Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Gene Villa Dojo

Wow. Sorry that I haven't updated for a long time. I was busy with school and then I started looking for a new dojo. I've been to Villa Sensei's dojo twice now. It made me miss my old dojo. I wanted more black belts and/or higher belts than me. However, Villa Sensei is very good because he tells us why we do the things we do in karate. He explains much more than Chinen Sensei. I hope that David will be there tomorrow because I would like to meet him in person. I'm excited for finally training in karate again. It showed that I haven't been training because I forgot what the moves after the three beginning sets in Seiunchin. So, a brown belt named Cory led me through part of the kata. I learned a new stance and much more details in Seiunchin. I learned how to do the part correctly that includes bensoku dachi. A black belt asked Villa Sensei what was the purpose for the real life application for bensoku dachi. He said it only for turning and foot work. I would write more; however, I have to go because I stayed to long at Andrey's house.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Chinen's dojo

I just read David’s most current posting that’s about my former dojo and teacher. It makes sense that a guy’s family was really concerned with him because my family was concerned with me too, especially my mom. She knew something was screwed up when my car broke down. I remember fiddling with my phone when I trying to call her or she was calling me. I think she was calling me because Captain David told to turn it off and hushed me. Because I was fiddling with my phone, I hushed him back on accident. That made him mad and told me to not to hush him. When my mom called me the first time, I told her that I couldn't talk because we were going into Sensei Mary's condo. When, I told her that and hung up, she got very upset and started crying because she didn't know where I was at. When I called her back, I had to stand outside of the condo on the landing, so I wouldn't disturb them. Then, my mom wanted me to go into the condo so she could get the address and pick me up. However, I didn't want to because I was afraid that I would get into trouble for disturbing them and bringing an active cell phone in the condo. Before my mom called me, my Sempai were keeping telling me that I needed to put my cell phone on silence, so it wouldn't go off the her condo when my mom called me. When I was talking to my mom, Sempai Amy came out and asked me what the matter was. I got really upset and had her talk to my mom on the phone. Then, Sempai Linda talked with her too and it ended up that Sempai Kurk gave me a ride home.

I've seen what Sensei Chinen did to the children too. One time, I remember to boys doing push-ups while kiaing for quite awhile when the adult class started. I think that they were going that because they didn't kiai when they were suppose to. I could tell that they were struggling with the push-ups. When ever they went down, they had to kai together. Then, when they were done they got into more trouble and had to do some more push-ups.

During Youth Gasshuku, I remember a boy crying for some reason. When Sensei saw that, he told him not to cry. That is so stereotypical for boys and men not to cry which is very old fashioned and out dated. Another time during Youth Gasshuku, I remember a boy's knuckles were really bandaged up. Sensei asked I think Sempai Scott if they were that banged up to have them bandaged up like that. I know that he had to have them less bandaged or not covered at all the following day.

I too believe that we should do something to prevent people from getting mistreated, hurt, and abused in that dojo. I just don’t know what to do about it. Obviously, Sensei Chinen and the Sempai are not getting any disciplinary action for what they are doing to the students. I know that Sensei is losing money and his good reputation, but that’s it. I don’t know what else that could be done make them realize that they cannot control every aspect of a person’s life and treat people like that.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006


I hate math. Why is it so hard???????? Calc. is the hardest class that I have taken so far in college and ARRRRg, it’s killing me. I mean it’s going to kill my GPA. I didn’t do well on my test today. I got most of the answers wrong. The first two I got right. I missed the second one because I looked at the wrong thing in my calculator. I think I got the third one right. The fourth one I got the tangent wrong because missed my x value. I missed the fifth and sixth ones completely because I didn’t understand them. I need to ask Kelly about the fifth one. The sixth one I understand now after looking at the key. I missed that one because I didn’t spend enough time on story problems. I’m so horrible at story problems because they always give me a hard time. I didn’t understand the bonus problem either.

The second part of the test is a take home. I guessed how many points he’s going to take off and if I get 100% on the second part, I’ll get around a 76%. That is horrible. I can’t afford a 76 because I got a 77% on my first test. Right now, I’m depressed because I don’t know how to get out of this one. I want to go to vet school and I really have to get good grades like all A’s. I can’t afford a C on my transcript. I could retake the class because I’ll get a higher grade on my transcript. However, my dad says that will show too.

I’m already spending lots of time as it is on calc. At least, three hours per day. I don’t know what I should do. I’ve been spending so much time on calc. that I haven’t spent that much time on chemistry. So far, chemistry is pretty easy because it’s a review for me. However, the things that we are learning now is new. So, I have to spend more time on it. So far chemistry is pretty easy because it’s a review for me. However, the things that we are learning now are new. So, I have to spend more time on it. Do I have enough time to spend on that because of calc? I don’t know. I barely have enough time looking for a new dojo and spend some time with my boyfriend. Before I met Andrey, I would do my chemistry when I got home from school and over the weekend. Now, it’s really I’m not home that much because I’ve been spending time with Andrey.

I didn’t spend time to study for my chemistry test. If I had more time, I know that I would have gone faster through it. I had a hard time remembering how to do some of the problems. I don’t know how I did my chemistry test today. Probably, I would have done better if I had time to study. Dr. Miller said that I probably did well when he skimmed over it.

Why can’t calc be as easy as chemistry? Dr. Miller said that chemistry is harder for some people than calc. It just takes me a long time to comprehend calc. I have to work with the solutions manual that shows how to do the problem step by step. I don’t think I could figure it out by myself like other people. I’ve been doing well on the homework and on the projects. I’m not doing very well with the tests. Gerrrr. I’m afraid that my chem. grade will go down because I’m spending so much time on calc.

Or is it that I’m not wisely managing my time? Am I spending too much time on with Andrey and the computer and not enough time on homework? Having a social life is good too because it releases stress. It’s so hard just to know how to balance my time. I think that I’ve been doing well with it. Probably, it could be improved even further though.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Aikido dojo

Hi. I'm sorry that I have wrote for while because I've been so busy. I went to the Aikido dojo last night with my boyfriend and it was very interesting. I liked it better than the Shotokan dojo. I think I like it better because it doesn't have any kata and it involves throwing and take downs. I don't mind kata; but, I know that I don't love it like some other people like Supergroup. When we worked on Bunkai Oyo during Gasshuku and worked on Sandan Gi in Chinen's dojo, I had more fun than doing kata by myself.

Bowmen Sensei was very nice. When I talked to him, he related Aikido to dancing. There were only four people in the regular class that consisted of three black belts and one white belt. The atmosphere was so much more relaxed than Chinen's dojo. When working with each other, they were laughing and smiling quite a few times. I think that Bowmen Sensei encourages creativity too. For example, white belt took down him with a Judo technique. Then, Sensei told him what he did wrong when he threw him and pulled a hamstring. He said that the white belt pulled Sensei on top of him instead of allowing Sensei to fall forward. Then, he told us the difference between Judo and Aikido. Aikido practitioners use their opponent’s center of balance and his motion against him instead of relying on muscle. That is so true when I did Judo in Chinen Sensie’s dojo. I really had to rely on strength when I did kakie with Sempai Art during Gasshuku because I physically had to lift him up and set him back on the ground without hurting him. Throughout the class, Sensei said not to use muscle. I can relate that to throwing disk because I couldn't use my muscle when throwing. I had to rely on my how fast I spun in my approach. My dad said that throwing disk is probably around 85 or 90 percent of speed and technique.

I'm going to go back to the dojo on Saturday to try it out. I just wish it was later because class starts at 7 A.M. That's really early for a Saturday morning because I usually like to do things on Friday night. However, that makes me arrive at the college and do my homework earlier. However, the other class time is on Monday night. Monday's are Family Home Evenings and I should go to them because it’s recommend by my church leaders. However, I don't go that much because of homework. I think I’ll feel a little bad going to the dojo instead of FHE. I heard that they sometimes have class on Fridays. I like the class size because it's really small. Therefore, I can get to know the people much faster than a big dojo. Plus, aikido would only cost me 25 dollars a month which is like nothing.

I just need to try out Gene Villa's dojo and see how I like it. I'm thinking about calling him today because I want to get back in a dojo. It's just so expensive. I know that they have many classes, but I don't know if I have that much time. However, I would love to go to a class more than twice a week. I would have to use some of my savings that I earned during the summer because the money that I earn cleaning my grandma's house won't cover all of it.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Japan Karate Association

I went to a dojo affiliated with the Japan Karate Association. It was very interesting. They were very nice and small. When I went there, there was only two black belts and Sensei Thomas. Supergroup, I finally saw your style. They worked mostly on kata. When I was watching, I saw there moves that I have seen or done in my style. They hardly kiaied though. It wasn't an EHHHH!!! It was more like eeeept. I heard them use osu. I haven't heard that before in real life, just on the internet. When they spar, they have no contact. That's a little sad because I like having contact. Of course, they didn't have any breathing like Goju-Ryu. When going through the kata, he counted in short high counts. He didn't go all the way through to 10. Have to go. Getting kicked out of the computer lab.

Monday, October 09, 2006


I talked to Sempai Jessica today. She said that I should call Sensei Chinen because I haven't been going to the karate class at SCC. She said that I should tell him that I'm alive. He doesn't know what's going on with me. AARrg. Now, I'm confused. By this statement, I think that Sensei is wondering and actually cares about me. If I do talk to him, I might change my mind about not going to the dojo. Oh, I don't know if I should talk to him and tell him what's going on or just leave it alone. I posted a letter on last night about quiting under the Teruo Chinen thread. Sensei still considers me as his student. I haven't personally told Sensei that I quit the dojo and going to find a new dojo. Maybe, he truly cares about me and my training. Maybe, this is one of his ways to get me back under control. I don't know. Oh, how I would love to get back training at the dojo, because of the people and training it's self. However, I don't want any more problems with the dojo. If only they didn't have those stupid rules.

