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ian
07-11-2006, 04:09 AM
Reflect (if you will ;) ) on kote-gashi. In aikido we tend to step out of the way and draw the opponent through and then throw.

Noticeably in other martial arts this is often done with a smaller movement where the hips (but not the feet) move, the wrist is grabbed and forcibly bent back. Indeed, if the feet move, it is usually a single step to enable a sweep.

Even in Kung-fu there is less foot movement than aikido. It strikes me (pardon the pun) we are far more dependent on intuition to enable us to make the movement as it is slower to move your whole body than it is just to stay planted and twist the hips. The later technique being much faster (and also much quicker to learn).

Now I would agree that the aikido movement is far more advantagous (esp. in mutliple attack situations and in retaining balance), but at beginning level, and from a practical stand-point, surely more speed can be developed using the latter technique? i.e. I could well believe that a top martial artist would tend towards the whole body movement, but those students who aren't full time - surely its more advantageous training with the latter method?

What are your feelings?

dps
07-11-2006, 04:27 AM
http://www.shodokan.ch/en/index.html
Technical Reference
Kihon Randori no Kata - 17hon
Tekubi waza #12

Kote gaeshi as practiced in Shodokan Aikido is much tighter than Aikikai Aikido. Sometimes we practice it without the foot movements and just twisting the hips as you describe. :)

philipsmith
07-11-2006, 04:36 AM
Ian,

what you're talking about is what sports scientists and coaches sometimes call "speed of anticipatation".
What this means is that the performer (in this case Tori) picks up small visual cues from the opponents posture, eye direction, hand position and so on and his or her response is based on these rather than the actual movement.This enables an apparent reduction in reaction times and therefore a more effective rsponse.

A good example of this is the return of a tennis serve.
In the recent mens final at Wimbledon Roger Federer could be seen running around the serve in order to make the shot on his forehand rather than his backhand. The ball is travelling at around 150 kilometers per hour at this point and so travels between players in a shorter time that it is physiologically possible to react. What Federer (and all world class performers do) is pick up on the visual cues mentioned above so that he can move before the ball is struck.

In my own opinion this is actually how O Sensei managed to "dodge bullets" as described in the Art of Peace (I think) and continue to perform well into old age - something that is often ascribed to Ki.

grondahl
07-11-2006, 04:50 AM
In my line of aikido: "Iwama style" there are several variations of "normal" waza such as ex: yokomenuchi kotegeashi omote, iriminage omote, ryo kata dori kokyunage where you dont move your feet, just the hips.
The hips move as normal but in a smaller more compact way, therefore I canīt se any difference between small, movements and little mobility and "aikido movement". Itīs the same, just a more advanced version.

Amir Krause
07-11-2006, 06:18 AM
In Korindo Aikido many technique variations require one step, and the rest is completed based on very sophisticated hip movement. I do not think this is easier for the beginners, if anything, it is much harder, since beginners normally learn from the outside in, e.g. from hands and feet to the center. Beginners find it much easier to perform several more steps then to use their hips. And as a matter of fact, we often use longer variations for teaching them, which are then cut down to minimal movement as they progress on.

The step is often the evasion, often taken towards Uke. In most cases, even when one does not step, he should stay out of the line of the attack. The hip movement is sufficiently strong to base the technique on it without any stepping.
As far as I have seen in other M.A. they have similar approaches with regards to staying out of the line of the attack, based on the foot work and anticipation of the enemy, or if you would prefer, a much shorter mental reaction time (opposed to muscular and neural response times).

The sophisticated hips movement is taught in Korindo by practicing the 8 Tai-Sabaki step types developed by Hirai.

Amir

Ron Tisdale
07-11-2006, 07:42 AM
Nice thread. I like watching really advanced people throw in jiyu waza and randori...rarely do they step step step throw...it's almost always one step entry and throw at the same time. Sometimes the evasions are used for multiples...but ususally one step entry and cut for the throw.

Best,
Ron

SeiserL
07-11-2006, 08:13 AM
What are your feelings?
My thought, its not "vs".

Intuition "and" speed = timing.

IMHO, timing is very important.

ian
07-11-2006, 09:15 AM
Thanks folks - very interesting feedback, esp. speed of anticipation reply. Maybe I'm just lazy and I want to do the minimum effort and the slowest speed ;)

DonMagee
07-11-2006, 09:35 AM
My thought, its not "vs".

Intuition "and" speed = timing.

IMHO, timing is very important.

A very important point. A lot of people forget that strength, speed, intelligence, and intuition are all very important assets in martial arts. Each trait alone has major flaws, but together they blend into skill.

John Boswell
07-11-2006, 09:57 AM
Thanks folks - very interesting feedback, esp. speed of anticipation reply. Maybe I'm just lazy and I want to do the minimum effort and the slowest speed ;)

There is a reason aikido is called a "martial art:" It is Martial.

If you think about it, we train to handle a physical confrontation (and various reasons) but the physical brings about many things. In a real fight situation, you'll have an adrinaline rush going, the need to calm yourself and focus on center so you don't loose your ability to see the situation for what it is, awareness of your environment, ability to counter the unknown because you don't know what is coming your way yet.

When you train, it is no time to be "lazy" or to have a desire to use "minimum effort" at ANY speed. When life comes at you and you need to react in a martial way, YOU BETTER BE READY! You need to develop the desire to look for openings, anticipate attacks, see the signs of agression before the agression ever confronts you... and act on your personal knowledge of how to handle the situation.

People train in various martial arts for many different reasons. Personally, I train in aikido for Control. I know if things ever get out of hand around me, there is a fight or attack of somekind, I want to be able to take control of the situation so no one gets hurt. If you are in aikido for fun, for rank or to just hang out with your friends... then intuition and speed don't really matter, now do they?

