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statisticool
04-05-2007, 05:41 PM
Do people who lecture on internal strength believe it is possible to add it to bowling, fencing, golf; really and other martial art or sport?

And if so, where are some examples?

Justin

ChrisHein
04-05-2007, 11:29 PM
Yes, natural efficient use of the body is internal.

Examples are most athletic endeavors. The body only works best in a few ways, people tend to use those ways over and over again in all physical activities.

People who believe correct fluid body use is unique to a handful of martial arts are giving internal a bad name.

Upyu
04-05-2007, 11:58 PM
Yes, natural efficient use of the body is internal.

Examples are most athletic endeavors. The body only works best in a few ways, people tend to use those ways over and over again in all physical activities.

People who believe correct fluid body use is unique to a handful of martial arts are giving internal a bad name.

No one's said that "correct fluid body use is unique to a handful of martial arts" dude ;) If anything Mike's pointed out that this stuff has been "common knoweldge" and a core of most MAs.

There is precedent for this stuff being used in sports. But none of it came from within the sports world. Tohei trained some baseball player and as a consequence he broke Babe Ruth's whatever whatever record. (I'm too lazy to look up the details)
I know that Ushiro Kenji has been coaching some high school basketball kids in using some of the stuff he has.
Kono Yoshinori has been making waves over here as well as a sports consultant etc.

Anyways Jin/Kokyu skills aren't necessarily exclusive to MAs, but it's most widely seen in the upper echelons of some MAs.
As for the body only "works best in a few ways" etc etc, I still think you just haven't seen enough of what's out there ;)

ChrisHein
04-06-2007, 12:57 AM
I still think you just haven't seen enough of what's out there ;)

Back at cha.

statisticool
04-07-2007, 07:43 AM
Anyways Jin/Kokyu skills aren't necessarily exclusive to MAs, but it's most widely seen in the upper echelons of some MAs.


Apparently the upper echelon MAs that don't do any competitions, despite claims of being unable to be pushed over.
:eek:

Justin

statisticool
04-08-2007, 01:04 PM
Chris seems correct here.

For example,

Check out this passage from a book, one I slightly altered (by adding in x's) to prevent one from figuring out immediately which martial art it comes from by looking at martial art specific terms:


Then go into your action with all the physical resources at your disposal. All your energy must flow through arm and xxxxx hand xxxxx until it strikes the target powerfully. Then, relax immediately and completely-from right fingers to left foot. 'All the physical resources' does not mean brute force.
...
By power, I mean that concentrated nervous energy which all xxxxx martial artists xxxxx must know how to store, and how to release suddenly, unexpectedly, and completely whenever necessary.


It could be something straight out of a taijiquan book, talking about not using brute force, the power coming from the leg, through the hands, concentrated energy flow, etc. But it is from a fencing book (On Fencing), from the 1940s. Last time I checked, fencing is not considered "internal", and moreover, it is "Western", and it is often claimed by some internal gurus that Westerners have not understand internal stuff properly.

To me, things like this, of which there are many examples, utterly demolish some internal gurus' claims that what they are teaching is new or even specific to certain types of martial arts, movements, or training methods, and claims that things are missing, and so many people (except them of course) don't know about such things.

In fact, a fun experiment would be to publish in a taijiquan journal, for example, an article that uses such passages from arts considered non-internal, and no one would even notice, then reveal in a subsequent article the arts (and not necessarily all martial ones) that they are actually from.

Justin

Kevin Leavitt
04-08-2007, 02:51 PM
Justin,

While I think you and I might see things slightly different...I would tend to agree with your basic premise that there is no such thing as external and internal being separate and distinct....there is only correct movement...some more efficient than others..I am told differently by some that this is not so, but my experiences to date have said that this is the case.

I have read some books by internal guys, ones such as B.K. Frantzis, which admittidly, Mike Sigman says..."he doesn't get it".
B.K.F along with most of these guys follow the traditional line of thought of labeling things like karate, tae kwon do, judo as external, and things like aikido, ba gua, Hsing I, Tae Chi as internal.

I used to agree with this, but now a days see it more semantical in nature. I did Traditional Karate for years, clacking arms and shins against each other..looking for that one solid shite or reverse punch..then I found aikido..and said..."Wow!" ohhhhh...Karate...external. Aikido....internal!

I improved leaps and bounds in my karate once I understood a little about center and what not...very empowering!

I thought...wow..this is it! Internal is where it is at. Yea...all those external guys are wasting their time hitting the makawara and grunting etc.

I dismissed BJJ for years because I saw it as more of an extension of external.

These days though, I would say there are people that train properly/correctly...and those that don't.

Karate trained properly can be very internal, however I'd say most have earned the reputation as external. (external being defined as incorrectly trained).

These days I have also discovered that methodology is very important, more so than what labeled art you study.

Many would say that golf is not internal. Frankly I am confused by this, to me it is the same logic as saying golf is not a car! What does it mean.

The best golf players must learn to control a great deal of things mental, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. They practice meditation, as defined as visualization.

I was a successful pole vaulter back in my High School and college years, many years ago. I had a coach that was amazing. We did things that were considered to be cutting edge at the time. Visualization, breathing drills, rope work, balance and posture exercises...all kinds of things that I have also done in martial arts. When the pole hit the box it as the endstate of alot of things being in sync and in line.

Back to methodology though. I do believe that it is possible to isolate out and enhance aspects of your training. We can teach our bodies to do amazing things with the proper training and proper methodology. My wife is a yogini. When I actually have time, she has shown me how to relax anatgonistic muscle groups so I can actually touch my toes!

Personally, I think much of this conversation concerning internal versus external to be semantics, but I am told from many that have experienced things which are new to them, that I am not correct. So, until I study with them that put things in the pots this way...I can't say for sure.

I have another thought which I will carry on another post...Arm Wrestling....

Kevin Leavitt
04-08-2007, 03:00 PM
Arm Wrestling.

This may be an example of what people call external strength. I can see no way possible based on the isolation of things associated with it that you could make this into what many call internal. The arm is basically a lever with muscle attached to it. It is isolated from the hips and any a real ability to "ground" it other than the elbow on the table. It seems to me to be very difficult to carry strength from your hips, to your shoulder, to your forearm, to your wrist and hand.

The best arm wrestlers would have short arms (lever) with thick hands, with BIG muscles!

the endstate though is to within the rules and isolated parameters, to place the back of your opponents hand on the table.

A strong opponent would be unbendable or unmoveable. I might not be able to budge him from that position.

However, if I could get up and move my hips and achieve a better position, then I could move his hand and place it on the table with very little effort.

If he could do the same, then we'd have a different game all together and we'd call it "martial arts".

The guy doing it externally would be straining using his muscles more than the guy that was labled doing it internally. The internal guy would continue to move and gain an advantage using movement and position (internal skills). the guy that used the so-called internal skills would win!

I am curious as to how maybe Rob, Mike or Dan would interpret Arm Wrestling and venture to say how they would see someone that had a greater understanding of internal skills seeing them apply to a game/sport like arm wrestling. Can it apply, or is the parameters so constrained that it would preclude the use of internal skills as they define them?

Cady Goldfield
04-08-2007, 03:06 PM
Kevin,
Years ago on the "Arsenio Hall Show," there was a young woman of average to light build and musculature, whose schtick was arm wrestling, and she claimed to be able to take on all comers. She arm wrestled (allegedly) random male audience members as well as Arsenio himself and defeated them in a split second.

Note the "split second." There wasn't any real vying or wrestling. She used one deft motion and took their arm and shoulder instantly to the table, without moving from her seat or making any overtly noticeable body movements.

Never heard anything of her since then. What do y'all think? ;)

Kevin Leavitt
04-08-2007, 03:23 PM
Cady,

It is hard to tell as we don't know much about the situation in retrospect.

I just thought that arm wrestling might be a good example to try and explain internal skills to, (or not), to gain a deeper understand of the paradigm that these guys are coming from.

I also read your post on the other thread a few minutes ago. I just realized that I self bannished myself from that thread :) so I am going to refrain from posting on it.

