Posts

Showing posts from July, 2016

Detached Retina

While warming up for the beginning of class Mark told me that after our previous class he started seeing flashing lights in his vision.  After he visited the doctor he found out that he had a detached retina!  He thought that it was from the throws I was giving him on a leg sweep move.  Wow.  I was kind of feeling guilty, but he pointed out that it's just his body being old and we just have to take it easy with throws in the future.  Needless to say when we practiced that move again I was hyper aware of where he was going and how fast.

Regular class was laughably small.  Basically Mark and I with four very young kids.  I got three six year olds and was told to set up the sports floor.  These giant red and blue puzzle pieces are the mainstay of most dojos I've every been too and provide a nice barrier between my pointy bones and a hard floor. 
After we emptied the closet out and got the floor put together (we can't keep it down permanently because we are renting a space for …

Dangerous Dance Of Death

Sometime back my buddy, Bob Patterson, had an article about folks looking for support in order to fund a documentary on the Dance of Death.  The skinny is in this article.

The reason this caught my attention was that I read those comic books as a kid and saw those ads for the "Black Dragon Society" and how they fired my imagination.  This was augmented by endless viewings of kung fu movies on local cable access channels.  How it would be a wonder to fly through the air or be able to whirl my hands in complicated patterns to make striking like a snake seem so effortless. 
Three plus decades later I'm writhing around on the ground with a foot in the back of my shoulder while my arm is pinned in such a way that one sneeze would shatter my elbow joint and I think to myself, "man, he's got to improve his technique to make this hurt more". 
When I had a few minutes to think about the session I asked myself, "where did that sense of youthful wonder go?" I…

Flying Elbows Of Death

In the after class Reed Sensei sat us down gave us the low down on our requirements for Black Belt confirmation.  A fee, a thesis, and the components of the physical bits (kata, 2-man, bunkai, etc.).  An intriguing piece was "good attitude".  Apparently some folks would get big britches and be a bit condescending to lesser belts.  I don't know how that would even be possible since everyone there is so cooperative.  Different times with a bigger school allows all sorts to move through. 

The other area in which we are expected to perform is the advanced elbow technique.  There are roughly three levels of skill related to the elbow techniques; the first being basic - which would equate to moving out of the way and giving Uke a shot with a elbow.  The next level would be adding a should lock and strike.  The level Mark and I are going to be working on includes a brutal takedown coupled with an arm bar.  After ten of those I had to take a handful of vitamin I this morning - a…

Progress

For the second class in a row I haven't had my partner Mark to work with.  Although it's not a drastic thing at the moment, the fact that he was ahead of me was helpful because he could help me work through some stuff.  As of last night I'm slightly ahead in the kata and, I think, have refined enough that I'm looking at least as good has him on what we commonly know. 

I was partnered with Dan Sensei last night in after practice to work on refining the kata till I was blue in the face.  Paired with the fact that I'm not feeling rushed we slowed down the speed and worked on each piece till I started getting it right.  This morning I was able to do it fairly well I thought.  Only a few slow spots that agonize me while I try to remember what's next. 
Regular class was spent with a brief warm up and then kicking drills.  I love these because if we keep regular with them I feel healthy and balanced.  Infrequently practicing them makes me feel out of shape and shaky. …

Shūdokan 85

I was hoping to make a bit more progress in the big kata last night, but when I did finally get to work on it in the after class I just stuck with sorting out all the handwork in the one section I'm slightly frustrated with. 

During regular class we worked on adding a few more moves to Nifanshi Shodan, but these were introduced as self defense moves.  After we finished up the warm ups we were to partner up and I got Sensei.  I enjoy working with him but it means I'm going to take some hard hits now and then.  And here I complained about not getting impact now and then!
The after class session took a bit to get started, but I was able to go through my trouble areas several times and iron out the boo-boos as much as I could.  Ivanna went through all my bunkai, but while this was occurring Reed, MaryAnn and Dan were sorting out the application series. 
The application is a continuous display of bunkai using two people.  There is attacker and defender rolls and the purpose is to di…