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First Saturday Class with Rex Saturday 5 April 2008

April 7, 2008

To my delight we had an attendance of 8 people for the first saturday class; 6 beginners and Dave’s O Rourke and Millist. It was great to have the 2 Dave’s present as it gave everyone a chance to train with someone with more experience and skill.

After a quick warm up which also included the stealthy inclusion of 2 kata from sanshin we began with Ukemi practice which went well and Zenpo Ukemi was introduced. Everyone got the hang of Zenpo very quickly and we closed ukemi section with a drill that involved a continuous movement from forward roll into zenpo, rolling off to the side and then back rolling to start position. Everyone enjoyed the drill and acquitted themselves well.

After rolling there was practise and exploration of ichimonji no kamae, hicho no kamae, and jumonji no kamae. Attention was paid to tweaking the form as everyone had a grasp of the techniques. In particular buyu were encouraged to find a relaxed, balanced and comfortable expression of each of the kamae for themselves while still observing form.In all subsequent classes we will be exploring the importance and role of balance distance and timing in the kihon.

Before breaking for tea some time was given to the Omote Gyaku as required for 9th kyu test. After a short tea break, some more rolling to shake out the cobwebs and the lesson moved onto throwing. It was great to have the two Daves for demonstrating and again for juniors training enjoyment ;-).

O Goshi gave us the oppurtunity to explore the importance of commanding distance, and the point was made (and received and practised), that it’s possible and in the case of O Goshi, desirable, to get off line by CLOSING DISTANCE with uke. This sets up the throw and everyone got this and throwing was much improved.

This took us to 12.30. Since next saturday is kyu grade testing, between 12.30 and 1pm we went through the entire 9th kyu syllabus. Very smooth. We will be doing this again at the end of our class on saturday 12 April. Grading will follow.

I had a great time and look forward to seeing everyone again next saturday.

– Rex Dunlop

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