PDA

View Full Version : Koshi Nage - Distance Between Nage's Feet


Please visit our sponsor:
 

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


Ketsan
10-11-2008, 09:42 AM
Does anyone else do koshi nage with their feet together?

Kevin Leavitt
10-11-2008, 11:11 AM
I have done it that way for sure. Prefer to have a couple of inches between them for more stability though.

ChrisHein
10-11-2008, 11:17 AM
There are lot's of throws that can be called Koshinage. As long as they go over your hips sideways, you could call it a koshinage. So yes, and no, depending on what kind of hip throw I'm doing.

sorokod
10-11-2008, 11:23 AM
Just the Judo people who are actually doing O-Goshi and such.

sorokod
10-11-2008, 12:19 PM
Illustration:

O-Goshi (Judo) : http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=PqLGjRU2kr0
Koshi-Nage (Aikido) : http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=ALr8_VkM9UY from about 2:33

Carsten Möllering
10-11-2008, 04:39 PM
Does anyone else do koshi nage with their feet together?
Yes, we do.
kihon waza says: keep your feet together.

Carsten

Flintstone
10-11-2008, 05:13 PM
Does anyone else do koshi nage with their feet together?
Not how O'Sensei did it, then? No; feet appart.

bkedelen
10-11-2008, 06:08 PM
Saito had mentioned that the feet should not be together before he passed away.
Ikeda Sensei's Koshi video shows some wonderful throws that end with the feet together, including a sick jo takeaway that I have never seen anyone else even attempt.
It appears to be one of those technical details that offers endless debate and minimal significance.

sorokod
10-12-2008, 08:23 AM
...
It appears to be one of those technical details that offers endless debate and minimal significance.

Why would a technical detail of a technique be insignificant? On the lowest level a technique is a collection of details, stringing those details together exposes the logic of the technique, different details == different techniques.

ChrisHein
10-12-2008, 12:07 PM
It appears to be one of those technical details that offers endless debate and minimal significance.

Ha, I really liked this quote, Then below that I see:

Why would a technical detail of a technique be insignificant?

I see the validity in both statements, but I still tend to agree with the first much more.

It is very reasonable to say that doing something a different way, makes it a different technique, because that is a true statement. However It's also just a name, that points to a thing, and not actually the thing itself.

For example; Koshi nage is a very general term, it simply means "hip throw". That name points to a thing, the thing is someone being thrown by way of the hip. Now off the top of my head, I can think of about 5 distinctly different ways to accomplish that task. Those ways are all different and so might be the names by which I call them. But the end result is the same; someone got thrown by way of my hip.

We could debate the distinctions about those "techniques", but really they are all just hip tosses. I guess it depends whether your interest is in the overall effect or the specifics that led up to that effect.

sorokod
10-12-2008, 01:22 PM
"For example; Koshi nage is a very general term, it simply means "hip throw". That name points to a thing, the thing is someone being thrown by way of the hip. Now off the top of my head, I can think of about 5 distinctly different ways to accomplish that task. Those ways are all different and so might be the names by which I call them. But the end result is the same; someone got thrown by way of my hip."

I do not think that the fact that a technique has a descriptive name gives you a license to make it up. Let me rephrase it, the name denotes a specific technique. You can make up stuff five or 25 ways that satisfying the name, that does not make them valid Aikido. O-Goshi is a great Judo technique (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=9UZ02P8M10c) but wearing a hakama while doing it does not make it Aikido. Here for example http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=9UZ02P8M10c (starting at about 3:40), Saito demonstrates, why is important to be able to turn towards your blind spot once the throw is completed. This approach allows for multiple attackers and indicates true Aikido quality.

"I guess it depends whether your interest is in the overall effect or the specifics that led up to that effect."


You are right, in one case you get cut from behind by the other attacker and in the other you do not.

jennifer paige smith
10-12-2008, 02:06 PM
I've seen koshi-nage adequately demonstrated and rationalized in several forms.

I accept the founders words that aikido is the form of no form based on my observations and experiences of nature and my practice in aikido.
I've also seen waves form and break in many shapes and sizes. They were all waves.

But like surfing, we've all gotta start somewhere.

sorokod
10-12-2008, 02:43 PM
I do not understand all this oceanic imagery, what are you saying?

jennifer paige smith
10-12-2008, 03:36 PM
.
Aloha,

I'll try to find another way to say it. I believe the imagery is fairly straight forward if you've spent some time in the water.

Not everyone is as fortunate as I have been to be able to be in the water and on the mat for so much accumulative time. So, I understand.

Maybe someone else who has had similar experiences could jump in..
I'll think on it some more.

Best,
Jen

sorokod
10-12-2008, 04:03 PM
.
Aloha,

I'll try to find another way to say it. I believe the imagery is fairly straight forward if you've spent some time in the water.

Not everyone is as fortunate as I have been to be able to be in the water and on the mat for so much accumulative time. So, I understand.

Maybe someone else who has had similar experiences could jump in..
I'll think on it some more.

Best,
Jen

Oh fortunate one
Thank you for being so patient, please, there is no further need for you to meditate further on the issue.

Flintstone
10-12-2008, 04:55 PM
I've seen koshi-nage adequately demonstrated and rationalized in several forms.

I accept the founders words that aikido is the form of no form based on my observations and experiences of nature and my practice in aikido.
I've also seen waves form and break in many shapes and sizes. They were all waves.
Bet you never saw a square wave, or one with an orange color with red dots. No, these don't exist.

You call it what you want, but you will be cut from behind if you do koshi nage like that...

:square:

jennifer paige smith
10-12-2008, 05:13 PM
Bet you never saw a square wave, or one with an orange color with red dots. No, these don't exist.

You call it what you want, but you will be cut from behind if you do koshi nage like that...

:square:

And you might be a fat woman in a tutu. I've never seen you either.

I'm certain I haven't stated how I do koshi nage.

jennifer paige smith
10-12-2008, 05:15 PM
Oh fortunate one
Thank you for being so patient, please, there is no further need for you to meditate further on the issue.

And there is no need to be impolite.

Flintstone
10-12-2008, 06:09 PM
And you might be a fat woman in a tutu. I've never seen you either.
Maybe.

I'm certain I haven't stated how I do koshi nage.
And I'm certain I haven't stated how you do koshi nage.

jennifer paige smith
10-12-2008, 07:09 PM
but you will be cut from behind if you do koshi nage like that...

:square:

My mistake.

Ketsan
10-12-2008, 07:17 PM
I do not understand all this oceanic imagery, what are you saying?

That there are many ways of doing koshi nage, but as long as certain fundamentals are kept then the technique is recognisable as koshi nage.

That's how I understood it anyway.

Flintstone
10-12-2008, 07:18 PM
My mistake.
Sorry, I thought you were a native English speaker. For your ready reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Generic_you .

jennifer paige smith
10-12-2008, 07:51 PM
That there are many ways of doing koshi nage, but as long as certain fundamentals are kept then the technique is recognisable as koshi nage.

That's how I understood it anyway.

Yes. That's a good way of saying it.
Thanks,
jen

Flintstone
10-12-2008, 07:56 PM
That there are many ways of doing koshi nage, but as long as certain fundamentals are kept then the technique is recognisable as koshi nage.

That's how I understood it anyway.
Yes, but here we're talking about Aikido's Koshi Nage in contrast to other arts' Koshi Nage(s). And one fundamental to keep is "watch your back; that foe has friends!".

Demetrio Cereijo
10-12-2008, 08:16 PM
You call it what you want, but you will be cut from behind if you do koshi nage like that...

If (big If) the sword wielding unfriendly guy is behind you, but maybe he is not behind you...

Kihon Waza is not Oyo Waza.

akiy
10-13-2008, 01:24 AM
Hi folks,

Please watch your tone. Some posts here are getting personal in nature and off of the topic of the thread.

-- Jun

ilia rudnitskiy
10-13-2008, 02:28 AM
Ah, this whole thread is very confusing so I'm going to respond to the original poster...

I've seen koshinage done two ways: with feet a bit more than shoulder width apart, and with feet about 8 inches apart... However, I've never seen it done with the feet together.

Part of the reason is, as some already stated, instability... if you have your feet slightly apart, you should have enough stability to perform a good koshinage.

Also, what i think is:
feet far apart = uke travels more of a horizontal distance
feet closee together = uke travels less horizontal distance

Personally, I perform koshinage with my feet fairly close together, and when I perform the throw, I move sideways so that uke falls straight below where I was standing... I find that this is a quicker and harder fall for uke (so obviously I do it slower on less-experienced people), and I also find it to be much easier for myself since i don't have to keep the weight of uke for as long.

But all in all, it can be done both ways... i.e. if you want to throw uke far, spread your feet farther; if you want to just drop them, keep your feet close; if you have amazing balance you can probably do it with your feet together but it won't make much of a difference if any.

