This Week in Karate
Monday night was entirely tournament prep. Sensei Walker and Shindo were at the dojo, so I decided to go to the gym instead and at least get a workout in. Did a killer back workout with the guidance of Gamal Castile.
Tuesday night we quickly ran through the yellow belt test criteria for our newest student. After that, we worked heavily on front, round, side, and back kicks. We did each one 4 count style forwards and backwards down the floor for about 1.5 hours. We followed that by working on the open/closed fist drill for about 30 minutes in air and with partners as targets. We finished up with 15 minutes of basic 1 time attack.
Thursday nights basic class we split up into groups and worked on the beginners kata.
Intermediate class consisted of basic punching and blocking with partners from natural stance. We did rising block, inside block, outside block, downward block, and knife hand block against punches. We did downward block and outward block against front kick and round kick respectively.
Advanced class we just worked on our individual kata; either for test or tournament.
Monday night’s karate class started with about 40 minutes of sparring: 2 minute rounds with the loser of each match doing 10 pushups between matches. After sparring, we spent the next hour and a half doing some very detailed kata work; focusing on the finer points of the movements and using the correct hip rotation for the techniques.
Tuesday nights karate class started off with 20 or so minutes of medicine ball catch. We then moved onto 45 minutes of sparring drills and dojo free sparring while working on strategy and technique instead of speed and power. We then spent about 45 minutes going through Oyo Tan Ren, the 3 Fukyugata, and the 5 Pinan kata. We spent the last 15 minutes of class working on basic techniques; focusing on applying the hips to get power.
Basic class we worked on Oyo Tan Ren, Fukyugata 1,2,3, and Pinan Nidan. We finished up having some fun relay races with the kids.
Intermediate class started out with free style one time attack for the first 25 minutes. We spent the last 20 minutes working on individual tournament kata.
Advanced class was mostly stance training focusing on using the scissors action to cover as much distance as possible. Everyone’s legs were quite stiff by the end of class. — feeling evil.
There was no class Monday night due to Memorial Day.
We started off with 15 minutes of jogging around the room; followed by 15 minutes of The Medicine Ball Game.
After warming up, we went through Oyo Tan Ren about 4 times. Then we moved onto basics: Seiken zuki, gyaku zuki, oi zuki in both zenkutsu and shiko dachi, age uke, gedan uke. Next we did several repititions of Fukyugata Ichi.
After that, we finished up the class by doing 50 or so repetitions forwards and backwards up the floor of rin mae geri and rin mawashi geri. Forwards was back leg first kick to the body, second kick to the face. Going backwards was front leg first kick to the body, second kick to the face.
Basic class we started with a mini-tournament for the white belts doing their tournament kata. Sensei Walker finished up the class working on some fine points of their kata.
Intermediate class started out with 12 minutes of tournament sparring to warm up. After that, we moved onto working on tournament kata for those planning on competing at the Columbia Cup.
Advanced class… well, there wasn’t one. Seems all of the advanced students had other things to do. So sad.
Monday night, I actually got to train. Sensei Walker led us through a pretty technical class that was basically going over what Sensei Keyes had went over the previous Monday. We covered lots of technical details concerning foot, arm, and body positioning while doing various kata.
Tuesday night I had a new student in the class, so we focused on white belt content. Class warmed up with about 15 minutes of The Medicine Ball Game. We then went straight into the kata Fukyugata Ichi. We did that kata over and over for about 40 minutes. We finished up the class by doing a few hundred jab-reverse punch combinations in front stance.
Thursday nights theme was sparring. First kids class we broke into 2 groups: those who didn’t know their kata, and those competing in the tournament. Those who didn’t know their kata went into the other room and worked on learning the kata. The competitors spent the class doing an in-house tournament.
The second class was another in-house tournament with all the colored belts; which Sam Martin won out of a field of about 10 competitors.
Third class shifted from sparring to weapons kata work. We finished up the class doing some weapons drills against an opponent.
