Thursday, January 29, 2009

Form admiration

I found this when I was looking at You Tube this afternoon. I'm always looking for good examples of forms. If I'm not mistaken, this is Jin Do, which I was supposed to have learned to earn my Ee Dan. I never properly learned it and definitely couldn't do it through to the end! I will learn it when I learn it. Right now, I'm learning the hows and whys of what I'm doing in class.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Pyung Ahn Oh Dan

What IS it about this form that makes it escape my mind???? I have the hardest time remembering it, and if I want to do it from end to finish, or to the right, I need to remember HOW to do the form. Period. It's driving me a bit batty!
I couldn't sleep last night, so I reviewed forms (after having reviewed some of them physically) in my head. I KNOW my forms, but apparently I'm overthinking them or something. That irritates me. I KNOW I can do the forms. I have done the forms. What is it that's blocking me from being able to do them properly or even just remembering them?

I've had a discussion with my best friend about Pyung Ahn Oh Dan and have the review on my cell phone. We talked about it back in October and there was no reason for me to put it out of my head!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Another thought provoking email

My instructor sent me another thought provoking email last week that I just picked up today. It took me pretty much all day after I initially opened it up before I read it, but I do think he was spot on, as usual.
Once a month we have Dan training at the dojang. He told me that I was more than welcome to come to training. I said, "I'll try, but I'm not sure what time I'll be finished walking, since I'm working on my 5k goal." He said that personally, he thought the Dan training would have benefited me more because I would have been working with the Dans of the dojang, and hopefully building a better relationship with them. He reminded me that I can work with Gups, but as a Dan, I have a vested interest in working with the Dans and learning what I need to learn to improve my technique, etc. As usual, CSN was extremely correct in his assessment. I'm pretty impressed with him because he's super intuitive and reads a lot of what's left unsaid or unwritten. All I can say is "wow". He did tell me that I don't have to feel afraid and that I have no reason to be afraid of attending the Dan training. Here's where my stupid thinking gets in my way again!!! GRRR!! I need to really work on my self esteem and my thinking.
Well, I am thinking that I may go ahead and sneak off to martial arts tomorrow. I was going to find the personal trainer here at the complex first and see about working with him. I may still have time to sneak off to the dojang afterwards. I won't commit myself to anything until I see what happens tomorrow.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Will there be a walk?

I missed my walk this morning. My best friend slept in and didn't go out walking with me. *I* didn't go out walking by myself because I hate being alone. If I'm going to walk, I like to have someone there to talk to. It takes my mind off how long the silly walk actually IS.
We're hoping to pick up our walk tomorrow, but there's no guarantee that it'll happen. Our temperature is supposed to be 35F in the morning. I'm not so insane that I like freezing my nose off! I may just have to wait and see what he says. If he says he can't get up (or if he doesn't call me at 9:00 am), then I'll have to break out the Wii.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Back to Basics

(Please bear with me for the apparent mis-spellings and whatnot. I just had eye surgery last Saturday and am "finding" my vision again.)

Today I'm going to practice a few of my basic forms. Keechyo Hyung Il Bu comes to mind. Why am I starting with the basic instead of the advanced forms? Well, partly because I feel that to become well rounded, I need to start at the beginning and work my way back up. Besides, I haven't done forms in over a week and I'm extremely rusty. I haven't worked out at my school in two months, so I feel like I'm a slacker. That ends today.

A few months ago, after a very intense discussion with Master G, I did some soul searching and decided that no matter what, I want to continue on with my martial arts studies. I need to learn the Han Gul, the Bunkai, etc. I think that by associating with the different martial artists I'm "hanging out with" on the Internet, plus the ones I talk to here in town, I'm going to do that. I talk to the Mr. L's (there are 3 of them to talk to and learn from), to Ms. S, to Ms. Mad and Master Mac. I talk to Master G. I will learn. They may feel like they have to beat it into my head at times, but I'll "get" it. I'm already understanding a lot more than I used to.

I love my new school. I like the idea of learning a movement and being told, "you'll do this in a battle because you could be taking out a sentry (in the case of the opening of Bassai)." I love the fact that it's not a "just blindly do what I say because that's how it's done." No. I am learning to question the forms. I am learning that this is how it is because in a fight, you'd want to be able to defend yourself. This is true "Self defense". There's a guy at work who constantly belittles me for taking martial arts because he says "why are you taking it if you can't defend yourself?" Well, he has a point. He won't be able to say that to me much longer!!

Yesterday I watched a killer video from Prairie Martial Arts. I have to say that I found it informative and found the light bulbs going on again. I had another "aha!" moment. I saw a practical application for Pyung Ahn Sah Dan. I watched a version of Pyung Ahn Sam Dan, which was most excellent. I could see differences in how we do things in our school, but I also saw similarities. That was a nice thing to see. I am looking forward to going back to classes and seeing how much more I can do.

I've been cleared by my eye doctor to practice forms, so today I plan on doing most all of my forms. I will start with the basics, as I said, but I will do them the three or four different ways Mr. L and I discussed on New Years. Lefthanded, righthanded, forward, backwards. Yep. It'll be fun to do. He has a point...some of the higher forms will be most interesting when done "backwards" because remembering where the jumps fit in will be a little challenging. Since I don't quite have the hang of forwards left and forwards right, I'll just do those first.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Blog of interest

Okay, I have to direct your attention to another blog that is incredible! You HAVE to go over and look at Prairie Martial Arts. It is a very cool site! He's got a wonderful video on his site about Pyung Ahn Sah Dan, which shows the Bunkai of the form perfectly!!! I was excited to see it!! I really enjoyed seeing SahDan done that way. It was really a good thing to see this morning.

