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ChrisHein
05-29-2007, 09:50 AM
The Aikido techniques are weapon techniques.

Saying that you are going to be in an unarmed situation and use Aikido is like saying you are going bowling but not going to use a ball.

The best fly fishermen in the world wouldn't catch a thing if they didn't have a pole and some flies. Techniques are situation dependent, and Aikido's techniques are based on situations involving weapons.

DonMagee
05-29-2007, 11:03 AM
The Aikido techniques are weapon techniques.

Saying that you are going to be in an unarmed situation and use Aikido is like saying you are going bowling but not going to use a ball.

The best fly fishermen in the world wouldn't catch a thing if they didn't have a pole and some flies. Techniques are situation dependent, and Aikido's techniques are based on situations involving weapons.

And by that logic I can conclude aikido is meant for persevering history and not self defense. Most of us do not carry the weapons of ancient japan.

ChrisHein
05-29-2007, 05:17 PM
And by that logic I can conclude aikido is meant for persevering history and not self defense. Most of us do not carry the weapons of ancient japan.

A more myopic view point there could not be.

As long as people hold weapons (any and all weapons) in their hands, Aikido's techniques are valid. Whether it's a club, knife, screwdriver, pistol, rifle, stun gun, laser blaster, or sonic disrupter. If you or they are holding it, Aikido has an answer.

DonMagee
05-29-2007, 05:27 PM
A more myopic view point there could not be.

As long as people hold weapons (any and all weapons) in their hands, Aikido's techniques are valid. Whether it's a club, knife, screwdriver, pistol, rifle, stun gun, laser blaster, or sonic disrupter. If you or they are holding it, Aikido has an answer.

My point is a self defense art should not fall apart when your attacker is unarmed. That makes it woefully lacking as a self defense art.

Ahh he only has a knife, piece of cake. Oh no! He dropped the knife, now I"m screwed!

ChrisHein
05-29-2007, 07:04 PM
My point is a self defense art should not fall apart when your attacker is unarmed. That makes it woefully lacking as a self defense art.

Ahh he only has a knife, piece of cake. Oh no! He dropped the knife, now I"m screwed!

I'm not picking on you here Don, but this is pretty hard to let go.

A) You are the one who should be armed. The ultimate in "self defense" is armed self defense. If you are really worried about protecting yourself and you are not using a weapon, you really aren't trying to protect yourself as best you can.

B) "He only has a knife, piece of cake". I'm sure that's sarcasm, but none the less; foolish. I would rather know nothing and be smaller then my attacker in an unarmed fight. Then face even the smallest unskilled child with "just a knife".

I don't know why everyone talks about "self defense" like it means unarmed fighting. I am armed 90% of the time, even in places where I'm not suppose to be armed. I do this for "self defense". Learning to box and wrestle is for children and sportsmen. If you are really interested in defending your life, use a weapon.

DonMagee
05-29-2007, 08:07 PM
I'm not picking on you here Don, but this is pretty hard to let go.

A) You are the one who should be armed. The ultimate in "self defense" is armed self defense. If you are really worried about protecting yourself and you are not using a weapon, you really aren't trying to protect yourself as best you can.

B) "He only has a knife, piece of cake". I'm sure that's sarcasm, but none the less; foolish. I would rather know nothing and be smaller then my attacker in an unarmed fight. Then face even the smallest unskilled child with "just a knife".

I don't know why everyone talks about "self defense" like it means unarmed fighting. I am armed 90% of the time, even in places where I'm not suppose to be armed. I do this for "self defense". Learning to box and wrestle is for children and sportsmen. If you are really interested in defending your life, use a weapon.

My point was that posters have said that aikido is meant for weapon and therefore will not work unarmed. At first I thought this meant all aikidoka are armed at all times. I then was told I was wrong and that aikidoka train against weapons and therefore are useless against bjj (or an unarmed attacker). This brings my sarcastic remark that a knife is easy but a unarmed attacker is too tough.

Obviously I do not want to fight anyone with a weapon. But if you can't deal with an unarmed person, how are you going to deal with an armed one? Its like the old aikido is for multiple opponent line. If you can't spar a single attacker, how can you deal with 3? I do not train anything for self defense. I'm not worried, I live in a great area. I train for the enjoyment it gives me. But I refuse to let people spout garbage and claim it as valid self defense.

ChrisHein
05-29-2007, 10:12 PM
Weapon training and unarmed training are just different. They require different skill sets, and a different training mentality.

Examples:
Headlocks are a great idea in unarmed fighting, but only work in an armed fight if you have the weapon.

Boxing skill works great if the other guy is unarmed, but not if he has a stick.

Learning to hold someone's wrist so they cant escape is very useful if you are fighting an armed man who has a weapon in that hand. But is not so productive if he is unarmed.

Kicking is an awesome long range attack for the unarmed man, but will likely cost you a leg if the other guy has a machete.

SeiserL
05-30-2007, 05:31 AM
Weapon training and unarmed training are just different. They require different skill sets, and a different training mentality.
This is one of those were I agree in general, but don't agree in specifics.

Yes, weapons work requires a different mind set. So, they are generally different.

Yet, in FMA our weapons and hands are the same. And, when I do Aikido, having roots in Kenjutsu, and "cut" rather than "pull" the waza is more effective. Done this way, even without a weapon, I am never unarmed.

George S. Ledyard
05-30-2007, 07:19 AM
This is true if one is talking about understanding the essential "logic" behind the way we practice. Why are the basic strikes shomenuchi, yokomenuchi, and munetsuki? Why do we have so many grabbing attacks? When folks from other martial arts look at Aikido practice they generally comment on the fact that no one in their martial art would attack in that manner. As I found with my police students, however, once you introduce weapons into the interaction, you really do see grabbing taking place. Give your partner a short sword or a katana and it's easy to see the relationship between our very stylized attacks and attacks with these bladed weapons.

But this does not mean that what we do cannot be effective as an empty hand art, you just need to adapt the principles to a different reality. If this is your interest, you need to work with folks who can execute strikes as they are found in karate, boxing and muy thai. Work on application of ones technique with a wrestler, judoka or mixed martial artist. Put some time in with a kali or silat practitioner on knife technique.

The result of this work will be much more impactive than how we generally manifest the principles in our practice but the principles will be the same.

ChrisHein
05-30-2007, 09:45 AM
But this does not mean that what we do cannot be effective as an empty hand art, you just need to adapt the principles to a different reality. If this is your interest, you need to work with folks who can execute strikes as they are found in karate, boxing and muy thai. Work on application of ones technique with a wrestler, judoka or mixed martial artist. Put some time in with a kali or silat practitioner on knife technique.



Well yes and no.

If you literally mean the principals of Jiu and Aiki as found in Aikido, then yes sort of. However the techniques of Aikido (shihonage, jujinage, Sankyo etc. etc.) cannot readily be adapted to unarmed fighting. In fact it would be really silly to try. The whole of Aikido's technical syllabus is simply not an effective means of unarmed fighting.

To make Aikido an unarmed system you would have to add lots of techniques to it (boxing skills, wrestling skills, and throwing skills). And you would have to add tons of new forms dealing with common unarmed positions. Why do all that when you have a perfectly understandable readily usable weapon system at your disposal??

If you are good at actual weapon fighting (like say the dog brothers), you will probably do pretty well in an unarmed fight against a novice. The reason being, that you are comfortable in confrontation. You know what it's like to take and dish out pain, and you know what it feels like to have someone aggressively coming at you. You will coupe with the stress much better, and likely come out on top. But if you think a trained weapon fighter is going to be as good as a trained unarmed fighter in an unarmed situation, you are kidding yourself.

To be for sure the opposite of this holds true as well, an unarmed fighter is likely going to lose his life to a trained weapon fighter in an armed situation.

DonMagee
05-30-2007, 09:52 AM
Ok, I just want a straight answer Chris. I can't seem to make heads or tails of this.

Pick one or tell me if these are off base conclusions. I am refering to the core training and main purpose that all techniques are really attempting to develop skill for.

1) Aikido is designed for you (the aikidoka) to use a weapon against an unarmed attacker. It's primary focus is weapon retention.Because of this we must assume for aikido to be effective you must always carry a weapon you train with.

2) Aikido is designed to handle attacks from armed attackers while you are unarmed. Because of this it is unable to deal with unamed attacks like grabs, punches, kicks, etc.

3) Aikido is designed to deal with unarmed attacker while you are unarmed.

4) Aikido is designed to deal with an unarmed attacker while you are unarmed, with limited weapon defenses.

5) Aikido is ment to deal with an armed attacker while you are unarmed with limited unarmed defenses.

Once I am clear of the position, I can make a rational conversation.

Jim Sorrentino
05-30-2007, 09:52 AM
Chris,I don't know why everyone talks about "self defense" like it means unarmed fighting. I am armed 90% of the time, even in places where I'm not suppose to be armed. I do this for "self defense".[emph. added]With all due respect, it is not wise to state this openly in a public forum.

Sincerely,

Jim Sorrentino

ChrisHein
05-30-2007, 10:05 AM
Don,

Aikido's technical syllabus is designed mostly to deal with:

You being armed and your attackers unarmed, quite likely out numbering you.

But it also has techniques to deal with:

Them armed, you unarmed.
and
You armed, them armed as well.

Jim,
I fully understand your point. And I thought about that before I posted it. However I believe it is mankind's right to be armed, and if everyone took an open stance about it, it would simply be understood. And we would no longer have to fear repercussions arming ourselves.

L. Camejo
05-30-2007, 10:40 AM
However the techniques of Aikido (shihonage, jujinage, Sankyo etc. etc.) cannot readily be adapted to unarmed fighting. In fact it would be really silly to try. The whole of Aikido's technical syllabus is simply not an effective means of unarmed fighting.Chris,

What training, testing, experience, professional credentials etc. do you bring to the table to make such categorical statements? The quoted post above is totally the opposite of proven, repeated results using Aikido waza and tactics in actual situations. From my own testing and experiences (and those of people much more skilled in Aikido than I) Aikido gives good options for dealing with certain weapon attacks and can work quite well when one is armed (weapon retention) also, but the possibilities for success are exponentially increased when one deals with an unarmed attacker. The measures applied are almost identical if the Aikidoka is armed or not, there is no need for high variation between the armed and unarmed approach unless your armed waza is insufficient to start with. The weapon retention aspects are directly related to the unarmed tactical paradigm.

Many of the safety measures one takes in properly dealing with a blade for example are not required with an unarmed attacker, providing quite a lot more opportunities for effective waza and tactical creativity and adaptation.

From your posts above I honestly get the impression that you are thinking of using Aikido in a "fight" (i.e. trading of strikes/blows, grappling for a superior position etc.) with an unarmed person. If you are doing this then you are not doing Aikido and not adhering to its tactical paradigm. Of course it would not work if you approach it this way, have you ever seen a Kendoka or Kenjutsuka aim to trade strikes (block and counter) with their opponent? No, one moves in to take instant victory, engaging their strategy and path to domination long before physical contact is made. This is Aikido's ideal domain and the concept works well both when armed or unarmed if one understands how Aikido works in a tactical situation.

I'm not sure what level or type of Aikido you have been exposed to but having trained with Shihan in 2 different Aikido styles who both view (and have literally used) their tegatana/shuto (hand blade) as if it were a bokken, quite often I don't see how one cannot apply the basic principles of the striking/thrusting blade to unarmed tactics via good use of tegatana. What you are saying does not hold up to actual testing imho. the difference between the use of tegatana and actual katana are minimal and operate using identical mind and body concepts.

So unless I am missing something Chris you need to explain why you believe the techniques of Aikido cannot readily be adapted to unarmed fighting. What objective testing and research has led you to this belief? This of course given that the vast majority of Aikidoka do not train the art with a true self protection mindset.But it also has techniques to deal with:

Them armed, you unarmed.
This is a good concept but has great practical limitations regardless of what real unarmed skill you may have when facing a weapon. Have you ever put on Bogu and tried to disarm a semi-skilled Kendoka really trying to hit you? You should try it sometime if you get the opportunity, it puts the "bokken disarm" concept in a whole new light.

Gambatte.
LC:ai::ki:

gdandscompserv
05-30-2007, 11:09 AM
Have you ever put on Bogu and tried to disarm a semi-skilled Kendoka really trying to hit you? You should try it sometime if you get the opportunity, it puts the "bokken disarm" concept in a whole new light.
LOL
Yeah, I almost lost my arm.

DonMagee
05-30-2007, 11:36 AM
Don,

Aikido's technical syllabus is designed mostly to deal with:

You being armed and your attackers unarmed, quite likely out numbering you.

