An introduction to Kung Fu

kung fu masterKung Fu is a popular term that is often associated with Chinese martial arts. But do you know that it has a different meaning in Chinese? It is a general term for any skill acquired and developed through diligence, hard work and continuous training. Wushu is the more appropriate term for the Chinese martial arts. It means the art in fighting. However, in the twentieth century as the Chinese martial arts became popular in many countries, it was popularly called as Kung Fu.

Kung Fu or Wushu started in the ancient times way back more than three thousand years in China when the art of hand-to-hand fighting was developed. This personal combat involves techniques like kicking, punching, throwing, controlling, pressure points attacks, and so on. Kung Fu training improves physical strength, health, will power and discipline. During the increased need to defend and survive against foreign invaders, Kung Fu was taught generally to fight with or without weapons.

Kung Fu training has played a vital role throughout Chinese history, especially when China rose to power. Their fighters or soldiers were selected through a martial arts contest and got promoted through the competition. Ancient techniques of empty hand-to-weapon combat was first put down during the Han Dynasty around 206 CE and schools for martial arts began around 264 to 581 CE.

Subsequently, various practical Kung Fu training emerged which included the use of weapons in fighting. There are patterned or choreographed trainings for students to gain understanding on how to attack and defend themselves. Ancient trainings also encouraged students for street fights to do the techniques in actual combat. Even so numerous ancient Chinese weapons were available, in Kung Fu there are limited commonly used weapons. These weapons are usually a straight sword, broadsword, staff, spear, dual swords, double straight sword, double hook sword, double ended spear, k-wan sword, nine section whip, rope, chained hammer, 3-section staff, daggers and etc.

Meditation is also considered as the most essential part of Kung Fu training. As this helps the individual to focus, for mental clarity and discipline on when to act during combat.

Originally, Kung Fu is exclusively taught only in China. However, by the end of the Chinese Civil War, when the People’s Republic of China was founded, Kung Fu also became popular to other countries. Training of Chinese martial arts was discouraged in the country to support with Maoist doctrine. As a result, several well-known Kung Fu masters traveled out from China and taught to other ethnic groups.

As Kung Fu training and knowledge spread, over a hundred Kung Fu styles and techniques were introduced by the greatest fighters called masters. These masters have enhanced the harmony of the martial arts with their own ability of fighting for efficiency. Some popular kung fu styles are Hung Gar, Northern Shsaolin, Tajiquan, Xing Yi, Bagua, Lion Dance, Jeet Kune Do and so on.

Nowadays, Kung Fu is considered as a sport. Anyone who engages in Kung Fu training needs sufficient nutrition and dedication for its rigorous, delicate and complex pattern of attack and defense.

5 Amazing Health Benefits of Kung Fu

Kung Fu is a type of Chinese martial arts which dates back to A.D. 527 and originated in the Chinese province of Henan. It was the Buddhist monks in Shaolin temples who first practiced Kung Fu in order to be physically fit and to develop their internal energy, vitality and strength.

Over the years, more and more people practiced Kung Fu in China and around the world. As such, it is important to understand and know its many health benefits:

  1. Improved physical fitness

You have to regularly train in order to be skillful in Kung Fu. And most of these trainings involve intense body movement. These trainings are like regular exercises which can make a person active and physically fit.

  1. Weight loss

If you are overweight, practicing Kung Fu can also help you lose those extra pounds. And you don’t have to starve yourself just to achieve your ideal weight. You could start a Kung Fu training and make it part of your weight loss program. If you have the commitment to go on with your training, you will be cutting off as much extra pounds in your weight in no time.

  1. Enhanced cardiovascular health

Kung Fu is also known to help improve your cardiovascular health. Since it involves rigorous exercises, your blood circulation will improve and so will be your cardiovascular health. Your extra cholesterol will burn and your heart muscles will be strengthened. When you combine a good diet with your training, you are going to experience the improvements in your cardiovascular health in a short time. Additionally, Kung Fu can also help lower your blood pressure. But you have to seek advice from your doctor first especially if you are at risk of heart attack before going through a rigorous Kung Fu training.

  1. Better metabolism

When your body is very active, your metabolic process will also greatly improve. And better metabolism is important to longevity of life.

  1. Improved mental health

During training, you will be taught to be alert all the time and to stay focused. You cannot defeat your enemy if your mind is somewhere else. Many Kung Fu masters can even fight their opponents even with closed eyes. If you learn the art of staying alert and focused, you can greatly improve your mental health. And you will be able to perform better in school or at work if you know about alertness and focus.

Over time, Kung Fu has been proven to provide many health benefits. Kung Fu is not only good as self-defense but also as a means to improve one’s health. It can help you improve your physical fitness, lose weight, enhance your cardiovascular system, improve your metabolism and improve your mental health.

These health benefits of Kung Fu can be enjoyed by anyone, young and old, male or female, regardless of nationality or physical ability. And no other sport or activity has the benefits that Kung Fu offers.

Famous Kung Fu Masters

Kung Fu is the most ancient and famous martial arts in China. In the beginning, it was only exclusively taught to and used by the elite people including soldiers. But over time, it has also become popular among the common people, and has also spread out to many other countries.

In fairly recent history, there were several famous Kung Fu masters who introduced and taught the different Kung Fu styles and techniques:

Wong Fei Hung (July 9, 1847 to March 25 1924)

One of the earliest Kung Fu masters is Wong Fei Hung. He was a physician, acupuncturist, a folk hero and a renowned master of Hung Gar style martial arts. He was only five years old when his father taught him Hung Gar. At a very early age, he was able to do the Shadowless kick, which is one of the most difficult stunts. As a master, he is famous for introducing a new version of Tiger Crane Paired Form Fist where he incorporated his famous Ten Special Fist Techniques.

