Tag Archives: quadriga

Plug and Play: Martial Arts T.I. #221

First a couple of plugs and then we can play.  And when we play, we’re going to plug in the moves of your choice.  Make sense?  No?  Just stick with me.

First plug is about SHIFT, the new-ish newsletter  I launched in April.  It isn’t exactly off to a scorching start.  If you signed up for it, please share your thoughts and opinions below so that I can make it better.  Thanks for your feedback!

Click here to visit Mitch’s General Store

Plug #2: Did you know that I have a quirky little online shop called Mitch’s General Store in which I sell all manner of unique fitness tools, martial arts modules, original artwork, books, and so forth?  Check it out.

 

And now on with the show, this is it.

Plug and Play: Martial Arts Training Involution #221

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, or light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.
  • Wrestling Conditioner #2. This one’s should be a mainstay in your rotation.  Get out a floor bag, grappling dummy or silent partner and set a timer for 10 mins.  Strike 10 times from Top Saddle then drop and roll to Bottom Scissors.  Strike from bottom 10 times.  Hit your reversal of choice — Hip Heist (full or half), Kick Stand, DWL Sweep, etc. — and get back to Top Saddle.  Repeat until timer beeps.  Is this Greek to you?  Sounds like you need to start training — either IRL in Richmond (once COVID lifts) or via distance learning.  Links below.
  • Hike 1 mile with a heavy pack.  Heavy carries build real-deal strength.  Select a bag appropriate to your size, strength and fitness level and get walking (#30, #45 or #60).
  • Sacred reading part 2.  This month’s symbol is the Book.  The essence of sacred reading is to analyze what you read in four different ways: literally, morally, allegorically and anagogically.  This is called the Quadriga (see video below for more info).  Spend 15 minutes reading something of a spiritual, or at least philosophical, nature — the Holy Bible, the Tao Te Ching, the Meditations, whatever suits your fancy.  Apply at least two of the four types of reading to your selection and record your insights in your journal.

 



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is a martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. If Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912) — is more to your liking, check out Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts, my for-profit martial art project. Click either photo to get started today!

Yanking Your Chain

I am going to yank your chain…

And as a true Christian Hermetic, I’m going to yank it in four ways — literally, allegorically, morally and mystically.

Literally…

Yanking is a martial arts tactic too often neglected.  Pretty or flashy? Not even a little.  Elegant?  Only in it’s efficiency.  Brutally effective?  Heck yes.  Intro video below.

Allegorically…

Nobody likes being pushed and yet, in martial arts as well as in life, pushing is the norm.  Parents push kids, spouses push spouses, bosses push employees, and so on.  Pulling, on the other hand, often works better if you have the patience.

Extend your hand and people will usually take it.  Give it a gentle pull and they will walk with you.  Wait for an employee to step up and then pull them into a project and you will get far better results than if you pushed.  Create an opportunity vacuum and pull collaborators into the open space.

In martial arts, if you are patient, wait for your opponent to push and then give a yank.  Then watch what happens.

Morally…

Moralizing — a.k.a. “finger-wagging” — is as old as time.  Interestingly, despite the fact that it doesn’t work,  everybody hates it, and God said not to do it, holier-than-thou behavior is never out of style.

Here’s the thing: people are really smart, and they copy other people who are smart, successful and worthy of admiration.  The best way to get people to clean up their behavior is to shut your mouth and focus on cleaning up your own.  Pull other people in the right direction, like moons pulled into a planet’s orbit by gravity.  Everybody will be happier including you.

and Mystically

Something that pulls without touching is called alluring which has the same root as lure.  A lure is of course a thing used to get a fish on the line so that you can pull it in.  So, to pull you into the project that my son and I started this past weekend I’m just going to allure you with a photo set and minimal words.  How’s that for yanking your chain?

[Today is the 12th anniversary of my father’s passing and during the project I was conscious that the date was approaching.  He was on my mind.  And I thought that if he was around, he would’ve really appreciated the mysterious thing that we’re creating.  So I made sure to use my father’s tools so that he could be in the project with us.  Rest easy Pop, thanks for the help!]

