The first half of this post will be a rehash of another one I wrote long ago.
I have two favorite kinds of exercises.
One is martial arts. I am mainly into Taekwondo, but I have dabbled in many others. Tang Soo Do is my second closest martial art as well as Long Fist Kung-fu. Unfortunately, I don’t get to practice much and I hope to get back into it soon enough. Martial arts practice tends to be very high-impact in their movements and is quite taxing. Many people practice at least 45 minutes a day
The second type of exercise I like are radio calisthenics. These are a type of exercises that used to be featured in American radio programs in the 1920s. The Japanese government embraced this and made their own version which is still practiced today: Radio Taiso. Due to its imperialist ambitions, Japan also brought Radio Taiso to Taiwan, Korea, and parts of of China which is why they have their own versions today. These routines tend to be no more than 5 minutes and usually uses a lot of gentle, low-impact movements.
Some time ago, I found out that the Chinese invented radio calisthenics routines based on the national martial art of Wushu. Just like radio calisthenics of China and other Asian countries, they tend to be 5 minutes of exercise. Unlike the other routines, however, they use a lot of kung-fu moves.
That was why I have always wanted to see if the Koreans, both North and South, made one for Taekwondo. If not, did the Japanese make one for Karate? The Koreans somewhat made a Taekwondo style of radio calisthenics but the North Korean version looks like a form/kata while the South Korean versions infused a lot of K-pop. The Japanese didn’t seem like they made a Karate style radio calisthenics workout but someone did one for Judo.
So I have decided to create my own routine. I basically used this one video for my ideas. There were a couple of guys showing off hand techniques and I liked the way they did them. So I copied the movements down. I didn’t like the way the practitioners demonstrated the kicks. They were doing the kicks up and down a straight line as usual in a Taekwondo practice.
After all, just like radio calisthenics, I want all my movements to be done in a small space.
Therefore, I created a routine for kicks and combined it with the one for hands.
About a week ago, I decided to test the calisthenics routine out.
I was pretty decent on my hand techniques. Obviously they need work, but I did well for someone who hasn’t practiced in a long time. The kicks were another matter. I didn’t feel much power in my techniques and I was a bit out of balance. I wasn’t surprised, though. After all, I haven’t practiced actual Taekwondo kicking in awhile and, being a bit chubby, my center of gravity is in a different part of my body.
The next day was another matter. Hand techniques were fine, but the kicking techniques improved! They improved a lot faster than expected. The muscle memory came back and I had power in my kicks. I was still unbalanced, but I had more stability than expected. My kicks still need work, so they are fall from perfect.
What also surprised me was that I had 21 moves in my list, but I was able to do them all under 10 minutes.
Going back to the post in which I wrote of this idea of wanting a Taekwondo calisthenics workout, that is one of my main requirements for this routine. The other requirement is that it can be done in a small space, which the routine I have designed does. It also does a good job in energizing the person if one doesn’t overdo the workout.
If there is one requirement that needs to be addressed, it’s the warm-up. I was hoping none is needed but I found myself almost pulling a muscle or two the last time I did this routine. That problem can be easily rectified with a few stretches.
I am pretty happy with what I have. It’s something I can do on a daily basis to slowly get myself back into fighting shape. One of the these days, I want to train like a black belt and this routine will definitely get me on the right track. The nice thing is that if I increase the reps on the techniques, I can actually train like I am in a proper practice session.
Soon enough I will write the routine down and put it on the blog. Unfortunately it may not be suitable for those who haven’t trained in martial arts, but it is something that can benefit those who are proficient in Taekwondo, Tang Soo Do, and Karate.