Exercise Your Center
Or more to the point..... our awareness of our centers.
Gotta stop waiting most of the week to blog. Bad habit. As a result my details are sketchy.
Start with some tenkans as part of warm up exercises.
So we did a few exercises designed to help us move along/with our centers. I remember doing similar exercises with Bob at Cape Ann. There was one point where he was stressing keeping our shoulders relaxed and open. I don't know about other folks but this used to be and likely is still a problem for me. I tend to push in and most of the time I'm not even aware I'm doing it. I might have a lot of bad habits but this one is at the forefront of my mind and always has been. I even notice it when I'm doing simple cuts with a bokken. Somehow I have trouble getting into a relaxed posture.
Maybe if I start practicing with my bokken at home more I can get my shoulders to relax and open up.
So, we continued the exercise which really was a kotagaeshi really slow. At one point Bob worked with me and tried to fix a spot in my technique where I was just disappearing. He thought perhaps I wasn't entering deep enough. But at the point I disappear (I'm no longer pulling uke off-balance and I'm neutral) I'm in a position that would make you think that being a little ahead of uke would be a good thing. I think perhaps I simply wasn't moving my arm out enough. So if we do this again in the future I'll be stepping in deeper and paying attention more to where my arm is to off-balance uke.
There were plenty of other things that we did but as usual waiting too long to record what we did has me forgetting what exactly went on. I know this was Matts first class in a while. Bob's son Matt showed up. Bob used him as uke to demonstrate the effects of atemi on an attacker. He didn't actually make contact or anything but Matt has a background of full contact so Bob could count on his reactions. Nice to see him.