Friday, September 02, 2005

A good night

Going in last night was tough. I haven't been sleeping well the past few nights. Because of this, I didn't feel particularly good when I started but as soon as the warm up exercises started I forgot about everything else except the training.

The class broke up into two groups with the beginners practicing their breakfalls and the more advanced students practicing their rolls. I think they were doing other things as well but I didn't really notice as my full attention was really on my own breakfalls. I can fall reasonably smoothly but the added "slap" of the mat just doesn't feel right yet. I really think my ukemi needs more work than anything else.

One of the people in the dojo I get to train with is also a beginner. The funny thing about him is that he is the only person there that resists everything, all the time. The first time I trained with him I sort of found it bothersome that he wasn't going "where he was supposed to go". For example, when doing one technique I'm supposed to lead the attacker off balance. Rather than letting himself get off balance this guy will take a step forward. He is now in my face and I don't have the angle I need to do the technique easily. It's at this point that I have to make some kind of adjustment. In the end, I found that if I slowed the technique down a real lot(sensei's suggestion) this guy did not take the step and would allow himself to be off balance. Leading the attacker instead of lugging him. At this point I've decided that training with him is very useful because it forces me to either do a technique perfectly or come up with something else.

Last night, we practiced what I believe was some kind of ikkyo variation where the attacker grabs each wrist from behind. You sort of bend your wrists/hands/arms a certain way and slip under him. At this point you have a normal ikkyo. Now... I get resistance guy again. So I successfully slip under him and try applying the ikkyo and he's resisting me so I do the best that I can and found a position with his elbow bent that I could control him easily but I let him go because I was concerned for his safety. I wasn't sure that what I was doing was safe for him. I'm new at this and don't want to hurt my partners through ignorance. The sensei spotted this and commented that what I was doing was a variation that he would teach us later. I just sort of fell into it by necessity. I'm not even sure how I got there. It did feel right though. My partner commented that I had him in a position he couldn't resist at all so that must be pretty effective.

The sensei then decided to show us a nikkyo. He went up the line and did a nikkyo on each of our wrists. As he's moving up the line he hits a beginner who lets out a small yelp. As the sensei is setting up his other hand the beginner looks at him and says "Did that a little fast don't you think". The sensei with a small smile says.... "No... I don't think so" and punctuates this with a nikkyo to the other wrist. Ahhh.... silly man, never talk back to sensei during nikkyo.

My best move of the night came in the last 2 minutes. We were doing some simple back stretches. My partner at the end of the night was a short woman who is also a beginner. She wanted to stretch me first so I grab her wrists... and up I go. We are back to back.... for about 1 second and then I feel the force of 1G. Yah.. thats right... she collapsed right under me. Somehow I sensed quickly enough to react and rolled in mid air and fell on my side very gently. She simply fell down. So the good news is I didn't crush her under me. A black belt in the class who witnessed it said I looked quite graceful.

There are some days I feel like nothing is working and others things feel good. Even on this night where I worked with "resistance uke" it was a good night.

DAPI: 2 - I feel great today. Not even a new bruise. Muscles feel a little worked.
(Day after pain index)


At September 02, 2005 12:42 PM, Blogger Lee said...

You said not to expect any amazing insights since you were a beginner but I thought "never talk back to sensei during nikkyo" were true words of wisdom. You're obviously learning fast...and from the mistakes of others, which is the way to go!


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