Nachi's Log

Discussion in 'Training Logs' started by Nachi, Apr 23, 2015.

  1. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Monday 13.9.

    Karate kids - teaching
    9 kids today, some who came were very small - the smallest was only 4. Luckily I had a helping hand - a friend - who took care of the youngest at times. We started warm-up with a game of tag, then Junbi Undo. We did I think a short hiza geri ractice, quickly went through tsuki and mae geri we practiced last time. Not everyone was heree last time, so I briefly explained again. Since we're training outside now, I made two teams to compete in shuttle runs - running forwas, backward, sideways, with falling on the belly, on the back, adding mae geri and tsuki into the run, etc. Some kids did have some trouble with coordination in some of these things, so I thought it would be a good practice. After every round we did some bodyweight exercise, the winning team less times then the losers, plus occassional personal penalty to some who forgot some technique, ran forward instead of backward and so on. Then I think we might have done something else, but I am not sure anymore. Maybe not.The kids weere again trying to talk me into playing a game at the end. I thought the one they wanted the most would be impossible or very hard outside and also with the younger kids, so I came up with another one, which was met with just about the same enthusiasm. I didn't participate in this class much - it was mostly runnign the shuttle runs and I needed to keep the eye on the kids so they wouldn't cheat and to judge which team won. So not much exercise for me.

    Karate adults - teaching
    Not too many people for the adults today - only three of us were really adult, then there were five youngsters 9-14 yo or something along those lines. I was planning to practice bunkai and teach them to the new guy who didn't know the kata, but did karate before, but there were three more beginners, so I changed my plans for teaching basic techniques first. Inspired by how nice the shuttle runs looked, I did the same with adults for a warm-up. We made two teams of four and it was generally faster than with the kids, so we did all the same rounds except for the last one. I was able to participate now. Also exercises in between. Junbi undo again with a focus on stretching legs. Some kihon (sotei tsuki) thrown in between. A tiny work-out at the end. I then explained hiza geri - the basic knee kick. At this time sensei arrived and came to join us, but told me to continue teaching the class. He sometimes added some explanation or went around correcting, otherwise he participated as a normal student, which made me honestly a little nervous :)

    I also went for sensei's favourite exercise when we form a circle and people hold hands down as targets for the person going inside the circle kicking hiza geri. We made several rounds with slightly deffirent stuff each time and different focus - eye contact, hands up and practice slapping to see if people were paying attention and kept their hands up, etc. Just as I said this, I started the round and my first target was sensei. He did slap me and I was still thinking about something and didn't defend at all. How embarassing! Then we went for a round with the third kick being with pulling the target forward and with kiai. The last round was the same + shoving the target away as the last technique. When I saw how sensei wernt around and what his shoves to the adults looked like, I braced myself, but since the basic stance was heiko dachi - feet on the same line, shoulderwidth, there was not much bracing I could have sone, so I ended up running backwards like the others, but unlike them ended on my butt... I kind of expected that, though. In between the rounds we did some burpees, jumping squats and push-ups. Push-ups with a clap for those who felt like it. In the end only I and the new guy went for this. I expected better participation.

    After the thorough hize geri practice there was still aboiut 20 mins left, so I went for mae-geri. Practicing slow-motion step by step to understand the movement, then step by step as with the snap kick, then normal fast mae geri about 40 times. Then 10x getting up from the ground with hands always in kamae, two kicks, lie back down. Then the same except for lying on the front, so basically jumping up into and frm a squat. Then several more normal mae geri, then mae geri as kihon ido with steps - around 40 kicks. Again some bodyweight exercises in between. It was nice, I think I kept the training at a good pace and I enjoyed myself. I was tired at the end, but so was everyone else, it seems. If they aren't sore all over by next class, I will have failed :)

    There was no advanced class today. Sensei rushed home.

    The only thing I realized only after is that since I am planning to have 4 hours of Taiji tommorrow, maybe I shouldn't have made a training focused on legs.. Ah well...

    I really didn't much more than stand and watch at the kids class, but even then, in those 2,5 hours, I burned over 1000 kcal. Max HR being 179 towards the end of the class when I kept my HR relatively high. A nice exercise, I'd say! I always burn the most when I teach the class. Maybe it is also because of the constant shouting the counting.

  2. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Tuesday 14.9.

    Surprisingly, I am not sore anywhere (at least not yet).
    Morning Taiji
    This week starts a new season in the Taiji school, several beginner courses are opening. There is one parallel to this morning class. The beginners stayed inside with the teacher, while the instructor took the rest of us for a warm-up - silk reeling on the terrace outside. When we finished warm-up there was our regular group and then abour 4-5 people knowing first 14 or a bit more moves and 2 people only knowing 5. So it was a bit hard to divide. The instructor took the people with 5 moves inside and told me to go through the whole form with the rest, with people dropping where their knowledge ended. Ah, this again. Last time I escaped being in the front of the more advanced group, but I won't talk back to the instructor. At least not in front of everyone :oops:
    When at the 25th move the teacher arrived an told us to switch places with the beginner group. The gym was after all larger and better suited for the long form. The instructor now started with us so I again escaped being at the front. He dropped midway with some of the people and we finished the form. I dropped at the 64th or what move and waited for the rest to finish. One of the senior students, asked why I was dropping. There's about 5 new moves left and he thought I could just try to copy. On one hand, sure, I can, but the karate-like and probably kung-fu-like discipline tells me it's better to wait for the teacher's judgement to know if I should try to continue and just bluntly copy. It was at this point that the instructor arrived and told us to go through the last part of the form and that I should just try to copy. Seriously, did they conspire against me? Ok then. There were like 3 or so new moves, as for the very last two, I already copied them before in the shortened form when I spent a class practicing with the teen group. The fried went slowly and briefly explained on the go. I couldn't copy everything very precisely, but at least roughly. For the last 15 mins the teacher arrived and reviewed the Crossed Feet form he taught us last time. I got several corrections and finally this teacher's explanation, which wasn't necessarily different from teacher P's, but sine he taught me most of the form, I am kind of better tuned to his style of practicing and explaining, so it makes more sense to me now. We then added the next move - Punch the Groin, that I was also already taught by teacher P. There's the super tricky turn that I got a bit better at, but still nothing I'd be too happy about. Still, when the teacher saw I can more or less do something approaching the turn, he showed me the more difficult version of it so that I can try at home, perhaps. Before I could try now to figure out what he was showing, the class was over.