I've been thinking. I wonder if I know more about Sensei than most of his students do. I've been talking to a former student of Chinen Sensei. He said that Sensei has lost his mind because what David and I have wrote about. He said that the things that were said on the thread was true about Chinen Sensei. He found out when the internet wasn't so easy to access. I just wonder why others in the dojo don't have the same problems that I do. Every one in the dojo seemed happy with the dojo when I went. Maybe, it's because I act differently and get different responces from my Sempai and Sensei. During Gasshuku, I met a black belt who was a Mormon and it seemed like that she didn't have any problems with the dojo. However, she's not a full time student of Chinen Sensei because she lives in the Tri-Cities.

I've been e-mailing dojos that I'm interested in and getting responses back. I would like to visit a one tonight and another toworrow. I have looked into Villa Sensei's dojo. I have to set up a private lesson with him first. Then, I'll try class two times. If I still want to do it, I'll be enrolled into a six-week trail program.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Picture of Me

Hi. This me breaking two boards. I'm going to fix it because it's sideways. However, I don't have time right now. Sempai Tony, the professional photographer, took this picture. My hair was all pretty because I had my hair trimmed.

Saturday, October 07, 2006


This is the best picture of Chinen Sensei had I have found on the internet. I bet Sempai Tony took this picture because he’s a professional photographer.

This is an awesome picture of Sempai Mark on top of Mount Spokane.

This picture was taken at the dojo. These are the implements that we work with sometimes. I’ve seen my Sempai work with them. However, I’ve only worked with the stone blocks in the front of the picture.

I love this picture of Sensei’s garden. When I was working there, the grass wasn’t green because it was dead and brown.

This picture was taken where we congregated at Sensei’s garden after training in Gasshuku. This is where we ate lunch after we worked in Sensei’s garden too.

This is a picture of Bonsho who’s Sensei’s chow. Whenever, we came to Sensei’s house after class, we waited on a side walk to wait until everyone was there. We usually waited for the men because they would close the dojo and then, buy cold beer. Then, Sempai Scott would start leading us down the ally way to the back of Sensei’s house where Sensei Chinen and Sensei Mary had their cars parked. Then, Sempai Scott would bang a gong letting Sensei or somebody else know that we were there. A few times, someone would unlock the gate and let us in. Usually, Sempai Brooke would open the iron door with a key. Sensei always had the gates locked because of the bad neighborhood. Then as we came in, Bonsho would always be there greet us. We always had to keep the doors/gates closed in Sensei’s garden because Bonsho would get out and run away. Sempai Derrick told me that chows weren’t that affectionate. However, Sensei really loves Bonsho. He says that Bonsho can do the dishes and other household chores. Sensei also said that he can to kata. In addition, Sensei likes to feed Bonsho people food. Once, he fed him an entire hamburger from a bowl.

Sempai Mark is training on a makiwara.

Sempai David who moved to Seattle is training on the makiwara. Sensei had makiwara scattered along the paths in his garden. I never had the opportunity to train on them in his garden. One can see the water lilies that Sensei likes to grow which are below and beyond Sempai David. Just beyond the water lilies, is Sensei’s front entrance to his garden.

This is a sign for All Northwest Conference in 2000. I’ve only watched in once and it was very interesting because I saw my Sempai work with all kinds of training implements. One can see the side of Sensei’s house in the background. See the tools? Sensei is always working in his garden. He spends two or more house working on it. I’m very impressed with it because he built the garden all by himself and it’s very beautiful. He actually has a pond too; however, I never seen it filled with water.

This was taken inside of Sensei’s garden dojo. I’ve never been in there before. However, I’ve looked inside and it has really nice hard wood floors.

This picture was taken at the front entrance of the garden.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


Going back to train at the dojo has crossed my mind. However, I know that I’m never going there again. I know that I miss the people and the training. However, I don’t want to go back because of Sensei Chinen. My relationship with him and my Sempai won’t be the same again. I’ve been still posting about my old dojo because that’s the only karate related thing to post about. I did once idolize Sensei Chinen because he was my Sensei. I also once idolized my Sempai when I started. Now, I don’t anymore because of what happened.

I have been thinking about why I train. I went to a dance class last night at my church last night. It wasn’t very disciplined and I was getting lost because the teacher didn’t take it step by step. The music wasn’t very fun to dance too because I don’t like popular music. I wasn’t having fun because I was bored and somewhat lost. In my mind, I wanted a Sempai to help me along. After class, I became depressed because I miss training so much. I realized that I train because it’s so much fun and it’s very interesting. I when I first started going to the dojo, I got a natural high afterwards because of the exercising and learning. Right now, I’m going nuts and becoming depressed because I’m not training.

I don’t care if it’s solitary. Actually, I’ve been a solitary person for a long time because I like to do things my way. However, I love structure, which is a must in karate. I don’t care if it’s going to be rough and rocky. That’s life. I’m used to it because of my autism and ADD. My childhood was hard because many kids teased and bullied me. Plus, my mom is Bipolar. My family has been homeless three times when I was a child. My mom and dad had jobs, but we didn’t have a home; instead, we lived in tents or a camping trailer. When I was growing up, my dad didn’t have a steady income because he’s in construction. In addition, my brother was run over by a truck when he was four years old and has had eight surgeries so far to correct his leg.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Boxing and skipping class

I wrote this in my journal on Friday, February 24, 2006.

Last Friday, I went to Cory Kerrs house to hang out with my friends. First, we played a game called Murder in the Dark. When done playing, we all went to the living room and watched two people box, mainly guys. The fights were quick and intense. Cory video taped the matches and then we would watch them again on tape.

I actually boxed and it was fun!!! I boxed a smaller girl named Becca. We boxed for a few min. She hit me three times in the face and it didn’t hurt all. Cory didn’t even get the first half of my fight. Afterwards, I noticed that people were rooting for Becca because they were telling her repeatedly of take headshots. I wanted to fight Amanda, but she didn’t want to. In addition, Cory didn’t want me to box anyone for some reason. I personally thought I was the worst fighter. However on, Wado said that I had the best fight.

Karate class was good on Wednesday. Ryan was practicing as usual in the foyer when I arrived. When Sensei arrived and sat down looking at a newspaper, he asked Emily, Ryan, and I what our horoscopes were. We all had five stars except him. We had class in the gym as usual. However, we had the smallest class ever! There were only five people, including me. Ryan, Emily, John, Tiffany, and I were there. I can’t see how others could skip class. Naomi told me today that she skips out of laziness. I would never skip Karate because it’s too much fun and Sensei doesn’t like it. In addition, my grade is based on my attendance.

We started class running saying Dojo Kun and he picked me to say it. It was much easier than last time because I just started running. I think he picks me because I know it. When I was done leading, he made us stop and change direction. He had done this throughout the quarter. It’s weird to me because I have never had a coach or a PE teacher do this. We always would run one way. Then, we practiced Moving Attack and perform Fukukata Dai Ichi really fast. I was bad at it because I haven’t practiced going fast with it. Once, I messed up in the beginning and it was hard to get into sequence again. Then, we practiced cat stance. He had us to be in that position while we counted. Oh, that burned and he knew it too. I would have never pushed myself that hard if I was alone.

Then, he had Emily do Saifa and Gekisai Dai Ni. He had Captain David do another kata which I have never seen before. It was really cool because his gi was swishing and snapping as he moved. Then, we almost learned Gekisai Dai Ni from beginning to end. It has a lot more breathing than the other katas that I’ve learned. I’m definitely doing to take Karate next quarter.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

All Northwest Profiles of Teruo Chinen

I can't believe that I found this on the internet. I would put it on my blog but, it's not working. What does everyone think of the video?

This was filmed 20 years ago. Oh, he seemed much kinder in the video because it said that he was humble and gentle. He seems much more alert and happier. I’m telling myself wow when I watch the kata at the end of the video. I think that's the best I ever seen in my life. I couldn't believe how fast Sensei was going with Sensei Mary. I have seen my Sempai do the exercise before and they did it much slower. I can tell that Sensei has aged a lot. I know that Sensei Mary doesn't move that fast either. I've never seen Sensei spar or sweat before. I've only seen him perform parts of kata and work with the makiwara.

From this video, I wanted to go back to dojo and train because he was a second ranking master in Gojo-Ryu and has so many years of experience. However, I had to remind myself how I was treated by Sensei and by some of my Sempai. Probably, he was kind and humble 20 years ago; however, he slowly changed and became the person he is today. Maybe, he just became jaded in his old age. I know that if I go back, I’ll have more problems with Sensei and my Sempai. I know that it’s not even worth it because I’ll be mistreated. I became so lost and no one was there to help except the people from the internet. It’s just too bad that he’s like that now. I wish that he could have been nicer and gentler with me. I wish that he didn’t have many of those stupid rules and he wasn’t that strict and controlling.

Friday, September 29, 2006

A Picture of Mark and my former Sensei

I aquired this from the Jundokan International website of Chicago. This picture is of three Sensei. Chinen Sensei on the left, Sensei Mary in the middle, and Sensei Mark on the right. Chinen Sensei doesn't look very well in this picture for some reason.

Sensei Mary is a very good Sensei. I loved when she taught us. I had so much fun.

Sensei or Sempai Mark is the person who I worked with on Bunkai Oyo in Gasshuku. In addition, he was the director of Gassuhuku. I liked working with him because I had a lot of fun and he allowed me to be myself.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

I Quit!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Stupid dojo and Sensei. I quit the dojo because what happened to Sempai David. For his reason why that he's quitting, look at his blog.

