Saturday, February 04, 2006

One week before the test . . .

. . . and there weren't that many people at class. Maybe 18 or so. Brian and I were in the 2nd row, right behind the black belts.

"We're moving up," I said. And of course, it's true.

Still, it's odd that so many people missed the Saturday class before the test.

When I filled out my test application before class, I noticed that there's a space there for you to list how many classes you've been to since the last test. I wonder if anyone in our school fills that out. I for one do not know how many classes I've attended since December 10!

There's been a line of discussion in on how long it takes to be a black belt. One thread of that discussion is on whether schools should record hours of class taken, not weeks of class taken. Another thread argues that some people just learn quicker, so each person can be judged ready for a black belt test at different times.

Master Hughes has often said that tests used to be 3 months apart, not 2. Sometimes I think that wouldn't be a bad idea. But for this test, when I've been getting in an extra practice per week with Brian (and a couple of extra practices with Justin way back in late December), I feel more ready than I usually do.

Dylan led the class, and did a very nice job. He did very well--serious and competent at leading the basic stuff. Justin was the teacher today, but he stood by and gave Dylan suggestions. It was a good mentoring situation, I thought. We all miss Ms. Pryor's intense Saturday workouts, but we're doing OK for now.

Dylan gave us a nice long time to spar, which I liked--for the practice and for the cardio workout that sparring always gives. We worked on 1 and 3 step sparring, too. Everyone there was really working hard, so the game of tag at the end of class was comic relief--fast running and yelling by all, and amusing acrobatic tags by Brian A (who was "it.")

Working hard, playing hard. Those who were there today knew it was time to get ready for that test, making this hour on a Saturday morning really count.

[note: this post didn't get posted on 2-4 as planned; they were working on the system over at]

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