Ed Stansfield
10-13-2008, 03:22 AM
Hello,

I don't practice a lot of koshinage, so my words can be safely ignored.

That said...

That there are many ways of doing koshi nage, but as long as certain fundamentals are kept then the technique is recognisable as koshi nage.

I also agree. For example: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-FRjEfP94s)

The distance between his feet varies, but see 1.03, 1.24, 1.31, 1.58.

Or look at the picture on page 24-25 of "Aikido and the Harmony of Nature" (the drawing by Mitsugi Saotome and then the photo of Hiroshi Ikeda).

Saito demonstrates, why is important to be able to turn towards your blind spot once the throw is completed. This approach allows for multiple attackers and indicates true Aikido quality.

Yes, but here we're talking about Aikido's Koshi Nage in contrast to other arts' Koshi Nage(s). And one fundamental to keep is "watch your back; that foe has friends!".

I agree that the idea that "there are many enemies" is important. However, it is too much of a jump for me to say that this is the determining factor of whether something is, or isn't koshinage (or indeed, Aikido, as the arguments above appear to run). If it was, then wouldn't we be led to the conclusion that Ikkyo isn't an Aikido technique?

Or going back to the Tissier example above, would it really be said that sometimes he's doing koshinage and sometimes he isn't? How close do his feet have to be before it's not koshinage?:)

For me, a better way to determine would start from the question "Does this technique embody the principles of Aiki?"; I cannot see why you cannot employ and embody those principles while creating a koshinage with your feet close together. If you did that, then for me it would be Aikido.

Best,

Ed

sorokod
10-13-2008, 04:38 AM
That there are many ways of doing koshi nage, but as long as certain fundamentals are kept then the technique is recognisable as koshi nage.

I am very interested to know what those fundamentals are. Could you enumerate them please?

sorokod
10-13-2008, 05:29 AM
...For me, a better way to determine would start from the question "Does this technique embody the principles of Aiki?"; I cannot see why you cannot employ and embody those principles while creating a koshinage with your feet close together. If you did that, then for me it would be Aikido...


What are the principals that make a hip throw a koshi nage?

Demetrio Cereijo
10-13-2008, 06:07 AM
What are the principals that make a hip throw a koshi nage?

A hip (koshi) and a nage (throw). From there you can go byzantine about feet position, number of enemies, weapons or not, how x shihan does it et c. but...WWUD?

sorokod
10-13-2008, 06:38 AM
I'd be delighted to use principles when judging an execution of a technique. Some people seemed to imply that they have them, hence my questions.

Flintstone
10-13-2008, 06:41 AM
If (big If) the sword wielding unfriendly guy is behind you, but maybe he is not behind you...

Absolutely. Anyway you (generic you) may feel like to sneak a peek. Not a judoka myself, but I never do koshi nage with feet together. Sometimes closer, sometimes wider a stance, but never together. Me.

Ellis Amdur
10-13-2008, 10:32 AM
It is a mistake to be preoccupied with the name of the throw, because, functionally, "nage" is deceptive. Properly executed, one does not "throw." Were one to use a name that describes what one does, it is "koshi-kake." (Hip-trip). In whatever position you have your feet, you establish kuzushi (uke is forward weighted on the balls of the feet), and you position your hips at a point right above his knees. The effect should be the same as if, unawares, one walked into a tightly stretched rope at that height. In classic aikido, the hips are perpendicular to the uke. Finally, it is very important to maintain your hip height until uke goes over. If you start to stand up, or heave him on your hips, you will actually restore his balance (unless he's a dive bunny). The same is true for judo's ogoshi, btw.
Best

maynard
10-13-2008, 10:55 AM
The usual recommendation that I've seen in my little circle of friends is to keep the feet close together. If the feet are too far apart, sometimes uke lands on nage's leg, potentially causing injury to nage's knee via pressure from the outside of the leg while the leg is being used as a support.

Having one's feet close together is a little awkward at first, but balance with one's feet close together while bearing uke's weight can be learned and developed. Of course, as Amdur Sensei and others have noted, ideally, there should be little to no load during the throw, but we all have to start somewhere.

Don_Modesto
10-13-2008, 01:30 PM
The usual recommendation that I've seen in my little circle of friends is to keep the feet close together. If the feet are too far apart, sometimes uke lands on nage's leg, potentially causing injury to nage's knee via pressure from the outside of the leg while the leg is being used as a support.

I almost injured my know once doing the technique with feet apart. It was a big guy and one leg took all the weight. Don't have the same problem with feet together. Feet together increases strength.

Flintstone
10-13-2008, 03:29 PM
If the feet are too far apart, sometimes uke lands on nage's leg, potentially causing injury to nage's knee via pressure from the outside of the leg while the leg is being used as a support.
That's why you want to shift your weight during the throw from your leg closest to uke, to the other. He won't fall on your leg this way. A swinging motion as explained by John Driscoll Sensei at http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14306Driscoll .

sorokod
10-13-2008, 04:56 PM
A swinging motion as explained by John Driscoll Sensei at http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14306Driscoll .

Very nice, this will teach me to use the search in the future.

Ketsan
10-13-2008, 07:44 PM
I'd be delighted to use principles when judging an execution of a technique. Some people seemed to imply that they have them, hence my questions.

Not have principles, are using principles!


I am very interested to know what those fundamentals are. Could you enumerate them please?

Right, I do not claim to be right here.............just less wrong than some people. :D

Well in order for a technique to be refered to as Koshi Nage uke has to travel across tori's hips. At the time of kuzushi tori's hips should be perpendicular to ukes and uke and tori should be in contact.

sorokod
10-14-2008, 03:00 AM
Not have principles, are using principles! Are you saying that they can not be expressed in words? If so, why bring them up, in an on line discussion, at all?

Well in order for a technique to be refered to as Koshi Nage uke has to travel across tori's hips. At the time of kuzushi tori's hips should be perpendicular to ukes and uke and tori should be in contact.

Sounds in line with some of the descriptions seen in this thread.

flipip23
10-14-2008, 05:00 AM
Hi everyone!

As an aside relating to foot position, but not directly relating to an aikido koshinage, the basic hip throws I've been taught at a school of jujitsu involved having the feet close together (heels touching). The reasoning seemed to be that it kept your balance very much in one, small footprint; for a couple of reasons I could see and probably many more I couldn't.

Firstly, it made clear in the mind that the point was to be a pivot, in the way of your uke, so that they move over your hips (much like described by Ellis Amdur, in fact the basic throws were o goshi and koshi garuma).

Secondly, more technical leg-throws were taught further up the syllabus, where nage balances on one leg and uses the other to 'encourage' ukes fall by perhaps sweeping back and up taking the legs sooner (I think). These throws came from the same or similar basic posture, and being able to take one leg off the ground is much easier if your weight is neutral over a very small footprint: i.e. if your feet are already touching, you are more likely to have learnt a neutral posture and be able to take either leg off the floor quickly. This would mean you would have flexibility as to which technique to perform for a much longer period in the execution of a technique.

So in that particular school, with admittedly my take on some of the 'whys', the foot position made sense. What I took away from it is that in those throws, the feet being together wasn't specifically a technical aspect for those actual techniques, but good habits allowing for flexibility in technique later on. Which is a good enough reason to do those throws in that way. To clarify, I'm only a 5th kyu in jujitsu, I'm not claiming any vast knowledge or experience, just my own take ;)

Aside complete, the koshi nages I've practised in my own school (of aikido) have the feet parallel, perpendicular to uke, and hip-width. Which makes sense for the way we do those throws. Foolishly I once though "ah! I think for hip throws the feet should be touching!" - transferring knowledge across arts without considering the actual reasons - and it didn't really help. The mechanics of the throws were different enough for the the hip-width posture to work better in those techniques from our school. Our style doesn't do many koshi nage, and so I can only say this observation applies to the specific techniques I know - but I think the point makes sense on a general level.

So, my take would be that for each specific throw, there's probably a good reason for the technical details encompassed in that throw, even if some aren't for the first reasons one might think.

sorokod
10-14-2008, 06:38 AM
...Secondly, more technical leg-throws were taught further up the syllabus, where nage balances on one leg and uses the other to 'encourage' ukes fall by perhaps sweeping back and up taking the legs sooner...

It is my understanding that the Founder took a dim view of being on one foot, because it restricts the freedom to move. Actually, how about this for a principal: "be free to move", which boils down to hanmi. Seems to work for koshi-nage indicating that it should be finished with the nage in hanmi.

Ketsan
10-14-2008, 08:41 AM
Are you saying that they can not be expressed in words? If so, why bring them up, in an on line discussion, at all?

