Break!

Throughout my life there have been great moments of accomplishment. A few that come to mind include the 40-hour famine, ripping that apple clean in half and winning the Wai-con ’07 Super Smash Bros. Melee tournament. Last night, another similar event is added to the list of great things that have happened in my life.

After the last Hand-to-Hand class at Rebel Empire Workshops HQ in Jandakot (sadly, we are moving because we’re thousands of dollars behind rent), I stayed back at bit to help move some furniture and throw out anything we didn’t have use for. Once the bulk of the heavy work was done, I decided to head home to get some study done. But as I was walking to the car, I saw Kaneda standing in front of the very full skip bin with his hands up in a guard. I froze to watch him as he brought his leg up and back down again with a crash. I continued to watch as he re-centred himself and tried again. Deciding whatever he was doing was very exciting, I jogged back over to see him trying to snap a table-top in half with a kick. He’d propped it up on a 45 degree angle between the floor and the skip bin and was attempting to break it with a kick. Very excitedly I offered to try, and after being dissuaded from a double-leg strike (due to the possibility of the top half of the table snapping too suddenly and giving me a concussion) I attempted to break it with a sidekick. If Kaneda couldn’t, I didn’t think I could, but it was worth a shot. After a few failed attempts, Kaneda realised it was quadruple layer plywood which was essentially reinforced. I had one final proposal for him: the two of us kicking at the same time.

There was a moment of stillness where we both got in opposite fighting stances and focussed on the heart of the board. “Ichi… Ni… San!” Our legs went up at the same time, chambered in the same place and struck out in synchronity. Unfortunately the board held, but we tried again, this time using the same stance, right-leg back. Again he counted down and we moved at exactly the same time, kicked in unison and hit the board in the right spot. It would not withstand our combined might and snapped beneath our feet. Kaneda’s half was noticably cleaner than mine, but it was still a great moment of success, where many hi-five’s were had. Kaneda was really hyped up and said he wanted to break more stuff now and I laughed thinking he was joking. Then he pulled out the other three or four table-tops.

Let’s just say it was awesome fun taking turns to snap the crap out of those boards. Skipping sidekick, double sidekick and even a few jumping sidekicks later (to get closer to the 90 degree angle) we tossed them all into the skip bin in pieces. It was a beautiful moment when all that Taekwondo could really shine. One of my treasured memories: breaking crap with the K-man. (H)

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