Disclaimer and Stuff

Firstly I would like to say that all of the material contained within this blog is of my own opinion and any inaccuracies in technical content or other's personal quotations are completely my own.

Secondly I would like to thank everyone in advance where I have used photos of you or photos you have taken. I have quite a library of digital photos and virtually no record of who took them so I hope you will take this general thanks as adequate gratitude. If there are any photos of you or taken by you that you would like removed please let me know.

Thirdly, some articles have been published on my dojo website if you would like to read them in an easier format

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7th dans achieved. Come and visit Ryoshinkan Iaido and Jodo Dojo Website at www.ryoshinkan.org

Monday 12 July 2010

BKA Nationals 2010

The Cold Fire...

Not much to report on last Wednesday's practice to be honest so I will focus on our National Taikai which took place last Saturday for Iaido and Sunday for Jodo. The theme for this blog entry is what you gain out of losing and I can certainly say that it is significant at this point.

This year gave the 5th dans the opportunity to do one koryu for their individual's and then follow up with no.2 and no.6. Throughout the early part of the competition I varied my koryu to get the feel of what was working but then settled on Oroshi as things started to get serious. In the end I finalled with Harry and knew that this was going to be difficult. I knew that Harry could be very smooth so I aimed for sharpness and tried to make the forms look like a real fight. Everything seemed to go smoothly and then...I lost 3-0.

I was a bit surprised as I came off as was Harry and we asked if either of us did anything wrong. Nothing seemed to come to light.

As we went into the team event again I lost a flag once and was a bit perplexed. The forms felt quite vigorous. I started to suspect that this vigour was getting the better of me and maybe was too fast for some judges' taste. In the final we were up against our same dojo with Harry as the last player as was I. We were even when Harry and I went on and I thought about how to get this shiai.

I cooled, I calmed...I did the kata. It went smoothly again. I don't think I went any slower to be honest. I won 2-1 (I wasn't surprised to drop that one flag).

There was something different though and I think I have sensed it in doing Jodo Kage before, a certain coolness and quietness to the performance which gives it a fire of its own. Maybe it's tame, maybe it's something else. It seemed to work and felt very nice.

First day back home after the event so might write more on this later.