The primary area that I need to work on improving before my Ikkyu test, let alone my Shodan test, is my kihon (basics). It is no secret that my martial arts journey started in Shuri-Ryu, and from there I added judo and eventually moved on to Shorin-Ryu. My journey has been a good one, and I have learned a great deal--and will continue to learn--but it has not been without its problems. While my Shuri-Ryu training developed very strong basics, those basics do not all fit Shorin-Ryu.
There were some subtle differences that I have been able to fix, such as the angle of my rear foot in zenkutsu-dachi (front stance) or the position of my hand in jodan-uke (high block/receiving). Some of the differences have given me a lot more trouble, however. In particular, I have issues with shuto-uke (sword hand block/receiving) and neko-ashi-dachi (cat foot stance).
|Shuri-Ryu Shuto-Uke and Neko-Ashi-Dachi (Photo by Mike Oliveri)|
|Shorin-Ryu Shuto-Uke by Nakazato Shugoro|
I have a lot of hard work ahead!