spotlight!

Each week, a member of the team will be spotlighted.  Monday, before class, the interview will be posted here and the next person will be notified that they have been chosen.  This will make an awesome way for members to get to know each other better!

Week Twelve: April 14th – April 21st

Mekenzie Dyer

Twelfth Spotlight Member of the Week

Twelfth Spotlight Member of the Week

Age/Year: 19/sophomore
Major/Minor: Secondary English Ed./creative writing
Wushu Experience: 1 year 4 months
Team Status: first rank
Chosen Apparatus: nothing yet, but I am hoping to get a strait sword after surgery.
Favorite Form: optional long fist
Favorite Stance: hook knee
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: plum flower
Zodiac Alignment: gemini/ year of the dog
Original Home: Mesa

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?:
I have always been into sports. I was on the track and field team throughout high school, competing in long jump, pole vaulting and throwing events. When I came to college I started looking for something new. When I first saw wushu, I fell in love with every aspect about it. It requires strength and power, but also a finesse that many martial arts lack.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?:
short term I ant to do well at collegiate’s and then recover fast from surgery. Long term I want to get arial (which I’m close to right now, but surgery could stop that) and continue ranking up.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?:
I love that I can see improvement in my wushu, even after a year. Hopefully I come back strong after surgery.

Last Week’s Question: What is your favorite funny Wushu memory?:
it was my first practice and we were at Denny’s. Of course, Cheyenne fell asleep and Tabitha proceeded to tell me about the tradition of stacking things on her. So I had the brilliant idea to put a buzzer next to her ear. When it went off, it was hilarious, and I think that was my initiation into the team.

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?:
How do you describe wushu to other people?

Week Eleven: April 7th – April 14th

Cheyenne Bramwell
Age/Year: 19 years old, Sophomore
Major/Minor: English with a focus in Creative Writing
Wushu Experience: 2 3/4ish years 🙂
Team Status: Secretary and 1st Rank
Chosen Apparatus: Double Daggers, Kwan Dao, and any weapon I can get my hands on. I can’t help if most of my favorites are bigger than I am x)
Favorite Form: My optional/personal longfist
Favorite Stance: Zao Pan, aka sitting twisted
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Five Stance/Running Jumping Inside Kick
Zodiac Alignment: I actually have no idea xD
Original Home: Ahwatukee (near Phoenix), Arizona 🙂

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
I love the fact that I’ve gotten so much stronger and more confident through it! I never was able to do anything even remotely graceful before this! Plus, you guys are pretty much my family up in Flagstaff, and I am so glad that I found you 🙂 ❤

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
My goals include getting splits (in all variations…eventually), having as many weapons forms as I can manage, getting aerial, not being nervous while doing Butterfly anymore, being able to be confident in helping others learn and develop their Wushu, and getting to the point where I can compete Advanced in tournaments 🙂

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
Um… I’m kinda a clutz, but don’t worry, the way you can tell something’s wrong is if I don’t get up x)
Oh, and no matter what, if you need anything at all, hugs, conditioning help ( 😉 ), or just someone to talk to, don’t hesitate to ask 🙂
Last Weeks Question: Choosing only one thing, what do you most want to improve about your Wushu?
Ooohh… that’s a hard one xP
I would say just upping my difficulty level by upping my confidence. That counts as 1, right? x)
What is a question you would like to ask the next person?

What is your favorite funny Wushu memory?

