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Shannon Frye
09-03-2007, 10:46 PM
After searching for answers on previous posts, I found only 1 other post (which was derailed by the originator bad-mouthing tenchin nage) that addresses my questions...

What are the differences between aikikai and yoshinkan aikido?
If I were watching a stylist of either style, what characteristics would I see to help me determine which style the aikidoka had trained in?

Some background on my question: I previously trained at an Aikikai style dojo. My new dojo considers itself "independant", but the lineage of the instructor traces back to Shogo Kuniba (soke) , who trained under Gozo Shioda (soke -founder of Yoshinkan - uchideshi to O'Sensei). Kuniba soke integrated his training in aikido and juijitsu into Goshin budo (now called Goshindo). In learning goshin budo techniques, the aiki influence is plain to see, and my instructor and I often joke that we "speak the same language", with regards to aiki.

Anyone training in yoshinkan - would you say that your style has a greater jujitsu content when compared to aikikai?

(Please don't comment that one is better than the other- that's not my intention - I would just like to know differences)

Thanks!
Shannon
:circle: :triangle: :circle:

Charles Hill
09-03-2007, 11:56 PM
Hi Shannon,

If you take a look at AikidoJournal.com's aikiexpo videos, I think you will see the basic differences quickly. They have clips up at their site or you can purchase dvds.

Charles

SeiserL
09-04-2007, 06:48 AM
IMHO, the differences in style is only one of emphasis. Yet, you can watch two people from the same style and see a difference in emphasis. So, I don't have a clue how you would know by watching.

xuzen
09-04-2007, 07:06 AM
After searching for answers on previous posts, I found only 1 other post (which was derailed by the originator bad-mouthing tenchin nage) that addresses my questions...

What are the differences between aikikai and yoshinkan aikido?
If I were watching a stylist of either style, what characteristics would I see to help me determine which style the aikidoka had trained in?

Some background on my question: I previously trained at an Aikikai style dojo. My new dojo considers itself "independant", but the lineage of the instructor traces back to Shogo Kuniba (soke) , who trained under Gozo Shioda (soke -founder of Yoshinkan - uchideshi to O'Sensei). Kuniba soke integrated his training in aikido and juijitsu into Goshin budo (now called Goshindo). In learning goshin budo techniques, the aiki influence is plain to see, and my instructor and I often joke that we "speak the same language", with regards to aiki.

Anyone training in yoshinkan - would you say that your style has a greater jujitsu content when compared to aikikai?

(Please don't comment that one is better than the other- that's not my intention - I would just like to know differences)

Thanks!
Shannon
:circle: :triangle: :circle:

Wrt to Aikikai, among themselves there are so much variation that there is no standard technicality...

Wrt to Yoshinkan, the emphasis is on pedagological approach. All components of a technique are broken down to its most basic parts and then reversed engineered to make it work against resisting opponents.

Initially there is little flow in Yoshinkan technique, we work more at angles and leverage to obtain the technique.. but as one gets more experienced, their techniques become smoother.

By and large, I think in any typical Yoshinkan class, the jutsu aspect is still emphasized.

Boon.

Ivan Sekularac
09-04-2007, 07:39 AM
Anyone training in yoshinkan - would you say that your style has a greater jujitsu content when compared to aikikai?

Yes... Shioda Sensei learned from O'Sensei before the war while he was still under a lot of infuence from Takeda and Daito-ryu aiki-jujutsu. After the war O'Sensei slowly changed some things and move his style away from Daito-ryu aiki-jujutsu.

These differences are sometimes small and somethimes little bit bigger... for instance... Yoshinkan kept some Daito-ryu aiki-jujutsu terms while Aikikai introduced new ones...

All in all, check your local dojos for both styles or more if you are interested... watch few classes and make a decision... I think that both are great ways to learn Aikido although the training method is somewhat different and will suit different individuals...

Ron Tisdale
09-04-2007, 07:46 AM
You have gotten some good answers so far.

One additional thing you might notice when watching the top rank of the Yoshinkan instrcutors is a certain adherence to a distinct postural form. Look for the weight being more forward, the back being kept straight, very sharp, crisp throws, and a well defined zanshin.

Not saying that these aren't seen else where...just that you will tend to see a lot of uniformity amoung the top in yoshinkan.

Best,
Ron (pedegogy is the most important distinctions, as Xuzen said)

Timothy WK
09-04-2007, 08:13 AM
IME, Aikikai prefers same side stances (tori faces off with right foot & uke left foot) while Yoshinkan prefers same foot stances (both tori and uke face off with right foot). This, I think, is a more profound difference than it sounds. It causes you to make certain choices in movement.

