If, like many others, you only see training taking place inside the dojo or gym, you are missing out on most of your training opportunities. In fact when it comes to practicing a martial art, you may even say that you will never truly get it.
A martial art is a way of life. A way of approaching every aspect of your life. The way that you stand, sit, walk, breathe are all training opportunities. The way that you deal with people, situations or setbacks are some of the best training opportunities. The way that you observe people, rooms or landscapes are again, all opportunities to train. When it comes to Systema, they are ways to not only train your martial skill and awareness, but also your health. In fact one of the reasons that I appreciate Systema so much, is its moment by moment ability to become conscious of and thereby improve your health, mobility, awareness and relaxation skills.
The dojo or gym is where you learn a particular skill, that may be a technique, principle or concept. But you will never master it there. If the next time you think about it, is when you go back to the gym, even if that is every day, it is not enough. It has to be embodied. It has to become part of every thought, every movement. It is a way of thinking, breathing, moving, being.
For me, Systema is a feeling. I am either in a feeling of Systema, or I am not. This feeling is relaxed, balanced, smooth, calm. Wherever I am or whatever I am doing. As soon as I notice something pulling me out of that feeling into tension, I check whether it is appropriate or not, and if not, I release it and drop back into the feeling of Systema.
Our bodies communicate thier to us through feelings: Pain, happiness, fatigue, tension, emotion etc before concepts and ideas. These are our first internal representation of what is going on. So if you can establish your baseline feeling as a good (clean) one: light, relaxed, calm, balanced and notice when you are pulled out of it, you are well on your way to making Systema a habit.
I am currently writing my next book, ‘Living Systema’. It is about taking the concept of training out of the dojo or gym and into your life. A way to bring your training to every moment to improve your skills, awareness and health. A way to make the act of living your training. In short, the way to improve yourself.
I will share these concepts more during the 4 day camp coming up in Wiltshire at the end of June. One of the key benefits of the camp is to make you more aware and conscious in every moment of the 4 days. Training outdoors is a one of the best ways I know to breathe life into your training.
I look forward to sharing these ideas with you.
Respect and best wishes,
I will also be sharing many of these ideas at the upcoming course in Marple, Lancs on the 21st May. Email me for more details.
|Click the links below for Matt’s systema: