Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Metsuke - where to look at the end of a kata

Metsuke - Where do you put your eyes during practice ? Do you focus toward your opponent's eyes, at his hands, his chest, or do you stay unfocused on the whole background ? 

The answer to these questions is "YES"... No kidding - but we will get to this later. 

For today lets get in to the devilish details...

Where do you focus your eyes at the end of a kata ? 

Your eyes should be looking down in the direction of the last fallen opponent.

Now you need to retreat back to the place you started from. You still need to display a certain level of Zanshin. So where do you look ? 

From our last class at the Dothan Dojo with Patty Heath Sensei this is what I gathered : 

  • For all regular MJER kata (Shoden, Chuden, Okuden sets) you should keep looking slightly down until you are back where you started. Then when your Right hand leaves your tsuka, your eyes look up (Horizontally)

  • For Batto-Ho Shoden & Okuden : keep your eyes down until your back foot gets level with the front one - after noto. Then, raise your eyes.

Please note that only your eyes are moving, not your head which should always stay vertical. Do not let your head lean up or down, only your eyeballs should move.

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