But it also has techniques to deal with:

Them armed, you unarmed.
and
You armed, them armed as well.

Jim,
I fully understand your point. And I thought about that before I posted it. However I believe it is mankind's right to be armed, and if everyone took an open stance about it, it would simply be understood. And we would no longer have to fear repercussions arming ourselves.

Oddly, I only have a little under 2 years training aikido, yet I have not once been shown how to use a weapon. I have been shown kata's that were designed to help me extend further and develop ki and improve my unarmed techniques. But not once have I been shown how to defend myself with a weapon. This tells me that at least the style I trained does not focus on weapons as a means of self defense. The self defense portion of any art is usually the gross motor skill techniques taught at the beginning (aka the basics).

what you have basically said is counter to what you have previously said. If I understand you right you have just said aikido can deal with armed or unarmed attackers while you are armed or unarmed. But in the bjj thread you said aikido can not deal with unarmed while you are unarmed and was not ment to do this.

I submit that at least the aikido I have been taught is designed to deal with an unarmed attacker who attacks you in a way that assumes you might be armed (thus the focus on wrist grabs which is a great way to prevent a sword draw) and also focuses on very primitive forms of weapon defense (lunge knife stabs and swings of clubs). However these principles can be applied to more advanced weapons techniques and unarmed techniques. However the core of what I was shown was to deal with wild swings (haymakers), lunge punches and grabs of all kinds. This leads me to believe that trained properly aikido could help you develop skills to control attackers who are either in escape mode, untrained, or so angry they are stupid. Which could be great for police.

There is no reason however these same principles could not be applied to proper defenses to skilled attacks. There is no reason there can not be an aiki sprawl. The technique itself does not have to change, but the intention can make a big difference, as well as the strategy in which it is employed.

In conclusion, I'm still confused as to the point you are trying to make about aikido, and armed vs unarmed self defense and effectiveness. If all we need are weapons, lets buy some guns and get proper training on their use and retention. If armed is the only thing that matters, this method will nullify the use of aikido for self defense and relegate it to the study of ancient weapons and history and philosophy.

Walker
05-30-2007, 12:05 PM
To echo what George has said above, it is my understanding that the assumptions of aikido include edged weapons and multiple attackers. I think those two features are very important in understanding why aikido is the way it is. Without assumptions like these, say the assumption was no weapons, ungloved hands, single person, then something like BJJ or sambo might be the form to follow that function.

But to disagree with a few other posters above -- aikido isn't straight jujutsu or grappling with weapons either, in my opinion. The other concept that helps me to understand aikido is that the jujutsu is more properly powered by sword mechanics. I find that while aikido waza can be powered like jujutsu and function it functions even better when powered like sword waza. This makes things doubly difficult because one has to then understand what sword movements are like and how they differ from other types of power.

Interestingly there is a similar issue in Wado ryu karate from what I understand. To do it properly one must do karate with jujutsu and sword mechanics. If one does it like Okinawan karate then it doesn't work the same.

Marie Noelle Fequiere
05-30-2007, 01:57 PM
[QUOTE=Chris Hein;179625]

Learning to hold someone's wrist so they cant escape is very useful if you are fighting an armed man who has a weapon in that hand. But is not so productive if he is unarmed.

With less than a year of training under my belt, I am not sure that I am getting this right.
Aikido is for defense. You never attack. Therefore, you are not supposed to hold on or chase someone who has decided to end the fight.
Now, if my Sensei has trained me well, I understand that the purpose of holding someone's wrist is to make them let go of yours, put them off balance, and to apply a painful lock that might break their arm or wrist, and will certainly change their mind about fighting.
Those techniques will work wether the opponent is armed or not.
I just do not get your point.

jss
05-30-2007, 02:00 PM
I think we need to accept that aikido was not created by O-sensei after he traveled the world, made a scientific analysis of all martial arts and all physical confrontations, after which he reached an enlightened conclusion as how to create the ultimate martial art.

He learned Daito-ryu from Takeda and added all other interesting stuff he could find. Daito-tyu is a member of the Japanese jujutsu arts. These arts grew from a very specific part of broad martial systems that included weapons, grappling, strategy, etc.
As you can read in Ellis Amdur's blogs on AikidoJournal: in these older forms of jujutsu the guy with the weapon kills the unarmed guy. And somehow, somewhen this was changed. And this changed in a period in time in which Japan was isolated culturally. How much did the Japanese know about boxing at the time, or about karate? Did they ever realize there are better ways to hit a man than with a te-gatana?
To put it bluntly: one can think of far more suitable cultures for a truely effective martial art to develop.

Or in conclusion: aikido is not about Intelligent Design, it's about evolution in an isolated environment. (Aikido is a kangaroo.)

ChrisHein
05-30-2007, 05:18 PM
Larry,
Nope I've never put on bogu and let a kendoka come at me. However I have let a dog brother come at me with a rattan stick (no bogu though).

Everyone,
We seem to have so little common ground here that I cannot explain all of this to you in a post.

Michael Varin
05-30-2007, 06:12 PM
It's great when threads move. Keeps me on my toes.

Aikido is a kangaroo.

Maybe, but watch a show like Court TV's Most Shocking (it's a security camera show in the US at least), pay attention to the situations that arise, watch how both sides respond, and ask yourself, What techniques and tactics make sense in these situations?

The aikido paradigm appears 10 to 1 over the MMA paradigm. The people who are most likely to assault you are either cowards, sociopaths, total idiots, or very highly trained. All of these with the exception of the idiots will likely favor the use of weapons, numbers, and/or surprise for their assault. Granted most aikido dojos may not train with this in mind or at the appropriate level of intensity, if you scratch the surface a little bit you will see that this is the proper domain of the tactics we see in aikido.

Doug Walker alluded to one of my favorite axioms -- form follows function. It's something you should always consider when asking Why?

What you are saying does not hold up to actual testing imho. the difference between the use of tegatana and actual katana are minimal and operate using identical mind and body concepts.

Not true. How successful is your tameshigiri with your tegatana? Even a small blade (3-4") in the hands of a semi-trained individual can inflict so much more damage than a highly trained person can bare-handed that there really is no comparison. In addition, there are many responses to bare-hand strikes that won't effectively protect you against a blade.

L. Camejo
05-30-2007, 06:54 PM
Not true. How successful is your tameshigiri with your tegatana? Even a small blade (3-4") in the hands of a semi-trained individual can inflict so much more damage than a highly trained person can bare-handed that there really is no comparison. In addition, there are many responses to bare-hand strikes that won't effectively protect you against a blade.Wow you totally missed the point of what you quoted. Nowhere am I comparing the effectiveness of tegatana against that of a live blade, that is just idiotic. However the same mind and body principles I use when doing tameshigiri (focus on the point of impact, using bodyweight and proper alignment to transfer power through the target, following through with the body after the cut is made etc.) are what I use to execute effective strikes with tegatana. That was the point of what I said, which was quoted in your last post, it was never a comparison between the cutting ability of blade and that of flesh. The result in using the same principles is that in both cases the transference of power is focused enough to cut cleanly through the target with a live blade and cause severe blunt trauma with tegatana, both of which are effective in ending an opponent's attack.

In addition, there are other movements done in Aikido that are based on using the blade that are directly applied in joint techniques as well as throws and atemi waza. One only needs to do some study or observation to find them.In addition, there are many responses to bare-hand strikes that won't effectively protect you against a blade.Of course there are. I never said anything to indicate otherwise. My point was that waza executed to deal with a weapon requires certain extra safety measures to be put in place because one is dealing with a weapon (in the case of a knife - edge awareness and weapon control is important) this makes the waza slightly more difficult as a result. However, in executing the same waza against an appropriate unarmed attack the blade's edge is no longer an issue and allows the Aikidoka more options in movement and dealing with the attack (you don't have to worry about locking or projecting such that you don't get cut from a blade).

My point is that the principles that allow Aikido as an art to deal with weapon attacks or weapons retention are the same methods used to deal with an unarmed attack. The gap between the two is not as large as you and Chris are having people believe. It merely sounds like you have not been able to bridge the gap and found an alternative means to deal with the situation instead of finding ways to apply what you know in Aikido to that situation. Just recently we had a local seminar showing precisely how weapon and empty handed tactics interchange seamlessly in executing effective Aikido waza with minimal changes whether one was armed with a knife, hanjo or with tegatana.

There is no problem with trying to be armed at all times to defend oneself, this is a good thing. But the reason many often come back to questions of empty handed defence is that many times your body and mind are the only weapon you have on you or alternatively when ambushed you don't have time to go for a weapon (been there). Even handgun experts train in empty handed tactics for times when they get caught in the hole with their gun in the holster and the attackers own already drawn at close range. Learning to operate empty handed is simply part of being prepared.

Gambatte.

Michael Varin
05-30-2007, 09:27 PM
Larry,

I didn't miss the point of what you said.

the difference between the use of tegatana and actual katana are minimal and operate using identical mind and body concepts.

I understood that you said "use," but just prior to the above you wrote the following:

If you are doing this then you are not doing Aikido and not adhering to its tactical paradigm. Of course it would not work if you approach it this way, have you ever seen a Kendoka or Kenjutsuka aim to trade strikes (block and counter) with their opponent? No, one moves in to take instant victory, engaging their strategy and path to domination long before physical contact is made. This is Aikido's ideal domain and the concept works well both when armed or unarmed if one understands how Aikido works in a tactical situation.

I'm not sure what level or type of Aikido you have been exposed to but having trained with Shihan in 2 different Aikido styles who both view (and have literally used) their tegatana/shuto (hand blade) as if it were a bokken, quite often I don't see how one cannot apply the basic principles of the striking/thrusting blade to unarmed tactics via good use of tegatana.

You brought up aikido's tactical paradigm, instant victory, literally using your hand as a bokken.

I mentioned the effectiveness, because it does matter. One of the principles of the striking/thrusting blade is that it is going to severe/pierce its target.

What possibility does even the best fighter have of surviving an attack by four men with bad intentions? If he uses a weapon his chances increase, because of the effect of the weapon.

The result in using the same principles is that in both cases the transference of power is focused enough to cut cleanly through the target with a live blade and cause severe blunt trauma with tegatana, both of which are effective in ending an opponent's attack.

You probably hit a lot harder than I do, but my personal experiences, which include Muay Thai, don't really support that.

You can use combat shotgun tactics with an airsoft shotgun, but your tactical paradigm will break down when the pellets don't have the same effect as the buckshot.

There is nothing wrong with knowing empty-hand techniques or being able to strike hard, however I do believe there are far more effective ways to strike bare-handed than with tegatana.

Who knows? I could be wrong. It wouldn't be the first time!

L. Camejo
05-31-2007, 06:00 AM
I'm sorry Michael. You're still missing my point. I agree totally with you on the comparative effectiveness of a blade over a hand or that of a real shotgun over an airsoft gun. But I am not talking about this.

The literal use of tegatana as a weapon (like a bokken because they are both blunt objects compared to a live blade) is obviously for situations where you have no other weapon. A weapon is most times preferable for defence, this is not a point of contention. When you train in this manner the weapon you have and your understanding of it becomes decidedly more developed. If you train moreso with blades and guns then your greater development will lie there. If one trains moreso with tegatana and applying Aikido's empty handed repertoire then here is where the development will lie. However in my situation the only weapon I am assured of having with me at all times are my hands so I train to use those, anything extra is gravy. There are also times when empty hands are totally insufficient for the situation, here is where on has to get creative.One of the principles of the striking/thrusting blade is that it is going to severe/pierce its target. Precisely. So how do you apply this principle of severing/piercing the target to the empty handed tactics of Aikido to effect successful waza? I know how we do it. For example, the thrusting motion is quite powerful in creating kuzushi among many other things. The penetrating/piercing effect is critical to create good kuzushi and empty handed technique. This comes directly from sword and tegatana work, but I guess if you are looking only at the obvious sword movements as a blade technique whose only purpose is to puncture a target then you would miss the host of other applications that the same piercing movements have on a person in an empty handed or other context. This would explain your situation imho.What possibility does even the best fighter have of surviving an attack by four men with bad intentions? If he uses a weapon his chances increase, because of the effect of the weapon.This is a very general statement not taking into account a host of variables. But just to address the question of possibility I would say it is quite possible (depending on the variables) because I have not only done this myself when ambushed and unable to get to a weapon but know of many others who have also. There is no question that a weapon increases chances, but where I come from the bad guys and the cops have most of the really good ones (guns) so you are always at a disadvantage and are forced to use what you have, which is most often empty hands or a small blade. Of course if you do have a weapon you'd need to be in good control of your own psycho-chemical reactions. The weapon does nothing if the person weilding it is not all together and ready to use it properly.You probably hit a lot harder than I do, but my personal experiences, which include Muay Thai, don't really support that.Well this is also irrelevant isn't it, since I've never hit you.:) The truth is also that both striking systems do not operate under the same premise. MT is about fighting, Aikido is about not fighting, quite different mindsets and application. Many people go outside of Aikido to find "better" methods without ever understanding what Aikido offers to start with. I also have had a bit of muay thai exposure and it is very good for certain areas of strike fighting but also has its weaknesses within the striking context as well.

