Monday, August 3, 2015

Karate Homework, 8/2/15

Last night I decided to start focusing more on the testing material, until I test later this month. To that end, here's what I did:


Stance progression:  10 times each side

Heian Shodan: Three times

Heian Nidan (all of it): Three times

Yellow belt hand technique demo: three times

Yellow belt kicking demo: three times

Yellow belt three-step sparring: once, with my imaginary friend

Orange belt hand technique demo: three times

Orange belt kicking demo: one time, but I'm confused and have reached out to my teacher for clarification.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Karate, 8/1/15

After stretching and going through kihon, we took another look at my heian shodan. Here are the tweaks my instructor suggested this time:


  • My wrist is bent on my rising blocks. I need to straighten it out.
  • I'm still fighting old muscle memory when it comes to my hip direction during blocks. Need more work on that.
  • My back stance is still all jacked up! I don't know why it's so elusive to me, but I'll keep at it. 

Earlier this week, my instructor said he wanted me to test for yellow belt later this month. During class yesterday, he suggested I test for orange on the same night.  I'm pretty confident in the yellow belt material, but nervous about the orange belt stuff. 

He showed me the 3-step sparring stuff I'll need for yellow belt, and the basics demo I need for Orange. In a couple of weeks, he'll show me the 3-step I need for orange. He also showed me the rest of heian nidan. I really like the kata but the second half is totally new to me.

I have a lot of work to do in the next couple of weeks! 

Karate Homework, 7/31/15

Stance progression:  10 times each side

Rising block: 10 times each side, front stance

Down block: 10 times each side, front stance

Front kicks: 10 times each side, front stance

Side kicks: 10 times each side, holding wall

Back kicks: 10 times each side, holding wall

Roundhouse kick (over back of a chair): 10 times each side, holding wall

Heian Shodan: Three times

Heian Nidan (First half): Three times

Yellow belt hand technique demo: three times

Yellow belt kicking demo: three times



Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Judo, 7/29/15

Tonight was all about juji gatame! 

First we drilled the typical one, from bottom guard, then the typical one from the top, from mount.

Next we worked on a few ways to get the arm from the top when bottom guy doesn't extend it for you. First was a "climbing juji", using your knees to get his arms out. Then, doing the same thing, but  doing things like figure-four-ing the arm you're attacking, picking bottom guy up on his side by his arm, sitting on his ribs, and doing a bicep crush when he won't let you get the arm loose.

Finally, we looked at how to slip out of an arm bar if you can pull it off quickly enough (grab your own lapel, shove their bottom leg under your leg and trap it, put their top leg behind your head, then turn into them). Has to be really fast. I tried it in randori later, but my opponent got the bicep crush on me anyway.

I rolled three times:

1. With one of the large yellow belts. Again, he dominated, but I'm determined to learn to deal with him.

2. A brown belt about my size. Sometimes I do okay against him, but tonight he was a little more aggressive. No big deal, I wasn't ashamed of my performance.

3. Against a 3rd dan. I think I surprised him a couple times. Once I escaped his arm bar attempt and turned it into a sweep. I also had him in open guard and nearly turned it into a triangle, but time ran out. He was obviously letting me play, which I appreciated.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Karate Homework, 7/28/15

Stance progression:  10 times each side

Punches: 10 times each side, horse stance

Backfists: 10 times each side, horse stance

Backfists with step: 10 times each side, horse stance

Rising block: 10 times each side, horse stance

Down block: 10 times each side, front stance

Inside block: 10 times each side, front stance

Outside block: 10 times each side, horse stance

Knife hand block: 10 times each side, back stance

Front kicks: 10 times each side, front stance

Side kicks: 10 times each side, holding wall

Back kicks: 10 times each side, holding wall

Roundhouse kick (over back of a chair): 10 times each side, holding wall

Heian Shodan: Three times

Heian Nidan (First half): Three times

Yellow belt hand technique demo: three times

Yellow belt kicking demo: three times


Notes:

  • I feel like I'm "getting" back stance better today. 
  • Both my hips are killing me from side and roundhouse kicks - they're not used to that range of motion. 

Judo, 7/27/15

Last night my rank group worked on all yellow belt material. It was good to run through the whole set of material pretty quickly. Again, I'm feeling pretty good about this set of stuff.

For the class drills we worked a couple of triangle entries (lapel grab and arm control), then the cross body arm lock, and the leg-grabbing sweep version of that. Wrapped up with the flower sweep. My triangles and flower sweep started to feel better this time.

I had a couple rounds of ground randori. My partner was another guy with a wrestling background, so he gave me a lot of trouble. He was light and spry, and it was tough to get him in guard. Once I did, I could dominate, but it only happened once. Also had better luck with survival and escapes due to his lighter weight.

