Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Beginner's Point of View 571-572

Day 571:

Today I’m back from being sick. My breath is shallow and my throat is still a little sore, causing coughing. Still, I need some exercise. I had a nice, quiet session of Iaido with three full sets.

I was tired after class but Sensei asked me to train a beginner early enough in his training to not practice with the class. Our other Sensei did not show up today, so I had to help out. No problem. I like being dependable. I took the student through basics of suri-ashi, men-ouchi, and kote-ouchi. I tried to mix things up by having him keep issoku-itto-no-maai with me in the two-man movement. He was exhausted after the session while I was just breathing a little heavier than usual. I wonder if it’s him not being used to the physical effort or if I’m just showing the years of effort I put into it. Still, I gave him encouragement to keep coming back to practice because repetition makes everything easier after a while.

Day 572:

No class today because of dangerous weather. There was a flash flood warning from the state.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Beginner's Point of View 569-570

Day 569:

No class today. I’m recovering from influenza.

Day 570:

No class today. I’m recovering from influenza.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Beginner's Point of View 567-568

Day 565:

Iaido class went swiftly. Three sets of kata plus a couple of iterations of the first and fifth kata to practice saya-biki.

In Kendo, the dojo became very hot and stuffy. One of the younger students asked that we close all of the windows, despite the heat. Sensei thought it was a good idea and we closed the windows.

We did endless repetitions of kiri-kaeshi, men-ouchi, kote-ouchi, doh-ouchi, and kakari-geiko. Sensei told me during class that I was sighing right before I attack. I should not be doing that. If I must exhale, then I should kiai for advantage instead. Just sighing lowers my energy and shows weakness.

At the end of practice, I nearly felt dizzy and light-headed from the heat. After changing into my street clothes, I noticed that my face and forehead poured sweat since it was not covered by the tenugui.

Day 566:

No class today because of a blister on the bottom of my foot. I’m resting it to heal.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Beginner's Point of View 565-566

Day 565:

In Iaido class, I did the standard three sets of kata with time to spare. I practiced the fifth and twelfth katas to practice. I need to do more saya-biki. My iaito is scraping the saya as it comes out. I need to draw more slowly. At least I remembered to turn my right foot for the ninth kata.

In Kendo class, the instructor didn’t show up, so sensei asked me to teach the beginners. Over and over we practiced Kendo steps and men-ouchi. With the limited space available, we did our best. I tried to mix it up to avoid getting bored. I linked motions into a combo of forward/forward/back/back/right/right/left/left/men-ouchi-forward/men-ouchi-backward.

Day 566:

Did three sets of Iaido kata and practiced the fifth kata several times. My saya-biki is getting better.

In Kendo, after stretching and suburi, we put on men right away. We did a lot of waza training. Kiri-kaeshi, men-ouchi, kote-ouchi, doh-ouchi, kakari-geiko, and ji-geiko. I was told by a student that I was hitting too hard. It gave me a flashback to when I had to tell a higher-ranking person to stop hitting me so hard. I have to keep my focus sharp to know who to hit hard and who to not hit hard.

Head Sensei showed up to teach the advanced class. He started talking about a new way to hold chudan. I have to get back into going home early to get my sleep each night well.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A Beginner's Point of View 563-564

Day 563:

Finally, I get back to Iaido class. I haven’t been drawing and cutting for months. When I started practicing, I made some mistakes. I forgot to turn my right foot during the ninth kata before the tsuki. I tried to do big chiburi like in the first kata during the fourth kata. At least I remembered to do the big chiburi the gentle way, like in the seventh kata.

In basic Kendo class, we did kiri-kaeshi, men-ouchi, kkote-ouchi, doh-ouchi, and ji-geiko. I didn’t have to push myself towards exhaustion again. I could keep pace with the others. Three of the new students don’t even have uniforms, so I gave them double practice in waza to help them out.

Day 564:

No class today because of a family meeting.