…for when you are snowed in, you miss team training, or you just plain miss karate!

Warm-up with stances - Total 5 minutes for white-purple belts, 9 minutes for brown and black belts  
These cartoon drawings show outward tension stances in the top row — this means: Seal your whole foot on the floor while squeezing your knees outward to solidify your stance. The first 3 drawings on the left are shotokan stances. The second row shows inward tension stances -- that means: Use your knees and thigh muscles to create a inward protection of your groin. The third row show neutral (neither outward nor inward tension) natural ‘standing’ stances.

The workout:
1.  Hold Zen kutsu dachi (translated as front stance) Left leg forward for 1 minute without bobbing, shaking, or standing up.  
2.  Hold Zen kutsu dachi (front stance) Right leg forward for 1 minute without bobbing up or shaking.
3.  Hold Kiba dachi (Horse-riding stance) for 1 minute without creeping up. 
4   Hold kokutsudachi (back stance) Left leg forward for 1 minute without coming up.
5. Hold kokutsudachi (back stance) Right leg forward for 1 minute without coming up.

6. (for brown and black belts) Hold nekoashidachi (cat stance) with each leg forward for 1 minute and hold sanchin dachi (hour glass stance) with each left forward for 1 minute (additional 4 minutes)

It is critically important to not stand up during each stance.  Your legs may get tired but your mind has to be strong.  No one ever died or broke anything, got a bruise, or snapped a bone or muscle holding a stance in a low position. 

Kata - 10 minutes
Do five repetitions of your kata, doing stances only without hands (hit each stance firmly and stay for a moment before moving on).  Then do five repetitions of your kata with stances and hand techniques fully, without cutting corners and ki-ai when you should.  This kata training section should take only 10 minutes with only 20 seconds rest between each kata repetition. 

Footwork, Conditioning for Sparring - 5 minutes

  • Do jumping jacks slowly or rapidly for 1 full minute non-stop. Hands should touch above your head as your feet are out.

  • Do 15 Mountain Climbers with your knees between your elbows, 15 on each foot. (This looks like running with high knees while your hands on the ground.) (30 seconds)

  • "Bunny hop from corner to corner" Stand up with feet together and hands in fists on guard in front of your chest, elbows bent. Jump with feet together from corner to corner of an imaginary square on the floor. You can jump from corner to corner in a circular fashion five times ones way and then five times the other way. Then take a 10-second break and then repeat the drill with a 'larger' imaginary square. Take a 15--second break, and finally repeat the drill but jumping from one corner or the square to the opposite corner creating an imaginary "X" on your imaginary square. Keep your knees bent to absorb the jump. These moves should be done quickly and not make loud thud noises.

  • Do 15 Mountain Climbers with your knees outside of your elbows, 15 on each foot. (30 seconds)

Strengthen and then Stretch - 10 minutes. 

  • Get down in a plank position (it looks like a push-up position with your hands directly under your shoulders and arms locked straight) and hold your body as a straight board (a plank of wood) from shoulders to heels for 1 full minute. Keep your toes/feet together, don't shift around.

  • First, work on hip flexors (lunges), hamstrings (hurdler stretch), and inner thighs (butterfly and splits). Next, do a split up-side-down with legs straight and open to improve your splits. Kids can do the 'wall split' for 3-10 minutes. Legs should rest on the wall completely and gravity and time will help open the split. (see JJ's picture below)