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Report from the Autumn Seminar

Kawaraban No. 32


by Watanabe Koichi

At the seminar, which took place from October 10th to 12th at hotel Kannon Onsen in Shimoda/Izu, 57 students participated. This time representatives of the students and the instructors organized the seminar jointly. Beginning with planning and preparation the seminar proceeded smoothly and took place in a happy but serious mood thanks to the efforts and the enthusiasm of the representatives of the students.

The hotel was located to the west of Shimoda about 20 minutes by car in the mountains and was equipped with an excellent gym and a Budo-Dojo (112 Tatami). All together there were three training lessons of 90 minutes each. The training was so fruitful that the 90 minutes were over before anybody noticed. Shimizu Sensei realized his ideas and so the training had a different touch compared to normal. During the first lesson shiho-nage was the main technique, and we were engaged in throwing and balance breaking upwards, sideward and downwards. During the second lesson the entry of ikkyo omote (from aihanmi katatedori) was the next technique. During the third lesson we were challenged by a difficult technique, which was slapping the hand of a partner attacking with tsuki to the side and throwing him with an atemi under his chin. In the beginning we hardly could absorb the kokyū (breath energy) and enter forward, but thanks to Shimizu Sensei’s explanation the absorption became better step-by-step. Generally spoken, progress could be noticed clearly, maybe because of the active engagement of everybody and also maybe because of the concentration, which had to be kept for a period of 90 minutes. 

After the end of the training we dived relaxed into the water of the ofuro (inside bath), which was completely made of cypress wood, or into the rotenburo (outside bath), refreshing body and mind by watching the autumn coloring of the mountains. And finally dinner. On day while we were eating the delicious dishes, Shima-san and Kojima-san served some fishes, which were prepared still alive and which they caught early in the morning in the sea. The organization committee guided us all through the program and provided a nice time. At the evening we gathered around Shimizu Sensei, and various topics were discussed.

Finally I would like to give my thanks to Shimizu Sensei, who instructed us, and at the same time to all representatives of the students, who cooperated quite well for the whole period and who got a wonderful seminar going. Furthermore thanks to Mr. Katagiri, who was driving the bus to the hotel and way back, and additionally to Kamata Sensei, Mr. Ikenaga, and Mr. Takahashi for their donations.

© translated by Peter Nawrot 08/2006