The new kids test requirements have been being used for the last several months, but they have now been added to the site under the “Children’s Belt Requirements” link. They are also now in pdf format so you can download them for off-line viewing or printing.
As for the actual requirements, not much has really changed; this is more-so an explicit publication of the requirements. The old documented standard was not very explicit and caused some confusion. The biggest changes are 1) no more pending, and 2) a change to the belt colors themselves. #1 is a tough one. In the past, a student had 3 possible outcomes from a test: Pass, Pend, or Fail. Pass and Fail are pretty obvious, but pend caused a lot of heartache; so we got rid of it.
An important thing to note here, since failures will now be much more common, is that a student DOES NOT have to re-pay for a test that they failed. This has always been the policy, but some people that had never failed/had a child fail a test were concerned about this.
The new belt ranks are as followed (top to bottom, left to right)
|Yellow w/White Stripe
||Yellow w/Black Stripe
|Orange w/White Stripe
||Yellow w/Orange Stripe
|Green w/White Stripe
||Green w/Black Stripe
|Brown w/White Stripe
||Brown w/Black Stripe
|Black w/White Stripe
||Black w/Green Stripe
||Black w/Brown Stripe
Monday nights started out with tournament prep focusing on tournament kata. After that class, Sensei Keyes made an appearance and led the regular class through a very technically grueling class.
Tuesday night was all basics: Seken zuki, age uke, soto uke, and uchi uke; the blocks all performed with gyaku zuki. We spent a little bit of extra time focusing on the non-blocking hand and how it can be employed during the techniques rather than being a “dead hand”.
Thursday night’s kids class was mostly Oyo Tan Ren. This is required to pass the orange belt test, and has single-handedly failed more students than any other exercise or technique. It was good for the beginners to get a chance to start learning it. The last few minutes of the class were spent working on their test kata.
Thursday night’s intermediate class was heavy on tournament sparring. We did 2 minute rounds with the loser of each match doing pushups; then rotating to the next partner. After that we focused on empty handed and weapons kata.
No class on Monday due to inclement weather.
Tuesday night, we did quite a bit of medicine ball work, followed by practicing jab-reverse punch-front kick, jab-reverse punch-round kick, and jab-spinning back kick-backfist strike-reverse punch up and down the floor with partners.
Thursday night we repeated Tuesday’s workout with the addition of focusing on spinning back kick for quite a bit as well. Second class we worked exclusively on the kata Fukyugata Ni. After class, we finished up with some informal free sparring.
It was brought to my attention by a new student last night, that the info on the site is a bit outdated; and the last post I made was 3 years ago. It’s amazing how fast time flies when your life is in shambles. I shall remedy the issue as soon as possible.
I have just updated the dojo calendar for the year, and I shall update more of the site in the next few days.
Been slacking off on the training updates. Here’s the summary for the last 3 nights.
Taught all 3 classes tonight. Nothing but stance training. Lots of sweat and shaking legs. Not much else to say about it.
Tuesday nights class was all partner training with the bo. Really focusing on getting down the 1st 3 drills and learning what it feels like to make solid contact with the bo.
Last Thursday night I taught all 3 classes as well. 1st class was basics with partners. The whole second class was dedicated to partner training with the bo, and the 3rd class was black belt kata.
I started my student off last night with front, side, and round kicks on the heavy bag. This was followed by 4 different types of elbow strikes on the heavy bag. Then on to every kata he knows. Afterwards, we focused on partner training with the bo. We did about 50 reps of 3 different drills. It’s amazing how sore the hands get when you actually make contact continuously with the bo.
For the second class, we simply went through the Shotokan kyu rank kata syllabus. We started with Taikyoku Shodan, all 5 Heian kata, and all 3 Tekki kata. We did this for about an hour and 15 minutes. There was a fair amount of explanation between repetitions due to folks just learning the kata; but it was more than enough to work up a sweat.