How can I ease my tension whilst practicing kata?

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Hi there, I’ve just started karate 2 days ago, some time before the end of the lesson my head started feeling very dizzy and I couldn’t see properly, my sensei told me that throughout the lesson I’ve been too tense and stressing my muscles, I’ve tried practicing at home but to no avail I was still stressing myself out, any suggestions on how I can relax more during training?
 

punisher73

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There was a recent thread that had a lot of good advice on it with the same question.


This would be a good place to start.
 

Flying Crane

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If you became dizzy and couldn’t see properly there may be a medical issue. You should get checked by your doctor before you continue training.
 

MadMartigan

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If you became dizzy and couldn’t see properly there may be a medical issue. You should get checked by your doctor before you continue training.
I second this. While I've never heard of overly tensed muscles causing dizziness and affecting eye-sight, life-threatening blood pressure issues or other serious medical conditions come to mind.
I would stop classes immediately until I'd been examined by a doctor.
 

Flying Crane

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I second this. While I've never heard of overly tensed muscles causing dizziness and affecting eye-sight, life-threatening blood pressure issues or other serious medical conditions come to mind.
I would stop classes immediately until I'd been examined by a doctor.

Yeah, sudden loss of vision can be a symptom of both a detaching retina or a stroke. Both are serious issues.
 
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If you became dizzy and couldn’t see properly there may be a medical issue. You should get checked by your doctor before you continue training.
I second this. While I've never heard of overly tensed muscles causing dizziness and affecting eye-sight, life-threatening blood pressure issues or other serious medical conditions come to mind.
I would stop classes immediately until I'd been examined by a doctor.

Will check in with a doctor or optician as soon as possible, thanks for the advice guys
 

isshinryuronin

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Hi there, I’ve just started karate 2 days ago, some time before the end of the lesson my head started feeling very dizzy and I couldn’t see properly, my sensei told me that throughout the lesson I’ve been too tense and stressing my muscles, I’ve tried practicing at home but to no avail I was still stressing myself out, any suggestions on how I can relax more during training?
Wow! There is so much wrong with this post. Some red flags:

1. The poster offers no info on age or physical condition.
2. Says he/she has unsuccessfully practiced relaxing for ONE/TWO DAY. It takes some two years to learn this.
3. Who made the link between the symptoms and being too tense? Whether student or sensei, this is a leap.
4. A first lesson is usually not too physically demanding as more time would be spent explaining things.
5. As has been said by all, wouldn't a visit to an MD be a better choice than to seek out a MA forum at this point?

The poster's first name seems well earned. If this post is sincere, my advice is to stop working out immediately. If not sincere, my advice is to stop posting immediately.

Edit: Just saw that Confused has seen the way.
 
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Wow! There is so much wrong with this post. Some red flags:

1. The poster offers no info on age or physical condition.
2. Says he/she has unsuccessfully practiced relaxing for ONE/TWO DAY. It takes some two years to learn this.
3. Who made the link between the symptoms and being too tense? Whether student or sensei, this is a leap.
4. A first lesson is usually not too physically demanding as more time would be spent explaining things.
5. As has been said by all, wouldn't a visit to an MD be a better choice than to seek out a MA forum at this point?

The poster's first name seems well earned. If this post is sincere, my advice is to stop working out immediately. If not sincere, my advice is to stop posting immediately.

Edit: Just saw that Confused has seen the way.
1)Sorry I didn’t provide more information. I’m a 14 year old male and I’m not sure how I should describe my physical condition
2)I didn’t know it would take 2 years to properly study relaxation! My sensei kept saying that I should’ve been less tense throughout the lesson and hopped on here for some advice
3)I’m gonna go to a doctor anyways
4)My sensei and I sort of just jumped into practicing basic kata and the purpose for them
5)I wasn’t sure if this was a normal thing or not so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to post something

I’m sorry if I came off as insincere or untrustworthy, but I’ll head down to a doctor tomorrow, it’s understandable if this post would seem weird I would too in your position reflecting back on it now.
 

Flying Crane

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1)Sorry I didn’t provide more information. I’m a 14 year old male and I’m not sure how I should describe my physical condition
2)I didn’t know it would take 2 years to properly study relaxation! My sensei kept saying that I should’ve been less tense throughout the lesson and hopped on here for some advice
3)I’m gonna go to a doctor anyways
4)My sensei and I sort of just jumped into practicing basic kata and the purpose for them
5)I wasn’t sure if this was a normal thing or not so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to post something

I’m sorry if I came off as insincere or untrustworthy, but I’ll head down to a doctor tomorrow, it’s understandable if this post would seem weird I would too in your position reflecting back on it now.
And it goes without saying, make sure the legal adults in your life know how this is moving as well.

