kendo practice 12th June 2008

I can now recommend kendo as a means of staving off a headache, glad I went along last night.

Sensei asked me to lead Taiso. Remembering the stretches wasn’t too bad, but I had some problems with counting. It’s very strange to be leading the count rather than responding.

Started with kirikaeshi and do-kirikaeshi.
Then moving onto Men strikes and oji waza. Sensei built the practice up by having us do the following exercises:

  • Kakarite seme’s in and strikes men
  • kakarite seme’s in, hold pressure and contact until motodachi opens for strike and then strikes as quickly as possible. Sensei said that it wasn’t necessarily the speedof the strike that was important, but being ready to move as soon as the opening came.
  • kakarite seme’s in, motodachi tries to strike men when they feel threatened and kakarite responds with debana men or debana kote
  • kakarite seme’s in, motodachi tries to strike men when they feel threatened and kakarite attempts oji waza of their choice

Sempai pointed out that I wasn’t really seme-ing far/strong enough as he didn’t feel ‘threatened’ enough to need to attack. I think this is another of these things where I’m doing things by rote rather than actually understanding how to do it, so need to be able to act differently depending on who I’m facing and under what circumstances.

Sensei explained to us his concept of Seme. That the crucial point in getting ippon is when the kensen are touching and seme is ust starting. And that seme carries right through the strike until you’ve turned to setup again. So from my limited understanding it seems that it carries through to what’s normally thought of as zanshin as well?

We then moved on kote-men and kote-do. Then using the same plan as above worked on oji waza in response to kote cuts.

Then it was time for jigeiko. I think I did OK, some things felt better this time. I was happy with my performance against sempai, unfortunately I didn’t get the chance to fence Sensei that evening.

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