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Kevin Wilbanks
08-30-2006, 06:05 PM
The other day we were doing a knife takeaway and I had a partner who seriously resisted my doing the technique. I noticed when he was doing the technique, he was so tense and jerky that he actually hit himself in the head a couple of times. He went on to start making a point of grabbing the knife with the other hand and "cutting" me with it if I didn't do the technique fast enough or to his liking.

He then went on to start lecturing me about how to do the technique, including complaints about how much I was twisting his wrist - insisting that he was not being tense or resistant, when he clearly was. When I realized I was actually starting to get into an argument with the guy, I decided to stop training with him. I was in the process of thanking him and going to the edge of the mat to wait for the next round, refusing to train with him further, when the clap came, and a potential scene/incident was avoided.

This is not someone with any rank or authority at the dojo, so far as I know. Definitely not part of the teaching staff or dan ranked. In case this isn't obvious from a description of his behavior.

I saw two major problems with what he was doing. Foremost, he was assuming the role of authority and teacher in someone else's class without the instructor's consent or mine. Secondarily, all the smart-ass stuff he was doing to demonstrate how badly I was doing the technique was a violation of the parameters of the training scenario. This was just ordinary practice and I was trying to work out the technique - not reality testing. All of his gotcha nonsense was predicated on the assumption that I would not use atemi - punch him in the face, snap his knee or instep, etc... As a higher ranking sensei here has often said, without atemi, any technique is resistable.

Anyway, I'm curious as to how others would deal with such a fellow at their dojo - both what they would do, and what is considered proper at their school. I think I know what the senseis at this school will say, but I'll be checking with them next time I get the chance anyway.

John Matsushima
08-30-2006, 06:50 PM
I've had the same experience on more than one occasion. It is even worse when someone with the coveted black skirt feels it is their responsibility to teach you.
I have learned that many times, these types of people don't know that they are being too stiff, overly resisting, and they are not trying to be malicious. This made me look at the way that I myself sometimes "correct" people and make the same mistakes. So with these people, I simply ask them to loosen up a little bit to help me do the technique. Sometimes, though, they say something like "Well, I am doing this because you are not doing the technique right". I ask them to please try to go along with me anyway, that I just want to try it this way for now. If they continue to be overly resistant and uncooperative, then I choose not to practice with them anymore.

People with "gotcha" theories don't understand one important thing. Any technique done by anybody, I don't care if it is o sensei himself, can be stopped because I know what's going to happen! Also, like you mentioned, it is done without real atemi and in slow motion. Sure, I could change the technique and do something else, but then I wouldn't be practicing the technique we are supposed to be doing.

I thought once, maybe I'll try to act like this guy when I am practicing with this yon-dan and see how he handles it. Well, he almost broke my arm and wrist. I didn't want to take this approach with Mr. Jerk, though, because it was too dangerous.

So, in short, I either ask for their cooperation, or practice with someone else.

Good luck!

Aristeia
08-30-2006, 07:04 PM
I think there's a middle way. You don't necessarily have to ask them to just go along with the technique - that will rankle with many. But my rule of thumb was always - don't block my technique unless you have some real and very specific advice about what I'm doing wrong. (unless we are overtly resistance testing). Just like I'd prefer not to tell uke to move in a certain way unless I could demonstrate why it was in their best interest to do so, I would try not to resist technique unless that led to a pointer that could make the technique better.

Just standing there and resisting with a "dude it ain't working" mentality is an invitation to to go to the rest of your toolbox imo.

gdandscompserv
08-30-2006, 07:38 PM
patience, grasshopper, patience.

DonMagee
08-30-2006, 08:01 PM
I know you are trying to work a single technique, but my advice is to just change the technique. Make it work by just changing to something he is not resisting. Blend with him. It will make you better.

Gernot Hassenpflug
08-30-2006, 08:01 PM
Michael's advice is I think good one. There's no point in giving advice unless there's an intellectual realization that the other guy can use to improve his aikido across the board -- because he now sees something that he couldn't see before. I don't go with the "it has to be shown, and ONLY shown" approach, although showing first is often the way to get the intellect working. I'm quite happy also to see people doing variations on things the teacher shows, especially if they know what they're doing, as long as we're all clear on what kind of things we're trying to learn. I think this is still a major stumbling block: even in Abe sensei's dojo more than 50% of the students (mostly all casual) need to be seriously educated about what they're supposed to be learning. Once that's down pat, even just on an intellectual level, all sorts of nice training scenarios emerge, based on this common understanding.

DCP
08-30-2006, 08:59 PM
I kinda like the passive-aggressive approach to this problem. It goes like this:

"Excuse me, Sensei. My partner has illustrated problems with my technique. Would you please demonstrate on him so I can see how to do it properly?"

I think this expands learning for everyone.

gdandscompserv
08-30-2006, 09:03 PM
Nice Daniel.

Kevin Wilbanks
08-30-2006, 09:12 PM
It was shihonage. He started by not letting me get under, then rolling out of it, though I was still succeeding about half the time. When I slowed down to try to figure out new angles and postures that might work against his resistance and rollouts, he started switching the knife to his other hand and mock stabbing me with it. When I tried to switch to other techniques, he resisted those and grabbed the knife and mock cut me with it every chance he got. I got tired of that, and that's when he went into lecture/argument mode.

