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aurik
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 08 Nov 2016
Posts: 25
Location: Denver, CO
Styles: Shuri-Ryu, Uechi-Ryu

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 2:18 pm    Post subject: Cool stuff I learned this week Reply with quote

As I've mentioned in my introductory thread, I studied martial arts for awhile when I was much younger (20-odd years ago). In high school, I attended a Juko-Kai school, where I learned Aiki-jujutsu (black sash) and shorinji kempo (gokyu). After I graduated high school, I studied for a year in central Illinois where I learned shuri-ryu (gokyu), kodokan judo (yonkyu), and some okinawan kobudo (primarily bo and sai). I loved the school and instructor, but had to leave after a year due to work considerations.

Two years ago, my son started at an ATA school, and I figured it would be something I can do with him. However, the school was hit or miss. They had one really good assistant instructor there, but after awhile I became disillusioned with the school. For example, he has a number of 7 year old black belts, and as long as you have time in grade and pay the testing fee, he'll promote you. Heck, my son once couldn't perform the required forms in a testing session. What did he do? He took our money, got one of the higher rank students to work with him for a bit on the techniques, and promoted him anyways.

Well, last year I finished my degree (PhD in Computer Science), and we moved to the Denver area. My son started immediately asking about doing karate again. We eventually found an instructor who would come to his after-school care and taught him. We eventually moved his lessons to the instructor's dojo (which, fortunately for us, is right across the street from his school).

Well, after watching his lessons for the entire summer, I decided I'd take the plunge. A little over a month ago, I decided to try things out. The good news is that a lot of my muscle memory is still there. The bad news is some of it's "wrong." But I'm having lots of fun while I'm at it, and I can already feel the differences in my everyday life. So as I continue with my journey, I'd figure I'd share what I'm learning here.
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aurik
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 08 Nov 2016
Posts: 25
Location: Denver, CO
Styles: Shuri-Ryu, Uechi-Ryu

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2018 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So last week was... interesting, to say the least. Last Saturday, our Sensei was hosting Master James Thompson (head of Uechi-Ryu Karate Do Kokusai Kyokai) at our dojo in order to do black belt testing (including several advanced black belts). During the course of the weekend, Master Thompson was also teaching several seminars, including a youth-oriented seminar (which my son attended), and a adult seminar for all ranks (which I attended).

I was hesitant at first, since I am still very new to Uechi-Ryu, but my sensei assured me I'd do fine. I understand enough of Sanchin and Kanshiwa to be able to perform them and not look dazed and confused.

During the course of the seminar, we did a lot of Sanchin and Kanshiwa, and I learned the first parts of Kanshu (well, I ran through it 3 times, but I was mainly following those around me, so it didn't sink in). Master Thompson also showed us some new variants on kote kitae. I was paired with my sensei's brother (who I later found out was testing for Godan the next day). For the first exercise it was mainly blocks and punches. My wrists and forearms are STARTING to get used to this. Okay...

The second variant added in a front kick to be blocked by... how do I put this, basically just dropping your forearm horizontal and then dropping your entire body weight a bit. On my first or second attempt, I kicked my partner's forearm.... and it felt liked I'd kicked a baseball bat. Needless to say, my shins are definitely NOT used to that!

Some of the other drills he taught were much more fun. He taught some joint locks and good vital points to strike when in close, and showed us some of the subtleties in all of the blocks and strikes we do. Such as turning a double-hand block into a block/punch on the wrist, followed by pulling hikite and striking the opponent's floating ribs on the way, followed by a sieken tsuki to the bladder. On one hand, this was a refinement to things I'd already seen (both as a white belt in uechi-ryu, and in previous incarnations). On another hand, you see what he's about to do and your eyes go wide open in "A-HA".

So I left the seminar feeling really good about what I had learned, but also pretty drained from the 3 hour workout. The 3 of us (wife, mini-me,and myself) had tickets to an AHL hockey game immediately afterwards,so that's where we went (changing in the car). Unfortunately, I ended up paying the price midway through the 3rd period as my quads and adductors started cramping up.

