Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Shinogi Kureha's Flexibility Workout

Alright. I know it may seem a little strange to have a workout devoted solely to flexibility, but bear with me for a moment. Shinogi Kureha said he possessed the flexibility of an amateur wrestler-- which in my book means usable flexibility, i.e. strength throughout a range of flexibility. For instance, a lot a people can do a gymnastic bridge, but a lot less can bend into that bridge with control and then stand up again. If you can stretch into a position, it is probably in your best interest if you can maintain your strength in and throughout that position.



We've covered power, speed, and endurance and this addition of (usable) flexibility into the mix allows you to have a great deal of control over your body. This isn't going to be a bunch of stretching, but a group of exercises designed to build strength throughout a range of motion.



Shinogi Kureha's Flexibility Workout



Level One
(One Minute/Exercise)

-Toe Touching- Feet Together
-Toe Touching- Feet Wide
-Body Twists
-Wall Walks
-All-Fours Drill
-Shoot Practice
-Handstand Push-ups with Support
-Reverse Push-ups
-Sprawling
-Hindu Push-ups
-Sit-ups
-Deep Squats
-Jumping Jacks
-Forward Bend and Stretch
-Runner's Stretch (each side)
-Kneeling Quadriceps Stretch
-Stretch as you normally would

Level Two
(One Minute/Exercise)

-Toe Touching- Feet Together
-Toe Touching- Feet Wide
-Body Twists
-Wall Walks
-All-Fours Drill
-Shoot Practice
-Handstand Push-ups with Support
-Practice Handstands without Support
-Reverse Push-ups
-Gymnastic Bridge
-Wrestler's Bridge
-Sprawling
-Hindu Push-ups
-Sit-ups
-Deep Squats
-Jumping Jacks
-Forward Bend and Stretch
-Runner's Stretch (each side)
-Kneeling Quadriceps Stretch
-Kneeling Quadriceps "Sit-ups"
-Stretch as you normally would

Level Three
(One Minute/Exercise)

-Toe Touching- Feet Together
-Toe Touching- Feet Wide
-Body Twists
-Burpees
-Wall Walks
-Practice Falling into Gymnastic Bridge
-All-Fours Drill
-Shoot Practice
-Practice Handstand Push-ups without Support
-Handstand Push-ups with Support
-Reverse Push-ups
-Gymnastic Bridge
-Wrestler's Bridge
-Sprawling
-Hindu Push-ups
-Sit-ups
-Deep Squats
-Jumping Jacks
-Forward Bend and Stretch
-Runner's Stretch (each side)
-Kneeling Quadriceps Stretch
-Kneeling Quadriceps "Sit-ups"
-Stretch as you normally would

Level Four
(One Minute/Exercise)

-Toe Touching- Feet Together
-Toe Touching- Feet Wide
-Body Twists
-Burpees
-Wall Walks
-Falling into Gymnastic Bridge and Practice Getting Back Up
-All-Fours Drill
-Shoot Practice
-Handstand Push-ups without Support
-Practice Easing Down into Gymnastic Bridge from Handstand
-Reverse Push-ups
-Gymnastic Bridge
-Wrestler's Bridge
-Sprawling
-Hindu Push-ups
-Sit-ups
-Deep Squats
-Jumping Jacks
-Forward Bend and Stretch
-Runner's Stretch (each side)
-Kneeling Quadriceps Stretch
-Kneeling Quadriceps "Sit-ups"
-Stretch as you normally would

Notes:
  • Make sure you have good mats. It is VERY important.
  • Toe touching should be done at a medium pace with no bouncing. For wide toe touching, touch right hand to left foot and left hand to right foot.
  • Keep your upper body loose for body twists. Your main goal here is in loosening up.
  • For wall walking, stand with your back facing a wall. You should be about two feet away from the wall. Bend your back like you are trying to look at the wall behind you and walk your hands down the wall (with control) until you are in a gymnastic or wrestler's bridge--it's up to you. Then, walk it back up to standing. This may be hard at first, so just go as far down as you can.
  • The All-Fours Drill is simple, but can be painful. It's a basic wrestling drill designed to improve your agility on the ground. You'll start on all fours (hands and feet, not hands and knees), with your knees slightly bent. Now, take one hand and place it in the position of the opposite foot. This will flip you so your body is facing away from the ground. Follow this procedure going back and forth, playing with the movement, until the time is up.
  • Shoot Practice- Shooting is a wrestling skill designed to take the wrestler to a lower level than his opponent to set up a takedown. Since there are a couple of different ways to shoot, so I recommend you look some up on Youtube to see which you like best.
  • We've covered handstand push-ups in previous workouts.
  • Reverse push-ups start with you on your back, your knees bent up toward your butt and your hands palm down on the ground next to your head. You are essentially pushing from this position into a gymnastic bridge (but up on your toes) and back down again.
  • We've covered the gymnastic and wrester's (neck) bridges before.
  • Sprawling is a useful skill designed to counter a takedown from a shot. To begin, bend your body, placing your hands on the outsides of your feet. Next, thrust your feet out behind you (much like a burpee), staying up on your toes and pressing your hips into the ground. Immediately get back up and sprawl again.
  • I believe we've covered Hindu Push-ups. If I'm mistaken, please comment and I will edit the post.
  • Sit-ups have previously been covered.
  • Deep Squats are just like a normal body squat, except you are going far past parallel. These would be called "ass-to-the-ground" squats by some.
  • Jumping Jacks have been covered.
  • The forward bend and stretch is merely a standing hamstring stretch with your feet together.
  • For the runner's stretch, with your feet together, put your hands on the outside of your feet and then lunge backward with one leg. Do both sides.
  • The Kneeling Quadriceps stretch I'm sure has other names, but you are seated on your knees and lay back, stretching your quadriceps
  • For Kneeling Quadriceps "Sit-ups", assume the seated position on your knees, then straighten your body, so you are "standing" on your knees. Place your hands just over your buttocks and, flexing your quads, lower yourself as far as you can and come up. The goal is to touch the ground and come back up.
  • Falling into a gymnastic bridge is difficult at first, so don't try it until you are very good at the gymnatic bridge itself AND proficient at wall walking. Once you try it, make sure you have a good mat to practice on. A big problem people have, is they are worried about looking up the whole time, so they never bend their back enough to be able to fall properly into the bridge. If you are looking at the ceiling as you are going down, you are not doing it the right way. You should be trying to look at the wall behind you.
  • Falling into a gymnastic bridge from a handstand is far more difficult and should only be attempted with proper mats and preferably a spotter. You will need to call upon very well-developed handstand and gymnastic bridge skills. Do not attempt this too early.
  • Usable flexibility is not something gained overnight. This, like most anything worth having, is an ability that must be cultivated through constant training. Please do not rush into things and hurt yourself.
  • And, finally, did I mention the need for mats? Yeah, you'll need those.
That's all for tonight. Until next time, good luck and train hard!
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