Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The long and short of it

Jerry couldn't make his Wednesday, 12:15 class, so the ever-ready Mike Jones stepped up.

It was an interesting class. Mike alternated techniques between omote and ura, all with a shomenuchi attack. We did kokyu ho (kaiten), ikkyo omote, kotegaeshi ura, nikkyo omote and finally good ol' irimi nage.

Mike helped me with the kaiten, which didn't feel natural for some reason, and very good advice in the nikkyo on how and when to go for the grip. I was kinda doing it the hard way.

I was partnered with a fairly new aikidoka. I had to laugh at myself a few times. I still don't really feel competent to give anyone any advice, but I did find the opportunity to inject a few words. The interesting thing is, I only told him stuff I've heard a thousand times.

I can remember very well when all those words were meaningless and confusing to me. (Now they are only slightly less confusing...)

Extend? Um, OK (push).

Relax? Why, aren't I relaxed? (while not even breathing...)

Seems like only yesterday... Gee, I hope it really wasn't yesterday!

I finally resorted to telling my partner, "don't worry I won't hurt you. Just stay loose." The dirty secret I didn't tell him is that there are levels upon levels of relaxation and I've just scratched the surface. I heard Harvey Konegsburg-sensei say within the past year or so that he was becoming satisfied with the level of relaxation in his shoulders. How many decades has he been at it? My god. I didn't mention all this though and we got through it all right.;)

Oh! After class, another new aikidoka, who I hadn't yet had the pleasure to meet, came up to me and said, "I like your blog." I don't think she knows how surprised and happy I was. Even though I put this stuff up here for people to read, I am always surprised when I find they actually do it. :)


ilsa said...

Hey, there. I meant it when I said I enjoy your blog!

I am most thankful for your summary of techniques we did in class as well as the bits of advice you've gotten from teachers and sempai.

You know, just a few kind words of advice can make a world of difference in how one feels about their path in aikido. [thanks, claire!]

I'll be looking for you in class and for your next blog entry!

AikiPenguin said...

Thanks Ilsa!

I enjoy summarizing the techniques, especially as it seems to reinforce and refocus my thoughts and attention.

They say some people learn by body movement, some learn by visual and others by words. Well, I'm decidedly in the last category, though I'm getting better at the others.

It helps me very much when knowledgeable people explain things to me. Then I can take the idea and work with it.

So it also helps me to put my random thoughts in some kind of order and write this blog. It makes things clearer.

I think it's the process of writing it, rather than the finished product, that does the most good. ;)

Looking forward to seeing you around.