My original question was and is a question purely of stylistics and not of principle. You can perform Koshi Nage with a wide stance, a narrow stance and in fact you can even do it balanced on one foot. Hip positioning is a principle, foot placement isn't, it's just the result of placing your hips correctly. IMO of course again I do not claim to be right here.

All Aikidoka I have met use a wide stance, the association I belong to, as far as I knew at the time, were the only people using a narrow stance, and I was curious to know if we were the only ones using a narrow stance.

Now I know that it's actually quite common.

SmilingNage
10-14-2008, 08:47 AM
Would say feet together for a few reasons:

1. to keep uke from landing on your leg
2. to teach nage to bend his knees to scoop up uke with his butt, keeping uke on the small flat of his back
3. to keep koshi nage movement from being more of tripping motion like in judo. Not that there is anything wrong about tripping; we talking aikido throws.

Oh and shame on everyone for letting this conversation degrade into school yard name calling match.
And shame on you Jen, you are teacher you should know better not to get drawn into a fight like that. Where is your awareness, zanshin?????????

Pathetic.

Flintstone
10-14-2008, 09:30 AM
SmilingNage, thank you for bringing this again to us. Actually the one being impolite was her. Here, read:

And you might be a fat woman in a tutu. I've never seen you either.

I'm certain I haven't stated how I do koshi nage.

That said,


1. to keep uke from landing on your leg
2. to teach nage to bend his knees to scoop up uke with his butt, keeping uke on the small flat of his back
3. to keep koshi nage movement from being more of tripping motion like in judo. Not that there is anything wrong about tripping; we talking aikido throws.

1. Uke will not land on your leg by doing a proper Aikido Koshi Nage a la O'Sensei, i.e. with "that" swinging motion.

2. One footed, cross-legged, heels together or shoulder width apart, if tori is smaller than uke, he (generic he) must bend the knees... but the goal is to keep your hip under uke's, not bending the knees per se.

3. It's not tripping but swinging uke over tori's hips. Nothing to do with Judo. Not that Judo's way is wrong, though.

C. David Henderson
10-14-2008, 10:48 AM
Someone told me the other day that after ducks get into conflict with each other, they shake it off, making a loud sound. Hmm...

Koshi nage. Oh yeah. We do it with feet close together, for reasons that have been mentioned.

I got the wave metaphor; don't know why it went south.

Regards,

DH

NagaBaba
10-14-2008, 12:59 PM
It is a mistake to be preoccupied with the name of the throw, because, functionally, "nage" is deceptive. Properly executed, one does not "throw." Were one to use a name that describes what one does, it is "koshi-kake." (Hip-trip). In whatever position you have your feet, you establish kuzushi (uke is forward weighted on the balls of the feet), and you position your hips at a point right above his knees. The effect should be the same as if, unawares, one walked into a tightly stretched rope at that height. In classic aikido, the hips are perpendicular to the uke. Finally, it is very important to maintain your hip height until uke goes over. If you start to stand up, or heave him on your hips, you will actually restore his balance (unless he's a dive bunny). The same is true for judo's ogoshi, btw.
Best
I disagree.
Certainly nage does actually throw attacker – because it is a part of leading him. Nage must use a complete body to execute koshinage, and particularly both legs are very important in this process. The legs have the biggest muscles in human body, so it is funny to advice not to use it. One can’t even maintain initial kuzushi without using a spring capacity of legs during koshinage. As Shioda sensei well remarked, all power in aikido comes from big toe. One must push his both feet (big toes) against a ground; this will create a power to throw. This power is transmitted by ankles joins, knees and leg muscles to the hips and from the hips to attacker. Power from hips will be used to maintain kuzushi(little bit as if one use a both hands to set up a bow before send an arrow) and to end the throw. More hips will spring up in the end of throw, more powerful kuzushi will be. It is particularly true with heavy attacker (that not only has a lot of weight, but also knows how to use it against nage :p )
This is proper body mechanics in koshinage.

Of course, in case when uke jumps by himself over nage hips, nage can safely stay all way down, he will be kind of dead obstacle for acrobatic jumper. However if attacker knows ho to use his weight, and nage will stay down, uke simply will lay over nage hips and push him down – impossible to maintain correct kuzushi then.

For those who want to do koshinage with feet wide – try to throw uke that weight 150 kg . LOL. I had such pleasure few times – one learns fast to get legs together otherwise one will injure himself.

Flintstone
10-14-2008, 03:02 PM
For those who want to do koshinage with feet wide -- try to throw uke that weight 150 kg . LOL. I had such pleasure few times -- one learns fast to get legs together otherwise one will injure himself.
Been there, done that. Many times. Honest. No big deal. Of course, if you try to lift uke, you will collapse... but if you swing your body, oh, then you've got the "throw". Come on Szczepan, you know what I mean. You don't need that springing motion you describe (nothing wrong with it, just you don't need it).

Demetrio Cereijo
10-14-2008, 09:33 PM
Maybe a clip of O Sensei performing koshi nage could be useful in this thread. I think he knew something about aikido.

SmilingNage
10-14-2008, 10:44 PM
SmilingNage, thank you for bringing this again to us. Actually the one being impolite was her. Here, read:

That said,

1. Uke will not land on your leg by doing a proper Aikido Koshi Nage a la O'Sensei, i.e. with "that" swinging motion.

2. One footed, cross-legged, heels together or shoulder width apart, if tori is smaller than uke, he (generic he) must bend the knees... but the goal is to keep your hip under uke's, not bending the knees per se.

3. It's not tripping but swinging uke over tori's hips. Nothing to do with Judo. Not that Judo's way is wrong, though.

Maybe we misunderstand each other, I believe we were talking about close or wide stance. So let me try to clear it up the best I can.

If you throw with a wide stance in most koshi nages applications, the likely hood of nage coming down on your knee/leg is much higher, that is a fact.

Actually bend the knees should be more of a flexing of the knees to load uke on to your koshi. So you can scoop him up with your hip motion. Otherwise You cant get under uke's center without flexing or bending at the knees. Uke will most likely run into your back and not be loaded probably.

With a wide stance its harder to get both "cheeks" into the throw. Most often only one cheek gets into the throw. Making it more akin to a judo sweep/throw.

sorokod
10-15-2008, 03:54 AM
...If you throw with a wide stance in most koshi nages applications, the likely hood of nage coming down on your knee/leg is much higher, that is a fact....

Are you suggesting the the correctness of the waza should be determined by popular vote?
Taking you argument to its logical conclusion, we also find that the safest thing is not to do koshi nage at all, probability 0 of dropping the uke on yourself.

SmilingNage
10-15-2008, 08:07 AM
Are you suggesting the the correctness of the waza should be determined by popular vote?
Taking you argument to its logical conclusion, we also find that the safest thing is not to do koshi nage at all, probability 0 of dropping the uke on yourself.

That is a far fetched assumption. That is like saying maybe I should stop breathing so I dont use up the number of times my heart can beat in a lifetime.

I personally don't believe in right or wrong ways, just degrees of efficiency. If want to throw ukes on your legs by all means do so. Just dont throw me on your leg(s) and injury us both.

So please continue your journey. Aikido is better learned through actions and not words. Let your own actions be your guide. I'm just conveying what I' ve learned to the conversation. Do what you will with it.

sorokod
10-15-2008, 08:32 AM
That is a far fetched assumption. You were arguing your point based on the "likely hood" of getting hurt. So it is not an assumption.

I personally don't believe in right or wrong ways, just degrees of efficiency.
What is it about Aikido that ecourages statements like this? Let's try it on brain surgery: "I personally don't believe in right or wrong ways of doing brain surgery, just degrees of efficiency." Hmmm..


So please continue your journey. Aikido is better learned through actions and not words. Let your own actions be your guide. I'm just conveying what I' ve learned to the conversation. Do what you will with it.
I agree, it can be learned only through actions not at all through words. However it can be ulearned through words.

SmilingNage
10-15-2008, 09:32 AM
You were arguing your point based on the "likely hood" of getting hurt. So it is not an assumption.

What is it about Aikido that ecourages statements like this? Let's try it on brain surgery: "I personally don't believe in right or wrong ways of doing brain surgery, just degrees of efficiency." Hmmm..

I agree, it can be learned only through actions not at all through words. However it can be ulearned through words.

I was basing my point of experience and what I 've been taught. I am not assuming just relaying experience.

Because there are no absolutes. The way I do something may or may not work for you. There are just degrees of efficiency. Just like teacher x says do this , teacher y says dont do that. Learn what you can from both and make your own decision as to what works for you. That is about as simple as I can make that. If you want absolutes, here are the only two that I know of, you were born and you are going to die. I hope that frames things for you. But if you need to be told what is right and what is wrong well go ahead and be a sheep and follow the herd. I prefer to make my own mind up after experiencing 1 st hand and going to the source. So go ahead and be a sheep but dont cry when the wolves prey on you.

sorokod
10-15-2008, 12:13 PM
... But if you need to be told what is right and what is wrong well go ahead and be a sheep and follow the herd. I prefer to make my own mind up after experiencing 1 st hand and going to the source. So go ahead and be a sheep but dont cry when the wolves prey on you.

