Hi Folks! I know all of the jujutsu-ka are putting in the miles for next weekend's grading opportunity. I just wanted to make a few observations to help your prep and just let you know of some time changes over the next two weeks leading up to the grading itself.
First up, the common question I get asked is "what are you really looking for"? Well it depends on the specific grade (obviously) but there are some general principles:
- Across all grades is a demonstration of spirit and determination. You don't have to possess the fitness of an elite athlete, but what you have to demonstrate is your willingness to push yourself to own limit and not pull short. Remember that kiban waza is not just a "warm up" but a set of foundation exercises (and yes your performance in this is assessable). Gradings have an element of performance to them. You will be pushed harder than in a regular class and you need to demonstrate that you can rise to the challenge.
- 8th Kyu expects that the candidate has put in a solid and determined year or so of training in. It means that you know the core etiquette within the system, have a reasonable grasp of the fundamental techniques within the nyumon portion of the syllabus.
- 7th Kyu means that you ave a good grasp of the fundamentals, and can demonstrate with some (minor) errors the core kata for nyumon. Again the odd mistake or lapse is understandable, but again we are looking for you to demonstrate spirit and determination, and to push on without "freezing".
- 6th Kyu is about demonstrating a basic competence of the nyumon. It need not be perfect, though the "gross anatomy" of all the syllabus elements must be there.
If you have not already downloaded the grading criteria for the level you wish to attempt, I would strongly urge you to do so ASAP and bring it along to the dojo to brush up on what you are a little rusty on.
Given grading prep, I will be changing around some of the training times this week and next. First, both this week and next, Thursday Systema training will go on hiatus in favour of extra Jujutsu sessions. Second, this Saturday, training will commence at 2.30pm in order to allow Michael to make another commitment earlier in the day.
Finally, the grading will commence at 12pm sharp on Saturday 6 May. However, the dojo will be open from 11 am. It is expected that candidates get there at this time to help set up the dojo and prepare it for the grading.
And, as a last note, everyone (friends, family, interested observers from inside or outside the Club) is most welcome to come and watch the grading and provide support to the candidates. I hope to see a crowd there at 12 pm on the 6th!