Sunday Morning and Monday Again
Sunday morning was a surprise where we did a whole bunch of stuff started with wrist grabs. At this point I can’t remember much other than it was just Tony and I. We did a bit of Nikkyo. A few throws. The iriminage I can never get my head wrapped around. It’s one where you sort of wrap your arm around uke’s around to the front of him and rotate 180 degrees to throw. You sort of push uke’s arm to his own chest. Pete did have us do 30 seconds of freestyle at the end of class. Usually I do better but I was spending too much time trying to figure out how to throw uke into the other uke. Way too much thinking. In some ways, responding to a shomenuchi or tsuki was easier.
Monday the wrists grabs continued. Buddy stretched us out. For whatever reason he started lingering on the stretches more which is nice. Then kept us busy doing ukemi practice. After the usual rolls, since he was just filling time before Bob showed, he did Alan’s favorite forward roll that doesn’t use an arm to roll and then does a slap at the end instead of rolling. Then after that he did a couple rounds of weeble rolls. Since I hadn’t seen one of those in a while I was rusty but ok. Then, he started to mix it up a bit. He did a forward roll with a tenkan followed by a weeble roll. After a couple of this kind of thing, he moved into a position to throw a line. That’s when Mr. Mulligan came over and stopped him.
Mr. Mulligan then had the whole class doing that basic exercise of a wrist grab, do a tenkan (you end up next to uke). This is the same exercise we did tons of with Francesca back at Cape Ann. Mulligan had us mix in with the new beginners so they could learn.
Bob stepped on to the mat at this point… He had us do a single technique…. Then he added to it…. Then added to it… then added to it. By the end of class we were doing something like 4 techniques in a row to uke. It was something like… Tenkan with a j-step which will swing uke around(atemi to the face), Kaitenage, Iriminage, Sankyo. The hope was that you maintained contact with uke the whole time… so you do the kaitenage but don’t do the throw…. Do the iriminage but don’t throw…. Come under uke’s arm instead and do the next one (sankyo).
The whole concept of this kind of practice had a name that I can’t remember. Reikiwaza…. Maybe? All in all it was a great class. Also, I have to say it was amazing to watch the younger students pick up so many sequential moves without getting confused overall. I think at their level of experience I wouldn't have kept it straight.
I’m a little bothered in the Monday classes of late. I don’t get corrected much at all. In fact... I saw Bob go up the line and had a correction for pretty much everyone except for my partner and I. I think overall I’m doing ok but I can’t believe that I’m doing things 100% right all the time. I don’t know if Bob is thinking ‘good enough’ for now but I have no idea how I’m supposed to improve if he doesn’t push me along. I sort of have that stalled feeling for learning again. Makes me want to do a double class if I can manage it physically. Keep in mind that when I started, it was in a small dojo with very few practitioners. Feedback was constant. Perhaps looming in the back of my mind is that some day I may be asked to test. Since I have a ton to work on right now, I don't feel even close to ready. I may be getting way ahead of myself here. Also, I'm not oblivious to the fact that just because we aren't focusing on test techniques doesn't mean I'm not learning.
In case I hadn't mentioned it.... this was another night with something like 18 people on the mat. I think there is a good 8 people in this beginners class.
Thumb is much improved. Range of motion is 99% there. My grip strength is almost all back. I have some small amount of pain just using it. Somehow when I first did it, my kids managed to hit it at least 5 times in two hours.