Congratulations to those who have earned promotions since our last newsletter. Mac Jackson, Aidan McCoy, Garret Fulton – Junior Yellow Belt, Jody Fulton – Senior Yellow Belt Alexis D’Ambly – Junior Orange Belt
REMINDER: OUR 27TH BENEFIT TOURNAMENT IS APRIL 29TH
AT HACKETTSTOWN HIGH SCHOOL.
* WE ENCOURAGE ALL STUDENTS TO PARTICIPATE
* STUDENTS MAY REGISTER FOR THE EVENT AT YOUR CONVENIENCE.
* WE NEED HELP DURING THE EVENT FROM TEEN AGED AND ADULT STUDNETS, PARENTS AND FRIENDS. THE BIGGEST NEED IS PEOPLE TO HELP KEEP SCORE DURING THE TOURNAMENT. WE TRAIN EACH PERSON – IT IS EASY AND IT IS FUN TO DO. ALSO, YOU GET ONE OF THE BEST SEATS IN THE HOUSE.
Hanshi Duessel’s most recent seminar was held in Pittsburgh was March 10, 2012 Approximately fifty students attended the seminar from Pittsburgh, Maine, New York, and New Jersey. A special thank you to Mr. Jeff Matusewicz, Mr. Scott Miller, Mr. Joe Marotta, Miss. Natalie Montone, Mr. Ryan Ammermann, Mr. Lee Gugler, and Mr. Tony Curcuruto for attending from our dojo.
BLOCKING – Scott Miller – Roku Dan
Whether sparring in a tournament or practicing one-step drills in the dojo, blocking an attack is an art form that requires practice just as much as everything else that we do in or training. We must become proficient when applying proper blocking techniques, which involves hand and eye coordination, timing, and good footwork. Because of our dedication and the due diligence in practice our mind achieves a heightened ability to react without thinking.
For example when our cell phones ring do we have to think about how to answer them; NO we just do it. When someone is punching or kicking me because of training, I should just react applying a great block that helps set me up for a good counter. I put blocking into 3 categories. 1) Catch and move 2) Jamming 3) Deflect and counter. My favorite type of blocking is deflecting because my concentration is to just redirect an opponent’s attack with minimal energy. If an opponent were punching toward me, I would put my arm in its directed path and let the opponent’s own momentum to move him and possibly take him off balance making my counter effective. Also needed for an effective block and counter attack are footwork and timing. Footwork can put you out of the line of attack and now your block becomes a guard. Footwork should work in conjunction with your blocking and countering. As we practice the procedure – step, set, block-move attack and counter our focus is on perfecting the proper form, footwork and timing.
Our biggest mistake is that we think too much which causes hesitation and loss of efficient form. Take time in the beginning of class to practice blocking drills with a partner. Try to utilize a series of different blocks. Ask your partner to challenge you by using effective attacks. You may have great form and technique but if you have to think about what to do when you need to do it – It might be too late. TRAINS TO REACT with the right move that is fast enough focused and sets up your counter.
Our Deepest Fear by Marianne Williamson
from A Return To Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles)
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
A student at Warren County College this semester referred to this quotation in a research project and I previously encountered it in the movie, “Coach Carter”. It was produced in 1999, where Samuel Jackson portrayed Ken Carter, a successful sporting goods store owner, accepts the job of basketball coach for his old high school in a poor area of Richmond, CA, where he was a champion athlete. He became disturbed by the poor attitudes of his players as well as their dismal play performance, Carter sets about to change both. He immediately imposes a strict regime spelled out in written contracts that include stipulations for respectful behavior, a dress code and good grades as requisites to being allowed to participate. The initial resistance from the boys is soon dispelled, as the team becomes an undefeated competitor in the games. However, when the overconfident team’s behavior begins to stray and Carter learns that too many players are doing poorly in class, he takes immediate action. To the outrage of the team, the school and the community, Carter cancels all team activities and locks the court until the team shows acceptable academic improvement. With the help of other teachers and successful students the team improves their grades and again plays the game. What is more important is that one of the boys, who actually recites these lines in the movie, was a gang member who watches as a close friend was killed by another rival team – thanks Coach Carter for his guidance and for saving his life.
Though this was in a movie, the thoughts in the quotation are real. We should not be afraid to shine, to stand up for what is right and others if they are being bullied. Doing what is right is not always the thing that the crowd does, but with integrity and character we can each make the right choices, showing others what should be done. We begin to learn these lessons at home and in the dojo.
ALWAYS REMEMBER that in the dojo, everyone works, nothing is free and all start at the bottom. We should exercise respect, patience, and understanding in dealing with our everyday existence. Succeed in the martial arts is developed through hard work, proper attitude, repetition in the techniques and devotion to him/herself and the art. Strive for perfection in all that is done and accept nothing less. Striving for less, we are cheating ourselves. Only you can make positive things happen.
Congratulations to Smyan Chinnam who placed first in his division at Kings Sparring Tournament March 11th at Newton High School. Winning the division was an accomplishment, but what was better is that he used technique and proper fighting form practiced in the dojo to achieve this success.