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    Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

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    JudoStu

    Posts : 212
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    Age : 45
    Location : UK

    Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by JudoStu on Mon Nov 17, 2014 8:57 pm

    Just wanted to share with you guys that I passed my dan grade theory yesterday and am now officially a black belt.
    Whilst I was sitting there waiting for my name to be called out by the examiner I was looking at the list of the throws from the Gokyo and my mind starting going blank. I didn't know the difference between a gari and otoshi or a goshi and a seoi. I was starting to panic and then when my name was called I went in to a zone and nailed every technique without pause.

    so i'm looking forward to going to my club and officially receiving my black belt from my instructor but after the initial feel good factor subsides will I be left with a big empty void? Will the extra pressure and expectations dull my pleasure in Judo?
    Just curious to know what and how you guys felt when you received your Shodan and if your training changed?

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    Jonesy

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    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by Jonesy on Mon Nov 17, 2014 11:19 pm

    Congratulations. You are officially a shodan when your record book comes back from the BJA with the big red stamp in it. Shodan is the best grade to get - nothing is quite like it or the same ever again.

    As for training you will be a marked man, for a while. All the kyu grades will usually want to take down the new black belt, irrespective of technique so be prepared for that. I found that when I got mine nearly 30 years ago it was the making of me. You can relax into your judo, with nothing to prove and my technique and judo career took off.

    Question is - do you want to keep going up the grades or not?


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    Udon

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    Location : Minnesota

    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by Udon on Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:43 am

    Well done juduStu! That's a big step.
    I think that now you will want your judo to be even better. You'll strive even harder to perfect technique, you'll want to be more fluid and relaxed in randori, and you'll fight even harder in shiai.
    You are now on the path to learning judo.

    tafftaz

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    Age : 52
    Location : Wales, UK

    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by tafftaz on Tue Nov 18, 2014 3:46 am

    Agree with Jonesy. Mine was a similar experience. Although I did find that the dan grades went up a few more gears in randori against me.
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    JudoStu

    Posts : 212
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    Age : 45
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    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by JudoStu on Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:19 am

    Jonesy wrote:

    Question is - do you want to keep going up the grades or not?
    I'm 42 and pretty fit and strong however I do seem to get lots of niggling little injuries, not all Judo related but affecting my performance nonetheless.
    I think I might have one more grade in me (to 2nd dan) competitively at least, before it gets too hard for me.


    GregW

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    Location : Norman, Oklahoma

    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by GregW on Fri Nov 21, 2014 3:41 pm

    I posted this response once, but the computer "ate" it. I'll try it once again.

    When I earned my shodan, it was days before I moved from Virginia to Oklahoma. I passed my practical test after having spent the day moving furniture. I was too exhausted to be elated. It took a few weeks for USJA to process the paperwork and the background check before issuing the certificate. I also had to take a break for about five weeks because of some job-related demands that took up all my time. When USJA mailed the certificate, I was glad to get it, but there was no ceremony or anything.

    The strangest feeling for me was going into a strange club in a new city as a black belt. It felt strange to line up with the black belts, because I had never done that in my home club before I moved. When I had the chance to participate in randori, I went with all the other black belts and I was a little nervous that I wouldn't measure up. After a few moments in randori, all that anxiety melted away. I was able to hold my own with the black belts in the club I was visiting and they readily welcomed me.

    I visited a few other clubs in the new area where I lived and in one of them, the kids called all black belts "sensei." That felt strange to me. In my old club, only the senior instructor was called that. Perhaps it was just out of respect for my age since I was already over 50 years old.

    A few months later, I organized my own club. Teaching judo has been very rewarding. Seeing my students progress is great and some of them are aspiring to become black belts also. I think that will be the ultimate--to see one of my students become a black belt. My son gets to test this summer so it's not too far away. I will be testing for nidan around the same time so he hopes that he will pass his test before me so he can catch up and be the same rank as his dad. That would be cool for him and me.

    Anyways, congratulations on your achievement! Wear it proudly and humbly.

    Raj Venugopal

    Posts : 120
    Join date : 2013-01-21

    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by Raj Venugopal on Sat Nov 22, 2014 2:04 am

    Congratulations! Great feeling, but what's better is having enough judo to start putting it all together and feeling it really flow. I got mine just before turning 42. It's a different judo man. The young guys really pound each other, and I like mixing it with them, but my speed isn't 160 km with foot on the pedal, but rather 105 km/h on cruise control. Life's off ramps as a productive member of society takes me off the highway from time to time (basement reno, marking exams, family stuff) but I try to roll with it. Rather than feel the post-climax, I felt excitement at finally starting to have enough basic techniques to start putting it together in a style that's mine. Anyway... way to go!
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    JudoStu

    Posts : 212
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    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by JudoStu on Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:42 am

    GregW wrote:I posted this response once, but the computer "ate" it.  I'll try it once again.

