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Bernie V
01-17-2002, 09:04 PM
Hi,
This is my first post. I have been taking aikido for a year now. I love it but I am still a doubting Thomas on whether it works.
I also just started to do some boxing to get the feel of a real attack and also to get see how my Aikido could be used to defend . Right now, when I am boxing I just box, but in the back of my mind I am thinking on how to use irimi or tenkan and also what technique I could use to immobilize or throw. forgive
my naiveness but I am still learning and would like some thoughts on this subject.

shihonage
01-17-2002, 10:14 PM
Originally posted by Bernie V
Hi,
This is my first post. I have been taking aikido for a year now. I love it but I am still a doubting Thomas on whether it works.
I also just started to do some boxing to get the feel of a real attack and also to get see how my Aikido could be used to defend . Right now, when I am boxing I just box, but in the back of my mind I am thinking on how to use irimi or tenkan and also what technique I could use to immobilize or throw. forgive
my naiveness but I am still learning and would like some thoughts on this subject.

Buy the Seagal film "Out for Justice" on DVD (its cheap) and see how he does things.
View it in slow motion as well.

If you're seriously interested, then what he does will give you new ways of looking at things. This film has the best bar scene ever.

Edward
01-17-2002, 11:59 PM
Welcome Bernie,

This issue has been discussed in many threads, probably because boxers really constitute a real threat. They know how to give effective blows, quickly and powerfully.

Aikido usually works better on committed attacks, when the opponent really means to hit with all his power. This kind of attack is very dangerous because it can be so quick you won't have time to react, and if it hits you, you're finished. However, if you can do a tenkan on time, then, the rest is up to you...

But if there is no committed attack, the kind of punches you see boxers throwing during matches, in preparation for the KO, in this case you need to be at a very high technical level in order to be able to defend yourself, probably not less than 3-4 Dan (and consequently not less than 40 years old!). But since we at Aikido prefer to avoid fighting, it would be reasonably easy to keep a safe distance (Maai) and wait for that committed attack. If it doesn't come, then even better. The conflict can be resolved without fighting.

Cheers,
Edward

Edward
01-18-2002, 12:02 AM
By the way, boxers tend to be very fit and strong. So I don't think it's a smart idea to fight with them ;)

AskanisoN
01-18-2002, 12:38 AM
"Fight a boxer and box a fighter."
-Bruce Lee

REK
01-18-2002, 06:03 AM
Aikido Today Magazine interviewed Kuriowa Sensei, who had begun his pugilism training as a boxer and had moved to Aikido. I don't know the issue #, but I do remember that he had some helpful perspective on the meeting of the two.

Rob

Brian Vickery
01-18-2002, 07:34 AM
Originally posted by REK
Aikido Today Magazine interviewed Kuriowa Sensei, who had begun his pugilism training as a boxer and had moved to Aikido. I don't know the issue #, but I do remember that he had some helpful perspective on the meeting of the two.

Rob

FYI:

It's in ATM issue #34, the article is titled: "A Common Sense Look at Aikido" written by Y.Kuroiwa & J. Roth

Jem8472
01-18-2002, 12:11 PM
I think with anyone that can punch as well as a boxer, it might help to move out of the way of the punch don't do anything just move. Alod this will help make him tired. Untill he throws a punch and overstreches himself the is your opening to do something and put him on the ground.

shihonage
01-18-2002, 12:12 PM
There's no such thing as a "Aikidoka" vs. "Boxer".

There are two people. One of them becomes hostile. The other does what they have to do.

Aikido is not a sport. It's not been made to survive in athletic competitions, where there are rounds, stances, rules, determined environment, and excessive endurance is required.

Aikido is not a game.

PeterR
01-18-2002, 12:32 PM
Boxing may be a sport but a boxer is a trained fighter specializing in a certain skill set and perfectly capable of stepping outside the ring. The question, if Aikido is to maintain any claim to being a martial way, is perfectly valid and to give Bernie his due he is not just talking about it but exploring it.

Can a person trained in the techniques of Aikido hold their own against a person trained in the techniques of a boxer. Good answers so far I have nothing to add.

There are boxers out there, even today, that consider boxing a way of life. Not a game by any means.

A dojo is not a determined environment?





Originally posted by shihonage
There's no such thing as a "Aikidoka" vs. "Boxer".

There are two people. One of them becomes hostile. The other does what they have to do.

Aikido is not a sport. It's not been made to survive in athletic competitions, where there are rounds, stances, rules, determined environment, and excessive endurance is required.

Aikido is not a game.

shihonage
01-18-2002, 01:11 PM
Originally posted by PeterR
Boxing may be a sport but a boxer is a trained fighter specializing in a certain skill set and perfectly capable of stepping outside the ring. The question, if Aikido is to maintain any claim to being a martial way, is perfectly valid and to give Bernie his due he is not just talking about it but exploring it.

Can a person trained in the techniques of Aikido hold their own against a person trained in the techniques of a boxer. Good answers so far I have nothing to add.

There are boxers out there, even today, that consider boxing a way of life. Not a game by any means.

A dojo is not a determined environment?


If we're not talking about a ring, then let's talk reality.

In real life, there's no predetermined environment. There's no predetermined skills, there's no predetermined minds (i.e. Aikido practitioner who would actually attempt a kotegaeshi vs. one who would attempt an eyerake and a Judo legsweep vs. one who would "project" a nearby chair into the attacker and assault him with a broomstick vs. one who would piss his pants and hope that the smell drives the boxer away), there's absolutely nothing to make any decisions by.

Is the boxer smart ? Stupid ? Tall ? Wide ? Enraged ? Calm ? Drunk ? Sober ?..

Does he have friends ? Did your girlfriend just go to the restroom and you can't run away ?

Is he carrying a concealed weapon ?
Are you ?

Is your leg bruised from training last week ?
Are you wearing a thick coat ?
Are you drunk ?

Did he hit you first and thats how it all started ? Where was your awareness ?
Does he have a reason to be enraged ?
Do you have the surrounding crowd on your side ?

Are you BIGGER than him ? Is he intimidated ? Are you ?

What I'm trying to demonstrate, is that unless the question was initially asked about a restricted environment with a set of rules, it was entirely pointless.

However, if it was asked about a restricted environment with a set of rules, it was entirely pointless as well - because Aikido is not made to be a game.

PeterR
01-18-2002, 03:00 PM
Alexsey - I thought I was being very careful to talk about skill sets and if I read the original post correctly it wasn't about a boxer and an aikidoist in a street fight.

Do Aikido techniques work against a boxer's attacks which are very very different from the type of attack normally used in an Aikido dojo? I have found out how different and how difficult by dojo experience but ultimately I do believe the answer is yes.

There is an article written by Diane Skoss at http://www.koryu.com on Ma ai. In it she tells a story of asking a Shihan of the Japan Aikido Association (Tomiki) how an Aikidoist can deal with Karate. The single word answer was ma ai. I believe the same answer is valid when dealing with a boxer's attack.

As for street reality I am pretty sure the average boxer can make the transition far easier then the average Aikidoist. It has to do with the type of training, the experience of going against someone that wants to hurt you (that takes serious balls), and ultimately the type of person that gets drawn to boxing as opposed to our little thing.

As for Aikido not being a game - I don't disagree. However, to differentiate boxing and aikido at this level is wrong. Boxing was taught for years at men's clubs (still is) as a means of self-defence and self-improvement whether physical or mental. Aikido does not have the monopoly on that.

Brian Crowley
01-18-2002, 04:17 PM
Bernie, I think you've got an interesting cross-training arrangement. I look forward to hearing your input on this subject in the future as you get better at both arts.

Peter's response reminded me of a question I have been meaning to post, so I throw this out to whoever might be willing to drop a few lines -

I notice that frequently when these types of questions come up, the answer, "ma-ai" is presented as the key to prevailing in the situation for the Aikidoist. I sometimes wonder if Aikidoists put too much hope in this concept. This may just be a reflection of my limited knowledge on the topic:

Does ma-ai just refer to keeping a proper distance from the opponent to allow your application of technique ? As a former fencer I appreciate the concept. However, outside the dojo (or fencing strip) you frequently have to deal with the distance (and terrain) you are given. If you are actually forced to fight, and not exit the situation, that probably means the distance is up close and personal.

What are your thoughts on the practicality of maintaing ma-ai outside the dojo ?

Brian

daedalus
01-18-2002, 04:56 PM
A quick note on enviroment, awareness, and maai.

Once there was a class in which the instructor asked the students to ask him how to defend against any attack. People gave examples of roundhouse punches, knife in the back, etc. One person gave the following scenerio:

"You have your back against the wall and your attacker has you pinned by the throat on the wall so that your feet are no longer touching the ground."

The teacher asked him to get up and show him the attack. A few steps before the student got within kicking range, the instructor took one step and his back was no longer facing the wall.

"Be aware of your surroundings. Don't put yourself in that position, and you won't need to defend from it. But just in case you forget..."

From there he allowed the student to lift him by his throat and went on to show an escape using atemi and whatnot.

Enviroment can be controlled as much as the situation. Don't try and control it, just blend with it and everything works out. Or you get pummeled. No, wait, just the first one. ;^)

PeterR
01-18-2002, 05:13 PM
Hey Brian;

I really suggest you read the article by Diane Skoss on Maai.

http://koryu.com/library/dskoss2.html

Bernie V
01-18-2002, 09:15 PM
Originally posted by shihonage


If we're not talking about a ring, then let's talk reality.

In real life, there's no predetermined environment. There's no predetermined skills, there's no predetermined minds (i.e. Aikido practitioner who would actually attempt a kotegaeshi vs. one who would attempt an eyerake and a Judo legsweep vs. one who would "project" a nearby chair into the attacker and assault him with a broomstick vs. one who would piss his pants and hope that the smell drives the boxer away), there's absolutely nothing to make any decisions by.

Is the boxer smart ? Stupid ? Tall ? Wide ? Enraged ? Calm ? Drunk ? Sober ?..

Does he have friends ? Did your girlfriend just go to the restroom and you can't run away ?

Is he carrying a concealed weapon ?
Are you ?

Is your leg bruised from training last week ?
Are you wearing a thick coat ?
Are you drunk ?

Did he hit you first and thats how it all started ? Where was your awareness ?
Does he have a reason to be enraged ?
Do you have the surrounding crowd on your side ?

Are you BIGGER than him ? Is he intimidated ? Are you ?

What I'm trying to demonstrate, is that unless the question was initially asked about a restricted environment with a set of rules, it was entirely pointless.

However, if it was asked about a restricted environment with a set of rules, it was entirely pointless as well - because Aikido is not made to be a game.

so far all the input has been interesting and imformative. I am asking about boxing
as one form of an attack you would see on the street. Iam not talking about using my aikido as a sport. The dojo is a controlled environment and I am being practical. I believe to know if the art is useful you have to be put in fighting situations as real as
possible. I decided on trying boxing to 'feel' what it like to get hit a couple of times in the noggin. it't scary at first. I think unless you know what it like to have some 230 pound bubba (somebody I boxed, 40 pounds heavier than me) and who knows how to
ring your bell you will be useless in a real world situation.

AskanisoN
01-18-2002, 09:34 PM
Hi Bernie,

I think that for most people, the best way to learn is to do. If possible, try to get a friend that boxes to participate in a "controled" experiment with you. At least this way you will have a better idea of what may or may not work for you. And, I think you will come away with new insight on your questions. Besides that, I'm sure your boxing practice will realy improve your atemi. :D

Best a Luck,

Scott

Bernie V
01-19-2002, 08:13 AM
Originally posted by PeterR
Alexsey - I thought I was being very careful to talk about skill sets and if I read the original post correctly it wasn't about a boxer and an aikidoist in a street fight.

Do Aikido techniques work against a boxer's attacks which are very very different from the type of attack normally used in an Aikido dojo? I have found out how different and how difficult by dojo experience but ultimately I do believe the answer is yes.

There is an article written by Diane Skoss at http://www.koryu.com on Ma ai. In it she tells a story of asking a Shihan of the Japan Aikido Association (Tomiki) how an Aikidoist can deal with Karate. The single word answer was ma ai. I believe the same answer is valid when dealing with a boxer's attack.

As for street reality I am pretty sure the average boxer can make the transition far easier then the average Aikidoist. It has to do with the type of training, the experience of going against someone that wants to hurt you (that takes serious balls), and ultimately the type of person that gets drawn to boxing as opposed to our little thing.

As for Aikido not being a game - I don't disagree. However, to differentiate boxing and aikido at this level is wrong. Boxing was taught for years at men's clubs (still is) as a means of self-defence and self-improvement whether physical or mental. Aikido does not have the monopoly on that.

PeterR
I was referring to confronting a boxer or
someone who is using boxing skills who is attacking you. I just want to be prepared
for anything, not just some clumsy nut who is
just wildly attacking you.

Bernie V

BernieV

Abasan
01-19-2002, 11:05 AM
I notice that frequently when these types of questions come up, the answer, "ma-ai" is presented as the key to prevailing in the situation for the Aikidoist. I sometimes wonder if Aikidoists put too much hope in this concept.

