Est. 2000
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Kalaripayattu Training

Kalaripayattu training at Kadathanadan Kalari Sangam is possible for all students aged 7 or older.
There is no upper age limit to taking part in training – the oldest student of the school was 69 years old.
It is never too late to start! Age is just a number – as long as your body is capable and your mind is willing, you have a place in the Kalari.

Kalaripayattu Training

5 Day Kalaripayattu Training/Yoga Retreat Package

Special Kalaripayattu training package

This Kalaripayattu training package (that comes with accommodation) is mainly focused on beginners and travellers who want to sample a taste of Kalaripayattu. It consists of:
-1 hour morning yoga practice followed immediately by 1 1/2 hour kalaripayattu training
-2 hour kalaripayattu training only in the evening

As 5 days is not enough to cover the vast amount of Kalaripayattu skills, emphasis will be placed upon special self defense techniques such as blocks, joint locks, and fighting strategy (tricks) to give the student the best chance to protect themselves with a minimum amount of training.

After the morning program, the group mayl visit local tourist areas such as Pazhassi Raja Tomb, Banasura Dam, and Pookote Lake to name a few. Other options include a visit to a local Kerala agricultural village, where you may observe first hand the myriad types of fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices that are grown in this region and the practices used by the farmers to produce and harvest them. There is also opportunity to take part in local community events like seasonal festivals and family programs
(One Kalari traditional massage is given free of charge to each guest. After this a charge will be applied).

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Kalari training in Kerala

14 Day Kalaripayattu Basic Techniques Training Package

This is the most basic Kalaripayattu course that goes beyond a taster. This course is the same as the 5 day package with the exception of the introduction of Maypayattu training (similar to the katas or forms of Japanese karate) wooden weapons are also included. Morning begins with optional 1 hour yoga session followed directly with 1 1/2 – 2 hour (depending on student’s capacity) Kalaripayattu training and 2 hours of kalaripayattu in the evening.

At this time the muchan (short stick) and kettukari (long stick) fighting skills are introduced to the teaching schedule. These skills are learned and practiced with a training partner. Kettukari rotational techniques are also shown and are practiced without a partner.
(Excursions and day trips to the local tourist spots will be an additional charge in the 14 day program).

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30 Day Advanced Kalaripayattu Techniques Training Package

The daily routine follows the same pattern as the 5 day and 14 day programs. 1 and 1/2 hours Kalaripayattu in the morning (yoga classes optional) and 2 hours Kalaripayattu in the evening. No yoga in the evening portion. The 30 day program will also include advanced muchan and kettukari training which will go beyond basic techniques and introduce the Maypayattu(forms) for these weapons. .The other weapons of Kalaripayattu such as Otta, shield and sword, dagger may be taught if the student so chooses and their skill level is adequate.They are taught at the discretion of the Master and depending on the physical and mental capabilities of the students.

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Kalaripayattu training academy

60 Day Advanced Kalari Techniques Program

This residential Kalaripayattu training program is designed to allow the student to continue his training indefinitely after the completion of the 30 day program. It will follow the same routine of morning and evening classes.
The 60 day plus program will give the student the opportunity to learn more advanced maypayattu (forms) and special techniques for the weapons they have already practised.

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60 Day Plus Package

This package will further the learning of the student even more and will continue for as long as he/she is willing. The longer the Kalaripayattu training the more experienced they will become and higher levels of Kalari performance will be achieved. Previously unused weapons will become part of the training routine and the short and long sticks will be mastered.

The above explains the four Kalarippayattu training sessions that allow anyone to easily learn Kalaripayattu through our different courses.Two hours practicing in the morning and two hours in the evening along with regular practitioners. While practicing in the Kalari yard trainees can wear suitable sports clothing. At the time of practice, the trainees have to apply Kalari medicinal oil all over the body according to the Kalari training custom

These programs condense this vast amount of information into a 30 days or more to make it accessible to the average person. No prior martial art experience is necessary . The programs are developed with a scientific progression to enable the student to absorb the material in a safe and enjoyable manner.

Kalaripayattu Holiday Training Camps

During school holidays Kadathanadan Kalari Sangam offers one month long Kalaripayattu training courses for large groups of younger students who want to keep busy while away from school. These special training camps will focus on teaching the students the basics of Kalaripayattu. The training will consist of two daily sessions, one in the morning and one in the evening, both three hours long so as to give attention to everyone in a large group. The camp will begin with basic self defence training and will move on to the first basic movements of Kalaripayattu routines. This will include basic steps, kicks, jumps and blocks. By the end of the training camp students will also have been introduced to both the short stick and the long stick, learning the early stages of their routines. This course is aimed at school and college students. Students from all countries are welcome!

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Yogic Diet Training – 6 month program

Learn the ancient and mystical ways of the Yogic diet and train your body to thrive on minimal food. Practice meditation techniques that will allow you to absorb energy straight from the universe itself in a form of spiritual photosynthesis.

