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Showing posts from January, 2011

Out of Action

I haven’t posted for awhile due to my busy schedule, but mostly because I haven’t been able to do anything since I’ve been back from the Big City.  While I was there my Doctor swung through and while we were hanging out I showed him some problems I’d been experiencing.  Primarily my right leg seemed to be week in a couple of spots.  I was unable to do a calf raise on my right leg and this caused him some concern which, in turn, caused me some concern.  I got back into town last week and the doc did a repeat of the evaluation and I hadn’t gotten worse, but neither was I better.  His first thought was to get me to a MRI a.s.a.p, but with a few exercises I noticed a small amount of progress.  So we are hold for the MRI, but Beatings has been put on the side line until I can do more physically.  This is especially frustrating as I’d hoped to go to class and do a modified workout, but the doctor wants to hold off.  I was wondering what I can accomplish, but I’m afraid to go backwards.  So …

Aikido 5

My last night. I was extremely tired and really was thinking about going to bed early, but I needed to get motivated and get to the dojo if for no other reason than to pay for my classes. In that vein I called Greyhound to see if he was going to the Gojo Ryu class just see if he could motivate me to go to two different classes in one night. He had a presentation so I was right out. I drug myself out and got there early to watch the kids class which is an entertainment in itself. There was youngster who insisted that she was not sucking her thumb all the while plopping her thumb in her mouth whenever sensei turned his head. He knew it was going on making the few onlookers teeter with stifled giggling. Sensei seemed to be speaking louder so I had an easier time understanding what was being said and it also meant that I didn’t have to lean over, struggling to understand what he was saying. I was under the impression that leaning over the kneeling line was frowned upon, but I could…

Aikido 4

After Gojo Ryu I wasn't sure how Aikido was going to feel. Sure enough the first 15 minutes felt alien and I kept losing focus, but we started the examples I felt more engaged. Of course I couldn't stop thinking about how much all the arts borrow from something else and try to refine it to a philosophy.

The Sensei at the school is very good and really focuses on centering on the Uke. This a concept that my school occasionally touches upon, but never in such concise fashion. It's the same with taking balance. They don't say that specifically (at least not to me), but everything in the class is predicated on some aspect of that. I did find myself taking umbrage with a lot of the moves that require the Uke to give themselves so fully to Nage. I know it's for building and such, but to have such drama put into it makes me want to puke. I'm like, "just stand up for god's sake and stop groaning and squirming." Totally not fair to the circumstan…

Gojo Ryu 1

This is week two in the big city and my enthusiasm for Aikido got a short side-step when they cancelled classes for Martin Luther King day. So my friend of many years (who I think participated in my brown belt test) talked me into trying out a free Gojo Ryu class instead.

We showed up early and got to meet our instructor. My buddy showed his normal annoying trait of not asking the correct questions. For instance, "Can we participate in class tonight?" turned into "Hi, I was wondering about Gojo Ryu and stuff." Urgh.

The class was lead in a very traditional Japanese style, but the floor was hardwood and seiza was brutal. Everything about the dojo screamed Okinawa and had all their pedigree out for everyone to see. The backwall was covered with makiwari and forearm weights. The other walls had tons of black and white photos of instructors in Okinawa doing all sorts of exercises with arcane gear.

Me and Greyhound shared the class with four kids and one teenage…

Aikido 3

Tonight I thought things were starting to come together because were worked on many similar techniques, but stuff where I take some pride really suffered. Specifically my rolls. I'd like to think I'm one of the better rollers in my class, but in Aikido I'm like a drunken elephant. Most of the time I go into the roll to fast and get a resulting boom whereas the seasoned practitioners enter and exit the rolls with nary a sound and always appear to be soft and comfortable.

Something that came up several times was when I was the Nage I would regularly forget to step out of line when the Uke attacked. This led to a lot of bad technique setup. Ironically I would say this was a problem I had at my TSD classes. So it was nice to have that corrected and I hope that it pays off in TSD.

The second portion of that problem was that I needed to be facing Uke with hips parallel, or being centered correctly, as they say it. I tend to enter the technique correctly but then get far beyond in…

Aikido 2

I wasn't sure how much I was going to enjoy the class since it was only an hour long, but the structure of the class is that you are to be ready to go when the clocks strikes 8. The Sensei gave us about 5 or so minutes to warm up, but it was enough as he structured the class around non-intense movement in the beginning to get the blood flowing.

After each movement we would sit while he demoed the next part. In this class the exercise was always following by the same thing except performed on the knees. Walking on the knees is call shikko (which I immediately dubbed "sicko), but I think everything combat related on the knees is called suwari (not sure I heard that correctly). By the half hour mark was groaning from the activity. Worried that my tender knees would really be acting up I would occasionally stop to stretch them behind me. It really didn't work, but my partners never indicated that it was a problem.

One of my favorites was an updown. When the person comes in for…

Aikido 1

I got into the big city Sunday afternoon and checked in at my hotel after doing the rental car hustle. If you get one off airport property it's half price. But you have to be there by 6pm and, of course, my flight landed at 6! I was able to make it and the hotel turned to be really nice.

So I finished work and ate a hurried dinner and went early to the dojo. Since I've been there before ( 2 years ago)I could join class directly, but they are very traditional and I struggle with the Japanese and timing of the beginning of the class.

However, they all seem fine with my lack of ability and mumbled Japanese (domo origto oh my god mmymmmbbyby).

I wanted to keep my mind on anything that could be used in our class (moves that are not predicated on the Uke grabbing and holding the Nage). The nice thing is that everything in class has a proper name, but I have no paper to write down what the Teacher is saying.

Two hours was a bit tough with a poor night of sleep behind me, but…

Post Vacay

I went on vacation to the mid-west for two weeks with the wife.  However just before I left my hip starting acting up.  The pain never cleared and I finally went and saw the doctor a few days ago.  Apparently I’ve got a pinched or enflamed sciatic nerve that makes it very difficult to bend over.  I’ve got to go to PT for a bit and stop stretching.  Apparently that was making it worse.  Work has decided to send me over the big city for some extra work and training.  While I’m there I can attend the Aikido School for two weeks fairly regularly.  Can’t wait.  I had visited a few years ago for two days and loved every bit of it.  This time I’ll remember to wear my white belt and try not to look like a dork trying to remember the ceremonial steps.