Clear Self Defense Techniques (Applications of Martial Arts Bow)

Here at Clear’s Martial Arts we don’t put much stock in the formalities and pageantry associated with Martial Arts and Kung Fu movies.

(If you haven’t yet learned basic manners and how to get along with others, you really don’t need to be training our material yet.)

However, there are a few formalities that have direct martial applications.

One of these is the martial arts bow. Different systems have different bows but they all are full of quick and dirty street applications.

This is from the DVD “Kung Fu Bow and Fighting Applications” where we teach the fighting apps of the bow we use in Clear’s Silat classes along with the apps for several common martial arts bows.

This DVD is included with the Clear Defense package that will be on sale April 19 – 21.

Power Striking Package

Power-Striking-Package

Hit Harder, Faster & Save over $150

This 5 disc package will rapidly increase your striking power at short distances and build explosive speed.

Training includes:

  • 3 Inch Punching, 1 Inch Punches, and No Distance strikes.
  • Learn to deliver a minimum of 3 – 5 hits per second (and sustain that rate of fire for at least 5 minutes.)
  • Eliminate wasted motion.
  • Become ‘Suddenly quick.’ So the opponent wont see it coming.
  • How to increase power as you increase speed.
  • Efficiency training for faster strikes (while actually moving slower.)
  • The Basic Seven power building exercises
  • The Advanced “Insane” Seven power building exercises

Package includes the following DVDs:

  • Power Striking: 7 Insane Ways to Triple Your Striking Power in 30 Days or Less – $147
  • No Distance Power Striking (2 discs) – $250
  • Speed Striking (2 discs) – $250

The 5 Elements of Martial Arts Speed Training

In Martial Arts speed is essential,
…but simple being fast isn’t good enough.

No matter how much natural speed you may have, proper training will beat it.

The good news is that no matter how slow or clumsy your are, if you put in the work, you can become fast.

There are 5 elements of speed training in the martial arts.

1. Power must be present

As soon as you tell someone to move fast they throw out good body mechanics and leave behind all their power.

Not only speed is useless if you can’t do anything with it, but true speed cannot be had without good body mechanics.

So, not only did they throw away power for a small speed gain, they throw away the potential of becoming truly fast.

Good body mechanics are essential for both power and speed.

Starting by training the principles of power and you will have built a foundation for speed as well.

2. Physical Conditioning

This is the most obvious and often over emphasized of the 5. You do need to put in some time preparing the body for explosive movement by training the tendons and ligaments. You also need to practice moving fast occasionally.

Here are two exercises that strengthen the body in preparation for fast explosive movement. (Among other benefits.)

Clear’s Bagua Exercise #1 for Internal Power, Strength & Flexibility

Wing Chun Lesson 1 – How to build Iron Body & Internal Power

3. Economy of motion

This is deceptively simple.

Don’t move more than you need to.

Most martial artists have much more wasted movement than they realize and to make matters worse they pause in their movement frequently.

Unfortunately, they move too quickly to notice these errors.

In an effort to be fast they are missing the very errors that are slowing them down.

The majority of your sparring and partner drills should be practice at an excruciatingly slow speed.

..and even when you do train faster, make sure to always move slower than your opponent.

If you are moving efficiently, their speed won’t matter.

If they beat you because of speed then you have efficiency errors. Slow it back down until you are going slow enough to catch the errors and correct them.

4. Suddenly Quick

Your speed is useless if your opponent knows what you’re going to do before you do it.

Your intentions must be hidden. You must be able to work from any position.

You must be able to go from nothing to something in an instant. Most people have a ‘get ready’ stage between nothing and something. Even when this is subtle it will make your speed less effective.

5. Relax

Relaxation is almost a prerequisite.

It doesn’t matter how much other speed training you do. If you are tense you cannot be fast.

