Aikido! Aikido! Aikido!

I never knew just how much I've missed aikido till my first class in 2 months this week. Visited two dojos in Wilmington, since I don't have labs to teach, and no classes on Monday and Tuesday (it's Fall break!). Skip Russ sensei at the first dojo, Shinbu-Kai Aikido, said I had this big grin on my face the whole time I was training, which I didn't even realise. How embarassing.... Went on Monday and Tuesday, and even had a short session of Iaido after class on Tuesday! I gotta bring my bokken from home now.... The class is pretty small, and so I got lots of one-on-one, and one-on-two training, was so stiff when I woke up the next morning, but aching in a good way! I was even happy to have the usual familiar swellings and bruises on my forearms- long time no see, haha! (I usually get them from nages who use their forearm to block my shomen or yokomen-uchi).

Tonight, I biked over to the Aikido of the Garden Spring Wind dojo, instructed by Keith and Deborah McDuffie senseis, which is just up the street from my apartment! Russ sensei asked me to check it out since it was much nearer to UNCW. Arrrggghhhh....I lived here for more than 2 months and I didn't even know it was there...Grrrr... We had lesson from 8.15-11pm! Very enthusiastic bunch, and I helped to uke some of the folks who are grading in a couple of weeks. Both styles are pretty similar to what I've been practising in Singapore (no surprise, they both had the same sensei and branched off after he passed on), very flowy, not too sharp and angular, emphasis on centre, breathing and unity with your partner. So I didn't have too much of a culture shock. Just...most of the terms are different! I kinda just looked at what each pair was doing to catch on.

I enjoyed training at both places, and if I had the moolah, would probably join both dojos, ha! Well, since I had to choose one, decided to go with the nearer dojo, would save a lot on petrol (Shinbu-Kai is a 20min drive away), and Russ sensei said if I ever wanted to drop in, I could do so anytime, which is really nice! Also at GSW dojo, if you pay two months, can train for 3 months, which is really really good news for me. The regular aikido classes are Mon and Thu 8.15-10pm, with Iaido on Wed and Sat. But they usually do some aikido after Iaido, so I could always pop in then as well.

So GREAT! I've finally found a dojo!! Hurrah!


AdamNg said…
Good for you! Aikido is quite a universal language don't u think? Pple of completely different cultures but doing the same kind of movements. Makes you feel at home. Do take some pics of ur dojo when u're free...!
Applecow said…
Oooo... yum yum... I'm more interested in the pictures of food!
Anonymous said…
to AdamNg:
Agree. ;-)

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