Tag Archives: cabal fang

The 3 Keys to Practical Weapon Skill

Are you working out, or training?  Are you actually getting more skilled with your weapon?  If so, can you prove it?  These are some of the questions answered in this week’s martial arts video, “The 3 Keys to Practical Weapon Skill” at the bottom of this post.

If this kind of thing appeals to you, consider signing up for a martial arts distance learning program.  The Cabal Fang Hermit Path program is 100% free and provided by the non-profit I founded in 2009 — click here to sign up today!

Interested in the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period — 1607 to 1912?  Click here to find out more about my Bobcat Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble program — just  $19.99/month.   

Or how about a bi-weekly email to designed to inspire and motivate you find your inspiration,  establish and hit goals, and feel more alive?  SHIFT your OUTLOOK.  SHIFT your EXPECTATIONS.  SHIFT your POSSIBILITIES.  Sign up here.

Drag Strip: Martial Arts Training Involution #199

You don’t need a fancy sled to do drag work. This 95 lb tire feels like 200 lbs when being dragged across concrete.

 

 

“There’s no sense getting serious about my training until…”

Stop delaying.  Stop surfing YouTube for the perfect training tricks, drills, tools and secrets. Stop combing magazines and books and websites searching for the perfect program or tool.

Strip away the bullshit. The training you do right now is 100% better than the training you put off until next week.

Shut your laptop, turn off your tablet or phone, and complete the training session below.  Tired,  weak, sore?  Old?  Rehabbing from an injury?  I was all of those things when I did this training session.  Modify the exercises to suit your limitations.  Lower the weights, reps or intensity as needed.  Anything you do is better than nothing.

Strip it down.

Drag Strip: Martial Arts Training Involution #199

*  Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. I generally do 8 minutes of MBF or either 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, or light heavy bag work.

*  16 minutes of survival martial arts.  Set a timer and complete 2 minutes each of Drags, Strikes, Shoulder Rolls, Strikes, IMT Sprints, Strikes, Drags and Strikes.  Take as few 12-second rest breaks as you need to finish.  For the the striking rounds, you can shadowbox, work a heavy bag, or do whatever you want.  I did tomahawk swings, braces, toe and eye strikes and cocking drills. Here’s how the rest work.

  • Drags: Go out to the shed or garage and find something to drag.  Here’s a rig I made with a trashcan lid.  Cargo straps make perfect harnesses. 
  • Shoulder Rolls: If you’re a martial artist and you don’t know how to do a shoulder roll, that’s a problem.  Watch this.
  • IMT Sprints.  IMT stands for Individual Movement Technique, and it means running, dropping to avoid being targeted, and popping up to run some more. Read more here.

*  “Stripping it down” meditation.  Cool down for about 3 minutes, then set a timer for 10 minutes.  Have a seat in your meditative posture of choice and regulate your breathing.  Leave your eyes open, and do not fidget, wiggle or scratch.  Now think about what makes you special.  What makes you unique?  Your favorite foods, colors, movies, books?  Your behaviors, your little quirks?  No, that’s just the bullshit that make you just like everybody else.  Meditate past your mask and seek the “true I.”


If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books and other products.  Why not check them out?

 

Stubborn: Martial Arts Training Involution #198

I went to lunch with a friend of mine the other day and he snapped this picture of me at the soda fountain because he thought it was funny.  I told him, “I got news for you buddy, I been drinking from that fountain since I was knee high to a grasshopper.”

What can I say?  My superpower is passion.  My kryptonite is patience (but I’m working on it).

This T.I. was created using the whacky dice that I sell here: https://www.mitch.store/

Anyway, true to form, I’m here to very stubbornly tell you — preach, yell, holler, and fuss! — that you need to make sure that your fitness work dovetails with your martial work as closely as possible.

STUBBORN: Martial Arts Training Involution #198

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. I generally do 8 minutes of MBF or either 2-3 minutes each of (a) something aerobic, like jogging of jumping rope (b) some light calisthenics like Half Squats, Push-ups on knees, Touching toes, Arm Swings etc. and (c) shadowboxing or light heavy bag work.
  • 20 minute pyramid of  6 martial fitness exercises.    Jump, Sprawl ‘n’ Punch, Smearing Push-ups, Shoulder Carry, Switches, and Step-ups.  This will really build the kind of strength you need for grappling and self-defense.  Get yourself a heavy bag you can manage (I used a #45) and set a timer for 10 minutes.  Start with 1 rep of each exercise, then 2, 3, 4 etc.  Climb until the timer beeps.  Finish the set you’re on and then descend.  If you don’t slack off, you should finish up just before the timer beeps. See video below for details. A full pyramid up to 6 is a nice target number for this drill.
  • 10+ minutes of sacred reading.  Pick a book that’s good for your spiritual development and spend some time reading.  Doesn’t have to be overtly religious, like the Holy Bible or the Tao Te Ching — it can be something that promotes mindfulness, wisdom, or philosophy.  Read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Occidental Mythology, Modern Man in Search of a Soul or whatever you like.  Meditation, contemplation, prayer and spiritual reading are the four cornerstones of the spiritual life and none should be neglected.


