The student of the month for January 2016 is Chloe Lundrigan of the Amherst Shotokan Karate Academy.
Chloe is a 14 year old and lives in Sackville, NB. She trains with her father, Bruce, and little sister, Nina, at the Amherst Shotokan Karate Academy.
The Maritime IKD interviewed Chloe and her answers were so great, we decided to provide the entire interview.
MaritimeIKD.com: Chloe, when did you start training in karate?
Chloe: Fall of 2014.
MaritimeIKD.com: What drew you to karate?
Chloe: My dad used to talk about karate a lot even when he wasn’t part of a club here, and would complain that no one would go with him, so I finally tried it. I like taking part in something that’s so ancient, especially since it originated almost halfway across the world, the history behind it is incredibly interesting.
MaritimeIKD.com: What is your favorite part of training?
Chloe: My favourite part of training is when we do group applications in class, especially when it’s my turn to be in the middle. I like being put in a situation and having to remembering all of the steps, and working with other people. It’s a bit like a test, because no one else is doing the same movements, and you (in a way) get to see how well you’re doing, because if maybe you’re leg isn’t bent, or you aren’t setting up to block properly, the technique doesn’t work. I also really like doing kata alone, and trying them backwards, or only moving one leg. I’m someone who doesn’t mind being corrected and/or being told I’m not doing the technique properly, if I don’t get it right, I want to keep doing it until I can, or at least I know how, and I can try it before the next class or in the living room at home.
MaritimeIKD.com: You have only been training for a short time but training setting long term and short term goals are very important. What are your goals for your karate future?
Chloe: In the future I guess I’d like to grade for first dan. It’s been an ongoing joke in my family to see who will be a black belt first, me or my dad. Short term I think I’d like to compete at the tournament in February, because I’ve never been to one before. I’d also like to learn at least a bit of my next katas, so that they’ll be easier to learn later, I’m trying to avoid having to learn and perfect multiple katas at once for a while, because it’s a nightmare. My ultimate goal is to take my instructor’s courses. I love working with little kids, so teaching karate would be lots of fun.
MaritimeIKD.com: Karate is about building bonds with the people you train with. You are lucky to train with your father and sister. How do you feel about training with them?
Chloe: I honestly don’t find training with my dad and Nina much different from training with everyone else. It’s nice to be in the middle level between them, because I have someone to correct me, and ask questions to, instead of YouTube (which ultimately makes things FAR more complicated than they need to be.) There’s always someone around to spar with, and to have a second pair of eyes for things that I don’t see, like back feet, or that my chudan punch is a bit too low, which is an ongoing problem, then I get to try and help them with the little things that they need to fix.
MaritimeIKD.com: You are very well skilled and double passed at your last rank test. Have you done any other sports or training in other martial arts before?
Chloe: I’d never done any Martial arts when I started Karate, I’d only really done dance after school as a sport. It’s great because I’m flexible enough to kick at jodan height, and holding your stance is MUCH easier after you’ve had to do a proper grand plié in second position, or try to hold your ankle next to your head. It’s also a bit of a curse, I end up stretching to far, or rotating weirdly, and then when I go back to a shorter stance I feel like I’m to close to just standing up.
Chloe is a talented martial artist and as very well spoken young lady. She was a perfect choice for the Maritime IKD Student of the Month.