For new visitors, this is primarily a working site to let students know what we covered if they have to miss a class. If you scroll through the posts, you will see that they are all class summaries, most of which include a video …

We are a unique Albuquerque Aikido school in that we combine both Zen and Aikido training into a single curriculum – integrating zazen (seated Zen meditation) into every Aikido class. We certainly urge you to look around. If you are absolutely new to Aikido, check out the About Aikido page. If you want to know a bit more about Zen and Aikido, check out the About BHC page.

Note that we only accept new students four times a year and our next window for enrollment will be the spring session starting in mid-February. You can follow this link for more info.Our noon class is tailored to the ‘over 50′ crowd, and you can find more info about that class here.

Aikido is a great martial art … combining Zen and Aikido is the ultimate. If you can’t wait until November to start your training in Zen and Aikido, here are several other Albuquerque Aikido schools that you may want to look into.

Always happy to answer any of your questions, you can leave a comment or see the Contact page. You are certainly welcome to observe a class. This past winter session filled completely, so you can e-mail me to request a spot on the waiting list for the upcoming spring session. Last, you can subscribe here to receive notices of all upcoming classes

Thanks for your interest in Both Hands Clapping. Jim Redel

Thursday Evening December 18th: Ikkyo, Nikyo

Warm-ups

Warm-ups are now complete

Breakfall practice
There are three main reasons to study breakfalls:

  • You need to know how to protect someone who is doing a breakfall
  • They force you to relax and just go for it
  • They are a good feedback on the connection between thrower and throwee

Remember that breakfalls are really just exotic forward rolls. Always turn to get yourself in a good rolling position before the throw. Also remember that your feet will go almost directly over you head.

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
---------- Nage Waza ----------------
Irimi-nage (entering throw)
Kokyu-nage (timing throw)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Sayu-nage (left-right throw)
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
-------- Katame Waza --------------
Kote-kaeshi (wrist turnout)
Ikkyo (1st option)

Review: Ikkyo(1st option)
Starting: Nikyo (2nd option)

We traditionally study nikyo as an option off of ikkyo. To that end, nikyo starts off as an ikkyo and then transitions into the classic nikyo positioning.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells, 20 minutes Zazen, 1 Bell

Thanks to Mark as timer

Special Thanks To …

Mark, Rick, Rich, Simon, Lochlin, Paul R, Lam, Crystal and Chris. Brian had to leave, was not feeling well - hope things are better today Brian.

Class Video

 
 

Tuesday Evening December 16th: Kote-kaeshi, Shiho-nage

Warm-ups

Warm-ups are now complete:
5 wrist stretches
Arm Swinging in Circles (shoulder warm-ups)
Boat Rowing Exercise (horizontal balance)
Raising and Cutting Exercise (vertical balance)
Front and Rear Exercise (horizontal balance combined with a pivot)
8 way Exercise (Aikido stance in any direction)
Left-Right Exercise (left-right balance with stepping behind footwork)
Wrist crossing, low
Wrist crossing, high (on one foot)
Arm Swinging Left and Right (shoulder warm-ups)
2 Step turn (turning footwork )
Back Pivot (turning footwork)

Continue forward rolls ...

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Ikkyo (1st option)
Sayu-nage (left-right throw)
Irimi-nage (entering throw)
Kokyu-nage (timing throw)

Finishing: Kote-kaeshi (wrist turnout)
Review: Shiho-nage (4 way throw)

A reminder that all throws can be executed in many, many ways. During a 13 week session, there is only time to show and practice it one way. In this session, we are performing Shiho-nage as a two step turn to the rear. Be sure that we are all doing the same version of this throw.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells, 20 minutes zazen, 1 Bell

Our breath is a powerful 'present moment magnet'. That is, it can help bring us back to this moment, this place. When you find that you have wandered off mentally (and you will), simply return to breathing completely. Not controlling your breath, but breathing with an awareness of it.

Special Thanks To …

Mial, Junji, Mark, Paul M, Rich, Paul R, Paul V, Simon, Lochlin and Lam.

Also, congratulations to Rich on his promotion to 5th Kyu.