If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books and other products.  Why not check them out?

 

TCB: Martial Arts Training Involution #197

TCB means “Takin’ Care of Business,” which is also the title of a great song by Bachman Turner Overdrive about how working hard at what you love isn’t work at all, whereas punching a clock doing something you hate is a “slaving job to get your pay.”

My redneck Bench Press set-up.

Sprinkled throughout this post are some shots of me lifting homemade weights at 6:30 AM in the crappy lean-to I put out behind my tool shed.  It was 30° F.

And yet it was a blast.   Because if you love what you’re doing it ain’t work.  It’s art.

If you love your art you will do whatever it takes to make it, including fashion your own weights from auto tires, decking boards, tarps, and old metal pipes.  And you will do it with joy and a sense of pride.  This whole set-up cost me just a little over $100.00.

This is my yoke for safely doing Back Squats solo.

I used to hate the thought of lifting weights.  But when I tried it and found out how much stronger it made me, and how more effective as a martial artist, I was hooked.   Now I love it.

Sometimes I do not want to do certain things.  For example, Bear Walks, Shots and Sprawls really suck.  But they make my art — my martial art — “prettier” if that makes sense.

I hope it does.  Because if you don’t find a way to love and appreciate the things you need to do in support of your martial arts, you’re training is going to be either laborious or lopsided.

TCB: Martial Arts Training Involution #197

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. I generally do 8 minutes of MBF or either 2-3 minutes each of (a) something aerobic, like jogging of jumping rope (b) some light calisthenics like Half Squats, Push-ups on knees, Touching toes, Arm Swings etc. and (c) shadowboxing or light heavy bag work.
  • 3 x 8 Grappling drill.  Complete 3 sets of 8 reps each of Throws (I picked Seoi Nage), Clinch Maneuvers (I did Cross-arm Clinch Rear Lunges), and Bear Walks (15′).  Use a grappling dummy, floor bag, or weighted duffel bag for the Throws and Clinches.  Your final count should be 24 Throws, 24 Clinches, and 24 Bear Walks (300′ or 100 yards), all in about 10 minutes.
  • 11 minutes on the heavy bag — all-in for power.  Break it up into round lengths appropriate to your fitness level.  Beginners: 4 x 2:00/1:00, intermediates: 3 x 3:00/1:00, advanced: 2 x 5:00/1:00.  Go at your bag with the intent to do as much damage as you possibly can.  Punch it.  Kick it.  Body lock it and squeeze as hard as you can.  Don’t hang on it — but do practice clinching, stepping into cross-buttocks position, etc.
  • 10+ minutes of sacred reading.  Pick a book that’s good for your spiritual development and spend some time reading.  Doesn’t have to be overtly religious, like the Holy Bible or the Tao Te Ching — it can be something that promotes mindfulness, wisdom, or philosophy.  Read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Occidental Mythology, Modern Man in Search of a Soul or whatever you like.  Meditation, contemplation, prayer and spiritual reading are the four cornerstones of the spiritual life and none should be neglected.


If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books and other products.  Why not check them out?

 

Warrior Rising: Martial Arts Training Involution #196

Tough constitutional this month.¹  Most take a little over 20 mins to start but get knocked down to ~15 by the end of the month.  This one took 30+ the first time and still hasn’t been done in under 20 yet.

The fifth exercise is generating questions so here’s the low-down.  Whether you’re in Japan or Joliet  there’s only so many ways for a warrior to kneel and stand while maintaining a stable base for fight or flightThe Japanese Get-up is the traditional method I learned doing Japanese and Korean martial arts, and it’s pretty universal.

Which means it also applies to Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble.  Can’t you you imagine a mixed bag of strangers, natives, farmers and trappers perhaps, kneeling around a trading blanket?  If you were in that circle, wouldn’t you’d want to appear as non-aggressive as possible while also maintaining your ability to fight or flee at any moment?  Sure you would.  There’s a video below.

Warrior Rising: Martial Arts Training Involution #196

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. I generally do 8 minutes of MBF or either 2-3 minutes each of (a) something aerobic, like jogging of jumping rope (b) some light calisthenics like Half Squats, Push-ups on knees, Touching toes, Arm Swings etc. and (c) shadowboxing or light heavy bag work.
  • Heavy bag ziggurat for power.  In architecture, a ziggurat is a stepped pyramid in the ancient Mesopotamian style.  In training terms, a ziggurat is what I call a stepped pyramid for time instead of for reps using 30 second (:30) increments.  Set timer to beep every :30.  Strike heavy bag with full power for one :30 interval then then rest for :30.  Then strike for two intervals (1:00) then rest for :30.  Then do three (1:30/:30), four (2:00/:30) and finally five intervals (2:30/:30) and go back down again.  That will be a total of = 16.5 minutes of oxygen sucking goodness.
  • Complete the February constitutional.  Beginners take care — this one’s real peach.  If you can only do half, that’s fine.  Carve away it and maybe you get through all of it by the end of the month.
  • 10 minutes of eyes open contemplation.  Set a timer for 10 minutes, have a seat in your posture of choice, and regulate your breathing.  Remain completely motionless.  Do not fidget, wiggle or scratch and do not think in words.  Simply sit and experience reality in stillness.  