Sorry if I sound rude, but I take aikido very seriously. Yes, it's fun and I do enjoy it and hanging with friends and even getting rank. But when a friend throws a punch, even in fun... on or off the mat, I take it seriously.

Getting back to the original question about getting off line or just turning the hips, etc. Full or Part-time students still need to learn the basics. It may take longer depending on how much time you have to give the mat, but better to learn it right the first time, refine your skills and pick up the pace down the road. There is no "short cut" to Skill.

(boy, am I nasty today or what??? :confused: :blush: :yuck: )

John Boswell
07-11-2006, 09:58 AM
A very important point. A lot of people forget that strength, speed, intelligence, and intuition are all very important assets in martial arts. Each trait alone has major flaws, but together they blend into skill.


VERY well said. ;)

jonreading
07-11-2006, 11:13 AM
Mechanics is a fundemental concept in aikido. There is a relationship between mechanical efficiency and effort that is stressed in aikido (think of a pulley system used to lift heavy objects as an example of mechanical strength). Greater mechanical efficiency requires less effort. Why use one pulley to lift a heavy load if I could use two? Why not move my feet if I can significantly reduce effort by doing so? For a peaceful bunch, we spend a significant amount of time arguing that using muscle is better than using mechanics. Of course, we also chastize people for having "bad energy"... I digress.

The most common reason for not moving (or "lazy" movement) is bad timing. Timing is a window of opportunity that provides the optimum results for an action. When our brain makes a complex calculation that we cannot explain, we call it "intuition." Intuition is nothing more than a guess that we cannot logically explain, our "gut" feeling. Don't mystify intuition; it is a natural function of your brain.

So how can you develop intuition? Practice. Your body needs to collect information necessary to making better timing judgements and that can only be done by practice.

Erick Mead
07-11-2006, 12:14 PM
In Korindo Aikido many technique variations require one step, and the rest is completed based on very sophisticated hip movement.
This provoked some thoughts I have been working on that were sufficently OT that I thought I would move my points to a another thread.

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=146986#post146986

Carry on, otherwise.

dps
07-11-2006, 12:49 PM
Mechanics is a fundemental concept in aikido. There is a relationship between mechanical efficiency and effort that is stressed in aikido (think of a pulley system used to lift heavy objects as an example of mechanical strength). Greater mechanical efficiency requires less effort. Why use one pulley to lift a heavy load if I could use two? Why not move my feet if I can significantly reduce effort by doing so?

With correct timing there is no need for mechanical strength, no lifting, pushing, pulling, no need for extra pulleys. Nage should not feel any resistance from uke. Less movement for same results requires less energy and greater efficiency.

Amir Krause
07-12-2006, 08:18 AM
When you train, it is no time to be "lazy" or to have a desire to use "minimum effort" at ANY speed.

I was often told many inventions were the result of laziness. One wishes to use the least possible amount of force, in minimal time, and get the best result. It is not laziness of the mind we seek, but rather the tendency of the body to do act in a minimal manner and still achieve the goals we seek.
One should not confuse this with laziness in the general sense nor with being un-martial. Quite the contrary, this is a wish to be most efficient.

If one can generate more then sufficient force with less steps, this would mean shorter action time, and it is always preferable (martially speaking). Of course, if you base the force on your arm muscles, you are likely to find it will not suffice against stronger\larger people. And it would require you to be hard, thus not soft, not receptive to the hints that allow the premature intuition and not harmonious. Therefore, the movement in Korindo is not based on arms strength. The movement in Korindo is based upon proper body movement that can provide the same effects and even better ones from your body, without additional steps. Our center can move somewhat even without our feet, at high levels in Korindo Aikido, this movement is all that is necessary for generation of power and for changing Mae and staying outside the attack, with very easily attainable Kuzushi. This type of smaller circle movements based action enables faster action time, with similar results.

Obviously, this requires a lot of practice. As I have written previously. This type movement is being taught in Korindo Aikido from day one. We practice it via 8 specific movement types known as the Korindo Tai-Sabaki. This practice is one of the pillars of Korindo Aikido training, and is done in almost every practice.

And as far as intuition, I would like to repeat the previous suggestion - practice, and then, practice a little more. Examine dynamic situations (Uke attacks you with a movement, even if he only wishes to grab you), And Uke should not act as a robot, and should vary the attack tempo all the time.

Amir

Erick Mead
07-12-2006, 10:45 AM
I was often told many inventions were the result of laziness. "I am NOT lazy -- I am ... efficient."

MaryKaye
07-12-2006, 11:26 AM
I train a lot with a six-year-old who has forced me to think about this technique differently. He has the fastest punch in the West and consistently hits me. If I increase ma'ai to a "safe" distance for my reaction speed, he feels too far away and wanders off. (Hey, he's six....) The only comfort is, I'm not the only one who has this problem--it was funny watching our top-ranking teenager tangle with this kid.

The only way I can succeed with him, at his chosen ma'ai, is if I am moving as soon as he is moving, which means I have to *know* when he is going to move.

To me that's the time-critical part of the technique. Once I have my hands on him, I have plenty of time--I don't need to do the no-step version (we teach that, too) to save time over the three-step version, because by that point I have some control. When I screw up, it's much earlier, before contact. That's the part where I need to shorten my reaction time.

Mary Kaye

David Orange
07-19-2006, 11:01 AM
I would agree that the aikido movement is far more advantagous (esp. in mutliple attack situations and in retaining balance), but at beginning level, and from a practical stand-point, surely more speed can be developed using the latter technique? i.e. I could well believe that a top martial artist would tend towards the whole body movement, but those students who aren't full time - surely its more advantageous training with the latter method?

