Training basics 1: Kamae

Commentary: Terada Sensei

How to perform the action:

  • Pay attention to the positioning of the mokuju. It should be vertical, not on an angle. Your right hand should be resting lightly against your body. Your right hand should be low on the mokuju grip. The shoubi (butt) of the mokujo should be in positioned forward of your right foot’s fourth toe. You should be looking at the other person’s eyes.
  • Step forward with your left foot about 1 to 1.5 ft. Your leg should be facing straight at your opponent. The inside of your right foot should be at a 15 degree angle forward of 90 degrees.
  • At the same time, with the mokuju at the side of your body tilt its position forward and grasp it with your left hand.
    Pull your right hand to the protruding tokibu (trigger) area and grasp it with your ring and middle finger.
  • The base of your right thumb holding the mokuju should be resting on your hip bone.
  • Naore (return to the starting position) is performed in the reverse order.

Points to keep in mind.

  • When taking kamae, to ensure that the mokuju does not lag behind slightly keep it close to the side of your body.
  • When moving your right hand, make sure that the “tanpo” (point) of the mokuju does not move up and down. The mokuju’s muzzle points at your opponent’s eyes.
  • Implement kamae movements without tension and do not rush. It is relaxed and in 2 deliberate movements.
  • If your hanmi (Sideways stance) is incorrect then you can easily create a gap in your kamae opening you to a datotsu strike.
  • Both Kamae and Naore are performed stepping forward.

 Good and bad points about the video

  • All three people are standing with the proper posture.
  • The movement of the body and mokuju together were exceptionally well done.
  • When you move your right hand back to the tokibu (trigger), to avoid the tanpo (point) swinging up and down, hold the mokuju firmly with your left hand and gently with your right hand. That way the right hand slides and doesn’t bounce the mokuju.
  • In kamae, when you are in proper hanmi (Sideways stance), you reduce the gap for a datotsu attack.
  • When in kamae, always aim the tanpo (point) at your opponent’s eyes.
  • The mokuju should be in a straight line between your thumb and index finger on both hands. It should feel like your fingers are riding on the mokuju. The thumb and index finger form a V shape with the point of the V pointing up.

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