Week Ten: March 31st – April 7th

Robert Lutton

Bei Shan Chuan
Northern Mountain River

Age/Year: 26 / Sophomore

Major/Minor: Geology with Paleontology Emphasis

Wushu Experience: 2 years as of April

Team Status: Senior Student / White Rank

Chosen Apparatus: Open Hand

Favorite Form: 3rd Compulsory Nanquan

Favorite Stance: Butterfly (personal reminder of physical progress)

Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Swallow Skims the Water / TKFJ

Zodiac Alignment: Leo / Rabbit

Original Home: Orange Park, FL

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
Wushu is a complete form of exercise; there’s strength, endurance, flexibility, and control just to name some of the major physical fields that I get to work out practicing Wushu. I especially enjoy practicing in a group as I can see what elements others bring to practice: the energy, the attitude, the flavor. It’s all unique and interesting.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Soon, I’d like to be able to do a successful kip-up. In time, I would like to learn a broadsword form.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
I am sincerely glad I met the team and discovered Wushu for myself. The team is a collection of wonderful people and I feel that my quality of life has been improved from making Wushu a part of it.

Last Week’s Question:  “If someone asked you what the spirit of Wushu is, how would you define it?”
Nebulous as the concept may be to put into words, I would define the spirit of Wushu as being a blend of a drive for improvement, an outlet of expression, and a test of self, physically and mentally. A blend that can be best articulated as a spirit of doing.

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?
Choosing only one thing, what do you most want to improve about your Wushu?

Week Nine: March 24th – March 31st

Jessica Baroga

Bei Quilin
Northern Mythical Creature


Age/Year: 21; Senior
Major/Minor: Anthropology; Biology, Asian Studies
Wushu Experience: 3.5+ years
Team Status: Senior student; President
Chosen Apparatus: Broadsword
Favorite Form: My personal longfist
Favorite Stance: Drop stance
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Butterfly
Zodiac Alignment: Western: Pisces Eastern: Monkey (Water element)
Original Home: Brawley, CA
What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
My favorite thing about practicing Wushu is the grace, strength, and endurance that it requires. To see it in action is a truly beautiful thing, and to be able to practice it makes my spirit sing.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
My short term goal is to solidly get aerials, and my long term goal is to eventually compete in the U.S. Team Trials.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
Wushu is the ART of combat not the art of COMBAT. While it is certainly possible to use Wushu to defend oneself it is not a decision that should be taken lightly. The decision to use the art of Wushu to harm another being should always be a last resort.

Last Week’s Question: “If you could meet a famous Wushu athlete, who would it be and why?”
Well, I’m not sure if this really counts since he is more a Wushu coach but I would want to meet Wu Bin. Why, you ask? To hear firsthand the story of the creation of modern Wushu and the establishment of the first Beijing Wushu Team.

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?
If someone asked you what the spirit of Wushu is, how would you define it?

Week Eight: Nov. 11th – Nov. 18th

Dusty Schmidt

Bei Lu Huang Yue
North Green Phoenix Moon

Age/Year: 22, Super Senior
Major/Minor: Music Education
Wushu Experience: Started in November 2008
Team Status: Former Coach, Alumni, Senior Student
Chosen Apparatus: Jianshu
Favorite Form: Jianshu
Favorite Stance: Pu bu
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Wu Bu Quan/Xuan zi zhong ti (twist)
Zodiac Alignment: Scorpio, Horse
Original Home: Queen Creek, Arizona

What is your favorite thing about practicing wushu?

Spirit, flavor, and passion. It’s an art form that incorporates the whole body, as well as a martial system. I love to see a performer with their heart on their sleeve and fire in their eyes. I love the variety of style, rhythm, and flavor between athletes. I love the explosive, fluid, graceful, dynamic, precise beauty of a performer who is pouring their soul out on the floor. Most of all, I love to feel these things when I practice and perform, and when I train with my wushu brothers and sisters, coaches and friends.

What are your short term and long term wushu goals?

Short term I’d like to heal up my injuries, I’ve had some bad luck recently and really want my body back in tiptop training shape. Long term I hope to get twist to splits, 540 outside and inside, aerial twist, get faster and have more power, jump higher, and I hope to one day make the US Wushu Team.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or about your wushu?

