PDA

View Full Version : The bad uke that I am... BUT??


Please visit our sponsor:
 

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!


Tijani1150
07-14-2007, 07:07 PM
Hi All

I was an uke for this guy who will be testing for his 3rd Kyu in two weeks and he couldn't execute some techniques or lets say the techniques didn't manifest to his satisfaction nor to the satisfaction of the observing 5th Dan shidoin because I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)

HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?

Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

Nick P.
07-14-2007, 07:25 PM
"HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?"

Depends - is that the commonly taught doctrin by your sensei? If it is, then obviously yes, they should.
If it isn't, you are applying your own criteria on what is being taught by the sensei.

I think uke, no matter how they are taught, has a hard job. They have to balance giving firm, commited attacks so their partner (not opponent, not student, partner) may learn how to deal with attack, and on the other hand they have to give their partner the opportunity to learn, even if that means sometimes falling when the technic was not 100% effective.

What I have no patience for, personaly, is an uke who starts their attack with full-fledged intention of doing me harm and then switches over to "I know what is coming next so I'm going to spoil your technic". That is just dirty pool.

My $0.02

Tijani1150
07-14-2007, 07:35 PM
What I have no patience for, personaly, is an uke who starts their attack with full-fledged intention of doing me harm and then switches over to "I know what is coming next so I'm going to spoil your technic". That is just dirty pool.

My $0.02

well I hate to defend me self here but if I must then it is never my intention to spoil a technique, you see there is a difference bewteen intending to spoil a technique and playing along with a technique which when execututed you hardly feel its impact on you as an uke and SPECIALY when it is done by someone preparing for his 3rd kyu I MEAN COME ONNNNN

I expect a 4th kyu to adapt his technique execution better than he did even when he saw that I wasn't moving as I should as an uke due to my inexperience instead of looking at the observing shidoin with a frustrated helpless look.

Nick P.
07-14-2007, 08:22 PM
I apologize, I did not mean that YOU were spoiling the technique; I was refering to in general, not you. Sorry if that was not clear in my post.

I ask again, however, as you did not adress my question; what is the indication of a succesful technique at your dojo?

Let's get specific for a moment.

On a pain scale of one to ten, one being sitting at your keyboard now and ten being the most painful technique you have ever received from anyone (any rank), what average rating would you have given this partners' techniques during your exchange with them? This I think will help the rest of us answer you with a more helpful opinion.

As for the difference in skills between a third and fourth kyu, I think you are expecting too much, as that is only what, one year?

The only difference between a junior and more senior student when they cannot execute a technic well is the senior student will just keep trying or stop; they trust the instructor/shidoin/shihan will help them IF THE TEACHER feels it is neccessary...sometimes being frustrated is part of the learning and testing process.

Trust your seniors, including the shidoin; you just concentrate on being the best uke you can be. If it is unclear as to how to accomplish that, ask your teacher.

DonMagee
07-14-2007, 08:29 PM
When you know exactly what technique is about to be done, you should be able to resist it 100%. That would not be the time to test the technique.

Now in a free form or randori type training session, if you resisted or did not go along with the technique, that is perfectly ok, because the nage's job should be to blend with you and change as you change.

It's like guys in judo who stiff arm uchi komi. Nobody is learning anything. If you were stiff arming me, I would just do throws that lend themselves to that stiff arm.

In a test, he is demonstrating throws. Your job is to make him look good. If it was sparing, that would be different. He was asked to do a throw, so he can't adjust to your resistance by doing another throw.

mathewjgano
07-14-2007, 09:19 PM
HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?

Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

There's a fine line between a learning opportunity and a waste of time when it comes to being even mildly uncooperative, and it's not always an easy task to find the happy middle-ground. It's also funny how we can unconsciously change our posture/movement from time to time which then prevents nage from doing their prescribed movement. It's hard to say what your particular situation is without seeing it firsthand, but I do know that in my own experience (limited though it is), when I've encountered some folks who obviously try to be difficult, they're not really attacking me well. They're not using complimentary muscles which makes them stiff and the only way I know to handle that is with atemi. Either that or they're simply too fast for me and don't give me a chance to get a sense of the timing. In either case I'm learning something, but sometimes uke simply isn't attacking right. That might sound funny, but when you're practicing something specific, there can be a right and wrong way to attack, regardless of whether or not the attack is potent enough to overcome nage.
Take care, dude (I'm assuming you weren't calling us "duhdz";) ).

Tijani1150
07-14-2007, 09:20 PM
On a pain scale of one to ten, one being sitting at your keyboard now and ten being the most painful technique you have ever received from anyone (any rank), what average rating would you have given this partners' techniques during your exchange with them? This I think will help the rest of us answer you with a more helpful opinion.

I would say 5

The only difference between a junior and more senior student when they cannot execute a technic well is the senior student will just keep trying or stop; they trust the instructor/shidoin/shihan will help them IF THE TEACHER feels it is neccessary...sometimes being frustrated is part of the learning and testing process.

actualy the shidoin observing did correct my uke position as well as kept reminding my partner that it is good experience for him to apply his technique's on a less experienced uke as I am so he experiences working with different uke's of different sizes and balancing ability the thing that concerned me is his in ability to make the technique work.

I guess this leads me to another question: What are the limits to which an uke resists or co-operates in order to help his/her partner to properly apply a technique? What is the middle ground here?

ElizabethCastor
07-14-2007, 09:30 PM
Hi All
I was an uke for this guy who will be testing for his 3rd Kyu in two weeks and he couldn't execute some techniques or lets say the techniques didn't manifest to his satisfaction nor to the satisfaction of the observing 5th Dan shidoin because I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)

HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?

Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

Hey Ahmed!

There are a few things in your post that make for good, meaty aikido topics:
--the etiquette of perparing for tests (or helping others prepare)
--the etiquette of resistance
--the etiquette of accepting advice from senior ranks and sensei
--YOUR expectations about PARTNER'S "ability"

Your job in helping your partner for test prep should be to give "acceptable" resistance. In my mind that's around 50% maybe at your club its higher/toughter/stronger. But there's no need to go at "kill" force. Yes.. the bigger idea is to use aikido to defend yourself but its also about working together even in the face of hostility.

If you are asked to give less resistance by your partner AND a shidoin you should follow their advice, for two reasons... First, the 3rd kyu may be having troubles with footwork or some of the finer details (hips/hands/etc.) and your resistance is interfering with his specific practice needs. Second, and more importantly, you are passing up on a perfect opportunity to learn the ukemi that you admittedly need. Ukemi isn't just about getting knocked over, or even falling over. Ukemi is about keeping yourself safe and following in such a way that you can protect yourself. If you resist in a street fight you may find yourself out-muscled and you may just get stabbed, shot or otherwise "disbatched" because of your resistance. "Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is..." keep in mind that it doesn't always work like that. That's why there is henka-waza and why ikkyo switches to nikkyo or sankyo because uke resists and a different technique must be applied. If you resist too hard your may find yourself taking a jiujunage breakfall.:eek:

I may be out of line asking... but what rank are you? When I read your post I got a sense that you are newer to the dojo or around 5th kyu since you admit "I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)." I have been wrong befre and I may be dead wrong now, but don't worry about what 3rd kyu SHOULD be able to do. Focus on what you are doing or are being asked to do you don't have to intentionally make stuff harder.

Good luck and keep practicing!
E

Tijani1150
07-14-2007, 10:10 PM
Hey Ahmed!

There are a few things in your post that make for good, meaty aikido topics:
--the etiquette of perparing for tests (or helping others prepare)
--the etiquette of resistance
--the etiquette of accepting advice from senior ranks and sensei
--YOUR expectations about PARTNER'S "ability"

Your job in helping your partner for test prep should be to give "acceptable" resistance. In my mind that's around 50% maybe at your club its higher/toughter/stronger. But there's no need to go at "kill" force. Yes.. the bigger idea is to use aikido to defend yourself but its also about working together even in the face of hostility.

If you are asked to give less resistance by your partner AND a shidoin you should follow their advice, for two reasons... First, the 3rd kyu may be having troubles with footwork or some of the finer details (hips/hands/etc.) and your resistance is interfering with his specific practice needs. Second, and more importantly, you are passing up on a perfect opportunity to learn the ukemi that you admittedly need. Ukemi isn't just about getting knocked over, or even falling over. Ukemi is about keeping yourself safe and following in such a way that you can protect yourself. If you resist in a street fight you may find yourself out-muscled and you may just get stabbed, shot or otherwise "disbatched" because of your resistance. "Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is..." keep in mind that it doesn't always work like that. That's why there is henka-waza and why ikkyo switches to nikkyo or sankyo because uke resists and a different technique must be applied. If you resist too hard your may find yourself taking a jiujunage breakfall.:eek:

I may be out of line asking... but what rank are you? When I read your post I got a sense that you are newer to the dojo or around 5th kyu since you admit "I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)." I have been wrong befre and I may be dead wrong now, but don't worry about what 3rd kyu SHOULD be able to do. Focus on what you are doing or are being asked to do you don't have to intentionally make stuff harder.

Good luck and keep practicing!
E

Thank you for a beautifully put advice Elizabeth as for my Aikido experience well I only started Aikido last September however I only consider my self started real training this past May due to the high quality training and instructors of the New Mexico Aikido Institute.

Dirk Hanss
07-15-2007, 02:13 AM
Hi All

I was an uke for this guy who will be testing for his 3rd Kyu in two weeks and he couldn't execute some techniques or lets say the techniques didn't manifest to his satisfaction nor to the satisfaction of the observing 5th Dan shidoin because I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)

HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?

Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

Just my 2 cts:
I do not expect someone being tested for 3rd kyu to be able to execute every technique effectively, regardless how co-operative or resistent uke is.
But I do assume a godan observer to recognise, how the reaction of candidate meets his expectations in footage, principles, and knowledge regardless how the uke acts.

Nevertheless there are exempts: if the candidate chose a dojo mate as uke and preparde the examination wiith him, he should know, how to treat him, and/but uke should not change his behaviour from prparation to testing.

Having several techniques not worked in the test ceates a good portion of psycological stress for the candidate. Some people get problems then. The examiner then could take him out and let him have a break before continuing the test with another person.

I do not know the situation, so just in general: unless specified otherwise, uke in an examination should flow with the technique - not acting, i.e. going where he should regardless what nage does, but move, when he feels, where nage wants him to move, even if it does not feel mandatory. so just a littleb more gently than in normal class. The examiner (committee) would see nevertheless, if the performance is satisfactory according to the expected level. And if uke is too resistent or too much dancing, he just will be replaced.