 

 

 

 



TWO MARTIAL ARTS DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAMS ARE AVAILABLE. 100% free and operated through my non-profit, Cabal Fang is a martial arts for personal development, self-defense and fitness. If Frontier Rough ‘n’ Tumble — the fighting arts, survival skills, lifeways and ethos of the colonial and indigenous peoples of North American during the frontier period (1607 – 1912) — is more to your liking, check out Bobcat Frontier Martial Arts, my for-profit martial art project. Click either photo to get started today!

Victory Flow: Martial Arts Training Involution #211

Victory is attained through flow not by force.

To lead a group you must be in dialogue with its members.  To win a fight you must work with your adversary’s openings.  To physically train your body for fitness, you have work with your body or you will destroy it.

Forcing people destroys teams and groups.  Forcing a given strategy onto set of conditions loses matches, fights and battles.  Forcing your body leads to injury.  And please tell me how it’s at all possible to force a relationship with your higher power?

The monthly focus and symbol are both related flow, which is the conversation and interplay between contrasting elements — you and your higher power, you and your martial opponent, the present state and the goal, etc.  Common symbols for this are pictured on the right.

Clockwise from the upper left: The Chariot Tarot card depicts a chariot drawn by two sphinxes, one light and the other dark.  The rider is being drawn along by the flow.  The stag, a crepuscular animal active only at dawn and dusk, is awash in the conversation between light and dark.  The Luminaries are the two heavenly bodies, one to light the day and the other to light the night.  Boaz and Jachin are the pillars of Solomon’s Temple, Boaz often depicted as black and Jachin as white, evoking ideas similar to the divine twins astride horses — one dark the other light — and  to the taijitu or “yin-yang” symbol — the unity of opposing forces.

The cross, this month’s symbol, is also about flow.  There are four ways of approaching biblical interpretation (allegorical, moral, anagogical and literal) and they are collectively known as the quadriga — a chariot drawn by four horses — a call-back to the symbols pictured above.  The cross, which is after all compass and the “X” that marks the spot, warns you that if you fail to acknowledge the flow you will surely lose your way.

Victory Flow: Martial arts Training Involution #211

  • Warm-up thoroughly for at at least 8 minutes. Do 2-3 minutes each of (a) jumping rope (b) light calisthenics and (c) shadowboxing, forms, or light heavy bag work, or 8 minutes of MBF.
  • At least 11 minutes of flow drills. Get our your grappling dummy or floor bag and set a timer for at least 3 x 3:00/1:00.  Put in at least 3 rounds on flow drills.  Start with a chain of two moves.  Add one or two moves per round, slowly building up your flow drill from the bottom.  Don’t force.  Let the drill modify itself as you go.  See what “flows” and what doesn’t.
  • Complete this month’s constitutional.  Pikes (25), Push-ups, uneven (25), Jump Squats (100), Reverse Bridges (25), Curb Touches (100), Ploughs(25), Burpees (25).
  • Contemplation.  Contemplation is about being in, and a part of, flow.  Dump out your intellectual mind for a few minutes, become empty of words, and marinate in the flow.  After you’ve cooled down for about 3 minutes, set a timer for 10 minutes. Assume your posture of choice and regulate your breathing to insure a slow and consistent rhythm that completely fills and empties your lungs without bearing down on your breath. Eyes open, gently allow your mind to empty and calm itself. Don’t make war with thoughts, just let them pass by, dissipating like ripples on the surface of a pond.
  • Record what you did and what you experienced in your training journal.  If you don’t measure performance, how do you know if you’re improving or not? Only that which is measured improves.


My new ebook “Martial Grit: Real Fighting Fitness (On a Budget)” releases July 1st.  Pre-order now at Barnes & Noble, iTunes or Smashwords.  Honed by 30 years teaching martial arts in inner city programs and in public parks for a non-profit, this is as real as it gets. 3 keys to proper mindset. Accelerate your training with the “S.A.F.E. M.P.” protocol. Dozens of drills and exercises using heavy bags, floor bags, dummies, slip balls, chains, weights, tires, sledges, pipes, mallets, etc. And DIY instructions for making your own gear for pennies.  

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