Ik-Kyu Promotion

Wednesday night was my third brown-belt promotion and the last one before becoming a black-belt candidate. It’s been a long, hard haul but it’s also been some of the best two and a half years of my adult life. As is the norm during the award ceremony, I had to perform my kata (not mandatory, but it’s good to push myself to do it.) Of course given how much the school(Joslin’s East/West Karate is growing these days, it was a pretty packed house.

Kushanku kata is long and complicated. It’s also got a lot of stuff that doesn’t make sense unless you know what’s happening. The principle of the kata is “fighting in star light” so much of what’s done is feeling your way around in the dark and attempting to misdirect your opponents by either sound or showing them a deceptive look. Fortunately I didn’t mess things up too badly and did the kata without much of a hitch. However, when I was done I couldn’t remember doing certain sections of the kata. I would have been pretty pleased with myself as my mind freezes in situations like that. After sitting back down, I whispered to one of my instructors to make sure that I didn’t leave anything out and she reassured me that I didn’t. It’s somewhat nice to know what I know the kata well enough to do it without thinking about ti too much. After the ceremony many of the other students said it looked great and that everything was smooth. I wish I felt that way, but I was gratified to receive the compliments.


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