Well as expected Christmas has landed and taken its toll on my time so I am sorry this monthly update is so much later than usual. Hopefully after the tinsel and festivities have receded I will be able to resume a normal service … or as normal as it gets anyway.
Due to illness all round training has been somewhat subdued this month but I think we managed to have a good physical blast through a Savate class with only one punching technique in it which I know we all felt a couple of days after; thanks to Euan for warming us up quiet so well. During the weaponry class it was nice to see people starting to get the hang of transitioning from one style of cane into another and starting to bring in a little more off hand play. The next step for us there is really to get some better protective gear and work on some more realistic sparring. November also saw the first of our Bartitsu inspired self defence classes focusing on dealing with a single hand grab. It was a very different pace of class but I think it worked well and those who were able to make it went away with simple but effective techniques they could actually use.
Obviously with Christmas we will be taking a break from Bartitsu so there will only be three sessions this month. The first was scheduled to be a focus on stealing timing from your opponent, but an unexpected influx of students shifted this over to a review of Bartitsu focusing on the central and thematic techniques. In reflection this worked very well and not only am I glad to see our numbers swelling, but it was good to see some of the more advanced students really making techniques work for them now rather than going through the motions. Tomorrow will be our weapons class and for a little break from the canonical material we will be looking at the combination of coat and cane! The third class will be grappling and I would like to end the year with a focus on improving break falling techniques so we can climax the lesson with our first full blown ju-jitsu throw. Meanwhile for self defence we looked at dealing with being grabbed by the hair and this week the focus is on dealing with two handed grabs. The final class of the year will be looking at a few simple improvised weapons to escape the grabs we have previously looked at.
We will be starting classes again on the 7th of January and with everyone well rested we can launch into some god hard training to burn off those excess mince pies. It seems unlikely at this point in time that the self defence classes will continue into the New Year but it has been an interesting experiment and I am sure the few people who may move across into the main class will be made to feel very welcome. Also with a new year comes new opportunities as well look towards the conventions season and ever elusive contact with the local universities. So enjoy a well earned break from work, make the most of time spent with your family and I will see you all next year.