Journey to a new style...

dvcochran

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I remember how easily I was derailed in the early days (I had a minor surgery behind one ear, and went back to training a year later). If this had happened back then, I'm certain it would have taken me years to get back to training, if I managed it at all.

I fear a lot of schools that were run for love (making little or no money) will be victims in this. Hopefully the folks making real money at it have set aside enough to manage to get back to it when it's safe.

I've always had this wish in the back of my mind that I could have started a school of my own. The past year, I've not wished that, at all.
I have roughly a 5 year bailout/loss column in my budget. I am currently well into year 2, more like 2-1/2.
 

caped crusader

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This thread reminds me of a Dojo I contacted some years back. They called it Zen karate if I remember correctly.
Was very expensive & they made it Sound like a new amazing style. After some careful questions I found out it was just shotokan with a Marketing ploy to make the Dojo Sound different. A bit of music & Meditation...and basta ! It's Zen karate I am very suspicous of mish mash Dojos. Not saying all are bad as I'm sure some have good intentions. Just don't be in awe of everything.
 
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_Simon_

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This thread reminds me of a Dojo I contacted some years back. They called it Zen karate if I remember correctly.
Was very expensive & they made it Sound like a new amazing style. After some careful questions I found out it was just shotokan with a Marketing ploy to make the Dojo Sound different. A bit of music & Meditation...and basta ! It's Zen karate I am very suspicous of mish mash Dojos. Not saying all are bad as I'm sure some have good intentions. Just don't be in awe of everything.
Ah yeah for sure haha. Yeah there are those out there that try to mystify their club a bit and glamourise it to sound spiritual and "special". Will keep that in mind. All through the thread as you'll see I've made sure to be very, very observant and aware of the club dynamics ;)
 

caped crusader

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Ah yeah for sure haha. Yeah there are those out there that try to mystify their club a bit and glamourise it to sound spiritual and "special". Will keep that in mind. All through the thread as you'll see I've made sure to be very, very observant and aware of the club dynamics ;)
yeah i mean people will believe anything that sound spiritual or some kind of majestic ring to it. I mean just because a sensei is japanese does not mean he織s better than joe bloggs from your town.
 
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_Simon_

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Well... ! After leaving my previous style years ago and embarking on a search for something which resonated with me, lots of trialling out, getting disheartened... getting excited, getting disheartened again... I think I've finally found my place :)

So it's a derivative style of Goju Ryu called Goju Kensha, founded by Tadahiko Ohtsuka Sensei, who trained Goju under Sosui Ichikawa Sensei. He also studied extensively internal Chinese MA systems and Shorin Ryu. This style is like a blend of these, and is definitely more about internal connection, fluidity and definitely "feel". Still a beautiful blend of hard and soft. We do heaps of kata application stuff which I wasn't ever really fussed about to be honest, but has been good exploring.

I looked for a few things... firstly a style that I'm really interested in, secondly and maybe more importantly an instructor that I really respect and connect with, and thirdly the club atmosphere, energy and culture of the dojo. This has everything I was after, but moreso it just feels right.

I'd been training for the last couple of months, and today after class I was called up to the front, and as a recognition of my previous experience and where he feels I currently sit I was awarded 3rd kyu.

I was truly blown away... so very honoured, but honestly I feel like I really don't deserve it haha. I'm struggling with that and told him that, yet whilst still truly honoured, grateful and blown away. He said he has been watching me very carefully over time, and ensures me my standard is recognised. Not a formal grading obviously (the next ones definitely will be), but a recognition and acknowledgement of what my current level definitely is. He was very reassuring and actually made alot of sense, and says we will refine things as we go but assured me my standard really sits there given my demonstrated experience and ability, and is a good place to start for me personally.