A reminder that tracking your attendance is up to you. I won't be doing it for you and I can't want to do it for you.

Class Video

 
 

Open Mat Sunday December 14th: Kata-tori Kokyu-nage

 
 

Thursday Evening December 11th: Kokyu-nage, Kote-kaeshi

Warm-ups

Warm-ups are now complete:
5 wrist stretches
Arm Swinging in Circles (shoulder warm-ups)
Boat Rowing Exercise (horizontal balance)
Raising and Cutting Exercise (vertical balance)
Front and Rear Exercise (horizontal balance combined with a pivot)
8 way Exercise (Aikido stance in any direction)
Left-Right Exercise (left-right balance with stepping behind footwork)
Wrist crossing, low
Wrist crossing, high (on one foot)
Arm Swinging Left and Right (shoulder warm-ups)
2 Step turn (turning footwork )
Back Pivot (turning footwork)

Continue forward rolls ...

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Ikkyo (1st option)
Sayu-nage (left-right throw)
Irimi-nage (entering throw)

Finishing: Kokyu-nage (timing throw)
Starting: Kote-kaeshi (wrist turnout)

Kote-kaeshi is our 2nd of 3 pinning techniques, (ikyo, kote-kaeshi, nikyo). Always think of Aikido as able to target the attacking hand (or arm) or the attacker's face/head area. When the tables are turned and you are making your throw, the attacker cannot protect both. If the attacker tries to protect the face/head area the hand/arm is vulnerable and vice-versa. In this case, kote-kaeshi is a perfect option for targeting the attacker's hand/arm.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells, 20 minutes zazen, 1 Bell

It is important to remind ourselves (constantly) that we do not try to control our breath. We follow it, we breathe completely, we embrace it ... but we do not try to control it. Our body knows how to breathe and when we observe our breath and try to micromanage our breathing, there are too often undesirable circumstances. If you find yourself thinking that you should be breathing this way or that way (for example, more slowly or more deeply), take a step back mentally and just observe.

Special Thanks To …

Mial, Junji, Mark, Fernando, Rick, Paul M, Rich, Simon, Lochlin, Lam, Chris and Crystal.

Class Video

 
 

Tuesday Evening December 9th: Irimi-nage, Kokyu-nage

Warm-ups

Warm-ups are now complete:
5 wrist stretches
Arm Swinging in Circles (shoulder warm-ups)
Boat Rowing Exercise (horizontal balance)
Raising and Cutting Exercise (vertical balance)
Front and Rear Exercise (horizontal balance combined with a pivot)
8 way Exercise (Aikido stance in any direction)
Left-Right Exercise (left-right balance with stepping behind footwork)
Wrist crossing, low
Wrist crossing, high (on one foot)
Arm Swinging Left and Right (shoulder warm-ups)
2 Step turn (turning footwork )
Back Pivot (turning footwork)

We have started on forward rolls ...

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Ikkyo (1st option)
Sayu-nage (left-right throw)
Irimi-nage (entering throw)

Starting: Kokyu-nage (timing throw)

Kokyu-nage is a very generic term and many schools use it to describe most any technique that doesn't seem to fall nicely into any other category. For us, we will be using the term Kokyu-nage as the name for just one throw - one that I like to think of as a back shoulder throw. This is a nice 2nd option for irimi-nage, especially in the event that your partner isn't inclined to relax and move to your front shoulder.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells
20 Minutes zazen
1 Bell

When it is your turn as timekeeper, be sure to give the rest of the students time to settle in before striking 3 bells. If you are not the timekeeper, be sure to quickly get to your zazen posture. While you can still be adjusting while the timekeeper is striking 3 bells, you should not be moving any time after the last bell is struck. Accept this! We create a lot of problems for ourselves by wishing things were different.

