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MM
08-29-2008, 02:43 PM
Just some interesting reading concerning what Ueshiba is supposed to have done.


Ueshiba: ... Then I let him push me while I was seated. This fellow capable of lifting huge weights huffed and puffed but he could not push me over. After that, I redirected his power away from me and he went flying by. As he fell I pinned him with my index finger and he remained totally immobilized. It was like an adult pinning a baby. Then I suggested that he try again and let him push against my forehead. However, he couldn't move me at all. Then I extended my legs forward and, balancing myself, I lifted my legs off the floor and had him push me. Still he could not move me.

Note that he pins with his index finger.

MM
08-29-2008, 02:44 PM
I think this one is kind of neat. Ueshiba sort of immobilizes the fellow. Neat trick.


One day, while my father and Mr. Shioda were traveling on a train, a man who was standing next to the Founder suddenly jerked up into a stiff, motionless posture. Mr. Shioda recalls the following: "O-Sensei smiled and chuckled. I thought it was surely just some old acquaintance. But when the train arrived at the next station and Sensei said, 'Okay, get off!' and the fellow flew off the train I asked who it was. I was surprised when O-Sensei said, 'It was a pickpocket." At any rate, when the pickpocket slipped his hand quietly into Sensei's inside pocket, in a wink, he twisted his wrist tightly and the fellow's whole body became numb and he stood up immobile.

MM
08-29-2008, 02:46 PM
So far, this is my favorite one. Ueshiba immobilizing/paralyzing someone yet again.


Yukawa was upset and walked around while still fuming. He happened to pass by my father's dojo. He popped in thinking he would have a match but the moment my father grabbed his hand, he felt paralyzed all over and could not move.

Patrick Hutchinson
08-29-2008, 02:49 PM
"balancing myself, I lifted my legs off the floor"

Still can't figure this out. Ever since I first read this passage I've had an image of Ueshiba flaoting in midair in some kind of flying posture with the guy's hands shoving his forehead.

Something to work towards, I guess.

DH
08-29-2008, 03:00 PM
The guy pushes on his forehead- the connection goes from his forehead to his butt-grounded.
The feet don't matter they are lifted off the floor like a sit up-maybe 6" or so. .
There are lots of old jujutsu tricks to show a developed connected body. Of course the real trick-is the connected body:cool:
I do one where I am facing forward and the uke pushes me over backward from the chest. So I am bent over backward with somone trying to push me up and over at a 45 deg angle. Its looks impossible since I am already going over in agreement with the push.....I don't go anywhere , and when I bring myself upright it feels like a crushing weight on uke. Doesn't work without connection.
Works great in the real world in motion too. When grappling with them trying underhooks or trying to take your upper body over your feet or forward like a seoi-otoshi or seoi nage.
In fact all of this works in any throw you can think of-not the least of which is hitting them or counter throwing

Demetrio Cereijo
08-29-2008, 03:26 PM
Still can't figure this out. Ever since I first read this passage I've had an image of Ueshiba flaoting in midair in some kind of flying posture with the guy's hands shoving his forehead.

http://es.youtube.com/watch?v=JYmZPdSyqcQ
3:50 - 4:24

Jo trick included.

Jim Sorrentino
08-29-2008, 09:22 PM
Hi Dan,I do one [old jujutsu trick] where I am facing forward and the uke pushes me over backward from the chest. So I am bent over backward with somone trying to push me up and over at a 45 deg angle. Its looks impossible since I am already going over in agreement with the push.....I don't go anywhere, and when I bring myself upright it feels like a crushing weight on uke. Doesn't work without connection.
Works great in the real world in motion too. When grappling with them trying underhooks or trying to take your upper body over your feet or forward like a seoi-otoshi or seoi nage.Please put up a video of you doing these things with Rob Liberti as your uke. Thanks in advance!

Sincerely,

Jim

DH
08-29-2008, 09:32 PM
Why?

Jim Sorrentino
08-29-2008, 10:11 PM
Why?For my own education, of course. Because I know Rob L., it will be more informative to me than if you use one of your students or training partners whom I have not felt.

I've got a long day ahead of me tomorrow, and if I don't get some sleep, I will be more of a training vegetable :) (or worse - a training mineral :D ) than a training animal - so good night!