This is the kind of thing that doesn't matter if the attacks are unarmed or unrealistic. But if the attacker is using a sword, all those "stand in one spot and fight" types are going to be split down the middle. Make the effort from the beginning to develop proper technique and it will not fail you. Shortcuts will get you lost, if not killed.

Best wishes,

David

David Orange
07-19-2006, 04:05 PM
This is the kind of thing that doesn't matter if the attacks are unarmed or unrealistic. But if the attacker is using a sword, all those "stand in one spot and fight" types are going to be split down the middle. Make the effort from the beginning to develop proper technique and it will not fail you. Shortcuts will get you lost, if not killed.

Best wishes,

David

What I meant to say is that aikido is designed to avoid SWORD attacks first and foremost. Everything we do unarmed is based on what we do when the attacker has a sword.

If you develop something good against an unarmed attacker, it may be worth nothing at all when the attacker has a sword.

I don't know how much most modern aikidoka practice for sword avoidance, but that is the real essence of aikido technique. It is illusion to develop anything else.

Best to you,

David

shadowedge
07-20-2006, 04:50 AM
IMHO, all techniques learned, make room for improvization when it comes to different situations... I guess we as Martial Artists have to learn how to apply the arts in diveverse ways, allowing for flexibility in application ne? :)

Amir Krause
07-20-2006, 08:00 AM
This is the kind of thing that doesn't matter if the attacks are unarmed or unrealistic. But if the attacker is using a sword, all those "stand in one spot and fight" types are going to be split down the middle. Make the effort from the beginning to develop proper technique and it will not fail you. Shortcuts will get you lost, if not killed.

Best wishes,

David

I am not an expert swordsman. When I saw our Shihan, who learned most of his weapons work in Koryu styles, I found his movement to be much smaller then most.

Sword avoidence at expert levels is something you do not see until after the fact, when the sword is down and you find out it did not reach the target, while the "target" is hitting you, seemingly without any movement. Large movements would get you cut while moving, the edge of the sword is much faster then you are, and the mae is such that if you intuit and move, the sword attack can be modified to adjust for it, that is unless you hit a very narrow timing window and keep your movement as small as possible.



Amir

George S. Ledyard
07-20-2006, 08:49 AM
My thought, its not "vs".

Intuition "and" speed = timing.

IMHO, timing is very important.

Actually, and I consider this to be an Aikido Koan, O-Sensei stated that it wasn't about timing. I can give my own take on what he meant but this is a work in process. I have experienced it but can't say I have "mastered" it.

The Mind moves before the body. In other words your Mind decides to strike before the body manifests the movement of the Mind physically. If you want to execute a technique like ikkyo, you must enter in to take the center. This isn't that hard at the typical speed that most Aikido people attack. But as you train with people who are capable of great speed in their attacks, the window of opportunity for ones entry gets smaller and smaller. There is a point at which "reaction", ie. starting ones movement as a reaction to the attack becomes impossible as there simply isn't enough time.

If, however, you place your attention on the opponent / partner and touch him with your intention, it's as if the entry already pre-exists in your Mind and you simply have to allow it to actualize physically. In other words the entry is already a reality in your Mind, before you move. When you can do this, you start to feel like there simply is no speed that the attacker can acheive that gets him ahead of you because you have already done it on some level.

Doing this shifts your perception of time. You start to see the opponent's movements as being rather slow, even when they are objectively very fast. Ushiro Kenji Sensei, the Karate teacher appearing as guest instructor for the second time at Rocky Mountain Summer Camp talks about this at length. He talks about having your Mind on the "inside" or the "outside". I have interpreted this as inside his ma-ai or outside. Anyway, it has changed my Aikido entirely both in terms of my ability to enter when attacked and to execute my attacks.

Since O-Sensei looked at everything from a mystical standpoint in which there really is no separation between attacker and defender, they are one and the same, then one can't talk about action and re-action. Timing is a concept which is essentially relative. It deals with "when" relative to something else. I would suggest taking a look at replacing the concept of "when" and replacing it with the concept of "already" and see how that changes things.

Ron Tisdale
07-20-2006, 09:54 AM
Nce post George. The problem for me is that I still work in the realm of timing...and I still stink at it...

Best,
Ron

Mark Freeman
07-20-2006, 10:01 AM
Good post George, thanks.

I agree fully with what you write, my own teacher speaks at length about this very subject. I think it goes some way towards explaining the sheer length of time it takes to be really good at aikido. Working on a purely physical level aikido is limited, working on the mind level of which you speak, it is virtually limitless?

I have had the 'glimpses' of the union with the attackers mind, I train to have more.

regards,

Mark

George S. Ledyard
07-20-2006, 11:32 AM
Nce post George. The problem for me is that I still work in the realm of timing...and I still stink at it...

Best,
Ron

Frankly, I think that this stuff is easier to get at, at least it was for me, via the sword. That may be because there isn't anyone I train with who is so highly ranked in karate or some empty hand style that they are fast enough to force me to discover these elements. But I have several students who are studying kenjutsu with Relnick Sensei. My Assistant Chief Instructor is really excellent, a true swordsman, which I am not. If I play with him, I have to use all of this or hee is apt to get me.

My partner, Genie Rivers, is a former national championship fencer. She and I have talked about this at length and she did exactly the same types of things. She once defeated the women's junior chapion by simply walking forward holding her epee out in front of her and backing the girl off the strip repeatedly. She ended up throwing down her sword and crying she was so frustrated.

You can see Ushiro Sensei do this. He projects his intention outwards and then moves forward in an instant to the spot at which he now owns the space between you. There simply is no forward movement you can make to attack him without being struck yourself. It's as if he has joined his will to yours and you can't act separately any more. He actually won a full contact bout in Europe by doing this to a Kung Fu guy and backing him off the mat repeatedly. The guy wasn't able to throw a punch.