To be honest, what I am hearing are people who were disappointed by the "fighting effectiveness" of the Aikido they were taught and instead of digging deeper into the core of the art to find the answer, found other methods to make up for the perceived gap in their training. This is common and is a good approach for someone who just needs practical self defence skills right now and doesn't have the time to go plumbing the depths. However the effect is that you convince yourself that "Aikido" (which really means your Aikido) is not a useful unarmed self defence art and go on to create a psychological structure that supports this theory (e.g. "it is a Do art so it's not meant to be effective or practical" or "that it is only effective when weapons are used"). You then spout this theory to others who may be willing to share your belief, which now helps one feel more secure that the theory is correct since there are more minds supporting it. Only it is not correct, since one has decided not to fully understand Aikido and what it is really capable of. This is ok if one is dabbling in Budo taking bits and pieces from here and there, but if one wants to seriously teach the art of Aikido it is not acceptable imho. An added danger is that when many seek out "effective" arts they find "fighting" arts which teach very different tactical concepts than those embodied in Aikido, even if the strikes and techniques are quite usable in their own context.

Imho.
LC:ai::ki:

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-09-2007, 11:53 AM
One of the first armbar setups I ever learned was from inside the guard.
I've actually been shown this, I think. Not very good at it yet, though. Right now, I'm trying to develop some skill at getting a simple kimura from guard.

I understand how you feel about using aikido in grappling. I try it every day.
Maddening, isn't it? Aikido seems like such a well-developed and sophisticated system, but it seems so much worse performance-wise than anything else. I'm not sure how to reconcile these two things.

I think that Chris Hein's argument that it's about retaining a weapon is persuasive...but in addition to having no real experience doing that kind of live practice, I'm also suspicious of saying that techniques will magically start working better than judo/BJJ if you put a knife in one person's hand, or strap a sword at your waist. It seems like even if they're optimized for weapons, they should function empty-handed.

Another theory I'm considering (not mutually exclusive with the weapons one) is that aikido isn't so much a standalone, foundation art as it is an advanced study for people already competent in judo and grappling. There's some historic evidence for this, in the biographies of aikido greats.

The highest success I've had is with wrist locks.

Are you thinking from standup or from on the mat?

DonMagee
07-09-2007, 12:31 PM
I think that Chris Hein's argument that it's about retaining a weapon is persuasive...but in addition to having no real experience doing that kind of live practice, I'm also suspicious of saying that techniques will magically start working better than judo/BJJ if you put a knife in one person's hand, or strap a sword at your waist. It seems like even if they're optimized for weapons, they should function empty-handed.

I don't buy this too much. Mostly because 95% of all aikido I've experienced was done without a weapon. My opinion is that if it was ment for weapons, we would not train empty handed.


Another theory I'm considering (not mutually exclusive with the weapons one) is that aikido isn't so much a standalone, foundation art as it is an advanced study for people already competent in judo and grappling. There's some historic evidence for this, in the biographies of aikido greats.


This is why I started training in judo in the first place and found out how much I love fighting.


Are you thinking from standup or from on the mat?

Both, I use some very weird wrist locks standing and from the knees. But I have tons of success in wrist locks from side control, north south, and the mount.

Michael Varin
07-10-2007, 03:40 AM
I don't buy this too much. Mostly because 95% of all aikido I've experienced was done without a weapon. My opinion is that if it was ment for weapons, we would not train empty handed.

Don,

I think that's about the same percentage of aikido that, in the past, you've suggested doesn't work. Maybe more people should train with weapons more often.

The men who developed the body of techniques of which aikido movements come from were not that interested in unarmed combat. They were required by law to carry swords, and used other weapons as well.

I understand how you feel about using aikido in grappling. I try it every day. I am getting to a point where I can use some stuff against white belts with some reliability, but it is still harder to do then just judo and bjj.

The highest success I've had is with wrist locks. They are as easy to setup as armbars and chokes once you get some practice. It's fun watching the white belts be afraid to reach for you because of fear you will wrist lock them. However once you start playing with guys your level, those techniques are too low percentage to be something you should be using when higher percentage techniques are just as easy to setup and won't leave you so bad off when they fail.

If you look at more open empty-hand fighting, like UFC, the techniques of BJJ are low percentage. Most of them have their roots in the same period of Japanese history.

Now, let's look at the most successful empty-hand techniques: wrestling takedowns, ground and pound, boxing/muay thai, chokes, blocking punches/kicks, and using the guard to minimize the effect of strikes. If you face someone with a weapon, these techniques will cost you. Even if you "win" you will likely be severely injured. You have to respect the weapon. You have to isolate and control the weapon arm. The weapon creates the necessity of the "lower percentage" techniques. If you are using the weapon, your best bet is to maintain control of it and continue to use it.

I'm also suspicious of saying that techniques will magically start working better than judo/BJJ if you put a knife in one person's hand, or strap a sword at your waist.

There's no magic to it. It's still quite difficult to use the techniques against a resisting opponent, but you will begin to see the reasoning behind it. But why take my word for it. I could be all wrong, so try it yourself. Get a tanto and some training partners, use BJJ/judo, and be honest about the "cuts" and "stabs" (I recommend striking below the neck only) you would have received and what probable effect they would have. Remember: a 3-4" folding knife can be extremely lethal.

There is nothing wrong with learning to hit hard, or grapple; they are excellent skills to have, and if you love a particular art, by all means, practice it, but it's wise to remember that the scope of physical conflict is much greater than 1-on-1 empty-hand fighting.

DonMagee
07-10-2007, 05:47 AM
Don,

I think that's about the same percentage of aikido that, in the past, you've suggested doesn't work. Maybe more people should train with weapons more often.

The men who developed the body of techniques of which aikido movements come from were not that interested in unarmed combat. They were required by law to carry swords, and used other weapons as well.

If you look at more open empty-hand fighting, like UFC, the techniques of BJJ are low percentage. Most of them have their roots in the same period of Japanese history.

Now, let's look at the most successful empty-hand techniques: wrestling takedowns, ground and pound, boxing/muay thai, chokes, blocking punches/kicks, and using the guard to minimize the effect of strikes. If you face someone with a weapon, these techniques will cost you. Even if you "win" you will likely be severely injured. You have to respect the weapon. You have to isolate and control the weapon arm. The weapon creates the necessity of the "lower percentage" techniques. If you are using the weapon, your best bet is to maintain control of it and continue to use it.

There's no magic to it. It's still quite difficult to use the techniques against a resisting opponent, but you will begin to see the reasoning behind it. But why take my word for it. I could be all wrong, so try it yourself. Get a tanto and some training partners, use BJJ/judo, and be honest about the "cuts" and "stabs" (I recommend striking below the neck only) you would have received and what probable effect they would have. Remember: a 3-4" folding knife can be extremely lethal.

There is nothing wrong with learning to hit hard, or grapple; they are excellent skills to have, and if you love a particular art, by all means, practice it, but it's wise to remember that the scope of physical conflict is much greater than 1-on-1 empty-hand fighting.

So I ask this question, If aikido only works when defending weapons, why do we not just train always with uke using a weapon? When I practice playing 9-ball, I always use a pool cue and balls. When I practice swimming, I always use a pool, when I practice fencing, I always use a sword. But when I practice aikido, 99% of the time, it is punches, overhand strikes, and those yokomen strikes, wrist and lapel grabs, etc. Then every now and then we break out a tanto or jo and defend against that (I've done this maybe 4 times in my time in aikido. Oh and we do a jo kata every few months or so.

Most video's I see on the net are also empty handed. So again, it seems to me, that it is a poor way to train to defend weapons without actually having someone attack you with a weapon. In fact it could even work better for you, give a guy a rubber baton to attack with and he is going to commit to his strike more. The reasoning is because he won't have the mental block that hitting you is going to hurt you. So he can just swing for 'the kill'. The same is true with rubber knifes. It seems to me that giving noobs weapons to attack you in this manner would remove the fear of hitting you. Thus they would commit properly and allow us to train what we are trying to train.

The last thing I'd like to cover is this, knife defenses are a joke. Seriously, I think it is laughable every time I see a knife defense. No one will ever, ever, ever attack you like that with a knife. Not in prison, on the street, in the woods, in the ocean, etc. Well ok someone will attack you like that, but only if you hand them a knife and tell them to attack you like that and you are in a dojo. A real knife attack is going to come out of the blue, probably a opening sneak attack from behind. You won't know the knife is there until its stuck into your back. Then as he pulls it out, maybe you can defend yourself. But that is just my opinion from watching videos with knife attacks on the street and in prison. They usually walk up real close, pull the blade and stab short fast repeated blows to the midsection or face. No lunging, chopping, etc. The distances is defiantly not the range most knife defenses train. Anyways, that's just my pet peeve. I was impressed with my instructors defenses against the baseball bat swing with a joe. But I've yet to be impressed with any knife defense work I've seen, save the work I've seen from the dog brothers.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-10-2007, 08:12 AM
The version of the "weapons complement" theory that I like best suggests that it's not so much about taking a weapon from someone as it is holding on to your own weapon when being seized. Although the former is there too. As Amdur stated in "Fighting On Your Knees, Part II":

Grappling techniques were explicitly for the battlefield, and thus, in the majority of them them, the shidachi ("doer" of the technique) was armed. The exceptions were joint-locking methods that preceded tying up a prisoner, and counters to weapon's attacks - primarily close combat with the enemy attacking with a knife or kodachi. The latter are preparation for what should never - but will - happen. You drop your weapon, it breaks, you are disarmed, and you are suddenly, at VERY close range, dealing with an armed enemy. These techniques - and those of innumerable similar schools - were done in iidori fashion - on one's knees.

He goes on to say that these latter "desperation techniques", while a small part of koryu, have received a greater emphasis since Edo.

He also deals with that "why isn't Daito-ryu/aikido training done with weapons?" question to some extent; basically, he says, that actually -was- the state of the art for empty-handed striking before boxing came along:

atemijutsu in jujutsu started by taking what they had - todomewaza (striking techniques to finish off a downed opponent) and converting them to standup. But without lots of testing, most people didn’t know how difficult it is to damage or knockout a moving opponent using techniques suited for a pinned one. And the testing simply didn’t occur - real fights with hands-and-feet between trained opponents (other than sumo) were few and far between.
[...]
The idea that yokomen and shomen are simulations of weapons attacks is quite an attractive one - yet such attacks were the rule, not the exception in every jujutsu school. Given no real reason to change - no outside input - they assumed it was the only way to fight. Karate and boxing were shocks to the imagination of Meiji martial arts practitioners, who had never conceived of hitting in that manner.

ChrisHein
07-10-2007, 06:54 PM
I think that Chris Hein's argument that it's about retaining a weapon is persuasive...but in addition to having no real experience doing that kind of live practice, I'm also suspicious of saying that techniques will magically start working better than judo/BJJ if you put a knife in one person's hand, or strap a sword at your waist. It seems like even if they're optimized for weapons, they should function empty-handed.



Well I don't think it works better then judo/bjj. In fact I believe that the roots of judo/bjj/aikido share their weapon orientation. However judo and bjj have been developed over time, through competition to make unarmed systems. They dropped the techniques that are really low percentage in unarmed fighting. Like wrist locks, shihonage, etc.

Now the reason Aikido retained these techniques is simple, there was no unarmed competition. No one ever found these to be low percentage unarmed techniques, so they kept them. The trouble with this, Aikidoka never learned how to actually apply the techniques, and what they were for, they never practiced them against resistance.

Now why are these techniques higher percentage with a weapon? The answer is simple, because of the necessity of controlling the weapon hand. In an unarmed fight, the striking hand can simply be checked, or kept in tight enough to not generate power. However a knife can generate huge amounts of power in a very tight space. In order to keep a knife from doing damage you much tightly control it (ie wrist grabbing). Now if you have to hold the weapon hand, in order to stay alive, your focus, and technique choice is going to be different then if you could skip holding the hand, and go to holding the core (unarmed fighting). So things like shihonage, sankyo, kotegaishi etc. are now higher percentage techniques.

