Warrior Wednesday – Progress with Standing Oku Iai


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I wasn’t feeling like going to practice last night at all. It’s winter. Home has comfy pants and Netflix. Outside has cold air that hurts my face.

I’m really glad I sucked it up and went.¬†Practice was great last night! I’m not sure Sempai would agree as he had to keep getting us back on task, but we worked on Standing Oku Iai kata while having fun conversations of the type I’m used to in school with the comedy group.

Some things finally clicked for whatever reason. I knew some of it was advice I had heard before, but I guess my mind couldn’t apply it or see the scenarios clearly before. Specifically, Shinobu (shh-no-boo) and Sodome (sew-doh-may) are feeling better. I think part of it was having so many higher ranked people there to watch.

For Shinobu, I finally get what I’ve been doing wrong. I was close before, but it was like having a word on the tip of your tongue yet feeling the word is one you haven’t learned yet. For some reason, it wasn’t clicking where my opponent’s sword tip would be and therefore I couldn’t get where their body would be. Of course, their tip will be where I tapped with my blade! I feel like such an idiot on that one.

For Sodome, I was having trouble putting my hip into things. We do the stairs scenario at my dojo. I had been told how to do it before, but I couldn’t understand it really. This will sound very strange, but it’s almost a hanmi (han-mee – kind of sideways) stance and we bring the end of sword handle to the side of our right butt cheek. Basically. Usually when we get our hips into things, it’s more of a forward facing stance and more like a pelvic thrust. Since we’re going down stairs, it’s very strange to act out on flat ground.

Maybe soon I’ll remember all the kata names in that set and how to do them without help.

My bicep is sore today. It shouldn’t be. I tensed too much last night and my sword wasn’t making noise most of the time because I was using the wrong muscles. One step forward and two steps back.

And that’s how it flows today.


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