It was Friday

Friday is just another day, on a good day Friday’s work day ends before I leave for training and my computer has backed up the week’s work. We were four for training today. Guido lead the training (Sensei), Ivo, Lothar and well the utterly frustrated me were the foursome.

When I arrived at the dojo today I was feeling frustration and aggression coming out of every pore of my skin and deep down in the marrow of my bones. I was ready to rip apart anything in sight and be merciless with anybody in my sight. It is an odd situation to be in: feeling like exploding, and being surrounded by three people whom you have trained for years, know well, and trust fully. We worked through various tachi waza techniques with a morote dori attack. Given that the three are all stronger than I in both technique and muscle, it was wonderful to be able to just let it all out since there was absolutely no way that I could hurt them. Within about half an hour of training I was however ready to leave the tatami. I was feeling exhausted and getting a good pounding myself, my energy had dropped. Somehow that passed rather quickly, the frustration was gone, the energy returned and the rest of the training was pure energy flowing.

I sometimes wonder how these training sessions look to an observer unfamiliar with Aikido. Here the observer would see this little woman going and attacking a strong fellow and holding on to him for dear life through some strange gyrations that get her off equilibrium, and then the guy mercilessly throws her on the floor making one hell of a racket. If she does not get thrown on the floor then she gets pinned to the floor and immobilized with her arms in some impossible contorted position behind her back. Needless to say that the whole fun on my side is to be back on my feet and attack again before he has caught his breath. This is how we practice, and by golly, it is fun! After four attacks, we change roles and keep on going until Sensei calls to demonstrate another technique or some detail of that technique.

But today (friday), when training was over one and half hours later, we still wanted more. Since while the muscles are warm is the best time to do stretching, I stayed on the tatami stretching. Then Ivo asks me to attack him. Still morote dori, but this time suwari waza. He wanted to try something with nikyo. Nikyo still gets me as uke (attacker). I somehow decouple my head from my body and go on head control and it is painful!

However the nikyo (suwari and tachi waza) as uke was what I needed. It reminded me of my great resistance to a lot of things in my life. Nikyo is easy to take as uke if one stays with the contact and forgets whatever concept the head has about nikyo. I had to laugh at myself after feeling my wrists and realizing that all that there was to do was to go with it, namely do nothing. Damn, just feel it, and go with the flow! I have taken ukemi on hundreds of nikyos, but the fear of the pain still gets me, and then the pain is there. When will I learn? Or am I just a masochist? Next time, I will find out. It is nothing that I need to think about now.


After training I met with Dirk for bier and heavy duty discussion. At one point he tells me that I need to step over my own shadows. Had we had this discussion before training, I think I could not have listened to what he had to tell me. I am still not happy with what I got done this week. I am anxious about a few decisions that are not for me to make. Uhm… I thought I was going to let Achilles and the Tortoise go at each other… I like to let them argue.

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