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Martial Arts Blog

Here we aim to bring you martial arts news and articles from around the web, especially the more whacky and weird aspects. We will also post blogs here from the Bear Martial Arts team, and also from you guys.

If you fancy writing a blog or posting an article, please email team@bearmartialarts.com your article and we will publish it on our site. You'll get full credit for your article, and we will even promote your own website / blog if you have one :)

Please note that any articles which are offensive, or are deemed inappropriate, will not be approved for publication.

Posts per page: 3 | 6 | 9 | All
  • The Best Martial Arts Blogs Around

    Date: 11th October 2017

    Apart from our blog (obviously!), there are some other great martial arts blogs out there for every type of martial art. Here are some of our favourites, sorted by each art so you can easily find the right ones for you.

    Do you read / write a blog that should be included here? Let us know!

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  • How Martial Arts Can Help People Who Struggle With Attention Disorders

    How Martial Arts Can Help People Who Struggle With Attention Disorders

    Date: 25th September 2017

    There are a million reasons why people opt to desire to learn a martial art. From getting fit and more healthy, to learning self defense for their own safety, and even to begin competing on an amateur or professional level. Interestingly, more and more people are striving to explore the world of martial arts for another reason: helping to combat against their personal struggles with ADD/ADHD. In this brief article, we will be delving into what precisely ADD/ADHD is and how martial arts is transforming the lives of millions of people who struggle with attention disorders and how it may potentially even be able to help you or someone that you love.

    Avoid the Tedious: It is a well known fact that exercise of any form is one of the best ways to keep your body and mind working and active to their optimal health and well being. However, people, both children and adults who have attention disorders can find it pretty tough to find the right kind of sport or exercise that not only fits their needs and goals, but is also one that they will want to stick with. Most sports and other forms of exercise tend to be super repetitive and tedious which will all too often leave someone with ADD/ADHD feeling bored and will inevitably just give it up.

    Goal Setting: Martial arts can show you how to set concrete goals of which are actually attainable. Many people who struggle with having to cope with attention issues find it difficult to feel that sense that they are winning at something in their life, which can be incredibly discouraging. With martial arts, you are learning and building upon a foundation that is reaching toward an ultimate goal that you will achieve with practice and discipline. And this of course can help you increase your overall sense of self-worth and a feeling of total control.

    Starting Routines: Martial arts is a great way to see and understand how different tasks can be broken down into manageable pieces. Martial arts are broken up into countless movements of which are often linked together, and when you take a martial arts class you will learn these various techniques on a level that works to your personal skill set. You will learn, repeat, and then add new steps when you are ready. You literally learn at your own pace and do not move forward until you are completely ready. This is something that can be taken into your personal life as well, particularly with regards to work or school. Instead of seeing everything on such a broad basis, you will be able to see the task at hand on a piece by piece level which will allow you to process the project as a simple routine instead of a daunting workload.

    Improved Concentration: Attention and focus are crucial to martial arts training. You will learn the ability to maintain your focus, even if you start to drift off. This again is something that can be taken into your (or your child’s) personal life as well. As when you or your child starts to daze off in work or school, you can take that knowledge from your martial arts training to reset and regain your mental focus to whatever the task is at hand where your attention must be.

    Mind Over Body: Martial arts is a great way to learn balance and physical coordination, which is perfect for someone who struggles with the inability to sit still due to ADD/ADHD. With martial arts training you will learn that your mind is far stronger than your body and even when the thought of having to sit quietly and still seems like an impossible feat, it is most certainly something of which can be accomplished with the right frame of mind. Martial arts classes are also an awesome way to get out some of the excess build-up of energy that we all experience throughout the day! You can work out all of the emotions that you deal with such as pain, anger, resentment, stress, or depression.

    Personal Practice: A great aspect about martial arts training is that once you learn the fundamentals of and get started with your training, it is something that can be practiced pretty much anywhere you go. If you find yourself feeling stressed out at work, take a break and head to the nearest park to work on some of your forms. Or if your child is lashing out because of a bad day at school, allow them the opportunity to put on some gloves and practice their punches on a punching bag in your garage or workout room! In fact, a great idea to bring martial arts into your home is to create a personal space for you to practice at home, anytime. There are a number of awesome, affordable punching bags, check out MMA Gear Addict for a comprehensive list of some of the top ranked ones, and you can be sure to find one to fit both your budget and your living space.

