The past week has been busy. On Thursday I happily returned to jiu jitsu and spent two hours training. Then at the weekend I was on the British Aikido Federation’s Spring Course, spending two days training with two very different Sensei’s.
So in theory I have a lot to write about! The reality is that I have so much to write about that you would be bored before the end of the first paragraph. So instead I have an array of thought snippets which crossed my mind.
Jiu jitsu A rather satisfying moment when I realised I was clearly finally absorbing some of the aikido principles, even if it was at a point where they were not required. My koshi guruma went a little askew as a result. Some further thoughts on body dynamics to follow.
And breath It seems I am now automatically exhaling when thrown, which made me landings in jiu jitsu a lot more comfortable. Now to keep that habit going, being winded is never fun.
Forward ukemi Having spent several weeks in aikido of rolling out of throws at strange angles, rather than the neat straight line it should be, I was delighted to have a fellow jitsuka spot the point where I was going wrong. Now just to correct that bad habit I have picked up…
5th Dan award No calm down, I’m not that good. At the Spring course in recognition of one member’s 40 years practice of aikido, an award of 5th dan was made. 40 years – that is a long time. I would like to think that I will still be practicing in 39 years time.
Arm shape Yes, everyone who has ever taught me has stressed the importance of arm shape. Yet at the weekend, watching Kanetsuka Sensei, I had one of those little clicks in the mind. Now if only my body will do what my mind knows is best.
Humility Sensei Don Morgan is a man who has been practising aikido for a long time. But that doesn’t stop him quietly explaining the basic manners expected on the mat, and then continually demonstrating that, regardless of who he trains with, he observes those small but important elements.
On a light-hearted note We checked into a hotel for the aikido spring course. The toilet was proving very difficult to flush, and the cries of, “use your centre,” from my room mates were made in jest in reference to our aikido training. After several attempts I finally got the water flowing and marched back into the room, and announced, “my centre was engaged, I just needed to extend my ki.”