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Bruce Baker
04-11-2002, 09:43 AM
How many of your have classes teach the Bunkai/ finishing technique of different Aikido techniques? How does your style of Aikido teach them.

I know, I was taught to find five or more different finishing moves in Jujitsu/Karate, but sometimes it is just me and my teacher who understand this concept? Sometimes it is just enough to get to a finishing technique with the beginners and those who haven't cross trained? So, we only do them when the level of experience in the class can get to this point understanding safety with hurting concerns.

Does your teacher have one or more classes that not only show pins and submissions, but strikes to finish opponents?

We don't get there but once a week or less.

Kenn
04-11-2002, 10:18 AM
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
How many of your have classes teach the Bunkai/ finishing technique of different Aikido techniques? How does your style of Aikido teach them.

I know, I was taught to find five or more different finishing moves in Jujitsu/Karate, but sometimes it is just me and my teacher who understand this concept? Sometimes it is just enough to get to a finishing technique with the beginners and those who haven't cross trained? So, we only do them when the level of experience in the class can get to this point understanding safety with hurting concerns.

Does your teacher have one or more classes that not only show pins and submissions, but strikes to finish opponents?

We don't get there but once a week or less.

Although Aikido IS a martial art, I don't believe you "get" the basic philosophy behind it. With all due repect Bruce, it sounds like you would be better suited to study Jujitsu, Silat, or some other martial art whose main purpose is combat.

Just my opinion, you are entitled to yours, however wrong you may be

Jonathan
04-11-2002, 10:25 AM
In my Aikido training I have been taught, not to "finish" an oppponent, but to control him. If my pin or lock is correct, I do not need to punch out the lights of my opponent. Besides, how can we peacefully discuss our differences if he is unconscious? :D (Maybe I could leave a note?)

DanielR
04-11-2002, 10:40 AM
Originally posted by Kenn


Although Aikido IS a martial art, I don't believe you "get" the basic philosophy behind it. With all due repect Bruce, it sounds like you would be better suited to study Jujitsu, Silat, or some other martial art whose main purpose is combat.

Originally posted by Jonathan

In my Aikido training I have been taught, not to "finish" an oppponent, but to control him. If my pin or lock is correct, I do not need to punch out the lights of my opponent.

I was wondering why making your opponent unable to continue attacking you is against the Aikido philosophy? I understand that the basic approach is to cause as little damage to the attacker as possible while making clear that you're able to control him, but don't you think there might be situations where you're left with no choice? Also, isn't it true that the Yoshinkan style does have finishing strikes? (please correct me if I'm wrong - I'm a beginner in Aikido and my opinion is often not too informed...)

Bruce Baker
04-11-2002, 11:44 AM
Please do not assume there is any mal-intent in learning and understanding Bunkai.

Assume it is within the tenents of Aikido.

Just because you know how to shoot a gun doesn't mean you will kill others, does it? I hope not. Even though we had multiple murders here in little old Barnegat the last few days, I don't assume it was worse than reported for the reasons reported, even though the old lady information line is alive with rumors? (If it gets that bad we will have to take guns away from policemen too!)

Let us assume we are learning bunkai for the best possible reasons and go on from there ...
Assume bunkai is to immobilize, not to kill. The human body is tougher than some people give it credit to be.
Let us consider it to be something that continues to work after a technique or pin. Does that clarify our parameters?

Thanks.

Lenocinari
04-11-2002, 01:33 PM
All-

As far as hand to hand aikido I have yet to encounter any sort of finishing move. It seems that with hand to hand you are dealing with someone that doesnt have control over their actions and therefore might have wanted to reconsider. However, when working with weapons (bokken, jo, tanto) the stakes are a bit higher and the ways to neutralize your assailent might leave a bit of a scratch. I believe that this is because of the potential for things to go a lot worse. So far in history there has been only one way to stop an attacker with no harm done to him what so ever...does anyone remember the phasers from Star Trek:D?

Just some thoughts-
Ben

Greg Jennings
04-11-2002, 01:44 PM
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
How many of your have classes teach the Bunkai/ finishing technique of different Aikido techniques? How does your style of Aikido teach them.


Bunkai roughly means "to find the meaning of" or "analysis".

I don't think that has any direct connection to "finishing techniques".

