Monday, September 28, 2015

A Beginner's Point of View 718-719

Day 718:

No class today as I am injured.

Day 719:

No class today as I am injured.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

A Beginner's Point of View 716-717

Day 716:

In Iaido class, I did 2.5 sets of kata. Things are getting smoother. The fifth kata is becoming easier to finish.

In Kendo, we had a small class. Only a few people showed up. We had a hard class today. Men, ai-ouchi-men, kote-men, ai-ouchi-kote-men, men-hiki-men, then the same drill differently. The kakarite receives a men strike, and then performed hiki-men. I’m not good at receiving it, I’m better at blocking and instantly going backwards. Then we finished by doing the entire string in a single, continuous drill. Very tiring, very breath-stealing.

We stopped keiko early and had a kata lesson. I did learn that for shidachi shoto kata, you practice two types of chudan. High-hanmei and middle-hanmei. The shoto is not perfectly vertical because you are one-handed. Only step forward when the uchidachi tries strikes. Also remember to lift your shoto on the right side, not the left.

Day 717:

Today we got interrupted in Iaido. The association moved us to the gym without telling us. We lost some time to practice. I could only finish 2.5 sets of kata.

In Kendo, it was a small class again. I led the class in stretches and suburi. Sensei said it was okay for everyone to strike the young student now, but only gently as she’s very small.

We had a repeat of the yandan training from last class, only this time we added men-suriage-men, including into the long string of drills. We finished with some very short ji-geiko.

Friday, September 18, 2015

A Beginner's Point of View 714-715

Day 714:

Today was a better day. I did 3 full sets of kata in Iaido.

However, in Kendo I was lacking in energy. After suburi and kihon we did many men-ouchi strikes. I was really getting sluggish inside. I haven’t felt this bad since I had liver damage.

Sensei has been striking the newest young student, albeit gently. I asked if I could do so also. I hate it when I get paired with her and she doesn’t get the entire experience. Still, Sensei said it was okay if I was gentle. So, I only tap her. She seems eager to receive strikes like a full student.

At the end of class it was balloon Kendo for her birthday. She took us all on gauntlet-style. My balloon popped in 3 seconds. Sensei said it was a dojo record. Great. She did have several good strikes for someone so young.

Day 715:

Today had lousy traffic, everyone showed up late. I only got to complete 2 sets of kata in Iaido. I asked Sensei about the fifth kata in hasso-no-kamae. He said the cutting edge is off by 45 degrees, not straight ahead. The follow-up strike follows the plane of the sword from the down cut.

In Kendo, after suburi it was a beginner class. We did a lot of kihon strikes and then immediately into ji-geiko.

Afterwards, we had a class in kata. Finally! I needed lessons in shoto kata. I actually got to practice uchidachi kata. I really need more practice. I know all of the pieces for uchidachi and shidachi, but not the order to put them in. For example, the uchidachi uses left jodan, gedan, and chudan, in that order.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

A Beginner's Point of View 712-713

Day 712:

No class today because of the holiday.

Day 713:

Today was a terrible day. I had no focus all day, even at work. I should have stayed home but I came to the dojo because it’s fun.

I did only 2 sets of kata in Iaido, all wobbly.

In Kendo, I was lacking energy. I led the class in stretches and suburi. By the time sensei led us in kihon, I was losing energy. I tried to pace myself but I kept slowing down. I just kept going with my arms and no kiai. Eventually, I had to step out. I missed ji-geiko but at least the day was over.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

A Beginner's Point of View 710-711

Day 710:

In Iaido class, I got an e-mail from sensei. He said that in the 5th kata, you grab the koiguchi directly. He also said that he commonly does the same mistake. It’s a good thing I have the official Iaido manual now.

In kendo, we had a small class. Sensei took over as our other nidan taught the newest beginners. He asked me to lead stretches and suburi. Then he taught a simple class in kihon and harai-men. The student that I taught has to stop about three-quarters through the class, but she did rei-hou with us at the end.

Day 711:

In Iaido, we had a slower start. Time seemed to pass by faster today for some reason. I only had time for 2.5 sets of kata.

In kendo, the student\nt I taught did not show up. I hope she did not give up. Still, we had a class today. After I led warm-ups and suburi, Sensei led a class in kihon and kote-men. There were two other beginners so we had plenty of uchikomi-geiko today.