Ankle, and out

Volleyball, first game, Tuesday night. I went up for a block and came down on the opposing player's foot. My ankle twisted and I collapsed to the ground.

I'm able to put some weight on it, which is much better than 17 years ago when I really messed up the same ankle. I think I'll just be out a few weeks, but I'm going to try to get into a doc to get it checked.

I think we lost all three games, too.



Friday Night at the Dojo - 3/21/08

Aikidokas: Tim, Randy, Larry, and Trey.

Ukemi: Full ukemi warmup. Went well. No big falls.

The Walk: Went ok. Remembered what I forgot during the demonstration.

Releases: Went ok. I know we did some explorations of them , but I can't remember what we were exploring.


Worked, as uke, with Trey on Oshi-taoshi.

Worked, as tori, with Trey and Larry on 1, 2, 3 and 5 of Owaza Ju Pon. The footwork is very similar on all of these, so once I got it down for one, I had fewer issues on the rest. I did still manage to screw it up. I was getting too far off-line.

Did the aikinage left and right side. Too much muscle and too much movement on the footwork. Small circles are necessary.

Aftermath: Bruised foot seems to be getting better. Did I break it, or something similar?



Had my demonstration for Ikkyu over the weekend. On the trip back from the seminar, strong hints were made that I'm going to be working my tail off in order to get to Shodan before the end of the year. The requirement for 6 months in grade is seen as the main limiting factor.

I don't know if I'll have to do the demonstration in front of the Technical Board, or just my two usual Senseis. Although, if the local Senseis showed up, it would be 5 members of the technical board. That's the same Senseis who were at the seminar this past weekend.

Anyone want to take some Garuma falls for me?

Volleyball, 2-1

We had 5, they had 3. We still got trashed in the middle game. 21-10, or something equally as ridiculous. We played well the other two games.


Killeen Seminar - Saturday 3/15/08

We were scheduled to get going at 9:00 a.m. We managed to get past a bunch of tasks and get onto the mat at around 10:30.

We reviewed the 12 double-hand grabs that we'd worked on Friday and then moved on to the final 2. It seems like we must have done more in the morning, but I can't remember what it might have been.

We broke for lunch around 12:30 and got back on the mat around 1:30.

The first order of business after lunch was demonstrations. I was demonstrating for Ikkyu, Larry was demonstrating for Shodan, and Jeff was demonstrating for Nidan.

Larry and I were serving as each other's uke, so we got good workouts.

I messed up on the walk. Larry gave me a few issues on the releases. We gave each other some issues on his demonstration of Oshi-taoshi. Neither of us could remember what technique we were supposed to be doing, so I attacked and he just came up with something. He thinks it was Shomen-ate. I think it was Aigamae-ate. Only the video tape can say for certain.

To save time, we each had to demonstrate on only one side. For Ju Nana Hon Kata, we both got to demonstrate on right-side. For the Owaza Ju Pon, Larry had to demonstrate the techniques from the left side. This would not have been so bad, but I had never uke'd for him left side. I had never seen him do the techniques left side.

I was in a bit of a panic, because the falls are garumas and I've had my neck twinged on those from time to time. And this time was no exception. On the first technique, things were a little off. I landed and my neck complained. I did a head-to-toe system check and all lights came back green, so I got up and we continued on.

My techniques: I know I messed up on the three I had to learn for this belt: Mae-otoshi, Sumi-otoshi and Hiki-otoshi. They were decent, but were imperfect.

We then got to sit down and recuperate while Jeff ran through his demonstration.

The technical board got together and pow-wowed for a few minutes, called us up, and awarded us our new ranks. Actually, Jeff already had his Nidan, so he just got additional acclaim.

After congratulations were passed around, we all got back on the mat for more seminar time.

The subject of the afternoon's session was Nami no Waza ("Way of the Wave"). This is a stringing of techniques together, starting from a release.

For instance, the first release falls into the 6, 7, 8 and 9 techniques.

The second release flows into the fifth release which then flows into T6, 7, 8 and 9

The second release, when uke drops all of his weight on the hand, flows into a hip switch and then into T15, 14, 17, and 16.

From here on is likely poor memory.

The third release -> T10, 12

Fourth release -> seventh release, T6,7,8,9

Fourth release -> locked -> hip switch -> T11

Ok. Beyond this I've forgotten the transitions. After a couple of hours of this work, my brain was full and I bowed off the mat. The rest of the seminar ended shortly thereafter.

A great dinner of spaghetti was dished out shortly. We spent a couple of hours chatting with everyone and then returned to the hotel. We got an early start Sunday morning and made it back to Houston in good time.


