View Full Version : Real life experiences

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09-19-2001, 03:13 AM
Hi everyone, just thought of starting a thread where everyone can share their experiences where they had to use aikido in real life attacks.

09-19-2001, 08:18 AM
I will start by sharing an experiance where my training was useful and I did not use a technique. Myself and two friends went for a walk one night through a large park, well we got lost and ended up in South Provedence(not nice neighborhood) so the two guys on bikes came up and asked to barrow a doller. My friend gave them one than they got up in our faces and asked what else we had. I had nothing this guy reached into my pocket for my wallet, I reached to apply kote gaishe(excuse the spelling) but stoped because there were two of them and I didnt know what else they were armed with. THey looked through my wallet and saw I had nothing. As they were riding away we saw that they both had guns tucked into their belts. They onluy got a way with 5 bucks between the three of us but if I messed with him it would have benn much worse.


09-19-2001, 10:51 AM
So my buddy and I were coming back from our college drama class, with fake guns tucked into our belts.

Then, as we were riding our bikes through South Providence, we realized that we were lost, it was late, and we needed to phone home.
Unfortunately, we didn't have any change.

Fortunately we spotted three guys walking by. They all looked a little disoriented.
We were really desperate to call home and took advantage of the stranger's courtesy by searching their wallets for change.

They didn't have any change but my friend is diabetic and we urgently needed to buy some cookies, so we took the liberty of borrowing 5 dollars.

We were glad that the 3 guys didn't rush us or anything, because we were desperate at the time.
Later we realized that they were probably intimidated by our guns.

09-19-2001, 01:56 PM
What could your point possibly be?

09-19-2001, 02:07 PM

09-19-2001, 02:12 PM

09-19-2001, 07:59 PM
I liked that I'll show it to the friends I was with that night.

09-19-2001, 08:06 PM
Both my friends laughed lots at your story, Sarah(one of the people I was with) wants her money back.

09-19-2001, 10:39 PM
Hehe :)

09-20-2001, 09:13 AM
darn,i was looking forward to more serious postings...hehe

Bill D
09-20-2001, 11:29 AM
I laughed too.


09-20-2001, 12:57 PM
On a more serious note, my little (13-year-old) sister almost broke some guy's elbow by doing something like munetski kokyunage, about a year ago.

He was a year older and swung at her first.

Robyn Johnson
09-20-2001, 02:22 PM

I very much enjoy reading these forums, but this is the first time that I've written. Just the other day, I was reading one posted earlier this year called "What brought you to Aikido?" That was very interesting to read, but I noticed that no one really mentioned taking it for the self-defense part. (If there was and I missed it, I apologize.) So I'm glad that this one popped up so I can tell my story (why I started and the part about the real life experiance).

My older brother (he's 21 and very strong) was born with Down Syndrome. He used to be "normal" but several years ago my family noticed a gradual change in his behavior. He would be "okay" but all of a sudden he would get really mad and usually resulted in pushing or hitting my mom and a few times ME! :( A friend of ours from church told us about aikido (he has a friend who is a sensei) and we thought we would look into it someday. "Someday" came a lot sooner then we expected because not long after that we had another "incident" and we called to find out when classes were. My mom and I have been doing aikido for over a year now, and we love it! I always thought martial arts were cool but I never thought I would actually get to DO it! Good things can come out of the worst situation! :D

Anyway, a couple of months ago, my brother had his worst outburst yet, and my mom and I knew that we had to try and pin him down (last time we just ran out of the room and he wrecked the house). I tried to Kotegaeshi him, which partly worked, but since we were in a small cramped space and he was directly in front of me, I couldn't get a good hold. My mom helped get him down and we eventually did some aikido (maybe more of a wrestling type) pin that kept him under control long enough for him to calm down so we could let him go. I can almost hear many of you reading this call out all sorts of techniques that would have worked much better with him right in front of me, but it was the only one I could think of at the moment. My mom and I are going to take our 5th kyu test in 2 weeks :eek: , so that's what level we are on. Our sensei has been helping us as much as he can by teaching us techniques and moves that might especially work with him. One way aikido is so perfect in our situation is that most people like my brother get even more enraged if they are feeling pain, and that ruled out most other martial arts. We have the chance to get him down in a way that won't hurt him (if we do it right) and keep him down (again if we do it right) until he gets control of himself.

I'm curious if anyone else is in this same situation, or knows of someone who is. I've heard it's not too uncommon to have Down Syndrome or retarded kids that are fine for years but will gradually change and get those violent moments. He's on medication that seems to help somewhat, but his mood changes so quickly. His outbursts have been more frequent too. We don't want to put him in an institution if at all possible, because we've heard stories of abuse, etc. Besides, he's not like that most of the time; he's actually quite loving on the whole. I'm very thankful that our situation is not nearly as bad as it could be. However, I do know one thing for sure. For us, aikido has been the answer to our prayers! ;)

Sorry if I talked too much. I'm stopping now. Have a great day everyone!


