Or someone very much like him. A guy came to practice yesterday. No one could lay a finger on him. My jaw was on the ground. The absolute control he had over other people. Kotomi thinks she overheard someone saying he was 8th dan, but he looked pretty young (but still with a few grey hairs). He also wasn't presumptuous: he would line up with the teachers now on the far left, now in the middle, or anywhere. This is something I greatly respect: when teachers just practice wherever they fit in and don't worry about the grade of the person to either side of them (which is something all my favourite teachers do, the lining up anywhere thing I mean). He also had the fattest grip on his shinai... seriously, it was twice the size of mine.

He pointed out some mistakes on my small men cuts, and I practised these points with all the other teachers. Squashi chisai men onegashimas haha.

Another important thing I learnt recently: Grumpy sensei's son pointed out that my left leg is always a little bent, and that when I cut I tend to straighten it before moving forward, which is a sign that I'm about to move, and takes time. He said I should have my left leg straight all the time. I've never really considered this... I was under the impression that I needed to have my leg bent so that I could jump forward. But he said that with my hight and reach I shouldn't worry about the distance, and instead concentrate on speed and correctness, and keeping my body straight.

Sigh... it's hard to remember all these points when you're actually there fighting, which shows how important it is to learn everything right the first time. Having to change something after you've done it a thousand times is a little difficult.

I tried drawing it here (I couldn't find a side-on image online, but I hope to find a better one soon):

So, the power comes from the ankle and hip working together, and that same power is used for small men cut (which is not in the image of course). It's great realising things that didn't make much sense to me before.

1 comment:

Sam Tsai said...

The picture looks very nice! :)