We can chat about it all day, but the best thing to do is try it. Get an Aikido buddy, have have him try and stop you from "killing" him with a wooden knife. Notice how often he grabs and holds your wrist. Notice how often you get then the positions that Aikido techniques pop up. You don't have to take my word for it, just try it, you'll see. And anyone who wants to is always welcome at my dojo. We'll train together and talk about what we find out!

Take care.

DonMagee
07-10-2007, 08:27 PM
Well I don't think it works better then judo/bjj. In fact I believe that the roots of judo/bjj/aikido share their weapon orientation. However judo and bjj have been developed over time, through competition to make unarmed systems. They dropped the techniques that are really low percentage in unarmed fighting. Like wrist locks, shihonage, etc.

Now the reason Aikido retained these techniques is simple, there was no unarmed competition. No one ever found these to be low percentage unarmed techniques, so they kept them. The trouble with this, Aikidoka never learned how to actually apply the techniques, and what they were for, they never practiced them against resistance.

Now why are these techniques higher percentage with a weapon? The answer is simple, because of the necessity of controlling the weapon hand. In an unarmed fight, the striking hand can simply be checked, or kept in tight enough to not generate power. However a knife can generate huge amounts of power in a very tight space. In order to keep a knife from doing damage you much tightly control it (ie wrist grabbing). Now if you have to hold the weapon hand, in order to stay alive, your focus, and technique choice is going to be different then if you could skip holding the hand, and go to holding the core (unarmed fighting). So things like shihonage, sankyo, kotegaishi etc. are now higher percentage techniques.

We can chat about it all day, but the best thing to do is try it. Get an Aikido buddy, have have him try and stop you from "killing" him with a wooden knife. Notice how often he grabs and holds your wrist. Notice how often you get then the positions that Aikido techniques pop up. You don't have to take my word for it, just try it, you'll see. And anyone who wants to is always welcome at my dojo. We'll train together and talk about what we find out!

Take care.

This makes me think of the mechanics of modern day knife attacks vs battlefield weapon attacks. I'd say these weapons defenses then (at least knife defenses) are from an era that has passed by. To know your attacker has a knife is probably an exception and not a rule to knife attacks.

ChrisHein
07-10-2007, 10:52 PM
This makes me think of the mechanics of modern day knife attacks vs battlefield weapon attacks. I'd say these weapons defenses then (at least knife defenses) are from an era that has passed by. To know your attacker has a knife is probably an exception and not a rule to knife attacks.

Fist let me say one more time for you Don. The majority of Aikido's techniques are designed for you to HAVE THE WEAPON. This means that YOU ARE THE ARMED GUY. So most of what Aikido teaches are not weapon defenses, but in actuality weapon use facilitators.

But for the sake of argument I'll argue Aikido as used to weapon defense system (which is the minority of it's teachings).

The techniques are not limited to knifes. Any thing held in the hand will do, it's just that knifes are likely the hardest to deal with in their range. If the day has gone by where people fight with hand held weapons, they yes, Aikido's techniques are useless. But I don't think we're there yet.

Watch any of these real life shows where people braking the law are on display. 80% of the time they come at the other guy with a weapon, they just pic up a rock, or a lamp, or what ever is handy and start swinging. They show a weapon in the hopes that the guy will give up his money, or what ever they want with out a struggle. These are the times that Aikido's techniques are useful.

Remember, as Michael Varin often says, assassinations are different then confrontations. This is to say that yes, people do plan to kill others. They plan out how to sneak up on them and stab them in the back. But there are also confrontations. A confrontation happens spur of the moment, when someone pulls a knife off the kitchen table and come at you. Or when someone simply wants your money, or to rape your wife. They pull out a weapon to scare you, in the hope that you won't struggle with them. It if far less common for someone to want to kill you then just humiliate you, or take what you have. You are less likely to run into an assassin then a mugger. Rapists are more common then serial killers. Confrontation is more common then assassination.

Really bad situations happen with weapons. If someone just wants to prove how tough they are (I call this ego fighting) they won't use a weapon cause it's cowardly. This is the type of fighting you will see in a bar, or on a school ground, or at a dance. These situations might hurt your ego if you lose a fight, but you won't die. However a bad situations is when someone wants to take your car, but you won't be able to go to work with out your car, and if you can't go to work you can't pay the rent. Someone trying to take your car, is likely going to use some sort of weapon to do it. This is when the techniques of Aikido are useful.

Jez, I hate writing long posts....
Sorry.

DonMagee
07-11-2007, 06:34 AM
Fist let me say one more time for you Don. The majority of Aikido's techniques are designed for you to HAVE THE WEAPON. This means that YOU ARE THE ARMED GUY. So most of what Aikido teaches are not weapon defenses, but in actuality weapon use facilitators.

But for the sake of argument I'll argue Aikido as used to weapon defense system (which is the minority of it's teachings).

The techniques are not limited to knifes. Any thing held in the hand will do, it's just that knifes are likely the hardest to deal with in their range. If the day has gone by where people fight with hand held weapons, they yes, Aikido's techniques are useless. But I don't think we're there yet.

Watch any of these real life shows where people braking the law are on display. 80% of the time they come at the other guy with a weapon, they just pic up a rock, or a lamp, or what ever is handy and start swinging. They show a weapon in the hopes that the guy will give up his money, or what ever they want with out a struggle. These are the times that Aikido's techniques are useful.

Remember, as Michael Varin often says, assassinations are different then confrontations. This is to say that yes, people do plan to kill others. They plan out how to sneak up on them and stab them in the back. But there are also confrontations. A confrontation happens spur of the moment, when someone pulls a knife off the kitchen table and come at you. Or when someone simply wants your money, or to rape your wife. They pull out a weapon to scare you, in the hope that you won't struggle with them. It if far less common for someone to want to kill you then just humiliate you, or take what you have. You are less likely to run into an assassin then a mugger. Rapists are more common then serial killers. Confrontation is more common then assassination.

Really bad situations happen with weapons. If someone just wants to prove how tough they are (I call this ego fighting) they won't use a weapon cause it's cowardly. This is the type of fighting you will see in a bar, or on a school ground, or at a dance. These situations might hurt your ego if you lose a fight, but you won't die. However a bad situations is when someone wants to take your car, but you won't be able to go to work with out your car, and if you can't go to work you can't pay the rent. Someone trying to take your car, is likely going to use some sort of weapon to do it. This is when the techniques of Aikido are useful.

Jez, I hate writing long posts....
Sorry.

I started writing a long post to this about the futility of self defense training in my area based on crime statistics and personal experience. I'll probably start a new thread though, as it really deserves its own thread. But in a nut shell, the crime in my area really doesn't support a need for self defense, unless you are a child or housewife. The majority of the crime seems to be domestic violence, thefts. However I need to do some more research as the internet is giving me some conflicting stats.

But I don't carry a weapon. If I did, it would be my handgun. So better served by training to retain and use a handgun. This would require me actually strapping on a toy gun of some type, and having people try to take it away from me while I try to "shoot" them. Something not done in my aikido class. We usually work from wrist grabs, lunge punches, and overhead chops.

philippe willaume
07-11-2007, 09:43 AM
Hello
I would agree with Don, I think aikido tai-jutsu is designed to be used empty handed.
Personally I think aikido link to weapon is more than at the organic level. IE one can fine that movement that one does empty handed is the way one uses the Jo/Bokken or if we have a weapon in hand.
it is there but i think that there is a deeper connection.

As well as aikido, I practice medieval fencing and that includes empty handed, longsword spear, Messer (large knife/fashion), sword and buckler and dagger.
Please bear in mind that I only have a moderate experience in aikido and in medieval "fencing" (only 6-8 years in each.). I train at least twice in aikido a one once in medieval fencing. In aikido we do weapon every week.
There is surely plenty of thing that I miss compare to people that have done that 2 or 3 time longer than me but here it is
.
It seems to me that the problem people have with aikido is that the techniques do not work well in open hand context, if I can only acknowledge that some techniques should be more direct if used in "earnest", the underlying principles are very sound.

All the 15th manuscript wrestling in earnest looks more like aikido than anything else, though they have a tendency to put a koshi as often as the can. and it is a stand alone wtrestling/stiking sytem.
As well the sportier manuscript looks like bjj-judo. (And they usually appear in the 16th cent).
Regardless, for 15th cent wrestling is to be used to bypass a weapon. I.e. wrestle is engaged so that the opposition can not access his Messer/dagger or from a safe position whilst fencing with the sword or a spear (as we do in the body variation of the kumi tachi).
I think this is another way aikido related to weapon because if we assume easy access to a weapon, then attacks are much more committed and there is less jockeying for position as it gives time to access and deploy the weapon.

I see another way where aikido and weapons meets and this is at a more tactical level.
To cut it short, I can see lots of similitude between aikido and using 15th century weapons. The only difference is the timing and distance need to be adapted to open hands. It is much much easier to spar with longsword (a fencing helmet and a shinai with crossguard and here you go) than with open hands. And I found out that more than the technique in itself it is moving to the right place that is crucial.
I think it is the same with open hands.

Phil

ChrisHein
07-11-2007, 09:57 AM
But I don't carry a weapon. If I did, it would be my handgun. So better served by training to retain and use a handgun. This would require me actually strapping on a toy gun of some type, and having people try to take it away from me while I try to "shoot" them. Something not done in my aikido class. We usually work from wrist grabs, lunge punches, and overhead chops.

Don, isn't it loud when stuff goes over your head like that?

Phil, I could be misreading your post, but it sounds like you agree with me.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-11-2007, 10:19 AM
I think this is another way aikido related to weapon because if we assume easy access to a weapon, then attacks are much more committed and there is less jockeying for position as it gives time to access and deploy the weapon.

A testable hypohesis -- give each person a tanto or bokken in their belt (the latter might be sort of cumbersome for safety, but...) and then put them at arms length. See whether or not aikido training is helpful. (I can think of a few possible techniques...like if you're cross-wrist-grabbed while grabbing a katana, you can apply nikyo with your hand or the tsuka.)

It still seems like the methods should be -usable- in regular unarmed grappling, even if they aren't optimal. I dunno.

I recall seeing this sort of thing demonstrated at at Friendship Demo or something. Not the aliveness part, but the "Aikido waza as ways to get a sword out". Wasn't Shoji Nishio-sensei interested in this aspect of aikido?

philippe willaume
07-11-2007, 11:39 AM
Hello,
Sorry, chris
I though your take was that aikido is not a “stand alone” empty handed system.
Nonetheless, I think we agree on it is coming from a time where you expect your opponent to be armed.

Paul,
Personally, I associate weapon access in aikido with late sensei Bill Smith.
Personally I think aikido is a good open hand system.

But to be fair, I can understand where Don comes from
We practice from 16 from (ie way of attack) and we have 9 techniques per form. There is a lots of atemi and we kinds of mean it. And the Guv’nor is quite found of koshi

On the side of all that we practice hije jime, jgije garami and other niceties here and there that are kind of extra curricular.
The said techniques have an omote and ura when it is possible and not too farfetched
And we do weapon very regularly (kumi-x and x dori awasia and so on).

This is not a mine is better bigger than yours, it is just to point that there is probably a difference in what each individuals is used to.

phil

DonMagee
07-11-2007, 12:25 PM
I guess my point is that if you are training a weapon art, then train a weapon art. I should see every single person on the mat sporting a weapon. The whole idea of "If you put a weapon in his hand it works" just seems silly no matter if it's uke or nage.

I guess it comes from my belief in aliveness. I think it is silly to train something other then in the manner you plan to use it. I don't run to be a better bike rider. I ride a bike.

Kevin Leavitt
07-11-2007, 03:02 PM
I agree Don. Aikido is pretty much about the "DO". the way of aiki. So the weapons work in aikido, in my exerperiences are there to teach us the DO...not to teach us how to be better stick, knife, or sword fighters.

To me, that makes all the difference in the world when you train.

I think many take what we learn in DO based arts and try and transfer it literally. Sure, the bunkai, and the application, and principles are all there. I would not argue that.

However, as you state, when you approach things from a standpoint of aliveness, then much of what we do to learn the DO seems like a very inefficient delivery system for teaching.

I try to be very careful about discerning between DO versus reality. I think that is what is most key when approaching the whole weapons issue.

Rupert Atkinson
07-11-2007, 03:28 PM
I have met a few BJJ people and I can honestly say, they were all nice people and they would not attack anyone.

The question is really, what to do if someone with more skill / power / violence attacks you. Basically, pick up the nearest chair and clobber them with it, unless they get to it first ...