Anyway, now that I understand what i am trying to do I can also do it with my empty hand but I still tend to refine my understanding with the sword first and then apply what I know to my emptyhand. It may be just how I process.

Chuck Clark
07-20-2006, 12:33 PM
Hi George,

Having met Genie only once I have only a small sample but I can feel some sympathy for any opponent she engages. I look forward to spending more time with you all when I get moved up there.

This subject is difficult for anyone that is still caught up in "fighting" or worrying about winning and losing. It is, and has been for some time, the largest part of my practice. I enjoyed your posts and look forward to more hands on time together.

Best regards,

George S. Ledyard
07-20-2006, 06:42 PM
Hi George,

Having met Genie only once I have only a small sample but I can feel some sympathy for any opponent she engages. I look forward to spending more time with you all when I get moved up there.

This subject is difficult for anyone that is still caught up in "fighting" or worrying about winning and losing. It is, and has been for some time, the largest part of my practice. I enjoyed your posts and look forward to more hands on time together.

Best regards,
Hi Chuck!
Do you have a time frame for settling up here? I am very excited about this, I must say...
- George

Rocky Izumi
07-20-2006, 07:14 PM
Reflect (if you will ;) ) on kote-gashi. In aikido we tend to step out of the way and draw the opponent through and then throw.

Noticeably in other martial arts this is often done with a smaller movement where the hips (but not the feet) move, the wrist is grabbed and forcibly bent back. Indeed, if the feet move, it is usually a single step to enable a sweep.

Even in Kung-fu there is less foot movement than aikido. It strikes me (pardon the pun) we are far more dependent on intuition to enable us to make the movement as it is slower to move your whole body than it is just to stay planted and twist the hips. The later technique being much faster (and also much quicker to learn).

Now I would agree that the aikido movement is far more advantagous (esp. in mutliple attack situations and in retaining balance), but at beginning level, and from a practical stand-point, surely more speed can be developed using the latter technique? i.e. I could well believe that a top martial artist would tend towards the whole body movement, but those students who aren't full time - surely its more advantageous training with the latter method?

What are your feelings?

I believe that speed during combat is more a matter of perception. According to Einstein, speed is relative. Another factor in the speed of a technique is the additive nature of speed. Finally, there is the issue of acceleration.

Perception of Speed. A person who is able to see more details between two points in time will see movement as being slower than someone who sees less detail. For instance, in combat situations where one tends to focus in on the apparent danger and ignore outside information, one sees more detail in the focus area and time seems to slow down, making things happen in slow motion. If one is distracted and does not see the danger situation, it happens as if instantaneous and the perceiver will comment that things happened so fast that they didn't know what happened. If you are able to distract Uke during a technique using something like movement, the Uke perceives the technique as happening quite rapidly no matter how slowly it is done. Speed is relative. It is relative to those things that are occurring around it.

Speed is Additive. Like a jet taking off from an aircraft carrier, you can increase speed of something by increasing the speed of launching platform and the speed of the air relative to a fixed point. If the launching platform is going at 60 kph + the wind is going at 40 kph + the catapult pushes the plane at 160 kph = then the velocity of the jet taking off is actually 260 kph. The plane sitting on the deck ready for takeoff is actually already moving at 100 kph. In doing a technique by moving the feet as well as the hips, the velocity applied in the technique is that of the feet combined with the hips. No matter how fast your hip technique is, you can always increase the speed of a technique by adding in movement of your feet.

Acceleration. Acceleration is the change in speed. A technique like kotegaeshi which changes Uke's direction during application of the technique, if one is able to have the Uke moving rapidly in one direction before changing direction, the acceleration applied in the technique is much higher than if the Uke is standing still. A rapid acceleration in the opposite direction will increase the perception of speed by the Uke. The most rapid acceleration will occur when movement changes 180 degrees. To achieve a 180 degree change in direction, a larger circle of movement is better as the angles of change is smaller, closer to attaining a straight line. When the technique is applied, the differential speed or acceleration is much higher because the angle of change is closer to attaining 180 degrees. Bigger circles, the faster the Uke's perception of acceleration during application of technique.

My point is that larger circles will appear to Uke as involving faster movement and higher acceleration in application of techniques. How fast you think you move as Nage is unimportant. Actual speed of Uke is moot. It is what Uke perceives as the speed of the technique that is important. In determining the force applied in a technique, it is the acceleration that is more important since force applied = mass x acceleration.

That is a scientific rationale for larger movements in the application of Aikido techniques. :hypno:

On the other hand, I could also just say we want larger movements because my Shihan said so. :rolleyes:

Rock

DonMagee
07-20-2006, 07:24 PM
You can see Ushiro Sensei do this. He projects his intention outwards and then moves forward in an instant to the spot at which he now owns the space between you. There simply is no forward movement you can make to attack him without being struck yourself. It's as if he has joined his will to yours and you can't act separately any more. He actually won a full contact bout in Europe by doing this to a Kung Fu guy and backing him off the mat repeatedly. The guy wasn't able to throw a punch.



Why would a guy be afraid to get hit in a full contact fight? You would be think he would of accepted the fact he had to get hit and just moved in. Either that or I have a very strong will because even when I feel overwhelmed with no way to attack safely, I just say screw it and attack.

George S. Ledyard
07-20-2006, 08:12 PM
Why would a guy be afraid to get hit in a full contact fight? You would be think he would of accepted the fact he had to get hit and just moved in. Either that or I have a very strong will because even when I feel overwhelmed with no way to attack safely, I just say screw it and attack.

This is precisely the difference between sport martial arts and combat. When you make potentially lethal techniques illegal, you put the emphasis back on being tough and being able to "take a punch".

The concepts I am talking about have more to do with traditional martial arts in which the consequence of getting struck is that you are dead. That's why I say that sword is really the place where you can more easily see these principles in action. Generally, folks don't require as much imagination to understand that the consequence of a mistake with the sword is that you are dead.