Best,

Keith R Lee
04-11-2002, 02:25 PM
I'd have to agree with Greg on this one. Whenever I have been privvy to discussions about bunkai it has always been in the context of what the technique's original purpose was for. Such as, What is the bunkai of jo kata dai ichi?

Meaning, why do you strike in certain places, and block in others. Where are you supposed to be striking, or when you move into a block, what type of strike are you blocking, etc. Ask a higher level instructor next time you have a chance and ask them about the bunkai of your style's weapons kata.

Personally, I have never heard of bunkai in reference to "finishing moves?"

And yes, there are techniques in Yoshinkai Aikido where the shite finishes with a strike instead of an osae.

Dan Hover
04-11-2002, 03:03 PM
The common finishing strike that one usually sees in Yoshinkan or other earlier Aikibudo off shoots comes from the Pre war mentality of swordmanship. When we pin nowadays in a standard ikkyo pin, that is, we control to immobilize, thus ended the lesson.
Now the shuto that is commonly seen performed at the end of the pin ( although I have only seen Daito people do it) it's Bunkai stems from the idea that once you had the uke controlled on the battlefield you would then draw a dagger or short sword and then finish them off. This is now demonstrated by the aforementioned shuto. One can see the shift in the performance of this movement in the styles that still retain it, i.e. DTR people still have that "jutsu" mind set ergo the movement is still there. Aikikai and modern day exponents no longer need that particular movement as a) we seldom carry a short sword or dagger with us and b) our point is to control not to conquer.

Greg Jennings
04-11-2002, 03:12 PM
Originally posted by Keith R Lee
I'd have to agree with Greg on this one.

Of course! We both have that Alabama mindset.

I sure wish you, Scott and Dean would all journey down together one Saturday. We could swap techniques, catch big air and generally have a blast.

Best Regards,

Keith R Lee
04-11-2002, 03:36 PM
Originally posted by Greg Jennings


I sure wish you, Scott and Dean would all journey down together one Saturday. We could swap techniques, catch big air and generally have a blast.



I'd really like to! It's hard to get away though, y'know? Too bad you can't come up to see Blok sensei next Friday/Saturday. I remeber you posting somewhere that your child has a soccer game or something, right? We'll be having two Shodan tests & two Nidan tests on Saturday around 5:30 PM, which are always fun.

Once I get through May I should have some more free time and hopefully we can schedule a trip down to the Capital City.

Cheers,

Greg Jennings
04-11-2002, 04:01 PM
Originally posted by Keith R Lee

I'd really like to! It's hard to get away though, y'know? Too bad you can't come up to see Blok sensei next Friday/Saturday. I remeber you posting somewhere that your child has a soccer game or something, right? We'll be having two Shodan tests & two Nidan tests on Saturday around 5:30 PM, which are always fun.

Once I get through May I should have some more free time and hopefully we can schedule a trip down to the Capital City.


Hi Keith,

Soccer season is in fully swing. We have games every Saturday through the end of May.

If sometime there is an opportunity on Saturday or Sunday afternoon to get together up there, I could probably make it. Dean tells me, however, that your dojo is normally closed on weekends.

Maybe we can schedule a get together sometime further out. I've really enjoyed what little I've experienced of Yoshinkan aikido. It seems that a lot of the underlying pedagogical principles are the same as my Iwama-oriented training.

Anytime you guys are down this way, please let me know. I can open up the dojo for us to play any time (except Sunday mornings).

Best Regards,

guest1234
04-11-2002, 05:58 PM
Why worry about a finishing blow when you can just apply a power ranger technique---opps, sorry---pressure point knockout technique.:D

OK, sorry, but it was just to difficult to resist...:o

IrimiTom
04-11-2002, 06:13 PM
all this "finishing move" business sounds to me like something out of Mortal Kombatevileyes

I do, however, think that sometimes we might put too much emphasis on the causing as little damage as possible to the opponent thing... I think as aikidoka we are not supposed to CAUSE anything really, if an attacker comes at you with a foaming mouth and a machete, you help him... blend with the floor to make him understand you won't let him harm you that easily... and just cause you won't kill him it doesn't mean let him get up and try again... if a friend is drunk and takes a swing at you cause you kissed his girlfriend... well, you might try to be more spiritual there :)

Largo
04-11-2002, 11:41 PM
If you've pinned someone in, oh, say a sankyo and they are face down on the ground, and you have control of them... isn't it easy to see how to finish them (if you wanted to, that is)

brian northrup
04-11-2002, 11:59 PM
i agree with irimetom
and please do everyone a favor if you wish to have corrorspondence do it via email

PeterR
04-12-2002, 01:57 AM
Originally posted by Keith R Lee And yes, there are techniques in Yoshinkai Aikido where the shite finishes with a strike instead of an osae.
And I assume a combination of the two - waves from the Shodokan corner.