CitoMaramba
07-11-2007, 04:12 PM
Demonstrations by Kenji Yoshida Sensei, 7th Dan of:
Ken-no-tebiki (sword vs grab) (http://kiev-amf.cool.ne.jp/video_clips_yoshida_sensei_062006/ken_tebiki_ai_nikyo_001.MOV)
and
jo no tebiki (jo vs grab) (http://kiev-amf.cool.ne.jp/video_clips_yoshida_sensei_062006/jo_tebiki_ai_ikkyo.MOV)
techniques.

Yoshida Sensei is a student of Shoji Nishio Shihan. In addition to taijutsu, a lot of ken and jo is incorporated into Nishio Shihan's training method, including ken vs ken, ken vs jo, ken vs emptyhand and jo vs emptyhand.

More videos of Yoshida Sensei can be found here:
http://nishiobudo.org.ua/index.php?page=31

ChrisHein
07-11-2007, 05:53 PM
It still seems like the methods should be -usable- in regular unarmed grappling, even if they aren't optimal. I dunno.


Well they (Aikido techniques) do pop up sometimes in unarmed situations, but rarely. The reason they pop up rarely is because of the set up.

It's important to train from the positions you are going to be in; what Tim Cartmell would call "the set up". It's hard to pull techniques out randomly and do them. You will most likely (in an "alive" situation) do techniques from the set up which you practice them. Further, some of Aikido's techniques can not be done from set ups other then we see in Aikido forms (shihonage for example).

In common unarmed fighting, the techniques are all done from unarmed clinches as the set up: bear hugs, headlocks, waist locks etc. However Aikido techniques are done from weapon clinches: Wrist grab, cross wrist grab, sleeve grab, lapel grab etc.

The focus of the confrontation in an armed fight is different then the focus of the fight in an unarmed fight. In an unarmed fight I can go right for the core, I can grab and control the core of your body. In an armed situation I must go for your core (center) via the weapon hand, or else I will be mortally wounded.

This focus on the weapon hand is what makes Aikido techniques "set ups" appear. With out the set up, it's hard to do the technique. Same reason many Bjj guys have a hard time going from gi to no gi, or judo guys from judo clinches to non gi clinches. When your set ups change so does your game.

Don,
Look, the principals of having something in your hand change very little depending on what it is. Size matters, and the way you use it. But if you can get your hand free, then you can use your weapon. You don't need to specialize in weapon retention for a 1000 different weapons. Aikido has methods for clearing small medium and large size weapons, that (in my experience) is enough.

I'm into training with aliveness myself(I don't like that word though) , check out our youtube page ( http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=ChuShinTani ), you'll see how we train, its pretty "alive". I had the theory I'm currently expressing for years, the idea came to me after I fought with the dog brothers, and it doesn't' get much more alive then that.

The techniques of Aikido never worked for me when I fought mma style fighting, or bjj. However they did work for me once I had a weapon in my hand. This theory is based on "alive" training, and not intellectual conjecture.

Here I am with anouther long post...

eyrie
07-11-2007, 07:27 PM
Forgetting techniques for the moment, all movement is powered by specific mechanical principles. Techniques are simply the result of motion and mechanics.

Having some experience in Arnis, I have to agree with Doug, Lynn and George and to add that weapons are essentially an extension of the body - i.e. the mechanics in either case are based on the same principles. So, whether you (or the opponent - both or one or the other) are armed or unarmed, some adaptation to the situation may be required.

I've had a similar discussion with someone on another forum, who has 45 years experience in Isshinryu karate, judo, jujitsu and aikido. His opinion is that both karate and aikido are based on sword mechanics, however there are differences in how forces are delivered and manipulated in both arts. The rest our discussion gels with what Doug wrote.

FWIW...

philippe willaume
07-12-2007, 03:35 AM
I guess my point is that if you are training a weapon art, then train a weapon art. I should see every single person on the mat sporting a weapon. The whole idea of "If you put a weapon in his hand it works" just seems silly no matter if it's uke or nage.

I guess it comes from my belief in aliveness. I think it is silly to train something other then in the manner you plan to use it. I don't run to be a better bike rider. I ride a bike.

Hello don yes I do agree with you.
I would say that aikido is not a weapon art, I think it has it’s root in weapons, weapons access and weapons retention.
Every bit of weapon we do in aikido is technically spund sense but we are missing bits and pieces to make it a proper sword arts. IE a way to reliably break distance to get in striking range safely.
Well the way we do it anyway, some other style seems to be more weapon based, the way we do it is to enhance our body techniques.

We start from the bind (when the sword are crossed), and this is a good trick because you do not have to estimate distance and you by pass the entry so it is much easier to get a consistent starting point.
I think pedagogically, it makes lots of sense but the trick with fencing is to gain that entry. And I think that is the crucible of the relation with weapon , and you can see that in what Eyrie wrote.

What he wrote and the way he expresses it, is typical of a fencer/weapon way on conceptualizing fight. It is very difficult for someone that does not have a modicum of weapon pratice to concretely understand the implication of that.

The art of fencing in earnest (this is not so much the case in Olympic fencing) is to gain the “true place.” As Gorge Silver calls it
To summarise it quickly the true place is where you can use proper body mechanic to deliver the strike, in range to hit your opponent and where he can not hit you directly.
He is then forced to defend and you can use his defence to create a direct threat and so on.
phil

philippe willaume
07-12-2007, 03:40 AM
Just for clarity I cut the post in two
If you understand what the true place is then it does not matter what weapon you are using from knife to messer (or katana) to longsword (or tashi) to Zweihander to spear and halberd passing by single stick or quarterstaff even sword and bucler
There will be change as to where hat true place actually is as distance changes according to the weapon but relative to each weapon that true place is always the same.

With that in mind open hand is just and other weapon. It makes sense to be in that true place even with open hands, just in case our opponent carries a weapon

It s all well and good but I think that you can not dissociate that with atemi.

If your opponent tries to intercept you when you are getting to the true place, you will always have a timing advantage on him and he will probably have to extend.
This what the BJJ/MMa guy call a Fucktard attack, and they are king of right, when fencing I call that messing up.

But if he doesn't to do that we need a strike or a thrust to take advantage of that true place. If we do not, he just needs to re-align his body and the true place is not the true place for us anymore.(but now it is for him)
Making use of the place implicitly require for either him to give something to use or for us to take it.

Phil

ChrisHein
07-12-2007, 09:53 AM
I understand the argument. An empty hand is just another weapon, so a weapon system can just deal with it as thus. I'd likely buy that argument; if I hadn't fought as much as I have.

Here's the thing, when you engage in conflict with another person, every little advantage you get counts. This is why we spend hours making sure we turn our hips just so, and move in at the right angles. It's why weight classes in competitive things are often less then 10 lb. different. Small things count, and multiple small things count a lot.

Now in a non weapon conflict, I can "round the edges" quite a bit. In an unarmed fight it is superior to cover the body (like a boxer does) for a strike then it is to block or blend with it. In an armed fight, a cover means getting wounded, likely severely. Now if I'm fighting a skilled unarmed fighter, and he's trained in methods of body covering, and I expect to blend with every strike, he's going to destroy me.

Unarmed methods of fighting are striped down to the essentials of what you need to do in an unarmed fight. In an unarmed system, you can simply grab some ones core, and pull them down (a la Greco-Roman wrestling). This will get you killed in an armed confrontation, putting on a waist lock is just begging to get stabbed.

In Aikido we train methods that are ideal for weapon conflict. We don't do waist locks, bear hugs, head locks ect. Because those things are too dangerous when facing an armed attacker, and to easy to escape when you are armed. Aikido techniques don't afford themselves the "edge rounding" that unarmed techniques do.

So if you try and use the methods we practice in Aikido in an unarmed fight, you will simply be out passed. You cannot keep up (unarmed) with a guy using an unarmed system. He can do all of his techniques faster and more surely then you can.

The beauty of this is that the opposite is also true. If he tries his unarmed methods against an armed attacker, he would quickly see why we (Aikidoka) don't practice those methods. Even if he gets in past the initial cut or strike, his headlock, or body lock is going to get him stabbed.

Walker
07-12-2007, 10:28 AM
I think Chris is right on. I assume everyone is familiar with Toby Threadgill's great essay on Assumptions?
http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=685

There is another similar story about Takamura sensei that is also told. In a similar situation to the one in the article Takamura pulled a knife on a BJJer who had him in the mount. People who saw it said it appeared as if the guy levitated off him.

What it comes down to is that aikido descends from arts employed by swordsman for use in a venue that assumes bladed weapons and multiple attackers. I think you need to know this information to do aikido successfully. If you impose different assumptions either your aikido will change its essential nature to fit those new assumptions or because of the miss-match your aikido will be inefficient and ineffective in the new venue, like driving a screw with a hammer.

mriehle
07-12-2007, 10:36 AM
Have you ever put on Bogu and tried to disarm a semi-skilled Kendoka really trying to hit you? You should try it sometime if you get the opportunity, it puts the "bokken disarm" concept in a whole new light.

I've never actually done this, but I had an instructor once who was big on sword work. He studied Kendo (I believe it was Kendo, might have been something else) as well as Aikido.

He said a lot of things that stick in my mind years later, but one which I think applies:

"If you are facing a person with a sword, get used to the idea that you are going to get cut. If you can live with that, you have a chance of surviving. If getting cut is a problem for you, you're going to die."

That's probably not exactly how he said it, but it's pretty close, I think. And he said this many times. Sometimes it was a knife, rather than a sword.

I've thought about this a lot over the years when practicing weapons defenses. I'm by no means an expert in this area, but I believe he has a point.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-12-2007, 10:48 AM
I agree with much of the above; this has gone a long way in giving me a (potential) answer to the question of how aikido can be 1) seemingly very sophisticated and well-developed and 2) seemingly of little use in its (at first) apparent venue -- weaponless fighting.

One caveat, though: I think that it's important not to start saying that aikido is meant to help an unarmed person take weapons off of multiple assailants. I much prefer the description of "grappling techniques for when two people (who have weapons on them but not readied) get into close quarters" or "when a person has got a weapon out but is being prevented from using that weapon effectively by a hold". (I think it would be interesting to look at judo and wrestling in this light: the former at least seems to also have this idea potentially going.)

I like Chris' explanation regarding specialization, as well. It's not that aikido training is totally inapplicable in a pure unarmed fight; just that it's not specialized for it. It might even be worse than "natural reactions" or basic brawling.

I'm going to see if I can put together some practice under these sorts of conditions. If "Aiki-boxing" and related exercises help show what aikido's not, the next step might be finding what aikido is.

DonMagee
07-12-2007, 11:09 AM
I've never actually done this, but I had an instructor once who was big on sword work. He studied Kendo (I believe it was Kendo, might have been something else) as well as Aikido.

He said a lot of things that stick in my mind years later, but one which I think applies:

"If you are facing a person with a sword, get used to the idea that you are going to get cut. If you can live with that, you have a chance of surviving. If getting cut is a problem for you, you're going to die."

That's probably not exactly how he said it, but it's pretty close, I think. And he said this many times. Sometimes it was a knife, rather than a sword.

I've thought about this a lot over the years when practicing weapons defenses. I'm by no means an expert in this area, but I believe he has a point.

I have always been given the impression that most cases getting cut with a sword (as opposed to a small knife) usually means you are going to die anyways.

I think Chris is right on. I assume everyone is familiar with Toby Threadgill's great essay on Assumptions?
http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=685

There is another similar story about Takamura sensei that is also told. In a similar situation to the one in the article Takamura pulled a knife on a BJJer who had him in the mount. People who saw it said it appeared as if the guy levitated off him.

What it comes down to is that aikido descends from arts employed by swordsman for use in a venue that assumes bladed weapons and multiple attackers. I think you need to know this information to do aikido successfully. If you impose different assumptions either your aikido will change its essential nature to fit those new assumptions or because of the miss-match your aikido will be inefficient and ineffective in the new venue, like driving a screw with a hammer.

While the article makes a good point and I agree you should never assume anything. I find it funny that he does not touch on the fact the he himself assumed Donny would not kill him. He assumed his attacker would be of a sport match mindset. While warning us about assumptions, he made and hedged his bets on his very own.

mriehle
07-12-2007, 12:00 PM
I have always been given the impression that most cases getting cut with a sword (as opposed to a small knife) usually means you are going to die anyways.

Well, there is that. :p

But, seriously, I think his point was more about getting over the fear of being cut. I've watched people trying to execute weapons take-aways over and over and the biggest mistake I've seen is overavoidance. Either moving too far (allowing a very fast follow-up attack) or moving too soon (allowing the attack to be changed). Second is the moving too late which appears - in most cases I've witnessed - to be motivated by fear, just like the overavoidance. It almost seems to be overcompenstation for a tendency to overavoid.

