忍耐 + 掌握人生
Practice makes PERMANENT. Perfect Practice makes Perfect.
Closing In Distance in Uchiotoshi
On Tuesday, I was working on the uchiotoshi-men waza and oji waza, more specifically on suriage-men. In uchiotoshi-men, I was able to make the opening I wanted after knocking my opponent's shinai down. However, I had a bit of trouble following up that opening with a men cut because the distance was too long. I should penetrate into my opponent's area when executing uchiotoshi. That way, the distance between me and my opponent would be much closer when I go for the men-cut.
Play like a cat: quick, agile, well-balanced, subtle and quiet
Strenger Sensei observed my jigeiko during the Tuesday night class and he pointed out that my toes were rhythmatically lifting up while in chudan-no-kamae. I knew I have this rocking rhythm when watching my shiai matches on my tapes, but Strenger Sensei was the first person to point this out. He said that the lifting of my toes and the rhythm I made during the jigeiko allowed my opponent to work out my attacking rhythm, which I think, would make my seme less imposing. Strenger Sensei said that if we watch the 8th Dan Sensei play, their movements are very subtle but agile, and I should try to play like that.
Be Aware of How the Left Foot Pushes Off
That night, I also got an unintentional stab to my throat which left a big red kendo kiss mark on my throat. Served me right! I was lifting my head up while going for the men, and my opponent's shinai got caught underneath my men-mune. It's been a problem that has been bugging me for so long and it's so hard to get this head-lifting problem to go away. I re-read an article on the importance of left foot in kendo featured in the Kendo Clinic article in Kendo World magazine Vol. 2 No. 2. I reckon there might be something wrong with the way my left foot pushed off the ground which affects my attacking posture, contributing to the body-leaning and head-lifting problems. I will need to pay more attention to my left foot in future practices.
Perfect Practice Makes Perfect
Thursday night training in UNSW was led by Kirby Smith. I joined half way through the suburi session. Those UNSW guys went crazy on Hayasuburi that night. I joined half-way through the Hayasuburi warm-up and only did 140 Hayasuburi. They did 490 Hayasuburi in one-go that night!!!! Something that I should do more often if I am aiming to train with Nittaidai.
The focus of that night was making every cut perfect. Kirby made a comment which I really like. He said practice does not make perfect. Practice only makes permanent. Only perfect practice makes perfect.
We practiced seme-men, seme-kote, aiuchi-kote, aiuchi-kote-men, kote-suriage-men. In aiuchi-kote-men, Kirby particularly emphasised on fumikomi - there is no need to take a huge step forward because of the distance constraint, but the right foot must stamp while left foot remain at the same place.