5th Dan

So I've been doing martial arts for 17 years, and I've been training at Martial Arts University for 15 of those years. I'm a 4th dan (pronounced "dahn," means "degree") black belt, which means the students have to call me Master Wood. 

I tested for my 4th dan when I was 19, end of my senior year of high school, and in MUCH better shape than I am now. It was a grueling 14-hour test that I gained 10 pounds of muscle for and then lost seven pounds of water weight during the actual test. On my old, old blog I had a description of every hour of the test and while my memory is hazy at this point, I might try to rehash that test sometime on this new blog. 

Anyway, I've spent the past year working full time at Martial Arts University and teasing with the idea of testing for my 5th dan. The test won't be nearly as hard as 4th dan, since I'm not testing for master level again, but I am very much out of practice and out of "fighting shape" as I like to call it. But I'm going to try to get ready to test in the fall, and I'll be talking about it on this blog mainly for motivational purposes.

One of the things I have to do is earn 12 different patches in non-martial-arts-related things (think Boy Scouts), so I went ahead and knocked out 10/12 of the patches in a very short period of time. The video above was for my Creativity Patch; Mack and I decided to show off what I do best - double stick. I downloaded some free video editing software and voila, I got my Creativity Patch. Hopefully over the next few months, I'll be sharing some of the other things I'm doing for patches and training and all that good stuff. 

And now that I've spoken it into existence, I actually have to do it.