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  • Writer's pictureJohnny

Snow Capped Temple

Turning Cold

After an exciting first day, I went to sleep with childlike thoughts of warrior monks battling evil. I awoke before my alarm (which would become a common occurrence this week). Stepping outside my simple room, I was surprised to feel a rush of cool air hit me. My skin had goosebumps, not because of the chill, but because of the familiarity to home. The temperature had dropped. I watched as the white crept over the village in the valley below. Slowly crawling towards our temple. Covering each curved black roof in a thin layer of snow and ice. As the world around me turned cold, I was reminded of my stomach that breakfast was awaiting me. My feet gingerly tapped down the steps towards my simple breakfast of bread, purple soup, and a boiled egg.

A Familiar Routine

The rest of my week was filled with wonderful training. The second day was basics, forms, and some power training with stone locks. The third: Sanda training, basics, and forms. The following days were very much the same. Basics, Forms, and some Sanda with the inclusion of Power Training and Power Stretching.

All of this is a familiar routine. And yet, it seems new at the same time. A new location, new master, new training companions, and a new intensity. Instead of fast, bam, boom, pow, go, go, go training of the past. The training here is challenging and relaxing. Those few classes I did for personal trainer come to mind. The balance of "Challenge vs Skill" leading to a "flow state".

"Having a challenge that is possible to overcome with our current skills, which also leads to improvement in that skill. Creates a state of flow in individuals."

I feel that the master at Kung Fu Xing Lin does a great job of presenting challenges to each student. The training has been very one-on-one. Most times it is up to the student to continue putting in the time and reps to overcome the challenge presented.

Enjoy the Moment

This month will go by. That is one thing I've learned very well through my adventures. So while I'm here, I will continue to enjoy the moment. Just as I would look out over the skyline of Shanghai each night, remembering every little detail. A similar habit has formed here. Standing on the cool tile in the middle of the temple. My body sore from training. I practice my form over and over again. Hoping that through this ritual, I will carry a piece of this place's "qi" with me. No matter where I perform this form.

A relaxing weekend awaits me.


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