Ever since I reopened the John Little book THE ART OF EXPRESSING THE HUMAN BODY, I’ve been doing nothing but study up on this concept of functional fitness. The way I see it, these are the most important things for wing chun:
*Strong upper body, with a specialization on the forearms
*Development of explosive power: maximum damage delivered even when you are close to an opponent and don’t have room to “wind up” or telegraph
*Body mechanics: learning to get the entire body behind a punch and not rely on just arm strength
While flexibility isn’t 100% necessary for wing chun (I don’t kick higher than the groin), it is still a good idea to throw a stretching routine in there. After all, the three main aspects of fitness are strength, endurance and flexibility.
At one point I was very interested in moving on to try the Beachbody workout Body Beast but, with this new development in my training, I don’t think it is a wise move. Hell, I’m not even sure P90X or P90X 2 would fall into the functional fitness category. However, I’m pretty sure I could AT LEAST continue to do the Shaun T series of workouts: Insanity and of course Asylum Volumes 1 and 2. From this point on, I don’t want to do ANYTHING that doesn’t advance both my fitness level AND martial arts skill at the same time.
I’m getting familiar with a lot of bodybuilding names, as well as the best books to check out by them. There are guys like Bob Hoffman (a huge supporter of isometrics), Mike Mentzer (the original “high intensity training” figure), Arthur Jones (creator of Nautilus, moved away from the trend of spending hours in the gym), and Bob Gajda (leading exponent on Peripheral Heart Action System, a precursor to what is now known as circuit training).
Even though he was more about being able to lift things up and put things down, there is one other gentleman whose book on bodybuilding I’d like to read. I am speaking of Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the book I mean is THE NEW ENCYCLOPEDIA OF MODERN BODYBUILDING.
Hopefully, all these sources will combine in a way that makes sense, and the pattern of my own “martial arts workout” will emerge.
To read more about the people I named above, check out these pages. There is no “official” site for Bob Hoffman, so I posted what looked interesting to me.
Mike Mentzer: http://www.mikementzer.com/
Arthur Jones: http://www.arthurjonesexercise.com/
As always, I encourage you to leave comments/questions. I will reply!!!