Special Thanks To …

Junji, Rick, Brian, Rich, Lochlin, Lam, Crystal, Paul R, Simon and Mark

Class Video

 
 

Open Mat Sunday December 7th: Kata-tori Irimi-nage

 
 

Thursday Evening December 4th: Irimi-nage

Warm-ups

Warm-ups are now complete:
5 wrist stretches
Arm Swinging in Circles (shoulder warm-ups)
Boat Rowing Exercise (horizontal balance)
Raising and Cutting Exercise (vertical balance)
Front and Rear Exercise (horizontal balance combined with a pivot)
8 way Exercise (Aikido stance in any direction)
Left-Right Exercise (left-right balance with stepping behind footwork)
Wrist crossing, low
Wrist crossing, high (on one foot)
Arm Swinging Left and Right (shoulder warm-ups)
2 Step turn (turning footwork )
Back Pivot (turning footwork)

We will begin rolling next week.

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Ikkyo (1st option)
Sayu-nage (left-right throw)

Finished: Irimi-nage (entering throw)

There are many, many throws in Aikido that show up in other self-defenses. If there were just one throw that is quite unique to Aikido, it would be Irimi-nage. Irimi-nage is often called the '10 year throw' and we will practice it a few more times.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells
20 Minutes zazen
1 Bell

When practicing Aikido and sitting zazen are the same, there will be nothing you lack.

Special Thanks To … (braving the crazy rainy weather)

Mial, Simon, Rich, Lochlin, Paul R and Crystal

Class Video

 
 

Tuesday Evening December 2nd: Sayu-nage, Irimi-nage

Warm-ups

We now know:
5 wrist stretches
Arm swinging (shoulder warm-ups)
Raising and cutting (vertical balance)
Front and rear (horizontal balance combined with a pivot)
8 way (Aikido stance in any direction)
2 Step turn (turning footwork )
Back Pivot (turning footwork)
Left-Right Exercise (left-right balance with stepping behind footwork)
Boat Rowing Exercise (horizontal balance)

We added:
Wrist crossing, low
Wrist crossing, high (on one foot)

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Ikkyo (1st option)

Finished: Sayu-nage (Left-Right Throw)
Started: Irimi-nage (Entering Throw)

There are many, many throws in Aikido that show up in other self-defenses. If there were just one throw that is quite unique to Aikido, it would be Irimi-nage.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells
20 Minutes zazen
1 Bell

Remember the expression: "Do chu no sei" ... motion in the midst of stillness. Be aware that this is not a judgement on the ability to do zazen, see it more as a an expression of the realization with respect to the natural activities of the 'self'. Attaching to stillness in the midst of stillness is a great source of dissatisfaction.

Special Thanks To …

Mial, Dale, Junji, Brian, Paul M, Simon, Rich, Paul V, Lochlin, Paul R, Chris, Crystal and Lam

Class Video

 
 

Open Mat Sunday November 30th: Kata-tori Sayu-nage

 
 

Tuesday Evening November 25th: Ikkyo, Sayu-nage

Warm-ups

We now know:
5 wrist stretches
Arm swinging (shoulder warm-ups)
Raising and cutting (vertical balance)
Front and rear (horizontal balance combined with a pivot)
8 way (Aikido stance in any direction)
2 Step turn (turning footwork )
Back Pivot (turning footwork)
Left-Right Exercise (left-right balance with stepping behind footwork)

We added:
Boat Rowing Exercise (horizontal balance)

Aikido Instruction and Practice

We now know:
Ude-nage A (arm throw, cutting like a sword)
Shiho-nage (4 way throw)
Ikkyo (1st option)

Reviewed: Ikkyo (1st option)
Started: Sayu-nage (Left-Right Exercise)

In any martial arts, self-defense situation, being able to throw using essentially just one hand or arm is vital. Put sayu-nage into this class. We use just the one arm to 'create the banana' and 'generate the throw' using just the one arm. As you become more familiar with these throws, you will naturally start to add more and more body into your throws. I call them 'bumps'. Your partner leans back to avoid your elbow and the you finish by dropping your whole body onto theirs.

Zen Instruction and Practice

3 Bells
20 Minutes zazen
1 Bell

Relax, relax. If you can't relax in zazen, how can you expect to relax with 3 or 4 attackers?

Special Thanks To …

Mial, Junji, Rick, Brian, Paul M, Simon, Rich, Chris, Crystal and Lam

Class Video