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Learning by Falling Blog Tools Rating: Rate This Blog
Creation Date: 06-29-2005 02:29 PM
From May 12th, 2005 to the present, my experiences with Aikido
Blog Info
Status: Public
Entries: 31
Comments: 9
Views: 28,634

In General 3 hrs. @ 90F (32C) Entry Tools Rate This Entry
  #11 New 07-20-2005 10:10 AM
Three hours on the mats in a 90 degree dojo will not only make you sweat, it'll make you question your own sanity.

It was hot. Hot and sticky. The first class was an intro course with several new students, so there were a lot of basic tai sabaki movements to practice. Nice and slow, methodical and measured.

Class two kicked things into a higher gear. We did a lot of highly choreographed shomenuchi and yokomenuchi strike/blocking practice. When done properly, the movements are fluid, and you're always setup for the next technique.

By the latter half of that class, everyone was drenched in sweat. As we were working on katatori nikyo, you could see the shiny patches on the mats from peoples' faces as a result of the pin. My dogi was getting really heavy from sweat, and the students who were less-than-april-fresh began to add to the aromatic scent of the dojo.

Class three was bokken suburi, taught by Keith Sensei, one of the kenshusei. I really like working with weapons because it makes shomenuchi kotegaeshi very logical. You must maintain maai properly because of the bokken.

However, shomenuchi kokyunage is a lot harder for me with bokken. The concept of throwing people off the end of a stick of wood is hard for me to get my head around. And then when I'm taking ukemi, I'm terrified. I think, in part, it's because we have a very rectangular dojo. The shomen is along one of the long walls, so often we are practicing using the shorter length. I suppose of the mat area was bigger, or if we practiced using the longer sides, it would be different. My rolls are far from fluid, so the thought of having to curtail them to avoid a wall locks me up.

The air in the changing room after class was so thick, hardly any of us could breathe. I think the walls were sweating. My dogi, a nice thick one, was drenched and heavy. When I got home and took it out of my bag, I was amazed at how wet it was. I guess that's healthy...sweating out all that can't be a bad thing.
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