Wednesday, 25 August 2010


Loads to write about but no time to do it! :=(

Friday, 13 August 2010

More classes

It's been a busy week here!

Went to the women's krav class last night. First off, it was GREAT to see big Lee back for the first time since his knee surgery. On the downside, he made us work hard lol.

We started off with some skipping just to warm us through. I *hate* skipping in bare feet as I always always manage to skiff ma tootsies with the rope at least once. It really stings with the plastic ropes as well :=) After some stretching and mobility we all grabbed a kettlebell and worked sets of 30 secs swings and 30 secs bodyweight squats. We then alternated swings and star jumps, then finished off with 20 secs and 20 secs rest of swings. Can't remember how many sets we did in total, so not entirely surely of the total work time.

Then we hit the floor for some planks and some leg raises. 3 sets of each, 20 secs each. Quick water break then we broke out the pads for some padwork.

Somewhere along the line in the warmup UTP 'pinged' her shoulder. This meant we needed to adapt the padwork slightly, so that she only held one pad for me instead of two. I took it nice and gentle as well, as she was using her weaker left hand. We also made sure we swapped holding and hitting really regularly. After a while though her other shoulder starting tensing up, so Lee suggested she sit out for a bit for a rest while I battered the heavy bag instead! A couple of the other girls then invited to join them so UTP and I moseyed on over. UTP made a good cheerleader for the three of us! We hit some good combos, starting with palm strikes then adding elbows, knees and kicks each time.

Another quick water break, and the gang voted to run through the Heave 6 stick drill again. UP's shoulder was feeling a bit better so she was up for joining in again. We managed to get quite a good rhythm going and this week nobody got clonked on the knuckles (or any where else!) which was a definite plus point! We still had a bit of flailing going on, esp when Lee suggested we try moving around as well. I *used* to be able to move and still do the Heaven drill but last night I could clearly only manage to concentrate EITHER on my hands OR my feet, but not both lololol.

Weather happened during the class. We had some torrential rain which really hammered on the roof for a while. It had eased by going home time, but I gave UTP a lift up the road anyway as she had a ways to go.

Good class though and glad to get home for my tea - was starving!

Thursday, 12 August 2010

This week's classes

I have to confess that I passed on Sunday Service this week. They'd relocated to Portobello Beach for the day, which would have been nice since the sun was shining. However after 6 hours of kung fu training the day before, I decided to stay in bed instead!

Chi kung and kung fu class.

In chi kung we focused on fine-tuning 'skills' rather than techniques. Nice relaxing class that set us all up nicely for kung fu lol.

In kung fu class, we were again working on refining our skills. It pretty much picked up on a lot of the stuff we covered on the Saturday, with lots of sparring / fighting and the emphasis on movement.

I'm actually not that great at the 'movement' bit! Somewhere along the line I either:

Acquired someone else's feet
Or forgot how to get the messages to move from my brain to my feet!!

Basically I'm inclined to 'plant' myself and stand my ground, rather than to move. Also I've noticed myself that my movement is generally linear rather than a mixture of linear and circular. I'm certainly curious where these habits have come from, and I do wonder if there's an element of 'laziness' in there somewhere. I'm sure I'll learn to move in time. Getting thumped is generally a good lesson!

Spin class at work. Nice hard class, with the usual mixture of flats, hills and sprints. Enjoyed it a lot.

Thought of going to krav or kung fu at night, but actually had too many exciting houseworky things to do. Instead, I got my 100 reps in at home like this:

100 kettlebell swings
30 single kettlebell presses (left and right)
kung fu supplementary exercises 1, 2 and 3 - 3 sets, 5 reps each

Spin class at work. This was quite a challenging class, with a fair number of hill climbs and lots of fast standing flats. Was particularly sweaty at the end lol.

Chi kung and kung fu class at night.

There were a couple of new people in for chi kung plus a couple of current students that I hadn't met before. Sifu focused on some basic techniques and kept the class fairly short. I'd had quite an upset stomach before training, and I found that the class actually helped settle it a bit.

There were only 3 of us for kung fu (the earlier class was actually quite busy) so we revised some of the stuff from the seminar then moved on to some weapons 'play'. Sifu was making the point that kung fu is 'principles' based so we can used the same basics techniques no matter if we are empty handed or if we have a weapon.

Fun class, and a bit different.

Spin class first thing. Kept it nice and light for a wee change.

Krav class tonight.

Kung fu seminar

Last Saturday Sifu ran a free seminar for current students covering most of the basics.

It was brilliant! We had a lot of fun covering things like stances and footwork, strikes and defences with plenty time for solo and partner practice. It was a great opportunity to meet more students and to really nail some of the basic stuff.

We actually started off the day by learning to get comfortable with being hit! Sifu's argument is that students can spend a lot of time worrying about getting hit with the result that they tense up and it actually hurts more than if they relax and go with the blow. So our first practice was around learning to relax and move. We started off with very light touches, and gradually the pressure was increased until our partners were delivering stronger blows. No-one was harmed in the making of this practice!

