Shintaido New England October Workshop – October 14-15, 2023

Shintaido New England October Workshop – October 14-15, 2023

By Bela Breslau

Shintaido practitioners in New England were lucky during their October workshop.

We were lucky to study with Senior Instructor Lee Ordemann who came up from Washington DC and led two keikos on Saturday that focused on the Jissen Kumitachi program. It was new for most of us and a refresher for a few. We practiced with bokken during two keikos on Saturday. A big thanks to Lee for making the trip and sharing his expertise with us. Heather Kuhn arranged to rent space at the Guiding Star Grange in Greenfield, the perfect dojo with a high ceiling and wood floors.

As New Englanders who have experienced the rainiest of falls, we were also lucky on Sunday morning when we gathered at Unity Park in Turners Falls. The sun came out just as we started, creating a dramatic backdrop. Bela led a Toitsu-Kihon and Eiko curriculum and encouraged everyone to express their energy and knowledge next to the beautiful Connecticut River. At least one practitioner (Eva Thaddeus) kept saying the field was her new favorite outside dojo. At the end of class, Stephen led us in Reposada, a new short kata developed by General Instructor Jim Sterling. “Reposada” means “restful “ in Spanish. It provided the perfect way to close.

In addition to the nourishment of learning from Lee and practicing the tried and true with Bela, we had two wonderful meals together: a potluck on Saturday night at Stephen and Bela’s house, and a breakfast and closing at Heather’s apartment in Turners Falls on Sunday morning.

Here’s a link to pictures from the weekend. You’re sure to recognize Margaret Guay, supreme organizer for the group, plus Lee, Bela, Stephen, Ann, Matt, Eva and Heather.

Bela and Stephen were delighted to host Lee and the women in his life – his lovely wife Elizabeth and his beautiful and energetic three-year-old daughter Esme.

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