The Funshop is an annual event for our students ages 6-12 of all ranks. This year the Funshop was held on February 21 and 22 from 9 am to 5 pm, and it was taught by Grandmaster Crandall with assistance from several black belt instructors and red tops. Here is just some of the fun and excitement from this year's Funshop:
Punches: After stretching students executed punches from a horse stance with ¼ turns, ½ turns, hops, spins, and to different target areas such as high, middle, low, and the sides. This was followed by a class on Basic Forms where students learned and practiced the 36 basic forms for our style. The students then had a class on Chess. Grandmaster Crandall taught the rules of chess, demonstrated with our jumbo chess set. Competition rules where reviewed, including rules for castling, and time was taken to discuss how chess is like life, with decisions to be made, planning to be considered, and patience playing a key role.
The second half of the morning included an Extension Tool Class with students leaning part of either the kama or sai kata. Each year our school holds an annual weapon's competition for all ages, and extension tools are required at testings for brown and black belt levels. This was followed by the first round of the Chess Competition: Once students completed their first round, they played practice matches or practice their katas in training hall room #2 under the supervision of an instructor.
Lunch (A break was taken for lunch, with students either bringing their lunch or ordering pizza. Once done socializing and eating, students practiced chess matches, worked on katas, or read the school textbook.
The afternoon's excitement began with a round of Karate-Man-Says, similar to "simon says" but with martial arts techniques and commands. It was then time for the Indoor Snowball Fight. Students used foam snowballs on teams to see who would be the last student standing :)
Following the hour of teamwork and listening games, the students moved into the Self-Defense Class with students learning and practicing fundamental escapes from grabs including straight across wrist, cross wrist, single lapel, shoulder, and throat grab. This area is important at colored belt, brown belt, and black belt testings. Another required skill set for testing are the floor exercises. This was the next class: Shoulder Roll / Meet Mr. Floor Class: Students worked on the shoulder roll and “Meet Mr. Floor”. Practice will included tumbling to strike a target. Some students worked on cartwheel, round-off, and backwards roll based on proficiency with shoulder roll and Meet Mr. Floor
The second half of the afternoon began with Sparring Skills and Rules. Students covered the rules for sparring. Then they will learned the basics of blocks, moving, and combinations. This was followed by a class on Jump and Flying Kicks. Students worked on how to run, jump, and land properly. Then they learned the basics of flying side kick. The day ended with the first rounds of the Sparring Competition. Students without sparring gear practiced testing requirements then watched some of sparring. Other students will sparred including whacker sparring matches.
It was an action-filled first day!
Tuesday began with a warm-up of stretching and Punches which included punches from a horse stance with ¼ turns, ½ turns, hops, spins, and to different target areas such as high, middle, low, and the sides. Then the students moved into Moving Kicks. Our style has 8 required moving kicks. Some these include spinning back kick, flying side kick, and skip center kick. We practiced all 8 moving kicks. Students who didn't know all 8 learned more. After some martial arts skill practice, the students moved on to the Indoor Snowballs vs. Ninja! The challenge was to hit the moving ninja target with our indoor snowballs! Points for hitting different parts of the ninja. A prize for the person who scored the highest! The ninja cutout was controlled by the Red Tops. This was followed by the second round of the Chess Competition. Rounding out the morning was a game of Whack-a-doo – teams had to get the balloon across the opposing team's line using whackers. It was an exciting morning.
A break was taken for lunch before jumping back into the afternoon's events, starting with Golf Putting Students learned putting for golf or miniature golf with indoor putting greens. This was followed by an Obstacle Course Students will race through a challenging obstacle course using skills they had learned since Monday. From their the excitement continued with more Sparring, Whack-a-doo Karate, and a Weapon’s Pinata where students used a bo to break open a pinata to get the candy.
The day ended with rounds of chess and the students were picked up by their families. There is no doubt the the students left feeling a stronger sense of camaraderie for their fellow students, with new skills, and with great memories. Looking forward to next year's Funshop!