Archive for August, 2007


Class Record: Advanced Rolling + Tenchi no Kata + Syllabus

August 31, 2007

Class: Thursday 30th August

The rolling we did was from Ichimonji no kamae but involved rolling to the rear from this position over each shoulder. We also had to do some fast rolling.

Tenchi No Kata from our Kukishin Ryu Dakentaijutsu Chuden No Gata has  an interesting variation of Oni Kudaki and this kata had us make use of setting up uke such that when applied with a  kick this gyaku should damage uke while making them land awkwardly. We applied similar ideas with a hanbo and then against a long-range knife attack.

The Dan grade syllabus involved another look at Kukishin Sojutsu with a particular emphasis on the swordman being aggresive. This made the spearman  look at distance and drawing out the swordsman –  a bit like how the taijutsu from  earlier worked – go figure!

Thought Provoker: If we cut down a kata from punch/punch/punch/kick/punch to just one punch,  should tori’s  kamae, in this shortened version, mimic the same position in the full kata?

– Ali Martinez


Open Mat Sessions

August 30, 2007

Don’t forget that the dojo opens about an hour before class Monday and Thursdays for  Open Mat

So team up,  open your syllabus – and play nice!

– Ali Martinez


Class Record: Kukishin Ryu – Ura Nami no Kata + Syllabus

August 28, 2007

Class: Monday 28th August

Ura Nami

This kata from the Chuden level really makes us apply a familiar lock under conditons we set up with uke to make them fall into it. I found that the lock applied this way acts on the spine rather than the arm. Later, kicks or characteristically “Kukishin” twists finish the job. Either way, your balance is tinkering on the edge – like standing in a water knocked by waves.

We looked at the same idea form a grab/punch combination and also applied hanbo to the movement. As usual ukemi from this postion could prove difficult as there are many directions to be knocked over while having both arms trapped.

Syllabus work kicked off with the Kyu grades doing Nage Waza and ukemi while the Dan grades continued to study Kukishin Sojutsu with the “Hitotsuki Ai ho” kata.

This kata contains the classic thrusting strike that makes sense with the spear, helped by some interesting spinning strikes. These allow us to set up the guarded swordsman to reveal holes in his kamae. All the time  the distance advantage with the spear is maintained. As the swordsman, it’s important to maintain Seigan no Kamae and I was reminded of Tim Bathursts very animated Seigan vs Bo in the Bojutsu DVD ’05 where the shielding power of the sword along with footwork is put to the test.

Thought Provoker:
Alex mentioned the concept of “Kasumi No Ken” in this class. How does this apply to our armed and unarmed waza?

– Ali Martinez


Event: Kihon Gata workshop

August 27, 2007

On Saturday September 8th, there will be a one day workshop in Rathmines focusing on kihon gata, or the basics of the Budo Taijutsu system.


This training is aimed at all students at the dojo, with equal emphasise placed on skill acquisition for newer students and consolidation for senior kyu and dan graded students. We will take the time on this day to cover:

(rolling and breakfalling), including
– Front rolling with one, two and no hands
– Diving rolls
– Side rolling
– Sideways leaping rolls
– back rolls
– twisting back rolls
– twisting leaping back rolls.

Kihon Happo no kata

Sanshin no kata

While we normally include some of these techniques in every class, we often skim over them and don’t take the time to focus on them in depth. In this session, everyone will get specific feedback individually on each one of their kata with the goal of allowing them to make specfic advances in their own skill.

There will be personal, hands on instruction for each participant at every level. I intend this to be a very intense session and one from which people should leave with their understanding of our kihon gata dramatically changed. Shidoshi level participants will also get shown some methods of teaching these waza to newer students.

This workshop is open to all Bujinkan students, subject to prebooking a place via e-mail or PM here on this board. The workshop will cost €35 and include personal hands on tuition appropriate to the level of the students – all skill levels will be accomodated. While this workshop is aimed at my students, others are welcome to attend as well.

Anybody who would like to attend this training should reserve a place by e-mailing me at the usual address.

There are currently n0 places left on this course as of today, August 31st.

You can still have your name placed on the waiting list in case someone drops out. Drop me a mail.


Class Record: Ichimonji no Kata + Kukishin Kata + Hojojutsu

August 27, 2007

Class: Saturday 25th August 

After doing some basic Ichimonji no Kata  practice we looked at some henka with kicks  -which brought us into looking at basic kicking. Later we applied rope to this movement. I think that the use of the rope to ensnare uke encourages good use of footwork and makes us think about openings too. There’s some neat looping tricks that can be done. I also think that shuriken and hanbo practice really helps when using the rope.

After break we looked at  a couple of the Kukishin chuden gata in their basic form and then applied the “kyoketsu shoge” to the movement – using the ring to strike and ensare and the blade to hook. The chuden gata as tought by Pol used a lot of attacks to hoshi and the rope and hook were usefull for attacking the same kyusho/pivot points. I wasn’t suprised when the rope also came into use with that “decending” feeling in some of the Kukishin waza thought by Alex. 

The only way of getting good with the rope is to practice, so September’s Saturday classes will see a lot of it applied to the Kukishin theme as well as continuing with the basics from the syllabus.

Thought provoker: Why is shuriken and hanbo practice good for rope-work?

– Ali Martinez


Class Record: Guest teacher Pol MacFionmhacain

August 21, 2007

Somehow Pol managed to squeeze in everything we covered at the seminar on Saturday!

For people who were at the seminar it was an opportunity to consolidate what was practiced. For people who weren’t at the seminar, despite it being a whilrwhind of kata and techniques I think some of the essential bigger principles might have come out. Kind of like watching a fast forwarded version of a film – you’d get the gist.

Thought Provoker: What’s the gist of the Chuden Gata?

All the bits in the middle – the places to strike, footwork, locks etc Pol came around and helped people individually.

– Ali Martinez


September/October 07 Gradings

August 21, 2007

The 9th Kyu grading will take place on Thursday September 6th so from today there are seven classes at the dojo in which the current ungraded students can practice for their test.

Practice involves pairing up with another beginner to go over the requirements and/or asking a blackbelt for assistence. This practice will be done formally in the latter half of every Thursday class and during “open mat” sessions. The Saturday class will also have a dedicated syllabus section.

Gradings for students going for grades above 9th Kyu will take place later in September.

– Ali Martinez