From Prague to Vienna!

29 11 2007

Fisr seminar with Endo sensei finished, and I am still <barely> alive: the left elbow/arm is not doing so well, but the worst has been the right foot toe.. A stupid collision brought a tough elbow crashing exactly on the toe, and the pain is quite bad! Unfortunately I feel pain walking, and I am extra careful while practicing.

Tomorrow lunch time we will go to Vienna by train, and Endo sensei seminar until sunday.


First visit at Iyasaka dojo!

25 11 2007

I was at Igarashi sensei seminar in Stockholm, Sweden, for only 3 sessions, sleeping in the dojo and meeting quite a lot of people for the fisrt time, but I can say that I hope it will not be the last time!!

It has been a very nice experience visiting Iyasaka dojo, one of the biggest Aikido dojo in Europe probably: around 500 members, 50-60 black belts, one 7.dan shihan, two 6.dan and so on!

Urban, 6.dan, invited Norwegian aikidokas during doshu seminar at the Norwegian Anniversary of 30 years of Aikido: this seminar was for free for us from Norway! A mini group of about 15 of Norwegian aikidokas accepted this very nice chance to practice! Quite funny that in this group, there were maybe 4-5 Norwegian of birth!! Most of us were foreigners living in Norway for work or that got a Norwegian passport 😀

Many many thanks to Urban for the invitation and for the hospitality in his great dojo!!

Last but not least: many congratulations to Odd from Aikikan Oslo that got 4.dan!!! Very nice graduation.. very interesting all the dan exams: maybe not all very good, but respect to some exams I have seen in the last months, especially in Norway, but not only, all people grading made an enough good job! One girl grading to shodan has been extremely good.. and one sandan too.. and Odd, of course!!! Also the other guy to 4.dan was very good.. a bit more nervous at the beginning, with the weapon practice.

In conclusion, very nice saturday “party” at a pub close to the dojo, with an extremely good choice of beers (many Czechian ones.. but I’ll be there tonight so..) and a great discovery of a Swedish beer, called Lungrens Lager: WOW!! Very tasty!

OK, now I’m in Arlanda writing.. so.. I must add that as usual I start my traveling with a delay: 1 hour her ein Arlanda.. that probably means I will lose the expected flight from Frankfurth to Prague.. so I am not really sure when I will be there! Svein and Tomas anyway had the good idea to go back to the Japanese restaurant where we had been in the summer: it will be sushi!!! 😀 Whenever I will get there!!!

Aikido holidays!!

23 11 2007

Starting today, I will bne away for about 10 days for some traveling and practice around Europe!

First will be Stockholm with Igarashi sensei seminar.

Next two Endo sensei seminars in Prague and Vienna: I am soooooooo looking forward to it!!!!! 😀

I also take with me the good camera and I am sure there will be some mass upload on my Flickr.. at some point in December!!!

Jorma Lyly in Oslo

22 11 2007

Another weekend of Aikido and babies: after the seminar with Frank Ostoff, also Jorma Lyly, 4.dan, from Vanadis Aikido in Stockholm, visited the capital of [Aikido in] Norway. The seminar was organized, as usual for Jorma, by Sunyata Aikido dojo. For the other part of the weekend, the babies, I had the chances again to stay at Simona & Karsten’s place and spend wonderful time with them and their two wonderful little girls, my little loves, Silvia and Sara!

The big difference of this time respect to all the previous was.. the absence of any camera with me!! Amazing, uhm? The problem is that MiKi (named after two amazing good Flickr contacts, Mika-rin and Kit*), my first digital camera, seems to be dead.. It’s not working anymore and making a strange whistle.. I just hope it will not explode in my hands! 😦

I say “it seems dead” because also my laptop seemed dead for the second time but after 2 attempts of holy CHKDSK yesterday night came gloriously back to life! 😀

Back to Aikido now!

