Grading Shock is delayed a week.

Well its been over a week since summer school and consequently my Shodan grading and it is only in the last few days that I have felt the impact of my grading on my body. For a week after my grading I have felt pumped and energised, being very surprised that I didn’t have any niggles (well perhaps giggles) and felt like I could do anything, I know from previous gradings and when I use to play rugby that you don’t normally feel the pain from the math or grading two or three days later.

However this delay has never lasted a week before, my plan was before summer school to recharge and have a mini break but feeling this good and with my passion for karate already burning again it was back to the grind.  I didn’t think it would be a literal grind! I already feel more drained and stiff then I have for the last week (kids don’t do drugs, do a grading the feeling will last a week!) and have acquired a bunch of small niggles, more so than I did at the grading, exercising is also alot harder than I recall, meaning I have to temper my spirit to go at it 110% because the body isn’t ready to.

I suppose a huge part of this high from the grading is that the weight and pressure has been lifted of my mental shoulders, it feels liberating and means I can enjoy training and my life more, I think part of is that before I could cope with this strain for 3 months but for almost a whole year it was hard to overcome it meant that I had to fight with my inner demons for much longer.

I can now develop more as a karateka, chipping away at the clay and improve the skills I have and learn new ones, it is weird seeing my name n my belt but it just means that I have to train harder (when I have recovered) to improve my standards and thereby the clubs standards.

Everytime I see the Nidan grading the 30 man kumite I wonder how anyone can go through that, on the one hand it seems like the ultimate challenge and on the other hand a trip through the seven gates of hell and back. In my first summer school ( I was a 8th kyu) thinking  Oh my god that looks positively terrifying it takes great fitness and beyond amazing spirit to get through something like that, all the other low kyu grades at the time said they couldn’t wait to do it, it would be easy. As the years have gone by those same people have left the club slowly becoming me thinking oh crap that is going to be me one day if I ever get to blackbelt.

Every summer school and every time I have seen it I think, that terrifies me why would you do that, then during the year I imagine myself attempting that, only to be reminded why I never want to do it at the next summer school. At the moment I don’t want to think about that, I just want to enjoy my achievement and improve my standards everyday, but as I drove home from summer school with two of my closest friends I said aloud “Oh crap I’ll be doing it in three years time” it dawned on me that when I turn 30 in three years time, if I get approval I want to go through the ultimate test. But for now I can enjoy karate, enjoy life.


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