In black belt class on Thursday we learned a new form. It was so cool. Something I'd never been exposed to before. Dragon form part 1. While working with Sifu Hayes he gave a chuckle and said to me, "you really like to break things down into fine details don't you?".. I didn't think about it too much at the time, but since then I've been reflecting a lot on the progress I've made in the past year and a half.
I have discovered the greatest gift that GBS has given me. I love kung fu. I'm fascinated by it. I get excited every time I think of all the things I don't know yet, of all the things I've already learned, and about how to pass on those lessons.
When I first came back to class I had to learn through watching. I couldn't do, some things I still can't do, and so it taught me to watch everyone very closely. I had to learn to break things down while I watched. I spent my time analyzing every body movement that I was seeing.
Then once I could practice a little, I had to relearn everything. Sifu Brinker has brought up often what an opportunity this is for me. To already have the knowledge and eye for detail of a black belt, but to physically retrain myself all over again. I didn't understand this until recently. It's easy to get wrapped up in everything that's going on physically. I never realized all of the new things I was learning. Don't get me wrong, there's definitely a lot of muscle memory, but I really had to think of how my body was moving. I had to watch and try to figure out how to make my body do what everyone else's was doing.
This has really given me a much better ability to break down movements. I can spend a whole evening working on a form and just focusing on my wrists. I watched the blue/brown class doing Hung I and I've been preoccupied with it's simplicity for a couple of weeks now. Analyzing how I'm moving, what I've been missing and how I can start to make improvements. I'm really excited.
Like I said at the meeting, I have to be creative sometimes to keep myself motivated, but I've been learning so much from everyone around me that I just can't help but be pretty darn pumped about it right now.