Overall, my impression was not that he had any particular point or points about what I was doing, or even a desire to help me in any way. I think he was just trying to dominate and school me for egoistic purposes.

My question was more about the norms and behavior standards of others and their places of training. For instance, I'm wondering if in some dojos, I would be allowed to beat on him to make the technique work if I chose - I know at this one you are allowed to if someone pulls that kind of stuff during a test, but I don't think so during training. I'm sure I would not get in trouble for refusing to train with him there, but are there some dojo where you are required to just lump it in that situation? Inform the sensei about the person's misbehavior? etc...

gdandscompserv
08-30-2006, 09:24 PM
For instance, I'm wondering if in some dojos, I would be allowed to beat on him to make the technique work if I chose
Well, that's what dojos are for. I like having big burly son's as students cuz they really like to "resist" the old man.
Seriously though, I wouldn't worry about it much. You are there to learn, so learn what you can from his resitance. Just keep at it. You do change partners regularly in your dojo don't you? So you probably only have to spend a maximum of 10 minutes, twice a week, with the guy.

Roman Kremianski
08-30-2006, 09:26 PM
This is why I avoid giving advice even to lower-ranking people then me. Even with the best of intents, you can still be seen as an asshole by some. :(

Gernot Hassenpflug
08-30-2006, 09:40 PM
This is why I avoid giving advice even to lower-ranking people then me. Even with the best of intents, you can still be seen as an asshole by some. :(

...some of us thrive on that... :p

I try to get people to at least stand in a way that starts to get some sort of 6-direction feel to it. When they can feel that themselves, plus the effect on me as uke, then they can continue, occupied by simply trying to keep that feeling whatever they are doing. No more teaching needed with words. And when I come up against my seniors, then I just laugh as my stuff fails to work properly...

aikidoc
08-30-2006, 10:08 PM
I don't know what the attack was but sometimes you just gotta hit them and dump them on their egoistic a$$ to keep them honest.

Personally, there is a safety risk for the uke resisting as well as not practicing something shown. Working with people like that is frustrating. When they know what you are going to do it is somewhat easy to counter the move. One thing I found works nicely with shihonage is to lock your thumbs across the wrist. If they fight, it hurts their wrist.

ESimmons
08-30-2006, 10:14 PM
Sometimes the best thing to do is to talk directly to the person you have a problem with.

shadowedge
08-30-2006, 11:19 PM
Sometimes the best thing to do is to talk directly to the person you have a problem with.

how true. if this guy understands your sentiments, it might even turn out beneficial for the both of you.

The only thing that bothers me, is that this guy might be the closed minded type. from the way you describe him, seems like the guy has (imo) pride issues.

Whenever a fellow trainee needs corrections, I give them a slight nuge in the right direction. If that persistingly doesnt work, I ask for sensei's help, that way if im off as well, I get corrected along with my parter.

My sensei always keeps an eye out for students with ego problems and stays close to them. I guess bringing this to the senei's attention would be a good thing if it'll turn out a good learning experience for both of you. But do this only if your talk with the guy didn't improve the situation.

Good luck bro!

Mike Hamer
08-31-2006, 12:11 AM
Ive never had to deal with this type of situation while training, our dojo is fairly small in size, and everyone there seems to get along nicley.

mjchip
08-31-2006, 12:18 AM
IMO, it's the teacher's job to deal with situations such as this one. As I see this going on after I've demonstrated a basic form, I'll usually go over to the pair of students and bow to the one who was doing the resisting (providing incorrect resistance = too much resistance for the partner or the wrong kind of resistance which can be lack of commitment, resisting to put oneself in a martially inferior position, etc.). I will then verify that the person's ukemi feels correct and will pay close attention to how they do their half of the form with me and how they did it with the person they were working out with. If they pull the same stunt with me I'll let them know what they are doing is wrong (usually nonverbally or in a very terse manner). If they miraculously start taking good ukemi for me, I'll usually say something like "Yes, that is how your half of the form should look. Now go do that with your partner and stop resisting stupidly." Works most of the time without a lot of impact. Sometimes it takes a little more......

BTW, This really doesn't happen often in my dojo as all of my students know that I'm to be the ONLY one teaching during class. Their job is simply to shut-up and train.

In closing, in the event that your teacher doesn't see what's going on, get his/her attention and let them solve the problem.

Regards,

Mark

eyrie
08-31-2006, 12:32 AM
Was this person a rank beginner or someone who has obviously had some sort of training? Was he part of the dojo or a guest?

Nick Simpson
08-31-2006, 07:02 AM
I think you handled the situation really well Kevin, no ones ego got bruised, no one got hurt and there arent any bad feelings. Dont train with that individual again, no big deal, it's him who is losing out on a good training partner, not you.

To answer the question, theres a few options open in this situation:

1) Refuse to train with them (politely)

2) Tell/ask them not to do what they are doing/ask what they are trying to teach you.

3) Tell them that in your dojo only sensei/sempai teach.

4) Tell sensei (I wouldnt do this unless it was a major issue, no one likes a snitch).

5) Depending on your dojo protocol you could employ Henka waza to take them down and show them the error of their ways.

6) You could beat on them (In my wilder, younger days I employed this method alot and while it works at the time it's not the best solution and these days as a sempai and assistant instructor It's my job to look after people, not hurt them, though if someone is being a real jerk I know I have my sensei's backing).

