As mentioned before I posted my rondori on YouTube for all to see.
I thought it turned out pretty well and it looks spectacular but there is problem with video. As one viewer commented on the video: “I'm sure you can kick my butt, but this was 99% fake....they didnt even wanna touch you”(sic) .
I suppose I should be pissed when people say “ Oh that’s so fake” I understand that the rush and energy does not translate through the camera but I can tell you and the anonymous poster that what you see in the video is quite real. I know, I was there and those young guys were trying very hard to grab hold of me. This is not aikido as Tabata Sensei has pointed out many times, it is an exercise in extending ki no matter what is happening. You try staying calm while five guys come at you.
“Why would you let someone grab you if you were walking down the street?” Tabata Sensei, the senior instructor often said when training us for this exercise. We are trained to lead them by before they can touch you . If someone comes at you, you better not wait until they grab hold of your coat before reacting or you’re done for.
The real life application is there in every play in a football game or dealing with a class room full of first graders. I once had to take a timed typing exam and was so stressed by it until I reminded myself it was rondori. I aced it. I used the same feeling when I was stage manager at the Lord Leebrick Theater corralling a dozen people back stage and make sure they were ready for their cues.
Think about this the next time you have four things that need to be done now. Think about this when you have to drive in heavy traffic in bad weather. Think about this the next time you feel overwhelmed with stress. Relax , extend ki and let it go by.