Just Blend Away

It's sumo, obviously. The lesson is still Aiki.

A New Year

We had a very traditional class last night. The warm-ups and stretches, the full taiso, then Ki exercises, followed by a series of techniques drawn from the 50 basic.

After class, Shihan explained his New Year's resolution is to return to the heart of Aikido, to explore the core techniques and the teachings, and to do it with a sense of gratitude and appreciation for all the gifts the art offers.

If you were ever thinking of joining a Aikido dojo, now would be the time, and the Academy of Aikido of Arnis in Farmville, N.C. would be the place.

I hope to see you on the mat. It's going to be a special year.

Irimi-nage, Sort Of

When it's showed slowed down, you can see that the uke's head hits pavement, so he's out cold when the rest of the officers get to him.

Harris Shihan posted this on Facebook, with the observation that if the officer really knew how to do an irimi-nage, it would have been even worse.

Training Camp

I was reading some some old columns by Dave Lowry and came across the following quote in a column titled "Training Camps" from September 2002:
I once asked a gasshuku veteran what he liked best about these training camps. “Bureiko,” he said—a word that refers to an informal get-together, a time when rank and position are laid aside as much as possible and people who enjoy karate gather for a good time. Maybe that’s why we rarely hear of gasshuku in this country: Perhaps here, where rank and title is a big deal, martial artists are more comfortable with seminars and their boot-camp mentality. Too bad. Sleeping bags, campfire cooking and the inevitable 3 a.m. rainstorm are par for the course at gasshuku. So are budding friendships, fond memories and the camaraderie of shared hardship. As far as I know, no one has ever issued a certificate for attendance to a gasshuku. And because everyone is expected to participate in the training and in the chores, a lot of the big-name masters might not be around. But we could do with a few more gasshuku.