Saturday, December 27, 2014

Last official practice of the year.

We had our last practice today and then a nokai afterwards.  In Japanese that's 納会. It's kind of an end of the year meeting/party.  We just had lunch together and chatted for a two hours.

Okeiko Practice

Practice Kumite Match
Practice Kata Match

We worked through the basics quickly and even did downward blocks for practice instead of lunge punches.  A was doing fine on his own today and so my target was H.  I wanted her to go through the practice and do everything that she could do and I was going to make sure she was going to do it.  Although, I didn't know how I was going to do that. She started out like she has been, kind of standing and biting her fingers and walking back and forth while everyone else does the basic drills.  Then she sat down on the judo mat.  I went over to her right away and, instead of just ignoring her and doing drills with everyone else, I tried to convince her to do the drills.  She wouldn't.  She wouldn't stand up.  She kept refusing.  After a few minutes of trying I finally got her to her feet and held on to her and kind of forcefully moved her through the motions.  She must of thought  that was fun and started to smile and laugh and enjoy the drills.  Muto-sensei ended the drills quickly and it was time to do kumite.  By then, she was in a good mood and I had no problem getting her into her sparring gear.  A too was in a good mood and got into his gear quickly enough.  From then on, H worked through the kumite on her own without me until we got to the point where it was too dangerous for her to continue and Muto-sensei sent her out of line.

Advice:  Step down hard and fast when stepping in for a punch and try to make a sound with your feet when you do it.  This noisy stepping is part of the "appeal" to the judges that you are making contact.
Try sweeping with your hands instead of blocking with our fists and forearms.  It's faster.
Timing.  Try and get your timing so that your counter punch matches your opponent's movements.  He is stepping in or coming down from a move and your come in for the kill.

Kankudai / Heian Godan - when reaching down for the hakama grab, shoot your arm out straight and don't swing your arm up to position as if you were scooping.  A straight shoot and grab.

It is better to pick a few kata, say three, and practice them hard so that you can do them very well, than to try and master 10 or more. - Muto Tadashi

It is a good idea to choose a kata that matches your body style.

The person who finishes first in a kata match often looses.

When doing your kata, for example, a typical I shaped embusen, it is better to step further on your way out than not because you can see your starting point as you go back and can adjust so that you end where you started (or are supposed to end).  This is because you will surely lose if you don't end up where you are supposed to.

Eyes and facial expression and kiai are important as power, speed and accuracy are when doing your kata.