If you are interested in kung fu or have just begun training, you are likely excited about all this discipline has to offer. Unfortunately, many students get so involved in training to be the best martial artist possible that they fail to take proper care of themselves after each training session.
Mastering your kung fu skills is important, but equally important is knowing how to take care of yourself following a training session so that you remain as healthy as possible. And staying healthy is the only way you will continue to improve at kung fu.
What follows are some guidelines for caring your mind and body following a training session:
- Cool Down. After a training session you are likely to be sweaty and hot. At times like this a refreshing shower sounds ideal. However, a hot or warm shower is the best way to go since it will decrease the likelihood of catching a cold or some other illness. Immediately after training you should always dry your body with a towel and avoid fans or air conditioners. It also is recommended that you complete cooling down exercises at the end of a training session so that you can return your heart rate to normal and aid in your body’s recovery.
- Rehydrate. Again, cold water is not recommended after a workout. This includes drinking ice water. Instead, opt for water that is at room temperature. While a tall glass of ice cold water may sound good, it is not best for your body because it can lead to colds or other illnesses. Don’t forgo water altogether, however. Your body loses a great deal of water during training so you need to replenish it.
- Relax and Reenergize. Training will sap you of a great deal of energy. Tapping on certain of your body’s acupoints is an excellent way to relax and reenergize. It also will allow you to regain some energy. If you are unsure what acupoints to concentrate on, you should ask your Shaolin Kung Fu instructor for guidance.
- Mediate. Meditation is an excellent way to calm your mind and increase awareness. Following kung fu practice, meditation will allow you to focus on your practice. Meditation is an essential part of kung fu, allowing you to banish negative thoughts and gain mental strength. If you have never meditated before, be patient with yourself as it takes time to be able to control your thoughts and get the most out of meditation.
Kung fu can do wonders for your mind, body and spirit. Make sure you get the most out of this practice by taking proper care of yourself following every session.