Keeping the left shoulder down is good. Often it leads to remarkable consistency in placement of the arrows, in one case the otoya even hitting the haya (ouch). But I’m still finding it difficult to adjust, though. For one thing I have to consciously keep the shoulder down, and then it seems like I’m still a bit off-balance when bringing the arrow down from daisan into kai. I want to make video so I can see what I’m doing, but it’s hard to do that when the dojo is crowded.
Another thing I found useful at the end of practice yesterday was to feel (best way I can put it) zanshin at daisan before hikiwake. It seemed to be part of some larger connection to a source of energy that I didn’t know was there before. It was very sudden, like I’d just “plugged in” to it. I’d like to think this was a ki thing, but it may also have been the green tea!
Oh also, the hemp tsuru broke at the nakajikake. I think it’s because the hazu of the arrows I’m using now have that keyhole shape, which seems to be hard on the string. This could get expensive.