Thursday, February 08, 2007

Too Easy

I didn't realize that it had a been a month since I have wrote. Last night was the first time going to karate class in two weeks. It was really nice to be back; however, afterwards I was making comparison between it and my old dojo. I really miss the hard coreness of my old dojo. I want a Sensei that will really push my physically and mentally, like my old Sensei. I think that we spend to much time stretching and not enough on kata. Andrew commented that our classes were too easy because more than half the class were teenagers to Sensei Jen. She got a little mad and said that our thighs would burn at the end of class because we were in Zenkutsu dachi. However, my thighs would never burn in Zenkutsu dachi because we don't go to deep. If we were in Shiko dachi, that would be a different story. Sorry that I'm complaining. I just miss that good work out that comes from karate.


ZenHG said...

If a tree is too firm the wind will snap it;
If a tree is too lax it cannot stand.

Chinen's Dojo is so strict and firm that it is about to snap, Chinen himself is already so close.
Sensei Jennifer, while a gifted Karateka, is very young for a teacher, she is so lax that she cannot instill focus in those she is teaching.

There is a middle ground to be found and you must find that for yourself.
Sensei Gene is right in the middle, he is a tree that always bends with the wind, yet maintains the strength of a tree, not too firm, not too lax.
Perhaps you should think about attending classes on Wednesday when Sensei Gene teaches. Unfortunately Mondays and early Saturday mornings are Black Belt classes, but maybe you could work something out with him. Say that you want to take your training deeper or something.

Most the people that go to that Dojo are just there as a hobby, for something to do.
Quite a few of them are lazy and usually just want to spend their time socializing as if it were a health spa.
I try to set an example of serious (but not too serious) training, whenever I teach the junior students something I make sure they get it, I make sure they are not just going through the motions.

Perhaps we can work something out and do some training outside the Dojo.
If it is shugyo-style training you are looking for, then it is shugyo-style training you will get.

lizzie said...

Thanks David. I noticed that many are just do karate as a hobby. It's just I miss the hard coreness that comes from the karate. I want a black belt that would really push me while training. I noticed that there are hardly any older people there because most of the class is composed of teenagers. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, it's just teenagers don't like to focus that much. I miss being in focus when I train and not thinking of any thing else. You are right; Sensei Jen doesn’t keep everybody really focused. I think that if we kept focused, we would train get through the material faster. I miss counting and focusing on a kick or a punch. Chinen Sensei instilled this ferociousness inside of me when I train. I don’t know how to personally get at it; but, he always knew. It comes out when I do Gekisai sometimes. However, now everyone is so lax in that dojo, it’s hard not to follow and be lazy myself.

Please David; I want shugyo-style training. I really miss it, I don’t know why though. Maybe, it’s because I always felt good afterwards.

ZenHG said...

Goju Ryu is about achieving balance between the hard and the soft.
The universe is formed of opposing forces; we have day and night, black and white, male and female, heaven and earth, hard and soft, ect.

There are internal or soft arts and external or hard arts.
Goju is right in the middle, being both internal and external, both hard and soft (at least that is the way it is supposed to be).
This is not a balance someone can instill in you, it is something you must discover for yourself.

Shugyo training is good, it is good to have ferociousness in your spirit, but it is also good to have gentleness.
Too much Shugyo training is not good, this must be balanced, just as too much training in general is not good, this must also be balanced.

My old teacher was very strict in some respects, but also liked to joke around quite a bit.
When he and I were training I could always tell I had been training even a week after the session, but this was balanced with non-instensive training and discussion as well.
Our Shugyo was on the level with Chinen's training, but also much more intense since he usually took time to just train with me.
Regular classes were not usually so intense, save for every once in a while.

Most schools, Chinen's included, usually practice Goju Ryu too hard and militaristic.
That is not Goju Ryu, that is just Go Ryu, in opposition to Ju Ryu.
Goju Ryu must exist in balance, no separation, no extremes.

Think on this in your training. When you become too serious, picture a pink bunny in a bear suit... When you become too relaxed, picture Chinen barking orders at the front of class.

supergroup7 said...

I too have learned that karate is based on balance of hard, and easy.. strong, and soft.

Patience, and self control is something that every martial artist really needs to cultivate. It is extremely important during a fight to know when to strike more than knowing how to strike. There are many times when there will a still silent "waiting for the moment" that will be more effective than rushing in with arms flailing. In fact, I actually witnessed this at a seminar where the more experienced black belt just waited for the young anxious black belt to come running right into the waiting punch.

By the way, I like hard training also.. so I can really understand where you are coming from Lizzie. I sure do hope that you find balance in your training.