Monday, March 24, 2008

Honasu and Crazy-Man Randori

Me and Rob finished Honasu and did a dozen repetitions of the initial movements then we moved into the first chain. After flowing back and forth a few times, I talked about Pat's "Rolling the Ball" exercise and did a little crazy man randori. In this exercise, uke attacks tori's face (at a safe speed) and attempts to maintain eye contact and attacks with either hand any time uke gets an opportunity to. After off-balancing me a few times while backing away, Rob got the hang of it and we did a few movements of Nijusan, mainly waki-gatame and kote gaeshi.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Tegakana and Nijusan with Rob

Last night me and Rob did tegatana about 5 times then moved into Honasu. We had plenty of time so we did all 8 wrist releases. After beating those to death and exploring what happens if Uke changes his direction, we went into Nijusan....and that's when we hit Gedanate. I know a lot of people have problems showing this in kata so I did what I always do. I explained to Rob I can only show him what I know, and what I know is that Gedanate feels linear to me and I can only demonstrate it in a linear fashion i.e. Junanna. So after making Rob suffer through ramblings of me talking about the rise and fall of the body and what can be done with it, he got to practice Gedantate (the "look at your watch" push) and got one really good push with it. Couldn't do it again for the rest of the night and I explained that sometimes that's how Aikido is during practice. You get one really good move but can't seem to re-enact it. We'll try again next class.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

First Night With My New Student

Well after work Rob came over for his first night of Aikido. I over-explained everything like I do with all new students. I just wish I could unload all the knowledge I've gained into their minds in one night. I always forget how long it took me to absorb what little I have :) We started with Tegatana (the walking kata) and moved into ukemi (falling techniques). We did some backrolls and a few triangle rolls. I think once Rob gets comfortable with rolling over in a circle he'll do well at them. We spent most of the night doing the first wrist release from Honasu and Shomenate (the first attack from Nijusan [or Junanna whichever you do]).

Thursday, March 13, 2008

New Uke

Well I was relaying my falling experiment and class with Sensei Crist and how I want to try attending but also how I'd like some extra practice to Rob, a fellow worker. He graciously offered to learn Aikido from me if I'd be willing to teach him (which gives me a steady partner). I love introducing Aikido to people who haven't been exposed to it before. Hopefully I'll be competent enough and he'll be willing enough to stick with it.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Late Night Chat With Andy

Andy went to Sensei Crist's class today and upon returning we talked about some ideas of what he'd take back to Pat's with him. Sensei Crist does multiple attacker randori so hopefully Pat will implement that. I wish Andy luck and hopefully he'll visit and we'll have both grown in our Aikido and Judo by then.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Back in Training

Well I attended a new dojo that is Fugakukai related yesterday. It's lead by Sensei Charles Crist. Here's his site . That means I have a new instructor Pat and will be twice the Aikidoka when I get back to challenge you for your dojo. New Dojos are always a wonderful learning experience. Sensei Crist is very concerned with what he teaches being practical in a real life situation and making sure his students (especially his boys) don't fall into patterns practicing that might hamper them in a real fight. For instance above a certain grade he wants techniques done at full speed unless it needs to be analyzed. If something doesn't work, he wants everyone to keep moving and try to do SOMETHING instead of just stopping. There will also be emphasis on multiple attacker randori (which I'm all in favor of). It IS a little hard being taught one thing by a 7th dan and doing that over and over till it's natural to you, then being taught a completely different timing and variation by someone else (but BOTH work). It's really nice challenging yourself in a new setting to see how your Aikido works and more importantly feels against different uke (especially when neither of you are used to each other's styles).