On Saturday, November 15th, I competed in the Family Karate Center’s Inter-Club Tournament. This time I was competing as a yellow belt with a little bit more experience under my belt . . . (ha ha, get it). Anyway, I practiced all week perfecting my Heian Shodan kata for not only the competition on Saturday but for my next belt test on the 24th of November. When my name was called and I marched out on to that mat, I felt like a million bucks. Like everything I had been practicing for had come to this moment to show the judges what I had learned and how I’d improved. I was really nervous though too because the several days leading up to it, I had been doing hammer fists in place of my down blocks. I really didn’t want to forget those and wanted to try to remember to put my “looks” into the kata too. This is where you look in the direction of the invisible bad guy before you make your next move. After watching the video, I remembered some but not all looks but my shirashi steps (sliding your foot from one step to the next so you are never out of balance) have come along nice and they looked better than I thought they did. Check out the video below of my latest kata and the one at the very bottom is the very first competition I did on June 21st as a white belt.
I also decided to try kumite (sparring) at the tournament. I was REALLY nervous about fighting since I never had done it before but I’ve been going to sparring classes for a couple months so I at least felt better prepared. I was bracketed with my friend Amanda from my class, a brown belt and a purple belt. I got to fight against the brown belt and we fought first in our division. The match was really close and as time went on I was feeling more and more confident about my ability to fight. We went back and forth most the match and time expired before either of us reached eight points so we went into sudden victory overtime. A minute or so into overtime and she scored just a split second before I did and won the match. I ended up taking a bronze medal but I am not at all disappointed about it. In my eyes it was a gold. I accomplished exactly what I wanted to at the tournament and hope to try it again the next time I compete.
The day was really fun and I walked away feeling very accomplished. It is the best I’ve ever competed and I’ve decided to compete in a bigger tournament in December and possibly in the State Games of America this summer. I never would have guessed that I would have this much fun doing karate. I can’t wait to be a black belt and compete against my black belt friends and my instructor. Oh, one more thing . . . I just want to congratulate all of my Community Karate Club friends who competed. I was especially proud of my friends who competed for the first time. Can’t wait to see how you do in your next tournament. Hope you enjoy the videos. Please leave me feedback on what you think. I love to hear what others think of what they see.
Video of Heian Shodan at the 11/15/08 Tournament
Video of my very first Heian Shodan competition on 6/21/08