What's more, in my own practice the most common criticism I hear is - yep, you guessed it - overavoidance. And what's it motivated by? Yep, fear.

You don't have a lot of room for mistakes when faced with a blade (none, really). And that fear seems to be a huge source for mistakes. So getting used to the idea that being cut is not necessarily the end of the encounter and being afraid of being cut can get you killed is - in my mind - an important aspect of being able to successfully deal with a knife (or sword) attack.

Mind you, the cases where I definitely know someone defended themselves against a knife attack they didn't, in fact, get cut. Although, in the one case the attacker suffered first a broken arm, then (when he picked up the knife in the other hand and attacked again) a fatal stab wound to the kidney.

Which is the other half of the cautionary tale: if you're going to use a weapon, make sure it can't be used against you.

mriehle
07-12-2007, 12:16 PM
This makes me think of the mechanics of modern day knife attacks vs battlefield weapon attacks. I'd say these weapons defenses then (at least knife defenses) are from an era that has passed by. To know your attacker has a knife is probably an exception and not a rule to knife attacks.

You know, I'd have to agree with this at least in principle. I know of "exceptions", but I also know that some of the scariest incidents I've been involved with involved attackers who were theoretically unarmed. Because the environment we were in had safeguards against them being armed. But it occured to me that those very safeguards pretty much meant that if they had a knife I wouldn't know about it until it was too late.

Most of these people I trusted. But there were exceptions.

Then, a couple of years later a gun materialized on the person of one of these "unarmed" people. It had gotten past the safeguards.

I keep trying to convince myself that the knife I see doesn't scare me, the one I don't see does. Truth is, they both scare me. :eek:

Walker
07-12-2007, 12:22 PM
While the article makes a good point and I agree you should never assume anything. I find it funny that he does not touch on the fact the he himself assumed Donny would not kill him. He assumed his attacker would be of a sport match mindset. While warning us about assumptions, he made and hedged his bets on his very own.
Believe that's what the article was about if you want, but I think the point is that there are always assumptions and it is better to be aware of them.

I assume the "he" above means Takamura not Threadgill. I think it is interesting that you are assuming what Tak's assumptions were. We don't know what Tak held in his mind, but given my distant impression of the man, Donny had no idea who he was playing with or what field he was playing on.

And isn't that the essence of winning? "If you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles." Sun Tsu

DonMagee
07-12-2007, 01:05 PM
Believe that's what the article was about if you want, but I think the point is that there are always assumptions and it is better to be aware of them.

I assume the "he" above means Takamura not Threadgill. I think it is interesting that you are assuming what Tak's assumptions were. We don't know what Tak held in his mind, but given my distant impression of the man, Donny had no idea who he was playing with or what field he was playing on.

And isn't that the essence of winning? "If you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles." Sun Tsu

In that case, I'd play it more to luck then knowing. Anyone willing to engage in a fight like that is lucky to survive. The fact is he is damming Donny for using his assumptions, but he used the same assumptions to win the fight. (I'm going to fight 'dirty' and he wont because he thinks this is a sport.) Had Donny pulled a knife and gutted him, this story would of read a different way. Possibly used as an example of poor form in a challenge match by the author.

This is why I tell people there are two kinds of challenge fights.

Fights in the ring with rules. - These are healthy and safe ways to test skill and technique.

Challenge fights without the discussion of rules where one person is trying to prove something to another. - If you find yourself in this situation, both parties have made very grave and poor judgment calls. If a fight does happen, you must assume your opponent wants to kill you and you act as if this is the case. If you are smart you will realize you are being an idiot and simply leave the dojo and never deal with that person again. Anyone willing to fight without the safety of rules is simply too unstable to trust with your personal safety during instruction.

Further more, the lesson taught in my opinion did nothing to correct the students assertion. In fact it validated it. He stated the technique was outdated and unable to deal with the technique of today. The teacher showed no technique simply showed resourcefulness that in reality anyone could do with no training at all. This pointed out a lack in the students technique, but did not show the strength of the instructors technique. Nor does it validate the training methods. It would be similar to the teacher agreeing to the fight, pulling a handgun out, shooting Donny then stating his jiujitsu was superior. Unless he taught shoestring strangle from under the mount kata, he allowed him self to be bested, or was bested to make a point that did not address the students concerns. That combined challenging a student instead of just asking someone that disrespectful to leave really shows poor form.

I have never heard of this behavior in sport classes. I find it unhealthy.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-12-2007, 01:26 PM
I think the story does a good job of expressing a point, though -- that assumptions differ considerably between traditional and sport martial arts.

I agree with you, though, Don, that this would be poor evidence that Takamura's jujutsu skills (or his capacities as a fighter in general) were superior. If he'd stood up and said, "And so you see, I defeated him with greater skill", I'd strongly disagree. Heck, the only "proper" jujutsu demonstrated was a takedown, a transition into mount, and so on -- all by the challenger. Any conclusions about the relative ability, wit, determination, or whatever of the two individuals would be improper, because this was not a good test of ability, or even resourcefulness.

But while it tells us little about the two individuals, it does highlight a difference in their backgrounds. From a sport perspective, this is unfair -- one point of sport competition is to honestly evaluate particular skills through a balanced match -- similar age, weight, equipment, and so on. From a traditional perspective, all of these are variables.

That's not to say that a TMAer would be -better- at dealing with things like a suddenly-introduced weapon than an MMAer; in fact, there's a good case to be made for the opposite.

I'll add that I think you're free to call some wankerism on Takamura's part. It's just that I give him some slack because said wankerism did at least make an interesting point. (If I were the one who'd been choked out, maybe I'd have a stronger negative bias.)

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-12-2007, 01:45 PM
As for the technical side...it might also reinforce one of the contentions going around in this thread, which is that aikido and traditional jujutsu have more of a notion of two combatants who might have weapons on them (or on the ground near them or whatever), even if they don't start out wielding them.

After all, if one person has a weapon drawn and ready before the other person closes range, the other person (regardless of what they know) is pretty much screwed unless they can get ahold of something equivalent -- so much so that I doubt classical martial systems have much to say about the topic, except maybe as an interesting abstract exercise. And if they both have weapons out, we're not really talking about jujutsu anymore -- the closest thing would be some form of grappling with paired weapons, like, say, a shoulder ram from crossed blades.

We might even talk about aikido suwari-waza and such in this way; positions that do not offer nearly as much durable control as BJJ positions where you position your base above the opponent, but rather expose you less to potential weapon attacks. (Similarly: positions that are not very good for applying a fight-ending submission, but are fine for getting space to deploy a weapon, or to a lesser degree perhaps throw a few fight-ending unarmed blows -- todome waza.)

DonMagee
07-12-2007, 02:04 PM
I agree the story does a good job of making a point. I just don't think the lesson answered the challenge of Donny in that story. I just wanted to point out the comedy of the winner who made the same assumption being used as an example of how making assumptions can cause you to lose. They both hedge their bets with assumptions and luck played it's part, not skill.

I don't think the match was unfair at all, because no rules were discussed. I think they are both idiots for choosing to fight without a discussion of rules.

"a martial art that has no rules is nothing but violence" - Kenji Tomiki

Walker
07-12-2007, 05:08 PM
Against my better judgement as you seem bent on projecting ideas onto Takamura that I don't think are justified I'll take issue with just one thing. I just wanted to point out the comedy of the winner who made the same assumption being used as an example of how making assumptions can cause you to lose. They both hedge their bets with assumptions and luck played it's part, not skill.and Had Donny pulled a knife and gutted him, this story would of read a different way.
I don't believe Takamura assumed any such thing in regard to Donny. I think that the possibility that Donny would not fight fair would have been very much a possibility in Takamura's mind. One of the points is that Takamura was playing a much more serious "game" than Donny and the fact that Donny didn't realize this even in light of the subject of the class was the surest indication of his downfall. The fact that Donny fell willfully into the trap laid for him and that the matching was so uneven allowed Takamura to deliver such a clear lesson.

So the lesson is there and it is up to the individual to extract benefit from that lesson or not.

In the end we do agree because it is lessons such as these that underscore the importance of good manners and harmonious existence. The martial arts illustrate the consequences of violence and it is plain good sense to avoid same.

ChrisHein
07-12-2007, 06:02 PM
Man I'm just glad this stuff is finally getting through to some of you...

I've been harping on this for years now!

philippe willaume
07-13-2007, 03:01 AM
Hello chris
I believe you understood that my tack was to show the relation with the sword and open hand not to say that is the best way to fight empty handed.
And I understand that you propose that it is not really applicable. You have a very valid point but you have as well a wrong assumption.

You see coming close with headlock, body lock, arm lock or throw is a very valid way of fencing (i.e. fighting with using weapons).
In fact all 15th century treatise I know of, consider getting close and wrestling a integral part of using a weapon and the manuals tells how to deal with it or to get to, with and without armour on foot and on horse.
Basically having a weapon does not prohibit close contact wrestling at all.
Fighting with a weapon is full of taking short cut and taking corners even accepting a slice or a small cut to the hand (or a even a thrust through the tight is you practise Scottish small sword……).
I understand that wrestling when both weapons have is not that common in koryu. So other than the body variation of the kumitachi it is quite hard to be exposed to that in aikido or in JMA in general (I think it exist ion some koryu, the bit we do in kumitachi has to come from somewhere).

So this is really where my disagreement why you analysis lay, however on the same vein you as making a very good point.

As you said specialised open hand fighting will have that built in the same way fencing as it regarding fencing. And so if you take fencing approach to open hand you will not have that or at least to the same extend.
One could argue that it is possible to optimise the open hand side of a sword based (and I think that it is what aikido is). But I would agree with you in saying that it can not really be optimised to extend of a dedicated hand to hand method designed for facing hand to hands.
That being said, the sword base hand method can be made good enough.

phil

philippe willaume
07-13-2007, 03:39 AM
Hello
Chris and Don comments made me realise something. May be what we consider what aikido is differently.

Chris talked about, head and body lock, and I a was about tp reply that we do defend against those in aikido but I think that may be there is an another differentiation in what we respectively thing aikido covers.

Yesterday we did knife defence with a bit of resistance
In one occurrence the technique was so that you ended on the omote side of uke
You grab his wrist with on hand and with the other you go around the neck from behind (ie you hand ends upon the front
You the drop on one knee (the outside one being up) and the arm bar the arm on the knee the extension of the arm is maintained by pulling the head away
(I hoped you see the one I mean)
Because we where resting and that you can not really fall with uke full ballast on you knee. Sometimes uke could prevent/resist the rotation of his arm on the knee (basically that could become a sticky point and we could loses our advantage) and so we ended chocking him instead still controlling the arms.

And for me that is still aikido, the choke being just a different way to finish the technique, but may be some would consider that outside the aikido scope?

phil
Ps (is that high jacking this thread, should we start a new one?)

philippe willaume
07-13-2007, 05:03 AM
sorry
slight reticification
I meant on the ura side of uke... :o
ie his back in front of you....

ChrisHein
07-13-2007, 09:50 AM
Phil, I don't know if we are having a communication problem, but I still don't see where we disagree. I too believe that wrestling with weapons is an integral part of weapon training.

I don't think that Headlocks and body locks are outside of the scope of what Aikido could be, I just think they are out side of the scope of it's traditional syllabus. I've never seen footage of, or heard a story of O-sensei teaching headlock or body lock escapes. I don't see them listed on the hombu list of techniques for testing.

Those techniques are great unarmed techniques in my opinion, but they just make poor controls for an armed man. In other words if I were making an armed system I would leave them out.

However a close relative that we have in our system is ushiro kubishimi. Interesting thing about Kubishimi is that it's a choke with a wrist grab. Why do you think that wrist grab is in there...

DonMagee
07-13-2007, 10:15 AM
Phil, I don't know if we are having a communication problem, but I still don't see where we disagree. I too believe that wrestling with weapons is an integral part of weapon training.

I don't think that Headlocks and body locks are outside of the scope of what Aikido could be, I just think they are out side of the scope of it's traditional syllabus. I've never seen footage of, or heard a story of O-sensei teaching headlock or body lock escapes. I don't see them listed on the hombu list of techniques for testing.

Those techniques are great unarmed techniques in my opinion, but they just make poor controls for an armed man. In other words if I were making an armed system I would leave them out.

However a close relative that we have in our system is ushiro kubishimi. Interesting thing about Kubishimi is that it's a choke with a wrist grab. Why do you think that wrist grab is in there...

Has this ever been verified as Ueshiba?

http://venus.secureguards.com/~aikidog-/aikicenter/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&p=1101#1101

Walker
07-13-2007, 10:33 AM
Those are from the Noma Dojo series of photographs.

