Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Only 5 Minutes Late This Time

With my new job I'm still working out the commute times. I'm so far distance wise that I'm not sure what I can do about this. I don't like being late but Bob specifically told me not to worry about it.

Started off with a couple rolls and then formed a line to have Greg do what I believe was kaitenage from a sitting position. He threw each of us a couple times. Then Bob threw us each with a crosshand grab. He said he wanted us to react to the throw. If the throw was soft we should roll, if it was hard... do a breakfall. I have no idea what he intended for me but I did a breakfall of sorts for both throws. Problem is.... I still don't get a good slap for my hand. Somehow for this breakfall, I dinged my groin. I had some small discomfort for about 5 minutes.... never did that before. Since I have two kids already I'm not too worried about it.

Lots of stuff on our knees for this class. We did hanmi handiche irmirnage. We did other thing from our knees as well.

Bob tried to keep the testing partners working together(there is a test coming up on wednesday). For whatever reason, I was purposefully partnered with Serge. In fact... where we switched partners at one point... he switched us back. Serge is actually one of the few people that ever hurt me on the mat. You can check my old posts about it. He did a kotagaeshi too well and I didn't manage to relieve the pressure quick enough. I actually had to sit back for a minute before I could continue practice. That was quite a while ago though. Since then, he's more aware of being careful around me, I've progressed a bit, and he seems to have an attitude change of sorts. I was wondering if Bob knew that Serge is unpredictable and simply didn't want to pair him with one of the newer beginners or one of the people who were about to test.

Serge tends to talk a bit too much on the mat. It's bad enough to the point where you may only get one throw in and he spends the entire time trying to teach what he thinks you need to know. Occassionally, he may be right but really you need to do the technique.... not just talk about it. As for his attitude change... he no longer likes to throw anyone hard it seems... also... he prefers not to take a vigorous ukemi during practice. At one point we were doing some flavor of irimi nage and he thought I was throwing him too hard. I really wasn't throwing any harder than I've received from others... and I know his ukemi is easily up to it.

After class, we were told we could stay for a free practice. After trying a few knife disarming techniques on me, rather than doing something.... anything... for practice... he spoke at length at least 20 minutes... I have no doubt he would have continued had I not herded us towards the changing room.

The gist of his talk was.... he was happy... didn't feel the need to prove this to others.... and went on with a zenlike attitude regarding the application of aikido in self defense. He also specifically mentioned that if someone is practicing with him and throws hard he will not respond correctly as uke. His point is... that you are treating him as nothing. There is a bit more too it than that but reading it would not be fun.

This is all nice, but I haven't reached a stage where I'm competent yet and would really have preferred to practice rather than listen to him talk about his personal epiphany.



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