Tension limits your ability to fully engage your body’s mass, violating rule #1. It slows down your physical movement negating the benefits of physical conditioning (#2) and limits your mobility (#3 economy of motion.) Tension also greatly increases the visibility of any telegraphing you do (#4 suddenly quick.)

Remember, there is always room for improvement in relaxation. and the benefits of relaxation are exponential in nature. Even small gains will have significant benefits.

Speed with Age:

Inevitably, a certain amount of speed will leave us with age.

However, if you train all 5 of these principles properly, you can maximize your full speed potential.

…and more importantly you’ll be quicker than all the young whippersnappers.

Learn to build explosive Speed and Power with our new DVD:

https://www.clearsilat.com/speed-striking

Is this common Kung Fu myth slowing you down and robbing you of power?

A common myth in the martial arts is that you should tense at the moment of impact.

Like any good myth it’s based on fact:

kinetic energy (KE) equals one half mass times velocity squared (KE=1/2m x v²)

This formula shows that we need to increase speed and mass to get more power.

So the strategy is to do everything you can to get your fist moving as fast as possible then right at the moment of impact you tense your entire body. The theory is that by tensing your whole body you are now striking with your entire mass instead of the mass of your fist or arm.

In practice this will only get you so far.

If you have major alignment errors, then you can use tension to limit the amount of power you lose at the joints.

However, this tension puts a limit on how much power you can get into your strike and it can cause injury.

Here’s how it works:

Alignment errors separate the body limiting how much mass you can get into your strike.

If your shoulder is not aligned properly, then you can’t get the mass of your body engaged and only your arm mass will be in the strike.

Tension also separates the body, but not as much.

So by tensing the shoulder you’ll get more mass engaged (but still a fraction of what it could be.)

This tension causes some major problems:

  1. It slows you down. You are freezing everything for an instant. This limits your momentum (part of why it limits your power.) It also means that your next strike comes on instant later. It may not seem like much, but in a life and death situation every instant counts and these stops add up quick. An opponent who doesn’t make this error can quickly be several steps ahead while using less effort than you.
  1. In addition to the long term health effects of tension, anytime you focus force on part of the body that is misaligned you increase the risk of injury. Tension can reduce this risk in the short term (unless the force is great enough to overcome the tension.) However, it also serves to focus the force on the tense area.

In the example above, if you tense your shoulder during every strike to compensate for the alignment error, eventually you will develop a bad shoulder.

We see this a lot.

The most common issues are bad backs, shoulders & knees from years of using tension to compensate for poor alignment while playing a sport, doing physical labor or training.

The solution is simple.

Work on your body mechanics!

Good alignment means less power is lost at the joints. You can stay relaxed, engage more body mass and you can move faster.

Not only can you move faster and hit harder, you are much less prone to short and long term injury.

To learn more about the body mechanics of speed (without sacrificing power) go check out the new Speed Striking DVD.

Wednesday is the last day it’s on sale.

https://www.clearsilat.com/speed-striking

The Marketing Gimmick that’s damaged Kung Fu

There’s an insidious marketing gimmick that’s wormed it’s way into the martial arts.

In fact, it’s become so pervasive that it’s become ‘common sense wisdom’ at this point.

Many teachers & students spread this myth without even realizing it’s a marketing gimmick.

You’ll recognize it when you hear it, and like all good lies it’s partially based it truth, so bear with me and I’ll break down why it’s so effective and why it’s so destructive.

It can come in many forms but usually it goes something like this:

“It takes many years to learn the martial arts.”

“There is no quick fix to becoming proficient in any martial art”

“Becoming proficient in any martial art system (meaning a foundation with good basics) takes a few years with hard practice.”

“Very few can actually utilize Taiji well enough to fight! This idea that you can use Taiji to fight with after a few years, is ludicrous….”

This message is very powerful and it resonates with a lot of people.

There is some truth to it. Complex arts like Tai Chi or Bagua do take a long time to master. There are many advanced skills which take many years to develop. You will continue learning new things about these arts your entire life.

