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The Forza Workout

The Samurai Workout: Get cut playing with swords (without a trip to the E.R.)

You probably think that swinging a blade around like Leonardo from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is going to leave you missing a limb. But don’t worry—the only thing you’ll lose doing a Forza workout is fat. A core workout based on samurai swordship, Forza doesn’t require actual blades. Rather, you can use a broomstick or wiffleball bat to mimic a katana blade and activate your core and shoulder muscles in a new way, burning calories and increasing endurance. Try the beginner’s routine below from Forza instructor Illaria Montagnini, to build a Bushido-ready physique. Read on to channel your inner warrior.

Directions:
Grab a dull, long, weighted object, such as a broomstick and walk into an open area with a tall ceiling (or no ceiling) and plenty of space. (You can buy a wooden sword at wooden-swords.com.) Perform the workout as a circuit, resting 30 seconds between exercises. (So you’ll perform all your reps for exercise A, rest, then exercise B, rest again, and so on.) Repeat the circuit as many times as it takes until you’ve been working out for 15 minutes—your goal is to eventually perform 15 minutes of continuous activity with no rest. Once you can do that, use a heavier object.

The Workout:

A Half-Cut
Grab your “sword” with both hands, palms facing each other, but separate your grip by four inches. Your right hand should be on top. Take an athletic stance and place your feet together. Keeping your arms bent, lift the “sword” over your head so the “blade” points directly behind you [1]. Take a short step forward with your left foot and simultaneously slice downward, so that the sword ends up in front of you with your bottom hand at waist level [2]. Return to the starting position. That’s one rep. Perform 15 reps, and then switch your grip so that your left hand is above your right. Now you’ll step forward with the right foot. Complete another 15 reps.

B Full-Cut
Set up in the same position as you did for the half-cut [1]. Lunge with your left leg until it’s nearly parallel to the floor, and slice downward with your “sword” so that it ends up in front of you and your bottom hand is at waist level. [2]. Return to the start position. That’s one rep. Perform 15 reps with before switching grips so your left hand is over your right. Now you’ll lunge with your right leg. Do 15 more reps.

C Horizontal Cut
Take an athletic stance with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the “sword” so your hands are slightly in front of your right shoulder and your “sword” extends behind you [1]. Rotate your hips and shoulders from right to left as you slice with your “sword,” tracing a line parallel to the ground and at your eye level, stopping when your bottom hand reaches your left arm pit [2]. Return to the start position. That’s one rep. Perform 15 reps before switching grips, so your left hand is above your right. Now you’ll cut left to right, rotating your hips in shoulders in the opposite direction. Do 15 more reps.

D Thrust Lunge
Take an athletic stance with your feet together, and hold your “sword” with your arms bent and your hands near your left hip so the “sword” extends in front of you [1]. Lunge forward with your right leg until your front thigh becomes parallel to the ground and push the “sword” forward [2]. Reverse the motion and return to the start position. That’s one rep. Do 15 reps before switching grips so you left hand is on top of the right. Now you’ll lunge with your left leg, and start on your right hip. Do 15 more reps.

Learn more about Forza at: www.powerstrike.com

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