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Classes have been going at a furious pace. Several students have had to bow out or pass out.
When classes go this good, there's not much to say or write. It's just an experience; becoming aware all around, feeling the attacks and the blending, not having the opportunity to stop and take a rest.
This is the kind of training that I enjoy, because it's one hour of hell, and the rest of the day of bliss. It's nice to see members walking out of the dojo with a smile on their face....maybe their smilling because the class is finally over.
Learning techniques on the mat is one thing. Learning the discipline and respect is another. ShinKiKan members should always remember this.
These are the basics in Aikido: respect.
-We respect the dojo by showing up on time
-We repsect the dojo by paying the dues on time
-We respect the mat by taking our shoes off before getting on
-We respect the sensei by being on the mat at least 2 minutes before lessons begin
-We respect the sensei by bowing to him at the beginning and end of class
-We respect the sensei by giving him an honest attack, even if he fails to do the technique
-We respect fellow students by bowing to them each time we are about to practice
-We respect fellow students by bowing each time after practicing a particular technique and at the end of class
-We respect our fellow students by giving honest and sincere attacks according to their level
-We respect our fellow students, sensei and dojo by not talking in class
These are just a few basics, maybe I'll work on the list more later.
Most people attend seminars in order to learn something new, and the quality of the seminar is often decided by how much new information is obtained by the attending person. The weapons seminar was greatly different from the typical seminar; rather than placing a focus on new techniques, the seminar focused on the basic and key elements that were often forgotten when performing a learned technique. The seminar was separated into two parts and scheduled in such a way as to promote both analysis of technique and application.
The seminar was oriented for anyone, but it tended to have the greatest impact on those who had an average or better than average understanding of techniques in Aikido, and it seeked to improve fundamental elements in them through the integration of weapons. The focus of the seminar was to explicate the basics, not only to break them down but also to study them as a whole. By taking an entire day to begin gaining a general understanding of key concepts the seminar served as a means to correct habits and focus on technique versus visual replication and repetition.
Essay written by Monique Lloyd - 1st Kyu
The focus in class, was not so much the techniques, but the importance of having an open mind.
When someone reaches out to grab, how do you know they are going to grab, what if they kick, punch, elbow, or bite....Let's be honest with ourselves.
When you are learning the techniques, most of the time, you maybe moving in a way that would not be beneficial if the attack was something else. But you're learning to make the moves. You are focusing on the steps and what is "supposed" to happen to Uke, the one attacking.
It's OK to do this, but always, always, keep in your mind the fact that your uke, attacker, could be doing anything. He could be kicking you, punching you, elbowing you, head butting you, even a bite is pretty effective. (I have a friend that went to the Vietnam war, he told me a personal story of his...one of his Vietnamese friends saved his life by biting and tearing out the throat of the man that was standing behind him about to kill him)
I would call this, Keeping you Mind Open. In the long run, when you start to get better at the techniques, you will truley excell if you always keep this in you mind.
On Saturday night, my wife and I were invited to the house of the General Consulate of Japan to experience a private concert by Shonosuke Okura, Noh Drummer, http://www.hiten-jp.com. I only write about it, because I was thoroughy impressed with his speech and with his music.
The principles of which he uses for the Noh Drum are very similar to the principles of Aikido. His stance, posture, and gaze was also identical to the way we train in Aikido.
His idea's of pursuing the drum for peace are the same as Morihei Ueshiba's ideas of pursuing peace through Aikido.