Still I think it is a bit archaic to mime the movements of throat and tendon cut after the pin is applied. Like if I figure you were that sort of person we would not even get as far as the pin. The idea that this was for battlefields is also a bit of a stretch. Consider the time it takes and that your enemy was not likely alone.

Apply the pin if you wish to control - much better ways to damage someone if that is your intent.

nikonl
04-12-2002, 03:11 AM
How bout 10 hit combos? or double KO? :D

JJF
04-12-2002, 04:34 AM
I am pretty sure that I would never be able to cut the throat of a guy allready pinned - it would be to much in cold blod. Perhaps in the right (wrong) situation I would be able to apply the throw or strangulation-pin in a way that terminated the attacker but I sure hope it wil NEVER come to that. When I do a technique I try to be aware of atemi at all times and thereby the possibility of striking the opponent if I loose control.

I believe that everything we do should reflect the situation. If one guy attacks me, and I'm able to bring him into a pin, then perhaps I would do that, but if there is multiple attackers there most likely wouldn't be time, and I think I would escalate the power of the technique leading to the pin, so that the attacker can be taken out of the equation ASAP and I can concentrate on the next 'bad guy'.

I think I have heard somebody quote Nishio sensei on saying that 'sometimes you have to cut the enemy', which - as I se it - means that sometimes all this talking about harmony and taking care of the oppponent can not be carried out in reality and you have to use the means at your disposal to save yourself.

Just my thoughts on the subject.

erikmenzel
04-12-2002, 04:42 AM
First, when I trained shotokan karate (long ago) bunkai was the understanding and explaining of among others kata's. I do not remember any connection to finnishing techniques other then those that where part of the kata's.

Second, wanting to train finnishing techniques clearly indicates that your understanding of the context of aikido is lacking and that you have no understanding of the philosophy and ideas of aikido.

Third, maybe you should spent more time in the dojo instead of playing Mortal Combat all day.

Jorx
04-12-2002, 05:42 AM
Mortal Kombat that is:)evileyes
I wished I had four arms or something ot acidic spit...

Anyway really...when you already pin/control someone you are in far better position than the uke... so if you are a killer or just a sadist you can hit him/her in pretty much every way you want... no matter how crappy one's strikes really are, a kneestrike to the nuts is always a kneestrike to the nuts.:freaky:

However a purpose of every technique is:
a) to kill
b) to injure
c) to capture
d) to neutralize in some other way...

Regarding to O'Sensei as I remember it Aikido practices always the way of D (that sounded nice;) )

However and just for the record we in our dojo sometimes show a strike after controlling the opponent (as in shihonage for example). Even more common thing is that you release the pin and when the opponent tries to stand up or strike then you apply one mighty throw KABOOM...:D

In dojo and with the beginners it usually comes down to this: "Okay now try to get up... in real situation uke tries to get up." "Nooooo! Do I really HAVE to?!?";)

Jorgen
Estonian Aikikai

P.S. As my knowledge of shotokan is quite close to zero then I actually don't know what a bunkai is;)

Bruce Baker
04-12-2002, 06:32 AM
Bunkai can be the many things hidden which will stop, or immobilize from injury, or as I have alluded to ... pressure points also known as excruciating pain?

Let's keep our child like opinions out this, read the thread, and respond responsively?

If I wanted looney toon answers I would watch Cartoon-Cartoon, my wife might think it strange for a 48 year old man, but hey!

I have spent a lot of time exchanging views with many different people on this, and my curiosity was to see what your teachers were allowing you to see in your modern Aikido practice, verses the old ways of MA?