09-20-2001, 02:32 PM
Hi Robyn,

Thanks for posting your story :)
I hope everything works out with your brother.

09-21-2001, 12:42 AM
hmmm...is your bro a good uke? hope he doesn't get hurt when you do a kote gaeshi on him. btw, why don't you get your brother to join aikido too ;) , my sensei takes in some "not-normal" guys. Aikido sometimes can do wonders ya noe...hehe :D

09-21-2001, 02:18 AM
Originally posted by Dajo251
Both my friends laughed lots at your story, Sarah(one of the people I was with) wants her money back. ... or at least share the cookies.... I prefer chokolate chip ;)

Robyn Johnson
09-21-2001, 01:41 PM
Hello everyone!

People have asked before this if my brother could join aikido or some other group. Unfortunately, he is severly mentally retarded. He can't speak much and even though he is excellent in doing some things (for instance, Nintendo games), he couldn't join aikido (or something like it) because he just wouldn't be able to understand.

As for him being a good uke for knowing when to go down or tap or anything relating with that, no he isn't. He wouldn't think to stop struggling if I tried doing some of the pins on him, so we just have to be VERY careful. We really don't want to hurt him. Besides teaching us aikido techniqes, our sensei has also showed us a few wrestling moves that might help us more in keeping him immobile.

I hope this explains it. Have a great day! :D


09-21-2001, 03:50 PM
Hey Gang.

This didn't happen to me, but I was there:

My buddy and I were both Security Guards at a local shopping center. We had both taking Karate from the same school, but "moonlighting" at other schools. I was taking Tai Chi, he was taking aikido.

Anyway, we got a call to support a store's loss prevention officer in apprehending a shoplifter. We got there and he is shoving the loss prevention officer around (she was a lot smaller than him. He was around our size.) My partner quietly slipped in behind him and applied San kyo.

The lock was applied releatively easily as the target wasn't aware of it until too late. My partner then put him against the wall and cuffed him. I was impressed and started studying aikido the next summer.

That's the only time I ever saw aikido done in a street situation. I've used karate and ju jitsu before, but never aikido.


Scott in Kansas

09-21-2001, 08:39 PM
robyn: i see...well,i hope yer bro's condition gets better in the future so that he could even join you in your aikido lessons.

Scott: Thanx for sharing

09-22-2001, 05:13 AM
Hi Robyn,
I used to work in an institution for developmentally disabled young men and I can identify with your situation. I would suggest checking with an institution about techniques (private Christian ones are usually quite helpful) as they have regular training in techniques to safely restrain people in irrational states.
One takedown we used to use was quite similar to Irimi-nage and from behind we would end up wraping both of the person's arms around himself in what looked like the person was hugging himself, and then use one knee to unlock the knee from behind and take them down to the ground. With some of the techniques in Aikido, there is a chance of damaging your brothers joints especially if he is flailing around irrationally. Using specialized techniques for your situation may require more effort, but usually people only end up with a few scrapes or a little rugburn on the forehead.

09-22-2001, 07:53 PM
Hi Kory
I also work part time with Intellectually Disabled men with "Challenging Behaviours" THe facility I work at will not condone the use of anything other than approved restraint techniques. THese "approved techniques" however are ineffective to say the least - holding a mans arm straight behind his back whilst taking care not to lock the elbow or wrist!
Prior to taking aikido I was seriously assaulted by one of these men and had a serious neck injury that put me off work for several weeks. Since I have started aikido (abt 2 years ago) I have only had to restrain a client twice - once I used nikyo and once sankyo. BOth times I got the guy into his room and away from the others with a minimum of fuss and no damage. I am sure he found this infinitely preferable to the many times he has been literally "sat on" by a couple of large guys until he's calmed down. When I think of all the injuries inflicted on my colleagues whilst trying to apply "approved techniques", and on the clients themselves in the attempt, I am, to say the least, very grateful for may aikido training.

To Robyn, good luck with your brother. I can empathise with your situation. Have you thought about getting respite care for him when he gets too much?

Robyn Johnson
09-23-2001, 07:24 PM

Thanks Kory for your suggestion. We might look into that.;) Also, thanks for your post Michelle! If my brother really did get to be too much for us to handle, I imagine we would look into getting some sort of special care for him. I find it very comforting knowing that other people out there can understand how I feel. :)

Have a nice day!


09-23-2001, 09:08 PM
Hi Robyn
I know exactly the pressures you're facing. Not only do I work with people with intellectual disabilities, I also have 5 nieces and nephews with disabilities. I know how much I'd HATE to see any of them go into fulltime care.
Have you had any help from a Behavioural Psychologist?