    There are a number of reasons that martial arts can significantly assist those who are battling ADD/ADHD on a daily basis, and whether you are struggling with it personally or have a child or other loved one who is dealing with attention issues, martial arts can help. Martial arts will teach you respect, discipline and self-worth in a manner that is unmatched in any other form of physical activity. 

    Written by: Amy Koller, MMA Gear Addict

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  • How You Can Train Like Batman

    Date: 10th September 2017

    It’s no secret that Comic Book Characters kick ass, with the rising trend in superhero movies pretty much anyone who watches them will be impressed by the display of the heroes (and villains) martial prowess; and if you are anything like me you will get all upset because you aren’t a chiselled badass with witty one liners.

    But just how practical are they? For the purposes of this article not exceeding the entire length of this magazine I will be taking a cursory look at one of my personal comic favourites Batman.

    bearmartialartsbatman_jpg

    Going from Batman’s Bio courtesy of http://batman.wikia.com/ Batman started his Physical and Mental Training at 11 and had mastered full body control at 18, which you know is achievable if you look at the way Shaolin monks can train and condition themselves from a very young age.

    In terms of fighting style Batman has no end of them; he is a master of 127 different styles (a tad ridiculous) and is feared and respected through the entire superhero community. His prowess was displayed in Batman: Year One where he takes out an entire SWAT team with a mixture of Martial arts, theatrics and stealth.

    batman_jpg

    Courtesy of DC Comics: Batman Year One

    You are probably sitting here thinking; well what bearing does this have on me as a Martial Artist? I’m not the Batman and never will be.

    timwoods_jpg

    My tenure as Batman was short lived…

    Well that’s true but the fantastic thing about Batman’s martial arts skills is that he has one weapon in his arsenal which we all (hopefully) own… his mind.

    Going toe to toe with some absolutely over powered people with just his knowledge of martial arts is going to be tough. What Batman mostly utilises and what you can use too is tactical thinking.

    It is one thing to be able to pull off a variety of very badass looking kicks and punches, but anticipating your opponents next move, using the threat of your footwork and body stance to maneuverer them into a position, which you can exploit will take a lot of work and time. If you can master the mind-set of a true Martial Artist, with enough training you will easily learn those techniques.

    As a Martial Artist I often get disheartened when I spar someone better than me or I watch a professional such as Jet Li on the camera.

    But neither Jet Li nor Batman would have got to the level they are today without what I think are the most important qualities of a Martial Artist.

    • Patience
    • Dedication
    • Calmness of emotion
    • Never giving up

    Without challenging yourself as a Martial Artist you will never grow as an individual, it is all too easy to practise those techniques which make you feel like Batman but what about those really gritty ones that you just can’t do and end up ignoring?

    Use your Patience to continue trying the technique, practice with friends or ask your instructor to help.

    Stay dedicated, can’t exactly get that throw or kick right? Practise it 50 times a day. Keep calm, if you are anything like me you will get angry, upset or feel inadequate if you can’t make the grading benchmark or you lose in sparring but every loss is a lesson and every lesson helps you improve.

    Most importantly never give up. Be it your cardio slowing you down or your opponents are so good you suspect they secretly fight crime in spandex, you have only truly lost when you lose the battle in your mind.

    batman_jpg

    Courtesy of quickmeme.com

    Now, being patient/dedicated and calm isn’t going to be the only thing to help you in a martial arts session, hell my Grandma’s local Vicar has all those qualities but sadly he isn’t much use in a fight, she absolutely destroyed him. You need to actually be in fairly good physical condition and a half decent fighter if you want to come out on top.

    Let’s take a look at how Batman typically trains. Once again using the handy http://batman.wikia.com/ there is a section on how he does it.

    “Batman began his physical and mental conditioning when he was 11 and then intense physical training and weight lifting at age 12”

    Okay so that’s a little hard-core, but let’s break it down. Obviously this is in the realm of fiction but to be any good at Martial Arts my own personal belief is that you need to train in general fitness as well as whatever art you happen to do.

    Cardio exercise is very important, sparring an opponent can often come down to lasting longer than them in order to attain full releas…victory. Flexibility is also crucial, being able to lift your leg to at least your waist and have a wider range of motion A) gives you more options when you are sparring and B) can help you resist a submission, just try not to let yourself get a dislocated joint.