In any case it is the commission or tester, who decides, if the technique is good enough, not uke. So you don't have to blame yourself. But you can always ask yourself, if you would help your fellow aikidoka a little bit more next time. You cannot help them showing a better technique during the test, but you could help them to feel more comfortable and thus being free to perform better. And then they can never blame you for not passing ;)

Best regards

Dirk

jyoung
07-15-2007, 02:28 AM
just to add my little words...i would have to agree with elizabeth 100%...also with Don

what we learn as we train...these techniques...have to be practiced over and over...and one thing i have learned as i've trained is that sometimes the instructor is looking for different things in a testing...perhaps he was hoping that this person's footwork would have improved moreso than how they were applying a certain technique...i personally want to know when my technique does not produce a desired result...i WANT uke to tell me...'i dont feel it'...but not necessarily at testing time...
as others have stated...that testing is a good time for you to show off your skills as an uke...not by resisting as much as possible...but by showing a good, dedicated attack and a nice, safe fall; that in itself can take years to get good at.

good luck training and as my instructor would say...'remember to breath!!' hehe

jyoung
07-15-2007, 02:41 AM
sorry...one other thing..

i don't claim that this is everyone's criteria for testing, but my instructor often said that he only allowed people to test when he already knew they were ready...he often told us that the purpose (in his way of thinking and teaching) of testing and demonstrations was to create a stressfull environment...according to him that was a good reason for the testing....now that might not be your instructor's philosophy...but it might be a good idea to have in your head at testing time...

Amir Krause
07-15-2007, 02:55 AM
I guess this leads me to another question: What are the limits to which an uke resists or co-operates in order to help his/her partner to properly apply a technique? What is the middle ground here?

Hi Ahmed

You admit to being a "bad uke". hte point is, being a good Uke is a very difficult task, as can be seen in the following discussions (and many like them I missed):
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10924
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10191
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11306
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10291
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=9177

However, while being a good Uke requires as much learning as being a good Tori, and, at least in my own opinion, is just as important for your martial capability.

One should not mistake and think Nage has no responsibility over the quality of his technique. This might be next to impossible in some cases, where Uke uses is pre-knowledge of the intended technique and makes significant changes to the situation, changes which are often done un-intentional and without either side noticing (if both of you are relatively beginners, and 4th Q is still a beginner) such as minor weight shifts or a half-step, etc.

Aikido techniques are trained and demonstrated (including tests) as Kata. In a kata situation, each person has a very specific role, down to his responses to pressure. A change in some part of the Kata should result in a change in other parts as well (if you pull instead of push when he pressures your grasping hand, he should do something entirely different).

At 4th Q, I think calling Sensei for help, as in correcting both sides, as Sensei sees fit, is a wise solution.

Enjoy the practice :)
Amir

Aristeia
07-15-2007, 03:08 AM
From a post I made a while ago on another forum

"A good uke will fall for you but at the limit of your ability. In other words, they will not just fall for you but make sure you are doing certain things at an appropriate level before they give you the ukemi. They will not just block you until you've got it perfect because then you would never learn. Each time they train with you they will extend you a little bit more by moving the point and the critereia for giving you their ukemi until finally they're only giving it when the technique is real world ready. "

A test for 3rd kyu is not the time to test real world readiness. If we keep claiming Aikido takes 10 years to apply, 3rd kyu is well before that. The question I would ask is how much is this about testing your partner and how much is it about your own desire to prove you have chosen an effective martial art?
3rd kyu is too soon for what you're talking about imo.

Jonshez
07-15-2007, 07:43 AM
Hi Ahmed,
some great answers here, I'll add my thoughts as another newer aikidoka.
There was confusion for me regarding 'resistance' and 'natural behaviour'. It's only recently I realised the difference between the two.
I had believed, as it appears you do, that if technique wasn't working then nage was applying technique incorrectly. When training though the situation is artificial to create a scenario in which the technique is the correct technique to use. That might mean that by reacting naturally and spontaneously as uke that the technique being practiced becomes the wrong technique for the situation (if you find yourself following in shihonage for example). As uke we have a responsibility ensure our actions allow nage to practice the technique.
If it was a genuine defence in the real world, nage would spontaneously and dynamically change technique to suit the 'natural' reactions of the attacker (shihonage becomes ikkyo as you follow the turn to continue the example).
So by 'reacting naturally' we are removing an opportunity for nage to practice the technique we are working on (in the example - shihonage).
'Resistance' however is different (in my opinion at least). If nage is applying the correct technique, and we have helped to create a technique friendly situation but you aren't feeling the effectiveness of technique then you should resist appropriately. By that I mean not obediantly drop to the floor in advance of the pain of nikkyo for example. In that situation you have a responsibility to nage to understand that the technique isn't being effectively applied so they can assess and improve.

I hope I was able to explain the difference as I see it well!

Jon

Nafis Zahir
07-15-2007, 07:49 AM
Hi All

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

I did that once to someone who was taking a NiDan test, and I got blasted for it! After that, I try to just do the best job as uke I can for the nage and not try and make it difficult for them during their test. However, I will call them to account during regular classes, especially those who are in the ranks of the Yudansha.

dalen7
07-15-2007, 08:20 AM
It seems that he should be able to move you...after all the uke on the street isnt going to 'co-operate' and say: "Now how was I supposed to stand?" :D

From what I have experienced, I naturally move as my wrist is be contorted in ways it should not.

Uke shouldn't move if its not working...cause that means that something is not being executed right.

You could go away in delusion that you know the technique, and you meet the guy on the street and find he is staring at you while you try to figure out how to properly execute sankyo. ;)

I have only had 17 lessons, but the reason I started was because I felt the pain, and effectiveness when ikkyo, etc was applied.

Does it mean that its good for a small person against a bigger person? Well I train with a 2nd kyu who is bigger and stronger than me...some things just dont work, and I have to find an 'alternative'.
In the street it would be called pick up a brick/throw and run. :D

Peace

Dalen

justin
07-15-2007, 08:35 AM
"and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..
So what do you dudZ think about this?"

i think you should be a tad careful with that mind frame some partners might see this as an opening to turn the technique into something else you might not see coming and in turn injure yourself

Amir Krause
07-15-2007, 09:20 AM
...after all the uke on the street isnt going to 'co-operate' and say: "Now how was I supposed to stand?"


This "uke on the street" of yours is also not going to know which technique is coming, and one should be able to choose the right technique for the situation, rather then being limited by the Kata.
And why do you think your Uke will simply hold strongly to your hand, and resist and interfere rather then leaving it and strike you?
Aikido and all other M.A. have each defined a certain methodology for teaching. If you wish to change it, be sure you are of the scale of inventing a new M.A.

After almost 17 years of practice, I automatically adjust the techniques to the situation, and use variants. Only recently, I had my sensei calling me after I demonstrated a technique to the group (he was sick) and asking me which of the variants I showed were the beginners supposed to follow?
And I was demonstrating with a good Uke (of my own level) and we both "simply" responded in accordance to the fluctuation in the situation created by slightly varying timing and position.
So I guess you can see my point about the "uke on the street": Aiki is more about adjusting the solution to the problem then it is about the techniques (most of which may be found in any Jujutsu style). You are not on the street, you are practicing Kata.

I often work with beginners, and one of the common situations is them trying to "test the system" by trying to give me hardship. Those beginners often completely miss the situation for the technique, and create a state much better suited to something else. Knowing their need to feel “aikido works”, I normally give them a taste of that, often selecting some more “interesting” variation :D
But the after this “first test”, I will explain to my Uke that he has changed the situation, and that I would like to practice as sensei instructed, so would he mind to get back on course.
In some cases, too much force is such a change. For example, if one practices a technique that is only suited to early release from side neck hold, and due to inexperience, the technique is not practiced in a dynamic, but rather Uke grabs and then the technique is to start. If Uke were to resist with strength, the early release technique would not work, it is not suited to this situation, and a different technique would be called for.
P.S. Personally I love this testing, and definitely prefer it to those who fall to the belt (I can stand and do nothing; they fear the BB around my waist and so throw themselves at the floor anyhow, as if the belt ever did anything).

Amir

dalen7
07-15-2007, 12:05 PM
This "uke on the street" of yours is also not going to know which technique is coming, and one should be able to choose the right technique for the situation, rather then being limited by the Kata.
And why do you think your Uke will simply hold strongly to your hand, and resist and interfere rather then leaving it and strike you?
Aikido and all other M.A. have each defined a certain methodology for teaching. If you wish to change it, be sure you are of the scale of inventing a new M.A.

Whoa grasshopper! I see that its becoming norm for people to take things I say out of context from my intent... ;)

I didnt say anything about changing anything...or starting my own art.
Again, my post was in response to the original poster.

If you want to know that your technique works - (and please, for the love of God, I hope this doesnt lead into a rabbit trail - from past post I can see how someone can miss the base point) - again, when someone does a move on you and the pain can be felt, you will tend to flow with that, and it wont be 'fake' (or resist it and try to break free...which will cause more damage, especially with tissues, joint manipultaion.) -

Thats it...all I wanted to say.
I put sankyo on a newbie (even newer than me) and nothing was felt, I did it differently and the pain was there like it was supposed to be, and they 'went with it' not to show off, but because they flow with whats happening. (and yes they can break out etc.)

I dunno - doubt this would clarify it any better. :)
But again, as to the uke on the street - that was in reference to the point that its nice to know/feel what works and doesnt. If I didnt I wouldnt be in Aikido now. - I would think its bogus by most of the comments I read and hear from BJJ, etc.

- and maybe in summary, Im looking at one part of a pic...and your looking at the grander scheme, so perhaps that is where we crossed paths in communication. ;)

- read back through to make sure I hit the basic points to help clarify, and I saw something else.
Yes, I do realize that you can change, etc. - thats more of what was mentioned above...another piece of the puzzle. - but as the original poster pointed out and I talked about...if I cant know my sankyo works...then it doesnt matter the rest of what you can do to change.

Again, remember...I am a very beginner...its easy to forget that we have to build up to where you are at to quickly change. Me quickly changing to another technique that I cant execute well will not help me at all.

I think that is the clearest I can summarize.

Peace

Dalen

jennifer paige smith
07-15-2007, 03:11 PM
Hi All

I was an uke for this guy who will be testing for his 3rd Kyu in two weeks and he couldn't execute some techniques or lets say the techniques didn't manifest to his satisfaction nor to the satisfaction of the observing 5th Dan shidoin because I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)

HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?

Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

This dude(?) has 2 questions first:
1) What is your current rank
2) Was it your sempai who made the observation that your ukemi was poor?
Now, this dude thinks if your teacher is interested in seeing how the 3rd kyu-ho is doing in his/her basic form at this point then your resistance may have been a distraction and difficult to determine anything beyond your resistance; which then makes the moment about you and your training and not your efforts to support the learning environment of another student. If your teacher is interested in seeing how well y'all do in resistance training as a measure of progress than you probably were encouraged, if you were appropriate.
But, what I hear in the post above is you making a lot of determinations about what things should be and how they should be and why they should be that. A determination the we reserve for the Sensei. In my school that attitude would be monitored closely because it is considered a lack of understanding. This is a common learning point for mid-kyu grades in ukemi( and all practice).
The job of uke is a lot like a laborer digging holes. You just do it. You don't build the whole temple. You dig the foundation.And you do it like you're going to have to do it for your whole life; without a lot of extra resistance. And you don't alter the plan sketch while you're at it.

Nick P.
07-15-2007, 06:24 PM
This dude(?) has 2 questions...

Rock-on, Dude.

Tijani1150
07-15-2007, 10:47 PM
This dude(?) has 2 questions first:
1) What is your current rank
2) Was it your sempai who made the observation that your ukemi was poor?
Now, this dude thinks if your teacher is interested in seeing how the 3rd kyu-ho is doing in his/her basic form at this point then your resistance may have been a distraction and difficult to determine anything beyond your resistance; which then makes the moment about you and your training and not your efforts to support the learning environment of another student. If your teacher is interested in seeing how well y'all do in resistance training as a measure of progress than you probably were encouraged, if you were appropriate.
But, what I hear in the post above is you making a lot of determinations about what things should be and how they should be and why they should be that. A determination the we reserve for the Sensei. In my school that attitude would be monitored closely because it is considered a lack of understanding. This is a common learning point for mid-kyu grades in ukemi( and all practice).
The job of uke is a lot like a laborer digging holes. You just do it. You don't build the whole temple. You dig the foundation.And you do it like you're going to have to do it for your whole life; without a lot of extra resistance. And you don't alter the plan sketch while you're at it.

maybe before analysing my pre determinations and attitudes you should read Dalen's words below to get my point:


...after all the uke on the street isnt going to 'co-operate' and say: "Now how was I supposed to stand?"

From what I have experienced, I naturally move as my wrist is be contorted in ways it should not.

Uke shouldn't move if its not working...cause that means that something is not being executed right.

You could go away in delusion that you know the technique, and you meet the guy on the street and find he is staring at you while you try to figure out how to properly execute sankyo.

Amir Krause
07-16-2007, 01:46 AM
Ahmed, Dalen

You are both making the same basic mistake over and over:
the dojo is not the street

* In the dojo you learn, in the street you fight.
* In the dojo you are obliged to a Kata - specific situation and specific technical response, down to the variation. In the street you adjust the solution to the current situation and may change techniques in mid-stride. (the point I tried to explain before)
* In the dojo Uke knows the Kata in advance, and may prepare and deflect the technique before it even started. In the street the attacker is not supposed to know you practice M.A. at all, let alone expect your next move.

For these reasons, and quite a few others, a beginner Uke in the dojo should not try to imitate the supposed attacker response in the street (unless he is told otherwise).
This is particularly true for a student preparing to a test. In the test, sensei will examine the technique quality and not you. Therefore, while preparing to the exam, one wishes to polish his techniques to improve his current level.
At such a point, I often asked people to be as soft as following as possible - reflect my actions as a mirror would. This way, I will see what I am doing. If Uke starts to enter his own agenda, the mirror will be distorted and I will have to sort out my actions from his responses, a much more difficult task leading to less efficient polishing.

I know beginners often wish to see the "street effectiveness" of Aikido at every step. It is a great passion, but a wrong way to learn, at least by Aikido methodology. If you wish to feel the "street effectiveness", find a suitable Tori - Yundasha or so, ask him before hand, and then let him play with you :D

Amir

PeterR
07-16-2007, 02:06 AM
Funny where I practice - for shinsa only yudansha are uke. When there are not enough yudansha, lets say for a practice exam in a smaller dojo, uke should be at least two grades higher but I guess that depends on what you have to work with.

It is unheard of for shinsa to be done with lower ranked uke.

Proper uke is difficult and even more so than the tori role needs experience.

Dirk Hanss
07-16-2007, 03:32 AM
If you want to know that your technique works - (and please, for the love of God, I hope this doesnt lead into a rabbit trail - from past post I can see how someone can miss the base point) - again, when someone does a move on you and the pain can be felt, you will tend to flow with that, and it wont be 'fake' (or resist it and try to break free...which will cause more damage, especially with tissues, joint manipultaion.) -

Thats it...all I wanted to say.
I put sankyo on a newbie (even newer than me) and nothing was felt, I did it differently and the pain was there like it was supposed to be, and they 'went with it' not to show off, but because they flow with whats happening. (and yes they can break out etc.)

Hi Dalen,
while it is running somewhat off topic as testing is not street testing:
I understand what you are saying and yes, verifying the effectiveness of techniques is valid training. Some dojo do it some do not, so discussion, if it is necessary might go on somewhere else.

You uke feels the pain it is not fake - agreed. And if uke does not move at all the technique is not effective enough.
But if uke does not feel any pain and does not know, why he felt, it does not need to be a fake. It might be just a good and effective technique.
And if a beginner uke moves according to the pain, the technique does not at all need to be effective. It might just say that the uke is foolish. An experienced uke could be resistent in an inteligent way, say just change a little bit in the kamae or twist the arm and nage is not able to do any harm on him. Or even better, instead of being resistent he could flow with nage's technique and just turn it into aa wonderful counter.

Peaceful regards

Dirk

Aristeia
07-16-2007, 05:14 AM
Ahmed, Dalen

You are both making the same basic mistake over and over:
the dojo is not the street

* In the dojo you learn, in the street you fight.
* In the dojo you are obliged to a Kata - specific situation and specific technical response, down to the variation. In the street you adjust the solution to the current situation and may change techniques in mid-stride. (the point I tried to explain before)
* In the dojo Uke knows the Kata in advance, and may prepare and deflect the technique before it even started. In the street the attacker is not supposed to know you practice M.A. at all, let alone expect your next move.

For these reasons, and quite a few others, a beginner Uke in the dojo should not try to imitate the supposed attacker response in the street (unless he is told otherwise).
This is particularly true for a student preparing to a test. In the test, sensei will examine the technique quality and not you. Therefore, while preparing to the exam, one wishes to polish his techniques to improve his current level.
At such a point, I often asked people to be as soft as following as possible - reflect my actions as a mirror would. This way, I will see what I am doing. If Uke starts to enter his own agenda, the mirror will be distorted and I will have to sort out my actions from his responses, a much more difficult task leading to less efficient polishing.

I know beginners often wish to see the "street effectiveness" of Aikido at every step. It is a great passion, but a wrong way to learn, at least by Aikido methodology. If you wish to feel the "street effectiveness", find a suitable Tori - Yundasha or so, ask him before hand, and then let him play with you :D

Amir

Post of the week imo.

Nick P.
07-16-2007, 06:57 AM
So what do you dudZ think about this?

So, based on your responses to those who have posted their thoughts, you are not so much looking for our thoughts on the topic, as much as you are looking for everyone to mirror your opinion.

Looks like you have a few that do, but most do not share your opinion.

Based on your logic, a fifth kyu (or whatever the lowest rank is at any particular dojo) should be able to throw someone who starte just the week before? I have seen many, many, many kyu tests by some very gifted and talented nages doing their first, second and third exams, and that scenario borders on impossible.

Mary Eastland
07-16-2007, 07:37 AM
"So what do you dudZ think about this?"[/QUOTE] :)

I would have sat you right down and called up another uke.

Mary

Basia Halliop
07-16-2007, 08:13 AM
Personally, I don't see anything wrong with it if it's what your nage wants and finds helpful. If you find that useful yourself, and find that it provides a feedback that helps you, invite your ukes to do it when you're nage. But do try not to impose your own preferences or learning style on other people. It can be really frustrating if you're trying to work on a particular aspect of your training, and your partner keeps 'taking over' and trying to force you to work on something else that they are personally more interested in.

PeterR
07-16-2007, 08:15 AM
This was not only training - but a shinsa.

Marc Abrams
07-16-2007, 08:51 AM
I am very clear with my students that the role of the uke is teacher. The question arises as to what kind of teacher you become. Are you providing resistance to help that person succeed, or to demonstrate your superiority? What are you allowing the nage to learn? Amir clearly pointed out that the dojo is not the street, nor is an Aikido dojo and environment in which kumite should exist (which runs directly counter to the "heart of Aikido). The uke also has an important learning opportunity by serving in that role. At it's most basic level, the uke learns how to receive techniques safely. It never ceases to amaze me how some will try as hard as they can to "fail" somebody's technique. Typically, the power ends up hurting themselves when they do not have the sensitivity to realize the injury is about to occur. The alternate is how hard the receive technique that opens up by their unidirectional resistance. At a second level, the uke learns how to remain safe and protected when sent to the ground. At a third level, the uke can learn how to release locked muscles so as to be able to re-align the body so as to escape from the execution of a technique (this needs to be mutually agreed upon, conscious practice). Finally, the uke can learn how to reverse a technique as it is being executed (this also needs to to mutually agreed upon).

Testing time is not the time to let your ego influence the other person's testing experience. The teacher will be well aware of areas that the student needs to work on. We do not need the uke to try and show us what we can typically already see.

The Aikido environment requires implicit and explicit trust in our training partners so that we can mutually help each other's techniques improve. People who typically apply purposeless resistance usually get hurt when a person then applies technique or response to the situation in a manner that fully returns the resistance to the owner. This is what happens on the street, NOT IN THE DOJO.

marc abrams

jennifer paige smith
07-16-2007, 11:03 AM
maybe before analysing my pre determinations and attitudes you should read Dalen's words below to get my point:

Letter from my dojo if you trained with me:

Thank you for training with us for this short time.
Sensei Jen

Qatana
07-16-2007, 11:19 AM
Clearly the beginners in this thread are far more knowledgeable about proper ukemi, and proper Test ukemi,than the several Sensei who have replied.
Of course, once they have to test with an uke twice their size giving "real" attacks thay might change their minds.

Paul Sanderson-Cimino
07-16-2007, 11:28 AM
Another danger of insufficient randori/jiyuwaza/sparring in aikido -- people start doing silly pseudo-sparring in places where it doesn't particularly belong.