After all, the term ‘Kung Fu’ does mean “skill through hard work over time.” Students are told to “eat bitter.”

This message also builds on the Kung Fu movie mythology of wise men training on mountain tops and grueling training montages.

Also, a lot of folks are fed up (rightly so) with our on-demand culture where everybody wants everything now and we want to cure all our problems with a quick fix pill.

And so this myth appeals to us greatly and it resonates with our sense of truth and righteousness.

Now, here’s the problem.

Mastering an art and basic proficiency are light years apart.

These arts were created for survival.

When old kung fu masters taught their kids, do you think they said,

“Son, in a few decades you’ll be able to use what I’m showing you to protect yourself in this violent world.”

No, they taught their kids how to protect themselves as quickly as possible.

Sure they spent many years honing their skill and refining it and learning more advanced things.

…but basic, I can use this to save my life, functionality? They taught that very quickly to their kids.

So how did the time it takes to master an art get confused with how long basic proficiency takes?

Like I said, it’s a marketing gimmick.

If you sell someone the idea that it takes years to become proficient, then they’ll keep coming back for a long time and you don’t have to deliver very much.

It’s a way for the teacher to avoid responsibility for a lack of skill in their students.

What if the student doesn’t listen, they don’t work hard enough, maybe they just learn differently and need to be shown in a different way.

With this myth the teacher doesn’t have to take responsibility for the effectiveness of their teaching method. They don’t have to learn how to connect with people and how to teach in different ways for different people. They don’t have to be there for their students to help them learn how to learn and develop good practicing methods.

They can blame the art.

…and they can keep this going for years or decades before the student catches on.

Teachers who talk about getting results in short periods of time are not common.

…and for good reason.

If you tell someone that they can learn a skill quickly, then you have to deliver.

Anyway, I’m putting away my soapbox for now.

If you’d like to learn the self defense method that Sigung Clear teaches his children, it’s here:

https://www.clearsilat.com/silat-dvd/clear-defense-street-self-defense-13948.html

Don’t neglect your martial responsibility!

Silat05You have two responsibilities as a Martial Artist.

Meet new people & make new friends.

Do this for yourself.

Your art was not created in a vacuum and you cannot grow in one either. Get to know people who train different arts and you will get better because of it.

Do this for your art.

People discover other martial arts through the people who embody them. no-one can discover and appreciate your martial art unless they have friends who are highly skilled in that art.

Do this for the Martial Arts.

Segmenting the martial arts by style, lineage or method only weakens us all. Bickering, infighting and petty politics drives people away from all martial arts.

Seek out opportunities to meet martial artists you would not normally interact with.

Find events that are dominated by Martial Arts Styles you have little or no experience with and get to know the people there.

The more people you get to know the better your art will be.

This is why Kuntao & Silat are as effective as they are. Because of all the mixing, intermingling, “cross contamination” and exposure to the arts from India, Tibet, Thailand, China, The Philippines and of course Indonesia & Malaysia among others.

Now a lot of that exposure was through warfare, piracy and other forms of violence.

Ideally we use other methods. Like friendship and cooperation to get that exposure.

Of course, you need to train hard and study good material so you can be a quality representative of these arts.

I recommend starting here:

www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

To Boldly Go Where No Martial Artist Has Gone Before…

Silat03The Internal Martial Arts are Incredibly awesome.

Anyone who understands this will study them for the rest of their lives.

This is fact.

Undisputable.

A teacher’s most important job is to communicate this fact effectively to their students.

That’s the hard part.

…but if the teacher can find some way to get that fact to sink in then their work is done.

The student will take over.

Take charge of their education, learn, seek out new facts and information and boldly go where no martial artist has gone before.

The teacher may continue to facilitate that process, but they are no longer a required component.

If the teacher disappears the student will find another way to continue their studies.

That is our goal.

To find an effective way to communicate how incredibly awesome these arts are.
That’s what each class, seminar & workshop and DVD is about.

