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Old 04-16-2006, 07:05 AM   #67
Amir Krause
Dojo: Shirokan Dojo / Tel Aviv Israel
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 688
Re: weapon training for lower ranks

Koren Ko wrote:
Hi there, I just wanna know, how long does it takes you to learn and accustomed with the basic weapon technique?

I mean, from the start of your weapon practice class until you had felt you can wield a bokken pretty ok.

Amelia Smith wrote:

Well. You do one or two bokken classes, and you feel like you're doing ok, because you know where the hands and feet go, and can do a shomen and a yokomen, and maybe one or two blocks. That's OK for a couple more classes, then it all falls apart as you try to work on the finer points. Then, if you're even the slightest bit dyslexic, you might suffer months of confusion doing kumitachi.

In my experience, feeling like you can do something "pretty ok" comes and goes in waves over the years. Looking at other people, someone who does frequent and regular (twice a week or so) weapons practice can get to a point of reasonable proficiency in a year or two. But, everyone is different.


As Amelia wrote. At first, you feel you learn the weapons very quickly, nothing complicated about it. As you advance, you realize you are barely touching a minimal level of skill. The more you practice and advanced you are, the more you feel your own misconceptions and unsatisfactory level.

I started practicing Jo as a beginner, in my first month (unusual in our club, most times sensei requires a couple of months to half a year, but somehow this is how it worked for me). After a year or so, I felt rather good, after a couple of years I was quite certain of my high skill level. Today, over 10 years afterwards I can point to a growing number of errors I have identified and trying to stop, and surely there are many more I have not found yet. And yes, I have practiced the Jo on my own in addition to classes, and I am much better then I once was.

As for the Bokken, I started rather late, after several years of practice. Further, I was introduced to a large number (over 4) of Koryu Kata too early in my study of the bokken. As a result, several years later, I am still sure I know nothing of correct handling of the bokken ( I know much more then I knew before, but still, hardly scratching the enormous size of things to learn).

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