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!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Japan 2008 - 1: Miyazaki

Arriving in Japan

On the first day I arrived Tokyo, I was too late for the kendo practice. I only had 5 minutes of kirikaeshi and uchi-gumigeiko with Kuroda-san. I was quite touch because he had been very busy for a few months due to work, and the new working place is too far from Kobukan, so he had only been there five times in the past 4 months. He went especially because he knew I would be there. As soon as I put on the bogu, I heard him shouting: "Liu-san! Come here!" Then I had my only practice.

From Japan 2008

A snap shot of the members practising on the first night just after arriving in Kobukan.

From Japan 2008

In the next morning, I flew to Miyazaki, Kyushu, to visit my friend Ryuzo and his wife Eriko. The whole trip was filled with good food, beautiful scenery, friendly people and nice hot spring baths. Eriko san's family also embraced me whole heartedly, and I was very grateful for that.

Training with the members of the police riot squad

On the third day, Ryuko kun took me to the police dojo of Miyazaki City, where the Miyazaki Riot Squad trains. The members play very strong and competitive kendo, one of whom is the member of Japanese national team.

The dojo is lead by Oshie Sensei, 7th Dan Kyoshi. Ryuzo told me how much he is still scared of him because Oshie Sensei used to be very harsh when they were children and they used to cry, because of his difficult training. He introduced me to the Sensei and also the other members. I started to be a little scared because of the level of caution put into the etiquette. "This is a very traditional place," I thought, "and the first thing I need to do is not to make any mistake in the etiquette."

From Japan 2008

This dojo, according to Ryuzo kun, is one of the 4-5 kendojos survived the war. Since Miyazaki is the origin of kendo, this dojo has a very significant kendo history.

From Japan 2008

Members of the riot police.

The practice is only jigeiko for one hour. I first practised with Oshie Sensei. I think because he knew I was Shodan so he did not put much difficulty. There is also not so much story I can say about it.

My second and third opponents were fast and strong. When they struck kote-men, is was as though the two strikes were one. I really had no time to react. I tried men-nuki-kote several times but my backward footwork was not fast enough to make a good kote-strike.

Hara Sensei, who was in Dresden earlier this year, came towards the end of the training especially to practise with me. Practising with him was a total pleasure. His kamae is very strong and has very strong kisei. He made me work to open a striking opportunity. There were a couple of moments when I felt connected to his thoughts, but unfortunately I made too premature kote-strikes which were not able to overcome his strong kamae.

From Japan 2008
Hara Sensei, Me and Ryuzo.

1 comment:

Vivian Yung said...

Wow, so exciting to read your some exciting post! Just reading it and looking at the pictures alone made me felt much more alert already!