Jim

DH
08-29-2008, 10:24 PM
For my own education, of course. Because I know Rob L., it will be more informative to me than if you use one of your students or training partners whom I have not felt.

I've got a long day ahead of me tomorrow, and if I don't get some sleep, I will be more of a training vegetable :) (or worse - a training mineral :D ) than a training animal - so good night!

Jim
All due respect to Rob he will be the first to tell you it will be faaaarrrr more informative for you to have me pick a few of my students over him.
I'll never do it so the point is moot,

Heres a hoot. And I hope you take it in stride and in fun.

Here is the weirdness of the internet. Rob tells you he, a yondan is nothing compared to the power of some twenty somethings who have only trained MMA and aiki- here.
Odd, but I remember you getting all fired up when...three years ago I said "I will bet I could take a guy who never trained in a martial art and train them for 5 years, in MMA and Aiki and put them up against a guy who trained for twenty years under a shihan in Aikido"
Now, One of them....that you know... has told you- in no uncertain terms- that I was, after all is said and done...correct.
Funny thing isn't it, that after all that-you *still* want to see -him- the one with twenty years in aikido-who really is no test of my skills...at all...over guys here who can hand him his head?
Where is the logic in that?
Funny thing the internet is.
I love the fact that Rob who is one of the straightest (doesn't give a crap what people think or about politics-and tests everyone..gees) guys out there is getting this stuff and is working it to death. I believe that guy is going to be one of the premier teachers to change the face of aikido in his dojos.
I've got a long day ahead of me tomorrow, and if I don't get some sleep, I will be more of a training vegetable (or worse - a training mineral ) than a training animal - so good night!

Speaking of sleep and a big day
I have teachers and students from Aikido, Taiji, bagau, Karate, judo, MMA, Daito ryu, and Koryu coming to train tomm. So good night from me as well.

mathewjgano
08-30-2008, 02:25 PM
Funny thing isn't it, that after all that-you *still* want to see -him- the one with twenty years in aikido-who really is no test of my skills...at all...over guys here who can hand him his head?
Where is the logic in that?
Funny thing the internet is.
The internet is truly fascinating to me, I have to agree! I can see where Jim might be coming from though. Speaking for myself, I find Rob to be a pretty articulate guy and that counts for a lot. I get what you're saying and agree that it's almost always better to train with someone with a higher degree of proficiency, but I can see where I might do similar to Jim simply because Rob seems to answer the questions I've had better than just about anyone else when it comes to the topic of IMA...usually without my getting a chance to ask him directly too.

...I believe that guy is going to be one of the premier teachers to change the face of aikido in his dojos.

I hope so. I love the information age for just this kind of thing. And besides, at this point I'm beginning to think it would be nice to hear less about what Aikidoka can't do, and more about what we can.

MM
09-02-2008, 02:07 PM
From Aiki News Issue 87

One time Ueshiba Sensei took a piece of Japanese paper and folded it into four. Then he told me to come get it. I did, but was thrown the moment I touched the paper. He was holding the paper along one edge and I was supposed to take hold of the paper along the other edge. So we were connected only through the paper. But Sensei threw me before the paper could tear.


and

I took Mr. Tomiki there and introduced him to Ueshiba Sensei. Mr. Tomiki was a little taller than I was. However, he was thrown in about 63 different ways just by having his hand held by Ueshiba Sensei.

MM
09-04-2008, 08:08 AM
From Aiki News Issue 019

One Incident took place, I believe, before the episode with the military police. Several captains who were instructors at the Toyama School invited me to test my strength against theirs. They all prided themselves in their abilities saying things like: "I was able to lift such-and-such a weight," or "I broke a log so many inches in diameter." They gathered around me to test my power. I explained to them: "I don't have strength like yours but I can fell people like you with my little finger alone. I feel sorry for you if I throw you. So let's do this instead." I extended my right arm and rested the tip of my index finger on the end of a desk and invited them to lay across my arm on their stomachs. One, two, then three officers lay themselves over my arm and by that time everyone became wide-eyed. I continued until six men lay over my arm and then asked the officer standing near me for a glass of water. As I was drinking the water with my left hand everyone was quiet and exchanging glances.