Thanks.

erikmenzel
04-12-2002, 07:30 AM
Well,

IIRC bunkai (ē™ČūĀjsimply means analysis and has no direct link in meaning to finnishing.

As for the rest of your sensless rant:

the great philosopher Yogi Bear once said:
The deeper you get into the woods, the more nuts you will find!!

Ghost Fox
04-12-2002, 07:35 AM
I've seen finishing moves in Tanto-Dori and Bokken-Dori, but rarely in open-handed techniques. Some of the yudansha and I who are into defensive tactics and self-defense techniques sometimes experiment with finishing moves. Most of them are from throws and not pins. One handed Kotegaieshi with the other hand on the throat, so the throat collapses on impact. A kokyunage (Figure eigth version) where you control the head by grapping thee chin, and give a good snap in the neck during the throw. evileyes Those are a couple we have developed (or rediscovered).

With pins we sometimes practice dislocating the shoulder, but that's only for situations where the uke resists the technique. In a real encounter if I had someone pinned and his friend decided to join the melee, you better believe I would break something before I released the pin and engadged his frien. Okay, okay first I would cause pain and threathen to break something if the other guy got any closer. :D

One of my previous Aikido instructors once threw someone into traffic (splat) :eek: during a self-defence situation involving several attackers. Is this an example of Bunkai?
evileyes

Chuck.Gordon
04-12-2002, 09:14 AM
Originally posted by Bruce Baker

Let's keep our child like opinions out this, read the thread, and respond responsively?

Yes, please.

Chuck

Greg Jennings
04-12-2002, 10:37 AM
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
Bunkai can be the many things hidden which will stop, or immobilize from injury, or as I have alluded to ... pressure points also known as excruciating pain?


There are two discussions going on. One about finishing techniques, the other about the meaning of the term "bunkai".

I have nothing to add about "finishing techniques" except that the meaning of the formal finish in Daito Ryu is well-known and documented.

As to the other discussion, I'll reiterate, "bunkai" does not mean "finishing techniques" nor does it mean "things hidden".

It simply means:
1. To find the meaning of.
2. Analysis.
3. Demarcation.

The same term can also mean something like a "branch" or "chapter". I'm not sure, but I think it is a homonym.

Words have meaning. I think it just spreads confusion to make up our own definition of them.

Best,

Bruce Baker
04-12-2002, 12:00 PM
It is said a single phrase in Japanese can be interpreted a thousand ways with a thousand different meanings, where English language might have but ten.

Move on to the spirit of the question.

How about, do you explore with your class or sensei other possiblilities beyond the normal pin or technique.

Or when you get to a throw or a pin and say the attacker is damaged but still trying to fight or kill you, could you have ended the conflict sooner, with less injury or damage to your attacker?

Or .... etc.... etc.... is there something more you could have done?

Please, I was interested in the application of practice and its knowledge, not a vocabulary lesson? Thanks.

Brian Vickery
04-12-2002, 03:40 PM
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
Move on to the spirit of the question.

How about, do you explore with your class or sensei other possiblilities beyond the normal pin or technique.


Not to side-track this topic, but there is another apsect of teaching 'finishing moves' that an instructor must consider. There are legal ramifications for instructors who teach their students to 'finish' their attackers ...by this, I mean, inflicting additional physical damage on an attacker AFTER you have defeated the attack and have control over the attacker.

Here's a very good article that touches on this very subject: Self Defense Law and the Martial Artist by Peter Hobart, Esq.
http://www.koryubudo.com/articles/general-4.htm

Under the heading of: "Martial arts teachersí liability", the author/lawyer explains the concept of 'Agency':

"Under the Theory of Agency, the principal is liable for unlawful acts which he causes to be done through an agent. There are three possible ways in which a martial arts instructor might be held liable as the principal for the unlawful acts of his students, as agents. First, if the instructor appears to ratify or approve of unlawful conduct, he may be held liable for the commission of such acts. Thus, a dojo which encourages the use of excessive force, or lethal force in inappropriate situations may be seen to ratify and approve of unlawful conduct. Similarly, an instructor who continues to teach a student who has abused his knowledge may be held responsible, if not liable, for subsequent torts.

