Friday, August 23, 2013

Walking, Part 1

Pat recently issued a blogging challenge: write a blog post every day for 12 days, about tegatana no kata, Tomiki Aikido's walking kata. While I don't think I'm going to take up the full challenge (I won't even try for every day), I'm going to try to write 12 posts about walking. I'm not sure I have that much to say about it, so some posts might be very short, and not worth reading.

Tonight as I was thinking about what I might write, I thought I might as well go through the kata once so it would be fresh on my mind. I went into my man cave and had an idea: The room was already a little disorganized since I taught a concealed carry class in it last night. I decided to leave it as it was, and clutter it up a little more for an experiment.

So I began the kata among stacks of CDs, plastic containers, and a chair. Maybe a dozen obstacles in all. I was trying to keep the motions in correct directions, relative to where I was when I began each step, but allowed myself to randomize the direction I was facing before beginning each new step.  I found myself needing to take bigger or smaller steps, even in the same section of movements. Keeping my mind on the footwork to avoid tripping or stepping on something was a new thing. I figure any time I need to move in an aiki-like fashion, it probably won't be under ideal conditions.

So the things I might have gotten out of the experiment were as follows:

  • A slightly more "realistic" practice
  • Confusion that distracted me from doing the arm movements and prearranged "dance steps" just so
  • A more interesting repetition of the kata
  • Avoiding tidying up my room for one more night

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