Skip to main content

First Iai Class of the New Year and "First" Kendo Class Ever

I could have started off the new year a little better in my practice as I was late after peeling my car like an orange.

Ottawa was hit pretty bad by freezing rain. I felt like I needed ice skates to reach my car. I also had a fun time parking near the dojo as is common with this kind of weather because it seems that although class doesn't start until 1pm, whoever is contracted to clear snow on that road never cleans the snow from the only side of the road that the parking signs are posted on. With my tiny car, I can't take the deep snow without ending up stuck.

We ran through Oku Iai kata. They were on number 4 when I got there. I did my standing etiquette and joined the others. It was a smaller than usual class because of the weather.

After spending the holidays doing an abundance of artistic things, I felt more in tune with my spirit and it wasn't so hard to understand some of the things that were taught. I've also started to read Musashi's book and I have a new appreciation for some of the Iaido kata. There are so many things that could be happening that could be either strategic or happenstance.

The heater was malfunctioning in the dojo, so my feet were so chilled they felt like they were losing circulation. It kicked back on during kendo when we didn't need to be warmed up anymore. That "Murphy" is a character.

I went to Kendo today after Iaido. It was my first class of Kendo, well, technically my second. I did Kendo one day in June 2013. The first day I ever attended a class at Tateyama, I did all three, Jodo, Iaido, and Kendo. It was too much. My feet were killing me, so I decided to just do Jo and picked up Iaido soon after. I also thought it was silly that they yelled the name of the body part they are attacking in Kendo, but they don't do that in an actual match, just practice.

I initially studied Jo because I thought it would be like the Bo techniques that I was already somewhat familiar with. It wasn't familiar at all. I left Jo when I began my career in roller derby, which is currently on hold due to a neck injury that hasn't fully healed.

Having more than a year in between when I first tried Kendo and now, I understand more why it's important to study Kendo, if you are able to, while studying Iaido. I felt a sense of urgency with Kendo that can only help my Iai. Also, my arms are quite sore from the weight of the shinai and the frequency that I had to move it. Kendo does more to teach Ki Ken Tai no Ichi because of the need for Kiai (battle cry) as you cut. I can feel callouses forming in my hands from tenouchi, which is applying a grip as though you are ringing a towel out. It's purpose is to stop the sword at the appropriate height. You get more of an idea of timing. You also work on targets constantly with a more clear necessity. With Iai, often we are practicing against an imaginary opponent, which can make it hard to judge things. In Kendo, we faced a different direction that made use of the mirrors, so we could always see our target even while practicing the fundamentals with no partner.

There's a lot of fast footwork in Kendo, and loud yelling with the Kiai. Being less than 5 foot tall, it was quite challenging to make it across the dojo floor with any expedience. With it being my first day too, I just tried to do it as best I could without knowing if I was doing all right. It's quite difficult to get the footwork down for some reason despite the fact that it doesn't change much, if at all.

My main goal currently with Kendo is simply to use it to improve my Iaido. Maybe it'll grow on me though and I'll come to love it just as much. Right now I doubt that, but stranger things have happened.

- Roy Iaidoka

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

A Lot of Bullspit - 2020 ROW80 R3-W5

This week has had a lot of bullspit in it. Shortly after my last trip to buy reno supplies, I discovered mold in my bathroom. While that's not shocking, it's pretty much because they appear to have left wet drywall in the wall and covered the wall with another layer of drywall instead of properly repairing it after a leak. Geniuses. This is a mixed bag. It means I may have to do the tub area sooner than I expected. It is the same wall as the annoying peeling paint, so that's kind of good. I may just need to replace much of the wall, which is about 1.5 drywall boards because it's a small room. Cost wise, the wall repair isn't so bad. I'm not looking forward to having to deal with it, but I acquired the PPE gear for it and the mold removal supplies. Now, here's where the project may change substantially. I was originally planning to install a tub surround over the tile and then use the Rust Oleum tub restore stuff, but if there is mold in the wall, it's li

November 18, 2020

My DRAWING course is done. I was happy to be learning it, but I am looking forward to not having graded assignments. After this, I will continue another course I started, which is entirely self-paced. I'll continue sharing my drawings on my Instagram: @thewritebuttons   On the HOME front, I have made a lot of progress on my couch project. Really, it will be a loveseat. I finished the sewing portion of the seat section, the wood base, and have nearly finished the wood back for it. I've added wheels to it instead of legs because I want to be able to move it for easy cleaning. Today, I am working on the sewing of the back piece. I acquired all the hardware I needed for attaching everything. I will have a wood skirt to do, which will help everything stay in place. I also have the sofa cover for it, though I will still have to figure out the arms. I'm taking a break on the sewing until thimbles come later this week because I'm tired of pricking my fingers.  As far as MUSIC

Funky Friday - Losses, threats, and violence

[caption id="attachment_4712" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Image created using Bit Strips.[/caption] I completed the second draft of my story, so I'm writing a quick post of the most prominent stories from this week. Sad - An RCMP officer in Ottawa took his own life. Happy - Jared from the Subway commercials got beaten in prison . I have zero sympathy for sexual predators. Sometimes I think I should feel bad about this, but children are one of our most precious resources and adults like him disgust me. Excited - Anonymous has declared war on Donald Trump! Hopeful - I'm starting a new treatment soon to better manage my pain. Unsettled - Given that I just finished writing a story that features an unknown pathogen... This outbreak in Wisconsin is freaking me out just a tiny bit. Well, that's all I have the mental capacity for tonight. Ciao, R~