¹ If you’re new around here, a constitutional is a set of 7 calisthenics.  In Cabal Fang we create a new constitutional at the beginning of each month and work it twice a week with the goal of getting it done in under 20 minutes.


If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books and other products.  Why not check them out?

 

Crop Circles: Martial Arts Training Involution #195

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This training involution is called “Crop Circles” because (a) you go in circles and (b) it contains exercises that can are based on real chores one might do on a farm growing crops.

Real-world fitness is built in to Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble martial arts and is central to Cabal Fang as well.

This particular involution was created using Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble Dice © available here.

Crop Circles: Martial Arts Training Involution #195

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. I generally do 8 minutes of MBF or either 2-3 minutes each of (a) something aerobic, like jogging of jumping rope (b) some light calisthenics like Half Squats, Push-ups on knees, Touching toes, Arm Swings etc. and (c) shadowboxing or light heavy bag work.
  • A Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble pyramid.  Get yourself a weight — a sandbag, large bucket full of rocks, or even a dumbbell if that’s all you have.  Suggested weights beg/sm #40, int/med #60, adv/lg #80.  Set up a bench, shelf, truck bed, etc. to load onto.  Beg/sm 3′ high, int/med 4′, adv/lg 5′.  Mark off an 8′ – 10′  diameter  circle.  Cabal Fang folks, and others who fight unarmed, go empty-handed.  FRT folks, stick a sheathed tomahawk in your belt.  Others who train armed, select your dull weapon of choice.  Pick up the weight in one hand and Suitcase Carry it around the circle once.  Then pick it up and load it onto your bench/shelf, release, then pick it up and put it back on the ground.  Deploy your weapon and pursue an imaginary enemy around the circle one time with maximum malice.  Next, with weapon in hand, complete one shoulder roll.  Then walk 2 circles, load your weight 2 times, pursue the enemy around the circle 2 times and do 2 shoulder rolls.  Then 3 of each, 4 of each, and 5 of each, then go back down to 1 of each.  Take as few 12-second breaks as needed to finish.  Your goal should be to complete this in 20 minutes or less.
  • 10 minutes of eyes open contemplation.  Set a timer for 10 minutes, have a seat in your posture of choice, and regulate your breathing.  Remain completely motionless.  Do not fidget, wiggle or scratch and do not think in words.  Simply sit and experience reality in stillness.  

If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books and other products.  Why not check them out?

 

Year Ten: Martial Arts Training Involution #179

I can’t believe that today we’re celebrating the 10th anniversary of Cabal Fang martial arts.

It seems like just yesterday that I started this crazy project.  What’s amazing is that thousands of people have read the Cabal Fang books, watched our videos, and visited this blog to find out about what we’re up to.

What’s even more amazing to me is that so many people have invested their physical, material effort, their sweat and attention, by training with us.  All of these folks are now my friends, and all of them — everyone who has ever attended a Cabal Fang training session here in Richmond, VA — has been invited to a celebration and homecoming event at my house this afternoon.

So I kind of need to wrap up this week’s T.I. and start getting ready for guests!

Anyway, in honor of our anniversary, this week’s. T.I. is a flashback to our very first official constitutional.  If you’re new to my blog and/or to Cabal Fang, a constitutional is a calisthenics training routine made up of seven different calisthenics exercises done back-to-back as quickly as possible and while taking as few breaks as possible.  A new constitutional is created each month, and everyone in the club is expected to get through it twice a week.  To see a complete list of all our monthly constitutionals back to 2009, click here.

At Cabal Fang we believe that calisthenics are an essential component of functional fitness.  So, without further preamble I present our first official monthly constitutional.

Year Ten: Martial Arts Training Involution #179

* Warm-up.  Set a timer for 8 mins and warm up thoroughly until the timer beeps.
* Martial mobility.  Perform 4-rep sets of Shots, Leg Triangles, Inside leg kick with décollage, and Sit-Out Push-ups for another 8 mins.
* Constitutional.

Lunges (100)
Log Presses (50) (use a sandbag or heavy bag if you don’t have a log)
Ab Punches (1.5 mins)
Neck Crunches (100)
Bodybuilders (25)
Jack-knifes (25)
Wall Touches (100)


If you enjoyed his training involution you’d probably enjoy my books.  Why not check one out?