Now, for the practice thing. I started a beginner’s course in Karate. So far it’s great fun, and probably good for me, though the most tangible result so far is that I am half-way limping at the moment due to having overstrained something or other on the top of my left foot. No pain, no gain, eh? Actually, I don’t suppose overstraining does me any good, so I will be a bit more careful hereafter. The general physical exercise, however, is bound to be good for me, as are the meditative aspects of the sport.
I have been wanting to learn martial arts of some sort for a long time, so I’m quite happy about having finally got myself off to a course. I’d have quite liked to do Aikido rather than Karate, I went along to one or two sessions of the Aikido club at Manchester University back in the stone age (well, a few years ago, anyway, five or so) and rather enjoyed the general style of the thing. However, Karate has a couple of points in its favour. 1. Pia is in the same club, though on a much loftier level. I can therefore look forward to being whacked by someone I really like instead of casual strangers. 2. It’s rather difficult to separate my concept of Aikido from rather a lot of other stuff going on at the time, especially since it makes me think of a certain person. In that context Karate is bad enough, it’s the same white suits (gis). Anyhow, though I can look back reasonably fondly, so to say, looking back fondly constantly is apt to detract from my concentration – and concentration is rather important in any martial art. Anyway, I’m sure thinking about ex-boyfriends constantly is not particularly healthy, especially five years after the fact and all. So there you are – at least Karate is different enough that I can concentrate on the task in hand. Besides, I like the kata concept. Do they have katas in Aikido? I don’t think so.
Having done both fencing and a short course in Tai Chi seems to have helped me in how quickly I grasp the movements, and especially the weight-transferral principles. Or maybe that’s just my imagination. Perhaps the reason I’m not corrected quite as often as the others (I’m quite sure I’m not) is simply that I’m so hopeless there’s no point correcting me? I dunno. Fun, anyway.
Now all I have to do is learn Japanese so I can remember all the names of movements and such – and the counting, “we” count in Japanese.