I'm going to find another dojo where the Sensei is respectful, kind, and helpful to other people, especially his/her students. I would love to message board about him telling people to avoid his dojo because I don’t want others to be brainwashed, manipulated, and abused. However, that would make my Sempai and Sensei angrier. I'm going to find another dojo that will fit my needs better. My Sempai and Sensei are so brainwashed that they don't know what’s the difference between right and wrong. My Sensei is so concerned about his reputation that it's he's willing to kick people out of the dojo. My Sensei and Sempai are far from the path of karate. For example, Sensei said that HE’S the ONLY one that can teach karate in the community colleges and in Spokane in general. I don’t want a Sensei that is that prideful and puffed up.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Sports v.s. Karate

I’ve been thinking about karate compared to sports. I’ve been in sports since when I was a kid. The first sport that I did was basketball when I was in elementary school. When I was in fifth grade or sixth grade (I can’t remember), I learned how to ski. I went skiing on every Friday for a half day because I was in Special Education classes. I’m thankful that I was able to do that because I had special equipment to help me learn. When I first started, I had a harness connected with straps that a person would hold behind me. One time, I remember I had straps connected to my skies too. I only used those a few times because I mostly used a bungi cord that connected the tips of my skis so I could automatically slow down by putting my skis in a pizza shape. Also, it prevented my skiing going to wide or crossing. In addition, I learned how to ski without poles. Whenever I skied, I had to put a red handicap sign on my torso. When I went up the hill for the first time, I didn’t have to ski on the bunny hill that had a rope tow instead of a chairlift because of the equipment. Eventually, I grew out of the bungi cord and started using poles. However, it took a long time to get comfortable of skiing off the chair lift.

On our field trip at Silver Mountain during Gasshuku, we had to take chair lifts to the top of the mountain. I couldn’t believe how uncomfortable my Sempai were with them. One of them even asked if they had seat belts. Another Sempai said that he was afraid of his life when he first got on. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. When I was riding with Sempai Brooke and Sempai Linda, I tried to lift the bar in front of us so we could get off. With this ski resort, they didn’t have signs telling the guests to lift the bar. I forgot to ask that I could lift it when guests normally lift them. Therefore, they freaked out and didn’t let me lift it. They only lifted it when the person on the top told them to do so. When I rode with them the second time on the chair lift, they joked with me saying that they were going to push me off the ski lift. I know that I failed to take in account that this was their first time on a ski lift. Probably, many would have acted the same way because the lifts can be thirty feet or higher in the air and all that prevents from someone falling of is the bar in front of them.

When I was in junior high school, I did basketball, softball, volleyball, and track. I quit softball because I didn’t like it. I quit basketball because I wasn’t very good at it. The only thing I was good at was preventing my opponent from getting the ball. It didn’t help me that I was afraid of the ball. When someone passed me the ball, I would take a few steps, stop, and pass the ball back. I couldn’t shoot at all. I wanted to continue with volleyball when I was a Freshman in high school, however; my grades were low and I wanted to work on them before I participated in a sport.

The only sport that I did throughout high school was track. When I was a Freshman I threw disk, shot put, and the javelin. I quit throwing the javelin at the end of my freshman year because it took too much time from disk and shot. During my sophomore year, I would practice shot and disk evenly. I threw my best for shot that was 25 feet when I was a sophomore. During my junior year, I practiced the disk more because I liked and was better at it. During my senior year, I didn’t practice shot at all because it took too much time from disk. I ended up throwing a little above ninety feet at divisionals. I had the potential of throwing 120 feet because I’m tall and muscular. However, my balance, speed, coordination, and mind prevented me from attaining that goal.

Whenever I stepped into the ring, I would tense and freak out. I think that I would unconsciously get nervous because people were watching me. When throwing disk, one cannot be tense and think too much. One has to be calm, collected, and in control. So, I wouldn’t throw a far at track meets when I threw at practice. Many times, I would get so frustrated with myself because my coach said that I practiced much harder than anyone else. Many times, he told me too stop throwing during practice because I would throw too much and he didn’t want me to throw my arm out. In addition, he always told me that I threw like at state champion when I was out in the field throwing. I would practice out in the field more than in the ring because the ring was always being used and because I would get in a lot more throws. Therefore, I became much more comfortable in the field instead of the ring. I don’t think that my coach adequately mentally trained me for throwing in the ring. However, I know that he did the best he could to help me. Now, I don’t throw anymore because it takes too much time from school. In addition, I don’t love it as much as karate.

Now, I’m in a Goju-Ryu dojo. At first, I thought it would be like any other sport; however, I was wrong. Compared to the many sports that I’ve been in, karate is so much harder because it’s nature. Just recently, I learned that it’s not even a sport. Now going through this situation and talking with Sempai David, I can attest to that. Many athletes go by seasons instead of training all year long. Teams are not like families because they don’t have Sempai/kohai relationships. Athletes do not learn about history or tradition. They do not live by a set of principles called the Dojo Kun. They don’t have someone always pushing you to train harder and faster. Coaches do not tear their athletes down and build them back up again. Athletes do not have to abide certain rules or always obey their coach that relates to their sport.

My sister thinks that her sport is harder than karate because she’s in high school varsity volleyball. It may be a little more physically demanding because she practices every day. However, that’s for a season. However, I personally think that training is harder because we train to be fighters. We do not train to have fun and play games. However, I personally have fun because I get to train myself mentally and physically. We train to become better people. We have to condition our minds to think in a certain way when training at the dojo. I have noticed that I can push myself physically harder because of the mental training at the dojo.

Naturally, my family doesn’t understand the dojo and what we do. Even some other martial artists don’t understand either. Many people are telling me to quit the dojo because of many reasons. I do thank people have helped me through this and their opinions. However, I’m thankful that this situation occurred because I have learned so much about the essence of karate and the relationship that’s between my Sempai, my Sensei, and me. If I didn’t experience this, I wouldn’t have grown and still be a white belt at heart. In addition, I wouldn’t have had Sempai David written so much to help me understand what was going on in the dojo. Sempai David said that my Sempai are very strict and hard on me because they see my potential. I also think it’s because they want to train me mentally. In a sport or in any other dojo, I wouldn’t have learned these lessons. Therefore, I want to stay with this dojo and continue with my training. If I go to another dojo, I’ll rob myself important lessons that will make me grow as a person.

Being in shape

Before and after Gasshuku, my family thought that I was out of shape and I believed them. Therefore, I went to looking for advice; however, they didn’t say much. This is what I said on

“How do I know that I'm in shape or not?

A few weeks ago, my family and I went on a moderately difficult 9 mile day hike. I thought I was going to do well with the hike because I've been doing karate for 6 months. I found out that I had a horrible time hiking up the mountain. At that time, my family and I thought I was the worst shape out of my family. I was the one in the rear instead of in front. Last year, I know I was in better shape for hiking. I walked a lot last year because I didn't have a car. Now, I hardly walk; but, I have taken up karate. Now, my family wants me to start running on a treadmill for 20 min. I'm a horrible runner because I'm so uncoordinated. I even have a weird walk because I bounce up and down. I don't know how to walk normal. In addition, for as long as I can remember, I've ran slower than other people. However, I've been able to keep up at the dojo most of the time.

Then a week later, I went to Gasshuku. It's a very intense karate camp which lasted all 6 days that started to 8:30AM to 9:00PM. It was the hardest physically thing I have done in my entire life. However, I knew that I was in shape because I kept up with the rest. There were some things that were easy to me and some Sempai thought they were hard. So, I found out that I had to push myself harder to get more of a work out. However, I noticed at the end of the day, I wasn't exhausted like a day of hiking or skiing.

I talked to my Sempai about it and they said I'm not conditioned to hike up a hill. I'm conditioned to do karate. So is this true? Am I in shape for karate instead of hiking up a hill? My sister says I’m in a different kind of shape. I think she’s saying that I’m not in shape cardio wise, enough for me to lose pounds. I don’t know if I want to lose weight because I don’t know if it’s muscle instead of fat.

How do I know that I gained more muscle instead of fat? After Gasshuku, I have noticed that I gained 5 to 10 pounds. Last year, I was wandering around 175 to 180. I have been I'm wandering around 185 to 190. Since Gasshuku, I went up to 190. This is the heaviest I've ever been in my entire life. I'm thinking its muscle instead of fat because my clothes still fit me. Actually, I’ve noticed that a pair of pants doesn’t fit anymore because it became too big for me after Gasshuku. I don’t know if 190 is too heavy for a person that’s who’s almost 6 feet tall. However, I do know that I weigh heavier than most people my height because of my body structure.

My stomach is the only area on my body where it's flabby. I have noticed that it's been getting flabbier over the years. I think my abs are flabby because weak. How can I strengthen them? I know that they are the downfall of my body. Sensei has told that I’m strong many times now. Then, how come I struggle with push-ups and jackknife sit-ups? I can’t even do an exercise called the peacock. Is it because of my abs?”

So, what does everyone think? I think that my family doesn’t know what they are talking about because they haven’t seen what we do in the dojo. Probably, they still think that I’m out of shape because I have a little gut on my stomach and because of that hike. I still don’t really know if I’m in that great of shape. However, I know that I’m getting into better shape slowly because of karate. For example, I’m better at doing push-ups and running.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Captain David and the apology

Hi. I had lots of fun in karate class today. Sensei wasn’t there because he went to South Africa. As we were waiting near the gym, I saw Sempai Eric. I couldn’t believe it and became really happy because he’s so nice to me. He told me where Sensei went and I told him what happened and why I that I haven’t been in the dojo. When Sempai Derrick walked in, we had to stop talking because we had to warm up. After class, I stayed behind to ask Sempai Derrick a question. Before I could, he started talking about Captain David. When Sempai Derrick left, Sempai Eric said that Captain David got into a horrible motorcycle accident a week ago on Saturday. He said that Captain David almost lost his life and will be in the hospital for two months. Captain David went around a corner too fast and fell off his bike. He went head first into a rock that went through his visor and into his skull. Plus, the impact broke his back. He had to have four hours of brain surgery. Then, Sempai Eric told me to come back and say that I would like to make amends to whoever I have to. He said that I should keep my apology short and simple. “I would like to make amends. I’m sorry for what I did and it will not ever happen again. I’m sorry for my ignorance because I didn’t know any better. I’m was curious and I'm learning. May I come back and continue my training?” He said that they will say yes. He said when people get disciplined like that; Sensei has them to think it over. Sempai Eric said that he as seen some very good practitioners get scolded and never come back. Sempai Eric said that it weeds out the unserious ones.

