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As long as I got up early in the morning, I might as well use it to rewrite some more enteries:
Wednesday, May 10th, 2000:
Breathing is important in training and the way we breath (the continueing of it, not stopping and holding our breath) allows us to train for a longer peroid of time without tireing.
Not holding our breath:
In excersices like stretching our partner backwards into an arch shape, it is easy to feel the difference in the achievement if we hold the air inside compared with letting it out and breathing softly and normaly.
If we hold the air inside, we will be able to bend only until a certain point.
If we breath freely, our flexibility grows, and we will be able to bend furthur back and with more ease (without starting a headache, dizziness, and not lose balance after coming back to standing position). [This of course, does not imply for people with injury or disease, especially in the back- like a prolapsed disc, scoliosis etc.]
I think that maybe when we hold our breath, certain muscles clench and don't enable us to do the full extent of the excersice. Since they are clenched, our flexibility is limited and we can't bend to the maximum our body is truely able to.
I think that this clenching of the muscles is like a reflex responce of the body to fear (in our sub- conciousness) of falling backwards (in this specific excercise).
As we learn how to fall and roll backwards, we can slowly deal with this fear and feel more free while doing certain excersices.
It is also important not to hold our breath when rolling forwards and backwards. It causes the feeling of exausution after a very small number of rolls.
With that said, it is still important to know when to take air in and when to let it out. Letting the air out later than we should is just the same as holding our breath (it's just another name for the same thing). Letting air out sooner than we should, will exaust us and may even prevent us from finishing the roll (getting stuck there in mid roll, needing to give a push to either side so we can get out of the uncomfortable suituation).
When rolling forwards, letting the air out should be when we slap the mat (or if we don't slap the mat, in equal time to it). From that point onwards until standing back in Henmi- Datchi, we breath in new air and so we finish the roll ready for the next action. Breathing in as we stand up also helps us rise.
Tamura Sensei has been here at a seminar (April 28-29th, 2000) and said: "One must rise like smoke"
Not heavily with no strength and not too lightly while losing balance.
Getting to standing position needs to be done in one smooth movement.
When rolling backwards, usually we don't slap the mat, but there is a point when it's possible to do so. At this point we should change from bringing air in to taking air out (just like in forward rolls).