The Kiraly summer camp took place in Csongrad Hungary from 2nd to 10 August 2014. Consisting of 5 hours of training and fighting daily with the world renowned Kiraly team and analysis from it's founder Istvan Kiraly.
In attendance were over 140 fighters from 19 countries ranging from Poland to Costa Rica. Fighters were split into groups of about 12 and then rotated around several stations covering Conditioning, Defence, Blitzing, Kicking and Analysis. These stations were run by each of the Kiraly team fighters.
Each day began at 7.30 with either a 5km run or an hour of aerobics. Because of my knee problems which prevent me from running I had to attend the Aerobics class each day. This proved to be a hard option as the level of aerobics was very high with Gabriella performing impossible abs and leg workouts and smiling all the way through and blowing her whistle while 140 kickboxers collapsed around her!!
We followed this session with a heart breakfast of Scrambled eggs mixed with bacon etc. There were essentially two classes. Women/youths and Mens and they would alternat the training times. The morning session was 1.5 hours from either 10.30 or 12.00 and covered the stations mentioned above, with drills, games and sparring involved.
Following this was Lunch, mainly some tasty chicken, rice or pasta and lots of Watermelon! Then a coach was laid on to take us to the spa in Csongrad where you could use the hot and cold baths or, my favourite, the warm thermal pool in the park. We would spend an hour and a half here trying to get our muscles back into shape for the next training session.
This was once again split into two times. Either 4.30-6.30 or 6.30-8.30pm alternating daily. This session was the main sparring and technical session and was taken by Istvan Kiraly. We concentrated on various strategies and practices and sparred with all comers including all the Kiraly fighters and world champions.
In the evening was dinner and then free time. Most went to the bar and spa in Csongrad to relax and ease aching muscles ready for the next days efforts.
After the 3rd day of traing was a rest day. Some people visited a nearby town and water park, others just rested in their rooms or at the spa. Then in the evening after dinner Lazslo Gombos showed his vocal talents performing a concert with his band. Debs and me were flattered to be asked to do a couple of numbers as a warm up. The evening was fun, relaxed and sober in comparison to the night before which saw most people letting their hair down at the bar and quite a party developing with vodka, Unicom and Palinka consumed as well as beer in sizeable quantities!
Thursday it was back to the daily training again with most people recovering energy after the day off. On Friday evening the classes were joined for a 3 hour sparring session with everyone and tuition, insight and analysis from Istvan. In the evening we went to the bar and had a very chilled marshmallow toasting evening.
Saturday was the Kiraly tournament day. All fighters were put into groups of 6 and then fought round robin with the winners going through to the quarter finals which took place later in the day.
Saturday night saw the final party and buffet with everyone letting heir hair down and once again the dreaded Vodka, palinka and Unicom emerged.
This was an amazing week of training and cooperation with martial artists from all over the world. We learnt so much form Istvan and all the Kiraly team and were always made to feel welcome. Friends were made and contacts forged with people from many different countries. We trained together, ate together, fought together and drunk together in a true spirit of co-operation. Mainly we learnt about ourselves. There were times when my body ached so much that I was sure I could not get up out of bed let alone throw punches and kicks, and still you put your gloves on and go training again for another couple of hours and afterwards you feel great! You realise that there is more in you than you think and that the biggest barrier to improvement is your mind.
I would like to thank Istvan, Laszlo, Zsolt, Tamas, Richie, Alex, Krystian, Henrietta, Vicky, Daniel, Gabriella and all the others too numerous to mention, (but just as important) who gave their expertise, assistance and advice and made this such a memorable week.