Tony and Chris couldn't make class yesterday morning. Two other people did come aside from myself though. Sunday morning isn't a popular class. It's hard for most people to want to get up in the morning and get moving that early on a weekend.
Chris has had a problem with his knee lately. I've noticed that he has trouble even sitting in seiza. He was ok for a class Friday night until he was called up for a demo. The instructor showed a technique where he pinned Chris's foot before the throw down. Apparently that fall had tweaked something bad enough that Chris had to quit the class. Thing about this though..... the instructor had him in this position for many seconds before the throw. Plenty of time to speak up. Instead of speaking right up Chris stood there and said nothing. He was mumbling a little and had a finger up as if to signal wait a second.
Part of taking ukemi is keeping yourself safe. There is no way someone is going to know that a particular throw is going to cause uke a problem unless you speak up or put some tape on something. If your knee is that bad off, you should protect yourself in some way. Maybe put some white tape in the shape of an X on the hakima. Anything to give your partner a hint that something is up.
Taking ukemi does not mean you have to take a beating. If you're injured, no one expects you to take ukemi you can't handle. It's up to you however to communicate in some way to your partner.
I feel bad for Chris getting hurt but in my mind he's more responsible for aggravating his injury than anyone else. I hope he gets better soon.
One of the interesting parts of class were the sword disarms. I hadn't done this in a while. The most common disarm was one where you enter to the left(partners right side) and just use your left hand to get at a grip on the handle. One thing about that disarm that I did remember was once you get a grip and you follow the sword down, you angle the sword away from you by rotating your hand up. This twist makes it so that your partner can't turn the blade in towards you and cut. Dave and I were the only ones that I noticed doing this. I started off by grabbing from the top. The instructor offered a correction where I need to actually get in below the right hand. I'm wondering if I just forgot that or I learned it differently from someone else.
After class I spoke to Dave and commented on the twist out. He said that Serge suggests that not only do you twist out but somehow there is a brace against your partners elbow. I'm assuming that keeps you safer as well. I'll have Dave show that to me next time I see him so I can play with it. Again, Serge is good at keeping safe and forcing uke into a position. In this case, where a sword is involved it may be very useful to look at what he does.
Sunday class without Chris.....
Peter started us with the 31 jo kata. Although better, I still don't know it yet. Also, I'm sure that some of my movements aren't right either (both foot and hand work). Spending a short time on this every Sunday is helping tons.
Peter had us doing kaeshi waza. Some were easy and felt natural, some felt alien. haven't done that in a while.