Interviewer then asks: "Aside from Aikido, you must have tremendous physical strength."

Not really.

MM
09-04-2008, 08:12 AM
From Aiki News Issue 069

If O-Sensei touched a person's shoulder while commenting on the fact that he had a strong physique the person would just collapse on the spot.

Thomas Campbell
09-05-2008, 05:45 PM
Clearly the person was overcome by the compliment.

MM
09-05-2008, 06:52 PM
Clearly the person was overcome by the compliment.

LOL!

MM
09-09-2008, 12:45 PM
Aikido Journal Issue 106

From an interview with Seishiro Endo, talking about Morihei Ueshiba.


He was showing some technique similar to suwariwaza kokyuho, but as I moved in to try to pin his arms, all of a sudden it felt like I had slammed into a big rock and I went flying.

Michael Douglas
09-09-2008, 12:49 PM
I find it strange how Ueshiba sometimes denied his considerable conventional strength.
I think he loved tricking and surprising people.
I think this led to much confusion about his physical abilities.
Just my opinions.

MM
09-09-2008, 02:17 PM
I find it strange how Ueshiba sometimes denied his considerable conventional strength.
I think he loved tricking and surprising people.
I think this led to much confusion about his physical abilities.
Just my opinions.

Or maybe he thought about it in two different ways? As some accounts have noted, when he first met Takeda, he was physically strong. But all of his physical strength and all of his prior martial arts training gained him exactly nothing against Takeda. Takeda had a different kind of strength. I think after he trained with Takeda, Ueshiba gained that different kind of strength. And that is where the confusion starts for those reading about Ueshiba.

DH
09-09-2008, 03:48 PM
I find it strange how Ueshiba sometimes denied his considerable conventional strength.
I think he loved tricking and surprising people.
I think this led to much confusion about his physical abilities.
Just my opinions.

I think Mark's spot on. He was talking about two different things. Just that no one knew enough to ask the difference.
Stan asked Sagawa what Takeda was like. What his muscles were like? Why........................? It's how he related to "strength" at the time. Takeda was known all over Japan for being a freakin monster of power. Sagawa's reply? That Takeda's arms were thin and very soft. But his forearms were huge.
So his power, the basis for it-was never discussed.
Think of Sagawa being interviewed by us-today. What sort of questions do you think we would be asking.
People ask questions based on their knowledge base. It's why you'd get a different interview with Oppenheimer-dependant on you had sending a shoe salesman or a physicist for interview.
It all depends on who's asking the questions, who's forthcoming or just smiling at you.

I think Ueshiba answered quite appropriately. What was his meaning when he said "Come try to throw this little old man." Or Takeda when he stormed the stage at the budokan and trashed a bunch of judoka uninvited, insulting them all the way and calling himself- "a little old man."
Strength and power are not necessarily the same thing.

One thing worth noting about Ushiba's strength.
He was with Deguchi in Ayabe, but it was only after Takeda's lengthy stay that Deguchi noted Takeda's "aiki" and was so impressed with Takeda that he suggested Takeda change the name of the art of aiki jujutsu.
What did he *see*, that he didn't *see*-before in Ueshiba in all that time?
Oddly it was only after this long visist and daily training with Takeda for over 6 months that Ueshiba received persmission to teach. What sort of training was Takeda focusing on during that time?

MM
09-10-2008, 07:48 AM
From Aikido Journal Issue 107
An Interview with Tohei


Also, having been away from Judo for nearly two years, by the time I got second dan, everybody else was already fourth or fifth dan. Even many of the third dans had progressed so far ahead of me that they could throw me all over the place. That wasn't very interesting and it wasn't much fun, either.

Hoping to strengthen myself, I went home and started kicking pillars around the house. After doing that a couple of thousand times a day, though, the walls started to come down. My elder sister wasn't very pleased about that and made me go outside in the garden instead. After a few weeks I got so I could move my feet with the same agility and dexterity as my hands. I went back to the dojo and was able to throw everybody.


This was all before he met Ueshiba. So, he talks about one kind of strength and his conditioning of it. Of course, it didn't get him anywhere with Ueshiba. Read the article to find out how amazed he was on his first meeting.