(You can see the difference, even in a sport martial art, if you compare the heavy weight fights to the lighter dividons. The lighter guys can't hit hard enough, usually, to end a fight with one strike so there is alot more "action". But one hit from a 300 lb boxer can be a fight ender, so they are much more conservative... less action but more strategy)

Anyway, that's why I have stated elsewhere that, if you gave those guys in the "Octagon" knives, you would see a whole different body type, an entirely different attitude, etc. It would be a matter of survival to start operating on a more inutitive basis.

It is absolutely possible to cut your consciousness off and ignore all these subtle signals being given off by the opponent. The problem with doing that is that when you do so you are totally shutting down the "intuition" which is here under discussion. If you are already faster, stronger, and tougher than the opponent you can certainly get away with this. But it won't work against anyone who is faster than you, stronger than you, or of greater skill than you.

So this actually brings us back to older discussions about whether Aikido "works". As we do it in the dojo, it is an art, an investigation into principle. There are a set of agreements about how the uke and nage interact which allow us to isolate various principles inorder to understand them and program our bodies to react in a certain way. Actually, most traditional Japanese martial arts use this premise in their training. It is Kata based.

"Fighting" is different. It is real. That atemi you just launched is a weapon that can kill or maim you. Look at Shioda Sensei's fight in Shanghai during WWII. The first guy through the door got a broken bottle in the face. That is that atemi you've been throwing in your waza all these years, but that was REAL. The next guy threw a kick and Shioda broke his leg. That leg break is implicit in all those techniques you've done against kicks but we throw off those because we don't want to injure our partners.

I strongly maintain that the whole logic of Aikido is really based on weapons and that it isn't really an empty hand art. If one treats it as some not very effective form of the UFC, one cannot possibly discover the subtle principles that are at work in the art.

DonMagee
07-21-2006, 06:36 AM
Interested explaination, but it didnt' answer my question. He was in a full contact bout...was this with weapons? Otherwise its safe to assume it was a competition, and thus should of had rules and thus your whole explaination does not apply.

As for real life, and aikido being a weapons art, that is a fine viewpoint. On the street you dont know if someone has a weapon or not. This is why I finally broke down and got my conceal and carry permit. Now, I no longer need to worry about being ready for a hand to hand street fight.

Back to the unarmed fight. Asssuming it was possible to know the other person does not have a weapon (lets say a match in a 3rd world country where the only rule was that they can not use weapons) I would have no problem getting hit. Its not that I ignore the subtle signals given off by my opponenet, instead I choose to strike and decide to get hit. Obviously you dont choose to take a hook to the face by a guy who is 100 pounds heavier then you, but there are choices you can make to protect your most vital areas. Its not about being tough enough, or faster or stronger, its still about being smart, but its also about accepting that this is a fight, and you can not expect to be untouchable. This makes me wonder if most aikidoka carry weapons on them, because you assume your first strike will kill, and its been my experiance that without a weapon, its not going to happen. In fact I have taken death strikes from people before. I've had a guy with a strike that was suppose to 'shatter my ribcage' and another knife hand strike to my sternum to rip out something or another (It was funny to watch him nurse those fingers), and finally, I have taken the elbow to the spine. I'm going to say short of breaking my neck, choking me to death, or crushing my throat (two of which are very hard to do) your going to need a weapon to kill me in a single strike. Potientially a blunt object, gun, or a sword (2 of the three are going to be hard to hide) This is why I find it acceptable to accept the strike and continue to engage.

I agree that aikido is a weapon based art. I have to agree because the empty hand attacks used in the training would be poor for teaching otherwise. Put a sword or staff in their hand and it makes sense. But that was not the point in question, my point was that in a full contact bout, the fighter was so afraid to enter he backed up and lost. This actually goes against your post that says in sport, the person would be trained to take the punch, vs the street. This kung fu guy could not of been a halfway good sport fighter then, or this was not a sport match. Unless I'm mistaken and this was a weapons match.

Ron Tisdale
07-21-2006, 06:58 AM
Or unless you have no clue at all about the power with which Ushiro Sensei hits. :) While mostly kidding, (of course fighters take hits, and of course unarmed hits are rarely fatal to conditioned fighters), there are always choices to be made.

This is why I finally broke down and got my conceal and carry permit. Now, I no longer need to worry about being ready for a hand to hand street fight.

If you think carying a gun makes you safe, that's a huge mistake. In some ways, it actually can make you more vulnerable, especially if you don't have the correct mindset, and aren't trained in weapons retention. Give someone 20 feet away a knife and serious intent...and if your gun isn't drawn already, there is a good chance you are toast.

Best,
Ron

DonMagee
07-21-2006, 07:08 AM
Or unless you have no clue at all about the power with which Ushiro Sensei hits. :) While mostly kidding, (of course fighters take hits, and of course unarmed hits are rarely fatal to conditioned fighters), there are always choices to be made.



If you think carying a gun makes you safe, that's a huge mistake. In some ways, it actually can make you more vulnerable, especially if you don't have the correct mindset, and aren't trained in weapons retention. Give someone 20 feet away a knife and serious intent...and if your gun isn't drawn already, there is a good chance you are toast.

Best,
Ron

So your saying I should carry a knife?

Ron Tisdale
07-21-2006, 08:12 AM
:) No, I'm saying that no defense is perfect, and that to think there are not trade-offs in any given situation would be a mistake.

Actually, I thought about what I wrote while on the can, and how it may give the impression that I thought you were in some way 'unprepared'...that is not the case.

Sport fighing & conditioning + TMA + handgun = pretty darn good defense. Better than 99.9% of the population I'd imagine, and definately better prepared than I.