Although Wong Fei Hung died in the early 1920s, his legacy remains because he has been a subject of many movies and television series.

Yip Man (October 1, 1893 to December 2, 1972)

Also known as Yip Kai Man, Yip Man is a famous Kung Fu master in Wing Chun style. He was a martial arts teacher and many of his students became famous teachers as well. The most notable of them are Bruce Lee, Ip Chun and IP Ching who were his sons and Lo Man Kam, his nephew. Yip Man started learning Wing Chun when he was just 13. His most important legacy is the worldwide practice of Wing Chun. He is also key figure in writing the Wing Chun history.

HK Bruce LeeBruce Lee (November 27, 1940 to July 20 1973)

Many people know Bruce Lee as an actor who has great skill in martial arts. He started learning Wing Chun from Yip Man at the age of 13. Bruce Lee also teaches Kung Fu. But because he was not a pure-blooded Chinese, many students are reluctant to train under him.

Bruce Lee is famous for introducing Jeet Kune Do also known as The Way of the Intercepting Fist. This style is also known as “the style of no style.” He introduced this because he thought that Wing Chun is just very rigid and formal.

Huo Yuanjia (January 18, 1868 to August 9, 1910)

Huo Yuanjia is also a famous Kung Fu master and a co-founder of Chin Woo Athletic Association which is a famous martial arts school in Shanghai. He is a master of the martial arts style called mizongyi. Huo is named as one of the heroes of China for defeating many foreign fighters in a number of highly publicized matches during his time.

These are just some of the famous Kung Fu masters in China who left important legacies in their respective styles. Their personal life became influential in the lives of many people not only in China but also in other parts of the world. It would be good to learn more about these people especially if you are interested in Kung Fu because you can learn many things from them.

Maintaining a Kung Fu Dojo

A Dojo is a place where Kung Fu practitioners and teachers alike perform their martial arts and other duties in the course of learning Kung Fu skills. The word Dojo is derived from Taoist and Buddhist terminologies “do” or dao which means “the spiritual way”. So a dojo is really a place to perform and cultivate the spiritual way through martial arts training.

There are several key apparatuses involved when you hear the name dojo and you will find them in almost all the martial arts dojos in the land. Certain things like the “Mook Yan Jong”, more commonly known as the wooden dummy, are available to everyone to practice their skills on and also certain weapons and equipment that are partial to the kind of Kung Fu that you practice.

Rubber mats are also a staple in any dojo worth their salt as it is there that they practice grappling, falling or striking techniques relative to all types of martial arts. You don’t really want to fall directly to the hard ground when you do Kung Fu and the rubber mats are there to make sure you stay in one piece always.

Building composition and design is also important when you are maintaining a dojo and the ventilation of the place must also be assured to maintain proper order inside of it. People will generate heat and will be sweating a lot in the performance of Kung Fu, so it is of utmost importance that you secure proper air flow inside the dojo or risk being victimized by the heat.

Water systems must be in place for both drinking and washing purposes. Certain appropriations must be made in order to allow people to take showers or baths after strenuous physical exertion. A very good water system like the best reverse osmosis system needs to be installed to guarantee the safeness of the drinking water inside the dojo.

A place to change your attire or somewhere to put your belongings is also needed in the dojo as people rarely go there without carrying anything. Some go to the dojo with their best lightweight luggage in tow and you must provide them with a safe and secure place with which to put their belongings on. You wouldn’t want things to go missing inside your dojo as it would lead to tarnishing of your name in your community.

It is not very hard to maintain a fully functioning dojo if you only adhere to the most common practices indicated in operating any place of business. Just make sure to observe the proper building code and also comply with city ordinances when building your dojo and everything would be just fine.

Just imagine yourself as a customer going to your dojo and you will find out clearly if it is any good or not. If you yourself find something amiss on the place then chances are, the customers would find many of them as they are not a bias source of information. Just build it beautifully and the customers will surely come.

Spreading the Word about Kung Fu

Exhibitions are a great way of naturally advertising your brand of Kung Fu all with the aim of attracting brand new and potential students to enroll in your courses. Kung Fu being a rather specialized brand of activity needs all the help it can get to raise the awareness of it, as it is not as mainstream as you would have liked it to be.

Of course you will have to spend a little in order to have a decent enough exhibition, but think of it as a kind of an investment of sorts, one that will bring to you much needed exposure and hopefully, more students in the future. It would also be a way to showcase your type of martial arts and of how it could help people achieve whatever it is they want through its use.

Kung Fu basically is a way of life that you get through practicing its basic tenets, teachings and movements. Its innate philosophy affords you clarity of thought and soundness of being that you either will be totally into it or not, as there is really nothing in between. If you are only after the moves then you are really not Kung Fu enough to be called a practitioner.

The idea of Kung Fu sometimes gets lost in translation as humans are creatures that value sight more above other available bodily senses, and would go after cool stuffs first before diving into deeper waters, which is what Kung Fu adheres to and really all about.

Knowing that, it is all the more attractive for Kung Fu proponents to subscribe to exhibitions, if only to generate more awareness of their crafts and deal with the in depth stuff later on, probably when people who joined are already primed for it. So it is a must for you to show what people might get from Kung Fu and the best way to do that is through exhibitions.

