Martial Anatomy 101 – How the Martial Artists’ body works!

Written by Gavin King. Posted in Articles by Gavin King, Blog, Frontpage, Shi Kon Classics, The Martial Therapist

deepfrontlineWritten in 2009 for The Martial Arts Standard

Welcome to Martial Anatomy 101 where we will explore how this wonderful complex mixture of intricate parts we call ‘us’ actually works. Under our skin we have a series of different structures that hold us together and allow us move about the world. For simplicity’s sake we shall limit our exploration to the bits that hold us up and move us around which are our muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons and fascia that also create the means for us to animate ourselves.

A common misconception is that it is our skeletons that allow us to stand upright, but in truth they are only one component of a far greater whole. If you were to take away all the ‘soft’ tissue you would find that you’d be nothing more than a pile of sticks (bones) in a bag with a few squishy parts like your stomach, liver and brain, forming a gooey heap on the floor. Our skeletal system on its own has absolutely no structural integrity as a single entity and our ability to ‘stand’ is only granted by the beautiful way that the soft tissues (muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia) of the body tie our bones together. Like a suspension bridge, our structure and its integrity are dependent upon the sum of all its parts, therefore any examination of ‘Martial Anatomy’ will require us to look at a seemingly complex number of parts and how they function and interact with each other.

The Secret of Internal Martial Arts – The Deep Front Line

Written by Gavin King. Posted in Articles by Gavin King, Blog, The Martial Therapist

The secret of the ‘internal’ Martial Arts lies in your ability to The Deep Front Lineconnect to and use the body’s core.  This is the first thing you are taught in our Tai Chi classes and how we begin every lesson – it is the secret to the famous internal power of Tai Chi!

In order to make the skills of the internal arts universally accessible to all Martial Artists we need concrete and methodical practices that systematically take the practitioner through a layered process to build core skills and sensitivity using simple language and terminology.

In the Shi Kon system we begin this process with Nei Gong.  Nei Gong translates to “inner work” and begins with a series of standing meditations that take the mind systematically through the true core of the body and teach how to use the breath to release excessive tension that can cause stiffness and obstruction.

The Martial Art of Healing

Written by Steve Rowe. Posted in Articles By Steve Rowe, Shi Kon Classics, The Martial Therapist

In this article Steve continues his series on holistic Martial Arts, from ‘The Chakras’ and ‘What is Chi’ to ‘The Art of Healing’.

If you study Martial Arts for Self Defence…..  What is most likely to kill you?  The answer is of course, bad health – and therefore that should be your first line of defence!  You have to care for your physical, mental and emotional health to be able to deal with any external threat effectively 

An important day in your life as a Martial Artist is the day you take responsibility for your own well being and training regime.

The art of healing is an essential part of your Martial Arts training.  The Japanese say satsu/katsu that it is essentially thatlife taking’ and ‘life giving’ should be in balance and the study of taking care of your own and others wellbeing should be a natural part of your study.

Understanding the Survival System

Written by Gavin King. Posted in Articles by Gavin King, The Martial Therapist

Having worked within the security industry my training has always been rooted heavily in the ‘reality’ end of the martial arts and my primary concern has been the body’s survival system.   It is the desire to understand this system that has really been the driving force in my martial development and was also the catalyst that led me into physical therapy and the healing arts.

Our survival system is powered by the sympathetic nervous system that is more commonly known as ‘fight or flight’.  This part of the nervous system is our body’s ‘call to arms’ and changes our physiology to allow us to perform during life threatening situations.