Please take a look at Articles on self-defense/conflict/violence for introductions to the references found in the bibliography page.

Please take a look at my bibliography if you do not see a proper reference to a post.

Please take a look at my Notable Quotes

Hey, Attention on Deck!

Hey, NOTHING here is PERSONAL, get over it - Teach Me and I will Learn!

When you begin to feel like you are a tough guy, a warrior, a master of the martial arts or that you have lived a tough life, just take a moment and get some perspective with the following:

I've stopped knives that were coming to disembowel me

I've clawed for my gun while bullets ripped past me

I've dodged as someone tried to put an ax in my skull

I've fought screaming steel and left rubber on the road to avoid death

I've clawed broken glass out of my body after their opening attack failed

I've spit blood and body parts and broke strangle holds before gouging eyes

I've charged into fires, fought through blizzards and run from tornados

I've survived being hunted by gangs, killers and contract killers

The streets were my home, I hunted in the night and was hunted in turn

Please don't brag to me that you're a survivor because someone hit you. And don't tell me how 'tough' you are because of your training. As much as I've been through I know people who have survived much, much worse. - Marc MacYoung


The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books. Please make note that this article/post is my personal analysis of the subject and the information used was chosen or picked by me. It is not an analysis piece because it lacks complete and comprehensive research, it was not adequately and completely investigated and it is not balanced, i.e., it is my personal view without the views of others including subject experts, etc. Look at this as “Infotainment rather then expert research.” This is an opinion/editorial article/post meant to persuade the reader to think, decide and accept or reject my premise. It is an attempt to cause change or reinforce attitudes, beliefs and values as they apply to martial arts and/or self-defense. It is merely a commentary on the subject in the particular article presented.

Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.

“What you are reading right now is a blog. It’s written and posted by me, because I want to. I get no financial remuneration for writing it. I don’t have to meet anyone’s criteria in order to post it. Not only I don’t have an employer or publisher, but I’m not even constrained by having to please an audience. If people won’t like it, they won’t read it, but I won’t lose anything by it. Provided I don’t break any laws (libel, incitement to violence, etc.), I can post whatever I want. This means that I can write openly and honestly, however controversial my opinions may be. It also means that I could write total bullshit; there is no quality control. I could be biased. I could be insane. I could be trolling. … not all sources are equivalent, and all sources have their pros and cons. These needs to be taken into account when evaluating information, and all information should be evaluated. - God’s Bastard, Sourcing Sources (this applies to this and other blogs by me as well; if you follow the idea's, advice or information you are on your own, don't come crying to me, it is all on you do do the work to make sure it works for you!)

“You should prepare yourself to dedicate at least five or six years to your training and practice to understand the philosophy and physiokinetics of martial arts and karate so that you can understand the true spirit of everything and dedicate your mind, body and spirit to the discipline of the art.” - cejames (note: you are on your own, make sure you get expert hands-on guidance in all things martial and self-defense)

“All I say is by way of discourse, and nothing by way of advice. I should not speak so boldly if it were my due to be believed.” - Montaigne

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Bunny Hops

My recent foray into the world of the Spartan Race got me to thinking about my training. One of the early training exercises to strengthen the legs for martial arts was the “bunny hop.” I have begun to use them once again to augment my current martial arts training and practice. I must say, it has been a while and my legs wobble when I am done then I move right into basics and kata. 

It must be noted and you must be warned that doing them correctly is critical, critical to your ankles and knees in particular. Make sure you start using them under the guidance of a qualified sport exercise instructor. I say this because not many martial arts instructors are best qualified to teach proper calisthenics. Note that I am not qualified so when I provide advice on doing this exercise take that advice to the professional to validate it “BEFORE” you begin using the bunny hops. 

Feet are about shoulder width apart. The feet should position themselves at a 45 degree angle, see snapshot (shallow-shiko-dachi.png  

Make sure you are comfortable. The reason I use the shiko dachi stance is because, for me, that puts my hips and knees in alignment when I do the exercise reducing the strain to an acceptable one for an exercise. Wearing comfortable baggy sweat pants and a t-shirt are conducive to free movement and the karate-gi is also adequate if your doing it in the dojo.

Special Note for the Dojo: In the dojo you are likely to do the bunny hop barefoot. It is imperative that when you return to the floor the balls of your feet should touch first allowing you to roll down comfortably so as to reduce any chances of injuries to your feet and ankles. If you prefer you can do this one with proper athletic type shoes that most of us wear daily anyway. The lack of extra support with shoes means you strengthen the ankles a bit more so “be very careful and start out low and slow!” Low and slow means don’t hop up very high and do them slowly until you build strength and your repetitive practice gets your feet, ankles, shins, knees, thighs and hips conditioned enough.

When lowering your body down into a squat position you should have your hands on your hips or out to the sides for balance. Do not use the hands on the legs to help you do this exercise. If you have to use them then stop because the idea here is to build strength and endurance in our legs along with other benefits especially for martial artists. 

When you lower down to the squat position your buttocks should be slightly lower on a horizontal plane as your knees (at the same level as in the jump-squat or bunnyhops.jpg snapshot). Your upper body will naturally lean slightly forward to balance the entire body properly. For weight lifters doing the squat the movement is the same (see weight-lift-squat.gif snapshot

except, of course, you have some weights held across your shoulders while holding the bar with your hands, etc.

You will notice on the snapshots as well as other graphics you will find on the Internet that there are a variety of ways to hold and use the arms as well as the stance you take. The key to this one is to find the one that will work best for you, your body type and the structure of your body or skeletal, muscular, etc. system. (see additional snapshots or graphics below)

In the dojo where I began this exercise was a regular and we bunny hopped across the dojo floor, back and forth until our legs were shaky, wobbly and ready to fall off. Please note that I tell you this for example and also know that in the dojo, 1979 Okinawa, we all were active duty Marines so we were in pretty good shape to begin with anyway. 

I like to separate kata practice with a couple of sets of bunny hops to really take the legs to a wobbly state so that when I do kata I can focus on making the legs overcome their fatigued state and perform adequately as if I were stressed and affected by the adrenaline rush so my body learns to compensate as much as possible. 

The following video shows an excellent way to do the bunny hops. The hips and buttocks don’t go down as far as I like to create stronger hips, etc. but the overall method is really nice.

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