Class Record: Happo Biken Kenpo

November 9, 2007

Class: Thursday  8 November

I started the class with the usual rolls and then threw in some challenging sideways decending rolls, diving sideways rolls, a way of coming up quickly to kamae in the back roll and rolling form a half-seated posture. This kamae would appear again later in class.

Alex has announced that he intends to bring us through the Hiken No Ho kata of the Kukishin Ryu Happo Biken from now until the end of the year. This is  our technical sword foundation at the dojo and contains both the basics and the strategies/timings of our swordwork within the Bujinkan. The higher Kyu grades have some of this material in their syllabus.

We started with Tsuki Komi and looked at one of the “sayugyaku” or “two sides” of the kata – sort of formal henka. It’s interesting to note that Soke’s latest sword book contains writings relating directly to these  techniques. 

We spent the entire class looking at this one kata and were able to work on grip, timing, thrusting, footwork, angling, various cuts, posture, intent, zanshin etc.

Thought provoker: What does the uke learn about in this practice?

– Ali Martinez


One comment

  1. I loved this class, I think it was the first class I’ve been to where I’ve actually learned some basic swordwork, and not just using the sword to demonstrate taijutsu henka and feeling, while using a sword.
    For the first half of the class (when acting as uke) I was allowing tori to “scewer” me with his/her padded sword (it is just a padded sword after all). As this was happening I tried to fully commit to my part as uke ie. continuing the strike regardless of tori’s sword being plunged towards my chest. When I started to consider the sword as an actual live blade, I found myself loosing grip and retreating to avoid the thrust in mid strike, almost like a jump back with our hips when a kick is coming in down below (well I dont know if this is the same if you’re female :P)…I also dont know if this has anything to do with your thought provoker Ali, but that’s what I got from in anyway 🙂 great class

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