Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Sacred and the Soiled

....I would have liked to say profane, but as we had to wash Son Sempai's blood out of my doji yesterday, soiled would be a better word.

I haven't been able to train as much as I would have liked regularly so last night (Thursday) was refreshing to say the least. Actually it was a pattern-breaking day beginning with Kata and ending in ji-yu kumite- hence the sacred and profane.

If you are KWF, you will know that we have three theories of generating power: koshi no kaiten, kusshin and the combination of the two. As Kata, Kumite and Kihon are just different expressions of the same fundamentals, sometimes YS does things backwards.

As opposed to me, who often gets things backwards.

Recently I have been asked if I know anyone who knows the Kata Hushu (Kaze no te or Wind Hand) which is an Asai-Ryu Kata (i.e. developed by Tetsuhiko Asai Shihan). I always say, "I don't know any Kata at all. The most important Kata for 6th dan in KWF is Heian Shodan- or at least it is checked minutely by YS and IS for that grade.

Last night was a special treat: focusing on koshi-kiru and tameru in Heian Shodan while adding in blocks and punches, then a clinic on some points on H-2 and H-3.

Heian Shodan
We only did it five times but each time YS asked us to completely focus on a specfic technical point and, as it turned out, the last time, synthesise them.
#1: Relaxed and perfection: focus on extreme hanmi and then gyakuhanmi
Pull out student for good example, correct student with bad example
#2: Relaxed and then apply power using koshi no tameru and hold, hold hold the hanmi to the last instant to generate power on the gyakuzuki
Pull out student for good example, correct student with bad example
#3: Repeat with more speed and power: however focus on Kushin and koshi no tameru
Pull out student for good example, correct student with bad example
#4: Repeat and now focus on all these points plus age-uke to gyaku-zuki (x2)
Pull out student for good example, correct student with bad example
#5: Put them all together!

H-2 & 3 Clinic:
The biggest points with Heian Nidan today were driving off the hips for the initial blocks and making the shuto long and attacking. With H-3 it was driving forward with the three fumikomi. The point is that if you are like me, and like stomping, move beyond that- you should be driving forward into your attacker (remember the hip thrusts in Enpi!) and belting out the urkan; the two must be dynamically linked- it's not THUMP (stomp) (fraction of nothing) WHACK (urakan), its driiiiiiiiiiiiiveSTOMPaTHUMP. Sorry, that's the best I can do for now!

We did 4 or 5 sets of Gohon Kumite and it was me with Son Sempai, who is old school, so I got hit on the jaw three times and kicked in the, well, yes, twice and then jiyu kumite with him, which involved, how might we put it, a fair and frank exhange of opinions, and me feeling the less than gentle administrations of the guy who regarded himself as the toughest non-sensei fighter in the old Ebisu dojo until a certain young guy called Yahara give him a whipping...and another one, and another one ;-)


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