Tuesday, June 28, 2011
NANO Inline Footboard
Wmpyr sporting his new NANO sent to him by TRIZCOM and HEELYS.
Martial Arts on HEELYS? You bet!
Wmpyr is going to be throwing kicks, displaying stick fighting techniques and knife combat moves while skating down the concrete jungle!
Parkour, Traceur, Freerunning is a French sport that involves roaming the urban landscapes in a creative and athletic manner, often times it includes "tricking" and martial arts.
Wmpyr has always felt that products like HEELYS enable the individual to mix skating with Parkour.
HEELYS NANO INLINE FOOTBOARD
I was contacted by Trizzcom to make some videos of the new HEELYS product the NANO. They saw my HEELYS video review that I had made a long time ago on my successful Youtube Boken88 Channel where I have tons of reviews on toys, games, DVDs, and comic books.
A little bit about my background, I'm currently 35 years old, soon to be 36. At this age, fitness and health starts to become more and more important, as I see other people my age start to deteriorate.
I am a martial arts instructor that has always been interested in learning different styles. To me Heelys is a link between Parkour and Martial Arts.
As a kid I enjoyed roller skating, I've ice skated a few times, but definitely preferred roller skating. I've never gotten into roller blading, but I have experienced some skate boarding back in junior high. I got into Heelys post college. At the time I was training for the Towers of America marathon, running up and down flights of stairs. I found the Heelys to be a nice alternative exercise from my routine.
If you want to read what HEELYS JOURNAL by Amanda click here!
WMPYR'S NANO JOURNAL
Let me tell you, I was so excited to finally get my NANO. I went out to the parking lot and skated the best I could. Even though I am pretty comfortable with my HEELYS, I found the NANO to be quite challenging. For me, it was definitely not the same, it felt like I had to learn things all over again from scratch. The NANO reminded me of the first time I got into HEELYS long ago. It was after college, a buddy of mine who is into outdoor adventure type stuff, introduced HEELYS to me. He enlightened me that there were adult sizes and that it's a neat and fun experience. Even though he thoroughly recommended that I try it, he did warn me that it's not as easy as it looks and it will require some practice. Fortunately at the time, I lived next to a corporate building and a huge mall, so I had all the skating space I needed after hours. There were even some very nice areas with safety rails which I used to safely learn how to balance myself. The NANO took me back to those fond memories.
It's been a few days since I got to try my NANO again, because I just finished moving to another city. The move was brutal and exhausting, however that didn't stop me from wanting to get back on my NANO ASAP! The new place I moved to is perfect for the NANO. There is a massive parking lot here, a few interesting urban landscapes such as inclines, rails, and steps. But the most useful thing for me is a smooth caged basketball court where I can practice all night long! Even with my low skill, I noticed a big difference, thanks to the NANO I am indeed skating longer and faster. Tonight I also noticed how the NANO actually felt more like a skate board. Once your able to just balance only on the NANO board, that's when you can really just use the other foot to peddle and make you go much faster.
The NANO is definitely a workout, I come home sweating and I can feel it in my legs. Today I was able to go faster which definitely makes things more exciting. I increased the speed by peddling harder, which I was able to do because my balance has gotten better. I also soared down a small hill which was quite exhilarating! I also practiced hitching my free leg on the foot rest of the NANO board. But the highlight of tonight was learning how to make wide turns. Knowing how to turn increases the time your on the board and basically this is what I'm trying to do, spend more time on the board and less time walking.
I practiced more of the same stuff to increase my basic skills, but in addition I also tried some new tricks. I tried putting my Heelys foot forward and the Nano foot to the back. I also tried hitching my Heelys foot to the foot rest of the NANO while keeping the wheel running so I had 3 wheels running simultaneously. Skating around in the basketball court brought back memories of when I roller skated on a roof top in Japan. I can't wait to skate more and more so that when I go to normal shoes it feels like a drag.
I wear my NANO on the right foot, and tonight I noticed how left turns are easier for me to make, however right turns are smoother when I can actually do them. The right turns are smoother because my left Heelys shoe lines up with the NANO board so the wheels align like roller blade wheels. I also practiced balancing on the NANO with one leg, this was a trick I saw on the Heelys website. There was a strange truck parked near by with the driver just sitting inside. I kept a close eye on him and decided to limit my skating to inside the basket ball court for tonight. Awareness is critical for good self defense.
