the cable machines to perform punches. Make sure to incorporate exercises for all types of punches. At home you can practice punching with dumbbells to improve speed or use resistance cords. Resistance cords are perfect if you have to travel and are on the road and make sure you can keep up with your mixed  martial arts training no matter where you are.…

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MMA Here to Stay!

Mixed martial arts is a sport in a league of its own. What I really love about MMA is the fact that “everything counts”, you can grapple, punch, clinch, take people down and throw people around. I remember back in the day when I used to wrestle, whenever I lost I would rationalize that “If it was a real fight I could have beaten that guy up”.
None of that in MMA, YOU get to decide where you want to take the fight and what your game plan is, its just a matter of which guy has the strongest will and skill set. As the saying about MMA goes “As real as it gets”, there is no room for taking a victim role here and find excuses, if you lost you should have trained harder.
I think over the next 10 years we will see a new breed of MMA fighters, these are going to be so well rounded that it is scary. They will have actually trained for the sport of MMA for 10 years+ and won’t just be a wrestler, boxer, karate ka, bjj or thai boxer who made the switch over to MMA.
I think the closest we can come to see how MMA fighters are going to be in 10 years is to take a look at GSP. The French Canadian can out wrestle most base wrestlers in the UFC and that’s even without having wrestled through his teenage years.
His striking his solid (Even though he doesn’t like to stand up that much anymore) and his jiu jitsu is black belt level, a guy like that is really scary since you have no idea where to take the fight. Even though his stand up is not the same level as some of the world class strikers like Anderson Silva, his wrestling and take downs will nullify a lot of those world class striker’s game as they will constantly have to wary of the take down.
MMA has been my passion for over 10 years now and the development I have seen has just been crazy, you can get all sorts of new training gear, MMA clothing, special MMA gloves and so on. It just warms my heart to see this development, so all of us in the MMA community let’s stay united and represent the sport we love in the best way possible and maybe, just maybe, break down some of those stereotypical pictures of MMA in the media!…

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Simplify Your Arts And Crafts Projects And Possibilities

Perhaps you have a nice art project in mind that you would enjoy doing? Do you need help coming up with a really great idea? Anybody can enjoy arts and crafts, so use the great tips in the following article to show you how.

Do you need new materials for your projects? Many online sites offer great prices on a huge selection of craft supplies. Check on Google to find great deals. Some of these online shops offer free shipping, which helps you save more money.

If you are doing arts and crafts that have the potential to create a mess, use old newspaper on any surfaces to avoid any damage. The newspaper can be balled up and thrown away when the project is done.

Remember that kids will likely make messes when doing arts and crafts. If that is a source of stress, you can cover your work surface with newspaper or butcher paper to catch the mess. Sometimes, the mess can be diverted however, such as when washable materials are used.

When you can’t afford the supplies locally, try a thrift shop. Goodwill and similar shops have great things for creative artists. You have to check regularly, because the stock moves quickly.

Beadaholique is great for all shoppers wanting custom jewelry. Various beads, chains and other supplies are readily available. A lot of fashions today include the addition of costume jewelry. If you are interested in designing your own piece, there is a lot of money to be saved, as well as a new addition to go with your wardrobe.

If you want to find inexpensive materials to make crafts with, Etsy is one of the best Internet sites out there. This site sells items from individuals. You can buy supplies here, and you can sell your creations, too. It is the perfect site for peddling your creations.

Organize your craft supplies. There are lots of ways to store them, so find something that works best for you. If you have your supplies organized, it will be much easier to find what you need for your projects. You will also know what supplies you have, or need.

To get that cloudy look out of your mosaic once the mortar has dried, spray some glass cleaner onto a rag and wipe the mosaic clean. Mortar powder is difficult to get rid of in other ways, nor do you want the powder messing up any final touches.

Arts and crafts can be fun for kids of any age. If there is a bunch of children in your midst, think of a project that everyone can enjoy. If you are out of ideas, ask a friend or check online for something they’ll all like.

People who get into arts and crafts can start making their own presents instead of buying them. Create personal gifts throughout the year and give them away during the holidays. Many people like homemade gifts, rather than gifts bought from the store.

Now you can see why people all over the world love arts and crafts projects. All you need is some creativity to make something useful. Use the great craft tips you got in this article to help build something special that people will notice.…

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Street Fighting Moves – Do You Know the 2 Mindsets For Women’s Self Defense and For Middle-Aged Men?

