What exercises do you recommend? (also, question about sit-ups)

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Amanda Sedai

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I recently attended a few karate lessons and I'll probably be taking lessons regularly some time around January. What kinds of exercises should I do in order to get in shape for karate? I've been doing the stretching exercises that I learned in the class I attended (the basic stuff. you know, stretch your legs and try to reach your toes, that kind of stuff), as well as push-ups and sit-ups, almost every day. What other exercises should I be doing? (I'm trying to do at least a few exercises each day, and every few days I go to a gym, so suggestions for things I can either do and home or do in a gym are welcome.) Also, is there a particular time of day when I should be exercising? I've always heard that you should exercise in the morning, but I know someone who says that stretching exercises should be done in the evening.

Also, I've noticed that whenever I try to do sit-ups it really hurts the base of my back for some reason. Is there anything I can do about that? (As you have probably already figured out I'm really, really out of shape.)

Thanks.
 
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Deathtrap101

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Well running is good, lots of stretching. Pushups and situps also good, at home i mostly just do push ups and sit ups and wroking on technique.

Just try to do what you have learned in class. As for times to work out i usualy work out in the evening because tahts when im feeling best. But anytime is good i would think?? With the back thing im not sure, i had the same problem when i use weights and an elevated board to do sit-ups on, gets pretty painfull in the back area. Unless anyone els on the board knows much about it i would sudjest seeing a docter or trainer.
 
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Bagatha

Guest
Sit-ups do not isolate the abs. It is an ab/lower back exercise. Which is good. You want both.

Do lots of cardio. 20 min every other day to start. This is best done in the morning.

Pushups are ok to start, but do not make up a proper excersise program. You will need something else adventually. A gym membership if you are serious about getting in shape.

Light stretching in the morning sets the tone for the rest of the day. If you stretch in the morning, you will be more flexible in the evening. Both morning and evening is best. Stretch when warm, right after your cardio ;)

It is weight resistance training that is best done in the afternoon.

Diet is of course 70% of training. If you dont eat the right things at the right times then you will not see the best results. But some training is still better than none, regardless of what you eat.

Have fun.
 
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sweeper

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if you are out of shape, run or jog a fair amount. also I would start doing squats too. after a couple weeks you might wana start doing some variations on those like hops instead of just squats and running sideways and backwards or doing shuttle runs.
 
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Kenpo Wolf

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If you are out of shape, I would'nt plan on jogging or running anytime soon as it will lead to a premature burnout or injury. First you start walking for a few months, maybe more depending on your age and weight, and then progress to jogging. If you are progressing to slow with walking, find some stairs to climb to add more of a workout

Two of the best general excercises you can do is squats and the lunges,
followed closely by pushups

A lot of fitness trainers today don't recommend the situp as it places too much stress on the back. Crunches as well as leg raises are better for you

BTW, find out what time the classes are that you are going to attend and do your 'tune up' conditiong in that time frame. That way, you will used to the conditioning phase of the class which will make the rest of the class less stressfull.
 

tshadowchaser

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I Suggest that if youhave a gym membership or you live near a lake to swim a lot. also running onthe beach or in shalow water is great.
Crunches instead of situps ( over both legs , while bring alternate legs to chest, or bringing both knees to chest as you crunch)
When doing push ups verry the posistion of your hand from you body: Do some with hands next to your rib cage( punchimg posistion) some from what is the normal push up posistion, some from a posistion where the hands start out in front of the body ( an extended posistion)
Start jumping rope

Shadow:asian:
 

Nightingale

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don't do situps if your back is hurting.

Use something like an ab roller (they're like $30 at target) to support your back and neck and help isolate your abs.

do 20 minutes of cardio every other day. Use a cardio machine that reads your heart rate and look on the machine to find out what your heart rate should be for your age and weight. it should calculate it for you, but if not, there are websites that can tell you what your heart rate should be. The more out of shape you are, the faster you'll get to your exercising heart rate. When I first started training on an elliptical machine, it took me like a minute to get my heart rate up to 155 (rate for a 23 yr old female), and now it takes me about five minutes, and the machine goes on a higer setting so I have to work harder.
 
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sweeper

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I think it's also important to state that you REALY shouldn't do something if it hurts.. it hurts for a reason so stop. If you are out of shape it's realy easy to over do things, also remember to warm up and stretch to reduce your chances of hurting yourself.
 
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bscastro

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It sounds like you have some good ideas as for what to do. One other thing I would suggest is to have fun doing whatever you do for extra-exercise. I think alot of people feel "I have to run" or "I have to lift" or whatever (I do also sometimes). One martial arts instructor I met told me that he used to run religiously, but as he got older, he found that playing basketball with his friends had similar benefits and that he found it more fun. So I guess what I'm trying to say is to find an exercise activity you enjoy to get your exercise in. For example, for cardio, you can choose between running, biking, swimming, aerobics, etc. Otherwise, I think the other posts give some great advice.

Good luck.

Bryan
 
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lvwhitebir

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Originally posted by bscastro

One other thing I would suggest is to have fun doing whatever you do for extra-exercise. I think alot of people feel "I have to run" or "I have to lift" or whatever (I do also sometimes).

I like this a lot! Most people think exercise is something special they do at the Kwoon or the gym. They never think about playing sports or just walking around. Just get out and do something. If you have a specific goal, you can add specific movements or "exercises" to get there faster, but above all get away from the couch.

