February 26th - Sanda and Tong Bei

Good weather again!

Afternoon/Evening Thoughts 💪

Today was some tough training. Out of the 10 students here 5 of them are out due to injury and those that are training are just coming back from some sort of injury whether it is a sprained hand, tweaked knee, hurt back or sore joints. But we all thought today's training went really well as it was our Basics, Forms and Sanda classes today. For our basics class our Master Peng made drills out of that Long Fist form I talked about previously (长拳初级三路), so everyone was covered in sweat after repeating the same moves for what felt like 100 times. I think all of our forms got better which was the goal.

Then, came the forms class and I really enjoyed it. Working with Master Peng as he taught me Tong Bei Quan (少林通背拳) is cool because we can talk in English and Chinese so I get a better, fuller understanding of the form. Though, after watching the video of me doing it I need to keep practicing as I'm a bit sloppy on some parts. It was cool because he taught me some applications for the moves that I am learning which is a part that I enjoy learning even if I will never use these moves. (I do enjoy using the "Tiger Claw" in forms though) And although I only learned a couple more moves into Tong Bei Quan I feel I learned so much because I can think of how to use them as well and I now know how to use a piece of a form to create exercises/drills for myself because of our basics class.

Ahh... the morning classes were great. Then came Sanda.

Delicious bread - 烧饼
I like and dislike Sanda. I like it because we get to actually punch pads or people but I dislike it because it is one of my greatest weaknesses as a "martial artist" ... the "martial" part of it. When I came to this school I had the idea that my kicks were good and useful. After the first Sanda class I quickly realized I was wrong and my kicks need a lot of work. Master Yan won't even use me for move examples as I "Kick bad". 😅

The Chinese are certainly direct.

That isn't stopping me from trying and others are trying to help me get faster kicks but sometimes during Sanda class I feel like an uncoordinated five year old trying to mimic moves off of a movie. (My nephew comes to mind) It is nice though when that rare occasion occurs of the teacher saying "Nice" then the next time it is "No, bad". Ups and downs. At least Raja (My Sparring partner) has told me my punches are getting faster... even if they are really slow still.

Eggplant, Chicken, 豆芽, 炒粉条, lettuce and rice
Sanda is growing on me as I first thought it was just "Chinese Kickboxing" which is how most view it but it really is so much more. There are the normal MMA/Boxing type stances, punches, and kicks but you also have the "asian influence" where there are some really cool kicks, sweeps, jumps and hand/foot traps. Oh man. The hand and foot traps that are used to set up sweeps are amazing. Then, if you get a "traditional" or just older teacher they will teach you like Master Yan does to us. He'll teach you more of the Sanshou version (which is what the military in China trains) which includes many... effective moves.

I think I'd like to get good at Sanda but it will take time.
Even though I'm tired, sore, did bad in Sanda I feel it was a good day. What about you?
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Oh! Did I mention the food today was great?


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