A large number of kyudoka had come together in Liège in the middle of the winter for the local dojo’s yearly seminar. The two days were under the responsibility of Vlasselaer Jean-Pierre Sensei, Renshi 6th Dan.
The first half day of the seminar was dedicated to Hitote Gyosha. After that, Vlasselaer Senei gave his views on everybody’s shooting. He insisted particularly on the importance of the gestures. Every archer has to give importance to this, from the very walking onto the shajo right until leaving the shajo. Shaho Shagi took place during the rest of the day, the sensei being present to give technique correction to the archers. The senior students worked on Hadanugi technique, the movement of taking the left arm out of the kimono before shooting and in order to allow proper shooting. All archers worked Ikiai, the unity of breathing and action, as well as the correct tenouchi technique, in particular regarding its aspects related to Tsunomi.
Vlasselaer Sensei talked about the historical evolution of Kyudo and read ancient texts about Kyudo. He took this opportunity to explain the role of Kyudo in the development of the archer’s personality and thus explained ways for the kyudoka to make progress in their shooting.
On the second day of the seminar, the sensei gave explanations on the correct way to maintain the kyudo gear, before even shooting. During Sho Shagi, particular importance was given to Torikake as well as Sanmi-Ittae, the correct using of the body, the bow and the mind in a fundamental unity.
On Sunday evening, the archers left for their home dojos through the snow, their minds and bodies filled with means of deepening their technique and the search of the right path on the Way of the bow.