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I teach Aikido at a small dojo in Winnipeg, Canada. Been doing so for many years now. This blog is just a collection of ruminations on teaching, descriptions of the events of daily practice, and the occasional funny story.
I'm going to be very opinionated in this blog entry.
I just watched a high-ranked aikido teacher (8th dan, I believe) doing some no-touch "throwing" on YouTube. Naturally, I thought the whole thing was ridiculous. The students were flinging themselves in massive, flipping arcs through the air in response to small waving motions from the sensei. I would've laughed at this demonstration if it didn't make Aikido look so bad.
I watched a vid clip on YouTube of a "ki master" doing similar things with his students.
This guy would wave his arms around and his students would leap through the air, or they'd jerk and writhe on the ground in response to the smallest movement from their teacher. I later saw the same "ki master" in another vid clip knocked on his butt and humiliated by a young kick boxer. This "ki master" lasted about a minute (if that) before his little fantasy world of ki mastery was brought to a humiliating end.
I think this needs to happen to some of the senior Aikido teachers I see representing the art in the same way as this "ki master." I think having a few of the big names in Aikido actually prove their Aikido works (or not) against a genuine challenge would be extremely good for the art. Much of the nonsense that has found its way into Aikido would be removed by this vigorous "process of elimination."
(For those of you who have seen clips of Osensei doing no-touch throws, I would urge you to make a close comparison between what he does and what idiots like the above "ki master" are doing. More than this, though, Osensei defeated a number of serious challengers and proved that what he was doing was not the empty foolishness of some Aikido shihan today.)