Thursday, May 30, 2013

Kumikata and ashi-sabaki interact and inform

Here's where all this talk of gripping becomes really generalizable to judo, aikido, and even into everyday life...

  • If you are holding onto something that is keeping you from expressing gracefully, let go of it.
  • If you are standing in a place or in a way that makes it hard for you to express gracefully, move.
  • If your hands are getting in the way of you moving your feet gracefully, let go and move.
  • If your footwork is making you feel like you have to latch on with your hands, let go and move.
  • If you are standing in the wrong place for your technique, you're standing in the wrong place.  Gripping harder won't cure that.
  • If your hands are gripping convulsively, you'll never get your feet (much less your center) to move gracefully.
If you study kumikata (gripping), then you should, as part of that study, pay close attention to your footwork.  If, like me, you are OCD about your footwork, you should pay attention to how your hands are helping or hindering your footwork.
Get your hands and your feet working gracefully, and everything in-between will work gracefully.

photo courtesy of Judy Van Der Velden

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Patrick Parker
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