Thursday, August 5, 2010

Just about every knows the martial art of karate as one of the most popular methods of self defense training in the United States and throughout the United Kingdom and other parts of the world. The Karate Kid movies of the 1980s did much to popularize the martial arts techniques and the discipline as a whole.

             Karate is a martial art developed in the country of Japan which includes many different training levels. It is seen by different practitioners as an art form and a method of self defense. As with other martial arts, Karate does not solely rely on physical techniques such as kicks, blows, strikes, holds, and takedowns. It also integrates various mental elements and training in leadership skills.

              The martial arts practice of Karate is built on different patterns, forms, and interpretations. Parts of the system include forms (called kata), attitude (known as kokoro), and sparring (also called kumite). When using kata, practitioners use a sequence of martial arts moves that translate into the principles of combat attack. Similarly, kumite incorporates grappling and kicking techniques that are commonly used during Karate sporting events and tournaments. Finally, kokoro is known as the center of Karate. Users of Karate cannot further their improvement without character and a heart for the sport.

These days many youth and small children are trained in the sport of Karate and it is usually seen in such a connotation. However, it has its beginning as a true self defense martial art. Early on, only 3 obi betls were used to denote ranking in Karate. Three colors were used: black, brown and white, and each color level was divided in several sublevels. With increasing popularity, many more colors were eventually introduced into the sport.

History of Karate
            Karate’s roots were established during a time of extreme political turmoil and wars. Shotokan Karate was founded by a man named Gichin Funakoshi, and he is given much credit for helping to spread the use of Karate across the main islands of the nation of Japan. Okinawa marked the beginning of the discipline in 1936 when many Karate masters came together. The masters of Karate included men like Kentsu Yabu, Chotoku Kyan, Chojun, Chomo Hanashiro, Shinpan Shiroma, Genwa Nakasone, Choryo Maeshiro, and Choshin Chibana.

The city of Okinawa and the surrounding region was important to the development of Karate because it was the nation’s political center. The kingdom was rules by Sho Hashi, who had banned the use of weaponry throughout the area. It was this weapons ban that led people to begin developing unarmed combat and self defense training.

In the years to come Karate increased exponentially in its popularity. Perhaps the early founders of the discipline would be surprised at how many have come to embrace its teachings. Now karate is offered in small towns and large cities across the globe, and it is practiced by women, children, and seniors as well as men. It has even been included in the Olympic Games.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

How To Build Male Swimmers Body?

A male competitive swimmer's body is often touted as the perfect body for men. If you look at the physique of these swimmers, all of them have wide broad shoulders, solid 6 pack abs, powerful arms and legs, V-shaped chiseled chest and back. Is it any wonder why competitive swimmers have such attractive bodies?

           So how can we get such an ideal male body shape? By spending most of your life in the swimming pool? Of course not. This is one of the most common misconceptions about building the male swimmers physique. Getting the ideal body shape of a swimmer is not by swimming everyday.

         Although swimming is one of the best low impact exercises, it is not how their body type is achieved. In fact, you can even get that magnificent male physique without ever stepping into the pool if you want, but by following a structured exercise and nutritional program to achieve that goal. Unknown to many people, all competitive swimmers do sports specific weight training in the gym.

        Although the answer may be simple, it is not as easy when put into practice, especially if you are not a fitness trainer or trained in the science of muscle development. However, it can be done. Here are some tips on how to achieve the male competitive swimmer's body.

        The first thing to do is to lose weight or rather lose body fat so that your muscle tone and definition can be seen clearly and not buried under a layer of fat. A healthy and fit male should have about 15% of body fat. For competitive swimmers, their body fat may range from 6% to 18%. However, for your muscle definition to show clearly including showing off your taut 6 pack abs, you should strive for body fat percentage below 12%.

         Genetically, the male body tends to store most of its fat above the waist. Since one of the more noticeable features of a swimmer's physique is the well shaped defined upper body, thus it is important for you to be more mindful of your body fat in that part of your physique.
          All cardio workouts, right eating habit and weight training can help you to reduce overall body fat. You will never get the classic swimmer's body if your body fat percentage is high. So watch what you eat. In order to lose just one pound of body fat, you will need to create a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories and this and more can be achieved by a combination of diet and exercise. So keep yourself active with a solid commitment to your workout program and you will see results sooner rather than later.
         Look, most people think that to get rid of belly fat, you need to do plenty of sit-ups and crunches. That is not true. When you diet and workout to lose body fat, the fat will come off from all over the body. But that is great, isn't it? We do want to get lean all over the body so that our muscle tone for the whole body can be seen, just like those of competitive male swimmer, don't we?

         Next, train with weights regularly and intensively. You may have low body fat percentage, but if you do not have nice muscles to be seen, you will simply look scrawny, not to say having the great physique of a swimmer.

        So in order for you to attain a swimmer's body, you should inculcate a combination of a good diet program, cardio workouts and weight training. Of course if you want to put swimming into the equation, by all means, go ahead!

Judo And Combat Self Defense

People choose to practice Judo for a number of reasons. Some are looking for a fun sport they can participate in. Others feel that Judo is an art or a fitness program or a way to discipline themselves. Others take up lessons in Judo because it is a great way to learn combat self defense.

History of Judo for Combat Self Defense
Kodokan Judo is a fighting form of the discipline that was created in Japan. It was founded by a man name Dr. Jigoro Kano in the year 1882. Dr. Kano developed Judo after refining another ancient martial art – the discipline of Jujitsu.

In 1964, Judo was first played in the Olympic Games. Today the martial art is practiced across the globe by millions of people. Practitioners of the sport use Judo to build self-confidence, to increase endurance, to stay in shape, and to socialize. But for many people, the practice of Judo is a hobby that is a lot of fun.

Practicing Judo Today
Because so many people are learning Judo around the world, there are many variants and schools of thought. The type of training you receive will depend largely upon your goals for learning Judo. Someone who enrolls in Judo for fitness may study techniques that vary from those learned by someone who competes in tournaments or someone who is training to use Judo as a form of self defense against an attacker.

There are lots of options for learning Judo. Private instructors offer individual lessons, but you can also take lessons in a class setting at the college level, at community centers, and in gyms and health clubs. For self-learners there are several internet resources, books, and self defense videos available to teach you the basics of Judo.

Skill and Rank
A system of ranking has been established within judo that has spread and is used in other martial arts programs. The rank system is designed to indicate a person’s level of leadership, knowledge, and ability. Different ranks are established for youth participates under the age of 17. Colored belts are used to denote ranks, and black belts work their way through ten additional black belt levels. The ranking system is used as a way to encourage students of the sport to continue the process of learning and achievement.

Kodokan Goshin Jutsu
Kodokan Goshin Jutsu is a specific branch of Judo. This discipline is comprised of 21 combat self defense techniques that can be used against an attacker who is either armed or unarmed. There are two sets of unarmed tactics and three set of armed tactics with weapons. Individual techniques included in this training are designed for fights that are close-in, others are for longer-range fights and they include techniques that use a knife, stick, or gun.
Before You Get Started
If you are interested in training, make sure you are healthy enough to participate in the activity. Look for qualified and skilled instructors that will ensure your safety during training.