The core is considered to be the pivot of one’s body. Share the benefits of this workout in building core strength. Are any specific exercises to build core strength under this form of training
As mentioned earlier, the Kalaripayattu and Silambam moves by design itself make the practitioner aware of the core. Repeated practice and understanding leads to deriving energy from the core for all the movements. Even the weapon practice one realizes that if the energy is drawn from the core, the movements and combat do not strain any part of the body. Also, the training helps to practice with the body in a relaxed position, with no rigidity, and awareness. All this facilitates the body to be aware of the core in Kalaripayattu practice and for all the movements as simple as walking, climbing stairs, seated for work, driving, etc. The vibrations or energy one feels in this heightened awareness and relaxed position from the core is the basis of the practice.
As a child, all body movements are generated from the core. As the child ages, the person with a visual, peer, and many more influences do the movement from the specific part. In Kalaripayattu and Silambam, we bring back the method of doing all movements from the core. There are specific sequences that are done right from the start to make the practitioner aware and practice them.
How has NeoKalari been able to create awareness of these art forms and reach out to people or Women in specific from different walks of life? What is the goal you share for the upcoming year?
We started NeoKalari with the idea of giving our indigenous forms a new perspective. The concepts of Kalaripayattu and Silambam have to be shared with the present and future generations. The self-defense aspect for both women and men are an integral part of the training. When one is aware of their own body and the energies, you start respecting the human body and the intricacies of the functioning of the body. This gives confidence and courage to handle a situation. We never train a person to fight or start a fight. It is to be aware of a situation and one needs more courage to move away quickly from an unpleasant situation or threat. The best fights are the ones you avoid. We teach both men and women, moves where one uses the opponent’s energy to defend themselves. Young girls and boys should learn the forms to understand and respect their body. The fights we talk about are not just physical but emotional and psychological threats. Children and adults should be taught the forms to inculcate discipline, focus, and awareness of the body and mind.
These are native and traditional forms that have been present for thousands of years. Over all these years, there was a base concept on which different styles have been allowed to be created and developed. NeoKalari was formed to learn the native forms that are practiced by specific people, teach the forms to everyone, practice them so that we understand the hidden nuances, and explore to build on the base concepts.
Any specific kind of diet you promote or encourage to accompany training for optimum results? Foods you avoid. Also, do foods that need to be included?
Mindful eating is what we practice. We don’t completely abstain from any food. Indian cuisine or rather native foods is what we recommend. What was cooked in your grandmother’s kitchen would be the best food.
Even junk food can be taken but in moderation once in a while. Try to avoid too much fried and packaged food. Having said that we don’t restrict too much. We don’t follow any diets as such. Day-to-day eating is home recipes with occasional indulgences.