    Maybe due to a few karate classes I had or the fact that my knees didn't feel stiff today anymore, I felt generally quite soft in the joints and it felt nice, I enjoyed the practice.
    What I didn't enjoy much was that I had to run to the tram stop in order to catch the earlier tram and be home asap for work. No the legs felt tired...
  3. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Tuesday 14.9.

    Taiji Kung-fu
    So the first class of this today. This class will last two hours and is meant for advanced students and those who want to get to the details, learn Taiji as a martial art - there will be applications, push-hands, etc. - and are willing to work hard on themselves by themselves at times. I expected there would be quite a lot of people, but it wasn't as many as I thought. The first hour of the class was parallel to the teens practicing, the next hour was alongside the advanced group practicing the Cannon Fist form, so some people joined them.
    The cool thing about this class is that there will be both our teachers.
    Today we started with the first five moves of the form to 4 directions and then went to dissect the first move. We tried a few times and were shown an application which we spent quite a lot of time practicing in pairs. It was a joint manipulation. One that is not that common in karate, but I've done it before, but without the Taiji principles. Or only touching upon the circular movement, not making it a priority. I had a rough idea how to go about it, but after trying many times and the teacher demonstrating a few times more I think I figured aome more details and I think me and my partner kept improving it throughout.

    The main teacher then asked teacher P to practice fajins in the first form with us. We isolated only the movements, did some silk reeling and a few fajins from that. I did try this fajin before with the head teacher once and while it originally seemed relatively ok, he told me the fast movement is only at the end of the motion that becomes rather long when in a wide stanc. I had no idea how to do that and really haven't figured that out. I tried to do something as a compromise today, but didn't find it too great.
    Still, I was sent off with all the advanced people sideways. It made me a nervous as I didn't know what we were going to do. It turned out we were only told to practice the whole form, not just a part, with the fajin. I don't know how to do fajins well, though. I certainly have an advantage from doing karate as fajin seems to be similar to kime, yet there are minor differences in principles, or more like in the focus that make it hard for me to grasp. Also I probably just haven't practiced them much. My confidence went down the drain especially when we were told to turn in a direction where I was first in line, so I had no one to try to copy, which I intended to do. I ended up just trying my best, while listening to the teacher's corrections. Then we also practiced the flow - the silk continuous silk reeling in the form - well we mostly practiced in only 1-2 moves. It is something the teacher repeatedly told us to focus on. But to practice properly, I'd have to do the form in a different, faster rhytm than is usually practiced in class, therefore it is difficult to practice in a general group. And I don't have much time left for solo practice at home. So to have the opportunity now even with the teacher correcting, was great.

    Then the first hour of the training passed and a few people left, including my partner for the application practice. While those who knew the push-hands were instructed to practice that, the rest of us were shown an application for the second move - again, a type of throw we also do in karate, but with circular Taiji movements. I paired up with a girl of similar age, who's been doing Taiji since young and has been the children classes instructor for a while now and her Taiji is really nice from what I saw before. We practiced for a while trying to figure it out as best as we could. Then the teacher came by and showed us the Taiji principles behind it that we lost there, which made sense and were nice, but I still couldn't do it with the same flow. Still, it was interesting. Later on teacher P walked us through the first two moves again focusing on some details. We kept practicing that till the end of the class. We basically only practiced the first three forms, but I learned plenty or took out what to practice and focus on.

    Taiji - 47 moves
    I didn't feel that tired and I automatically stayed for the class I've been attending for the past few weeks. Teacher P was in charge today. I felt quite ok at the beginning, but as soon as we finished the silk reeling at the beginning, I realized I am not as fine as I thought I was. Suddenly my legs were very tired and heavy. I was going to push through the class and did my best not to slack in anything. We practiced the Fair Maiden Works Shuttles the whole class with several things pointed out, too. I learned a couple of useful things that helped me jump further and turn with more stability. Nice!
    At the end of the class, though, I was already completely drained. My legs and my back (muscles) hurt - not as in sharp pain from too much load, but more like tha general weakness from a long training. Ah, it is my fault for making yesterday's karate class focused on legs... I sort of diserve this. No, two more training days to go. I wonder how I'll manage.

    It was four hours of Taiji today -400 kcal in the morning, nearly a 1000 kcal now in the evening.
    axelb likes this.
  4. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Wednesday 15.9.

    Taiji - 6 moves
    I was planning to go to this earlier class today with my dad who planned to give Taiji one more chance. I was half expecting he'd change his mind at the last moment, but surprisingly, he didn't. I told him I am helping a little with the classes sometimes, but he told me not to think about going in front of the class, I am supposed to stay by his side and help him remember. There was supposed to be a different instructor for this class, but wasn't, so I was asked to do the warm-up right away. After the silk reeling (my legs were tired from yesterday, but I didn't slack with my stances anyway). When I am tired or my legs hurt, I find it harder to relax and find the right flow in the movement, but today, though my legs hurt, I was able to get "in the zone" quite easily.
    After the warm-up I stood in the middle row with my dad. I felt a bit bad that I made it hard for the teacher to call me to the front if he needed, but my dad stuck by me and I hope the teacher didn't mind. As I wasn't supposed to be the instructor for this class, he didn't call me up anymore.
    THe people in this class, except for my dad, were practicing the first 5 movements for quite a while now and as was planned, the teacher was teaching the next move today. He also talked about the theory for quite a while, so it wasn't overly exhausting except for when we were asked to hold the stance while he went around correcting.

