How did I get here?
My Shibari/Kinbaku passion was initially born thanks to my beloved friend and founder of the legendary Barcelona Club Social Rosas5, Kurt. I was deeply impressed by watching how that Helvetian looking man, who sometimes wandered around with a grumpy attitude, lit up and smiled when he spoke about his journeys to Japan and his so admired Sensei, Osada Steve. I felt I could spend the rest of my life listening to his tales about the Far East, losing the sense of time. My frequent journeys to Spain gave me the chance to build a strong and deep friendship with Kurt.
Although our encounters were short, they were very intense. By his side I was able to meet some wonderful people and forge priceless friendships. The creative photographer TENTESION and his lovely medora, and the great rope artist Alfil and his beloved elora were the ones who were always by his side.
One day in 2010 Kurt told me he was happy because Osada Steve had accepted his invitation to travel to Barcelona to teach Shibari workshops for a few weeks and to stay for the Club’s anniversary celebration. I was so happy for him that I asked him to enroll me in all the workshops. This happened again the following year. Thus, without even realizing it, I started learning this wonderful art at the hand of someone as special and generous as Osada Steve is. In time, I got to know him better and learned about his life. One night, after the lesson was over, Kurt made me promise, with Steve as his witness, that I would travel to Tokyo to experience for myself all those stories that he had told me year after year. I feel that I never had a chance to really thank Kurt for all he did for me…
Nowadays I feel glad being able to assist my Sensei in translating his Osada-Ryu projects into Spanish. But, even more important than that, I’m planning my trip to Tokyo to honor that promise I made to Kurt and Steve. I feel that besides being his last wish, my friend Kurt sowed the seeds of a passion that ignited a flame inside me. Even today I treasure as priceless my first set of ropes, the one I received as a gift from his hands. The same set of ropes that I took to Yukimura Sensei workshop, and that still accompany me with that spark of energy that he drove into them…
All this makes me feel really proud to be able to promote what would be the first Shibari/Kinbaku Dojo in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Not only for assisting my Sensei with all Osada-Ryu material translation into Spanish, but also for counting with his approval to start teaching and having my own students.
Those who guided me in my learning path
“You will find several people capable of teaching you bond patterns and knots …
but only a few will be able to give you the freedom to set your own path without suggesting you to imitate them”
October: Ten days private and intensive classes with Yukinaga Max 雪長 at the Copenhagen Shibari dojo in Denmark. I’ve been trained in Semenawa Nanatsuno Hashi(Seven Bridges). I also practiced Yukinaga Max’s version of Tengo hojojutsu (originally transmitted to him by Miura Takumi 神浦匠 Sensei from Tokyo). Nijubishi sho hojojutsu, Nijubishi ni hojojutsu, Nijubishi san hojojutsu and Nijubishi yondan hojojutsu (all originally transmitted by Miura Takumi 神浦匠 Sensei from Tokyo to Yukinaga Max). I also reviewed the Usagi Tsuri Shibari.
I also attended to the Yukinaga Max Sensei Advanced high suspensions Workshop. We saw hojojutsu ties and Yokotsuri transitions to Kero and Embryo.
Officially named as Yukimura-ryu student and given the bakushi name “HaruTsubaki“.
Osada Steve sensei considered recognising my advances within his school giving me a new Osada-ryu forth kyu certificate. I feel very honoured and proud to receive this recognition to my efforts and to come back to my dear Buenos Aires with it!
August: One week of private and intensive classes with Yukinaga Max at the Copenhagen Shibari dojo in Denmark. I practiced Yukinaga Max’s version of Tengo hojojutsu (originally transmitted to him by Miura Takumi Sensei from Tokyo). Nijubishi sho hojojutsu, Nijubishi ni hojojutsu, Nijubishi san hojojutsu and Nijubishi yondan hojojutsu (all originally transmitted by Miura Takumi Sensei from Tokyo to Yukinaga Max). I also reviewed the Usagi Tsuri Shibari.
April: One week of advanced workshop with Nawashi Kanna Sensei from Tokyo and Kagura-san at Barcelona.
Program: More than five variations over Kanna Sensei’s Ushiro Takatekote, with and without tasuki and finger decoration (yubi shibari), which in part defines his shibari style. Akechi Denki’s version of the takatekote.
Hojojutsu from Itatsu-ryu school: Hojo shibari, Jyumonji Shibari. Honnawa, torinawa, hishi shibari, kikkou shibari, hikitokena, hayanawa, hikitokenawa (kirinawa) which was used in people that were going to be beheaded.
