Well, I had a little more hands on time with Ikeda sensei since he was staying at my house with me. I think that he tells everyone exactly what to do, only we're not very good at listening to him! Make a line, shift, move inside, make tight etc. He says those things a lot, he says them for good reason, they're actually pretty accurate in terms of what we're supposed to be doing (on the physical level).
Maybe it's because I have met Mike Sigman too, I think he perfectly explains what Ikeda sensei is doing to the point that a lightbulb should be going off in your head once you've met both, in my opinion, they compliment each other perfectly. Certainly, after meeting Mike and playing with Jin on most lessons in the last 12 months then I think we all complicate things too much - I asked Ikeda sensei a few years back to explain to me what a line was, he kept saying it's just a line, it's just a line. You know what? It is just a line
I can't do anything nearly as well as Ikeda sensei, but I am fairly sure I know what he's doing and yes, I can reproduce things on some level or other.
Hi John - thanks for your view on things.
I think the big question about this kind of practice is whether repeating it again and again will get you there. People like Dan and Mike talk all the time about the need for regular solo practice to develop these "lines" internally (and Kanetsuka Sensei among others keeps hinting at this too), but Ikeda Sensei didn't talk much about this aspect at all - not in the classes I was in, at least .