Sunday, May 2, 2010

Creaking joints and ukemi

Day 1 we all arrived at the Matsusaka budokan, feeling really special only to discover there was a karate seminar on Tonfa and Bo on and a Kyudo practice as well. Enjoying the mayhem of slippers, negotiating the toilets (and yet more slippers) has us all in the change room and onto the tatami in no time. A big sigh of relief for participants as the hard tatami are actually on a sprung floor so its not so bad to take falls on - though can be a little hard on the knees when listening to speeches. The seminar was open by an ikebana demonstration for display on kamiza and then some speeches by Williams, Hashimoto, Maruyama and Oshima and a local town dignitary - it was Shugyo training for some as they battled to maintain seiza - though the wiser opted for sitting cross legged (you can hide anything under a hakama).
Maruyama Sesei was up first and outlined some of the framework of Aikido Yushinkai for the benefit of the other schools attending the seminar and following his class it was time for our Bento lunch (its a kind of Japanese smorgasbord in a lunch box) which we all enjoyed o the steps f the Budokan. Once finished we hurried in side only to find the ladies in our group had been whisked away and were in the process of being dressed in traditional Kimono. (lookout Paul Gabby chose the wedding kimono!)

Second class was held by Williams Sensei who upped the action in what became a Japanese / Australian ukemi competition. By now our bodies were beginning to understand what was happening and get into gear. All to soon the second class was over and there was time for a quick drink and to sneak next door and watch the Kyudoka at work before hustling back to see what Oshima Sensei had in store for us.

What ensured was wht could only be described as a high energy class with the pace building relentlessly right up until it was time for the end of class. See video here of Katedori tenkan Kokyu nage

A quick soak in the local Sento and it was off to dinner at a local Italian restaurant.

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