January 31st - Finally Arrived at Maling Kung Fu School

Meihua Pole Training

My Thoughts πŸ‘€ ζˆ‘ηš„ζƒ³ζ³•

So I finally made it to this martial art school with some mixed feelings. I'm excited because the place is how it looks in the pictures and it looks as if they are expanding it even more so. The weather, so far, has been great and the people are all pretty nice.

Laura
JD (The "Tai Chi" Guy)
John (He is leaving soon though)
Josh (Will be my roommate once my quarantine is over)
Rodger (Maybe not his name but he's an Indian bodyguard getting training here, he is the "sanda" guy)
Natalia (Wants to do the splits before she leaves in a couple months)
Bryce (I think...)
Matt (A big guy trying to get healthier)
A little kid (Here with his little sister and family)
And a few other people who I really can't think of their names.

Monday is when the classes will really start but for now everyone is just relaxing or training on their own. And train on my own I did! (See the exercise section)

The School
But, I do have mixed feelings about the place. Maybe its not so much the place but its the circumstances that I arrived in. I arrived at the end of winter, which I'm told has the least amount of students. So when I arrived early in the morning the place was dead quiet. Even the driver that took me there joked that no one was home. Second is the nCov Virus going around which has made the school cautious of people who are coming in. So, for the first 7 days I have to wear a mask while training, walking around, in my room, eating and more. A bit of a bummer. Also, all the masters are gone for Chinese New Year but they come back Monday, so I don't feel too bad about that. Atleast normal classes will start back up.

Just these small hindrances have effected my mood more than my first impression of the place. My first impression of the place is still great, the rooms are nice and basic, there is plenty of space to train and plenty of tools to use to train from punching bags, mats, pads, gloves and more. I don't get my uniform and 2 weapons yet so I'll have to wait.

Entrance to the School

Exercise πŸ’ͺ 运动

I arrived at the school 7-8 in the morning and once I got sanitized, situated, eaten and comfortable it wasn't too long before I went to start training on my own. It did feel weird, I traveled such a long distance, 20+ hours by plane and 10 hours by train, all so that I could train by myself again.

So what exactly did I do?

I stretched a lot, I practiced my stances a lot, and I shadow boxed a lot. I've been wanting to do these three things for a long time but didn't because I wanted to use my time in Shanghai to relax and be with my girlfriend.

I finished my workout session with some padwork with a guy named Josh. Both of us just arrived and both of us have to wear masks so it seemed fitting we both practiced together. We worked on some basic combos and even threw some low kicks into the mix. I can already tell 散打 will be a different form of kickboxing entirely as it is more of a sideways stance compared to the frontal/open stance of muay thai/boxing.

Later on after lunch, I trained with Natalia on helping her with pad work. I found that I really enjoy working the pads and creating combos for people. She then showed me an example of what a power stretching session would feel like.

I'd like to thank both Natalia and John for making my muscles feel intense pain. It was a painful couple minutes of stretching my legs and shoulders but in the end they felt more flexible. I can't even imagine what a power stretching session with the masters must feel like as just working with John and Natalia doubts starting rushing into my mind as to why I came here and why I paid for this much pain.

But now that I sit here tired on this hard Chinese bed writing my thoughts about the day I realize that this is why I came here. To be challenged every single day, to be beat up, stretched, pushed, sore and in pain so that the next day I will be stronger than before.

That is why I'm here. To challenge myself.

I even did a little weight lifting today with some cool "traditional" weights, I'll have to get pictures for the next post.

Study 🧠 学习

I didn't study but I did manage to get off the train successfully and I talked with the driver who picked me up and took me to the school. We talked about my Chinese, the area, where I was from, the Virus and even about other foreigners that he has taken to the school. He said I was the first one that had good Chinese! That made me happy even though he could be lying.

I've made it to my goal only to realize I have a greater adventure ahead of me. What goals lie ahead of you?

-Johnny "η™½ζ­¦ιΎ™"

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