ON January 4, eight members of Barry Kyokushin Karate Club made a trip to Scwyd-Yr-Eira Falls in Penderyn to attend the annual ‘Winter Waterfall Training’.

This annual trip has been held on the first Saturday of the New Year for over 30 years in the same waterfall in Penderyn.

Other Kyokushin practitioners from around the UK joined the members of Barry Kyokushin to make the trip to the waterfall. Dressed in their Dogis (karate suits), the group ran two or so miles to the falls, making stops along the way to perform different karate exercises. One of the highlights of the run was stopping to perform punches to a slow count. After each count, the kiai (shout) would echo and rebound off three mountains.

At the Falls everyone removes their trainers to walk down behind the falls and perform a series of ‘Kihon’ (basic) exercises on the rocks by the side of the river. The group have to keep moving, performing punched and kiai, in order to fight off the cold from the falls. Then, going in grade order, the groups line up behind the falls and in twos take turns to perform a number of punches, the number depending on their rank, under the waterfall itself.

Having all taken a bow to the waterfall, the group then race back to the Lamb Inn, Penderyn, for some welcome warmth and refreshment.

Barry Kyokushin train at Castleland Community Centre every Monday and Wednesday, 6.30pm until 7.30pm for juniors and 7.30pm until 9pm for seniors, and Sunday 10am until 11.30am for seniors. Contact us on 01446 408974, at www.bkkc.co.uk or find us on Facebook.