Breaking

terrylamar

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I have been involved in breaking, usually, with boards and concrete blocks. I am trying to introduce breaking to my classes. I have never been involved in the selection of what it was that I was breaking other than boards. Can some of you give me ideas of what you break, it's composition, size and where I might find these breakable items. You might include other tips to help the break and to protect the part of the body you are breaking with.

For example:

Boards, soft pine. 10"X12"x1". A standard break for adults, more than one board may be broken, commonly two boards for hand techniques and up to 4 boards for a foot technique for experienced Martial Artist. For children cut the boards to 8"X12"X1" to 4"X12"X1/2". Tips. Make sure the curvature is towards the breaker. Make sure the wood grain runs in the same direction and is aligned for the technique to be used. Train the board holders to hold properly.

Any other examples?
 

mozzandherb

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I know they now sell practice boards that break and then can be put back together. A teacher I know uses them to train juniors for power breaking techniques, if you want I can find out more about them. One thing I know is that it will probably save you a ton of money if you are breaking a lot
 
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terrylamar

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I know they now sell practice boards that break and then can be put back together. A teacher I know uses them to train juniors for power breaking techniques, if you want I can find out more about them. One thing I know is that it will probably save you a ton of money if you are breaking a lot

I have seen them in catalogs. There has been a discussion of them on this forum. I have never used them and I am reluctant to do so. While I'm sure they are as hard to break as a board would be, it doesn't seem to be the same to me and I don't think it would be to other observers as well. Though I could be wrong and I frequently am.
 

granfire

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The dreaded plastic.

well, you can use them over and over again, and without the mess wood leaves behind, that's a plus. They come in different strength and are color coded, no surprises. Also a plus.

To use them you have to break them in at least 25-30 times before you can take a technique to them (trust me, even the white ones are tough at first!)

Unlike wood, you have to be more precise, the technique must land in the middle, on the seam, or you will have a few very sore people...

I do not like to do hand techniques on them, like a hammer fist or similar, I am rather petite and have not much meat on my bones.

We use them for rank test, but for demos we use wood.

Anyhow, introducing breaking you will need some targets and bags as well. I audited a clinic once where they had the kids practice on sheets of printer paper. And don't be fooled, it's not as easy as it reads...

I can't comment on bricks and the likes, but when you got youngsters (and maybe women as well) the material you use is less important as the ultimate success to build confidence. I have seen many young kids at their first breaking clinic. All are timid at first, but usually the boys get it quicker.
 

ATC

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At our school we start all kids under 10 with 1/4" boards. 10-13 break 1/2" boards and 14+ break 1" boards or multiple 1" boards.

All red belts (3rd kup) and up no matter of age must break bricks. Children 8-10 must break with palm strike a single brick.

Children black belts or pooms regardles of age will break with multiple techniques. All will do palm, knife, fist, elbow, and ridge hand. Age 12+ will do 2 or more bricks stacked. Multi brick breaks will have no spacers. Spacers are only used during demos.

All students practice their breaking techniques with focus shields. Then they move to rebreakable boards and bricks as these are quite easy to break. After some use the rebreakables tend to break with a simple touch but give the students confidence due to hitting something hard not padded.

Student then move to boards and or bricks before each promotional test. They each get one free board and brick to break and can purchase additional for their practice. They can also choose to stack multiple rebreakables if they choose for practice as well.

That is about it for us. Here is a clip of my 10 year old daughter breaking a brick doing a knife hand strike during her promotion test. She broke her first brick at 6 with palm strike.

She will now need to break 2 or more bricks from here out.

Hope I have helped.
 
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terrylamar

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Yes, it helps. What I really need is the composition of the bricks or a product and brand name and the dimensions.

After talking to the guys at the lumber yard, I have discovered white pine is the softest, though it is not as common as yellow pine. I've tested some pieces and it seems really easy to break.
 

JWLuiza

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Yes, it helps. What I really need is the composition of the bricks or a product and brand name and the dimensions.

