Jeet Kune Do, The Three Minute Meditator, And Balancing Your Body

Hi! Folks,

I was fortunate enough to study Jeet Kune Do for about two years in my 40s, and I learned a lot about biomechanics. This style of martial arts, developed by Bruce Lee, was based on the admiral idea of using all the things that work for you (and your body and mind type) whilst throwing the rest away. This is equally effective for endurance training. The fact that some technique is easy for your coach does not mean that it is good for you, whatever he/she might say. However, you must, at the same time, remember the maxim that ‘just because something feels right does not mean it is right, and the converse, because something feels wrong does not mean it is wrong!’ You have to find what works for you personally in order to avoid injuries. For instance, my eldest two sons, Nick and Duncan, were heavily into weight lifting for some time, and Nick still is. When it comes to the straight bar bench press Duncan had all sorts of shoulder problems, but this did not occur with dumbbells, where his shoulders are free to move as they wish. This was not an issue for Nick. Answer: Duncan should not do straight bar bench press, simple as that.

So! Be aware of your body, and find your limitations CAREFULLY. One way to do this is to incorporate your studies of your body, and your training, into your daily life, as was recommended by Bruce Lee. Another advocate of such incorporation is the author of ‘The Three Minute Meditator,’ David Harp (plus Nina Smiley, now!). Meditation and endurance sports have a lot in common, and a lot can be gained in your training through the incorporation of meditation into your daily life, in my opinion anyway. Here is a useful meditation that I modified from the thoughts of Thich Nhat Hanh

and things I have learned in my weekly Feldenkrais sessions: For minutes to hours reverse your ‘dexterity,’ by reversing how you use your limbs. If you are reaching for something in the kitchen and you feel your ‘best’ arm activated, use the other one. Open bottles the other way around, take your shoes off in the other order, and for me specifically alternate my sitting posture when I sit cross-legged. This work will slowly help you to regain your original symmetry that you have probably been skewing to one side all your life. Give it a try! It will eventually help your training, but go easy or you’ll pull something instead!

Cheers,

Kevin

Comments

  1. Tennis Wrist Pain

    Dear Kevin,
    I have just retired and would like to get back into playing tennis regularly. I am, however, experienceing a problem that used to bother me – that of wrist pain. The pain occurs when I play for longer periods, particularly if I am hitting the ball forcefully. The pain is on the inside of my wrist and runs linearly from the base of my thumb down my wrist for about 3 inches. If I am looking at my palm and wrist, the pain is about 3/4″ in from the right side. This is NOT tennis elbow. I think it is probably tendonitis. Once it flares up, I have to lay off playing for a week or two. I would be interested in your thoughts on the problem as well as sorting through the many views and suggestions (many of which are conflicting) posted on the internet.
    Best,
    Byron

  2. Kevin Morgan says:

    Hi Byron,
    Sorry about your wrist pain. I have responded in some detail in a blog post entitled “Tennis-Induced Wrist Pain – Every Injury Is An Opportunity To Learn And To Improve In Your Sport”
    Kind Regards,
    Kevin

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Disclaimer: As a veterinarian, I do not provide medical advice for human animals. If you undertake or modify an exercise program, consult your medical advisors before doing so. Undertaking activities pursued by the author does not mean that he endorses your undertaking such activities, which is clearly your decision and responsibility. Be careful and sensible, please.