I'd say that not throwing yourself through the air is appropriate in a test -- that is, they should have to really do the technique. Then again, uke needs to supply the right energy (things like trying to always face nage, trying to regain balance, and so forth) as though it were being done "for real". This includes, in my opinion, not "cheating" by anticipating what technique they'll do.

Tijani1150
07-16-2007, 08:53 PM
And if a beginner uke moves according to the pain, the technique does not at all need to be effective. It might just say that the uke is foolish. An experienced uke could be resistent in an inteligent way, say just change a little bit in the kamae or twist the arm and nage is not able to do any harm on him. Or even better, instead of being resistent he could flow with nage's technique and just turn it into aa wonderful counter.

Peaceful regards

Dirk

thanks drik very wisely put

jennifer paige smith
07-20-2007, 11:08 AM
Rock-on, Dude.

"Party on, Wayne."
"Party on, Garth."

Carlos Rivera
07-22-2007, 09:24 PM
Hi All
Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

Ahmed,

I do not know you personally, nor what rank or martial arts experience you have. But you still have a lot to learn about Aikido and martial arts. I can tell you that with that attitude or disposition the "welcome mat" would be taken off from under your feet in other places, and in very traditional dojos like in Iwama, Japan, you would hear a very loud "zenbu dame!" (huge and inexcusable mistake) and would be shown the way out- never to return again.

My advice is that Aikido is not a "rock star" style or a "hey, let me show you what a bad_ss I am." The street is the street, and the dojo is for practice- I can tell you that from experience. If you want to test drive your Aikido on the street, then you are not practicing true Aikido nor true Budo. Maybe you need to check other styles that suit your personality or expectations.

Being a good uke means you provide honest atemi, honest grabs, and not trying to showboat at the expense of whoever is testing- that's really bad martial arts etiquette. By honest, I mean there should be a certain degree of resistance but not to the point where a brawl breaks out. By the same token, you are not expected to fall like a house of cards. But being stubborn like a mule may lead to injury or maybe no one will want to train with you. Eventually, you could get a) a "reputation" or b) a "reputation" and no training partners or even worse, a dojo to train at.

Learn from your sempai (your senior students), and ask your Sensei. Read the advice from Sensei (like Jennifer Paige Smith Sensei, Lynn Seiser Sensei and others) that routinely post on Aikiweb. You would also benefit from some reading; pick up Progressive Aikido (Ueshiba Doshu), Aikido and the New Warrior (Strozzi Sensei) or Aikido for Life (Homma Sensei). Get on the mat, and practice until you don't remember anything but the technique, your breathing and proper execution. Leave your issues out by the door. You can be humble without being weak, and you can be assertive without screaming at the top of your lungs.

I can tell you that anyone can win a brawl with whatever tool they use (knife, gun, taser, tac baton, shank, etc.) but to use Aikido in its highest state is a whole different ballgame where you walk away unscathed without even getting into a fight. You live another day, and save your energy for what really matters.

Get on the mat. Practice true Aikido.

:circle: :square: :triangle:

dalen7
07-23-2007, 12:00 AM
My advice is that Aikido is not a "rock star" style or a "hey, let me show you what a bad_ss I am." The street is the street, and the dojo is for practice- I can tell you that from experience. If you want to test drive your Aikido on the street, then you are not practicing true Aikido nor true Budo. Maybe you need to check other styles that suit your personality or expectations.

Being a good uke means you provide honest atemi, honest grabs, and not trying to showboat at the expense of whoever is testing- that's really bad martial arts etiquette. By honest, I mean there should be a certain degree of resistance but not to the point where a brawl breaks out. By the same token, you are not expected to fall like a house of cards. But being stubborn like a mule may lead to injury or maybe no one will want to train with you. Eventually, you could get a) a "reputation" or b) a "reputation" and no training partners or even worse, a dojo to train at.


Reading through all the post, as well as the above 2 paragraphs, Im beginning to think that perhaps there is a degree of misunderstanding going on between people participating in this thread. - again, the misunderstanding may be solely on my part. ;)

but...if Im correct, I dont believe that the original poster was implying at all he wanted to show boat. And again, Im only saying that based on how I understood what he said, based on the perspective of my own (short) experience with Aikido.

i.e.
I just came back from a 4 day training camp.
I have bruises, etc., as well as a 2nd kyu that I know has hurt his foot as well as obtained bruises. - I happen to know that the 2nd kyu is trying to make sure of the effectiveness of the technique, and he is bigger and does not want people to have a false sence of belief that they can just toss him. (which is extremely good, and I know, as a smaller guy, I appreciate it. If I had delusions of grandeur I could get hurt worse if something actually truly happened in the street.)

Another example to back up the last sentence.
We did sumo/groundfight at the end for fun. Well I by nature am more for naturally wanting to hit and kick, etc. - but I went and tried (while both of us were on our knees) to apply some aikido techniques that I learned in the past 20 something days. Well the dude was a bit stronger than me and he got the knife from me and that was that. True I could have ended it fast as I had the knife, but I was more concerned - not with just poking the knife at him to claim victory, but to get the feel of iriminage or nikkyo, etc. working. I couldnt get any to work - doesnt mean they arent effective, but it shows me that I still have a ways to go in being fluent in how to make the techniques to work in the right situation. And again, this exercise was meant to use strength...and of course I went away with some marks on my body from some accidents like nail and clothes burn.

Also, the 1st kyus I practiced with from various cities were rough...the guys from my dojo are relatively safe to practice with, and I do appreciate that - there does seem to be a line of pain where you see it is effective vs. receiving bruises left from bad technique.

Point and case, my 4th dan and 3rd dan, when doing an example of taking a knife away (well actually a couple of them were like this...) I felt a quick sense of pain which forced me to drop it.
When I was doing it to someone esle, but making sure it was more the motion and not quick and hard to actually make the knife go - as it hurts, I was told to practice it correctly - this was not told to me harshly, but it was more out of concern to ensure that we would truly know and feel its effectiveness in the event that it actually happens.

So, again, there are levels...those that practice hard and cause 'injuries' because of bad technique...and those that practice more gently but build up so as not to cause injury.

At the end of the day it comes down to you and your uke communicating and understanding each others end goal - as well as the direction form your senseis.

Again, Im quite satisfied with my aikido training thus far.
I sit back and read of all the people saying that aikido is fake or rather is not effective until 100 years after taking lessons (not from here necessarily) and I have to sit back and wonder if its not due to how they are being instructed. - again, nothing wrong with it.

And I do realize the goal of Aikdio is not to go out and hurt someone as my senseis realize this also.

There goal isnt to hurt anyone either...but to ensure that we effectively know what it is we are beign taught.

Fact is, if you were to meet them on the street, they would appear genuinely happy, friendly, confident, and relaxed...just as in the dojo...and I guarantee you that true aikido would be reflected by them, as I doubt a fight would even start. - on the spiritual side of aikido, they tend to project from their attitude - not violence - but peace. And like draws like.

Have you ever watched that people that tend to get into fights or accidents have what eckhart tolle would describe as a similar degree of 'pain body'.

So again, Im trying to clarify, (and I know it depends on the individual), but there seems to be a clear difference in which someone can indeed go about learning aikido through 'feeling' the actual effectiveness of the moves, and at the same time build up the confidence and inner peace inside, which will result in resolving the fight before it happens.

Now, not sure how I did at explaining this, because I know it can be easy to go with one point here and have it taking out of its fuller context...which is what Im not sure I was able to adequately deliver.

But the general gist of this post was my response in saying that I do think that there is a misunderstanding in general happening when people talk of training 'hard'...its not about show boating, but just a difference in mindset, and overall perspective of milieu. :)

So, to finish up one other thought - at the end of the day, where I am training at - Im sure a shodan, etc. could walk away from a fight without ever needing to fight...but in a hypothetical situation where someone did decide to fight, I am pretty sure that the attacker would effectively be put down, unlike some of the comments that say aikdio is not effective. - One thing I know about Hungarians, when they set there mind to it, they are good at stuff. Check out some of the leading inventors, scientist, sports artist, musicians, etc. and you will see that Hungary has contributed a lot in all areas. - probably because of what I described above...their sense of diving into something fully.

I was reading an english article from Yugoslovia, which held a world event sometime ago for aikido...only 89 people showed up, including guest from other countries - which was a disappointment to them (marketing,) - but they commented that Sensei Imre from Hungary and his 'hungarian' team were the most effective and fluent in the aikido demonstrations they had.

- no, this isnt a plug for hungary - most of you know, i cant even speak the language...well im at the level of a 3 year old... ;)
This is a plug for saying, that Aikido seems to have more potential perhaps than what most realize.

But at the end of the day, its about what you need to take from it.
Not what I feel, or what someone else feels. You are training where you are at, because you are getting something that you want out of it...

Peace

Dalen

Tijani1150
07-23-2007, 12:49 AM
Reading through all the post, as well as the above 2 paragraphs, Im beginning to think that perhaps there is a degree of misunderstanding going on between people participating in this thread. - again, the misunderstanding may be solely on my part. ;)

but...if Im correct, I dont believe that the original poster was implying at all he wanted to show boat. And again, Im only saying that based on how I understood what he said, based on the perspective of my own (short) experience with Aikido.


not just a misunderstanding, some comments are sarcastic and prvocative and reflect the true nature of the writer but hey I won't let these so called Sensi's drag me to where their egostic selfs would like me at nor will I defend my self or explain what I meant just because some people lack common sense and a degree of intelligence and I rest my case here.

dalen7
07-23-2007, 02:08 AM
not just a misunderstanding, some comments are sarcastic and prvocative and reflect the true nature of the writer but hey I won't let these so called Sensi's drag me to where their egostic selfs would like me at nor will I defend my self or explain what I meant just because some people lack common sense and a degree of intelligence and I rest my case here.

Hmmm...I am confused now...as to who you are referring to?
I for sure wasnt trying to be sarcastic...but anyway

peace

dalen

- never mind, I think I understand your post better now.

Amir Krause
07-23-2007, 03:40 AM
I sit back and read of all the people saying that aikido is fake or rather is not effective until 100 years after taking lessons (not from here necessarily) and I have to sit back and wonder if its not due to how they are being instructed. - again, nothing wrong with it.


I think you continously misunderstand the point most people here tried to explain:
A technique should be effective - yes, definitly.

But, it is not the job of a beginner Uke to examine the effectives of a technique applied by another beginner. Simply because this would lead to a wrong learning process.
Advanced students acting as Uke may be expected to correct the technique (in one of multiple ways, depending on teacher \ Dojo and sometimes Tori ).
Advanced students acting as Tori should have effective techniques! but the Aikido methodology to get those techniques to be effective is of multiple repetitions in preset situations - Kata. A beginner whom starts to resist normally deviates from the Kata, and thus disrupts his friend the Tori from learning the intended lesson.