Ron Tisdale
08-31-2006, 07:22 AM
Hmmm, well, I have been instructed that the proper way to stop someone who was rushing in too much and too open on yokomenuchi was to "pop them once". The partner was a brown belt, and male, so in that case, I followed instruction. End of problem. On the few occations where *I* was the jerk, I've had seniors simply throw the tar out of me. Again, end of problem.

I think though, it's case by case. The first time I did nage waza using the jo, I asked my partners (both with pretty good ukemi) to take it easy, and let me learn...but this was after class training, and they decided to go for broke. Well, they still got thrown, but the ukemi wasn't pretty...I don't think that will happen again. My main concern was would this get someone hurt, but too much of my concern was probably will I look like a fool if I can't throw them. The instructor there said "hey, they're at a high enough level...If that's what they want, give it to them."

Conversely, if I got caught beating up on someone who obviously couldn't take the ukemi...I think some long jiyu waza sessions as uke would be liberally applied. I've seen that...not going there...

Best,
Ron

roninroshi
08-31-2006, 07:32 AM
Sensei should be watching and taking care of the problem...a light fingerflick to his face and rapidly change direction...turn it into Sankyo and gently take him down..w/a smile...he is showing you (with out knowing it) a number of way's to deal w/flowing waza that you may otherwise never learn.

mjchip
08-31-2006, 09:04 AM
Hmmm, well, I have been instructed that the proper way to stop someone who was rushing in too much and too open on yokomenuchi was to "pop them once". The partner was a brown belt, and male, so in that case, I followed instruction. End of problem. On the few occations where *I* was the jerk, I've had seniors simply throw the tar out of me. Again, end of problem.

<snip>

Conversely, if I got caught beating up on someone who obviously couldn't take the ukemi...I think some long jiyu waza sessions as uke would be liberally applied. I've seen that...not going there...

Best,
Ron

Yup, pretty much the way I was taught.

Regards,

Mark

P.S. Ron, next time you get up to Massachusetts, look us up: www.aikidojinseidojo.com. I'd love to train with you.

Ron Tisdale
08-31-2006, 09:18 AM
Would love to, and it may happen sooner than I thought...I look forward to sharing some mat time.

Best,
Ron

mjchip
08-31-2006, 09:32 AM
Would love to, and it may happen sooner than I thought...I look forward to sharing some mat time.

Best,
Ron

I'll PM you my cell #. Give me a call when you get out my way and we can train.

Mark

Nick P.
08-31-2006, 09:43 AM
Anyway, I'm curious as to how others would deal with such a fellow at their dojo - both what they would do, and what is considered proper at their school. I think I know what the senseis at this school will say, but I'll be checking with them next time I get the chance anyway.

1-Put on blank stare
2-Slightly nod head in mock acceptance
3-Keep doing exactly as you were doing

There is no doubt they are doing many things wrong, and perhaps even you were doing something wrong (in their eyes), but in the end all they want to hear and see from you is "Of course! You are so right! How could I be so wrong!" followed by you doing exactly as they suggested (neither of which are likely to happen). Of course all you want to do is either thrown them with authority or prompt them to say "I am sorry, I was wrong and you were right."

Hope you learned something of value from the whole exchange; whenever it happens to me I am reminded of how much more work on self control I have yet to do.

aikidoc
08-31-2006, 09:57 AM
George Ledyard had an interesting article talking about resistive uke's. He made some good points:
1. A lot of aikidoka are all beat up later in their careers due to taking improper ukemi and absorbing the brunt of the force.
2. Uke cannot find the kaeshi waza opportunities if they are fighting the technique.

I would also add that being shown the technique makes it easy to stop someone. If that is the way the person trains, then you both just stand there staring at each other. Switch rolls and stare at each other again. No one gets to practice anything. As the practice becomes more skilled then the attacks can be more challenging making nage work out the bugs.

Roman Kremianski
08-31-2006, 10:00 AM
I personally like training with ukes like this. It's very...different. If you get too comfy and sheltered doing a previously easy technique on someone and all the sudden this technique fails on the resistant uke, then it really opens up your eyes. Not to mention you can work on alternatives. :D

mjchip
08-31-2006, 11:08 AM
I personally like training with ukes like this. It's very...different. If you get too comfy and sheltered doing a previously easy technique on someone and all the sudden this technique fails on the resistant uke, then it really opens up your eyes. Not to mention you can work on alternatives. :D

Well, there is a time and place for this sort of practice and IMO, it's not during basic forms training.

In addition, I believe that people shouldn't start working with heavy resistance until shodan or so (once they have both sides of the forms internalized and have a good sense of where their bodies should be and what constitutes proper resistance without creating additional suki).

My $0.02

Mark

Kevin Wilbanks
08-31-2006, 11:27 AM
Hope you learned something of value from the whole exchange; whenever it happens to me I am reminded of how much more work on self control I have yet to do.

That was the reason I pulled the plug at that point. I was feeling the adrenaline rise and on the verge of getting seriously pissed off. In retrospect, it does seem a little silly to have let such a short episode with an arrogant know-it-all effect me so.

