Another Excerpt from Listen Up!

21.We teach what we need to learn and we learn what we need to teach. –Erik Haag

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Erik Haag was my first Commando Krav Maga (CKM) instructor and the best training partner I have had to date. We hada great symbiotic relationship. He helped me with his superior martial art skill and expertise in CKM and I helped him with his physical conditioning. He took me from no self-defense skill other than the fact that I was 6’1” and weighed 220lbs to being the top graduate at a CKM instructor course under the watchful eye of Moni Aizik, the founder of CKM.

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He in turn relied on me to train his physical conditioning to the peak levels he needed to pass the advanced CKM tests, like surviving four highly trained guys attacking him full force and non-stop for 10 consecutive minutes. He entrusted me with the training that took us both to awesome levels of conditioning and this became part of the Extreme Military Fitness–Basic Training Course. When he told me he wanted to improve his strength I researched and learned about heavy double kettlebell work. As we went through our journey together he said to me, “Eric, we always learn what we need to teach and we teach what we need to learn.” My enthusiasm for training and conditioning led me to all sorts of books, DVDs and courses. I ended up teaching them to Erik and together we achieved new and better levels of conditioning. This included the implementation of better preparation and recovery strategies like joint mobility drills, loaded stretching, isometric stretching, partner assisted stretching, pressing on acupuncture points, and finishing the workouts by me receiving a chiropractic adjustment from my CKM instructor, training partner and practicing chiropractic and me giving him an acupuncture treatment thanks to the two years of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine training I received prior to joining the Navy.

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After the workout we would have a small recovery meal and I would go home feeling like a million bucks, because not only did we have some of the most challenging workouts of our lives, but because we were also dedicating as much time to recovery. Here I must credit Dan Gable who planted the seed of this concept in my mind when he told us to, “spend as much time in recovery as you do in training.” I know others who had an “A-ha” moment when they heard that and immediately incorporated it into their training. Now you have too!

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