Sempai/kohai relationship

I’ve been thinking about the relationship that I have between my Sempai and me. My Sempai compared it to an older brother/sister relationship and that my Sempai are not my friends. At first, I thought that not being friends meant that they were going to my enemies. After asking one of my Sempai, I realized that our relationship is so much closer than just being friends.

I’m the oldest out of my brother and sister. We’re friends but we are so much more than that because we’re siblings. I wouldn’t tell a friend that I would tell my brother and sister. For example, I wouldn’t tell my friend my deepest innermost feelings. Actually, it depends on how close my friend is to me. When I lived in Anaconda, I would go to Sabine, who worked in the computer lab, if I had any problems. She could have been my Sempai because she would listen, council, and comfort me.

I can tell my brother and sister anything because they understand me. In many ways, my sister is the oldest because of her personality. She’s high-strung, a born leader, and sometimes stubborn. She tells me what to do all the time and so does my brother. I tell them what to do too, however, it not as much as they tell me what to do. I don’t mind following my sister because I’m so laid back. I just go with the flow with things.

In looking at other relationships between brothers and sisters, some are not friends. They can fight and hate each other. I used to argue with my brother constantly too. However, it has gotten better over time. I never fight with my sister because I’m closer to her than my brother. Anyways, one has to love their siblings even if they don’t like them. You always end a friendship with someone if it goes sour.

I take comfort that my relationship between my Sempai and me is so much closer than being a friend. Even if they don’t like me, they need to look out, care, protect, and mentor me. Even if I don’t like what they tell me to do that’s karate related, I still have to obey them. I just hope that none will abuse their authority over me because that’s irresponsible.

One thing that is different from a sibling relationship is them disciplining me when I do something wrong. I read on the internet that it frees up the responsibility of Sensei when they discipline for Sensei. I don’t get to discipline my brother and sister because that’s my parent’s job. So in that context, they are sort of my parents too because they discipline me and I have to obey them. In the Bible, it says to honor thy father and mother. That means that I have to obey them because they know so much more than I do. They will not lead me astray on some forgotten and lonely path. This means that I have to trust all of my Sempai.


I wrote this in my journal on Thursday, February 16, 2006.

I’m sad. I won’t have karate this Monday because of a holiday. Therefore, I have to wait a week. However, I can practice kata. I don’t know whether I want to replace the dojo experience that I had on Tuesday, with a normal class on Monday, if I had the chance. I think that I would pick the dojo because it was a thing that I never had experienced before. However, if I would pick Monday, I would not have to wait week. (Try waiting for a month or longer to go to the dojo to train. Ugg. I want to go back to the dojo very badly because I miss it. I hope that I have to wait a week and a half until I start training there again. I know I have to be patient because it says in the Dojo Kun to continue my training with patience but it’s hard. However, it has let me think about my training)

Karate class wasn’t as hard as some previous classes. I arrived there a half an hour early. In the Sports Complex, a foyer leads to the main gym and to the rest of the complex. That’s where Ryan was there practicing. Soon after, Emily, Naomi, and Sensei arrived. Sensei asked us how we liked the dojo and I said it was different. Then, we started talking about Montana. Sensei has been to Helena many times because he had a friend who had a dojo there. (I heard at Gasshuku that the Helena dojo had many people. I think that they said it’s not there anymore because the instructor moved away.)

Yesterday, everyone gathered in the foyer and then went to the old gym. We usually gather in the hall outside the old gym because we have to wait until a kickboxing class is over. Then, we went inside and I did a kata one or two times. Then, Sensei wanted us to go back to the foyer to have our class. He called it the little dojo. I don’t know why he decided to go back to the foyer. Maybe it’s because it has mirrors on one wall.

Then, we practiced Gekisai Dai Ichi for most of the time. First, we worked on the horizontal karate chop (knife hand strike). Then, we went through the kata. A few times, he stopped us to have us practice by ourselves. However, Chris was learning the kata and working with Captain David. Then, we sat down and watched Naomi and Emily perform Gekisai Dai Ni. It’s very similar to Gekisai Dai Ichi. Therefore, Sensei taught us the new block that we do at the end of the kata. Then, he had us to practice by ourselves. While practicing, Sensei came up behind me and touched my back. He scared me and patted me on my shoulder. He had to show me the new block twice because I forgot how to do it.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Boxing movie

Here is a boxing video that my friends put together.
I have no clue to put this movie on my blog. I'm the girl in the blue shirt.

This was when I first started in karate back in February. I noticed that we were aiming for the head, not for the body. In addition, we were throwing wild punches left and right. That doesn't take any skill what so ever. None of us had any training in boxing or in any martial art. In addition, the living room was way too cramped to fight in. We didn't have room to attack and escape. Most of the fights ended up against the wall.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


I found out that my dojo really did kick me out when I talked with Sensei today.

Why are they so mad at me? I didn’t mean to offend and harm anyone. Don’t they realize that? It seems like I’ve been a problem child in the dojo. I’m keeping getting into trouble. It seems like it one thing to the next. It seems like they don’t understand me or I understand them.

I started one thread when I haven’t even trained for a month and wasn’t even part of the dojo. I started the other when I was just starting to look in the dojo and been training for three months. How was I supposed to know that I couldn’t ask about him? I couldn’t have. I felt bad about that thread and deleted it. Isn’t that enough?

When I was having problems with the dojo, I would write it in my blog. I didn’t know what to do about all of these problems. The reason why I didn’t come up and ask my Sempai or Sensei is because I’m intimated by them. It feels like it’s “Do what you are told and don’t ask any questions.” When I say what I think about something or feeling I get into trouble. That is why I asked people on the internet because I felt that they were more approachable than my Sempai.

My Sempai say that they aren’t supposed to be my friends. How can I trust a person if he or she isn’t my friend? We should be friends to everyone inside and outside the dojo. My Sempai has said that the dojo is like a family and that my Sempai is like older siblings. In a family, older siblings are supposed to be friends with their younger siblings. They are not supposed to discipline them because that’s the parent’s job. If a sibling criticizes, puts them down, or belittles them, the parents will discipline him or her. Wouldn’t apologizing to Sensei be enough because he’s the parent and the one who runs the dojo?

If my Sempai are my brothers and sisters, wouldn’t we be equal to each other? Of course, they have been in karate a lot longer than me; however, we should be still equals. From what I’m seeing is that we are not equals in the dojo. For example, my Sempai can speak any time at Sensei’s house and I can’t.

In addition, parents are supposed to be friends with their children. However when they mess up, they need to discipline and love them at the same time. This is what President Faust said on the website.

“One of the most difficult parental challenges is to appropriately discipline children. Child rearing is so individualistic. Every child is different and unique. What works with one may not work with another. I do not know who is wise enough to say what discipline is too harsh or what is too lenient except the parents of the children themselves, who love them most. It is a matter of prayerful discernment for the parents. Certainly the overarching and undergirding principle is that the discipline of children must be motivated more by love than by punishment. Brigham Young (1801–77) counseled, “If you are ever called upon to chasten a person, never chasten beyond the balm you have within you to bind up.”

Discipline with severity, discipline with cruelty, inevitably leads not to correction, but rather to resentment and bitterness. It cures nothing. It only aggravates the problem. It is self-defeating.

Teach your children to love you rather than to fear you.”

I’m getting the vibe that Sensei wants us to fear him. I even heard from other Sempai that Sensei would hit people with a stick if they made a mistake. My Sempai has said that they are just to tear the lower students down, what’s the point in that? Wouldn’t it be easier to keep on building students up and up? When they break a rule, a parent can tear them down by disciplining them and then build them up again with love, not fear.

This is what Layne E. and Jana Squires Flake said the website,

“In order for any organization to run effectively, it must establish a set of bylaws. A family also needs bylaws to prescribe boundaries for behavior. If parents do not have a specific, deliberate plan for discipline, they are likely to rely simply on instinct and react emotionally to each situation.

At our weekly family council, we mutually agree upon rules which all must abide by. We also establish consequences for disobedience. In this way, everyone is aware of the rules and the consequences; there are no surprises. And the consequences are predictable and consistent.

An orderly home depends upon well-defined and well-understood rules.”

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Revamped my blog

I majorly revamped my blog. It always seems like I'm always editing it. I deleted posts that were negative about my Sempai and Sensei. This was my own decision because I didn't want anyone else to read those things. It took more than four hours to go through my whole blog. I had to print the posts and comments that I wanted to change in my blog. I know printed more than 50 pages. I didn't realize that my blog was that big.

I accept full responsibly for my words on my blog if my Sempai has read them. I realized that I wrote my blog expecting that my Sensei and Sempai wouldn't read it. I treated my blog as a journal. In a journal, I can write anything that I want in it because no one will read it or care. It’s a thing that I can express my thoughts and feelings without repercussion. However, that's not the case with a blog. I said some things that I wouldn't say to my Sempai in person. I couldn't believe how much I had to delete.

I feel better now, because I fixed one of the problems. Now if one of my Sempai reads this blog, I wouldn't care because it doesn't have any thing that would get me into trouble. (I think.) Now, I really need to work on school work. I should have been working on that than revamping my blog. However, I knew this needed to get done.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Sensei found out

Sensei found out about the thread. My Sempai told and printed it off for him so he can read it. Then, he said that that's all lies and I shouldn't have done that. He said that I'm kicked out of the dojo. I said that I'm really sorry so, he has forgiven me. Now, I have to talk to my Sempai and tell them that I'm sorry. I think I can go back to the dojo when I talk to my Sempai.