The problem here is maai is not unique to Aikido. Karate, Tai Chi, etc etc... all teaches maai. Different terms maybe, but its all there. So forget maai as a one stop solution to all attacks when you're going against a trained fighter who knows everything about spatial/relational distance. Especially a boxer who's out there in the ring everyday dishing it out to another boxer who won't have a problem giving as good as he gets. If their distance/timing/awareness is all wrong, they're going to get a massive wake up call.

Just my thots anyway...

PeterR
01-19-2002, 01:03 PM
Originally posted by Abasan


The problem here is maai is not unique to Aikido. Karate, Tai Chi, etc etc... all teaches maai. Different terms maybe, but its all there. So forget maai as a one stop solution to all attacks when you're going against a trained fighter who knows everything about spatial/relational distance. Especially a boxer who's out there in the ring everyday dishing it out to another boxer who won't have a problem giving as good as he gets. If their distance/timing/awareness is all wrong, they're going to get a massive wake up call.

Just my thots anyway...
True - ma ai after all is just combative distance not some magical trick. I think the point to the one word answer is that you must adjust ma ai based on who or what you are facing and where you are facing them. Of course as you mentioned the trained and or experienced fighter is doing the exact same thing. You just must do it better.

Brian Crowley
01-19-2002, 04:23 PM
Thanks for the ma-ai comments folks.

Bernie, I never really commented on your question before going off on my ma-ai tangent. My opinion is that most Aikidoists would have trouble with a boxer in a "real fight". I think most would find a flurry of jabs, feints and assorted puching combinations to be a bit overwhelming in comparison to the usual attacks that they train against. I'm not saying this would always be the case - clearly it wouldn't. I also think Aleksey's points regarding the other factors in a real fight is right on point.

As for ma-ai, I think people should remember that in most sportive martial arts (including boxing, karte, kickboxing, fencing, etc.) there is a range of fighting in which the contestants agree to fight by using footwork to move in out of that striking range. When the fighters get too close - as they frequently do - a ref stops things to provide additional distance to allow the match to continue. Similarly, in an Aikido dojo, we practice with attacks that are performed from a "correct" distance. My personal feeling is that the lack of a ref, or the controlled environment of dojo, means that ma-ai "on the street" has whole new meaning.

Of course, the best advice, when it's possible, was provided earlier - ie. don't put yourself in the situation. However some people, either because of their profession, neighborhood or just bad luck have no choice. To those people, I would say don't count on your ability to manipulate ma-ai. Make sure you know how to fight in close ! If you can learn that in your Aikido class, great. If not, you might want to supplement your training. If you want suggestions on how, let me know.

Brian

shihonage
01-19-2002, 04:38 PM
Originally posted by Brian Crowley
Make sure you know how to fight in close ! If you can learn that in your Aikido class, great. If not, you might want to supplement your training.

I must say that I ordered Senshido tapes about a year ago (Tactical Urban Set #1, 4 tapes) and they are a must-have for an Aikido practitioner who is concerned with reality of his/her training.

Period.

Edward
01-20-2002, 04:14 AM
I think one must be reasonable in one's expectations. Before I took up Aikido, I knew that it is a "soft" MA, which purpose is to subdue an unsuspecting attacker without hurting him. Nothing in Aikido training suggests that we would be able to "compete" against other MA, neither in terms of violence of the techniques, nor in terms of the physical training which is by far inferior to the standard training of let's say an amateur boxer.

I think the main value of Aikido resides in other aspects than in its martial efficiency.

I think in theory aikidoka don't fight. In case one is put in a situation where fighting is anavoidable, probably the most important factors in determining the winner are physical strength and ruthlessness. Apart from that, we have seen in competitions that even with a clear winner and looser, if you repeat the match under exactly the same conditions, the outcome is not necessarily similar.

Just a few thoughts.

Cheers,
Edward

Suru
01-20-2002, 11:19 AM
Aikido teaches us some important self defense, but it is not as simple and straightforward as other martial arts from what I've seen. This makes it more complicated and difficult. As it is much quicker in a fight to add 1+1=2 than divide 253 by 57=whatever, aikido is probably not the most efficient combat method. I've found in my life, however, that aikido philosophy (which comes alive through training and reading,) keeps me out of trouble. I've found that if I just don't severely piss anyone off, no one wants to fight me. Maybe it's just that simple after all.

Erik
01-20-2002, 01:11 PM
Everytime I read something like this I start to wonder about something:

Are you people really thinking about one-on-one fair fights?

If so, WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE!

shihonage
01-20-2002, 01:21 PM
Originally posted by Edward

I think the main value of Aikido resides in other aspects than in its martial efficiency.

I think in theory aikidoka don't fight.

Edward + Yoga = Perfect Match !

JMCavazos
01-20-2002, 05:43 PM
After the last Lennox Lewis fight with (I forget his name) I was really interested in what the other guy said. (Remember that this other guy knocked out Lennox Lewis in their first bout) The other guy said that he could never get off a knock out blow because Lennox kept out of knockout range (or something to that effect).

Anyway, I think that ma-ai is just that, keeping out of the other person's "Knockout" range - it doesn't mean that you will never get hit. Then wait for the opportunity to apply an Aikido principle and a technique will come out of it.

This is pretty interesting. Oh, I watched the Steven Seagal barroom fight scene last night! Pretty neat, but the punch that the old man boxer threw is pretty much the same kind of punch we practice with regularly - not really a punch a real boxer might throw.

gilgul1
01-21-2002, 01:11 AM
Hello everybody.
I have gotten many different viewpoints on this subject. One person sees Aikido training as self-defense training; he wants to be able to hold his own in a brawl.
Myself, I would run away before risking injury to myself or another. I would give away my money and my car before trying to kotegaish some hijacker. My Sensei says that Aikido is slower than many other styles, and that the main thing that will serve one in such a situation is a "sense". This "sense", he explained, is knowing when an attack will come; I interpret it as several internal mechanisms that we train: ma'ai was mentioned in the thread, upright posture, that "weighted" feeling you have when you've executed a technique correctly, and that "moment of Aiki" before the technique begins when the attack begins and first contact is made. These and other internal trainings are the sine qua non of Aikido. Many of the techniques would be alkward and downright ineffective without these disciplines, they wouln't even work on the mat! Sensei also demonstrates sometimes what would happen in a committed attack--he steps off the line and strikes once, and it's over. He's not one to mince works or actions.

Good thread!

unsound000
01-21-2002, 01:41 AM
Interestingly, I have read that aikido is first and foremost a philosophy of harmony. The martial applications flow from this ideal and not the other way around. Other arts most certainly are more effective combatively. Aikido though, I think, is something special. It creates peace, awareness, calmness in the individual and situations. Many other arts do not focus on these attributes nearly as much. It reminds me of the story of the 3 samurai asked to walk into a room to talk to their lord. He had placed a piece of wood above the door ready to fall as a test to see which was the most skilled. The first samurai walked into the room and as the wood fell he jumped aside and drew his sword. The second samurai walked into the room and was skilled enough to draw his sword and split the wood as it fell. The third samurai however sensing no danger, simply opened the door and allowed the wood to fall harmlessly to the ground. The lord gave him the greatest praise. Anyways, I think aikido has more answers to preventing violence than just defeating it.

Good post. Most of these 'what if's' suck.

Originally posted by Edward
I think one must be reasonable in one's expectations. Before I took up Aikido, I knew that it is a "soft" MA, which purpose is to subdue an unsuspecting attacker without hurting him. Nothing in Aikido training suggests that we would be able to "compete" against other MA, neither in terms of violence of the techniques, nor in terms of the physical training which is by far inferior to the standard training of let's say an amateur boxer.

I think the main value of Aikido resides in other aspects than in its martial efficiency.

I think in theory aikidoka don't fight. In case one is put in a situation where fighting is anavoidable, probably the most important factors in determining the winner are physical strength and ruthlessness. Apart from that, we have seen in competitions that even with a clear winner and looser, if you repeat the match under exactly the same conditions, the outcome is not necessarily similar.

Just a few thoughts.

Cheers,
Edward

Bernie V
01-21-2002, 07:16 AM
I agree with alot of the posts that Aikido is a way to avoid conflicts and to resolve situations peacefully with minimal force. I
took aikido for this reason and I feel that I would seek the the peaceful ,nonconfrontational route if possible. But I am a realist and If I have to fight I want to be the one standing. I have always been interested in the martial arts and I have dabbled in it over the years but several situations recently involving my family have propelled me to get serious about it. It's a violent world out there and I don't see it getting any better. I would gladly give my life to protect my wife and kids that is why I want to train as if I am going up against Mike Tyson and Bruce Lee at the same time. Outlandish? Yes, but that is the way I approach it mentally.

" a time to tear and a time to mend
a time to be silent and a time to speak
a time to love and a time to hate
a time for War and a time for peace"
Ecc. 3:7,8

" seek peace at all costs but prepare for War":ai:

Edward
01-21-2002, 08:00 AM
Originally posted by Bernie V
I would gladly give my life to protect my wife and kids that is why I want to train as if I am going up against Mike Tyson and Bruce Lee at the same time.

My advice for you and I'm very serious. If this is your purpose, MA won't help much. Buy a gun and learn how to use it. This is the best way of delf-defence.

Practice Aikido because you like it, not to defend yourself as it will take you at least 30 years to be able to do it efficiently.

Cheers,
Edward

Brian H
01-21-2002, 08:44 AM
Originally posted by Edward


My advice for you and I'm very serious. If this is your purpose, MA won't help much. Buy a gun and learn how to use it. This is the best way of delf-defence.

Practice Aikido because you like it, not to defend yourself as it will take you at least 30 years to be able to do it efficiently.

Cheers,
Edward

Edward, I agree that weapons are a better option than unarmed combat where a life is in the balance (and as I type this I have a pistol on my hip). However, you just can't shoot unarmed people for assaulting you. (That is not to say that unarmed people can't kill you or be repelled using "deadly" force, its just a rather fine line) --- Besides Bernie hails from the People Republic of New Jersey where they frown on that sort of thing.

A trained boxer uses jabs to distract and unbalance his opponent. The jab can hurt, but generally will not seriously injure the opponent by itself (that comes when the boxer follows up with a committed punch that delivers a telling blow.

I'm not a boxer, or even a fan, but as someone who has a martial interest in fighting I have watched afew matches. Most boxers seem avoid getting hit by moving as opposed to blocking. Anytime I saw a boxer put up his hands to block his head it was because he was getting the snot beat out of him and had stopped moving.

Controlling Ma-ai is the key, if you "move like a butterfly" to the rear or the side then the boxer can not jab you, but must extend into a punch (with a greater opening and loss of center), then you can "sting like a bee."

Also boxing DOES NOT WORK at very close range. Two drunken college buddies were horsing around in the dorm one time. One was a golden gloves boxer and the other was a wrestler. The boxer was dancing around the wrestler and slap boxing him in the face while teasing him. After about twenty slaps the wrester stepped in grabbed the boxer around the body, flipped him and pinned him. The boxer was not pleased.

Bernie V
01-21-2002, 09:06 AM
Brian

I agree with you totally. a gun is not an option because the state and my wife ( who I fear more than most men) would not allow it.
your take on the boxing aspect is correct. I have sparred a couple of times now and I can see that ma-ai is the key. the next couple of times I am going to try more of my aikido expertize because my boxing instructor is also a martial artist who will let my try it.
I also have some ideas if I am up close
to him and momentariilly in contact with his body. some type of irimi move maybe. but I'll try them first before I discuss them. also, you are right, most likely an assailant will do other things than just box, but as my instructor tells us knowing a little bit about every art (boxing,judo, etc) can only help

PeterR
01-21-2002, 09:22 AM
Originally posted by Bernie V
I have sparred a couple of times now and I can see that ma-ai is the key. the next couple of times I am going to try more of my aikido expertize because my boxing instructor is also a martial artist who will let my try it.
I also have some ideas if I am up close
to him and momentariilly in contact with his body. some type of irimi move maybe. but I'll try them first before I discuss them. also, you are right, most likely an assailant will do other things than just box, but as my instructor tells us knowing a little bit about every art (boxing,judo, etc) can only help
Personally I would be very interested in hearing the results of your experimenting. Keep us informed.

[Censored]
01-21-2002, 12:44 PM
I notice that frequently when these types of questions come up, the answer, "ma-ai" is presented as the key to prevailing in the situation for the Aikidoist. I sometimes wonder if Aikidoists put too much hope in this concept. This may just be a reflection of my limited knowledge on the topic

If you can't punch them, and you can't kick them, and you can't close to grapple with them, then maai is your only hope. :o

I want to train as if I am going up against Mike Tyson and Bruce Lee at the same time. Outlandish? Yes, but that is the way I approach it mentally.

That is the best way to learn the real meaning of harmony.

Also boxing DOES NOT WORK at very close range...after about twenty slaps the wrester stepped in grabbed the boxer around the body, flipped him and pinned him.

