National Squad – 20 Jan 2019
By Mr A Swain (4th Degree, Bournemouth)
The first National PUMA Squad training session was on 20th January at the Yate Academy. It was a chilly morning, but lots of PUMA students were eager to kick the New Year off well with some extra training. A good number of those were red & black belts who were planning an additional two hours of training under Master Gayle straight after! But more on that in a later post.
The start of the year is a busy time for the squad with the Open Dutch (run by Master Van De Mortel in Helmond, The Netherlands) just a week away, and the PUMA International Open a month away. Plenty of those at squad were long standing members continuing their preparations for these competitions; but it was a pleasure to welcome some new attendees at the session. Remember squad training sessions aren’t just for those wanting to compete at the highest levels – but anyone who loves training and wants to get some fresh ideas on patterns and sparring.
Mr Pixton and Mr P Whitlock were in charge for the session, and did a great job catering for all levels of experience, as well as making sure those competing at the Open Dutch were training smart as well as hard.
Mrs Swain got things rolling with a brief warm up – which definitely got the heartrate up in no time at all! We were then split into two groups (black belts / colour belts) to work on traditional techniques and competition specific patterns for the first hour. In the black belt group as well as technical accuracy Mr Whitlock reminded us all that the performance side of things, how you present yourself, is very important too!
After that those of us only competing in patterns at the Open Dutch were given the opportunity & space to keep practicing in our own time; while everyone else got ready for some sparring drills and free sparring. The main focus of the drills was getting the correct distancing for different attacks, and moving out again – all while making sure you kept your guard up! This section finished with some free sparring; splitting the younger juniors from the adults and larger juniors to make sure everyone had plenty of space.
The session rounded off with Mr Pixton leading a cool down and stretch. In their closing remarks Mr Pixton an Mr Whitlock wished those competing at the Open Dutch the best of luck, thanked Maria Cacia for bringing along some samples of Protein bars and Electrolyte drinks, and reminded the juniors to thank their parents for bringing them to squad!
I want to say thank you to Mr Pixton and Mr Whitlock for their time and efforts during the session – everyone seemed to have a brilliant time; with plenty to work on for the next session. Photo’s from the session can be found on the PUMA Facebook Page here.
All the best to the following members of the Squad at the Open Dutch:
- Mr Daniel Lammin – PUMA National Team Head Coach
- Mrs Jenny Swain – Patterns & Coaching
- Mr Adam Swain – Patterns & Officiating
- Mr Ed Colman Roberts – Patterns, Sparring & Open Weight Sparring
- Mr Dom White – Patterns
- Mr Mikael Cacia – Sparring & Open Weight Sparring
- Mr Aidan Bailey – Patterns & Sparring
- Mr Jack Gould – Sparring
- Mr Sam Gould – Patterns & Sparring
- Mr Szymon Doniesiewicz – Patterns, Sparring & Open Weight Sparring
- Miss Juliette Remillet-Scarpa – Patterns & Sparring
Provisional Squad dates for 2019 (at Yate Academy, 10-1) are below, it’ll be great to see you there!
- Sunday 3rd March
- Sunday 31st March
- Sunday 5th May
- Sunday 19th May
- Sunday 23rd June
- Sunday 21st July
- Sunday 8th September
- Sunday 6th October
- Sunday 3rd November
- Sunday 8th December