Robyn Johnson
09-23-2001, 09:57 PM
Hi Michelle!

Wow! You DO know how I feel! :eek: Yes, putting my brother in a place for full time care would be a last resort for us! We saw a psychiatrist a few times but we weren't happy with him so we are in a process of finding another one.


09-24-2001, 12:03 AM
Hope it all goes well for your brother. IN the meantime, keep enjoying your aikido - I find it to be a great stress relief!;)


09-26-2001, 10:04 AM
Hey Michelle,

Are you trained in MANDT restraint techniques? Your description sounded like the MANDT techniques I was trained in when I worked at a mental hospital. I had to use them a few times and they worked reasonably well, not a well as aikido though.

Keep in mind MANDT techniques are not meant to be used on much larger opponents. They are designed to employ large muscle groups against small muscle groups. They are intended to be completely free of joint strain or pain.

At the hospital I was at we usually employed multiple people to restrain violent patients, so we really never needed to be that martially adept.


Scott in Kansas

09-27-2001, 05:21 AM
Hi Scott
No, never even heard of MANDT. We have one or two person restraint techniques - both involve just holding their arm behind their back with no stress on any joints. Don't think I've ever seen it employed effectively. Can you give me any idea where I could find information about MANDT restraint?

10-01-2001, 02:15 AM
Originally posted by Ninjachick
We have one or two person restraint techniques

That's strange, the ninjitsu style I've studied involves at least 45 joint locks/restraints. It derived, no doubt, from aikijujitsu.

10-01-2001, 02:50 AM
hmm...That's All for real life aikido experiences? No one else had to use Aikido for other situations?? :)

10-02-2001, 09:16 AM

More info on MANDT training can be found at:



Scott in Kansas

10-02-2001, 09:31 AM
Check out





10-02-2001, 09:35 AM
Yes! I'm glad to see so few "real Aikido experience". Maybe O'senei accompished something after all :) (I mean more than making at least my life to a pleasant journey!)

The fact that aikidoka behave in a manner that doesn't invite agressors is in my opinion a very very good thing.

Sheers mates!

03-31-2002, 08:21 AM
I'm surprised there are so little "real life" situations in here. But it's a good thing I guess:)
Okay: mine:
Coming from the rehearsal at 10pm in a bus stop. A friendly drunk guy starts talking about music... then insists that I play for him and he sings. I said sorry man, It's an electric and so on and so on... At last he sais that oh I'm sorry and stands up... I stood up too and made the distance. Then he goes that he'll make me play and flips a knife out of his pocket towards my throat. I instinctively grabbed the knifehand and then it was like -freeze- -what the hell am i doing- After a little messing around got the knife with some move similar to disarmament in kaiten-sankyo against knife. Then backed with the knife... gave it to a cabdriver had him to call the police and jumped on the bus (being shocked:eek: ) Later I realised that if he had thought a bit more I would be probably dead now. I didn't move away from the line of attack. (I couldn't do rokkyo 'cause there was the booth and no shihonage 'cause I had a guitar on my back... kotegaeshi would've been the right soultuion) But I managed... and I thank Aikido for that. Although I did a really crappy move I didn't FREEZE right away.

Long live MA;)


04-01-2002, 08:26 AM
wow, didn't know this thread was still alive... :D

its good that we have these experience sometimes, makes us more concious of what we are training for.

Jorge Garcia
04-09-2002, 11:10 PM
My son was recently walking home from work down a busy street here in our city. As he approached a bus stop, a man came up to him and started asking for money. My son said that he didn't have any. He turned his back to him and kept walking. The man told him again that he wanted money but this time more forcefully. He then came up on my son from behind and grabbed him from the shoulder and jerked him backwards hard. The force of the pull tore my son's shirt down the back. My son said that he didn't have time to think. He said that he heard the man come up behind him and was surprised when he grabbed him. As he was falling backwards, he turned his body as if to roll but regained his balance enough to deliver an atemi to his ribs. He said that when he hit him, he made a sound like he was expelling air. The man still had his shirt by the shoulder (or what was left of it). He then grabbed his hand and turned it into a sankyo going underneath his arm and threw him backwards as hard as he could. That ended the assault. He hit the ground hard and was in a lot of pain. My son left the area immediately and came home holding his shirt in his hand. The next day, when he was at work, he looked out the window and saw the man walking down the street. He had a cast on his arm running down his arm all the way to his fingers.
I was grateful that my boy wasn't hurt and that he was able to use his knowledge of aikido to save himself. He just turned 18 and has been in aikido for 7 years.

04-10-2002, 07:51 AM
Thanx for sharing Jorge :)