Practicing Forms in a cramped home

skribs

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While I can practice a lot of techniques at home, I find forms are the hardest. I live in a condo, so I have no yard. The best space available for me to practice forms is an 8'x5' space. Considering my stride is about 4' long in front stance, I need a space about 3 or 4 times as big in each direction for effective practice.

What I have been doing is practicing the form with the upper body positions correct, but the length of my stride is only heel-toe instead of front stance. While this can get me decent practice, I don't feel 100% sold that it's great practice.

Practicing outside is a possibility for only 3 months out of the year where I live. It's too cold and wet the rest of the year. My options are my parents' yard or the park. I find the yard to be okay, but I'm wearisome of practicing martial arts in public (fear of "hey, you know martial arts? show me what you got!" type challenge).

How do you guys practice your forms at home?
 

donald1

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You could do all the basic stretches (limber up) or another thing put the forms in small sections so you use less space and have a starting area so when you finish a small section you can move back to the start area and proceed where left off at last idea I can think of if there is a local park that could work too

Best of luck
 

donald1

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Or work on the techniques in the form, before you get the form down you must have the techniques first, perfecting those will improve your form
 
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skribs

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I practice the techniques in addition to the form. However, as I have no problem practicing the techniques by themselves, I didn't request advice on how to do that ;)
 

sopraisso

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I practice forms at home having very little space every day. My tip is the following: whenever you have to make a step forward, first bring your front foot back then finally advance the other foot. Always bring one foot back when you need more space for the other foot, no matter if you perform a step forward or a turn.
If you have to step backwards, just do the opposite, i.e. first bring your back foot forward then finally step back with the other foot.
It can sound a little tricky in the beginning but with little time the adaptations can be very natural.
Also, when a turn puts you in an impossible direction to go on, just "freeze" your position in that very point and then rotate your body to one possible direction like you were moving a statue, then go on with your form. This way you can pretty much train your forms in an elevator or in a 1x1m2 space. Just beware the surrounding objects when you kick or jump, lol.

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Dirty Dog

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Once you know the form, stop practicing it. Seriously.
Practice the techniques and combos in it instead. Focus on the ones that give you the most trouble.
If you have good techniques, stringing them into a form is easy.


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skribs

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I find I still need to practice the form. I tripped up a little bit on one of them yesterday because I've neglected practicing at home (and I got a little ahead of myself).

Sopraso, I'll try what you suggest. It sounds like what my master does when he gets too close to the wall when he's up front demonstrating.
 

granfire

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Practice in the park.
Just tell the morons that might talk to you that you are practicing advanced Tai Chi...;) (I am sure that will end them running)

I might have to take my own advice to hearts... :hmm:
 

Earl Weiss

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Sometimes for fun / Chllenge we do form variation. One is called "In a Box" Each move is done jumping in place. even with 1/4 , 1/2 or full turns. You could try that.

Old story - Guy moves into new house and back yard is muddy and floors are being worked on so he puts on his uniform and starts practicing in front yard. Old lady neighbor calls cops saying new neighbor is drunk and outside dancing in his pajamas. Cop comes and sees the guy and asks what he is doing. Seems cop has done the same style and they do a few moves together.
Old lady calls cops again and says "What kind of police force is this? some drunk is outside dancing in his pajamas and a policeman shows up and starts dancing with him."
 

MJS

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While I can practice a lot of techniques at home, I find forms are the hardest. I live in a condo, so I have no yard. The best space available for me to practice forms is an 8'x5' space. Considering my stride is about 4' long in front stance, I need a space about 3 or 4 times as big in each direction for effective practice.

What I have been doing is practicing the form with the upper body positions correct, but the length of my stride is only heel-toe instead of front stance. While this can get me decent practice, I don't feel 100% sold that it's great practice.

Practicing outside is a possibility for only 3 months out of the year where I live. It's too cold and wet the rest of the year. My options are my parents' yard or the park. I find the yard to be okay, but I'm wearisome of practicing martial arts in public (fear of "hey, you know martial arts? show me what you got!" type challenge).

