This dates back to February and was posted on Facebook at the time, but I wanted to capture the memory here, just in case the Region is returned to a Lockdown.
Congratulations to the first rounds of online graders! I have to admit, I was extremely reluctant to take this step, but I am impressed with the results. Karate is a fighting art. How does one demonstrate mastery of self-defence techniques without a partner? Well, after putting off gradings forever, and with the end of this lockdown only now on the imminent horizon, we continue to move forward.
We are fortunate that Karate has a foundation of solo training: basics and Kata. For the most part these can be conveyed online. Bunkai, self-defence applications, and sticky hands, these elements demand a partner. For these aspects, students are doing a great job of playing both the role of the defendant and the assailant, along with the much more challenging part of verbally talking through the scenarios.
In always looking for the positive in every situation, I have to say that when it comes to online gradings, I’ve been most impressed with the energy level of students. We have significantly increased the cardio and physical demands of gradings to compensate for the otherwise stressful situations of dojo gradings and the physical demands of sparring. Here again students are rising to the occasion.
I still can’t wait to train together in person, but all-in-all I am pleased we are still moving forward: learning, getting stronger and improving. I am always inspired by gradings, and now, even online gradings. Congratulations to everyone who took part in the gradings!