Twenty uncontested hits, and you say it didn't work? Do you suppose he got his Golden Gloves title by lightly slapping his opponents? :confused:

Brian H
01-21-2002, 01:54 PM
I don't box. I am going to get close enough to knock his block off with an elbow strike or back off to the point I can safely deploy a weapon (Pepper, baton, gun etc.).

I'm not saying twenty real hits would have been pleasant, more that when your uke is in contact range, then boxing has limited value. When a boxer gets tired of getting smacked around he closes to kissing range to get his bearings and slow the other guy down. Then the ref pushes them apart and they get back to beating the snot out of each other. Now given that a boxer knows this they will back off to control Ma-ai and keep pummelling you.

Carl Simard
01-21-2002, 02:09 PM
Well, it certainly depends on the "why" of the fighting, but what about the psychological side of fighting ?

What I means is that, for what I know, aikidoka usually don't look at all like born killers or rough guy looking for trouble... If someone (a boxer or anyone else) choose you as an opponent, it may well be because you don't look too dangerous and seems an easy fight. Simply standing there without looking afraid may simply make your opponnent unsure of end of the fight gladly forget about it if the opportunity present, you simply have to let the door opens for a "peaceful" ending...

Another thing is that aikido is not the most known martial art, which may be somewhat of an advantage. In this case, if you're facing a boxer, you know what he will try to do to you and can act accordingly. The reverse will not be true most of the time: the boxer will not have the faintest idea of what you will trying to do. He simply see that you seems to exactly know what you are doing and don't know what to do against that and sense that he may be up for a surprise if he do the wrong thing... That simple thing may make someone lose his confidence and wanting to get out of a fight he's not sure to win...

Brian Crowley
01-21-2002, 03:38 PM
There are a few authors that I think are relevant to this thread. I apologize for repeating myself from other posts. However, I can't resist because these authors are worth repeating:

First, in Ellis Amdur's book (see his website for details) is an excellent essay that is titled (I think),"So how tough do you want to be when you grow-up ?" My copy is on loan to someone, but as I recall the article humorously discusses reasons for MA training. I think any martial artist will find a few useful insights in this book.

Second, John Perkins has an excellent book on self-defense ("Attack Proof"). After reading the book you realize that if you are being seriously attacked it is unlikely to be in any conventional MA attack. He has excellent advice on what it takes to survive and the drills in the book are second to none.

Last, but certainly not least, Sanford Strong has an excellent book called "Strong on Defense". His main theme, which is well supported by his examples, is that mental preparation is the critical factor that allows someone to survive a violent encounter. The book is truly an eye-opener.

I can almost guarantee that after you read any of these (especially the last), you will realize that whether an Aikidoka can be beat a boxer will probably never have any practical significance for you unless you decide to join some kind of "fight club". I still enjoy the debates, but these books provide much needed perspective.

Brian

Edward
01-21-2002, 07:47 PM
Originally posted by Carl Simard


What I means is that, for what I know, aikidoka usually don't look at all like born killers or rough guy looking for trouble... If someone (a boxer or anyone else) choose you as an opponent, it may well be because you don't look too dangerous and seems an easy fight. Simply standing there without looking afraid may simply make your opponnent unsure of end of the fight gladly forget about it if the opportunity present, you simply have to let the door opens for a "peaceful" ending...



Very interesting point, that I happen to have discussed recently with my Shihan. He's of the opinion that in 99% of cases, the agressor choses a victim who's smaller, weaker, less impressive than he is. Only a fool, no matter how strong, would attack a bigger stronger man, this is the rule of nature.

Now if you happen to be in an unfriendly environment, like a bar for example, if you act as a harmless person, then it's like inviting trouble. If you have a gun or any weapon, make sure every body sees you do, if you have big forearms (from bokken practice :) ), show them. Always keep a bottle of beer handy. This way, you can prevent a potential fight before it happens.

But I think if you do the above too obviously, or not naturally enough, you'll be inviting more trouble ;)

Cheers,
Edward

Carl Simard
01-22-2002, 07:55 AM
It was simply remembering me a short story that happened to me, well before I was doing aikido, that shows what I mean by the "psychological side".

I was something like 12 and was coming back home. I simply cut to a small trail in a small wood to save time. In the trail, 4 local bums stop me and ask me to give them my bicycle. Since I'm more a "low medium" size guy, I probably look like an easy one. However, I simply stand there and tell:"Since you're four and I'm alone, you can certainly take my bike if you want. However, be prepared to get some black eyes and broken teeth before getting it.", and simply stand there and wait, trying not to look afraid (which I was!). I was telling the truth: I was knowing that, at four against me, I simply have no chance and that they will rapidly overhelm me. At that time, I was doing judo and was also knowing however that the first one or two coming near me can get a run for their money... After maybe one minute of staying there silently and seeing that I would not give them the bike easily, the leader of the bums simply said: "Ok, we let you pass.". It was the only time I get problem with them. They never tried me again. At some point, it was a fight, but not a physical one. And winning the psychological part can be all you need... The leader was knowing that he can get the bike. However, he was also knowing that, as the leader, he would have to be first, showing the way. If he get a broken teeth, he would look like a foul in face of his mates, even if he's able to pin me afterward. My bike was simply doesn't worth the risk...

Even if someone know that they can win against you, they will not necesseraly want to risk to be hurt. Simply make them believe that you can be a tough nut to crack can be enough to make them look elsewhere.

PeterR
01-22-2002, 08:04 AM
Who do you train with Carl? I notice we are both in Quebec City.

jimvance
01-22-2002, 08:34 AM
Hey Bernie!

Here's a couple of thoughts; I know that this post has rambled on and on about "combative reality" and "correct ma ai", which is all well and good. But I think you wanted something simpler, no? We always look at things from an inner to outer perspective, subjectively; in other words we look to our own weaknesses and compare them to strengths. The case in point here about "Aikido vs. Boxing".
Here are some thoughts (which I don't take credit for):
1. In a bout against a puncher, you will get punched. (With a knife, you'll get cut; with a wrestler, wrestled; etc.) The effect of that punch does not have to be exactly what the pugilist wanted it to be though. In other words, while still getting hit, what happens, because of correct posture, movement, etc., only 25 percent of the force exerted reaches its target? In Aikido, we don't think we should get hit at all.
2. There are illegal things in boxing, like "covering" (and ear-biting). What happens when you close distance on a boxer so much that they can't get the right distance to throw a punch? It doesn't feel comfortable, and you will get hit, but refer to point number one.
3. When a boxer throws a punch, they stop their feet and use their upper body predominantly (good boxers like Ali could "float" a little). Pay attention to these moments and move into an "uncomfortable" distance. It think that this is good boxing, or good fencing, or good judo, or good aikido. Most of us get strength by stopping our feet and exerting force against the earth. What would happen to most boxers if they were wearing rollerskates?
I hope these points/questions give you some more perspective, and help you in your experimentation. We do a lot of this in my dojo, and I find it really fascinating (despite the occasional "memory knot").

Jim Vance

Edward
01-22-2002, 09:50 AM
Originally posted by BRIAN H


Edward, I agree that weapons are a better option than unarmed combat where a life is in the balance (and as I type this I have a pistol on my hip). However, you just can't shoot unarmed people for assaulting you. (That is not to say that unarmed people can't kill you or be repelled using "deadly" force, its just a rather fine line) --- Besides Bernie hails from the People Republic of New Jersey where they frown on that sort of thing.



Hi!

Eventhough I do not carry a gun myself probably because I do not need to since I live in one of the safest cities in the world, however I do not have any taboo for guns and would carry one if I had any need for it.

It's true that by law you cannot shoot someone who attacks you unarmed, but I don't know many people who would attack someone knowing he's armed. Guns can be the best deterrants to violence (if used strictly for this purpose) and definitely a better option than Aikido ;)

Moreover, I believe that a Japanese sword or a knife can be more dangerous for the untrained user than a firearm.

But this is unrelated to the thread subject so please forgive me.

Cheers,
Edward

Brian Crowley
01-22-2002, 09:53 AM
Great points, Jim. I agree that closing is probably the best strategy against a boxer. The only problem is that if you don't train to fight in close, you are both in an uncomfortable environment. It sounds like your dojo does some of this training, but most of the Aikdo dojos I have been in do not.

All the "dirty tricks" that we have mentioned using in close are available to the boxer too - ie. elbows, biting, head-butts, etc. In fact, sometimes those tricks pop out during actual boxing matches - as evidenced by the famous ear biting incident. Therefore in a hypothetical example, the boxer and Aikidoka are now standing nearly toe to toe. Now neither is really doing the art he is comfortable with. There are now many other factors that will probably decide the winner.
Who is bigger ? Who is more ruthless ? Who is more comfortable fighting in this range for whatever reason ? Do either of you have a knife ?

So yes, taking the fight in close nuetralizes a lot of the boxer's strengths. If you are the one to close you probably also have the element of surprise on your side & maybe even some control over the situation. However, for what happens next, I think that you are no longer looking at the example of boxer vs. Aikidoist, but rather who is the better street fighter or grappler.

Brian

Edward
01-22-2002, 09:58 AM
Originally posted by Carl Simard


"Since you're four and I'm alone, you can certainly take my bike if you want. However, be prepared to get some black eyes and broken teeth before getting it."



Hi!

It's amazing how wording can have a dramatical influence on the outcome.

By admitting that they can take the bike, you preserved your adversaries' "face", but showed determination not to give up easily. However, had you said: " Over my dead body" or " Come and try to get it" I'm sure you would have left them no choice but to attack you since you challenged their ability of taking the bike.

I think there is a lesson to be learned here.

Cheers,
Edward

Carl Simard
01-22-2002, 10:14 AM
Originally posted by PeterR
Who do you train with Carl? I notice we are both in Quebec City.

I train with David Mooney and Serge Marquis, at both dojos (CEGEP Sainte-Foy and CJVC).

Bernie V
01-22-2002, 10:31 AM
Very good points Jim and Brian. After seeing too many Steven Segal movies we tend to think we won't get hit at all. But my
sparring sessions so far have shown me your going to get hit until you have reached a high technical level in Aikido. I appreciate
the posts urging to try to avoid fighting
and that is the first option, but there will be a time when fighting is the only way and that is what I want to explore now.

PeterR
01-22-2002, 10:54 AM
Originally posted by Carl Simard
I train with David Mooney and Serge Marquis, at both dojos (CEGEP Sainte-Foy and CJVC).
Do I know you.

I used to train with David Mooney until I opened my own group whose days clashed with the CJVC classes. I find Serge to be one of the best Aikikai teachers I have run into. Very very good attitude. David is good to train with also.

My dojo is shut down now in preparation for my move back to Japan so I do have time to pay a visit. Maybe tonight - yeah I think I'll do that. 7:30 right?

Carl Simard
01-22-2002, 11:03 AM
Originally posted by Bernie V
Very good points Jim and Brian. After seeing too many Steven Segal movies we tend to think we won't get hit at all. But my
sparring sessions so far have shown me your going to get hit until you have reached a high technical level in Aikido.

You're absolutly right. If you're taking a fight, wanted or not, against an opponnent, boxer or anything, you must be conscient that you may get hurt even if you end up winning the fight. Against a boxer, it may means that you may end up with a black eye or a broken nose, even if you throw him to the ground and control him with a lock at the end... Any fight has a big part of risk. If you're not willing to assume that risk, avoid the fight... There's no magic there and it's true no matter the MA or fighting style you do. There's simply no single art that is 100% effective all the time. What MA can do is simply to put the balance a bit more on your side... It's not like the movies where the hero simply crushed his opponents without a bruise... In the end, it will probably the one that is the more skilled in his art that gets the best chance to win. No matter if it is aikido against a boxer. Bad aikidoka against a good boxer means that the boxer probably wins, and the reverse is also true...

Erik
01-22-2002, 11:10 AM
Originally posted by Bernie V
But my sparring sessions so far have shown me your going to get hit until you have reached a high technical level in Aikido.

I think you are going to get hit even then if your opponent also has a high level of ability. Where you get hit less is when there is a large gap in technical ability. Aikido, even at high levels, doesn't make one immune to getting hit.

However, another myth is one-punch, one-kill, or however that one goes. The head is a pretty hard object. If you are moving and keep your hands up it won't be nearly so easy for a boxer to take you out in a squared up fight. You might even want them to hit you in some places. There's a reason clean knock out blows make the highlight films.

It isn't Seagal movies that make Aikidoists think they are invincible. It's the training methodology. Ever see a student take down a sensei or point out a sensei's openings? Sometimes, but it's pretty rare isn't it?

Same thing in class. Strike, fall, strike, fall, strike, fall, switch, repeat...... Do that a few thousand times and pretty soon you start thinking you are pretty good. Get a little rank added to it and you start getting really good.

shihonage
01-22-2002, 11:48 AM
Originally posted by Erik

Same thing in class. Strike, fall, strike, fall, strike, fall, switch, repeat...... Do that a few thousand times and pretty soon you start thinking you are pretty good. Get a little rank added to it and you start getting really good.

I find that just fooling around with friends can
help an individual to find out what they have learned to do reflectively and what is actually working for them.

Also, it's fun and relatively safe.

jimvance
01-22-2002, 12:56 PM
Originally posted by Brian Crowley The only problem is that if you don't train to fight in close, you are both in an uncomfortable environment.
This can be overcome by training at different ma ai. Ma ai does not mean being outside of attack range; there are different "ma". Most aikido techniques are illustrated at "toi ma" or "far distance". Techniques can still be done at different ma, it just requires fitting just a little differently, or finding techniques that are more appropriate at certain intervals, such as koshi waza, etc.
...Therefore in a hypothetical example, the boxer and Aikidoka are now standing nearly toe to toe. Now neither is really doing the art he is comfortable with. Standing toe to toe does not necessarily mean we are clashing. This is one emphasis of sword training in Aikido. If I am off of his "power line" and yet he is on my "power line", I am definitely doing the art I am familiar with. It may not be the same as training in the dojo, but principle is still the same. This may be one reason boxers are so feared (for lack of a better word) by the martial arts community. Once you learn to throw a punch, the job becomes one of maneuvering the opponent onto the power line at the correct time to use that punch. Watch good boxers, they do a lot to throw a punch; we do they move so much?

Jim Vance

Brian Crowley
01-22-2002, 03:15 PM
Originally posted by Vim Vance
Standing toe to toe does not necessarily mean we are clashing.

I agree completely. I think it really comes down to your earlier point about training in a closer ma ai so that you have comfort and sensitivity at that range. I still maintain that most Aikidoka do not and that it's best to go to those who specialize in that range for some pointers. Just my opinion (and my own personal practise).

Brian

jimvance
01-22-2002, 03:41 PM
Brian,

My sensei are all judo yudansha, and they love the close distance or "chika ma"; as a matter of fact, they prefer it. I am still uncomfortable within chika ma with someone really coming after me, but that's just one more reason to keep showing up at the dojo. Thanks for your earlier posts.

Jim Vance

Chocolateuke
01-22-2002, 10:28 PM
sure your proably gonna get hit but my sensei said one of the reasons people like shioda can throw with almost no touch is becasue the moment one does touch them or get in a good range they react instantly and solidly. but that requires years and years of dedicated and focused practace. focus is one of the things that a lot of people miss in their training ( at least in dojos ive been to including my own untill we started to be more focused ;), boxers arnt really the best people to test your aikido to the max I would much rather go against a street fighter or a dirty fighter becasue when they see an opening they use it and they also "cheat" ( there are no rules to fighting) and makes you use your imagination much more what if the guy tried to kick you while faking a punch something a boxer would never do. there are opionons on this and that is good it means everybodys thinking!

Bernie V
01-23-2002, 10:41 AM
More good posts! something I am going to try next time I spar is to try stay in a reverse stance. it seems to me (in theory)
that this way his power side is a bit farther
and he will have to telegraph his movement if he is going to strike from that side. he will
have to step in more with the power side to get a good punch. if his stance is more squared off this may not work. any thoughts?

shihonage
01-23-2002, 03:28 PM
Originally posted by Bernie V
...to try... (in theory)...
he will
have to.... if his stance... may not... any thoughts?

Just do it.
And get back to us.
Thanks.

David H
01-23-2002, 04:11 PM
Hello all, I've come to this a little late but it's interesting, as I'm sure many aikido practitioners ask questions along their own path.
I have 14 years under my belt (so to speak) but recently saw some boxers in training and was taken aback by the speed and power of the multiple punches.
A friend who trains with me used to box so he brought his gloves (for safety) and we 'messed about'.
There are many valid comments in this thread, some I understand, some I think missed the point, BUT what I found in our 'messing about' was that you have two options - 1) stay out of range and look for an opportunity or 2) committ totally without any form of hesitancy.
I am sure our few sessions did not take us far but I see either committed frontal irimi or irminage (getting behind) as most effective.
I did think that gedan attack (take the knees out with your whole body) would be so very unexpected.
And yes - many factors such as awareness (why are you there inthe first place); what are the circumstances of the situation etc. are SO relevant but I look at this as purely another question as to what do we (I) know. (know = where am I along the path?)

Brian Crowley
01-23-2002, 08:34 PM
Posted by Bernie: More good posts! something I am going to try next time I spar is to try stay in a reverse stance. it seems to me (in theory) that this way his power side is a bit farther ...


I don't quite follow. Do you mean you will have your "power" hand & foot forward instead of the traditional boxing stance ? I don't see how that makes your target areas farther away.

I believe that JKD & some Filipino martial arts use that stance. However my understanding was that they do so to have the stronger, more coordinated, hand closer to the opponent - not to make the targets less available to the opponent.

Brian

Kenshin75
02-02-2002, 02:47 PM
Most Police officers I know, use a modified form of aikido As thier self defence... Many cops defend themselfs everyday... So as far as "Is it effective"... I think that answers it. About Fighting a boxer... I dont really think its important, if you keep your distance.. they still need to bridge the gap. Also anyone remember Ali, when he got stomped on by that big ol wrestler years ago... Boxers are Good, but not invincible... they train hard...It reminds me of something i read in book about bruce lee... "Dont expect bruce lee results, unless your willing to put in a bruse lee effort"... The guy trained all the time.. ( not 2 or 3 days a week for an hour and a half )... then lastly would be.. why would you be fighting a boxer in the first place?... Isnt one of the principles about harmonizing, or resolving conflict... I belive the best way to resolve conflict is to not put yourself in situations where conflict may arise...for Instance... if you were to go to the atm at 2am.. would you really be suprised to find yourself getting mugged. Or being at a bar, and getting stupid... the list goes on, I mean, really how many times do you find yourself in real fights, If you do then you must be doing something wrong.

Brian Crowley
02-02-2002, 05:00 PM
Posted by Robert: Most Police officers I know, use a modified form of aikido As thier self defence

They may be taught Aikido-like restraining holds, but I'm not sure I would classify it as "modified Aikido". Many of the techniques are common to various forms of jujitsu/self-defense. Anyway, police have clubs, mace, guns and radios that can get other cops to scene.

Distance has been discussed quite a bit on this thread. I still maintain that you can't count on being able to maintain distance. It is too easily breached and then too difficult to regain.

I agree with your other points though, and in fact I think the attached essay covers the subject in some detail. I don't know much about the techniques that MacYoung teaches, but he makes some great points here:

http://www.diac.com/~dgordon/streetfighting.html

Brian

Kenshin75
02-02-2002, 06:37 PM
Sorry about that, I didnt mean for it to sound like I was saying that all Cops are aikidoka running around. Its just that I have a couple friends ( CHP, SDHD ),family, and The man who fueled my love for the art many years ago( even though I havent been able to train ) was a Riverside Sheriff. Plus I am Taking post certified police classes at the moment. and even though.. What they learn may not look as pretty, It seams that some aikidoka fail to realize that what we practice in the dojo is "Idealized".

As Far as distance goes... Your right... Its tough to maintain it...

The question I think the man was posting was more about defending against a boxer while sparring in a controled environment ( assumeing its a friend of his )...
And I would say... It would be tough. In that type of setting its his game... But on the street( yes Ive been in my share of fights in my younger years, not to mention been around some resently, booze at big partys sometimes does that.. :) )And I have yet to see anyone who is intent on knocking your block off, take the time to bob and weave, jab, jab cross.. type of stuff...

Anyhow,.. I Enjoyed the link to MacYoung though...

respectfully....

PeterR
02-03-2002, 11:22 AM
As one of the guys talking about ma ai I must say it was not as the be all end all answer. Ma ai is one of several basic principles which come togeather and can not stand alone.

Even so ma ai as combative distance means that if bubba does get close then your technique must change to accomodate it. The ma ai of most aikido techniques is different than the ma ai of judo for example.

shihonage
02-03-2002, 12:18 PM
Originally posted by Kenshin75
Sorry about that, I didnt mean for it to sound like I was saying that all Cops are aikidoka running around. Its just that I have a couple friends ( CHP, SDHD ),family, and The man who fueled my love for the art many years ago( even though I havent been able to train ) was a Riverside Sheriff. Plus I am Taking post certified police classes at the moment. and even though.. What they learn may not look as pretty, It seams that some aikidoka fail to realize that what we practice in the dojo is "Idealized".

As Far as distance goes... Your right... Its tough to maintain it...

The question I think the man was posting was more about defending against a boxer while sparring in a controled environment ( assumeing its a friend of his )...
And I would say... It would be tough. In that type of setting its his game... But on the street( yes Ive been in my share of fights in my younger years, not to mention been around some resently, booze at big partys sometimes does that.. :) )And I have yet to see anyone who is intent on knocking your block off, take the time to bob and weave, jab, jab cross.. type of stuff...

Anyhow,.. I Enjoyed the link to MacYoung though...

respectfully....

We make the same points:

1) Many people don't seem to realize that the dojo practice is idealized.
Because its idealized and because we try to get it just this perfect, that means we'll actually have a better chance of having a working technique in real circumstances.
Experimentation outside the dojo (with friends) and in this respect the beginners (people who just joined) are of great aid.
Outside the dojo, no matter how ugly your iriminage is, and if it ends up with a headlock and you dragging someone and punching them in the ear... it has worked perfectly.

2) Aikido is not about playing games or competition.
In a ring, you both start with your guard up.
In real life, the attacker must first bring his hands that high and close distance without arousing suspicion.
Then there's the whole "fence" thing taught by many reality self-defense instructors, which in its physical manifestation awfully resembles IKKYO-UNDO.
Many real life attacks do in fact look like shomen, yokomen attacks (only faster), due to the andrenaline rush affecting the other person AS WELL, as they lose their fine motor skills and get tunnel vision.

Brian Crowley
02-03-2002, 04:31 PM
Originally posted by Aleksey: 1) Many people don't seem to realize that the dojo practice is idealized.

I agree and I think this puts them at a huge psychological disadvantage when they face the non-ideal situation. I have even seen at least one Aikido school compound this potential problem by including a phrase like "Self Defense School" in the name of the school when, in fact, the school really did not have a self-defense emphasis. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with not making self-defense the focus of training - there are many other great reasons to study. But then, maybe one of those other reasons should be part of the name of school in place of "self defense". Just my opinion.

Then there's the whole "fence" thing taught by many reality self-defense instructors, which in its physical manifestation awfully resembles IKKYO-UNDO.

I haven't heard the term "fence", but I think I know exactly what you are talking about. In fact, I've had similar thoughts to yours myself. Of course, while the physical manifestations of ikkyo-undo may be similar, they can be a world-away if you are not aware of the applications and modifications that can make a world of difference. The Attack Proof book I mentioned (by John Perkins) has a move that looks somewhat like a modified ikkyo-undo, but the differences in application are immense.

Brian

Irony
02-04-2002, 07:16 PM
Also consider that a boxer will almost always seek to close on you to strike, whereas an aikidoka will keep that distance. A boxer may not be used to attacking an opponent who does not seek to close with him.

PeterR
02-05-2002, 07:22 AM
Do you watch a lot of boxing matches? At least half the time one of the boxers has to close distance. They do it very well.


Originally posted by Irony
Also consider that a boxer will almost always seek to close on you to strike, whereas an aikidoka will keep that distance. A boxer may not be used to attacking an opponent who does not seek to close with him.

Irony
02-05-2002, 08:48 AM
I don't doubt that they do. My point was that a boxer will be pushing forward to win, and is used to an opponent who is seeking to win as well. An aikidoka would more than likely just try to resolve it without aggressively engaging, keeping ma ai and whatnot. That might be a new experience for a boxer. I dunno, just my thoughts.

jimvance
02-05-2002, 10:58 AM
Originally posted by Irony
...would more than likely just try to resolve it without aggressively engaging, keeping ma ai and whatnot...
So how is the conflict resolved? You are assuming that the "boxer" will quit once they can't break the static ma the "aikidoka" has established. Ma ai does not mean keeping everything at fingertip reach, that is just a certain ma, or distance. I can keep really good ma ai in a conflict, it's called running away. What happens when I am caught offguard or I can't run away? When does this "aikidoka" step in and take the center? Limiting veiws of correct engagement weakens ability and creates openings. Engaging, aggressively or otherwise, in my book is called blending or fitting, and that is why aikido is so hard.

Jim Vance

Thalib
02-05-2002, 11:41 AM
First of all, how was the conflict caused?

Did one just go out and challenge a boxer to a fight? If that was the case, then I must say that that person have already failed. Because when the desire to win is involved, then it becomes a competition. It is a completely different frame of mind.

Did one accept the challenge from a boxer to a fight? This case also have grief consequences if the desire is the same as the first case. If one did not accept the challenge to a fight, the conflict is resolved to some point.

Did a boxer just come in and suddenly attack? One will have a different frame of mind. Now it is about defending oneself, survival. In this case, anything goes, no rules. Kicks, choke-holds and knee-to-the-groin can apply, but not need to.

We all can discuss which techniques is best until the sun don't shine anymore and it won't make a difference. Every person is different, every boxer is different, and every aikidoka is different. Study the principles well, and one will know what to do at a given moment.

P.S.: I prefer to practice with grapplers, they do everything: kicks, punches, grabs, tackles, choke-holds, etc.