However, while I am here typing. :)

I'd say what you wrote is what I have the most problem with, and I think it is more inline with this thread anyway.

That is...that somehow that this stuff has been a great secret that has been kept from us by a few eastern dudes and that it will some how revolutionize things.

I'd contend that performance and efficiency is known in all societies and in many sports. Guys like Tiger Woods get it. The best Pole Vaulters in the world get it.

On pole vaulters....as I was one back in the day when they said women could not do it, yes, I do think there are paradiqms that can be broken.

Yes, I do believe that there are methodologies for training that are innovative and it is possible that three are some eastern guys that have somethings that we can learn...maybe more efficiently and with a deeper understanding for many of us.

The things that Mike, Dan, and Rob have learned and seemingly codified may serve to assist YOU and maybe even ME in breaking down paradiqms and road blocks that we have been stumbling on for years, where aikido sensei's may have been unable to reach or tap.

I do think though, that we need to be careful about extrapolating our own shortcomings and experiences to the bigger picture and professing that because these things are so new to you, and they have helped where other people have failed...that the logic follows that it must mean that no one else understands these things and can do them.

I'd submit that the top athletes in their fields have perfected those aspects (internal) that make them successful.

Can they learn more. Apparently so, as we are constantly seeing records broken and things like females pole vaulting today...(most of that can be attributed to pole technology and the shift in paradigm concerning womens ability to develop core strength etc.).

So, i'd say that, yes, I agree that what Dan, Mike, and Rob teach can help us...I would not, at this point go so far as to say that it is any big secret, and that it will blatantly revolutionize martial arts or training...

Might it help you? Might it help me? Absolutely!

That is not to say that it would help Helio Gracie, or Rorian Gracie, or Michael Jordan...as they may already have developed methodologies that allow them to exploit the exact same things.

Who knows! I might be wrong!

Thanks for the conversation!

Cady Goldfield
04-08-2007, 03:37 PM
Kevin,
About the lady arm wrestler -- The "winky" was meant to mean that I'm being tongue-in-cheek. It was a long time ago, and, truthfully, I have no idea what the lady's gimmick was, whether it was a trick of leverage and quickness, where she learned to arm wrestle that way, or whether she had a clever manager behind her promoting her special brand of "parlor trick." Obviously, she didn't create enough of a sensation to make herself famous (one shot on "Aresenio" isn't exactly a career maker!). Maybe people view these things as just amusing curiosities and nothing more. They may not even care what makes it "work" beyond casual "I wonder how she did that..." musing.

You can watch someone perform what seem to be amazing feats that might or might not require a degree of internal manipulation. But for the vast majority of people, they would not be able to tell that such things were being done. When it is being done, action is not readily visible, only its effects. That's one of the reasons why Justin's continued demand that internal skills be demonstrated publicly in tournaments or UFC in order to prove their existance and legitimacy, is without merit IMO.\

As for internal skills in other activities outside MAs, I have wondered how it would affect, say, American pro football, and hockey (our NHL could really use some help :) ). Now that would be some interesting stuff.

Kevin Leavitt
04-08-2007, 03:58 PM
Sorry didn't catch that tongue in cheek.

It is so hard to have these "feeling" conversations on the internet.

I am not so certain his demand for demonstration is unreasonable given much of the conversation that has taken place over the years on the internet and some of the claims and things that have been illuded to here.

However, I do understand and agree that the success of a particular methodology may not be so readily visible.

For instance, I am an upper blue belt in BJJ. How do I know this, one I was promoted by a black belt to blue belt, second, and more importantly I went to a few tournaments, one was a top ranked international tournament and competed successfully with those of the same rank. Lastly, I have a few students of other arts and people that seem to keep coming back to train with me.

Now, ask me how much BJJ experience I have in an actual BJJ dojo. You would be suprised at how little I have actually done compared to my rank level.

So, where did I learn all this? I will tell you it was through my years of aikido training of developing a sound base in principles coupled with about 18 months worth of training with various people in BJJ of and on.

My aikido training allowed me to surpass many of the people I was studying with, even though aikido does not translate directly to BJJ, and in a BJJ tournament you would see very little that would lead you to believe I EVER studied aikido.

So,. yes, I agree that methodology allows from transference of skills and lessons that apply to a wider audience.

The Methodology that Mike, Dan, and Rob are adopting and teaching could have merit and apply to a wider audience, say MMA folks for sure!

Just like my aikido methodology did.

However, just because I studied aikido, did not make me remotely successful in MMA or BJJ. Also, it would seem crazy to go and state that this mysterious art of aikido would revolutionize BJJ and has been kept a secret.

If I did that, the BJJ guys would come to an aikido dojo and call Bullcrap on aikido (like they do), and say it does not work and is a waste of time. Why? because they are judging it from a different paradigm. Same guys would ask me how I got promoted in BJJ so fast...I'd say, "because I studied aikido for so many years!"

Everyone is scratching their head "is it bullcrap of not?"

Answer is it depends on your situation and your position in a partiucular point and time.

If I would have spent the 12 years studying BJJ than Aikido, I'd be much better off in BJJ possibly than I am now...so while there is transferrence...it does not draw a correalation that one methodology is additive or better than the other.

Make sense??

So, I don't think there are any great secrets macroscopically, only secrets that maybe you or I don't know about.

An analogy would be the mid 1400s when the prevailing paradigm was that the earth was flat. There were people that thought it was round for sure.

When the paradigm began to shift to a round earth it wasn't a matter of secrets or anything...it was simply that more people saw things for what they really were.

Did the new paradigm or way of looking at things change anything in the world...not really, we still build buidlings the same way, we still do everything the way we did before, we just now have a different paradigm. No secrets, nothing empricially new added to the equation, simply a new perspective on the same old subject.

Cady Goldfield
04-08-2007, 05:10 PM
Kevin,

Maybe not so much "secrets" as that these things just...don't...interested people beyond a casual curiosity. If it doesn't make money for someone, why bother? ;)

Below is a story from the NY Times (the link no longer is active, so I had to cut/paste from a file I kept) describing some Belgian researchers who tried to hypothesize why Nepalese porters and women from certain African tribes are able to bear very heavy loads on their heads or across their foreheads without expending the amount of energy that one would logically assume you'd expend during such tasks.

They are totally clueless, scientifically. They attribute the "strength" of the porters and water carriers to their short stature, frequent rests, the way the tump line (carrying strap) of the Nepalese is used across the forehead (but they don't elaborate on how that would work), and a greater number of oxygen-bearing red blood cells that typically develop in all human beings who live at high altitudes for some period of time. At no time does any knowledge of biomechanics or even mechanical engineering (structure) come to bear in their studies! They also forget that the African women are not living at high altitudes, might be relatively tall, and that they carry the jugs of water on their heads, not necessarily with tump lines.

In a post a month or two ago, Mike Sigman made a really sensible postulation about the African water carriers and such load bearers, noting that a jin path to the ground was the most likely reason for their amazing abilities. It's not magic, and it's not even "rocket science." It's knowledge of structure and load-bearing, as well as the human body's ability to make maneuvers to maximize those elements. But not a soul in the science world seems to have investigated the structural physics and the biomechanics of it.

It would be a great thesis for a master's or Ph.D. in exercise physiology, physical anthropology and a number of other areas. Personally, if I had the energy to go back to grad school and finish my degree work in primate evolutionary ecology, I'd do it myself. But except for the Belgian researchers, no one else seems to have even a bit of curiosity about this peculiar phenomenon that seems to fly in the face of normal human function.

So, I don't expect too many people to get excited about other aspects of internal skills, either.