You think you are helping Tori in your resistance, letting him correct his technique and find the right way of implementation versus resistance. But in fact, you are hindering his progress, since the Aikido common spirit is to find the path of non-resistance. In that particular instance, the strategy selecting the technique \ variation \ movement which would flow with Uke power and throw him “softly” on his head. Getting Tori into the habit of overpowering Uke, would teach him the wrong lesson, and might make his progress slower.

This does not mean one should not learn within Aikido how to over-come resistance, or how to circumvent it. But those lessons should be given with intent and a directing hand, to a student capable of learning them and knowing the purpose of study.

We do not advocate in-effective techniques in the Dojo I practice. And having Israeli students, the advanced students techniques are often put under test. I do not have a problem with that (an advanced student should overcome the resistance and then ask his Uke to return to practicing the Kata, and as I admitted, I actually enjoy this). The problem is with two beginners going at it without knowing the implications of their actions. The way to hell is full of good intentions.

Amir

dalen7
07-23-2007, 03:46 AM
I think you continously misunderstand the point most people here tried to explain:
A technique should be effective - yes, definitly.

But, it is not the job of a beginner Uke to examine the effectives of a technique applied by another beginner.
Amir

edited post: for the sake of clarification and brevity.

I was referring to Nage not Uke

Peace

Dalen

dalen7
07-23-2007, 03:54 AM
I
You think you are helping Tori in your resistance, letting him correct his technique and find the right way of implementation versus resistance.

Actually, its my sempai and senseis who resist to show me if its effective - and this I appreciate...
Here in lies our misunderstanding, but now I think we are clear. :)

Peace, and thanks for your post Amir

Dalen

Amir Krause
07-23-2007, 09:32 AM
Actually, its my sempai and senseis who resist to show me if its effective - and this I appreciate...
Here in lies our misunderstanding, but now I think we are clear. :)

Peace, and thanks for your post Amir

Dalen

Dalen

Sempai has a different role than a beginner Uke. It is part of his role to teach you, and should thus adjust his behavior in accordance to your actions.

As a Sempai, I do assist my teacher in guiding the beginners. This has many different aspects:
- Making the technique while being Uke, on myself. Guiding tori hands and body via my own movements.
- Resisting when incorrect movement is attempted while going easy on correct actions.
- Flowing with every minor movement, letting Tori be aware of every direction of force he applies.
- Giving clear and concise directions of my own force.
- Making Tori very aware of mistakes and openings (showing them mistakes have consequences and allow a reversal and or atemi).

Giving the right feedback, or the right combination of feedbacks, is an art form by itself. Different people should get different treatment, depending on their previous experiences (also outside the Dojo) and personality. Thus, the difference between beginner and Sempai (veteran) in the limits of legitimate actions as Uke and my critique on Ahmed and your own previous statements.

Amir

jennifer paige smith
07-23-2007, 10:02 AM
Dalen

Sempai has a different role than a beginner Uke. It is part of his role to teach you, and should thus adjust his behavior in accordance to your actions.

As a Sempai, I do assist my teacher in guiding the beginners. This has many different aspects:
- Making the technique while being Uke, on myself. Guiding tori hands and body via my own movements.
- Resisting when incorrect movement is attempted while going easy on correct actions.
- Flowing with every minor movement, letting Tori be aware of every direction of force he applies.
- Giving clear and concise directions of my own force.
- Making Tori very aware of mistakes and openings (showing them mistakes have consequences and allow a reversal and or atemi).

Giving the right feedback, or the right combination of feedbacks, is an art form by itself. Different people should get different treatment, depending on their previous experiences (also outside the Dojo) and personality. Thus, the difference between beginner and Sempai (veteran) in the limits of legitimate actions as Uke and my critique on Ahmed and your own previous statements.

Amir

Very practical and well stated. What is being described by Amir is a developed attitude toward healthy practice as outlined in basic dojo behavior (ASU has a good handbook with this included).

There should be no attitude distinction in the mind of the practicioner between the role uke and nage (in my words). A beginner is a beginner at both. etc. and you don't get points by showing how much your 'outside' knowledge could help out in a test. It is time to clear the mind and to approach practice as a child again. The ego is a fussy old geezer and probably will put up a hell of a fight on this account.(can you hear it?) The masters I have been with are marked by the distinctin of having little ego. They are also, as I have become, aware of the devices the ego uses to maintain itself.
So as I said above, as have others who have traveled the long road, get to learning and leave the criticisms to the teachers. Otherwise, get a broom and clean the temple.

Mark Uttech
07-23-2007, 05:47 PM
"and when cleaning the temple, don't stop to read old newspapers..."

In gassho,

Mark

Ryan Sanford
07-23-2007, 11:21 PM
not just a misunderstanding, some comments are sarcastic and prvocative and reflect the true nature of the writer but hey I won't let these so called Sensi's drag me to where their egostic selfs would like me at nor will I defend my self or explain what I meant just because some people lack common sense and a degree of intelligence and I rest my case here.

With all due respect, I'm going to ask you to quiet yourself. You've just discredited some of the most developed and well-respected (rightfully so) Aikidoka on this web site. I'm not going to "enter and blend" with your comments, because he just referred to those people (with Mr. Seiser among them, whom I very much respect for his writing) as egotistic, and it's really infuriating. I'm only an 8th kyu for goodness sake, but even I can see how wrong you are. Not only have you just said that you're not going to back up your position, you've said that you won't even listen to them. Please be a little more humble next time, sheesh...:dead:

And with that, I'm off to read something by someone who knows what they're talking about.

(edited slightly to seem less angry. o_o)

David Paul
07-24-2007, 01:19 PM
Wow- a darn good question. Hard to say if there is a right answer to this. Part of me thinks that if nage is executing the technique properly--then it should work right? If it doesn't -then is this stuff real?
BUT--I then also have to agree with someone who said that if uke is resisting said technique-nage (in a randori setting perhaps) could do something different. However if nage is committed to doing a specific technique--like irimi nage (one of my worst techniques) and uke is resisting in a testing situation--nage is kinda screwed. In a real world situation-nage could just punch uke in the face or try something diffrent.

I'd also add that part of the training is the ability to take the ukemi--we learn how to fall to protect ourselves right?

Anyways-a good question-my answer is that there has to be a happy medium in there. As uke it is easy to anticipate a technique and either take the front roll or break fall regardless of the effectiveness of the technique or to resist it. It is much harder to just try and flow with the technique and see where it takes you. I am guilty of both as uke--although in a testing situation--unless the technique was totally awful-I’d go with it. Especially if the person testing was going for 4th or 3rd kyu.

David Paul
07-24-2007, 01:31 PM
Letter from my dojo if you trained with me:

Thank you for training with us for this short time.
Sensei Jen

by the way--this is a great response.

dalen7
07-24-2007, 01:59 PM
Wow- a darn good question. Hard to say if there is a right answer to this. Part of me thinks that if nage is executing the technique properly--then it should work right? If it doesn't -then is this stuff real?
BUT--I then also have to agree with someone who said that if uke is resisting said technique-nage (in a randori setting perhaps) could do something different. However if nage is committed to doing a specific technique--like irimi nage (one of my worst techniques) and uke is resisting in a testing situation--nage is kinda screwed. In a real world situation-nage could just punch uke in the face or try something diffrent.

Yeah, this is along the lines of how I was thinking and how we do in our dojo.

1) When Im acting as Nage (remember Im not even kyu grade) and my uke (typically a 2nd kyu) will 'resist' on purpose.
And its not to prove that he is 'bad', and the purpose is not for me to change technique...he wants to show me that how Im doing it is not right.
1a) he then corrects my movements and shows me the difference in what I did and he did.
1b) or he shows me that I did it right, but it would not work in that situation given a bigger guy - and shows me an alternative route.

Also, we are encouraged to properly execute techniqe.

1) at the past seminar, I did the motion of disarming a knife, but it wouldnt - in real life work - as there was no pain that I delivered for the uke to drop knife. My 3rd dan did the technique on me, and I felt the pain and dropped it. So thats how we practice.

1a) people tend to feel the pain, it hurts...but no bruises, etc...
1b) the above is true with the masters doing the technique and even 1kyu...but with lower belts, and even some people did get bruised (i know I did) etc. - but you know...there is a level of trust there and this is the milieu. ;)

Personally, Im happy with the training - my initial hardships due to the language are fading quickly as I get to know the people (open up), and Im getting used to the ideas behind the technique.

From what Im understanding in these forums, most places appear to take a more gentle approach.

I dont have a problem with this at all.
I do wonder if it doesnt contribute to why people think Aikido doesnt work until you are 6th dan. ;)

Also - I see that people say there isnt enough attacks taught, etc.
1) As you see, Uke is encouraged here to attack...you feel it, even with the jo and tanto on your throat...
2) Also we are shown what hits and kicks can be done by nage to uke during techniques, as well as defending against such strikes and kicks from Uke to Nage due to improper execution of form.

Well, all this to say - Im quite happy with 'magyar' aikido. :)
- not to mention the pressure points that 'sneak' into our training.
Anyone saying there not effective cause its slow...well takes practice - my 4th dan had me down with no second thought and absolutely no effort at all using Aikido and pressure point.
Peace

Dalen

Ron Tisdale
07-24-2007, 02:19 PM
FYI...the problem with pressure points isn't that applying them is slow necessarily. The problem is that each person is affected differently, each person needs a slightly different but fairly exact location applied, some people just don't respond to some points, and some people just don't care about points that only give pain.

These are much bigger issues than speed.

Pressure points sometimes give excellent added effect under certain specific conditions. Other times...not so much. I can pretty much guarantee you that most PPs will make a skilled fighter angry, and more likely to pound you...but they won't give the edge you are thinking of in a fight.

Best,
Ron

dalen7
07-24-2007, 02:48 PM
FYI...the problem with pressure points isn't that applying them is slow necessarily. The problem is that each person is affected differently, each person needs a slightly different but fairly exact location applied, some people just don't respond to some points, and some people just don't care about points that only give pain.
Ron

Good insight indeed - for sure I know that Im not at the stage of thinking of using them...infact it would make for a good comedy.

On the street:
defender: "Wait...no, thats not it..."
attacker: "yeah, take it...and, yes...thats it! you got it."