Ahh, my nemesis, the poetic language! As always I have difficulties with it.
Let's see, I am a sheep because I take the form seriously. In this, presumably I am with the others in the Shu of Shu Ha Ri. That was easy!

But what about "going to the source"? What can that mean? And the "wolves" that will "prey" on me, who are they?

C. David Henderson
10-15-2008, 12:42 PM
David,

You clearly seem convinced koshi nage should be done with feet apart, and you've related this to the multiple attacker situation.

Fair enough.

Other people have brought up concern for the safety of nage, specifically including the possibility of uke landing on nage's leg or knee.

From over here, it seems when these issues are raised, the discussion gets off-track.

So, if you'd be so kind, may I ask you to indulge these questions:

Other than the utility or necessity, in your view, of performing the technique with feet apart in multiple attacker situations, do other bases exist for your opinion on the proper way to execute this technique? If so, what are they?

Do you disagree that the safety concern articulated is valid?

In performing this technique the way you believe it should be performed, has such a problem either occurred or come close to occurring?

Do you cope with the possibility of uke falling on nage in some fashion when executing the technique with feet apart?

Do you have opinions as firm as this about other waza, or is your opinion about koshi nage unusual?

Regards,

DH

Flintstone
10-15-2008, 02:40 PM
Other than the utility or necessity, in your view, of performing the technique with feet apart in multiple attacker situations, do other bases exist for your opinion on the proper way to execute this technique? If so, what are they?
Yes. It serves as a basis for kokyu nage. Same movement, but removing the hips. You can see where's uke going to land. You can throw uke further. Etc.

Do you disagree that the safety concern articulated is valid?
I do. Please, reffer to the now very famous and repetitive swinging motion.

In performing this technique the way you believe it should be performed, has such a problem either occurred or come close to occurring?
Never. And by performing it with heels together... did you ever lose balance and felt with uke to the mat? Not a very solid stance, it is.

Do you cope with the possibility of uke falling on nage in some fashion when executing the technique with feet apart?
No. Because uke's not lifted.

Do you have opinions as firm as this about other waza, or is your opinion about koshi nage unusual?
Normally open minded about waza. We are just saying that there's nothing wrong about doing it with feet apart: uke will not fall over you; you don't need to lift uke with your knees, but to unbalance him forward (and up); you can (or not, depends on generic you) deal with multiple attackers; you can disengage more easily...

Nothing wrong with heels together. I just find it more JU than AIKI. IMHO.

Best.

NagaBaba
10-15-2008, 03:20 PM
I don't get it at all: how the hell the wide stance can help you face multiple attackers? Just see boxers - they have ONE opponent who changes fast directions and distance - and still they have very narrow stance.
Feet apart = stiff, rigid posture, impossible to develop like that great mobility.

Feet apart are used only to teach beginners. Beginners learn this way how to preserve their balance. But there is no high level martial artist in the world(no only aikido masters), that use it, all of them have very natural position with feet almost together. And these feet are constantly moving, changing their position, to harmonize with attacker.This is also very true in case of koshinage - wide rigid stance will never allow to do it.

Only such natural posture can help to face multiple attackers.

SmilingNage
10-15-2008, 03:30 PM
I would say get some experience with a deshi of O'sensei, or one of the deshi's deshi. That would be the best source

C. David Henderson
10-15-2008, 03:31 PM
Alejandro,

Thanks for your response.

It's helpful in moving things forward, and though I did understand some of the points you are making from your own earlier posts, I'm glad you summarized them here.

To answer your question to me -- yes, feet close together does sometimes feel awkward.

By the way, my last question in particular was not addressed at you, though I appreciate your position. I don't know David shares your view, at least as to this technique.

I think I'll go back to lurking now; the question on the floor from Szczepan needs addressing....

Regards,

DH

Flintstone
10-15-2008, 03:34 PM
I would say get some experience with a deshi of O'sensei, or one of the deshi's deshi. That would be the best source
O'Sensei -> Saito Morihiro -> Daniel Toutain: I guess this a very valid source. Not that I traing with him everyday, just during his seminars in Spain.

Flintstone
10-15-2008, 03:37 PM
By the way, my last question in particular was not addressed at you, though I appreciate your position. I don't know David shares your view, at least as to this technique.

Thank you David. I know it was not addressed to me, but was a good place to summarize my view ;).

Flintstone
10-15-2008, 04:11 PM
Feet apart are used only to teach beginners. Beginners learn this way how to preserve their balance. But there is no high level martial artist in the world(no only aikido masters), that use it, all of them have very natural position with feet almost together.

Chida Sensei, Yoshinkan 8th dan, direct student of Shioda Gozo:

http://www.fitnessjp.com/upload/a76_p1.jpg

Philippe Voarino, 6th dan from Iwama Ryu:

http://www.aikidotakemusu.com/IMG/jpg/at_cahier13_1.jpg

You can find this throw in Yoshinkan, Yoseikan, Iwama Ryu... (just to keep into the Aikido paradigm; if we talk Nihon Jujutsu think of Asayama Ichiden Ryu, for example).

http://www.shorinjikempo-cartagena.org/1-Asayama%20Ichiden.jpg

Not to speak about Saito, Shioda, Mochizuki, O'Sensei, etc... All did Koshi Nage with feet apart. I don't believe they are only beginners, Szczepan...

sorokod
10-15-2008, 04:48 PM
By the way, my last question in particular was not addressed at you, though I appreciate your position. I don't know David shares your view, at least as to this technique.
DH

What Alejandro said, plus the following.

All these are quotes from this thread:

"don't believe in right or wrong ways, just degrees of efficiency"
"The usual recommendation that I've seen in my little circle of friends"
"one of those technical details that offers endless debate and minimal significance."
" I can think of about 5 distinctly different ways to accomplish that task"
"I've also seen waves form and break in many shapes and sizes. They were all waves."

O Sensei developed his art over 60 years of intensive training, the techniques (core techniques including koshi nage) are based on his experience, more precisely the techniques are his distilled experience. When people modify a technique claiming their own "understanding", I wander how it compares to Founder's (being extra polite here :) ).

Oh, and also this: there is a right way and there is a wrong way to do things, and while its true that there may be more then one right way, that does not mean that every way is OK.

sorokod
10-15-2008, 05:00 PM
More pictures...

C. David Henderson
10-15-2008, 09:41 PM
David,

Thanks for amplifying your own views. I tend to think, though, taking isolated statements from other's posts doesn't really help you establish your point; rather, quite honestly, it tends to establish why you reacted to particular posts the way you did.

I'm not convinced, FWIW, that any of the people you quote intended to suggest that any way of doing a technique is okay.

I recall you asking for princiles on which to evaluate koshi nage; do you have principles in mind to distinguish between acceptable and unacceptable variations of techinque? Just asking.

In any event, thanks.

DH

Demetrio Cereijo
10-15-2008, 09:42 PM
WWMD?

http://img248.imageshack.us/img248/9457/koshiuz9.th.jpg (http://img248.imageshack.us/my.php?image=koshiuz9.jpg)http://img248.imageshack.us/images/thpix.gif (http://g.imageshack.us/thpix.php)

Don
10-15-2008, 10:45 PM
Personally I end up doing most of my koshi's with my feet at about shoulder width or slightly less. After throwing a 280 lb guy once (I'm about 195) with my legs apart, forgetting to move my legs in (because I remember wondering how I was going to manage this....) and him hitting the outside of my knee.....I have learned to either shift my weight or legs.

Argue all you want about proper position.....You can obviously learn to do it any number of ways.....I now do lots of weight training to keep from getting my torn meniscus reparied. Potential for injury is enough for me to do it with a fairly narrow stance.

sorokod
10-16-2008, 04:40 AM
Hello David H
...I'm not convinced, FWIW, that any of the people you quote intended to suggest that any way of doing a technique is okay.

I take those posts at face value. That is why I have so much trouble with similes and metaphors.


I recall you asking for princiles on which to evaluate koshi nage; do you have principles in mind to distinguish between acceptable and unacceptable variations of techinque?

I was asking for those because the previous poster was hinting at some knowledge of them and not because I have them.
A list of universal principles that can be used to identify a flaw in a waza would be great, but I am not optimistic about defining it any time soon (Hanmi as a principle should probably be on that list).

So what remains is the form, it is not ideal, but this is all there is for now, the form is the principal and this is why respect to the form is important.

