Saturday, April 07, 2007

Easter Snap

Around here it is an old rule of thumb that right around Easter each year we'll have a short bout of cold weather - usually the last of the season. We call it, "the Easter snap." Many old farmers will plant corn on Good Friday because of this timing. Well, this year's Easter snap, beginning about yesterday and peaking about tonight is unusually cold. It is really a "30-year snap." We're expecting cold on the order of the 1971 and 1940 Easter snaps. Everybody is worried about covering or otherwise protecting their plants from the freeze and sleet tonight.
So, needless to say, the dojo was cold this morning. Not as cold as it has been this winter, but cold enough to put an end to any deisre to do breakfalls - especially when combined with delayed-onset soreness from yardwork yesterday. We repped tegatana a couple of times emphasizing different ways of thinking about the first step - pulling forward or popping up or snapping hips underneath or tightening the groin, etc... Then we worked hanasu 2-3 times emphasizing making the attacks single ballistic motions and tori beginning the technique right at ma-ai.
From here we worked on the four "neighborhoods" in which techniques live, the omote path from nijusan, the ura path from nijusan, the shortcut from ura to omote that happens a lot in randori, and the tenshin path that happens in Owaza. This started out as just looking at these offbalances and ended up being a session of hikitate geiko - a limited form of randori in which uke and tori have defined roles but uke does not fall for improperly executed techniques. Instead he flows with tori until tori is able to come up with the next appropriate technique.

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