1.1 Welcome

Welcome to the Westside Academy of Kung Fu and Mo Duk Pai.  Most of your training will be physical - learning techniques, doing drills, sparring, etc.  Some of your training, however, will involve reading this training manual and other outside reading.  The purpose of the reading material is the same as the purpose of the physical training - to make you a better martial artist.

More specifically, the training manual is designed to help you with the mental side of training: strategies, philosophies and vocabulary that are supposed to be helpful in studying martial arts.  If you have any questions about what you read, ASK!  Questions are a big part of what helps keep students, teachers and the art itself evolving.

1.2 Why We’re Here

The longevity of any system of martial arts depends on many things: the surrounding culture, functionality, sport, history, etc.  We believe that our survival as a system depends on delivering quality.  This means providing quality instruction, quality techniques... quality in everything we do.

The world is full of opportunities and temptations to cut corners, cut quality and save time.  That’s fine but we’re in this for the long haul and believe that by keeping our focus on quality we will not only survive but thrive.

1.3 Fitness

The literal translation of Kung Fu into English is “hard work over time”. Hopefully, you will be challenging your body as you train. What follows are a few ideas regarding how you can take care of yourself and your training partners.

Eat Well – There are numerous ideas on how to eat well out there.  Here are some basic ideas that may be helpful in managing and considering the food you put into your body.

Sleep and Recovery – The harder you train, the more recovery time your body needs. Get adequate sleep.

Hygiene – Keeping both yourself and the school clean will allow you and your fellow students to continue to train with fewer interruptions. The following rules should help:

Work Hard, Work Smart - The more you put into your training, the more you’ll get out.  However, if you’re unable to train - you won’t get anything out of it.

1.4 Set Ups (Fighting Principle #1)

A set up is preparation for something else.  Cleaning and sanding the walls before you paint is set up - a quality paint job is the result.  Sweeping the floor before a party is set up - your guests being impressed by your tidiness is the result.  Pulling hard on a rope during tug of war so that your opponent will pull hard as well is set up - letting go of the rope and watching your opponent take a tumble can be the result.

One set up that we do before every class is salute in.  This is designed to give you an opportunity to clear your mind before you train.  Forget the rest of your day (good or bad) and just train - set yourself up to have a good class where you are able to learn as much as possible and are in the right mindset to welcome challenge.

Set yourself up to accomplish your goals.  Set your partner up so that you can accomplish your goals.

Additional (Optional) Reading -

On Quality - Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig.

On Fitness - What is Fitness? by Greg Glassman.

On Diet - Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual by Michael Pollan.

(If you notice any spelling errors, grammar mistakes or have any questions regarding the training manual, please email me at sifu@westsideakf.com)