After much, much rumination on it today haha.. I can definitely see that I would sit around that rank more generically speaking. Just more specifically there are subtleties and nuances I will need to refine still. And I truly do 100% trust his wisdom and intuition if he feels that's about where I sit ranking-wise. Just I need to work out the struggle of accepting it in my own psyche haha... I don't know if anyone else has ever felt not worthy of a rank or had similar experience, feel free to comment! I don't focus on rank but just on learning and growing as a martial artist; this certainly just was a shock. Obviously differing opinions on this for sure, but I do understand it now, and there was no need to start from scratch and work my way up one grade at a time.

But I feel truly blessed that I've found this home, and other folks I train with too online who are like family. It's been a very long journey up to this point, but things are starting to make more sense :)
 

caped crusader

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Thanks mate yeah I feel you're right haha.
the only Grading that i saw that shocked me was a Blue belt to Purple belt one in Shotokan karate. two guys were up doing Kata side by side & one was clueless trying to copy the other guy who was "OK" but i would say a very low pass as well. They both passed to my surprise & disgust. I did not train there but was with a friend who did.
It was no surprise for me to later find out they were mates with the two Dan grades sitting at the table. not sure if they made it to Dan grade or not later on. Of course that would have been Graded by others and not the local club.
 

isshinryuronin

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I was awarded 3rd kyu.
I was truly blown away... so very honoured, but honestly I feel like I really don't deserve it haha. I'm struggling with that
I posted a few months ago that the promotion that was most special to me was a surprise advancement from yellow w/stripe to blue, skipping a couple of ranks. I was stoked.

As for not feeling you deserve your 3rd kyu, GOOD! Keep that feeling. While others may have their ego stroked by such an advancement, you sound like the type who truly wants to be worthy of rank. This will give you the incentive to work harder to justify your sensei's confidence in you. Having this feeling is proof that your sensei was not wrong in promoting you. A student of any rank should never feel they are good enough.
 

caped crusader

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I posted a few months ago that the promotion that was most special to me was a surprise advancement from yellow w/stripe to blue, skipping a couple of ranks. I was stoked.

As for not feeling you deserve your 3rd kyu, GOOD! Keep that feeling. While others may have their ego stroked by such an advancement, you sound like the type who truly wants to be worthy of rank. This will give you the incentive to work harder to justify your sensei's confidence in you. Having this feeling is proof that your sensei was not wrong in promoting you. A student of any rank should never feel they are good enough.
Hey bro...can you promote me to Red Belt 10th Dan ?;):D
 

dvcochran

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Well... ! After leaving my previous style years ago and embarking on a search for something which resonated with me, lots of trialling out, getting disheartened... getting excited, getting disheartened again... I think I've finally found my place :)

So it's a derivative style of Goju Ryu called Goju Kensha, founded by Tadahiko Ohtsuka Sensei, who trained Goju under Sosui Ichikawa Sensei. He also studied extensively internal Chinese MA systems and Shorin Ryu. This style is like a blend of these, and is definitely more about internal connection, fluidity and definitely "feel". Still a beautiful blend of hard and soft. We do heaps of kata application stuff which I wasn't ever really fussed about to be honest, but has been good exploring.

I looked for a few things... firstly a style that I'm really interested in, secondly and maybe more importantly an instructor that I really respect and connect with, and thirdly the club atmosphere, energy and culture of the dojo. This has everything I was after, but moreso it just feels right.

I'd been training for the last couple of months, and today after class I was called up to the front, and as a recognition of my previous experience and where he feels I currently sit I was awarded 3rd kyu.

I was truly blown away... so very honoured, but honestly I feel like I really don't deserve it haha. I'm struggling with that and told him that, yet whilst still truly honoured, grateful and blown away. He said he has been watching me very carefully over time, and ensures me my standard is recognised. Not a formal grading obviously (the next ones definitely will be), but a recognition and acknowledgement of what my current level definitely is. He was very reassuring and actually made alot of sense, and says we will refine things as we go but assured me my standard really sits there given my demonstrated experience and ability, and is a good place to start for me personally.

