WOW! After 20+ years away from the tourney circuit I got wild hair and decided to signup for this years Traditional Empty Hands Forms & Traditional Weopan Forms at the Sunflower State Games in Topeka.
I also got one of Ben Miller one of my novice students interested in competing. Ben spent a few months working on Lian Huan Chuan and performed it very well. Especially when you concider it was the first time he ever competed and the first time he ever performed in front of more than three or four people. Ben place 2nd in Novice 12-13 year old Traditional Empty Hand Forms.
Personally I decided to do Shaolin Shao Fu Yen Chuan for my Empty Hands Set and BaJi Li Liu Dao for the Weapons set. Now I didn’t actually plan on Li Liu until the week of the tourney. You see I was training a traditional Whip Chain Set when I unexpectedly had a connecting link BREAK! So as with so many things in my life plans changed.
The competitors were amazing. Okinawan, Japanese, Korean and Ben & I the lone Kung Fu guys. Well I have to say I was sure after watching the completion that I was in no better than 5th place in weapons and when the score keeper called me as SECOND PLACE I about dropped my sword. Seriously, I was happy where I had myself scored, but to pull a second against the guys I was competing against with the focus and control they were exhibiting absolutely blew me away.
Then we got to the Empty Hand Forms and the bracket grew from eight to about 12 and then all the stops were pulled. I mean WOW these guys were great.
Smooth, solid, focused and powerful.
I don’t actually know my final score but the top three absolutely deserved their spots!
The tourney was held at Christ the King Church and the facility was very nice. Thanks to all who did prep work and to all who assisted in making the tourney happen. I will be back next year and I am pretty sure I’ll compete in more categories especially after the encouragement and comradery I received from this years competitors.
May the Lord bless you and your house hold