Sunday, October 21, 2018

My personal journey to Go Dan exam: - 10 months

In May 2015 I passed my Yon Dan exam, now the time to test my personal Kendo improvement trying the Go Dan exam is getting near. For the next 10 months I will try to describe the challenging I will try to overcome to be prepared for the June exam.

Concerning Go Dan exam comments I found very interesting and in frame with my personal thought the comments on Go Dan Grading from Andy Fisher between, see between  6.44  and 12:20 mins  in [KENDO RANT] - Practicing for 5th Dan?  . From his comments I would actually highlight, for my personal journey, the following sentences:
  • Not doing Kendo by yourself 
  • Do not attach randomly 
  • Having a conscious influence on the opponent not just a reaction to opponent action
Other keywords from
  • seme
  • zanshin  
At the beginning of September I visited Heijoshinkan  in Voghera and I asked my friend Claudio Scacheri (6 Dan) to make some rigorous comments on my Kendo to identify points to be revised in these months.

It came out that:
  1. my left heel should be kept more near to the floor. 
    •  I tried and I realized that my posture and ability to push improves, now I have to make it part of me.
  2. The other point was referring to seme. In an exam simulated jigeiko Claudio told me that I was not exactly doing seme, since I was simply finding the right distance for the attach, by getting progressively near to the opponent till I reach a position to make my attach. Claudio indicated me that from Issoku ittō-no-maai I have to search for the opportunity to attach then with seme I will step-in to Chikama, inducing a change in the behavior of the opponent. At that point either I strike my attach or my opponent reach and I have to execute an oji-waza.
    • Till now I was focusing on interacting with the opponent and forcing him to react to my pressure. The problem is that I was always too much near to the opponent to make a decent oji-waza. I got the point to keep my pressure in Issoku ittō-no-maai.
An other interesting point of the practice at  Heijoshinkan, was the execution of Bokuto Ni Yoru Kendo Kihon-waza Keiko-ho. Usually I do not practice them usually, but they very useful to fill more the body posture.

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