Saturday, November 19, 2005

Watching sparring

We broke today at all-belts, and I was able to do my axe kick break on the 2nd try. Brian and I also went through a bunch of forms. There was some side-kick practice that made my hips ache. But mostly, we sparred.

Justin had us get in circles to do some round-robin sparring. Basically, different pairs get chances to spar each other. Often the winner will pick their next partner; this time, we just took turns with different pairs each time.

You learn different things when you spar like this. Mostly, you get more of a chance to watch others spar. In fact, you have to watch--and watch for points. Kicks or punches to the torso are usually 1 point and kicks to the head 2 points.

I think it's good to learn how to watch for point scoring. It helps you focus and helps you learn to officiate a match, which all black belts need to know how to do. I also watched how others kicked and blocked, and noticed how the better sparrers really moved their arms to cover the sides of their torsos as they sparred.

The guys--the dads, I mean--were full of vinegar today, teasing each other, joking around, laughing. Women seemed to be seriously outnumbered in class (Stacy and I were the only grownups) which seemed to add to the boistrous air.

Brian and Brian sparred in an endless match--or maybe two. They're both pretty good. I can't even remember who won, but I do remember all the guys took it easier than usual, keeping their hits to "light to no contact."

I sparred against Jamie, a green belt high school girl. I'm more than twice her age, but I'm faster and have more sparring experience, so I won without too much problem.

At the end, Justin challenged anyone who wanted to spar him. LOTS of people took him up on that; mostly the black belt girls, who gave him a run for his money. Paul did well, too. Justin must have sparred in 6 or 8 matches. Quite impressive as most people get too winded to do that much fighting at once. Usually the teacher doesn't get to have that much of a workout! It must have been that pop-tart he ate before class that gave him the energy to get through it.

I was disappointed, though, not to have the chance to spar again--maybe back in our usual sparring lines--after our round robin. After watching all those matches, I wanted to try out some things. Maybe we'll have time on Monday; after that, there'll be a break for Thanksgiving that's long enough for me to forget stuff!

No comments: