Illinois State Martial Arts Tournament Circuit Tournament, Aurora Turners Club

Illinois State Martial Arts Tournament Circuit Tournament, Aurora Turners Club

The tournament, held Oct. 13 at the Turners Club in Aurora, 20 minutes after the advertised start time. There was a smaller turn-out this time, so the delay was probably to give a chance for late-comers. Once it started, the event went as smoothly as ever.

It was my first post-surgery tournament as a competitor, so I had no expectations going in. Well, other than the expectation that tournament organizers would try to convince me to be part of a smaller women’s black belt division. They did (twice) and I, again, refused.

Competing in local tournaments, as a kyu level, there was one black belt division. For the most part, the guys who make up the division now, are the same competitors I looked up to as a kyu. And, since 2007, I’ve been working to compete in that division with those black belts.

So, it’s irritating event organizers try to separate me out. But, you’ll notice, it’s not so irritating that I’ve stopped going. The benefit of going to small tournaments is that, to some extent, we are able to make our own experiences.