I just want to say that wushu is hard and it will always be hard. Wushu challenges the self, physically mentally and emotionally. If you are struggling with a movement, it is because you must work through it. If you have trouble motivating yourself to train, it’s because that’s an obstacle specifically for you. If you are frustrated by your level or lack confidence, it is another challenge to overcome. Just don’t quit! Obstacles are meant to be overcome, hurdles to be jumped, boundaries to be broken. You can do it – jiayou!

Last Week’s Question: “What is your chosen Wushu apparatus or style for the Zombie Apocalypse and why? (Not limited to one you currently know or your ‘chosen apparatus’ listed above)”

Zui jian (drunken sword) because I feel I could blend in with the horde but still slice heads and be on my merry way without issue.

What is a question you would like to ask the next person? “If you could meet a famous wushu athlete, who would it be and why?”

Week Seven: Nov. 4th – Nov. 11th

Sean Rooney
北 熊 貓 Bei Xiongmao
Northern Panda

Age/Year: 23/Let’s say senior

Major/Minor: Mechanical Engineering/Math

Wushu Experience: This is my fourth year on the team.

Team Status: Senior Student; Team/Officer Liaison

Chosen Apparatus: Spear, Rope-Dart

Favorite Form: Sparring set

Favorite Stance: Gong-bu

Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Frontslap Kick/Backsweep

Zodiac Alignment: Libra/Horse

Original Home: Kingman, Arizona

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
It’s great having this physical thing to do, really anytime you need it.  It’s the best stress reliever that I’ve found since coming to NAU.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Short-Term: To learn the broadsword compulsory and a rope-dart optional
Long-Term: To get really, really cool.  And eventually be able to teach my own hoard of minions.  Or become a stuntman.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
My favorite thing about being on the team has always been our Family dynamic.  We all have our differences and sometimes we don’t get along with specific other people on the team but that kind of just defines us as a family even more.  You join this team thinking ‘cool, kung fu stuff’ or thinking it might be the anime club and show up to the wrong building, and you end up with this huge support group and it’s just an immediate group of friends.  The whole team may change but it is always here for us.

Last Week’s Question:  “Out of all the people you have trained wushu with, who’s wushu do you think has the most influence on your own wushu flavor? Explain why or give examples.”
I feel like a lot of my flavor was inspired from working in the sparring sets.  So blaming it on a person, I was mostly influenced by the combination of Jessica and I.

What is a question you would like to ask the next person? “What is your chosen Wushu apparatus or style for the Zombie Apocalypse and why? (Not limited to one you currently know or your ‘chosen apparatus’ listed above)”

Week Six: Oct. 28 – Nov. 4th

Lianna Rivera
北绿莲蛇  Bei Lu Lian She
Northern Green Lotus Snake

Age/Year: 23, Graduate
Major/Minor: BA in Music, Minors in Asian Studies and Business
Wushu Experience: 3 years and 8 months
Team Status: NAU Wushu Team Alumni, Jade Moon Wushu Academy Senior Student
Chosen Apparatus: Fan
Favorite Form: 3rd Compulsory Gunshu
Favorite stance: Pubu
Favorite basic/Difficulty:
Swallow Skims the Water/Xuan Fei Jiao
Zodiac alignment: Virgo
Original home: Mesa, AZ

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?:
First, I love the family aspect that develops around wushu team members. I thank you all for still letting me be a part of your wushu family even though I have graduated and moved away. It’s so awesome to have two wushu families now. I am happy that my two wushu families get along! Secondly, the work out. Wushu works my body good! I love being able to look in the mirror and see all my hard work paying off. And ladies, your wushu thighs are beautiful! Don’t you forget it! Even when you are at the store and you can’t find a single pair of jeans that will fit!

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Short term: Learn the changquan, gunshu, jianshu, daoshu, qiangshu compulsories solidly.
Long term: I am not sure if trying out for the US Wushu Team is actually for me. I am a performer more than a competitor. I think acting/playing wushu in a small independent film is the route I want to go. But we will see where my wushu takes me these next two years.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
I LOVE DRUMMING FOR LION DANCERS!!! I also like lion dancing. And dragon dancing. Wushu has so many outlets for creativity!!!!

