Classic Kokyu-nage

We worked on one technique in Friday's class. The tenkan kokyu-nage that our style calls the classic. It is also often called "the 20 year technique" because that is how long it takes to master learn it.

There's footwork and timing, hand position, movement, balance, four basic principles. About the time you are moving correctly, you're not positioned correctly. Get your placement right and you're slightly off balance. Blend well and now you find you've let your arm trail out of position.

And in all of that, you also get to take a lot of breakfalls, because at least half the time you're the uke.

It was a great class, focused and demanding. I don't pretend to have the technique fully mastered, but I am one class closer. Here's a link to what Suenaka Sensei has to say about the technique.


Remember when you first saw Aikido? I do. The way the people in the black skirts moved seemed effortless. Someone would come running in, throw a strike, and sail out into a roll that brought them back up to their feet. It was magical, like watching birds in flight.

Then I decided to start training. Everything was hard, clunky, and hesitant. Taiso, the seemingly simple exercises that class started with, were confounding. Rolling hurt. I would watch a technique demonstrated, and then when it was time to practice, I might well have been trying to rub my belly and pat my head while I hopped on a pojo stick.

Pasour Shihan initiated a discussion last night about what we do, what it takes, what it costs, and in reply, Barrett Sensei said something that I want to repeat here,
"It takes a lot of effort to make it look effortless."

Blend AwayFrom The Yokomen-uchi!

Every once in a while you run across something completely different. How about full contact medieval combat? 70 pounds of armor and real weapons, albeit with rounded edges. One-on-one or  teams.
"The teams fight in teams of 5vs5, and 16vs16, where, as it was in medieval times, the object is to knock the opposing team to the floor. A new category of 10vs10 will be introduced in Poland in 2015.
There is also 1vs1 dueling category, that like the sport of fencing is scored by the number of hits made, in this case in a 2 minute periods. Unlike Fencing the fighters do not stop each time a point is scored.
The fighters can choose to excel in two-handed sword, sword and shield or two handed pole weapon."

Here's the USA team at last year's World Championship, starting at about 3 minutes into the video.

New School T-Shirts

The Academy of Aikido and Arnis has new t-shirts made of a quick dry material, with a redesigned  logo, in both both short and long sleeved designs. We have them available for sale at the dojo and will be taking them to summer camp in June.

Pasour Shihan announced that these shirts, with black pants, will be the new workout uniform for Arnis classes.

Don't get just one, stock up, and support the dojo!


Congratulations to Magnus on a great test!