After 3 relaxing days, the camp does start. The Belgian team has 7 members, the 5 you’ve met earlier in Beijing – Lieve, Jeroen, Boris, Karen and me – and 2 others who we meet in the hotel, Micha and Kevin.
We’ll train intensively during the next 10 days a myriad of various martial arts styles.
The day starts – at 6:30 – with Qigong, one I mostly skip… This training harmonises the inner energy balance, to be able to cope with the more physical styles during the rest of the day.
After breakfast, at 9:00 we continue with Tong Bei, a style which emphasises long, swining arm techniques and body structure. The style is based on the movement of a white gibbon, a fast, powerful and synchopated style.
Lieve and Karen follow Tai Chi instead, a style often used to redirect incoming attacks. Uniting Yin and Yang.
After a short break Boris and I continue with Tang Lang, Praying Mantis Boxing. The characteristic of this style is the use of vertical and horizontal circles, permitting striking, trapping or defending.
Micha, Jeroen and Kevin follow Shuai Jiao, commonly known as Chinese judo. This technique concentrates on arm locks and throwing techniques to throw the opponent off-balance.
After lunch, around 14:30 we continue with Xing Yi, one of the major internal styles. This form is characterised by aggressive, seemingly linear movements and explosive power.
At that moment Boris follows Ba Gua, another internal style, known for the circle walking. Karen uses this hour to practice her Tai Chi Sword movements and Tai Chi moves.
We end the day with weapon training… Lieve, Karen and me follow the Tai Chi Sword methods, while the others learn to master the long pole…
After those intense training day, we often use the evening for some more practise. To repeat the sequences learnt that day or to revise and reflect.