Monday, 15 June 2015

Trainees from Australia's Sunshine Coast: Noel and Heidi Moralde

A special thanks to my training partner, Morooka Takafumi San (JKA 4th Dan), who assisted me with coaching Noel and Heidi.
Over the weekend I had two members of JKA Australia come for private training. Noel Moralde (who runs a JKA club on the Sunshine Coast) and his wife Heidi. They had several private karate lessons with me here in Kumamoto including one at the Kumamoto Budokan, two at my dojo in Uchinomaki, one at Kokuzou Jinja, and one at my dojo in Ichinomiya.

In sum, the theme of the weekend was ‘how the trinity of kihon, kata, and kumite collectively—and harmoniously—must lead us towards the capacity of ichigekki hissatsu’. To do this I taught several critical points: (1) Shisei (posture) of the pelvis, back and neck; (2) Tachikata (Stance)—“into the opponent via 'connection' and correct distribution/application of one's body weight”; (3) Junansei (Softness) for speed and transfer of energy; (4) Koshi no kaiten (Hip rotation—horizontal power); (5) Tai no shinshuku (the contraction and expansion of the body)—vertical power used 'for momentum' when transferring/driving one’s vertical axis’ forward; (6) Ma—for ‘kime’ with every technique/action;  (7) Kakato chushin—“one movement” and maximum drive from terra firma; (8) Te-ashi onaji—perfect coordination of the hands and feet; and (9) Correct maai: no wasted movement, only techniques with the right distance to down the opponent in a real fight: namely "...to always make/set the ‘correct attack position’ (and when attacking, essentially "...the distance and placement of the feet")".

While I won’t go into the specifics of the above nine points, as these are for Noel and (and whom he chooses to share them with), the overall theme was “…everything in budo karate leads to effective jiyu-kumite and self-defence”. More importantly, anything that doesn’t achieve this is literally counterproductive in a self-defence situation. Fortunately, this is why Noel came to my dojo, so we could maximise the training time. 
To wrap up, I’d like to say that I really enjoyed meeting Noel and Heidi. I wish them both the very best in their on-going budo karate development; moreover, I really hope that they at least learned one thing that will help them to advance their existing karate skills. Over the weekend I saw several major improvements, which I am sure will snowball in the coming weeks and months to come. Noel and Heidi, you are always welcome at my dojo. We adamantly hope that you both enjoy your remaining time here in Nippon. Osu, André.

Noel and Heidi outside my dojo in Ichinomiya (Aso-shi, Kumamoto).
© André Bertel. Aso-shi. Kumamoto, Japan (2015).

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