In fact, this type of thing is one of the main motivators for my coming back to Aikido. I found myself at a relatively quiet folk show asking some rude asshole in front of me to be quiet, for the second time... so pointedly. Most of the time, people just shut up, but this time the guy got in my face and called me a 'dick' or something. It launched me into serious thoughts of destroying the guy, like smashing my heavy cocktail glass into his skull or doing Muay Thai kinda stuff to him. It made me realize I needed to get back to martial arts to work on the my temper and conflict confidence.

Roman Kremianski
08-31-2006, 11:40 AM
Well, there is a time and place for this sort of practice and IMO, it's not during basic forms training.

I'd agree, but these type of encounters only happen about once every 30 classes, so it's not that big of a deal to me. Not like we train with resistance every single day. No progress would be made!

Besides, I don't choose it. If someone believes my shihonage isn't effective enough and tries to struggle against it, I just go down on one knee and do a torque movment and they go down in pain anyway. Maybe not the most aiki smooth but...

Ron Tisdale
08-31-2006, 11:59 AM
It made me realize I needed to get back to martial arts to work on the my temper and conflict confidence.

The other night I did a stupid with an obnoxious driver...my comment to myself was "bring it on, I'm not in the mood and I'll finish you..." -- not the proper frame of mind at all. For all I knew, he could have had a gun. It didn't come to anything thankfully...but as a barometer, it let me know my own control wasn't where it should be.

Good on you for recognizing where you were.

Best,
Ron

Don_Modesto
08-31-2006, 11:59 AM
The other day we were doing a knife takeaway and I had a partner who seriously resisted my doing the technique....all the smart-ass stuff he was doing to demonstrate how badly I was doing the technique was a violation of the parameters of the training scenario. I had a guy doing this with KUMIIAI once. The defense consisted of entering on the attacker's upswing. He was being too clever by half, beginning with his BOKKEN in JODAN. I, not being able to do the technique, simple thrust into his belly. His insolence frustrated, we left, muttering.

Good riddance.
This was just ordinary practice and I was trying to work out the technique - not reality testing. All of his gotcha nonsense was predicated on the assumption that I would not use atemi - punch him in the face, snap his knee or instep, etc... As a higher ranking sensei here has often said, without atemi, any technique is resistable.violation of the parameters of the training scenario.Actually, while partners like you suffered irritate me, too, they are also useful.

Some people dismiss kata entirely (Bruce Lee?) But if you always have tenacious resistance, you cannot develop clean technique. At some point, you HAVE to do kata, you have to GO THROUGH THE MOTIONS.

OTOH, I personally think we may do too much of this in aikido. I think aikido defenses against weapons are very misleading to practitioners and we ought to be getting stabbed by those wooden knives a lot more than we do in order to convey how dicey and unlikely disarming someone really is to folks with us for self-defense rather than philosophy. An argument could be made for making all aikido practice a lot messier.

So in the original conflict, I think both parties had arguments. Kevin, for kata, the "asshole" for realism (not doubting for a moment Kevin's contention that the partner was all about ego--I've run into too many like this to doubt it.)

I know you are trying to work a single technique, but my advice is to just change the technique. Make it work by just changing to something he is not resisting. Blend with him. It will make you better.I agree and do this.

Unfortunately, you may run into the teacher's ego here. I've had more than one come by and chide me for doing something different than he had divinely dispensated to the class. Geez, at some point, the rubber's gotta hit the road. With TAKEMUSU AIKI the ideal, we can realistically ask if it's not explicitly prohibited in most teachers' classes.

TOPIC FOR ANOTHER THREAD: When is HENKA WAZA hunky-dori?

( http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/newthread.php?do=newthread&f=1 )

This is why I avoid giving advice even to lower-ranking people then me. Even with the best of intents, you can still be seen as an asshole by some. :(Yes. Me, too. I wait until I'm asked.

Kevin Wilbanks
08-31-2006, 12:33 PM
Actually, the point about the fantastical nature of such weapons takeaways made me think what he was doing even more absurd. Of course I'm not going to be able to do shihonage on some guy trying to slash me with a huge bowie knife - especially not while I'm doing it in slow motion and he is free to move at full speed. To me, the weapons takeaways in Aikido are over 90% fantasy. I guess if you found yourself in that proximity to someone trying to stab you or slash you with a sword, you'd have to give it a try, but if it comes to that, it's probably your time to go down. If we were talking realism training and that guy pulled out a knife that big with nefarious intent, I'd run to the other side of the room and grab a bokken off the wall. If I was the only one in danger, I'd probably skip the bokken and go right out the front door. I see the weapons vs. open hand training as a type of exercise that changes the parameters and focus of what you are doing somewhat, and not much else.

As far as all the stuff revolving around the idea of giving the guy what for, it sounds satisfying, but this isn't the kind of dojo where I could break this guy's nose or send him to a physical therapist without it being a major incident. As far as doing it more subtly, with pure Aikido skill, I am just coming back from about 3 years away, so I don't see that happening anytime soon. Also, the way I interpreted the guy's attitude, anything I did in that vein was just going to lead to escalating one-upsmanship - an arms race that would eventually go nuclear.

Ron Tisdale
08-31-2006, 12:36 PM
I know what you mean about the arms race. If you start one, you certainly don't want to lose. I guess it's a very fine point of control to be able to make the point without breaking the nose. ;) Apparently my seniors think I have that much control. Sometimes I really wonder about that, though...