Every youtube video and facebook post.

That’s what the Internal Combat Arts Course is for. http://www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

That’s what each and every blog post is about.

Sharing information is simply a tool that teachers use to empower their students and communicate awesomeness. So that one day the student will take the art to a new level. One above and beyond anywhere we’ve gone before.

…and if you teach, that is your job.

Just that one task.

Figure out how to communicate the incredible awesomeness of the Internal Martial Arts.

You won’t reach everybody all the time.

In fact, you probably won’t reach anybody most of the time.

…but that’s ok.

We’ll just keep practicing and try again tomorrow.

Is your training past it’s expiration date?

Training Half-LifeTraining methods have an expiration date.

Like a piece of uranium.

Now, a single atom of uranium is highly unpredictable.

It could break down and release it’s energy in the next second, or it could hang around for billions of years. If you get a chunk of uranium things get a little more predictable.

We still don’t know when exactly the whole thing will decay but we do know that in 704 million years half of it will be gone.

704 million years is the half life of uranium.

Your training methods also have a half life.

The half life of a training method is the amount of time it takes to gain half of all the skill you can gain from that training method.

This is a very important.

…because from here on out you will never gain as much skill from this method as you already have.

And the amount of skill you gain will continue to become less and less.

Your progress will slow and stagnate unless you learn something new.

Of course it’s easy to find someone who will tell you to you should continue to learn.

But that’s not enough.

An open mind, an empty cup, going to workshops…

…these are the prerequisites. By themselves they are not enough.

You also need to know WHEN to learn something new and WHAT to learn next.

The first requires training logs and journals to track your progress. The second requires research and study.

I recommend starting with the 16 week Internal Combat Arts Course for a step by step study of Tai Chi, Bagua, Xing Yi, Qigong & Kuntao Silat.

http://www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

Every skill also has a learning curve.

That’s the amount of time it takes to develop functional use of that skill.

Some skills you can learn today and use tomorrow. Others could take 10 years of training to become usable.

The length of that learning curve depends on where you start.

So here’s the cool part…

Say I have a skill that takes six months to learn from scratch.

You could start now and spend 6 months of hard training before you begin to be able to use it…

OR we could find a second skill. One that’s related to the first.

Say… something with a 1 week learning curve and a 3 month half life.

So you have something you can use after 1 week.

…and you’re experience with second skill will cut 4 or 5 months off the learn curve of the first skill.

This is why learning from someone who is skilled in Kung Fu is a whole lot different than learning from someone who is skilled at teaching Kung Fu.

WARNING: Ignore Sammo Hung At Your Peril.

SammoI was sitting at my desk last night (couldn’t sleep) when my eye fell on a Kung Fu movie that I had been neglecting to watch for months.

Turns out it was a perfect example of the eclectic Kuntao Silat philosophy in action.

A young man, obsessed with kung fu, is torn between the only two kung fu schools in town.

He can’t decide which to study with and both schools strictly forbid studying with the other.

Fortunately for our young hero, he’s saved from The Bad Guy’s Henchmen by none other than Sammo Hung. Who gives him this advice,

“This situation is like food.

Some people like chicken,
others like fish,
others prefer vegetable and bean curd.

I like it all.

As long as it’s edible, I can eat anything.

I don’t care, that’s why I’m so fat.”

So, he takes the advice. Learns from both schools, and he does quite well for year.

Then, inspite of his new skill, he’s beaten up by The Bad Guy’s Henchmen, found out by both his teachers and kicked out of both schools to fend for himself.

Fortunately, The Man Who Eats Everything is still around running a wine business.

So, after a grueling training montage with his new teacher, our Young Hero beats up the The Bad Guys Henchmen, kills the Bad Guy and beats up the Bad Guys Brother (who’s been training in Manchuria for last three years preparing for revenge.)

Oh, and the feuding kung fu schools realize the error of their ways and are reunited.

The moral of the story?

When Sammo Hung says to eat everything, you eat.

