January 24th, 2008

after all

(no subject)

Monday evening I did something I've been wanting to do for a few years now - got back on the mat at an aikido class.

The Kokikai dojo on Capital Hill was recommended by another Vashon Islander, and it is indeed very similar to the AAA dojo I was part of in Chicago. Class followed an almost identical pattern, which was both comfortingly familiar and more than a bit surprising.

Most disconcerting moment: the sudden realization that I can no longer do front rolls. I managed two on the left side, and could feel that I wasn't doing it properly, but felt that it was better to try again and relearn on the fly. However, when it was time to do the right side rolls, my body just refused to do it. I didn't feel scared or unwilling, but I also could not move. So I bowed out of the rest of the roll exercises and watched as everyone else finished.

We did two techniques: kosadori kotageshi and ushiro tekubitori sankyo (I have probably mangled the spelling, and I know if I go to doublecheck it I will not return to finish posting, so...).

It was like my head remembered more than my body did, but both were interested in doing this a lot more. Both the instructor and the senior students in class were very good to work with. The other beginners were clearly just starting out, but worked at it with a will. I'm looking forward to getting back there next Monday.

The only downside was the expected physical soreness the next couple of days. My left shoulder specifically is unable to extend the arm naturally. But I remember this being a part of it as well. With care I'll get full function back in time for the next class, and with repeated use the muscles adapt to the new demands.