Best,
Ron

ChrisMoses
08-31-2006, 12:37 PM
This can be really frustrating. I remember many times doing waza that I considered to be more learning tools (undo) rather than effective waza and having a partner decide to point out all of the openings. You get left with the decision to do something besides what you're supposed to be working on or have your partner think they're getting the best of you (not to mention getting really frustrated). This also goes back to my assertion that the rules aren't clearly defined enough in Aikido practice. Is it kata? Is it oyowaza? Is it randori? Too often nage is stuck within the confines of a kind of kata (they're supposed to be working on a specific version of a technique after all) but uke is acting more in line with oyowaza or randori. That's not a fair training relationship. Often a particular technique presupposes a specific attack and straying from that attack can change the scenario enough to make the intended study impossible. Of course one *should* have enough control over uke that this isn't a problem, but if we were all that good, we'd be the one calling the techniques.

It sounds like you're also bumping up against the 'shiho nage problem'. The technique (the way most people do it) has a very limited range of people that it works on. We've all had newbies spin and twist out of a gentle shihonage. But by the time you have good enough ukemi to have somebody really throw you, you should know how to block it six ways from Sunday. It's really one of the easiest techniques to nullify, so it works best as a teaching tool, and that requires a certain ammount of cooperation from ones partner.

My big beef is when the tables are turned and as uke I'm trying to offer a learning experience for nage so that they can find the right movements, and rather than reexamine their waza, they just punch you. Great, thanks. Atemi is not a get out of jail free card.

Ron Tisdale
08-31-2006, 12:44 PM
Great, thanks. Atemi is not a get out of jail free card.
:)
Agreed...it often gets used to cover up a lot of bad technique. That's why I almost always only go to it when the *instructor* points to it as the solution. Not just on a whim with any resistant uke.

Best,
Ron

ChrisMoses
08-31-2006, 01:09 PM
:)
Agreed...it often gets used to cover up a lot of bad technique. That's why I almost always only go to it when the *instructor* points to it as the solution. Not just on a whim with any resistant uke.

Best,
Ron

Didn't mean to be implying you were. Certainly there are times when uke can act in such a non-martial way that they are able to block your waza but only by positioning themselves in paces that are martially useless. I've pointed this out with atemi myself when whoever I was working with just wasn't paying attention to the whole of the interraction.

Kevin Wilbanks
08-31-2006, 01:42 PM
You've got it, Christian. The more I think about this though, the more I think I just let the guy take me off my center and priorities, metaphorically speaking. Right now, my main goal in Aikido is to just participate regularly without injury and get my body used to things again. After that, my main interest is mostly taking ukemi. If I could, I'd just take ukemi most of the time and not bother with techiniques, frankly. I just like it on a sensual, visceral level and I also aspire to the kind of silent smoothness that the woman who taught me Waite-style has. In the larger scheme, I really have no ego tied up in my throwing abilities at this point, so the guy shouldn't have rattled me. The problem is that I'm a very independent person and I often react in an irrational and extreme way when I perceive that someone is trying to take advantage of me, losing sight of my goals.

odudog
08-31-2006, 02:40 PM
The 4 ways to cure this problem are the following: 1) ask him politely not to resist so that you can practice and for him not to get hurt 2) if that doesn't work, drop to your knees while doing shihonage, he should get the message them hopefully 3) if #2 doesn't work, then change to another technique that is even more painful or make another soft technique become painful 4) if he still doesn't get the message then just avoid him and leave him in his arrogant and destructive ways.

One of my old instructors was practicing at his new dojo in RI with a new student. The new student ripped up my old instructor's elbow doing shihonage improperly. It has a been about 1 1/2 yrs now and my old instructor still isn't able to get on the mat due to this injury.

Don_Modesto
08-31-2006, 03:10 PM
To me, the weapons takeaways in Aikido are over 90% fantasy.We agree.

....the rules aren't clearly defined enough in Aikido practice. Is it kata? Is it oyowaza? Is it randori? Too often nage is stuck within the confines of a kind of kata (they're supposed to be working on a specific version of a technique after all) but uke is acting more in line with oyowaza or randori. That's not a fair training relationship.Well said.

Qatana
08-31-2006, 06:26 PM
OK so I've both dealt wth the jerk and been accused of being the resistor.

scenario !, I have mentioned before. I was visiting a dojo, the instructor gave a technique and very clearly said uke may CHOOSE to breakfall or roll. I told my partner to please throw me into rolls. He proceeded to throw me into higher and harder breakfalls, all the while, when I was nage, lecturing me on how I was not caring for him properly. This person was wearing a white belt, so WHY was he lecturing somebody senior in rank to him in the first place?A Guest?

In my own dojo I am being accused of being a bad uke because several of my (bigger, stronger and trained in other arts) kohai are having trouble making me fall. Now I am 5'3", I weigh around 105# and i'm 50n years old. I also have thirty years dance experience and superlative balance and flexibility, especially for a person my age.Not to mention several years of tango training, which is All About Following. So I'm sincerely TRYING to follow their technique but they don't seem to be able to adapt their technoique to me, and I get blamed. When I ask Sensei he says to "lead my nage' which I can do to some extent with a beginner but not with a fourth kyu who has 50-100 pounds on me. Am I a jerk?
I actually walked out of an iriminage when Sensei was demonstrating with me. He didn't chastise or accuse me, he simply changed the technique to yonkyo and believe me, I have no clue how I ended up on the mat!

