June is here, and the summer has just begun. In today’s Bayani Warrior (www.bayaniwarrior.com) article, I intend on giving a quick top ten list of things you can do to start improving your Kali skills this summer.
1) Train on Outside Terrain: The weather is warmer, so it’s time to get outside and start training. Unless you plan on getting jumped in a climate controlled and padded martial arts studio, you need to get outside and get used to training on sand at the beach, on pavement in a parking lot, on uneven rocky hillsides, and on grassy fields. You will find that your sense of balance and footwork needs to adapt and adjust to the terrain you are training and sparring on, and as a result, you will be forced to adapt and adjust your techniques accordingly. You will gain better sense of kinesthetic awareness and balance, as well as an improved ability to fight in a multitude of conditions.
(Picture Above: Photo of myself sparring at a local lake on the sand. Sand makes a great and challenging surface for training.)
2) If you have kids, take the time to train them: Now that children are home for the summer, now is a great time to train them on their summer vacation. Far too many children spend too much time playing video games and sitting around doing nothing. Now would be a great time to grab some foam sticks and teach them some techniques. Make sure to be patient with them and make training fun and dynamic. Training kids develops your communication skills and your sense of patience, and also helps you share your knowledge with the next generation, thus keeping them safer and healthier on their summer break.
(Picture Above: Training children takes patience, but it can improve your skills as a Kali practitioner since it requires you to know and communicate every move from inside and out)
3) Train in a Swimming Pool or in the Ocean: If you have access to a swimming pool of sufficient depth, or a nearby body of water, try to practice your footwork, kicks, and even your stick strikes (using a pool noodle or even rattan, if you are able to use it) in the water. Water provides a natural and significant level of resistance, which causes you to work harder and helps develop muscular and cardiovascular endurance. The legendary Muhammad Ali attributed his hand speed to shadowboxing underwater, and Filipino warriors used to train waist deep in the ocean as a means of challenging their balance.
(Picture Above: Lapu Lapu and his tribe fought on the shores of Mactan Island in the Philippines against Ferdinand Magellan and his men. Being able to fight in the water takes great balance and training in water should definitely be something you incorporate in your routine.)
4) Take a Seminar / Vacation Trip This Summer: Instead of simply going on your typical summer vacation to an amusement park or national monument, grab a friend or spouse, try looking up the seminar schedule of your favorite Kali instructor and attend one of their seminars that may be outside of your state to a place you’ve never been to before. Once you get there, attend the seminar, train hard, but afterwards, go check out the local attractions and local eats with your friend or spouse. By doing this, not only do you get to travel to a new place and see new things, but you also get to train as well. Make sure to book an extra day or two in the hotel so that you can really take in the sights and sounds after your seminar is done.
(Picture Above: Photo of myself with the New Hampshire and Massachusetts Sayoc Kali group at Sayoc Kali Sama Sama in Florida last year. Traveling to train is a great opportunity to see new places and make new friends this summer.)
5) Throw a Summer BBQ With Training: Light up the grill, get some food, and train with your friends and training partners. Not only is this a fun way to reconnect and bond with training partners, but it offers you the chance to train in a safe, fun, and ego-free environment in the summertime. In Bayani Warrior, our version of this type of training is called the Bayani Warrior Gathering, which we hold every year. This year, we will be holding the Gathering at a local park outdoors.
(Video Above: Footage of last year’s Bayani Warrior Gathering. Our Gatherings are day long events where all the Bayani Warrior Members from all over the country eat and train together.)
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