…and when you’re looking for teachers, look for ones who don’t limit themselves by style or affiliation.

That’s why the Internal Combat Arts course contains Bagua, Xing Yi, Kuntao Silat, Tai Chi and Qigong.

Each of these arts can work just fine by itself,

…but they’re so much more powerful when you let them support one another, and feed off each other and grow together.

Listen to Sammo Hung.

Click the link and join now.

www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

The Myth of Style VS Fighter (Kung Fu for the Slow and Unexceptional)

kung-fu-for-the-unexceptional
Stop me if you’ve heard this one.

“The fighter makes the style.”
“The fight in the fighter is more important than the style they practice.”
“Any style is good if you apply yourself.”

I’m not sure how this myth got started, but I can tell you why it sticks around.

Most martial artists don’t have reliable training methods.

The don’t use a carefully designed, step by step, curriculum that works for the vast majority of people the vast majority of the time.

  • Instead they have some forms
  • Some techniques
  • a few applications
  • some sparring

It’s all lumped together and the only folks who do well with it are exceptionally gifted or hardworking.

…but instead of examining the curriculum for problems they just blame it on their students.

Thing is, the “best” NASCAR driver can not win the Indy 500 in my ‘99 Ford Escort.

I recently saw it put this way,

“Material beats method”

Basically it doesn’t matter how hard you study or how good your teacher is. If you pick the wrong material you won’t get very far.

I don’t know about you but I’m not particularly gifted and I make procrastination an art. So I need a system that will work for the slow and unexceptional.

I need the most efficient and effective methods I can find.

Fortunately for me, Sigung Clear has been studying and researching self defense for over 40 years.

He’s constantly looking for the best and most effective training methods.

…So you don’t have to be gifted, or talented, or exceptional.

All you have to do is show up, do the work and keep at it.

The Clear Defense Method is the distillation of Sigung Clear’s 40 years of training.

We’ve taught it to all types, Old, Young, strong & feeble.

It can be learned quickly & effectively. And it works, even for the slow and unexceptional.

Kung Fu Challenge Matches

Kung Fu ChallengeOccasionally folks have questions about the validity or effectiveness of a martial art, system or school and will issue a “challenge.”

Typically this is a request to test the school in question by participating in a “challenge match” against one of their students or teachers.

A challenge match is a contest of skill pitting the challenger against a member of the school or system being challenged.

Traditionally the party being challenged determines the rules of the challenge match and the challenger must defeat the senior students of a school before they can challenge the teacher or head of a system.

Since he began teaching in 1983 Sigung Richard Clear has had an open door policy. All are welcome to come visit, participate in training, ask questions and test our methods.

Clear’s Silat & Street Kung Fu “challenge” policy.

Step 1: Schedule a time to visit.

We are too busy and too old for this S#!+ but we do want to make sure you get adequate time and attention to address your concerns.

Contact us to schedule a time to visit our headquarters in Maryville TN USA. Usually this will be a Thursday evening from 7:30 to 10ish. However, we travel frequently so you must make arrangements in advance.

Step 2: Participate in a Class.

We understand that our training methods are unusual. In most cases a little live training with a some Q&A is more than enough to address any concerns someone unfamiliar with our system will have.

You’ll be partnered with a senior student who has the skill and knowledge to answer most questions. You’ll be able to participate in class and you’ll get to learn about what we do and why we do it in a friendly & safe atmosphere.

After all, we just want to be your friend.

Step 3: Challenge Match.

If you still have questions or concerns after class we are happy to discuss them with you. If you still feel a challenge match is necessary we will discuss rules, match you with a suitable opponent and let you try your best. (within reason. ex: Full contact is OK. Live blades and firearms are NOT.)

