Summer is the perfect time of year for outdoor training. Many people are even more motivated to train during the summer months, and are looking for something different. Here are some ideas for outdoor summer training for martial artists of all styles.
* Stay hydrated! With warmer temperatures, the danger of becoming dehydrated is always present. Always take plenty of water with you and drink it often.
* Wear sunscreen. This is something that many of us would probably overlook, but you will sorry you did if you spend any real time training outside. Protect your skin. Wear a good sunscreen before you do any outdoor training.
* Wear cool clothing. Don't ever wear a sauna or sweat suit for outdoor training, especially when the temperature starts to rise. Not only do you risk dehydrating, but you risk raising your body temperature to dangerous levels. Wearing hot or thick clothing does you no good in training. Any weight lost in this way will just be water weight, and will quickly return.
Get Your Feet Wet
- Training in water can give you a completely new training experience. Try throwing a set of kicks or punches as fast as you can underwater. As an example, pick four different kicks and four different punches, and throw each 20 times per side, as fast as you can, while neck deep in water. You will love the burn, get a great workout and over time your techniques will become faster and stronger.
If you live near a large body of water such as a large lake or the ocean, you can also try stance training. Stand about knee deep in the water, and practice holding your stances for 30 seconds to a minute at a time, maintaining your balance and stability against the pressure of the waves.
Spend Some Time At The Park
Cardiovascular endurance, otherwise known as your "wind" is extremely important to being good martial artist. Spend some time at your neighborhood park. Try jogging on the grass. Avoid jogging or running on cement, as it is bad for the joints. If you are just starting out, set yourself a mark, such as a particular tree. pole or trash can, jog out to it at a moderate pace, and jog back. As your endurance improves, either increase the distance of your marker or the number of times you go back and forth.
For martial artists with better endurance, try running wind sprints. Pick a marker that is a moderate distance away, and run to the mark as fast as you can. For an added challenge, as soon as you get to your mark, drop down and do 25 pushups. Get up and sprint back to your starting point. Drop to the grass and do 25 crunches. Rest at this point for between 1 and 5 minutes, then repeat. You can also mix these up some. Instead of doing pushups or crunches, you can do a certain technique for 25 reps instead.
Head To The Beach
Training on the sand is great for improving stability and overall power. Try sparring or shadow boxing on the beach. Stay away from crowds and try to wear a martial arts school or gym shirt, or even your uniform if you have to, so people don't become alarmed and think you are in a real fight.
Grapplers will get great benefit from training on sand as well, provided you don't mind the mess and give yourself a good shampoo afterwards. Practice bridging and turning on the sand. You can also grapple with partners, but I would recommend wearing goggles, as silly as that might sound, to avoid getting sand in each other's eyes.
These tips are a good start in getting the most out of your summer training. Enjoy the good weather while you can, and get a great tan while improving your skills. With a little creativity you can come up with many other outdoor training ideas as well.