Having never been good at maintaining regular entries into a blog of any type, it comes as no surprise to me that it’s been about 9 months since I last posted anything. Needless to say my long promised summary of what I learned at the SDK 2009 seminar is long overdue but sadly, will not be posted at this time. If you’re really curious then feel free to ask and I’ll do my best to scrounge up my brief notes.
Overall in this last year I’ve noticed some areas where I’ve improved, others where I’ve actually regressed, and others where I’ve remained the same. I’ve experienced some slight improvement in my taikai performance and no longer get nervous just before a match. This might be because I’m now approaching it thinking, “alright, just do my best and I’ll see how far I go.” Unfortunately this has also reinforced a bad habit of mine: hesitating too much. More often than not, I end up waiting just a little too long trying to find an opening and end up missing it entirely. This usually results in either a point scored on me or my Sensei telling me I hesitate too much and that I could do better. Back in the dojo, my kamae has gotten somewhat better although I still need to improve my tenouchi and leg power. The latter however has not been given as much attention as I would like due to some odd inflammation just under the ball of my left big toe. The one area where I wish I could have made some progress but in fact have done the opposite is iaido. I haven’t nearly been able to practice as often as I need and/or would like and as video from a recent demo for my dojo’s tournament shows (one that I was asked the night before to participate in), there’s far too much that needs correcting to go into here.
With the possibility of testing for sandan this November, I definitely need to practice harder and focus on key areas. Certain key points I need to definitely focus on are my timing, kamae, and seme. I plan on speaking with my Sensei in more detail about how to prepare for the shinsa and any advice my Sempai can give but in the mean time, more suburi and more keiko.