Saturday Bo Staff and Sriking…High Box with Staff makes my brain feel stupid, My flow has improved

2.5 hours of training today. We worked on bo staff, and striking (JKD). Today was the first day after Muay Thai camp where my body felt like normal. Even felt good. I went hard, and got a good workout with my husband and partner feeding me.

We started out with staff class. We had some visitors down from Maryland, and it was cool to have new people in the class. They have come down once before and wanted to train with us again.

Staff Training:

We started off with abecedario with staff. Which while a fundamental move with sticks changing staves makes the movement slightly different.

Abecedario = High forehand, low back hand, high back hand

Then we worked on abecedario with redondo. A redondo is a circular forehand strike from around your head. Not to be confused with an ordabise which is a circular back hand around your head.

Redondo with Abecedario = Circular forehand strike high, circular for hand strike low, circular forehand strike high, low back hand strike, high back hand strike.

In preparation for the high box, we did a roof to shield drill that required the feeder to feed a #15 strike that you roof, then a #15 strike to a shield.

And finally for staff training we did high box with staves. Now this for some reason was more difficult for my brain parts. I can do a high box with sticks, with swords, with espada y daga (sword and knife), but with staff you have to hold with both hands and your body movement is different. Which makes for the perfect storm for Kali brain issues. Which hand.

Staff High Box – #15 strike from opponent, you roof block, opponent returns a #1 strike, you inside deflect and return a #2 strike. The opponent shields the #2, and then you start the circuit over by feeding a #15 to your opponent.

We started to work on middle box/standard but we ran out of time.

I love Kali and the staff class. I love how it stretches my brain muscles and makes me think. Now my brain is dead.

This video is of us working on the Redondo with Abecedario.

Striking (JKD):

We worked on combos. This is were I was able to work on flow, timing, and speed. My partner told me he could see a difference between when I left for Muay Thai camp, and now. He said I flow better, my speed, form and focus are much better. I could not ask for more from Thai camp. I wanted to learn all I could, and to increase my skill set. It seems I have. Yay!

Khun Kru Krysta broke the training down to two sets of combos. First where the feeder feeds, a jab and a right straight cross/cross. The second where the feeder feeds a jab, and a wide cross. For the wide cross think John Wayne punch. Or old western bar fight punch.

First combo –

  1. Feeder feeds Jab
  2. You catch
  3. Feeder feeds straight cross
  4. You parry while doing a simultaneous left kick to inside of leg
  5. You return a cross
  6. You return an upper cut
  7. You return a cross
  8. You return Left torso kick/round house

Second combo –

  1. Feeder feeds Jab
  2. You catch
  3. Feeder feeds straight cross
  4. You split the cross, slide in with a cross to the body
  5. You follow with a hook
  6. You return a cross
  7. Right kick/round house

Third combo-

  1. Feeder feeds Jab
  2. You catch Jab
  3. Feeder feeds a wide cross
  4. You shoulder/bicep stop the cross
  5. You return a cross
  6. You return a hook
  7. You return a cross
  8. You return a right torso kick/round house

Fourth combo-

  1. Feeder feeds Jab
  2. You catch Jab
  3. Feeder feeds a wide cross
  4. You bob and weave
  5. You return a body cross
  6. You return a hook
  7. You return a cross
  8. You return right long leaning knee
  9. You return right torso kick/round house

These were great combos. I loved feeling like I was back into my groove. I liked feeling like I had more confidence, and I love just working on my technique, flow, timing, and target acquisition.

This video is of us working on the third combo, or the stop the shoulder or bicep combo.

I hope you are all having a great weekend. I certainly am. Thanks for reading, let me know if you have any questions. Keeping working to be the best you that you can be. Much respect to you all.

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Thursday Muay Thai and Kali…5 days and my hip flexors are sore, Disarms

2 hours of Muay Thai and Kali. This blog entry is going to be short and sweet. I am tired, and need to get to bed. Its been 5 days and my hip flexors are still sore. I thought I was weird and that my body was just being a pain in my tushy… But apparently it is normal. This happens when you work out for almost a week straight every day for almost 8 hours a day. I know each persons body is different, but I should not get down on myself and my body for doing what it needs to do to repair.

