Changing Things Up


Just when I thought that I was starting to get a hang of the class and found routine in the lessons more changes and different things to confuse me have come about to throw me off.

One thing that has been routine for the past couple of lessons has been the circle drill. When this started to become a regular practice I realized it must be because it serves as a warm-up before we get into focusing on main moves. We often go through this drill for the first 15 minutes of class but by the time that we are done I feel like enough time went by where it should be time for class to be over. Although routinely working on something is logically the only way to improve, repetitiveness eventually becomes extremely boring to me and then I eventually lose the drive to improve my performance. However, the instructor always finds other moves to incorporate into this drill that use the entire body and keep things fresh.

The first time we did this drill it simply consisted of circling around the room in our fighting stance. The instructor then added throwing punches and circling around the opposite way when we started moving again. Occasionally the instructor would say “ reverse” and that would mean we would have to face outside the circle and spin around while still being expected to keep moving in the bigger circle. The drill then started to include push-ups and squats. Also, sometimes when we are expected to do a squat, we are told to throw a punch every time we come up from the squat. Though I believe I strongly have expressed my hatred and inability to perform push-ups, being instructed to do them is a nice break because circling around the room gets exhausting. While the rest of the class is able to do push-ups, I attempt to do them but often end up just doing somewhat of a plank while bending my arms. Luckily the instructor has not noticed this yet because he often is too busy performing the exercises himself.

The first couple of times we did this drill the instructor would stand inside of the circle we created and throw punches at us that we would have to block by keeping our hands by the side of our eyebrows. It is important to get used to keeping your hands in this location because this is where your hands should stay when you are fighting. This is the ideal place to keep your hands because it is the softest part of your head and you can block your stomach while keeping your hands in this location. Often because of all of the movements, I find it challenging to remember when we go back into moving around in the circle that my hands need to go back by my head. While most of the drills we did with our partner were more practice of what we did last class, one of the employees would always come over when he saw me with my hands not by my head and move my hand up. This kept me on my toes because he did this several times when I did not expect it and when I realized that I did not have my hand in the proper position I would move it quickly so he did not come back to correct it.

Instead of having to remember that everything that I do has to be opposite of the instructor, my newest problem is imagining what the move would look like from a mirrored perspective so I don’t have to ask the instructor for help. No matter what partner I am with they always try to help me understand how to do the move but get confused because they are right-handed. During my sixth class, however, I was partnered with someone else who was also a southpaw. Although you would think that this would make the class easier, we still got confused how to perform the drills because we would forget what hand we needed to switch to when the instructor had us do the drill alternating which hand we use to punch.

Often when things are too confusing for me, I’ll admit I become too easily tempted to give up and walk away. I end up getting overwhelmed and start to think no time I give will lead to me understanding the task any better. However, there are other times where I become frustrated that a task is confusing because I want to understand it so badly that I become motivated to do whatever I have to for as long as I need to in order to understand it even if it feels like it will take me forever. Though I hope for one day where I will find routine and understand everything, the classes keep me wondering what will happen next and are never boring!


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