A cold dojo and the first class of 2014
Today was my first Karate class of the new year. The dojo was freezing cold and even after a good warm up, I was still cold. I am not exaggerating when I say cold, it must have been in the high 50 degrees in there and the floor felt like iced concrete. I have a lot of respect for the Karate students before me that trained outdoors or in dojos with no heat. When I thought of the masters who trained in the elements with no complaints, I buckled down, stopped being a wimp and made the most of my training.
Horse stances to warm the legs….
Sensei Noia had us get a partner and then both of us got into a horse stance. One partner punched to the other partners face and the other did a rising block, then one punched to the body and the other blocked with an inward block, then a punch to the belt and the other blocked with a downward block. We continued doing this for a good number of techniques which helped warm us up. Holding a horse stance for a long time can get the sweat going and all the punches and blocks got the upper body blood flow working.
Next, we moved into Front stances and cat stances. We did all the various blocks (rising, inward, outward and downward) with double punches in a front stance and then we pulled back into a car stance with another block and punch combination.
Warm legs, time to kick…
We worked on a few kicking combinations going forward in a front stance. We started with front snap kick and then the combination front snap kick and back kick. Next came, front snap kick, side thrust kick and back and after those, we added a roundhouse kick to the last combination.
This entire class was all kihon work and I certainly know that I needed it after a few weeks off. Even though I trained at home a good amount over the break, there is still no better workout than when you are in a class with others. It’s hard to explain in words but the energy level goes up and I always feel that I get a good workout.