And I’ll be watching my aching joints if you just give me a minute to cool down.
So the first karate lesson of my life rolled around earlier today. I must say, I didn’t know want to expect. If I’m to summarise the entire session in one word, I’d probably have to pick ‘surprisingly good’. No wait, that’s two … Aww.
The sensei, who had initially struck me as a soft spoken man, suddenly become a raging demon of complete combat prowess the moment that off white gi and cloth made black belt are properly fixed onto his body. From flurries of hard hitting strikes to spinning kicks, the guy left me stunned. And I mean absolutely stunned. It was like watching one of those all powerful anime characters in real life. Put Ryu on hold, this guy’s got the moves!
Training started a bit slow. It mainly consisted of some of the raddest meditational yoga I’ve ever tried with some of the more hardcore stretches in between. By the end of them, I almost felt like I was made of silly putty. But thankfully, they were a great help in the labour that was to come ahead. And labour in this case roughly translates to ‘Right Dandy, it’s time for me to teach you a whole bunch of stuff without pause or rest so I hope you’re ready.’
I’d say before I could even learn the proper meaning of fitness, I had already found myself taking a neutral stance and then following master’s lead while we both alternated our fists in stomach level strikes. Then shortly afterwards, blocking incoming overhead attacks seemed to be the next stage of the wave of teachings. Although there is still so much to learn, and that I highly doubt I’m anywhere near performing these techniques efficiently, I am rather pleasantly surprised as to how well I did right off the bat. It’s just the ‘changing direction motion’ part of the up and down exercise that had me doubting the fidelity between my body and mind.
Thankfully, sensei was kind enough to encourage me to keep trying. “Remember, these aren’t moves that normal people do. They’ll feel more natural to you in time but for now, it’s ok for it all to feel so alien.”
At the end of the hour long session, he held up a plain white gi that was new in the bag, bearing the insignia of his own school of teachings. He had a chuckle about the possibility of me continuing onwards and even poked me with the hypothetical question of just how badly I wanted to don that uniform and continue training.
This was where my inner child and martial artist themed self seemed to just pierce through my facade-like calm demeanour as I found myself expressing every bit of interest in continuing down the road.
In following ‘the road ahead.’
You might be wondering what possessed me to pick that track for this week. Would you believe me if I told you that this track was playing on the classic hits radio station during my first boxing session back in my earlier years of high school? … What?! It’s catchy! ^w^