Koshinage Khronicles & Quaking Quads – Training Log

This past Saturday the 6th was my third training day in 3 weeks. Goes to show how spotty my exposure has been.

To start off the day I ran 6 miles – an awesome accomplishment considering that on the 5th (last Thursday) I ran 6 miles of hills! Just thinking about this makes me gitty like a little girl.

…Unfortunately I discovered that these miles came with an unintended consequence – my quads burned every time I went up a flight of stairs! Funny enough I have no pain walking, but just going up and down was a painful endeavor that day – which I discovered to my dismay when I was walking up the stairs in the dojo and when I went to the library afterward.

So running 6 miles x 2 back to back is an awesome feeling – even with your quads unable to support your own weight!

Then for training, the theme was Koshi-nage.

Koshi nage (“腰投げ”) or otherwise known as the hip throw can be a touchy subject for most Aikido schools. Not too many instructors do these because it requires a certain amount of training and presence in part of both the uke and nage. While this throw is one of the most frightening and intimidating for beginners, that should not be an excuse to not introduce it in a less overpowering presentation.

So my sensei started out using a fellow brown belt as an uke for the first half in front of the class, then used myself.

At this point in my training I’m use to being the crash dummy uke in front of a class of 20 or more. That day that class was easily over that number. So here I am being my Sensei’s wonderful uke demonstrating with him the possibilities of having a “low” koshi done on the uke.

For the unacquainted, a “low” koshinage is basically when the nage (the person doing the technique) allows their hip is drop lower than the height their hip would normally be at. Thus, from my experience, in addition to the sensation that you’re flying through the air over someone’s hip, you’re flying through the air then you’d suddenly drop straight down . 

Definitely a different experience. Sensei simply dropped me straight down onto the mat! What I was suppose to do was be present and allow my body to an extremely tight roll. What happened instead was I landed on my right shoulder!

Now it doesn’t hurt, but it was a shock to say the least – in front of 25 members of the dojo! Luckily I simply got back up and Sensei continued on with his lecture. Then the next movement was up.

*Note: At this point is has been over 24 hours since the incident and although nothing is out of place/broken, I definitely still feel some twitching from time to time on the impact area. 

Sensei was demonstrating how there are certain situations where the uke (the person attacking) can intentionally become rigid and/or uncooperative. He was demonstrating with me utilizing a shihonage and transitioning into a koshinage with an arm bar. He transitioned into the koshi but apparently I half-assed flopped onto the floor.

Not as dramatic as the picture shows, but same feeling.

He turns to me in front of the whole class and states that I had pulled back at the last minute and he had to let go – otherwise my right arm would have been snapped off my shoulder. Seamlessly he continued on explaining the technicalities of the situation and proceeded with a couple more rounds of the shihonage-transition-to-koshinage-with-armbar. That ladies and gentlemen, is what happens when the body has not been exposed to Koshi’s for over a year does to you!

Regardless, that was fun! Oh and if someone can; look that one move up for me.

So Saturday’s training was basically me limping around because of my aching quads, in addition to a right shoulder that took 150 lbs of force from a drop 4 feet. I’ll add that to my list of near misses in Aikido.

I mentioned this in a past post of mine, but at the rate that I go to training nowadays (3-4 times a month) seem to have had an unintended positive change to the way I view my training. Every time I come to training it’s as if the effect is akin to being “in the zone”; or as I stated last time like how Superman rejuvenates himself by going near a yellow sun (a yellow sun grants him his powers). Or how when Bruce Wayne would put on his the cap and mask, Batman appears.

I suppose since dropping from 4-5 times per week to the same amount of times per month has made my unconscious more appreciative of each time that I get the opportunity to train. That and I’m sure that since I have to prioritize in other areas other than Aikido has made my time on the mat much more appreciative to myself.

For those of you who don’t know what Koshinage looks like, I’ve included a video from the Aikido series on Howcast. You can view the entire series here. Hope you guys enjoy it! Till next time.

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2 thoughts on “Koshinage Khronicles & Quaking Quads – Training Log

    1. None of the above; everything that is done at my dojo is partner based. That and I rarely have time to devote solely to practice since I have other responsibilities such as my current job and looking for work. Space is also an issue.
      What I do practice in is the meditative portion of Aikido – the body/mind practice. That I do every day.

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