Peter Goldsbury
10-16-2008, 05:48 AM
In my 'aikido life', I have been privileged to have been taught koshinage by at least six of O Sensei's direct deshi (M Saito, S Yamaguchi, H Tada, K Chiba, M Kanai, M Kitahira). So I think I am in a position to make some comparisons. Of these deshi, all except one placed their feet fairly close together, either in shizentai ('natural posture', with feet place about one foot apart) or in a T form (kusunoki: the base / stem of the T focused on uke--my own hips were never flexible enough to use the T form: I am aware that kusunoki also denotes the general position of tori's hips, in relation to uke's, but I think this is less important here). The exception was Morihito Saito, who always kept his feet apart--and always did koshi-nage successfully. So it might be that the position of the feet do not really matter: there are other factors that are far more crucial to successful koshi-waza.

There was never any loading of uke on the koshi and the set-up for the waza was exactly the same as for the vast array of waza known as kokyu-nage--the thinking being that if you can set up a kokyu-nage successfully, you can drop down and scoop uke over your hips, even with several variations of shiho-nage.

I think that there is never any question of loading uke on your hips. I also think that sumo offers a very good parallel here. Nobody could ever have beaten Konishiki (295 kilograms) by loading him to to the hips. Yet, the smallest and lightest wrestlers regularly beat him. Why? They understood how to use Konishiki's own weight to their advantage, which is the same principle for koshi-nage. If this is understood, the position of the feet are important only in order to take maximum advantage of uke's 'floating' predicament. If uke remains firmly anchored to the ground, then the waza becomes very difficult, if not impossible.

Best wishes to all,

PAG

sorokod
10-16-2008, 05:53 AM
"Legacies of the Sword" by Friday and Humitake ( http://www.google.co.uk/search?q="Legacies+of+the+Sword"+by+Friday+and+Humitake ) has a serious and useful set of principles of Kashima-Shinryu. So it is not impossible in principle.

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 06:18 AM
In my 'aikido life', I have been privileged to have been taught koshinage by at least six of O Sensei's direct deshi (M Saito, S Yamaguchi, H Tada, K Chiba, M Kanai, M Kitahira). So I think I am in a position to make some comparisons. Of these deshi, all except one placed their feet fairly close together, either in shizentai ('natural posture', with feet place about one foot apart) or in a T form (kusunoki: the base / stem of the T focused on uke--my own hips were never flexible enough to use the T form: I am aware that kusunoki also denotes the general position of tori's hips, in relation to uke's, but I think this is less important here). The exception was Morihito Saito, who always kept his feet apart--and always did koshi-nage successfully. So it might be that the position of the feet do not really matter: there are other factors that are far more crucial to successful koshi-waza.
You mentioned postwar students. Maybe this is more of a modern approach influenced by Judo? Saito being the exception in that he lived and trained daily with O'Sensei in Iwama. Prewar students seem to agree in feet apart, or is it just my perception? Daito Ryu's koshi nage is done with feet apart or with heels together?

Thanks,
Alex.

Peter Goldsbury
10-16-2008, 06:53 AM
You mentioned postwar students. Maybe this is more of a modern approach influenced by Judo? Saito being the exception in that he lived and trained daily with O'Sensei in Iwama. Prewar students seem to agree in feet apart, or is it just my perception? Daito Ryu's koshi nage is done with feet apart or with heels together?

Thanks,
Alex.

What are your grounds for making such a distinction between 'postwar students' and Saito? Morihiro Saito was also postwar, in the sense that he was after the watershed of 1942. So your distinction, if it is valid, has to be made on other grounds. An argument based on 'living and training daily with O Sensei' has little validity unless you can actually show that this fact of daily postwar training had a striking effect on Saito's koshi-nage (sufficient to differentiate Saito from the other students like, e.g. Tamura, Tanaka Shigeho, and Yamaguchi). I think that there are too many variables to make a valid distinction IN AIKIDO.

Best wishes,

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 07:08 AM
What are your grounds for making such a distinction between 'postwar students' and Saito? Morihiro Saito was also postwar, in the sense that he was after the watershed of 1942. So your distinction, if it is valid, has to be made on other grounds. An argument based on 'living and training daily with O Sensei' has little validity unless you can actually show that this fact of daily postwar training had a striking effect on Saito's koshi-nage (sufficient to differentiate Saito from the other students like, e.g. Tamura, Tanaka Shigeho, and Yamaguchi). I think that there are too many variables to make a valid distinction IN AIKIDO.
My grounds are ones well know to the community. That postwar students have mainly trained in Kisshomaru's and Tohei's ways of doing things, since O'Sensei was retired in Iwama and not teaching at Hombu Dojo. So Saito's way has to be closer to that of O'Sensei by all means. And that Saito's way has more to do with prewar styles than with postwar ones, as far as I see it. Saito's, Shirata's and Shioda's styles are more similar than any two postwar "lines" that you may pick, in my opinion. Not that I have the absolute truth (whatever that means).

Best.

Peter Goldsbury
10-16-2008, 07:45 AM
My grounds are ones well know to the community. That postwar students have mainly trained in Kisshomaru's and Tohei's ways of doing things, since O'Sensei was retired in Iwama and not teaching at Hombu Dojo. So Saito's way has to be closer to that of O'Sensei by all means. And that Saito's way has more to do with prewar styles than with postwar ones, as far as I see it. Saito's, Shirata's and Shioda's styles are more similar than any two postwar "lines" that you may pick, in my opinion. Not that I have the absolute truth (whatever that means).

Best.

Well, I think that we will have to agree to disagree. My columns are designed to show that the grounds "well known to the aikido community" rest on far less secure foundations than previously supposed. I mentioned people, not lines, and I believe that your distinction between prewar and postwar is far too simple to bear any weight.

Best wishes,

PAG

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 07:55 AM
Is there any picture of O'Sensei performing Koshi Nage with feet together? I'm more than ready to change my mind if I see the man himself doing it.

Anyway I'll be longing for your new installment on Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation. Even when I always though that at least Mochizuki and Sugino where proposed to inherit the art before Kisshomaru was. But that's another question altogether.

SmilingNage
10-16-2008, 09:06 AM
What Alejandro said, plus the following.

All these are quotes from this thread:

O Sensei developed his art over 60 years of intensive training, the techniques (core techniques including koshi nage) are based on his experience, more precisely the techniques are his distilled experience. When people modify a technique claiming their own "understanding", I wander how it compares to Founder's (being extra polite here :) ).

Oh, and also this: there is a right way and there is a wrong way to do things, and while its true that there may be more then one right way, that does not mean that every way is OK.

Where to begin........... In terms of mechanics, to some degree, yes techniques all boil down to inherit motion(s) that render them as being true to a form. So for example ikkyo, regardless of aikido style, would be recognizable as ikkyo though the name might be different. But here lies the catch, when preforming technique, the circumstances are never the same, be it ma ai, different ukes(in regards to height sizes, aggressiveness etc) and a host of other circumstances, generally means you can't do the technique the same way every time. Even in Ikkyo, some styles say step in immediately or other say cut down the step in, other say take the ikkyo offline the line and away, other say cut down in arc, yadda yaddda yadda. So the point, yes techniques have a universal form to some extent, but its the application/execution/situation that renders degrees of efficiency. All the ways of doing Ikkyo have merit, but how you apply them,being the various ways, yields degrees of efficiency. But there is no magical cookie cutter way/technique that works on everyone can every single time. There is form, then degrees of efficiency of the application of said form. You want the so called "right way" save it for testing where you have to do it a certain way to be graded on with semi complaint ukes who don't want you to look bad during testing and predetermined attacks and responses.

Back to the thread topic, go ahead and use the wide stance. There wont be this great schism in aikido like there was in between catholic and orthodox churches over this. There will just be people who will walk with a limp and those walk away from throwing koshinage without a limp. Probably like 99 times you throw with the wide stance, you will be safe; its that last 1% that will get you. Not saying anyone is right or wrong, (though personally wise stance looks sloppy to me) its more of matter of safety.

Demetrio Cereijo
10-16-2008, 09:26 AM
In Gaku Homma's book "The structure of aikido" he performs koshi nage with feet apart but he clearly states that nage, for his own safety, has to retract the extended leg to avoid uke falling on it. (pg 132 in the spanish edition).

iirc Homma was a live in student of the founder at Iwama.

ChrisMoses
10-16-2008, 10:12 AM
Is there any picture of O'Sensei performing Koshi Nage with feet together? I'm more than ready to change my mind if I see the man himself doing it.

Anyway I'll be longing for your new installment on Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation. Even when I always though that at least Mochizuki and Sugino where proposed to inherit the art before Kisshomaru was. But that's another question altogether.

This thread is amazing...

Out of curiosity, do you end every technique with one arm raised overhead as you pin (as was demonstrated quite clearly in the Noma dojo photos)? Perhaps you do, but this whole thread reminds me of religious conservatives who cling to minutia of scripture as if their very life depended on it (worse, their very soul!), while glossing over and ignoring commands, rules and doctrines that once carried just as much weight in their religious communities.

