Re: It Had to Be Felt #2: Chasing Waka-sensei
During the years I lived in Japan, I attended Moriteru Doshu's class every day. Usually, he would use the uchideshi or younger instructors for ukemi, but I was lucky enough to get called out by him a few times, which was a great honor.
His class always had a theme- katatedori day, or ushiro waza day, etc, and the last 10 minutes or so were designated free training. During the free training time, he would walk around, give instruction and such. Every day, during this free training time, he would come over and say "Lisa, do you have a question?" I'd reply, "Yes, Sensei, how does blah blah blah....." Or "Yes, I do, I can't figure out blah blah blah...." He would take my partner, throw him a couple times, take me, throw me a couple times, showing me the answer to my question. Then he would smile, pat me on the shoulder and say, "Like me, do it like me" , and move on to the next group.
For days, weeks, months, he gave me this training, giving me the chance to feel the technique and understand it with my body, not just a verbal explanation to me. The training was aboutt feeling it, experiencing it, not talking about it. Moriteru Doshu gave me not only wonderful traiining experiences, but lessons in how to train.