I’m wondering why all of a sudden my Sempai got excited enough to tell Sensei. What did they find to make them angrier? The only thing that I can think of is, but I deleted that. However, the act just asking about Sensei behind his back is bad enough. I wonder if they found my blog yet, but I didn’t lie about Sensei. However, I did talk about my Sempai and told everything what they have said to me on my blog. Plus, some people hasn't agreed with what's going on in the dojo. I think that would get some really mad and excited. I think that’s it because some just knew about the threads and they weren’t all that excited before Sempai Linda talked to me and Sensei left to go somewhere. I just don’t know when he left. Now, every black belt knows what I did. Do I need to change the names on my blog and delete some posts which I talked about on my blog so I can cover my tracks and won't get into so much trouble?

School starts tomorrow

School starts tomorrow and I have mixed feelings about it. I love learning and going to school. However, I don’t like the endless workload. I get so tired of it that I don’t care about school anymore. I work so hard that I burn out each spring. I was feeling a little burnt out of the beginning of spring quarter and at the end of it, I really had to push myself to do my homework because I was so burnt out. At that time, I didn’t know it because I still wanted to do summer school. However, my dad said not to because I needed a break and therefore, I didn’t go.

When I was a senior in high school, my annual burn out wasn’t that bad. It was my only quarter and semester in my high school career that I had straight A’s. The only time I acquired straight A’s before high school was in the eighth grade on the last quarter too. I hope that this years burn out will be like when I was a senor in high school and not like last spring. It was terrible.

I’m going to take Calculus, Advanced Chemistry, Aquatic Fitness, and Karate. I’m not excited for Calculus because I know it’s going to be very hard and time consuming. Luckily, I’m going to have the same instructor that I had for Intermediate Algebra (Math 99) last fall. I just hope I don’t have to work with the disabilities office when I take tests because they only let me take them for a time and a half. That’s barely enough time when I was in math 99. When I was in pre-calc II last spring, it took me twice the time or even a little longer to take a test. At least I don’t have to take it for all three quarters. I’m only going to take it for one quarter and then, I’m done with math at SCC.

I was nervous about Advanced Chemistry because I thought I was going to the next step from high school chemistry. I have forgotten a lot of it because it took it over a year ago. Luckily, my teacher suggested that I should keep all of my papers because I’ll need it for college. Once I bought the book, I realized that I’m going to relearn everything that I learned in high school. I’m going to take three quarters of chemistry and that equals two years in high school. I only took it my senior year in high school. Probably, this quarter is going to be a giant review to me, except for the labs. In high school, we only did a lab per chapter not twice per week. That’s what happened in Biology 101. I learned the same things that I learned in Advanced Biology in high school. The labs and some chapters at the end of the quarter were completely different though. I hope that Chemistry won’t be hard and as time consuming as Calculus.

I’m taking Aquatic Fitness because I want to be in better shape. Karate isn’t enough. I don’t know what to expect in that class. I know that I won’t go swimming though. I just hope it won’t be filled with old people.

I’m excited for karate because I’m going to get more one on one with Sensei. In the dojo, he teaches everyone and hardly teaches at an individual basis. My Sempai usually teaches the younger students one on one. I know that I won’t learn that much in class. However, it will be good to work on the basics because everything evolves from them. I just wonder if anyone from the dojo will be there. I’ll know by tomorrow. I just hope that the class won’t be so small like last spring because the school threatened to cancel it.

First time at the dojo

I wrote this in my journal on Wednesday, February 15, 2006.

I arrived at the dojo for the first time at eight p.m. If someone would walk by the building, one wouldn’t know it’s a dojo because the plain and white building has a little sign reading Jundokan. When I walked in a little hall that led to the dojo floor, I saw Sensei. I think Sensei forgot I was going to be late. I took off my flip-flops and followed him to the dojo floor. Then, I put my keys and water on an orange chair and my flip-flops on the hard wooden floor.

Then, I joined a group who were taught by Sempai Jessica who’s a green belt. At first, I had no idea what kata we were doing. In addition, I was stuck in a corner and couldn’t do the kata properly. Therefore, I was doing poorly. Then, Sensei had Ryan, John, and some others learn Gekisai Dai Ichi. I was stuck dong Fukukata Dai San with a beginner who didn’t even have a gi yet! At first, I didn’t respect the green belt. Therefore, I went ahead when they were being too slow. Therefore, she told me to stay with them. I didn’t want to do Fukukata Dai San very slowly. I wanted to learn Gekisai Dai Ichi. Then, Sensei noticed that I didn’t stick my heel all the way when transferring to kokutsu dachi. After that, the kata wasn’t so bad because I had to work on it.

While I was training, there were three other groups in the dojo. A group was performing Gekisai Dai Ichi who was being taught by Sempai Brooke, a brown belt. Another group that had Emily in it was performing Saifa on the stage. The biggest group had brown and black belts who were doing kumite. Sensei was just wandering around the groups helping correct.

While we were training, Sensei stopped all of us three times. The first time, he mainly was talking to the sparring group. They were blocking wrong and he showed them how to do it right. When he stopped us the second time, he had Ryan and John perform Gekisai Dai Ichi in front of the class. When he stopped us the third time, he made everyone run saying the Dojo Kun. He picked me to lead it while running! I think he picked me because I wasn’t saying it. I am so winded that it’s hard to say; therefore, I about die when I lead it. After running, we practiced punching and saw three girls including Emily do Saifa. Then, he picked my group do our kata. Sempai Jessica went very quickly when he had her go first. Then, I went next. He told the class I was from SCC and that I haven’t missed a class.

When I started, I forgot to yoi. When I did yoi, I closed my eyes and Sensei told me not to. When I was performing the kata fast, my balance got the best of me twice and I messed up. Of course, Sensei didn’t know that I messed up because of my balance. When I’m tired, my balance is worse than normal. I was proud of myself for doing that because I wasn’t nervous at all. There were around 40 to 50 people in there. (Major exaggeration, there were at the most 24 people.) Then, Sensei had the beginner perform the kata. He constantly helped the beginner because he was forgetting to switch to kokutsu dachi all the time. When helping him, he spoke Japanese a few times. Then, we did some weird closing ceremonies. We have to bow to each other and to Sensei when sitting.

When class was done, I went to get a drink of water from my water bottle. However, Captain David stopped me before I could drink and told me not to. I felt like a fool because I was the only person who had things on the dojo floor. Then, I had to wait until it was my turn to bow towards the Shomen wall when we left the dojo floor.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Naming Stances

I wrote this in my journal on Monday, February 13, 2006.

I’m supposed to study for a psychology test but I want to get this out of my system. Karate was really fun today. I loved it.

Like always, we started with the Dojo Kun. Then, we went Moving Attack three times. As we were going through the exercise, Sensei asked us what the names of the long and short stances were. I was the only one who answered. The short stance is sanchin dachi and the long stance is z something (zenkutsu dachi). (At that time, I didn’t know how to pronounce it let alone spell it.) Sensei was so impressed that he made everyone clap both times that I answered.

It’s funny that I even remembered those names. Saturday night, I was looking through and there was a thread on stances. They were using the real names for the stances. I figured out which stance went to which name by searching in the Google search engine under images so I can see what each stance looked like. Later, Sensei us what was the name of the short stance. Again, I was the only one who answered. Then, Sensei said that I had a good memory.

After going through Moving Attack with Sensei, he had us go through it by ourselves. He didn’t help us and we couldn’t look at our neighbor for help. When we finished, Sensei said that I took first place in a tournament. They clapped for me and I had a huge smile on my face. I took first place because I practice at home. Then, we practiced Fukukata Dai San two times. On the second time, we had to start over because I messed up. Sensei and Captain David makes us start over when somebody messes up sometimes.

Then, Sensei had Emily demonstrate Gekisai Dai Ichi. After that, he had Emily and Chris go to another part of the gym to practice Saifa. Captain David led us through Gekisai Dai Ichi around five times. Like always, Sensei came over to help teach and correct. Then, Captain David made us practice the kata all by ourselves. Therefore, I didn’t know where to go or what to do in some parts. Captain David helped me one third of the time. Ryan had as much trouble as me. I tried to watch Naomi, but she went too fast.

After practicing for ten min, Sensei had each of us get up in front of class to do Gekisai Dai Ichi. Luckily, I got to watch four people and was the last one to perform because that helped me memorize it. As I was running up to do it because it was my turn, Sensei asked me if I was a happy girl. I said that I am. I think he asked me that because I’m smiling all the time in there. Karate makes me so happy.

When I was performing, I kiaied weakly at one point in the kata and Sensei told me to do it louder. I did and he laughed. I don’t know why he laughed. I kiaied weakly because I’m so used to doing that when I practice by myself. I wasn’t the best at performing Gekisai Dai Ichi. I could have done much better. After me, Emily and Chris did Saifa. Then, we ended with Dojo Kun. After that, Sensei told us not to buy anything for our girlfriends or boyfriends for Valentines Day because it’s a waste of money if we break up with them.

I’m going to the dojo tomorrow. I wish I could be there for the whole thing. But noooo, I have a test to take and group afterwards.

The Path of Karate

David posted this in his blog on Monday, September 11, 2006. I could hear one of my Sempai saying this to me in the dojo.

The path of Karate, no matter what style, is not an easy path to follow. It is meant to be an uncomfortable and trying path to the extreme. The old saying goes something like this, “If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen” or Dojo as the case may be. There is also another saying that I am very fond of, “The strongest sword is forged by the hottest flame”.

Sensei is not supposed to be a nice person, neither are his Yudansha or any of your senior Sempai ahead of you. They are there to test you, to push you to the brink, to tear you down and build you up again. This is NOT a path for the feint of heart so if you are not willing to pay your dues, to go through your trials of blood, sweat, and tears as your seniors have done, then you are not in the right place and need to just quit right now, otherwise you are just fooling yourself and wasting everyone else's time.

