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Yesterday, on my drive down to the sparring circle from my house up in Orange County, my car threatened to drop a wheel, break down, or otherwise leave me and my husband stranded on some stretch of the 60 miles between home and Brooklyn.  After some deliberation, we decided to turn the car around and accept the disppointment of missing the sparring circle, rather than risk the total destruction of the car, upon which we are utterly dependent.

I emailed Greg, called Nicole, and sent a Facebook message to Peelo, asking her to head the group and look out for a few women who had contacted us, saying that they were planning on checking out the circle that day. Lorena, who attended our first meeting but had been unable to spar due to an injury was making her first appearence at the circle for sparring, something which I was hoping to experience.  And  I was especially disappointed that I would not get to meet Hanna, a mutual friend of Peelo’s and my friend Sylvie Charbonneau in Chiang Mai. She has trained in Thailand and has a distinctly Thai style of fighting.

As it turned out, the sparring session went great.  Nicole brought two friends from another group taught by her boyfriend Rich, who have little experience with sparring and not a great deal of contact with other women in these martial sports.  The girls got in the ring after the sparring session and “rolled”, practicing Jiu Jitsu and Lorena jumped in with them! And Hanna was a great addition, demonstrating her powerful and effective clinch, and Peelo said that Hanna and Nicole matched up very well in the ring. 

Photo by Peelo

The women who came to visit were, by and large, very impressed and interested in returning to the group.  Kristine Finn, a triathalete (!) seemed very happy to see the group and, from what I heard from her, Peelo did a great job of heading the group and introducing the visitors the the circle.  Kristine will return in the future for sparring.

Two more visitors were Audrey and Judith, who train in Krav Maga at the Krav Maga Federation.  They watched the circle and wanted to see if their training in KM would translate to sparring with MT fighters.  Audrey tells me that Judith is excited to return and try it out, and Audrey is considering trying it out as well.

In all this was an unique and fun experience for everyone in attendance.  I’m incredibly disappointed that I missed it (and sorry, no pictures!), but very happy that it went so well and that everyone shared such a positive experience.  I’m excited at the possibility of seeing Lorena and Hanna at the circle next week and I have really missed sparring with Peelo.

This is what Nicole R. wrote. I have to say I can’t imagine a better feeling or experience. It’s what the circle is all about:

Some of the girls that train with my boyfriend in staten island on the weekends came down, i asked them to check it out; perhaps give them something to aspire for. i wanted them to see that there are more girls out there that train, and to see some girls who were at higher levels in technique. we rolled after sparring, and lorena jumped in. it was so much fun. hanna was great, she is very strong and has a great clinch, awesome set up for kicks. it was great. we might start rolling after if some girls are up for it too. this was such a fantastic idea, i look forward to tuesdays, its not about competition between girls, its like networking; we share our ideas, and trade techniques. i feel so blessed to be apart of it.

Photo by Peelo


One Comment

  1. Hey Sylvie and Peelo, Thanks so much for having us.

    Judith and I train at the Krav Maga Federation in NYC

    (Which is different than Five Points)

    Hope to see everyone again soon.

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