This month we had more kids at the Dojo than ever before. We were visited by the young Tabley boys early in the month. Macrus and Daniel came along to watch a class and hopefully next time they can come and train with us too.
Terry’s son, Alec came and joined us for a session too. He trains in GKR and was recently graded to red belt so joining in our class wasn’t a problem for him. Despite some differences in Kata and Kihon, Alec did really well and I hope he comes back and trains with us again.
Blast from the past
David Hennessy visited the dojo and brought with him three of his students. They travelled all the way from Kurrajong to visit us and he brought Emma, Linda and Finn along with him. In our training session we covered a huge range of Kihon, a little Bunkai and plenty of Kata. We all did Taikyoko Shodan together and worked our way up through some of the Heian Kata and then on to Tekki and Bassai Dai.
After class, we grabbed some mats and had an impromptu bunkai session where Riz and I got to show David the things we’ve been looking into during the past 12 months. The kids enjoyed it so much, they made David promise to bring them back every 6 weeks!
David is a Karate-Ka from many years ago and used to train at the dojo in the early 2000’s. He was the last Shodan awarded under Kyoshi Sensei Clutterbuck and he and I spent so many hours in the Dojo working on Kata and Kihon.
What I recall the most is the time we spent working on our synchronised Bassai Dai routine. We performed the Kata at his Shodan grading ceremony, except rather than both of us performing the Kata ordinarily, we decided to mix things up. As if the Kata wasn’t hard enough we decided to arrange it so that our Kata crossed paths. During the demonstration we got so close that at one point our backs were touching.
Here’s an old and grainy video of the performance we did at David’s Shodan grading ceremony
New green belts
Two students were promoted to green belt this month. Santina has been putting in the hard yards recently and it shows. She has stepped things up and has really thrown herself into her training.
Dawn has had a cavalcade of obstacles try and slow down her progress in Karate. But despite a number of physical set backs and other things, she’s kept going and puts in a determined effort every single training session. As the saying goes, “a black belt is just a white belt that never gives up”.
Congratulations to both of you on your well earned promotion!
However, things are going to get harder for you two. Being a green belt is a major steps towards Shodan and a significant milestone in your Karate journey. There’s no more white on your belt so you are no longer a beginner. You will now start to learn a broader range of kicking techniques as well as focus on making Heian Shodan and Nidan the best you can.
These are the things you have to learn but the most important focus of your training is to improve the consistency of everything you do. And this requires a lot of focus during the lessons!
Progression in Karate can seem slow at times, and improvements can appear to be non-existent from one session to the next. You have both come a long way since your last grading and you have improved in every aspect of Karate. Keep training as you have been and you will continue to get better and better.