Friday, 22 March 2019


Robert Frost said:

‘Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.’

My dojo feels a little like this. Shouldn't they all? Since grading for my Shodan in May 2013 (6 years?? How has it been 6 years?!) my focus and commitment to my karate training has been sporadic (if we're being polite) or appalling (if we're being honest). Yet, every time I return to the dojo, it feels a little bit like coming home.

I've been back in the dojo consistently since August 2018 (barring a few weeks off in December when my older brother sadly passed away (yes, you read that right, on top of losing my Mum (2012) and my little brother (2013), the universe clearly has not tired of kicking me in the pants by inflicting us with family bereavements!)). 

I haven't wanted to resurrect the blog, or post that I've been back to training, because every time I've done that in the past 6 years its been short lived. I've had more comebacks than Madonna! 

We began back to karate as a family in August. Sadly it hasn't really stuck for the rest of the cookie family but I'm definitely feeling my karate mojo again. I've been consistently to 3 to 5 classes per week since January. I feel like I'm making serious progress in getting back to where I was in terms of knowledge, practice and understanding and in some areas even moving on.

There is talk of Nidan grading in the autumn. I think my belt has had that one gold tab for long enough. Time to put some graft in and take the next step.

So, focus for the next few months:

1) Fitness - currently level is pretty much in the toilet. I need to get back to some proper cardio and strength training. Good job I didn't cancel that gym membership.Thankfully the Cookie Kidlets are old enough to fend for themselves at home for a few hours now if hubby and I both need to be out.

2) Flexibility - I am still about as bendy as an ironing board. In fact I think it's probably worse. Somewhere in our house exists a copy of Flexibility for Martial Artists. I need to get that dug out.

3) Kata - My lower kyu kata are in pretty good shape. My higher kyu kata is a mixed bag, some are boxed off, some need work. My Shodan kata are okay, they just need more repetition and practice. My Nidan kata...... work in progress.

That's probably about enough to think about for now! Trying to balance the enjoyment against the possibility of overdoing it and burning out. My boss says I'm Action Potential: when I go for something I am an all or nothing kind of person. Must fine the middle ground!


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Maira Gall