Thursday, December 21, 2023

Your First Martial Arts Lesson

Martial arts are about moving and using the body in a certain way.

Just as sports, dance, and hatha yoga have ways of using the body for a specific function, so do the martial arts.

Yet, before we can begin to move the body correctly in the martial arts, as students we need to reset it to zero. We need to learn how to move the body in correct joint alignment, with correct posture and structure that can support the martial arts.

Moving in such a way that we are in balance and able to understand distance.

Junan taiso (tiger and dragon exercises), breathing exercises, and going for long walks are three such ways of returning the body to correct balance and alignment.

Which puts the student in a place to start moving correctly in the martial arts.

Our first martial arts lesson is best experienced in the dojo, but one is able to visualize it and approach an understanding as to why we practice it.

In this fundamental exercise you stand across from your training partner, about six or so feet away in distance- the correct distance is where they have to take a step in order to reach you.

When they are ready, your training partner is going to step forward and try to grab your wrist.

As they do this, using footwork, and moving in correct martial arts alignment you get out of the way, avoiding the grab, while positioning your body so your training partner cannot just grab you again.

No martial arts strikes, blocks, locks, throws, or counters.

Just get out of the way, take yourself off the angle of attack, and put your body in a safe place where you cane scape or deescalate.  

This is the first (or one of the first) lessons in training as it begin to override the wrong natural reaction of just standing and not moving when something enters your space. (kukan).

It begins to train the mind-body-spirit to work together and just act.

Something enters your space, move correctly and get out of the way.

Martial arts as a very specific and specialized way of moving, not as a collection of techniques, but rather a feeling.

See you on the mat!

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The aim of the Bujinkan Shinmyoken Dojo (school of the life giving sword) is to understand nature and the movement of being zero through taijutsu- martial ways of using the body. The school exists to create and transmit this feeling and method through the experience of isshi soden.

Located in Westchester New York, the Bujinkan Shinmyoken Dojo is a martial arts training group founded in 2005 with the aim of coming together as martial arts friends to study the Japanese martial arts of Masaaki Hatsumi through the movement lessons of the Bujinkan Dojo.

Training is supervised by Fred Feddeck who has been studying Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu since 1993.

Classes are held on Saturday Mornings from 9-11 AM at a local park in Yonkers New York easily accessible by car, train, and bus. Additional training times are held for workshops and seminars each quarter.

Questions, feedback, and inquiries may be directed to the group here:

Those interested in finding more about our training are invited to join our meetup and event mailing list below.

This mailing list is used to provide updates regarding upcoming seminars and workshops, along with meeting times for our once a month martial arts meetup to discuss and explore various topics in our training.

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