The weight room is like a second home for athletes. While that training time is necessary, let’s face it – it can also get a little stale.
Let us help you mix up your routine with unique and fun (but not easy) workouts that build strength, speed, power and improve balance and flexibility.
The seventh video of our Training Remix series uncovers Wing Tsun martial arts, guided by Sifu (master instructor) Alex Richter of City WingTsun in New York City.
What it is and how it helps: Wing Tsun Kung Fu, a form of Chinese martial arts, teaches you how to use your power and strength as efficiently as possible to fight off a larger and stronger opponent.
Richter says Wing Tsun is advantageous for all athletes because it trains you to use your opponent’s force against him or her.
Wing Tsun training combines hand and leg techniques, requiring you to move your upper and lower body in sync. “Everything is synergistic and explosive,” Richter says.
The style also involves a lot of footwork, hand-eye coordination and conditioning, making it a great tool to improve reaction, agility and develop explosive power.
The test: Nazareth’s (Brooklyn, N.Y.) Bianca Cuevas aspires to one day play in the WNBA.
The fearless point guard, who blows by defenders with her sharp speed and dangerous crossover, helped power the Kingsmen to the No. 25 spot in the final USA TODAY Super 25 girls basketball ranking.
Cuevas also helped Nazareth claim the Brooklyn/Queens Division I title for the second consecutive year.
Cuevas’ approach to training is all about being fast and agile, so she was up for the challenge of trying Wing Tsun. Did she handle it or did the workout handle her? Check out the video to find out.
Strengthens shoulders, triceps and lats
• Stand with feet hip-width apart
• Extend arms straight in front of body
• Make a fist with each hand
• Cross wrist over wrist so each fist rotates over the other
Sets/Reps: Perform 5 sets of 10 punches
Start with one punch per count; once you’re more comfortable with the movement, increase speed to two punches per count and work your way up to five punches per count
Develops lower-body explosive strength and improves balance
• Partner holds a “kick shield” (handheld pad)
• Start with left leg forward
• Step forward, lift right knee
• Extend right leg and stomp mat with heel
Form tips: Using bottom of foot to kick, generating force from heel; avoid kicking with toe
Sets/Reps: Perform 5 kicks on each leg
• Front kick, immediately followed by chain punching
Perform each exercise in combination three times
Chain Punches on Wall Bag (perform 50 punches)
W Pushups (perform 5 reps)
• Lie face down, place hands slightly turned out to form “W”
• Extend arms and push body up
• Lower body until chest is an inch or two above ground
• Repeat up and down pattern for specified reps
Form tip: Maintain straight line from head to heels
Chain Punches in air (perform 50 punches)