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Old 10-19-2003, 10:01 AM   #41
Kevin Wilbanks
Location: Seattle/Southern Wisconsin
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 788

That's some sensible thinking, although I'm not sure aims and means can be divided up as neatly as you propose. Far from being a matter of whimsical preference, the "science bit" has some pretty clear inputs regarding the appropriateness of some of those aims.

If one is after long-term adaptations in terms of strength or flexibility, the brief warmup period prior to Aikido training just isn't a very good place for these. Beyond the most rudimentary levels of fitness, there isn't enough time to accomplish anything. Increasing ROM requires more extensive and frequent sessions. Without specifically targeted joint actions, the time requirements could become staggering. Also, stretching this vigorously just prior to intense athletic activity is contraindicated as it has been shown to reduce strength output.

Likewise, in terms of strength, there is also inadequate time or facilites to accomplish much that would be useful to any but the dedicated couch-potato. The timing is not good, as just before a possibly extensive and vigorous workout is not the best time to exhaust, deplete and weaken the muscles. The most productive thing to do subsequent to serious strength exercise is to rest and replenish nutrients, not pile on an long exercise session running on empty.

Motor-skills wise, I think it is also questionable whether anything beyond the most rudimentary can be accomplished with solo warmup exercise. Motor skills are highly specific and can really only be addressed by doing the activity itself. Since Aikido is about doing things in relation to a partner, the role of solo exercise is inherently limited - far too many important elements are missing. Paul's surfing analogy comes to mind: while there may be some benefit at a beginner level to putting the board on the sand and practicing how to stand on it, how much time do experienced surfers spend doing this?

Also, my understanding with regards to hangovers: your system is full of toxic byproducts of alcohol metabolism, and it simply takes time to process them. The Aikido training itself might help in the long run by speeding up metabolism for a while, but nothing you can do in the 10 minutes prior to working out is going to make much difference.

Last edited by Kevin Wilbanks : 10-19-2003 at 10:05 AM.
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