Tag Archives: Body Unity

Systema Class Training in the Netherlands – Scheveningen

26 Oct
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Systema Exercise Video: Wall Walking for Body Control

16 Oct

Russia classes 2013 with Vladimir Zaikovsky

12 Jul

This time with Vladimir in Russia was (as always) extremely interesting, he gave us some new and challenging drills, involving relaxation, body control and balance:

The first drill was to relax our shoulders and connect our body. It began in a push-up position at the lowest point, almost but not quite touching the floor.
Now you stretch out one arm in front of you and slightly to the side, put it down on the floor and drag your body forward, while doing this the opposite leg curls up and climbs forward.

Now with the other hand stretching forward and out to the side slightly, now drag yourself forward and the opposite leg curls up and you push off the feet to move forward. If you’re doing it right it should feel and look like you’re swimming, using a minimum of muscle, try to just shift your weight and relax your body.

Then do the same exercise but now going backwards in this low push-up position. I’ll make a video on this as it is not easy to explain or understand in writing.

– Now go in a normal push-up position, but instead of on fists, rest yourself on your forearms and elbows, in a position which feels comfortable – where you’re not tensing yourself unnecessary – now hold.
Try to shift your weight to your legs then back to your arms and if your arms feel tired, shift the weight more to your feet. Shift your weight around your body and feel what changes inside.
Keep holding for 4-5 minutes and relax!

– Then do the same as the above drill but change position so you are laying sideways off the floor, balanced on your forearm and elbow, back straight. Now hold. While you are doing this learn how to shift your weight
to your legs, arms, and then try to make the weight 50/50, experiment while in this position, relax your psyche and body. Then switch and do the same on the opposite side.

– In a push-up position again, this time in the upward position. Stretch one arm out in front, then the other, then one leg, other leg, then opposite legs and arms, then others.
Now go down the full way in a pushup position. Now balancing on on arm, stretch your other arm directly out in front of you, hold for 10 breaths then change. In this exercise Vladimir asked us to try to do it without shifting the weight of our bodies.

The drills emphasized relaxation, balance and economy of movement. The first drill we did for 30 mins + – which was very tiring, but afterwards my body felt connected on a completely new level.

Rolling the Russian Way

22 Apr

In Russia there were some classes with trainers who i didn’t know, very skilled people but not normally teaching every week.

One such morning session, had a group of us, doing some very interesting movement drills;

– From a full down squatting position roll forward into the same low squat position in one movement – it is one movement. If you do this right it feels like you roll as one whole piece and land as one whole peice. Your weight starts on two legs and finishes on two legs

– From a standing position roll forward the same as the last roll and land in a squat. Your body should be collected and whole.

– Then the next step is from a standing position to roll forward and in one movement let the momentum and weight of the roll take you and stand you up. In the roll the weight will be in your whole body, when both feet land to get support, your body weight will be in your feet (tip: let your body weight travel up to your upper body and this will bring you standing up from the roll – without using strength.

– Afterwards you can do many kinds of rolls rolling sideways from standing, rolling forward, landing on one leg and coming up.

The most important thing: These are done in one continuous movement – no breaks in the movement.

(You can try using a shorter inhale/exhale to make the movement flow)

How to Create the Warrior Feeling

24 Mar

Or Special Methods Of Russian Relaxation

When you work with the Russian masters, they give you a certain feeling, of ease, of relaxation, of softness and of confidence, which if you hold and remember that feeling, your work for some time after is changed, and you do things you couldn’t do before.

Many of us go to seminars and camps and Canada and Russia for Systema. When we get home that feeling of relaxation and power lasts for a while, but after that while has past – we usually lose some of it.

Part of the Systema knowledge is learning how to first create that feeling for yourself and secondly to pass it on to others. Of course when our skill improves- any exercise we do gives us that special combination of relaxation and power.

Here are some exercises which easily allow you to create that warrior feeling:

– Walking – starting with 1 step inhaling and 1 step exhaling and moving to to 20 plus then back down to 1, clears your mind, fills your body with power,awareness and heaviness.

– Wall Walking – you start with your legs on the wall your hands on the floor, holding yourself above the ground, then you rotate your body and climb over with your legs so your stomach is now facing upwards, continue turning like this along the wall, then go the other way, repeat for 15 mins. Afterwards, feel how your shoulder blades have dropped into place, and now you feel connected with your hands and feet.

– Rolling – 1 roll inhale, 1 roll exhale, throughout the whole movement, work up to 2, 3+ then back down to 1 roll inhale, 1 roll exhale, relaxing your whole body as much as possible, this will make your whole body full (give you awareness of your whole body as you move)

– Filling up your hands for punching – a simple exercise is walking up and down the wall with your fists, relax your body, and feel the blood go into your hands. Another simple but powerful exercise is standing facing the wall, putting your fists on the wall, the same way as you would do a pushup on the floor. In this position slightly bend your arms. Now lean off the wall, fall against it with your fists and bounce off just by tensing your hand, it should feel and look like you are bouncing back and forth away and against the wall, just by using the tension in your hand.

– Lastly of course is the famous Systema Massage . The importance of this is mentioned by Michael and the other Russian trainers. During my last visit to Russia, one of the old students of Michael said that in the old classes with Michael they would do the walking on the body massage after every class. For your continued health, relaxation and power I recommend finding a partner you can do this with.