Muay Thai

We worked on the same things in Muay Thai that we did last Tuesday. Distance management and entries, from knees and kicks. To getting out of the pocket, evasions and guarding/shielding kicks.

Kali – Disarms

In Kali we worked on the same things we did on Tuesday as well.

Snakes, and Vines, and disarms. It is good to keep in mind that disarms are a sometimes happen thing, they don’t often happen and according to some world class martial art practitioner like Guru Dan Inosanto they tend to happen by accident.

So relying on a disarm you hope to achieve is selling yourself short. Learn lots of tools, work with the ones that fit your style, that you like, and use those. I think that if you try to learn them all you will find what works best for you. When you do and you use them, you will become a much better martial artist.

Today I took a video of some of the snakes and vines we were doing. you will see the equal sign, the plus sign, snake with wing, and snake with knife hand. What you will also see is my foot work today is for trash. For some reason I just did no keep my footwork up. So that means executing the moves and getting off the line is much more difficult. Anyway, it is below if you wanna see.

Like I said this one is short, and I did not have the time or energy to go into great detail.

Have a great day! Thanks for reading, and keep being the best you can be. Remember the two most important things in Muay Thai is respect and discipline. Respect to you all.



Muay Thai Camp day 1… The most amazing adventure, Water is not enough

Where do I start… Muay Thai camp was an amazing adventure. I am so happy I got a chance to attend and learn from the many amazing martial artists there. Muay Thai camp was put on by the WTBA (World Thai Boxing Association).

It was hard getting on a plane and leaving my family. It was harder going 5 hours clear across the country in a plane. I have worries about being away from my home base, about being so far from my family should something go wrong. Muay Thai camp was a big unknown too. One person I knew for sure was going to be there was Khun Kru Krysta. She is my instructor and we were going on the same plane. I had some other people I had met at another seminar here on the east coast.

So with all that going on, I also was worried I was not conditioned enough for the camp, and I wanted to do well. =) I had one month notice and I had to get myself ready. So I worked hard to get that conditioning in, running and 16 to 20 rounds a day of bag and pad work.

We got in to Portland, went to dinner, waited for a new friend and roommate, then we got to our house. I was lucky enough to have a friend rent an Air B and B and I was able to pitch in for a room. So instead of camping in a tent and using a communal bathroom/shower, I was able to have the amenities of home. I would guess a good half of the people who attended Thai camp stayed in tents.

I have a restless sleep, and wake up on my own at 5:30 am Portland, Oregon time. Everyone gets going with their ruitine. We all have something we do, supplements, taping up our various body parts, brushing our teeth, etc. We head of for coffee and then to the first day of training.

I am buzzing with caffeine, and even more so with excitement. I don’t know what is going to happen exactly and I really really want to make it through so I decide to take one challenge at a time.

Training Day 1: (notes: curtesy Khun Kru Krysta, and Kru Caro)

~7 am :

We start shadow boxing, then Ajarn Greg Nelson leads everyone in stretching.

We then do 1.5 mile run. I got slightly lost because I missed the trail. I laugh about it.

We get back and Ajarn Chai starts us off with the combos that we will be working on for the day. We start with a combo and work on the variations each day. This day he wanted us to focus on leg kicks, with entry to boxing, and elbows. He wanted us to always think about counter attacks.

Combos:

  1. Left inside/lead leg kick
  2. Right Overhand punch
  3. Lead body shot/hook
  4. Rear kick to body
  1. Lead Jab
  2. Right leg kick
  1. Left inside/lead leg kick
  2. Right cross
  3. Lead body shot/hook
  4. Shield

“Everything is basic until you start taking punches.”

Ajarn Greg Nelson


We worked the combos in shadow boxing. Then Ajarn Chai had us pair up and work together. He wanted to make sure we got this timing, flow, and combos down.

~9 am:

Then we break for breakfast, and a break. Ajarn Chai gave us about 2 hours for break and breakfast. He wanted us to get enough time to eat and rest.

By the time breakfast came around I had already drank two liters of water. I only mention this because it will become important later. =)

“Get some breakfast and rest, because we are going to work hard when we get back.”

Ajarn Chai

~ 11 am:

When we all got back and got started working. He had us shadow boxing to start with. Then we stretched.

He had us working some of the variations of the leg kicks, and entries. Then we started.

