Monday, September 28, 2009


Maybe have gone to 6 or so classes since I posted last. Things have been quite busy.

Last class I attended was Mr. Mulligan's Friday night class. We worked on the sky hand for tenchinage quite a bit. I had a tough partner at that point. He wouldn't take a lead unless it was really strong. Which is fine. I just had to make sure I was doing things well. We also did an ura version. I noticed that I was too far away from uke at first. Once I kept tight to uke my ura version was looking better.
At one point my uke forgot what attack to do and instead of a yokomen strike I ended up receiving a tsuki. Without thinking about it I tenkan'd and laid my hand on his. At that moment I was headed toward a kotagaeshi response. We stopped at that point as he realized he had done the wrong technique and there was no need to go further with it.

A couple classes ago I got to Bob's Monday night class. We did quite a bit of movement exercises. Lot's of moving through multiple attackers. I noticed I had some improvement just doing it a couple of times. Good to practice.

The past few classes I've been getting serious intent from a couple of my partners. There was one night where I had Kim as my partner. After doing the technique, I was headed toward the mat but felt incredible intent on the back of my head and covered it as I went down. I'm not sure why I felt this but I did. Sure enough, he was using his arnis experience to follow the technique with a strike to the back of the head (he didn't actually make contact). On another occassion I had something similar happen where I could really feel my uke's intent. This doesn't happen all the time, but it happened a few times this past month. I'm wondering how much if it is my being more aware vs my uke's being more in the moment.

Monday, September 07, 2009

No Class For a While

Unable to get to Friday class. Went to a wedding this weekend instead. Sundays at Shodokan are cancelled for a little while longer.

Sunday class was cancelled at NSA. I received word via email, phone call and facebook that the class was cancelled. I really appreciate being told about the cancellation.

No class anywhere on labor day. Hope to be on the mat soon.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Cool Seminar Pictures Are Up

Anyone that's interested can go to the "North Shore Aikido" facebook page to see pictures from the seminar.

I've Seen That.... Oh Wait... I Haven't

Friday night class was with Mr. Mulligan. It was a more comfortable night I recall so he had us picking up the pace a bit. We did a myriad of throws and techniques. Some were easier than others for me to get right. At the end of class we did a freestyle. For whatever reason I ended up in a group of 2-3 ukes. One thing about my freestyles that I need to work on is that I'm comfortable dealing with an uke or moving but if not immediately attacked I stand there waiting. I do engage eye contact with someone which usually gets you an attack but really I shouldn't be just standing there waiting for him to do something. Mr. Mulligan wanted to see me enter more. I assume he would like me to engage my next uke and not wait for him to come to me.

Sunday I went to NSA. No Sunday classes at Shodokan for now. Rob taught. I hadn't seen Rob in quite a while. For the most part his aikido is somehow less confounding that it used to be. He's a very loose, watery, bendable, gumby like aikido guy. At one point we were doing a simple exercise and he's bent over backwards and yet he's on his feet as if they were pinned to the floor.
Anyway... we worked on a nice connected progression of exercises/techniques culminating in a hip throw at the end.

I was busy doing a different hip throw of course. I did a standard move to the third point of the triangle in front of uke and do a throw. It was generally smooth and nice.... but it wasn't the technique Rob was teaching. After about three attempts at showing me I finally realized what was different and what I was doing wrong. Instead of moving in front of uke, it was a tenkan, turn the hips and sort of wrap uke around you for the throw. Very nice. I got a couple of these in correctly before class ended.

Monday night at NSA. We did a bunch of techniques but the one thing that sticks out in my mind was us practicing kaitenage. At one point I had Jim as a partner. I guess he decided I needed more of a challenge so gave me a more realistic attack where he would do the tsuki but then pull his arm back. It took quite a few tries to deal with the timing. If someone leaves their arm out there you have all the time in the world. When they are going to pull it back some you have to move in earler, and stay really sticky. Excellent practice. I could deal with it easily at about 1/3rd speed. I'll need more practice to react quick enough to something like that.

My thumb sprain from the seminar is much better at this point. The constant ache in it has subsided. I'm regaining some strength in the thumb. It will likely take a month or so to be normal. Any time I need to do a grab I've been doing a judo grab. Now I can grab again normally but not as strongly.