About this blog..

This is a blog that I started in April 2006, just after I first put on my bogu (kendo armour). It collects the advices given by more experienced kendo practitioners as well as those from my own experiences. Both technical and the mental aspects of kendo are written in the blog. I hope someone will find them useful or interesting at least!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Training with Waseda student

In the last two trainings (Tuesday and Wednesday) we had Tasturo Kozai from the Waseda University visiting us. Just by listening to his kiai pumped up my energy by ten-folds.

For those who don't know their university has the best kendo amongst all the Japanese universities, well, hence the world's best. Every year a few students from their university kendo club travel to Germany with arranged home stay and local guide in exchange with kendo trainings. This idea was made possible by the close tie between the German kendo federation and late Ando Konzo, 8-dan, who was teaching at Waseda.

Coming back to the story. I had the chance to play with on Tuesday. His men-strike was just too powerful which overcomes mine easily. I got his men once by launching the attack from the front-right. Another was a hiki-do. A great feeling playing with Japanese kendoka as opposed to most of the others is that the atmosphere is always friendly and collaborative, more laughs and smiles. The practise with him was just too short.

On Wednesday many people turned up for the training and Tatsuro effectively lead the training, and explained many fine points including:
  • In Taiatari the impact should be made with the force from the stomach and the hip. The arms held tight against the sides of the body.
  • The motodachi receiving the taiatari has an important role of NOT being too relaxed. He should also stand firm and receive the impact with the force from the stomach and the hip.
  • In kihon-geiko, one can practise seme and simulate the competition situation.
  • The right foot should be lightly touching the ground, as though there is a sheet of paper between the foot and the floor. This allows agility, in the case of nuki-waza or renzoku-waza. It is at the moment of shinai landing on target, that the weight is heavy on the right foot (ki-ken-tai-ichi).
  • Distance in nidan-waza's should be careful.
  • Seme, seme, seme.

My peformance on Wednesday was much better than the previous day, because I really tried to hold the centre before striking.

After the training Georg requested jigeiko with Tatsuro. It was a great match to see as Georg is one of the strongest kenshi if not the strongest in Dresden. But Tatsuro got ippon after ippon. He had such a strong centre and clean movements. A real pleasure to watch.

However, he looked quite tired from everyday's training from Sunday to Wednesday. I wonder if he expected differently before coming to Germany? heh heh


Georg said...

It was a great pleasure for me to play with him and he is so strong.
We did a first jigeiko on sunday, I was able to do a lucky men-debana-men, and gained some tips from our Trainer Tomo how to handle it even better.
In fact on sunday he won 2:1.
On wednesday Stephan said to him: "Show all your skills, Kill him" -.-
I had one good hit on Kote, but no Zanshin *annoying* and ooh darn... he is so amazing strong.

But just for information he is doing Kendo at Waseda University as long as I do Kendo at all (4 years).

Ivan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ivan said...

I thought you did very well! It was a real pleasure to watch the match. ;) The sky is the limit!

(from Paris)

Vivian Yung said...

Hey Ivan,

It is very exciting to hear that you have such strong Japanese kendo exchange student practicing at your dojo now. What rare opportunity! Hope you have a great time observing and learning from your Japanese friend.

Noctua said...

Hi Ivan,
I've been following this blog for several months (now I'm with the older posts).
I'm my college (Valencia, Spain)every year we hold a clinic and a competition with Waseda students and teachers and they are GREAT.
Though I'm only a beginner, quite clumsy I must say, this blog is such a big inspiration and a source of info for me.
I leave you a link to this year's clinic and competition.


(sorry for the advertising, but I though that maybe you could be interested)

Well I'll keep on following your blog, take care


Ivan said...

Hi Begonya,
thanks for your comment, and I'm glad that you like my blog. This year I don't have such time but hopefully in the future we can meet in an international seminar or somewhere. Keep yourself updated!