    Taiji - 15 moves, instructing
    Right after that the class I am supposed to be helping with started. My dad decided to stay for the silk reeling before going home. I led the warm-up, my legs were shaking by now, but I did my best to ignore it. Actually midway I discovered that since I was already warmed up and stretched from the class before, I might have had an even wider stance than before. Stupid me.
    When we moved from the terrace indoors, while the teacher left me be in the previous class, I was called up right away to be int he front for nearly the whole class with the exception of the teacher explaining something. When practicing the 14 moves acouple of times, he took a break and told everyone to follow my lead and tempo. I did my best to make the form flow nicely as that was what the teacher asked everyone to pay attention to. Later the teacher started explaining the next, 15th move - Striking down by twisting body obliquely. He explained, showed a few times and again had us practice with my lead. I didn't really get a chance to relax except for when the teacher was explaining for a while.

    I was very tired by the time we finished. Maybe a bit less than yesterday, but the fatigue does accumulate. At least I'll try to get a bit more sleep today. Since tommorrow sensei is away and I'll be teaching karate again, I swear, we won't even move the legs this time! Hahaha, or at least only very little :D
  5. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Thursday 16.9.

    Morning Taiji
    My legs felt a bit better today (no idea how that's even possible, but I am not complaining), though still tired. I didn't get anymore sleep, only 5,5 hours again, but felt fresh enough for the class.
    Today is the class for people of all levels + a parallel course for beginners. It's taught by teacher P and another senior instructor, so they can split the two groups. However, the instructor didn't come, so I was asked to do the warm-up for the joint group of all levels and go through the whole form once. There were a few people there who only knew up to the 15th or 25th move, so I encouraged them to stop where they needed and go throught that part once again, while we went through the whole form (well, nearly, for me). I was thinking what to do next. The less advanced practiced their 15 moves, while I thought I could practice what I learnt last time, but didn't dare order the advanced group, although they were willing to help me with the 63rd and 64th moves. Before we started, though, the teacher appeared and asked me to go through the 15 forms with everyone (too many levels here to split to more than the beginners and the arest) while he'd bring the beginners inside. We did that and one more time with the beginners watching to show them what the form (or its beginning) looked like.

    Then the teacher asked me if I could go to the beginner group and show them the first type (one-armed) silk-reeling. Ah, I generally worried if I would be ever asked to help with the beginner classes since I haven't attended any ever since I first learned the basics and wasn't sure how exactly or at what pace to teach etc. It was good as long as I was given a particular task like this. They seemed to have done only the standing meditation so far and the teacher wanted to show them the silk reeling for them to know what they'd learn next (and so that they wouldn't just stand in wuji and breath the whole hour). I thought I'd better give some instructions on what to do and what the basics of the silk reeling are instead of just standing in front and silently letting the group to copy. So I explained briefly about the stance, the turning ans shifting weight. While trying I corrected the knees going over the toes for some lady and added how the hands would open and close. That probably wouldn't be necessary for them at this point, but it is quite easy to do here and no reason for them not to try just because I hadn't said anything and let them practice it wrong. I thought since the teacher wanted them to just try, I shouldn't add anymore info to overwhelm them. But the ladies had questions about breathing, so I simply answered and showe them where the breath started and where it ended.
    While practicing I encouraged them to keep the stance high if their legs hurt and weren't used to this, while I kept lower. Firstly I am use to that and secondly, the body mechanics are bigger and easier to see when lower, so I thought I'd be able to show better like this. We only did the right arm in both directions, before I noticed, one by one nearly the whole group stopped, just watching, with only 1-2 people still going with me. What was that? Well, ok, I didn't have much of an estimate on what the beginners could endure, but they could just try in a really high stance like one of the continueing ladies did, right? If this was karate, they'd get some push-ups if they looked like they needed to rest their legs, but here... I gave them a short break instead.
    Then we tried the same for the left arm, without me explaining much, just an occassional reminder when I saw someone was making a glaring mistake, and tried to have them copy the movements and just calm down and focus on breathing.
    The teacher arrived at the end, explaining he just wanted them to try it, not really learn it, they'd be doing that next class with him or the head teacher. I felt like I wasn't supposed to dump all that info on them, but from my experience when learning stuff, it is not so great to learn to do somethign wrong just because I wasn't told the easy rules behind this. And I think the ladies were able to get the simple instructions.

    Well, although I really thought like I wouldn't want to teach the beginners as I didn't know what way to teach them, and I am not sure if I did what the teacher had in mind exactly, but I wasn't nervous in the end and actually felt it went well. I am trying not to be surprised by anything pushed on me anymore, always just expecting the worst. :D Be ti helping with the beginners or leading the form in a group more advanced than me... that I think about it is pretty much the same as what happened with karate some years ago...

    Still I wouldn't mind if the assigned instructor would arrive next time :oops::cool: Or rather, he'd better arrive. :D
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2021
  6. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Thursday 16.9.

