Training at home can be a pain. Literally. Because we can get lazy and skip workouts, sometimes for months and years at a time.
We don’t mean to. The passion still smoulders, but it’s hard to motivate ourselves to train at home with the same frequency or intensity we do at the dojo.
Life always seems to get in the way. And when it doesn’t, we often just don’t feel like it. And when we do, the workouts aren’t as long, intense or regular as when there’s a sensei or sifu to push us and classmates to compete against.
But that doesn’t mean we should just quit. Rather, it’s important to recognize the challenges at hand, and find ways to overcome them when we can.
For me, a veteran of 35+ years of mostly self-training, the content of my workouts varied greatly. Sometimes I’d run. At others I’d get to the gym. But mostly, it was catch as catch can at home, periodically shifting between practicing techniques, forms, combinations and shadow boxing with moderate stretching, calisthenics and cardio interspersed along the way.
So i know how easy it is to get sidetracked. But what I found most helpful was realizing how much I loved to just do it, all of it, and thrilled everytime I did, no matter how great or how small.
Sure, conditioning suffered. So did timing and distance. But I found my technique surprisingly improved, even when my memory of every little thing slipped.
For me, it was my understanding of the principles that allowed me to keep and grow my art, even if not at the same pace I could have working out 6 days a week with instruction.
But that wasn’t what it was about for me. As I got older, it was no longer about being the best fighter or ready for any eventuality. Rather, it became about the joy of movement, the flow of energy, and the challenge to master myself that came with every effort.
So if you’re stuck at home and seeing your ability slip, don’t despair. Do what you can, when you can. Work on something new. Polish what you’ve already got.
Above all, go easy on yourself and forgive yourself your failings. For there’s no one there to compete with but you.
Stay with it as best you can. If you need inspiration, reference material or virtual classes to keep you going, please check out our digital dojo.
You’ll be glad you did.