We spent most of Thursdays practice in Surrey performing and reacting to seme. O'Sullivan Sensei instructed kakarite to initiate the attack by sliding the right foot forward a few inches with a sense of pressure. This is done while keeping the left foot still and the left leg energised, ready to cut in an instant. Motodachi was asked to cut men when they felt threatened by the seme, at which time kakarite performed debana kote.
This was a test of posture and reaction time. I found it difficult to 'snap' a kote cut instantly as I tended to hesitate at the critical point, thus losing time.
Key points which were raised during the lesson:
- Seme and kote/men cut should be a complete movement. There should be no break between seme and the cut.
- Do not reach out with your arms during the seme, keep a solid centre as you push forward.
- USE LEFT HAND!
- Snap the cut with the wrists.
- Arms during chudan should not be pressed against the Do, leave a small gap.