Zagreb June 2023

Seminar with Maurizio Volpe


On the weekend 16-18 June a seminar with Maurizio Volpe, hosted by Ki Aikido Dojo Zagreb, Branko Mandić, was held.
This was the first time M. Volpe had been invited to hold seminar at Zagreb following his instruction at last year’s Summer seminar in the county (Velebit). Participants came largely from several Zagreb dojos, as well as Dubrovnik, Italy (Thiene, Torino, Novara) and Austria. On Sunday, senior instructors from two Ljubljana dojos were also in attendance.

The seminar

The location had been changed by the venue from the judo hall to a partitioned section of a sports hall flanked variably either side by dance and basketball. The lack of ventilation in humid conditions hindered not and practice opened intensively with Katadori, led by Sensei in his usual calm, thorough and detailed manner. Noticeable was Sensei’s approach in using his own familiar uke and choice of programme in order to gain a better understanding of how the participants move and act.
Many of the participants then gathered together at a local restaurant close to the Sava river (Stara Sava). In Zagreb, a "jumbo pizza" is something to behold, and according to one local Aikido teacher, for maximum three people! Perhaps three of four such monsters adorned the long table. A tradition among one local group was also observed over the two visits in which amusement is had in watching hot chilli sauce samurai (Tomi and Mario) go head to head.

Group Photo

Seminar in Zagreb 06/2023

Life always goes up

On Saturday Maurizio announced the conferral of Godan for the seminar organiser, Branko Mandić, which had been awarded by "KNK Musubi". Branko also celebrated with a round of drinks in the evening at Stara Sava.
The morning comprised a detailed study of Bokken Kumitachi (TW 29) which also ran into the afternoon practice. The importance of correct distance and posture throughout each attack and counter-attack was demonstrated. Ki testing was shown as a useful way to test the mind of the partner.
Several Jo Nage techniques followed; it is remarkable to see how form and the correct change of form (in relation to the ki of uke) negates any use or need of power or force in leading partner.
A wise decision was made to exit the hall and make use of the courtyard for further bokken practice in the fresh evening air, including the final part of happo giri which involves cutting the entire space around oneself in which several attacks have encroached. The author was absent on Sunday due to an other commitment.

M. Volpe will next instruct at Velebit Summer Camp 2023 , from 28.07-02.08. Please register online.

Text and Photos: Ryan