Killeen Seminar - Friday Night 3/14/08

We pulled into Killeen and then around 2:30 after a nice, uneventful drive. The crew from Alabama were already there and recovering from their 11-hour drive. We had a chance to chill for several hours before the scheduled start of the festivities. We got the chance to play with "Lizard" and "Chance", Jeff and Gail's dogs. Lizard played far too hard and had to be tended to for a good portion of the afternoon.

The evening was devoted to exploring Riki Kogure's double hand grabs. These are a series of exercises meant to explore off-balances. There are 14 of these. We managed to cover the first 12 in the evening session.

Let's see if I can remember them:

double-hand to the center
one hand to the center
double-hand tenchinage
spinning armbar
double hand waki-gatamae
wheel throw
hip throw

Sensei Mike (who has 3 dan grade certificates signed by Sensei Tomiki and two signed by Sensei Oba) had us switching partners every time we switched exercises, so I got to work with almost everyone there.

We broke up around 10pm and had an excellent dinner grilled by one of the attendees. I managed to get into bed around 12:30 and we were scheduled for a 9:00 am start on Saturday morning


A lost weekend

It feels like a lost weekend. I did not get nearly as much done as I would have liked. And, probably due to a gut bug, I slept far more than normal.

Friday night: aikido

Saturday: spent 11 hours at a judo seminar videotaping. Lunch was at Wendy's and I think the food disagreed with me. I was in discomfort much of the time until Monday morning.

Sunday: Sleeping and gardening. I was awake only 6 hours. Bummer. I think I may have come close to passing out while gardening. I know I felt very pale.

Friday Night at the Dojo - 3/7/08

Aikidokas: Tim, Randy, Mike, Larry, and Trey.

Ukemi: Full ukemi warmup. Went well. Getting compliments on the big falls.

3 Nanadans running the class. Mike might be a Hachidan, I can't remember.

Mike was there to watch Larry and me run through our demos. He also tweaked some of our etiquette for the demo.

The Walk: Mike counted through this one quickly. He did make some changes to my version. Ack! I don't know if I can successfully incorporate it in two weeks.

Releases: Went ok.


1-17 right-sided for me. We made some adjustments for my Sumi-otoshi that made it much more effective.

1-17 left-sided for Larry, plus 1-5 of Owaza Ju Pon. My wrist got tweaked a little on Shihonage and that threw Larry out of his mindset for the last three. I noticed that he was off a little, but the final three techniques were good.

Owaza Ju Pon went well. I discovered where the soreness in my left calf is coming from. Owaza Ju Pon. I landed half-on/half-off of the additional mat we bring on for the garumas and that caused my calf to let me know it wasn't pleased.

I'm kind of concerned about some of the etiquette things being discussed. They run counter to every demonstration I've seen so far.

Aftermath: Bruised foot is still making its presence known.


Volleyball, 1-2

We actually had 6 folks playing on the team last night. We played well, but did not win the match. I think we won the first game 21-19, lost the second one 19-21 and the third was fairly close, probably 12-15 or something.

My eye is still feeling the effects of the game. I took a spike straight on the left side of my face from about 2 feet. No black eye, but feels a little abused.

I was going to go to the local caucus after the match, but I was confused as to where it was. From what I heard, it was a madhouse. Four precincts trying to hold their caucuses in an area fit for just one, given the turnout.voll


Saturday Afternoon at the Dojo 3/1/2008

Aikidokas: Tim, Randy, Jeff, Gail, and Trey

Ukemi: Ukemi went well. Took some big falls during this time for the first time with the new mats.

The Walk: as usual

Releases: Not today


I was a tackling dummy for the day. I served as uke for Jeff all afternoon. We worked on Koryu Dai San No Kata. I think. Some suwari waza stuff.

Lots of falling. A good, and educational, day.

Aftermath: Still have a tight left calf muscle and bruised foot.

Friday Night at the Dojo 2/29/2008

Aikidokas: Tim, Randy, Mike, Larry, Kim, and Brad.

Ukemi: We arrived a little late, so had to do a quick ukemi session. I think I bruised the area of the foot next to the little toe on my right foot during this.

3 Nanadans running the class. Mike might be a Hachidan, I can't remember.

Mike was there to watch Larry and me run through our demos. He also tweaked some of our etiquette for the demo.

The Walk: Mike counted through this one quickly. He did make some changes to my version. Ack! I don't know if I can successfully incorporate it in two weeks.

Releases: Went ok.


1-17 right-sided for me.

1-17 right-sided for Larry, plus 1-5 of Owaza Ju Pon. I took my first big falls on the new mat during this process. Larry's Hiki-otoshi was a little unsettling. Tim came over and expressed concern for my safety as uke.

We spent a lot of time on Larry's Hiki-otoshi. We also reviewed Waki-gatamae to try and eliminate an early arm bar that causes me to tap out before the usual end of the technique.

Aftermath: Bruised foot. And, I've got a gorgeous bruise on my right forearm, probably from the previous week's Hiki-otoshi