One bad night.

September 8, 2011

Coming into class last night, I learned that Sifu is in the hospital. He’s having surgery for an ongoing issue. The surgery went well, but he will be off the mat once more as he recovers from this latest complication. Our love and best wishes go out to Sifu and his family.

Classes will continue, taught by senior students and black sashes. I am not of a high enough rank or skill to teach even a kids class, of course, but I will do whatever I can to help my Sifus and my school during this time.

On a personal note, last night fucking sucked for me. It was one of those snowball nights. One little thing goes wrong and it irks me. More things go wrong and I become increasingly frustrated with myself. By the end of the night I was done in. I just couldn’t bring it back into the groove. I was challenged to let go of that frustration and just move on, and I’m here to tell you, it was a challenge that I failed. It stayed with me all through that second hour and on into the night. I got my ass kicked sparring; I couldn’t move for shit and I continuously left myself wide open for some well-deserved shots, shots that seemed effortless for my partners and ridiculously – and I mean ridiculously – elusive for me. Trick #5 was frustrating and difficult, I never did get it right. Form #3 left me feeling wonky and lame, to the point where I said ‘fuck it’ (literally, I said out loud, ‘fuck it) and just went back to the forms I know well. When I got home, the feeling that nothing was going right lingered throughout the night. It was just one of those days. I know I’m not the only one who has them, but it sure does feel that way when we’re stuck in the middle of one.

Knowing what my wonderful Sifus have been through and continue to go through, it feels incredibly petty and childish and stupid to bitch and moan about having one bad night. I don’t mean to complain about it, really I don’t, but only to get it off of my chest and out of my head.


6 Responses to “One bad night.”

  1. Kathy said

    Prayers for Sifu T and Sifu B; they has been through a lot this last year.

    You are right about not being the only one to get into the middle of a funk. Earlier this week I was ready to just give it up all together-I seem to be treading water and with my next promotion coming up that is not where I want to be.

    One of the BB told me that it is part of the process and that between Blue/Green and Green/Brown it happens to most everyone at some point.

    I’ll pass on his advice: it will get better, hang in there!


    PS: Form 3 seems to be one of those forms that takes awhile to begin feeling right.

    • Kajumaga said

      Thanks Kathy, I know Sifu T and B appreciate all of the prayers and good thoughts coming their way. I saw Sifu T. last night, and he is recovering at home. It will be a while before he is back on the mat, but he is surrounded by good people and has a lot of support.

      Also, thank you for the good advice. I read somewhere that, for many martial artists, somewhere along the line we hit a plateau where our progress seems to stop. I think that’s where I’ve been for a while now – treading water, or even worse, backsliding. Things that seemed simple suddenly become difficult. No lie, it’s frustrating! A huge part training for me is to push myself beyond what is comfortable, not just physically but mentally and even emotionally.

      Some days feel like a test of dedication and perseverance. Those days, I have to remind myself of what we go through in our tests. For every black sash, a part of their test was to wear them out, to force them to push through, dig down and find the will to keep going. While I may not have the willpower of a black sash, I have no plans to quit the training when it gets hard. Instead, I try to remind myself that this is the best part. I am here to push myself past those blocks that say, “This sucks. Why do you do this to yourself? You’ve got a bruised rib, wrist and shoulder, you dope. Go home, eat a bag of potato chips and watch House!” Admittedly, Dr. House and a bag of chips sound pretty good some nights! But I know they won’t get me where I want to be. 🙂

  2. Nick said

    I had this experience when I was promoting and as learning so much then for some reason nothing was wanting to work for me every thing went down hill. I am not sure what rank I was at but it was hard to want to come back the next day. I was told by my instructor that it would pass and to not push so had for awhile. so I came in the next couple days and went through the motions for awhile and didnt try as hard to push after awhile It all came back to me. From time to time this will happen again with my training and now I take a little break like a couple days off to relax and recharge myself. This helped me to realize why we do what we do to better ourselves, those around use, and we like the abuse.

  3. Nick said

    I am curious;

    What different kinds of drills do you guys do in your class?

    I am trying to build a list myself of Kajukenbo Drills and it seems like I am forgetting alot of them.

    • Kajumaga said

      Hi Nick,

      Thank you for all of the comments! The drills we do consistently are:

      Kicking sets with partner. Basically ten of front, round, side kicks, plus slide ups of all three. We’re working on technique, not power.

      Kicking sets down the mat and back with partner and kick shield, front/round/side/mule. Here we’re working on technique plus power. Advanced students throw these kicks from closer to the target.

      Basic walking (stepping off line) and tai chi step/turn, with and without vertical punch/brush block or backfist.

      Punching sets on the bag. We monkey line the bag and go through different punches, one or two strikes at a time. This way, our instructor can see and correct each of us throwing punches at 100%.

      Punching sets with focus mitts. Backfist/reverse, duck the cross from partner, backfist/reverse.

      Depending on the instructor, we sometimes practice drills that don’t get practiced very often. Things like shoulder rolls to a fighting stance, breakfalls, or different combinations of techniques and takedowns. Everything else above, though, we practice consistently. There are probably other that I’m forgetting as well, but we really cover the basics.

      Sigung is fond of saying, what do they practice in the teens class? Basics. What do we practice in adult class? Basics. What do we practice in advanced class? Basics. They want us to build strong foundations!

  4. Kirk said

    Odd (or perhaps not),
    Those are almost exactly the same things we do in class. Huh Nick?
    I think we all understand the need to drill the basics. But as a student, we have a hard time fitting in all of the different things we feel we need to work on, and sometimes drilling the basics over and over feels…….well….a little repetitive. We feel rushed to fit in all of the things that are required learning from white through first degree. That is part of the progression process as a student. The initial wondering if you can actually do this as a new student gives way to a certain amount of settling into a rhythm as a purple through about green belt. Then the pace to brown-black picks up…..and the panic sets in. “Oh no! It is my next test. How did it get here so fast? Have I learned anything? Am I ready?”.
    After a certain point that frenzy goes away. You outrank those kinds of tests. The student runs out of “new” things to learn. You have been shown all of the curriculum. Then you have to realize that the goal is not always to learn new things, but the perfection of what has been already given. New things come from outside the school. You pick up another art, you incorporate into what you know. Seminars, message boards, YouTube etc.
    It is a circle. A big circle. White to Black, back to White again. All the while filling the cup so that it can be emptied again.

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