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bobmartin
09-11-2001, 12:48 AM
I'm as newbie as it gets and I have a question about Aikido and something that happened to a family member. His house was broken into by two intruders while he and his family slept. Thanks to a dog and close neighbors the incident resulted in no one getting hurt and the two intruders were caught about a half hour later when they were pulled over for speeding. But there was a moment when the break in was going on that he was facing one intruder and the other in another room. That got me to thinking. Following the philosophy of Aikido, given my family is in danger from two or more assailants and only one is attacking me, I have to (if I can) dispatch the one and then confront the other who may be in another room. How do I dispatch the first one, so I don't have to stay with him and hold him, yet not have to worry about him when I go to confront the other?. I have to hurt him, don't I? Immobilize him? Are there techniques for this situation and can I still remain true to Aikido's "no harm" core?

shihonage
09-11-2001, 03:06 AM
bobmartin, check out :

a) http://www.senshido.com/

b) http://www.diac.com/~dgordon/index.html .

No, this is not blatant commercial advertising. It's just that these guys (Richard Dimitri and Marc MacYoung) are actually _experienced_ in the subject, and even just reading their advice might actually save your life, and shatter quite a few pairs of rose-colored glasses along the way.

Greg Jennings
09-11-2001, 06:40 AM
Originally posted by bobmartin
Are there techniques for this situation and can I still remain true to Aikido's "no harm" core?

My personal take on Aikido philosophy is "minimize total harm to all involved". With me and mine first on the list.

What good is a philosophy if it causes you to save an attacker's life at the cost of your own? Where's the harmony in that?

In my mind, if someone breaks into your home, they are pretty much starting a zero-sum game.

Regards,

lt-rentaroo
09-11-2001, 09:09 AM
I agree with Greg. My family and friends come first. If that means ensuring that attacker #1 will not get back up while I'm dealing with attacker #2 then so be it. I'm not talking about maiming this person for life, but at the very least preventing this person and his/her buddy from continuing with their intended plan.

bobmartin
09-11-2001, 09:31 PM
I agree with Greg as well, without hesitation and I wouldn't be too concerned about maiming or worse where my family is concerned. Stop number one intruder would be the plan and the chips would just have to fall where they do. I'm a recent convert from Isshynryu Karate. Convert may be too strong of a word and I mean it with no disrespect toward Isshynryu or any other martial art. Aikido better fits my natural and reflexive movements though it's Aikido's depth and layers that, I suspect, are the true draw. I'm already an Aikido-ist, I just have several years of training to do, if that makes any sense. Several punches or kicks, depending on the situation, would serve to dispose of intruder #1, I was wondering if there were Aikido techniques I haven't heard about, perhaps taught at higher ranks (pressure points for example), that could be brought to bear in the dual intruder situation. Thanks for all the input.

guest1234
09-11-2001, 09:52 PM
Pressure points are a really unreliable choice to deal with folks intent on hurting you. Some have aberrant anatomy and don't feel it. Some are on drugs/alcohol and don't feel it. Some feel it but are willing to suck up a lot of pain to accomplish their goal.

I guess good locks for the doors/windows and/or an alarm system would be out of the question?

bobmartin
09-11-2001, 10:13 PM
Thanks, Colleen (clever, girl). I have a good dog, too. A fierce looking Boxer with the soul of a teddy bear. I also thought about a sign to post on property announcing "No Intruders". Good points about the pressure points (is that sentence legal in all states?), though.
Thanks.

Mares
09-11-2001, 10:28 PM
Originally posted by bobmartin
How do I dispatch the first one, so I don't have to stay with him and hold him, yet not have to worry about him when I go to confront the other?. I have to hurt him, don't I? Immobilize him? Are there techniques for this situation and can I still remain true to Aikido's "no harm" core?


I'm really only just a beginner but this is my take on this issue.

If confronted by more than one attacker done attempt to pin anyone, you'll just cop it from behind. This then means you must utilise a throwing technique. As I understand it the severity of the technique can be dictated by nage. All the throwing techniques allow you to throw gentily as you would with a lower kyu grade, throw "hard" as you do with a black belt, or with a little adjustment you can maime the attacker to ensure he does not attack again. As a student of Aikido we attempt not to injure those around us, but if placed in a sitution where someone could possibly hurt myself or even worse my family I would not hesitate in breaking arms, legs or elbows to ensure the safety of those closest to me.

Whilst we study a martial art which does not rely on bludgeoning someone and we believe in avoiding conflict, we must not lose sight of the fact that there are people out there who do not think like us. We must keep everything in perspective.

Those are my thoughts and I hope they have helped you bob

guest1234
09-11-2001, 10:29 PM
A Boxer!:) :)
I love Boxers, they have such great facial expressions, especially when they are trying to make you believe they don't understand you:confused:
With all that, I'm sure no one would even think of breaking in...

bobmartin
09-11-2001, 10:49 PM
Thanks, Mares.
That's kind of where I was going with my logic, too. If you're throwing someone you can direct the collision point toward something unfriendly for the thrown, like a counter edge, a slate floor, a second story window, as well as the force of the throw. Might be a little difficult to control the hurt, maim, kill degree, however, but if my family or others are at risk the plight of the attacker might be a ways down on my priority list.
Thanks

bobmartin
09-11-2001, 10:55 PM
Yeah, Colleen, Boxers are like that. Except mine doesn't feign confusion. She pretends to get her commands mixed up ("sit" becomes "jump in my lap, pin my shoulders to the couch and slurp my face" and "no" turns into "grab the shoe I'm trying to put on and vanish into the depths of the house"). I'm certain any intruder would have the same problem with her. I can see an intruder vacating the premisis, dastardly deed undone, in utter frustration. Come to think of it, maybe I should enroll my Boxer in Aikido class. Headlines would read "Intruder pinned and slurped into submission by sixty pound pup".

ian
09-12-2001, 04:21 AM
Hi Bob,

As Mares was saying, you can actually throw someone as hard as you like - the trick is not to try to force them until their balance is broken (or else they resist) but once their balance is broken you can put as much force in as you want.

Like many real events you have to judge the situation as it stands. If you attack them you have to be prepared to get a serious amount of anger in reaction. This is what I would do (NB this is assuming an attack without firearms, and in the home):

Do a standing pin (or sankyo) - and say you'll break the wrist/arm if the other person comes any closer.

If this is succesful let the other person get away and then escort the person you have (with a hold), outside the house (but not too far - and watch out for friends outside!) whilst anyone else in the house calls the police.

If this doesn't work - break their arm/wrist and then throw/pin the other person (pin them if the first person is incapacitated).

Like many other people responding I feel you should do minimum damage to your attackers. But unless you are very good it is hard to defend from attackers in your own home because it makes it more difficult to run away (on the street you can throw them, then run off). Breaking someones wrist is a good deterrent against them using that hand for striking/stabbing and can be very painful. It also prevents you having to do them serious damage.

Strikes to the sternum and the neck, as well as chokes can be useful to wind/disorientate(or KO) or temporarily disable them. If you cannot strike hard these are OK but be careful if you are quite powerful as you could kill someone with these.

Ian

ian
09-12-2001, 04:23 AM
P.S. Ueshiba cannot be a model of the 'no harm' school of thought. He once broke a judokas hip with a strike.

Also, with attackers in the home - do not delay; act immediately and powerfully - you have to frighten them to regain the element of suprise.

Ian

L. Camejo
09-12-2001, 09:24 AM
Originally posted by bobmartin
How do I dispatch the first one, so I don't have to stay with him and hold him, yet not have to worry about him when I go to confront the other?. I have to hurt him, don't I? Immobilize him? Are there techniques for this situation and can I still remain true to Aikido's "no harm" core?

Hi All,

Anyone think about throwing intruder 1 into intruder 2 with a well directed kotegaeshi? Or utilising sankyo to use intruder 1 as a shield against intruder 2 and then pinning (or throwing)them both?

I think zanshin (awareness)is really important in these cases, but one can defend against multiple attackers and keep some semblance of injury free Aikido principle at the same time.

If any of you ever do a lot of Ninendori (free practice against multiple attackers)like in Shodokan Aikido, a degree of awareness can be developed that can be applied to this scenario of two intruders, whilst still preserving them from serious injury.

That's my 2 cents.

L.C.:ai::ki:

shihonage
09-12-2001, 12:00 PM
Originally posted by L. Camejo

Anyone think about throwing intruder 1 into intruder 2 with a well directed kotegaeshi? Or utilising sankyo to use intruder 1 as a shield against intruder 2 and then pinning (or throwing)them both?