One mustn't try to win, but one must to end the conflict.

jimvance
02-06-2002, 10:52 AM
Originally posted by Thalib
First of all, how was the conflict caused?...For the sake of the original question on the forum, this question is irrelevant.

...Because when the desire to win is involved, then it becomes a competition...Look up your definition of competition. I call this a fight.

...If one did not accept the challenge to a fight, the conflict is resolved to some point...Tell that to the Tibetans, or the Holocaust survivors. Ignoring the conflict does not always make it go away.

...Did a boxer just come in and suddenly attack? One will have a different frame of mind. Now it is about defending oneself, survival. In this case, anything goes, no rules. Kicks, choke-holds and knee-to-the-groin can apply, but not need to...This reminds me of karate competitions, where all these karate people train in all these kata and correct form, and then when they get to face off, everything they learned gets thrown out the window and they wind up thrashing around like a pair of drunken monkeys. What are you going to take from the dojo in the real world, besides the philosophy of peace and love?

...We all can discuss which techniques is best until the sun don't shine anymore...I don't remember talking about any techniques. As a matter of fact, most of what has been said has been in regard to proper distance and closing distance.

...I prefer to practice with grapplers, they do everything: kicks, punches, grabs, tackles, choke-holds, etc...I prefer to practice with people who agree to take care of me, even in dangerous situations, and who help me grow, even when it's uncomfortable.

...One mustn't try to win, but one must to end the conflict. This is what I was talking about, and is just plain foolish.Limiting veiws of correct engagement weakens ability and creates openings...If you don't practice with the right intent, your ability will reflect that, regardless of whether it is in the dojo or at your job. How can we practice conflict resolution if there is no conflict?

Jim Vance

Bernie V
02-06-2002, 10:54 AM
Hi,
just an update with the boxing. first I want to say I agree with your take Jim. ma-ai
is not everything, you may have no choice but engage.
To what Thalib said, I agree that fighting a
grappler is the best choice. but right now I want to explore one type of style which could very well be used by a grappler. believe me I want to explore kicks,holds, chokes, rushes, etc. But that is for later threads.

I haven't been doing any sparring lately. my boxing instructor has shown me some boxing techniques. I don't want to be a boxer but seeing how a boxer thinks and acts helps in defense. I got some more insight from my sensei because he has had some experience
with fighting people using boxing skills. what he suggests is continually circling to the ukes weak side and seek an oppurtunity to use a technique that way. for instance, if he is leading with his left hand and jabbing with it, you circle to that side so you are facing his shoulder. you use extention by keeping in contact with your hands between his elbow and shoulder. this in a sense traps his arm and he is going to try to circle with you to square off again. getting more behind him is even better because he will have a harder time
pulling that left foot back to square off and will also set you up nicely to do
irimi nage ( from the book Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere it is called kokyu nage). hopefully I will get a chance to try it. until then....

[Censored]
02-06-2002, 12:03 PM
Originally posted by jimvance
How can we practice conflict resolution if there is no conflict?

Nothing to add, but that is definitely worth quoting.

PeterR
02-06-2002, 02:44 PM
Originally posted by Bernie V
ma-ai is not everything, you may have no choice but engage.
Not intending to beat a dead horse but the whole point of ma ai is that you are in a position to engage to your advantage.

Thalib
02-06-2002, 04:10 PM
I do appreciate your opinion. It is the type of statement that is always an issue n Aikido. A lot of these questions in class.

It is possible what I've said would easily be misinterpreted. I get this a lot when I write. Words like between "challenge" and "engage", between "practice with" and "practice against". I try to choose my words carefully, and may have failed to some point. For example, I try to avoid using first person and second person.

The best way to convey my thoughts could only be possible through these postings since we span great distances. If we could train/practice together, then there will probably be better understandings.

You have chosen your path, and it is yours, I respect that.

Just for reference, in my country, martial arts are still like it is in the old days, where one school often challenges another school. It doesn't have to be other schools, there are even conflicts within the schools themselves. It is sad, but it is a fact.

Here, whenever there is a new dojo or any new martial arts training place, there will bound be some people that come in, not to try the art, but to test the art (it's an eastern thing probably). So it is very important to prove one's ability to take responsibility of what one teaches. If not, just pack up the bags, lock the door, and leave.

Abasan
02-06-2002, 08:08 PM
What's all this theoretical discussion all about anyway? I don't really think you can discuss this - aikido vs boxer, boxer vs wrestler, JKD vs the world, etc - topics and hope to get a conclusive answer. And whats the point? So that the next time someone asks you can tell them that aikido beat them all? (at least the forum in aikiweb said so...). Maybe you want to have it certified somewhere so that the next time a boxer bouncer comes to knock your lights off, you can scare him away by saying that aikido ppl can always win against boxers. Btw, we know how to defend against your swift punches through our regular interface at aikiweb.:rolleyes:

Who is the ideal representative for aikido? And what's real aikido anyway?

Who's the ideal representative for those other arts that you want to compare with?

At the end of it all, you either keep go against that person yourself, or you learn to go with yourself. So get on the mat already!

Brian Crowley
02-06-2002, 08:41 PM
Originally posted by Thalib:
Here, whenever there is a new dojo or any new martial arts training place, there will bound be some people that come in, not to try the art, but to test the art (it's an eastern thing probably). So it is very important to prove one's ability to take responsibility of what one teaches. If not, just pack up the bags, lock the door, and leave.

I'd love to hear more on this. Where are you from ? What happens to the winner/loser in these matches ? Obviously some schools will be more effective than others - how do the others stay open ? How do the Tai Chi & other 'softer' arts make out ?

Bernie -
I see you are from NJ. Do you ever make it into NYC ? If so please consider visiting Al Ridenhour's Ki Chuan Do school there - you can pay by the class - no committment needed. I know several people who practise Aikido and visit Ki Chuan Do classes from time to time for a different perspective.

Abasan -
You have a point, of course. With almost any hobby it is difficult to explain fully why we do what we do. I imagine some people would ask why train in these obscure arts that we never use. Or, why collect a bunch of cards with baseball players on them - why not go out and play baseball ? Sure there are various answers to all of these questions, but ultimately I think it is because on some level we feel the need to explore what we enjoy on different levels.

We all go through various stages/phases in our training. We ask questions about effectiveness, who is best, what are the benefits, what is the point, hard vs soft, what if someone does xyz ? Don't judge us too quickly - you may have been there at one point or you may be there in the future.

Brian

unsound000
02-07-2002, 03:58 AM
I think one of the points that Thalib is making is that we shouldn't let our anger and frustration get the best of us. I don't think Thalib was arguing that we should "ignore the conflict". You asked, "How can we practice conflict resolution if there is no conflict?"
Well, we understand that there is a conflict but do we have to get angry about it? Do we have to want to defeat that person and show him who's boss? I would say that we are more likely to lose the fight like this. I don't need to feel any of that conflict inside of me to do the art. Ego, pride, and anger are not intent. We use intent to control them. And what is wrong with only taking from the dojo "the philosophy of peace and love?". If that was all anybody got from practicing, then would it be such a horrible thing?:)
This article is about aikido's combat effectiveness and some other things discussed. Good points Jim.

http://www.aikiweb.com/general/combat.html





Originally posted by jimvance
For the sake of the original question on the forum, this question is irrelevant.

Look up your definition of competition. I call this a fight.

Tell that to the Tibetans, or the Holocaust survivors. Ignoring the conflict does not always make it go away.

This reminds me of karate competitions, where all these karate people train in all these kata and correct form, and then when they get to face off, everything they learned gets thrown out the window and they wind up thrashing around like a pair of drunken monkeys. What are you going to take from the dojo in the real world, besides the philosophy of peace and love?

I don't remember talking about any techniques. As a matter of fact, most of what has been said has been in regard to proper distance and closing distance.

I prefer to practice with people who agree to take care of me, even in dangerous situations, and who help me grow, even when it's uncomfortable.

This is what I was talking about, and is just plain foolish.If you don't practice with the right intent, your ability will reflect that, regardless of whether it is in the dojo or at your job. How can we practice conflict resolution if there is no conflict?

Jim Vance

jimvance
02-07-2002, 08:24 AM
Originally posted by unsound000
Well, we understand that there is a conflict but do we have to get angry about it? Do we have to want to defeat that person and show him who's boss? I would say that we are more likely to lose the fight like this. I don't need to feel any of that conflict inside of me to do the art. Ego, pride, and anger are not intent. We use intent to control them. And what is wrong with only taking from the dojo "the philosophy of peace and love?". If that was all anybody got from practicing, then would it be such a horrible thing?Gosh, everyone must think I was foaming at the mouth when I posted those points. I like to play devil's advocate, and I am very passionate about aikido and my training. But I don't ever think I said you had to get mad or had to kill the other guy. You do have to control the conflict in order to resolve it, and like you said, if I cannot control my own emotions, how can I successfully resolve the conflict? It is very easy to talk philosophy and show a favorable face to the world. Training to resolve conflict within oneself (which is very real) and within the dojo is the only way to really internalize the "philosophy of peace and love". And to think I have done it yet is just plain foolish.

Jim Vance

Edward
02-07-2002, 11:01 AM
You know, guys, there a lot of different kinds of boxers out there, as there are different kinds of Aikidoka. There are good boxers and bad boxers, big and small ones, strong and weak, tall and short...etc. That's why they play by weight categories.

Give me any time an average boxer, average strength, 20 kgs less than me and I guarantee I'll kick his butt. Give me a ballet dancer about 100+ kgs. of weight (if such a thing exists :) ) and I assure you I will have my butt kicked in no time.

In my dojo there is an Aikidoka about 135 kgs who is an ex Greco-Roman wrestler, another 100 kgs. who is an ex french foreign legion officer. I don't think you wanna mess with such guys.

I hope my message is clear :)

Cheers,
Edward

PeterR
02-07-2002, 12:05 PM
Very clear Edward - of course all things being equal .........

As an aside there are people a foot and a half shorter than me and the same weight that scare the living daylights out of me.

One of the things I have found really annoying are the people who say I do this art or I train with this person and assume that somehow their Aikido or whatever is better than anyone who does not. Nothing wrong with a bit of pride in what you do but sheesh. As you pointed out that generalization tends to fall apart very quickly. I have run into boxers that I know I could take just as I know boxers (Tyson for instance) that might be able to take me. :D At this point I begin to talk about the Do and conflict resolution.

It's not the art but the artist.

unsound000
02-08-2002, 03:44 AM
No offense Jim but someone reading your reply to Thalib could think that you implied that he was foolish and that he had little martial art ability. I don't think you meant that. I just think that you're passionate about doing aikido with intent and realism. No worries..I used to like to play devil's advocate but I found through rough experience that girlfriends hate it. i.e. Well, let's consider the possibility that you do look fat...<WACK>

Originally posted by jimvance
Gosh, everyone must think I was foaming at the mouth when I posted those points. I like to play devil's advocate, and I am very passionate about aikido and my training. But I don't ever think I said you had to get mad or had to kill the other guy. You do have to control the conflict in order to resolve it, and like you said, if I cannot control my own emotions, how can I successfully resolve the conflict? It is very easy to talk philosophy and show a favorable face to the world. Training to resolve conflict within oneself (which is very real) and within the dojo is the only way to really internalize the "philosophy of peace and love". And to think I have done it yet is just plain foolish.

Jim Vance

Thalib
02-09-2002, 05:49 PM
Originally posted by Brian Crowley
I'd love to hear more on this. Where are you from ? What happens to the winner/loser in these matches ? Obviously some schools will be more effective than others - how do the others stay open ? How do the Tai Chi & other 'softer' arts make out ?


I'm from Indonesia.

As for the loser, they get humiliated, basically speaking. Since the challenger is looking to discredit the school, there is no need to say, "If you leave, close your dojo, and never teach martial arts again."

Usually if the challenger loses, he sometimes joins the dojo (it's an alpha-male thing). If not, the challenger will one day come again bringing the challenger's senpai/sensei so does say.

If the challenger wins, usually rumors will start spreading on how weak the style/dojo is. People would be reluctant to train there anymore. That's also one reason why there are a lot of personal dojo here, that is kept secret from the outside world... until they go commercial that is...

My sensei got a lot of challengers. Especially when Aikido was offered to be a part of PasPamPres (Pasukan Pengaman Presiden - Presidents Security Forces). These soldier boys are very skeptical of Aikido, and they will not accept it until they are defeated by Aikido. Just to say that, Aikido is part of PasPamPres training now.


P.S. to Vance-san:

It is understandable, I do that too sometimes, to test people's reaction, putting myself in another person's perspective. That's why I responded not with an attack, but with self reflection. Because, in a way I do believe that you were not "foaming at the mouth".

I take even the most hurtful response as a self reflection (in a different way of course). Because I know I have my share of giving out unnecessary and maybe hurtful responses. There is always a lesson to be learned.

Abasan
02-12-2002, 10:30 PM
Thalib,

Its kinda outworldly that you have those challenges in this day of age. Don't you videotape them? It would probably be very realistic don't you think what with the challengers set on beating the crap out of your sensei. I would have like to see those matches... I bet they use hooks even! Could answer some questions here in aikiweb anyway.:D

Thalib
02-13-2002, 01:37 AM
It's not outworldly here in Indonesia. In martial arts, one have to prove oneself before one could start spreading the art. Indonesians are very picky. The world of martial arts here basically have very low tolerance.

