I caught the evening class at North Shore Aikikai . I hadn't caught a Sunday there in a while. I met a couple of their newer folks. Both their newer folks were interesting to work with. I always talk about how you get real reactions from beginners. This pair was excellent for that. For katatetroi techniques one guy was regripping if you let him. So even if you get the grip you want by placing your wrist, if you delay at all, he will regrip and you lose it. He would also step if he wanted to get in a more comfortable position and spin out of shihonage naturally. I saw him doing this with another He has a really good sense on how to relieve the pressure. This means of course you have to do things as right as possible and with the best timing possible(no delays so he can't regrip).
The other newer person was even more interesting. She was watching what I was doing. How I was gripping, where I was stepping, even how I transitioned. We were just doing a simple ikkyo. Same side handgrab, do a shihonage start then move their arm back up into a circle for the ikkyo.
She seemed uncomfortable with this particular ukemi so there was a challenge here. Perform an effective ikkyo on someone who will move freely about without doing in such a way as to be trashing them. I asked her to tell me if she thought I was being too rough. In reality, I think I kept things at a good easy pace for her. Normally for ikkyo, if you move slowly enough, uke may move away from you and turn their back and you don't have an ikkyo any more.
I didn't want to speed anything up and give her more than her ukemi could handle. This meant that if she moved, I had to move to maintain our connection and body positions. It was good practice for me. The way she picks everything apart I wouldn't be shocked if she picks things up fast. I noticed a huge difference in her ikkyo, by the time we were done. And... I really gave no verbal cues. She got it all from watching.
The end of class we worked on some jo exercises. I like these. We don't do much of this in general so it's fun to see this once in a while. We just did some exercises moving the jo from one side to the other. The final exercise was...... holding the jo as if it were a bokken. Sliding one hand up it, flipping it over as we tenkan and end up in a hasso stance. Then center the jo and do a shomen cut to finish.