    Karate adults - teaching
    Sensei is away today, so he asked me to teach the classes, if possible. I didn't make it to the kids class today, but a sempai was there, luckily. Because of the traffic I arrived late and because I didn't chack the weather forecast, I didn't expect a downpour when I got off the bus, so I didn't bring an umbrealla, nor a jacket. It is only about 200-300 m to the dojo, but I got soaked anyway, dripping water in the school hallway. Parents waiting for their karate kids found it amusing and Seth lent me his towel. I understood why they were laughing when I saw myself in the mirror. I looked as if I just got out from a pool, hair completely wet. I'll check the forecast next time!

    The kids' class ended up faily late, so we also started 20 mins later, so I was there actually on time :D
    Only sever people today. I did only a quick warm-up and Junbi undo with some kihon - hiza geri, tsuki. We review these two and proceeded to practicing the three basic blocks that appear in the first kata - age, yoko and harai uke. Especially the last is usually tricky for beginners, but the two beginners we had - father and son, were doing pretty good. Father used to do Shotokan for some time 30 years ago and while I thought the son had no experience, he did very well, too. I had them practice only age uke for now in pairs and toward the end of the class we made use of the fact that we were in the dojo inside for the first time (due to weather) and had access to equipment like pads. So we practiced tsuki and mae geri with pads. And we did some bodyweight exercises throughout the class.
    We finished a bit later - as we started later.

    Karate - advanced
    Me, Sett and the sempai stayed for the next half an hour for an advanced class. Sensei wasn't here so we simply took the opportunity to review the kata we... sort of forgot. For the sempai it was Shisochin, and I asked Seth to help me with Seiyunchin and Sepai that I had a bit of trouble with. Seiyunchin came back quite well, but Sepai was tougher. I suddenly had bigger trouble that last time, and just couldn't focus properly to do it right. I still have some detials I am unsure of as we hadn't practice this kata too much before. I will have to look into my notes. I think I have everything written down for scenarios like there :)
    I am depressed that I forgot. Also, as I was only practicing Taiji lately, I subsonsciously tried to start some techniques by moving my hips in a circle and making the hands go in a circle that wasn't there. Luckily I did stop myself before going through with that... I'll have to practice my kata some more.
    axelb likes this.
  7. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    This weekend I was resting, no physical activity at all :D I planned to do the online Tiaji class I missed, but I had other stuff to catch up with and didn't. Even then, my right knee started hurting out of nowhere a bit - a sharp pain when twisting the leg a bit. No idea why.

    Monday 20.9.

    Karate kids - teaching
    10 kids today. We started with a slalom - running, jumping, various things. Junbu Undo, then hiza geri and mae geri practice, short game at the end. There were several parents in the dojo today, watching. Maybe that was one of the reason why the kids were behaving :) Or maybe they are still nervous at the beginning of the school year. The class went well, today. Just that I was shouting the ocunting and encouragements etc., I got myself tired from that.

    Karate adults - half teaching
    I asked Sett if he could do the warm-up, I seriously exhausted myself. We did some footwork, then I did Junbi Undo and after Sett had an exercise with basic tsuki and something for coordination that we did most of the time. I was happily just helping with correcting others etc. Then we went through two blocks - Uchi uke and Uchi barai uke.
    Although this is an adult class, it looked more like a kids class. There are two 13 year olds, which is the age we accept kids for the adult class. But one of them has a 10 yo friend, then there are brothers who can't make it to kids class on Mondays, so they go to adults, then somehow one or two 8-10 yo came out of nowhere and finally a father and 14 yo son. So only four adults, really. And one new boy, who could have been around 14, too. I am glad there were a lot of people, but it is not really a class where we could be doing hojo undo or iron body conditioning etc...

    Nearly 1000 kcal burnt.
    I was really very tired and sleepy at the end, so we even skipped the advanced practice. Might be as I wasn't sleeping too much lately, my Polar says average of 6 hours of sleep for the last month. I guess I was feeling that today.
    Travess likes this.
  8. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Tuesday 21.9.

    I nearly overslept. I had weird dreams about moving somewhere and forgetting about the upcoming Taiji seminar, only realizing the next day. It gave me a bit of stress, but half sleeping, I was thinking: "How could I possibly forget" and I started waking up thinking it's ridiculous, what day is it, there's surely time till weekend. As I did, I checked my watch and found out I should go for a tram in just about 5 minutes, for the morning class, so I jumped out of bed. I realized it's ok if I go by the later tram, though, so although in a hurry, I prepared tea in my thermo mug, brished my teeth, put on clothes and rushed out....

    Morning Taiji
    Just as I arrived, the receptionist greeted me: "Ah, good you're here, the usual instructor isn't coming today, so I thought it would be on me!"
    In the end, though, I wasn't asked to help today, but the receptionist was called over. There were three groups today - the beginners, the group around 25 moves and the advanced group knowing the whole form with me. The teacher asked me: "Do you already know the whole form?" Well, no. But the rest of the group helped me answer: "Nearly." Not sure if it carried the meaning I intended that I haven't advanced any since last Tuesday. We went through the whole form once, and then practiced the last two moves I learned. The teacher was going between the three groups, with the beginners being managed by the receptionist-instructor. When he came to us, he showed me the next move - Ape Presents Fruit. I did try to copy it before from the others, but didn't get an explanation and thus missed several details. We practiced these three new moves (for me) over and over. I forgot some of how that weird turn should be, and I was trying to figure it out, but will have to look into my notes from last week later.
  9. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Tuesday 21.9.

