Where are you at in your own practice?
This is a question I like to ask myself and others from time to time. It’s one thing to go to class and follow your instructor, but it is quite another to have an idea of your own path and how your personal practice fits into raising the group’s overall successes. Training goes in steep climbs and plateaus for our bodies, our minds and our spirits. As with any long learning path, you will have obstacles or challenges to overcome, mostly self inflicted.
So, have you thought about your next test? Do you know the terms for the techniques, the stances, the attacks, and the variations? What is your overall goal at this point, and what will it take for you to get there?
One piece of advice I have taken to heart is to find a partner with a similar rank, so that you can work on test material together. For me, this has proven to be very useful advice in terms of technical training, and also toward fostering trust and friendship.
Here are some useful handouts I often refer to for memorizing terms, and also the AKI test material, by rank. Keep in mind, you may practice everything for your own rank level and then get asked something completely different! But it is still assumed you know these basic techniques when you are called upon.
Next instalment, I’ll expound upon how I came to love testing!
Peace on the mats.