This month in class we are gearing up for a belt test, which is to happen on the 18th. It is going to be a huge test. There are three men going for their black belt and one man going for his second stripe on his black belt (nidan). The first three men are going to have to have a 10 man fight and the soon to be nidan, will have to fight 20.
Wednesday is our only full contact training of the week right now. I really need full contact training. That is where I burn the most calories. Get the cardio up. This week an old buddy came back to the dojo too. Nate has been away working hard and now he is home for a while. Nate and I started around the same time and we both fought for the first time together last year in Connecticut.
Nate, Sensei K, and I were the only one for full contact and we started with bag work and mored on to blocking kicks and practicing our cresent kicks. Shihan came back from dropping off his kids and to my surprize, he said we were goingt o do domawashi kaiten geri, or wheel kick.
He brought out bob, the body opponent bag and wrapped the base with a mat and placed a mat on the floor. Sensei adjusted the floor mat and tried to hit Bob. Unfortunately she missed.
My turn, I set up, I eye bob's nose and flip bringing my right leg up and over me as straight as I can. I almost get his head but got his chest instead. I kind of landed a bit on my head. ouch.
Nate decided to sit out for a while because he had never done this kick before and wanted to see how it was done before he tried it.
Sensei tried again and after adjusting the mat, missed again.
My turn and I did it. I struck bob with my heal, right into his pretty face and I really rocked the dummy. Sensei was now more determined than ever to hit bob. She really had a hard time. So we move the mats to a hanging heavy bag and still it is hard for her. I didn't really have that much of a problem. I struck the bag, leaving a deep imprint of my heel nearly every time.
Sensei and Shihan taught me this kick last June. New tricks wheel kick. She is a lot better than I at everything, including this kick when we were holding pads at head level last summer. It is a really hard kick to do. Hard to preform and hard on the body. Especially against bob because he has that heavy base to worry about it.
Worry, that is the word I need to describe why Sensei didn't hit bob and the lesson of the day. She was worried about the landing. She adjusted the mat and came at Bob with an angle so she would land on the mat. Bob's base is hard and heavy. Bob doesn't have the give that a human has. So I don't blame her for protecting herself but that mindset of how and where to land is what made it difficult for her.
I have seen someone else trying to do the kick and he also wasn't very good about it. He would focus on the flip. It was the prettiest flip ever and he landed on his hip like he is supposed to, but the foot hardly made the target and it wasn't powerful when he did.
Thinking is the key to this kick. What you are thinking about will determine your success. Think about the flip and your kick isn't strong. Think about the landing and you miss altogether.Think about hitting the target and doing it hard.
I didn't give a second thought about landing or the flip (probably should have). I saw Bob's nose and was determined to hit it. I went up to Bob and did an flipping ax kick (wheel kick) straight on, landed on the base somewhat and slid down. Did the same with the heavy bag. Had I thought about the landing and maybe hurting myself I wouldn't have done it well, because that wasn't the most pleasant place to land.