Last week’s question: “What is your wushu theme song? What gets you in the zone and puts you at your best for training or performing?”
Funny thing is, even though I have a degree in music, I don’t actually know the names of songs or artists. I usually go off of genre. My favorite genres to do wushu to are EDM (to get that “I’m so awesome” feeling and fast/slow rhythm) and music from ballets (to help me feel graceful and pretty).

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?
“Out of all the people you have trained wushu with, who’s wushu do you think has the most influence on your own wushu flavor? Explain why or give examples.”

Week Five: Oct. 21- Oct.28

COACH GENEVIEVE Ω BURNS
北明鶴 Bei Ming He
Northern Bright Crane

Age/Year: 21. 4th Year/Senior
Major/Minor: Double Major! Communication Studies, International Affairs
Wushu Experience: Four complete semesters and some other training at Jade Moon Wushu Academy
Team Status: Team Coach, Senior Student, Club Historian
Chosen Apparatus: Jian.
Favorite Form: My jianshu. 3rd Compulsory Jianshu for a form that I want to learn.
Favorite Stance: Pubu
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Of the ten basics, I like jumping po. Of the difficulties, I like xuanzi.
Zodiac Alignment: Capricorn
Original Home: Phoenix.

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
The grace, ferocity, discipline, and personality of the artist.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Short Term: Coach well. Long Term: Coach better.
On another note, learn as much as I can and find myself in the wushu that I love and develop.

Last Week’s Question: What was the first difficulty you finally got that made you shout for joy?
People may remember when I first executed an aerial at Coach Houwangzi’s Wushu Anniversary Class and I let out a triumphant “fxxx yeah!”…

Next Week’s Question:
What is your wushu theme song? What gets you in the zone and puts you at your best for training or performing?

Week Four: Oct. 14- Oct. 21

RONNIE HUDSON
Bei Hu Dao
Northern Tiger Blade

Age/Year: 21/Junior
Major/Minor: Electrical Engineering/Math
Wushu Experience: 2 Years 8 Months
Team Status: Blue Rank and Senior Student
Chosen Apparatus: Nangun and Nandao
Favorite Form: 3rd Compulsory Nandao
Favorite Stance: Ma Bu
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Front Slap/Jumping Inside Sidefall
Zodiac Alignment: Leo/Monkey
Original Home: Las Vegas, Nevada

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
Hmm hard to choose. The great exercise, the fast pace, and looking elegant while being deadly.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Short tern: Optional Nanquan and Nangun. Long term: Gainer and splits.

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
I love the people I’ve met here the first friends I made at NAU! This sport is amazing, you can come in having never done a sport in your life, and come out a top athlete!

Last Week’s Question: “Which nontraditional apparatus (i.e. NOT staff, broadsword, spear, or straight sword) would you like to learn/develop a form for?”
Chain Whip and 3-Section-Staff

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?
What was your first Wushu injury or What was the first difficulty you finally got that made you shout for joy?

Week Three: Oct. 7-Oct. 14

ROBERT WHITEFIELD
北豹子 – Bei Baozi (Northern Leopard)

Age/Year: 20 Junior
Major/Minor: Psychology/Japanese
Wushu Experience: 6 semesters
Team Status: Senior Student
Chosen Apparatus: Broadsword
Favorite Form: Drunken Fist
Favorite Stance: Gongbu (弓步) – Forward stance
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Jumping Po/Jumping Inside Slap
Zodiac Alignment: Saggitarius/Monkey
Original Home: Esteredge

“What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?” That it’s an all around body/cardio workout. I’ve also met some of the best people at NAU on this team.

“What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?” Short-term: Broadsword personal. Long term: Personal forms for Drunken fist, double dao, and hooked cane.