Tonight I didn't focus much on technique and developing certain skills, but instead I just purely skated around and had fun. However, I did noticed how my skating seemed to go smoother when I put more of my weight on the NANO rather than 50% on each leg. I definitely got a nice sweat as usual, while enjoying the night summer breeze, but the best part to me is that I get to work on getting better balance, now that's something that doesn't happen normally.
It's barely been a week since I've been practicing on my NANO. In the martial arts the better you get at something, it starts to become more and more natural and less extreme. For example breathing techniques can sound very forceful, but when your at an expert level, there will be times where you will be just breathing normally. I figure the same would be for the NANO, so tonight I tried to skate as if I was just standing relaxed with my hands at my side instead of doing the airplane wings. I also tried the polar opposite by squatting down low like an Olympic speed skater. It felt like I was putting a lot more weight into my feet.
When I was heading over to the basketball court, this jerk was walking his really big dog. The dog didn't have a leash and it came up to me all curious. Thankfully the dog was nice to me and I happen to like dogs, but it was not a nice feeling to completely trust the owner whom is a total stranger, that his dog is cool with me. I did have my NANO board in my hand, ready to smash at either one of them if needed.
For tonight's practice I focused on balancing on the NANO with one leg, which was quite challenging for me. Also for the first time, I was able to skate down a nearby hill all the way from the top to the very bottom in one continuous motion, it was quite a rush!
I was able to go down the hill again in one smooth go. It's not a steep hill but it is a hill for sure, and I do gain quite a bit of speed. Definitely gets the heart beating faster! In Martial Arts, one of the most important aspects of training is to simply just get a ton of reps. So tonight I applied this to my NANO practice and went around the basketball court 5 times in each direction. This was actually really good practice and I will be doing it again tomorrow night.
I like to skate around midnight, and for some inconsiderate reason there were people playing basketball, I'm sure the residents nearby were not happy about this. So I had to go else where tonight. I skated the parking lot which obviously covers a much larger area than the basketball court. It was interesting to feel how different pavements affect the NANO. I went through concrete with various degrees of smoothness as well as brick, grass and wet pavement. It was really amazing to experience skating and then using walking mixed in to over come various landscapes. The walking I did tonight was purposeful and a very different experience to me compared to the times before when I was walking around awkward because I couldn't skate as well.
Ok coming off of a 1 day break. I just had the longest non stop, non pedaling skating experience ever! Provided it wasn't super fast, it was challenging and fun, the result was epic! For the first time I also deployed my folding knife while I was skating. Please do not copy, even though I'm new with the NANO, I've been skating a long time, and I am a knife pro. The basketball court was open today but since I had so much fun skating in the parking lot I decided to do it again, I found a natural slight mini half pipe area on the street where I could go back and forth and work on more sharper turns. It was a great night for me.
Tonight I began on the parking lots and worked my way to the basketball court. The basketball court is definitely not as engaging or challenging as the streets, however I feel it is good to develop good solid basics. Once again, I went around in circles on the court 5x each direction. I also practiced deploying my knife while skating, and slashing in the air. Also once again, I have more difficulty taking turns on my right side.
Time went by fast tonight, probably because I'm doing a lot more now. 70% skating on the street and 30% on the basketball court. The street is much more action-packed. Please keep in mind I am skating in a relatively safe neighborhood, after hours when hardly anyone is around. I also know that this local area has no security guards and I am a self-defense pro. There were some weird people hanging around the basketball courts so I did leave earlier than I wanted to. Skate safe, skate smart!
Tonight was filming night, went to the usual area a few hours earlier than I normally skate. The sprinklers were active and I had to skate on some wet turf making it more challenging. Also I hadn't practiced skating with sticks, so the video you see is my first time to skate while doing Stick Fighting moves. Everything went well, I didn't fall once. The video contains the basketball court location, and parking lot area where I come down off a small hill. Last night police escorted some drunken college kids out of the pool, so I was worried that the police would be here tonight and be extra strict even though I do my best to skate mindful and polite. Skate safe, skate smart!