BTW, I would consider the activities below to be a perfectly fine demonstration of some of the internal skills Justin would like to see. I've been to Nepal four times, and many times have seen tiny, elderly Nepalese women carrying 75 lbs. of firewood on their backs with tump lines, trotting up steep Himalayan trails while I (a very fit hiker at the time) was left in the dust. I guess what fascinated me more, was that these old ladies and young girls were doing virtually all of the heavy load carrying while their menfolk sat in the tea shops and played cards. :p

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The Times June 17, 2005

Why the sherpas of Nepal would leave our fittest soldiers standing
By Mark Henderson, Science Correspondent

NEPALESE mountain porters who climb steep Himalayan slopes carrying more than their bodyweight are the fittest and most efficient load-lifters in the world, scientists have found.
Their combination of technique and physical ability makes their performance far more effective than that of Western soldiers marching with backpacks, according to research. It even surpasses the most efficient carrying methods studied to date: those of African women whose loads are balanced on or suspended from the head.

A study by Belgian researchers has quantified the remarkable efficiency of Nepal's porters, most of whom come from the sherpa, Rai or Tamang ethnic groups, for the first time. They carry huge loads in a basket known as doko, which is supported with a strap looping around the top of the head.

A team led by Norman Heglund of the Catholic University of Louvain, in Brussels, conducted tests on eight porters travelling to a bazaar in the town of Namche, which lies 3,500m (11,500ft) above sea level close to Mount Everest.

The dirt-track route from the Kathmandu Valley to Namche covers 62 miles (100km), with combined ascents of about 8,000m and descents of about 6,300m, and takes seasoned porters between seven and nine days to complete. Hundreds of porters make the trek every week; on the day before the bazaar, the scientists counted 545 men and 97 women, along with 32 yaks, with many more passing earlier and later in the darkness. The youngest porter was 11 and the oldest 68.

All were carrying loads that seemed unfeasibly heavy to Western observers. The men bore an average of 93 per cent of their bodyweight and the women an average of 66 per cent. A fifth of the men were carrying 125 per cent of their bodyweight and one managed an astonishing 183 per cent.

By contrast, the greatest loads carried by African women, such as those of the Kikuyu tribe in Kenya, amount to 60 per cent of bodyweight, and the loads typically included in military backpacks are lower still.

Dr Heglund, whose results are published today in the journal Science, recruited eight of the porters for further investigation, which has shed some light on the nature of their amazing skills. The porters were asked to walk along a 51m flat track at five different speeds, carrying six or seven different loads, while their oxygen intake and carbon dioxide output was measured.

The tests revealed that loads of up to 20 per cent of bodyweight were carried "for free" — meaning that the porters' metabolic rate did not increase at all compared with an unladen walk. With higher proportional loads, their energy efficiency was far greater than seen with the most efficient head-based carrying techniques used in Africa.

Previous research comparing Kikuyu women with army recruits found that the former carried heavy loads much more efficiently. For loads of 20 per cent of bodyweight, Kikuyu oxygen consumption rose 2 per cent compared with 13 per cent for the soldiers. The difference was even greater for 70 per cent loads: the soldiers used 100 per cent more oxygen, but the women only 50 per cent more. The porters did even better. While they were not subjected to quite the same tests, they were able to carry an extra 30 per cent of bodyweight, on average, while maintaining the same metabolic rate.

Their secret seems to rest on three factors. The first is physiology: the combination of a short but powerful stature and a high red blood cell count evolved as a result of living at high altitude. Also critical is their carrying technique, by which a strap around the head bears the majority of the load. The final element seems to be the regular rests that they take during their climbs.

TAKING THE STRAIN

SHERPA

Technique: doko basket on the back supported by namlo strap around head

Load and efficiency: male porters carry average of 93 per cent of bodyweight, females 66 per cent. Maximum was 183 per cent. Can carry 100 per cent of bodyweight for same energy used by an African woman carrying 70 per cent

AFRICAN WOMEN

Technique: loads balanced on the head or suspended from it using straps. The most efficient method, used by the Kenyan Kikuyu, uses bindings across the forehead to support a load on the back

Load and efficiency: Loads do not generally exceed 60 per cent of bodyweight

SOLDIER

Technique: backpack with shoulder and waist straps

Load and efficiency: US Army guidelines say that a backpack should weigh no more than 15 per cent of a soldier's weight. A 70 per cent load raises oxygen consumption 100 per cent

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

dps
04-08-2007, 05:10 PM
Your external strength is based on how well you use your internal structure and musculature ( internal strength).

David

Mike Sigman
04-08-2007, 05:17 PM
I am curious as to how maybe Rob, Mike or Dan would interpret Arm Wrestling and venture to say how they would see someone that had a greater understanding of internal skills seeing them apply to a game/sport like arm wrestling. Can it apply, or is the parameters so constrained that it would preclude the use of internal skills as they define them?But see, this is just another example of the constant round and round, re-visiting the same topics over and over that I get tired of. I posted the URL of the videoclip of Kuroda Sensei doing techniques and at the end showing 2 "ki" examples, one of which was a version of arm-wrestling. Another example (note that I'm trying to keep these anecdotes far removed from anything that I am attesting to) that I can think of was Lee Scheele (studies Wu style with Tony Ho in Orange County) mentioning an anecdote (note: Lee wasn't there and is only repeating what his teacher *told* him and Lee tends to be very worshipful of his teacher) where his teacher arm-wrestled a guy and used jin to defeat him.

I think an interesting side note I see to a lot of these discussions is that the Asians tend to keep things secret and NOT show them publicly (a good habit if you have a tradition of protecting your martial skills from public exposure so people can't figure how to defeat those techniques).... yet a lot of westerners jump up and say "If he's so good, why hasn't he entered a UFC competition and kicked butt". They can't imagine someone not strutting his stuff and kicking butt, bragging about it in public, demo'ing it, etc. It's a marked difference in approach and perhaps a little bit of arrogance when you loudly assume anyone worth his salt would do it your way. ;)

Best.

Mike

Mike Sigman
04-08-2007, 05:20 PM
I guess what fascinated me more, was that these old ladies and young girls were doing virtually all of the heavy load carrying while their menfolk sat in the tea shops and played cards. :p That's pretty arrogant, Cady. Just because people live in Nepal doesn't mean they don't know the proper assignment of responsibilities.

Best.

Mike "Runs For Cover" Sigman
:D

Cady Goldfield
04-08-2007, 05:21 PM
Sounds like a certain chap in Durango needs some old Nepalese ladies to come and "tune" him. :D

Kevin Leavitt
04-08-2007, 05:40 PM
Cady,

I go to Africa on occasion and I am constantly amazed at the women that carry those loads. I have a picture of a one woman carrying a child on her hip with a 50 or 60 lb propane bottle on her head, effortlessly. Amazing!

Anyway, I had to laugh at the "U.S. Army guideline". 15%. that would mean that a soldier 175lb solder would carry...what a 26 lb pack? that does not even meet our "competition" standard for testing of a 35lb rucksack!

I estimated that my basic load of gear of as an infantrymen well exceeded over 100lbs..dry. I weigh about 225lbs and I have wieghed on the scales, my carrying load of what we call "full battle rattle" and I was well over 350 lbs total!

Anyway, maybe my issue is that I have experienced the same things and this is only semantics! I have done some pretty extreme things in my time! :)

I do prefer sipping a beer and playing dominoes while the women folk work...that is appealing! I see this in Africa as well.

Anyway, I am a little confused...it seems you and I agree? right?

Kevin Leavitt
04-08-2007, 05:43 PM
Thanks Mike, so you are saying that it is possible say in an arm Wrestling venue, where things appear to be fairly well isoloated from the hip movement/ground...that Jin is still in use.

I would not venture to say that you could "see" this...I think this would be very silly as it would simply look like arm wrestling with the other guy tanking it!

Thanks for the reply.

Mike Sigman
04-08-2007, 08:08 PM
Thanks Mike, so you are saying that it is possible say in an arm Wrestling venue, where things appear to be fairly well isoloated from the hip movement/ground...that Jin is still in use.

I would not venture to say that you could "see" this...I think this would be very silly as it would simply look like arm wrestling with the other guy tanking it!