    Being conditioned through intensive workouts lets your mind and body adapt and cope with physical punishment so when you do get punched in the face or have your spine broken by Bane you will have a slightly better coping mechanism.

    “Wayne abstains entirely from drinking alcohol, though he presented Bruce Wayne, his alter ego, as a borderline alcoholic (he created this illusion by drinking ginger ale and pretending it was champagne). Batman's refusal to drink was directly linked to keeping his body in its absolute best.”

    Alcohol is pretty bad for sports people. Alcohol in itself is a diuretic which means it makes you produce more urine, leading to more toilet breaks, leading to dehydration (Lots of pee = Oh dear). This is bad because you need to be hydrated when you exercise as this aids the body’s flow of blood throughout the body.

    After drinking alcohol the liver can’t produce as much glucose (or as I like to call it fight fuel) which means you have low levels of blood sugar, less energy means you will not be at your peak training capacity.

    That being said, training can be a kickass hangover cure.

    Batman doesn’t drink because it hinders his training and overall ability to fight crime, I see no problem with moderation but in order to progress forward we all need to cut back on the Friday drinks!

    Batman trains in every style imaginable, in every way possible in order to counter any weaknesses he may have, to be prepared. To be more like him don’t just train in the stuff you love, train in the stuff you hate as well. If you suck at kicking, practise those kicks stretch off and kick some butt! If you find grappling hard do some strength training, learn some techniques and practise.

    Train your very hardest, never give up and who knows, perhaps you can be the Hero we need…

    Tim Wood

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  • Enter our September 2017 Competition!

    Date: 5th September 2017

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    To enter our competition and have the chance to get your hands on one of 5 of our t-shirts and a Bear Martial Arts notebook, please simply fill out the form below. We will pick, at random, 5 winners on 1st October 2017. Good luck!

    Competition terms and conditions:

    • Entrants must be 18 or over
    • Winners are picked at random by Bear Martial Arts. Bear Martial Art's decision is final
    • Winners will be given a choice of one of 3 t-shirts, in one size from S, M, L or XL
    • No cash alternative
    • Bear Martial Arts will never sell on your data, or pass it on to any third party. Your details be kept strictly with Bear Martial Arts
    • By entering this competition you agree to receive occasional promotional emails from Bear Martial Arts
    • Only one entry per postal address. If 2 or more entries are found to be from the same address, all entries from that address will be discounted
    • Entries are valid until 11:59pm on 30th September 2017. All entries after this time will not be included in the draw

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  • Motivation for 2017!

    Motivation for 2017!

    Date: 3rd January 2017

    It's 2017 and there is never a better time to kickstart a new and improved training program, or even to get started if you aren't currently training. 

    Here are some of our favourite videos to get you in the mood.

    Also, here are some of our favourite blogs to get your 2017 kickstarted:

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  • 7 Things You Need To Start Your Own Martial Arts Club

    7 Things You Need To Start Your Own Martial Arts Club

    Date: 27th December 2016

    Many of us who train in martial arts dream of one day running our own class. But have you ever wondered what you actually need to put a class together? Here are 7 of the most essential things you need to get started.


    1. The Correct Grade To Teach

    Not all schools require you to reach black belt before you teach - each school will have a minimum grade requirement before you branch off with your own class. Find out what that grade is from your instructor and you will have a target to aim for so you can start your own class.

    If you plan on teaching independently of your school, we highly recommend getting your black belt first - it's the best way for new students to respect you as a teacher, as a black belt carries a magical aura with it to novices.


    2. Insurance

    Teaching martial arts means teaching a physical and dangerous art to people with no or little experience, and also people with experience. Accidents will happen, so cover and protect yourself by taking out the appropriate insurance. A quick google search will bring up many providers who can help you with this.


    3. A Place To Train

    This almost seems to silly to mention, but you need a place to hold your classes. This means finding a space, paying for it, keeping it clean when you use it etc. Also, making sure your students can reach it easily, it has adequate parking etc are all important things to consider. 


    4. Students

    It's a risky strategy to start a class and just hope people turn up. Numbers will probably be low initially. A good idea is to ask friends from your existing class to come along, so any newcomers will see other people who have been trained, so they won't feel intimidated. 