MM
09-10-2008, 07:49 AM
From Aikido Journal Issue 107
An Interview with Tohei


On one occasion the prince pointed at Ueshiba Sensei and said, "Try to lift up that old man." Four strong sailors tried their best to lift him but they couldn't do it.

MM
09-11-2008, 12:16 PM
From Aikido Journal Issue 115

Article by Robert Smith


In lecturing us on resilience and rooting, he had two stout students (one was my frequent partner from Kyushu) each grab a wrist so that one grabbed Ueshiba's left wrist with his right hand while the other grabbed Ueshiba's right wrist with his left hand. Thus, all three men were on a line looking at us. Then the master asked them to really bite in with their grips which they did, bending their knees a bit at the same time.

Then quicker than a flash, Ueshiba bent his knees and sent his ki to his wrists. The wrists didn't move much but his students simultaneously snapped skyward in unison.

MM
09-11-2008, 12:19 PM
From Aikido Journal Issue 116

An interview with Masando Sasaki


I remember he got angry at me when I asked him, "Sensei, how should I explain when people ask me what aikido is?" (laughter) Hardly anyone had even heard of aikido back then, so I always had a hard time explaining it. I figured Ueshiba Sensei would be able to explain it since he was the one who created it. But when I asked him, he stamped the ground and exclaimed, "Aiki? I am aiki!"


and


Once when I went with him to the Omoto church in Ueno, all the way there I as by his side supporting and helping him along, but as soon as we entered the shrine and began climbing the stairs he suddenly cried, "Stay back! We're going before the kami-san!" and threw me away from him with a kokyuho. As O-Sensei always said, "Aiki is something we learn from the kami-san," and his final teachings to me were seeing him adopt such a personal carriage before the kami when he could barely even walk on his own, as well as the kokyuho he threw me away with on that occasion. He passed away two or three months later.


and


But I persevered: "Someone throws a ball and you hit it with the bat." He said, "Ah, I see ... well then, bring me a wooden sword." He then had Arakawa swing the bat as hard as he could at his sword, but the bat bounced right off and almost flew out of his hands.

MM
09-11-2008, 12:21 PM
From Aikido Journal Issue 119

An Interview with Mariye Takahashi


My favorite technique was when O-Sensei placed his index finger on a young man's neck just below his ear after completing a technique. The young man would be completely nailed down to the mat by his finger and sometimes his face would become red and he would start panting.

MM
09-27-2010, 09:46 AM
From Black Belt 1988 Vol 26 No 4
An article about Virginia Mayhew by Chuck Bush

She became an uchideshi (live-in student) under the tutelage of Koichi Tohei, then chief instructor at aikido's Tokyo-based world headquarters, and also devoted one week a month to rigorous Zen meditation and training at a local Buddhist monastery. Despite an arduous routine which included outside studies with several aikido masters, Mayhew's first priority was to attend Uyeshiba's early morning classes.

"He used to demonstrate with his little iron fan, standing in the middle of the mat as three or four of his strongest instructors attacked him with wooden staffs."

"He also used a technique which many people experienced - coming around and putting his finger on you very lightly, hardly touching you- and you couldn't move, no matter how hard you tried. There was no terminology to explain this phenomenon, nor did I try to learn terminology so much as to try to understand. This was a manifestation of energy which, according to various instructors, can be reached by a variety of techniques. But it isn't in the techniques; it is within oneself."

AllanF
10-02-2010, 08:28 PM
A nice thread Mark, inspiring stuff!

MM
10-03-2010, 07:41 AM
A nice thread Mark, inspiring stuff!

Thanks Allan!

In the very short time since the Founder of Aikido was alive, we have lost a lot. I think the exploits have survived in written form only. Who knows what the detailed training of the Founder was? To replace all that, we have "Modern Aikido": The Aikido of the Founder's son, Kisshomaru Ueshiba. But we have to remember that during the time of the son, we also have Koichi Tohei, who also contributed immensely to Modern Aikido.

Many Japanese shihan wouldn't be where they are (or were) if not for Kisshomaru Ueshiba and Koichi Tohei. The debt to Morihei Ueshiba is negligible for many.