There is a lot in your first post that simply strikes us as potentially odd and possibly dangerous. But we aren’t in a position to comment much because we were not there to witness what happened, we don’t know your teacher nor how knowledgeable he really is, nor what your physical capabilities are, etc. So get with your doctor and make sure you do not have any medical issues that need to be addressed, nor anything else that might become an issue down the road or would make training dangerous for you. Better safe than sorry.

I hope it all turns out to be fine, maybe you were training too hard for your level of conditioning? Maybe you got dehydrated? Maybe you need to ease into this a bit more gradually? These are just thoughts off the top of my head that could be possible. But see the doctor first.
 

JowGaWolf

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If you became dizzy and couldn’t see properly there may be a medical issue. You should get checked by your doctor before you continue training.
Either a medical issue or the OP isn't breathing. Similar to what happens when people lift weights while holding their breath.
 

JowGaWolf

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2)I didn’t know it would take 2 years to properly study relaxation! My sensei kept saying that I should’ve been less tense throughout the lesson and hopped on here for some advice
Some people are able to relax easier than others. For people like me, I need to practice relaxation often or I'll slowly tense up without realizing it. Sometimes tension is not related to martial arts. It can come from daily activities. Two days ago I began to learn how to covid on one thing at a time. I try to limit my thoughts to one present task. I don't want to be void of thought. I only want to have one thought.

For your training, think less about force. If your technique is good then force will be there even when it doesn't feel powerful.
 
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Tony Dismukes

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Says he/she has unsuccessfully practiced relaxing for ONE/TWO DAY. It takes some two years to learn this.

I didn’t know it would take 2 years to properly study relaxation! My sensei kept saying that I should’ve been less tense throughout the lesson and hopped on here for some advice
Learning to relax properly while performing techniques, kata, sparring, etc is a long term, incremental process. "2 years" is kind of an arbitrary estimate of how long it might take a typical student to reach a certain level of relaxation, but the learning process goes on much longer than that.

However, even a first day student shouldn't be so tense that they get dizzy or have trouble seeing. Really the only way that excessive tension would likely cause those sorts of symptoms is if the student was so tense that they were holding their breath while performing the kata. That could do it.

If you weren't holding your breath, then the next most likely possibility which could cause those symptoms would be dehydration. If the intensity of the exercise was significantly higher than you are used to and you hadn't drunk enough fluids before and during the workout, it could have that effect. Otherwise, check with your doctor to make sure there isn't some more serious underlying health issue.
 

isshinryuronin

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1)Sorry I didn’t provide more information. I’m a 14 year old male and I’m not sure how I should describe my physical condition
2)I didn’t know it would take 2 years to properly study relaxation! My sensei kept saying that I should’ve been less tense throughout the lesson and hopped on here for some advice
3)I’m gonna go to a doctor anyways
4)My sensei and I sort of just jumped into practicing basic kata and the purpose for them
5)I wasn’t sure if this was a normal thing or not so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to post something

I’m sorry if I came off as insincere or untrustworthy, but I’ll head down to a doctor tomorrow, it’s understandable if this post would seem weird I would too in your position reflecting back on it now.
Your age explains a lot (not your fault, we all were 14 at one time). Giving full info in your posts helps others understand and make relevant and more helpful comments.

All new students are usually over-tense. Not a big worry now. Just work on the big movements and don't try too hard and be concerned about power yet. It doesn't take everyone 2 years to learn to relax, but even black belts have to keep it in mind from time to time.
 
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isshinryuronin

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And it goes without saying, make sure the legal adults in your life know
I know this is very hard for a teenage boy, but it is absolutely VITAL that you share (certain) things ;) with your parent. Your health is at the top of the list. At 14 you just don't have the experience yet to judge what's important and what's not. You listen to your sensei, right? Why? Because he knows more than you. Believe it or not, in most things the same is true of your parents, as much as you'd like to deny it. One thing martial arts teach is to step back from your ego. Good luck.
 

mograph

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I can't speak to any medical issues, but I'd wager that the OP is trying to hard to be "tough," or "angry." I saw a youth at a karate demo doing a kata (and yelling "kee-ai!"), but he was so tense, I could see that Y-shaped blood vessel on his forehead quite easily. Very bad.

It's unfortunate that we need to learn how to relax, when we shouldn't have been tense in the first place!

So, OP, just put your limbs where they need to be. Don't try to be tough. Relax. Doing this stuff while tense is like driving with your foot on the brake all the time. It prevents you from moving easily and smoothly.
 
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