Saturday, January 17, 2009

Kihon Waza

We have had a small influx of white belts lately at the Broken Bokken Dojo which is always exciting. It is a time to start at zero with fresh minds and bodies...and to stay connected to Kihon Waza. Kihon Waza means, 'Basic Techniques'. Shihan Dean called the basics, "Our Bread and Butter." He emphasized it continuously...and even today, after four decades in the arts it is what I continue to do in my personal workouts.

Without our Bread and Butter nothing else works...period. It is our foundation upon which we build our martial art house, and as we are all aware, a house with a crappy foundation will soon crumble, especially under pressure. Without a good base, both mentally and physically, you will get your butt whipped in a self-defense situation.

I am so thankful for Shihan Dean's teachings of the basics as they saved my ass quite a few times. In my profession as a counselor I can find myself in conflictual situations. This typically happens during a heated couples' counseling session that isn't going well or when I am running an anger management group for men who have committed domestic violence. (Hint: Never ask someone in anger management, 'How does that make you feel?'...and yes, I do purposely piss them off at times.)

Well, I digressed a bit. Sorry. Kihon Waza, for some can be very boring, but they need to be drilled until that point of no-thought and are 'forgotten'. Different styles have different Kihon Waza, but bottom-line, if you speak with any instructor, they will agree it is their bread and butter. If you are relatively new to the arts (or even old) please remember this lesson. The basics are your foundation and keys to your success both inside and outside the dojo. Yes, it takes time to build (in my mind about four-five years is good...with one kata), but your martial expertise and long-term joy in the arts is well worth the effort.

Regardless of your rank or years of experience, stick to your 'Bread and Butter.'

Be Well,

Shinzen Sensei

No comments:

Post a Comment