Videotapes? :confused: It's not like these challenges were planned. Besides, it happened back when Hakim Sensei was still a shodan and back when he was still teaching the military. When I was present, we have occasional challengers, but most of them were grapplers. He also coached some people who accepted challenges.

But I have learned that it is not about the art, it is about the person, the martial artist him/her-self. If I wasn't under Hakim-sensei when I started, I would probably have left a long time ago. I've seen and now felt the existing yudansha here in Indonesia. Some I really respect, some I really don't know what to say except to have pity on them. I know I'm actually disrespecting some of the yudansha here in Indonesia, but I do wish that they will act their grade. We have white-belts that act wiser and have better understanding of techniques than some of the yudansha.

Abas-san, it's not like everytime they have a video camera handy. It's not like UFC or any NHB matches that were telecasted. The proof is that Aikido survived and has expanded here in Indonesia, that is quite a feat. It has adapted to the new environment. Instead of knife and swords, we have to deal with machette and sickle. Instead of dealing with the threat of firerarms, we have to deal with hoodlums that have mystically armored themselves against weapons.

Indonesia's culture has changed very little from the ancient times. The difference is we now have more advanced technology, but still low in education and social maturity. Also, in majority, we still have tribal mentality. It's a whole different ballgame down here. Sometimes it makes me feel depressed thinking about it, but I hope someday I will be able to change all that for the better.

What am I rambling about... well... that's a very small part of my cultural background. I guees now you all know why my postings are kind of weird at times... or maybe all the time.

Hakim Sensei wouldn't still be in Aikido if it hasn't been proven. I wouldn't have stayed in Aikido if it wasn't proven. I don't want to live a lie anymore.

ranZ
02-13-2002, 03:09 AM
Abasan, don't challenges happen too in Malaysia? With all the silat going on, you know.

--------
Tell that to the Tibetans..

mm.. this is most interesting. The Tibetans know exactly what they're doing. A nonviolent act. They prevent further bloodshed. Dalai Lama once ask a monk who has been prisoned for years by the Chinese - what he was afraid most. The monk answered "I fear of loosing compassion to the Chinese."

They are not ignoring a conflict, just viewing it from a diffrent standpoint. (*Hey the Dalai Lama is touring the world to free Tibet!*) So if you do tell that to the Tibetans, it'll only reaffirm their beliefs.

jk
02-13-2002, 06:22 PM
Hi Thalib,

I'm also keen on reading some accounts of the challenges that've happened in Indonesia...does this sort of thing happen often? It sure doesn't seem to here in Bandung. We've only gotten visitors who sit and watch class being conducted. We smile at them, they smile back. :) Members of the military come in, and they've always been polite and friendly...

Perhaps this has something to do with our dojo-cho being pretty high up there in the TKD heirarchy, but I haven't seen or heard of challenges happening while our dojo-cho is teaching TKD either...

Maybe the challenges are very much tied up with trying to increase reputations, and hence potential monetary gain...but there are MUCH easier ways of making money in Indonesia...

I guess we're lucky that we seem to be ignored by challengers, then...

Regards,

Thalib
02-14-2002, 10:48 AM
Hi Kuo-san...

I've heard places such as Bandung and Yogyakarta (I think even Medan) have quite mature mentality, "martial artist"-ly speaking. Especially in Yogyakarta, where they have a really quite a peaceful, helpful, and mature martial arts community (the locals say that it is caused by the high support of Sultan Hamengkubuwono).

In Jakarta, the challenges are not for so that people would rather come to their training places (monetarily speaking). It's saying my art is better than yours, or I'm better and stronger than you, kind of thing. You are probably familiar with the term "mentalitas preman" or maybe in English it translates to "hoodlum mentality", it is exactly that.

Some, I repeat, some of the martial artists here in Jakarta are basically "preman"s.

jk
02-15-2002, 03:29 AM
Ah yes, preman...no doubt there are hoodlums to be found almost anywhere on earth, and in almost any vocation...

Still, I have to question why these martial arts hoodlum challenges/turf battles would mostly be localized in Jakarta, but then it'll be hard to get clear, verifiable data on that...

If you think about it, challenges seem to be a much more civilized method of dispute resolution on the part of hoodlums, compared to readily available options such as drive-by shootings, bombings, and, heaven forbid, lawsuits...

Anyway, I think we're wandering off topic again...sorry 'bout that, folks. :)

Hope you had an enjoyable Valentine's day, everybody...

Love & Kisses,

Abasan
02-24-2002, 08:01 PM
I think the east have always been associated with a lot of the occult and the mystical. As for challenges, mayhaps it has been the norm for the martial arts world a long time ago. In fact, it used to be regarded as the privilege of the student to take the masters place as the head of the school by defeating him in combat. That happens not only in old china, but here in Malaysia & Indonesia itself. So much so that masters who do take students from outside their family, keeping certain techniques secret, sometimes to their death bed. But here in Malaysia, I don't think we get that anymore. Its probably illegal.

Here, there are plenty of schools of Silat that has closed down or gone underground because our Government tends not to tolerate occult and mystical stuff. Ever heard of Nasrul Haq (Thalib, Ranz?). Its not even a martial art really, just more of a passive spiritual exercise actually. Even that was banned, because no one can really understand why assailants to its practicioners cannot get close to them. Perhaps anything regarded as non-conformist to the majority will be eyed suspiciously. We after all are a race of men who are wolves to conformity but sheep to credulity.

I wasn't sarcastic about the video tape though Thalib. The short amount of time I spent with your sensei has been enough to conjure my respect for that man so I don't doubt at all his abilities. I don't have a chance to watch what you see happening there from time to time and if the only venue I can do the same is through a videotape, then so be it.

As a side, are you sure Hakim Sensei didn't do any silat before? Given that you are there, a challenge from some of these people can raise hairs, especially from the ones who are into Batin. How can aikido deal with that?

jk
02-25-2002, 06:43 PM
Hmm...good thread drift. To the best of my understanding, silat batin has to do with the supernatural, such as resisting bullets, poison hands, etc. Very interesting stuff. My opinion on these things doesn't really matter.

To stir the pot even further, my sensei, Atsushi Yamada, has remarked to me that he had received a challenge of some sort during his tenure in Bandung, apparently from a silat group. Somehow, the challenge never materialized, so I suppose it's all speculation, and not very confirmable. You COULD ask him about it. He's in KL, at Aikikai Malaysia...

How can aikido deal with silat batin? Gee, don't know...be nice, and eat your vegetables?

No offense intended...I'm also very keen on having more light thrown on this subject, even if it gets away from aikido.

Regards,

Thalib
02-27-2002, 10:51 AM
I guess, I'm mostly responsible for this... sorry to the other post-readers that were looking for answers to the thread...

Anyway...

Silat batin... Sinlamba (Islam based - similar to Nasrul Haq) is the most famous one in Indonesia. But the practitioners have made it clear, if one approaches without the intention to harm (no evil intentions), it is useless. Basically when you are in Aiki (in the true sense), none of those silat batin works.

You can try it as an exercise in calmness: try to approach one of these guys, first, with the intent to throw them, you would get thrown instead. Then, try to calmly approach them as if approaching a friend not just physically but also mentally and spiritually. The barrier does not work any longer if you are in Aiki.

Maybe we should discuss this in the other post about supernatural feats...

Note: since Indonesia is not an Islamic country (although most are muslims), old spiritual rituals (animism, spiritualism, etc.) are still widely practiced (some are even merged to other religions). It's a believe it or not kind of thing, you won't believe it until it happens to you...

MARZ
04-05-2002, 09:25 AM
I started boxing when I was 14. I am now 26. I have recently began taking Muay Thai and Jiu Jitsu with some Judo and Akido. Jiu Jitsu, Judo, and Akido are taught in combination at the dojo that I am at. To make a long story short. I realize that what I am receiving in the Jiu Jitsu/Judo/Akido combined will do these arts the justice that focusing on one the would, but it is giving me a good intro so that I can make a choice as to which area I will focus in once I have acquired enough proficiancy in the Muay Thai which is the dojo's specialty.

As far as boxing, it is apparent that many people in martial arts community do not thoroughly understand boxing if at all. There are a lot of misconceptions. Boxing is an art and is no less sophisticated than any martial. From what I have seen of many martial arts demonstration, there are no better strikers with the fist than boxers. To suggest that Bruce Lee at 147 lbs could even come close to generating the type of power of a heavyweight boxer of 200 + is to demonstrate a total lack of understanding of boxing, body mechanics, and physics. In fact as a fighter, I will tell you honestly that "Bruce's punching technique was not exactly great". I can think of lightweight fighters like Roberto Duran at 135 that could hit harder.
People seem to assume that boxers will follow rules on the streets that they barely follow in the ring. Hopkins, Holyfield, Tyson, DLH, Whitaker, Ray Robinson, and the list goes on all cheated in some capacity in the ring. Why do you think that outside the ring they would not just cut lose. In fact, many African-American boxers particularly from the Brooklyn area, know a martial art(Mike Tyson and Zab Judah) called Jail House Boxing or 52 Blocks. I fully acknowledge boxings limitations and that is why I am interested in Akido, Muay Thai, and other arts, but there is no such thing as a complete art, PERIOD.
In Akido's case, I am still considering if it is the art I want because from what I have seen, it has not evolved to deal with the attacks of boxing. I have not seen one that has other than boxing. Each art deals best with its own attacks. They are all culturaly specific. Boxing also enjoys among other things a broader pool of contributers to its development from Africa, America, and Europe.

Abasan
04-05-2002, 10:29 PM
Boxing (in its original form) next to Wrestling is one of the oldest fighting around. Having originated from Egypt i.e. before Greek times as most of us assume, it had the time to evolve into a science an art form that many martial arts borrows from.

I think, most of us though can only relate to boxing that's already popularised. Nothing I think which has the poison of mass consumerism within it, can truly remain true to its original form or intention. Such is the boxing we see today; made for the masses, for viewing pleasure.

I suppose, to understand boxers, we would have to go back say... to 1930's and look at the great boxers of that era. Not limiting ourselves to the pros, but also to the unnamed. (a lot are amateur fighters, who are good, but unable to sustain living of boxing).

After all... who would have thought that Rocky (ie stallone) was not a boxer, or rambo or a cop or a rock climber, after watching his numerous blockbusters. Little did we realise, our patriotic and heroic superstar, spent his time as a chaperone in a girls boarding school in Switzerland during the war.

So, perhaps, we should open our minds and not limit boxing to just 'in the ring, slugging it out'. Maai, tricks, luring, trapping, avoiding, balance breaking, timing, muscle targetting, pacing, blocks, feint, parries, counter attacks and all that... if its not a superb martial art, I wonder what is.

Bruce Baker
04-06-2002, 06:17 AM
Let's give in to the fact that a Boxer who maintains a no contact intermediate distance will be able to evade most Aikido entrys to take away their power/balance ...

With that said, maybe many of you should add simulated strikes and kicks to your Aikido practice to view where you should be in your techniques in practice, and then you will see why manipulate/move our partners the way we do?

Aikido, as in jujitsu or boxing, is not a static form of practice. No matter what the weapon, what ever the attack, we find the weakness or harmony of movement to use that force against itself. If that force is punching, sometimes trapping one of the boxers arms, simple misdirection by raising a hand ...

Of course, our goal of using Aikido is not to pummel with malicious intent? So, by the tenents of Aikido, once we adopt this intent we have lost? Isn't that what we are doing by even thinking one martial art is better than another?

I think there are many pieces to learning MA. Some of them are in learning to box, some are in learning Aikido.

Some interesting ideas in this thread.

Erik
04-06-2002, 07:38 PM
Originally posted by MARZ
In Akido's case, I am still considering if it is the art I want because from what I have seen, it has not evolved to deal with the attacks of boxing. I have not seen one that has other than boxing. Each art deals best with its own attacks. They are all culturaly specific. Boxing also enjoys among other things a broader pool of contributers to its development from Africa, America, and Europe.

Hi Mike!

I was wondering if you could be more specific in regards to "has not evolved". I'm assuming you had specific things in mind based on what you've seen.

MARZ
04-08-2002, 09:00 AM
Originally posted by Abasan
Boxing (in its original form) next to Wrestling is one of the oldest fighting around. Having originated from Egypt i.e. before Greek times as most of us assume, it had the time to evolve into a science an art form that many martial arts borrows from.

I think, most of us though can only relate to boxing that's already popularised. Nothing I think which has the poison of mass consumerism within it, can truly remain true to its original form or intention. Such is the boxing we see today; made for the masses, for viewing pleasure.

I suppose, to understand boxers, we would have to go back say... to 1930's and look at the great boxers of that era. Not limiting ourselves to the pros, but also to the unnamed. (a lot are amateur fighters, who are good, but unable to sustain living of boxing).