NagaBaba
08-31-2006, 07:50 PM
In my opinion there is not such concept as ‘jerk’ in aikido practice. Why should everybody be nice and follow the same drill as a uke? Of course one (as instructor or as more advanced aikidoka) can punish uke for not politically correct behavior, and uniform the way of attacking or receiving techniques.

However, it is not natural at all (as in Nature there very many differences) and leads to form very distinguish style of practice. What is worse, that this situation is the biggest obstacle to unify all aikidoka to practice together. And we hardly can see students of ***** sensei when other sensei instruct class or seminar.

Techniques from one aikido style are not working at all in other style. And ppl are so frustrated by their powerless, that they prefer not to come to practice to other style. And they close themselves in their own style progressively believing that only their way of doing ukemi is THE best. And all this starts from drilling uke, as Pavlov’s dogs.

I have completely different idea – if techniques doesn’t work, it is ALWAYS fault of nage. And when attacker is attacking, we are here not to value his behavior, but to deal physically with attack in aikido way. And role of instructor is to show effective way to do it, instead of punishing uke.
When students get use to such situation, they are free to practice in any style, because extreme difficulty of executing techniques is a daily, natural and the most desired situation. They understand that under such conditions they can learn in most efficient way Real Aikido LOL. Why O sensei chose the martial techniques as a tool to spiritual transformation? Just because only such techniques can create right environment -- with one condition: uke is not drilled as Pavlov’s dog.

Nick P.
08-31-2006, 08:38 PM
-- if techniques doesn't work, it is ALWAYS fault of nage. And when attacker is attacking, we are here not to value his behavior, but to deal physically with attack in aikido way.

I agree.

However the original post was asking was how to deal with a jerk of a partner (talking, teaching, showing-off, etc).
If a person with one month of training is practicing with someone with one decade of training, and the senior is the jerk, how do they deal with it? I think they should just keep trying. The same applies if the reverse is also the case.

But perhaps the best answers lie here
http://www.aikiweb.com/general/founder.html
and this is one of my favorites
"I do not think badly of others when they treat me unkindly. Rather, I feel gratitude towards them for giving me the opportunity to train myself to handle adversity." O-Sensei

dps
08-31-2006, 08:46 PM
The other day we were doing a knife takeaway and I had a partner who seriously resisted my doing the technique. I noticed when he was doing the technique, he was so tense and jerky that he actually hit himself in the head a couple of times.. I think at this point I would politely and respectfully thank him for his help tell him you are not going to practice with him for fear of him hurting himself. Then tell sensei about it.


I think Uke is the mirror of Nage/Tori's ability to do technique.

Gernot Hassenpflug
08-31-2006, 08:46 PM
Yeah, if it's the senior that's the jerk, the junior is pretty much f**ked -- and I think we all know seniors like that :lol: (takes a quick walk down own memory lane...)

On the other hand, there's always the case where the "junior" takes down the senior with his other MA knowledge. I've had juniors who did judo or wrestling and were just much better than I was at the time. Not to mention the really big guys that sometimes step onto the mat.... I've seen a nondescript junior passively take a lot of shit from a talkative senior, and then kick him in the head with an axe kick while still standing in the usual face to face position. I'm sure we other seniors should have really made him pay for that, but we were too busy rolling on the mat laughing our a**es off, with phrases like "stupid must pay" going around....

dps
08-31-2006, 10:13 PM
Better yet, humbly go to sensei and tell him that your technique works on every uke except one and could sensei please show how to do it on this particular individual. If you are having a difficult time understanding and need to understand all aspects of the technique, you may have to ask sensei to demonstrate over and over and over again.

ruthmc
09-01-2006, 04:11 AM
Hmm, if the technique was shihonage, I'd have dropped an old school shiho on him and made him squeak evileyes

One hand twists his hand outwards and downwards (hold his fingers for extra ouch points), your other (slightly bent) arm braces underneath his elbow and extends upwards and towards his outstretched hand at the same time. This will get him hopping on hs toes and unable to think beyond the pain burning through his brain :D

No speed required, simply co-ordination :cool:

And no, I don't normally do shihonage like this as most folk prefer to have full use of their arm at work the next day ;)

Ruth

Ron Tisdale
09-01-2006, 08:12 AM
Techniques from one aikido style are not working at all in other style. And ppl are so frustrated by their powerless, that they prefer not to come to practice to other style. And they close themselves in their own style progressively believing that only their way of doing ukemi is THE best. And all this starts from drilling uke, as Pavlov's dogs.

There is some truth to this statement, and that must be acknowledged to move forward from such a bad position.

BUT...this is not always the case. Increasingly, groups and individuals, led by free thinking and innovative instructors, are stepping outside of the 'normal restrictive patterns', and learning from each other. Some of the relationships that have made this possible were formed at the Aiki Expos and other cross dojo events. Some of these relationships have been made possible because individuals took the time to go to other dojo, behave properly, and learn.

In my experience in the joint seminars given by Ikeda and Utada Sensei, there are some waza that one group does that does not have a great affect on members from another school *at first*. But when the instructors call up uke from the other school, the waza does in fact *work*. And the longer we train, the more they work for the students, as we improve. I'm sure a case can be made that some students often tank for an instructor (esp. one not their own) to be polite. I guess the only thing one could do about that is to take the ukemi for themselves.