We did more partner work. We worked with partners on pads.

“On the balls of your feet. Lift your body up when you kick, or when you knee.”

Ajarn Chai

Ajarn Chai wanted us to focus on form and getting the combo down. To really know it for the first day. He wanted us to focus on teqnique and not how fast we could do it.

~2 pm:

We break for lunch. Again Ajarn Chai wants us to eat and rest cause we are going to hit he circuit hard after lunch.

A special thank you has to go out to the kitchen staff. They worked hard every day in the heat to feed all almost 100 of us students, instructors, and staff. I know how much it takes to feed an army like that. So many thanks and much respect is owed. Also Ajarn Chai brought out his sister to make us some amazing Thai dishes. I will be dreaming about those dishes for a while to come.

By this time I had drank 2 more liters, for a total of 4 liters. Again I only mention this as this is pertinent to happenings later on.

~4 pm:

We all come back and assemble. Again start with shadowboxing, and stretching. Then Ajarn Chai introduces the station we will be working for today.

Khun Kru Krysta tried to help me prepare for this camp and told me years past that there were four stations. Shadowboxing, Pad Work, Bags, and then Clench Work. This year Ajarn Chai added a station. This one was partner timing. Not going as hard as you can, like on pads on bags (note: he wanted us to go hard while observing technique) , but working on flow and technique.

We would do 4 x 3 minute rounds with a 30 second burn out after each round. The burn out was a:

Makatune, #8 elbow, to skip knee #2, then two torso kicks

We were working on the combos and variations of the combos Ajarn Chai taught earlier in the day.

Water is not enough

We start on the first circuit. I get through all 5 stations, and I am doing grate. However, I start to notice my right calf is locking up on me. If I point or flex my muscle it wants to lock in place and not move. I make it through 2 stations and notice it is acting up more. I head to Khun Kru Krysta and tell her what is happening. She and another Ajarn tell me to go Devon. He is a massage therapist. He comes to camp just to help us when we are having muscle and or joint problems.

Let me just take a side note to say Devon is amazing. He is calm, calming, and listens to you. He deserves so many thanks, and much respect.

However, I make it to Devon’s table. He listens to what happened, and he begins stretching. I tell him I don’t know what the problem is. I took my bcaa this morning, and drank 4 liters of water already. He is stretching my calf and then it goes into full charley horse/muscle locked up. He mentions I am “desalinated”. I need to be ingesting more magnesium, potassium, and salt. My body is lacking and this one muscle is complaining about it.

That Charley horse hurt a great deal. He had to keep massaging it and then letting it relax. He made sure I drank some Gatorade. I was laying on the table watching my fellow Muay Thai Camp family rotating through rounds. I ended up missing 8 rounds. I was so unhappy. I was brought down by lack of minerals and salt. I did not want to fail the entire camp. This was day one. How could I, a seasoned athlete, and just some one who keeps an eye on health mess this up.

Devon made sure I drank two of the cups of Gatorade, and two cups of water before I re-entered the rounds, and finished out the day. My calf was sore and painful for the rest of camp, but it felt like a light muscle tear. I just worked through it.

So now you know why I was mentioning how much water I was drinking. Water is not enough. I was going to drink my recovery drink that replaces magnesium, and potassium after the day. But I underestimated just how much I was going to be using during camp.

All in all every day I drink about 8 liters of water. I made sure after the first day to drink water, and recovery drink, and Gatorade as well. Just to get the minerals and salts in me. I also made sure to eat bananas every day. I did not want another charley horse.

We finished the circuits of the stations, then Ajarn Chai had us line up, count down the line 1 to 5 and then stagger ourselves. He had us doing 8 count body builders. Think if burpees had a bigger older meaner brother.

The group did 50 of them. I got through 40 of them.

~8 pm:

We broke for dinner and finished for the night.

This was one of the most amazing, difficult, and wonderful things I have ever had the chance to do. I was so excited for the next day, but was annoyed my calf gave out on me. I am happy to say that I did not have any more muscle issues. Yay!

In total my Fitbit told me I 34,264 steps and burned 6,731 calories

Thank you for reading, keep working to be the best you can be. Respect to you and your families!

