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I'm finally getting used to doing randori. It's taken a while. It's not that I'm any better technically but at least it's less stressful being out there and I can actually enjoy the process and start to think a little bit more about what I need to try and work on when I'm out there.
I've been trying to figure out how to not circle around so much because although it looks nice and generally people can't touch me, I can't control the situation. So one of the guys told me that I should actually try and enter more. So I've been trying that the last couple of times. I find it means I have a higher tendency to grab (hard on the uke and less fluid and wastes time) so then the next time I tried turning even less but then while i stopped grabbing so much, I realised my positioning got a lot poorer and there were a couple of times I got swamped.
So i'll have to keep trying to find a good balance and learn how to position myself better.
It was also fun watching the new shodans get out there. Some of them can move so those are the ones who are real naturals at it but others started out pretty much like me. Getting swamped by losing time through improper technique then the whole session falls apart. Taking ukemi is also tough on some of them I notice but one of them who actually looks like Po in Kungfu Panda turned out his ukemi is improving by leaps and bounds (literally). It's a joy to watch him now and it's fun to do randori with him.
Sometime back I wrote about a 13-year old who is allowed to join the adult class and who never helps with the mats. Earlier this week I found out why: it's the parents. The mother told me the father tells her not to help with the mats because she's tired after school, she's so small she can't do much etc (she's as tall as I am and frankly the adults don't expect too much just that she tries.)
That would explain a lot. It explains why despite being told, asked politely and eventually scolded by her sempai, she would always say yes but skulk upstairs rather than coming down to help despite being early. After all, father trumps sempai. It was only when the sensei himself went up to her and scolded her after one class in no uncertain terms that finally she showed up with mom instead of dad (who usually just sits and reads newspapers by the side).
I pointed out to the mother that everyone is supposed to come and help with the mats, and her child, especially since she was being allowed a special privilege to attend the adult class and be trained by the adult sempai, is doubly expected to do so. However that didn't seem to carry any weight as the mother then responded that, well, she's not been there that long (it's close to 6 months already) and that they'll start to pay adult fees soon at which point I really got annoyed and told her point blank that I can see where the problem lies, it's with the father's attitude that's the real cause of the problem isn't it and th
Kungfu Panda's a blast. I just saw it today with a bunch of aikido mates and we all enjoyed it hugely. Was laughing out loud through much of the movie with all the antics of the characters.
It's got a fairly predictable plot (and i'm not going to say anymore about it so no spoilers here) but so well executed it's a joy to watch. I really like the fight/training sequences and my favourite sequence has to be when the choosing of the next Dragon Warrier is on and the hero is trying to get into watch the proceedings.
The fight sequences often are to me like the martial arts movies I've seen with characters swooping from tree to roof at impossible distances etc. With animation it can be done far more smoothly and plausibly in an imagined world than with real life actors and props. It's why i think I actually prefer this done in animation than in real life movies. Kinda like a Platonic ideal.