a MMB! Kendo Blog: Still Fighting On!

MMB! Kendo Blog

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

忍耐 + 掌握人生
Still Fighting On!

I am still sticking to the training plan that I set myself in the weekend. Things are looking good now. My stamina is coming back. My body and muscles are slowly but surely listening to what my heart wants. Although I still lack the speed, I think all signs are showing that I am getting back on track. I'd say I am 80% fit now and I can feel that I will be fully fit for the weekend National Squad Training.

I went to Pyrmont and UNSW trainings on Monday night. Yup, two training sessions in one night. It's been a long time since I trained in Pyrmont as I have been attending training sessions at Master Kim's dojo on Monday nights in Artarmon, where it was much closer to my home.

Going back to Pyrmont was good. The no-muck-around one-hour intensive jigeiko certainly brought all the adrenalin up (and also made my body dead tired). I knew I had worked hard when my left calf muscle started to ache half way through the training session. A welcome indication that I was using the correct kendo muscle groups and building them up. It's been a while since the last time I had such high frequency in leaping out to execute cuts for such long duration.

There were two visitors at Pyrmont tonight. A Japanese guy who I later found out that he had rang me before in the previous week. He came and observed for the duration of our 1-hour Pyrmont training. Then, there was a Hawaiian guy who has been training in Japan for about 4 years. He was really good. His kendo was fast and strong. I didn't have a chance to play him in Pyrmont, but was the first one to play him in UNSW. Yes, Kirby, Andrew van Hamond, me, this Hawaiian guy and the visiting Japanese guy all went straight to UNSW training after the Pyrmont session ended at 8:30pm. Actually, when I was rushing out the dojo, Andrew was teasing me that I was going to be late for whatever things I was going to. He didn't know at the time that I was rushing to UNSW. Andrew just followed me when he found out that I told him about the UNSW plan.

We arrived at UNSW at 9pm for the free jigeiko session. I put on my bogu straight away and played against the visiting Hawaiian guy. As I said before, his kendo was powerful and fast, and also very nice too. I hope he is going to Willoughby training on Wednesday so that I could play him once more before he leaves Sydney on Thursday.

I also played Gideon, Yoshiki, Jackson and Adam before the session ended at 9:30pm. The training left me in high spirit. It gave me the much needed confidence that I will be able to tackle the intensive National Squad Training in the weekend.

On Tuesday night, I arrived to the Hornsby dojo just after 8pm. One of my family car's engine has broken down and deemed unsafe to drive. With only one car, I had to wait for my brother to return from his singing lesson before I could drive to training.

When I arrived, Strenger sensei was teaching the class kihon kata. I quickly put on my bogu and joined in. After about 20 minutes of kihon kata, we put on our bogu and practiced kihon waza before jigeiko.

Learn To Play My Style
I was lucky to be rotated as the first person to play Strenger sensei. Strenger sensei unleashed his attacks from all sides, like machine-gun. I had a lot of trouble trying to read his attacks and all I was thinking was to block, block, block. Of course, because of my defensive mode, Strenger sensei was able to increase his attacking frequency even more and I was bound to get hit with that sort of attack.

So after the training, I expressed the problem I had and asked for advice from Strenger sensei. Strenger sensei said when he was training in Japan, his sensei also did the same thing to him. The problem I had was that I was following my opponent's style, instead of stepping up my style to overcome my opponent's style. Maybe I am lacking seme? I don't know. But that's something I will need to work on. To play my style and create an aura with it so that my opponent would step back just looking at my style of play.

Have confidence in myself
Also, Strenger sensei said that my cuts were good, but what I needed was to have confidence in myself.

Don't hesitate when cutting. Show strong zanshin!


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