If you practice martial arts, you should be doing Budokon, the yoga for martial arts
Budokon - Japanese for “the way of the warrior spirit” - was developed in 2001 by Cameron Shayne, who pioneered a training system that combines striking, grappling, yoga, calisthenics and animal locomotion. This unique yoga practice is now being offered at Monarchy MMA.
The combination of these different techniques comes to life in the form of the Budokon Yoga Primary Series, which consists of seven sections of controlled movements designed to improve flexibility, mobility, agility, flexibility and strength. Didn’t understand yet? Take a look at this short demo video of Cameron Shayne in action:
Cameron Shayne, creator of Budokon, in a sequence demonstration.
While yoga is generally considered to be a female dominated practice, the combination of martial arts movements and the higher physical demands has made BDK more popular with men, and in particular to men and women who are already involved in sports practice and in particular martial arts. The practice has been engineered to develop agility, flexibility, stamina and strength and focuses on movement rather than posture, as in other “traditional” forms of yoga.
“One of the main differences between Budokon and other forms of yoga is that we focus on controlled continuous movement with the emphasis on the transition from pose to pose, rather than focusing on the pose itself”, says Tony Robson, Budokon instructor at Monarchy MMA.
Tony Robson, Budokon yoga instructor at Monarchy MMA.
Connecting body, mind and spirit through movement and breath is the premise of all forms of yoga and this has proven to be a perfect complement for combat sports, with fighters reporting improvements in concentration and mental clarity under pressure. The UFC’s Conor McGreggor has revealed in many interviews that yoga has been a regular part of his training program.
There are many health benefits associated with yoga, a study published by the Journal of Alternative Medicine shows that people who practice yoga experience a reduction in levels of cortisol after only 10 days of regular practice. Cortisol is a stress hormone known for breaking down muscles, suppressing the immune system and promoting body fat storage.
Connor McGreggor during Yoga practice.
The founder or Monarchy MMA Samir “Flexible” Mrabet, an MMA fighter himself, began his own yoga practice in Kuala Lumpur three years ago and recommends the practice for any martial arts practitioner.
“Yoga has helped me to breath and keep calm even in the most uncomfortable positions – and that is a key part of MMA and BJJ. Sometimes you find yourself in really difficult situations and you have to stay calm and breathe”, says Samir.
Monarchy MMA founder Samir Mrabet in a Yoga retreat course in Thailand.
Budokon yoga classes in Kuala Lumpur will be taught by Tony Robson (200 hour BDK yoga instructor and BDK red belt) who continues to train with the founder of Budokon, Cameron Shayne at the Budokon University in Miami, Florida.
“I feel privileged to bring the practice of Budokon to Kuala Lumpur and to Monarchy MMA in particular. I am confident the students will find the practice beneficial in improving their athletic performance regardless of what martial arts they practice, and maybe they will discover something valuable about themselves along the way,” he says.
Budokon Yoga classes in Kuala Lumpur are now a regular part of the Monarchy MMA training program every Sunday at 5:45 PM. Private classes are also available for members and non-members of the gym.