Here is a very illuminating conversation from the Facebook event page for the Beginner’s Dynamic Strength class. The events described show the way complex movements are built on a foundation of simple or fundamental movement. The learning curve of a complex movement can be very short for someone who has competence in the fundamentals. The learning process can be needlessly long, difficult or even endless or injurious for those who are dysfunctional in the foundational or “root” movement patterns. This is the essence of why FIF students are so shockingly strong for their compact size: fast, flexible, tireless and resilient. They also stand out as mastering complex movement such as dance, acrobatics, juggling, martial arts, yoga, acro-yoga and other activities much faster than their peers. They regularly surpass their instructors in these activities within a very short time. They often arrive at these classes more adept than their nominal instructors. Enjoy. – EK
Eric Kenyon Sfg- Cassidy is traveling, so it’s Libby and I teaching tonight. Libby has the advanced, I’m taking the beginners.
Libby- Push-ups: if you think you can’t do them, I will show you that you can. If push-ups are easy for you, I will give you some challenging variations.
Eric Kenyon Sfg- Libby was talking about one-leg deadlifts and other balance challenges last night. Heavies, be ready for that
Gabe Cuppet- The one leg dead lift is perfect for Aikido, it’s the fundamentals for taking a front roll correct. Strength, balance, and form are all incorporated in this lift to produce a higher level of ukemi.
Frank Bloksberg- Yes, we’ve been using one legged deadlifts to get people strong and balanced enough to take extremely easy and safe front rolls. So, bring ’em on!
Gabe Cuppet- After doing some research I have found that the military press is the complimentary workout with the 1 leg dead lift. As we roll we create what is known as ” the ring of iron” with the arms. This creates a rounding effect that allows one to smoothly roll starting on the arm and curving across the back. The millitary press strengthens the arms and shoulder in a way that helps protect this part of the body in these dynamic movements, also making the back strong to protect the spine during a roll or throw.
Eric Kenyon Sfg- Beautiful Gabe! Sensei Frank made a short and brilliant demo of the relationship of one leg deadlift and ukemi, today at the advanced class. He had us all try it, twelve people with almost no martial arts experience, but solid mastery of the 1LDL. We all nailed the ukemi after about 3 minutes of instruction. Frank shot some video, I’m looking forward to seeing it. I would like to see more Aikido fusion demos in that advanced class.
Gabe Cuppet- Wow! I’m speechless.
Frank Bloksberg- That was an incredible experience. I thought the experiment would work, but I was shocked at how well. It was really something. I’ll get the video completely as soon as I can.
Gabe Cuppet- Boom! After even more research if found that the dead lift in general is the most efficient way to protect the lower back form impact, this is super important for Judoka and Aikidoka! Protecting the spine during impact is a important key to ukemi. the glutes actually support the lower back, so as we roll or fall the glutes, quads and calfs are fully engaged to protect the spine and lower back. This is where the impact of front roll is absorbed, lower back and spine. Strong dead lifts activate all these stabilization muscles, totally protecting the spine in general and allowing fluid to enter the spine for flexibility. Wow! What were are doing is armoring the entire body with one movement.
Eric Kenyon Sfg- That’s right Gabe. The deadlift is the primitive, foundational, “root” movement that supports all other movement, and static strength as well. It is a simple hip extension, the most powerful movement a human can do. The feet are on the ground and the weight is in the hands, so everything in between exerts high force. There is not one human activity which is not improved in quality and capacity by correct practice of the deadlift. That is why every one of our student’s education starts with the deadlift, and why all of our athletes do MANY. My son started with deadlifts at 6 months old, and so has every human that ever existed. I didn’t teach him, he taught me. My student, pro snowboarder Evan strong does deadlifts. That’s what we did at his first session. That’s what he is doing on the front of the sports section in the Union last month. So now everyone knows my secret, LOL! I’ve been in this business for 14 years and I find extremely few people have the courage, intelligence, or work ethic to apply the deadlift correctly. So ironically, I predict my “secret” will remain essentially mine alone for decades to come.