My Best Friend: Are you a fitness enthusiast that takes their running shoes on trips, only to feel uncomfortable road running in unfamiliar areas? Are you tired of endlessly waiting for cardio equipment to free up at your gym, only to feel like a hamster running on a wheel? Do you love to run outdoors, yet shy away from putting on five layers of under-armor and sweats on in order to brave the sub arctic temperatures?
Well, let me introduce you to my “Best Friend”, the jump rope. You can take it anywhere, you do not need much space, it does not matter what the weather is like outside, you do not need expensive equipment ($2.00 to $20.00 for a rope, my favorite costs $8.00) and you can vary the routines and movements to keep it interesting. My Grandfather was a boxing trainer in Paterson, NJ back in the 30’s, 40’s and into the 50’s. He instructed me on how to jump rope as a teenager as a means to improve my foot speed and endurance for wrestling and football. I then began to realize the incredible benefits of jumping rope.
If you jump rope at a good pace for 5 minutes, it’s equivalent to running a mile! The coordination of your hands and feet moving in rhythm with each other is essential for a fighter. All of my martial arts classes begin with 3 to 5 minutes of jumping rope. In addition to the coordination development, jumping rope is an incredible means to warm up the body.
Even if you are a beginner and you miss on your jump, keep moving your feet. To learn how to jump, here are a couple of tips:
1) Play some music that you like with a good beat. You should put together a playlist for at least the same amount of time that you want to jump for. Use your favorite, upbeat songs & make a mix. Or, for those with obsessive, manic personalities, repeat the same song as an extended version. This also helps you jump rope longer. You basically fool your self into NOT thinking that you are jumping that long.
2) To initially get your timing, watch as the rope hits the ground. That’s when you time your jump. It may take a few weeks to get your timing, but keep working, it will eventually happen.
3) If you are still having issues, try putting the rope in one hand and jump up and down while rotating your wrist. This will help you to find your timing.
4) Remember the less movement of your arms, the better. Your wrists are the primary focus of the rotation. Try also to keep them in the same spot, approximately at the level between the bottom of your chest and the top of your hips. This does not hold true when you are doing more advanced movements, like crossing the rope or double jumps.
5) You do not have to jump very high. You only need to jump high enough to allow the thin rope to pass under your feet. Get your rhythm and all else will fall into place.
If you’d like to workout the rest of your body, try performing push-ups and abdominal exercises in a rotation with jumping rope. You can start with 100 jumps, 20 push – ups and 30 abdominals. Start with 3 rotations and then increase to 5. You may also execute additional push – ups or abdominals. What a great way to start the day!
Victory Favors the Prepared!
If you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach me at HYPERLINK “http://www.philross.com” www.philross.com.
What’s your motivation? (and how to keep it)
A seemingly simple question to answer, but whatever your motivation to train is, it must be more compelling than distractions that will dissuade you from your fitness commitment. Maybe you want to be the best fighter in the world, or your grandfather died of a young age due to his weight, you were mugged or picked on as a child. There could also be positive motivations: the quest to be the best that you can be, to stay in or get in great shape, for the enjoyment of training, stress relief, competition with others and yourself. Unless your motivation is harmful to others, there is no right or wrong reason to train, as long as it keeps you working out and improving yourself – it’s good.
Many of the the reasons that are our original motivation to train do not last forever. Example – let’s say you want to make the Varsity Football Team. You have to get bigger, faster, stronger and learn the skill set for your desired position. OK – you’ve made the team, now the season ends and your are graduating high school. There’s no way that you are going to play in college, yet you really enjoyed the way that you felt and how your body looked and performed when you were working out. Now you have a different motivation.
Just like rotating your workout schedule, you need to alter your motivational factors from time to time. If you start a new martial art with the goal of becoming a Black Belt and then a few months later decide to enter a triathlon. They are quite different goals, but the training for one will help the other. Keep fresh motivation, shot range goals and try different motivations.
I have plenty of clients that come in want to lose weight. They have now lost their 80 lbs (yes, this did happen), what do they do now? Just keeping the weight off as a goal may not be motivating enough. The person knows that they must keep working out – but what is the motivating factor? This person wants to be able to do a pull-up and start the martial arts. They can achieve the new goal because of their former motivation.
I’ve had other clients that wanted to get off of all of their blood pressure and cholesterol medications. Avoiding death is a reasonably strong motivator. Now that the client is off of the pills, what’s his new motivation? He now wants to be able to snatch a 24kg (53 lb) kettlebell 100 times. That’s a very respectable goal and new motivation. He had to change his motivation since his former goal to train had been met.
The point of all of this is to get you to think of new goals, new motivations and new methods to keep you inspired to continue your training. There are many excuses for failure – find the reason to succeed!
As Always: Train Hard and Train Often!
Cathy Raimonda, AKA “Miss Cathy” leads our Lil’ Eagles Program. She brings over 6 years of experience in teaching pre-schoolers ages 3 to 6. Our program is geared toward learning basic martial arts skills through reinforced movement patterns, motivational activities and fun. The children acquire listening skills and are instructed in exercise that develops their stabilizers, core, balance and coordination necessary for preparing their minds and bodies for activities later in life and serves as a foundation of health and fitness.
We conduct our classes in the mornings, afternoons and weekends to best accommodate your busy schedules.
Fitness, Focus and Fun are the foundation for a successful childhood!
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Our next Promotional Exam will be held on Saturday, September 21st.
Children’s Programs:Empowerment, Goal Achievement, Discipline and Self Esteem are just a few of the multitude of benefits that are gained by our students. We have over 35 years of experience in the Martial Arts and Fitness Industry. Our programs focus on the athletic development of your child. The body awareness, core development and total body conditioning will provide your child with the tools for success in any venue of competition. The goal achievement, discipline and problem solving will equip your child with the mindset for academic achievement.
Children’s Martial Arts:A more comprehensive, goal based program for children between the ages of 6 and 12. The focus is on positive reinforcement and situation avoidance tactics. The children are instructed in Taekwondo, basic grappling, defensive tactics, sparring and total body fitness. Additional benefits of training result in core development and improved speed and agility. Children are also schooled in the art of conflict resolution, stranger awareness body awareness.
Children are instructed in the defensive and sport applications of kicking, blocking, striking and grappling. They learn how to move and position themselves in both standing and ground situations. This enables them various venues of competition and prepares them for defensive maneuvers from any position that may require response.
Black Belt Club: Our BBC is available for those students whose desire is to “take their training to the next level”. We instruct the students in Traditional Korean and Burmese Katas (forms) as well Eclectic forms for competition. The students are also instructed in the use of Traditional Weapons from the aforementioned countries as well as Okinawa. The ITP (Instructor Training Program) is open to the BBC members as well. In this program, we instruct our students in the art of teaching, thus becoming leaders amongst their peers.
American Eagle Mixed Martial Arts – About Us
American Eagle Mixed Martial Arts Academy is comprised of a unique blend of Martial Disciplines.
The arts of Taekwondo, Bando, Jiujitsu, Western Boxing, Muay Thai, BJJ, Wrestling and Arnis make for a system that is well suited for the street, ring, artistic competition, physical fitness or “peace of mind”.
The techniques studied and philosophies employed have deep roots in the long standing tradition of Martial Arts, coupled with the ability to adapt to the situations and demands of modern day society. Fitness, practicality, growth, development of motor skills and a positive environment are the direct results of our methodology.