I think I just learned something this morning, so I'm pleased. Now I need to find someone to work with. I'm getting all fired up again!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Last week was the last time I practiced my Ho Sin Sul. I was working with one of my co-workers who is a Brazilian Jiujitsu student. He likes to attack my legs and tries to take me down any chance he gets. Whenever I spar with him, he always asks me why I don't get in close and do a jab/jab or jab/cross combination. I prefer to strikek and get back. It may be my training from my old school. I have to remember what Master G said--think a bit differently when you're sparring. If your opponent is a person who is tall, they may want to keep some distance between the person they're sparring and themselves. If you're sparring a shorter person, they may want to keep you close. You have to watch your opponent and make a decision on your sparring when you're working together.

The one class I went to over at the Legacy dojang was one such sparring night. I was paired with a young lady who GOT the sparring. She was very quick and kept me off balance. I thought she'd be a close figher, but then she used distance on me. If I got complacent with the distance thing, she darted in and and struck when I least expected it.

Sparring with different people is a good thing. It gives you a chance to brush up on your skills. You have to think on your feet. If you are stuck in a rut, you'll be entirely too predictable.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

One 5k down

This morning was a perfect morning for a walk. It was 60+ degrees when I left the house and went to the park to go walking. My friend was already there, so when I got there, he got out of his car and we took off walking. We didn't really check the time when we started out, but it was about an hour and ten minutes to an hour and 20 minutes for the walk. I'm guessing as I didn't time it either. Since we added in the lake lap, it was a full 5k.
We didn't run today, but as we're both getting back into the habit of walking, it was a good start. We both chatted as we walked. We talked about fitness plans, martial arts, etc. He's in better shape than I am since he has access to a fitness center at work and exercises there, but it was really nice of him to join me this morning. I told him that I plan on walking every weekend, plus I want to start walking at work too. I'm going to pack my clothes for walking on Sunday night so that I'm ready to go at work. I have a later lunch on Monday--I work 9:30 to 6:30, so I go to lunch at 1:30. That'll be a good time to get out and get a walk in. The other days, I go to lunch at 11:30. I'm going to be ready for it.

Since I've been out and walked, I feel like I've accomplished something. I set my mind to walking and I did. Now my next step is to get my time down from an hour and some to about 45 minutes or so. Even if I just walked for an hour, it'll be a bonus.

I also took the opportunity to have him grab me so that I could practice my Ho Sin Sul. I need the practice and he was there, so I got in the practice. I remembered 3 out of four of the Ho Sin Sul I did on Thursday, so I'm keeping up my plan to practice.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Friday meditations on martial arts

As many of you know, I left my old martial arts school in July of 2008. I wasn't happy and had a few issues that couldn't be resolved, so I left. I had a lot of angst about it and spent a lot of time agonizing over "did I make the right decision?" My former instructor tried a few times to communicate with me and I took the cowardly way out--I either let the calls go to voicemail or I didn't return calls when I said I would.

I have since moved forward and have found a new school. I am happy with that school--it was a good change for me, I believe. I do not regret my decision. It was something that was needed. I am learning my forms and am learning to ask "WHY" about the technique and the forms. It's a new challenge to me as I have to learn Korean, bunkai, Bushido Codes and other things. In many ways, I feel like I've started over again and am back at white belt, only I know the forms. I have much tweaking and adjustments to be made or I won't be able to get myself up to speed.

Yesterday I went over to a friend's house and talked about a lot of things martial arts related. We talked about Bunkai and we talked about language. We also talked about our Ho Sin Sul and one steps. I got a chance to review four of the Ho Sin Sul I would need to know as a white belt. It was a very productive afternoon for me. We talked about performing the forms in various ways--forward or "left" (because you learn it to the left), 'right hand' (opposite of how you initially learn it), "backwards to the left" and "backwards right handed".
We talked about setting goals...if you set the goal of performing a form a day, in all four ways, you'll actually learn the forms very well. It's a good thing to work on and it's something that I'm thinking will be beneficial for me.

Another thing--since I'm sidelined again this month (grrr!!), I'm going to talk to the trainer my apartment complex offers "for free". I'm going to get with him on Tuesdays and Thursdays this month and see about getting beaten into shape that way. I need the exercise and working with a trainer will be a good way to get myself back on track. I'll make sure I tell the trainer that I'm a martial artist so that he can help me focus on things I need. Upper body strength, lower body strength, cardio, etc. I truly want to get into excellent shape. Tomorrow I'm going to start my weekend out by walking a 5k. I may take the entire family with me but if they're not interested in going with me, I'll go alone. I plan on doing this every weekend. I am also going to start walking at work again. That'll be a mile a day (the route I walk is 1.9 miles round trip.). It's just a short term goal to getting healthier and happier.

I plan to return to BTK. I will have to wait until it's feasible but I WILL be there. I told my friend yesterday that when I come back, I plan on being there with the attitude of "I can do it." I WILL do it. I'm going in with the plan of being there, learning and learning well.

Now I need to go get my notebook out and practice those Ho Sin Sul we worked on yesterday. I'm going to do them every day until I get them ingrained in my head. I may show them to my friend DB tomorrow, just to show him "this is what I can do."