The suburi pace
Last summer I participated in seminar with Hijikata Naohito sensei. One thing that surprised me was the suburi pace.
We did suburi
rather slow and were holding our shinai
s on the imaginary men
for quite a long time. Some other sensei
s offer a faster pace for suburi
. (I mean the pace between strikes, not between moving shinai
up and down.)
So what are the advantages of making suburi
slow (i.e. normal strike but then holding shinai
on imaginary men long)? And what are the advantages of a fast suburi
What pace do you usually use in your trainings?Answer:
Very nice question.
I think what you did with Hijikata sensei
is to have a pause at the men
height. This is very useful for those who start getting used to kendo
People tend to bounce up their sword in suburi
. They are literally just swinging their sword instead of cutting. Sometimes they do not even know they are not striking men
, i.e. too low or too high.
By pausing at the men
height, we can
- Actually cut down instead of swing and bounce our shinai back up (kensaki should be at your eye height)
- Check if we are cutting down men, i.e. not too high or not too low and
- Realise that suburi is not merely a warm up but actual training method.
This is rather useful for beginners. I always do this myself because I want to check my cut.
Even in suburi
, each strike should have the feeling of a "cut". You can make it faster or slower but this is the first thing.
So how long do we have to pause our shinai
at the men
Usually you do not want to pause for a long time but it is a good training method.
Hope this helps.