Although there are hundreds of photographs in this series, the groupings have been lost so we lack context for individual frames. It is very difficult to draw conclusions about individual poses and there were no written descriptions of what is being portrayed. Therefore it is very easy to project all sorts of interpretation onto this series of photographs.

philippe willaume
07-13-2007, 11:39 AM
hello, chris
Sorry it seems that I managed to find a hidden meaning to what you wrote (but that what happens when we are separated by a common language) :-)

About the body lock, head lock and even wrist lock in fencing (provided that what I call lock is what you call lock), I was wondering why they consistently appear in 15th fencing? Manuals. After all we are talking of a 80 to 100cm blade, with a pommel and Quillons designed to strike.

And the answer came from sparing. (Hence my liking of pressure testing, cross training and sparing when it is possible)
And it is not unlike shooter from MMA and open hand.
To be fair those hold do no last very long as they are there to set up a throw, then there will be some form a control/pin to set the point and thrust But conceptually, I do not find it very different of shoot, throw, mount and pound. (But it may not be what you call a body lock or ahead lock per se)
When we tried that situation, we did not feel that the cut that I was delivering would have been fatal, crippling or debilitating. I am not sure that they would have draw blood with medieval clothing on. (Not armour but stonger than a modern T shirt). And it took to much time form to do something meaningful with my tip (and he could always control my sword hand arm long enough to "kill" me before I could get into position)

To paraphrase Don, even a sword is not that useful from a dominated position… (I think a dagger/wakisahi is probably the weapon that would make ground and pound very unhealthy)

I mean we can use the sword to stop push-cut (or pull-cut) them and it works against people that shoot from to far, commit too much in the blade clearance, or that you are ready for. but if the guy is a good shooter (and as a blade as well) he will probably get through. (If only on the ground that he will only shoot when he has a good opportunity and I do not have a good opportunity to defend.)

I hope that does make sense.
Phil

philippe willaume
07-13-2007, 12:07 PM
I don't think that Headlocks and body locks are outside of the scope of what Aikido could be, I just think they are out side of the scope of it's traditional syllabus. I've never seen footage of, or heard a story of O-sensei teaching headlock or body lock escapes. I don't see them listed on the hombu list of techniques for testing.
......
However a close relative that we have in our system is ushiro kubishimi. Interesting thing about Kubishimi is that it's a choke with a wrist grab. Why do you think that wrist grab is in there...

yes we do have ushiro kubishimi in our formal system as well.
phil....

DonMagee
07-13-2007, 12:32 PM
Those are from the Noma Dojo series of photographs.

Although there are hundreds of photographs in this series, the groupings have been lost so we lack context for individual frames. It is very difficult to draw conclusions about individual poses and there were no written descriptions of what is being portrayed. Therefore it is very easy to project all sorts of interpretation onto this series of photographs.

I'd like to know more about this. Is there anywhere I can see more of the pictures in context?

I managed to find this book
Budo: Teachings of the Founder of Aikido (http://www.amazon.com/dp/4770020708?tag=budodojo-20&camp=14573&creative=327641&linkCode=as1&creativeASIN=4770020708&adid=0JNVDDHRJNF0HAV5HYMN&
) but I was wondering if you knew of anymore resources?

Walker
07-13-2007, 01:49 PM
I don't think they have ever been published beyond what is reproduced in Steven's translation of Budo. There are some series assembled by Stevens according to his ideas of what might be some plausable sequences.

I know Stan Pranin has made capies of the entire set, but without an organization there is little use publishing them.

Another factor is that they date to the 30s so one would need to be familiar with the Daito ryu/aikido hybrid that Ueshiba was doing at the time. Kowing DR or modern aikido might not be enough.

DonMagee
07-13-2007, 02:26 PM
Seems a shame not to publish them simply because nobody knows the order. I mean even if we might not know what is going on, it's still a part of history.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-13-2007, 02:30 PM
Seems a shame not to publish them simply because nobody knows the order. I mean even if we might not know what is going on, it's still a part of history.

Agreed. I myself am VERY curious about what Ueshiba himself actually practiced.

Walker
07-13-2007, 11:21 PM
Agreed. I myself am VERY curious about what Ueshiba himself actually practiced.

I don't think it is that much of a mystery. We have Tomiki, Shioda, and Saito sensei (who are pretty well documented and have published materials available) as well as two illustrated texts (Budo Renshu and Budo) that give a pretty good indication of the content and focus of that era of aikido when Ueshiba oversaw training. Couple that with video and text records of DR's Hiden Mokuroku and a pretty clear picture is possible at least academically.

As for the viability of publishing the Noma photos, I don't think idle curiosity would be enough to make it economically viable.

Out of curiosity I pulled down my copy of Budo and it has 50+ pages of Noma photos with an average of 5-6 per page. That should be plenty to satisfy the curiosity of most. Moreover it's only $17 new and it can often be found discounted for half that. Really no excuse for not owning a copy.

Rhino2693
07-14-2007, 11:00 AM
I know that I am only a beginner but from the three moves that i have learned so far (one of which is made to knock some one out) , they all work very effectively weather the person has a weapon or not. Say someone is punching you....u treat that just like someone is stabbing at you with knife. You can catch the throw, twist their arm and have complete control of the person...its just very basic.

ChrisHein
07-14-2007, 11:16 AM
Ryan,
Read the thread. It's filled with opinions from people who know more then 3 moves.

Rhino2693
07-14-2007, 11:21 AM
Im not trying to come off like i know everything. Thats more of a question, i mean wouldnt that work though.

L. Camejo
07-14-2007, 03:04 PM
"If you are facing a person with a sword, get used to the idea that you are going to get cut. If you can live with that, you have a chance of surviving. If getting cut is a problem for you, you're going to die."

I've thought about this a lot over the years when practicing weapons defenses. I'm by no means an expert in this area, but I believe he has a point.Good point. If one is fearful of dying in the face of an attacker then the mind becomes confused, locked, fettered and unclear, which seriously helps decrease ones odds of survival.

Having done the exercise you quoted above, things worked quite well when I allowed the Kendoka to come at me as if he were seriously trying to kill me. When he went into the cautious, "fight mindset", "sport Kendo" mindset it was more difficult to execute waza (not impossible though) since he gave much less energy to work with, which meant I had to generate my own.

Your point is very important. Many who attempt to apply Aikido under resistance start with a "fight", contest or "struggle" mindset, which is exactly the opposite of Aikido's core tactical approach. When one sees the situation as life and death, regardless of whether faced with a weapon or not, ones entire approach to the engagement changes. It is this approach that creates fertile ground for Aikido waza to operate against real threats. There must be Mushin, else Aikido simply won't work very well, as this is a foundational element. This goes back to the thought on assumptions as well, all of these things help in clouding the mind. A good example was seen in the "Aiki-Boxing" thread where the Aikidoka started to "fight" and "struggle" (which led to more half-baked waza and Judo type moves) with the attacker as soon as he donned protective gloves. When he went empty handed the Aiki waza started to flow.

I maintain what I said earlier in this thread, the method works. The real question is, how many are willing to do what is necessary to get there? If one is "fighting" or intending to struggle with an assailant, one is not doing Aikido.

Gambatte.

L. Camejo
07-14-2007, 03:33 PM
Im not trying to come off like i know everything. Thats more of a question, i mean wouldnt that work though.Try "catching" the hand of someone punching or stabbing with a rubber knife and not cooperating when you try a technique and you'll find the answer imho.

Experience speaks volumes where words can only do so much.

LC:ai::ki:

jennifer paige smith
07-14-2007, 04:20 PM
"Good point. If one is fearful of dying in the face of an attacker then the mind becomes confused, locked, fettered and unclear, which seriously helps decrease ones odds of survival."

If one is fearful of dying in the face of anything the minds becomes all of the things you said.

ChrisHein
07-15-2007, 12:28 AM
In order to transcend the struggle, you must enter into the struggle with an open mind. Resist this, and you are just struggling with yourself.

xuzen
07-15-2007, 07:10 AM
I like to read LarryC' s post the most. His ideas of aikido are quite similar to mine, but he is better at expressing his thoughts in writing.

Boon.

jennifer paige smith
07-15-2007, 09:02 AM
Try "catching" the hand of someone punching or stabbing with a rubber knife and not cooperating when you try a technique and you'll find the answer imho.

Experience speaks volumes where words can only do so much.

LC:ai::ki:
Perhahs a few words coming from experience would be helpful:
Some of the answers that you will find are limited to the lengths that one, as an individual, is wiling to go when executing a technique or wrestling with another human being. It should always be considered that causing death is an option, if not for you, than for them. And the games that people play to replicate this can fall short of the reality of a moment where a life is about to be gained or lost. No one is there to say "yamae" and no tap out will do.

ChrisHein
07-15-2007, 12:02 PM
Perhahs a few words coming from experience would be helpful:
Some of the answers that you will find are limited to the lengths that one, as an individual, is wiling to go when executing a technique or wrestling with another human being. It should always be considered that causing death is an option, if not for you, than for them. And the games that people play to replicate this can fall short of the reality of a moment where a life is about to be gained or lost. No one is there to say "yamae" and no tap out will do.

I couldn't agree more.

I think practices where people are actually trying to work against you are so much closer to how it would be if someone was trying to take your life. Uke/Nage training is all fine and good. But it never gives you that feeling that you will get when someone is actually working against you, trying to harm you, and doing everything in their power to keep you from achieving your objective (peace).

Nice post Jennifer!

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-16-2007, 07:57 AM
In response to Ryan: I completely agree with you that, theoretically, it should work just fine. (At least, from a certain beginning theoretical perspective.) Empirical reality is more complicated. This is the conflict that, at least for me, is a key motivator behind looking into theories about aikido's development and fighting rationale.

Dewey
07-16-2007, 09:14 AM
This thread has been quite an interesting read! There's not much I can really add other than my observations concerning what the empty-handed sword art called Aikido;) has taught me:

We have considerable weapons training (ken, jo, tanto) in my dojo. As I see it, swordwork teaches us one of the most fundamental, practical and effective techniques of Aikido: maintaining proper ma-ai. There's nothing like a vigorously swinging bokken nearly missing your head to keep you mindful of tactical spacing & distance! Ditto with the jo!

From a "real world" self-defense perspective, and not the confines of the dojo or the enclosed sparring ring of two willing combatants, being able to stay just out of your unarmed attacker's effective range is the best defense. Good ma-ai can be accomplished ether conventionally (i.e. utilizing open terrain/the whole street to your advantage) or "improvised" ma-ai (e.g. utilizing obstacles such as tables, desks, parked cars, etc.). That coupled with strong, quick tai sabaki. The two skills are indespensible and fundamental to Aikido.

Maintaining ma-ai and solid tai sabaki works, I've used them effectively in real life situations, as have a lot of Aikidoka...and I'm nobody special...just average, and my Aikido is only average for my rank...not even of Dan-grade. Does it fit the criteria of machismo or comicbook notions of honor? Not nearly! However, it's smart & effective self-defense.

philippe willaume
07-17-2007, 06:08 AM
Ryan
Conceptually speaking you are dead right, however I think the issue is not so much in the what to do but more in the getting into position to do it safely.

An that really depend of the weapon and the correlation you can make with open hand

If you look at my profile you will see a picture of a Sweetnam 12 foot lunges. He advocates no moving the foot that is at the back when the lunge is finished.
For that period rapier that is a very sound way of doing thing.
It is a very long thrusting sword with little chopping abilities and the hand is encased in a skeletal guard (and that protect the forearms from slice cut). I.e. we are maximizing thrusting and keeping it safe.
It is not so good to do that with a proper cut and thrust sword, we are in a position where cutting our arms is relatively easy and there is not that much we can do about it.

Equally it is not so good against an open hand style that strike and throw
But equally there is a punch delivered in similar fashion (not that low of a stance) in 18th century bare knuckle boxing (where all throws or body grabs are prohibited).

To gack to your comment, if you are thrusting and keep you back leg fixed, you are “overcomitting” the thrust over cutting and moving. You do not need to be that low, you just need to have your shoulder significantly passed over the hips.

All that to say, that in that king of thrust or punch, the one that is punching is giving the opponent the position do use a technique in safety.
And this is one of the main reasons what MMA people fined thrust punch so abhorrent, but you can jab or cross in the way.
Personally I think there time and places where using that type of punch/thrust is very pertinent but that is certainly not when you try to break the distance.

