Black Belt Grading – 2010

The annual Black Belt Grading was a weekend-wide event. Derek Collins (Chief National Coach and Black Belt 8th Dan) conducted a strenuous Friday-evening Sennen session, then on to the First and Last pub to meet up with the karatekas from the Oxford Radley and Risinghurst clubs.

Saturday started with the 9 to 2 grading sessions. Derek conducted these with Elaine Jaycock (BB7, Radley Club Instructor); Clive Double (BB6, Cornwall Coach and Sennen Club Instructor); John Aylwin (BB5, Risinghurst Club Instructor) and Clint Hosking (BB4, Marazion Club Instructor) assessing the 6 Candidates.

Also participating were John Hannan, Andrew Symons and Denzil Searle.

Moves to be demonstrated were varied. The overall effect was assessed but also each part, the whole body scrutinised from toes up! As usual, an intense learning time as well as a “doing” one. At last a break for refreshments from Les then on to the dreaded theory test on MayoShinDo, the body and first aid. Afterwards, paired work, moving combinations to test skill, coordination and cooperation. Again, not just the smack against focus pads, but also the whole posture and movement was judged.

A few hours to sample the delights of West Penwith in the rain followed by an evening of wit and chat at Clive and Les’s. Good to talk (and eat!) and with CDs, DVDs and the Internet things have changed since showing photos with the occasional cine. Hopefully we’ll be building up a collection of “movies” on our website.

Sunday brought 3 hours of combinations, free movement, kata, groundwork and partnered practise. At the very end it was time for each to face 2 lines continuously attacking; KEEP MOVING! Time flies when you’re having fun. So, a final bow then time for reflection by Derek, Elaine, Clive and John.

Everyone has their own unique strengths and weaknesses. Each Candidate was seen in turn. Each instructor has a plan to improve their student. This time all 6 candidates achieved their goal, so well done to them all for keeping going and showing that they truly deserved their grades, which are:

Luke Jackson, Black Belt 3rd Dan
Rod Smithum, Black Belt 1st Dan
Dave Hazel, Black Belt
Mike Hazel, Black Belt
Yi Cui, Black Belt
Rob Potts, Black Belt