Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Just for Fun - Anagrams Number 3

Or, alternatively, Just for Fun 7! Anyway here are some more anagrams for your delectation and delight. as before, they are all related to aikido and the club. Answers next week.

  1. sand! O my!
  2. a main hi
  3. van cases
  4. Rio ride
  5. just on a kid 

Sunday, 29 November 2020

Quote of the Week - 29th November

This week's quote is another one offering encouragement for our hopes of practise. 

The longest journey begins with a single step.

 Lao Tsu

Wednesday, 25 November 2020

An Anecdote from Alan Ruddock

This is about aikido in a roundabout way. It is in Alan's 'Aikido Memoirs', and it recounts an incident that took place when he was sailing to Japan where he was going to study aikido with O-Sensei. You might find it amusing.

Sailing from Singapore to Bangkok we were sailing past Saigon at night. Normally the ship would have docked in Saigon, but because of the war in Vietnam we were sailing directly to Bangkok. WE were sailing towards many ships. It was actually the United States Fleet. Suddenly I noticed a morse code signal being flashed from one of the warships. Having been a Radio Officer I was easily able to read the signal. They were asking 'What ship? What ship? Moments later looking up to the bridge on our ship I saw the French crewman signalling 'Viet Nam, Viet Nam'. This request from the warship was repeated many times with out man replying on two or three occasions. Finally looking up I saw the French crewman throw his hands up and with a look of absolute distain ignored the continuing American requests. Fortunately, as we sailed past the fleet our name was visually verified by searchlight to actually be 'Viet Nam'.

Alan Ruddock

Sunday, 22 November 2020

Quote of the Week - 22nd November

Something for all of us who feel that the progress towards practise is one step forward and one step back!

Fall seven times, stand up eight.

Japanese proverb 

Wednesday, 18 November 2020

Distance and Space in Aikido

Over the past nine months we have all become very familiar with the term social distancing. We use it to describe the distance we need to keep from others to avoid catching Covid-19, but its original use was to describe the variety of distances that we keep with and from other people. In aikido too, social distancing is important, and our present heightened awareness of it may help our future practise.

Aikidoka have always been aware of distance  - or mai. This is the space you need to leave between yourself and an opponent, so that they need to move towards you to make an attack. In other words to move into your personal space. This is the point where we need to move offline to either a) leg it (technical term!) or b) prepare for a technique.

There is also another social distance or space. Private space. This is the one that, thanks to Alan, we know as 'granny space', the space in which you hug your granny. Your private space should be sacrosanct. Yet many aikidoka try and control an opponent by pulling them into this private space. As Alan said "It's where you hug your granny." So no attacker should be allowed in. After all, at the moment few grannies are getting the hugs they need. So why should a nasty person be there?

So, if we think about the social distancing we need at the moment, perhaps it will help our aikido practise - whenever that may be!

Margaret Thompson



Sunday, 15 November 2020

Quote of the Week - 15th November

This week's quote is an encouraging one for everyone who is wondering when we shall be able to practise aikido again - because even with the hopeful news of a vaccine it all seems a long time off.

There is hope, even when your brain tells you there isn't.

John Green

Wednesday, 11 November 2020

Quiz 3 Answers

Here are the answers to last week's quiz. But first well done to Neil who sent me a text with all the right answers.

  1. Koichi Tohei You can find this in 24th May post.
  2. Rear strangle and wrist grab.
  3. 2008 10th October actually.
  4. Four directions throw.
  5. 27th July 2016
  6. Harper Green Sports Centre