Monday, February 28, 2011

Kita Katsushita-Gun Open Tournament, 30th January 2010

Pictures Courtesy of Arakawa Sensei's Blog

Peter Here;

The year's competition calendar literally kicked off with the Kita-Katsushita Area Taikai on Sunday 30th January. Technically, I was still told to not compete by the doctor because of my toe recovery, but a combination of my foot feeling great (no pain at all for a while), and itchiness to get back into training and competing meant that I was lining up with the other competitors at the opening ceremony.

As this was an open tournament, the major styles had come to participate; Goju, Shito, Shotokan and Wado were all present, and it was great to see some old faces from previous tournaments again. I even surprise them with some (allegedly) improved Japanese!

Kata was first, and it wasn't so good for the Wado entrants, as could be predicted. Personally I love Wado kata, but the other styles had fielded a strong set of competitors, including in my category. I felt happy that I had given my best shot with seishan (even Arakawa Sensei said it was my best attempt yet, despite the weird kicks and shiko dachi), so I was satisfied with how I did even though I went out at the first hurdle.

Pictures Courtesy of Arakawa Sensei's Blog

Kumite was a bit better, as I was drawn against a relatively easy opponent in the first round, winning 5-0. What I was even happier with is that I was scoring with punches and not relying on my feet (although I must say my healing foot forced me into it somewhat). The next round however saw me compete against Toyama Sensei, one of Arakawa Sensei's many friends. He was BIG and, to be honest, the fear stopped me from performing. I seized up, and ended up losing 3-0. The problem was that I could see scoring opportunities, but didn't think I was fast enough to get them. I will work on this.

As usual for the tournaments, many kids from the Shiramizu English classes were there, and I spent a lot of time with Sae, Kaho and Saho from the Monday class drilling them on distance and gyakuzuki. Whenever I get the chance to do this it reminds me of how much I love coaching the kids, both in English and Karate, and it's really something I'd love to do back home now.

Shiramizu ended with medals and many best 8's, and overall it was a good haul for them. Considering that I had been injured and unable to train for the past five weeks, I felt my performance wasn't disappointing, though for the next tournament I must improve if I am to reach my goals of at least two silver medals this year. Back to the Dojo!

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