Doing exhibitions are relatively easy in that all you need are mats for all your performances and also chairs for your audiences. Implements such as wood boards, weapons, uniforms and others are easily sourced and all you have to worry about are which of your students, probably also you, will do the routines.

It doesn’t hurt if you also have cameras and video equipment to document the whole affair, probably the best travel tripod also for unmanned documentation which you can just click and leave for the duration of the affair. Uploading of all exhibition coverage online is also important for you to reach as much people as you possibly could.

Offering creature comforts to your audience will also endear them to you and make them more interested in what you are trying to tell them. Refreshments are a nice way to go and also make sure they each have a seat for the duration of your presentation.

You can also get out of your way to make their stay a very pleasant one by adding non-traditional comforts, like probably several best pack n plays, if you have them, to put their little ones on so they won’t wander around the venue. Reading materials are also recommended so they can read about you even after the event. Anything you can think of which can bring value to your audience is a step in the right direction.

Kung Fu Coloring Pages: Best Option for Boys

Kung Fu classes are not only for adult people. And they are definitely not only for boys. Kung Fu, in fact, is now gaining in popularity among young boys and girls. Kung Fu is a form of martial arts which originated in China. It is a form of self-defense which does not use any weapons.

Many children are now becoming vulnerable to bad elements even when in school. There are bullies and adult people who take advantage of weak children. Knowing this, many parents support their children if they are interested to learn martial arts. It is a way to protect themselves from those who would like to take advantage of them. And many children who know some form of martial arts become popular in their school. Other children will be interested to also learn a few movements from them. Also, other children will be reluctant to bully them or to hurt them because they can easily defend and protect themselves.

Indeed, there are many benefits of teaching martial arts to younger children especially boys. And there are many forms of martial arts that are suitable for children such as Kung Fu and others which do not use any weapons. Martial arts have become a good avenue to teach discipline, endurance and patience to young children. And they can develop these attributes as they continually learn and master their skill.

Learning Kung Fu does not just start as soon as you enroll your kid in formal training. If you really like your kid to be interested in learning Kung Fu, you should start introducing it to him or her as early as your child can hold a crayon. And yes, you could start introducing Kung Fu through Kung Fu coloring pages.

Many young children including toddlers are enthusiastic about coloring. That is one of the reasons why coloring pages such as Disney’s Frozen coloring pages, Skylanders coloring pages, Disney movies coloring pages, and many others become quite popular. Well, you could buy your kid any of these popular designs plus several Kung Fu coloring pages to slowly introduce this form of martial arts. But you should never force your child to like Kung Fu. Some children may develop an interest in it while other may not. Parents should understand that children have varying interests. Even if you come from a family of Kung Fu artists, you may have children who will not be interested to learn it. But introducing Kung Fu coloring pages at an early age may have some influence on your child.

Kung Fu coloring pages can be bought in bookstores or they can also be accessed online. There are various sites where you can print this kind of coloring page for free. And many of these coloring pages illustrate Kung Fu movements. As your child colors them, he can also learn basic moves.

While you could introduce Kung Fu as parents, it is still your child’s personal choice if he or she will choose to enroll in formal training at a later age. After all, true learning starts with interest. If your child is not interested in it, then it will be difficult for him to learn it and master the skill.

 

Tips to Lose Weight by Learning Kung Fu Exercises

Some people who are on a weight loss program get involved in various physical activities including Kung Fu. Kung Fu is a form of martial arts that requires constant practice to master the skill. Basic Kung Fu normally involves movement of the arms, feet and even the whole body. That is why it is an ideal activity for those who want to reduce weight.

But before you engage in Kung Fu, there are some useful tips that can help you prepare for the physically demanding activities ahead of you:

1. Observe a healthy diet

Prior to learning Kung Fu exercises, it would be good that you observe a healthy diet so that your body will have the needed energy to perform the exercises. It is recommended that you include low carb fruits and low carb vegetables in your diet because they contain the needed nutritional value for your body without letting you gain more weight. Also eat adequate amounts of foods containing calcium and protein for stronger and healthier bones and muscles. You need these foods to resist the stresses of Kung Fu routines.

2. Get involved in other physical activities

Kung Fu exercises require a high level of endurance and if you are not used to physical activities, you might easily give up on it. You could do regular walks or runs or do basic exercises such as pushups and knee bends. You could also learn yoga because it will teach you some meditation and breathing techniques which are important in Kung Fu exercises.

black belt3. Choose a specific style of Kung Fu

There are various Kung Fu styles that you can choose from and it would be good to focus on one specific style. Among the popular styles that are easier to learn are Shaolin Kung Fu, Hung Gar, Wing Chun and Tai Chi among others. Focusing on one style allows you to master a particular type of martial arts skill. But before you choose, read more about the different styles of Kung Fu so that you will know which one is the most suitable for you.

4. Find the nearest Kung Fu school

After choosing your Kung Fu style, find a school, training center or training instructor nearest you. If there is none available, you could also research online for video tutorials. There are many available resources on the Internet which can help you learn a particular style even at home.

5. Practice regularly

You will not be able to learn Kung Fu exercises and lose weight if you will just practice for two to three hours per week. You should make it your daily routine. You need to have patience and discipline regarding practice sessions and in following your practice schedule.

You need adequate preparation if you like to be trained in Kung Fu. It can be a physically tiring and demanding activity but it can also be worth your effort because of its many health benefits. And one of them is weight loss.