How do you guys practice your forms at home?

I don't do TKD, however, I do live in a condo. I, like you, prefer to not showcase things to the public, so I tend to stay indoors. However, I have a large garage, so if I need room, I can simply go there. But most of the time, I push the coffee table out of the way, and do them in the living room. Sometimes, when I run out of space, I simply just take a few steps back, and continue my movement. It might not be the best way to train, especially when you really want to get into the form, but with limited room, you have to improvise. :)
 

rlobrecht

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I push the coffee table out of the way, and do them in the living room. Sometimes, when I run out of space, I simply just take a few steps back, and continue my movement

This is exactly what I do. I always try to keep my orientation, relative to the starting position, correct, and just move forward or backward to make room for the next few moves. 8x5 is a little small, but you can probably do 1-2 moves before having to back up. It's not perfect, but it is helpful, especially as you are learning a pattern, or trying to remember one you may be rusty on.

I think your technique of shortened stances would throw me off, especially when you get into a pattern which has a mix of long and short stances.

Good luck with your training.

Rick
 

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I say just do it right out there in public. If any challengers step up well then you've just improved your practice 100% right there. ;)
 

Tenacious_Red

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Before I started any martial arts, when I would see someone in public practicing, it would encourage me even more to find a place to sign up at.

NOW with that said, I do know that there are people who will mock you or make silly comments, but if you're in your zone it won't matter, they will continue on, and even better you get your practice.

I don't know about you, but I like practicing in all elements, and my favourite thing to do after fishing all day, is to go creekside, or a 10 minute hike in my backyard in the mountains allows me to practice on a peak during sunset (or sunrise). It is so peaceful and relaxing :)
 

Carol

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Belated welcome to Martial Talk, scribs!

Had the same dilemma myself. The solution that I picked was to practice outside anyway. The way I see it, if I do have to use my skills in a live situation, its likely not going to be an environment like my training hall. I won't be barefoot, in a gi, on a perfectly level mat with reasonable climate control. I'm glad that most martial arts schools are like that, because I think that's a great environment for instruction and learning new things. But once I leave class, its up to me to make it work, in whatever environment I'm in, with whatever clothes and shoes I happen to be wearing.



Personally I preferred finding a less conspicuous spot in my condo complex to practice. I have done some practice in the park before, but found I was more comfortable practicing in my complex. There were fewer people walking around, and most folks were too busy doing their own thing than to look outside the windows at me. Haven't heard any challenges. Only person who commented was my upstairs neighbor who said he used to study TKD and missed doing it.

Its not easy practicing outside, but I think its valuable. You get a really good feel for how you have to adjust your footwork based on your footwear.....boots in the grass was very different than anything I had done at the dojo. It took awhile for me to build up the discipline to get outside and train in different types of weather. I didn't find it easy, and there were some conditions that I flat-out avoided (lightning, ice, gusty winds with precip). It had its rewards, too. Training weapons in the rain was a blast. Training just about anything during a snowfall was mind-blowing. :)
 

Rumy73

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Before I started any martial arts, when I would see someone in public practicing, it would encourage me even more to find a place to sign up at.

NOW with that said, I do know that there are people who will mock you or make silly comments, but if you're in your zone it won't matter, they will continue on, and even better you get your practice.

I don't know about you, but I like practicing in all elements, and my favourite thing to do after fishing all day, is to go creekside, or a 10 minute hike in my backyard in the mountains allows me to practice on a peak during sunset (or sunrise). It is so peaceful and relaxing :)

This is great advice. I have had a many practice sessions outside. Like already said, a quiet, low traffic place does the trick. I always wear running shoes and a track suit. Finding a nice field in the morning is a great way to focus and get into the form. Hope you give it a shot.
 

Markku P

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This is great advice. I have had a many practice sessions outside. Like already said, a quiet, low traffic place does the trick. I always wear running shoes and a track suit. Finding a nice field in the morning is a great way to focus and get into the form. Hope you give it a shot.

I agree. Just practice outside and don't care what everyone else are thinking.
 

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