My girlfriend will be getting her first pair of HEELYS soon thanx to Amy from Trizcom! This is very exciting for us, so I will be documenting her experience soon! It's been a few days since I skated, just trying to lay low, because when your living in a college area, the college kids act stupid and the cops have been showing up, I don't want the cops to think I'm a college kid looking for trouble. Better to be like a Ninja and stay out of sight so I can enjoy this really fun activity. Tonight I had my second wipe out. The first time was when I first got my NANO, and went outside to test them out, and I right as I got out the front door, BOOM! I fell. Since then I hadn't fallen once! Tonight I was feeling good and skating better than I ever have, so I tried a new trick. As I was speeding down, grab a small pillar and rotate around it so I can pull a quick turn, well there was a bump right under the pillar and I completely fell. Thankfully, I'm not hurt, plus, thanx to Martial Arts I know how to take a fall much better than the average person even though this is not my forte and I hate falling!
Tonight I was back on the basketball court. It seemed really tame compared to the parking lot but it's good for practicing the good old solid basics. The basics build a foundation for you to build upon. Without good basics, your really limiting your potential. Normally I peddle a few times before gliding, but tonight I focused on peddling once, which means I have to time things better especially when turning, and have better balance on the NANO. Turning on my right side came much easier for me tonight, and so did aligning my left leg behind the NANO. Alright that's it for tonight. Skate safe, skate smart!
I believe tonight was the latest I've ever gone out skating. Surprisingly there were people out. I use to go out late at night for a walk when I lived in a bad neighborhood. It was me doing night patrol, being a solo Guardian Angel. You really feel like Batman, and instantly there is a predator and prey relationship that gets established the moment you set foot in the "night concrete jungle". I haven't felt that in a long time, but I felt that tonight. I did my best to avoid anyone and use a keen sense of awareness to detect people early. It was great to be able to focus on these type of awareness and evasion skills while skating.
Oh no! I'm getting in the habit of skating later and later. I do not want to be out there at 2am in the morning! Focusing my weight on the NANO board has really helped. And then, focusing on good solid form of pushing off with the foot with the HEELYS has also helped me. Today I practiced adding in the stepping with the foot so I can go over major bumps and go off side walks in a smoother fashion. Aligning my left foot behind the NANO also came much more naturally today and I had my longest skate like that so far. Another thing I noticed was when I got to the basketball court, making the loops seemed much shorter, because I was traveling smoother and faster. Another great session!
Tonight, since my GF got her first pair of HEELYS thanx to Amy from Trizcom and HEELYS, we went out around 9pm to practice. I didn't have my NANO but I wore my HEELYS, thinking it would be a nice break from the NANO to revert back to the HEELYS so I can make a comparison for you guys. I said it before and I'll say it again, the NANO is pretty different from the HEELYS. Now that I've been practicing on the NANO and have gotten better, I actually felt quite limited with the HEELYS. I couldn't skate as long, as fast, or make turns as well. The NANO has spoiled me! Since I will be helping my GF learn how to skate with her HEELYS, I'm hoping that this opportunity will help me go back to basics with the HEELYS and help me get better, which should also help with my NANO skills as well.
Tonight was simple short straight forward practice. I just went to the basketball court and did laps. When making laps, circling left is so much easier for me because of the left turns. It was a very smooth skate and I just fell into the rhythm of things, it was great! On the other hand, circling to the right felt terrible! Had family visiting over the weekend, so it was very busy for me, I am exhausted right now. Hopefully tomorrow will get to film a HEELYS related video!
Tonight, went skating with Amanda, this was her second time. Since she's working on her HEELYS, once again I left the NANO board behind and just wore my HEELYS. I can't wait until she gets to a decent level with HEELYS so that she can start using my NANO board. The ABSOLUTE Great thing about all this is that her wheel size is the exact same as mine. So we can share wheels and she can use my NANO board without changing the adapter bits. As for myself, I was able to skate better tonight with the HEELYS than the last time. It just took some getting use to since I've been so use to the NANO lately. But I believe that practicing both is the way to go!
Once again went skating tonight with Amanda. Since she now can skate without my support, I got to work on my own HEELYS skills. I practiced switching feet, so that I could skate while having either leg to the front or back. This is still difficult for me but I was slowly starting to get the hang of it. We also skated on the parking lot and I got to skate longer and faster with my HEELYS. I can't wait to go back out there with my NANO and see how much practicing with the HEELYS has helped my over all skating skills. Skate safe, skate smart!