I would rather be focusing on my own training; working on some kicks that I know need improvement, working on modifying my form to keep in line with those practiced in the school of my current Sensei, than work with someone who is not willing to give it everything they have regardless of the bruises and beatings.If this is you then I will run you out of my school because you do not belong here, if you are sincere, then I will put your sincerety to the test, the harshest test you have ever experienced. If you are unable to take it, then I guess you were not so dedicated after all.

This is a truly unforgiving path, it is not supposed to be nice and cozy like a local fitness center, we are not here to make friends or to socialize! This is a Karate Dojo, we are here to learn and practice Karate! You need to get in this mindset and truly push yourself if you are going to last, otherwise everyone will leave you behind. That sort of failure is completely unbearable and it is on your own head as to whether the path cultivates you are destroys you.

No one is special, the path seeks out and tests EVERYONE regardless of level, regardless of teacher, if you are not truly tested in this way then you are NOT PRACTICING KARATE!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Learning Gekisai Dai Ichi

I wrote this in my journal on Thursday, February 9, 2006.

It’s still Wednesday because I haven’t gone to bed yet. (I have the same problem when blogging. To me, it’s still Thursday, not Friday.) Karate was fun today. Before class, Sensei helped me improve my kicking. My kicking wasn’t controlled so he made me kick a certain brick on the wall. That helped keep my balance and my aim. Sensei and I counted together when I kicked the wall. Then, he led me through Fukukata Dai Ni once and it was cool. He made me perform the kata so I can practice what I learned from kicking the wall. While going through the kata, he stepped on my foot so I wouldn’t move it. I realized that my zenkutsu dachi was too narrow. I need to make it wider.

Then, the whole class lined up and said the Dojo Kun. Then, we did Fukukata Dai San and Moving Attack once. We haven’t practiced Moving Attack for awhile. Then, Sensei said that we knew three kata and now, we’re going to learn a fourth. He had Emily do it twice, so we can get a side and front view. Then, he took the advanced students to another part of the gym. As he passed me, I gave him a smile, so he patted me on the back.

Then, we went through the new kata. I don’t know the name of it yet. (We were learning Gekisai Dai Ichi.) It has many new moves. We punch with two hands. There is a new stance called the Sumo stance (shiko dachi). We elbow strike and karate chop horizontally (knife hand). In some blocks, we inhale and kiai when we punch.

I received lots of praise from Sensei today. However, I messed up a lot when I was learning the new kata. Therefore, Sensei and Captain David had to correct me. Most of my mistakes were mixing up my arms when we prepared to block. I was getting my right and left confused. I was the same way when we learned the Fukukata. Captain David was mostly teaching us the new kata. Twice, Sensei came over and helped. Then, we all came together and said the Dojo Kun. When Sensei teaches us, Captain David helps correct. Such as today, he made me punch his hand while I was performing kata.

Guess what?! I get to go to the Dojo next Tuesday!!!! However, I’ll be late because I have a test in psychology. Class starts at 7 P.M. Hopefully, I’ll get there at 7:30 but probably around 8 P.M. I wish I could go for the whole thing! He would like us to be there at 6:30.

I wonder what the Dojo looks like. Naomi and Emily said being at the Dojo for the first time is scary. They said Sensei will slap people around because he’s meaner and stricter. I’m excited. P.S., Sensei says that I’m improving.

Monday, September 11, 2006

A sparring exercise

I wrote this on Thursday, February 2, 2006 in my journal. The class was at Spokane Community College.

Karate was fun today. Before class started, Sensei invited us to come to the dojo. He said, “Please come” and put his hand on my shoulder. At the beginning of class, Sensei made me practice a kata. Therefore, I practiced Fukukata Dai San (FDS). While I practiced, Sensei had and only watched Marsha, Naomi, and Emily perform another kata. The rest of the students were still stretching.

In the first half of the class, Sensei taught us basics. We practiced Dojo Kun and “About Face!” In addition, we learned some steps that would help us when we spar. First, we went into zenkutsu dachi and slid in sanchin dachi without having our feet pass each other. For example, I start in hachiji dachi. I move my left foot in front of me in zenkutsu dachi. I move right foot into sanchin dachi so that my right toes are in line with my left heel. Then, I punched and/or blocked. I mirror myself when I started with my right leg.

Sliding into sanchin dachi was hard for some reason because I would over step my other foot or be right next to it. I had to check if my feet were pointed inside my body like a pigeon. Then, I had to keep my knees bent at all times. I had an easier time going backwards than forwards. One of the guys was having trouble blocking, so I had to stand there with my arm stretched out in a punch. That burned! While Sensei was correcting him, he caught me watching. He yelled at me to look straight and not be happy all the time.

When we added kicks, my concentration flew out the window. I need to work on my kicks because I don’t kick myself when coming back down. Sensei and Captain David yelled me to chamber on the way down. Anyways, I was slow at kicking and combining the steps. Sometimes, I kicked with the wrong foot and my stances were all wrong. A few times, I messed up my blocks or punched at the wrong time. It was terrible!! I think I’m going to take my Ritalin before karate so I can concentrate and don’t make so many mistakes.

During the second part of class, Captain David made up practice FDS. I’m used to his teaching style more than Sensei’s. Captain David corrected me when I did make some mistakes. However, he praised me for a kick. Sensei even praised me when I did the high, middle, and low blocks in a row in FDS.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Bloody Nose

I wrote this in my journal in January 30, 2006.

Guess what? My sensei was at class today and he was in his gi! I was happy he was in his gi because the last two times he was in sweats. I asked Marsha if he not being there was a fluke. She said yes because he normally got on people’s cases when they didn’t show up for class. Hopefully, he won’t miss class for awhile.

Before class, I saw Sensei teach Emily I think the beginning moves in Saifa. I think she is the best student that can do Karate. We started class by learning harder and newer moves called moving attack. There are three sequences called number one, two, and three. We do them in this order; one, two, three, three, two, one. We go forward with the first three and go backwards on the last three.

After we did that, we split off into groups. Sensei went to another part of the gym to teach the advanced group. Captain David started teaching us FDS. Then, we went through Moving Attack again. While doing that, my nose decided to bleed. I went to the bathroom and Captain David sent Tiffany with me to see if I was all right. Of course, I was fine, it just happens sometimes. It was a little one, but it took five min. to stop. When I went back to the gym, Sensei asked if I was all right. I was lucky that I didn’t get any blood on my gi.

(I had a similar experience during Gasshuku. When we were doing kata, I started to have a bloody nose. Therefore, I stopped what I was doing and went up stairs to the girls bathroom. A few min. later, Sempai Linda came up to see what was wrong and to see if I was all right. I told her that I had a little bloody nose. She waited with me until it was done. Then, I followed her down stairs and out on the dojo floor. When I came back in line, Sempai Dale said “Welcome back.” Ten min. later Sensei asked why I left and I told him. I don’t know why my nose likes to do that. When I was a little kid, I had bloody noses all the time. When I cried too hard, it would start to bleed.)

While practicing, I noticed that Sensei made the other group run a few times. I even saw Naomi run by herself. The advanced Emily and Naomi said that Sensei likes to make people run when they make many mistakes.

When I get tired down blocking and switching to kokutsu dachi or near the end of class, it’s hard to keep my technique up. Nevertheless, when I know that Sensei or Captain David is watching me, I do my best not to slack off.

I’ve been practicing lately by myself at home. Today, I noticed that I did some moves wrong when practicing and that defiantly showed today. I’ll get better. At least Sensei said that I have improved during class. I’m glad that he noticed.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006


I had the opportunity to clean Sensei’s garden for Gasshuku. One of the Sempai told the dojo that we had to sign up to clean his garden. I couldn’t go the first time because I was working with my dad. That was all right because the second week I helped stack wood and build a rock wall in his garden. Just recently, all the green belts had to come and clean his garden for Youth Gasshuku. I enjoyed that because I thought of it like a big service project even though I had to miss going to Silverwood with some family friends, my brother and sister. I chose to help clean because I would have got bored at the theme park.

My job was to pick up piles of grass and leaves which my Sempai raked up. When my big tub got full, I would go to a spot in the dojo it dump it. One time I was on my way to dump it,I was near Sensei and thought there wasn’t enough room to pass through. So, I tried to put it on my shoulders like I do with the recycle bin which is smaller. However, that backfired and lost it's balance on my shoulders. Therefore, I spilt some of the grass his stone pathway where it was just swept my Sempai Mesha. So, I started picking up the grass that dropped from the bin. As I was doing that, Sensei came to me and said that if I was a brown belt, my head would be chopped off and slid his hand across the back of my neck. Because of me, Sempai Mesha had to resweep the stone path.

All of us has to clean the dojo after class. We have to sweep the floor and take out the garbage on the second floor. Sometimes we have to clean the toilet and sink in both bath rooms. After we do that, we line up on the dojo floor to clean it with rags. Some black belts don't have to do that because they supervise us instead. I cannot go ahead of my Sempai when going across the dojo floor with my rag. I did that before and Sempai John yelled at me.

It's my fault for injuring Sempai Ross

It's weird that I would get into trouble for saying one little word but not causing injury to a person.

During Gasshuku, I was doing Bunkai Oyo with Sempai Mark and Sempai Tony. Sempai Tony mostly taught me how because he was higher than Sempai Mark. Most of the time, I would attack Sempai Mark with Sempai Tony guiding me through the Bunkai. In the dojo, one has to pay attention and watch out where other people are being thrown because it's crowded during Gasshuku. On Wednesday night, we were working on Bunkai number seven which includes a tricky throw/role. I distinctly remember Sempai Tony telling me not to let go of Sempai Mark when I threw him. Of course, that night I let go of him and he slid right into Sempai Ross. When I got up, I saw Sempai Ross laying on the ground in anguish and clutching his ankle with Sempai Mark hovering over him. At first, I was horrified at what had happened and what I had done. It took a few min. for people to realize that someone was injured. Then, Sensei made all of us line up and sit down. While sitting there, I started crying a little because I felt so bad. I saw that Sensei was mad because we could have prevented the injury. Because of the accident, we went home early without going to his house. I wanted to say that I was sorry to Sempai Ross before I went up stairs to change but never had the chance.

