Hey there fellas!
Hi, it's me Yash Soni, a karuta enthusiast. This post is meant for memorisation technique which proves to be very effective in memorising the position of cards.
So, karuta is based primarily on your hearing and reflexes but you cannot just target a random place when the card is read aloud (neither do you have time to find the cards). You are supposed to memorise the position of 50 cards and also remember how to approach each and every card. Well, the technique I'm about to tell uses this mnemonic for going the cards on the field.
Mu Su Me Fu Sa Ho Se
U Tsu Shi Mo Yu
I Chi Hi Ki
Ha Ya Yo Ka
Each card represents the family of cards that a particular card may belong to. This representation has a meaning in a row-wise arrangement. Each row member is associated with it's neighbouring same row member in a way. I want you to figure this out and tell me down in the comments below.
There are few points always to remember:
One, always be thorough of your opponents cards position.
Two, start memorising from shorter cards (1 syllable, 2 syllables)
Three, always memorise a card imagining yourselves swinging your hand to take the card (Yes! Imagination helps a lot!)
As you play you will get a fixed kind of card placement (which can be improved at timely intervals by changing the fixed positions of certain cards), so you need to focus more on what you have across the line to attack.
First syllable cards are easier to take so, it's kind of obvious to take them in note.
Imagining actually helped me improved the way I take a card, so just it's a piece of personal advice
Now we come to the point that 15 minutes interval has started and you have to make most out of it. But you may cheat a little and pay attention while placing your cards in your territory before the time interval has started.
Once time starts, start from the lower right to the upper left of opponents field and scan the cards present in zigzag fashion (actually any order may do but try being deterministic and follow the same order every time)
Now, only recall the positions of the cards as if the cards are being in the mnemonic order given above. Mu stands for murasame no itself and U for both Uka and Ura, similarly A stands for all 16 cards starting from A like Akino, Akika (I know that's too much for 'A' but beware of those cards, you really have to be careful in the endgame because you cannot tell whether the card has turned into a 1 syllable or not)
Repeat this again for the second time for your opponent's territory a little faster this time.
Next time, include your cards too.
Until now you have gone through the field thrice, but that is not sufficient. Go for another two rounds sitting the position that you are making a swing looking at a fixed location like the middle of the lower row of your opponent (do not make practice swing before 13 minutes).
When 13 minutes are over practice swings in the same order. This helps to firm your memory. During this time also think of the first three cards that you will send as Okuri Fuda.
Whenever you get time in between two poems revise the positions and keep track of the changing kimariji.
And the last thing, though memorising time is just 15 minutes, but you can keep memorising until the game is over.