When people say work out, everything immediately thinks gym. Kung Fu has feelings too! Kung Fu workouts are quite zesty to say the least. Although there are variances to our workout regimen, generally speaking we like to start with a supercharged cardiovascular workout to get the blood moving to make sure our heart is still beating and remind our lungs they are still on our payroll! Most of the time we also stagger in some static or anaerobic exercises. Some students like to think it is break time to catch their breath; however, the strategy is to change up the pace for your internal system while not letting up on the intensity. By keeping your mind guessing as to what is going to happen next and your body being slightly on edge without being able to fall into a holding pattern, this actually stimulates your metabolic rates, enhances your muscle tone in a shorter amount of time, increases your endurance, promoting a speedy time, and generate explosive power.
Obviously we are all not created equal. Some of us are more physically adept than other and everyone starts their kung fu journey at different points of their body; however, scaled appropriately, the results are same. The best way to describe it is like a cheetah who got a hold of some Wilder Beast milk. Have you have ever watched a nature show featuring cheetahs hunting? It is absolutely astonishing! From a dead stop, cheetahs can go from zero to their top speed of 65-75 miles per hours in just 4 seconds (explosive power) and hold that for 60-90 seconds depending on terrain and how much fuel they have (what we can consider strength and endurance). What is even more flabbergasting is their ability to turn on a dime without losing their stride, and in some cases be able to kick it up a notch (lateral speed/power). The wilder beast, on the other hand, can hit top speeds of 50 miles per hour in 7-9 seconds when they don’t want to be dinner and just need to maintain this for at least 90 seconds if they had a decent head start running from a cheetah, or for 5-7 minutes running from lions. Generally speaking though, they can Forest Gump jog it at 40 miles per hour and maintain that for hours everyday for 1800 miles during their yearly migration. Here at White Tiger, the mix of anaerobic and aerobic exercises allows us to cultivate both this explosive power at a high intense energy like the cheetah AND hold it for a longer duration like the Wilder Beast.
Why is this important? Pragmatically speaking, although the vast majority of our students don’t join for self defense, it is still a part of our program. If our charm and good looks don’t diffuse a situation, our physical capabilities hopefully can tip the scale of any potential altercation in our favor. The short bursts of energy, some timing, and proper body mechanics to channel our explosive power can lead to quite a bit of impact. Regardless if it’s a body check, a shove just to give us space, a strike to stun our opponent, or quick jerks to free ourselves from a grab, we can muster the power to do so from a dead stop. Repeatedly we might add. Worse case scenario, we also have the power to quickly flee the situation or endurance to outrun our friends…or aggressors. Bruce Lee would say something profound and philosophical at this point, “Be like water.” We leave you with these wise words, “Be the wilder beast and outlast the cheetah.”