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Isn't it strange how what you like and dislike about your martial art changes as you make progress. When I was a junior coloured belt I liked practising the basic kihon moves, pad work and kata but I really disliked the kumite, kata bunkai and self-defence techniques. Now I actually prefer the things I disliked before! I still think it is important to regularly go through all the basic moves and I still have a long way to go in improving my technique with many of them - particularly spinning kicks! And it is never a chore to find a space in the dojo to practise my kata.
However, now I really like sparring and learning defences against different attacks. So what has changed? I think the change is clearly in me. kata and basic kihon appealed more initially because you don't actually have to touch anybody so it's like learning karate without all the unpleasant or painful bits. Now though, I have the confidence to be thrown and to assertively apply techniques, including throws, to others. In other words I've got over the not wanting to be physically close with other students and the fear of being hurt or hurting someone.
So now I am able to enjoy learning all the elements that karate has to offer me and not shy away from the less pleasant ones. I feel my 'journey to black belt' is moving forward, slowly but surely and hopefully I will be ready for my grading to brown belt in June.
Did you have an awareness of something changing in you as you learnt your martial art
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