Ramlan-sensei says I am expected to test for shodan in August...in Malasysia...
there is also a rumor that Joe-sensei might be doing the grading...
I tested for my first black belt in 1987...it was a tough test. empty hand, weapons, history, philosophy - the whole 9 yards. Took weeks to recover from that one, and I was 21 years old.
The RYA 1-kyu Yoshinkan test was the toughest one in recent memory, and I honestly think without the 1 hour massage beforehand I would not have made it through. It was 45 minutes of constant motion and intensity, trying to will my body to do what it knows; trying to
Sensei-Joe's "secret handshake" (aka kotegaeshi)
More than anything, I am the product of my training. I don't want to shame any of the teachers in RYA who spent so much time and energy to help me learn Yoshinkan. I don't want to embarrass Farid-sensei who travels a long way every week just to try and correct my techniques. I hope I can make them all proud to have been part of my journey to this new milestone. More to come. Plenty to do before August.