When it comes to generating power in martial arts it is about fighting smarter not harder. Raw strength is a great asset for martial arts, however, muscles often distract from using body mechanics to increase your power. The other benefit for using body mechanics is conservation of energy. You can throw a significantly high number of hard hits blows faster and longer when you use body mechanics instead of the muscles in your arms.
Use this drill as a warm up to start training your core to help generate power instead of your arm:
This drill is designed to practice the downward strikes at the neck and shoulder. The strike comes in at a 45 degree angle. When practicing this strike on a straight pell like the one in the video it is normal for the sword to slide down. Make sure your initial contact is edge on at a 45 degree angle to the pell. Be sure to over exaggerate your movements as you learn this drill. It’s about teaching your muscles timing and firing to add speed and power to your strikes.
This next drill is training your feet to step in time with your body’s swing. Many new fighters will strike before their feet are on the ground, which results in having a foot in the air as they are trying to hit. That means they lose 25-50% of their power from poor footwork.
Be careful with this drill! You will need about 3 feet of rope with some kind of weight on the end. I used a 2.5 pound weight. Do not go heavier than 2-3 pounds. You just need the weight to get the rope moving and feel the drag of the rope. Start with the rope a little shorter as you learn this drill, then you can go longer once you get the hang of it. Start by just swinging the rope around your head like a cowboy. Focus on the feel of your core muscles and how you are engaging your muscles with this movement. As you get used to the movement start to add steps. You want all of your muscles to move in the same direction driving your power into your opponent
Time to put it all together and start learning how to apply this technique in a fight.
The secret to this technique is turning your body into a whip. Your hips generate the power sending it through your shoulders into your arms. Once the power has been released you pull your hips, shoulders, and arm back to create that extra whip at the end. The video above is a quick explanation of this concept. If you want a more detailed explanation of this technique check out “Team Ursus: Jeffery Galli Polearm Training Exercises.”
This article gives you a preview into the type of training found at Ironside Medieval Combat. If you like what you see come give one of our classes a try! We also offer online classes for those of you who live far away – Sign up for Online Classes.
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