Do you think that the approach to self defense and self protection is the same for women and middle-aged men? In this article, you will discover that there are 2 important mindsets that are vital for effective self defense for the woman as well as for the middle-aged man, 50 and over.
When you walk into the typical strip-mall martial arts dojo to observe a lesson, what is it that you typically see? You usually see, young people, say between the ages of 18 and 35, predominantly and on the average (with the exception of course of the teacher who he himself may be in his 40’s or 50’s) more males than female. You will likely see a lot of showing off of high and spectacular kicks by the senior students. This is the typical traditional martial arts scenario.
What I want to talk about now is what sort of reality-based, proven, easy and tested method can the average woman and/or middle-aged man utilize for effective self defense and self protection.
Essentially there are 2 mindsets that in particular the average woman and middle-aged man must adopt because in both of these cases it will almost always involve a bigger and stronger man attacking you.
The 2 Mindsets for Women’s Self Defense and Self Defense for the Middle-Aged Man
Mindset #1 – Put Situational Awareness and Distance Awareness In The Forefront of Your Personal Safety – You be always be in the moment and notice your environment. Notice suspicious situations and suspicious characters. Once you put on alert your situational awareness, you must know be aware of the proximity of the perceived danger is from you. If you can see danger coming before it hits you, you can either avoid it or more effectively deal with it.
Mindset #2 – Be Not Afraid To Strike First With The Most Destructive Blow Available – The preemptive strike or as some may like to say “the sucker punch” can be the difference between your survival or your demise. When danger approaches, strike first, hard and without hesitation with the most destructive blow available. Let me interject here that one of the easiest to execute and the most destructive first strike blows is the head-butt. The smallest woman or middle-aged man can head-butt an aggressor by surprise and easily cave his nose bone in and knock him out. (Be sure to strike not with the eyebrows or the mid-forehead but with the area high on the forehead, just about where the hairline meets the forehead which is the hardest part of your head.)…

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Analysis of Shaolin Chin Na: Instructor’s Manual for All Martial Styles by Dr Yang, Jwing-Ming

This book by Dr. Yang, Jwing-Ming is a text book full of Shaolin Chin Na principles and techniques. For those not familiar with Chin Na, it is one of the four major fighting categories in Chinese martial arts. The four categories are kicking, striking, wrestling, and seize-controlling. Chin Na can be called the art of seize and control, and it consists of various joint locking techniques, as well as different grabbing, pressing, and striking.
Just like joint locks are only a portion of the Hapkido curriculum I teach, Chin Na is only a portion of Chinese arts. With that said, the concepts and techniques can be learned and incorporated into other styles, especially those that are already familiar with locking techniques such as practitioners of Hapkido, Aikido, Jujitsu, and so forth. Therefore, this book can benefit many martial artists, not just those who study Chinese arts. If your style does not include locking type techniques, Chin Na resources, including this book, can assist you in rounding out your program.
After a short Foreword and two short Prefaces (original and new one for second edition), there is a general introduction to the concepts and the basic principles. Next comes a chapter that focuses on fundamental training. A variety of exercises are illustrated and explained that will enable a practitioner to better perform the techniques taught in the manual.
The next few chapters are divided by the type of Chin Na explained in them. They consist of Finger; Wrist; Elbow; Shoulder, Neck and Waist, Leg; Muscle Grabbing; Cavity Press; and then a short chapter on using Chin Na in a fight, and another on the treatment of injuries. The book then concludes with a two-paragraph conclusion and several appendixes.
There are numerous techniques in this book (The back cover says over 150), and each one has a description of how to do the technique, with accompanying photographs, the principle behind the technique pointed out, and a description with photos of an escape and counter to the technique. I especially liked that these escapes and counters were included. I felt these added much value to the collection of information, especially as an instructor resource. The pictures are black and white, and sometimes a little difficult to fully discern what is being done. If you are apt at joint locking techniques, you can most likely figure it out. However, if you are a novice, you might have a little trouble with some of them. To remedy this, you could pick up Dr. Yang’s DVDs to see the techniques performed. In fact, I’d encourage anyone to complete their Chin Na resource library by including both the books and DVDs Dr. Yang has put out. Using them together make for a much better learning experience.
The chapter on using Chin Na in a fight is pretty short. There are two pages of good concepts, and then a small sampling of concepts and techniques illustrated with photographs. Dr. Yang admits this is just a tiny sample, but points out that he included more in his book “Comprehensive Applications of Shaolin Chin Na.” I have not read that book yet, but it is on my list. Like the applications chapter, the treatment of injuries chapter is also short. You won’t be a competent healer from this chapter, but it gives some general information and hopefully peaks your interest to further your study in the healing arts as well as the fighting arts. They go hand in hand.
Overall, this is an exceptional manual to help a person learn Chin Na, and I recommend it highly, as I do all of Dr. Yang’s cannon of Chin Na resources.…

