Saturday, February 23, 2019

Promotion Day

Today was a very eventful day- we promoted fifteen of our judo students, ranging in age from five to ten. Our fourteen year old, who is eligible for promotion to an orange belt, wasn't at class today. We tested the kids on their vocabulary, and had them demonstrate the techniques they knew.

One of our star pupils, a six year old, forgot the name of kesa gatame, but was able to recall it by the end of the class, so the day was saved and she earned her orange belt. As part of her promotion process, she had to fight me... at first she shot me a faux worried look, but our head sensei joked that, if she started losing the match, she could pull my hair. By the time he said 'hajime', she looked as if she'd been shot out of a cannon. Needless to say, she won the match, by a hair, but not mine.

We had a free period without students, so I did a bunch of uchikomi with one of the adults, a tall, limber guy in his twenties. I taught him the throw uchi mata, figuring that it played well with his height and flexibility. It's a hip throw, with the use of the leg as a force multiplier, but it looks like you're kicking your opponent in the crotch:

I believe that I've handed him a secret weapon...

It was a happy day, the kids play beautifully with each other. They are good sports, and it's clear that they want to learn together and help each other. I always try to stress the moral component of the sport- in order to do the potentially dangerous things that we do, we have to be good to each other. When I left the dojo, I was tired, maybe even a bit run down (right arm is still a little sore), but I was elated. I'd say that the kids are alright, but they're better than alright. I'm alright... a couple of aspirin and I won't even feel sore.


Big Boppa said...

Nice story. Seeing you in the comments section at Wonkette led me to check out your blog. Little did I know you’re a mentor to kids.

You may be big and bald but ‘bad’ seems to be a bridge too far.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Thanks, BB. I coined the name years ago as a spoof of macho bro culture, making fun of toxic masculinity.

That being said, I can pretty much draw on this persona in case I'm in a situation in which being a bookish, nerdy type isn't the best course of action.