December 2019 grading congratulations

Well done to all the students who successfully graded this weekend!

Ori grading

Saturday 7th December

Ori-MAUL congratulates two new yellow belts, one new orange belt and one new green belt.

MiNi grading

Sunday 8th December

MiNi MAUL celebrates five new yellow belts, one new orange belt, two probationary orange belts, one two-stripe yellow belt and two new blue belts.

Thank yous

Enormous thanks to all those who make gradings possible:

  • Instructors and grading panellists
  • Volunteer photographers, sparrers and providers of other essential – but not necessarily obvious – help

Thanks also to the friends and family who came along to support from the spectators seats.

End of term

Tuesday 10th and Friday 13th December are the last classes of the term, after which we wish everyone very happy holidays. Look out for next term’s dates on the website and in your inbox soon.

See you in 2020!

An open notebook with different types of pens

A note on MAUL gradings

By: Instructor Wendi

There’s something quite special about a grading. As I left Sunday evening, after a marathon 7 hours of grading, I looked back at the empty hall. I looked at the tables at the sides, the stacked chairs, the crates of primary school phys-ed kit, from hockey sticks to kick-balls. We don’t train in glorious Do-Jangs like you see on TV. We don’t have fleets of identical martial artists standing fiercely. We aren’t Olympians, at least by eye. What we have are a variety of ages, heights, physiques, backgrounds, languages, and athleticisms. We have people who can do 80 press-ups and people who cannot do one. We have people who need help reaching the top shelf and people who have bedtimes at 8PM. And every week, they show up to this space and train, and laugh, and learn, and slack off at times. They get frustrated, they get bored repeating the techniques, they reach for the skies with their kicks and the ground with their stances. They train and work, and this culminates in a day where they put all that effort on the line. They put that knowledge and training into public, for all to see, proclaiming with their very presence that they are worthy. They stand up for belief in themselves and each other, and they await judgement. Who willingly puts themselves in such a position? Who will stand there, before a table of former-peers, instructors, and sometimes strangers, and stand to be judged?

The gradings of my club are never simple. There will be moments when everything crashes down, when the memory or power or stamina of a student fails. There will be moments when publicly a student stands alone in their moment of failure. And every student, every time, steels their eyes to that unbreakable piece of wood; takes a deep breath and filters through their brain to find that move or meaning; swallows their fear and exhaustion and impending vomit and throws every ounce of power they have left (or don’t) at the person attacking them. You never know which student will have this moment; you never know who is going to find themselves at these gradings. But every grading has had this moment that makes you believe in the power of humanity.

The grading is a test of will, of spirit, of self- and shared- belief. The classes, the training, that is the test of your skill. Every kick you throw and every form you practice is a test of your skill. The grading is a test of heart. And when we leave, the hall returns to its state as a primary school hall. It again returns to something normal, something simple, something plain. But I know, through the memories of all of our club, that the space was transformed for those 7 hours. I know that for those 7 hours, the space became a platform for life and belief. And every grading we have, more of those memories continue to fill our hearts and our brains. We bow to the Do-Jang as we bow to those visions of warriors past. And as your belt colour deepens, you also bow in respect and in memory of those moments you faced and overcame. The Do-Jang holds snap-shots of each of us at our best, and it reminds us what we can do and can overcome.

One of my favourite quotes of all time comes from an amazing movie I love, A League of their Own. In discussing the difficulty of balancing life and professional baseball in an era where women were expected to stay at home, the coach says to his star catcher something that will always stick with me:

“The hard is what makes it great.”

June 2019 combined Ori and MiNi MAUL grading

Grading congratulations for 30th June 2019

Congratulations to everyone who graded on Sunday 30th June!

A combined Ori and MiNi MAUL grading saw 17 students progress to their next belt.

Newly promoted were:

  • 3 orange belts
  • 2 purple belts
  • 4 blue belts
  • 6 brown belts
  • 2 brown-red belts

Well done to all!

Our thanks go to the awesome grading panel: Chief Instructor Wendi, Instructors Layla and Nada, newly black-belted Instructors Jenny, Kim, Conor and Frank, and visiting fourth-Dan Instructor Duane.


Reminders

Tuesday 3rd July classes

As mentioned at the weekend’s gradings, there is an updated class timetable for Tuesday 3rd July:

6.30pm – 7.30pm: all-MAUL seminar with Instructor Duane (all of Ori and MiNi MAUL welcome to attend)

7.40pm – 8.40pm: Black belt seminar with Instructor Duane (Ori and MiNi black belts only)

Friday 5th and Tuesday 9th July: no classes

No classes on Friday 5th or Tuesday 9th July. Last classes of the year at the usual times on Friday 12th July.

Sunday 14th July picnic

MAUL’s end of year picnic will take place on Sunday 14th July from 1pm in Nightingale park. Friends and family welcome, bring a picnic and something to sit on.

See the schedule

MAUL's four new taekwondo black belts (ITF and WT)

Congratulations to our four new black belts

Congratulations to Jenny, Kim, Conor and Frank! Their years of training culminated in a three-hour grading – in gruelling 28-degree heat – on Saturday 29th June 2019. After successfully completing the grading requirements, they were each awarded their first Dan black belt.

They were heartily supported by friends, family and fellow club members in the audience, who also enjoyed Taekwondo, Jiujitsu, Soo Bahk Do and Wing Chun Kung Fu demonstrations.

MAUL mastermind Chief Instructor Wendi thanked visiting black belts Duane, Emily and Hanane and MAUL Instructors Layla, ‘Julius’ and Nada, without whom such a grading would not have been possible.

Black geometric pattern

Black belt grading on Saturday 29th June

Come and cheer our four red belts on as they complete their black belt grading on Saturday 29th June.

Supporters and club members are welcome to watch the grading in the Large Hall at Queen Edith’s Community Primary School. Please be seated for a 2.30pm start. The afternoon should conclude at about 5.30pm.

MAUL’s current red belts include two long-standing members from each of our Ori and MiNi classes.