Slinking Back

Aside

So, it’s been a while again. The awful truth is, I’ve half finished a post or two, but have never managed to muster the courage to edit and publish them. I might do it now though (better late than never) so that the work doesn’t go entirely to waste.

I had a half-voluntary training break again, hence the lack of updates. I think I only attended one class after the last post before coming up with excuses to slack again. Eeh, how embarrassing. Slinking back to the salle after another month or more of absence is a great exercise in humility and not imagining that the world turns around me.

Speaking of the world not turning around me: I opted out of an exercise last week and the week before that. As mad as it sounds, this was kind of a big deal. Despite safety and health being absolute priorities at the salle, till now I’ve been loath to avoid any exercise, even if it was pushing my limits a tad too much. Turns out everybody does not stop and gape at my laziness if I stand aside for a while. Thank goodness.

In all seriousness, I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was for me to decline an exercise. Go me! It’s a step (though tiny and silly) closer to humility

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Sixth Lesson: Muscleless

“The only thing clouding my mood when we do the ending salute is the fact that my upper back started hurting again.” I already felt hints of the pain during the cutting drill: especially the posta longa guard and the cuts that go through it seem to trigger it. I still hesitate to ask for help, but in the end me and my father (who has had similar issues) go to talk to the teacher.

It turns out I’ve got a back that is too S-shaped. Because of this, my upper back is not supported very well and the muscles there have to do a lot of work when lifting a sword. I’ve never really done much physical exercise before sword fighting, so those muscles tire very quickly and start hurting. Continue reading

Fifth Lesson: Back Pain

This lesson was okay. Well, actually, it was a ton of fun despite the scariness of the falling exercise and the difficulty of the second drill counter-remedy. It would’ve been a great experience overall if it wasn’t for the back pain.

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Third Lesson: Don’t Get Stuck With the Pointy End

The third lesson was a huge success. Not because I succeeded at everything (I didn’t), or because it was less difficult than what I’d feared it to be (it wasn’t), but because I managed to keep to the rules. I did my best not to focus so much on myself, which helped a ton in not being embarrassed about fumbling at exercises. Because I wasn’t thinking “oh noes, whatever do people think of me for that blunder”, I could concentrate on how to correct my mistakes. As far as the self-confidence issue is concerned, this lesson was a triumph.

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Second Lesson: A Look Back

There’s one thing I haven’t talked about yet concerning this lesson: swords. The bad news? What we do is mostly repetition of last week’s exercise, the Fendente Mandritto. Oh, it’s great to get a chance to practice and refine it more, it just doesn’t make a very interesting blog post to end this week with. I might write something in the future about the specifics and quirks of the fendente blows (that’s the fancy term for iconic slashes with a sword), but I don’t feel ready for that yet.

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Realising That Failure Doesn’t Equal Humiliation

“[The dagger defence exercise] doesn’t go well. By the time we stop I feel defeated, frustrated and embarrassed.” It doesn’t take long for that embarrassment to turn into humiliation. By nighttime it’s already self-loathing.

Hang on… Self-loathing? Really? Overreacting much? This is stupid.

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