This one is in English, a Finnish perspective by Antti Seitemaa, enjoy! //Rikard
Baji Association visits Stockholm
We left for Stockholm on the five o’clock cruise ship and did some light training in the evening on one of the more secluded decks, beyond the eyes and ears of the party people onboard. The boat arrived in Stockholm at ten o’clock the following morning and we were met by Rikard, one of our hosts at Kungfu Stockholm. We were very excited about this weekend for a number of reasons: it had been about three months since we had last trained together in Beijing, and there was a good turn-out of people for the course. Our training place was Svea Thai – one of the birthplaces of Scandinavian thai-boxing. It was a sweaty, traditional gym with caked trails of blood on the floor and heavy punching bags hanging from the ceiling.
We began practice around eleven o’clock, starting with “cheng chui”, and we continued to practice until two o’clock. Master Lü stressed the importance of correcting the timing of this strike. Newcomers came together to learn with more experienced practitioners and time flew by very quickly. We took a break for lunch and returned to the gym. Someone asked the Master about training for body hardening and we practiced a few simple techniques meant for beginning this kind of development.
As the morning training had been quite strenuous, the afternoon consisted of the participants asking questions from the Master about their practice. Before the training ended, everyone that was willing had a chance to demonstrate their forms. Everything from “xiao jia” to “dragon form” was seen.
After training we headed towards our destination for the evening: the apartment of one of our hosts. We went to the grocery store on the way to buy ingredients and prepared a fantastic meal. The rest of the evening was spent drinking, eating and listening to martial arts stories and concepts.
The following morning we began practice again with “cheng chui”. The weather, however, did not stay suitable for outdoor practice for very long and we found ourselves chased inside by a drizzle of Scandinavian autumn rain. We spent the remaining time before lunch discussing the theory and practice of Baji. It was a great balance to the hard training that we had already been through and it resulted in much important material for consideration. Some of this information will be refined and updated onto baji.info for the benefit of those interested. We took a break for lunch after Master Lü’s lecture and practiced briefly before departing for the cruise ship. The rest of the night was spent in a jovial atmosphere, with much discussion of martial arts culture, practice and history.
We wish to thank our Swedish hosts for their hospitality and hope to encourage anyone else that is possibly interested to join our cross-Scandinavian trips. These trips are very much open for everyone and are just as much about practice as they are about building inter-Scandinavian relations.