    There's nothing worse than holding a class and then one novice appears!


    5. First Aid Experience

    As mentioned with the insurance, you are teaching a dangerous art. Make sure your first aid course is up to date so you can deal with any minor incidents. Also, make sure you carry a first aid kit to every class.


    6. Teaching Experience

    Before you start your new class, get experience in your existing class with teaching. Ask your instructor if you can take a group of students through a technique, or even take a few classes under their guidance. This experience, along with the feedback from your instructor, will be invaluable when you go it alone.


    7. Marketing

    "Build it and they will come" - this old saying doesn't really work. In the modern day advertising does not have to be expensive, or even cost money at all!

    Check out our Marketing 101 guide for some free advertising tips. Also, list your new club on online databases like our Find a Club Locator Map (for free!) to reach new students to improve your SEO.

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  • Mannequin Challenge Masterclass by Master Ken

    Date: 24th November 2016

    Master Ken shows us all how it's done with an incredible attempt at the Mannequin Challenge

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  • Dealing With The Difficult Student

    Date: 7th November 2016

    Whether you are a student or an instructor, you have probably come across difficult students in your class. Managing difficult students is an important skill for instructors to learn, and if you are a student knowing how to deal with them will help make your lessons more enjoyable and useful for yourself.

    Here are some of the more common behaviours of difficult students and how you might go about dealing with them.


    Over enthusiastic / violent with strikes and techniques

    Anyone who has done martial arts for a period of time will know that there are defensive techniques that involve strikes either as a weakening strike, a finisher or as the main technique.

    Not all the time your opponent has their guard up (either due to the nature of the novice, or because the opponent has disarmed the guard). Eventually you will come across a student who does not let this deter them from hitting with full power. This can be dangerous, or at least very annoying. No one wants to go home from class injured or with cuts and black eyes, so this is behaviour that needs to be addressed.

    In most cases the student is probably just over eager to show intent (a term we instructors use pretty much every lesson), but this intent needs to be harnessed. Tell the student their intent is impressive, but that a good martial artist also needs to show restraint when appropriate. If you are a student and do not feel comfortable telling another student this, ask your instructor to do so.

    If you find a case where a student is truly violent, an instructor needs to take them to one side and ask them to show restraint or leave the class (a violent person doing martial arts is not necessarily a bad thing, as the arts can help calm a bad temper, as long as that is the student’s intentions).


    Convinced that none of the techniques taught would work in real life

    Training means a lot of the time that we cannot fully execute a lot of techniques – everyone in class would get injured every week if we did. That also means that your training partner has to show some willing when it comes to having techniques performed on them. This can be a sore point with some newer students, who become convinced that this false environment is showing that the techniques are not realistic, rather than just adhering to health and safety.

    One way around this is to apply the techniques full speed with experienced partners. Get two black belts to fight it out as a demonstration, showing how the techniques really work (black belts should be trusted to do this without actually killing each other).

    Pad work for striking techniques is also useful, as you can get students to hit the pads much harder, illustrating that the strikes would be very painful.

    Another tactic here is to set up some light / medium sparring in the group, and get your students to use these techniques in a fight scenario. Most students should eventually see that the techniques can be pulled off to good effect.

    Eventually though, any martial art is only effective if the practitioner puts in the time to learn it and apply it – some students may just have too closed a mind to put the time in with an open mind. These students should maybe be told to try a different past time, or asked to have much more patience whilst they learn the art.

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  • Free Bear Martial Arts T-Shirt or Notebook For Every Instructor!

    Free Bear Martial Arts T-Shirt or Notebook For Every Instructor!

    Date: 18th October 2016

    If you are an instructor who has listed your club on our Find a Club map (don't worry if you haven't, listing is free of charge and you can list your club here), then you can get yourself a free Bear Martial Arts t-shirt or notebook (you choose which!)

    To get yourself your free gift, simply share / retweet our FacebookTwitter post from 18th October 2016 (relating to our World Martial Arts Leaderboard app) on your club's Facebook page or Twitter account, and then email us with a link to your share / retweet, along with a link to your club's page. 

    Once we have verified these we will ask you which item you want and then send it to you for free. Simple!

    *Offer subject to availability. No cash alternatives.

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