Additional Requirements:

  • All interactions will be filmed.
  • You must sign a waiver before class releasing us of any liability for any injuries you receive during training and giving us permission to film the interaction and use your likeness on video.
  • Sigung Clear is eager to participate in a challenge against you. However, he is 50, type 1 diabetic and has kids to think about. So we’re not going to let him, unless you demonstrate that you can train in a friendly and safe manner during class and prove yourself against one of us (his senior students) first.
  • You are welcome to bring an assistant to to film the interaction for your own records.

Not your Traditional Kung Fu Tradition.

When people hear the words traditional or lineage they think of a single unbroken line from master to student.

One continuous unbroken thread passed down throughout the ages.

That’s nice.

But there are other traditions.

Ours is an eclectic tradition.

A tradition of research and study. Using what works. Constant testing and research.
It’s what Sigung Clear does, it’s what his teachers did and what their teachers did before them, and so on…

Not a single thread but many,

…woven together becoming ever stronger.

Understanding how these arts are different and how they fit together certainly gives you a broader perspective…

..but what surprises many people is that this also gives you a deeper understanding of each individual art.

www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

How to make sure your teachers will teach: Avoiding the cult of secrecy in Martial Arts.

In the traditional Chinese martial arts including Tai Chi Chuan, Xing Yi Chuan and Ba Gua Zhang there is a culture of hiding information.

It is not done by all, but, it is done by many.

Most often this is seen as private or behind “closed doors” (disciples only) information and public open door information.

Historically (prior to the proliferation of guns) this made sense for safety and security. In the modern world it is much easier to pick up a gun than it is to spend 6 months to several years learning how to perform high level skills for fighting.

When it came to the health aspect of these arts it also made sense to hide information due to the need for personal security. If my family and tribe are really extra healthy and my enemies are not very healthy then we are in a much better position to defend ourselves.

But in the modern world this is just plain messed up.

If a teacher wishes to keep the secrets by only teaching a small handful of folks and not teaching publicly then I feel they are completely within their rights to do so.

If they are going to teach publicly and charge money for what they are teaching then it is a different matter entirely.

I find it slightly hard to grasp the following scenario and yet in the Chinese internal arts this is often the case:

A teacher has a method and the means to make folks healthy and publicly offers classes.

The students know or feel that the teacher has the info and they want to be healthy and want to have the health benefits the teacher has.

They pay the teacher good money (and often a lot of it) to learn how. But, the teacher is not teaching them the real way to be healthy?!?!????

The same goes for self protection skills!

In the modern day, I am completely against this policy of secrecy for a number of reasons including what I consider the unethical circumstance I detailed in the last paragraph.

One of the biggest complaints that I have against this policy is that it has caused the quality of these arts to be greatly diminished almost to the point of causing them to flat out disappear.

Really high quality practitioners of these arts are hard to find.

The first and foremost thing I dislike about this deception & abuse of power (from teachers who really do have the goods) regarding secrecy is the situation where a teacher has a few folks who get the real thing and everyone else gets crap.

The thing that I really don’t like about it is when high level teachers (who have the goods) do this and then charge for the crap as if the student is getting the goods. This IMHO amounts to fraud!

Also, today, there are a lot of folks who are masquerading as the real thing when they are not. This includes but is not limited to folks who have a “few” higher level things right but who are missing many of the other skills relative to the art they claim to teach. This culture of high level teachers hiding information while charging for it and teaching crap instead creates the environment where folks who do not really have the skills can “also” rip off the public.

In any other buyer / seller situation fraud can be criminally actionable and is certainly subject to civil action. (By the way, I am not an attorney and nothing I write here should be construed as legal advice).

There are a number of simple solutions to the problem.

First and foremost, teach the real thing that works.

Most of the skills in these arts take a lot of time and effort to train and develop. They are not quickly or easily attained.

Even when teaching folks correctly only a handful will get to the real intermediate or advanced material because most folks simply won’t put in the time and work required.

Another way to do this is for potential students to take some responsibility. Vet the teacher thoroughly.

1. Do they have something of value to teach you?

2. Will make you noticeably healthier, stronger, better able to defend yourself and will work for you in old age as well or better than you can now?

