Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Rings One Update and miscellaneous training.

I just noticed my last formal training log entry for the Rings One program was in February.  It's not that I've given up on ring training or exercise - it's just that there's been a lot going on - lifestyle changes, injuries, illnesses, etc.

I really don't know how my shoulder was injured this time.  Seemingly all of a sudden, pushups were painful to do for that shoulder.  I think I made it worse by trying to do Dive Bombers on my "pro height" P-Bars (parallettes).  From late summer to fall, I gradually restored stability to that shoulder and reduced pain by ditching parallette training in favor of rings, Eric Wong's Hip Control program, and practicing inverted pushups on the floor - that's right, inverted pushups were painless for some reason.

I went through all 12 weeks of the Hip Control program.  I did notice a reduction in hip pain or pain referred to the hips, as well as some improvement in hip flexor strength and hamstring flexibility.  The Hip Control workouts took enough of a toll on my hip flexors that they were too sore to allow me to practice the L-Sit.   For the Above the Rings workout, I've been substituting Can Openers (a preparatory exercise for the Front Lever) for L-Sit practice, inverted pushups on the floor for the ring version, and eliminating pushups altogether.   Maybe after I work up to ring dips in the 10-12 rep range, and progress in the inverted pushup to being able do them with feet elevated, I can try horizontal (normal) pushups again.

The one bit of Rings One that I'm following fairly close "to the letter" is the Phase 1, Level B, Below Rings workout.  Progress has been steady there, with max chinups at 11, inverted rows at 8, and inverted tuck roll chinups at 7.  Today I tried two movements from Phase 2:  inverted pike roll chinup and another new movement (whose name I forget) that starts from German Hang and rolls into a pike roll chinup.  I might be misunderstanding something about Phase 2, because the 2nd movement appears to include the entirety of the first movement, with the German Hang tacked on at the beginning.

My conclusion from today's assessment of the Phase 2 moves is, not surprisingly, that I should continue working at the Phase 1 level.  I need to build up to good volume on the Inverted Tuck Roll Chinup, because I'll need to keep improving my grip strength-endurance and my core strength before I can be more productive in the Inverted Pike Roll Chinup, which places much more demand on the abs.  I will add the basic version of the Skin The Cat (taught in Phase 2, Level A) to my routine, really focusing on straightening the legs as much as possible when lowering into the German Hang, then trying to keep them straight when pulling out of the German Hang back into Inverted Hang.  I can feel my glutes and hamstrings working harder when I do this - perhaps strengthening them this way will result in a better pike position.

I suffered  a calf injury a couple of weeks ago when I was accidentally kicked there.  It's been preventing me from getting into position for an inverted pushup.  This week though, after some cold compress treatment and taking an NSAID pain reliever, it's finally starting to loosen up just a bit, and at least allow me to walk without a limp.

All this focus on upper body strength is unlikely to improve my 6H skills, but I have to do whatever it takes to keep my shoulders stable - just leaving them in a state where they can dislocate easily is not desirable when I train regularly with partner in grappling and other martial arts stuff.

I'll probably work this into my routine as well:  https://gmb.io/hip-pain/

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Three Internal Harmonies (of the Six Harmonies of "internal" martial arts and movement )

Copied from a post by Mike Sigman:

The ancient Chinese postulated the existence of "qi" to explain the type of phenomena in our example. Using "qi" like this involves "intent" aka "yi". So the Three Internal Harmonies say essentially that the "desire of the subconscious" (Xin) triggers the conscious mind (yi), the conscious mind then sends the qi to where it is needed for this physical action, and once the qi is in place it precedes the force (li or jin) that can be felt when someone like Paolo pushes. They said it like this:
Xin - Yi, Yi - Qi, Qi - Li

That's the Three Relationships aka the Three Internal Harmonies.