Happy Valentine's Day. I hope that everyone that reads this is spending time enjoying the company of those you love.
This last Saturday Sensei taught us Happo-giri, The eight directions cut.
In the practice of Aikidō, happo-giri (or happo-no-giri) is an exercise performed with the bokken, cutting in eight directions. Each cut is a simple strike from the top of the head straight down the centre line, with the bokken ending parallel to the floor at roughly the same height as the lower abdomen. The order of the strikes is north, south, east, west, southeast, northwest, southwest, northeast, finally returning - without performing a ninth cut - to the original position (north).
The main purpose of happo-giri is to teach how to control one's surroundings while maintaining proper stance or kamae, by moving around one's centre.