Oh, well. Something else to add up in the "lessons learned" category.
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tallgeese
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 04 May 2008
Posts: 6834
Location: McHenry County, IL
Styles: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Bujin Bugei Jutsu, Gokei Ryu Kempo Jutsu, MMA, Shootfighting, boxing, kickboxing, JKD, Pekiti Tersia Kali

PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 7:58 am    Post subject: Re: Cool stuff I learned this week Reply with quote

aurik wrote:
As I've mentioned in my introductory thread, I studied martial arts for awhile when I was much younger (20-odd years ago). In high school, I attended a Juko-Kai school, where I learned Aiki-jujutsu (black sash) and shorinji kempo (gokyu). After I graduated high school, I studied for a year in central Illinois where I learned shuri-ryu (gokyu), kodokan judo (yonkyu), and some okinawan kobudo (primarily bo and sai). I loved the school and instructor, but had to leave after a year due to work considerations.

Two years ago, my son started at an ATA school, and I figured it would be something I can do with him. However, the school was hit or miss. They had one really good assistant instructor there, but after awhile I became disillusioned with the school. For example, he has a number of 7 year old black belts, and as long as you have time in grade and pay the testing fee, he'll promote you. Heck, my son once couldn't perform the required forms in a testing session. What did he do? He took our money, got one of the higher rank students to work with him for a bit on the techniques, and promoted him anyways.

Well, last year I finished my degree (PhD in Computer Science), and we moved to the Denver area. My son started immediately asking about doing karate again. We eventually found an instructor who would come to his after-school care and taught him. We eventually moved his lessons to the instructor's dojo (which, fortunately for us, is right across the street from his school).

Well, after watching his lessons for the entire summer, I decided I'd take the plunge. A little over a month ago, I decided to try things out. The good news is that a lot of my muscle memory is still there. The bad news is some of it's "wrong." But I'm having lots of fun while I'm at it, and I can already feel the differences in my everyday life. So as I continue with my journey, I'd figure I'd share what I'm learning here.


There's a chance we've met. Central Illinois was my stomping ground 20 years ago. Was the USBBA crowed training with the Juko-kai guys then? I'm thinking it was earlier but that overlap was evident for a long time. PM me if you get the chance.
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https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJhRVuwbm__LwXPvFMReMww
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14183
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you, aurik, for allowing us to walk with you and your son while on your MA journey. I enjoy, as well as looking forward in reading your posts!!

Train hard and train well!!



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singularity6
Pre-Black Belt
Pre-Black Belt

Joined: 26 Jun 2017
Posts: 958
Location: Michigan
Styles: Jidokwan Taekwondo and Hapkido, Yoshokai Aikido, ZNIR Iaido, Kendo

PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2018 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting reads! Thank you for sharing.
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5th Geup Jidokwan Tae Kwon Do/Hap Ki Do

(Never officially tested in aikido, iaido or kendo)
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aurik
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 08 Nov 2016
Posts: 25
Location: Denver, CO
Styles: Shuri-Ryu, Uechi-Ryu

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2018 10:19 am    Post subject: Re: Cool stuff I learned this week Reply with quote

tallgeese wrote:
aurik wrote:
As I've mentioned in my introductory thread, I studied martial arts for awhile when I was much younger (20-odd years ago). In high school, I attended a Juko-Kai school, where I learned Aiki-jujutsu (black sash) and shorinji kempo (gokyu). After I graduated high school, I studied for a year in central Illinois where I learned shuri-ryu (gokyu), kodokan judo (yonkyu), and some okinawan kobudo (primarily bo and sai). I loved the school and instructor, but had to leave after a year due to work considerations.

Two years ago, my son started at an ATA school, and I figured it would be something I can do with him. However, the school was hit or miss. They had one really good assistant instructor there, but after awhile I became disillusioned with the school. For example, he has a number of 7 year old black belts, and as long as you have time in grade and pay the testing fee, he'll promote you. Heck, my son once couldn't perform the required forms in a testing session. What did he do? He took our money, got one of the higher rank students to work with him for a bit on the techniques, and promoted him anyways.

Well, last year I finished my degree (PhD in Computer Science), and we moved to the Denver area. My son started immediately asking about doing karate again. We eventually found an instructor who would come to his after-school care and taught him. We eventually moved his lessons to the instructor's dojo (which, fortunately for us, is right across the street from his school).

Well, after watching his lessons for the entire summer, I decided I'd take the plunge. A little over a month ago, I decided to try things out. The good news is that a lot of my muscle memory is still there. The bad news is some of it's "wrong." But I'm having lots of fun while I'm at it, and I can already feel the differences in my everyday life. So as I continue with my journey, I'd figure I'd share what I'm learning here.


There's a chance we've met. Central Illinois was my stomping ground 20 years ago. Was the USBBA crowed training with the Juko-kai guys then? I'm thinking it was earlier but that overlap was evident for a long time. PM me if you get the chance.


