Keiko approach as a beginner

by Juan Pablo

Monomi of Your Men

Monomi of Your Men

Dear Imafuji Sensei

Again, I'd like to start by thanking you for sharing all this knowledge and teachings. It's a great complement to actual training, and the more I train, the more useful your work becomes. So, thanks again.

I've started wearing bogu a couple of months ago, and as you can imagine, I'm quite lost during keiko. I'm sure I have a problem with distance. general, I'm not sure what I'm doing ;)

The actual question is more about the way I should approach combat. A couple of times I've been told I should attack attack attack, and focus principally on men.

The thing is, I'm not sure how to do this and how to show this will to attack. Should I really wait to see an opening or opportunity? Or should I attack continuously without thinking too much about opportunities? As you can imagine, all opportunities will be "created" by my more experienced senpais, but sometimes there is none, or I can't take it on time.

Probably you've been asked this many times, sorry if the answer is already there. I couldn't find it.

I'm lost, but I can't wait for the next training session.


Juan Pablo

Answer: Thank you for your question. Your question is very good and don’t apologize. I don’t even remember if your question was already answered or not. :)

You need to get used to the bōgu. And make sure you can see your opponent through monomi of your men. Monomi is a widest part of the men-gane and it is usually the 7th gap from the top.

Since you are a beginner and been in bōgu only for 2 months, you should keep striking. And as you were told, you should strike men in jigeiko.

You should learn the distance and how you can execute good strikes in Jigeiko. Many people start “hitting” targets destroying their beautiful basics or kihon they learned when they didn’t have their bōgu on.

So focus on striking with good kihon. And learn your distance.

If you don’t know your distance, other techniques won’t work.

Of course, you should strike kote when you think you should strike kote. I don’t really recommend to strike do unless your motodachi let you strike their do.

Many strike do in Jigeiko and destroy their posture so until you get used to your bōgu and know your distance, I think you should focus on striking men mainly and kote.

Hope this helps!

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