This weekend I visited Riga again for the third Bujinkan seminar in Latvia sponsored by Juris and the Bujinkan Kurokawa Dojo. It was good to see my old friends again. Also to see how they have grown in the art since last year.
My flight was a couple of hours delayed, so I had nothing else to do than read a good book about Yoga written 93 years ago, quite interesting, and have a couple of Hoegardens (my new favorite beverage).
On Friday there was an extra training in the dojo which is located in the middle of the old town in Riga. We started with basic warm up which in my way of teaching almost always includes Sanshin no kata, Taihenjutsu ukemi and Kihon-happo. Then after maybe 40 minutes, I let Ivars show a technique he wanted me to work on, this evening it was a defense technique against a straight punch to the nose. I did a few variations on it, both with the opponent trying to hit the face area with his fist, but also against a hidden weapon. For example a hidden knife hold reversed in the attackers hand.
On Saturday we started the seminar with basic jodan-tsuki and jodan-uke drills, then we went in to ukemi, and then later Gekkan from Shindenfudo-ryu. Then it was time for lunch in the local food court at the shopping mall. In the afternoon, more training.
Later in the evening there was fireworks in the city. It was the national independence day and it was very crowded. We were a little late so we couldn’t get to the front row, but we could still enjoy the fireworks. After we went to a salsa club in old town for a few drinks, salsa is big in Riga now they said. We didn’t stay for long, there was training the day after to.
On Sunday we started with sword training, just the Jodan-giri cut. From Jodan no kamae down to Seigan no kamae, with both hands and also with only the right hand (like a cut with the tachi) but also with just the left hand for practice, that was difficult and good strength training for the arms. Then we did a shindenfudo-ryu technique (I forgotten now which one), then lunch. After lunch we did some Jutte training, just basic kata from Kukishin-ryu. Then in the afternoon we finished with a Nawa-jutsu technique and a few rope tricks.
On Monday, my flight was promptly on time much to my surprise, and the trip home went smoothly.
A BIG thanks to Juris (on my right on the picture), Ivars (on my left on the picture) and all the other guys for taking so good care of me. I’m already looking forward to the next seminar, hopefully in August when the weather is a little better.
For more information about training in Latvia please check out the Bujinkan Kurokawa Dojo web site at w w w . k u r o k a v a . c o m web site.