February 8

Tonight’s class was more thoughtful. Sensei Walker had us looking closely at why we do what we do in kata. Not for right or wrong. And not to change it necessarily for those testing in April.

He had us doing “attack” sequences (all the moves in one direction before pausing) for Fukyugata ichi and san, a few of the pinans and naihanchis. While we all did the same thing, we found in a couple of cases we “violated” the attack sequence because that was the way we’ve been practicing. Not that the violation was necessarily wrong but that if we’re going to deviate we should do it purposefully and with reason.

He also talked to us about training with conviction. We’re all nervous. We all want to pass but lack the confidence to think, even to ourselves, I WILL pass this. He encouraged us to train with that conviction. “All” we need to do is elevate our game a little; demonstrate what we can go beyond.

Sept 7 – 11

Tuesday night’s class was another rough one. Started with about 35 minutes of medicine ball work. Then we moved onto using the heavy bag and used it for some military style team drills. After that we did some heavy duty sparring for about 45 minutes. Then we did kata slowly, similarly to yoga, with weights in our hands. After that we work on some shoulder exercises with weights, then lots of pushups, ab work, and back work.

Thursday night’s kid’s class  worked almost exclusively on kicking. Started the kids class by having them warm them up with 100 of each of the basic punches and blocks in shikodachi. After that we spent most of the rest of the class standing in heisokudachi. Went around the class having each student count 10 reps on each leg. First round it was knee to chest with the left leg. Second round was knee to chest with right leg. Third round was front kick left leg… then right leg… then knee up to the side left leg… then knee up right to the side right leg… then round kicks the same way. After all that, I had them form 2 lines and do shuffle up/front leg round kick against the focus pads that Hope and I were holding.

Second class was a repeat of the first class with the older kids and adults. In addition, we added these same drills done from zenkutsudachi. After all that, it was time for some heavy duty sparring. We finished the class with King-of-the-Hill sparring matches.