In my personal trips to other schools, I have not found that the waza I was taught did not work, and I have found that others could certainly make their waza work on me. Sometimes there were rough patches, sometimes there were problems...but I've always been able to sort such things out. If I can do that, I know others can too, because my skills are pretty mediocre.

Best,
Ron

actoman
09-01-2006, 08:19 AM
I know what you mean dude. We recently had a new family come into the dojo. Good people, honestly, but here is the problem: He is a non-dan, white-belt rank, truly a very beginner, less than 3 week along. While he seems to be doing well, his ettiquette in the dojo is appauling. We were training in Gokyo the other day, both tenkan and from Munetski, and he was trying to teach the instructor! While he looked offended, he poised and took a breath and moved on. I think he is going to get wailed on one day if he does'nt realize. Then he went on to give this ridiculous tale of how he used what he'd learned already to subdue a drunk guy 'instinctively' at a store. My only thought was 'gimme a break'

Eric Webber
09-01-2006, 10:26 AM
Anyway, I'm curious as to how others would deal with such a fellow at their dojo - both what they would do, and what is considered proper at their school. I think I know what the senseis at this school will say, but I'll be checking with them next time I get the chance anyway.

In my home dojo, which is small and intimate, I would change technique and put a particularly ugly joint lock on, capture his or her attention with some discomfort, then whisper in my partner's ear, "Let's stick with the prescribed technique so no one gets hurt by accident." In other cases, in other dojos or seminars, I would take a more mature and tactful approach :D.

crbateman
09-01-2006, 10:36 AM
The other night I did a stupid with an obnoxious driver...my comment to myself was "bring it on, I'm not in the mood and I'll finish you..." -- not the proper frame of mind at all. For all I knew, he could have had a gun. It didn't come to anything thankfully...but as a barometer, it let me know my own control wasn't where it should be.
It's great to have self control. Sometimes better still to have self control AND a gun of your own... ;)

Ron Tisdale
09-01-2006, 10:42 AM
Certainly, but personally I refuse at this point to even own a gun, let alone apply for a CCW. I do have a relative who has suggested it, but I declined. I think my reluctance may be some left overs from my more liberal days...but I frankly really dislike being around them.

I did have an instructor though who took us to a range and taught us to shoot. It was a good experience. Just not something I want as a constant part of my life though.

Best,
Ron

James Davis
09-01-2006, 10:43 AM
Luckily, I haven't had to deal with as many jerks in the dojo as I have nice people. When I first started, I dealt with them by not dealing with them at all. I removed myself from the situation, and sat at the edge of the mat. My sensei seemed to approve of my doing this, instead of "exploring my other options" when I met resistance. ;)

Now that I'm in a position of responsibility in the dojo, and I have a little more skill, I try to stop the problem before it starts. When I have an uke come up to demonstrate technique with me for the rest of the class, I usually throw them pretty easily the first time around. After that, when they know what technique I'm planning to teach, sometimes uke will try to resist. I will then usually blend with what they give me and change the technique entirely, and throw them again. If I say something like "We have other tools to deal with resistance, but I want us all to practice this technique tonight.", it generally reassures the students that aikido works and nips the resistance problem in the bud.

If I notice someone being a problem uke with another student, I generally make them my next demo uke. They're usually not being mean about it; they're just curious as to "what nage will do against this". :)

Like some other teachers, I like to use the term "paired kata" to explain our resistance free training. I also like to remind my "hard core" students that resistance will have its place... later, when nage has a little more skill.

When I was a sixth kyu, it was not my business to try to correct student behavior. Now that I teach,sometimes I have to. It's usually not unpleasant if I turn it into something that everyone can learn and benefit from. :)

James Davis
09-01-2006, 10:59 AM
Certainly, but personally I refuse at this point to even own a gun, let alone apply for a CCW. I do have a relative who has suggested it, but I declined. I think my reluctance may be some left overs from my more liberal days...but I frankly really dislike being around them.

I did have an instructor though who took us to a range and taught us to shoot. It was a good experience. Just not something I want as a constant part of my life though.

Best,
Ron
I can understand that completely. I have a concealed permit, but I generally don't carry. I just have it for the day when I and my family decide to go on a road trip, in case we get two flat tires. I don't like to think about the three of us walking alongside the road unprotected, or of going for help by myself and leaving my wife without that extra tool for defense. Cell-phones are wonderful, if they work. ;)

I don't really like being around guns either. Even when I go target shooting with people I trust, somebody might get careless; that's no good. I do like the option of carrying my gun when I go to feed the horses, though. Poisonous snakes like our high ground, especially after tropical storm Ernesto dropped so much rain on us. I didn't think of the pistol on my hip this morning as something that would keep me perfectly safe, but it was an extra tool. Having it with me made the experience of batting away mosquitos and keeping an eye out for water moccassins slightly more enjoyable. :D

Ron Tisdale
09-01-2006, 11:38 AM
Sounds like you have a good life! :) And a very balanced approach. I would probably not shoot a snake, I rather like them...but I don't own horses on high ground in Florida either. My grandfather in Orlando always wanted me to kill the snakes I caught on his lake front property. I (very) politely declined. I'm still amazed by the fact that he didn't tear me a new one for that. He was extremely stict in every other regard.