When a crisis situation occurs it happens unexpectedly and very quickly. I was minding my own business skating at night as usual, when I noticed an elevated truck coming from the other direction. I quickly got off the street and found a safe spot on the grass and waited. To my surprise this truck came directly to me, and parked right in front of my face after it had blinded me with headlights. As I saw two college looking guys inside, I quickly unfastened my NANO for running and bashing them in the head if necessary. I also took out my knife. This may seem extreme. But the philosophy of martial arts is to hope for the best while expecting the worst. I would have liked to have skated off and prevented any possible confrontation, but sometimes we are too late, and we have to fall back to plan B or C. The fact of the matter is, I am near a college campus, it is a friday night, after 2:00am, there is a lot of alcohol and drugs here, frat boys and other trouble makers. I know that the image I present is the average, "I don't want any trouble" nice guy. So if someone messes with me, I know that they are a bully, so I can justify any violence returned, and maybe next time they will think twice when they decide to pick on a "nerd".
I apologize that it has been a few days since an entry, we've been ultra busy and this week is also very hectic. You never know what your going to encounter each night, and tonight I heard an alarm going off from a LOWES store near by. I watched by just to keep an eye on things, and it brought back memories from my security guard days. I had a very tough and rough job back then. After that, I went over to the basketball court. As I skated around, I noticed how my HEELYS practice is helping me with the NANO. For the first time, I felt aware of how I put my HEELYS side leg was making a difference when skating with the NANO. I also began to practice kicking with the NANO. I tried many type of kicks; front kick, side kick, back kick, spinning back kick, spin kick, round house kick, inside and outside crescent kick. I practiced these while being stationary and also while skating into it. Video will come soon!
Tonight I skated on the street, it was great, dodging speed bumps, and making the right "path" choices to gain speed, definitely much more action packed than the basketball court. I get to use the inclines and small hills and go much faster and longer. I practiced stepping and then gliding. This was a useful trick for dealing with bumps. I noticed how I am paying more attention to the surface details on the street. I also feel that training in HEELYS and the NANO has increased my skateboarding skills. Now the interesting thing is that I found a perfectly good skateboard not too long ago in the dumpster! Soon I will give it a try and let you know how it compares to HEELYS, NANO and how well the skills transcend over.
Tonight I went skating with Amanda so I wore my HEELYS only. I enjoy skating with both my HEELYS and my NANO. Best of all, the skills compliment each other so skating in one will help the other even though it feels quite different. The best thing about HEELYS and the NANO is that they both allow you to walk and skate. You cannot do that with a skateboard, and with roller skates and roller blades the walking becomes severely hindered. In fact I could easily run in my HEELYS if necessary!
Tonight I was back on the NANO. For the people that think there is not much to skating, or that skating is boring, let me explain that this is not true. There is much more to skating than one might think! First of all the importance of location. You will hunt for a good location, and once you find one, if it's really good, it can spoil you rotten! You can have so much fun depending on how the terrain is shaped. As you skate you will create courses, your mind will have to rapidly compute which direction is the better choice as you skate through obstacles and debris. There is also practicing and developing new moves!
Tonight I skated on the streets, it was all about endurance gliding. Endurance Gliding is a term I made up, it refers to gliding for as long as you can without peddling. To me this is great exercise because it works on your balance, and really examining the terrain, not only do you have to make the right turns, you have to milk the inclines and how you shift your weight to really keep going. I hope to finally film some new stuff for you guys tomorrow!
Skate safe, skate smart!
Today went skating with Amanda, but I took my NANO. We filmed and I got to practice both HEELYS and NANO, plus even got to practice the KICK OFF, a simple kicking technique using the NANO. When skating with a partner on the street, it's really nice because you can look after each other for incoming cars. I normally skate very late at night when traffic has died down, but during the day, you shouldn't skate on the street, but if you had to cross it or whatever, definitely important to have a partner that can responsibly look after you! You are only as good as your team!
We went Target today while wearing HEELYS! We actually did our grocery shopping, and it made it much more fun. Pushing the grocery cart actually makes it easier because it acts like training wheels. Even though we tried to skate a lot, we definitely walked around the store a lot more, and it wasn't as awkward as I thought it was going to be. Can definitely start to wear them more and more in our daily lives!