    When I earned my shodan, it was days before I moved from Virginia to Oklahoma.  I passed my practical test after having spent the day moving furniture.  I was too exhausted to be elated.  It took a few weeks for USJA to process the paperwork and the background check before issuing the certificate.  I also had to take a break for about five weeks because of some job-related demands that took up all my time.  When USJA mailed the certificate, I was glad to get it, but there was no ceremony or anything.

    The strangest feeling for me was going into a strange club in a new city as a black belt.  It felt strange to line up with the black belts, because I had never done that in my home club before I moved.  When I had the chance to participate in randori, I went with all the other black belts and I was a little nervous that I wouldn't measure up.  After a few moments in randori, all that anxiety melted away.  I was able to hold my own with the black belts in the club I was visiting and they readily welcomed me.  

    I visited a few other clubs in the new area where I lived and in one of them, the kids called all black belts "sensei."  That felt strange to me.  In my old club, only the senior instructor was called that.  Perhaps it was just out of respect for my age since I was already over 50 years old.  

    A few months later, I organized my own club.  Teaching judo has been very rewarding.  Seeing my students progress is great and some of them are aspiring to become black belts also.  I think that will be the ultimate--to see one of my students become a black belt.  My son gets to test this summer so it's not too far away.  I will be testing for nidan around the same time so he hopes that he will pass his test before me so he can catch up and be the same rank as his dad.  That would be cool for him and me.  

    Anyways, congratulations on your achievement!  Wear it proudly and humbly.

    Yeah going to new clubs as a newly promoted black belt will be a bit daunting but I earn't mine so i'm going to wear it with pride.
    In one of the clubs I go to all the kyu grades call the dan grades sensei so that will feel a little weird at first.
    Good luck with your nidan test

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    JudoStu

    Posts : 212
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    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by JudoStu on Tue Nov 25, 2014 2:45 am

    Raj Venugopal wrote:Congratulations! Great feeling, but what's better is having enough judo to start putting it all together and feeling it really flow. I got mine just before turning 42. It's a different judo man. The young guys really pound each other, and I like mixing it with them, but my speed isn't 160 km with foot on the pedal, but rather 105 km/h on cruise control. Life's off ramps as a productive member of society takes me off the highway from time to time (basement reno, marking exams, family stuff) but I try to roll with it. Rather than feel the post-climax, I felt excitement at finally starting to have enough basic techniques to start putting it together in a style that's mine. Anyway... way to go!

    Thanks.
    Just learning the counters and combinations for the theory part of my test has helped me learn new things and new techniques. Some of the throws I had to do I never try in randori because I've never felt comfortable with them. Well I nailed all my throws under pressure so this has given me the confidence to try them in randori now and add different throws to my repertoire.
    As you said, exciting times ahead, I just wish I was 10 years younger Sad


    Raj Venugopal

    Posts : 120
    Join date : 2013-01-21

    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by Raj Venugopal on Tue Nov 25, 2014 6:19 am

    I wish I was younger so I could start judo earlier. Ironically, when I was in grade 3 (9 years old), I wanted to do TKD. My parents objected, and told me to start judo. I said "no, judo is for wusses. there's no kicking, and the instructor doesn't even have a japanese name." So I took up the manly sport of competitive swimming, where we wore tiny swim suits and shaved down for the big races. Ironically, nearly 30 years later I would join the same judo club, taught by the same instructor (head of canada's national grading board, olympian... ). I wish I could get those years back, but the only we can look at this is to accept that we are on the road now, and that perhaps we would have fallen off if we had joined earlier. It is tempting and hard to not see joining judo later in life as a loss, or waste of time. I regret this terribly. The only thing I got right was latching onto my wife from the second I met her! But in our 40s, shiai are still exciting, training is intentional, and the fitness is there. And, with some planning, World Masters...!
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    JudoStu

    Posts : 212
    Join date : 2013-01-04
    Age : 45
    Location : UK

    Re: Passed my Dan grade theory yesterday, i'm now a shodan :)

    Post by JudoStu on Wed Nov 26, 2014 2:52 am

    Raj Venugopal wrote:I wish I was younger so I could start judo earlier. Ironically, when I was in grade 3 (9 years old), I wanted to do TKD. My parents objected, and told me to start judo. I said "no, judo is for wusses. there's no kicking, and the instructor doesn't even have a japanese name." So I took up the manly sport of competitive swimming, where we wore tiny swim suits and shaved down for the big races. Ironically, nearly 30 years later I would join the same judo club, taught by the same instructor (head of canada's national grading board, olympian... ). I wish I could get those years back, but the only we can look at this is to accept that we are on the road now, and that perhaps we would have fallen off if we had joined earlier. It is tempting and hard to not see joining judo later in life as a loss, or waste of time. I regret this terribly. The only thing I got right was latching onto my wife from the second I met her! But in our 40s, shiai are still exciting, training is intentional, and the fitness is there. And, with some planning, World Masters...!

    Seems we have a lot in common as I actually started Judo when I was 7 years old but gave it up for Karate for the same reasons you wanted to do TKD, and the Instructor at that Judo club was a friend of Brian Jacks (8th dan, Olympic Bronze Medalist and Superstars legend) who by coincidence is the President of one of the clubs I train at now.


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