Don't forget to say your favorite action movie one-liner after you're done...

Some people are so distant from reality, it's scary and sad.

PeterR
09-12-2001, 12:18 PM
Larry was just answering the question he quoted with some possibilities. He even mentioned a training mehtod.

Using one of your adversaries as a weapon requires a mind-shift but in REALITY it is the only way you can deal with multiple opponents. You have to slow the situation down somehow.

wildaikido
09-12-2001, 12:35 PM
Any one for some hojojutsu :)

L. Camejo
09-12-2001, 05:07 PM
Thanks Peter

It appears that some people's vision of reality isn't so REAL after all.

Perception determines reality Aleksey, and Aiki is exactly that - changing your perception of attack and defence to deal with aggression in an enlightened manner.

Besides, the techniques I mentioned above actually worked in real life and that's a direct result of Ninendori practice.

Masakatsu Agatsu
L.C.:ai::ki:

shihonage
09-12-2001, 05:26 PM
Originally posted by L. Camejo

Besides, the techniques I mentioned above actually worked in real life and that's a direct result of Ninendori practice.

Masakatsu Agatsu
L.C.:ai::ki:

Could you please share the details of the encounter(s) where those techniques worked for you ?

L. Camejo
09-12-2001, 06:42 PM
Originally posted by shihonage
Could you please share the details of the encounter(s) where those techniques worked for you ?

You all love Aikido stories don't you? Okay, here goes:

I'm sitting at the curb of a street during Carnival (a 2-day street festival in my country). A half drunk guy from my group of associates walks up to me in an aggressive fashion, shouting allegations of girl stealing (usual scenario during that time with so many scantily clad women around:D). I keep sitting and just look at him smiling, telling him to sit down before he falls over.

As he approaches, he suddenly swings a beer bottle towards my face, using a back hand (yokomen) movement. I get up and enter on the outside, turning with him (tenkan), doing a gedan balance break and taking a grip of his hand for kotegaeshi. In the midst of this I remember that this guy cannot fall properly in his condition, so I just keep the low balance break going without pivoting into kotegaeshi. At this point he is almost kneeling on the ground due to the kuzushi.

Seeing this, his other friend (much bigger guy than me, and someone who really doesn't like me) rushes from behind, shouting to let the guy go. As he is about to reach me, I have no choice but to pivot with the kotegaeshi (not at full power of course). This sends the first guy stumbling into his friend and he falls over onto the ground.

The second guy just guides his falling partner into the ground and comes at me and grabs my collar, ready to pummel me with the next hand. Instantly I drop and turn with the grabbing hand into tenkai kotehineri (sankyo for traditional folks), cutting backward across his wrist, I apply the lock and float his weight upwards and turn him around. I then cut down (shomen uchi type), throwing his weight upward and forward towards his friend who is still getting up. With his size he collides with his half drunk friend and holds onto him for support, making them both crash into the ground.

While they were a heap on the ground I got my cue to turn around and run like hell through the crowd. I'm a lover not a fighter :). Besides, too many pretty ladies around to waste time on that sort. :)

But seriously, this is my account of where I used those techniques I spoke of. Granted it is not the same scenario as a robbery with 2 fully coherent attackers, but I think that with similar conditions (i.e. no one with guns and stuff like that) they may come into use. However, I know that I was very lucky and that quick reaction probably saved me better than any of those techniques I used. Hence my focus before on good zanshin, which would facilitate effective application of techniques in multiple attacker scenarios.

L.C.:ai::ki:

Bill D
09-12-2001, 07:15 PM
Good story.

As I remember, in the original scenario, the victim was confronted with one attacker in his room and another in the other room, which would preclude using multiple-attacker tactics (although I would like to point out that they are, indeed, effective, and are in fact one of the strengths of Aikido compared to other martial arts. That's why they're on our shodan test). I suggest taking a page out of more traditional self-defense and police advice, which tells us that most people who break into others' homes at night are cowards. If the first attacker doesn't run away as soon as he sees you awake, which may be unlikely, you should use your Aikido training with him. DO NOT seriously maim him, not only because it's against our spirit, but also because then neither him nor his friend would be able to escape easily, and you should NEVER leave them without an escape route.

Once you demonstrate to these people that you are prepared to defend yourself, I am almost willing to give you a personal guarantee that they will leave immediately, as they are just looking to steal things, not kill anyone or get into a hostage situation.

