Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Took Class Sunday and Monday

Went to Shohdokan on Sunday morning. Pete taught. After stretching we went straight into some line techniques to warm up. It was nice warming up that way. Had a great class. Monday night I went to North Shore Aikikai. We did a couple of test techniques for Roger who is testing at some point and covered a couple for me as well. We also did a fun sumi-otoshi. Tsuji attack. Deflect the strike with the same hand (eg. right on right), then take both hands bringing the arm around behind uke as you enter. It's excellent to practice ukemi for this one as well. Another technique was interesting. Here is what I remember of it. From another tsuki attack. Lets pretend uke is striking with the right hand. Move your feet but end up with the same hanmi facing to the left(turned sideways to uke). At the same time, push your right hand into the upper arm/inner elbow off to the side. Take your left and and cut down a bit on the same hand. At this point uke is very off balance. se your right hand once more to push at the hip, shoulder, neck or whatever you get your hands on. We did that last technique a month or so ago. I had an easier time with it for the most part this time.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Phone Booth Aikido???

Had a laid back Friday night class. Went to Shotokan. Bob taught tonight. We did a few different techniques from an unusual opening. One of the more interesting aspects of practice was when Bob had us work in a small area as if we were in a corner with a wall behind you and to one side. It was a good exercise. Very interesting. It was a strange night. Usually, I can just practice but I had two different partners asking me for feedback tonight. Good to see the effort. Rather than just going through the motions these are the people that are still learning. One took a look at me during his nikkyo and although I moved some he's been around enough to know that he doesn't quite have it. So he worked on improving it a bit. Someone else did the same thing with his sankyo. He wanted to stop mid practice and work on his control. So... a laid back night. I had a little fun doing my best to yonkyo the hell out of my partner when that technique was shown. It can be a tough one to get.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Been Away

Was travelling all last week. Usually when I travel I attempt to go to a dojo but I knew I just wouldn't have time so I didn't even bother to pack a gi.

Went to Shodokhan's Tuesday night class tonight. Lots of people showed tonight. From what I understand a few more than usual. Pete had us focus on sensing uke's motion and trying to time your response to make use of uke's motion. Lots of wrist grab techniques. Everything from kotagaeshi to kokyunage to iriminage to kaitenage and so on. I got to see a couple of the newer folks but I didn't get to work with them. Bummer. I was curious to see where they were at.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Always Learning

Went to North Shore Aikikai last night. We did some interesting stuff. There was a shomenuchi attack. Nage steps a bit offline and raises his arm to deflect and let the strike slip by. Using the other hand we can grab the near shoulder and as little as possible bring uke's balance off a bit. I was able to do this best by pulling the near shoulder out and then toward me in a circle. Supposedly, at some point you can do this without doing much with the other hand but I still need the cheat. Once off balanced, you slide forward a bit and drop your arm/elbow right across uke's upper chest. You move through with your center. It very much reminds me of a sword cut where you raise your sword up to deflect an attack and come down with your own right after. I actually practiced this with a bokken once while visiting an ASU dojo in Baltimore.

Here was the most thought provoking comment of the night. During my shomenuchi nikkyo I was told I had a hole. I'm always looking for holes in my technique. I do have to say I had about 3 seconds of defensiveness. Then I thought about it and went... hmmm, ok, where is the hole? For the variation I was doing at that moment, you enter and grab the attacking arm at the top as it's just coming down. You make the connection, enter, tenkan, and follow the arm down moving around and then into a nikkyo. The problem with the way I was doing it was that when I made my connection I made a loose one. I am grabbing(making a connection) but allowing uke's arm to rotate. I'm used to not setting a grab tight for most techniques because frequently once you grab hard the fluidity of most techniques stop and you are locked into doing one thing. However, in this case, it may be wiser to take a more solid hold with the grab so that you can get to the nikkyo better. I'll have to experiment with it a bit.

Now... more about the hole. The thought was that although I have a connection, I don't have as much control as possible. The way Matt does this technique is that he grabs solid with one hand to bring the hand down up and into his shoulder but with the other hand he is pushing around with his hand right away to start the nikkyo. He has a nikkyo relatively early. Then he brings it to his shoulder. I definitely see he has more control at this point then the other version. I find this hard to do this way but it may just be a matter of practice.

This brought up a couple of thoughts. If this is my hole then every technique we do when we tenkan, j-step and pull someone around has the same hole. So, as Jim was trying to point out to me last night it's about having degrees of control.

So am I left with the thought that you are in control... until you're not in which case you need to establish control?

Sunday, April 01, 2012

I'm Tenderized

Well.... Tony is back. He was feeling real good today. Peter had us doing mostly responses to shomenuchi attacks.

He had us doing sumi-otoshi, kotagaeshi, koshinage, sankyo, ude garume, udekiminage, shihonage, nikkyo, kokyunage, taiotoshi.

The most interesting throw out of all of them was the taiotoshi for me.... The attack would come, we enter and slide in a bit with a pivot taking ukes arm. I lead him down, out and up as I stepped in front of uke and throw. The entry was interesting.

Toward the end I had Tony as my nage and he decided during the freestyle period to throw in a koshinage we hadn't done in the class for shomenuchi. It was excellent and well timed as usual. Peter then came over and said.... do it the other way. Apparently, a class or so ago Tony was doing the koshi by turning his back to the attacking shomenuchi arm as he steps in for the koshinage. It was fast.... very fast. The ukemi was much more difficult.

So.... between the koshinages and whatever else Tony pulled out of his hat I was tossed around pretty well.

I feel all warm and fuzzy for the rest of the day. I got a nice workout.