Sunday, April 19, 2009

Spring Gathering 2009

Wow what a weekend! I am typing now through sore muscles and the post partum haze of a good time.

Nick Lowry and Kyle Sloan, Glenn and Greg came down from WindSong Dojo in Oklahoma. A bunch of the nicest guys you could meet.

Friday night started with Matl Sensei teaching his unique and brillant approach to Judo. Slowly Hussey's Aikido group started filtering in. The room was filling up nicely. Then I turned and was surprised as the local Bujinkan group had joined us and were quitely kneeling on the mat. Surprised by Ninjas! I have been training my whole life for this day!!!

Friday we did a round robin of techniques - trading off from the various art forms. I found it interesting when the students of one style were instructing the Shihan from another. Fascinating dynamic.

Saturday Nick did most of the teaching. I can only describe Lowry Sensei as a "Good Ole Buddha". He had a interesting blend of a highly articulate southern accent, mellow attitude, technical insight, and good vibes.

I have worked out with a lot a Budoka in the few decades. I feel like many teachers out there have have inflated ranks - beyond what they really need. Jokingly last night I awarded Nick last night with his 8th dan because I recognize him as a level of teacher my dojo wants to associate with.

Jeff Duncan Dojo Cho of Full Circle Aikido wrote me this morning with a wrap up -

"Seriously had some fun, mellow as an any guy could be with tons of info and people to get more info from...
Saturday of the Seminar, really brought about some fundamental differences that I need to bring around in my mindset of what really makes things work..
It was a really good seminar that was based upon learning the principals through a few exercises and drills, that really allowed you to break down what is happening in the altercation relationship.... sometimes you think you know all there is to know about something and just need to internalize it in movements, then you attend a class like this last Saturday and you learn you missed some of the simplest but most needed points of the entire system..."

"Big thanks goes out to Eric for getting this set up, and for Nick and his OKC crew that showed up to give us some insight on what all they are working on and their thought process on different things.."

Hussey Sensei yet again proved himself to be yet again to be a highest caliber teacher, gracious host and wonderful friend.

Click Here to read Sloan Sensei's review!!!!

After doing a count we had members from 7 dojos attend!

Windsong Dojo
Matl Sensei's Judo club
KyuRyu Aikibudo Dojo
Hussey's Aikido Dojo
Ross Robertson of Still Point Aikido showed up to play
Full Circle Aikido
John Hidalgo's Bujinkan group

Good Seminar - now getting ready for Waddell Sensei next week!


  1. Eric,

    I had an incredibly awesome time! I've never been around an entire room full of ninja before.

    Things like this are what the martial arts are about. To be able to come together, share, learn from one another, without ego/prejudice/bias.... it's a pretty rare thing. Yet, the dojo was filled with people who did it.

    I enjoyed the concept of "riffing" on Friday night. It was a very neat approach. An Aikido jam session... who'd have thought?

    I appreciate your hard work, and look forward to doing it again!

    - Kyle

  2. Sounds like a blast! But both you and Kyle forgot to mention the most important part of any budo gathering - what did y'all eat after class!?

  3. Torchie's damn good tacos! A quintessential South Austin treat.

  4. If only I had the opportunity to join you in so many of your learnings, Sensei, what a wonderful experience it would be. You are the first and only person I have heard of bringing so many disciplines together. Breaking boundaries instead of boards, Sensei Strange has done it again. ^_^

    Brendan Martin

  5.  It was really a great event . Many thanks to the
    the Oklahoma /north of the border Aikidoists.
    Really enjoyed the transmission of info and knowledge from Sensei Lowry.
    Thanks to Jeff Duncan and his dojo for attending.
    And of course Eric(and his blindingly awesome
    techniques!) and his people.
    Hope see all on a mat in the future.

  6. Thank you all for a terrific time! Lots of sweet aiki going round