I felt bad because I was the one who threw Sempai Mark and hurt Sempai Ross. It ended up that he tore some ligaments which is worse that a break because it takes longer to heal. I talked to Sempai Eric about me feeling bad. He said that accidents happen and that I shouldn't worry about it. I realized that the black belts around me should have been paying more attention. I was a white belt and didn't know any better. Therefore, I didn't get into trouble at all when it was my fault for injuring Sempai Ross.

Monday, August 21, 2006


Thanks everyone for answering me, especially Supergroup. You are becoming a Sempai to me because of all the help you have given.

I’m very happy with my dojo. A couple weeks ago, I was telling myself that I loved it. I was happy as a clam until this happened. Now, I’m over it. I don’t care about this extra stuff that goes with the training. I’ve been thinking about what everybody said told me. However, I decided to not to leave my dojo because this problem isn’t a big deal to me. I much rather learn by a international Goju-Ryu master than by some local Sensei. If I left, I would miss my dojo and Sensei very much. Plus, it would kill me to not have karate when I’m at SCC too. I’ve been looking forward about training at SCC again.

Right now, I’ve been missing karate. I couldn’t go last Thursday because I went to the LDS temple instead. I’m so glad that I went because I haven’t been there since winter. It was so peaceful there and it put things into perspective for me. While I was there, I didn’t care if I was missing training. If I would have gone to the dojo instead, my conscience would be plaguing me about not going because Latter Day Saints are commanded to go to the temple. Therefore, I would be sinning and have to repent if I didn’t go. In addition, the temple is so much more important than going to the dojo to train. The temple is eternal and the dojo is temporal.

I’m not going to be there this week because I’m going near Seattle to work in an airplane hanger with my dad. I like working with him because I make lots of money. However, I don’t like it because I miss training at dojo. I just wonder if Sensei thinks I’m mad at him because I’m going to be away for a week and a half.

Here are other weird rules that I have to abide by when I’m at the dojo or Sensei’s house. I said this in “Never touch my hands on the Shomen wall. Or never put a picture of Sensei on the ground. Or never have your back to Sensei when talking to someone. Or never show any disrespect towards my Sempai. Or always call my Sempai, "Sempai" even outside the dojo. Or always obey my Sempai, without question even if they are wrong. Or never leave anything at Sensei's house, like a water bottle. Or never yawn inside the dojo. Or never show the pads of my feet when I sit. I always have to sit cross-legged or in seiza. Or when watching my Sempai do advanced kata, I have to stand straight as a board, pay attention, and not move around at all.” On the last day of Gasshuku, I was getting really antsy about standing and watching a Sempai doing a higher kata. When I wasn’t paying attention, Sensei caught me and made me do push-ups in a corner.” Or never lean against the wall when standing. It seems like I find out about a rule until I break it. I'm not used to getting into trouble so easily.”

I talked to my dad about me saying that I didn’t miss the Russians. He said that when I said that, everybody thought that meant that I didn’t like them at all. That explanation makes sense from my Sensei’s and Sempai reactions. When I said that, I meant I didn’t miss them because I didn’t even get to know them that well. My dad says that I get into these situations because I’m slightly autistic. He says that I think, perceive, act, and process information differently than most people. My Sempai and Sensei don’t know me that well. I say things that are direct and from the heart. Some people perceive me being mean and cold. However, I mean no harm. I think that happened last week. Now, my dad wants to call Sensei to explain to him what I meant and why I’m so different. I’m thinking that would be a good idea for future reference.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

My first journal entry about karate

I don’t know what to write about. I have so many things to write about that it’s so hard to select one. I can only pick one because of the amount of time I have. For example, I can write about what happened at work today that involves the internet and the office key. Some other things I can write about is my job interview for Wal-Mart, cleaning Sensei’s garden for Youth Gasshuku, sparring, my first journal entry about karate, and some more of Gasshuku. These are many subjects to pick and it’s hard to choose. Some of the subjects I can write for hours upon end. Does anyone have this problem?

I’m going to copy my first journal entry about karate with me proof reading and commenting. This journal entry was made January 26, 2006. That means I have been training for almost a month.

“Hi. I found a new thing to obsess about. Guess what it is? It Karate and I love it! I love it so much that I wish I could go to class everyday. However, it’s only on Mondays and Wednesdays. Why do I love it so much? That’s a good question. I think it’s because I get to learn how to block, punch, kick, and trip.” The trip is actually a sweep kick. I didn’t know the name of it at that time. “It’s not like anything I’ve done before. It reminds me of dancing and doing line drills for disk and shot put.”

“I think I love it because I can perform as well as anybody else. In every other sport, I compared myself to everybody else.” When I did that, I would get frustrated and get down on myself because I wasn’t performing as well as everyone else. “In basketball, I couldn’t dribble the ball without looking, dribble with my right hand, jump, rebound, and shoot. I was afraid of the ball in basketball and in softball. I couldn’t catch or throw a ball very well. The only thing that I was good in basketball was blocking and guarding my opponent from the basket.” In other words, I didn’t excel in sports.

“In karate, I’m still lagging in some things. I can’t say the Dojo Kun when we run around the gym because I breathe too hard.” I still have trouble with that. Now, Sensei expects me to say it when we run. He can tell that I’m not saying it because he can’t hear my voice. That’s the trouble of having a really loud voice. I’m loud every time when ever I have to respond to him.

“I can’t stay balanced when kicking slowly or holding a kick in chamber.” I don’t do the jackknife very well either. The jackknife is where I have to sit on my butt, lift my legs in the air while keeping them straight, and punch. I’m not good at it because of my balance and my weak abs. “Finally, I can’t do push-ups. I can do girly push-ups, but those are hard.” Girly push-ups is where I do push-ups on my knees instead of my feet. “I have to do regular, knuckle (they hurt when doing them on the gym floor), diamond, and wide push-ups. I haven’t tried doing girly push-ups in class yet. I’ve only practiced them at home.” It's a good thing that I didn’t because I know that Sensei or Captain David would have yelled at me.

“In karate, I’m good at kata and back kicks. A kata is a series of movements done in order. It looks like a type of dance. However, it’s used for multiple attackers. So far, I learned what a long stance (zenkutsu dachi) is and a short stance (sanchin dachi) is. I’ve learned how to do a high (jodan), middle (chudan), and a low (gedan) block. I’ve learned how to block my knees in the long stance. I’ve learned how to do normal (mae geri), crescent (mikazuki geri), sweep (ashi barai), and back kicks (mawashi geri). I’ve only practiced crescent, sweep, and back kicks in one class, so I haven’t practiced them yet.” That was when Sensei wasn’t there. Captain David made the class run towards freestanding punching bags, kick them, and run back our lines. I want to work with the punching bag more because I need to work on sparring combos and control, I can use more power, and it’s fun.

“I’ve learned three kata and memorized two. These kata have the same basic moves but each one builds off another. For example, our basic kata, Fukukata Dai Ichi (FDI), is a series of blocks, punches, and stances. Fukukata Dai Ni (FDN) is the same thing; however, I add a kick whenever I punch. Fukukata Dai San (FDS) is harder. There are a lot more punches and four more different types blocks including the knee-to-knee block.” The knee-to-knee block is when we switch between zenkutsu dachi and kokutsu dachi. “The kicks remain the same.”

“Whenever I get ready to perform a kata, I have to stand straight as a board, have my hands flat against my legs, and feet together in musubi dachi. Then, I say the name of the kata and bow. Then, I put my left hand over my right so they look like an X. Finally, I breathe and perform the kata. When I say I breathe, I mean I make a certain breathing sound when I exhale.” Actually, I have to make noise with our noses and keep my mouth shut when inhaling. Then, I tighten my throat to make more noise when I exhale. “During the kata, I yell EH (kiai) when I arrive to a certain punch. I do that twice during the fukukata. I end up in the same place I started when I finished performing. I’ve seen different kata, Gekisai Dai Ichi (GDI) and Gekisai Dai Ni (GDN), preformed by the advanced students. The kata are weird because they use moves I never seen before and they do lots of breathing. I also have seen them spar; however, we (the beginners) haven’t learned how to do that.”

“Now, I’m going to talk about my Sensei. My Sensei is Teruo Chinen. You are probably saying, ‘So what?’ When I was researching karate on the internet, I came across his name. I learned that he is one of the best Goju-Ryu masters in the US and in the world. He trained under one of the founders and moved to the US to teach. Therefore, he goes to seminars all over the US and the world. He has his own DVD collection. He’s Japanese, an eight dan, and 64 years old.” Now, he’s 65 years old. “I think he’s cool because he’s authentic and has an accent. Right now, he’s been missing from class. I really hope he’s there on Monday. I’m going to ask an advanced student if he’s always gone for a long period of time. I want him to be in class because I want him to teach me and I want to get to know him better. He’s only taught me twice so far.”

“Captain or Sempai David has naturally taught me the most. Sempai means senior student. He’s a third dan black belt. I like him but he’s not cool like Sensei. He teaches us when Sensei isn’t there. When Sensei is there, he will teach either the beginners or the advanced students. I hope that we can enroll in karate as many times as we want because I would love to continue with it. When we practice, we have the traditional karate gi (uniform) on. Sensei wrote each of our names on our gi in kanji."

