Saturday, March 4, 2017

Practice Notes

Instructor Crown

  • Warm-up, stretching, physical conditioning 
  • Kihon 
  • Kumite 
  • Kata

Muto-sensei has officially retired and we have yet to find a replacement.  The elder mothers of the club say that we cannot find a replacement outside of the house of karate that we have been training in.  Mind you, this does not mean from a different style.  They won't look for any instructor unless they came from the club of or were taught by the most senior instructor in our .... lineage?  

So, we have a high school student, the oldest minor in our club, teaching us.  Once or twice a month, an instructor comes from the big city of Chitose. Muto-sensei drove two hours to get to us from Kushiro.  Takanohashi-sensei drives  2 and half hours to get to us.   But because he has a job and teaches in Chitose already, he can only come on Saturdays.  I like him.  The kids like him.  However, I made a promise to my wife that practice on Saturdays would not interfere with family outings etc.  So whenever she plans something for the kids, which is often, they don't go to practice. Which means they are lucky to go once a week. 

Takanohashi-sensei (鷹觜正三先生) introduced a lot of new training methods.  Before we never did physical conditioning or stretching.  Now we start with it.  I am happy for that because we need to do it.  We need to practice more than once a week and NOT on weekends.  

Kihon has changed a lot as to how we do it but the moves are basically the same.  We don't do nearly as many punches as we used to.  We are doing more combinations.  

I am starting to ramble.

I have been too busy to update this and our practicing has been sporadic.  Mary, after over three years of practice STILL forgets Heian Shodan and still does not do any move well.  She can do them well, she just doesn't.  And the strange thing is that, she can do them really well at home when it is just her and I, but she seems distracted and unwilling when we are at practice.  She can do Heian Shodan really well at home and we have been trying to practice regularly.  I was hoping to get her to practice every night but that will never happen without the support of her mother.  But still, she is practicing with me more often and she is getting better.  Now if only she can carry that over into practice with the club.

Kumite - Instead of the San-bon Kumite, we are now doing the standard Go-hon kumite, which is 5 moves instead of three.  

Kata - advice.  Make each move complete and distinct and don't meld two moves into one.  Each move should be done as quickly and powerfully as possible, but each move should be distinct from the others.  

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Practice notes

Crown instructor

We had practice and the format was familiar.


However the kihon was different, the kumite was different, and the kata was a bit short and a bit different.


Instead of doing everything ten times, we did twice as many things half as many times.  This was good and bad I suppose.  The good thing about it is that it is much more interesting with the added variety.  The bad thing is that we get less practice of each.  I'm going to suggest to Crown that he spend some time one of these days focusing on little details, like how to correctly perform mawashi geri or other basic moves.  I can't do it correctly.  Maybe he could spend a few minutes each practice focusing on one of the kihon moves while still practicing the others.


For kumite we did 3 bon kumite and then kizami zuki 5 hon in randori style.  So each member practiced it (and the other moves) about 8 times.  Then gyaku zuki 5 hon x 8 times. We did Mawashi geri to ura mawashi geri (?) 5 times x 8.  One person would hold their gloved fists up at the appropriate heighth for their current partner and the partner would practice kicking with mawashi geri and then bringing the kicking leg down and up around to kick the gloves with the ball of the foot (underside of the foot).  The kids looked like they were having fun for the most part.  Even Ross was less recalcitrant.


We went through the Heian Kata and then again, like last time, practice tournament style kata, with each member choosing which kata they wanted to perform.  I did Jion.

Advice on Jion
Keep your core tight.  You are leaning or your upper body is twisting when performing the movements when it shouldn't be.

I need to focus on keeping my core tight.  I need to work on strengthening my core for this.

That was last night.  I had some free time today so I practiced Jion and Unsu again during my lunch break.  I really need to practice in front of a mirror or videotape myself doing it.  I saw once a site where people posted videos of themselves doing something like learning a new skill or working out for 100 days.  I don't know if I could ever do something for 100 days straight.  My life is too out of my control, but it would be great if I could get control of my life, even if just a small portion of it, for 100 days, or for ever....

Monday, October 17, 2016

No instructor and Tekki Shodan

We lost our instructor.  He was 80 years old and not feeling so well and so he retired.  And we are so far unable to find a new one.  We found one, but he was 70 years old and already teaching 4 days a week and didn't think he had the stamina to teach 6 days a week.  I don't yet fully understand WHY we can't find another instructor, but it was explained to me like this: "you can't choose your parents."  Although there are other Shotokan instructors in the area, they are not from the same "family" that our group is in.  Whatever.  I think if we find an instructor who matches our groups' needs and goals, then it shouldn't matter if that instructor came from the same line of instructors as our last one.

SO, in the mean time, our highest ranked member, a 3 Dan (though admittedly, he probably shouldn't yet be a 3 Dan) is running practices.  He is knowledgeable enough and has a sense of humor and the last two practices with him looked more enjoyable for the kids.

Kata - Tekki Shodan

For the last two practices we have only practiced Heian Kata.  All of them.  I think we could break from the norm and practice just one or two of them, for example. But thoroughly.  

Kata Advice:
At the end of practice we all do a kata to practice for tournaments.  There is no practice, we just do it, and our new leader gave us advice.  For the last two practices I did Tekki Shodan and he gave me some advice so here it is.
  1. My hand movements were not defined enough.  In an effort to make them as fast as possible the movements were running together.  He said it would be better to make sure each movement is done more distinctly.  
  2. I lean.  I need to make sure my torso is straight up and down.  I don't realize I am leaning so I need to practice in front of a mirror or take video of my practices.