Battle Box: Martial Arts Training Involution #189

Wow, my numbers are up almost 40% — over 10,000 views in 2019!  I hope that means you guys think my posts are getting better and more interesting!

But enough about me.  Let’s talk about you.


Question: When practicing self-defense against sincere training partners, either empty-handed or armed with training weapons, which do find more troublesome?(A) wide, circular attacks or (B) straight, direct attacks?

And which do you find more intimidating? (A) single attacks in isolation or (B) multiple fast attacks in combinations or chains?

I hope you answered “B” to both of those questions.  There are no unqualified rules in fighting.  But, for the most part, the hardest attacks to defend against are the ones that are fast and straight and delivered in quick combos.  Which means that, by-and-large anyway, that’s how you should be delivering them.

I call this “staying in the battle box.”  The battle box runs from the eyes down to the groin and is the width of the torso.  In today’s T.I. you’re going to practice staying in the box.

Battle Box: Martial Arts Training Involution #189

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes.  I like to do 2 minutes each of jump rope, light calisthenics, shadowboxing, and dynamic stretching — or I just do 8 minutes of MBF.
  • 15 min Half Pyramid.  Set a countdown timer for 15 minutes and start with 1 each of Drop Duck-Unders, Narrow Push-ups, Crunches Legs Elevated, and Shoulder Rolls.  Then do 2 of each, 3 of each etc. See how how high you can climb before the timer beeps (I made it to 8).¹
  • 15 mins in the battle box with fists or wooden training weapon.  Set a timer for 3 x 5:00 (no breaks) and focus on form.  Round 1, shadowbox in the box.  Round 2, attack your heavy bag in the box.  Round 3, hit your double-end ball in the box  Tip: To change the angle of attack without putting your arms outside the box, turn your waist, flex your knees (this is especially important when attacking low), and move your whole body left, right, up, down, in and out.
  • 10 minutes of meditation or contemplation.  After you cool down — for about 3 minutes or until your heart rate is below 100 bpm —  have a seat and do 10 minutes of internal work.

¹ For the math nerds: the formula for the total reps in a Half Pyramid, where peak = P is:

Example: If you complete a Half Pyramid to 8 reps you will have executed 36  reps of each exercise because 8² = 64.  64 – 8 = 56.  56 / 2 = 28.  And 28 + 8 = 36.

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