Archive for May, 2012

Ushiro waza

Posted: May 29, 2012 in Aikido, Diary
English: Aikido ushiro waza

Aikido ushiro waza (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I missed a few Aikido sessions due to working out of the country. I returned to a class where the main focus was ushiro waza. Ushiro is “to the rear” in Japanese as I recall from judo and jitsu (e.g.: Ushiro Ukemi). However this knowledge proved useless in deciphering what was going on! The class followed form a session I had missed and I needed to catch up.

As usual, the Shodan grades were very helpful and patient. The main attack was a grab of both wrists from the rear. I had done a kotai version of this where the wrist grab is applied and then you escape. I had also done a variation of a one wrist pin and one arm strangle. The jutai version was a bit more difficult to grasp.

The technique involved offering one hand to a moving assailant, stepping of the line, performing a tenkan in a narrow stance before performing ikkyo. This was similar in some ways to a previous version of shihonage. I did actually manage this in the end and the class moved on to a version of sankyo and gokyo. The key is to position for ikkyo first before moving on to the other locks.

Due to more travels abroad, that’s it for the next couple of weeks as far as Aikido is concerned. Looking forward to a recreational break though!


I managed (against all odds) to get to a session tonight.


Kaitenage (Photo credit: Germaine)

It was great. Things went really well and I learnt some new techniques as well as feeling that I am making progress on some of the basics.  All the techniques this session were from a “tsuki” to the mid-secton. We started with positive and negative versions of ikkyo, moving on past the full application to kaitenage.  This was new to me, but once I got my head around the projection method and the direction my arms had to go to simultaneously control the head and wrist, it went pretty well.

The class was small and this meant I got more time to practice as well as mat space.  From this we went on to some tanto work.  Again this was from a tsuki attack t the mid-section. We did a number of variations of kote gaeshi and shihonage some other (nameless) disarming techniques. I was also educated on the proper tanto etiquette. I felt a progressed a lot tonight. It kind of made up for my last session.

Geocache used in the Geocaching sport. Loonse ...

Example Geocache  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Took the kids for a short walk on Sunday afternoon.  The weather was pretty good and I hadn’t had chance to go out with them much this year. We had a great time in a lovely place on the edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park.  The lakes had plenty of ducks there were lots of people out on horses. The picnic food was well received and we found a geocache before returning to the start for the kids to explore the playground.

植芝盛平(Ueshiba Morihei, 1883 - 1969)

Last night I suffered a total mental block. I couldn’t recall how to do hardly any of the techniques I have learnt over the last month or so.  I think this is because my mind is on other things. A mixture of work issues,  family and other commitments are all colliding in the next few weeks. To be honest I don’t know where I am at the moment. With the impending up-evil I may not be able to train from the next four weeks. That’s about as long as I have been studying Aikido. Sometimes a break from something can help to reinforce understanding. See my post on creative problem solving. In the engineering world, this can lead to gold plating and wastes of time, effort and money. My worry here is that after about a month of training the same period without training may wreck the small amount of progress I have made so far. Solo practice is always a possibility, but reinforcement of the wrong way to do things is no good either.

Off course, I may be over thinking this too much – Aikido is a relaxation activity. There is no schedule or deadline to hit. The only competition is with myself

“There are no contests in the Art of Peace. A true warrior is invincible because he or she contests with nothing. Defeat means to defeat the mind of contention that we harbor within. ”
Morihei Ueshiba

Real life takes over

Posted: May 6, 2012 in Activities, Aikido, Diary

I was unable to attend Aikido on Friday,  but we had an extra session on wedensday which was good.  It’s bank holiday Monday tomorrow and my wife is working on Tuesday so that’s scrubbed practice until Thursday at the earliest.  The weather looks bad too so I can’t do any solo weapons  practice either. On the other hand,  I could do with focusing a bit on some systems research topics.
Sounds like I may be working out of the country next week as well. It was a good immersive start to my Aikido training – I had managed to train at least twice a week for the last month. Now real life has taken over!

Tonight I trained in a small class of 3 students.  We went over the 6th kyu technique list. I had done them all before, but not looking at them in-depth. We did some bokken work to emphasize the correct movement for kote gaeshi and I did some over-the-belt breakfalling. This took me back to jitsu days. The sensei emphasized that this type of falling was not needed for 6th kyu and I did feel a little sore the day after!

Tonight after the warm up and shikko, we did some iriminage practice. This consisted of Ura and Omote variants. Ura is used when the uke’s attack was under way and Omote used when his attack as not yet developed.  After a successful Ura technique, the Omote version is used as soon as the attacker was getting up. After this, we divided into two groups.  I was in a group of novices.  We practised basic techniques for grading.  These were ikkyo, kote gashe, and iriminage. We did these from katate dori, where the backs of the hands are touching. We also practiced from a shomen uchi or sword hand attack. A good session,  but I was aching afterwards especially my right hip.  Not sure why. I felt that some things like iriminage are starting to come together. I hope this continues.