Dogs as Workout Companion

 

If you have to master different skills in Kung Fu, regular training and workout are a must. Training can help you be familiar with the different movements and techniques in Kung Fu. It can also help keep our mind and body alert which is vital during sparring sessions. One the other hand, workouts can keep you physically active even when you are not training for Kung Fu moves. They can also help build your stamina to overcome tedious Kung Fu trainings.

Although the benefits of Kung Fu training and exercises are known to many people, the lack of motivation discourages them to do these physical activities. This is especially true if you have a tiring week and all you want to do on your free time is to sit on your couch and watch your favorite sports program or to simply rest. Having a motivating factor is vital if you like to consistently train and workout to develop Kung Fu skills.

Making time for Kung Fu may be the last thing in your mind if you are always preoccupied with work and feel worn out at the end of the day. One way to get motivation is to find a companion who will inspire and remind you about your schedule of trainings or workouts. A dedicated companion should also help you find out the type of workout that is most suitable for you.

There are many people who can be your companion during physical activities. You can have your spouse, friend, trainer, son or daughter or even your dog.

Having your spouse for a companion allows you to train while spending more time to build quality relationship with your partner. Your spouse can be your strongest motivator if he or she also likes doing physical activities. He can remind you of your activity schedule and drag you out of bed when needed just so you can train as scheduled. However, if your spouse also lacks interest in physical activities or has a busy schedule to accompany you during training, you may have to find another training buddy.

If you have friends who have the same interest in Kung Fu as you are, you could both become a training companion for each other. You could both schedule a time and day when you could both workout and develop your skills. At the same time, you could also share whatever skills you have that your companion may not know.

Your children could also serve as your training companion. Bringing them during training or practice allows them to develop their interest in Kung Fu and help them learn basic skill and movements even before they begin to have formal trainings.

Lastly, if you cannot find anyone else, consider having a pet dog who can accompany you during outdoor trainings. Dogs are naturally playful and active and they would gladly accompany you during workouts. But choose a bigger breed of dogs for this purpose. For instance, if you already own poodle mixes such as Bichon Poodle, you may want to find a bigger dog that is more suitable for physical activities. Poodles are small dogs that are good as lap dogs but not as training dogs.

It is important to remember that if you lose interest in training for Kung Fu, a companion who can motivate you to go on with your training may be all that you need. Find your Kung Fu companion now and be inspired to train again.

Top 5 Early Signs of Pregnancy

 

7482102Kung Fu is a popular martial art not only among men but also among women. While men can continue on with their training as much as they want, some women may be limited by certain circumstances such as during their monthly menstruation or when they are pregnant. Although it is still possible to train during pregnancy, it may not be suitable to women who have a high risk of pregnancy. High risk pregnancies are more likely to experience complications or problems than other pregnancies. This condition is common among women who are 35 years old and older, or women with medical conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes.

If a woman has the tendency to have a high risk pregnancy and she is also very active in sports or in martial arts, early detection of pregnancy is very important. Normally, it would help if both the woman and her partner will use implantation calculator, you can find one here, and look for signs of implantation to detect pregnancy at the earliest stage. This way, further involvement in physical activities that can endanger the pregnancy can be avoided. There are five common signs of pregnancy or implantation:

1.  High Basal Body Temperature (BBT)

Your BBT will normally rise during ovulation and will drop once ovulation is finished. However, if you are pregnant, your BBT will continually soar high after ovulation. Of course, you will only know any changes in your BBT if you are periodically monitoring it during regular cycle.

2. Missed Period

If you have a regular monthly period and you notice that you missed your period when it should have already arrived, then you might be pregnant. However, if your only basis for detecting pregnancy is a missed period, it may not give you a conclusive answer because there are many other factors that can affect menstruation. Among them are illness and stress.

3. Morning Sickness

Many pregnant women experience morning sickness during their first trimester. And some women even experience this condition throughout their pregnancy. There are varying symptoms of morning sickness, the most common of which is nausea or vomiting.

4. Fatigue

Pregnancy may cause your metabolism to work faster than normal. As a result, your body may feel overloaded. You may get easily tired even if you did not work that much. You may also have more urge to rest or sleep than to do your regular routine.

5. Changes in taste

During pregnancy, the hormones in your body tend rise, affecting your saliva. This in turn may alter the taste of the foods you are eating. It is one of the reasons why some pregnant women avoid eating certain types of food while also craving for others.

These early symptoms of pregnancy are not all-inclusive. There are many other signs of pregnancy and sometimes you may fail to notice them because you may be preoccupied with other things. For safety, it is best to learn how to identify the changes in your body and to consult your doctor about them.

Hedgehogs as Pets: What You Should Know First

 

One of the many benefits of having pets is that it can give your stress relief. It is a good feeling when you come home from a tiring day and be entertained by your pet. This is especially true among many Kung Fu enthusiasts who are often subjected to tiring and demanding activities. It helps them relax when they are around pets after coming home. Also, one of the benefits of having certain pets such as dogs is that you can have them as companion during outdoor trainings.

African pygmy hedgehogSome of the most common pets are dogs and cats. However, these animals can be demanding of your time and expensive to maintain. On the other hand, hedgehogs as pets may be less popular among other people but they are gaining in popularity among busy people especially those who like exotic pets. They are cheaper and easier to maintain than other common pets. They also don’t require much attention. That is why they are most ideal among busy Kung Fu trainees.

Hedgehogs are mammals that are insectivores. They normally feed on worms and crickets but they can also be fed with cooked meat as well as fruits and vegetables. Their foods are inexpensive and that makes them inexpensive to maintain. Being nocturnal, they are active at dusk and sleep most of the day in their natural habitat or in hedgehog cages.

