Another year another Kung Fu camp in the lovely setting of Ben’s family farm at Warninglid.
This year we met up first thing on Saturday morning and Horsham instructor Hamish led students through a chi kung and mobility warm up – to wake everyone up and get the body ready for the hours of training ahead.
The initial focus of the morning was stance work, always one of the most important aspects of a martial artist’s training. Working from the ground up, we spent time doing various exercises to improve the low horse stance. After lots of hard work and a good mixture of fun and quite strenuous exercises we spent some time working on San Zhan (the first Kung Fu form).
Continuing the theme of stance work and forms, I taught the Shaolin Stance Form, a very nice short Kung Fu form that teaches basic stances and how to transition from one stance to another (for those who know the White Crane Six Stance Form, it’s also a nice addition to the arsenal and gives a slightly different perspective).
After the now traditional BBQ lunch and chat about the morning’s training a large part of the afternoon working in groups exploring the martial applications of the Shaolin Stance Form. This allows students to delve deeper into the moves and explore how they can actually be used. It’s a really useful exercise and the list of moves goes on and on once you get started! Some more elaborate than others.
The day then built to the crescendo of a semi contact kickboxing tournament. We prepared a ring and this year I decided to spring it last minute on competitors that the fights would each be just one single 5 minute round!
There were some great fights including a couple of draws which needed to go to a 1 minute sudden death round (Martin and Jason even drew this round and fought for an extra 30 seconds to settle the bout).
The fights were hard fought and the results were as follows:
3rd place: Martin Kinsey
2nd place: Ben Weeks
1st place: Alex Bone
Well done to all competitors and thanks to those helping out.
I’m already planning for next year and thinking how to make the days bigger and better than ever!