"I’ll end with Dojo Kun.
Dojo Kun.
Hitotsu, be humble and polite.
Hitotsu, train considering your physical strength.
Hitotsu, practice earnestly with creativity.
Hitotsu, be calm and swift.
Hitotsu, take care of your health.
Hitotsu, live a plain life.
Hitotsu, do not be too proud or modest.
Hitotsu, continue your training with patience.”
We say that at least once in class. Lately, we've been saying a new Dojo Kun that talks about hitotsu. To me, it's funny and sounds absurd because the author put meaningless words together.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

My mission

Happy Birthday to me. Happy Birthday to me. Happy Birthday dear Lizzie. Happy Birthday to me.

Actually, my birthday was on the ninth. Today, my family and I are going to celebrate it tonight by having my birthday dinner. Now, I am twenty years old. Finally, I’m not a teenager any more. Hurray! One more year and I can go on my mission for my church. For those you don't know, I’m a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints which means I’m a Mormon. Lately, I’ve been thinking about my mission. My mission will be for two years. I can go anywhere in the world except the Middle East, China, and North Korea because they don’t want us there yet. I can’t pick where I’m going to go because Heavenly Father picks instead. I’ve been thinking about going when I’m 22 so I can finish up at Spokane Community College (SCC) and continue training in karate. However, I don’t think I can wait that long. I’ve been wanting and waiting to go on a mission all of my life. I just need to put my faith into Heavenly Father and trust that I won’t forget all that I learned in college and in karate. I’m afraid that I’m going to forget Trigonometry for Physics. Plus, I’m going to really miss karate and the dojo. I just wonder how much the dojo will change when I get back.

I would really love to go to Japan for my mission. I would like to go there because I want to learn more of the Asian culture. I know that learning any foreign language would be hard like Japanese. However, it would be cool to speak Japanese to Sensei when I get back. Plus, I would know why Sensei has some of the other special rules that deal with culture that’s in the dojo.

I would also love to go to the British Isles because I’ve always loved their accents and it’s part of my heritage. I’m English, Welsh, German, and Scottish. I think I was gypped because I have everything except Irish. I was gypped again because I don’t have any Hawaiian in me. My dad’s side of the family lived in Hawaii for many generations and none of them married and had kids with a native.

Anyway, I’m wondering who will be there at SCC from the dojo. I’m wondering if I’ll be the only one again like last quarter. Maybe, Sempai Jessica or Sempai Amy will help because they are both going to SCC this summer. Both may be too busy with nursing though. I know last fall Sempai Jessica helped out. When I started in the winter, Captain David helped. Then in the spring, nobody helped. So, a 8th kyu who wasn’t part of the dojo became captain of the class. If nobody helps, I know that I’m going to be captain. It would be really nice to have a black belt help. I know that during the winter, Sempai John helped at Spokane Falls Community College, SFCC.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Gasshuku Part 3

Hi. Monday was the only day that Sensei watched us from the stage. That night, Sensei asked me if the first day met my expectations. I said that I thought it was going to be a little harder than it was. Actually, I thought it would be a lot harder than it was because of the stories that I heard. Through out Gasshuku, I commented about how easy everything was. Sempai Linda said that I can’t say that in front of people. What’s easy to me is hard for others. Then, she said that I should look at what Sempai John does. When he worked with me, I have looked him as an example ever since. I know that Sempai John puts 100% in everything he does in karate. So, I have decided to try put my 100% in everything and try to push myself harder each time.

However, that’s easier said than done. I noticed that it was easier doing a thousand front snap kicks in Gasshuku than doing around 300 in practice last week. I have no clue why it was easier. I know that me being tired isn’t a factor because I trained all day in Gasshuku. Maybe it’s because I was mentally stronger during Gasshuku than last week. One of the factors maybe when I was on my meds during Gasshuku and last week I wasn’t. I think it’s a mental factor.

Sempai Diana said that you should be sore after practice. Normally, I don’t get sore and don’t know why is that. (A little later after researching about it) I thought that I wasn’t working hard enough because I normally don’t get sore. I talked to my dad about it. He said it could be because I’m really limber and flexible. Now that I have researched about it, I’m not worried. Professors think that muscles get sore after 24 hours is because of microscopic tears. When the muscle tears, it gets inflamed and causes pain. This type of muscle soreness is called delayed onset muscle soreness. When one uses the muscle more and more, the soreness will abate. I acquired this information from

The thing that made me sore during Gasshuku was kakie. On Friday, I worked with Sempai Art with kakie. Sempai Art is an Asian black belt who has a skinny build and weighs a little less than I weigh. I was familiar with the first kakie that I did with Sempai Art because I did it before with Sempai Amy. It’s where I have to put my hand on the floor while both of my legs are on both sides of my opponent. I didn’t like the second one because I couldn’t land very gracefully. I catch myself with both hands and land on my stomach. I wasn’t very good at that because I didn’t give myself enough time to let go of his leg and catch myself while falling. Twice, I hit my chin on the ground when I fell. The others involved a lot of picking up and setting my Sempai on the ground. I was thankful that Sempai Art was strong enough to lift me up and set me on the ground gently without dropping me. I was surprised that I was strong enough to do that to him. When I land, I have to keep my arm straight and slap the ground when I land. I was keeping bending my elbow when I was slapping. My arms and lower back weren’t used to picking a person up. Therefore, they were sore a day later.

The hold in the last one of the kakie didn’t work for me. It’s where we both are sitting on the ground and my opponent pushes my neck forward while my shoulders are pulled the opposite way. Usually, that makes a person tap out. Sempai Art has never met a person where that hasn’t worked on him or her. He even asked other Sempai to see if he was doing it right. I thought it was cool that a technique didn’t work for me because I’m too flexible. I think that my shoulders are the most flexible parts in my body.

Sempai Marty, a brown belt, had a hard time with me being flexible when we were working on Bunkai Oyo. He didn’t know how to make me tap out. Therefore, he said to pretend it hurts and tap out. During a water break, Sempai Marty told Sensei that I was flexible and slapped my back. Sempai Eric, a brown belt, didn’t have as much as trouble with me as Sempai Marty. When I worked with Sempai Linda, Sempai Kurk, Sempai Valerie, Sempai Mark, and Sempai Tony, they didn’t have any trouble with me at all. My main partners for Bunkai Oyo were Sempai Mark and Sempai Tony. I’m very thankful that I had them for my partners because they were high black belts who were in the first row.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

My first Randori and I broke my foot

Sensei said that we shouldn’t train to the point where we get bloody knuckles. I’m planning never hurting them again by hitting the Makiwara. Once a Sensei from a different city got blood all over a Makiwara and ruined the pad that covered it. It had an illustration of a tiger that had clear tape around it.

I didn’t realize that knuckle push-ups will always hurt. Now that I think about it, I think I realized it when Sempai John told me to ignore the pain when we were doing them together during Gasshuku. I didn’t realize that it hurt him too.

I don’t think I was using a roundhouse at that time. I know that we I practiced once with him when he was telling me what to do. When I was sparring, I never aimed at the head. I was just aiming at his stomach. I know that one time he roundhouse and touched my neck lightly. I’m thinking he either blocked hard when I front snap kicked and broke it. Or he broke it when he tripped me with is sweep kick. I was going for a low kick while all of a sudden he dropped to the ground and swept me off my foot, which made me land on my butt. I remember as time went on, we punched and kicked harder. I don’t know how I broke my foot when I sparred with him. That’s all I remember that has to do any thing that deals with kicking and my feet.

This is what I said on “Last night was my first experience of actually sparring with someone. I loved it and thought that it was really fun. I learned that I need to practice these techniques by myself so I can use them correctly and have good form when I actually spar. Of course, the black belt was really easy on me by not defending and evading all of my strikes. He usually let me attack first. When did attacked me, sometimes I didn’t effectively block his strike because I’m not used to blocking yet and wasn’t expecting it. It did feel good when I got a counter attack in when he attacked me and started blocking all of my moves.”

“I wasn’t expecting to be the only white belt to spar with a black belt last night. As I was sparring with him, the other white belts just stood and watched. I would have thought that Sensei would pick a higher and more experienced white belt to spar with Sempai. When he was teaching us the sparring techniques, I know that I didn’t perform as well as my fellow white belts. My kicks were horrible because I’m so uncoordinated. I wasn’t chambering with my kicks because I wanted to keep up with everybody else. My crescent and sweep kicks were bad because I didn’t make half circles. In addition, many of my kicks were off target. By the end of his lesson, I was slower and performing worse than everybody else because I was so tired. Therefore, I was surprised that Sensei still wanted me to spar with him.”

This is what I said in my journal. “For a good hour, Sempai David taught us sparring moves. It was nice to work with him again. I learned how to do all types of kicks. Most of my kicks stunk. Sensei noticed and yelled at me to chamber. Some of my kicks were way off target. Sempai noticed and tried to correct me. I think we were going too fast because my quality of my technique was bad. Cory was doing better than me! As we were doing that Sensei came up behind me and slapped the top of my shoulders. Of course, that startled me. Sensei corrected and reminded me to be in Sanchin Dachi. Sempai had to remind me to make a circle when I swept kick. When we were done, I was tired. Then Captain David asked me if I Randoried with anyone before. I said that I thought so. Then he said not to break his ribs. We stared to spar. First, he told me what to do and as time when on, I made up my own stuff. However, he was really good. Once he kicked my neck. Another time, I landed on my butt because he swept kicked me and I was kicking him with my other foot. Maybe that’s how he hurt my foot."

"Ever since Tuesday, the top of my right foot has been tender and swollen. Yesterday, it turned really black, blue, and purple near my toes and ankle. Rhea says that it’s still swollen, but I can’t tell. On Thursday, I had it wrapped to keep the swelling down. It didn’t help that I had a big split under one of my toes from athlete’s foot. From sparring, I aqurired the biggest blood blister on my left big toe that I have ever saw. So, my feet hurt for a few days. Anyways, sparring was fun.”