The most distinctive feature of hedgehogs is their quills. You have to deal with them if you will take them as pets. Quills are hollow sharp hairs that they use for defense. When they are threatened, they will normally curl up to form a ball where their quills will extend to protect their body. Quills can be black, brown, gray, cream or albino in color.

The most common hedgehog sold as pets is the African pygmy hedgehog. They can grow up to nine inches long with an average life span of five years. Some hedgehogs if properly taken care of by their owner can last up to ten years.

Hedgehogs can be very entertaining pets. If you are tired and would like to enjoy live entertainment, just look at them while they play. Play is also their means to exercise. That is why it is important to supply their cage with toys including a hedgehog wheel. They can be fun to watch especially when they are playing on the wheel. They are also relaxing to watch because they are just quiet and not aggressive.

If you like to own a unique pet to entertain you after a day’s tiring activity, hedgehogs can be the best option for you. They are easy to feed, easy to maintain and inexpensive to have. But before owning one, you should be able to have some basic knowledge about these animals so that you will know how to properly care for them.

When to See your Doctor for Unexplained Bruising

Bruising is common among people who are engaged in activities that involved physical contact such as Kung Fu and other forms of martial arts. A bruise may be black or blue in color. It may occur in any part of the body that experienced physical trauma such as when your sparring partner hits you really hard in the face or arms. Your blood vessels may break as a result of the trauma. The bruise will form when the blood from the damaged or broken blood vessels collects near the skin surface.

bruiseNot all cases of bruising needs medical attention. When you are into martial arts, it is fairly common to have bruises from time to time as a result of being kicked or hit during practice or sparring sessions. However, there are also cases when you may experience unexplained bruising in various parts of the body. And some of these cases may need medical attention:

  • When you have a bruise that already swells and is accompanied by extreme pain, you should seek medical attention immediately. Your doctor will normally recommend pain relief medication and other medications to soothe the swelling and prevent infection.
  • Some people with heart disease or those who have problems with blood clots are often recommended by doctors to take blood thinners such as warfarin. For some patients, taking blood thinners causes them to have unexplained bruises. If this is your case, you should immediately see your doctor because you may be experiencing the side effects of your medication.
  • Unexplained bruises in certain parts of your body also need medical attention such as under a fingernail or toenail and bruises in the head. These bruises may cause you unbearable pain and anxiety.
  • If you acquired some bruises in your head and you blacked out, completely forgetting about what caused it, you may be experiencing a concussion. You should be taken to the nearest emergency hospital for checkup. It may have caused trauma in your head which needs proper medical attention. In some cases, you may also be required to have your head CT-scanned or checked through MRI.
  • If your bruise is around your eye and you are experiencing some abnormalities in vision, or you cannot move your eye in a certain direction, or you are experiencing headaches, it is likely that you have a serious injury that needs to be checked by your doctor.
  • Even if your bruise does not cause you unbearable pain or does not meet the conditions mentioned above, if the bruise has not improved after two weeks or if it has not yet completely cleared after four weeks, you may also need to seek medical attention.

Bruises are a condition that should not be taken lightly. This is especially true if they do not result from your Kung Fu practices or exercises. If you have unexplained bruise which meets any of the cases listed above, be sure to have it checked by a doctor immediately.

Fleas on Humans: Stop it Before You Lose your Focus during Sparring

fleasFleas are common not only among animals such as cats or dogs. Fleas also attack humans. And if you do not control and get rid of them, they might cause you to lose focus during your Kung Fu practice or sparring session. That is because flea bites can be very itchy. And they can occur anytime regardless of what you are doing.

Fleas are wingless pests that are considered to be external parasites. They feed on the blood of animals and humans. They could infect you through other people or pets at home.

It will not take long before it will become pretty obvious that you are being attacked by fleas. If you notice tiny red blotches on your skin that are itchy and do not go away, there is a big chance that they are flea bites. They are common on the legs but they can also take place in other parts of your body. And if your sparring partner has fleas, it can easily spread to you by skin contact. Or if you are the one who has fleas, they may also spread to your sparring partner if you do not get rid of them.

Getting rid of fleas especially from your hair can be a time-consuming process. But you don’t have to use harsh or toxic chemicals to do it. There are natural remedies which you can use.

One of the natural remedies for fleas is a mixture containing equal amounts of lemon extract and dish detergent. Do not use lemon juice because it is not as effective as lemon extract. The fatty acids and limonene present in this mixture is potent to kill larvae and fleas.

You could also wash your hair with ordinary shampoo and leave it for 30 minutes. After that, bath in hot water to totally kill the fleas. And while your hair is still wet, comb it with a fine comb from root to tip and put any fleas in a bowl of soapy water.

For fleas on the skin, get rid of them by scrubbing using abrasive sponge or cloth. Pay attention to your toes, legs, back of the neck, and hairline where they usually linger.

You normally cannot get rid of all your fleas in just one bath. You should repeat this procedure two or more times in a week until you do not anymore itch from flea bites. Additionally, if you have pets that have fleas, you also need to get rid of their fleas because there is a big chance that the fleas can transfer to you. Vacuum also your carpets because larvae and flea eggs normally thrive there.

If you want to get rid of fleas on humans, learn more by clicking here.

When practicing martial arts including Kung Fu, you need to focus. And if you have fleas in your hair or on your skin, they can cause you to lose your focus because they can be very itchy. By using the natural remedies such as shampoo or a mixture of lemon extract and dish detergent, you can now get rid of fleas quickly and naturally.

