Martial Arts Warm Up and Stretch
Before engaging in an intense martial arts workout, it’s a good idea to start the process with a martial arts warm up that increases blood flow to the muscles of the legs, core, and lower body. This video takes participants through a martial arts stretching workout that optimizes the targeted resistance of the Kbands in order to activate the muscles and stretch and loosen the ligaments of the hips and legs.
This exercise can benefit both children and adults, and it works equally well for both beginners and advanced practitioners. Like any effective martial arts stretching routine, this set of moves will be built around standard kicks and stances that are essential to balance and coordination.
The first section of the routine will focus on martial arts stretch moves that can be completed with no added resistance from a standing or sitting position. The second half of the video will demonstrate how to attach the resistance bands and continue the martial arts warm up using more dynamic moves and kicks.
This workout requires very little equipment, only suitable floor space, proper clothing, and a set of Kbands Leg Resistance Bands for each participant. Engage in these moves before beginning a high intensity martial arts workout involving cardio, strength training, skill development or any other aspect of martial arts practice.
Martial Arts Stretching: Un-resisted Stretch and Warm Up Moves
As participants begin this routine, they can attach the Kbands straps around the upper legs and secure them, leaving the resistance bands to the side for the time being. To warm up the muscles and allow the blood to start flowing, participants can jog lightly around the room, swing the legs dynamically at the hip, or simply walk, jump, and practice a few standard kicking moves.
When the lower body feels activated and limber, the first gentle martial arts stretching moves can be used to engage the hamstrings and ligaments of the hip and groin. Participants can plant the feet wide and drop into a crouching position, bending the knee and centering the body over the right foot and then the left.
While shifting from one hip to another, students will have one knee bent and the other leg extended. Pressure can be applied to the straight leg for at least ten seconds at a time.
For the next move in the martial arts warm up, students can sit on the floor and extend one leg forward with the knee straight. The other leg can be bent at the knee, with the foot against the straight leg. Students can lean as far as possible over the straight leg, lowering the chest to the knee. Each leg can be held in this stretch for ten seconds.
Next, students can stand up and engage in some dynamic martial arts stretch moves. These kicks will stretch and loosen the hamstrings and lower back. Students can adopt a front-facing stance with the arms up and bent at elbows. One foot will stay planted, and the other will swing from behind in a high, controlled kick motion with a straight knee. Students can complete ten of these kicks on each side.
For the next move, participants will grab the wall. With one leg planted, students will swing the other leg back behind the body from the hip ten times per side. This martial arts stretch will focus on limbering the joints and ligaments of the hip.
Next, students will return to a seated position and extend the feet wide to the sides. With a straight leg, students will lean down over one leg and then the other. Then they will lean forward, always being careful to keep the stretching sensation in the legs, not the lower back.
This un-resisted portion of the martial arts stretching exercise will end with a series of squat kicks. Participants can plant the feet and bend at the knees before standing back up and delivering a series of front kicks on the right and then the left.
Martial Arts Stretching Exercise: Resisted Kicks
At this point, martial arts practitioners can attach the Kbands Resistance Bands to the straps and begin the dynamic portion of the martial arts warm up and stretching drill. With bands in place, students can begin with ten rounds of the front swing kick. After adopting a front-facing stance, students can plant one foot and swing forward with the other. The kick should stay high and the knee should stay straight for maximum advantage.
Next, users can move on to the resisted version of the side swing kick. With the hands placed against the wall, one foot can stay planted while the other one rises in the form of a swinging kick behind the body. Students can complete ten repetitions of this move before moving onto the final dynamic kick on the martial arts warm up sequence.
The final kick in the martial arts stretching series will be a resisted version of the standard squat kick. As described earlier, students will plant the feet wide and drop down into a squat before straightening back out and delivering a front kick that works against the resistance of the bands. This kick should be delivered with a straight knee and should come from the hip. During the squat motion, the center of gravity should not drop too deeply toward the floor, since this can place a strain on the knees—the squat should be just deep enough to loosen and limber up the hamstrings and hip flexors. This final kick can be repeated ten times, just like the other two kicks in the series.
Martial Arts Stretching and Warm Up: Final Notes
If students and practitioners find a few minutes to execute this entire sequence before launching into the rest of an intense training routine, they’ll feel better prepared and get more out each minute of the session. For more marital arts training videos and tutorials, users can explore the martial arts training section of KbandsTraining.com.
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