    Taiji Kung-fu
    The second class of this type (2 hours). We started with silk-reeling with fajins included and a bit of theory on fajins. We then split inot two groups - those who know up to the first five moves and the rest. Of the rest, half was told to practice moving from the hips, while the rest of us were working on the first around 23 moves, trying to make them flow better, with the more difficult versions of some movements. That was nice, I am always told to practice that, but rarely have the opportunity to. We then practice the 6th move - White Crane Spreads its wings for quite a while, also - the hip movements there are really tricky, so we had time to try and figure it out. We took this move as a basis for our training today and tried to work on an easy (in theory) application in pairs. First was re-directing the pushing force, then grabbing their arms near the elbow and pulling them in another direction. That was nice. Then we also tried something a bit more basic - Two people would face each other, one leg back, pushing each other's hips. Or rather, one will be doing the pushing, the other would try to just turn their body along its vertical axis a little bit to throw the partner off balance.
    My partner is a friend, a bit younger, a bit taller, but slim and my estimate is she could be around 15 kg lighter than me (I am 76 kg, so...), I'd say, so she was at a huge disadvantage here. I tried to push enough to give her some force to work with, but not too much so that she could comfortably try the technique.And when she turned to any direction, I didn't resist at all.
    I pushed a bit harder when she asked me to so she could try under more pressure, too. She was getting better at it. Then we switched. I didn't find it too hard, but also because she was lighter than me, I didn't have much trouble pushing her one way or the other even with bad construction. For example I forgot to push my back straight andonly remembered or found out when the teacher reminded me. I then asked my partner to also push hard, so I could try the technique with a bit more force as well. I turned a little, I thought relatively slow etc., but to my surprise, she was disbalanced and actually fell o_O I guess I did it right, but no idea how it happened. It was probably that she really pushed with all her weight. My partner also said that we could try both pushing at the same time and see who can disbalance the other first. It was definitely a good practice, but she had no chance. I let her try pushing a bit, while I took the opportunity to feel which direction she was pushing in order to use her force against her eventually.

    The teacher then arrived to explain some detail to us asked me to push him hard so he could demonstrate. I wasn't worried he'd have trouble with that, but still didn't feel like giving it 100% of my strenght - he'd probably send me flying :D He showed how the technique worked with ease and I thought I got it, more or less. Then the teacher asked me to push my partner and he corrected some stuff for her. He said we needed to awaken her fighting spirit, haha :D Therefore I was asked to push her properly, so I pushed a bit harder, but the teacher urged me on. I pushed more. My partner lost her proper construction, and her whole body started shaking quite a bit. It was obviously a struggle just ot hold her place. Losing her stance, she couldn't turn anymore to throw me. The teacher then explained to everyone that is no the way, no shaking! He then took us to the other women pair and switched us up. My partner got another instructor, who's similarly tall and with similar build. I was asked to pair up with the other instructor, the teacher telling her: "Take Nachi, she's too fierce!" (well, literaly he said "predatory") -_- I wasn't fierce on my partner, I was actually really nice and compliant when I felt like her strenght went the right direction. The teacher was the one who urged me to push harder and harder! And now he'd turn that against me, tsk -_- Anyway, my new partner was still much lighter than me, but had more strenght and more experience, better construction. She reminded me to keep my back straight and I focused on that, exerting a slightly more strenght on her and it worked nice, she was able to disbalance me to either side with relative ease and vice versa.

    Taiji - 50 moves (more or less)
    The class after the kung-fu thing was one I am attending, too. We worked on the Fair Maiden Works Shuttles move for the whole class right after the usual silk reeling. Quite a lot of jumping today. There were 9 people in our group, which is more compared to summer. Only toward the class did I realize I was the only woman there. I found that quite surprising, there are usually more women in general.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2021
  10. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Wednesday 22.9.

    Taiji - 15 moves, instructing
    I originally planned to go even tot he previous class with my dad. But my dad said his knee hurt and he'd leave it to next week and will decide if he'd be coming to taiji, or not. I had some work to do, so I only went to the later class.
    I did the silk reeling, then practiced the 14 moves with the group under the teacher's instruction. Later the teacher pointed out some things to focus on and explained more details of the 15th form which we practiced. He was demonstrating in the front himself and only asked me to take his place when he wanted us to try all 15 moves again. It didn't go that well for me today, I didn't feel the flow too much. Also partially due to the fact that I tried to do slowly and focusing more on the postures in the main parts rather than the flow. When the teacher demonstrated something, I noticed he breathed a bit differently in a couple of moves. There are more versions and I was wither taught both by the head teacher, but did the other, or I actually didn't know the version teacher P was doing now. When I was asked to do the 15 moves with the class again, I tried teacher P's version to do it the same way, but I only got stuck at that place where I figured I needed to add one more breath and it messed the whole move up. So I stopped trying :D I guess a different version done more or less correctly and smoothly is better than just trying hard to do something that doesn't work for me.
    After the class, the girls in the changing room wanted to tell me they enjoyed my silk reeling as I had the perfect tempo for them. Some instrucotrs or teachers usually do it much slower or faster and I guess us women of similar age would have similar natural breathing :) When I was leaving, one of those girls that I hven't talked to before today actually even thanked me for doing the silk reeling - leading the warm-up. It caught me by surprise. Why thank me for that? It was really nice of her, though.
  11. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Thursday 23.9.

    Morning Taiji
    The regular instructor for this class arrived today. After he led the silk reeling, the teacher sent him to the beginner group. We went through the whole form once, and since there were a couple of people who know only about half of it, the teacher had us work on some of the harder parts of that first half. He said we might get to the end of the form (probably where I am at) later in the class, but not surprisingly, there wasn't enough time. I didn't mind, I was reminded of some things in the earlier moves I did wrong and figured out a mistake I was doing in one of the turns. Only to realize this was more or less the correction I got for this form last time, but forgot about it... I managed to do better today when we practiced it. Other than that tiny success, I wasn't able to get into the "zone" ever since the meditation at the beginning of the class. I couldn't get the movements to flow, I couldn't get the breathing to deepen or I don't know how to explain, but it just didn't feel right and I was annoyed at myself for that, further preventing me to get into it. I did some minor mistakes in the form because of this also and didn't enjoy today's training as much, internally. I guess there are some days like that, sometimes.