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Brazilian Jiujitsu – The Thinking Man’s Martial Art

This is a very important question I want you to ask yourself.
When you’re training and sparring, what’s going on in the back of your mind?
I mean, more than just what you’re thinking, how are you thinking about it?
Are you telling yourself that you’re just trying to survive?
Are you telling yourself to force through your techniques because you’re not sure about them?
These two examples will tell you a lot about flaws in your approach.
Whatever it is you’re thinking, it’s a great idea to be aware of it and write it down after your training.
This is one of the fastest ways that you can get out of whatever problems you have in your training.
For example, let’s say you keep getting caught in a certain submission and can’t figure out what you’re doing wrong or what to do to counter or escape.
I can guarantee you that if you’re telling yourself, “I always get stuck here.” or “what am I doing wrong?” then you will keep doing that same thing and repeating the same pattern and getting the same results.
By becoming aware of this and writing it down you can start to get out of that habit and answer the question.
If you always get caught in a certain submission and say I always get stuck here, then obviously the next step is to find out why and what you should be doing to prevent or counter it.
If you find yourself repeatedly asking what you are doing wrong, then you are uncertain about something that you are doing before getting caught and need to figure out what that is.
Asking your instructor or training partner for help here in finding the solution is very useful.
You’ll also want to change what you are saying to yourself.
Again with the two above examples, if you’re “always getting stuck” or asking “what are you doing wrong?” Then you need to replace those with “I’ll never get stuck here again” or “what am I going to do instead?”
By finding out what you are doing wrong and replacing that with what you should be doing and replacing what you’re saying to yourself in those moments, you’ll be changing your thinking and actions and getting new results instead.
This should make it clear enough that there is a reason why Jiujitsu is called the thinking man’s martial art.…

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Modern Tai Chi

In traditions past, tai chi was handed down by Master to student over decades of rigorous study and the “secrets” or key principles were often not taught or held back until the Master was close to passing to protect the family secrets. There are schools in existence today where you train everyday for a year before the Master will even speak to you but those schools are becoming fewer and fewer.
In today’s school’s, tradition still exists to varying degrees, the western student sets goals and wants clear knowledge on how to achieve them. If one school or Master Instructor won’t teach you what you want to know then you can go to another or even go to the internet and learn from tai chi online classes via downloadable videos to get what you want.
Online training is great for those who have a certain level of discipline and want to move at their own pace. You can also repeat the same lesson over and over again until you get it. You can move on to the next set of exercises or forms when you get bored or need some variety or another point of view.
Today’s tai chi is not your mother or your grandmother’s tai chi. It has evolved to new dimensions that Master’s of the art would have cringed at even ten years ago but the information age is here and people want to know who, what, where, when, why and how about everything. Welcome to the new and modern world of tai chi online.…

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What Are We Doing to Arts Education?

“The Arts” and “Culture”. These are two terms that are thrown around in today’s society, but what have they really come to mean? Have what were once profound and highly developed concepts recently been pushed towards obsolete, or worse, a mere tool for other endeavors?
For previous magnificent cultures, such as the Egyptians, Greeks or Italian Renaissance, the arts have been so critical as to even define the society’s mark on history. But today, much of our children’s education of the Arts has turned into merely a support structure for other subjects, namely Math, History, Science, and English. The repeated standardized testing and scoring of our children to determine their aptitude for any given subject has proved that involvement of the arts will help boost test scores and ultimately improve knowledge retention. However, does this mean that the Arts should be heavily utilized as a method to enhance one’s Math understanding? Surely visual elements will assist most thinkers to conceptualize things like geography, world history, or biology, as we know from the prevalent use of maps and images in text books, but to understand the full purpose and potential of Art requires a deeper and more innate appreciation for the term and its many forms.
More to the point, Art does not have to improve a child’s reading level to prove its intrinsic value in our society.
A foundation of Arts education serves a critical need for young ladies and gentlemen by developing appreciation of sculpture, music, paintings, drama and dance. People who have attempted projects in these fields can then enjoy them more fully, knowing the level of difficulty to develop mastery of the crafts. Young people can gain self esteem, fine motor skills, and an expressive voice, as well as build career enhancing traits like patience, creative problem solving, and good craftsmanship. The arts are also used for community building and services, challenging social norms and providing methods for community reflection and growth. To not afford students these tools would significantly limit a society’s growth potential.
In summary, the Arts should not be viewed as stepping stone for generating higher level reading, but instead carry their own value and merit based solely on the innate human need for beauty, expression, and creativity.…