The Final Round

By Matthew O’Leary

This is it. The final round. I’m out in California for a martial arts tournament, and it has been fun. Seeing all of the different forms and styles really put me in a state of awe and wonder. However, this doesn’t mean that they were the best. With a lot of students out in the west, all lot don’t get one on one teaching back in my class. This cause not as good martial arts students. This doesn’t mean that the qualifying round wasn’t hard. This consists of test of strength, endurance, speed, and the five major basics of martial arts: Body up right, movement from the waist, straight wrist, snap, and the hardest, Separation. This was the hardest part of the tournament. Now this tournament has been going on for three days. I wasn’t planning on going to the final round, I just wanted to have some fun and increase my knowledge of other schools. The western schools had a lot more students than the north, so I saw a lot of the same fighting styles and techniques. I easily beat anyone, once I found their style. If two student went to the same school, I knew that schools fighting style in a matter of minutes. Now I’m here at the final fight. My opponent was 2nd degree black belt, six feet of conditioned muscles, but at the same time, flowing and calm. This guy mastered the basics and the advanced techniques were even easier. I have seen this guy in other matches, and he was THE martial artist. This guy has won rounds with just advancing and not even throwing a punch. And all four of those were in the semi-finals with even a 6th degree from Korea. Lucky the second degree made him faint, so I didn’t need to fight him.   That is how good this guy was.  Was I ready to find out? Did I want to find out? The ref is calling me up. This is it. The final round.