Thanks for the reply.Exactly. Kuroda's demonstration of jin is cute (very clever), but someone with jin skills sees what he's doing right away. The next step, for someone watching who does jin skills, is to say to himself, "Hmmmmm ... I never tried that variation. I'll give it a shot". If they can't do it, they know "here's another one I've got to practice.".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InlQtTMK5Ys

Same with Ueshiba's jo-trick. It's a "good one" (even though he never fully pulls it off in the videos we can see). Still, the jo-trick is such a stretch that anyone with jin skills (actually that one takes very good jin skills and well-trained ki to pull off, if it can ever really be pulled off) would automatically think, "Hmmmmmm.... heck, Ueshiba must have really trained his skills to a high level".

These are body-skills, Kevin. Without going back through them, you've heard how they make someone difficult to throw, how it gives a lot of power for short releases, how it conveys power in an unusual way out to the hands, feet, etc. There are variations that are *very* clever. The Chinese refer to these variations as the "19 types of jin" and that sort of stuff... but they all come from the one jin.

FWIW

Mike

Upyu
04-08-2007, 08:26 PM
Thanks Mike, so you are saying that it is possible say in an arm Wrestling venue, where things appear to be fairly well isoloated from the hip movement/ground...that Jin is still in use.

I would not venture to say that you could "see" this...I think this would be very silly as it would simply look like arm wrestling with the other guy tanking it!

Thanks for the reply.

Kevin, Actually there is a slight "catch" in the way Kuroda does it.
Notice he does it a) when he's lying down, body stretched out.
and b) with his pinky.

a) For someone with these skills, it's easier if the body is oriented this way. (Once you have Jin skills, body orientation doesn't really matter, but it still doesn't hurt ;) )
b) In that particular context, once you have the skills, in a way its easier to only use the pinky, or index finger because it forces you to work double time in using your Jin to "input" it to the other guy :)
Which is why the Ueshiba demo where he lifts and tosses people with his index finger in Kokyu dosa is a "kind" of a trick. You need the skill first, but that context makes it easier for him to pull it off.

FWIW

Cady Goldfield
04-08-2007, 08:42 PM
Kevin,

I'd disagree with you on the part about the sipping beer while the womenfolk work, but that could just be my gender bias. ;)
Women do most of the physical labor in agricultural/pastoral, non-industrial countries. Men are "too important" because they can get the paying jobs in town --as drivers, tourist industry workers, etc. When I was in India and Nepal, I saw mostly women doing the bulk of the day-to-day hard physical work. Men would plow the fields with water buffalo, and do roof thatching -- which are sporadic or at least not frequent tasks. The rest of the time they drink tea (or booze), play low-stakes gambling games, run cockfighting matches and enjoy other timekillers between sex, plowing and paying gigs. :D

"Thank goodness for post-Industrial Western life," she said. :)

I wouldn't say that the only "secrets" are the ones that we don't know about when it comes to the cogently-developed, integrated system of internal body skills that arose in Asia perhaps largely for martial use. It was not meant for the average Joe as load-bearing is, and I believe that it is also not a spontaneous discovery that others will find on their own, although many discrete initernal body skills, such as the weight-bearing method, have been spontaneous, parallel discoveries in many cultures and places in the world. Given a few millennia, a culture will plumb the depths of any skill that is necessary for its survival. IOW, if you live in a culture where you have to carry heavy loads on your body for long distances, your people will figure out a way, over time, to make that process as efficient as possible. And it will be handed down mother to daughter/father to son. Necessity being the mother of invention. ;)

One problem we Westerners have as a group, is that we are armchair thinkers and mental doers. Many of our amazing inventions involve machinery and electronics to do the work for us. Most of us have lost touch with our bodies as machines that do work, and would not know where to begin to learn to manipulate our internal structure and movement.

So, I think that unlike your round-Earth paradigm, knowledge of how to implement internal skills can make a difference in our post-industrial world, in terms of body efficiency in doing work, if nothing else. In martial arts, I deeply believe in their efficacy, having seen and felt it myself. And heck, I may have to carry propane tanks some day, and I sure would like to do it without getting a hernia. And, I want to go back to Nepal and show those ladies that a Westerner can trot up miles of foothill paths at 12,000', carrying a load of firewood without breaking a sweat. ;)

And, Kevin, if you train in and learn this stuff, maybe you could get a gov't contract to teach soldiers how to carry more weight with greater efficiency so they don't eat and sweat so much. We tax payers will appreciate the savings in food, deoderant and other stuff the military uses by the truckload to fuel its troops. :D

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 01:49 AM
Cady, you are certainly quick witted!

I would say to a point it would make sense that these methodologies would be perserved somewhat in more ancient cultures than in the west. As a culture, the west was torn apart over the last 1000 years, with technology being the driving force behind our successes.

So, yes, I can see where certain methodologies to train skills would be preserved and codified.

I use the word methodology, as I do believe that there is a clear and separate distinction between methodology and skill.

What is being transmitted is the methodology and not any unique set of skills, as I hypothesize, that athletes and people that must use these type of things figure it out, or at least components of them to support there activities.

I can remember as a young guy working on potatote farms, moving heavy barrells 14 hours a day. It sucked for a couple of weeks until you figured out how to stop using muscle and "connecting" with the barrel. I could then do some pretty amazing things that made them look almost weightless.

Anyway, believe it or not, you are not so far off on your speculation concerning my goals to become a contractor in the martial area. I will most likely be working in this area in some capacity.

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 01:52 AM
Mike/Rob,

Thanks again for the video and the explaination. I had forgotten about that video.

You do see him moving the hand through a kokyu plane, which I never caught before.

Appreciate you guys sharing that, and I hope to get with you within the next year!

Cady Goldfield
04-09-2007, 06:29 AM
Kevin, I agree with your use of "methodology." These are principle-based concepts that become deeply integrated -- not just "technique." It's just that "skill" is a convenient word to describe the abilities or actions themselves, such as that of efficiently carrying load.

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 08:52 AM
I think skill is the part of the endstate and can be reached by many methodologies.

It might be that much of the confusion surrounding this topic deals with not making the distinction between methodology and skill.

Good discussion!

Mike Sigman
04-09-2007, 08:58 AM
You do see him moving the hand through a kokyu plane, which I never caught before.
I have no idea what you mean, Kevin. That sounded like techno-babble, to my ears. I would suggest once again that we do not talk about the same things, but I don't want to get into an involved discussion anymore about how to do these things.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 09:14 AM
Whatever....I know kokyu when I see it and feel it and it looked like kokyu to me. Sorry I didn't pass your "get it test". I am trying really hard to become a member of your club but apparently I am not possible of passing the muster.

Best way to not get involved is to simply not respond. Just when I think you are a reasonable guy that has good intentions of sharing information, you turn around and bite. Don't get it, but that seems to be par for the course between us for whatever reason.

I have no problem disagreeing, but please the attitude and "superior" attitude is what is disturbing to me.

Probably right. Maybe we need to steer clear of each other for a while.

Mike Sigman
04-09-2007, 09:25 AM
Whatever....I know kokyu when I see it and feel it and it looked like kokyu to me. Sorry I didn't pass your "get it test". I am trying really hard to become a member of your club but apparently I am not possible of passing the muster.

Best way to not get involved is to simply not respond. Just when I think you are a reasonable guy that has good intentions of sharing information, you turn around and bite. Don't get it, but that seems to be par for the course between us for whatever reason.

I have no problem disagreeing, but please the attitude and "superior" attitude is what is disturbing to me.

Probably right. Maybe we need to steer clear of each other for a while.Don't miss the point, Kevin. Over and over again, the comment has been made that the things you're saying show that you don't understand. Repeatedly, you come back with something saying that you MUST understand... after all, you're a "teacher". I'm not "superior" (but thanks for the personal slam), I simply think it needs to be pointed out each time what is happening:

(1.) You infer you already know these things, thus protecting your status as a "teacher".

(2.) I say you don't know these things and I couldn't care less if you claim to know them... you need to get out and see them, just like other teachers on this forum have done and who are now getting ahead of the game. My worry is about students being assured by some "teacher" that they already know everything. I've been a victim of that myself. If it's "superior" to point that out each time, then I'm guilty.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 09:40 AM
1. I have never said I understood anything about what you are doing.