Standing randori was with the same guy. I had a decent kouchi-to-ouchi combo, and a good ogoshi counter. I also pulled of a very pretty deashi, which I normally don't get during randori.

Karate Homework, 7/26/15

Stance progression:  10 times each side

Hip rotation:   10 times each side

Punches: 10 times each side, horse stance

Backfists: 5 times each side, horse stance

Backfists with step: 5 times each side, horse stance

Rising block: 10 times each side, horse stance

Down block: 10 times each side, front stance

Front kicks: 10 times each side, front stance

Side kicks: 10 times each side, holding wall

Back kicks: 10 times each side, holding wall

Heian Shodan: Twice

Heian Nidan (First half): Once

Yellow belt hand technique demo: three times

Yellow belt kicking demo: three times


My main focus this time was on correcting my back stance; keeping my torso upright instead of leaning back.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Karate, 7/25/15

Today was my second private karate lesson. We warmed up by doing a neat little stance progression that went like this:


  • Move into a front stance with either a punch or low block, I can't remember which
  • From there, the front leg comes back, then out into horse stance with a side elbow strike
  • The same leg moves backward into back stance while doing a knife hand block
  • Move same leg into front stance and it cycles for X repetitions
  • Repeat on other side
    • Things to remember:
      • Keep hips at same level throughout all movements
      • My back stance needs work
This was a great warmup, and I need to build more endurance to do much of it.

We warmed up more with some front kicks, side kicks, and a 2-person roundhouse kick drill. I need to make all my kicks more fluid. So far I keep breaking all the details down in my mind and it makes for choppy technique. We also did a few back fists and back fists with a kind of lunging step. I need to remember to breathe through all my movements, especially kicks.

Next we looked at the rank material for yellow belt. Seemed pretty straight forward. 
  • For hand techniques, you demonstrate 
    • three punches while moving forward in front stance 
    • three rising blocks while moving backward in front stance 
    • three forearm / outside blocks while moving forward in front stance
    • three knife hand blocks while moving backward in back stance
  • For foot techniques, you demonstrate
    • four front kicks while moving forward in front stance
    • four side kicks while moving sideways in horse stance
      • remember hips must not turn at all during these
  • Three step sparring
    • We haven't covered this yet
  • Kata
    • Heian shodan
      • I need to clean up my high blocks
      • I need to really work on my knife hand blocks and back stances
      • I also need to work on my hip direction during high and low blocks
Karate is turning out to be really hard work. Now to get to practicing!


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Judo, 7/22/15

Last night we drilled nothing but guard passes. We covered:
  • Thigh press guard pass
  • Separation / Step back guard pass
  • Stacking guard pass
  • Stack and flip guard pass
  • A few more variations I'm struggling to remember

Afterward we rolled a good bit. I went four rounds:

  1. Against a brown belt, roughly my size, I feel like I did well against him, at least positionally (I had some okay escapes, and maintained superior position for a while). I also remembered to play the choke threat / armbar and armbar threat choke game, but didn't get to pull it off (I would have tried for an armbar once, but another pair of folks was right behind us).
  2. A really smooth older black belt, that lets me into the game as well. I like rolling with him, but he gives me lots of trouble!
  3. A 275 lb short stocky yellow belt bulldozer. Once he gets on top of me it's over. I did almost pull off an armbar / triangle / spider guard defense, but only for a minute. It's ridiculous to even try to go against guys so much bigger than me at this point. Hopeless.
  4. A yellow belt closer to my size and skill. We always give each other a good challenge. He got an americana on me once, and I got a tee-pee triangle on him to end the night.
Lots of hard work!

Karate Homework, 7-23-15

Stances:
Stayed in front, back, and horse stance, for 30 seconds each side

Walked the floor in front and back stance, 4 steps each, total.

Strikes:

  • Punches: 20 each side, all from front stance.
  • Backfists: 20 each side, all from horse stance.

Blocks:

  • Rising block: 10 each side, all from horse stance.
  • Down block: 10 each side, all from front stance.
  • Inside block: 10 each side, all from front stance.
  • Outside block: 10 each side, all from front stance.
  • Knife hand block: 10 each side, all from back stance.

Kicks:

  • Front kicks: 10 each side.
  • Side kicks: 10 each side.
  • Back kicks: 10 each side.
  • Roundhouse set up (Leg lift only): 10 each side.
  • Roundhouse set up (lift and rotate only): 10 each side.

Movement:

  • Hip rotation: 20 each side.

Katas:

  • Heian Shodan: 2 repetitions.
  • Heian Nidan (to the first kiai): 3 repetitions.