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Slow down your Systema Training

Updated: 3 days ago

Taking a slow and deliberate approach to learning Systema and any martial arts training can offer several benefits.

By slowly progressing through the basics, practitioners can build a solid foundation of fundamental techniques, stances, and movements. This strong base serves as the foundation for more advanced skills and techniques.


Slowing down allows practitioners to focus on precision and control in their movements. This attention to detail helps develop proper form and technique, leading to more effective and efficient self-defense technique execution.


Rushing through training can increase the risk of injury, especially for beginners who may not have developed the strength, flexibility, or coordination required for certain techniques. Moving slowly allows practitioners to gradually build up their physical abilities while minimizing the risk of injury.


Slower practice encourages practitioners to be more mindful and aware of their body, breath, and surroundings. This heightened awareness can improve concentration, focus, and mindfulness during Systema training and daily life.


Going slowly allows practitioners to better understand the mechanics and principles behind each movement. This deeper understanding enhances their ability to apply techniques effectively in various situations rather than simply memorizing sequences of movements.


systema training

Repetition is critical to developing muscle memory, which is essential for performing skills developed in Systema instinctively and efficiently. Moving slowly allows practitioners to repeat movements with greater attention to detail, reinforcing proper technique and ingraining it into muscle memory.


Martial arts training can be physically and emotionally demanding. Slowing down allows practitioners to regulate their emotions, manage stress, and cultivate patience and resilience, both on and off the training mat.


Slowing down allows practitioners to fully immerse themselves in the Systema training experience, appreciating the journey of learning and self-improvement. It can foster a more profound sense of enjoyment, satisfaction, and fulfillment in self-defence.


Taking a slow and deliberate approach to learning martial arts can lead to a more thorough understanding, greater skill development, reduced risk of injury, and enhanced overall enjoyment and appreciation of the art.




Once upon a time, I regarded “self-awareness” as something that was of little value to me. It seemed too touchy-feely. When people told me I had to “find myself,” I thought, “How can I find myself when I’ve never been lost?”

The self-assuredness of my early 20s was quickly shattered when I got laid off at the age of 26. Suddenly, I started feeling lost. I was starting to realize I had been directing all of my energies toward proving that I was an adult (whatever that meant!).

In reality, I had no clue who I was. Yikes!

Obviously, I missed school the day they taught us about self-awareness. Oh wait, that’s right, they never taught any of us about it!

I believe the practice of self-awareness is one of the greatest skills in life because it enables you to learn about yourself in a way no one else can ever teach you.

It teaches you how to manage yourself and how to productively engage with other people.

Most importantly, it enables you to design work that works for you, so you can design your lifestyle on your terms.

Before we dive into defining “self-awareness,” let’s break it down and focus on the meaning of “awareness” first.

I like to think of “awareness” as what you notice in life. It’s about paying attention.

It’s the details you pick up from your perception of the world. It’s your consciousness actively gathering and processing information from your environment. It’s how you experience life.

There’s lots of stuff to notice each day, each hour, and even each minute. Look up from this blog post for a moment and slowly scan the area around you. What did you notice? Which details can you describe?

I have a very good friend who notices very different things about the world than I do. I often tell her she could have been a CIA agent because she can recall an astonishing amount of detail from any given scene of life.

I’m more oblivious. Well, not really oblivious, just more hyper-focused on one particular part of the same scene my friend and I are experiencing.

I tend to be very aware of people. I easily remember people’s names. I feel their vibe. I notice how people interact with each other in a group. I catalog their stories in my brain. I can pick up conversations exactly where we left off even if months have passed.

My friend, on the other hand, will notice the physical details and movements of all people, even strangers. I tend to be more aware of people I know or spark my curiosity.

Neither form of awareness is right or wrong. They’re just different. It’s our natural tendency.

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