As I said in my previous post, Sensei had me work on something in class that required skill, but also was a revisitation of a skill I had shown before. As a motivator, he chose to have me break another board. All he had told me prior to going to get it was "What once took you many strikes, I now wish to see you accomplish in one". Kind of cryptic but that's Sensei for you. His meaning became abundantly clear, however, once I saw what he was planning to have me do.
Over the summer when I helped out at Gurnee Days, Miss Linda talked me into breaking a board in order to improve my self confidence. It was something that I struggled with, as I had trouble understanding the concept of striking through, or past, the board. It took me around thirty or so attempts to break the board, and I was determined that would not be the case this time.
Sensei held the board just as Miss Linda had done, though instead of using a vertical hold he held it horizontally and asked me to use a downward hammer strike. I nodded, took a deep breath, and...
WENT THROUGH THE BOARD IN A SINGLE STRIKE!
I was a bit shocked to say the least. As with my original board break, I was so focused I did not really see it break, and because board breaks should not hurt if they are done properly I didn't feel much either. It only registered because a small crack was heard. Even Sensei, who was holding the board for me, said he had not been aware of the board breaking and only realized it when he found two pieces of wood in his hands instead of one.
Everyone signed the board as usual, and it now sits in my room as a trophy. Here are pics.