Jukendo-ka commentary: Larsen
This was my second ishu jiai using a mokuju versus kendo. It was my opponents first time against mokuju so I was very confident that my vast experience would bring me victory
The first time I did ishu jiai using a mokuju the jukendo sensei watching us was yelling at me constantly “geidan, geidan”. As you can see from the first point (43 seconds) when the jukendo side uses geidan it makes the maiai difficult for the kendo person to judge. Especially for kendoka that have never played against mokuju before.
Takebayashi-san obviously has a strong and calm mind. The unusual distance and techniques didn’t phase him and he pressed his attack very strongly from the commencement of the second point (1 min 3 seconds). By closing strongly and controlling the maiai Takebayashi-san ensured I had no clear opportunity to attack.
In stark contrast to Takebayashi-san I forgot to keep listening to the sensei in my head screaming “geidan, geidan” and proceeded to give away the advantage of controlling the distance. Takebayashi-san did not let me get away with that mistake and as soon as I settled my weight onto my heels and was unable to move he punished me for it.
For the third point Takebayashi-san maintained the pressure on me and my nuki-zanshin was far too slow to successfully evade his men (1 min 31 seconds). I don’t know if his use of a kote strike to cancel my final attack was deliberate or not but this is certainly a technique any kendoka would want to emulate. My technique of standing still is definitely not one to emulate.
This was a fun match and I appreciated the opportunity from Takebayashi-san immensely.
As a side note, In Jukendo so long as a part of the foot is inside the court you are not out. In Kendo I believe one foot over the line completely is out (I could be wrong). As two of the judges were Kendo I should have remembered this. It wouldn’t have changed the result but I always feel silly if I step out (1 min 16 seconds).