Well, it's been a while again, sorry for not keeping my promise and keeping these posts regular. Work and BKA tripe has been stealing my spare time again. I have been training quite regularly though with some extra sessions at Hilary's dojo on Saturday's as well as some extra sessions afterwards and some iai after Jodo on Sunday's.
It came to my attention this evening that I haven't really done any seitei practice since the European champs last year. Only by Chris Sensei forcing everyone to run through the seitei did I do any this very evening. Thankfully it felt ok and I think that's quite a good testament that Koryu practice alone can spread it's effect over all of one's iai.
In terms of strength and stamina, tonight was a good night. I've had a few bad sessions recently, last Wednesday finding a general lack of energy (turned out I was about to be ill) and then Saturday hurting my shoulder (again) during the extra training).
So where am I with stuff? I am trying to retune my Shoden a bit to make it a bit sharper and less stretched out. This is generally only possible when I have the energy to do so but every time I do it's a repeat of the same old lesson - it's your feet and legs that makes your iai!
Chuden is taking a bit of a back seat and I am still having problems with Iwanami. The few pointers I have had from Sensei have made Toranoissoku more effective though.
I have been working a bit on standing Okuden and gave Somakuri a bit of a thrashing the last few weeks. It is absolutely one of those kata that keeps on developing (i.e. it is bloody hard). I think I have done quite well when I isolate one component cut from another. I believe that the challenge of this form is starting and finishing each cut and each step at exactly the same time. This is a bit different from Sogiri and gives Somakuri it's sharpness. I am gradually working on it but it takes a long time to make improvements.
Anyway on we go....