This six month package involves education in nutrition and diet as well as meditation training. It is split into three two month stages:

Stage 1: Stage 1 involves basic meditation training and the introduction of an intermediate diet of both raw and cooked foods. The student will drink boiled water only and alcohol, caffeine are gradually phased out.

Stage 2: The number of meals per day is reduced to two and the boiled water is replaced with unfiltered water from a natural source. More advanced meditation is taught.

Stage 3: One meal per day is taken and meditation is increased. The diet will move towards raw foods, slowly phasing out cooked food.

Kalaripayattu training is offered as an additional option next to this course.

Kadathanadan Kalari Sangam school of Kalaripayattu training
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Kalaripayattu Training Certificate

In order to celebrate and acknowledge the achievements of all of our students, upon completion of their course they will be presented with a certificate. The certificate will contain information about the length of their course and will be signed by Thomas Gurukkal and stamped with the seal of the Kadathanadan Kalari Sangam. Not only is this a great souvenir to take home to show your friends and family, it is proof of your training in Kalaripayattu.

Benefits of Kalaripayattu Training

Kalari training requires a great amount of physical and mental effort. The benefits therefore are both physical and mental. Firstly, the most instantly noticeable effect is an increased stamina. The high tempo, high energy nature of the training routines ensure that heart rates and breathing rates are kept elevated for long periods of time making it an excellent fitness exercise. Weight loss is a natural side effect of these vigorous training sessions which are specially designed to steer the student towards an ideal weight and body shape. The mental strength to continue training even after the student has left the Kalaripayattu school will be instilled in the student by the enforcement of a rigid routine of twice daily Kalari sessions.

Furthermore strength and flexibility will be greatly improved. The aim of the Kalari student is to condition their body to be as hard as iron but as fluid as water.

Kalaripayattu is primarily a martial art and so its practice will lead to a knowledge of self defence and fighting skills. From empty handed combat to disarming a knife wielding opponent the student will learn a huge variety of ways in which to defend themselves.

The mental benefits include huge improvements in focus and concentration. Every movement in a Kalari routine is a purposeful act of meditation and conditions the mind to stay focused for extended periods of time. Increased focus combined with the physical benefits of regular exercise will amount to an increase in confidence and mental wellbeing for the Kalaripayattu practitioner.

Finally there are immense spiritual benefits to Kalaripayattu training. The exercises are specifically designed to unlock the Kundalini power that lies within all of us. The power stays dormant at the base of the spine for most people but when Kalaripayattu is practiced the power is gradually released – energising the body and aiding the spirit on its journey towards self realisation and enlightenment.

Kalaripayattu Training Dress

The dress code in Kalaripayattu training today puts comfort above all else. Students are invited to wear any variation of exercise kit that they feel comfortable in, provided it preserves their modesty. For boys this means tracksuit bottoms or shorts and a t-shirt is optional but not needed. Girls can wear leggings or yoga pants with a shirt, blouse or dress. 

In ancient times the dress code for training used to be much stricter and, sadly, only really catered to male Kalaripayattu warriors. The students Kalari students used to train wearing a garment called a kacha – a long strip of cotton that was wound tightly around the groin, abdomen and lower back to create a pair of shorts. Although it might be seen as a chore to put on, the kacha is a piece of clothing that presents many benefits to its user. Firstly it is excellent back support for the lower back. Wrapped tight about the spine it acts as a scaffold that prevents it from over bending and stretching. Furthermore it stores energy from bending like a coiled spring, ready to be released as the warrior moves from position to position. It also helps with breathing – by tightening the abdomen it supports the diaphragm and enables the lungs to operate with greater efficiency. Finally, in the event of extreme injury to the abdomen area (for example a knife wound) the tightly wrapped kacha will keep pressure on the wound, blocking the escape of blood and prana. This will give the injured warrior more time to seek medical assistance. 

The wearing of the kacha has such a strong connection with Kalaripayattu training and fighting battles that there is a Malayalam idiom about it. “Kacha kettuka”, meaning put your kacha on, is said to someone if they are being told to be prepared for anything.

Nowadays a more all encompassing approach is taken to Kalari uniforms and, for formal demonstrations, a more unisex kit has been adopted in the form of trousers and a stiff collared cotton waistcoat. The colours of the uniforms vary from school to school and the details are chosen by the Master of each sangam. 

Additional Activities To Do Alongside Kalari Training

To pass the time in between Kalaripayattu training sessions there are several optional activities that can keep you busy while staying on the farm. Feel free to help tend and gather vegetables and spices in the kitchen garden or look after our livestock. The cow and the buffalo are very friendly and always welcome a new student who wants to help feed them. There is also a fiery horse called Badhari who not only needs feeding every day but riding too.

Help around the house is always appreciated. Those who wish can lend a hand in the kitchen and learn to cook delicious traditional Keralan meals.

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