Shinkake Shibari, Agura Shibari and Rydu ude ushiro awase.
Suspensions: Kata Ashi Zuri, Hykiaku zuri (suspensión del cartero o mensajero), Ashi agura Awase, Yokozuri with out transitions (Kanna Sensei’s version).
Teppo Shibari zuri in two different variations: one self choking and another with a bit of giyako ebi.
Two variations or Giyako ebi Zuri.
October: One week intensive training with Yukinaga Max, staying at Copengahen Shibari Dojo. On our private classes we trained: katazuri, yokozuri (with transition to embio), ganji garame, nijubishi between other hojo ties, a hishi TK which can be used for suspension and several Yukimura-ryu techniques on newaza and ki-hairimasu. On the public classes of the dojo we practiced: hobaku techniques and hands and legs ties from Yukimura-ryu. Also shakuhachi and usagi shibari.
March/April: One month of intense tuition on Osada-Ryu from Osada Steve Sensei in his Tokyo honbu dojo. Osada Steve Sensei generously arranged for me to receive tuition also from Yukimura Haruki, Grandmaster Sensei from Tokyo.
I feel very honoured to be admitted under Osada Steve Sensei’s guide. After lot of hard work and practice, translating Osada Steve Sensei’s material into Spanish, learning Japanese and a my consistent long term commitment of excellence; I could finally make it back home in Buenos Aires, with my kyu certificate in Osada-Ryu and my Sensei’s permission to start teaching the basics.
Sensei considered that it would be good for me to receive feedback from different Japanese audiences to improve my style. He arranged for me to do different special performances at different Tokyo Bars as: Indigo (under Kitagawa-san organization, in Roppongi area), UbuBar (under Yoshida Yoi-san and Shigonawa Bingo-san organization, in Roppongi area) and PinkCrystal (Organized by Maya and her cousin in Kabuki-cho, Shinjuku-ku area). He also arranged for me to visit DX SM LIVE (in the heart of Kabuki-cho, Shinjuku area) where there were other Japanese nawashi performing.
It was a very difficult year for me. My Sensei, Osada Steve became ill and couldn’t travel as he thought he might. I felt in the dark in need for his guidance. The spark that made me feel better was the opportunity of visiting Copenhagen Shibari Dojo one of the biggest shibari dojos in the world leaded by the finest nawashi, Yukinaga Max to receive tuition from Yukimura Haruki, legendary sensei from Tokio.
Workshop organized by Yukinaga Max at Copenhagen Shibari Dojo, August 2012. 6 hour modules, small groups of 5.
Program: Yukimura- Ryu Newaza, Yukimura-Ryu 2 ropes Gote Shibari, Sarake Dasu, Shuuchinawa, Kotoba seme, energy handling (ki) and Kata Ashi Kaikyaku and Kata Ashi Tsuri variations, weight management of the model’s body techniques.
Peter Slemrian WorkShop at Copenhagen SMIL, August 2012. 6 hour class in a small group.
Program: 3 ropes Takatekote (Slemrian-style). Hip harness (Hajime Kinoko style).
Kazami Ranki, sensei from Tokio (as Osada Steve back up)
Workshop organized by ESINEM at The Flying Dutchman, London, April 2012.40 hour class in small groups.
Day 1: Hishi-shibari, Kazami-Ryu (Kazami style).
Complete Hishi-shibari (including whole body, torso and legs).
Day 2: Yoko-zuri, Kazami-Ryu
Day 3: Kata-ashi-sakasa-zuri, Kazami-Ryu
Day 4: Hikyaku-zuri (Kazami-Ryu)
Day 5: Newaza (Kazami-Ryu)
Year 2010 y 2011
Workshops organized by Kurt at Club Social Rosas5 (Barcelona, September 2010 and 2011). 80 hours divided between public lessons of small groups and private lessons.
Program WorkShop 1 (for beginners): 3 rope Osada-ryu Takatekote. Some Gote variations and Kazami and Yukimura techniques.
Program WorkShop 2 (for intermediate riggers): Gote-Shibari, Hishi-Nawa variations and Yukimura-Ryu techniques.
Program Professional WorkShop: (for people with advanced knowledge and who master to achieve 3 rope Osada-Ryu TK blindfolded): Intensive course for those who perform in front of an audience or simply wish to learn a little more.
The emphasis was on Teppo-Shibari, Hojo-Hishi-Nawa, Futomomo-zuri, Sakasa zuri, Aomuke zuri and progressive suspensions techniques.
Author’s Note: I’ve assisted both Professional Workshops by suggestion of Osada Steve Sensei.