Best,
Ron

crbateman
09-01-2006, 12:11 PM
I'm cool with snakes. In fact, I have a seven-footer hanging on the back of my chair as I write this. As far as the gun thing, I have considerable training and a permit, and carry one in my car. I have another near me in bed. In my life, I have taken them out to protect myself twice. Once to hold a peeper until the sheriff arrived, and the other to back down an attacker with a hatchet in hand. This is why I have them, and why I sleep very well about it. No regrets, no moral issues, and no need to injure anyone. My MA training gives me other tools to use, but in the right situation, a weapon is a very effective deterrent. When it counts, I'd rather have one than not have one, but I also realize that it's not right for everybody.

markwalsh
09-01-2006, 02:38 PM
Compete, punish, ignore, stop an ask - these are the tactics I´ve been using with arseholes for years but I´m getting dissatisfied with them. The later is also hard with the language barrier I usually have in my life.

Kevin Wilbanks
09-01-2006, 03:37 PM
With the gun issue, I think it's all about geography. I used to live in Florida. It's like the wild west there. Almost everyone has a gun. Illiteracy and stupidity are much more rampant than many other areas of the country. Several of their cities are in the top 10 in the US for random violent crime. Being opposed to even owning one there could seem very irrational, depending on where you live and where you go.

On the other hand, in Madison, WI, many people will think you are crazy for owning one, unless it's for hunting. The vast majority of violence is about drunken college kids on the weekends, and random violent crime is relatively rare. Many people don't even lock their doors or cars. I had firearms handy and ready in FL, but don't bother in WI. Geography.

crbateman
09-01-2006, 03:45 PM
Sounds like a little slice of heaven up there, Kevin. Hope you folks up there can keep it that way. Too late for us down here. Too many people here from cultures where the values are vastly different. :(

Lyle Bogin
09-01-2006, 04:16 PM
When I have trouble with a practice partner (that isn't a very high level martial artist) I usually go one of two ways....one is I decided they are really not going to help me improve my life so to speak, so I stop training with them. The other way is to just treat them as sempai and do whatever they say. Even if I think their martial arts essentially sucks, I doesn't mean they can't be good training partners...in well moderated doses.

I try to remember that a person teaching you too much is actually showing you how to defeat them.

NagaBaba
09-01-2006, 08:56 PM
I agree.

However the original post was asking was how to deal with a jerk of a partner (talking, teaching, showing-off, etc).
Choke him out. :D

dps
09-01-2006, 11:40 PM
Choke him out. :DDisposable Uke. :)

Amelia Smith
09-02-2006, 06:50 AM
I try to remember that a person teaching you too much is actually showing you how to defeat them.

True!

On the gun issue, I've always thought of them as a sort of magnet for trouble, but I do live in an area where very few people have guns. I'd rather not have a gun in the house than have one, and have it fall into the wrong hands (malicious, inexperienced, or both).

Nick P.
09-02-2006, 12:27 PM
Choke him out. :D

Atemi to the crotch.
Or as a friend of mine used to say "5 against 2."

Nick Simpson
09-05-2006, 09:04 AM
I used the drop to your knees during shihonage on sunday when my uke tried to counter my shihonage. Worked a treat :)

gdandscompserv
09-05-2006, 09:33 AM
I used the drop to your knees during shihonage on sunday when my uke tried to counter my shihonage. Worked a treat :)
My oldest son and I worked on some very resistive shihonage this weekend as well. :D

Nick Simpson
09-05-2006, 10:00 AM
What better way to spend your leisure time eh? :)

Mike Galante
12-30-2006, 09:17 PM
Hi Kevin,
You know when dealing with jerks, it is a great opportunity to bring all the emotions and mental fighting into your lower abdomen. Even if no technique is really getting practiced. The great benefit of redirecting your fighting instincts is invaluable. Next step is to do the former and try to open your heart to the guy.

Just my $ 0.2

All the Best and Happy New Year to one and all,

Mike Galante

Ken Zink
12-31-2006, 03:53 PM
Whenever I'm dealing with a difficult situation in the Dojo I first examine what Uke is doing and if its good Budo. If it is and it's just difficult for me than I take it as an opportunity to grow and keep practicing, if its the latter then I adapt to what they are doing to show them what's wrong. If that's means atemi then I do that (all at the same speed as the motion of course so they can adapt to me still) or I'll show them where it comprimises their posture ect.

Many times people do not realize that when we are training we do so in a specific manner because we are embodying certain principals. We stay full and keep entering because to become stiff in an effort to show strength means we stop moving and can be hit easily by any skilled martial artist. So I've also found its beneficial to explain these concepts to those new to the Dojo who don't quiet understand why we train the way we do.

Shannon Frye
12-31-2006, 09:50 PM
My recommendation is to confront the issue and the person. Get it out in the open, and get it over with. I had a similar problem, and figured I'd just avoid the person. I kept my distance. Behind the scenes, the situation festered, he rallied support, and eventually turned other against me. I eventually left the dojo over this.

Any more, I'll be confronting morons from the very start.

xuzen
01-01-2007, 11:33 PM
A good few rounds of DOJO BRAWL (TM) err.. I mean randori/jiyu waza should keep everyone happy. Class, repeat after me... If you don't spar, you don't find out if it works or not. Now chant this mantra 100 times every hour.

Boon.