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It was just Sensei and I tonight. We started out with warm up as usual except I was the one leading the warm up. We pretty much do warm up in the same order every class, and I pretty much know the order of the first half. It's the last half that's a little cagey for me. It's so much easier to follow someone elses lead. Not only that, when your doing the leading it forces you to start thinking about what exersize comes next while your doing an exersize. That invasive thought then distracts me from what I was doing and the next thing I know I've not reversed the exersise on the count of go. There is something to be said for the mind body coordination exersizes of leading a class. I'm glad it was just sensei and I, otherwise I would have been even more self conscious causing me to flub even more exersizes.
After exersizes we started working on throws that will be on the sankyu test. We stopped to play with the showmen strike for a momment, to see how easy it was to accept this attack using one point and unbendable arm. I asked Sensei to strike me as hard as he could. I would step in using unbendable arm and centered stability, and no matter how hard Sensei swung at me it was as easy as catching a base ball. Sensei took a turn at this as well. I showmened him about 4 or 5 times progressively getting harder till the last two times I was swinging full force. Now I'm 6'2" and 230lbs. Not braggin or anything but to stop my momentum dead in its tracks is a pretty
Due to some miscommunication between sensei and I, I ended up at the dojo by myself on Monday. I used the time to work on my Jo and Bokken katas after I finished a good warmup/workout. Threw in some shiko and ukemi and I had a pretty good sweat on after an hour.
Towards the end of my workout I started to hear people show up next door. I thought this would be a good opportunity to train there again so I asked that sensei if I could join them. He said certainly, and thus I was training for another two hours. Good workout!
We started out with paired bokken practice. The first technique we practiced involved uke attacking in showmen. Nage counters by drawing the sword and slicing uke's arm pit, and moveing forward and off line of uke as he raises his sword for the attack. The technique is finished by nage turning 180 degrees under his sword so it remains pointing in the same direction as before the turn, and showmen striking ukes sword close to the hilt. I couldn't help but notice the relationship between nages body movements in this bokken practice, and the near identical body movements required to preform Shiho-nage Irimi.
I saw no other relation ships to empty hand in the other bokken techniques we practiced. I did notice how powerful a suttle move can be if the bokken is moved from your center. ie: Keeping my hands in front of me, using my wrists to control the bokken for parries, and my hips and legs for power during thrusts.
There will be some changes for me in the new year that may affect my training. I'm not sure if the changes will affect my training for the good or the bad. At the end of the month I will be moveing to an afternoon shift from a night shift. I will then have Wednsdays and Thursdays off. This means I will be moveing my training times from Mondays and Wednsdays to Wednsdays and every second Saturday. Less training but if sensei starts a kids program on Saturdays after regular class then I would consider that as extra training time.
I won't be able to bring my kids on Friday evenings as I had planned but maybe the kids program would remedy that (hint hint Sensei).
I am looking forward to getting off night shift but I hope it doesn't mess up my training too much.