Best,
Ron (now all you have to worry about is driving to work in the morning and that Mac truck coming...look out!)

DonMagee
07-21-2006, 08:52 AM
I actually dont carry. I got the permit so I could carry if I choose to. If I was going somewhere I concidered dangerous I will wear it, but wearing it normally makes me feel like i'm walking around with the intention of shooting someone. I reason for brining it up is to comment in a round about way that the best way to be prepared for a weapon is to have a weapon. I'm not a big fan of most unarmed vs weapon techniques. I find most of the attacks too unrealistic (this is in reference to knife and gun disarms, sword attacks are usually more realistic) and I have yet to see one where I didn't feel I could cut or shoot the person attempting the disarm or that the disarm would not of worked had the attacker employed a realistic attack.

To get back on topic with intuition and speed, my main point was in the example I singled out, the kung fu fighter was not properly trained. He has the sense (intuition) that he was in danger, yet he didnt' have the phyisical fortitude to press the fight. This is important in real life as well as in the ring. If you are in serious danger, lets say a person is walking at you with the intention of killing you and raping your wife, you can't go with that feeling that your attacks wont get though. You have to force yourself to take that chance and press the fight if you want to have a chance to survive. Sure, you might die, but you might not.

George S. Ledyard
07-21-2006, 10:28 AM
I agree that aikido is a weapon based art. I have to agree because the empty hand attacks used in the training would be poor for teaching otherwise. Put a sword or staff in their hand and it makes sense. But that was not the point in question, my point was that in a full contact bout, the fighter was so afraid to enter he backed up and lost. This actually goes against your post that says in sport, the person would be trained to take the punch, vs the street. This kung fu guy could not of been a halfway good sport fighter then, or this was not a sport match. Unless I'm mistaken and this was a weapons match.

No, it was a sport match, although it was full contact. So if you have some reason to believe that the guy standing across from you could possibly take you out with one punch, then it becomes very much as it would be with weapons. Apparently, this Kung Fu fellow sensed enough pwoer and intention in Ushiro Sensei that he took the threat seriously...

Anyway, there are countless stories around about this particular idea. There were a number of people of stood in front of O-Sensei and felt rooted, unable to attack. I am very interetsed on the dynamic and have been playing with it. I think it is very useful from the Aikido conflict resolution standpoint. If you can effectively project such strong and clear intention outwards, many potential encounters will end with the other guy deciding to go away.

As an aside, for all of this to really connect to reality from a fighting standpoint, one really needs to study atemi waza to the point at which he has a solid repertoire of strikes which would either kill, knock out, or disable in one blow. I only know a very few. It's not an area which I am pursuing in depth at this point as I really don't anticipate using my Aikido for self defense anyway. I am more likely to get killed in a car crash...

markwalsh
07-21-2006, 11:05 AM
Interested observation re speed from watching Meido Moore

markwalsh
07-21-2006, 11:10 AM
..Sensei last weekend. Someone said, he's very quick (like lightening) how does he do it? My guesses were:
No preparatory or unnecessary movements, he's very relaxed and has complete familiarity with the techniques.
I'm still thinking about this, but it was interesting to me that his speed seemed a result of these other things.

Apolgies for the split post.

markwalsh
07-21-2006, 11:14 AM
"what you're talking about is what sports scientists and coaches sometimes call "speed of anticipatation"."

Philip - Thanks for the science - can that intuitive capacity be trained?

MM
07-21-2006, 11:50 AM
As for real life, and aikido being a weapons art, that is a fine viewpoint. On the street you dont know if someone has a weapon or not. This is why I finally broke down and got my conceal and carry permit. Now, I no longer need to worry about being ready for a hand to hand street fight.


If you have the mindset that while carrying concealed you don't have to worry about being ready for a hand to hand fight, then, well, you're probably going to end up dead in a fight.

21 feet. That's the distance someone with a knife can reach a law enforcement officer and stab him without getting shot. Remember, LE have a weapon outside in a holster that's easy to get to, not concealed somewhere under clothing.

If you don't believe me, do some research. It's out there. I've talked to people in LE who've tried it, too. 21 feet or less is death by knife if all you do is go for your gun.


Its not that I ignore the subtle signals given off by my opponenet, instead I choose to strike and decide to get hit.

(and)

I'm going to say short of breaking my neck, choking me to death, or crushing my throat (two of which are very hard to do) your going to need a weapon to kill me in a single strike. Potientially a blunt object, gun, or a sword (2 of the three are going to be hard to hide) This is why I find it acceptable to accept the strike and continue to engage.


Just have a question. Have you ever trained with someone who is good at kali?


I actually dont carry. I got the permit so I could carry if I choose to. If I was going somewhere I concidered dangerous I will wear it, but wearing it normally makes me feel like i'm walking around with the intention of shooting someone. I reason for brining it up is to comment in a round about way that the best way to be prepared for a weapon is to have a weapon.


Hmmmm ... you might want to reconsider your reasons for carrying a gun. Or do some research to understand that you don't have to be in some "dangerous" area to need it. In fact, think about the headlines ... shot in parking lot at courthouse ... shot on university grounds ... shot at McDonalds ... shot at factory ... etc etc etc.

If you're going to areas where gangs frequently clash and gunfights break out, you don't need a concealed carry permit. You need a new job and/or lifestyle. :)

But, yes, overall, a weapon is good to have. IMO anyway.

Mark

George S. Ledyard
07-21-2006, 12:01 PM
If you have the mindset that while carrying concealed you don't have to worry about being ready for a hand to hand fight, then, well, you're probably going to end up dead in a fight.

21 feet. That's the distance someone with a knife can reach a law enforcement officer and stab him without getting shot. Remember, LE have a weapon outside in a holster that's easy to get to, not concealed somewhere under clothing.

