Learning new skills different to conventional sports

Learning new skills different to conventional sports
  • High School
Rachel Grantham

This month, we feature Claire Chan (Grade 10) who is a karate martial arts expert who has been involved in the sport since she was 6 years old. Read more about Claire and how she has grown to love and compete in the sport of Karate.

Claire Chankarate

Grade 10

Karate

It's always good to have someone to give you advice when you're stuck on something—always ask for what to improve and how to improve so that you can achieve the best.

How old were you when you started your chosen sport?

Claire: I started karate when I was 6 years old during the summer in first grade

How did you start and become interested in your sport? (Parents' signed you up? You saw someone competing and decided to attempt it)

Claire: I first became interested in karate when I heard that one of my friends did karate near our school, and I decided to try it out along with my other friends, out of curiosity about how it is taught. After several lessons, I really started to enjoy the process of learning new skills that are very different to other conventional sports.

How long have you been engaging in your sport?

Claire: I have been learning karate for 10 years

How often do you train, and where do you train?

Claire: I train at the public school gym near my house once or twice a week.

What level of competition do you engage in?

Claire: I have competed in local tournaments between other schools that teach the same karate style, Gōjū-ryū.

How successful have you been? Did you win or do extremely well in certain competitions, and please describe what competitions they are.

Claire: In previous tournaments, I have been placed second place for my form, "kata", and sparring, "kumite". The kata is a competition where the adjudicators judge our form—which is a choreographed set of movements—and how well we have executed. The other competition is the kumite, which is a type of one-on-one sparring; the person who lands the first three blows to the opponent wins the round and will continue to spar with other winning individuals.

Have you faced any challenges?

Claire: As the level of the kata that I learn becomes more advanced and the people I spar with are all adult black belts, the definition of executing well changes. This means that the usage of the muscles and body movement required throughout the kata and kumite becomes harder to execute. Every lesson, I continue to struggle with learning new skills and incorporating them within the kata and kumite while using my entire body effectively to perform well.

Any final words of advice for budding athletes?

Claire: It's always good to have someone to give you advice when you're stuck on something—always ask for what to improve and how to improve so that you can achieve the best.

A final sports quote:
"Consistency is key to getting good results, whether it is obvious or subtle."

 

ratek

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