Archive | December, 2012

The Art of Cooling Down After Workouts

14 Dec

Why should I cool down? I’m gonna go home and rest anyways….That’s exactly why you should cool down after a workout. We all understand that we should warm up  before workouts, but may not understand what a sufficient warm up is, which was talked about in “The Importance of Warming Up.” A lesser percentage understand the importance of cooling your body down after training. If you already have this as a part of your training regimen, then you’re ahead of the curve. Hopefully this will help anyone else still suffering from injuries, regardless of warming up.


During training sessions at 10th Planet Van Nuys, muscle fiber, tendons, and ligaments undergo a lot of stress, causing waste product such as lactic acid to build up around each of these. So, you know when the soreness hits you a day later than you originally expected? If you perform a correct cool down, you can significantly reduce muscle soreness! Once all the blood and waste product has built up around your muscles, it begins to stiffen the muscle, causing swelling and pain. With a proper cool down, it helps in returning blood back to the heart in sufficient quantity to relieve the muscles of lactic acid. Again, the cool down may take just as long as the warm up, but it is very important and very much worth it once you begin to experience the results of it yourselves. Every cool down should consist of:

10 minutes of jogging – this will slowly lower your heart rate

10 – 15 minutes of static stretching (holding deep stretches) – focus on major muscle groups or muscles used the most during workout

and believe it or not, the final stage in the cool down process, is your post workout meal! All 3 of these factors work together to ensure muscle growth and recovery. Don’t sell your workouts short! You’re not training everyday to NOT see results, are you? Take the proper steps to keep your body going and feeling great! Stay healthy and keep training!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       


The Importance of Warming Up

13 Dec

Are you tired of being injured all the time? Especially when competitions are coming, always seem to be the opportune time for a jiu jitsu player to get injured. Are you taking the right precautions to prevent injuries? Everyone is always so eager to jump on the mat and get straight into the sparring, or the “fun” part of jiu jitsu. ALL of jiu jitsu is fun, but what’s not fun, is sitting on the sideline for 8 weeks because of something you didn’t do. This quick read is to ensure that everyone in the martial arts community, whether it be a hobby, or you’re a full blown fighter, take the proper steps that will keep them injury free and more importantly, on the mat!

Most people believe that warming up is just a simple procedure to avoid injuries alone, but there is a lot more that you can benefit from that we don’t realize. The time spent warming up or cooling down will actually help improve an athletes overall performance, and on top of that, help speed up the recovery process of any already existing minor injuries. Now the question is, does simple stretching prove to be a sufficient warm up? The answer is yes and no. We often times confuse the difference between static stretching and dynamic stretching, along with when each one should be used. For warming up, an athlete should use a dynamic stretch, as this will help reduce muscle stiffness (static stretching does not do this). Injuries often times are connected to muscle stiffness, so we want to minimize this as much as possible. Every warm up should consist of the following:

10 minute jog – this will begin to raise your body temperature                                                   15 minutes of dynamic stretching – as we discussed, to reduce muscle stiffness                   10 minutes of sport specific drills – preparing yourself for the workout session

I know what you’re thinking….35 minute warm up?! Am I crazy?! That’s how important warming up actually is, and why it is overlooked many times because of how tedious it is. Those 35 minutes of warming up could mean the difference between a successful training session, or a 2-3 month hiatus. If you love jiu jitsu as much as I do, or any sport for that matter, don’t risk it! Take the time your body deserves and keep it healthy. Here is an awesome video on lower back injury prevention with Rener Gracie. Especially in jiu jitsu, we use a lot of core in almost all movements, but without strengthening our lower back first our core is useless. If you notice the amazing lower back and core conditioning of Rener, he sits on the stability ball, having a conversation for over 3 MINUTES! Check back for another article on cooling down! Very important as well. Enjoy this video and keep training!                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

10th Planet Van Nuys Coaching Program In Full Effect!

3 Dec


On Saturday December 1st, 2012, 10th Planet Van Nuys launched it’s 2nd term of the official coaching program! This is a very exciting new addition for the Van Nuys chapter in 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu. For Coach Alder Hampel, head instructor of 10th Planet Van Nuys, having the assistance of other instructors goes way beyond just teaching.

The first time around, myself along with 4 of my teammates completed the 12 week course and are now able to take the jiu jitsu training experience at Van Nuys to the next level.  Like I said before, the program goes way beyond just teaching. With extra coaches on the mats during training sessions, it helps keep a safer environment preventing sports injuries. This is the biggest thing we try to focus on at 10th Planet Van Nuys, it is our goal to make sure all of students make it to their black belts, but in order to do that we need to make sure we’re able to keep all of our students on the mats. The assistants are a major in this, helping monitor sparring sessions, to make sure no ones rolling harder than necessary.

Competitions, is another area where the new instructors shine. When teams go out and compete with an average of about 10 competitors per competition, it’s extremely hard for ONE instructor to coach every single person. It’s pretty much impossible! Having someone in your corner during your matches is a big part of our competitors success. When you have 5 extra coaches with you, now everyone gets tended too, and you have a higher success rate with your students.

I’m excited to be a part of the new breed of coaches we are bringing into the fold at 10th Planet Van Nuys. This is gonna bring our team closer and help all the students improve their jiu jitsu games much faster. If you’re looking to be a coach, learn jiu jitsu, or improve your jiu jitsu, come check us out in the San Fernando Valley and join the revolution.

GCAL Jiu Jitsu

10th Planet Jiu Jitsu Purple Belt, Head MMA Instructor @ 10th Planet Van Nuys, Strength & Conditioning Coach, and Lover of Martial Arts

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