New ROK Article: 3 Body Hardening Methods

I have a new article on Return of Kings about body hardening techniques, and why you ought to do them:

If you will recall, a few weeks ago I wrote an article on body hardening, a concept in martial arts where the muscles and bones are deliberately subjected to trauma in order to strengthen and prepare them for delivering their own punishment to an opponent.

In that article, I discussed two methods: sandblasting (using the fingers to strike loads of beans, sand, or BBs to strengthen them for the finger attacks typical of such kung fu styles as the Praying Mantis), and bottle rolling, which is done to the shins to deaden them to pain. In addition to describing their body hardening roles, I also described how such body hardening techniques can be used as a form of conventional strength training as well.

This article will provide four more methods of body hardening that are predominantly used to benefit the combat athlete, but can also be used for general purpose strength training and/or cardiovascular training…

“Iron body” training is one of those concepts that most people have a dim idea of from popular culture-perhaps you have seen films such as Enter the Dragon (to mention San Francisco’s favorite son again) or Tiger and Crane Fist demonstrating this technique, or have seen video footage of kung fu masters taking kicks to the groin without flinching.

While I have never willingly taken a kick to the batch, this technique involves a combination of proper posture  (thrusting the hips forward so the impact is divided between the groin and the buttocks) and muscular control over the inguinal canal, and is beyond the reach of this article.

Instead the iron body technique that I am familiar with is the one that conditions the body to absorb pain from an opponent by subjecting the body to controlled impact. While the movies always show this as something that is done with a partner—or more often than not, a supplicating student ordered to by his master—you can utilize iron body by yourself with just a couple of easy-to-find tools…

Read the article here