In most of the photos that people have posted in this thread, nage is quite clearly looking at the ground. I have never met a single aikido or jujutsu teacher that said that we *should* be looking at the ground while we do technique. Certainly sometimes our spine inclines forward and our gaze drops from the horizon, but even then the eyes should be trying to gaze up and out (in order to align the neck and torso). And yet, looking at photos of "the greats" so so many of them are looking at their feet. Do we emulate that with equal conviction or is that similar to the text of the Christian bible that relates to pig's flesh?

In closing, I'll relate a story.

I forget where I heard this one, so please forgive me. A woman was preparing a Christmas ham the same way she had learned from her mother years ago. Her husband had watched her make this recipe for several years. This year, he watched her carefully cut off the front and back of the ham and toss those portions in the trash. She then set the ham in her pan and got ready to cook it. "Why do you cut the ends off?" he asked. "Well, that's how my mother taught me," she replied. "Well why does she do it, that's not how my mother did it." Never having thought of it before, she decided to call her mother to find out.

"Mom, why do we cut the ends off of the ham before we cook it?" she asked. "I don't know," her mother replied, "that's just how my mother did it." Intrigued, the women called the source.

The granddaughter asked, "Gran, why do we cut the ends off of the ham before we cook it?" "What do you mean?" asked the grandmother. "You know, before we cook the ham we cut the ends off and throw them out, why do we do that?"

"You idiots, when your mother was little we didn't have many pans and I didn't have one big enough to fit a whole ham..." she replied. :D

If you think I'm being silly here, you'd be right, but I'm not the only one. :)

sorokod
10-16-2008, 10:23 AM
In my 'aikido life', I have been privileged to have been taught koshinage by at least six of O Sensei's direct deshi (M Saito, S Yamaguchi, H Tada, K Chiba, M Kanai, M Kitahira). So I think I am in a position to make some comparisons. Of these deshi, all except one placed their feet fairly close together, either in shizentai ('natural posture', with feet place about one foot apart) or in a T form (kusunoki: the base / stem of the T focused on uke--my own hips were never flexible enough to use the T form: I am aware that kusunoki also denotes the general position of tori's hips, in relation to uke's, but I think this is less important here). The exception was Morihito Saito, who always kept his feet apart--and always did koshi-nage successfully. So it might be that the position of the feet do not really matter: there are other factors that are far more crucial to successful koshi-waza.
...


Seeing the same technique done in different ways by people you respect, how do you resolve the differences? How do you explain it to yourself, not from historical point of view, but from "which way should I do it" point of view. I guess my question boils down to "how do you choose what to teach your students"?

Demetrio Cereijo
10-16-2008, 10:23 AM
Out of curiosity, do you end every technique with one arm raised overhead as you pin (as was demonstrated quite clearly in the Noma dojo photos)?

Only when I previously have "beheaded" uke and, what is more important, sensei is not looking.
:)

Nice story, btw. Food for thougth.

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 10:25 AM
Out of curiosity, do you end every technique with one arm raised overhead as you pin (as was demonstrated quite clearly in the Noma dojo photos)? Perhaps you do [...]

More often than not.

[...], but this whole thread reminds me of religious conservatives who cling to minutia of scripture as if their very life depended on it (worse, their very soul!), while glossing over and ignoring commands, rules and doctrines that once carried just as much weight in their religious communities.

That's an awful comparation, if I may say.

In most of the photos that people have posted in this thread, nage is quite clearly looking at the ground. I have never met a single aikido or jujutsu teacher that said that we *should* be looking at the ground while we do technique.

Gess you've never been at an Iwama Ryu dojo, then.

And yet, looking at photos of "the greats" so so many of them are looking at their feet.

Maybe they know better than us.

Do we emulate that with equal conviction or is that similar to the text of the Christian bible that relates to pig's flesh?

Not an expert in Christian bible myself. I don't know what you're talking about, but again this comparation looks ugly to me.

"You idiots, when your mother was little we didn't have many pans and I didn't have one big enough to fit a whole ham..." she replied. :D

This is neither relevant nor related to the matter at hand. Are you implying that "the greats" had a reason to do Koshi Nage feet apart than no longer applies? If so, what could that be?

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 10:27 AM
Only when I previously have "beheaded" uke and, what is more important, sensei is not looking.
:)

This one was good, Demetrio :D!! But you don't need to behead uke to finish the technique with an atemi...

C. David Henderson
10-16-2008, 10:31 AM
For me the question of "form" brings up analogies with language and music. Language has a grammar, for example, that determines proper "form" of sentences, but in any living language it is a generative grammar that enables the fluent speaker to create any number of sentences.

I don't want to overstate any comparison between a language and Aikido or other martial arts; however, consider then the following entry from Aikiwiki:

"TakemusuAiki:

A 'slogan' of the founder's meaning 'infinitely generative martial art of aiki.' Thus, a synonym for aikido. The scope of aikido is not limited only to the standard, named techniques one studies regularly in practice. Rather, these standard techniques serve as repositories of more fundamental principles (kihon). Once one has internalized the kihon, it is possible to generate a virtually infinite variety of new aikido techniques in accordance with novel conditions."

Retrieved from "http://aikiweb.com/wiki/TakemusuAiki"

Look at music and the art of improvisation. Improvisation is structured sponteniety, as distinguished from a sound I might make doing music "anyway" I want. It is responsive to context as well -- e.g., the context of other musicians performances.

To me the apparent delimma in trying to decide what is the correct form stems from not placing the concept of Takemusu Aiki along side form, and seeing it as "repositories of more fundamental principles (kihon)."

DH

Demetrio Cereijo
10-16-2008, 10:39 AM
Now seriously

I'm not sure if being very exact and picky about things like these makes sense.

If we're talking about kihon/kata then maybe, but if we're talking about throwing people for real (people who do no want to be thrown, and what is worse, wants to throw you) then a lot of adjustments are needed.

Context is everything.

sorokod
10-16-2008, 10:55 AM
If you think I'm being silly here, you'd be right, but I'm not the only one. :)

It is natural to desire to make the thing that we study, our own, and one of the ways to exercise this ownership is to change it.
Whether this change makes sense depends on the level of expertise, or more precisely to the relative level of expertise. Relative between your level and the Founder's that is.

As much as I dislike dogma and "arguments from authority", logically there is no alternative here that does not make the art a pale copy of itself.

Michael Douglas
10-16-2008, 10:56 AM
Is there any picture of O'Sensei performing Koshi Nage with feet together? I'm more than ready to change my mind if I see the man himself doing it.

This was posted ;
http://img248.imageshack.us/img248/9457/koshiuz9.th.jpg (http://img248.imageshack.us/my.php?image=koshiuz9.jpg)http://img248.imageshack.us/images/thpix.gif (http://g.imageshack.us/thpix.php)
Right column, second down ... feet seem to be closer together although the hakama obscures stuff as usual.
I'm sure having the feet close together during a transitional movement can still allow the feet-apart stance before and after and that cool look with the hand up in the air. "Shazam!" :cool:

I'm also sure Ueshiba's legs were strong enough that he didn't need to have his feet together to get the most strength into his stance and avoid injury. He himself said he could lift a LOT of weight when he was younger.

ChrisMoses
10-16-2008, 10:58 AM
That's an awful comparation, if I may say.

You may, although I think you're getting caught up in details not principles.

Gess you've never been at an Iwama Ryu dojo, then.

No, although I did get my shodan from Kurita Minouru Shihan's Aikido Seikikai and he spent a lot of time in Iwama with OSensei. Their technical syllabus very closely resembles the Iwama stuff. Interestingly we were instructed to do koshinage with the feet no more than a foot apart. So let me get this straight, you've been taught to do your waza looking at the ground and that is a trademark of the Iwama style of Aikido?

Not an expert in Christian bible myself. I don't know what you're talking about, but again this comparation looks ugly to me.

You could read some of this (http://www.lionking.org/~kovu/bible/section05.html) if you were so inclined.

This is neither relevant nor related to the matter at hand. Are you implying that "the greats" had a reason to do Koshi Nage feet apart than no longer applies? If so, what could that be?

There's lots of reasons people do things the way they do. Bad knees, bad backs, wrecked shoulders, personal preference, being tall, being short, having strong legs, not having strong legs...

The case could be made for feet close or feet wide, but if you're hitting the principles behind the specifics it doesn't really matter. Personally I don't really do this koshinage anymore, preferring many of judo's koshi throws.

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 11:06 AM
Right column, second down ... feet seem to be closer together although the hakama obscures stuff as usual.
I'm sure having the feet close together during a transitional movement can still allow the feet-apart stance before and after and that cool look with the hand up in the air. "Shazam!" :cool:
No. Take a second or a third look at the pics :cool:.

