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Well I haven't posted for a while, just been showing up and training (when work and health allow ). On the whole it's been good and I'm feeling like I am moving much more smoothly again, and learning
We had our house Shidoin Peter Brown Sensei down last month to teach a course at our dojo which went really well and I learned loads from him. He emphasised that unless you are taking uke's balance, then you haven't distracted his mind sufficiently, as the goal is to get him to switch from thinking about attacking you to thinking about staying upright I thought that was really cool and an excellent way of thinking about Aikido!
I also taught a class when Sensei was away in Japan in November, and after that realised that I don't need to be nervous about teaching (which just came from not having done any for ages!). Now Sensei wants me to teach when he can't make it, along with our 1st kyu student
In preparation I have been mentally noting the things our students have difficulty with, common errors, and any weak points, so that I can tackle these in my next class. Sometimes it helps to have a different teacher occasionally, as they may explain something in a way that a student suddenly understands, having struggled with it before. I certainly found that true for me when our 1st kyu student taught a class and helped me loads
Just to make sure I get the timings right, I still prefer to write down what to teach and how long to allow for each activity, as I'm not used to doing it regularly so don't have it down naturally yet! It's probably not a bad idea to have a few lesson plans in hand so I can teach a class on the spur of the moment if required