2. I do understand a little about martial arts and efficient use of my body as it relates to what is generally what falls into the realm of empty handed martial arts. These things involve posture, balance, correct use of your mind, body, and spirit. I don't think I have said anything contrary to that.

3. I have never said that what you are saying is incorrect. Only asked questions concerning the application and endstates and definitions concerning martial effectiveness/efficiency.

It seems we both are on the same plane concerning being worrried about a teacher saying that they know everything, or things that they know very little about. I have pointed this out where I thought it was appropriate when people discuss martial efficiency or MMA.

So where is it that we have an issue between us?

Is it not possible for me to understand ANYTHING martially?

Apparently these days I need some sort of "Good Housekeeping" seal of approval to say anything at all concerning martial subjects.

I believe I have asked more questions here than I have posted statements.

I believe when I have had opinions, I have backed them up with facts from my own experiences and have stated that my opinions were based on my own experiences. I have never said that they were correct necessarily, nor have I asked anyone to prove anything.

So why is it that I apparently irritate you so much?

akiy
04-09-2007, 09:49 AM
Hi folks,

Can we please stay away from ad hominem posts?

-- Jun

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 09:53 AM
Sorry Jun. I will try and not let it happen again. It was not my original intent.

Mike Sigman
04-09-2007, 09:57 AM
1. I have never said I understood anything about what you are doing. Sure... you've said you teach ki and kokyu to your students. That raises a problem because the subject we're talking about (Ushiro, Tohei, Dan, Rob, Abe Sensei, me, and many others) is called "ki" and "kokyu". That presents a big problem because you don't understand what we're saying yet you claim in your posts that you teach it. Do you see the problem from that perspective?Is it not possible for me to understand ANYTHING martially? Rule #1: Do NOT leave any openings for Mike Sigman to make smart-ass one-liners: he cannot resist them. ;)

Let's take one tiny example and look at it, even though the one example doesn't cover the whole topic of the problem. Let's say nikkyo.

I can go to various dojo's and be shown "nikkyo" and as a "joint lock" it is fine and it "works martially". Some people will immediately jump into the discussion with "timing" and "from your center" and "stand in this angle to apply it" and "how to use it in a bar fight or combat with the enemy" and so on. All of that is fine and is "martial" and different people have different takes on it. AND it works! So therefore, they all "know nikkyo". I admit they can do nikkyo, but it's not really a version (by most people) that O-Sensei or any other skilled Asian martial artist is going to concur with as being correct if jin is not being used to do it. And there are degrees of jin. You don't have any really impressive jin power until your "middle" is extremely powerful. Your middle isn't going to be extremely powerful and connected out to your arms and legs until your "ki" is developed with breath, intent, stretches, and etc.

If you knew ki and kokyu skills, you'd have already known this and used it as a caveat, part of an explanation, etc. No one is "doing ki and kokyu skills but doesn't know they're doing them" or "didn't recognize the descriptions".

Can you "do things martially"? I have no doubt. I'll bet you're a great fighter. So was Ueshiba. But he's dead, so he can't kick butt anymore. His art is what we're talking about, though. ;)

Regards,

Mike

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 11:16 AM
Sure at a certain level of understanding I teach the concept of kokyu. It is important. Do I have room for deeper understanding? Can I demonstrate it adequately in an aikido context, not really...that is why I study aikido with people I consider more competent in this area other than myself. It is why I would consider being open to studying with the you Rob, or someone like Dan when I have the opportunity.

How much time do I spend on teaching kokyu? very little to be honest..very little as it is not the core of my practice to work on MMA type stuff. Having been exposed to it through Saotome Sensei, Ikeda sensei, and many of his senior students, I appreciate it enough to at least spend some time on it.

What is wrong with that? Given that I work in an alive/non-compliant environment pretty much exclusively it doesn't pose too much of an issue because either something works or it doesn't in this methodology, and aliveness keeps things honest and gives me an avenue to explore things I am attempting to understand.

Would I go to Jimmy Sorrentino's dojo and teach kokyu or proceed to show my fellow students anything concerning kokyu..not at all, because that is a different environment and I have much to learn in this context as there are people that are much better at these things there than I.

Nikkyo, interesting you bring that up. In my MMA context I have pretty much dismissed it as being useful. Why is that? It does not work for me. Maybe this in and of itself demonstrates my inability to understand Jin. Good point. This should demonstrate to you the level of honesty and scenarity of have concerning this. At least I am not deluded (as I once was) in thinking that what I was doing in my aikido practice would actually work for me.

This does not imply that nikkyo is worthless, only my own limitations possibly to understanding it.

So I would agree there are levels of Jin or Kokyu, and given the enviornment that I currently work in, it is not an issue as I have very measureable criteria to determine if what I am doing works or does not work. It allows me to stay honest with myself and the others I work with.

Given the fact that I am turning 42 and work with guys that are in top shape and I can move most of them around fairlly effortlessly with very little actually speed and demonstrate a fair amount of "dead/grounded weight"...must count for something. Most of the guys I train with say they feel like they are trying to move a refrigerator when they are working with me, what does that mean? Don't care if you answer for me it is unimportant what you think about me or my skills. I am here to learn what I can learn and contribute what I can contribute, which is all i can do based on my own personal experiences.

Not saying it is or is not what you are doing. If you say it is not what you are doing because I don't describe things the way that would demonstrate that what I discuss is Jin..I accept that as it is more than just you that is saying it...and I will accept that until I feel it for myself. Got it.

Mike Sigman
04-09-2007, 11:45 AM
Sure at a certain level of understanding I teach the concept of kokyu. Well, without going any further than that, my comment was justified and a viable point, wouldn't you agree?

There were a group of people on the old Neijia List who left in a huff to form their own list because they were insulted at the idea that anyone would accuse them of teaching and being senior students and not understanding "peng jin" (the core jin of Taiji, but the meaning is more like "exended ki"). It was pretty funny because their outraged statements still showed that they just didn't understand what they were teaching. To cover their tracks, some of them came up wih the idea that they were perfectly qualified to be teaching Tai Chi at a "Kindergarten Level". I.e., they were qualified to teach the basics and didn't claim to teach advanced stuff. One of them started using the phrase "Caveat Emptor" to show that it wasn't his fault if he was teaching things wrongly.

But here's the real problem. The basics of the arts that use so-called "internal" skills are the internal skills themselves. The techniques in so-called "internal" arts are built around that internal form of strength. So, for instance, a person cannot really teach a "kokyu throw" if he can't exhibit and teach basic kokyu power. There's a disconnect that is logically inescapable with the idea of teaching "basic level" kokyu, ki, jin, fajin, or whatever, if the basics are not there. It's like saying, "OK, even though I don't know the full alphabet myself, I can at least teach basic essay writing". It doesn't compute.

Now don't get me wrong, Kevin.... this applies to all of us in many arts and I've been guilty of it, too... I'm not singling you out. The major point I've been making is more that people need to go back and get this basic, very important stuff, and then reconfigure around it.

And of course, based on long experience, I expect resistance from people who are "teachers".... they will naturally resist the idea that there is some basic topic about which they know little or nothing. So I prepped the discussions for that fight ("insultingly" as some wounded teachers have put it) a long time ago. Without being "insulting" and instead being "nice and diplomatic", what would happen is that the existing hierarchy would simply roll over and crush any discussions containing the idea there was anything they were lacking. I.e., there's an unavoidable conflict as this fairly critical time... and my option is simply to go straight into it, pretending that there are a few people who, like I was, really want to get ahead but who are trapped by the existing hierarchies and protocols.

By not "respecting" the position and protocols in place, I/we are naturally going to be construed as "rude" by some people. But that's unavoidable. Some people will see the point and some won't. C'est la vie. The question is not about personalities or rudeness, but "is there something there to make this circumvention of protocol" justifiable? I'm sure of it. Ikeda Sensei and Ushiro Sensei are sure of it, too. So are the many others who have seen it. It's what O-Sensei referred to in his douka. ;)

Best.