    Tommorrow I am going for a 4 day Taiji seminar again. I was thinking of making the trip there by train and bike. As a result, I will have to work overtime today to be able to leave earlier tommorrow. Which means no karate today. Which makes me sad, but a day only has so many hours...
  12. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter


    I was leaving for a 4-day long Taiji seminar today. I decided to go by train and bike to enjoy a nice ride. I packed enough clothes into a backpack with a final weight of 9 kg. I rode 7 km to the main station and got out of the train 90 mins later. I planned a 32km ride to the teacher's place.
    I planned a different route than last year - trails rather than roads with traffic. It was all planned well, the trip and trails were great - except for a couple of places where the terrain was a bit too rough. I got off the bike at one of them which was not avery used trail and the grass on it was as tall as I. It was a bit up the hill and with roots hidden in the grass. My front wheel was lifting
    off the ground partly due to my heavy baggage, and I decided to get off.
    Everything went well, except for me realizing maybe after 3km that the backpack was too heavy. My back hurt more than my legs and in the later part of the trip I did frequent breaks to relax the load and stretch. The last few km were quite uncomfortable. Luckily it wasn't the "bad" back pain, only the muscles holding the load were very tired.

    Upon my arrival I took a shower and went for a dinner -after that we had a first training session - Wuji meditation, silk reeling and the first 6 moves. The 6th move - White Crane Spreads Its wings - is quite difficult and the teacher had a correction for the senior instructor. She worked on that even after the training with the teacher trying different explanations and approaches. I planned to improve that part too, but since the correction wasn't primarily for me, I only watched and listened for now, with no energy for really trying. I'll try tommorow
    BIKE: 32 + 7km, 1283 + 197kcal, 2h30min +24min

    Travess likes this.
  13. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    TAIJI SEMINAR 25.9. morning

    I started my practice a bit before 8 am.
    (I would have sooner, but there was a queue for the bathrooms). I went through the form once. My legs and back were quite stiff. At 8 am the teacher arrived to do the silk reeling warm-up. When I arrived, he was almost surprised: „You're silk reeling with us?" Not sure about his surprise. Did he think I should go practice forms (as the advanced usually do)? Not sure, but before I thought it through and had time to disagree, I was the one leading the warm-up...
    After breakfast we started where we left-off yesterday -with White Crane Spreads its wings. For the more advanced, which seemed to include me, the teacher showed a version which flows better and is a bit faster. We were trying that. A bit later we split into 3 groups. The most "advanced" one was catered a bit towards my needs. Everyone else knew the whole form, so the part we were practicing was the moves I had just learned. I again learned more details and was told to try and learn both versions.
    We got time to practice. When the teacher returned and saw, he told me Id better stick to the basic version now, after all, hahaha :D And was told several corrections... Then he showed us even a third version from Sin Jia school with mor fajins, which seemed even more complicated. The different versions were about the difficult turn there. For roughly the last hour was the staff/spear practice. I had no one being at a similar
    place in the form, so I practiced by myself, trying to see if I could at least remember all I learned last time. Soon, however, two ladies came asking if I could teach them the next move as they were at the beginning. I prefer leaving the decision if someone should learn something to the teacher, but I suppose it wouldn't be a problem here. The actual problem was that I was not proficient with the staff at all, don't know many details of the moves and there's a huge chance I'd teach them wrong. I cannot do the moves well at all. So we at least reviewed what they knew. When the teacher came by, he showed us and taught us so I could teach them... Another instructor adviced to teach them the moves only roughly, not to a detail. We're learning the staff mostly for fun anyway and they need to start from the big moves. Later I again went through the parts I wanted to practice.
  14. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    TAIJI SEMINAR 25.9. afternoon

    In the afternoon we again split into our groups. As for our group, the teacher showed us (well, mostly me) the next move. It feels like he's not going very easy on me in teaching the forms anymore. He shows once, explains twice, let us try and practice. when he returns, he tells me everything I'm doing wrong and shows 2-3 different variations of the move and teaches the next part. Not confusing at all!
    He also tried to improve my posture in the new move, which felt more like he wanted to break my back. He gave me examples of one chinese master and his best student - many times European champion and two times world championship medalist - in how to do that stance in a low and lower position. Then I realized he's probably just having some unrealistic expectations. But sure I will try toward that goal. When an instructor later corrected my foot position there, it went a bit better. Thank goodness she was there. I could
    always ask some details that weren't clear to me. Later we practiced the staff again. The ladies found me again, too, so I worked with them, later on my stuff for a bit as well.
    3746 kcal burned today.
  15. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    TAIJI SEMINAR 26.9. morning

    Today I was actually the first person to practice outside (7:30). I did the form twice. It started mining a bit, unexpectedly. I didn't have a jachet, but the rain was not that intense. At 8 I had the warm-up again.

    After breakfast we split into the same groups. One woman of our group already knows the whole form, but she 's returning to Taiji after a few years so she asked if we could go through Lao Jin Yi Lu with her so she could copy and remember it. We did that twice.

    When the teacher arrived, we reviewed the last more and he showed me the next-Stepping back to rid the tiger. Again a brief demonstration, explanation and we were left to practice.
    As usual, for the last our of training we practiced the staff/spear. As promised, today I wasn't helping the other ladies, but practiced with the instructor and the teacher helping with some parts. Since nearly all the staffs were taken by others-except for the very long (way too much for me) or very short, I took the short one like yesterday.

