Today marks the first day I have gone to karate training since March and all my illness woes began. I had been jogging to regain some form of fitness but nothing prepares you for the training that I just endured. Almost straight away I was down into the splits, no amount of fitness can prepare your muscles for that sort of pain. Though, regardless of muscle pain, it feels good to have completed the training. Maybe now I can get back to being somewhat fit. Also, I can now say I’m really bendy and mean it again, though I probably can’t say it with a straight face.
Though she’d never admit it, Karla secretly loved sparring Tom. Both of them were so poor with words but in the heat of the moment, their bodies uttered secrets their lips couldn’t even imagine forming.
His stance was shuffled back, his legs slightly closer together than usual, arms held high covering his head but ready to alter themselves and defend the rest of his massive bulk at a moments notice. He was preparing for an attack, he felt guilt, he felt apologetic?
Her stance was lower, much lower, legs wide and steady. She had fallen once and been hurt, it wouldn’t happen again. She was ready to attack, she had every reason. She wanted to hurt him.
This is a photo from around eight months ago. I used to be able to do a jumping side kick. I could get quite high off the ground as well in my jump. My muscles have since lost this ability. One of the only things I dislike about university are that I can no longer train as much as I once did.
My status on this day in 2009
My attempts to alleviate writers block
I stand poised, fists clenched, he mimics me. I stare straight into his eyes, he stares into mine. My gum shield presses against my upper lip, his does the same. Our faces swell due to the gum shields, creating a false look of aggression. The referee moves between us. He assesses our white uniforms, ensure we are wearing our black safety gear.
“Gloves, gum shields, footpads, shinpads, helmet?”
We nod in synch, our eyes never breaking contact from one another. His hand passes through the air between us.
“Fight!” He shouts.
Adrenaline floods our veins. We charge into one another, a flurry of punches and blocks. Too close for kicks. I break away and flank back. He follows me with a roundhouse kicks to the face. I swerve, duck and dodge. He follows with more kicks. I catch his leg and spin him. His back faces me for only a second, but that’s all I need. I launch at him with a single punch. It connects with the force of a bull.
“Stop” The referee shouts.
We separate, returning to out original positions. Our eyes remain locked.
“Point this side.” The referee says while pointing to me.
I bow in response.
We launch ourselves at one another again. He forces me back with a flurry of blows. I do my best to block them. Sweat flows down my forehead, but I don’t stop. I try to charge him. He steps back and raises his leg, a trap and I’ve fallen for it. His heel connects with my face, then darkness.
Moments later I awaken. The coppery taste of blood in my mouth, a thick musty smell of sweat engulfing me. I push the paramedics away and return to the fight. The referee asks if I’m ok. I nod in response. He then points to my opponent.
“Three points this side! Fight!”
I silently curse myself. I was a fool for falling for his ruse. I try my best, launching attack after attack but he dances around me doing his best to run the clock down. Adrenaline and the taste of blood drive me on, but to no avail. He blocks and dodges. I can’t catch him and then I hear the words I was dreading bellowing from the referee.
Me, myself and Demi Lovato!
Today I was given a new charge at my Karate club. The boy was young and as far as I could tell, highly energetic. In the end I had to help him individually. He was really struggling. He couldn’t grasp the concept of a correct kick. When I tried to correct him, his eyes would well up with tears and he’d almost cry. He really took every ounce of my patience. But I did my best! In fact I think he even was starting to enjoy karate by the end of the session.
It was only afterwards that I was told by my Sensei, that the boy in question was in fact Autistic. I was shocked and I still am, but I’m not sure why. I guess he just seemed so normal, if a little energetic. I’m kind of glad I hadn’t been told beforehand. I’d hate to have subconsciously treated him different.
Yesterday I finally got my brown and white belt. This means I am one year away from getting my black belt, that is if all things go as they should.
The grading was incredibly intense. Four hours of techniques and stances. Thankfully I wasn’t too injured by the end. All I was left with was blistered feet and swollen fingers on my left hand. The latter was entirely my fault. For God knows what reason I decided to block a sidekick with my fingers extended. Not my best moment. Needless to say my fingers were bent back and are still swollen.
It was so strange, standing in the hall, awaiting my judgement. To my left were all the white belts and lower grades, so eager and young. I could remember the feeling, the nerves mingled with exhaustion. Adrenaline keeping you alert and on your toes while exhaustion begged your limbs to submit and allow you to sit. To my right stood the black belts. Poised in perfection, paragons of their martial art. That’s the destination, where I intend to go within the next year. A friend of mine joined the ranks of the black belts yesterday. I’m so proud of him, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little envious. He is, after all my rival within the club, we joined roughly the same time, but he soared ahead. So he is the one opponent I endeavour to defeat. I am so happy for him, in his achievement. But that doesn’t alter the fact that I must defeat him. Friendships in the karate club are so unique in that they breed competition and rivalry.
Friendship and Rivalry. When it comes to Karate they are two sides of the same coin.
The fight that lost it all, but hey I still got bronze :D
“Next Two Fighters!”
I walk out, my opponent is at least two foot taller then me. What’s worse is I recognize him. He’s the same tall guy that beat me in a tournament in Birmingham almost a year and a half ago. I clench my fists, and perform the customary bow.
“Shane be up for it!”
“You can do this!”
“Come on Shane”
Adrenaline enters my blood stream and every noise fades away to a false silence interrupted only by the sound of the referee saying “Fight.”
I launch, as does he. We slam into each other before pulling back to take potshots with our kicks. He tries to catch my foot, cheeky git. I side step his punches and then out of nowhere, CRACK! He lands a blow right against my ribs I stumble back.
“Come on Shane, Don’t let him take it away!”
I launch again. More kicks. All aimed at his head. None connect substantially enough. I drop my foot. Like a cobra he strikes with a punch. I catch his arm and give him a punch of my own.
“That’s it Shane, More like that!”
We’re both more hesitant now. Light blows and dancing around each other. Nothing serious, testing the air, assessing weaknesses. Then he strikes more forcefully, a chase. I try to counter, my hands slip. I try to kick and my footpad is ripped from my foot by his guard. Before I can recover he strikes me right in the head with a kick.
Three points to him.
“Shane double your kicks, don’t let him through!”
I’m a flurry of kicks, I need to even it out. He backs away. I keep chasing. He’s waiting for an opening and I know it. My foot drops. Smash. Vision falters and I see stars for a second. Such a punch to the head, completely unnecessary.
“Shane, Don’t let him win it!”
I’m gunning for revenge now. I chase with my kicks, and then just when he thinks more kicks are coming I smash his chest with a punch of my own. His ribs heave against my glove. He falls back to the floor in pain.
No score, too rough.
I lose 4-1. Still at least I got bronze.
Nanananana Ninja Sparrow