A lot of people spend countless hours practicing contact training, which focuses on 'taking' and 'giving' heavy strikes or holds. Non-contact training differs from this type of approach.
Simply put, non-contact training involves avoiding or "closely taking" any strikes or holds through body movement and breathing. It is a difficult practice and requires an in-depth knowledge about body dynamics and movement - both your own and your opponents.
The Basic Principles of Non Contact Training
In practicing non contact training, you must be aware of your entire body. Here are some ways to heighten your awareness:
Sit in a chair and think about the various parts of you body while breathing.
Tense and relax all parts of your body. This way you know the difference between the two states - tension and relaxation.
Take punches and kicks close to your body, but not on your body. They should literally be skimming you.
While training concentrate on yourself as much as your opponent.
Your opponent should be honest with his or her movements and make sure punches, kicks or grabs are deep and true. This in turn will force you to be honest with your reactions.
Please do not practice guided punches and kicks, instead pick a target and go. Start slowly and as you become more comfortable with your movements, you can then increase the speed.
Poor breathing is a common problem, but in non contact training it is even more so. Often your attention is focused on your opponent or the situation and breathing is forgotten.
The "catch 22" is that in order to move properly when faced with a situation, you need to breath properly. When training, pay careful attention to your breathing - make sure to continue breathing in and out as you move.
A good training partner can help remind you to breath if he or she sees you stopping.
By practicing 'contact' and 'non contact' training equally, you can improve your skills and much more.
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