In the four years that the 100-Kata Challenge has taken place, we've always completed it with pride and have even made it part of our official list of annual events.
This year was no different, where 25 keen dojo members came together to work hard in homage to Karate Day and in respect to the pioneering karate masters of our past, who paved the way for us to benefit from the art today. The 100 Kata Challenge also connects karate practitioners from all over the globe through a mutual goal and to remind us all that we are but one family. As always, we were honoured to take part.
The challenge is normally performed on Karate Day, which remembers the Meeting of the Masters, which took place on October 25th 1936. Our event began at 6:30pm on Tuesday 24th October at the Reformed Chruch Hall in Whitehaven. This year, we decided to up the intensity a little by performing 10 full burpees after each set of 10 Naihanchi Kata. This gave us a grand total of 100-Kata and 100-Burpees. This added physical challenge forced us to dig deep and with the associated muscular fatigue, rely more on efficient body mechanics during the kata performance. An added bonus to the challenge and a valuable lesson to take away.
Performing so many kata within the same session also allows you to become very mindful of specific nuances and offers you the chance to experiment with various adjustments and evaluate different elements within the choreography. For us, mindlessly repeating kata simply for the sake of reaching 100 is not the way to approach this challenge. For us, it proves to be a very valuable learning opportunity and certainly for me, each time I complete it I learn something new.
This year's group was a healthy mix of 100-Kata veterans and a few first-timers who weren't exactly sure what to expect. This feeling was compounded after mentioning to the group that we'll be adding a few burpees to the mix too! As I expected, everyone gave it their all and although a few were unable to complete our 'burpee challenge' due to fatigue or injury, everyone still managed to tally their 100-Kata! Before we finished, we added an extra kata at the end for our dojo, which was performed with strength, enthusiasm and pride. As chief instructor, this was a wonderful sight to see!
As part of this event, participants have been gaining sponsorship for our community fund raising activities. If you would like to donate to this worthy cause then please catch up with one of the participants in class, or drop us a line. All donations are gratefully received.
Congratulations to all our members who completed the challenge this year and special thanks to Paul and Linda MIlls, who tallied up the numbers whilst we were all otherwise engaged. Well done also to all our karate family from around the world who joined us and worked hard in celebration of Karate Day 2017!