In any case, do not get into a physical fight with the second attacker, or with both of them, or even with the first one, for that matter, unless absolutely necessary and unless forced to by them. And don't try to injure them so they can't get away. These are Aikido principles that you should keep in mind before even considering sankyo or anything else, and are the advice of all self-defense professionals.

Also, I think the original poster mentioned that he/she is a beginner. Train A LOT more before you feel confident taking on determined attackers. Burgulars will most likely run away quickly anyway.

:ki:

guest1234
09-12-2001, 08:48 PM
I don't know, Shihonage's comment seems pretty relevant...

Why is it the threads that have to do with these hypothetical situations don't include answers like 'avoid the situation' (leave before 'friends' who don't like you and are drunk get upset, or avoid 'stealing' their girl, or lock/alarm you house,use good lighting and keep bushes cut, call 911)? And where do you all live (or what is your attitude) that you are constantly using your techniques 'in real life on the street?' It's like ER on TV, where more happens in an hour than a month in a real ER. It sounds like no one is learning how to avoid conflict with their Aikido, just how to win a fight.

Mares
09-12-2001, 10:06 PM
Well, to be honest I agree with Colleen and Bill. Prevention is better than cure. But dispite our best efforts sometimes confrontation cannot be avoided. Dailling 911 (or 000 in Australia) would be the first thing I'd do, and hopefully the police would arrive in time. But I do believe you must be prepared in the event they find you and are prepared to attack. But I guess it could be wise, if possible, to appear with a Jo in your hand. If they have no weapon then they are more likely to flee. But if they are dumb enough to attack then you can practise some jo nage and keep throwing them around till they get tired, or perhaps just bop one of them on the head and pin the other (the latter an extreme option)

PeterR
09-12-2001, 10:26 PM
None of Ueshiba's deshi went to him to learn how to avoid conflict - they went to learn how to fight or at least expand their bag of tricks. This is what Aikido is - a collection of fighting techniques. Budo is soldier training. Like many other Do there is also a cultivation of mind and spirit but the foundation lies in the techniques.

The assumption is that you are not going out looking for fights but if they find you - you will walk away but never run. I trained for several years in Japan and don't ever recall such an emphasis on running away which exposes you to far more harm in the long run.

You don't need to train in Aikido to do the below. Just half a brain. Trying to understand how your techniques translate from the dojo to the street is part of the training.


Originally posted by ca
I don't know, Shihonage's comment seems pretty relevant...

Why is it the threads that have to do with these hypothetical situations don't include answers like 'avoid the situation' (leave before 'friends' who don't like you and are drunk get upset, or avoid 'stealing' their girl, or lock/alarm you house,use good lighting and keep bushes cut, call 911)? And where do you all live (or what is your attitude) that you are constantly using your techniques 'in real life on the street?' It's like ER on TV, where more happens in an hour than a month in a real ER. It sounds like no one is learning how to avoid conflict with their Aikido, just how to win a fight.

L. Camejo
09-13-2001, 08:41 AM
Hi All

Peter: I hope training is fun as usual. Not sure about getting to the festival in Osaka on my side though.

Bill: I agree with you on the point of avoiding conflict and not maiming your attacker. It is something I always stress in my classes and also do in practice. But the situation I described above is not the norm for me, not something I advertise and generally only occurs when one of the parties are intoxicated or incoherent in some form, i.e not thinking rationally. And I totally agree on the point about intruders running away as soon as you stand up to them.

CA: As Aikidoka, it is generally assumed (at least by me) that we would always try to avoid conflict in a harmonious manner. That concept is pivotal to all Aikido training, hence I tend not to stress on it as it is supposed to be "understood". That is not to say that conflict is avoidable all the time, and that is why Aikido has physical techniques. If we all thought rationally all the time there would be no need for physical defence techniques. The sad part is that in the REAL world people don't always sue for peace and harmony (as we saw this week in NY) :( . Even some of the most peaceful people in history(Ghandi, Martin Luther King Jr, Jesus Christ) had to face personal destruction from someone who decided that they did not like them or their ideals for some reason. Physical techniques exist for the 1% chance when someone decides to go against human nature and try to damage someone else. I am totally for avoidance of conflict, but we must be aware that sometimes when you walk away you can get stabbed in the back.

