Six pack abs, rippling triceps and toned legs look impressive, but if you truly want to toughen up your muscles while you strengthen them, few things work as well as Shaolin iron body training techniques. It's a given that you're not going to be kicking banana trees in Thailand to deaden the nerves in your legs, but you can incorporate less intense versions of iron body training techniques into your weekly routine to toughen up your muscles and bones and make them more resistant to injury.
Hands and Arms
You use your hands and arms for virtually every activity throughout the day, whether it involves exercise or not. Shaolin iron body techniques condition the forearms and hands to be more resistant to injuries and to dish out harder strikes in training. With a training partner, swing your right arm as she swings hers and collide, palm up on the soft side of the forearm. Continue through the motion and bring your arm up as she does the same, this time colliding on the harder, bony outside of the forearm. Do this with both sides and swing hard enough to cause pain, but don't overdo it. You can condition your hands by punching heavy bags and working your way up to the point where you can punch the sand on the beach without risking injury.
Your hands help you dish out damage when you need to, but all of your vital organs are contained in your torso, so conditioning your chest, core and obliques is important. You can have a trusted training partner punch you lightly, but you can also condition your core on your own. In addition to core strengthening techniques such as crunches, planks and martial arts training, punch lightly beginning below your naval and work your way up your torso. Don't cheat yourself by striking too lightly, but don't cause deep bruising or sharp pain with your strikes.
Legs and Feet
Before you begin punishing your legs, you should have a solid foundation of muscle gained through running, squats and gym exercises. Shaolin conditioning techniques for the legs include the same light to moderate punches you use for your torso, as well as grinding on the calves and quadriceps with a rolling pin or rounded stick. To toughen up your feet, nothing works quite as well as driving hard kicks into a heavy bag.
Iron body training techniques are effective methods to toughen up the muscles you already have, but don't take these techniques lightly. Doing iron body techniques too light will gain you nothing, but punishing your body and refusing to give yourself adequate time to rest between conditioning sessions will break down muscles rather than hardening them. You should be able to condition at least one section of your body every day without experiencing any significant pain.
Steven Kelliher is an experienced sports writer, technical writer, proofreader and editor based out of the Greater Boston Area. His main area of expertise is in combat sports, as he is a lifelong competitor and active voice in the industry. His interviews with some of the sport's biggest names have appeared on large industry sites such as ESPN.com, as well as his own personal blog.