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by John Roath

On Feb. 11th and 12th, 2012, Yamakura Shihan visited Canada and conducted a seminar at the Windsor YMCA. As always it was a very informative event and our thanks go out to Pirrone Sensei for bringing this training opportunity to us. We are truly fortunate.

During the seminar Shihan covered many topics from stance transitions, basic’s practice, kata review (Kihon Tzuki, Geki Sai’s, Saifa, Seiunchin, Sanseiru, and Sanchin Testing), bunkai, conditioning drills, some partner work and he also discussed overlying principles in the martial arts. There was a lot of information shared in a short period of time which makes it hard to accurately write up now.
With each portion of the seminar, Shihan called attention to areas where focus should be noted and where corrections should be worked on. He did this with both the group as a whole as well as providing individual students with areas of focus in front of the group. There were probably more things covered too, hopefully I’ll remember those at some point. Sometimes it’s hard to take everything in all at once and it takes time or practise to bring it back into mind.
Something that does strike me at a personal level with these visits is how varied the information presented is and the depth of instruction. This becomes evident when you talk to different students afterward and hear what they have to say. When you listen to the comments its remarkable how different people were able to learn or see different material being presented. Things that were important to them that I had either missed or overlooked, but once brought up I remembered. In my mind that kind of depth is a true indication of quality instruction. To me it was just a great learning environment and a pleasure to be part of. Our thanks go out to Yamakura Shihan for sharing his time and knowledge with us again.
As a bit of added interest to the weekend on the 11th there was a gathering for Fina Pirrone’s 12th birthday, Happy Birthday Fina!!