Ultimate Bo Home Course by Sensei Michael Hodge

This video is just a preview of our article about Ultimate Bo. Check: http://www.blackbeltathome.com
Coming soon!

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Axe Kick by Infinity Martial Arts !

This is a an excellent video about the Axe Kick.

The steps are pretty clear and easy to follow. I understand the execution might not happen fast if you are a beginner. Do not get discourage. Big Foot Wallace has some nice tips to kick high. It’s all on you tube.

How can improve your kicks?

I believe perseverance is the key. I like this quote by Bruce Lee:

I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.

Karate do

 

 

 

Why do I practice Martial Arts?

 

 

 

My first belt signed by Royce Gracie

( This is my first belt. It was signed by Royce Gracie, the legendary  UFC champion)

Why do I practice Martial Arts?

I know this is a question WE martial arts practitioners ask ourselves.

I guess the blessing of martial arts is that it finds you before your find it.

It happened to me twice in my life and some how, even though I stopped doing martial arts, I went back. It’s almost as if martial arts can speak to you: train. This is your sport. You cannot run way away from it. Karate, Jujitsu, you name it; it’s who you are.

My first experience occurred back in 1993-1994 when I saw Royce Gracie on TV. He won the first UFC championship fighting again huge opponent who were brawlers, kick boxers, boxer, wrestlers, etc., who didn’t know anything about Jujitsu.

Of course I didn’t know anything either. Practicing Jujitsu in 1993 in Peru and even in the US was not easy to do. You could not find schools the way you can find them today in every corner and even on line.

A friend of mind who was very religious and some how mystic (he was a vegetarian, believed in reincarnation, and his head was fully shaved) introduced me to Tae Won Do).

I always knew I was good using my legs when playing soccer and also in a very primitive way to defend myself at school or in my neighborhood back home (I was raised a very rough place), but I didn’t know I could practice martial arts.

My friend R. was very strong and naturally aggressive. He fought at the first Vale Tudo in Peru. He won’t a couple of fights, but he also lost with a Jujitsu fighter. Then he started cross training. I was an ignorant in MMA. , So I started at the beginning: learning a traditional martial art.

I learned from R that the key in a battle is aggressiveness, but also how to be calm in a fight. He made us run inside an improvised Dojo (t was really a religious place and we used its space during morning hours); we will do push-ups, and abs until I almost felt like throwing up. We did squads until we could barely walk normally.

I complained a little a bit due to my ignorance. When will I learn martial arts? What does all these have to do with learning the kicks, the punches, and the flashy moves?

We will only do shadow boxing, shadow kicking, and shadow everything, but we never did sparring.

Maybe after two months finally he said: let’s do sparring. He put us in pairs and a fond friend of mine was in front of me and I felt that I should go easy on him assuming that he should go easy on me. Oh, boy, I was wrong. When the “fight” started my friend came with blows and kicks almost like he wanted to destroy me and I backed up. At least I did keep my balance with a nice horse stance. I saw my self-surprised by the aggressiveness of my “attacker.” My friend R. shouted at me and said, “ don’t back up. Fight!” Then, like a song I am very fond of says, “I knew it was now or never.” I did my kiai and throw a solid kick to the center of his stomach and the fight ended. My friend was sitting on the floor for at least ten minutes. I was scared and I apologized. My friend said it was all right. My friend and sensei told me not to worry about. After the class, we went to showers. My Sensei came to me and smiled and he said, “Good. That is what you have to do in a fight. End it.”

I had a chance to do sparring again with another friend who was bigger than me. He was very muscular and had tattoos, which gave him an intimidating look. This time, when the fight started, I moved in circles avoiding his kicks waiting for the right time. I could not get on his game of getting closer. One of his punches could probably put me to sleep for a week. So I waited until I saw an opening and landed a front kick to the stomach. My friend could not stand up. When he did he really did not find for he rest of the round. I saw in him, he was already “paralyzed” and mentally blocked because of the solid kick to the stomach.

After those first sparring, I learned how important was to be calm, to be prepared, to know when to attach. Also, I valued the importance of conditioning. Every Saturday, I went to train Tae Won Do riding my bicycle just to warm and get more strength on my legs.

Royce Gracie, the first UF champion would tell me similar tips as my first Sensei did. In 2003 I interviewed Royce Gracie. Yes, I met him!!! And that probably will a good reason to put another post.

This post was intended to explain why we practice martial arts. My reason after all this digression is simple: martial taught me about not surrendering, about fighting with bravery, about the importance of being healthy. It does not matter to me if I was not the best practitioner back then, or if I am not a black belt who one day will make it to the Hall of Fame. What matters to me is that today I am in a journey to understand the philosophy of ancient martial arts and that my daughter who is seven is very focus in learning Karate and its meaning: self disciple, respect, and honor. I was not blessed like her as far as having the opportunity to train with my parents, but God give the opportunity and the blessing to find my sport and to be a guide for her despite of my limitations

 

Domo Arigatou どうも有難う

First place at the 2014 King George Isshin Ryu Competition !

Karate Competition. 1st place !

It was an awesome day. That’s all I can say. First place with Nunchakus and third place performing Katas !
It was a wonderful day, almost perfect, but my daughter did not get a a trophy and started crying.  Daddy had to tell her that a trophy means nothing at the end of the day and that it takes months, maybe years to learn a discipline. I told her that the path to “win” is persistency and also humility to accept when you lose in any competition. My Karate Sensei told me once: A Black belt is a White belt who never quits.
I will never forget that Saturday when my lovely wife, my beautiful daughter, and I went to King George to make a dream come true: compete just for the sake of it. It was just wonderful to watch all the children performing their katas and also sparring.  Some Black belts performed very impressive Katas maybe as way to remind us that practice makes perfect. One last comment: The King George Karate Isshinryu competition is a great place to compete and spend the day with the family. Karate do !