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Thread: Practicing Techniques

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    MXB
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    Default Practicing Techniques

    Sometimes when I practice my techniques it gets overwhelming because there are so many techniques (and variations) to practice between white belt and second black (plus forms). I am curious how some of you practice. For example, do you tend to take say 30 techniques and do them left and right side 5 times each, or do you instead just take 150 different techniques and do them once or twice? I don't know what is better for development in the long run. I mix it up but I am just curious what training styles others of you use. Any thoughts?

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    I solved the problem by switching to a 55 technique system. LOL.

    It used to take me 3 hours minimum to review all the material in our previous syllabus. I used to break it out weekly. I assigned each day of the week a different belt level and focused on that. For instance: Monday was yellow day, Teusday was orange, and so forth. If was going to be busy I'd sometimes lump two into one day.

    Hope that helps!
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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    I created an MP3 of myself reading out the technique names with a five second pause between each (You will probably find you don't always need this much but you can change it). An instructor recommended and I found it to work great.

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    Talking Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by crane557 View Post
    I created an MP3 of myself reading out the technique names with a five second pause between each (You will probably find you don't always need this much but you can change it). An instructor recommended and I found it to work great.
    That is cool I will try that. I use Flash card's
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    Talking Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by MXB View Post
    Sometimes when I practice my techniques it gets overwhelming because there are so many techniques (and variations) to practice between white belt and second black (plus forms). I am curious how some of you practice. For example, do you tend to take say 30 techniques and do them left and right side 5 times each, or do you instead just take 150 different techniques and do them once or twice? I don't know what is better for development in the long run. I mix it up but I am just curious what training styles others of you use. Any thoughts?
    I think mixing it up is always a good. (I do most all of my techniques left and right side). My techniques and kata are split up white one day orange the next and so on. I'm not to black I will be soon, I have 176 techniques,and 18 kata's so I have to split them up. Good luck in your workout.
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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Couple of different ways to approach your training when it comes to techniques:

    1) Practice your techniques based on belt level, working your way through your system.

    2) Practice your techniques based on relative body position. For example, practice all the techniques you know techniques that will initially place you outside a right punch or kick; then inside a right punch or kick; then outside a left punch or kick; then escapes from various hugs, then holds, then locks, then chokes, etc., etc. You get the idea. This will help to cement snapshots of body position into the memory. When that happens your ability to react spontaneously will increase exponentially. Grafting (we call it blending and borrowing) will begin to come much, much easier.

    Remember that good Kenpo is less about the techniques themselves than it is about the ability to act/react spontaneously and effectively in any given situation.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    When doing techniques I like to ingrain them into my mind so it becomes muscle memory. I like to do each technique three times.

    1. The first time I go through the technique step by step. After each step I move on to the next one and than go back. Example: Triggered Salute, step 1. pin and step forward with the heal palm. I do that a few times and than move onto the crane. And than go back, etc.

    2. Than I go through each technique fluently. I always try to remember what Bruce Lee said: "Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless-like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend." In some way I see this teaching minor and major movements. The second time through each technique I go through and figure out which is major and minor and try and fluently go through the technique.

    3. Now I know which is major and minor and where each strike and munipulation is supposed to go, so I blast that puppy out, full speed and full power. If I mess up whatever, just do it again.

    Every time I do a technique in the air I try and picture my opponents body, this way I know where I am supposed to be hitting.

    I have been working on timing for a while now, trying to make myself quicker in that sense. So when going step by step I try to both figure out and ingrain the timing of the technique in my mind.

    I hope this helps in some way.
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    Lightbulb Re: Practicing Techniques

    Divirsity is your best friend. The more different ways you can breakdown and practice your techniques, the better. It helps to keep it challenging and allows you to add cross referencing tags to your memory.

    So working them level by level, working them by Method of Attack, (This can be done two ways, either by simply going down the list of techniques, or givign the heading and simply supplying all the inclusive techniques), working them with/ without a partner, common principals....(give the principle and cite and demonstrate techniques that utilize the idea), emphasis on Speed, Power and Flow of any of these groupings.

    The more creative approaches you take, the more it keeps even reviewing old techniques more challenging and engaging. (Practicing on auto pilot is almost like not really even practicing)


    When practicing a technique, I am an advocate of applying the KISS Principal. (Keep It Simple, Sifu) Each technique is broken down and assigned a single, logical label for each count of the technique. The label is a form of shorthand for the technique. When you practice the technique you use the same labels everytime, whether verbally, or internalizing the labels. This helps burrow the specifcs of the technique deeper into the memory, by assiging things like, "Block, Chop, Poke, Uppercut..." to be the permanent labels of 5 Swords, then repeating this everytime, either verbally or in your mind, helps momorize far better than, "Biff, Pow, Crack...", or "1....2....3....4"
    . The mind doesn't have any visual references for "Bif, Pow and Crash", nor does it for the numbers. However, inside your mind's eye, there lies a visual for "Block, Chop, Poke..." It is engaging multiple senses to record the data. You can See the Technique, Feel the technique, Speak the technique and finally even Hear the technique.
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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    I used to practice them belt-by-belt, spending more time on the belt I was currently working on. I would generally do them on both sides, 10 reps each for the current belt, 5 reps each for prior belts.