Re: Daito-ryu and jujutsu---My experience with Daito-ryu leads me to believe that Yoshinkan *isn't* any closer to Daito-ryu than Aikikai. I've encountered a number of people who have ideas about Daito-ryu or "old school aiki-jujutsu" that just aren't true about Daito-ryu.

The big difference, IMO, is the teaching methodology. The stylistic differences, at higher levels, is pretty minor.

Ron Tisdale
09-04-2007, 08:45 AM
IME, Aikikai prefers same side stances (tori faces off with right foot & uke left foot) while Yoshinkan prefers same foot stances (both tori and uke face off with right foot). This, I think, is a more profound difference than it sounds. It causes you to make certain choices in movement.

Interesting...my experience in Yoshinkan is over 10 years. I see both aihamne and gyakuhamne stances practiced. For most waza, especially the 150 basic waza. Can you reference specific sources?

Re: Daito-ryu and jujutsu---My experience with Daito-ryu leads me to believe that Yoshinkan *isn't* any closer to Daito-ryu than Aikikai.

Interesting again. I am fairly familiar with the Main line of Daito ryu under Kondo Sensei. And have some minor exposure to some other varients, some quite different from the Main line. In my experience the Main Line has a lot of similiarities to the Yoshinkan training. I believe I has been specific on that in other posts. I'll try to locate the post.

Of course, if your exerience with Daito ryu is Kodo kai, Takumakai, or Roppokai, I have not trained much if at all in those branches, so that might explain the divergence in opinion.

I've encountered a number of people who have ideas about Daito-ryu or "old school aiki-jujutsu" that just aren't true about Daito-ryu.

Me too! ;)

Best,
Ron

Basia Halliop
09-04-2007, 09:30 AM
What I know about Aikikai would suggest that if someone says they study at an Aikikai dojo your next question should be what Shihan(s) they are descended from or try to follow. The Aikikai is more of a political structure, it doesn't tell you as much stylistically as knowing the various Shihans or at least sub-organizations does.

Timothy WK
09-04-2007, 09:37 AM
Interesting...my experience in Yoshinkan is over 10 years. I see both aihamne and gyakuhamne stances practiced. For most waza, especially the 150 basic waza. Can you reference specific sources?
Technically, I spent a semester practicing Yoshokai, not Yoshinkan. It was my understanding that they were almost the same, but maybe there are significant difference I'm unaware of. Anyway, we almost exclusively practiced same-foot stances. Maybe it was just this particular teacher.

Interesting again. I am fairly familiar with the Main line of Daito ryu under Kondo Sensei. And have some minor exposure to some other varients, some quite different from the Main line. In my experience the Main Line has a lot of similiarities to the Yoshinkan training.
My experience is with Hakuho-ryu (formerly Hakuho-kai Daito-ryu), which is a mixed of Takumakai & mainline. Yoshokai didn't seem "closer" to Daito-ryu to me. In my Yoshokai class, some people claimed Yoshokai/Yoshinkan was "more like old school Aiki-jujutsu" because, basically, it was "harder". But it didn't seem to have the same "lock & drop" philosophy typical of Daito-ryu. It also didn't seem to exhibit the same type of soft throws I see in Hakuho-ryu.

Ron, I would be curious what you think are the similarities between Yoshinkan and Daito-ryu. My expereince with Yoshokai/Yoshinkan is still pretty limited.

Ron Tisdale
09-04-2007, 09:54 AM
Hi Timothy,

My teacher studied under Kushida Sensei (of the Yoshokai) as an uchideshi, after his time with Gozo Shioda. At least in the past, Kushida Sensei (I believe) practiced / taught from both stances. Did you study under him, or one of his students? Was it formal training at the hombu, or a branch/university club? That may explain the difference.

I also had some minor experience with the Hakkohu kai. Okabayashi Sensei is quite a gem, isn't he? :) Liked what they did very much. I wouldn't say that the similarities mentioned in the post below are as striking in comparison with the Hakkuho kai. The yoshinkan I train tends to have some lock and drop, but most aikido projects out rather than down...yoshinkan does more of the down in my experience than other forms, but still out is a major change from Daito ryu to aikido in general.

http://www.budoseek.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?p=254374#post254374

I think Jose (as usual) is spot on. Those are all good similarities, and even when it comes to specific waza, you will see more and more similarities, the older the varient of yoshinkan that you study (look at the waza of Amos Parker Shihan, as an example, with many fully reclining pins that bring the body weight to bear on locked limbs).

Atemi is built in to most (if not all) of the 150 basic yoshinkan waza, and you see similar styles of atemi in the Daito ryu I have been exposed to as well. This extends to even the shape of the hand in various postures for striking.

The use of kiai and the types of kiai are similar as well, though I believe Daito ryu may go into more depth as to when to use what (ha for cutting/pinning/todome, to for atemi, ya for throwing, etc.).