3. Can the teacher do something that you would like to be able to do?

– Ask them how long and how much time it will take for you to be able to perform the skill. The best answer will tell you how long on average it takes for a student of theirs to learn it and specifically how much it will cost you to learn it. If it is a skill that is gained over a long time of training then ask for benchmarks that you can use to really gauge progress.

If the teacher is vague or evasive with their answers or simply seems completely unable or unwilling to answer the questions then BEWARE!

Pay close attention so that you can reasonably pick up the difference between con-man tactics and someone who simply has not considered teaching their art with these benchmarks in mind. Remember that it is them who are selling and you who “MAY or MAY NOT” be buying.

4. Does the average student that has been with them for 6 months to a couple of years have some ability with these skills that makes it obvious that the skills are actually being taught?

– Ask to visit a class and speak with students who have been attending for 6 months to 2 years. Talking to folks who are indoor disciples doesn’t cut it because they may be getting the goods but it is not guarantee that you ever will.

5. If and when appropriate and if it is a skill that pertains to body quality or self defense ask to try out a class and feel / experience the teacher or one or more of his senior students. IMHO, you should really feel & experience the teacher or senior students of theirs if they are making some fairly lofty claims and you cannot figure out from looking if they are skilled enough to really increase your current abilities.

Of course it’s hard to go check someone out first hand and feel what they have when you live halfway across the country or on the other side of the world.

That’s what’s so great about todays world of Youtube and DVDs.

You can check someone out on Youtube, you can try some of their DVDs. Sometimes you can even chat with them by email.

It makes it much easier to get a feel for what a teacher has and will teach before you put in all the time, effort and money to work with them live.

If you’re curious about what you can learn from me, go check out the Internal Combat Arts Course:

www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

You’ll learn a bunch of fun stuff and it will give you a really good idea of whether our programs our a good fit for you.

Best Wishes,
Richard Clear

Slow Kung Fu is Better (and being faster doesn’t work.)

Why slower?

So, first the training benefits of slower. (we’ll get the martial application in a minute.)

Start slow to learn then speed it up.

Obviously you need to train at medium and fast speeds on a regular basis.

The thing with the Internal Martial Arts is that we’re always adding layers of depth and refining to a higher level.

So, for example, in the Tai Chi section of the Internal Combat Arts course…

www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

…you learn how to dissipate a punch using movement & softness.

You start slow. That way you learn the skill and no one gets hurt.

Then you have 2 options.

1) Slowly increase the speed until you can do this against a full speed attacker.

OR

2) Refine the skill.

Stay slow or go even slower. Use less movement. Use more softness. While getting even better dissipation of the incoming force.

Of course you should do both.

You also learn a bunch of different ways to generate power in the Internal Combat Arts course. (Around 6 – 8 different methods. I’ll count up exactly how many soon.)

So you learn several of them. Then you have the same two options with each of them.

You use option 2 to continually refine them and increase the amount of power they generate.

Then there’s a third option.

3) Combine.

You take the power methods and the dissipation skill and you start combining them. So they all happen at once. Correctly.

Then we’re back to the first two options… …and of course we do both.

It’s a never ending cycle of refining skills and combining skills.

…and so the ‘start slow to learn’ part of that first statement never ends.

Now the martial benefit of slowness.

We have to assume the attackers are faster than us.

If you don’t make this assumption you are in for a very unpleasant surprise,

…if you ever have to use your art for survival.

So, we must train to use Position, Timing to overcome faster opponents.

(Of course we build speed too.)

The good news is that not only will Position and Timing beat speed.

Position and Timing will continually improve as long as you work on them.

…at some point your speed will decline no matter what you do.

So, if you move faster than your partner you are making a dangerous assumption and building bad habits.

(Moving sooner than your partner is ok. Faster is not.)

Moving at the same speed as your partner(s) is ok.

Moving slower than your partner(s) (and learning to still completely dominate the situation) is better.