Talking and practicing with Jorma confirmed my last thoughts after Tissier sensei seminar in Cologne and a few more:

  • I must practice much more often form, structure, pure technique!!
  • Often I meet people with whom I have no joy at all to practice, but at the end I receive a lot of good feedbacks, especially on my several mistakes
  • Jorma has done a great work developing his own vision of Aikido, and, every time, he helps me in seeing what other instructors, like Tissier sensei or Endo sensei, do at light speed or effortless and I never understand. His way of explaining things is one of my favourite!
  • Very enjoyable seminar, as most of the time: the combination of the very warm dojo as Sunyata is (not temperature warm, but warm to the heart!) and the kind of seminars like Jorma’s is often perfect!
  • It is wonderfull seeing Sara and Silvia growing up 😀

Pics from Cologne!

21 11 2007

I finally uploaded the pictures from Cologne, where I was for Tissier sensei seminar.

A special mention goes to Jörg Kretzschmar and his Forum Kishintai Aikido dojo, known as one of the most beautiful training place in Germany.

kamiza.. or kamidana??

The previous shot shows O’sensei shrine, what we usually call kamiza, 上座, but the link put the doubt in me: probably the correct name, not so used in martial art environment, is kamidana, 神棚.

Jörg and O'sensei pics

Flickr = photos!

15 11 2007

Yep.. in these last few days I spent a little of time re-organizing my Flickr account..

Now I think the mess of pics is better presented in the Collections page.

Still a lot to do and many pics taken this year to be uploaded.. maybe for the end of the year!! 😀

Christian Tissier in Cologne!

14 11 2007

[a couple of pics, links and words more later!!] 

Even with all my luck in traveling by plane, I got to Cologne for an extremely good, and hard, seminar with sensei Christian Tissier, 7.dan Aikikai.

A few considerations in my famous messy order 😉

  • Sunday evening I was dead tired! Saturday the 2 sessions of a bit more than 2 hours (with a few minutes break) were separated by 30 minutes! Heavy schedule: I have heard that it is more and more common for sensei to organize the seminars like this, in order to give more teaching during the 2 days. On Sunday it was 1 hour bokken followed by 2 hours Aikido.
  • Lots of people here too: it seems it was the first time with so many people. Not crowd as Endo sensei in Paris, but on Saturday, both sessions, it was impossible to perform any throws and it was necessary to pay a lot off attention when taking ukemi.
  • For me, Tissier sensei seminars are the perfect balance to Endo sensei seminars: the latter works more on contact, feeling, sensation, less on the structure of the technique; the former is the opposite. Of course neither of them do not forget or neglet the other side!!! 😀 But they have a rather different approach that, once blended, gives an idea of the Aikido I want to learn for myself! Big goal, uhm?
  • Following from this last thought, I realized that lately I worked a bit too much on the “Endo-approach” and it is not so good for me: when it was time to perform the technique itself in a more structured way (let’s say, in a graduation form, for example) I realized I am becoming a bit messy (I should say, becoming again a bit messy). I must again work more on the form, the structure, and I think that I have to do it when practicing “at home”, in Stavanger or at Norwegian seminars. Focusing on the technique. With no technique, I think, one cannot understand the “Endo-approach”.. cannot practice in freedom..
  • Shomenuchi sankyo omote & ura: talking about technique, the guy I was practicing with gave me a wonderful time! He showed me, step by step, how to improve and perform an extremely effective technique! And he soundly kicked my ass when I tried my sloppy way!
  • Sensei‘s memory is always amazing: this time too he asked me only if I was coming from Norway or Sweden (and my look is slightly different from last time I met him, in Paris, at Endo sensei seminar) and he remembers I understand French.. ok, I more or less understand French! 😉
  • Tissier sensei threw me once, applying a very “Tissier-like” katatedori gyaku hanmi kotegaeshi entrance.. on the left arm, that it is slightly injured (shoulder, elbow and wrist are all a bit.. off!!). A very direct version of kotegaeshi, and I.. flown.. from a static standing position, to a static laying position.. with no pain at all in any part of my left arm. Sensei was showing the technique to a girl and when he did a more indirect throw she landed not so well.. so he took me and said that with me he could do the direct version.. so cool!!!!!! And I survived!!!! 😀

A final consideration is that I want to practice more with him! I have to try to travel to his seminars at least 3 times per year, for finding some more balance in my technique and my mind. I know for other people one sensei is totally enough: I feel that right now, for me, Endo sensei and Tissier sensei approaches, together, form my Aikido.