Tuesday Muay Thai and Kali…Ordered to take it easy, Combos from Thai Camp

2 hours of training. I still feel it from Thai Camp. I got in on a red eye at 7 am yesterday and had to work last night. While I had a nap yesterday after I got home, I had a nap today. I am still tired. But doing well. So today is our regular training day.

It was really nice to get back on the mats. I had so many people welcome me back and ask about Thai camp. They also congratulated me on completing it and making it. It was really nice to be back in my home. The area I am comfortable in.

So today Khun Kru Krysta told me, “to take it easy, and that is an order.” Kru Kristen was surprised I was in for training today. =)

So I guess other people might not have been in. I can say my muscles are still tired, and my hip flexors are sore still. But I did it.

Enough gabbing, here is what we did.

Muay Thai Combos from Thai Camp

  1. 1 round of jump rope
  2. Feeder Jabs, and then right kicks
  3. You side step, or move leg out of the way
  4. You teep
  5. Feeder feeds a right kick then a cross
  6. You parry the cross, with left hand
  7. You cover with right hand, grab back of neck and then knee feeder
  8. Feeder right kick
  9. You Shield kick
  10. Feeder feeds a lead hand upper cut
  11. You lean step back and lean back with left arm down to the side, and right hand covering right hand side of face.
  12. Right knee, to right Kick

Kali

In Kali we worked on a entry with jabs creating noise or distraction. The finished with an Cross, hook, cross.

We worked on: Disarms both Snake and Vine

Vine disarms – are weapon assisted disarms, in this instance with a stick

Snake disarms – are disarms without a weapon

  1. Plus leaver disarm with the stick, using an indide deflect
  2. Off of an equis feed, or strike #1 and strike #2
  3. Inside deflect, and control opponents arm
  4. Strike a #4 or back hand shot to opponents ribs
  5. Slide controlling hand to end of opponents stick
  6. Strike hand of opponent holding stick
  7. Making a plus sign with sticks use your stick to leaver opponents stick out of opponents hand
  8. Equal leaver disarm with the stick, using an inside deflect
  9. Off of an equis feed or strike #1, strike #2, strike #1
  10. Outside deflect, and control opponents arm
  11. Slide your stick along their stick and under opponents wrist making an equal sign
  12. Turn over your hand, and slide your other hand along stick to their hand to grab and wrench out of their grip
  13. Inside Snake disarm
  14. Off of a Strike #1 inside deflect
  15. Snake arm down and around counter clockwise
  16. Look at palm of your hand and turn your whole torso around to pull stick out of their grip in your arm
  17. Outside Snake disarm
  18. Off a Strike #2 outside deflect
  19. Snake arm down and around clockwise
  20. Either wing it out of their grip, or blade hand and squat to take stick from opponent.

Below is a paper doll I made for the 17 count. So the numbers I am referring to above are here below.

Then we worked on Kali sparring with a soft stick, and boxing gloves. One person had gloves and one had a soft stick. We had to work on our distance management, getting in for the boxing and keeping the other person at bay for the soft stick.

Today was a really fun day. I did not push it to hard. I had a good time. I got to see my fellow classmates and Martial Arts family again. As always I try to put up terms when I remember them, into the glossary (What does that even mean?) if you are interested. I use it to remember terms myself. It is a living document, and will keep being added to. If you practice Kali/Escrima/Silat/JKD or Muay Thai and I made a mistake let me know of course. I will fix it.

Thank you for reading, and if you have questions let me know. Keep working to be the best you that you can be.

Thai Camp… This was the best and one of the hardest things I have ever done.

Oh man where do I start? 4 days, 10 hour days of training Muay Thai. Working with the best of the best in Martial Arts. I am going to have to break these posts into digestible chunks. I just got home off my flight and am starting to decompress. I got home, showered, started a load of laundry, and took a 2 hour nap.

We did 250 rounds the entire weekend. That is not including instruction and practice. Rounds being 3 minutes with 30 second burn outs. We worked in 5 different stations. Each of the 5 stations we did 4 rounds per station, and many many laps around each station. (note: some of the rounds were 2 minutes, but you get the picture.)

The camp was all outside, in nature, no air conditioning and no gym mats. We worked on uneven ground, with pot holes, grass, gravel, dust, and dirt. We were all sweating up a storm, and we were all working our rear ends off.