After much, much rumination on it today haha.. I can definitely see that I would sit around that rank more generically speaking. Just more specifically there are subtleties and nuances I will need to refine still. And I truly do 100% trust his wisdom and intuition if he feels that's about where I sit ranking-wise. Just I need to work out the struggle of accepting it in my own psyche haha... I don't know if anyone else has ever felt not worthy of a rank or had similar experience, feel free to comment! I don't focus on rank but just on learning and growing as a martial artist; this certainly just was a shock. Obviously differing opinions on this for sure, but I do understand it now, and there was no need to start from scratch and work my way up one grade at a time.

But I feel truly blessed that I've found this home, and other folks I train with too online who are like family. It's been a very long journey up to this point, but things are starting to make more sense :)
I have likely said this before on here but I never really gave a lot of thought to any of my ranks until the last ones. I guess I was caught up in training and competition to the point where the 'promotions' were just a formality.
I had a Huge gap in between my last testing's and it was quite a struggle to get to a point where I would even accept the promotions. Enough so that it caused major friction with organization and my GM (about 2 years).
My point is I had to get to the place where I could accept it emotionally, even though I knew I had already checked all the boxes long before. Because of my injuries and prior ability I was pretty hung up on my limitations so I had to get my head above my own personal clouds and see that there was a bigger picture. I had to trust my GM to see that, even when I didn't fully see it.
It sounds to me like this is where you are at. You emphatically said you like your new instructor and clearly resonated your trust and faith in him/her. So step out in that trust and accept your rank and use it as it should be used.
Kudos and congratulations for finding a home school. I know it has been a long process for you. Now strap that belt on and get ready for the next one!
 
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_Simon_

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I posted a few months ago that the promotion that was most special to me was a surprise advancement from yellow w/stripe to blue, skipping a couple of ranks. I was stoked.

As for not feeling you deserve your 3rd kyu, GOOD! Keep that feeling. While others may have their ego stroked by such an advancement, you sound like the type who truly wants to be worthy of rank. This will give you the incentive to work harder to justify your sensei's confidence in you. Having this feeling is proof that your sensei was not wrong in promoting you. A student of any rank should never feel they are good enough.
Thank you so very, very much. I totally 100% get what you mean, and I absolutely want to be worthy of the rank. It will be a great starting place, and even though I was prepared to go through the ranks, the earlier stuff is very very basic, so this makes sense. I know some instructors would have ulterior motives and try making more money off grading fees and belt fees. I asked my instructor what I owe him for the belt and he said it was a gift and was on him. That in itself was very special.

Again thank you, your post is very encouraging, and I'm glad you chimed in as I really respect your experience, insight and thoughts. Domo arigato gozaimasu
 
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_Simon_

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I have likely said this before on here but I never really gave a lot of thought to any of my ranks until the last ones. I guess I was caught up in training and competition to the point where the 'promotions' were just a formality.
I had a Huge gap in between my last testing's and it was quite a struggle to get to a point where I would even accept the promotions. Enough so that it caused major friction with organization and my GM (about 2 years).
My point is I had to get to the place where I could accept it emotionally, even though I knew I had already checked all the boxes long before. Because of my injuries and prior ability I was pretty hung up on my limitations so I had to get my head above my own personal clouds and see that there was a bigger picture. I had to trust my GM to see that, even when I didn't fully see it.
It sounds to me like this is where you are at. You emphatically said you like your new instructor and clearly resonated your trust and faith in him/her. So step out in that trust and accept your rank and use it as it should be used.
Kudos and congratulations for finding a home school. I know it has been a long process for you. Now strap that belt on and get ready for the next one!
Ah that's awesome... thank you so much, your insights are gold.

Yeah absolutely, very well said, especially about the bigger picture. And even though I gained 4th kyu rank before I left my old style, it's not like I just sat back in the few years until now. I trained my **** off haha; trained more than ever and was determined to let go of old ways of training and foundations and embrace new ones, learning softness, fluidity, not only from other instructors but through solo dedicated practice.