Proper Diet for Quality Breast Milk

You may be asking how breastfeeding is related to a Kung Fu site. Many women who are training for Kung Fu are also mothers themselves or will soon become mothers. Breastfeeding is part of motherhood as it is recommended by many doctors unless the mom has a special health condition which can render her incapable of producing healthy breast milk.

Even during Kung Fu training, it is still possible for a mother to produce healthy breast milk as long as she is able to follow the recommended diet for a nursing mother.  Diet has a significant impact in the quality of the breast milk. Even if you are in the process of learning how to stop breastfeeding, as long as you are still breastfeeding your infant, proper diet must always be observed.

Foods to avoid may vary from one mother to another while breastfeeding. But the rule of thumb for foods to avoid while breastfeeding includes spicy foods, high fiber foods, citrus foods, caffeine and alcoholic beverages because they may cause stomach problems on the nursing baby. Other babies may also develop allergies on certain foods like nuts, corn, and shellfish. Mothers should carefully observe how their infant reacts to the food they eat so they will know which foods to avoid next time.

While there are foods you should avoid eating, it does not mean you cannot eat them at all. You can still drink coffee or alcoholic beverages in moderation as long as there is no history of your baby developing adverse reactions to a glass or two of coffee. The same is true with other foods that are recommended by many doctors that you should avoid.

Moreover, if the mother has healthy eating habits, it can be beneficial to her and her baby. It is not recommended for a nursing mom to count calories because excessive reduction in calories may affect milk supply. Drinking at least eight glasses of water can also help avoid dehydration. Other than water, you may also drink juices and also milk which can be a good source of calcium. Nursing moms also tend to be hungry and thirsty more often so it is important to listen to what your body tells you. If you are hungry, eat; if you are thirsty, drink.

Aside from calories and liquids, a good source of vitamins and minerals is also vital while breastfeeding. You can get them if you eat a well-balanced diet composed of fruits, vegetables, meat and carbohydrates. You may also take supplements when needed.

While exercising and Kung Fu training can help a nursing mom maintain good physical health, having a proper diet can also help in keeping your baby healthy through the milk you feed. Don’t restrict your food or drink when hungry and thirsty. When in doubt whether a food is good for your nursing baby or not, it is safer to avoid it. Always remember that whatever you eat or drink will affect not only you but also your baby.

Skin Tear Care Tips

In Kung Fu, there are certain styles or movements that may result to tearing or ripping of the skin. And since your sparring partner may use these styles against you, it would be good to know how to care for skin tear in case you have one.

Skin tears are wounds characterized by the separation of the epidermis and dermis layers of the skin. They can be a result of accidents or lacerations of sharp objects such as a knife, glass, or even finger claws just like when the tiger claw style is used in Kung Fu. Additionally, older people are also more prone to skin tearing as the skin becomes delicate and dry. Despite efforts to avoid tearing of the skin, it is something that cannot be avoided especially if you are old and are still engaged in Kung Fu. Skin tears may also happen during other physical sports or work environments that expose you to sharp objects.

There are different stages for treating skin tears. The first stage is to control or stop the bleeding. To do this, pressure must be applied on the wound. The limb must be elevated if necessary. When the bleeding has stopped, you may start cleaning the wound using water or warm saline to remove any debris or residual hematoma. After the wound is cleaned, check the viability of the skin flap. If it is still viable, try flapping back the skin in place using damp cotton. You may then dress up the wound with appropriate topical products that can protect the wound while allowing it to heal. Your doctor may also recommend the most suitable topical product for your tear. If possible, do not touch the dressing for several days so as not to disturb the flap.

Regular cleaning and reassessment of the wound is important after it has been dressed. Every time dressing has to be changed, be gentle when removing the dressing and make sure to work away from the skin flap that is still attached. You can put a sign in the dressing as an indication on where the attachment is located. To minimize the trauma in this procedure, you could use a silicone-based adhesive remover or saline soaks. Gently clean the wound without disrupting the skin flap. Check also the skin integrity if the flap is already pale or has darkened. For a non-viable flap, debridement is usually necessary.

Aside from using ordinary dressing, other materials that can be used to protect the wound include hydrogel sheets which are effective in maintaining a moist environment for the wound. Protective sleeves which are tubular elastic support bandages can also hold the dressing in place without irritating the sensitive skin.

Moreover, it is also important that you check the wound from time to time for any sign of infection. Some patients such as those with diabetes are more at risk of developing infections. Symptoms may include erythema, oedema, bad odor and increased pain.

When it comes to treatment of skin tears, it is important to always keep the wound clean and protected from possible infection. But if infection does develop, it is best to seek medical attention so that necessary procedures can be administered to treat the tear.

Treatment Options for Labral Tear

If you are undergoing Kung Fu training and other physical sports, you may experience having hip flexor pain or torn labrum hip. These are conditions that normally result from sporting accidents, falling or repetitive sports trauma. In fact, there are many studies showing that athletes who often complain about groin pain are 22 percent more likely to have a hip labral tear.

Among Kung Fu trainees, there are many cases of reported hip labral tears due to falling during sparring sessions. Aside from groin pain, other symptoms may include pain in the buttocks or lateral hips and the clicking or catching in the sockets of the hip as you move it. You may also feel like your hip is locking up. Restricted movement is also common. The combination of these symptoms as well as a series of tests helps doctors diagnose hip labral tear. MRI is particularly important to look into the joints of the patient.

