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I suppose it's a good sign that a week between training sessions feels like a long time. I've been practicing suburi each night; nothing exceptional for how much time put in (approx. 15-20 min.), but I've also been trying to open up my body (approx. 15-20 min.), particularly my hips, but also my shoulders. In general, I'm trying to feel connection between knees hips and elbows as I move around. It's not what I would call a serious training regimen.
I get the feeling my years of predominantly right-footed soccer playing have made for some imbalances in my hips and how they connect to my legs and lower back. I feel a distinct difference between right and left and after intense yard work (as in the last few days), I feel so tight and inflexible in the hip area.
I'm very "front-heavy" in my movement, so I'm trying to think of putting ki into my back as I move around.
I'm enjoying the fact that my bokuto feels more familiar to my hands again. Last night I was practicing some old kata which I remember helping me with my footwork, and I think I will add that to my "dailys."
Looking forward to wearing hakama again, although I think it will feel odd at first. I put it on right after it arrived in the mail and folding the straps back up took a minute to remember. I've been wearing only keikogi and have become quite used to it. At any rate...
Ok, off to the back yard to practice. (Edit)
Last night I went out to practice in the yard when lo and behold the rains a came a fallin'. I was pretty wet after an hour of various suburi and unsoku practices, but god bless it it was fun! I have always loved the rain. When I was a kid that was almost the surest time to find me outside playing; trompin' in the muddy woods, the smells of pine and earth mingled with that of the rain. It added to the visceral experience of the play and I was feeling rather similarly last night...although I may have to put up a trellis so I don't feel so self-conscious every time my neighbors come home.
Last night went a little like this:
"Feet!" - as I would try to "get into" different parts of my body, I kept coming back to how much better it would feel when I also focused on where my weight was falling through my feet. I spent most of my time focusing on the "stirrups" of my feet and lower leg, rotating about the major axis. I had a few moments where my hips felt like a gyroscope and I felt fast and stable, but it's funny how quickly the mind wanders and you find yourself thinking about cimbing trees as a kid, or threads on akiweb, or...hey, that's the neighbor! Duck!...ok where was I? Oh yeah, swinging my sword around...wait, no! Feet! Yeah...ok...again...mugamae...negaeshiuchi...is that a bird singing? I remember thinking a squirrel was a bird once, maybe it's that...wait, where's my weight at? Focus!