Thursday Karate class – 10/25/07 – Tekki Shodan again and kihon.

Class was a little different but filled with excellent insight.
Sensei didn’t have us do the normal warm ups and left out some of the kicking drills that we usually do. One interesting note, when doing the back kick, Sensei said to bend the front leg before kicking. This gives more stability and it felt like it was much more powerful than kicking when standing fully upright.

After some basics, Sensei Cieplik sent the 4th Kyu’s off to the side with Sensei Noia to work on our kata. OUCH! That’s one way to describe how hard we worked on our kata. We spent a lot of our time in a horse stance and my legs were shaking at times. I have been putting in extra effort when my in my horse stance and make sure to tighten up my quadriceps and push my knees out as far as I can. The biggest problem seems to be that I am having a problem keeping my butt under me. I end up leaning forward. I am considering doing a horse stance at home against a wall to help me get the right feeling of how I should be.

We spent at least 45 minutes on our kata and as I got more tired, I had a very hard time keeping my chest out. We also went out, one by one, to do our kata in front of Sensei Noia and I ended up tensing up through the entire first half of the kata. I was forcing my way through the moves for some reason. I really need to find a way to relax when doing my kata and hopefully after a few hundred more, I will be able to do so.

We then went back in front of Sensei Cieplik so that he could see how well Sensei Noia taught us tonight and he was not disappointed. He said that Sensei Noia did good and that we all looked good.

Sensei Cieplik made a comment about kizeme after we finished our kata. His point was that when we turn our heads during the various parts of Tekki Shodan, we should be able to attack our opponents with our eyes or “the look”. He often uses my son as his example and comments on how my wife, would give him “the look” when he does something wrong. The idea is that you can stun your opponent without getting physical and break their concentration, even if only for a short moment. The look should be powerful enough to stop someone in their tracks.

Another comment that he made was related to the side snap kick. Sensei said that the side snap kick should not kick our far, it should stay close to the body. It is not meant to be a very high or powerful kick.

And another great comment was about “relax, adjust and make it natural.” The idea is that a Karata-ka will spend 10 years learning to relax, 10 years learning how to adjust the moves or techniques to our bodies and the last 10 years learning how to do it all naturally. This comment was so insightful and thought provoking. Here I am, a 4th Kyu thinking that once I am a black belt, I will be on my way to understanding things and Sensei says that it’s 30 years before things become clear. I really wish that I would have started my Karate training many years ago but I am in it for the long haul and looking forward to the next 26+ years of learning.

Along the same lines as above, Sensei said to take five minutes a day to do “nothing.” He said that everyone in the class is worthwhile and deserves at least five minutes of relaxation each and every day. I know that I have a hard time just sitting down for five minutes but I am going to try.

Class ended and I knew that I worked really hard when I could barely get out of the car when I got home.

I also did 6 – Tekki Shodan during the day before class.

About doug
Doug is a Shotokan Karate student that enjoys sharing his Karate training experiences with everyone. He is a Computer Consultant, an ISSA Certified Personal Trainer, blogger and a freelance writer..

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