Hence I believe that we must ALWAYS aim to resolve conflict peacefully without EVER having to resort to physical violence. However, to be realistic, we must also be fully aware of how to deal with those who do not adhere to our view of life and harmonious existence.

Takemusu Aiki is what we seek, but in the real world people don't always "go" with our technique. (Hey that rhymes:))
L.C.:ai::ki:

bobmartin
09-14-2001, 10:53 PM
I'd like to thank everyone for their words and thoughts. I think, collectively, your replies have answered this newbie Aikido-ist's question.
To begin with, there are too many variables in any situation for pat answers. Exactly where participants are standing, where the doors are, lighting, the state of mind of all those involved, the "sense" of the scene, the way people are facing, the confidence of the attacked, words or lack of them ... all play a part in setting up the situation. It is then the Akido-ist's reading of the situation, and long trained instincts that will determine the proper course of action (which may be non-action). Changing any of the factors could result in a completely different approach. Any dynamic situation is fragile and can be spilled in many different directions. Aikido is a way by which we may exert control over which way it will spill; from being dilligent enough to prevent, still enough to calm, wise enough to deflect and skilled enough do what is necessary if the situation demands. It is as multilayered as any situation and it is up to the Aikido-ist to train and attain a level of skill, internal and external, to blend with whatever is confronted and dissipate the situation.
How am I doing?

Marc McIntyre
09-15-2001, 09:23 AM
I'm also a newbie to aikido, and an experienced karateka. I refer back to various readings I have toiled through. The ultimate goal of aikido is one of non-violence. This is a noble goal and one that could be obtained,IF the attaker is willing to let it be.
There are situations in which your attacker may have reduced your options to a singular certainty...his or your demise. We need only to revert back to the attacks on the World Trade Center to see this. Some situations are just beyond your benevolent nature.
I feel we need to protect ourselves first. We did not set the course of events, therefore we cannot always raise the level of their violence. We blend and redirect. We cannot transmogrify.
So saying this, one of the most simple and devastating finishes in all of budo, is the stomp! A primary advantage of you standing and your opponent prone is the power to utilize your body weight and strength in a devestating technique; one that should incapacitate your attacker in one fell swoop. As brutal and un-aiki as it sounds, I doubt very seriously if O'Sensei would find your death an aiki-like phenomenon.;-)


:p

otto
12-08-2001, 10:05 PM
Respected Mr.L Camejo...
would you elaborate please on the meanig of "Takemusu Aiki"....i'm pretty much a begginer and since you used that phrase to compress what we as aikidoka are pursuing....it's my best interest to know what i am after.

Thanks very much in advance...
Ottoniel D.Ojeda M.


P.S.: si pudiera definirlo en espaņol...muchisimo mejor!!!

JohannesD
12-10-2001, 01:53 PM
I have read books where it says that Ueshiba broak ppls arms and such... He had an xibition where like all of his students got hurt quite badly(brooken ribs, legs etc...)Soo if u have too u should make some high throws and throw them into the walls and such..
Theyll follow ill promisse u.. Even if they dont train aikido.. I know..(Street fight..)

But do what the situation tells u to do..

adrian
12-12-2001, 08:06 AM
I think people get this "harmony" priciple wrong. Anyway i get it somehow defferent. If would be in a stituation like the one described i would break his nose or ..... with a strong punch (maybe a couple) then i would break his arm or knee. I would kill the guy if i had to and i would not consider it against the principles of Aikido. But if i knew the guy is harmless and then kill him then THAT would be against Aikido principles. I think that your understanding of harmony is weakness, if you think you can defend yourself against someone bigger and stronger without harming him then you should wake up. He would atack stronger and become more dangerous. I just dont undernstand how people can think about the atacker's health, the guy can kill you, your wife....the safest is to break him hard, or kill him if necessary.
As i said in another post, one should train for very long time to undernstand the principles of Aikido, words and weak techniques will kill you in a real fight.

shihonage
12-12-2001, 10:38 AM
Originally posted by adrian
words and weak techniques will kill you in a real fight.

More likely, words can save your life.
Look up "verbal diffusal tactics" often taught in reality self-defense schools.

Andy
12-12-2001, 11:43 AM
Originally posted by adrian
As i said in another post, one should train for very long time to undernstand the principles of Aikido, words and weak techniques will kill you in a real fight.
So, how long have you been training?