But, at the end of the day, it is fascinating, and as you mentioned, some situations probably are more suitable for the use of effective and quick points.

peace

Dalen

raul rodrigo
07-24-2007, 08:19 PM
Pressure points sometimes give excellent added effect under certain specific conditions. Other times...not so much. I can pretty much guarantee you that most PPs will make a skilled fighter angry, and more likely to pound you...but they won't give the edge you are thinking of in a fight.

Best,
Ron

One aikidoka i've trained a few times with relies greatly on pressure points to make his waza work. It has a couple of negative effects. One it makes many people reluctant to train with him, because the pain is gratuitous to a properly executed technique. The second is that he relies on pressure points that on some people don't actually work. When this happens between the two of us, I tap out as a quiet concession to his seniority, but in fact I dont feel all that much pain.

A person who trains this way is due for a rude surprise some day in a real fighting situation. Ron is right. Blend with the attack. find the right position, apply the technique. Pressure points, to me, are reserved for the very rare occasions when the uke resists inappropriately and needs to be reminded of what nage can do.

Should I point out to him whenever the pressure points don't work? I would if he were a friend. But since he isn't and I don't like his proclivity for hurting even white belts, I feel inclined to just leave him alone.

R

dalen7
07-25-2007, 01:13 AM
Should I point out to him whenever the pressure points don't work? I would if he were a friend. But since he isn't and I don't like his proclivity for hurting even white belts, I feel inclined to just leave him alone.

R

Dude, I would be upset if that was the case.
When pressure points, or any painful skills are done at my dojo - its with the intent of the higher ranks sharing and teaching you what it is they know.

I understand about your reluctance to let him know it doesnt work, but its good when there is clear communication - or people will be delusional thinking their techniques work 100% - but again, in your case its not a 2 way street of sharing the info.

Mabye you can approach him about this - what does your sensai say? Does he notice whats happening?

Peace

Dalen

DonMagee
07-25-2007, 07:50 AM
The only pressure points I care about are elbows to the temple,kicks to the balls, shots to the throat, and as Bas Rutten would say "The liver shot!"

Ron Tisdale
07-25-2007, 08:26 AM
and as Bas Rutten would say "The liver shot!"

I can guarantee that one works. OUCH. Used to spar with a really solid kickboxer in college. I could kick him full force in the gut...he would smile and hit me in the head. :(

My first liver shot came from him...back then I was in shape and could take a real good shot to the body. He hit the liver, I bent over, he hit the head, I went down. Didn't get up for a while either :D

Now THAT'S an &^%#@$$in pressure point!

Best,
Ron

raul rodrigo
07-25-2007, 09:11 AM
Mabye you can approach him about this - what does your sensai say? Does he notice whats happening?

Dalen, he's not from my dojo. I've only trained with him a few times. I don't consider him my responsibility. He's also my senior, so the etiquette of offering a correction would be a bit tricky since we dont have a prior training relationship.

The basic point remains: the use of tsubo or pressure points cannot be made to substitute for actually being able to do the technique, without effort, without forcing.

Tony Wagstaffe
07-25-2007, 09:59 AM
Hi All

I was an uke for this guy who will be testing for his 3rd Kyu in two weeks and he couldn't execute some techniques or lets say the techniques didn't manifest to his satisfaction nor to the satisfaction of the observing 5th Dan shidoin because I wasn't a good/experienced uke (which is a fact I am not ashamed of)

HOWEVER shouldn't these techniques work and put me down regardless of how good/bad the uke is?

Shouldn't the technique work if executed properly regardless of how coperative/uncoperative the opponent is because after all who is going to be submissive and cooperative in a real situation anyway!!!

and yes I do deliberately make it hard for the nage to put me down or move me because I would be cheating him/her if I back fall or fall on my knees every time they execute a technique for the sake of the technique instead of its effectiveness..

So what do you dudZ think about this?

To a point you have it right...... if the person was taking a grading for the 1st time then total resistance is counter productice.... but at the grade of 3rd kyu there should be firm attacks and gripping but not allout resistance.... it much depends on whether you are doing kata, randori or shiai and the level of the person you are uke for.... Just use common sense but don't be a complete asshole just to make somebody look ridiculous..... we have to cooperate to some extent..... are you able to execute waza successfully if your uke totally resists? I wonder?......
Tony

Kevin Wilbanks
07-25-2007, 10:13 AM
Having seen this type of thing so many times, I'm guessing Ahmed is laboring under a common delusion. Planting your feet and tensing up your body to resist Aikido techniques only "works" because you are abusing the conventions of the training scenario.

It is very easy to rid yourself of this delusion. Find a senior with extensive experience in a striking art, give him or her your full permission to use real atemi on you. Now get back into the same position and try out your resistance on them.

I think you will find that your tense, resistant body can be struck at least twice before you can even loosen up enough to start moving. Moreover, you'll find out how much more it hurts to get hit when you are tense.

If you are stiffened up like a statue, there is no point in trying some kind of subtle Aikido throw on you. If your partner really wants to hurt you, you make a perfect punching dummy - not only are there vital points, but every tense muscle becomes an inviting pain-producing target. On the other hand, if your partner is serious about the philosophical side of Aikido, they have no need to do anything to you because standing stiffly and grabbing real hard is not really an attack.

jennifer paige smith
07-25-2007, 10:29 AM
Having seen this type of thing so many times, I'm guessing Ahmed is laboring under a common delusion. Planting your feet and tensing up your body to resist Aikido techniques only "works" because you are abusing the conventions of the training scenario.

It is very easy to rid yourself of this delusion. Find a senior with extensive experience in a striking art, give him or her your full permission to use real atemi on you. Now get back into the same position and try out your resistance on them.

I think you will find that your tense, resistant body can be struck at least twice before you can even loosen up enough to start moving. Moreover, you'll find out how much more it hurts to get hit when you are tense.

If you are stiffened up like a statue, there is no point in trying some kind of subtle Aikido throw on you. If your partner really wants to hurt you, you make a perfect punching dummy - not only are there vital points, but every tense muscle becomes an inviting pain-producing target. On the other hand, if your partner is serious about the philosophical side of Aikido, they have no need to do anything to you because standing stiffly and grabbing real hard is not really an attack.

I very much agree with this post.

I would add that delusion is a product of privelidge. The privelidge of having been told what the technique will be, the privelidge of relative safety and politeness of a dojo, the privelidge of knowing there isn't someone waiting behind a corner to knock your head off at the brain stem while you're stiffly defying your 'opponent'. Perhaps even the privelidge of never having to really have fought for your life, and the fantasy that comes from that.

There is no person/opponent in aikido. The 'opponent' is resistance itself and our general mission is to eliminate misunderstandings on how to use resistance and how we are prisonerst to it when we aren't aware of it's power.

Budd
07-25-2007, 11:27 AM
Very well put, Jen, regarding this particular delusion. There are ways of "stopping" a technique that don't involve overt "resistance", merely just placement and connection. All that really provides, though, is a point for you to either reacquire the attack or counter, depending on the drill or sparring paradigm.

One of the biggest things I see in beginners is getting them past the notion that "stupid" resistance (as well described by Kevin and Jen) is worth anything in real combatives. It's also why I am a skeptic whenever I hear people talking about training against resistance without providing the context.

Which doesn't mean I think it isn't important to do in aikido, I just think individual teachers/schools have their own ways of - honestly or otherwise - addressing it. And that's a whole other (long) series of (multiple) threads. Just saying you train against resistance is like saying you train in martial arts, which varies from school to school (how? with whom? under what conditions?).

I echo what others have said in that good ukes give just enough "resistance" to help their partners learn - and I also think that can apply in waza, kata and randori.

MM
07-25-2007, 01:13 PM
I'm going to say I disagree with some points that have been proposed. This is my opinion and my experiences, so take them as just that.

I recently worked with a woman who is about 5' 4", give or take an inch. I'm guessing her weight around 120. Small and petite. Me, I'm 5' 7" and 195 pounds. It's a good bit of muscle.

The exercise/technique was a same side wrist grab turned into a kokyunage type throw. The end result is that uke rolls away. (EDIT: I forgot to mention that she didn't move her feet at all throughout the technique.)

First: resistance.

I offered full resistance, leaving nothing behind. I actively tried to stop the technique. At various points in the technique, I even tried to disengage.

The result? This small, petite woman tossed me like a rag doll. I couldn't stop her, I couldn't muscle her, and I definitely couldn't disengage until I rolled out of it.

As far as resistance itself, I don't believe it is the "opponent". The "opponent" is oneself. That's what budo is about. Not uke's resistance. That doesn't matter if the person doing the technique is doing it right. There should be no resistance inside oneself.

Second: atemi.

She needed no atemi to complete the technique and have it martially effective. If one is using atemi to cover bad skills or abilities, then one is not using atemi properly. Within the training parameters, she needed no atemi. Although I'm sure, had she wanted to use one, I wouldn't have been able to stop her. I have about 75 pounds and a few inches on her. No way she can move me with muscle. In fact, there were a few times when she didn't move me at all because she didn't get the technique right. She tried using muscle and it didn't work. Had she used atemi, it still wouldn't have worked. It would only have covered bad structure/skill/ability.

Third: Cooperation.

Heh. None. I worked hard to stop her at every point throughout the technique and gave her not one iota of cooperation. She found the proper structure, kuzushi, tsukuri, and kake and all without using "muscle".

Lastly,
Had I not given full resistance, had I cooperated in any way, or had I not done my best; she would have never been able to walk away with the affirmed experience that what she was doing worked. It would have been a disservice to her and her training to allow any of that to come into play. And it would have been a disservice to me because then I wouldn't have experienced it working as a fully resistant uke. And let me tell you, there's nothing disconcerting like being in the middle of a technique (we did it all slowly) going, "Oh, sh$!, stop her! Stop her! Ugh, let go of her hand. Just let go", not being able to accomplish any of that, and then being forced to roll away.

How does that relate to other dojos and their training? Honestly, I don't know. Everyone has different ways of training. I can only speak about my experiences and offer my opinions.

Mark

DH
07-25-2007, 01:36 PM
I recently worked with a woman who is about 5' 4", give or take an inch. I'm guessing her weight around 120. Small and petite. Me, I'm 5' 7" and 195 pounds. It's a good bit of muscle.

The exercise/technique was a same side wrist grab turned into a kokyunage type throw. The end result is that uke rolls away. (EDIT: I forgot to mention that she didn't move her feet at all throughout the technique.)
Mark

Hey now...I know that woman. I call her "Squirt."
Not bad for 8 months training I'd say.

Resistence / delusion are sides of the same coin in martial arts. You don't observe both in the same place with equal measure. By degree the greater the former, the lessor the later.

Erik Johnstone
07-25-2007, 01:53 PM
Hey now...I know that woman. I call her "Squirt."
Not bad for 8 months training I'd say.

