Last night was the black belt pretest. 35 people took the test. 35!!! and most of them were going to nidan or higher. One of the adult students is going for 4th degree. There are at least 6 or 7 adults testing for 3rd degree, a bunch of teens and a couple of adults going to 2nd degree, 4 youths going to 1st and only 1 adult going for 1st (G). I'm totally routing for G. she has an awesome attitude, (her daughter was also testing, but for teen Nidan). She was very nervous which is understandable. the pretest is a very nerve wracking experience. first of all, they make you line up facing a totally different direction than you usually face in class. That alone can throw a person off. Secondly, Kyoshi has 3 tables of judges watching from 3 different angles. He also has everyone line up and stand in ready stance in complete silence for about 10-15 minutes while he meets with all the judges in the office. Just to add to the tension. My theory is that they're all playing rock/paper/scissors and eating nachos back there and laughing. I stayed for some of the pretest. So glad it wasn't me out there.
Ok so I've just finished learning my 5th bo kata. Here's what I know.
Taiso Rensu uke
Shushi no kun
Taiso Rensu kogeki
Ten ryu no kun
Tokemeni no kun
so its time for nunchucks!! First kata is Nunchuck dai ich. lots of figure 8's. Lots of repetition. A couple weird one legged stances. I'm not sure about those. I have a hard enough time with all the crane stances in Chinto, but whatever, I'll do what I can. And then once I learn that, I can move on to kama. Yay!
So last week, we got a new bunch of blackbelts. The ceremony and show went well considering we only had half a gym. Apparently, the huge door that divides the gym was broken so they had to perform in one half. This caused a HUGE vein to bulge on Kyoshi's head for most of the day while setting up. But everything went well, M kicked ass on her demo! Congrats to all of them. AND all the black belts who graduated last time (me) got their Shodan certificates. There is a 6month probation period from when you actually get your black belt to when you become "official". Just to ensure that only the dedicated students get their certificates. We have had people get their black belts and then never show up again. Those people kind of get crossed off the list.
I went to a couple classes yesterday, lots of kata and bunkai and power kicks. Kyoshi taught. After that weapons. We reviewed and practiced some basics with the bo, "working the bo" etc. Its always helpful to work on those little things that make it look better and help it to make more sense. I hate it when I KNOW that I don't really know what I'm doing but I'm going thru the motions anyway. For me, its almost impossible to remember any kata unless I know what I'm doing and why. Some people seem to have no problem just going with the flow and looking ok. I feel like I look like I'm faking it and everyone knows it. Just one more bo kata and I can move on to nunchucks. YAY