Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Darrin - Camp

Hi Sam

In reply to your homework email...

Leading up to the camp I had been focussing on trying to 'fix' some of my kendo problems and I was doing extra cardio work to improve my fitness/stamina. Two days before the camp I got a cold - a bad one! Oh man, I was so frustrated!

I atttended the camp on Saturday and to be honest it was a long day for me because I had a headache and wasn't feeling too great. However I still really enjoyed the training.

I found the spiritual aspects of kata really helpful with having the appropriate attitude when approaching kata.

I found the breathing training really helpful although pretty hard work.

It was really useful for me as I have been thinking a lot lately about my breathing and how I use up all my breath on one kiai.

I also found that the focus on training with the attitude that your life is on the line every time was really good and should help me to improve my sanshin.

The kirikaishi training was cool too! It was really hard work when you and your opponent had to continually attack each other when one ran out of breath. My opponent and I each refused to say that either of us had 'won the battle' and so we fought 4 times I think.I was really stuffed after that but exhilarated too!

Actually I felt that the things that Sensei was focussing on are the same aspects that you, Marleen and Jeffrey focus on with our training also. This tells me that I have excellent teachers!

Hmm, when I mention good teachers I have to say that I noticed a couple of dan grade kendoka from other clubs did not appear to me to be as kind or maybe humble as I would expect from people at their level(?), so again it makes me grateful for the high quality of the instrutors in our club.

So anyway, I got through Saturday, went home and pretty much straight to bed. When I woke up on Sunday my cold was even worse and I decided that it would not be sensible for me to attend the camp that day - but I was really disappointed.Still, I learnt heaps from Saturday and it's given me a lot to work on. For one thing, after training all day I reckon that 3 hours on a Saturday is nothing!!

I want to finish by saying that I noticed how much preparation etc was going on in the back ground and I am immensely grateful to you, Marleen, the senpai from our club and all the others that did stuff to make sure the camp ran smoothly for us all. I can't really thank you enough and it humbles me with all that you guys do for the club.

Kind regards
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