Gentlemen, we can rebuild him, we can make him faster, stronger...
You didn't really think that six-foot broadsword was for fighting, did ya? It accentuates the grace of the movements and makes a real sword feel like a feather. I still think your average feller with a katana or rapier and decent training would have an edge over all that weird whirly **** though.
Originally posted by Repulsive Monkey
The only way I know of is through the use of weapon forms.
The Chinese got into all sorts of weight training, from the sublime to the insane. I like using iron shotputs for upper-body strength, an idea I cribbed off some john painter magazine article. It lets me do weight training while still moving my body in a non-isolated way. Deadlifting things is probably good for whole-body harmong too, although I don't make a point of doing it. Perhaps I should start...
I know I have problems learning a technique correctly because of my muscle. I can cheat a lot on things like sensitivity/redirection, but when I get someone stronger than me I have to actually do it right. So I make a point of training with the 2-3 people who outmass me whenever I can.
Repulsive Monkey: There are strength building exercises within the Chinese martial arts that are specifically designed to build strength and power for fighting. They are all part isometric, part dynamic , it all depends. Why do I say they are degigned for fighting? Many have beautiful combat applications in their movements. You would execute differently of course.
I would encourage you to do any of these exercises in addition to weight training. Now before I go, many of the exercises I a thinking of are considered external, with some internal influence. There are internal exercises though that will give you a benefit in strength or power, just not as fast.
Also, anyone who has done internal exercises can tell you that by doing them, and seemingly not exerting yourself too much, you will sweat like a ************. It's weird like that, I'm sure you know, being a TaiChi man.
“We are surrounded by warships and don’t have time to talk. Please pray for us.” — One Somali Pirate.
The sweating part is definitely unusual. I'm the kind of guy who can spar or grapple at 70% intensity for half an hour without breaking a sweat (man, does that piss some people off). However, sometimes a few minutes of chi kung is all it takes . . .
I am interested in looking at all strength-building exercises, but as an IMAist, my particular dilemma stems from the fact that none of my techniques--from punching to pushing or locking--is based on muscular strength. In fact, if you're tensing any muscles, you're doing it incorrectly.
After doing some thinking and going through the feedback on this thread, I think that I will begin a strength training program, but just for the benefits of increased mass and general fitness. I don't see a lot of things that translate directly to martial applications and am not going to kill myself looking for them. Nevertheless, I will try out whatever comes my way (including that shot put suggestion). Meanwhile, I will carefully monitor my techniques to make sure that I'm not using strength as a crutch. As long as it's all good, it's all good.