    When the instructor saw this, she sent me to take a spear-it should help me correct some mistakes I do in the turning steps and elsewhere. The spears here were on the heavier side and slightly longer than what I could use. But only slightly for some, so I picked one. It was a bit thicker and hard to shake. I felt a bit awkward with it at the beginning, but slony a got used to it. It was indeed still hard to shake it in some moves, but on the other hand, if it did, I could be relatively sure I used the energy and direction of that strike well. I'm not very good with the spear. O watched the instructor and tried to learn from her and from what the teacher told us.
  16. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    TAIJI SEMINAR 26.9. afternoon

    After the lunch break our group was shown again the next move-Turn Back and Double Wave Lotus. Some parts toward the end seemed a bit tricky, but not overwhelmingly. My knees again hurt. Last seminar they (or at least one) hurt when I stretched it and put weight on it, now the problem was bending it with weight on it - like squatting. When I managed to squat (while propping myself with arms), I couldn't get up... When I pushed past this pain a couple of times, it eased a bit, but...

    Luckily practicing the form (except for trying the crazy low stances that I can't do anyway), didn't seem to be a problem.
    Later we again practiced the spear form - I was again alternating with the instructor, trying to improve the technique. The teacher told me he would rather not teach me new moves now, that I should work on what I already knew - about half of the form. I definitely agreed with that. I know a sequence that is long enough for practicing various skills and I am a long way from mastering them, so I wasn't thinking about new moves at all.
    3820 kcal burned today. .
  17. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    TAIJI SEMINAR - 27.9.

    Today I started practice at around 7:40. I did one form with the instructor, ending just two moves before the end. As we finished I went to join the warm-up. It was already led by another person, as the instructor told me, so I guess I needn't join, but I think I should work on improving my silk reeling. It's true that I get to practice that more often than the whole form, but it 's a bit of a tradition already. After breakfast I practiced the last few moves I learned. When the teacher returned from teaching the other group, he taught me the last move - Cannon Right in Front.
    This was just about the briefest explanation and demonstration yet - It couldn't have taken more than 5 mins and most of that time was probably us trying. Luckily this move was short and I copied it before during one class I spent practicing with the teens.

    I have now officially learned the whole Lao Jia Yi Lu! Contrary se expectations (it seems to usually take 3-4 years in the courses, but I finished in 2 years - 2 months of which I had a break). It was the instructor first and the teacher next who congratulated me on finally stepping on the starting line - I could finally start learning properly now. Pretty much like getting a black belt in karate in this way, I guess

    Last hour before lunch was spent practicing spear.

    After lunch break our group went through the whole Lao Jin Yi Lu. My first whole form after learning it! For a celebration I got a small tea toast :) We worked on a few different parts of the form then and I asked the teacher about some details I wasn't sure about. We also talked about fajins and I got some tips.
    I was also told to maybe not overdo it with the number of classes I attend, the teacher would prefer that I just practice the whole form by myself as much as possible and regularly even if it be one a day. And not come to classes to needlessly review what I already know, or be used to do the warm-ups, then listen to the theory instead of practicing as much as I can by myself and focusing on improving what I was told. I am not sure, though, if there are classes I really want to or should cut out... I’ll try more practice by myslelf, though. One falls into that category, but that is an evening one that follows right after the main class I should be attending, so I think it wouldn't take from my practice since I wouldn't have any energy to practice by myself if I went home instead...

    For the last hour we again practiced the spear. I again worked with the instructor - one practicing, one taking a break - alternating. I am getting used to the longer and heavier spear, I can shake it a bit better.
    I slowed down the form today, trying to figure out how not to wrestle with the spear, which I was supposedly doing. I could feel I was improving, getting from terrible to slightly less terrible :D
    When the teacher came, he wanted to correct the next move the instructor know - one just after the sequence I knew. When the teacher was correcting the instructor, I was always trying the things with them. If the instructor is doing something wrong, chances are I do as well. Since I didn’t know this part, though, I stood sideways, giving them space and just watching.
    But I was told right away to try and copy and was eventually was taught about 4 new moves (well two of them were ones I already knew). What happened to not teaching me anything new for now from yesterday?
    One of the moves was pretty tricky and quite a struggle strength-wise with my long and relatively thick spear. I’ll have to find the trick to do it well.
  18. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    TAIJI SEMINAR - 28.9.

    The last day of the seminar I started shortly after 7:30. Together with the instructor I went through the form. The last move of the form is the same as the first, so when we finished, unexpectedly, instead of closing the form, the instructor continued right with the second move and like this we ended up going through the form 3 times. This way I did skip the silk reeling today, but I think I was even supposed to.

    After breakfast, we split into groups. For some reason two people from our group joined the others working on the 7th move, so there were only two groups today – the instructor + me and the rest.

    I originally thought we’d be working on the end of the form that I’d just learned and the instructor seemed happy to work on as well, but when the teacher came to check on us and saw us practicing some part, we stopped at the very first move. He corrected the hip movements of the instructor and went into quite the detail. Again, if she was doing something wrong, I am pretty sure I was doing it even more wrong, so I tried what she was doing, too. The teacher gave us both corrections of this, each a bit different. I am a bit lacking after all, so I have different things to work on. All of it was quite a complicated detail and we were left to practice it since the teacher wanted us to really learn this properly. Actually after some trying in vain, I realised the two problems I was supposed to work on were probably related. If I can’t turn the hips well and shift the weight properly, it is hard to open the foot early and smoothly enough. It was hard. But we were both happy we were given such useful and detailed corrections.

