Saturday, February 27, 2016

Henka Waza

Friday night class was ok.  We did our stretching and did a few line techniques to warm up before class.  Richard joined us.  I hadn't seen him in a while.  He doesn't often come on Friday nights.  Here is a guy that has been practicing for years but doesn't seem to remember anything from class to class.  He just doesn't have it in him to remember.  Despite that, he usually tries and has a good time in class.  He's developed a habit of not taking ukemi well though.  If he can avoid a roll by hopping away or doing some other maneuver he will.

During one line technique we were doing kaitenage.  It was obvious that he wanted to get out but I was doing the technique correctly.  There was no escaping it.  He flipped over and dumped out on the mat.  Afterwards, I told him to stop that because he'll injure himself.  That he needed to roll.  He is totally capable of it and had nothing wrong with him,  He was just resisting or being lazy with his ukemi.  When he realized that he wasn't getting out of techniques (from me), he started doing his normal rolls.

Class starts and Mr. Mulligan has us doing different stuff.  Most of it was pretty easy for me to do.
We did a bunch of henka waza which is easy for me because we do so much of it on Sunday morning.  It's easy to transition from one in to the next.

When I failed to do one particular thing well, I started analyzing it.  This is a habit I've developed at the other dojo (North Shore Aikikai).  They study aikido there quite a bit so I got used to looking at what I'm doing to uke.  In one technique, I realized that I was drawing uke's weight right through his forward foot.... This means uke was going no where.  As Mr. Mulligan is coming over to help me with a correction, I mention this, and he says.... "Yes.... your triangularization point is not there."  I think of it a little differently, but no matter what you call it, that was the main problem for my technique at that moment.  When something is failing, I can usually figure out why nowadays.  This was one of the times though that I recall actively thinking about what I am doing and how it's affecting my uke.

We usually think of aikido when we are first learning by putting a foot there and a hand there and so forth.  We don't know why it works.... it just does.  Then you notice that if you make a little change the technique may be better.  However, early on, no thought is usually given to exactly how this is affecting uke.  Are we putting all of uke's weight into the front ot rear foot?  Where is out center in relation to uke and how does that help the technique.  etc.  This is a different level of learning aikido.  It's a stage I'm going through now.


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