And not only that, but being forced to learn how to train differently through a chronic debilitating pain condition. There were many, MANY times I thought to myself that I just will never be able to train again with this... but wow it has been a long and arduous journey working through that up to where I am now.

Feeling all the emotions now haha and on that note... thank you :)

Wow, Feb 2018 was the start of this thread, how much has happened in that time, I'm sure I'll update you all every now and then how things are going, but seems the "journey" whilst it is completed, has really just begun...
 

Yokozuna514

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Congratulations Simon. I understand how you feel. Having followed your journey, I can see that you are not chasing belts and understand that the rank also comes with some responsibility that you want to feel you can uphold. 3rd kyu may very well be a good place for you to begin this part of your journey as you do have prior experience that is transferable to your new style and it would seem as if your form is good enough to be a decent example for the lower ranks. Whatever you lack in style specific information you will more than likely make up with effort and study on your own time which has been pretty evident by the way you have been looking for a new second home.

Good luck to you and looking forward to reading about your continued progress in your new style.
 
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_Simon_

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Congratulations Simon. I understand how you feel. Having followed your journey, I can see that you are not chasing belts and understand that the rank also comes with some responsibility that you want to feel you can uphold. 3rd kyu may very well be a good place for you to begin this part of your journey as you do have prior experience that is transferable to your new style and it would seem as if your form is good enough to be a decent example for the lower ranks. Whatever you lack in style specific information you will more than likely make up with effort and study on your own time which has been pretty evident by the way you have been looking for a new second home.

Good luck to you and looking forward to reading about your continued progress in your new style.
Yes absolutely, thank you very much!

That's a really good way of putting it, and for sure it is a certain responsibility that rank, maybe that's why it shocked me haha, but keen to diligently work on and iron out any kinks for sure.

Osu :)
 
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_Simon_

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Really loving training :)

Wednesday class we got the mats out and spent some time working on ukemi, rolling and a variety of different break falls. So so handy to learn...

Advanced class (which i am now a part of) has been varied and we work alot on bunkai, but this time was really dedicated technical kata practice. Was really good, times when we practice on our own, and the instructors would go around and watch/help intermittently. Really value that, I find it's hard to practice it properly with someone constantly watching, but breaking it up into solo and more guided was wonderful.

This morning we did push hands exercises which I just LOVE and have always wanted to delve into, we'll be doing it more often :)

And today's advanced class was working on nage waza, throwing techniques and takedowns. Something I am HORRENDOUS at haha, but hoping to get more comfortable at.

Also have dedicated sparring classes which I'll be attending next weekend's.

That's all :)
 
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_Simon_

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Also, I need to learn the art of "tapping out" haha. We were doing takedowns and joint locks etc, I think I waited too long until the pressure was on, but I'm learning to move "with" the lock more (in the direction it's applied) to avoid the pain and hyper extension or whatever, and tap as soon as it reaches that... place. New stuff for me.
 

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Also, I need to learn the art of "tapping out" haha. We were doing takedowns and joint locks etc, I think I waited too long until the pressure was on, but I'm learning to move "with" the lock more (in the direction it's applied) to avoid the pain and hyper extension or whatever, and tap as soon as it reaches that... place. New stuff for me.
This is one of the things that a lot of folks have to learn when they get into these types of locks. Once you know them well enough, you're able to tell they are about to work, just before they actually do, so you have that extra bit of time to get started on the tap-out. Also, some of what you're feeling now, you'll be less sensitive to. I think there's some toghening of some sort to the joint (not sure how better to describe it) and you gain some range of motion over time, so the lock-point is less absolute.
 
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_Simon_

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This is one of the things that a lot of folks have to learn when they get into these types of locks. Once you know them well enough, you're able to tell they are about to work, just before they actually do, so you have that extra bit of time to get started on the tap-out. Also, some of what you're feeling now, you'll be less sensitive to. I think there's some toghening of some sort to the joint (not sure how better to describe it) and you gain some range of motion over time, so the lock-point is less absolute.
Ah that's very helpful, thanks heaps :)
 

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