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 11:11 AM
So let me get this straight, you've been taught to do your waza looking at the ground and that is a trademark of the Iwama style of Aikido?

It's a trademark of O'Sensei, since Saito clearly stated he did the Aikido of O'Sensei. Ey! I'm not even a Iwama guy myself! But in Iwama, the teaching is that, yes: look up to you arm while you extend uke up and forward, and then look down to perform the actual throw, so your hand (and uke's) will follow your head. That's a pretty good rationale too.

You could read some of this (http://www.lionking.org/%7Ekovu/bible/section05.html) if you were so inclined.

Sorry, I'm not.

There's lots of reasons people do things the way they do. Bad knees, bad backs, wrecked shoulders, personal preference, being tall, being short, having strong legs, not having strong legs...

So all of them had the same reassons, and somehow we don't have them anymore? I don't think all of them had bad knees or wrecked shoulders anyway.

Personally I don't really do this koshinage anymore, preferring many of judo's koshi throws.

That would explain something. But we were talking Aikido throws.

Demetrio Cereijo
10-16-2008, 11:14 AM
and then look down to perform the actual throw, so your hand (and uke's) will follow your head. That's a pretty good rationale too.
Not in the branch I practise. May be we don't have t3h r34l Iwama....

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 11:23 AM
Not in the branch I practise. May be we don't have t3h r34l Iwama....
Actually it's looking back rather than down. How you do it then, Demetrio? Never seen you or anyone from your dojo!! Anyway I don't care about teh r3a1 Iw4m4, or the R341 Y0231k4|\|, just about proper principals. I'm still a loooong road ahead!!

phitruong
10-16-2008, 11:28 AM
don't know about you folks but I really liked Kuroiwa's approach to koshi nage in this film clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vyxbvg4fJ-M If you noticed his feet and body structure, it's a very casual approach, yet very nicely done. he seemed to move his leg, as he cross over, to make a hole for uke to fall in and to keep uke from falling on his leg. did i mention i really like his koshi nage? really really really like it. :D

Demetrio Cereijo
10-16-2008, 11:33 AM
Actually it's looking back rather than down. How you do it then, Demetrio?
Not to totally the front, not totally the back and never to the ground (if you look to the ground you'll end in the ground). Something in the middle to keep a wide perspective about the surroundings and keeping peripheral vision...IHTBF :)

I'm still a loooong road ahead!!
Me too.

BTW, the first time I watched Kuroiwa's clip Phi posted, I said to myself: "I do want this, this guy is amazing!!!"

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 11:41 AM
don't know about you folks but I really liked Kuroiwa's approach to koshi nage in this film clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vyxbvg4fJ-M

Like it too!!

Not to totally the front, not totally the back and never to the ground (if you look to the ground you'll end in the ground). Something in the middle to keep a wide perspective about the surroundings and keeping peripheral vision...IHTBF :)

I see. But the principals are the same. Anyway, something in the middle is always better than something in the extremes. IHTBF however.

ChrisMoses
10-16-2008, 12:09 PM
don't know about you folks but I really liked Kuroiwa's approach to koshi nage in this film clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vyxbvg4fJ-M If you noticed his feet and body structure, it's a very casual approach, yet very nicely done. he seemed to move his leg, as he cross over, to make a hole for uke to fall in and to keep uke from falling on his leg. did i mention i really like his koshi nage? really really really like it. :D

But he does it with his feet apart and then together and then stepping through!!! Which one is THE RIGHT way??? ;)

phitruong
10-16-2008, 12:21 PM
But he does it with his feet apart and then together and then stepping through!!! Which one is THE RIGHT way??? ;)

his way? :) he got the feet apart to satisfy the folks who liked feet apart. he got feet together for folks who liked feet together. he got T-feet to keep T-feet folks happy. together he made me happy. :)

i am happy! he's happy! are you happy? savvy? :cool:

C. David Henderson
10-16-2008, 12:28 PM
I'm happy you posted that video.

DH

NagaBaba
10-16-2008, 02:02 PM
If uke remains firmly anchored to the ground, then the waza becomes very difficult, if not impossible.

Best wishes to all,

PAG
That is very important remark, and is valid for all techniques in aikido.
The right way of doing techniques comes not from pictures, some esoteric explanations or opinons expressed in conversations, but from correct using of biomechanic of human body.

So the question is, how, in koshinage, one unroot uke from the ground to put him on the toes AND preserve this state until he fall down - using one hand? one wrist? It is simply not possible unless uke is jumping by himself.
One must use his WHOLE body, in preference, legs and hips, that contains the biggest muscles. This is only possible when one use horizontal and vertical dimention of movement. With legs apart such most effectif way of using human body is impossible.

Flintstone
10-16-2008, 03:53 PM
Szczepan, you keep on insisting on what O'Sensei, Saito, Shioda, Chida, etc. do/did is wrong, don't you? It's ok. End of the matter for me. I'm not trying to convince you feet apart is t3h 0n1y w4y, but you keep insisting all these people are/were wrong. Amazing.

Peter Goldsbury
10-17-2008, 03:58 AM
Seeing the same technique done in different ways by people you respect, how do you resolve the differences? How do you explain it to yourself, not from historical point of view, but from "which way should I do it" point of view. I guess my question boils down to "how do you choose what to teach your students"?

Is this not the case with most waza? Nevertheless, since I have been training for nearly 40 years, I supposed I have evolved a preferred way of training that fits me. As for teaching, I have had so many teachers that I tend to show different ways of doing the same waza--and then let people, especially yudansha, work it out for themselves.

sorokod
10-17-2008, 07:04 AM
Is this not the case with most waza?

My question was about most waza.

I supposed I have evolved a preferred way of training that fits me.

It is this evolution that I am asking about, how do you rationalize it?

Peter Goldsbury
10-17-2008, 07:22 AM
My question was about most waza.

It is this evolution that I am asking about, how do you rationalize it?

I am not sure what you are looking for, over and above the comments I have already made.

Ron Tisdale
10-17-2008, 10:18 AM
I have been trying to figure out how to contribute to this thread in a useful way...

Let's try this. I often find (when looking at different ways of doing a waza) that if I understand the bigger picture of the goals of a particular training group, then I can see several clues as to why they do a particular waza a particular way.

Some groups are influenced by another art, such as judo, and that will often flavor their perspectives on a waza such as koshinage.

Some groups focus strongly toward a particular aspect of training...that might be a very strong kuzushi at the very instant of contact, or starting with a very light and leading kuzushi, then strengthening that through out the waza, or anything in between. That might lead to differing ways of doing a specific waza.

Some groups will be very influenced by a strong shihan or teacher, and that person might have a distinct body type. So the group will focus (sometimes without even realizing it) on types of waza that work really well for that instructor.

All of these things can shape how the place where you train generally does koshinage. Personally, I may have my favorites, or my preferred ways, but I find value in trying out all of the different approaches.

I've done it by positioning my hips, looking up at the leading hand, then down as I cut down and lead uke over my hips...

I've done it by getting tight tsukuri, then popping uke up in the air...

I've done it by having my feet apart, and having my feet together...

What I am trying to accomplish specifically in that particular moment is what usually drives the choice of details.

Best,
Ron

ChrisMoses
10-17-2008, 10:45 AM
I have been trying to figure out how to contribute to this thread in a useful way...



Ron, Ron, Ron... You're doing it wrong. Where's the vitriol? Where are the not-so-subtle inferences that yours is the one true way? Honestly, I thought you'd have these intarwebs figured out by now...

:D

(For those of you who's humor detector is malfunctioning this morning, please read the above as, "Nice post Ron.")

Ron Tisdale
10-17-2008, 12:07 PM
:D Thanks Chris!

B,
R (I'm so busy these days can't train or post much...probably make up for some that this weekend, 3 days with Inoue Sensei)

NagaBaba
10-17-2008, 03:01 PM
Szczepan, you keep on insisting on what O'Sensei, Saito, Shioda, Chida, etc. do/did is wrong, don't you? It's ok. End of the matter for me. I'm not trying to convince you feet apart is t3h 0n1y w4y, but you keep insisting all these people are/were wrong. Amazing.

Hello Alejandro,
Thinking that you are able to do the techniques the same way like O Sensei, Saito, Shioda, Chida did, is a frightening illusion. We, mortals, we are simply not the same level. So you can’t copy the forms of such masters directly, from video or pictures. This is particularly true, in the light of the fact, that every one of them developed his own unique pedagogical system.
So the question may rise – what ‘normal’ aikidoka should do in such horrible situation? Where to find the points that will lead our own development?
Surly not by looking for differences between the forms of these masters. Rather, by trying to find some common points in their forms. One of such common point is unbalancing, other is leading after unbalancing.
O sensei was able to unbalance his attacker even before contact – so ukemi of his uke looks like they are almost jumping over him. If you look carefully at attached pictures in this thread, you can see that his uke landed far away from him. What was the reason?

