14/12/11 Kata for the first time in 6 months

Today I did Judo Kata for the first time in a while.

I’m just going to write this:

I love Kata.

I’m possibly in a minority, and yes, I’m terribly romantic about life, the universe and everything but some one has to see the magic for the mists.

So it was myself and Pete,

Pete is an awesome person in waiting. I’m fairly certain he will become one of those guys who’s just impossible but in a good way.

We do Nage no Kata, or the classical form for throwing, it comprises of 15 throws, in their traditional form thus preserving the absolute basics of Judo throws. It helped my training, it’s like showing someone how to draw lines, and basic shapes and then with this knowledge they go on to draw trees, and flowers.

Also personally I find having the element of the ceremonial and the sociable, I find it more fun than uchikomi, or singularly repetitative motioning. It’s nice being able to have a bit of a discussion, and like you’ve made something at the end 🙂

Pete finds Kata stressful.

We are doing the first set te-waza (hand techniques), I’m tori (thrower) he’s uki (throwee)

Some sober bowing and general appreciation and respect shown to joseki and each other.

First throw is uki otoshi which I think translates as floating drop. We fluff it. Three steps backwards are supposed to be followed by my getting down on one knee, while pulling Pete into an elegant arc. Pete should roll, my free hand should land like a autumn leaf to the undergrowth on my knee, and I should hold onto Pete for a brief resonant moment. However our stepping was stressed, I overbalanced on the knee bit, Pete panicked a bit on the roll, and I couldn’t hold onto him. His gi ripped from my fingers in a somewhat dramatic Die Hard 2, but mostly painful way. Even my free hand flailed, I had to use it to avoid falling on my face.

We continue on with the next two throws, it’s ok, but I miss the congruence I had achieved previously.

We switch, with Pete throwing, and I’ll admit I’m not the best at being thrown in controlled conditions. It’s partly a lack in confidence on my part. This did not bode well.

Pete had an existentialist fit by the time we reached the second set Hip techniques (Koshi-waza).

He calmed down, and practiced some more, I got him to breathe it out and reminded him that he knew all the throws and had no reason to worry about Kata. He did a lovely controlled harai-goshi or sweeping hip.

Then we had to finish up as the Judo class was on. We finished 15 min late… No one complained.

We did the Judo session, a small class, three green belts to begin with, myself, Pete, and another. It was interesting to note the personality differences between us at the start. We were joined by another two, a brown who’s new, and Ben.

We did a class mostly on sweeps and a bit of strangling which I love. And finished on some ground randori.

Pete popped on his brown belt and pootled off to jujitsu.

I waited for him and Liz (from the art gallery, she is a cultured ninja) and we all went to the pub.

It was here Pete had a moment.



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