Saturday, November 29, 2008

Syllabus day

Yay, intermediate again. The basic days are over. Now it's back to feeling stupid and being yelled at by Guy.

...why did I want to be an intermediate, again?

(More on the syllabus seminar later, hopefully, but now I've got to rush to the salle party.)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Not very taxing

On Thursday I realised that swords classes tend not to be very physically taxing anymore. All this time, I've thought in terms of "aaaargh, I have to move my limbs around and get tired and sweaty, aaargh!" when in reality, that's just not the case. Sure, the warm-up can cause a certain amount of sweating, but the class itself rarely does. Every now and then when I do rapier work, my arm and back leg get really tired, and that's where lack of conditioning tells; but longsword is just so relaxing and natural that it's been ages since a single 1.5-hour class made me tired or even a 3-hour one.

This is definitely a change from the last time I re-started training, when I built up huge amounts of muscle because I was so adamant that I knew all that stuff already that I just muscled through instead of improving my technique. Maybe this is the other end of that continuum: I'm in crap condition, but can hold my own against bigger and stronger guys.

Some sort of middle way would seem to be indicated...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Learning styles

A nifty table for determining whether you learn primarily through auditory, visual or kinesthetic&tactile means can be found here.

This page explains the Myers-Brigg type indicators (extraversion/introversion, sensing/intuition, thinking/feeling, judging/perceptive) of learning styles.

(An interesting point is that while the first link gives me a clear result (I'm primarily kinesthetic&tactile with visual a close second), the results of my informal MBTI profiling would fluctuate wildly depending on which of my "gears" I'm in. I have a go-getter gear where I'm disciplined, resourceful, creative, positive, extraverted etc., and then I have a neutral gear when I'm lazy, slow, stupid, negative, introverted etc. My life divides itself into periods with one or the other gear dominating strongly, these periods lasting anything between 2 months to perhaps a year or so. Last year around this time I was stuck in neutral; in spring I switched to go-getter gear, but in a quiet mode. Now I'm recovering from a short bout of neutral. I'm tempted to blame this on the ADHD, which causes fluctuation in neurotransmitter levels, but I could just be bipolar.)

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


For the past month or two, I've been trying to correct a fatal error in my footwork: that of grounding through both feet. What needs to happen is to ground through one foot and leave the other light as a butterfly, which results in being able to step quickly and without signalling the intention. What tends to happen is that I put my weight on both feet and then, when I need to step, I first rock backwards or forwards to mobilise a leg and only then get to take that step.

Another persistent footwork error of mine is always stepping onto the ball of my foot or onto my toes. This would be more or less fine (arguments on the subject notwithstanding; Guy is relaxed on the topic) except for one thing: I tend to do this solely for the purpose of controlling my forward movement by stopping myself with my toes. As a result, I step in a stilted, halting manner rather than moving forward and back in a fluid, continuous manner.

I'm making progress in fixing these, but it's nowhere near as fast as I would hope.