Mike

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 01:03 PM
The difference between what I do and probably what a tai chi school does is that I train in primarily these days in an environment of aliveness, non-compliance, or whatever you want to call it....not within the confines of "DO" per se. So in the respect, I don't need to be too concerned about if what I am teaching is correct, I have immediate feedback from the people I am working to tell me that...not a theorectical or solely principle based practice.

Albeit you do work with people of diffrerent skill levels and you still need to be cognizant that people will feed you inappropriate responses even in that environment..one of the guys I train with does this alot.

This environment, MMA, allows us to explore freely what works and does not work for us...our main concern is effectiveness so much different in this environment...you can freely explore what you know about kokyu, nikkyo or what not...if it works great, if not, then you know that you either need to ditch it, or find someone that can show you where you are wrong.

It is not as critical as say in an aikido dojo where it is pretty much necessary to have proper guidance or instruction in these things as if you don't you are essentially wasting your time or being filled full of crap that you really don't know works.

Two schools or methodolgies of thought.

I am not confined by the hiearchies or societial pressure of an aikido organization to were I keep my mouth shut and remain "compliant" either willfully or out of shear ignorance because I have only been exposed to a limited spectrum within the martial community....so I completely can appreciate your perspective to a degree.

That said, I have respect for those within these organizations, on of which I have been affiliated with, ASU, of which one of our shihan you apparently hold in regard in some capacity. I do feel it is possible to be respectful, train with them, and work without disrupting the flow, learn and do my own thing outside of this organization. However, rude is rude, arrogance is arrogance, and I know it when I see it...just like kokyu! :)

Mike Sigman
04-09-2007, 01:14 PM
However, rude is rude, arrogance is arrogance, and I know it when I see it...just like kokyu! :)I don't know if you saw something I posted about rudeness, respect, etc., Kevin, but let me hit the highlights real quick.

Let's say you go into an MMA school, one that uses the same name and logo as your own school which you value highly because it's a famous and hard-earned name. And in that school you find 4 or 5 teachers who don't even know the basics of the guard, take-downs, etc., but who are doing their own versions of it. These guys all have "belts" and have "been teaching" for 15-20 years. At a common martial arts forum meeting, you run into them and you try to be friendly and mention a couple of basic things that you think they might find interesting. In fact those same basic things are mentioned over and over in the manuals, but they never seem to have encountered them and many think they are "fantasy" and of "no help". They look at each other and say "We never heard of that.... what are you, a trouble-maker?" They tell you that they don't like your style of talking. At that point, are you being rude/arrogant or are they being rude/arrogant?

Of course, in the long run it doesn't matter, because if you're right there's no way these guys can go on forever before their bubble gets popped, since it's a small world. Maybe it's better to wait and see. Imagine if you're right and what's going to happen to the value of the books several of these guys wrote, further on down the line. See the ramifications? It's like an enthralling soap-opera, ain't it?

Regards,

Mike

Kevin Leavitt
04-09-2007, 02:24 PM
In my MMA experiences this has not happened too much. (MMA as defined as predominately grappling based jiujitsu). Either you dominate, control, or demonstrate you effectiveness, or you don't. They can deny it all they want, but it becomes quite clear very fast what someone can do or cannot do.

What I like about that environment is the fact that you pretty much lay your cards on the table everytime you train. If you could do the things that you do internally and could walk in and not only demonstrate the methodology, but also can actually do it, then you have an audience that is all ears! If you cannot, then you pretty much get the cold shoulder and for good reason.

To bring this back on topic. I think you find this pretty much with any sport or activity in which their is definitive criteria upon which to measure success. If you could show Tiger Woods how to improve his golf through the use of Jin, you'd have a very well paying consulting job.

However, if you have these tools, and cannot effectively demonstrate how they can be used for a particular purpose, then people might say, hey that is a pretty neat trick, and be impressed and then move on, failing to see the utility of it.

Aikido, I think, is different in that it primarily is not concerned with martial effectiveness, but in holisitc self improvement, which in turn hopefully can instill harmony and peace philosophically to the entire world. How does Jin play into that, and what is the realitive importance? No two people will ever agree. I'd submit that it is not so critical to perfect it, maybe even awareness of it is all that is needed, however, Obsession of possessing these internal abilities solely for the perfection of them, without regard for the other aspects that must be kept in balance and moderation...IMO is missing the point all together...missing the message of aikido and the intent of what it is designed to do.

Which is why, IMO, when we discuss MMA, internal skills, and aikido in the same breath in many cases, we are talking apples, pears, and oranges.

As far as the whole book thing. It is interesting that you bring it up. I have gone through many of my books that I held out high hope for over the years, many of them so called "internal books", and today, I find them to be pretty much garbage and not much us other than stating obvious facts, but not giving us much in the way of "how to".

I think the real revolution in your skills will be when there are people that have them that can adequately demonstrate how to apply them to various sports and practices and the participants define it as unique, different, and nothing that they have ever seen and felt before. I am talking not the average Joe in which anything that is remotely skillful is new and exciting, but highly skilled, world class athletes. It seems some head way might have been made in some aikido circles if what you say about Ikeda and Ushiro is true. That is a good thing I think, something I am looking forward to.

If what you are doing is true and geniune, I agree, eventually it will reach those that are denial and are hiding behind barriers and constructs of a fabricated environment of a dojo or organization.

The cool thing about how I practice is that on any given day, there might be a guy that shows up that is much better than me. That guy is the one that teaches...not me. It always seems silly to me to pretend to be the teacher when there is someone that is better...what a waste of time!

Cheers.

Ecosamurai
04-10-2007, 04:50 AM
Nikkyo, interesting you bring that up. In my MMA context I have pretty much dismissed it as being useful. Why is that? It does not work for me. Maybe this in and of itself demonstrates my inability to understand Jin. Good point. This should demonstrate to you the level of honesty and scenarity of have concerning this. At least I am not deluded (as I once was) in thinking that what I was doing in my aikido practice would actually work for me.

This does not imply that nikkyo is worthless, only my own limitations possibly to understanding it

This is kinda what I was talking about when I referred to MMA 'cherry-picking', I've said it before but I'll repeat it. An MMA guy loudly announced to me that nikyo didn't work and nearly screamed when I applied it to his wrist. What he meant to say was 'nikyo doesn't work for me' instead he declared 'nikyo doesn't work'. Not saying that's what you did but I usually view it as the downside of the MMA combined with competition approach. There are probably plenty of things that work just fine but don't make it into MMA's common repetoire or UFC toolkit. I suspect this happens more often than not because the common MMA attitude is that if it can't be made to work with minimal training and I can't apply it in the ring with minimal training it 'doesn't work'. I think it may turn out that as UFC &c continue to get older more and more things that have been thrown out as being 'ineffective' will begin to creep into it as it becomes more sophisticated and the skill level of competitiors increases.

It wasn't so long ago that I remember all 'internal' skills or 'soft arts' as they were often called (using the hard/soft dichotomy) were dismissed as rubbish and 'ineffective' People who dismissed them this way were often stunned when they came accross someone who was really good at the internal stuff (I knew a really impressive muay thai fighter who told me he was intimidated by my aikido teacher for example. Even though my teacher didn't do anything that would be viewed as intimidating, it was simply his presence).

Mike

Kevin Leavitt
04-10-2007, 05:28 AM
Actually I think the reverse is happening, more things are making it into MMA.

Yes, you will always develop your "game" with a limited number of "high percentage" things that work for you. You can train someone actually realitively quickly to be functional I believe....more so than from an "internal", DO, or strictly "budo" practice.

Yes there are some that will end their practice and training at that point...a few things that work.

What tends to happen though is that everyone learns those things, you achieve an efficient market of things that work, then someone else comes along with a new angle or new twist or methods and figures out how to exploit it.

The upside to MMA type training, or better yet, training with aliveness is that you actually can make real mistakes, not simulated ones, and then struggle through and figure out what works and doesn't..find your weaknesses honestly and work through them.

Do I still do niikyo, yes I do, I have a much better understanding I think today of the importance of nikkyo than I did three or four years ago.

