My Left Foot or How I learned to love the bag

Now here’s an interesting post outside of the normal tech sphere.

The other day I went to the gym. I know, *gasp*, tech people go to the gym?! You should see the reaction I get when I tell people I practice Muay Thai kickboxing. Talk about stereotyping.

Anyway, I digress. I started with martial arts about 15 years ago when I would let one of my high school buddies "show" me his Tae Kwon Do moves. You don’t have to be a punching bag for too long before you start to pick up some techniques. Since then I’ve studied Kyokushin Karate, Jeet Kune Do (which Bruce Lee made famous), and Kenpo at various periods in my life.

I got involved with Muay Thai about 3 years ago, first through Columbia University’s Kickboxing club and since have practiced on my own. Currently, I’m evaluating several NYC schools. Pickings are surprisingly slim. I like Five Point Fitness and even though they are all the way downtown, I may make that my new home.

Practicing on my own has been OK, but everyone’s natural tendency is to get comfortable in a given routine and not push yourself towards your weaknesses. This bring me to the original reason for my post; my left foot.

Unlike some of the other styles I’ve studied, Muay Thai does not chamber its kicks and the leg is straight through most of the kick. It’s the reason Muay Thai is renowned for a very powerful martial art. However, after so many years of doing chambered kicks, its difficult to completely adopt a new technique. This is doubly true for your non-dominant leg.

So here’s where technology come back in play. I started browsing YouTube and Google Video for Muay Thai clips.There are some really decent ones like this match, and some junk, like this clown. But, in all, I was able to glean some things from watching experienced fighters. Then, I decided to make my own video in order to evaluate my own performance. Truthfully, my original intention was to keep this for private viewing only, but A) putting it online gave me an excuse to play with Flash, which I have not done for awhile, and B) it makes me appear cooler that I actually am.

So, narcissistic tendencies aside, you can see my latest endeavor in the Flash player to the right. I don’t know exactly how it started, but I’m pretty sure the bag said something about my Mama. It knows better now.

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