“What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?” I’m not big on performing, which is why many of you will only see me doing so during full competitions. I’m a part of the team for the personal and physical growth that I experience rather than for showing off or being in front of a crowd.

Last Week’s Question: “Is there a Wushu athlete or team that you really like the flavor of and why?” I’ve never met him, but Dennis Truong is my wushu idol. He performs many of the same kinds of forms I want to learn and I love the way he moves from a gentle calm into an explosive fury. When I watch him perform, rather than a choreographed routine, I see actual combat with imaginary foes.

“What is a question you would like to ask the next person?” Which nontraditional apparatus (i.e. NOT staff, broadsword, spear, or straight sword) would you like to learn/develop a form for?

Week Two: Sept.23-Oct.7

HANNAH EATON

Bei Lu Hua Mao
Northern Green Flower Cat

Name: Hannah Eaton
Age/Year: 20/Graduating this December
Major/Minor: English Major with Certificate in Creative Writing (fiction)
Wushu Experience: Starting my fourth semester of Wushu. Trained over the summer with Jade Moon Wushu Academy. Has competed in two Collegiate Tournaments.
Team Status: Senior Student
Chosen Apparatus: Interest in learning staff and broadsword
Favorite Form: Optionals (I enjoy seeing what people chose to do with their Wushu when offered the freedom to do so)
Favorite Stance: Xubu (empty stance/cat stance)
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: Five Stance/Reverse Sweep
Zodiac Alignment: Aries/ Year of the Rooster
Original Home: Mesa, Arizona

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
I love that Wushu works my whole body and that by doing the movements I build strength and grace. I also love how it works my mind and offers me a discipline in how I think. The combination offers me structure in my life.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Short Term: Finish learning 3rd Compulsory and increase flexibility (left splits specifically)
Long Term: Compete at Team Trials in two years and consistently train six days a week

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
I would be interested in starting a Wushu club at ASU, both to spread the art as well as to continue to compete at Collegiates.

Last Week’s Question: “Name ten Theoretical things to do with an old pair of feiyues: don’t restrict yourself to normal shoe things- get creative >:)”

  • nunchucks
  • bookshelf ends
  • attach wheels (homemade roller skates!)
  • fashionable mittens
  • Pencil holder
  • Christmas tree decoration
  • ear warmers
  • double purse
  • shoe fight
  • match best friend necklaces

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?
“Is there a Wushu athlete or team that you really like the flavor of and why?”

Week One: Sept.16-Sept.23

NAOMI BLACKWELL

Bei Huo Xin
Northern Fire Heart.

Age/Year: 20/ Junior
Major/Minor: Theatre+German/ English
Wushu Experience: Starting my 5th semester
Team Status: Vice Pres., Senior Student
Chosen Apparatus: So far, none
Favorite Form: 5 animal
Favorite Stance: Drop stance
Favorite Basic/Difficulty: frontslap/ reverse sweep
Zodiac Alignment: Aries/ Year of the Rooster
Original Home: Hamburg, Germany

What is your favorite thing about practicing Wushu?
It’s a great way to work out that is also a lot of fun. Besides that, the people on the team are great, which makes hanging out after practice one of the highlights of my week.

What are your short term and long term Wushu goals?
Short term: I’d like to broaden my repertoire of forms. For someone who’s been doing wushu for four semesters, I really should know more than I do. Long term: splits, someday. And an apparatus would be…fantastic >:)

What else would you like to mention about yourself or your Wushu?
Well, I’ve heard people list as one of their reasons for not doing much physical activity that they aren’t sporty enough; on that note, before I joined the wushu team here at NAU, I was a total noodle- armed bookworm with no coordination. And despite that, I’ve stuck with it for four semesters and will continue to do so. Just, an interesting little tidbit that might be worth mentioning.

What is a question you would like to ask the next person?
Name ten Theoretical things to do with an old pair of feiyues: don’t restrict yourself to normal shoe things- get creative >:)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: