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Well, after two months of work, moving, and gernal life craziness... I managed to get back on the mat this week.
First, there was a trip to San Angelo, Tx. for a quick seminar there at Randy Shupe Sensei's dojo. From 3pm to 7pm (though I got out at 6:30pm) we did basics training: katate dori ikkyo omote and ura, shomenuchi iriminage, katate dori iriminage and others. I can't remember all of it, but Randy Sensei is very eager to associate with Kato Shihan and learn his style. In order to do that, Riggs Sensei will be logging many hours in San Angelo, which he doesn't mind at all. Randy was a GREAT help to Riggs by coming to Midland and helping with the build out of the new office and dojo space. We owe Randy a huge debt of gratitude.
Last night, I was in class, finally, with Lan Sensei at the helm. He was in charge, teaching class with myself, Jared and Brandon. Both of these newer students are coming along very well. I was lucky enough to see their last test and was pleased to see how far along they've come.
Class last night consisted of shomenuchi ikkyo omote and ura, katate dori yonkyo and tenchinage. My tenchi is REALLY rusty! I've completely forgotten how to do it... was making stuff up it seemed.
...got...to... get... back... on... the... mat!!!
Anyhow, between the seminar and class last night, put me down for 5.5 hours! By the time I'm all warmed up and ready to go (hopefully before Christmas) I'll be ready for my test and have all the hours needed t
The new dojo is coming along very well. When we first started to work on it, it was a bunch of offices all chopped up and "cubicalized," if there is such a word.
Since then, almost all of the walls have come down and it has opened up into a huge space! We took out the drop ceiling and now we have over 10 feet of airial space with which to practice weapons work. Most of the existing walls have been mudded and are ready for finalizing. Once we have it all texturized, it will be painted and then a new mat will come in and finish it out. MAN is that gonna look sharp once it's completed!
Very exciting stuff going on.
I've been off the mat for over a month now... work, wife, life and more work have kept me busy. I've sold a lot of houses, my wife is pregnant, we are buying a house and will be moving at the end of the month. Very exciting times...
Hopefully, I'll get back on the mat this week. I'm WAY rusty right now. If I can get back on the mat and get back in the groove of things, I should hopefully be able to test for first kyu before the calander flips. I'm sure that will be a relief to my Sensei. He's been on my case to get training again. ALSO... Kato Shihan will be having another seminar in Houston in November. If all goes well, I'll be able to attend that, which I really need to do.
Jarred is back... joy. He still has a very immature attitude, but he was better last night than the night before when he stopped by to visit. He's cocky. He likes to TELL people that we can't pin him because he is so limber, he feels no pain when we lock him up. Oh well, he'll learn.
Worked alot on Shiho last night. It was good to focus on that, it's been a while. We did that and the shiho throw with the Jo. That's always fun. Doing both helps to polish up technique.
Timing is everything on these things. One thing that I found especially funny was the fact that if the Uke can extend BEYOND the nage... then the reversal is ON!
I was trying to explain how practice for reversals was important and I was misunderstood. I was TOLD that you have to go with the energy and move with it. Looking for the "hic-up" in the technique is the opening you need to reverse. Well, sure... you can feel that hic-up... but can you DO something? That's what needs practice... so you know what to do when the opprotunity comes around.
I don't know if the pressure to test is getting to me, pressure to train, pressure at work, bills, pregnant wife... or what, but I was in a major funk last night.
We worked on iriminage last night and it just didn't feel very good. During my training, I recall Sensei cutting down at the finish of iriminage, but last night he corrected me saying that I should be cutting out. THAT is why the hip is so important at the end: cutting the nage outward.
I thought I was supposed to be dropping them down. BOOM! Cut and down they go. For whatever reason, I was loosing patience with the whole thing and basically got off the mat and "shadow boxed" the technique for the last 20-30 minutes of class. That seemed to help more than anything.
Things just suck right now: I have family coming into town today and tomorrow, so that gives me an obligation to be with them. They are staying through the weekend, so that cuts into my ability to help Sensei with the new dojo renovations. I'm hoping to put in a little time Friday night, but I just don't know right now if that is feasable. Saturday, Randy Sensei is coming from San Angelo to work on OUR dojo...what a great guy!... and I can't be there? That sucks. Not to mention the fact that spending a little time at home with my pregnant wife would mean a lot to her.
All these things leave me hanging... and I'm supposed to test in September some time. I need more mat hours and if I can't get them, that pushes everything back: 1st k
Last nights class was pretty good. EVERYONE was on the mat + 1.
We started off, because we had a new student, doing Ikkyo. That's good because now studying Kato's style, Ikkyo is slightly different (though better) than before. Footwork is coming around, definitly got the hip action in there, need to work on the hands now: keeping the elbow down and raising up the uke more.
After that, Sensei announced,"More Koshi's for Bozz." *sigh*
Oh well, it was good. I actually had my head in the game last night and was able to focus more on what to do. Still need to work on not bending over. Need to strengthen my legs more. (damn I'm weak in the legs!*) I actually started to get people loaded a little better last night. Still seems very greek to me, but its coming around.
The class ended off with a martial arts group from Odessa coming over to Midland to see our class and see what we do. Sensei gave a good taste introduction to aikido to them. I think they enjoyed the class. There was a lot of discussion after class with the students and instructor of the other school. Afterwards, Sensei, Lan and Couch took them over to the new dojo.. I think. I had to go home, but the plan was to go look at our upcoming studio.
Good class! Racked up another 2 hours. I should be ready to test in Sept. Maybe October depending on how things go. I'm really gonna just sit back, train and let Sensei tell me when to test.
By the way, Kato Sensei should be returning to Texas around the end of
First hour of class we spent on Koshinage. You know, I think I did not manage to do ONE single one. All I worked on was setting up the technique, and still... I don't think I ever did. I need a lot of practice. My legs, knees specifically, are weak and I'm not over them properly.
Second half was jujinage. Need to move from the hips almost exclusivly on this one. Need a lot of work.
Class last night was pretty good, but I got tired quick. Half way through class, I was so exhausted that everything Sensei said or did just went in one ear and out the other. People would encourage me to "just try it."
We worked on jujinage (sp?) and though I'm told I had the general movement down, I still need to work on the footwork and extension. I was too colapsed into me own space and my feet were too far apart.
In reflection, I see I'm exhausted, not sleeping well, staying up too late and need to change all that. Tonight, I am skipping class and hope to get to bed early. Waking up with headaches and bad dreams is not helping me or my marriage at all. I need rest!!
Back to Ikkyo again. I played uke for Ben who has returned to us again. (Welcome back, Ben!) He should be testing for 5th kyu in August if he logs the hours... and he should be able to do so easily.
Ikkyo : The cutting hand isn't enough if you do not throughly CUT! Enter... and CUT! But on top of that, in order to bring about good control, the other hand must come to the elbow, raise up the uke to help take their balance so that when you do cut, the uke is thrown forward and off-balance.
On this technique, the thing I need to work on is lowering my center to get under the uke and raising them up for cut.
Shihonage: 4 direction cut. Footwork is very key on this. Up, up, up and pivot! Don't cut until you have it sufficently raised and under control.
Kotegaishi: Again with the footwork... get off line! You really need to fully tenkan or step ten shin to get outta the way of the attack. If you just move back, you invite another attack.
It was good to just play Uke and feel the differneces in the techniques of others compared to Sensei. There is a keen difference. It was good!