Getting Ready for the Beach Practice, and the Soggy Aftermath

Getting Ready for the Beach Practice, and the Soggy Aftermath

Beach Practice Practical Wisdom …

Here are a few tips for our 46th beach practice on Saturday, January 16th, 2016, from 1-1:45 PM, at English Bay.

Eat a good (warm?) breakfast a couple of hours before practice.

Arrive dressed warmly: fleece, warm socks and boots, hat, on top of your gi. Hang on to what body heat you have.

Beg friends and/or family to be there to cheer you on, take photos, and hold your stuff. You will be so grateful they are there after you stumble out of the water. If they are holding a towel and a cup of hot chocolate or tea for you then, they are THE BEST!

Yes, you will get wet and cold. Under your gi, wear swimwear and a white tshirt. DO NOT tie your gi pants or top in tight knots: once they get wet they will be VERY difficult to untie. Do go ahead and wear old runners, or sport sandals. A few intrepid souls might go barefoot, but do keep in mind that there might be sharp objects in the sand and surf.

How/Why will you get wet? Our practice usually ends with a short jog on the sand, after which we do oizuki into the surf: zenkutsu-dachi forward ten steps, turn around, ten steps back out, that kind of thing. Depending on the tide, we might end up just thigh -high in the water, but by then many of us will be feeling all Polar Bear about it and will just throw ourselves in. Great photo op there for your friends/family!

The moment practice is over, we will all be running for warmth. You will appreciate having these on hand:

1. A large garbage bag to stand on while you change, and to hold your sandy, wet clothes after you get out of them.

2. Sandals or easy-to-slip-on shoes.

3. Towels, naturally. A super large one may spare you from having to cram into a crowded change room.

4. Loose, warm clothes to change into.

5. Money for lunch or something warm.

The more of us who show up to do this, the more fun we’ll have. The day will be gorgeous, whether it is sunny or snowy!

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