After talking to the guys at the lumber yard, I have discovered white pine is the softest, though it is not as common as yellow pine. I've tested some pieces and it seems really easy to break.


Try to find a concrete manufacturer that makes them on premises. Places like Loews or Home Depot are going to have "harder" bricks with more stones, etc in the mix. Since they have to transport them longer, the bricks are made harder than they would otherwise be. I didn't know this the first time I did a demo and was cut up very badly doing a palm strike on 3 slabs.
 

astrobiologist

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We have several of those plastic rebreakables. They're fun and less expensive than breaking boards all the time. I still like breaking boards once and a while. Almost just for fun. For training, I prefer the makiwara, a punching bag, or a live opponent. I've met a lot of people who were great at breaking but were horrible when it came to applying it to combat.

If you're going to teach a class on breaking, then I suggest doing something that is a little more on the cheap side. It would be pretty easy to fly through a lot of wood if the class is centered around breaking. Brick is far less expensive, but, as I'm sure you know, should not be attempted by the beginner to intermediate students.

I've never broken blocks of ice, but I imagine that's gotta be fun.
 

FieldDiscipline

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The dreaded plastic.

Ha! I'm not a fan either!

I am familiar with the various ways of breaking wood and concrete, however I am very curious as to how people break house bricks like these:


shale_paving_brick.jpg
 

searcher

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I just get my materials from Home Depot. I normally use 12"x12"x1" boards for my adults and kids. One board for yellow, then add 1 board per rank level. After 5 boards, they go to pavers. The boards go as follows: 1 board, 2 boards w/ spacer, two boards flat & 1 w/ spacer, two pairs of boards w/ spacer between pairs, 3 boards flat & 2 flat w/ spacer between the 2 and 3 flats.

We do not dry anything and it is the way it comes from the store. Sometimes they are wet and sometimes they are frozen. The students overcome the variances with little to no problems.

When they break pavers, I lay a towel over the pavers to keep them from getting concrete embedded in their skin. We perform conditioning on makiwara and kicking shields.
 

granfire

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Yes, it helps. What I really need is the composition of the bricks or a product and brand name and the dimensions.

After talking to the guys at the lumber yard, I have discovered white pine is the softest, though it is not as common as yellow pine. I've tested some pieces and it seems really easy to break.


I believe Spruce is even easier, according to my instructor.

When we have breaking clinic, it's $1.50 for junior boards and $2 for adults...per board.

Oh, and a heap of broken stuff to clean up after...can you say campfire! ;)

Just one question for those who break oodles of boards with spacers and stuff, you have them stationary on a stand, right?

I am asking because we have people holding them and even with the big guys, I think 3 boards is pretty much the limit...no spacers.
 
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terrylamar

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I have broken up to four boards with two people holding them. I have never used a mechanical holder before.

What is a "paver?"

I have broken cement slabs of various sizes and shapes.
 

HM2PAC

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Another advantage to the re-breakable boards is that if you do not hit them on the seam, they will not break. You cannot forego proper target acquisition and still expect to break them. Your student must be accurate.

They are also consistent. Pretty much the same tension over and over and over.....ad nauseum.

Wood will vary depending on type and seasoning as to it's tension and flexibility.

Bricks will also vary in their tension depending on composition and cure.
 

sadantkd

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I often break regular patio blocks or else the scalloped edging blocks that are probably 24 inches long. What are the blocks that create a cloud of smoke when broken? That really looks neat.
 

IcemanSK

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It is the same item, just a construction term. Normally pavers are 16"x2"x8"


If you go to Loewe's or Home Depot it can also be called Fence cap or cap block. Same thing, with a different name. They usually cost about a dollar each.
 

Daniel Sullivan

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We start with very thin boards at white belt (1/4" thick). We move to the half inch pine by green belt, then to multiple boards as the student moves into red belt.

Students interested in further breaking have worked with GM Kim and Master Deb. I've seen concrete, slate, and I do a bottle break using a palm strike.

I have considered buying some rebreakables for home practice, but have not gotten there yet. I also have received feedback regarding rebreakables.

Daniel
 
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