If you don't believe me, do some research. It's out there. I've talked to people in LE who've tried it, too. 21 feet or less is death by knife if all you do is go for your gun.



Just have a question. Have you ever trained with someone who is good at kali?



Hmmmm ... you might want to reconsider your reasons for carrying a gun. Or do some research to understand that you don't have to be in some "dangerous" area to need it. In fact, think about the headlines ... shot in parking lot at courthouse ... shot on university grounds ... shot at McDonalds ... shot at factory ... etc etc etc.

If you're going to areas where gangs frequently clash and gunfights break out, you don't need a concealed carry permit. You need a new job and/or lifestyle. :)

But, yes, overall, a weapon is good to have. IMO anyway.

Mark

The average Law Enforcement involved shooting is 6 - 8 feet away in low light conditions. It's not that different in civilian encounters, at least in terms of distance. At that kind of range you will not have time to access your weapon if the other guy "draws" first. You absolutely need to be able to go to the center and strike hard and preferably unbalance the opponent so he goes to the ground. This gives you time to access your own weapon. Which, of course, isn't really any different than the original use of our Aikido techniques. Throw the enemy down so that you can draw your sword and cut him.

DonMagee
07-21-2006, 01:10 PM
If you have the mindset that while carrying concealed you don't have to worry about being ready for a hand to hand fight, then, well, you're probably going to end up dead in a fight.

21 feet. That's the distance someone with a knife can reach a law enforcement officer and stab him without getting shot. Remember, LE have a weapon outside in a holster that's easy to get to, not concealed somewhere under clothing.

If you don't believe me, do some research. It's out there. I've talked to people in LE who've tried it, too. 21 feet or less is death by knife if all you do is go for your gun.



Just have a question. Have you ever trained with someone who is good at kali?



Hmmmm ... you might want to reconsider your reasons for carrying a gun. Or do some research to understand that you don't have to be in some "dangerous" area to need it. In fact, think about the headlines ... shot in parking lot at courthouse ... shot on university grounds ... shot at McDonalds ... shot at factory ... etc etc etc.

If you're going to areas where gangs frequently clash and gunfights break out, you don't need a concealed carry permit. You need a new job and/or lifestyle. :)

But, yes, overall, a weapon is good to have. IMO anyway.

Mark

I've done my research, I''m well prepared for hand to hand combat. I'm also ok with shooting someone who is trying to hurt me. So basically, I've been told that gun = dangerous for me, but aikido = saftey from armed attackers?? This makes no sense. I guess I just havn't met the right masters yet, but I have yet to see any effective knife or gun defenses. The best I've seen so far is the stuff the dog brothers do and even its very low percentage.

Anyways back on topic. I could see someone putting forth a vibe that their hit will kill you (Even though I do not believe in one hit empty hand strikes). I can even see someone's intuition keeping them from attacking. I just can't fathom a sport fighter getting in the ring and never thoughing a punch before throwing in the towel. I just wish one time in my life I could be that guy in that situation where a master was 'rooting' me. I'm a show me guy though.

ian
08-17-2006, 09:08 AM
As an aside, for all of this to really connect to reality from a fighting standpoint, one really needs to study atemi waza to the point at which he has a solid repertoire of strikes which would either kill, knock out, or disable in one blow. I only know a very few. It's not an area which I am pursuing in depth at this point as I really don't anticipate using my Aikido for self defense anyway. I am more likely to get killed in a car crash...

I'm starting to understand where you are coming from in terms of timing now George - thanks for that valuable contribution. I think you are correct.

I do see self-defence, traditional training and sport as quite different things. I tend to see the self-defence aspect as a focus for the aikido. As far as kill, knock-out and disable in one blow goes - I think aikido is specifically designed to be good at these types of attacks since it involves complete body movement from a single sudden attack. Once a fight has been engaged natural body defences (e.g. pulling head in to protect neck) tend to reduce the chances of these amazing knock-out strikes which are seen in demonstrations with completely relaxed people (otherwise MMA fighters would all be using them).

Also, what some people conventially term as 'self-defence' is in their mind fighting. I have been in several situations where moving out the way or removing a grab has stopped anything further actually occuring.

I suppose I just don't believe that the development of intuition (maybe through reading someone) is i. quickly developed or ii. suitable in all situations - even if this is a long term target of aikido.

Thanks for replied folks - really useful.

dps
09-02-2006, 10:18 AM
Actually, and I consider this to be an Aikido Koan, O-Sensei stated that it wasn't about timing. I can give my own take on what he meant but this is a work in process. I have experienced it but can't say I have "mastered" it.

The Mind moves before the body. In other words your Mind decides to strike before the body manifests the movement of the Mind physically. If you want to execute a technique like ikkyo, you must enter in to take the center. This isn't that hard at the typical speed that most Aikido people attack. But as you train with people who are capable of great speed in their attacks, the window of opportunity for ones entry gets smaller and smaller. There is a point at which "reaction", ie. starting ones movement as a reaction to the attack becomes impossible as there simply isn't enough time.

If, however, you place your attention on the opponent / partner and touch him with your intention, it's as if the entry already pre-exists in your Mind and you simply have to allow it to actualize physically. In other words the entry is already a reality in your Mind, before you move. When you can do this, you start to feel like there simply is no speed that the attacker can acheive that gets him ahead of you because you have already done it on some level.

Doing this shifts your perception of time. You start to see the opponent's movements as being rather slow, even when they are objectively very fast. Ushiro Kenji Sensei, the Karate teacher appearing as guest instructor for the second time at Rocky Mountain Summer Camp talks about this at length. He talks about having your Mind on the "inside" or the "outside". I have interpreted this as inside his ma-ai or outside. Anyway, it has changed my Aikido entirely both in terms of my ability to enter when attacked and to execute my attacks.