All the big names in budo all had aliveness backgrounds prior to studying the more esoteric stuff we tend to study today. They became authorities in their area because they did stuff with aliveness.

This is just my own opinion, but I have never figured out how you can learn this stuff honestly without finding out that nikkyo does not really work most of the time in reality. Why do it over and over again in a nice, clean enviornment for years...only to discover that you really don't know what nikkyo is, or how to apply it?

All the great sages, philosophers, mentors, saints and those that have been deitized have all sort of said, "look, I figured it out so you don't have to". ....At least that is how we interpret what they say today.

I think what they really meant to say is "here is the path, follow me!' so you don't have to get lost...I know a way there!".

Even Buddha said "don't take what I say or do at face value, figure it out for yourself".

Anyway, I see MMA or aliveness training as a way back to the roots of what was lost in training in many respects. A rebirth of forgotten things...it is putting the life back into the kata and things that are dead.

I did nikkyo for years thinking that it had some life in it. I found out that my nikkyo is essentially dead. So how do I now put the life back into it?

The limits you see in MMA or aliveness I think is reality. We have to learn to crawl, then walk, then run before we can start climbing mountains. In many respects I think Budo practice leaps bounds above thngs and starts training people how to climb mountains, sort of like reading a book on technical mountain climbing, and then saying I can concieve of how this is works, but I would probably kill myself if I climbed Everest!

Sure there are many that are involved in it for only the sport that will never be concerned with Nikkyo, Jin, or anything associated with it. However, that does not mean it MMA or aliveness cannot, will not, or does not incorporate elements of these concepts, now or in the future....it is only presenting that which works and is honest, IMO.

Ecosamurai
04-10-2007, 05:39 AM
Actually I think the reverse is happening, more things are making it into MMA.

Which is exactly what I said if you read what I wrote :D

Mike

Kevin Leavitt
04-10-2007, 05:45 AM
Yes, I misread what you were saying, sorry, I see that now. Good to see we agree! Thanks!

Ecosamurai
04-10-2007, 06:17 AM
Yes, I misread what you were saying, sorry, I see that now. Good to see we agree! Thanks!

Lol, no bother :)

Mike

Ecosamurai
04-10-2007, 07:58 AM
They look at each other and say "We never heard of that.... what are you, a trouble-maker?" They tell you that they don't like your style of talking. At that point, are you being rude/arrogant or are they being rude/arrogant?

I'd say it is entirely possible that they are being mis-informed and/or defensive and you are being self-righteous. Of the two of those I'm not entirely sure which one I would rather be all things considered. It's not a pretty situation to be in.

Mike

Mike Sigman
04-10-2007, 08:29 AM
I'd say it is entirely possible that they are being mis-informed and/or defensive and you are being self-righteous. Of the two of those I'm not entirely sure which one I would rather be all things considered. It's not a pretty situation to be in. OK, so if someone knows what he's supposed to know (in the example I used of Kevin meeting a MMA group), and the "teachers" don't know what they're supposed to know, Kevin is "self-righteous" if he tries to offer something? I see.

But add this to the equation.... Kevin is not taking money/loyalty from students, but these "teachers" are. I.e., if I were a student and my teacher blew off anyone who tried to mention something that was critical to MY ultimate learning, I'd be concerned. As a student, I would take great comfort in a situation like this where I could see the my teacher opted to do what was best for me, the student. That's a real teacher.

In fact.... that's exactly what Ikeda Sensei did for his students.

What I think this "rude", "arrogant", "self-righteous" stuff means is that a number of self-styled teachers want "respect" because they're teachers, but they want if from people who can see clearly that there is something basic missing from the teachers knowledge. "Be helpful silently and respect me so that I don't lose face". Is that what you think should be done? It leads to an interesting discussion.

I've already said that if it were me and I had reasonable evidence that I was missing something, I'd just arrange to go see, go get it, etc.. I wouldn't get into these "respect me" discussions. But then, that's my perspective.

Mike Sigman

Ecosamurai
04-10-2007, 08:40 AM
Is that what you think should be done? It leads to an interesting discussion.

It does lead to an interesting discussion. No I don't think that's what should be done, but politeness is still politeness even if you leave out the 'respect me so I don't lose face' thing. Maybe that's just my native Englishness coming out against your American-ness, who knows? Either way I probably agree with you more than disagree.

Mike

Mike Sigman
04-10-2007, 09:05 AM
It does lead to an interesting discussion. No I don't think that's what should be done, but politeness is still politeness even if you leave out the 'respect me so I don't lose face' thing. Maybe that's just my native Englishness coming out against your American-ness, who knows? Either way I probably agree with you more than disagree.

MikeI'm still waiting for something substantive in terms of a "how to". Your Englishness is kewl and I've been interested to hear about your deeds and your teachers and the flaws of other peoples' personalities, but while I see a lot of nods and "we do that, too", I don't see anything else (well, unless you count repeating back Tohei's easily found vaguenesses).

If you know these things, you can explain them in common terms (even if you opt out of doing mathematical analyses). I gave a good solid and fairly complete answer to you yesterday on keeping the undeside heavy. Now, how about explaining the physical how-to's of O-Sensei bouncing someone back who is pushing on his chest. The answer should be able to tell us a lot about what you do.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Ecosamurai
04-10-2007, 09:39 AM
I'm still waiting for something substantive in terms of a "how to". Your Englishness is kewl and I've been interested to hear about your deeds and your teachers and the flaws of other peoples' personalities, but while I see a lot of nods and "we do that, too", I don't see anything else (well, unless you count repeating back Tohei's easily found vaguenesses).

That's a rather interesting way of putting things. Makes me sound like a doer of mighty deeds, lol. Nothing further from the truth really. My teacher is another matter entirely, he can speak for himself and doesn't need my help. As far as flaws in personalities goes, we all have them and if I've pointed any out you've done so at least as much if not more so I think. As to the nods and the we do that too stuff. Well a lot of what you describe we do actually do, so what am I supposed to say? No, we do it differently? Why would I do that?

If you know these things, you can explain them in common terms (even if you opt out of doing mathematical analyses). I gave a good solid and fairly complete answer to you yesterday on keeping the undeside heavy. Now, how about explaining the physical how-to's of O-Sensei bouncing someone back who is pushing on his chest. The answer should be able to tell us a lot about what you do.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

The answer will, but it's a tough question and I'd need to think of a good way to describe and explain it in a useful manner. Assuming I even have a good answer, and to be honest I'm not entirely sure I do at this point in time. Unfortunately, my future wife has booked me for the evening and I'm out of time here at work, so you'll have to wait until tomorrow. Whereupon I'll put it in the how-to thread. Sound ok to you?

Mike

PS - Incidentally, Tohei's vagueness probably isn't all that vague. The stuff in his books is fairly basic, but certainly no more vague than anything you or I have written on the internet IMO.

statisticool
04-14-2007, 05:11 AM
In a post a month or two ago, Mike Sigman made a really sensible postulation about the African water carriers and such load bearers, noting that a jin path to the ground was the most likely reason for their amazing abilities. It's not magic, and it's not even "rocket science."


Yet saying 'jin path' is not science. It is simply using a placeholder for what someone wants us to believe is science.

As far as non-Africans not being able to match their feats. That makes good sense, considering those particular Africans have done that their whole life, probably from a very young age, and they do it for a living. You know, gongfu, skill over time?

Justin

statisticool
04-18-2007, 11:16 AM
If you know these things, you can explain them in common terms (even if you opt out of doing mathematical analyses). I gave a good solid and fairly complete answer to you yesterday on keeping the undeside heavy. Now, how about explaining the physical how-to's of O-Sensei bouncing someone back who is pushing on his chest.


The book The Secrets of Judo has some great pages on just how unstable the human body is, and they give calculations for the approximate forces required to off-balance someone in an upright posture and someone in a more deep posture. These forces are much smaller than one might expect.

If it is the video clip I am thinking of, the above, coupled with a push, a non-live environment (a public demo), the master's own students, and an aging teacher, I'm not really sure what there is to explain??