In terms of application of kuzushi, I see more focus on immediate kuzushi in Daito ryu, though my own yoshinkan instructor often says the same thing...opponant's/partner's balance must be broken on contact. But I think Daito ryu (at least Kondo Sensei) stresses it more often.

I also see much more focus in Daito ryu in the application of shime waza (at least as compared to my varrient of yoshinkan) and methods of securing body position during the application of chokes. One of my favorite areas, but I don't get to study it enough, especially since it is rarely taught in aikido.

And of course there is the area of reigi...strong similarities between yoshinkan and Daito ryu, though Daito ryu is even more formal than yoshinkan.

Some of the more fascinating differences to me:

The definition of zanshin: finishing posture/total awareness/remaining mind [yoshinkan] vs "leave nothing behind" [Kondo Sensei]. This was especially well portrayed by the waza of Hasagawa Sensei. She is fantastic.

The depth of waza in the Kajo series as opposed to the basic controls in aikido.

The inclusion of the pretzel waza (though a strong case may be made in my opinion that without the more rarified application of aiki these are show / demonstration waza mostly).

While the specific varient of yoshinkan I study has a well developed buki waza curriculum due in part the the influence of Kushida Sensei on my instructor, some varients of the main line school stress buki waza (weapons work with sword especially) much more than is commonly seen in aikido.

A whole bunch of stuff that I wouldn't be able to even see let alone learn at open seminars, as opposed to regular training under a licsensed instructor.

Best,
Ron

The Jose is was discussing with is a study group leader under the Main line and Kondo Sensei.

Best,
Ron

mathewjgano
09-04-2007, 10:39 AM
One additional thing you might notice when watching the top rank of the Yoshinkan instrcutors is a certain adherence to a distinct postural form. Look for the weight being more forward, the back being kept straight, very sharp, crisp throws, and a well defined zanshin.

I haven't experienced any Yoshinkan, but I have always really liked that vibrant posture! I imagine it must be similar to the tiny bit of Shodokan I was fortunate enough to experience. It was quite structured like I imagine Yoshinkan tends to be. If that's indeed the case, I think it would only be a great addition to one's Aikido palette!

odudog
09-04-2007, 11:56 AM
If you're talking about basic practice, then some signs are as follows:

Yoshinkan:
uke & nage always start in the same spot
stance seems very rigid
movement seems very stiff
only the sensei is wearing a hakama
all the students move in unison
sensei barks out orders for each movement

These are some of the things that I have noticed from reading my books, watching my DVDs, and watching countless amount of YouTube vids. There are some techniques that once you see them performed in a certain manner, then you know right away that it is Yoshinkan.

grondahl
09-04-2007, 02:06 PM
I find the statement that Aikikai practice is based on ai hanmi a little bit odd. The most basic exercises like tai no henko, kokyo-ho, katate dori ikkyo-yonkyo, shihonage etc are all trained in gyaku hanmi from the very start.

Ron Tisdale
09-04-2007, 02:17 PM
I agree Peter...I've trained in a LOT of different styles, and rarely if ever find a preference for one stance as opposed to another...it's almost always a case by case situation. "What are we studying today?" seems to be the driving factor. In styles more influenced by modern arts like boxing, you won't find attacks from stances that don't make sense in that context, but other than that...

Best,
Ron

Berney Fulcher
09-04-2007, 07:47 PM
It also seems much rarer in Aikikai schools for Nage to lead off with the attack (though I have seen it done).

There are also some terminology differences between Aikikai and Yoshinkan.

Shannon Frye
09-04-2007, 10:48 PM
Great answers - thank to all that have contributed!

Most notable from what I've been reading is characteristic of "lock & drop" within the Yoshinkan style. This definitely has passed down through Kuniba-soke's style. Once my instructor has uke "locked", there is very little extension (as commonly found in modern aikido). There is, however, a big DROP coming!

Again, thanks to all for their answers.

Shannon

creinig
09-05-2007, 05:17 AM
If you're talking about basic practice, then some signs are as follows:

Yoshinkan:
uke & nage always start in the same spot
stance seems very rigid
movement seems very stiff
only the sensei is wearing a hakama


So far correct (although depending on the sensei he might not bother with the hakama either) :)


all the students move in unison
sensei barks out orders for each movement


Only true for kihon dosa (basic movements) and hajime training.
In normal technique training every pair has its own pace and sensei mainly watches and corrects individually. Although things still likely look more "orderly" than in many other styles due to the "uke & nage always start in the same spot" thing.

Alex Megann
09-05-2007, 10:06 AM
Most notable from what I've been reading is characteristic of "lock & drop" within the Yoshinkan style. This definitely has passed down through Kuniba-soke's style. Once my instructor has uke "locked", there is very little extension (as commonly found in modern aikido). There is, however, a big DROP coming!