If our uke strike within his own space (keeping the shoulders aligned with the hips) and we grab his wrist using tenchin, he will be able to resist us at will and it is not that surprising.
After all grabbing is wrist when he is on posture is exactly what kote dori is from ai hanmi and goyku hanmi.

phil

L. Camejo
07-17-2007, 04:47 PM
Perhahs a few words coming from experience would be helpful:
Some of the answers that you will find are limited to the lengths that one, as an individual, is wiling to go when executing a technique or wrestling with another human being. It should always be considered that causing death is an option, if not for you, than for them. And the games that people play to replicate this can fall short of the reality of a moment where a life is about to be gained or lost. No one is there to say "yamae" and no tap out will do.Quite true. Of course if one is incapable of achieving desired result while playing, then the likelihood of doing so when life is on the line is often more remote. It comes down to the individual. Getting back to my last post - if you can't "catch" the knife hand of someone who is not trying to kill you then the likelihood of catching it when someone is trying to kill you is a lot lower imho. Unless of course you plan on catching it with some other part of the body than the hand. ;)

Brian: My experiences have been quite similar to yours. Ma ai and tai sabaki are quite critical elements when getting hit even once can be the fight ender (they have saved my life at least once). This to me is important when we look at how Aikido operates as a method of dealing with serious, focused physical conflict. Good to have another p.o.v. from someone who has actually used it.

Boon: You're biased, you were once a Shodothug. :D

LC:ai::ki:

CitoMaramba
07-17-2007, 10:30 PM
Another video clip, this time of Nishio Sensei himself:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D8uJhC5wZug
Notice the similarity of kaiten-nage, executed with empty hand and with weapon (ken-no-tebiki).
In a later part of the clip, note how the movement of drawing the sword becomes an entry for udekime-nage, and how what looks like a throw is really an atemi.
Again illustrating how weapons are an extension of the body and that there is a union of principles (riai) between the use of weapons and taijutsu.

jennifer paige smith
07-22-2007, 10:59 AM
[QUOTE=Larry Camejo;183955]Quite true. Of course if one is incapable of achieving desired result while playing, then the likelihood of doing so when life is on the line is often more remote. It comes down to the individual.

Mostly, one is incapable of achieving an enviroment that replicates your life being on the line. Everything is much more random and even good technique might not be your 'savior'. It might be a mindful observation of a car or a streetlight casting a shadow that helps you out, a ridiculous scream or a wandering idiot who you call out to like a friend that helps.Things you cannot replicate or provide. Point is, you don't know and a lifetime of training is still no guarantee. But train anyway. It comes down to the moment.

Aikibu
07-22-2007, 11:59 AM
Mostly, one is incapable of achieving an enviroment that replicates your life being on the line. Everything is much more random and even good technique might not be your 'savior'. It might be a mindful observation of a car or a streetlight casting a shadow that helps you out, a ridiculous scream or a wandering idiot who you call out to like a friend that helps.Things you cannot replicate or provide. Point is, you don't know and a lifetime of training is still no guarantee. But train anyway. It comes down to the moment.

Great Post Sista Soul Jah Sufer!!!

I am still alive today because of two main material constructs which cannot be fully replicated no matter hard and realistic my training....

Seconds and Centimeters.:)

Training may have helped a tiny bit but not much.

Aikido Training can only help change me and guide me to embrace my powerlessness over much of the physical world. People... Places... and Things. The best I can hope for is an authentic connection with the "moment" and this "connection" has resolved every 'pontential" conflict I have ever had... Emotional... Spiritual... and Physical. When I am not connected... I give into fear.... and then anger... I have only hurt myself and the "other" I have chosen to "fight"

Sorry Folks if I sound like a Malibu Hippy Punk Red Neck Liberal Zen Catholic Nut Job Surf Guy...

:)

Practice Hard.

William Hazen

ChrisHein
07-22-2007, 12:03 PM
Nice post Jennifer.

For me, training is not about replicating some crazy potential situation that MIGHT arise in my future. It’s More about being honest to the practice that I'm partaking in.

The development of ones character is dependent on honesty and participation in reality. If you sit around all day playing fantasy master martial artist, you can never develop your true self, only your fantasy alter ego. Training hard and honesty is the most important part of the martial arts. Asking why we do the things we do, and if they are actually applicable to real life confrontation, simply keeps us on track.

L. Camejo
07-22-2007, 05:43 PM
Everything is much more random and even good technique might not be your 'savior'.

It should never be. Are folks still relating ability to save one's own life when it is on the line to who is the better at technique?

Wow. I guess that's my queue...

When I am not connected... I give into fear.... and then anger... I have only hurt myself and the "other" I have chosen to "fight"Well said.

If you sit around all day playing fantasy master martial artist, you can never develop your true self, only your fantasy alter ego.Chris: Where did you get this impression from the thread?

Dozo.

ChrisHein
07-22-2007, 10:07 PM
Chris: Where did you get this impression from the thread?

Dozo.

It's a general comment on those who are more interested in wearing fancy skirts and being called sensei, then actually training to develop your self.

L. Camejo
07-22-2007, 10:30 PM
It's a general comment on those who are more interested in wearing fancy skirts and being called sensei, then actually training to develop your self.I see your point then. :)

Aikibu
07-23-2007, 12:35 PM
It's a general comment on those who are more interested in wearing fancy skirts and being called sensei, then actually training to develop your self.

Why did you feel the need to express your general opinion on this thread? What was the context? What does it add to the discussion?

Just Curious since I used to rant about this kind of thing all the time.

William Hazen

ChrisHein
07-23-2007, 10:40 PM
post #86 and post #88.

Erik Calderon
07-24-2007, 08:48 AM
With or without a weapon, the technique should work in the same way.

http://www.shinkikan.com

mriehle
07-24-2007, 09:12 AM
With or without a weapon, the technique should work in the same way.


You know, I fundamentally agree with this statement insofar as it goes.

But...

The consequences of a mistake are radically different. I've blown an entry and wound up taking a punch to my body and then followed that up by tossing my attacker (okay, I'll admit it, sometimes I threw them a bit hard when their punch actually landed :( ). If the punch had been a knife, I might have been dead and I certainly would have been seriously injured.

Although, it occurs to me that such incidents were in training. The few of times when I was facing a serious challenge no punches (or kicks) ever landed. Still, that might have been dumb luck.

So, yeah, the techniques work the same, but you just don't have the margin for error against weapons. Hey, maybe that's a good reason to train against weapons?

Aikibu
07-24-2007, 09:22 AM
With or without a weapon, the technique should work in the same way.

http://www.shinkikan.com

What should happen and what does happen can be the differance between life and death...Hard Practice...Luck...Focus...Fear...Resolve...and Martial Spirit...

Like a Fellow Aikidoka has already suggested and I have posted myself... You don't get a second chance to get it right in a fight when edged weapons are involved.

William Hazen

ChrisHein
07-24-2007, 09:56 AM
With or without a weapon, the technique should work in the same way.

http://www.shinkikan.com

Well beyond the more serious ramifications of what will happen if you make a mistake, there are many other fundamental differences.

While you are basically correct, the technique should be the same, with or with out a weapon, whether the technique will ever arise or not is another thing. Yes a shihonage is going to be a shihonage, whether you have a weapon I have a weapon, or neither have a weapon. But will you have the opportunity to use a shihonage?

In unarmed fighting the fighter can choose to go to the core of your body in order to control you. This is the superior way to control a person; by going directly to their core. Things like Body locks, waist locks and headlocks are superior positions. The reason they are superior is because they are a quicker and more direct means to control what you need to control in a physical confrontation; the core.

These means of control being superior, if you attempt Aikido techniques while unarmed against a trained unarmed fighter, they will likely win. They will be better from the superior position (we don't train said techniques).

So what changes all of this? A weapon. If someone tries these superior unarmed techniques (body/headlocks) on you while you are armed, they will be neglecting your limbs. If you are armed, they will lose (weapon will win even in a bad position). Now if they take your limbs into account and try to hold them...we have shihonage; or any of the other techniques of Aikido.

Ron Tisdale
07-24-2007, 10:55 AM
Good post Chris. One question...if someone can extend the power of their body out to their own limbs...could that change the nature of your equation?

Best,
Ron

ChrisHein
07-24-2007, 05:34 PM
Good post Chris. One question...if someone can extend the power of their body out to their own limbs...could that change the nature of your equation?

Best,
Ron

Well I'm not really sure where you're going here, but I'd say no...

Proper body use does enable you to move your body weight and larger muscle groups (legs and back) through your arms. Making your arms more powerful. But this isn't an advantage for the grabber (uke in Aikido techniques). What he wants to do is to grab and control the center of the other guy. More links in a chain makes this harder ( the other guys elbow and shoulder). It's much simpler, and more powerful to directly grab the body. However if they are armed doing that will get you killed.

Now for the guy being grabbed it can be an advantage, But also a disadvantage. The guy being grabbed wants to stay as flexible as possible. This makes it harder for the grabber (uke) to control your center. But being able to suddenly use the power of the whole body through the limbs can make escaping much easier.

Ron Tisdale
07-25-2007, 07:16 AM
Thanks Chris! While I don't always completely agree with your perspective, it seems very well thought out and logical to me.

Best,
Ron

Budd
07-25-2007, 07:46 AM
I'll second Ron's comment. Chris, even if I don't always agree with your conclusions, I very much appreciate the "research" (in aikido and other arts, through drills, sparring, etc.) you (and Mr. Varin) are putting into practice in order to form them.

I tend to make it out to the Bay Area (Oakland) each year. If you guys are available and close enough - I'd love to get together to vist/play and trade notes.

Best,

ChrisHein
07-25-2007, 09:37 AM
I tend to make it out to the Bay Area (Oakland) each year. If you guys are available and close enough - I'd love to get together to vist/play and trade notes.

Best,

Our school is open to anyone interested in training. You're welcome any time.

Budd
07-25-2007, 09:48 AM
Excellent, thanks! Probably won't be until next winter/spring, but I'll definitely follow up with you by PM at that point.

Best,

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-26-2007, 08:52 PM
This evening, I ended a reasonably long non-training spell (a month or more?), and did aikido with some friends who are also "stranded" from a dojo post-college. I tried out Chris' suggestion, and found the results pretty striking. (Although of course this is only a preliminary experience.)

We started out as for normal grappling, but one person had a tanto slipped into his or her belt. (We began with maybe slightly closer than normal kamae distance.) We pretty much stopped it as soon as one person had clearly got the knife and could strike with it, in part to avoid injuries. Aikido techniques appeared seemingly very naturally, and worked out rather well. (I felt that there was also a lot of room for judo-style sweeps.)

We also tried other setups, like the person having the tanto out and the other person having a grab of their choice. We also tried both people having tanto in their belts. We then did some with a bokken in the belt instead. The bokken actually seemed nearly useless at close range; also, body grapples seemed much more functional for the unarmed person.

Now, I should emphasize that we were a trio of aikido people, so we're arguably more prone to expecting the techniques to happen -- we might have been biased that way. I might end up trying this with a friendly wrestler or BJJer too -- I'm anxious about it appearing to be a challenge rather than an experiment, but I think it might work out with some of them. (I'll see if they wander up to us in free grappling and ask what we're doing with that wooden knife, perhaps.) I suspect there might be a wrestling way of doing this too -- but it's possible that it will end up looking a lot like aikido.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-26-2007, 09:00 PM
I'll also add that, as Chris has argued so cogently, aikido worked probably better for the person with the tanto than the person without. It was easy to forget this, and we had to remind ourselves periodically at first.

ChrisHein
07-27-2007, 12:55 AM
HA, GREAT!

Like I've said before, you don't have to take my word for it, train it and see what happens!

Awesome Paul, please post any further results.

Tonight we trained multiple people against one armed person. A practice like this quickly gives you an understanding of why Aikido's techniques are useful and necessary.

CitoMaramba
07-27-2007, 01:09 AM
Action shot from Ken-no-tebiki practice:

http://www.aikidojournal.com/images/contrib/nishio_06.jpg

Tori: Nishio Sensei
Uke: Shishiya Sensei

Aikibu
07-27-2007, 09:47 AM
Cool Shot of Sensei there Cito. :)

William Hazen

jennifer paige smith
07-28-2007, 12:20 PM
Our school is open to anyone interested in training. You're welcome any time.

I'd love to coordinate with that visit if it were possible. Let me know if any travel plans develop ( I'm a barger). Otherwise, I might just mosey on down by my lonesome if that is acceptable etiquette in your neck of the woods.

You are all welcome to come train with me at any of my dojo, if you would like. They're all in Santa Cruz, so it's a nice destination for a mini-vacation. (If you'e poet and you don't know it. Oops, hope I didn't blow it. Computer getting the better of me...best not to throw it....) Ha-Ha. Just kidding around.:D

Anyhow, I'd sincerely love to meet and train with any and all of you. I hope the opportunity comes soon.

Thanks, Jen