After all these observations, ask yourself: can I do koshinage exactly as O sensei did?
If answer is YES! – keep feet apart as O sensei did.
If answer is NO! – don’t copy, but use your intelligence to search how you must use your body to reproduce similar result. So you will discover THE way to use your feet correctly (feet together?), who knows? If I may suggest – just to be sure that uke will not tanking, do these experiences with not very cooperative uke that has more experience then you in aikido. :D :p

Flintstone
10-17-2008, 03:58 PM
Hi Szczepan,

Thinking that you are able to do the techniques the same way like O Sensei, Saito, Shioda, Chida did, is a frightening illusion. We, mortals, we are simply not the same level.

Sure. If I was able to do the techniques like them, I won't be here now ;) !!

Surly not by looking for differences between the forms of these masters. Rather, by trying to find some common points in their forms. One of such common point is unbalancing, other is leading after unbalancing.

True again. Another common point among these greats was to place feet appart, so that's what I try to do. And find it easier than feet togheter. Ok, maybe it's just me. No problem.

After all these observations, ask yourself: can I do koshinage exactly as O sensei did?

Since answer is NO...

If answer is NO! -- don't copy, but use your intelligence to search how you must use your body to reproduce similar result.

I don't mean to copy, but if they do it like that... I don't copy millimeter by millimeter and radian by radian, but I (try to) keep the principals the same. And my intelligence (or lack of it) says that feet appart:

1. is more stable,

2. lets me throw my opponent further,

3. allows me a clean and beautifull entry for kokyu nage,

4. permits me to watch my back (and my side),

5. makes it harder for uke to sutemize me or counter me in any way...

... and possibly more and more advantages. But that's what my brain says. Most probably other brains think different. And maybe I'm very wrong, but I have what I see as big reassons.

just to be sure that uke will not tanking, do these experiences with not very cooperative uke that has more experience then you in aikido. :D :p

OMG, that's extremely very easy. I'm just a newbie in the arts!!

Best,
Alex.

sorokod
10-17-2008, 04:24 PM
I am not sure what you are looking for, over and above the comments I have already made.
The waza that is yours, the one that you evolved, probably reflects different variations done by different teachers. You may have taken some parts from one teacher and some from another. By the same token you may have rejected certain ways of doing it.

What is the logic you used to accept/reject a variation.

I am probably oversimplifying the learning proces, but I think that the question makes sence never the less.

Peter Goldsbury
10-18-2008, 02:21 AM
The waza that is yours, the one that you evolved, probably reflects different variations done by different teachers.
PAG. Well, it might do, but the devil is in the detail. I am not sure what you yourself mean by 'reflects' here. The term might suggest a mirror image, but is the 'reflection' of different teachers sequential or simultaneous? This is always assuming that the reflection is real, i.e., genuine: that the waza of Shihan X is actually reflected in my own.

You may have taken some parts from one teacher and some from another. By the same token you may have rejected certain ways of doing it.
PAG. You seem to be assuming that this is a conscious, logical process, but I have never learned aikido in this way. I have always been taught that the goal of training is to imitate as far as possible (with no conscious exclusions) the waza of the teacher. I believe that this is the SHU stage of SHU-HA-RI, but there is no conscious logical step to the HA stage. HA is not rejecting parts of any waza that you do not like, while keeping the rest. Nor is RI putting all the various bits together, like a patchwork quilt.

So I have been through the SHU stage with several different teachers (Chiba, Kanetsuka, Yamaguchi, Tada, Kitahira) and so have learned a number of variations of the same waza.

What is the logic you used to accept/reject a variation.
PAG. I have never accepted or rejected a variation, so there is no logic. If you think about it, I would be very unlikely to reject a variation from someone with the knowledge of Yamaguchi or Tada. The issue here is not one of variations, but of attempting the master the entire waza as Yamaguchi or Tada did/does.

I am probably oversimplifying the learning proces, but I think that the question makes sence never the less.
PAG. I think the question makes sense, but, yes, I also think you are oversimplifying the learning process.

sorokod
10-18-2008, 03:47 AM
I'd say that the quality of reflection depends on the quality of the reflective surface, at least this is what I had in mind. To put the question in a different way, if "HA is not rejecting parts of any waza that you do not like, while keeping the rest", what is it?

Peter Goldsbury
10-18-2008, 06:59 AM
I'd say that the quality of reflection depends on the quality of the reflective surface, at least this is what I had in mind. To put the question in a different way, if "HA is not rejecting parts of any waza that you do not like, while keeping the rest", what is it?

PAG. I mentioned the SHU stage of SHU-HA-RI as a model of a learning process that, for example, enables one to practise koshi nage with feet apart or with feet together, depending on the teacher.

I think discussion of HA and RI is best left to a separate thread.

Richard Sanchez
10-18-2008, 12:40 PM
I'd say that the quality of reflection depends on the quality of the reflective surface, at least this is what I had in mind. To put the question in a different way, if "HA is not rejecting parts of any waza that you do not like, while keeping the rest", what is it?

David,

I'm an Iwama Ryu Godan living in Bangkok. Can you PM me details of your 2009 Thailand seminar?

Regards,
Richard

tobiasfelipe
10-18-2008, 05:26 PM
I don't belive a thread about distance between feet got 100+ replies

Flintstone
10-18-2008, 05:32 PM
I don't belive a thread about distance between feet got 100+ replies
We have much free time. How you do Koshi Nage then?

raul rodrigo
10-18-2008, 09:27 PM
It's not so much the number of replies that surprises me as the underlying assumption that there is such a thing as one correct distance between the feet in koshi nage. As Prof. Goldsbury showed, O sensei's students show considerable technical variation, and so you can't single one out and saying he's being untrue to his teacher's legacy. We can't even settle on the "one true way" to do ikkyo or tai no henko; these same shihan do them differently. Chiba's ikkyo is nothing like Saito's. Nishio's tai no henko is not like Tada's. And that to me is a good thing, not an occasion to wonder who is being more faithful to what Morihei taught.

Flintstone
10-19-2008, 04:36 AM
[...] not an occasion to wonder who is being more faithful to what Morihei taught.

This has nothing to do with fidelity, but we expose reasons as to why do it like this or like that. Of course, since quite a lot of us are in the SHU phase...

raul rodrigo
10-19-2008, 05:48 AM
Alejandro, you were the one who was positing Saito's waza was a more faithful reproduction of his master's koshinage. And also hypothesizing that a different stance, feet together, that Tada, Yamaguchi, etc preferred, was a result of postwar cross-pollination with judo and is not a faithful reflection of how O sensei did it. Perhaps the question is not whether a waza is more or less an accurate reproduction of how Morihei did his waza. Feet together, feet apart—what matters is how you manage to make the waza work for you. If you can reproduce six different flavors of koshi nage, as Prof. Goldsbury can, then so much the better for your students. In the end, an aikidoka will make waza that is his own.

Ketsan
10-19-2008, 07:35 PM
I don't belive a thread about distance between feet got 100+ replies

Seriously, I was quite happy to know that it's quite common for people to do Koshi Nage the way my association does it. :D

C. David Henderson
10-20-2008, 10:21 AM
Is this a complaint or a compliment?

I don't belive a thread about distance between feet got 100+ replies

When you read the thread, there are a lot of things to which people responded. Koshi nage generally became the vehicle for talking about those issues too.

Lan Powers
10-20-2008, 03:18 PM
Is this a complaint or a compliment?

When you read the thread, there are a lot of things to which people responded. Koshi nage generally became the vehicle for talking about those issues too.

This is one of the most interesting/revealing portions of the thread to me, anyway. ;)

BTW we tend to keep the feet close to keep our hips aligned over the legs, FWIW
Lan

raul rodrigo
10-20-2008, 05:23 PM
I tend to either keep the feet close, or sweep the foot back to get it out of the way.

tobiasfelipe
10-21-2008, 07:59 AM
We have much free time. How you do Koshi Nage then?

I do koshi nage wrong. :D
About the feet thing, close enough to equilibrate, and far enough to equilibrate, that's how I measure.

Flintstone
10-21-2008, 08:08 AM
I do koshi nage wrong. :D
About the feet thing, close enough to equilibrate, and far enough to equilibrate, that's how I measure.
So I guess you do it right ;). But I would say close enough not to collapse, and far enough to equilibrate and not to lose hanmi.

Jose Dundee Santos
10-22-2008, 06:00 AM
Koshi nage's foot distance is just a little narrower that the distance of your shoulders. Try jumping forward roll on the highest level you could and that will be the best and powerful foot position you can use in applying koshi nage.

Dundee Santos
Philippines