After all... who would have thought that Rocky (ie stallone) was not a boxer, or rambo or a cop or a rock climber, after watching his numerous blockbusters. Little did we realise, our patriotic and heroic superstar, spent his time as a chaperone in a girls boarding school in Switzerland during the war.

So, perhaps, we should open our minds and not limit boxing to just 'in the ring, slugging it out'. Maai, tricks, luring, trapping, avoiding, balance breaking, timing, muscle targetting, pacing, blocks, feint, parries, counter attacks and all that... if its not a superb martial art, I wonder what is.



Not to try and make this a boxing forum, but boxing has evolved considerably since it inception. Boxing during the early part of the 20th century not meniton anytime before was very primitive compared to what it is now. I do not think that the use of popuralized when refering to boxing is a acurate description. Boxing has evolved for that very reason (so many have tried it and contributed to it). Give me a art that has a larger more diverse pool of contributers than something with a limited pool any day. Boxing evolved in real life fighting situations. That is not to say that Akido did not, but Akido is not practiced in that way now to the degree that boxing is. As far as Rocky, it and many other theatrical attempts at boxing from a technical standpoint were insulting. The technique of every boxing movie I have ever seen has been terrible although Will Smith did a fairly decent job. Boxing techniques are no less complex than any other arts. It is just that those that have not mastered the art are just as visible if not more visible to the public than those that have mastered it.
I considering either Akido or Wing Chung because I think they would compliment my boxing skills, but the verdict is still out.

Jorx
04-08-2002, 11:54 AM
Hello

To Marz: I'd objectively advise you to take up Aikido... it's even more different from boxing I guess (also my father who used to box and now takes Aikido says some of the concepts and movements are similar) than WingChun and so You would benefit more from it... - as a boxer I think You have sufficient hitting skills...
but thats just my opininon...:p

About Bernie V's quote:
ma-ai is not everything, you may have no choice but engage.

Well then lets engage: IRIMI. :grr: (and end up with a doing a headlock for example)

What I like about Aikido (of course that is no Aikido-only-thing) is that You have multiple choices of movements and all are equally good. (depending on the enviroment of course)

Best wishes
Jorgen
Estonian Aikikai

CraigJamieson
04-09-2002, 02:33 AM
Aikido is for relaxation, fun, possibly anger management, but NOT REAL FIGHTING!!!! i know that it is against our philosophy as aikidoka to get into fights, but the subject is constantly raised in the forums, which is good. I have practiced aikido for 3 years, and muay thai for 1 year. If i was in a fight, god forbid, it would be my muay thai training which would help me out. Brutal it may be, but this guy(S) wants to kill you, talking to him hasnt worked, you cant run away (either cos you cant physically or you dont want to-pride) so youd better make sure you kick his ass good, cos if you dont, he'll kick yours.
People often go for this hippie like love your enemies drivel in aikido. Remember though, o sensei was a belligerent, violent drunken old sod for most of his life, yes he was brilliant, but lets practice for the art and forget about all this nonsense. If some guy tries to rape your girlfriend, you dont say "grab my arm please kind sir" you go and apply atemi ie. beat the s**t out of him.

Thank you, peace and goodnight,
craig

Ghost Fox
04-09-2002, 08:13 AM
Originally posted by CraigJamieson
Aikido is for relaxation, fun, possibly anger management, but NOT REAL FIGHTING!!!! i know that it is against our philosophy as aikidoka to get into fights, but the subject is constantly raised in the forums, which is good. I have practiced aikido for 3 years, and muay thai for 1 year. If i was in a fight, god forbid, it would be my muay thai training which would help me out. Brutal it may be, but this guy(S) wants to kill you, talking to him hasnt worked, you cant run away (either cos you cant physically or you dont want to-pride) so youd better make sure you kick his ass good, cos if you dont, he'll kick yours.
People often go for this hippie like love your enemies drivel in aikido. Remember though, o sensei was a belligerent, violent drunken old sod for most of his life, yes he was brilliant, but lets practice for the art and forget about all this nonsense. If some guy tries to rape your girlfriend, you dont say "grab my arm please kind sir" you go and apply atemi ie. beat the s**t out of him.

Thank you, peace and goodnight,
craig

At my level of proficiency (or should I say deficiency) in aikido I would have to agree with you. I think most people in this forum can agree that aikido is not the best choice in a martial art if what you want is immediate self-defense applications (Krav-Maga, Muay Thai being better choices).

But I think you are wrong when you say Aikido is not for real fighting. Aikido can be used in a real life situation; it just takes a lot longer to learn. You might get much quicker results in the area of self-defense studying Krav-Maga or kickboxing, but you will get little else.

What most people fail to see is that Aikido is holistic; it is a science, an art, a fighting system, a philosophy, a spiritual vehicle, and more. Being all these things allows Aikido to create well-rounded individuals, not just fighters. But by dividing its energy in this way, Aikido cannot be solely dedicated to self-defense applications.

So what if it takes me 10-15 years in order for my Aikido to be physically viable in a self-defense situation. Along the way I am becoming calmer, less confrontational and more aware. For someone who felt nothing but apathy towards people all his life, Aikido has slowly open my heart, no matter how much I try to fight the hippie bunny crap. I am becoming more compassionate, more empathic, and less violent. I don't know when it happened, but it does happen if you train seriously and intensely.

Again right now, if someone tried to rape my girlfriend, it would take all the powers in heaven for me not to kill or seriously maim the individual(s), and I can except the blood on my hands (Survival first, the other guy second). The next day I would be right back in the dojo training that much harder. Hoping for the day when I have the level of control and mastery where I can choose not maim, not to kill. Training for the day when I am not driven to hurt someone by my insecurities, fears or anger.


:triangle: :circle: :square:

ronmar
04-09-2002, 01:35 PM
Hi,

I think that this aikido vs boxing debate highlights one of the main problems with aikido and the martial arts in general; too much thinking and not enough doing.
I boxed for a year in university and even at this very low level found that I learned fast because I had to. There is little room for theorising about what will and will not work in the boxing ring (you don't see a lot of karate reverse punches or blocks in boxing).
I feel people might be kidding themselves when they talk in terms of "performing move X while stepping with technique Y as the boxer throws a punch" etc. This is a bit arrogant as it assumes the boxer is unadaptable, slow and predictable, as well as having inferior technique (ie its not an eastern martial art and so is crude and can be defeated by applying more advanced principles).
Most boxers I have met are the very opposite of this stereotype as a direct result of their training with a live opponent, I feel.
Boxers have fast reflexes, they know how an opponent will react under pressure, and they are very good at ending a fight fast.
Perhaps it would be good for people to try a little boxing so as to get the feel of being on the receiving end of a real attack and not one thrown by a friend in the dojo.

Steve Pilling
11-19-2011, 02:55 PM
this very old thread was very interesting.

basically we seemed to be get to the consensus that aikido is not very effective against boxing. :(

whats the solution though? just accept that aikido is not perfect and avoid getting into scraps with boxers?

learn some boxing?

Personally after a year of aikido (and studying hard with a great teacher) I still feel like a beginner and if anyone (even a non boxer) attacked me I would defend myself with the Muay Thai I learnt 20 years ago and hope that I could slip in some aikido moves.

Steve Pilling
11-19-2011, 04:09 PM
It occurred to me that maybe we just expect too much from aikido- we want to be invulnerable in a few months against all martial arts and all opponents armed and unarmed while still keeping the moral high ground, having fun and also by the way learning to relax while getting a work out without unduly damaging our aging bodies.
Its a tough brief but I would say aikido does quite well all things considered.

Autrelle Holland
11-19-2011, 05:14 PM
Get Ron Balicki's "Kali and Silat Entries and Takedowns."
As must for any Aikidoka who wants to see the Kali perspective.

Autrelle Holland
11-19-2011, 05:17 PM
this very old thread was very interesting.

basically we seemed to be get to the consensus that aikido is not very effective against boxing. :(

whats the solution though? just accept that aikido is not perfect and avoid getting into scraps with boxers?

learn some boxing?

Personally after a year of aikido (and studying hard with a great teacher) I still feel like a beginner and if anyone (even a non boxer) attacked me I would defend myself with the Muay Thai I learnt 20 years ago and hope that I could slip in some aikido moves.

Not my experience. There are definitely trainable techniques that are perfectly acceptable aikido techniques for use with boxing and kickboxing.

Migas
11-19-2011, 07:58 PM
this very old thread was very interesting.

basically we seemed to be get to the consensus that aikido is not very effective against boxing. :(

whats the solution though? just accept that aikido is not perfect and avoid getting into scraps with boxers?

learn some boxing?

Personally after a year of aikido (and studying hard with a great teacher) I still feel like a beginner and if anyone (even a non boxer) attacked me I would defend myself with the Muay Thai I learnt 20 years ago and hope that I could slip in some aikido moves.

I practice since I was 8 (I'm 21 right now) and I steel feel like a beginner. and that's what I like.
To feel that there's always so much to learn and to improve.
I once practiced with a boxer and I did manage to defend myself from every punch, although I didn't applied any Aikido technique.
But Aikido's practice made me capable of protecting myself, and that's the most important

SeiserL
11-20-2011, 04:42 AM
I am an old boxer.

If you want to learn to defend against a boxer, train with one.

I remember a seminar applying proactive ikkyo against a jab. No problem.

Rob Watson
11-20-2011, 01:22 PM
Get Ron Balicki's "Kali and Silat Entries and Takedowns."
As must for any Aikidoka who wants to see the Kali perspective.

Alas, out of stock ...

matty_mojo911
11-21-2011, 04:46 PM
Like all things it depends on the level of the boxer, if we are talking about a good boxer - well balanced, doesn't over comit punches, combinations, fast etc...good luck using Aikido on any person like that. You may be able to, but the odds are against you.

Here is something you might like to think about - single leg takedowns, or double leg takedowns. That is - cover and dart in (or as we say "shoot in") take the legs and take the person to the ground. From a BJJ perspective.

To engage with a well trained boxer in "stand up" is very, very risky - and as for applying a 'proactive" Ikyo - well you may be able to, but again it is a huge risk to do this.

Yes - you can evade punches to a certain degree, but if you're always evading and they are always closing with you and swinging - you're going to wear one.

Last bit of advice - if you get into a scrap ALWAYS expect to be hit, seen some classics over the years where some one gets tagged then they stop and you can see their brain going "you hit me!!" ALWAYS expect to get hit, in most scraps you will (particualrly if you are taking on a boxer), so expect it and shrug it off (if you can).

Belt_Up
11-21-2011, 05:43 PM
The next key, is to capture the elbow! Too many people I have trained with, practice to catch a punch or strike. Forget all that! Blend and entry take care of the strike for the most part. Make contact at the elbow, and you can quickly control center, and then adjust to the wrist or hand, after you have affected his center. Try for the wrist or hand before, and you end up in a fight over that wrist or hand. Affect uke's center first, and you have given yourself options, even beyond the techniques of Aikido. While uke is adjusting his center to regain control, you apply your technique to the appropriate wrist or hand.

A nice excerpt from a great post in this (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=297626#post297626) thread.

Aside from obvious issues like "How the Hell do you know he's a boxer?", boxers do not train to disengage/counter/reverse aikido joint locks/pins/throws. There are pros and cons on both sides.

Michael Neal
11-22-2011, 07:29 AM
There are MMA gyms these days just about everywhere, very easy to test if your aikido technique will work or not. If you could pull some moves off even occasionally it would do you well for self defense situations. I am very mediocre when it comes to Judo and Jiu Jitsu but against the vast majority of would be attackers out there I would have a good advantage. You really have to mix it up some and do some sparring, Ueshiba developed his skill not just by training but by taking challengers on a regular basis.

Aikironin21
11-23-2011, 01:17 AM
Thank you for the nod Mr.Byers!

Mr.Seiser is correct. If you want to learn to use Aikido against a striker of any kind, train with strikers. A wrestler, train with wrestlers! If you want to learn to fight with Aikido, you need more experience beyond the traditional stylized attacks dojo training gives you. This means you will have to leave your comfort zone, and take a few lumps in the name of knowledge! That's where I am taking my training right now. I have returned to Kaj, and am starting a study group with MMAers and Wrestlers as soon as I can get my shop matted.

Michael Varin
11-23-2011, 05:40 AM
This actually is an interesting topic.

It's much deeper than, "Oh. Can I get a kote gaeshi off of a boxer's jab?"

I will add, do not forget that shomen uchi, yokomen uchi, and tsuki, amongst other atemi are all legitimate aikido techniques. Combine the skills you learned as uke and nage! You must recognize the nature of the engagement that you are entering and respond in an appropriate manner.

Be creative.

Remember your principles: relax, be calm, centered, grounded, and move as one piece.

Watch your ma ai, and seek ki musubi and awase.

Purpose matters, form does not. Remain open as to the form and strategy with which your desired outcome may be realized.

And then, like Michael Neal said above, get out there and train it.

