Day 5: 11th Jan

The final day of the first week was probably my favourite class yet! I must admit I snoozed my alarm thismorning 3 times and got to the dojo with 5 minutes until class. But yet again, I felt great during and after the class. Some days when it is hard to get to the dojo, I give the class 10 minutes and by then my complete attitude has changed and I just want to train!

This morning was the only class I attended today because my family and I have gone on a weekend get away. The class was entirely self paced but before the seiza Sensei Martin got us to think about what we want to get out of this class.

While in the 5min seiza I reviewed the week entirely and what i have struggled with the most. I came to the conclusion that I wanted to work on body balance and using my left and right sides equally to generate power. For about 10 minutes the dojo was silent and then i began to kiai. The power of a Kiai is almost infectious and soon the dojo was no longer quiet. The first half an hour I did a lot of stepping/punching and advanced kata. I really focused on my overall balance and generating the hard and soft throughout a kata. To do so I tried to use less muscle and more hips. I think this helped and I will play with it more throughout the rest of the intensive.

The second half of the morning class I was working with one of the yellow belts. We did a bit of bunkai and then kicking on the bags. Again I focused on not wobbling my head and getting that twist at the end of my blocks/punch. With the kicking we used the bags, we started off slow and controlled and then evolved into a faster kick with a target. I loved just letting loose and using all on my power. Was good to just sweat!

This evening my little sister and I found a grassy patch on southbank river and had a bit of a kick around. I got her to play with her balance while stepping and then to use her leg strength as we did a few really slow controlled kicks. Was just enough to get our minds ticking before we got dinner!

When I first starting writing this blog at the start of the week, I believed it wasn’t going to do very much for my training as I already have a training diary. But I found that reflecting in more detail by myself and writing down my experience has grown me. Not just as a karate student but as a person as well!

I have had some very positive feedback from students and parents at the dojo who have been following me on this intensive journey. Even a few from overseas, thank you so much. See you all Monday!