I hated this week's training!
It was nothing to do with the intensity of the sessions. As mentioned last time, with several club members preparing to grade, training has been at a great pace as we seek to build fitness. With only 90 minutes in each session and Hugh wanting to cover all areas, we were working hard and I was very much drained by the end of both nights.
It was nothing to do with the skills we practised. There was a bit of everything, from pads to sparring to wrestling to kata. I mentioned before about discussing with Hugh how to improve my distance when sparring and, as luck would have it, we spent some time on this very skill. Hugh also spoke about closing distance with intent (placing an attack) rather than walking into things (which I usually do and want to fix).
It was nothing to do with the wrestling as Tuesday night saw some good exchanges, and a chance to face my fellow brown belt, John C. who has missed training over the past few months due to work commitments. I even managed to get him to tap out! Wednesday saw more wrestling and some useful tips from another fellow brown belt in Grant and one of the club instructors, John Marley.
It was nothing to do with the kata, something I enjoy and it saw further work on Hungetsu Den that we started last week. Tuesday saw us spend about 30 minutes on kata with Hugh fine tuning our movement, posture and positioning.
It was nothing to do with my previous injury. I did some wrestling, some sparring and the break fall kata and, as I write this a few days later, there are no ill effects. This definitely is a positive.
It was, however, everything to do with my own performance. For me, Shoto Budo is about the personal challenge of continuously developing and improving my skills. It is not a competition to be "the best" or "number one" but it is about being the very best I can be. To this end, both sessions were tremendously frustrating as I felt I was a step behind on everything we did.
My sparring still needs work on the distance and my kata felt scrappy whilst on the ground, normally a favourite practise, I was struggling to get good movement and position. Forgetting the sequence of the break fall kata at the end of Wednesday's practise just added to my generally downbeat mood after the session. I think my confidence levels took a knock as I felt frustrated at not being able to execute techniques as well as I would like or hope.
That is why I hated this week's training. However it's a new week and two fresh training sessions await. I am ready and looking forward to getting back on the mats and working to improve on last week.
Tune in next time to see if I succeed . . .
Scott has been training in Shoto Budo since 2007 and is a 1st Dan Black Belt. He is working towards his 2nd Dan grading.