Resistence / delusion are sides of the same coin in martial arts. You don't observe both in the same place with equal measure. By degree the greater the former, the lessor the later.

I know that woman too...

yep; my experience has been the same as Mark's; she can get it done.

Erik

Budd
07-25-2007, 01:57 PM
She sounds tough - I don't wanna mess with her . . . ;)

This is circling back to what I argued in other thread regarding appropriate resistance versus "stupid" resistance.

Depending on the conventions of practice, some types of resistance are stupid/inappropriate. If I'm getting owned in BJJ, does that mean I cheap shot the other guy in the nose (especially if it means he then punches me in the kidney so hard that I have to sit out a few rounds *whistles*)? I'd rather not . . .

If I'm practicing aikido at a dojo that explicitly uses atemi and I'm a noob - do I gain anything by clamping hard on him and freezing/fixing my own posture - so that I'm the one that can't move? Probably, no . . .

If I have a guy tell me to try and throw him - do I kick him first? Hmmm . . . maybe if I'm sure I can run faster than him and that he's had too many gimlets . . . *considers* . . . Nah, probably gonna try to throw him AND do my best to "listen" to how's he's stopping me.

:)

FWIW

Kevin Wilbanks
07-25-2007, 02:03 PM
I think you are trafficking in some awfully broad and probably baseless speculation, Mark.

First of all, in some cases, getting all stiff and resistant actually makes the technique easier. It depends on how you do it, and what the technique is. Often it just makes the uke into something akin to a sheet of plywood standing on its edge, which is easy to knock over if you find the right angle. So all that ending stuff about how much of a service you did by providing nage with an ultimate effectiveness test may be nonsense.

Second, when you say, categorically, that nage's use of atemi would not have worked, I think you are revealing that you don't know much about atemi and don't have much experience getting hit. If she hit one of the arm muscles you were using to resist so hard that it involuntarily convulsed you don't think it would have made you easier to throw? What about a punch in the sternum hard enough to crack it? How about if she had crushed one of your eyeballs with a finger thrust?

Ron Tisdale
07-25-2007, 02:04 PM
maybe if I'm sure I can run faster than him and that he's had too many gimlets . . . *considers* . . . Nah,

Wise choice, grasshopper... :D

B,
R

Budd
07-25-2007, 02:06 PM
Yeah, sometimes I can exhibit a survival instinct . . .

Ron Tisdale
07-25-2007, 02:10 PM
Hi Kevin,

I usually find your posts very factual and reasonable...but...

I think you are trafficking in some awfully broad and probably baseless speculation, Mark.

First of all, in some cases, getting all stiff and resistant actually makes the technique easier.

Mark didn't say a word about stiff. YOU added that. Having trained with Mark a bit, I don't find him particularly stiff or likely to be so, even when resisting.

How about if she had crushed one of your eyeballs with a finger thrust?

Uh, hyperbole anyone? As much as I respect good atemi...I've yet to meet anyone who actually DOES crush eyeballs with a finger thrust. Someone tried that with me once in a keiko session. It hurt, I said "keep going" and I made a point not to train with them anymore. But no crushed eyeball. Not even a scratch on my cornea. About a week later some white belt trashed them for acting out of place. Probably what I should have done.

Best,
Ron (must have been in a good mood that day) :D

Budd
07-25-2007, 02:15 PM
I think Mark was right on with "There should be no resistance inside oneself."

For me, much easier said than done - struggle, sweat, struggle, rinse, repeat.

Oh and I still train the Three Stooges Eye Poke Reception # 1 for just those emergencies . . .

DH
07-25-2007, 02:25 PM
She sounds tough - I don't wanna mess with her . . . ;)

This is circling back to what I argued in other thread regarding appropriate resistance versus "stupid" resistance.

Depending on the conventions of practice, some types of resistance are stupid/inappropriate. If I'm getting owned in BJJ, does that mean I cheap shot the other guy in the nose (especially if it means he then punches me in the kidney so hard that I have to sit out a few rounds *whistles*)? I'd rather not . . .

If I'm practicing aikido at a dojo that explicitly uses atemi and I'm a noob - do I gain anything by clamping hard on him and freezing/fixing my own posture - so that I'm the one that can't move? Probably, no . . .

If I have a guy tell me to try and throw him - do I kick him first? Hmmm . . . maybe if I'm sure I can run faster than him and that he's had too many gimlets . . . *considers* . . . Nah, probably gonna try to throw him AND do my best to "listen" to how's he's stopping me.

:)

FWIW

Smart ass:D Running? You can try my cardio out. The BJJ'ers and wrestlers do.:cool: Actually the bulk of your post echos my thoughts exactly, Budd. Appropriate resistence for agreed upon work being done. If we are training....then we are "training" not fighting. Most of the time I see everything as a sort of game with rules. I like wrestller I like BJJers and Judo guys, aikido guys etc. Sure you can deicde to go at it and break out the gloves, or not. But most of them are working their juts, and their change-ups and set ups. I mean anyone can try and bite a leg in an omaplata but it isn't really the point is it? We're training. But that said there is still ways to learn to have better body skills within...I'll say it again...within....our own choice arts to make them and more importanly us work better. And that work is? Did I say it enough...within...our chosen art. Its all about training to be a better ,...you. No matter what you choose to do.

Resitence
How not to tense and yet still feel like hard rubber is the result of not resisting. In a way one can say "The more you don't resist the harder you feel." Then of a sudden you can choose to feel light and lift off the floor as a cohesive whole unit. But again it becomes more of a choice though a connected body.

heathererandolph
07-25-2007, 02:30 PM
The only problem is, we know Aikido so therefore when being uke we know how to prevent an attack from continuing as well as how to be stable. If one is to use his Aikido abilities as well as his knowledge of the technique, it gives him an unfair advantage. Therefore, a correct attack may be an overextended uke.

Personally I do not think that any technique will always work. It depends on the attacker, the speed of the attack and where you want to throw the attacker, among other things, as well as the build of the attacker and his intent. Sometimes if your attack is more clear and precise, the nage actually will be able to do a better job.

Ron Tisdale
07-25-2007, 02:47 PM
Therefore, a correct attack may be an overextended uke.

Sorry Heather, but I have real issues with that...

Best,
Ron (though it certainly opens the art to everyone)

Budd
07-25-2007, 02:49 PM
Dan - HA! My cardio in bjj and wrestling is actually much better than for running (cursed activity, me and my knees hates it).

I'm right on board with you in terms of being in harmony within "yourself" before you can adequately harmonize with someone else.

'Course the noobie that clamps down and fixes their own structure usually ain't doing either (offering themselves gift-wrapped with a bow, more like it), but I have no doubt that building the body skills to be a better "you" is where it's at, no matter what your "art" may be.

Best,

Kevin Wilbanks
07-25-2007, 03:06 PM
Hi Kevin,

I usually find your posts very factual and reasonable...but...

Mark didn't say a word about stiff. YOU added that. Having trained with Mark a bit, I don't find him particularly stiff or likely to be so, even when resisting.

Uh, hyperbole anyone? As much as I respect good atemi...I've yet to meet anyone who actually DOES crush eyeballs with a finger thrust. Someone tried that with me once in a keiko session. It hurt, I said "keep going" and I made a point not to train with them anymore. But no crushed eyeball. Not even a scratch on my cornea. About a week later some white belt trashed them for acting out of place. Probably what I should have done.

Best,
Ron (must have been in a good mood that day) :D

I guess I'd have to experience what you are talking about. I'd say resistance is stiffness by definition. If he's not planted on two feet and using muscle tension, and he's not on top of her, using dead bodyweight, where is "full resistance" coming from? A fortuitous tail-wind?

Next, the point of the hyperbole was to show the absurdity of a categorical statement that atemi would make no difference. I suspect there are a whole range of targets and strike intensities that would soften him up and make the throw easier, as well as a few, like the ones I mentioned, that would make following up with a throw a moot point. Whether or not someone would likely poke your eye out or crack your sternum in an Aikido class is immaterial to the point. There are people out there who could. Scoffing at the prospect of being hit is foolish.

gdandscompserv
07-25-2007, 05:01 PM
I can pretty much guarantee you that most PPs will make a skilled fighter angry, and more likely to pound you...
My take on "skilled" fighters is that they generally try not to become angry. As I see it, a skilled fighter is more likely to "pound you" when he is calm, cool and collected.:cool:

DH
07-25-2007, 05:27 PM
I guess I'd have to experience what you are talking about. I'd say resistance is stiffness by definition. If he's not planted on two feet and using muscle tension, and he's not on top of her, using dead bodyweight, where is "full resistance" coming from? A fortuitous tail-wind?

Well if the drill was to grab in a way normal folk grab- then yes it will be muscle and the intent to hold and stop someone like most people do when they are trying to hold and stop someone from doing something.

If the exercise is to utilize a trained structure in grabbing then you can offer seriously substantial control in a grab or siezure wthout using the same muscle chain. Interestingly enough that use of structure is exremely difficult to capture, mainipulate or control in any way. In that sense atemi could be a good defense.

Next, the point of the hyperbole was to show the absurdity of a categorical statement that atemi would make no difference. I suspect there are a whole range of targets and strike intensities that would soften him up and make the throw easier, as well as a few, like the ones I mentioned, that would make following up with a throw a moot point. Whether or not someone would likely poke your eye out or crack your sternum in an Aikido class is immaterial to the point. There are people out there who could. Scoffing at the prospect of being hit is foolish.
I think Mark was trying to explain the feeling he had of having his center captured. Whether or not you beleive it is possible is beside the point. What he did say was that he could NOT remove his hand or control himself fto punch. Agree or not, its pretty tought to tell someone that "they" donlt know what happened to "them" in a training encounter.
In time when you train this way, or lets say if you continue to train with me I teach you how to undo everything I do "to you." Thereby making it much harder for me to play you, and making it exceedingly difficult for others who do not train their bodies this way to do much of anything to you.