Once diagnosed, there are different treatment options for patients. One is the nonsurgical option where athletic trainers or physical therapists develop a rehabilitation plan which starts with examining and determining the factors causing the tear in the patient. Rehabilitation may include rest or modification of activities to decrease the stress in the hip joint. Customized exercise programs may also be implemented to address the problem on muscle imbalance, movement and postural patterns and pelvic position. This may include range-of-motion exercises, stretching, hip joint mobilizations exercises, and exercises that can help develop strength in the hip muscles.

When a person has a labral tear, full recovery is unlikely because there is lack of blood supply in the area affected. However, rehabilitation and exercises may help reduce the pain and other symptoms and the patient may be able to do sports activities again.

If nonsurgical options do not work on the patient, surgical treatment may become necessary. Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure which is performed while the patient is under general anesthesia. After the surgery, postoperative rehabilitation may also be necessary. The rehabilitation will normally focus on helping the patient regain full hip joint motion, movement control and strength.

Additionally, during rehabilitation, patients are advised to use crutches for at least two weeks. As the patient’s condition improves, rehabilitation will also progress until the patient is capable of doing normal daily or sports activities. It may take at least eight weeks before a patient can be back to high-impact sports.

Because of the nature of training involved in Kung Fu, it is possible that trainees will suffer from a tear in labral hip. But it can be avoided by paying careful attention especially during sparring sessions where accidental falling often happens. And when you fall, don’t put all the weight on your hip as this is one of the most common causes of labral tear.

If you are diagnosed with labral tear, your two options are nonsurgical and surgical treatments. Your treatment greatly depends on the severity of your tear. Whatever treatment is recommended for you, rest and rehabilitation therapy are always part of it.

Toothache: Causes and Relief

When you have a toothache, you can hardly do anything but feel the pain. It is said that toothache is even more painful than a punch or a kick that you get while training in Kung Fu. And there may be some truth to it. When you get kicked or punched while practicing Kung Fu, you are more motivated to continue and take advantage of your opponent. On the other hand, if you have a toothache, you may not be motivated to go on with your regular activities.

Practically everyone has experienced tooth pain. It is as common among adults as it is common among children. It is caused by various factors including tooth decay, abscessed tooth, damaged filling, infected gums or gum pain and repetitive motions of the jaw such as when you are grinding your teeth or chewing a gum. It may also be caused by tooth fracture which is common among those who are into physical sports and martial arts. Oftentimes, due to an accident or if your opponent hits you in the face, your teeth might also be affected. As a result, you may experience teeth fracture which can be really painful.

When a person suffers from toothache, the symptoms may include swelling in the tooth area, headache or fever, bad breath or foul tasting drainage on the infected tooth. But more seriously, it may be caused by an infection that can spread to other parts of the head including the skull and possibly, to the bloodstream. In such cases, a mere toothache may result to a more serious health problem. Moreover, for people who experience toothache because of tooth fracture, the pain normally worsens as more pressure is applied to the infected gum or tooth.

It is important that your dentist immediately check the cause of your toothache, not only for the tooth pain relief but for early detection of infection. One way that your dentist will be able to identify the cause of your toothache is by asking for your medical history and conducting a physical examination of your teeth. Be prepared with basic information such as when the pain started, where it is located, what makes the pain less severe, and what makes it worse. You will also be subjected to examination of your mouth, gums, teeth, jaws, sinuses, throat, nose, ears and neck. If no conclusive diagnosis can be made, your doctor may also recommend an x-ray and other tests.

As there are various causes of toothache, there are also different treatments available. For instance, if it is caused by tooth decay, your dentist may resort to filling your cavity or extracting the affected tooth. If it is caused by a root nerve infection, a root canal may be necessary. Aside from a root canal, you may also be prescribed to take antibiotics especially if you experience fever or swelling in the jaw area. For those who are experiencing extreme pain, a phototherapy with cold laser may be able to help alleviate the pain.

A toothache can be painful and can prevent you from doing your normal activities. To avoid suffering from toothache, one of the best things to do is to practice oral hygiene. This can be easily done by brushing your teeth regularly with toothpaste containing fluoride. You should also minimize eating foods that are high in sugar including candies and sweet treats. And you should see your dentist at least twice a year.

Causes of Fluid in Lungs

Many Kung Fu trainees engage in this type of training to achieve physical and mental wellness. An added benefit of the training is being able to learn skills that can protect you and those with you from possible criminal attacks. However, there have been cases of Kung Fu trainees suffering from fluid in lungs, see here. And this condition can hinder someone from undergoing regular training. At its worst, if not treated, it will result to a more serious health condition which can be fatal.

A deeper understanding on what causes fluid buildup in the lungs can help a person avoid or prevent this problem from happening. And these causes can be grouped into cardiac and non-cardiac causes.

Cardiac Causes

Your lungs and heart work as a team. If one is not functioning well, the performance of the other one will also be affected. One of the most common cardiac problems that cause fluid buildup in the lungs is coronary artery disease. Under this condition, the patient has a weakened heart which makes it difficult for the muscles to pump blood. As a result, the blood moves back to the lungs and in the process, some fluid passes into the air sacs where they will accumulate. A similar instance happens to people with cardiomyopathy and heart valve issues where the heart is too weak to do its work properly. High blood pressure (HBP) may also cause fluid buildup because HBP requires the arteries to work harder, and in the process, causes some liquid to divert to the air sac.