SteliosPapadakis
11-23-2011, 06:56 AM
I enjoy suwari waza, love it!
Once i trained (just for experience points) with a kick-boxer,and a Greek-Roman wrestler while at a gym i used to attend for weight training sessions.
Maae was of paramount importance and at times the only way i could effectively deal with them guys was in suwari mode. Esp the wrestler who was specialised in locks and the sort while working at very low posture.
I also found that whenever a commited blow engaging all the torso was directed to me, i could somehow neutralise the whole arm by striking back at the elbow joint; this would leave the attacking arm at least numb (strong nerve pain) while i could work on something else.
But, truth is that, a commited trained boxer, strong and closed shut as a chestnut, is indeed a difficult opponent. At the same time, such a person might choose not to fight for the same reasons we choose not to fight too.
(hopefully) :D

Ken McGrew
12-03-2011, 11:37 AM
The notion of how to defend against a boxer in this discussion, with the exception of what Daniel said, is to engage with the fight. Why fight? Aikido is about refusing to fight. This can take many forms. Running away is honorable. If you can't run away then you should still avoid getting drawn into the boxers game. There are many things that could happen. In general, obviously, stay way from the flurry of punches that could come. Either keep your distance, move in to smother the hands, or better yet move behind the attacker. Where the neck goes his body will follow.

hughrbeyer
12-03-2011, 02:54 PM
Agreed.

I hesitate to post this because it it wasn't created to illustrate this point, but I've always thought this video clip (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F8vAy3EnqJE&feature=player_profilepage#t=84s) was a good illustration of the point. People seem to think that an aikidoka facing a boxer has to play the boxer's game--has to stand in a very close ma-ai, as though they were in a ring and compete for points. Here, you see that every time the attacker closes up the space for another punch, nage opens it again, requiring the attacker to move in and over-extend to get at nage until there's an opportunity for a throw.

grondahl
12-03-2011, 04:19 PM
People seem to think that an aikidoka facing a boxer has to play the boxer's game--has to stand in a very close ma-ai, as though they were in a ring and compete for points. Here, you see that every time the attacker closes up the space for another punch, nage opens it again, requiring the attacker to move in and over-extend to get at nage until there's an opportunity for a throw.

The problem is that sooner or later you will encounter a corner/wall/physical obstacle and the simple fact that boxers also train how to manage space and attack without over-extending.

Strong irimi seems like a more reasonable choice.

kewms
12-03-2011, 08:06 PM
People seem to think that an aikidoka facing a boxer has to play the boxer's game--has to stand in a very close ma-ai, as though they were in a ring and compete for points. Here, you see that every time the attacker closes up the space for another punch, nage opens it again, requiring the attacker to move in and over-extend to get at nage until there's an opportunity for a throw.

But how do you deal with the log bridge over the chasm?

I agree that playing the boxer's game is a losing strategy, but retreating doesn't work either. I'll bet the boxer's chances of backing the aikidoka into something unpleasant are at least as good as the aikidoka's chances of getting the boxer to overextend.

On the other hand, how does a Western-style boxer deal with a snap kick to the knee? Every art has blind spots.

Katherine

Ken McGrew
12-03-2011, 08:20 PM
The problem is that sooner or later you will encounter a corner/wall/physical obstacle and the simple fact that boxers also train how to manage space and attack without over-extending.

Strong irimi seems like a more reasonable choice.

I tend to favor irimi and attack the throat. But that's me. A variety of responses are possible. But the desire to fight I think is a real problem and the ability to let that go is the greatest asset in Aikido.

hughrbeyer
12-03-2011, 09:53 PM
Yes, I can see irimi working, and I can see opening up the distance working. What's not going to work is standing there like a boxer and playing their game badly.

ryback
12-04-2011, 11:45 AM
In my opinion there's no much point trying a comparison between martial arts (let alone between a martial art and a fighting sport) but any attack or fighting situation is unique.So the way i see it, you can't tell what would work and what wouldn't.Try to make the attacker overextend by rearranging ma-ai could work,and fast blocking his panches while entering for a, let's say, irimi nage sounds also like a good idea, it depends. But i believe that what is important, that applies to everything is to have a clear mind,empty of any pre-determined ideas of what one should do and act according to the attack to the best of his abilities, if he cannot avoid the fight. Setting up a fight with a boxer in a "sterilized" environment is not what aikido is about and the results will mean nothing.In a real fight one can use his surroundings to his advantage as obstacles for his attacker if possible and you never trully choose where and who to fight in a real situation...

Autrelle Holland
05-25-2012, 11:48 AM
Alas, out of stock ...

Here is a video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRefd2At50o) from my Kali instructor.

He outlines a basic set of curriculum from the double dagger combatives in Kali. I use the word "combatives" because this is what he taught in the military. These are the same entries that are used in the empty hand system applications for Silat and Kali, especially when they are working the takedowns and throws. This, in itself, is a fairly complete solution to addressing boxing with Aikido techniques. As shown, the techniques can work double dagger, single dagger, empty hand, or with improvised weapons. There are any number of techniques that can be applied after the entry.

Autrelle Holland
05-25-2012, 01:56 PM
Everytime I read something like this I start to wonder about something:

Are you people really thinking about one-on-one fair fights?

If so, WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE!

Well said!

Dan Richards
06-03-2012, 09:45 AM
The best defense against a boxer is to find out what kind of beer or drink they like.

Chris Parkerson
06-03-2012, 09:39 PM
The best defense against a boxer is to find out what kind of beer or drink they like.

Better to slip him a Mickey,
'cause your eyes can't hit
What your eyes can't see,
He'll float like a butterfly
And sting like a bee

http://m.youtube.com/?reload=3&rdm=m4kh7d7h2#/watch?desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Ffeature%3Dplayer_embedded%26v%3DVnzofi_QltI&feature=player_embedded&v=Vnzofi_QltI&gl=US

Chris

Simon Lai
06-27-2012, 08:16 AM
Best defense against a boxer for a aikido-ka is to use a jo or shinai. Not joking.

Simon

sakumeikan
06-27-2012, 11:48 AM
Best defense against a boxer for a aikido-ka is to use a jo or shinai. Not joking.

Simon

Dear Simon,
No well dressed Geordie [from Newcastle upon Tyne ] would venture out for a night on the town without a jo or a shinai secreted on his person.These implements make a wonderful fashion statement if teamed up with multi coloured hakama.The ultimate in sartorial elegance. Cheers, Joe.

phitruong
06-27-2012, 11:56 AM
Dear Simon,
No well dressed Geordie [from Newcastle upon Tyne ] would venture out for a night on the town without a jo or a shinai secreted on his person.These implements make a wonderful fashion statement if teamed up with multi coloured hakama.The ultimate in sartorial elegance. Cheers, Joe.

don't forget to say thing like "there can only be one!"

Chris Parkerson
06-27-2012, 01:02 PM
Best defense against a boxer for a aikido-ka is to use a jo or shinai. Not joking.

Simon

My first partner in Bodyguarding was a Kyokushin karate world champion. I once, pointed a stick at him and regretted it. Some bad dogs just do not care about the pain they receive as long as they can give some back. Perhaps it was because he was from Camden New Jersey. Oh yes, he did Aikido too. And, Oh yes,, he liked to break baseball bats with his shins.

Yikes,

Chris

Simon Lai
06-27-2012, 07:33 PM
My first partner in Bodyguarding was a Kyokushin karate world champion. I once, pointed a stick at him and regretted it. Some bad dogs just do not care about the pain they receive as long as they can give some back. Perhaps it was because he was from Camden New Jersey. Oh yes, he did Aikido too. And, Oh yes,, he liked to break baseball bats with his shins.

Yikes,

Chris

But Chris, you are talking a world champion kyukushin karate- ka, not mitten wearing punchy punchy people.

If faced with world champion kyukushin karate-ka, do what any respectable person should do:
Grovel, prostrate and beg for mercy like a little missy.

Simon

Simon Lai
06-30-2012, 09:00 AM
My first partner in Bodyguarding was a Kyokushin karate world champion. I once, pointed a stick at him and regretted it. Some bad dogs just do not care about the pain they receive as long as they can give some back. Perhaps it was because he was from Camden New Jersey. Oh yes, he did Aikido too. And, Oh yes,, he liked to break baseball bats with his shins.

Yikes,

Chris

Hmmmm come to think of it, were you using toothpick or real stick? :D

Actually in my mind, I am thinking more along the line of mune-tsuki's stopping power rather than as a bludgeoning utensil.

Simon

Benjamin Green
06-30-2012, 10:08 AM
Specific defences are all very well to talk about but how do you take that and translate it into something you can train? There are some people who train their martial art and look at is as a big collection of techniques - be those joint locks or kicks or strikes or what have you - and I've never seen them actually use their skills when they count.

Reality's not a catalogue of options.

"Oh I'd like some tenshinagi and maybe an irimi would go lovely with that."

"Oh yes, and red socks would go lovely with that too."

Please.

And there are other people who train their martial art and look at it as containing relatively few techniques that exploit a small collection of largely overlapping principles - distancing, rhythm, conservation of momentum, timing, relative positioning. The latter can then go and use their training as a way to develop their reflexes to exploit those things.

You get into an explosive situation, you'll react as your training, capabilities, mentality and the context interacting with each other dictate. I don't recommend claiming to not have really been thinking in court, but it's certainly true that the thought that does occur is on more of a gut feeling level than it is a verbal, "I can see that his eyes are glazed and he's got something in his hands... is that a kni-- Oh, I've been stabbed." sort of level. Too slow.

So, someone shows you a particular application, a particular trick. Well, it's very clever - and it is indicative of a certain way of thinking, a certain attitude towards conflict - but have they actually worked that in drills? Do they have a system that their martial art supports to develop the underlying skills to put that in place? And what else does that system support; have they ended up with something that's cripplingly over-specialised?

In my experience, what makes boxers as good as they are is that they're aware that what they're relying on is a matter of those underlying skills - and consequently they've developed a system of drills to train it. They're even aware that there are different ways to apply those skills. That's why you get technical boxers, infighters, classical boxers that fight from the outside - different kinds of boxers. I mean it's all very well to say what is a defence against a boxer but in all honesty that's sort of like saying what's the best defence against a Chinese martial artist. You look at how someone like Emanuel Augustus fights when he's clowning around:

Apologies in advance about the language in the music of the first video.

Emanuel
http://youtu.be/wvkRpykP6mQ?t=3m7s

And it's very different to how Mayweather

Trains
http://youtu.be/4nnWH2IEECM

And fights
http://youtu.be/VtBO8cYXXMA?t=59s

(That's an especially interesting comparison since Emanuel and Mayweather actually fought each other once.)

The tricks with boxers - and I've no doubt the good ones would catch on to it fairly quickly - are things that exploit the contexts they don't train for, and the specialisations of the ones they do. Many boxers tend to stand in a relatively short sort of 45 degree stance. Which is good for what they do, it lets them roll fairly easily, it lets them flurry at things in front of them. It suits the rhythm of a movement that doesn't have to worry over-much about someone pulling against it or dropping down on it. But, consequently, you can catch boxers with sweeps fairly easy. If you can get in close, which you should be able to, there's a grappling and ground game where you can try to swing things back in your favour.

There's a certain amount of truth in the idea that boxing doesn't have much of an interplay between different guards either - just because boxing gloves make it so much easier to shield than it is with hands. And that leads to a style of movement that doesn't favour moving stuff around as much. You look at people with lighter gloves, or with no gloves at all, and there's much more percentage in deflections. Which leads to a greater use of - to borrow some terminology from fencing - two time (parry and riposte) rather than one time (everything done in one movement) exchanges. It changes the rhythm of a fight. It's really got to be said: As gloves have got heavier boxing has got more and more boring to watch.

But again, boxers have a variety of rhythms even within that. I say 'the tricks with boxers' but I really mean the strategies I've had the most luck with. If you look at Emanuel again, he's got a very interesting style of movement, very adaptive. I don't think you'd catch him - or any really good boxer - with this sort of stuff. (Though you may catch a fair one.) You can't really cut a general fit for a subject this broad.

The point of all this is, if you're looking for a technique or strategy that's gonna solve the thing; whether it's running up against boxers or anyone else; I just don't think there's one out there. Whatever your technique is you have to be good enough to do it. And for that you need a system that trains the underlying skills in.

And some people will look at that sort of thing and just think - ah ma-ai is the answer he's talking about. No. Or at least not just as something you can sum up in a word like that. If you understand the principles that go into ma-ai you should be able to comment on the different styles of movement that different training for different contexts enables - and the potential flaws thereof.

Really, I think if you don't have any drills that let you interact with those styles of attacks, if you don't spar against them, if you don't develop at least a general set of reflexes suited to that sort of thing based upon your analysis of the situation - you may as well forget it. If you don't have that, it doesn't matter what techniques you know. Techniques and little tricks are just the gravy, they're not much of a meal by themselves.

One of the big flaws of many folks Aikido, at least that I see a lot of, is that a whole lot of people don't know anything about how to throw a decent punch or kick. So they can't drill it. So they never develop those sorts of reflexes suitable to different styles of movement.

That's probably enough aimless blithering on the subject from me. :freaky:

Chris Evans
08-03-2012, 01:04 PM
By the way, boxers tend to be very fit and strong. So I don't think it's a smart idea to fight with them ;)

Conditioning is an excellent "waza."