Monday, July 27, 2009

Healthy Obsession?

Yesterday, I spent a wonderful afternoon with three of my relatives at a concert in Central Park. Since the concert was free, there were just as many people waiting outside the gates to get in as there were inside ready for the music to begin. And while I was packed in line with them, I kept looking around and going through self-defense scenarios in my head. What's wrong with THAT picture?

It seems that there is hardly a time when I'm NOT thinking about karate: be it kata or tai sabaki techniques to try during sparring, but self-defense techniques at a concert?!? Good Lord - I think I'm becoming obsessed. Are there 12-step programs for this type of thing?

Hello, my name is Felicia and I'm a karate addict.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Back to the Drill Again...

My summer host dojo is an amazing place to be. You'd think traveling an hour each way for some serious out-of-the-box training would get tedious, but it isn't. Sure, it makes for some late nights and dinner sometimes ends up being catch as catch can, but that everything is stepped up a notch and that my brain is working as hard as my body is incredible. I feel like I've tapped into some sixth karate sense or something and am more in-tune with my body movements and hand/leg positions.

Being the non-natural athlete I am, everything new that I'm introduced to takes time - usually a lot of time - for me to learn. Consequently, I spend many, many moments looking and feeling like a complete spaz when I try to emulate the gracefully fluid example Sensei S. or his regular students have just given. Truthfully, there are times when I think I'm going to chip a tooth or something. It's hardly pretty.

But drilling it - doing the kicks, slides or hand combinations over and over and over again - totally help. Sensei S. calls it "homework." I call it necessary...

Last weekend this time, 11 of my training partners and instructors were at Super Summer Seminars, a martial arts camp held in Upstate, NY that hosts MA enthusiasts from all over the place - and has for the last 27 years. I learned lots of new drills, exercises and techniques as I do every year. Loved, loved, LOVED the idea of trying something completely new (this year it was Capoiera and "Falls for TV/Film Stunt Fighting) or learning new spins on familiar ideas (like this year's White Crane Okinawan Karate, Women's Competition Sparring and "Improving Your Kicks" seminars). Got a chance to pass a little of the knowledge on today as well, as it was my turn to lead drills in this morning's class. I'm having a blast, can you tell?