Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Taking a Bite

Taught level 1 last night in the small room. I don't think I've ever done that before. It was a pretty big class, and we worked palm heel strikes, round kicks, front kicks to a vertical target, and 360's. How I love 360's. Such a natural movement. Mudslide came and sat in on class for a while, so I had him attack me for the demonstration & he was brilliant. Good hard attacks, but very visible.

I've just finished writing an article for the new website called "The Unwritten Rules of the Mat", an idea I stole from watching the Tour de France where they had a similar story about the rules of the peloton.

Looking back on last night's class, I realize how often people just instinctively know the rules of good behavior in class, even though they can sometimes be different than those of the outside world. It's extremely rare for someone to just be an outright ass in training. I refer in the article to an incident when I had to strike back at someone who was being reckless & hurting other students (including me) by running over them when pushing his partner back with his strikes. It was making me mad, but I knew he was pretty new to this, so I tapped him on the shoulder & asked him politely to stop doing that. He said he would, then slammed into us again. I asked him a little more sternly to be careful. I saw him running over other people, stomping their ankles & hurting them. Ooooh, it made me mad. So I positioned myself next to him during the next round, & when he ran over me I body slammed him & stuck my finger in his face & told him he'd better cut the crap right now. He was shocked, and after class came over to me & apologized repeatedly. It turned out he really hadn't meant to harm anyone, he was just being a wild man trying to keep up with his more experienced partner. I felt kind of bad at the time about how mean I'd been to him, but it was only then that he stopped stomping us all to death. I guess sometimes when a growl doesn't work you have to take a little bite.

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