23rd JODO Summer Gasshuku in Würzburg

Around 20 participants from a total of 8 nations had found their way to Würzburg this time:

Denmark 3 - Germany 4 - Austria 2 - Czech Republic 2 - Switzerland 5 - USA 1 - Belgium 2 - Croatia 1

After all the years of the pandemic, the number of participants seems to stabilize again. We were especially pleased to welcome 2 participants we had not expected, Martin from Austria and Barbara from Switzerland. 

Also this year the sun had blessed us abundantly, so that we could train uninterruptedly outdoors.

The motto of 23rd Gasshuku was "MA-AI" (left Kanji). "MA-AI" belongs to the basic knowledge in Jodo and should be considered at the latest when learning the Kihon Sotai. The different length of Jo and Bokken must be taken into consideration.

Michel and Coco demonstrated this impressively during Saturday morning. The three elements that make up "MA-AI", namely "Tōma" - "Chikama" - "Uchima", received special attention.

"Tōma": great distance between the opponents. In this position nothing happens, the two opponents can still decide whether to fight or not.

"Chikama" is probably the decisive phase. This is the point of no return

"Uchima" is the moment when a lightning-fast attack can occur at any time.

These three terms can be found in virtually all Budo in a slightly different form and should play a decisive role especially in kata with weapons, because depending on the use and length of the weapon, these distances can vary. To avoid injuries, especially for beginners, great attention must be paid to this.

Conveniently, we were able to have lunch at the Greek restaurant attached to the hall complex right next door.

So after training diligently in the heat on Saturday, interrupted by small drinking breaks, we had again according to our good tradition an excellent dinner in the restaurant "Schützenhof". It is located on the hillside above Würzburg and offers a magnificent view over the city.           

Since they are from French-speaking part of Switzerland, here you can see our two trainers studying the menu with the help of a translation program. Hopefully they found something good!

On Sunday we continued as usual. During the early morning training, the Kihon were trained, then there was again the breakfast, organized by helpers of the Budo club in which Franz trains. My special thanks to these persons for having agreed to be active for us so early on Saturday and Sunday.

After that, the training resumed seriously. Kenjutsu kata were also demonstrated and trained. In general, Kenjutsu exercises are extremely important for the Jodo kata. Because without good mastery of the sword techniques, the Jo side can also not learn and execute their techniques well. 

This time no examinations took place, these are to concentrate then on the Gasshuku in the Black Forest. And so I hope to meet again at least most of the participants in Würzburg in August in the Black Forest. Unfortunately, the author of this report could not participate throughout because of back problems. But just watching can bring valuable insights.