Happy new year! How did you celebrate the end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015? I spent New Year's Eve at the dojo with my friends. My sensei/friend Brandon decided to start a new tradition this year and host a Japanese New Year's party. People brought traditional Japanese sweets, sake, and lychee drinks.
Unfortunately, it can also be hard on our bodies. A couple of days into camp an old shoulder injury started bothering me. Gradually repetition began worsening it until it was difficult for me to do many of the exercises, because aikido consists mainly of throws and joint locks. I tried to accommodate my shoulder in a way that allowed me to continue training, but it wore on my body in different ways, and my opposite elbow and knee started twinging.
I finally decided not to go to a few sessions so that my body could recover. Today, I am sitting out and watching, because most of the techniques we are working are very shoulder-intensive. So, I am currently sitting on the side watching the classes. Even though I can't participate, I still learn quite a bit from watching my sensei's demonstrations. Plus, it shows that I am committed and am not just finding excuses not to participate in the very long, tiring sessions.
I decided to to clean the bathrooms at the dojo while everyone else trained. I'm a scholarship student at the dojo, so I am supposed to do chores anyway, and it provided me with a good opportunity to do it (finally). I wish I could be on the mats training, but I am always very careful about treating my body in a way that protects it's longevity. I figure that sometimes it is important to push limits, but not when it concerns the well-being of my body. I do hope to be able to participate as soon as I can, even if it means taking things slowly and only half-way doing the techniques.
We can't feel our best all the time, so sometimes we have to just settle for a bit less. I have to remind myself that doing what little I can is still worth the time and effort, because I learn from it. I still want to be on the mats though.