As something kendo-related happened in the Kasugai dojo, for these two days we’ve been training in sensei’s house, either on his driveway or in his office. As you may guess, there’s not plenty of room there, so we focused on the very basics (how a thrust should look like, especially with the energy driven from the back leg and hips) plus on kata.
We’ve also started with tankendo, in both, basics and kata. Although doing makiotoshi in the office entails a grieve danger of All Japan statuettes falling down on us, I guess we did reasonably well. It definitely helped with the control of the weapon. I dare to say my harai is getting better, though it is the ‘big and pretty’ harai used in kata – I’m still a bit too slow for the shiai ‘smack and attack’ one.
Trains to Kasugai cancelled due to heavy rain. How heavy has the rain to be to stop a train? The ones in Poland can withstand anything, though it usually ends in them being delayed 500 minutes or more. Plus some kind Japanese people willing to translate the messages about the issue to poor gaijins. I am thankful.
We went for training to another dojo, approximately a 30 minute ride by train. The weather, on an aforementioned scale, was ‘awful’, which means hot – and, as we discovered, the dojo not only lacked air conditioning (one can dream!), but also air as such. I’ve also moved onto a new level of sweating – which is growing nice green mould on bogu. My right kote stinks, and sweating it even more did not help at all. Except the basics, for the first time in this week we put bogu on (the stinky parts too), which, when added to the lack of oxygen, meant that it was far from an easy practice.
There were two people training with us, one was a woman, which is always a nice touch, as I’m used to the male-dominated martial arts. What was so exceptional in them, was the fact that their thrusts were sharp and precise, but as a receiver I felt only a light tap. No pushing, no unnecessary force. And they were as sweaty as we were, yay! Honestly, though, it was the first time I’ve enjoyed jukendo jigeiko, which doesn’t mean I was good enough. I’ve managed to make some decent attacks and miss some great opportunities, and get stopped with my charging each time I hear hajime. I guess I’m really predictable now, but that’s all I can do, so I’ll stick to it for a while.
*This is part of an ongoing series of posts by Jukendo World translator and guest author, Klara, who has only recently started jukendo and is undertaking a 3 month visit to Japan to further her training with her partner, Lukasz.*