Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Weapons In The Park

 Sensei hit that point in training where he wanted to try something different.  I totally appreciate when we hit this point.  Usually an indication that we've hit a plateau and need to shake it up.

As a group we don't focus on weapons a great deal.  I'm always interested because I have such a minimal exposure.  I have three bo (staff) kata, but have largely forgotten them.  

Yesterday we studied a short kata from the Yammani-Ryu school, Donyu Kun Ichi (Introduction Staff One).  Reed went into a lot of description about why we were doing what we were doing, but we completed it by the end of the time.  Apparently it continues to gain complexity in the second form, but uses the same pattern.

Here is a nice example of what we learned.

We are a bit more vigorous.

In other news - It's been slightly over a year since I took my Nidan exam.  I've got two years to go before my exam.  I'm really hoping that the pandemic is managed by then.  My classmate Mary-Ann is going for her Yondan which sounds stressful.  All wrapped up at the school and possibly get Covid or do it at home via video conference where things are so separate.  

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Karate In the Time Of Apocolypse

 I haven't written much because there hasn't been much going on.  The Pacific Northwest has been inundated with biblical plagues during the last month, so even leaving the house was becoming hazardous due to air quality.  While waiting for the air to clear we had to keep an eye on the fires that were creating them.  My wife and I packed to leave twice when evac levels started ramping up.  Absolutely stressful.  I now have a small insight into what folks in California run into year to year.

During this time I've been diligently practicing my six katas, but have a tendency to moan about progress or lack there of.  When you can't leave your house all of sudden the time that you never had you get back in spades.  So practice became a regular thing.  Too bad we could get together as a class.

Just as covid set in I began a serious regime of weight lifting.  I once aspired to be a body builder in my younger years and took up the weights again in a attempt to stave off the muscle wasting that seems to come with age.  Unfortunately, returning to the process also landed me with several injuries.  A hamstring, a shoulder and finally my neck.  When the neck thing started appearing I finally ended weights, but it took about four weeks of PT to get to the point where I can be mobile without pain.  It would appear that I have a slightly damaged C6 or C7.  When it bulges it pinches a nerve that goes down my left shoulder and arm.  The pain it created almost made me psychotic.  I now have insight into people with chronic pain conditions.  I wouldn't want to wish that on anyone.  It's horrible.

So the PT worked it's charm and I do all sorts of weird exercises to alleviate the pinch in my neck and I can do a lot again.  I haven't picked up the weights just yet due to fear, but I was able to go back to karate!  

And now that the air is clear (the air quality hit 500 at one point - toxic) karate in the park was back on, but socially distanced as before.  The concern I carry now it about warming up and minding my body carefully so I don't re-injure or slow down current healing.  

I got there a bit early and starting warming up, but I strangely never feel like I'm ready to go.  Our warms up always let me know that one part is not ready to go at all.  In this case my left ham appeared locked. I couldn't even sit with spread legs.  Super frustrating.  

We got going and I ended up working with Olivia on Shishochin.  She hasn't had time to practice so we went over a multitude of times.   Then we were corrected by Sensei on a host of little things.  After a ton of refinement we moved on to a new kata - Seiyunchin!

I got the three first moves down and we ran out of time.  Super cool though, since this means that we are on seventh of twelve kata!  

After I got home, my neck told me that it was worked so it was back to exercises to loosen it up and try to relax.  It appears to be fine this morning - whoop!

Your Clothes, Book Cast With 100%

  At 6:05am I looked at my phone quizzically while trying to wake up.  My SaBomNim (master teacher), who is legally blind, sent me the messa...