The rest of the seminar really built around these skills. I really enjoyed the challenge of the sparring / fighting - well, right up until Sifu picked me as a partner and demonstrated his skills, speed and efficiency! I think I managed to catch him maybe twice, both times more by chance than skill lol. I still have the bruises though.

Sifu also showed us some wicked tough supplementary exercises which I've been enjoying trying out at home. They are *hard*!

Basically the time just flew by and I couldn't believe it when our 6 hours were up. I'm really looking forward to the next session.

Friday, 6 August 2010

krav for girls

Last night was the first time I've been at the women's Thursday class for a good long while.

We started off with a circuit style warmup:

Inverted kettlebell rows
Double / single arm kettlebell swings
Kettlebell squats
Single kettlebell lunges
Jab-cross on the heavy bag
Star jumps
Ab roller
Single kettlebell press

All for a minute each

Then we moved onto the 'meat' of the class. We started off with some double stick drills:
high one cut, low two cut - right and left, just to get the feel of the movement before moving onto a Heaven 6 count.

I learned the Heaven / Heaven & Earth 6 count drill a few years ago, although I haven't practiced it for a while now. It took me a long time to learn! It was obviously new to a few people last night. Most people were fine with the right hand side but not so good returning with the left. It just takes time to learn though.

UTP caught me an excellent crack on the knuckles at one point - it wouldn't be stick work without at least one good knuckle rap lol.

There was a point to the stick work though. It was about learning the body movement for our next combative drill. Basically we were defending a static knife threat to the chest / throat. The attacker had the knife in their right hand and we used our left to drive the knife across our body and thus offline. By locking out the elbow and stepping forward onto the left, we were taking the attacker off balance and preventing them returning the knife. Obviously we followed up with a strike or several to the face!

We took turns drilling this and then finished up for the evening.

I had a very good night's sleep last night!!


This has been my first week of 'proper' training in a good while, so I'm pretty well fried today!

Went to spin class on Wednesday which was ok, legs weren't too bad at all. Thought about hitting the kettlebells again at night, but after Tuesda's session decided to lay off lol. Did spin again yesterday morning (Thursday) and it was quite a toughie - it pretty much flattened me for the rest of the day.

Finished off with krav class at night which luckily wasn't quite as tough as it might have been!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Kung fu update

We're all back on with the kung fu.

Although my instructor has decided not to teach any more, he arranged for me to transfer to the senior instructor's class. Of course it's on a different night, so I'm having to juggle my week around a bit, but that's ok.

I went along for the first time a couple of weeks back and it was great! I'd been training one-on-one with sifu for so long that I'd forgotten how much fun it is to train with other students. The material was different for both chi kung and kung fu - more advanced, I think - but a new and good challenge. Also training with more senior and experienced students is always an advantage.

The senior sifu offers more classes so I will get to train more frequently as well. Classes are not running this week, as sifu is away on holiday. However he has invited me a day long seminar this Saturday which should cover all the basics that I need. I'm really looking forward to this!

So, whilst I'm sorry not to be training with my original instructor any more, things might just have worked out ok.

And we're back!

I decided to take a break from blogging for a couple of weeks since I was on holiday. Also, there wasn't much to write about really, as I haven't been training that much recently. Am back in harness this week though!

Things I have done this week

Sunday - Sunday Service in the Meadows. Sunday Service is a bit of fun - a bunch of us turn up at a pre-arranged time and generally run around playing with kettlebells, ropes, tyres etc. Great fun and a brilliant workout. It's also free!

Monday - toddled off to krav maga class. You can tell it's holiday time - a grand total of 3 students turned up .... Not that I can say anything really, as I haven't been to krav in quite a few weeks now. I was definitely out of sorts stamina-wise, esp when it came to running. Need to up my game in that respect. Otherwise we worked on defending against multiple attackers, which was fun.

Tuesday - first spin class in about 4-6 weeks. Again you could tell it was holiday time - a grand total of 2 of us for this class! Went better than I thought it might - my legs didn't protest quite as much as I thought they might (they're also not bad at all this morning!) When I got home, I chose to totally *fry* myself with some kettlebell stuff. Previously I've tended to train kettlebells for reps; this time I trained for time. And it was hard!

8kg for 3 mins
12kg for 2 mins
16kg for 1 min
20kg for 30 secs

8kg for 3 mins
12kg for 2 mins
16kg for 1 min

I added in some barbell chest presses and bicep curls just for fun, although my forearms weren't really laughing by this point.

Then I finished off with 100+ reps bodyweight stuff:

50 x squats
50 x crunches
25 x star jumps
25 x pressups

Then I went and lay in a corner for a while!!

Today - spin class at lunchtime and prob some more kettlebells tonight.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Normal service ....

.... will be resumed shortly.

I have been on a much-needed holiday.