Since O-Sensei looked at everything from a mystical standpoint in which there really is no separation between attacker and defender, they are one and the same, then one can't talk about action and re-action. Timing is a concept which is essentially relative. It deals with "when" relative to something else. I would suggest taking a look at replacing the concept of "when" and replacing it with the concept of "already" and see how that changes things.

George,
Have you ever read the book, "Power of Intention" by Dr. Wayne Dyer or any of Carlos Castenada's books.

From " The Active Side of Infinity" by Carlos Castenada:

" Intent is a force that exists in the universe. When sorcerers ( those who live of the Source) beckon intent, it comes to them and sets up the path for attainment, ......"

Sydney Tovatt
10-05-2006, 03:06 PM
George S. Ledyard wrote:
If, however, you place your attention on the opponent / partner and touch him with your intention, it's as if the entry already pre-exists in your Mind and you simply have to allow it to actualize physically. In other words the entry is already a reality in your Mind, before you move. When you can do this, you start to feel like there simply is no speed that the attacker can acheive that gets him ahead of you because you have already done it on some level.

Since O-Sensei looked at everything from a mystical standpoint in which there really is no separation between attacker and defender, they are one and the same, then one can't talk about action and re-action. Timing is a concept which is essentially relative. It deals with "when" relative to something else. I would suggest taking a look at replacing the concept of "when" and replacing it with the concept of "already" and see how that changes things.

My question from the standpoint av recent experiences "on the street" is not hypothetical: Were you to meet an unknown person in a confrontation on the street whose skill in projecting his intentions equaled yours how could you react, finding you and your space suddenly owned by this person? -I first now, reading your words began to understand what happened to me.

Sydney Tovatt

philipsmith
10-06-2006, 03:08 AM
"what you're talking about is what sports scientists and coaches sometimes call "speed of anticipatation"."

Philip - Thanks for the science - can that intuitive capacity be trained?


Hi Mark,

Glad to hear it's REALLY hard work in Brazil.

In answer to the question yes it can and yes we do.

How often does it appear that Tori is moving a long time before uke attacks?

The two best examples I have ever seen were the late Saito Sensei who appeared to moving at snails pace but finished his weapons strike at the same time as uke and Chiba Sensei who, on more than one occasion, I have not been able to complete an attack as he has thrown me at the point where I've thought about attacking him.

In a sense nearly all of our training is aimed at developing this sense of anticipation as with a "full-on" attack its physiologically impossible to move in time to evade it. (Check it out with Mark V & Tom next time your in town)

Regards

Phil

Esaemann
10-06-2006, 08:10 AM
Don Magee,

If you are interested in some phenomenal and fun handgun (or other firearm) defensive training, check out frontsight in Las Vegas. www.frontsight.com.

Eric

George S. Ledyard
10-06-2006, 09:15 AM
My question from the standpoint av recent experiences "on the street" is not hypothetical: Were you to meet an unknown person in a confrontation on the street whose skill in projecting his intentions equaled yours how could you react, finding you and your space suddenly owned by this person? -I first now, reading your words began to understand what happened to me.
Sydney Tovatt

Someone can only own your space if you concede it to him. This is the whole point of "fudoshin" or "immoveable mind". I have to have the strength of intention to maintain my outwardflow of attention to the opponent's center. If his intention and forward movement causes me to back up mentally, I am done for unless he makes some mistake himself.

This is why O-sensei councelled his deshi not to look into the opponent's eyes because they could "steal your spirit". Using soft focus is a way to utilize the movement receptors in the eye but it is also a way of cutting off the communication an aggressor is mking to cause your attention to retreat.

Of course, that instruction was for the students... O-Sensei
looked them in the eye and stole their spirit. So it depends on whether you have stronger intention than the other fellow whether you choose to connect with his intention this way.

If the agressor in question got inside your space physically, then you failed to act at the "critical Instant". The only potentially safe place to go at a certain point is forward to the center. If you freeze in place, they have you; if you back up, they have you. But the decision to move must be made before the aggressor has taken the space for himself.

This is why the "intuition" was so important for O-Sensei and Takeda Sokaku. Real enemies will attempt to take you by surprise. one must develop that sixth sense that allows you to feel the quality of their intention. Gavin DeBaeker, author of the Gift of Fear, has quite a bit to say about this. Very good reading.

Mark Jakabcsin
10-06-2006, 07:57 PM
If you can effectively project such strong and clear intention outwards, many potential encounters will end with the other guy deciding to go away.


George,
I too have been working on this topic for some time and have truly enjoyed your posts. I am curious as to your thoughts on how one 'effectively project such strong and clear intention outwards'. How are you experimenting with this? How are you projecting your intention?



This is why O-sensei councelled his deshi not to look into the opponent's eyes because they could "steal your spirit". Using soft focus is a way to utilize the movement receptors in the eye but it is also a way of cutting off the communication an aggressor is mking to cause your attention to retreat.

Of course, that instruction was for the students... O-Sensei
looked them in the eye and stole their spirit. So it depends on whether you have stronger intention than the other fellow whether you choose to connect with his intention this way.



Any thoughts on how one 'steals anothers spirit'?

Take care,

Mark J.

Sydney Tovatt
10-11-2006, 03:50 PM
From the standpoint of recent and ongoing experience my question is not hypothetical: Finding yourself confronted in real life with an attack by a previously unknown person or persons at least equally skilled in projecting his/her intention upon your space how do you react? When your intuition "sees" i coming? When it has become a matter of fact?
________________
Sydney S. Tovatt
Örebro, Sweden
No dojo

Sydney Tovatt
10-14-2006, 09:15 AM
Geroge.
I apologize for the redundancy, not seeing the first connection made it. Your reply gives me alot to chew on and feels right on time in real life. Thankyou.
Sydney :ai: