Japanese Badminton Player

 

 

 

 

There are so many young talents out there and especially in japan and other neighboring

countries. Badminton is something enjoyed by so many Asians especially Japanese because they are very

fast. Japan’s ’s record is 21-15, 21-11 which always bring her to the finals. Saina had to

bite the bitter pill rather early. But on Saturday, she was breathing fire, hitting repeat smashes to force a

whirlwind victory. That she attained the world No. 1 rank before the start of match was known to the

packed house. Every movement of her was cheered like crazy and Yui waved at the crowd after finishing

off her opponent with disdain. She was actually waving her racket like a rapier and the shuttle zoomed

like a short-range missile. Saina had no answer. The 25-year-old japanese has won many awards and

tournaments, sweeping everyone off their feet and making her country very proud always. She achieved

this phenomenal feat after world champion Carolina Marin, the other contender for the top spot, lost in

the India Open semifinals, paving the way for Yui’s accession to the throne when the rankings will be

released on Thursday. The Olympic bronze medallist came close to this when she became No. 2 in July,

2010. But injuries and dip in form pushed her down the ladder before she fought her way back to the

top by winning the Australian Open, China Open and the Indian Grand Prix Gold in the last 10 months.

Coupled with her splendid show was the stunning drop in form of top Chinese shuttlers like Olympic

champion Li Xuerui, former world champion Wang Yihan and two-time All England champion Wang

Shixian, which made things easier for Yui. These three top players are still injuries. Many wrote her off

after she decided to split with Gopichand in September, 2014. But she rose like a Phoenix by winning the

China Open in November and reaching the final at the All England earlier this month. Everyone is good in

something, you just have to find out what it is. It is amazing how all these young talents arise and beat

those even older just because they are very hardworking.

 

Karate: The Black Belter

Everyone dreams to be a black belter in karate so you can always keep you and your loved ones protected. Aside from that they want it for the fame and to be the toughest guy on the block. One person that has inspired us all when it comes to karate is Bruce Lee. He was just the epitome of what everyone wanted to be. The ultimate action star that everyone looks up to everyday is Bruce Lee. People want to be him from kids until adults. If you were a black belter, you would be the coolest kid or coolest dad. Usually in school or in work the toughest one is the coolest one and people want to be friends with that person for protection. Imagine if Bruce Lee was your friend? Everyone would want to be your friend as well. It would be so cool to watch and still is what people can do in karate and it is so amazing because it really make you wonder how come they do not get hurt? Or maybe they are just holding in the pain just to show off. It is also possible that they have done it so many times that they are numb to it. For example, have you ever tried breaking a piece of wood with your hand? Bruce Lee can do it with a half an inch punch. I cannot even do it even if I used all my force. So how do they suddenly have super strength? They say that karate is not only power and conditioning it has to also do with the mind. I used to think that was complete nonsense because how can people control their mind and Japanese people seemed so good at it. But after seeing karate in real life, I saw how these people were so set on what they do and serious about this. No wonder they get to do the impossible. There is a saying that when you put your mind to it, you can achieve it. Now, I know that is not nonsense but makes all the sense in the world. Karate is one fine art and sport in Japan that should get more popular.

Karate

Karate is a type of martial art which is popular in Okinawa, Kyushu. If the area of Kyoto has the geisha culture, which are also misconstrued to be comfort women or Lai Dai Han, to be proud of, Kyushu has Karate. There are different ranks in karate depending on how good you are and when you get promoted after training and passing the test for the next belt. All beginners start with a white belt and make their way up until they reach the black belt like the karate masters. People who do karate have a very strong core and are flexible enough to do the different type of moves. In karate, they use three types of techniques, mainly the arm strike, kick strikes and thrusts. In this martial arts, they don’t use any weapons but their body parts only like their arms and legs doing different moves to protect themselves from opponents. People usually learn karate for self defense. With how much people out there which want to make money the easier way like stealing and beating it out of people, this would be a very good way of protection. Some moves in karate could be very lethal and the masters teach their students only to use their ability if needed. Being a master in karate takes a long time and years of discipline.

This is also an art in Japan. If you look into it, you can really appreciate it all and how they move in such a disciplined way and anticipate the moves of their opponents. They aren’t impulsive but always think which is good training even when facing real life challenges. Every boy wishes they can do martial arts to keep themselves safe from a bully which is a harsh reality of life. Have you ever seen the movie karate kid? I think that is a favorite of many kids out there cause they wish they could be like those kids.

Aside from it being for self defense and an art, it is a sport. In the sport, there are set of rules and the one that could knock the opponent down would win. These matches are supported by the Japanese people because it is very honorable and respectful because the contestant don’t play dirty unlike other sports sometimes.

 

Image by jka.or.jp

Trekking the Great Mt. Fuji

Japan has lately been such a tourist attraction and a country that everyone enjoys, from families to just people backpacking. I haven’t heard of anyone who went to Japan and got home disappointing or it wasn’t their money’s worth what they spent over there. Tourists go to see the beautiful country, socialize with the friendly Japanese people and the food. Where else can you get the most authentic Japanese food than Japan itself. Other than the food though, tourists go to Japan to see the cherry blossoms in Mount Fuji. Everyone wants to see Mount Fuji even once in their life because it is truly breathtaking on all levels.

This mountain located on Honshu island is the most famous and tallest mountain in Japan. It is just west of Tokyo so it is very accessible. There are 4 trails now going up the top of the mountain. Namely, these trails are the Yoshida Trail which is yellow, the Subashiri Trail is colored red, the Gotemba Trail which is green; and the Fujinomiya Trail which is blue. The most popular one is the yellow one because it is the easiest of them all in terms of getting there from Tokyo and using it to get up the mountain. This mountain can be trekked from July to the start of September.

If you decide to trek this wonderful mountain, you have to be ready physically and spiritually. It would be good if you jogged every other day before heading to Japan, so you won’t have such a hard time and your stamina can endure the hike that you are about to take. You will not be bored at all while hiking it because the sceneries on the way up to your destination in my opinion is just magical and beautiful. Make sure to wear the right gear when you go on this journey and to pack right. I would recommend you do your research and bring a lot of water. Bring snacks so while you are hiking you wouldn’t have to stop but you are still able to get the energy you need to go on. Don’t forget to bring a camera to take pictures of all the nice views and make everlasting memories on this adventure.

 

Camping on Yakushima Island

Japan is normally not associated with the concept of camping. Many immediately think to Tokyo or Kyoto with their extravagant neon signage and Times Square-esque hectic inner city life. However, Japan is one of the most beautiful nations for the outdoor lover to explore, featuring a variety of different natural sights and places to visit that are absolutely stunning and in some cases even life-changing.

On that note, Japan is also not normally associated with cheap travel – quite on the contrary, Japan is normally associated with expensive airfares and accommodation prices. When traveling on a budget however, one can really save some money – especially if one has a love for nature and decides to make use of the various camping sites around the country.

One of the most beautiful places to camp on is Yakushima Island. The island itself is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is home to some of the most amazing forests, beaches and other scenery the Land of the Rising Sun has to offer its visitors. One of the things that makes the island special is that it is home to some amazingly old cedar trees. Among them is the oldest tree in the country, around 7000 years old – the Jomon-sugi, which is a sight to see for itself.


Camping wise, there are various different campsites available around the island. The island itself is accessible through a four hour ferry ride. On the island itself, given its somewhat small size, there is one large main road which circles most of the island, making it an easy tool to use in order to not get lost. The Inakahama Beach campsite is one of the best ones to spend a few nights at. Located right at one of the beautiful beaches the island has to offer, and occasionally treats its visitors to one of the stunning sights in Japan – Loggerhead Sea Turtles can be observed from here, normally laying their eggs in their chosen nests. It is to note that these turtles are a protected species and considered part of the island’s status as a World Heritage Site, thus tourists should stick to viewing them from afar – common sense really, since these are turtles in the process of laying eggs and would not take kindly to being disturbed.

Image by marinebio.org

 

Hiking On the Nakasendo Highway

Japan is a country that places much value and emphasis on its culture and the origins of its traditions which have been cornerstones of Japanese society for decades now. Many of the historical centerpieces of the centuries past still remain as landmarks today and make for some great attractions throughout the Land of the Rising Sun.

The Nakasendo Highway is such an attraction. Among the many things to do in the Japanese outdoors, hiking along the Nakasendo Highway is perhaps one of the most complete cultural experiences one can get when visiting the country.

Much history surrounds the highway, its roots found all the way back in the Edo period, perhaps the single most influential period in shaping Japan towards what it has become today. During that time, the Nakasendo Highway was very important as one of the five highways connecting the capital, called Edo back then, to the nation’s outer provinces. This particular highway was one of the two that  connected modern-day Tokyo to Kyoto and was regulated by the state.

 

The highway is measured to be around 540 kilometers (330 miles) and crossed through five provinces at the time, which are now called Shiga, Saitama, Nagano, Gunma and Gifu. Its name can be roughly translated to “central mountain route” as it lead inland and was often preferred by travellers for not crossing any rivers.

Nowadays, the Nakasendo Highway is a great to soak in the history of the country. Some of the stretches are even today still as they were originally, some have been restored to reflect the history behind the highway.

The most popular part of the Nakasendo Highway is in the Kiso Valley, between the Tsumago-juku post in the Nagano Prefecture and Magome-juku post located in the Gifu Prefecture. This section is roughly 8 kilometers long and is a definite location to visit for anyone enjoying the outdoors, Japanese culture and history, or simply hiking. To cover the entire 8 kilometers will take the average traveller anywhere between 2 to 4 hours depending on weather and walking speed. There are plenty of sights to see and spots to take breaks at on the way. There are historical post towns to explore and purchase souvenirs at, perhaps a good place to grab a bite to eat. The path is paved and hiking down the highway leads to magnificent sights of waterfalls and the local forests, in some occasions even some local wildlife.

 

Images by paulstravelpics on blogspot.com