I think it was Covert Bailey that talked about the animals. Do you see fat foxes? Are they doing push-ups and crunches? Nope, they're out running around and "playing."

Anyways, I just wanted to say that this is terrific advice for general fitness.

WhiteBirch
 
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Amanda Sedai

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Originally posted by lvwhitebir


I think it was Covert Bailey that talked about the animals. Do you see fat foxes? Are they doing push-ups and crunches? Nope, they're out running around and "playing."


*leaves martialtalk.com to go exercise. Comes back later with a dead squirrel in her mouth.* :D

...oh, wait, I wasn't supposed to take you literally, was I?

Seriously, though, I've heard that playing sports "doesn't count" as cardio exercise because you aren't moving constantly, you're constantly stopping and starting. Is that anything to be concerned about?
 
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bscastro

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I think you shouldn't worry as much about whether it "counts" or not, but instead just have fun. I think you can enjoy running or swimming, because I do also, but I guess I'm saying to find some stuff that you enjoy and not worry so much.

I think games such as basketball, soccer, tennis, etc. can be quite cardiovascular depending on how much you are moving or how intense the game is. Actually, for martial arts, the stop-and-go action and lateral movement is very good. I guess things like golf might not count, unless you are running from hole to hole or running around looking for your ball.

Bryan :)
 
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sweeper

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cardiovascular means pertaining to or affecting the heart and blood vessels.

Cardio exercise is exercise that targets the heart, what's required is a raised heart rate. As long as your pulse is up it's cardio, doesn't matter wether your power lifting on a circuit with low rest time, runnning around on a grassy field with a dog or running on a tredmill, it's all cardio.

the thing with some sports is you may have large lapses in the intensity of exersise and as such large changes in your heart rate. so if you get subed out your heart rate might fall for example. also alot of sports you can't easily maintain a high heart rate, I tihnk baseball would be a good example of this. but most sports I would call cardio unless you aren't on the field/court/ice/whatever. I would personaly suggest soccer because I like soccer ; ) pluss it will probably strengthen your legs alot and in alot of ways most people odn't strengthen thir legs wich can mean you don't get injured as much when you are practicing MA (but than again I'm biased :p)
 
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lvwhitebir

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Originally posted by sweeper

cardiovascular means pertaining to or affecting the heart and blood vessels.

Cardio exercise is exercise that targets the heart, what's required is a raised heart rate. As long as your pulse is up it's cardio, doesn't matter wether your power lifting on a circuit with low rest time, runnning around on a grassy field with a dog or running on a tredmill, it's all cardio.

I'll agree, with a caveat. Aerobic exercise is defined by many experts as lasting a minimum of 20 minutes, working the large muscle groups, and keeping the heart rate between 60-80% of your max. That may or may not be the same as cardio exercise with your definition above (is there an exercise that isn't cardiovascular though?).

Most sports are not aerobic because there's too much starting and stopping.

I agree that you shouldn't be concerned about it, just try to do something else that is aerobic once in a while. Like jogging, jumping rope, or bag work. You may find it's a lot harder to do since you don't have the ability to rest. A lot of people can do spurts of activity, but can't do continuous.

Originally posted by Amanda Sedai

What kinds of exercises should I do in order to get in shape for karate?

I get this question a lot at my school. I think your specific question is a little different, but I often get people saying they need to get in shape *before* they get into Kung Fu. As you go through your classes, you'll learn a variety of ways to get in shape. Heck going to class itself is exercising, you probably do some sort of warm up exercises, some stretching, pushups, etc.. If you follow the same format for you home practice you'll see results.

If you want general fitness information you should consider three areas: aerobic training, strength training, and flexibility training. There's tons of information on all three subjects. Try going to the library to get some of the beginner type books on the subjects for specific exercises.

And hey, leave the squirrel on the doorstep the next time you come in... ;)

WhiteBirch
 

Roland

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No one here mentioned going to see their Doctor first, or even to check out a personal trainer.
The trainer thing was really good for me, best shape of my life.
You just got to watch out for the the few scammers still out there.
 
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artful dodger

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If you're doing stomach exercises you need to make sure you are doing exercises for the back as well. When I first started doing martial arts I got a back injury and the physio said that i would have to quit. But it's a bit hard when you're obsessed, right? So I kept going but started doing back exercises and everythings fine now.

I agree with the person who said squats and lunges - really good exercises for martial arts, and if you have access to one, kick and punch a bag.
 
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sweeper

Guest
aerobic exercise is an exercise that targets your type one muscle fibers, cardio is something that works your heart. any exercise will work your heart but it's a question of how intensly and how long. That's why aerobic exercise is sometimes refered to as cardio, because people partake in it with intent to target their heart not their muscles, as long as you don't take long rest stops your heart rate will stay up with any exercise. Also I think soccer and basketball will give your a fair aerobic work out as long as you aren't subed out. Both sports require constant re-positioning and there aren't alot of situations where you shouldn't move.
 
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Amanda Sedai

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Newbie question here: What are lunges? How do you do them?
 
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sweeper

Guest
kneel on one knee, place your other heel right next to the knee on the ground, stand up and go down in this position, I prfer to do them moving forward, like walking but alot of people do them in place.
 
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