Well, it had been a long time coming. 14th June 2014. The St. Helens Stick Day.
The last DBMA UK Stick Day was back in July 2013, again in St. Helens. Due to problems experienced by the other DBMA Group Leaders in the UK, there were no more stick days in 2013, so it was down to me to try and keep the ball in play.
It was a warm summers day in Parr, St. Helens. Thanks to contacts made a few years ago we had the use of Derbyshire Hill Family Centre, a fabulous sports hall that appears to have been made especially for us!
We started things off with a warm up, a good game of Stick Ball. Introduced to me by the other Group Leaders, this game is great for skill development, fitness and of course fun.
After a quick drink of water we went straight into the workshops. Unfortunately for those present, I was the only group leader there, so all attending had to put up with me for two workshops!
The first workshop was on empty hands, particularly the link between siniwali and empty hands. Starting off with double stick we worked a few combos, before translating them to empty hands.
The second workshop was on staff. We looked at what we classed as a staff and covered the basic Malayu, along with the uppercut diagonal combo. We made the most of having the space that we very rarely are able to train in!
Then came the sparring. Everybody got to have a blast with the training knife sparring, before progressing through action flex sparring on to the real thing - raw rattan sparring.
Everybody did exceptionally well, showing great courage and intelligence. I took the opportunity to check everyone out and see the areas that we need to work, as well as the areas that had been absorbed already. I was very impressed with everyone's progression, and most importantly I had a great time playing with everyone!
Afterwards it was back to mine for a barbeque and a couple of bevvys. All in all a wonderful day in great company. The DBMA UK clan grows!