Summer Gasshuku 2015
- Henry Wren
Monday- Day 1
After the long journey to Milton Abbas, Dorset, I was very excited. Me and my cousin Alex Wren- with Sensei Mark-spent most of the journey trying to make Sensei Anthony nervous for his grading on Wednesday (it worked).
The first training session was hard work. However, despite this, I had revised Kushan-Ku and Pinan Godan. This influenced my karate as I practiced moves and stances to the best of my ability.
After the first training session, we went swimming. The TCB group played water polo and it was great fun. Even being pushed under water and tackled for the ball was great fun!
The evening training session was brilliant. We practiced pair work techniques and moved on to different counter attacks. This influenced my self defence as I learnt not to think about the technique I was about to do next making me faster and, as a result, protecting myself more effectively. After this we tried out our self defence techniques in a group of four. I went with Sempei Charlie, Sempei Aaron and Sempei Joseph. We had huge amounts of fun counter attacking each other and improving our Zanshin (awareness).
I am currently in the Common Room at Milton Abbey and I extremely feel part of the TCB team, even though Karate is seen to be a singular performance Martial Art.
Tuesday- Day 2
Day 2- While all the Senior grades grading tomorrow were getting nervous I enjoyed a quiet breakfast.
The first training session contained of me and Sempei Aaron practicing all the Senior Ohyo's for our next grading. I learnt a lot and improved my techniques while building a good connection between my grading partner and I.
The second training session consisted of kata practice. I revised all the Junior katas such as the Pinans. Also, I learnt the new katas for my next grading: Basai, Pachu and Niseishi . I also learnt Unsu, which I have been trying to learn for months.
During our swim time in the evening, Sempei Joseph and Sempei Ian Fanner taught me how to dive in the pool. This shows how our TCB group can help each other and group together as a team.
After swimming, TCB played rounders. Some of us were good, and some were worse than others.
Later on in the evening we played a huge game of 40/40 It, bringing us together as good friends.
Grading day: Today I went out early to improve my kicking. Half an hour or so past and I was surprised at my capability. I then injured my knee which made me out of action for the rest of the day.
The grading's started almost straight away. The whole of the TCB team were amazing and sent a buzz of electricity through my spine. It was amazing to see my role models gradings mean so much to them as it once did to me. All that participated were incredible and I was extremely proud of all of them. Well done to Sensei Anthony Wren, Sensei Darren Harding, Sensei Harriet Mears, Sensei Paul Valle, Sensei Denis Thompson all achieved 4th Dan and Sempei Ian Fanner 2nd Dan.
The afternoon session consisted of a competition. Unfortunatly, as I was injured I couldn't compete, however I learnt a lot by watching the competitors compete in Kumite and Kata. Well done to all that took place.
In the evening we went swimming and went to play tennis. We also had a sing-song with the piano, all building our TCB connection stronger.
In this morning session, we were taught by Master Ohta. We went over the Katas Jion and Basai-Sho. Master Ohta showed us not only the kata itself, he encouraged us to perform certain moves from the Katas to show their effect within a fighting situation. Also, it was very interesting to see the way that Master Ohta put power into his techniques within his Katas, by using his hips effectively. I learnt a lot by just sitting back and watching the way his hips moved in line with his hands, arms, shoulders and legs performing self defence techniques.
In the afternoon, we did free-fighting and kata. I couldn't take part in this due to injuries but I learnt a lot by watching students attack and defend themselves. This benefitted my karate as I didn't injure myself more but I could see where people should have hit the target when they didn't, increasing my awareness for open targets on the body and head.