Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Strike Again Harmonious Fists

Let's say that everything has a tempo.

I find patterns instructive and powerful tools for learning especially within beatings. For practice, getting a rhythm going just seems to create an expansive, hypnotic feeling. It's where you can let go of what's going on, step outside of yourself and look at what's going on in an objective fashion. Of course, I realize that this same pattern is the direct cause of problems in sparring or other one/two step applications because it builds up an almost neural pattern - a trap of repetitive training.

Last night I realized that without Nilon we established an otherworldly tempo of counting during the warm ups. Even if everyone finished the move at a different time the counting was always on the mark.

Later when we were doing partnered punching and movement drills I noticed the detrimental side of the rhythm. If a person has no rhythm then long-term drilling is subject to constant failure. It wasn't helped by me constantly stopping Older Sister and telling her to step and then punch. She punches with such confidence and vigor that I think she is more experienced than she is. She still makes the mistakes that everyone does...

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Douchebag Chronicles

I had to leave class immediately.

I had to leave class immediately or I might have burst into laughter.

I ran up the stairs with a rictus like grin - smiling so hard I thought I'd tear the skin on my face.

Bob from Striking thoughts mentioned that guys like this will eventually have someone rain on their parade.

Tonight the rain came and the only disappointing thing about it was that I didn't get to bring the rain.

Nilon strolled into class a half hour late, but was on task and was fairly focused. But at the very end we had sparring. What a night it was. First, our new teenage girls showed that were tough as nails. Their session started off with a profound smack in the face that sounded like a gun shot. Whoa! Then came Beard and Nilon. It was epic. Nilon tried to bring the fight to Beard - literally trying his half-ass made up Judo moves on a guy with a Blackbelt in Judo; who's had it for over 20 years. I could see this going bad quick, but Teacher never made a move to stop it. Normally he he curbs anything that isn't right out of our book.

Nilon tried some grabs with leg sweeps that only got him punched and eventually knocked down. Beard swiftly got behind him and got his legs all locked up and then choked him out. Teacher finally called that and class was down.

Nilon was silent for the rest of the time and absolutely hermit like in the changing room as Beard and I talked about my adrenaline shaking hands.

I couldn't stand it so I left as soon as I could so I wouldn't burst out laughing.

On another topic I'm feeling a little more like a brown belt. I'm educating with some more comfort and I know in the sparring I look a hell of a lot better than the others. I got a spinning heel kick in on Teacher tonight, but I'm sore as all get out.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Douchebag Analysis

By the calendar it appears that a month has gone by since my last attendance to beatings. After a rich diet of beer and finishing other peoples meals for a month beatings was going to be hard. Thankfully everyone else appeared be doing about the same after the holidays.

Things haven't changed much with the group. Still a plethora of teenage girls with some of our original gang. Teacher is out of a lot of instruction due to a rotator cuff problem - even punching is painful.

Nilon is there of course. I was mentally prepared to see him so it was no surprise when he showed up late and joined the warmups, which I was leading, fouls the count by either shouting extremely loudly or off by a few beats and then precedes to do his own thing during stretching. Nilon is devotee to long distance running, but never figured out how to stretch. He is about the most inflexible person I've ever met and refuses to put time or effort into the process. So he gripes and ends up doing whatever. Although it's not limited to the stretching - if anything can't keep his attention for more than a minute he's off and doing something else. And I thought my ADD was bad.

I'd like to say that I've gotten used to his unintentional douchebaggery after a few years, but that would be a lie. The typical even that drives me nuts is that we have a standard drill (one step sparring) and he immediately starts doing whatever he wants. Teacher normally stops him and refocuses him, but it doesn't last very long. So it always with some trepidation when I get partnered with him. Last night he proved to be gentle and kept telling to relax! What a change. I bet it only lasts a week.

I was nicely tired after the exercise and my legs didn't end up shaking too bad. This morning I'm not a bundle of knots so I count that a good start.

Bassai in the park

Holy Cow!  So much time has passed since I've sat down and collected my thoughts for a quick update about my martial practice.  March wa...