The way we often determine speed on slow drills & sparring is:

Go as fast as you can while still being able to see EVERYTHING you and your partner are doing from head to toe. Training this way will rapidly increase the speed at which you perceive everything that is happening around you.

When you start to get good at moving slowly your partners will begin to walk right into things because your position is smarter and they are moving faster than what they can effectively perceive.

So, take all the different push hands games and drills in the Internal Combat Arts Course and spend time training them at an excruciatingly slow speed.

If you put in the time to do that, you’ll find your skill actually increases faster.

One last thing, instead of starting slow and speeding up. Try starting slow and slowing down. This will magnify the benefits discussed above and you’ll get other things out of it as well.

Greatly Improve Your Kung Fu Training in 3 Simple Steps

Here are 3 simple ways to greatly improve your Kung Fu training.

Apply them to your form, your techniques, your applications and especially your drills & sparring.

Just a word of warning first. Simple does not mean easy.

1. LOWER

Everything you train today should be a little lower than it was yesterday. And make tomorrow a little lower than today.

Keep at it until your thighs are parallel to the floor.

Don’t compromise structure or softness.

Once you can move as comfortably, easily and softly at thighs parallel as you you can standing up then your work here is done.

2. SLOWER

How slow can you train without stopping?

Now work on going slower.

Make sure to maintain constant, smooth movement the whole time.

No starts and stops.

This is especially important training for partner drills and sparring.

3. SOFTER

There’s no end to this one.

Sigung Clear is much softer than I am and he’s still working at it.

His teacher’s, in their 60’s, 70’s & 80’s are much softer than he is and they’re still working at it.

So relax more and deeper and more completely.

…and then become even softer.

Lower, Slower and Softer.

These are not fun to work on.

…mostly because progress feels slow and the more you improve the more you realize how much more room for improvement you still have.

Don’t get discouraged.

Kung Fu training is supposed to taste bitter. Internal Kung Fu even more so.

Even a little bit, done consistently will produce great results…

As long as you have good training methods to start with.

Like the stuff in the 16 week Internal Combat Arts Course. If you join that program and practice the material you’ll get a lot of great stuff out of it.

But if you train that stuff AND apply Lower, Slower, Softer the benefits will be greatly enhanced.

http://www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

 

The Kung Fu Con Exposed by Martin Luther King, Jr.

This very important quote by Martin Luther King, Jr. has been around for a while.

…but martial artists seem to have missed it for some reason.

I guess they’re just too busy quoting Bruce Lee and Mister Miyagi to notice this ‘secret’ hidden in plain site.

If they had paid attention it could have saved them a lot of time and effort.

Here it is:

“Justice too long delayed is justice denied.”

This means if something takes too long, it’s worthless.

…but we’ve been trained and conditioned to think otherwise.

Over and over we’ve been told that these arts…

…that Internal Kung Fu, takes a lot of hard work over a long long time before you can use it.

Everytime you hear that remember:

“Skill too long delayed is skill denied.”

Sure, SOME things take a while to learn, and others take a while to master.

However, FUNCTIONAL SKILL can be developed very quickly.

The old Kuntao masters knew this.

They also knew that if their students couldn’t fight very well and very quickly, the students wouldn’t be around long enough to learn anything that took a while.

That’s why these methods are so powerful.

It’s why they’re so effective.

I’m surprised more people don’t teach this way.

I’m surprised more students don’t expect this from their teachers.

There’s so many people out there stumbling around in the dark, learning form after form, memorizing abstract sayings and studying classic texts…

…when they could be out there learning to USE the art they love instead.

Our goal is to help people make that transition from abstract form and theory to practical functional skill.

If you’d like to join the our other students who have made that transition, go check out the Internal Combat Arts Course.

http://www.clearsilat.com/internal-combat-arts

…and the other cool thing about developing functional skill quickly is that it builds a much more solid foundation for advanced skill later on.