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Keiko thursday was challenging in a couple dfferent ways. My kids had been sick and had a hard time sleeping, so of course the same was true for my wife and I. I watch them during the day so to keep awake I drank more coffee than I should have. By the time keiko rolled around thursday evening I was fried. I made it just in time to bow in. I like to use the open mat time before class to get my wits and body loosened up, but didn't have the chance to this time. I felt pretty out of it most of the evening, but it was a good chance to work on my ability to focus. By the end of class I felt much better.
The last couple classes have included a focus on a double kesa action, which has been fun to explore. We also worked on gyaku hanmi katatetori ikkyo undo (edited: confused irimi ura from an earlier session), which was done a little differently than in the past. Sensei told me I needed to put more ki in my left flank/kidney area and it was interesting to work on the waza with this in mind. It suddenly became easier to align myself verticaly and to feel the forces settle into my hip/base (i.e. I felt more powerful and more stable). Writing this now I realize the last couple nights I forgot to work on this during my suburi, but tonight I'm leaving myself a note to really work on this.
On another note, my wife and I are planning on doing the Seattle Rock N Roll Marathon this year and we decided to train for it as part of the Team in Training program. We're going to be fundraising f
So our family friend did quite well with her procedure. They delayed things because of some respiratory issues, but once it was done, she was awake and responsive fairly quickly. She responded so well to it that they're talking about letting her go home soon. She has to relearn how to swallow and walk, but things look much better.
I was going to drop the lads off at my mom's so I could train today, but with the events surrounding our friend, my mom is visiting the hospital today. My wife is on a "mom's weekend" catching up and unwinding with friends, so I'm stuck at home. It's a beautiful sunny day so I'm going to bundle up the "wee'uns" and play in the frost-covered yard. I'll take a few licks at the makiwara in between pretending to be an airplane and a construction zone (the popular games of the day).
Suburi the last few nights has been very cold. I'm getting a little tendonitis in the outside of my wrists so I need to stretch and relax my grip more. I've been massaging along the ulna which seems to help a bit.
I've been trying to focus on accessing my lower back better since I've also been feeling some tightness around there. Last night I asked my wife to run an elbow along my spine and she ran into a very tender spot. That area is usually pretty tender, but it was much more than usual. I've been noticing, too, when i walk my right kidney area feels tighter than normal.
...so, as usual, today i will try to relax my hips and spine and work on breath practice and al
No biggy right? I wanted to write more on my last blog because I'm trying to really pick apart my training experiences so I can maximize my learning. Unfortunately I found my motivation was flagging due to a very close family friend who is toward the end of her short life. A friend of my cousin's, she was all but adopted by my aunt and uncle and has been living with them for years now. She's been battling brain cancer for a while and is about to go through a temporary procedure which has considerable risk involved. From what I understand, this procedure is about making her last...days?...weeks?...a little nicer. They recently drained some fluid and it left her unable to speak much. This one will hopfully take away enough pressure and not cause too much damage so she can interact with her loved ones more.
One funny bit...so she wasn't able to talk and for some reason they had a TV going with no sound. I'm not sure if it was some kind of therapy or what, but it was on all day. Late at night they're just sitting there watching the thing and her dad asked if she wanted him to leave the TV on to which she replied instantly, "turn the damn thing off," and then gave a bemused smile a moment later. Never underestimate a fiesty spirit!
Cherish every moment, folks.
Walking Life's Pathways
blindness around each corner
steps are miracles
Good fun, of course. After dropping the boys off at gramma's I thought I would be late, but I was just in time. It was a small group, sensei making a total of 6. I like these kinds of days because it always feels more intensive.
Bokuto things to focus on:
Softer right hand
Less tucking tail/better hip alignment
Activate and relax the knees more
Drill and Kill kata
I started out paired up with the new uchi deshi. I suddenly couldn't remember my next movement in a kata (I should have down pat by now), but fortunately he remembered it for me (er...it was a test...yeeeah, I was testing him!). I've been focusing more on the parts of the kata so I still have a strong sense of the whole flow for some of them and need too much memory jogging. If I'm going to work toward that "First Step" I need to cross those proverbial "i's" and dot those proverbial "t's."
The major lesson seemed to be better use of the hips through better alignment and rotation; and relax more in general. I would be moving and sensei would say "stop," so we'd freeze and he would make various postural corrections pointing out where I had too much tension. At one point sensei demonstrated a connection between a kesa exercise and taijutsu application.
For the taijutsu portion of class I requested shomenuchi tenchi nage. We didn't quite get to the whole thing, but we did get a nice close look at shomenuchi. After practicing the attack itself we essentially practiced slipping past it with a shomen of ou