忍耐 + 掌握人生
My Kendo is Back
I was so full of energy that tonight's training session seemed shorter than it was. I really could go on and do a few more hours of kendo. Oh, it was so fantastic to be able to train hard again.
Yes, yes, yes! No more consecutive 8:30am - 9:30pm workdays. The immensed pressure to get assignments done within a challenging timeframe, and at one time, putting my own bonus package on the line are now truely over. Yes! It's finally over! I can finally breath again. The events in the past few weeks have made me realise how precious and fortunate it is to be able to have good health to go to training. That's why I am so happy now. Kendo is back!
I went to UNSW training tonight. I arrived to the training a bit late because I had to rush home from work (I still got calls from work when I was on the train going home) and drove to UNSW after a quick dinner. At the entrance to the dojo, my brain was asking me if I was really sure I wanted to train. Do I really want to put myself into this? While in deep thought walking into the dojo, I tried to be as quiet and non-disruptive as possible while the class was doing group stretching. I didn't notice that everyone was actually watching me when I walked in. Then Kirby called out "Hi Vivian", then Yoshiki and Jackson also said "Hello Vivian". And then the rest of class who just finished stretching turned to look at me. It was pretty embarrassing getting everyone's attention like this. Oh, I need to get myself ready quickly.
By the time I was ready, I have missed part of the suburi session, but still in time for the 100 hayasuburi. Then we put on our men and kote, and did 5 rounds of kirikaeshi along the length of the dojo. Afterwards, we made two lines and went straight into 10 rounds of uchikomi-geiko. Followed by 5 more rounds of 2-breath only uchikomi-geiko. Although I was breathless at the end of that 2-breath only uchikomi-geiko, I really enjoyed it. It's tough on the body, but it quickly brought up the adrenalin level in me. I felt so pumped up. It felt so good!
We then moved into a short waza-focused session. Today it was on kote-nuki-men. Based on the 1-2-3 timing and doing it slowly at the first two rounds of practice, my body was able to execute this waza in full speed in the third round of practice which was with Dino. All four nuki-men cut landed solidly.
Correct Distance: Kote-Nuki-Men
Kirby then told the class to move into a more realistic kote-nuki-men practice where both sides would apply seme and launch kote-cut at the right opportunity. I paired with Kirby in the first round of the seme kote-nuki-men practice. In my first attempt, Kirby told me that the cutting distance was too close. So I put extra attention to the cutting distance to the subsequent cuts and they all landed beautifully, which was very encouraging.
After one more round of kote-nuki-men, we moved on to mawari-geiko. After playing a few rounds of mawari-geiko, I finally rotated to play Jackson. The prospect of playing jigeiko against Jackson instantly made me pumped up. I knew I had to play my best if I want to execute good cuts against Jackson and be able to stay on when Jackson executed "the Great Wall of Jackson" taitari. My left foot was serving me well. I was able to launch into cut with one movement. I was also able to match Jackson in tsubazerai situation and made a good hiki-men cut.
It was from the Jackson's jigeiko onwards that I really felt alive. We went on to do a few more rounds of jigeiko until Sano sensei arrived to the dojo. Sano sensei introduced a men-cut only one-point 30-second shiai. Winner would be promoted up to the further side of the dojo, while loser would move down one spot plus having to do a 5 seconds kakari-geiko. I had some wins and losses plus heaps of draws. It was really fun to do so much kendo in such a short space of time. And everyone was really giving their best shots in each of the matches, so I was able to really enjoy the exciting kendo.
If only the training could run longer... I am looking forward to the Saturday training!