Hmm. That also sounds very much like my experience with Fujita Sensei, whose background is Aikikai, rather than Yoshinkai. I have never seen him do a "big" projection; when I have taken ukemi from him, the ground tends to approach very soon and very quickly.

Actually my own practice is quite strongly, if indirectly, influenced by the Yoshinkai, as my teacher (Kanetsuka Sensei) was originally a student of Shioda Sensei, only later learning from Chiba, Saito and Yamaguchi within the Aikikai. Interestingly (perhaps not surprisingly?), his aikido looks to me much more like Shioda's than it does modern Yoshinkai aikido.

Kanetsuka Sensei's teaching is very much based on "kokyu" from basic solid posture and immediate control of uke's centre, and is quite different from the more flowing movement of most of the younger Aikikai Hombu Dojo Shihans that I have seen.

Alex

Charles Hill
09-05-2007, 07:56 PM
So, I don't have a clue how you would know by watching.

Hi Lynn,

I own the 2002 Aiki Expo video set. If I have it on, my wife (who has no budo experience and negative interest in Aikido) can easily point out which demonstrator is Yoshinkan. She has no knowledge of any other styles except for names. She cannot tell the difference among any other styles.

Your comment is interesting as I believe you are actually in one of the demos, are you not?

Charles

Nikopol
09-28-2007, 12:33 AM
[QUOTE=Ron Tisdale;188587]Interesting...my experience in Yoshinkan is over 10 years. I see both aihamne and gyakuhamne stances practiced. For most waza, especially the 150 basic waza. Can you reference specific sources?

In Yoshinkan all "1" waza (omote) start in aihanmi, and all "2" (ura) waza start in gyakuhanmi, in Aikikai both omote and ura tend to start in gyakuhanmi.

For example Aikikai's basic katatedori shihonage starts in gyakuhanmi for both omote and ura. Yoshinkan's katatemochi shihonage 1 starts in aihanmi. Katatemochi shihonage 2 starts in gyakuhanmi.

It's also easy for posters to confuse the terms.

Shizentota
09-28-2007, 09:17 AM
Hi everyone, I been reading all the answer, you are talking between to styles that in some ways are similars, what if you compare any of the styles before mentioned with Ken Kyu Kai (Yoshinobu Takeda Shihan)
I will be happy to hear what you thing about it.
Thanks:)

Steven
09-28-2007, 09:23 AM
[QUOTE=Vincent Nikopol;190765In Yoshinkan all "1" waza (omote) start in aihanmi, and all "2" (ura) waza start in gyakuhanmi[/QUOTE]

With the exception of swari waza and ushiro waza ....

Ron Tisdale
09-28-2007, 10:09 AM
Hi Steven, for Ushiro waza, don't we usually start with hoja dosa? In that case, ai hamni would be the norm, correct?
ai hamne
shite leads, uke strikes, shite blocks, shite strikes chudan, uke blocks, uke goes behind. Then ai hamne stance with uke behind. In case anyone isn't familiar with this particular form. Corrections welcome.

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
09-28-2007, 10:14 AM
I've had the priviledge of training with the local AKI group. I find them a bit different from your standard yoshinkan and aikikai.

But I like training with them a lot! Very joyfull, very serious (somehow they do both), a lot of connection work, and they really got me started on working relaxation more. I really love the way their senior people feel.

The biggest difference from other associations that I've experienced is their seeming lack of rigid form. I know Aikikai schools that stress form as much as Yoshinkan. AKI does something very different I think.

Best,
Ron

Hi everyone, I been reading all the answer, you are talking between to styles that in some ways are similars, what if you compare any of the styles before mentioned with Ken Kyu Kai (Yoshinobu Takeda Shihan)
I will be happy to hear what you thing about it.
Thanks:)

Shizentota
09-28-2007, 10:56 AM
Thanks Ron, that is true, It is a very joyfully work,
the technique seem to be less relevant in his form, but very deeply in it soul.
:ai: :ki:
The scroll I have in my dojo says "Aiki". The monk who used to be a vice proctor of Eiheiji temple happened to draw it for me. It is "Aiki" instead of "Aikido". I asked why "do (way)" is missing then what he told me was "You find your own 'way'"

-Yoshinobu Takeda Shihan

Ron Tisdale
09-28-2007, 12:05 PM
Same for the scroll at the local AKI dojo.

Always liked that story.

Best,
Ron

Steven
09-28-2007, 12:09 PM
Hi Steven, for Ushiro waza, don't we usually start with hoja dosa? In that case, ai hamni would be the norm, correct?
ai hamne
shite leads, uke strikes, shite blocks, shite strikes chudan, uke blocks, uke goes behind. Then ai hamne stance with uke behind. In case anyone isn't familiar with this particular form. Corrections welcome.

Best,
Ron

My point exactly.