Class began with rolling forward from Seigan with a daitō, keeping the correct alignment for the roll and ensuring that the blade didn’t contact the ground. After this we moved onto hichō, starting with adapting the basic outwards, then with a leap out or over a target. From here we reviewed basic tai sabaki, before working on Jōdan and Gedan uke in preparation for the kata section.
After reviewing Teiken and henka we moved onto the Chū Ryaku No Maki, first discussing the shift in function and feeling between the first and second levels. After that we reviewed Ujaku in two parts, first the initial positioning, examining the selection of attacks by Aite, and the second half looking at first getting the correct alignment for the katate nage and then working on using the nagare to throw and cover openings. For Seitō we reviewed two versions of the kata featuring the ura and omote ōgyaku.
For the kenjutsu segment of the class we looked at the basic footwork of Happō Giri and Sayugyaku, looking at direction and angling, working with Aite in response to different timings, weapons and initiative.
“It’s very important that when you study martial arts you don’t be stupid about your training…it’s very important from now on that you realise that martial arts is something that you’re putting your life on the line for, otherwise your martial arts will only go half way and you will as well.” – Hatsumi Sensei