Justin

stan baker
04-18-2007, 06:30 PM
Hi Justin,
do you have any experience in martial arts, if so what is it

stan

statisticool
04-19-2007, 09:37 PM
Hi Justin,
do you have any experience in martial arts,


Relevance to the topic of this thread?

Justin

Tom Fish
04-20-2007, 06:09 AM
Hi Justin,
I think Stans question was quite reasonable. It doesn't seem helpful to you when people try to explain things within the Martial arts paradigm, and with your requests for proof, it might be helpful if someone understood how to frame a response. It might be possible someday, to help you understand that just because some things may be beyond your ability to grasp, their nature does not become invalid.
Tom

Budd
04-20-2007, 06:32 AM
Before one brings up the analogy of Roger Ebert critiquing a film and the relevance of his film experience, let us not forget that he is a Pulitzer prize-winning author with actual experience in the film industry (he wrote Beyond the Valley of the Dolls -- say what you will about the quality of his output).

I'm also sure there are plenty of people in the industry that think to themselves, "Ebert, what the hell has he ever done . . .?" I also don't think that people working in film look to Ebert for validation other than to see how other people that DON'T work in the industry react to what he has to say (i.e. whether or not people are likely to come see the film based on his review).

If your audience/peer group is comprised of people that DO have extensive experience in related areas of discussion, then your own experiences do factor in to the amount of validity that's weighted to your contributions.

Franco
04-20-2007, 10:40 AM
Relevance to the topic of this thread?

Justin:

Check out the word ethos. Here is a bit from wikipedia:

In rhetoric, 'ethos' is one of the three artistic proofs (pistis) modes of persuasion (other principles being logos and pathos) discussed by Aristotle in 'Rhetoric' as a component of argument. At first speakers must establish ethos. On the one hand, this can mean merely "moral competence", but Aristotle broadens this word to encompass expertise and knowledge.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethos

Looks like the audience is trying to determine whether you are a high or a low-ethos poster. Why do you retort with the same argument ("my martial experience is irrelevant to the topic") over and over again? If you write things in a public forum, it is because you intend for people to read them, right? You have something to tell the world. So, if what you write relates to budo, why wouldn't the readers wonder about your qualifications in budo? This is basic common sense, not rocket science.

But if you still think that your martial experience is irrelevant, why don't you just indulge everyone's curiosity? After all, it should only take you a minute. It's not like somebody is asking you to travel to Tibet just to see if it's raining.

So, please, indulge everyone: what is your experience in martial arts?

statisticool
04-20-2007, 02:24 PM
Why do you retort with the same argument ("my martial experience is irrelevant to the topic") over and over again?


It probably has to do with the obvious fact that if someone knows what internal strength is are they are being asked, they can explain it in their own terms whether the person who is asking has 1 month or 20 years of experience in the martial arts.

Justin

Franco
04-20-2007, 02:47 PM
It probably has to do with the obvious fact that if someone knows what internal strength is are they are being asked, they can explain it in their own terms whether the person who is asking has 1 month or 20 years of experience in the martial arts.

Justin

Right, but why don't you just go ahead and indulge everybody and explain what your martial experience is. It will only take a minute. C'mon.

Tom Fish
04-20-2007, 03:03 PM
Hi Justin,
I think it would help people respond to you questions better if they understood how to frame their response in a way that you may better understand it. For instance, if someone was explaining to me a way to establish a ground path and they stated it as "Let your weight from the crotch area Be in his hands", I would understand this explanation and find it helpful. (This has actually happened) If someone without the capability or capacity to understand this was told this same thing, they may think this is a ludicous explanation. They may not understand it and they might use this explanation inadvertently to display their ignorance.(This has also really happened) Anyway, if someone is truly seeking understanding, it would be beneficial to those wishing to help, if some level or degree of ability was established. The answers could then be framed to best provide the information. Other wise, there is just this established level of futility that remains.
Tom

statisticool
04-20-2007, 07:34 PM
Right, but why don't you just go ahead and indulge everybody and explain what your martial experience is. It will only take a minute. C'mon.

This point has already been completely addressed and dismissed as irrelevant to the discussion.

Justin

Tom H.
04-20-2007, 08:45 PM
Justin, if you direct people to the forum search, they can satisfy their own curiosity without sidetracking the thread. For example, this post (http://aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=171536#post171536), or this one (http://aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=171435#post171435). Even better, direct people to your introductory post (http://aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=137588#post137588).

More on topic, Sadaharu Oh is the student of Tohei's Rob mentioned back at the start of this thread. Oh broke some big records, but there's some discussion about what this means; Japanese baseball fields are shorter than MLB fields (I read it on wikipedia, I'm not much of a baseball geek).

Franco
04-21-2007, 03:19 PM
Wow, Justin, you got a lot of nerve to talk down to people like Dan Harden when you yourself don't even have one year of aikido experience. I see now why you've been so secretive about your martial credentials.

statisticool
04-21-2007, 03:32 PM
Wow, Justin, you got a lot of nerve to talk down to people like Dan Harden when you yourself don't even have one year of aikido experience. I see now why you've been so secretive about your martial credentials.

As mentioned, you are able to find it on other threads. It is just irrelevant to this thread, so it is hardly secretive.

If someone (Dan) claims that they cannot be pushed over, that is a claim that transcends aikido.

But let's get back on track. Can 'internal strength' be in the listed activities, and if so, are there and videos of it being done?

I see things like the quote from the fencing book, and fencing specific terms aside, it sounds like it could have came right out of internal martial arts books. It is 'external', and moreover, it is 'Western'.

Justin

Aran Bright
04-21-2007, 10:46 PM
As mentioned, you are able to find it on other threads. It is just irrelevant to this thread, so it is hardly secretive.

If someone (Dan) claims that they cannot be pushed over, that is a claim that transcends aikido.

But let's get back on track. Can 'internal strength' be in the listed activities, and if so, are there and videos of it being done?

I see things like the quote from the fencing book, and fencing specific terms aside, it sounds like it could have came right out of internal martial arts books. It is 'external', and moreover, it is 'Western'.

Justin

Justin,

I am curious because you actually seem interested in developing internal strength, you do tai chi right? But you are so skeptical that when someone gives you the answers you look for you ignore them and focus on something else.

If you want to learn internal skills get off your computer and go find them, then yes than can be used in anything you like. Kevin posted at the start of this thread about his experience going from karate to aikido to bjj. His training was becoming more and more internally focused but (i would argue) that his training was getting more and more dynamic, using the body in different ways that he never had before. So I am sure he can pick up a tennis raquet and use the skills he has learnt to play tennis, just as some great internal master could use his skills to play tennis. Doesn't make either of them good at tennis though.

Now my point is any video will be useless at showing internal skills in sport because they will look like anyone else, maybe a little more relaxed or focused or centered or whatever but that won't really help you now will it.

Regards,

Aran

statisticool
04-22-2007, 04:40 AM
I am curious because you actually seem interested in developing internal strength, you do tai chi right? But you are so skeptical that when someone gives you the answers you look for you ignore them and focus on something else.


What can I say. Their 'internal' seems to just be waxing poetic about regular old external strength.


Now my point is any video will be useless at showing internal skills in sport because they will look like anyone else, maybe a little more relaxed or focused or centered or whatever but that won't really help you now will it.


So internal is simply relaxed external?

Justin

Aran Bright
04-22-2007, 06:35 AM
What can I say. Their 'internal' seems to just be waxing poetic about regular old external strength.

So internal is simply relaxed external?

Justin

No, trust me, your in for a very pleasent surprise...one day.

Keep training that's the first thing. Secondly, start working on strengthening from the inside out, (pilates focuses on this sort of thing whilst I don't think it is really 'internal') balance is more important than brute strength, the two together are of course optimumal. These two factors will leave you in good stead for the future. It is a proven fact in physical therapy that having good internal strength will protect your back and balance your whole the body, reducing the risk of injury. This is not real internal skills that Tohei teaches but a good start.

Anyway that's just my view.

Aran