    I'm in the Tracy system, with 30 techs per belt, so after you get a few belts up, it can start to become overwhelming. Like CC mentioned, it would take hours to do them all, esp. if you also do all the variations. Eventually I started breaking it up and doing 2 or 3 or 4 belts in a session, and other belts in the next session. But it can still be overwhelming.

    I've been thinking about this more, lately. Maybe the thing to do is to begin identifying the techs that you have the most faith in, that you feel you can really use. Maybe there are 20 - 80 or so that you feel really good about, and these are the ones you would be most likely to rely on and they offer a good enough variety to meet all kinds of different scenarios. Focus your practice on these. Drill them over and over and get your useage really strong. Keep the others in the wings, however. Think of them as ideas to play with, supplemental material, practice them a bit so you don't forget them, but don't try to practice them with the same intensity. If you do, you will end up overwhelmed again, too much time to get thru them all, and the quality of everything begins to suffer for it.

    If you are at second Dan level, you should be able to make these kinds of decisions for yourself. If you continue to study with a teacher, and you are learning more, probably along the way you can identify which techs to add to your "hot list".
    Michael


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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Master Key movements, strong stances, basics, concepts and principals will keep your tools sharp.

    I asked Master Tatum this question once and he told me he practices his sets daily in addition to other things.
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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    how about this:
    practice your forms when you are alone and techniques when working with a training buddy. i've gotten very little out of just doing a string of individual techniques in the air, and nothing that isn't gained from doing the forms. now when you have people to work with, that is another story altogether.
    "Rust Never Sleeps" - N.Young.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    how about this:
    practice your forms when you are alone and techniques when working with a training buddy. i've gotten very little out of just doing a string of individual techniques in the air, and nothing that isn't gained from doing the forms. now when you have people to work with, that is another story altogether.
    Good point Pete, but for space limitations, I often work the techniques in the air until I am able to find someone to pound on (e.g. like Scott)....Scott are you out there, LOL?
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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by Seabrook View Post
    Good point Pete, but for space limitations, I often work the techniques in the air until I am able to find someone to pound on (e.g. like Scott)....Scott are you out there, LOL?
    Yeah, and I'm kind of wierd because I like it, LOL

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    It's always preferable to a have a training partner to practice with, but it is still possible to gain benefit from practicing the techniques whilst alone. Try focussing on a small group of techniques and working the stances and basics within that technique. Group together techniques that employ similar openings, basic moves or footwork. i.e. all techniques that begins with an inward block. All techniques against a double-handed push. I like to focus on the basics and patterns within the techniques - focussing on just one aspect across multiple techniques helps to reenforce that pattern of movement, rather than 'diluting' your focus across lots of unrelated techniques.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesB View Post
    ...it is still possible to gain benefit from practicing the techniques whilst alone. Try focussing on a small group of techniques and working the stances and basics within that technique. Group together techniques that employ similar openings, basic moves or footwork.
    no doubt, but wouldn't those benefits be resultant from forms practice, which in my humble opinion offers so much more.
    "Rust Never Sleeps" - N.Young.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    no doubt, but wouldn't those benefits be resultant from forms practice, which in my humble opinion offers so much more.
    Depends. Proper forms practice means assuming that one is performing a move against one's identical size and shape (or at least, so I was taught).

    Practice with a partner means I get real-world feedback as to where I need to hit. My Silat training partner is 5' 10" and 230 and I'm......nowhere close to either of those numbers. He's more typical of the kind of person that I would need to defend mysef against. and I can adjust my angles accordingly.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by carol kaur
    Depends. Proper forms practice means assuming that one is performing a move against one's identical size and shape (or at least, so I was taught).

    Practice with a partner means I get real-world feedback as to where I need to hit. My Silat training partner is 5' 10" and 230 and I'm......nowhere close to either of those numbers. He's more typical of the kind of person that I would need to defend mysef against. and I can adjust my angles accordingly.
    yeah, my point was to do forms alone and techniques (applications, usage) with your training partner. not sure of the benefit gained of doing a list of techniques in the air that is not better developed by practicing the forms.
    "Rust Never Sleeps" - N.Young.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    yeah, my point was to do forms alone and techniques (applications, usage) with your training partner. not sure of the benefit gained of doing a list of techniques in the air that is not better developed by practicing the forms.
    Ah! I gotcha! I'm so sorry, I was reading the thread to fast.

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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by katsudo_karate View Post
    Master Key movements, strong stances, basics, concepts and principals will keep your tools sharp.
    True that! Well said!

    Don't get so bogged down in the "material" that you neglect what's truely important in honing your skills.
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    Default Re: Practicing Techniques

    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    no doubt, but wouldn't those benefits be resultant from forms practice, which in my humble opinion offers so much more.
    well yes, the same benefits can be obtained from forms - but the original question was regarding technique practice. If Forms can be regarded as elegonated techniques - and as both are made up of basics, stances, breathing, footwork etc, I don't see how there would be any real difference in practice between the two. I guess it all depends on how the techniques/forms have been taught in relation to each other.
    Last edited by JamesB; 02-09-2007 at 01:50 PM.

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