This camp was put on by the WBTA (World Thai Boxing Association). It was started by the living legends themselves, Arjarn Chai (Surachai Sirisute) and Guru Dan Inosanto themselves.

It is a camp for instructors and some select students by invitation only. We go to hone our Muay Thai skills and bring them to the next level.

I was asked to come just a month before camp and had less than 4 weeks to condition up. I was honored and amazed to be asked. I was scared I would not be ready, and that I would not make it all the way through camp. I have been told there are people that did not make it and people that leave after the second day.

I knew I was going to learn so much, and that I was going to be pushed to my limits. I was going to be asked to perform like a top notch athlete or like a Thai Fighter. What I did not account for was the community, the family, the love and support that everyone gave, and shared. I now have an extended family of support and love. People that I can ask questions of and know they will help me on this journey. They will help me cultivate my skills for Muay Thai.

I cannot thank Ajarn Chai, and Guru Dan Inosanto enough for taking the first steps to bring Muay Thai and Kali to the United States. For their continuing dedication to spreading and teaching future generations about Muay Thai and Kali. For creating such a wonderful family such as the WTBA and for being so gracious to us all. I cannot thank all the Ajarns and all the instructors enough.

I have a lot of decompressing to do and a lot of notes to go through. But I will post more about my adventure, my learning, and my love for Muay Thai. I will write about all my experience at Thai Camp. Also The food is/was fantastic.

I was invited back again next year, and I can’t wait. But I need to rest now. =)

Thank you for reading, keep your hands up to protect your face, and keep being the best you that you can be. Respect to you all.

Conditioning Days 20, 21…Rest, Refueling, and Chiropractor Visit

This is the Tens Unit that my doctor uses. It makes me tingly.

Today and Yesterday were rest days. Boy did I need it. I took a 2 hour nap yesterday, and could have kept sleeping. Today I took a 45 minute nap. Only because I had been waken up with a phone call. I have been eating/fueling my body, and it seems after doing so it just wants to crash and sleep. So I am listening when I can.

I have been making sure to drink enough water. Get protein, carbs, fat and fiber into my food.

I also went to my Chiropractor today. He adjusted my back, my hips, and my neck. My hips tend to get jammed on one side and cause lower back pain. He then electrocutes my back, using a tens unit.

“A transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) unit is a battery-operated device that some people use to treat pain.

TENS units work by delivering small electrical impulses through electrodes that have adhesive pads to attach them to a person’s skin.

These electrical impulses flood the nervous system, reducing its ability to transmit pain signals to the spinal cord and brain.

The same electrical impulses also stimulate the body to produce natural pain relievers called endorphins.

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323632.php

In my doctors case it is not battery powered, it is plugged into the wall.

I am packed and ready to go. I am excited, and will keep a journal about my adventures in Muay Thai Camp. I don’t know how much I will be able to upload, but if I can’t upload any I will add the posts when I get back.

Thanks for reading, and have a great day.

Conditioning Day 19…Last Hard Push, 4 Hours

4 hours of conditioning training. This was my last push before I head to Muay Thai camp. I am taking Sunday and Monday off to replenish my glycogens. Per my trainers I need to let my body rest.

Today it is 100 degrees F out. Hotter than hells porch so no run for me. But that was just as well, because I can feel my bodies exhausted.

I did 15 rounds of pad work. I did 8 rounds straight of mixed kicking (both fast flow and strength). Between each of this rounds I had a 45 second rest. Then after 8 rounds I took a round off. Then I did 4 more rounds of kicks to knees. Then three rounds of kicks to knees to elbows. After that was Striking class where we did boxing practice.

I can definitely feel my muscles are exhausted. It’s a feeling of some soreness but more of I stretch and I just feel I can’t pull that muscle far enough to get it truest stretched out. It’s not lack of motion or flexibility but more it’s just tired. My motion and flexibility is exactly the same and or better so I think it’s just exhaustion.

I have conflicting feelings about rest. On one hand I feel I need it. The logical science understanding part of my brain knows this. The Martial Artist I. Me wants to keep going to keep improving. So I am listening to those much smarter than I. I am resting for the next few days.

So that was my last hard push. I hope I am physically ready for Thai Camp. 4 x 10 hour days.

Thanks for reading and keep being the best you that you can be.