Non-cardiac Causes

Although cardiac problems are the most common causes of fluid in the lungs, sometimes, the problem is caused by something else such as lung infections. If a person has pneumonia, the affected area of the lungs can become swollen and be filled with fluid. Oftentimes, the fluid will just go away when the underlying illness is treated. Other non-cardiac causes are kidney problems, acute respiratory distress syndrome, and taking illegal drugs or certain medications.

Other Causes

Apart from cardiac and non-cardiac causes, a person may also develop lung fluids by inhaling smoke or household toxins such as chlorine and ammonia. Being in a high altitude or having a near-drowning experience may also cause the same problem.

Normally, most cases of patients with lung fluids are treated after the underlying health problem is also treated. However, in some cases, it is an isolated problem that must be treated separately; otherwise, it may result to further complications like asthma. Thankfully, there are home remedies for asthma that you can rely on. But it is still best to consult your doctor so that you will know your real condition and so that the appropriate treatment can be identified.

If you have fluid buildup in the lungs, it may not be best for you to continue on with your Kung Fu training without treating your condition first. Kung Fu training involves strenuous activities which could make it difficult for you to breathe if you have a lung condition.

Neutropenic Precautions while Engaging in Kung Fu Exercises

Neutropenia is a condition when a person has an abnormally low level of white blood cells that protect the body against infections. People who have neutropenia are normally advised by their doctors to be on neutropenic precautions. That means, carefully watching your diet, the clothes you wear and the places where you go because you can easily contact infections from food, dirty clothes and dirty surroundings.

A person with neutropenia does not necessarily need to refrain from doing physical activities. In fact, there are many neutropenic people who are also engaged in various activities including Kung Fu exercises. However, you need to observe some precautions to safeguard your health and avoid getting any infection.

Proper personal hygiene is of utmost importance among people with neutropenia. You should take a shower every day and wash your hands on regular intervals especially before and after eating and after you go to the comfort room. Also part of personal hygiene is oral hygiene. You have to brush your teeth regularly. After brushing, gargle with mouth wash or warm water with salt. You should also maintain a hygienic environment at home. Be sure that your home is well dusted and regularly cleaned. And if outside the home, avoid going to dirty places or construction sites as well as near hospitals.

You should also regularly monitor your body’s condition. Check your body temperature every day. If you are not feeling well and your temperature is higher than 100.9 degrees Fahrenheit, you should call your doctor immediately. Also, to ensure that your health condition is under control, have a regular urine and stool test. This will also let you know if there are any improvements in your condition.

Your diet also plays an important role in your health. Strictly observe a neutropenic diet which involves avoiding undercooked and uncooked meat, vegetables, eggs and fish, and certain foods such as honey and unpasteurized milk.

If you are doing certain activities, be careful not to get cuts on your skin. Even small cuts can be a potential entry point for infections. If you have existing cuts or wounds, replace your bandages and dressings regularly and keep them dry when you have them. Check also for any swelling or redness because it could be a sign of infection.

Since your body is low in white blood cells that can fight off infections, you should avoid contact with people with infectious or transmissible diseases including colds and cough among others. You are more at risk of contracting their diseases. And if you are in crowded places, you could wear a surgical mask as a safety precaution.

Depending on the severity of your condition, your doctor may also recommend that you avoid engaging in Kung Fu sparring and other physical sports for a period of time until your health improves. But you may still be involved in low-risk sports and activities. You can seek your doctor’s advice if you can still do Kung Fu exercises.

5 Spots in the Body Where Tattoos Are Most Painful

Tattoos are becoming very common nowadays. You can see people from various cultural and educational backgrounds sporting a tattoo on various parts of their body. It is common among ordinary people and popular people. You can also see them among those who are into martial arts. In fact, among many girls and women, engaging in Kung Fu and having a tattoo are two popular signs of masculinity in men.

Getting a tattoo could be painful depending on which part of the body is being tattooed. It could hurt the most in areas with less or no fats. Here are the top five spots where tattoos could hurt the most:

1. Chest

Chest tattoos for men are a popular choice for many. It is one of the areas in the body where a tattoo can get a good exposure. It may take several sessions before a beautiful art in the chest could be completed. Unless a person has a lot of muscle or body fats, getting a tattoo in this area could be really painful. So if you are skinny, be prepared to experience pain if you are planning to have a chest tattoo.

2. Ribs

The rib area can be a perfect spot for a scrolling design tattoo because of its spread. However, because of the thin skin across this spot, it is also one of the most painful spots to get a tattoo. You should first get feedback before getting an intricate design on the rib area. It is best to start with a small design and then gradually increase in size if you know you can resist the pain.

3. Foot

Some tattoo artists do not like to work on the foot because of the risks of poor healing. This spot is also uneven and there is only a limited choice of designs that can look good in the foot. But apart from that, the pain involved is also worth considering.

4. Behind the Ear

The area behind the ear can also be a sensitive choice for getting a tattoo because of its delicately thin skin which could mean more pain. But many people still choose this spot. Some tattoo artists use a special cream to help alleviate the pain.

5. Ankle

Since there is nothing in the ankle but mostly bones, expect it to be more painful if you choose this as a spot for your next tattoo. If it is your first time, it would be better to choose another spot that is less painful.

If you are considering getting a tattoo and are worried about the pain, you should opt for other locations than the ones listed here. A skillful tattoo artist can help you choose which parts of the body are less painful for tattooing. Consider having it on the arms, shoulder or back, especially if it is your first time. However, regardless of which part of the body you want your tattoo, always expect to experience some sort of pain even on the fatty areas.