On Sanchin...

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Postby mhosea » Thu Jan 04, 2007 11:06 pm

f.Channell wrote:But you can't rely on tension, because fighting with tension for 1-2 minutes will totally exhaust anyone.


I know that's right!
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Postby Dana Sheets » Sun Jan 07, 2007 3:58 am

Thanks for that description.

I've heard two very specific opinions on the "grabbing floor with the toes" camps.

On the one hand I've heard that the feet and toes should strongly grip the floor for strength and stability in the sanchin stance. By gripping with the toes you activate the other leg muscles and form a strong base.

On the other hand I've heard that the feet stay relaxed and flexible - it is the activation of the glutes with the legs slightly bent that puts pressure on the lower legs and drives the feet into the floor. Coupled with the slight tension you use to keep your feet from sliding out of sanchin. So you get the feeling of your feet grabbing the floor but it is from the focus higher up in the leg. If the feet are flexible balance is more stable.
Last edited by Dana Sheets on Sun Jan 07, 2007 4:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby f.Channell » Sun Jan 07, 2007 2:52 pm

Hi Dana,

As you probably know I'm a "do what works for you kind of person".
So whatever method works for a person as far as gripping with the toes goes is okay.

Another technique which I grip with the toes is the roundhouse kick.
Grasping something akin to an invisible marble has an interesting, "for me" effect of the focus of the shin during this kick. I think a lot of people just kick and don't really focus the leg or ankle during this kick.

And on the Sanchin tension thing another word I was looking for was "isometric" which is also a good way to describe the focus brought about from the form in the Kata.

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Postby Bill Glasheen » Mon Jan 08, 2007 11:44 pm

I've heard it said often by Okinawans that "Kata is kata; application is application."

I wouldn't have all the interesting degrees of freedom of motion capability in my Sanchin that I use now if I hadn't spent time "waking up the muscles" involved in the movement. I may grab with toes and corkscrew my feet while doing Sanchin, but ultimately I find the toe-in position more useful as a cocked spring rather than a permanent fixed position.

All that Nakamatsu stuff I learned from you, Dana, is starting to take hold now. I've always used core muscles in movement, but not like now. As you know, you need to be really fluid in the core to make the body "sing" the right way. But we all needed to do the tension work first. And in some cases, that tense posture in Sanchin is a starting or finishing point rather than a solid vehicle we use to do stuff. We can't use those starting and finishing postures at an instance if we don't spend a lot of time in them.

I hope all that makes sense.

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Postby Dana Sheets » Tue Jan 09, 2007 2:52 am

Hi Fred,
Yes indeedy, I'm a huge fan of the sokusen roundhouse. I believe my teacher was the first one that showed me Bobby Campbell's version of an inside out roundhouse toe kick to the inside thigh...yeeouch! :D

What I've noticed in teaching folks is that sometimes when they try to grip the floor with their toes they start tightening up their knees...which is not very desireable. And that being said - I know many people find many ways that make sanchin work for them. It is really amazing what the hard sanchin training does to the human body...it can completely transform it in a way I've not really seen achieved without a whole bunch of equipment and machines. How the heck did those Chinese guys figure that out?

------------
Hi Bill, what you're saying does make sense...and you do a good job of describing the "outside in" methodology of Uechi where you learn the "hard" first and then the "soft."

I spent my first 5 years in Uechi trying to pull the boards up off the dojo with my toes every time I got into a Sanchin stance - no matter the kata or the drill. Got myself some nice strong feet doing that and actually went up 1/2 a shoe size. For about three years after that I ignored my feet completely and for the last couple years I've worked to have less and less tension in my feet and instead worked to create downward pressure into the floor by using everything else. the more downward pressure I feel in my feet, the more potential energy I think I've got stored up.

.......

There's one other thing bouncing around in the back of my head...there was an article that contained an interview with Kanei Uechi. Right now I can't remember where the article was placed or who wrote it...but the author was describing Kanei Uechi and included a comment something along the lines of "he had gigantic calf muscles that he had developed by training himself to walk only on the balls of his feet." I still ponder that description from time to time and wonder what that was about.
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Postby Stryke » Tue Jan 09, 2007 4:20 am

There's one other thing bouncing around in the back of my head...there was an article that contained an interview with Kanei Uechi. Right now I can't remember where the article was placed or who wrote it...but the author was describing Kanei Uechi and included a comment something along the lines of "he had gigantic calf muscles that he had developed by training himself to walk only on the balls of his feet." I still ponder that description from time to time and wonder what that was about.


lunging speed and range good calves are a must , I used to jog on the balls of my feet when competing seriously . A side effect of shotokan is crazy strong calf muscles
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