I'd love to send you a PM, but I don't have enough posts yet However, my Juko-Kai days were in Southern Illinois (near St Louis), so we may not have had any overlap, and actually those were in the early 1990's. Now I'm starting to really feel old...
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aurik
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 08 Nov 2016
Posts: 25
Location: Denver, CO
Styles: Shuri-Ryu, Uechi-Ryu

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 9:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, it's been a couple weeks since I posted in here (so much for the "cool stuff I learned this week" topic ). Anyhow, I've had a few revelations over the past few weeks.

At our school we do a sparring class each Saturday. Most of the ones who attend are kids, but a few adults also attend, so we get to spar against each other. Anyhow, I was sparring against one of the better adults there (non-black belt), and he had come in for a kick. I blocked it with a crane block, and I accidentally stepped on his foot on the way down. At that point I realized that I had him at a severe disadvantage and could have wailed on him pretty much all I wanted. Being the nice guy I am (and not wanting to injure my partner), I let him go pretty quick. Later on in the day, I was sparring our CI and tried that on him a few times. It didn't work, but I'll definitely be trying it a few more times.

I'm also getting to the point where I'm starting to feel BETTER after a workout (as opposed to beat up). I'm not as young or spry as I once was -- I've got some arthritis/bursitis going on in my knee, and I've got bulging discs in my lower back. However, after a class I may feel exhausted, but my knee and back tend to feel a LOT better.

Finally, I tested for (and passed) for kukyu today. I liked the way the CI runs his tests -- he has a panel of yudansha that form the testing board, and each black belt is responsible for a handful of students. The board members each take notes on the student's performance, and after the test (we all passed), the supervising black belt gives each individual student feedback on where they erred (I didn't make any egregious mistakes), and also areas they need to focus on for their next belt. I found it to be a very refreshing approach to testing.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14183
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2018 10:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great post, aurik!! Glad to hear that you do Kumite with your CI as well because the CI makes you work for it and earn it; gives you a different aspect than from those same or near experience.

Congrats on passing your Kukyu Testing Cycle; the fun continues!!



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Wayofaswede
Member of the Month
Member of the Month

Joined: 16 Jan 2017
Posts: 127
Location: Sweden
Styles: Shukokai Shito Ryu, Goju Ryu, Aikido (Aikikai), Judo, Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu

PostPosted: Sun Dec 09, 2018 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations on passing your test.


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The path so far: 3 kyu Aikido (Aikikai), 4 kyu Karate (Shukokai Shito-ryu), 5 kyu Judo, 9 kyu Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu

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Fat Cobra
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 14 Jul 2018
Posts: 113
Location: Fort Drum, NY
Styles: Ryukyu Kempo

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

aurik wrote:
Well, it's been a couple weeks since I posted in here (so much for the "cool stuff I learned this week" topic ). Anyhow, I've had a few revelations over the past few weeks.

At our school we do a sparring class each Saturday. Most of the ones who attend are kids, but a few adults also attend, so we get to spar against each other. Anyhow, I was sparring against one of the better adults there (non-black belt), and he had come in for a kick. I blocked it with a crane block, and I accidentally stepped on his foot on the way down. At that point I realized that I had him at a severe disadvantage and could have wailed on him pretty much all I wanted. Being the nice guy I am (and not wanting to injure my partner), I let him go pretty quick. Later on in the day, I was sparring our CI and tried that on him a few times. It didn't work, but I'll definitely be trying it a few more times.

I'm also getting to the point where I'm starting to feel BETTER after a workout (as opposed to beat up). I'm not as young or spry as I once was -- I've got some arthritis/bursitis going on in my knee, and I've got bulging discs in my lower back. However, after a class I may feel exhausted, but my knee and back tend to feel a LOT better.

Finally, I tested for (and passed) for kukyu today. I liked the way the CI runs his tests -- he has a panel of yudansha that form the testing board, and each black belt is responsible for a handful of students. The board members each take notes on the student's performance, and after the test (we all passed), the supervising black belt gives each individual student feedback on where they erred (I didn't make any egregious mistakes), and also areas they need to focus on for their next belt. I found it to be a very refreshing approach to testing.


Congratulations on your promotion. It sounds like you are going to a good Dojo with great instructors. I agree 100% about the panel of Yudansha assisting with testing.
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Sandan in Ryukyu Kempo
Head of the Shubu Kan in Fort Drum, NY
(United Ryukyu Kempo Alliance)


Last edited by Fat Cobra on Tue Dec 11, 2018 10:52 am; edited 1 time in total
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