Tonight was the pre-grading assessment for the coming black belt grading on the 13th of November (see Events for more details). This was a formal assessment of some of the key aspects of the syllabus that the candidates are expected to know. This makes sure that those coming up for promotion are up to it. It’s alsoÂ a chance, not only for myself but for the Sensei’s and Senpai’s to highlight some things that they should be working on between now and their grading.
The pressure was certainly on with the smallest details being picked up as they went through their paces.Â Chewy, Andrew and Tim all rose to the challenge, remaining focused on the task at hand, not giving in to the pressure. Being able to deal with pressure and remain calm and focused when things get difficult is at the core of what the journey to black belt is designed to teach. Even though this is a unique journey for everyone it is never easy and everyone has their challenges and obstacles they need to overcome along the way. The greatest challenge still lies ahead of them with their black belt grading now only a month away.
After satisfying those present that they where up to the task they where officially invited to grade to Shodan. They will now be wearing white belts when training between now and their grading. This is a reminder that we are always learning, that even though you may be going for your black belt you should never stop being a white belt, there is always something new to learn, something more that needs to be practiced.
Osu Shihan Malcolm.