    We practiced this the whole morning except for the last hour spent on the spear. The teacher corrected the principles of the spear techniques that I can’t do - some things I simply forgot to try and do and other correction were for the instructor that were too hard for me to do (I didn’t even come close), but I tried anyway to at least remember, collecting the knowledge so I knew what to practice and work towards.

    After lunch we only had about 90 mins which were, as usual, spent giving each person a homework of sorts – the most important things we should work on at home. My knees were again very stiff and since I got a big systemic correction in the morning, I thought I may not need to show the form now to get any more corrections. The teacher said so as well, but asked if I wanted to show something. I really didn’t, but ended up doing so anyway when the teacher was thinking what it was that made my knees hurt. Actually I thinkg it is not the joint per se that hurts, but all the soft stuff around it as it is probably not used to this type of movement. It doesn’t hurt during practice, only after. I could pick what to show now, and since I was stiff, I decided to do the beginnig forms rather than the ending I just learned as that part is much harder. Even as I started I was stopped even before the first step and then the second. The teacher found a possible reason for my knee pain. He tried with me, showing me the correct way to do it – correct by taiji principles and preventing me from putting my weight into the knees. It was hard to do i the correct way even with detailed explanation and the teacher helping me adjust the positions. Again, this was actually connected to the corrections I was given in the morning. It was actually the way to improve on those things. Ah, I am so glad I did show the moves now! If I can learn this, it would be a huge help! Hopefully I can ease the load on my knees! I still admire the teacher for figuring out such details even after one look. Actually once I understood what he meant by saying some stuff, his explanation of the forms and everything are pretty neat. He can explain even fairly complicated stuff to the tiniest detail that it’s acually possible to understand even though I am not able to make my body do that. That is actually the reason he is able to teach me new moves in a matter of minutes. When I thought about all this, I had to appreciate what a great teacher he is.
  19. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    As for the trip from the seminar, I rode my bike, but only much shorter distance - around 9 and later 7 more km. This movement was ok for my knees and the trip was easy. I actually decided to not struggle with the heavy backpack anymore and put nearly all the clothes into a separate bag I asked a friend - the instructor to put into her car. I'll pick it up later.

    This seminar was really awesome, I was a part of a small group, so we could get a lot of personalized instruction. Well, the whole group was reviewing the moves I was learning. I kind of expected that if the circumstances were right, I might be able to finish learning all the moves of the form. Now I should not be dragging the advanced group of the morning class down, as they won't have to review the last moves of the form one by one with me for the next maybe a month of more. I am glad for that. I should be working on improving my taiji in the form in general now, mostly.

    Before I actually even finished learning the form, the teacher brought up the topic of what to learn next and asked my opinion. I had none, though, I never really thought much beyond what would come once I learn the whole Lao Jia Yi Lu. I expected to spend some time then and maybe learn bits of what's available. The teacher said it would depend on how he'll organize the courses, but he'd let me improve the Lao Jia Yi Lu and work on that at least till the end of the year. Then a course learning the next par - the Cannon fist form - Lao Jia Er Lu should finihs and he could start perhaps a sword form class. He thought learning the sword might be good for me. He advised not to learn the Cannon fist for now, that I should first improve on my fajins. I agreed with that.
    A couple of days later, the teacher spoke to me and the instructor I partnered up with for practice and proposed we - at first I thought it was aimed at the instructor, but perhaps it was for both of us? - could perhaps learn the newer form - Xin Jia (83 forms). It should be similar to Lao JIa Yi Lu, but with some moves added and the moves generally being more complicated and with more fajins. He thought it might give another perspective on the form we already know, too, and give us more flexibililty in the moves and maybe eventually create a mix of the forms that would be best for us that we could practice as our personalized form. Those ideas were quite interesting, but quite far for now. THe teacher mentioned we could start learning this next spring and spend the year working on the Xin Jia form, but he wouldn't make a class for that, but would teach those interested on these seminars or in the Taiji Kung-fu classes. He then mantioned that until then - till spring, I could finish learning the staff or sword of a weapon of choice. Well that was another surprise. I will wait and see how things go and see what would be available or let the teacher decide what he things would be best for me. I am already looking forward to all the possibilities. Although I am probably most excited about the possibility to learn the sword form. :)
    But for now I still have plenty to learn and digure out in Lao Jia Yi Lu. I am fairly motivated now from the seminar, so I'll do my best :)
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2021
  20. Nachi

    Nachi Valued Member Supporter

    Wednesday 29.9.

    My dad wasn't coming, so I didn't go for the earlier Taiji class today. I had slightly more time, though, so I came half an hour earlier to do some solo practice as I was instructed and tried to figure out the new corrections. I went through the whole form once, very slowly, figuring the movement where I needed to change it. This took 22 mins. I still had 5 more mins till the start of the class, so I decided to do a fast form (I was also told to practice different paces - like slow - 20 mins and fast - 7 mins). 5 mins still wasn't enough so I started from the 27th form or so - the kicks.

    Taiji - 15 moves - instructing
    I then went for the class, led the warm-up. The head teacher at the seminar also told me to use the time I am in front of the class to work on my technique, not minding the people behind and use the chance that I am the first in front of the mirror, without anyone obstructing and dictating the my own tempo. So I did that. I worked on the hip rotattion in the silk reeling. I most likely didn't do it right, but at least, I did it differently than usual, as I could feel different muscles starting to hurt a bit.
    Later when we practiced the moves up till the 15th, I focused again on the corrections when it came to stepping. I was just a little worried as I was just trying that for the first time today and at times it was hard to keep my balance or not to do some awkward moves. Since the class was told to follow my tempo/lead, I wouldn't want to do that. I got absorbed and focused on that that I actually forgot this is the 15 moves class and I continued with the 16th, but realized half was through the move.... Otherwise today's class felt nice.

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