Thursday, December 6, 2007

More Warrior Fitness

I want to share with you one little part of my personal program for warrior fitness. This is both a calisthenic and a practice drill. It comes from the book Arwrology: All Out Hand-to-Hand Fighting by Gordon E. Perrigard, M.D. It's called "Knee Blow Psycho Physical Calisthenics".

First, the physical part (pp. 39-40):

Stand at attention and stretch your arms straight out in front of you.

Suddenly bring your left knee as high as you can toward your left hand. Then step forward and down with your left foot.

Then bring your right knee high as you can and with all the force you can muster. Bring it up towards your right hand.

Then step forward with your right leg. Then left knee blow, left step forward, right knee blow, right step forward, left knee blow, and so on.

I do this in my bedroom, so there's not much room to step forward. I also found that if I try to hold my hands straight out, I will unconsciously cheat by bringing my arms down to meet my knees, so I clamp my elbows to my side with my forearms straight to the front. This allows for a good slap of my knee against the forearm, which lets me gauge how much snap I'm putting into the action.

If your obliques are weak or flabby, you'll feel it in your midsection until you firm up. But, as I said, this is a training drill as well as a calisthenic. That's where the psychological part comes in (p. 41):

Every time you strike your knees up, think of giving mighty knee blows up at your enemy's stomach or crotch. And in actual fighting, keep your knees driving into your opponent at every opportunity.

Perrigard was a Canadian physician who wrote Arwrology as a manual for military and civilians during WWII. He combined his medical expertise, including his understanding of physiology and biomechanics with his interest in jiujitsu to craft a combat system similar to that of W.E. Fairbairn. The advantage to Perrigard's work is that, if you're looking for a complete self-instructional system of close quarters combat (fitness, drills, techniques, etc.), you'll find it packaged between the covers of Arwrology. I'm not saying that there aren't some aspects of the program that couldn't benefit from more recent developments, but I'm saying that it's a complete system in itself that has a lot proven and effective components.

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