I haven’t written for some time, but that doesn’t mean I have stopped training. However, you guys don’t know that and one of the readers of this blog has recently reminded me I should still be writing, so, I am.
What has martial arts taught me? Well, many things, but one thing that is helping me a lot with coming to grips with TSYR training is this. I will get better.
There is a particular kumitachi kata that I can never get my head around and it is a simple kata, the first in the second set we have to learn in the Shoden Mokuroku. Every now and again I do it correctly. But those times are few and far between. It is an extremely frustrating experience, usually sensei will critique my technique, suggest changes and I change accordingly. However, with this technique I am simply not improving in a gradual sequence, but rather haphazardly getting it right occasionally and I often fall back on an old habit that refuses to let go. Here is the point, I will get better. I have faith in that statement. Years of aikido training has taught me this. I will get better.
Once a martial artist has found a competent teacher in a legitimate art, then he or she must have faith that through mindful training, he or she will get better. I watch my fellow students working their way through the curriculum and they too have certain techniques that aren’t sticking yet. We all do and for me it is a sword kata, for another it may be a particular taijutsu technique. It doesn’t matter, we will get better.
Our sensei often comments on trusting in the kata. The kata was designed by someone many, many years ago that knew what they were talking about. Trust in the kata, let it condition the body and make connections that need strengthening and in time we will see a bigger picture and realise why the kata is important. We learn its applications and we will be better martial artists for it. We will get better.
The body conditioning and subtlety of TSYR is flowing over into my aikido and improving my structure, my base and the overall power of my techniques. I am really enjoying my aikido by being able to look at it from a fresh perspective. Training in a koryu allows some of the aikido techniques to make more sense. I will get better.
Thanks for reading and I will make an effort to keep this blog more current.
Yours in training,