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Showing posts from May, 2011

A Pinch Of Do, And A Dash Of Shiai

What a night last night was!  We had a great practice, which revolved around Do strikes.  After warm-ups we jumped straight into a few drills that concentrated on small Do strikes, with emphasis on:
Cut forward with the shinai after you strike, don't let the shinai strike and bounce back off the target.  It should end up striking and sliding forward and/or a bit downward.The kensen should stay in front of the body at all times during the strike, it shouldn't go back behind the head/body.  The small loop/half-heart shape you make with the shinai when you strike Do should all be on the same side as the strike (i.e. Don't let the shinai cross the center line when you move to strike Do.  Bring the kensen straight up and then loop around to the partner's right side to strike).Don't have a lazy strike, don't let the shinai slow down once you move to strike.  The whole thing should be quick and without wasted time.  Think speed!This one is for me - Make a slightly bigg…

Mukogawa!

Last night we had a few visitors.  A class of girls from the Mukogawa Fort Wright Institute came to visit and see what Kendo is all about, and also to participate with us.  There were just over a dozen girls that came and they mixed in with our group for warm-ups and some kihon drills which consisted of Men, Kote, and Do strikes.  At first we had them strike just our shinai, and then later we put on our full bogu and came back out to let them strike us again.  They were all great, really energetic, and made an awesome effort to do their best, despite never having done Kendo before.  We had a lot of fun and laughs with them during the drills, and I hope it was as good an experience for them as it was for us.

Afterwards the girls all took a seat and we went into the rest of our practice.  we briefly covered a few kihon drills, including Men, Kote, Do, Kote-Men, and Hiki-Men.  I tried to keep a mindset of going faster the entire time.  Mental work and concentration is almost as tiring o…

Speed Isn't Everything, But It's Important

Compared to the last couple of practices, I felt really good last night.  Saturday and Monday I was really off my game and exhausted so I didn't feel that I practiced up to the level I normally do.  I made sure to get a lot of sleep the night before last, though, so that when I went to practice last night I could get back into my normal groove.  I think I did well.  Plus my leg felt a lot better so I felt like I could move a bit more, but I also didn't want to push it too much so I played it safe and took a break later on in the practice to rest and stretch it out a bit before jumping back in. 

After our usual warm-ups last night we did a striking drill that emphasized a few points for faster strike.  The four points that were mentioned were: relaxation, no wasted time, no wasted movement, and anticipation of speed.  All of these things were brought together through this drill to culminate in a strike that was quick and efficient, whether we launched from a standstill or took …