DH
07-25-2007, 06:45 PM
My take on "skilled" fighters is that they generally try not to become angry. As I see it, a skilled fighter is more likely to "pound you" when he is calm, cool and collected.:cool:

Maybe Ron's point coincides with Budd's and mine. If you're not fighting your playing by agreed rules. and P.P's are going to annoy people without doing anything to really harm them. If you're going to be a jerk and annoy people outside of the rules, you might as well do soemething worthwhile. I was playing with a BJJ purple belt and he got frustrated because he couldn't get anything to work on me. Close to the end of his 5 minutes he started to "absent mindedly" cross-face me with his ulna, I dug my hand into his kidney and whispered "We don't really won't to go there do we?" He looked up at me in as if in surprise and aplogized. I felt like saying "Aplogize for what?" He knew what he did and was trying to motivate me to turn my head and expose my neck. And all that said, head butts, crossfacing, and liver and kideny short-strikes are more in line with real world substantial motivators and attacks not P.P.s

Kevin Wilbanks
07-26-2007, 12:24 AM
I think Mark was trying to explain the feeling he had of having his center captured. Whether or not you beleive it is possible is beside the point. What he did say was that he could NOT remove his hand or control himself fto punch. Agree or not, its pretty tought to tell someone that "they" donlt know what happened to "them" in a training encounter.

Either you are confused on a very rudimentary level, or you are deliberately trying to obfuscate. The stuff he said about atemi clearly stated that getting hit would have made no difference to him as uke, and that for nage to use atemi in that situation was not only useless, but remedial "to cover bad technique". Now, in defending him, you are claiming he made an entirely different point about "atemi" in the uke role. You have even taken the misdirection so far as to suggest that it has something to do with rigorous philosophy about the issue of subjectivity. Ridiculous.

As far as the rest of what you have said, it is convoluted. I am guessing that you are trying to argue that there is a way of thwarting someone else's techinque that involves staying mostly loose and directing your resistance along appropriate lines of force, deliberately outsmarting or outmaneuvering nage. I would call this grounding or neutralizing, not resisting.

If this is what is being talked about as "resistance" by the intial poster, then he is an unprecedented savant to have mastered such subtle skills at the sub-3rd kyu level. Moreover, I think anyone who has any experience in Aikido would agree that his insistence on applying that kind of masterful "resistance" to a 4th kyu trying to review for an upcoming test would make him an "asshole" by almost any stretch of the definition. Sounds unlikely to me. What sounds much more likely is that the resistance described is the same kind of crude tension that I have seen so many times i can't count them, the existence of which is vehemently denied by virtually everyone who exhibits it.

Ron Tisdale
07-26-2007, 07:00 AM
I would call this grounding or neutralizing, not resisting.

Ah, difference in definitions. That explains it. ;)

And we were no longer talking about the initial poster...we kind of moved on from that.

Best,
Ron

Budd
07-26-2007, 07:19 AM
Kevin, I don't want to speak for Dan or Mark, but from what Mark was writing, he was discussing a specific drill in which all the resistance (clamping down) he gave was immaterial when his center was taken. As Mark said, if his partner did not move properly, or tried using muscle, Mark wasn't going to move. If his partner did move properly, Mark got tossed. In that particular drill, a kind of resistance was called for to overcome appropriately. One could legitimately argue that atemi would change the drill, but it might not help in succeeding according to the aims of the drill.

I think where the subjectivity comes into play (again dealing with "appropriate resistance") has to do with the aims/conventions of a particular practice (within and between different "arts"). If I'm practicing in a line of aikido that comes from someone that was a professional boxer or skilled karateka, it wouldn't be suprising if there were also an emphasis on atemi integrated into the practice (how well integrated may also be subjective).

If my line of aiki practice emphasizes "capturing the center" of the other person on contact, then for the purposes of training drills, I may not be concerned about atemi at certain stages as much as having the connected body that enables this skill. Of course using the connected body to deliver atemi *rubs chin whiskers* . . . . I bet that's pretty interesting *ouch*.

As for the crude resistance you describe in the context you describe, I am still in agreement that it is combatively useless in the context you describe. I again have the image of the gi-clad oaf offering himself up gift-wrapped for either the "capture the center on contact" grappler or the "fix yourself in place so I can pop you" pugilist - or some scary combination of both . . . *shudder* . . . either way it won't be pretty (but likely very entertaining).

DH
07-26-2007, 07:59 AM
Hi Bud
For people who do and like what I call "the aiki game" (I'm not a big fan) the training method when one begins learning this new way of moving should include many static drills which are meant only to test what is going on inside their body. They are an indicator of their solo work progress. It's interesting for Aiki people who do wrist grabs and such-I'm not much interested other than helping them with their goals.
The real training is about movement, position and power. Standing still and or clamping down isn't something I am interested in for martial pursuits. Fluid, changing power is. "Capture center on contact" is something many talk about but I'd say the big caveate is whos center? And how do they train? It works fine for those deliver muscle power, but most any experienced grappler is going to dump out and change up if he doesn't get anything or runs into power. So, naturally anyone interested in a grappling game has to be able to change and continually move to set-up and take what he can. So learning to move in trained way where their center continually gets caught through a chain of movement makes it extremely difficult for you to get thrown while you can strike with more openings than you normally will get.

Kevin Wilbanks
07-26-2007, 08:16 AM
Ah, difference in definitions. That explains it. ;)

And we were no longer talking about the initial poster...we kind of moved on from that.

Best,
Ron

Difference in definitions maybe explains part of it. I guess I would call grounding just being heavy, passive - not moving. It can be done on a barco-lounger. It's hard to see how someone is going to call that "full resistance", as one is not really doing anything, including attacking nage. What I call neutralizing is relaxed but active - it involves moving in a way different than what nage is trying to get one to do, redirecting. Once again, this doesn't seem anything like "full resistance".

I can see what Budd is saying about the clamping down being a specific drill. I have been many places and trained with many people for whom almost all of Aikido is this kind of "drill". I don't really see much value in it.

Grabbing someone's arm, in and of itself, is not an attack. Resisting something that nage is trying to do to you is not an attack. In order for arm grabbing to become a meaningful attack, there has to be more: grabbing someone's arm and pulling them into your fist or knee, grabbing the arm and attempting a contol or lock, grabbing it to move it out of the way so you can attack their body, etc...

My understanding is that we practice techniques from a grab largely as exercises, to learn about the throw and the ukemi. The way to step it up is to make the grab part of an actual attack, not grab really hard and try to prevent a technique. As ukemi practice, it's awful - exactly the opposite of good ukemi, which is fluid, alive, trying to find openings, pressing the attack... As technique practice, it makes no sense to me. If I encounter that kind of resistance to something I'm doing, I need to change to something more appropriate to uke's energy. If their energy is that of a statue, there isn't much point in throwing them.

Ron Tisdale
07-26-2007, 08:29 AM
I think you don't have any context for the training being described. Perhaps if you get to train with the parties involved in the discussion, it will be clearer.

Best,
Ron

Budd
07-26-2007, 08:42 AM
Urgh.

Dan - Totally agree that "capturing the center" needs (with regards to grapplers - consider me the choir) to be fluid (unless there's some wrestler out there perfecting the one-on-one or two-on-one static wrist grab that I don't know about). But like you've also said, how to begin training this (in solo practice and drills)? I am also a fan of many aspects of the "aiki game" (darn contradicitons), so I see some overlap there. But, definitely, drills are drills, sparring is sparring, fighting is fighting.

I also remain extremely glad that you are still interested in helping :) .

Kevin - It really depends on the school/style. There are grabs in most every martial art that I've seen. My understanding as well is that the grab represents your connection to the other guy as something to work with. How this is done depends on the drill. Lots of different methodologies teach principles and create assumptions around these drills. Some are valid, some are silly. I think (which seems to be where the thread is heading) that the purpose of an increasingly rigorous method of freestyle practice is to test the merit of some of these principles/assumptions.

Again FWIW

jennifer paige smith
07-26-2007, 09:15 AM
I'm going to say I disagree with some points that have been proposed. This is my opinion and my experiences, so take them as just that.

I recently worked with a woman who is about 5' 4", give or take an inch. I'm guessing her weight around 120. Small and petite. Me, I'm 5' 7" and 195 pounds. It's a good bit of muscle.

The exercise/technique was a same side wrist grab turned into a kokyunage type throw. The end result is that uke rolls away. (EDIT: I forgot to mention that she didn't move her feet at all throughout the technique.)

First: resistance.

I offered full resistance, leaving nothing behind. I actively tried to stop the technique. At various points in the technique, I even tried to disengage.

The result? This small, petite woman tossed me like a rag doll. I couldn't stop her, I couldn't muscle her, and I definitely couldn't disengage until I rolled out of it.

As far as resistance itself, I don't believe it is the "opponent". The "opponent" is oneself. That's what budo is about. Not uke's resistance. That doesn't matter if the person doing the technique is doing it right. There should be no resistance inside oneself.

Second: atemi.

She needed no atemi to complete the technique and have it martially effective. If one is using atemi to cover bad skills or abilities, then one is not using atemi properly. Within the training parameters, she needed no atemi. Although I'm sure, had she wanted to use one, I wouldn't have been able to stop her. I have about 75 pounds and a few inches on her. No way she can move me with muscle. In fact, there were a few times when she didn't move me at all because she didn't get the technique right. She tried using muscle and it didn't work. Had she used atemi, it still wouldn't have worked. It would only have covered bad structure/skill/ability.

Third: Cooperation.

Heh. None. I worked hard to stop her at every point throughout the technique and gave her not one iota of cooperation. She found the proper structure, kuzushi, tsukuri, and kake and all without using "muscle".

Lastly,
Had I not given full resistance, had I cooperated in any way, or had I not done my best; she would have never been able to walk away with the affirmed experience that what she was doing worked. It would have been a disservice to her and her training to allow any of that to come into play. And it would have been a disservice to me because then I wouldn't have experienced it working as a fully resistant uke. And let me tell you, there's nothing disconcerting like being in the middle of a technique (we did it all slowly) going, "Oh, sh$!, stop her! Stop her! Ugh, let go of her hand. Just let go", not being able to accomplish any of that, and then being forced to roll away.

How does that relate to other dojos and their training? Honestly, I don't know. Everyone has different ways of training. I can only speak about my experiences and offer my opinions.

Mark

This story would be an example of 'good training' with an educated approach at the helm. And an educated Uke, too. It does not sound at all like the same dynamic I was referrring to, which does come up fairly frequently in practice.

There are great situations like these that happen all the time. It is important to note that the leader in this story (I'm assuming that was you, Mark) is familiar with concepts of resistance and how they can work 'for' or 'against' us in our training and lives.
There are many ways to use resistance ,when we know what it is, and when we aren't just reverting to some knee-jerk pattern.

My main question regarding the posters grade still remains a mystery to me as does my question as to whether his sensei had already offered him feedback on the subject and what that might have been. Those are very important to my understanding of the intent and dynamic of thread starters dojo and training environment. My guess is he is way to 'young' in training to be handed such reins.
I can't see what happened but only in the words and attitude of the ots. It sounds like a condition that I would monitor very closely in my dojo.

jen