First week at the HDKI – Hombu Dojo Dublín

As some of you know I was given the opportunity to do a internship at the HDKI Hombu Dojo in Dublin, Ireland. Last tuesday I arrived in Dublin with my backpack, two karategis and starving to train. Once at the airport, and after a hard night in which I tried to leave everything organized at home, Sensei Scott Langley was waiting for me, who kindly offered to pick me and welcome me as the first participant in the Internship that officially carries out the HDKI.

After a coffee and a delicious sandwich in the surroundings of the Dojo in Ranelagh, I was explained my schedule of classes in which I should collaborate and in which I should attend as a student as well as morning trainings conducted by the team of instructors. So that same day I attended with Sensei Palma Diosi (who is 20 times Hungarian National Champion and elite sports karateka) to three children’s classes, later with Sensei Ross Stewart who just over 2 years ago arrived from Scotland to join To the team of instructors of the Hombu Dojo and is also a JKS Champion.

With Sensei Ross I was able to participate in a class focused on the use of heel or ball as a pivot in the turns, specifically we worked on an example that is the 10th-11th / 12th-13th movement of Bassai-Dai. This time the front foot pivots on the heel and the back foot on the ball, this concept would also be dealt with sensei Scott Langley in training on Thursday afternoon, using some examples of the new syllabus of the HDKI.

Wednesday morning at Hombu Dojo and we started with an intense weight training, some of you have seen the videos on Facebook or Youtube or in this same blog in one of the previous articles morning trainings are characterized by being of high physical intensity always being mindfull.

Wednesdays is the day when you train with weights, dumbbells, ankle weights, as well as a weight vest. It is a training that lasts an hour and ends with the last minutes doing some Kata. “Juan, which kata is do not you know from this list?”, I replied “Wankan”, Wankan is one of the shortest kata of all Shotokan (24 movements), then proceeded in detail to perform movement by movement Different aspects that are important within it; Some important points to highlight is 1) in the first two movements (kaki wake uke) you have to look for the feeling of contraction and expansion, very important, 2) also in the 9th and 13th movements it is important to perform a block at the level of the head when you rotate 3) the same before carrying out the charge preceding the yama-tsuki (between movement 23-24)

The day continued with some children’s classes throughout the afternoon in which I had the opportunity to collaborate with Sensei Palma and later at the end of the day participate in the adult’s classes with the Sensei Palma Diosi. I find them very challenging, demanding your body to have a lot of freedom and a lot of relaxation and to remove a little Mindset from the kihon to get into a much more fluid and free dynamic. In this class I started a new kata for me … Hangetsu.

On Thursday the same dynamic continued with a morning training in which we used the elastic bands, as the day before a very demanding training from a physical point of view, later on I had the opportunity to attend some classes With Sensei Ross and later at the end of the afternoon with Sensei Scott Langley in his Thursday class in which we went deeper in the concept of swinging on the heel or on the ball with a very interesting kihon.

On Friday I ended up being a relaxed day in which I was able to recover energies to face the Saturday that is also a hard training day, so on Friday I took some time to go around the city and see some corners of Dublin that are nearby the dojo as well as going to Phoenix Park, the largest park in all of Europe.

On Saturday the training sessions with Palma Diosi begin with several children’s classes and then end with an adult class and a competition class focused on the aspects of kumite.

Finally comes Sunday which also ends up being a pretty relaxed day in which I have the opportunity to go to know the Guinness factory, and to recover energies for the week that awaits me … my second week, that begins with a kihon to enter into the field of Nijushiho. Here is a video of this class.

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