Second, an instructor may be held liable for having entrusted a student with Ďan extremely dangerous instrumentalityí. "[W]hen an instrumentality passes from the control of a person, his responsibility for injuries inflicted by it ceases. However, when an injury is caused by an exceptionally dangerous instrumentality, or one which may be dangerous if improperly used, a former owner or possessor may ... be charged with responsibility for [its] use...." The implications for instructors who teach potentially lethal techniques is clear."

...if you want to read the entire article, please go to the web site listed above.

...just some food for thought!

akiy
04-12-2002, 03:59 PM
Originally posted by Brian Vickery
Not to side-track this topic, but there is another apsect of teaching 'finishing moves' that an instructor must consider. There are legal ramifications for instructors who teach their students to 'finish' their attackers ...by this, I mean, inflicting additional physical damage on an attacker AFTER you have defeated the attack and have control over the attacker.
Good information, Brian!

I personally take these kinds of "finishing moves" and such to be like how some people interpret chiburi in iaido -- as a way to maintain zanshin through the entire technique.

(Although my own experience with doing such has been pretty limited, people I know who have done makiwara tameshigiri (as I'm sure you have, Brian) have commented doing a chiburi movement probably really wouldn't get any blood off the sword -- especially not enough to immediately replace it into the saya! Better to cut a piece of clothing off your felled opponent and wipe that sword clean.)

We don't do such "finishing moves" at our dojo. Better, in my mind at least, to control uke from the beginning and maintain the control throughout.

-- Jun

Erik
04-12-2002, 04:11 PM
Suppose, you've just harmonized with Tom. Tom is pinned and no longer a threat despite his clawed appendages. Suddenly, Jerry appears ready to do great bodily harm to you. I don't know about anyone else but I don't want Tom getting back up while I'm harmonizing with Jerry. He's a little guy but he can cause havoc. And the two of them together?

Brian Vickery
04-12-2002, 04:19 PM
Originally posted by akiy

I personally take these kinds of "finishing moves" and such to be like how some people interpret chiburi in iaido -- as a way to maintain zanshin through the entire technique.

-- Jun

Hi Jun,

We are told the same thing in Shinkendo & Toyama Ryu in regards to 'chiburi' ...it's more of a way to 'punctuate' a kata in a definitive manner, rather than an attempt to sling the blood & guts off your sword.

'Finishing moves' can have the same function, a way to punctuate your aikido defenses in a definitive way, not really having the intention of inflicting unnecessary damage to your attacker. But I feel the instructor needs to teach his students that that is what he is doing, so they CLEARLY understand that in a real self defense situation, they are NOT to do this.

Regards,

MaylandL
04-12-2002, 09:24 PM
Great post Brian. The article that you provided has some excellent points and issues for all martial arts students and instuctors to ponder on. Australia has similar legal requirements for martial artists.

As for using "finishing techniques" I would agree with Jun that it would be better to maintain control of Uke through out and zanshin.

As for multiple attackers, its the use of reasonable force to deter an attack and defend yourself. I think multiple attacks falls into the aggravating and mitigating factors category.

Bruce Baker
04-15-2002, 05:49 PM
Maybe I am getting old ...

But ...

If you pin somebody, even with giving them an injury, why are you doing it, and does it keep the person from attacking or hurting you?

I know there is more, if you look for it.

Even though O'Sensei gave us a safe practice method, how did he make it safe? Safe from what?

There are different ways and means to immobilize and injure your opponent without even thinking about going into the big death thing? If you can find five or more places/ways that stop an attacker from recovering from a technique or pin, or understand what can be physically injured verses lifethreatening, then you have tried to stay in harmony with Aikido while understanding the serious repercussions that could happen.

I was taught that finding the purpose of these things from the mercenary point of view allowed you to look inside the secrets of the technique with new eyes? It also allowed one to understand the mindset of an attacker ... a place you do not go into but use Aikido to overcome with your clarity of thought.

Clarity of seeing what could be verses the practiced methods of Aikido practice, should give you enlightenment to things hidden in practice or technique .... bunkai ... or so I have seen demonstrated hundreds of times by dozens of teachers.

Although we have soften our training and we peacefully practice, at one time these were arts of war? I would think seeking bunkai would make the teacher and the students more aware of safety and the seriousness of MA practice? Even Aikido.

Again:

Do your teachers ever show you the serious side of your safe practice, or techniques?

(I know if I bring up that third pressure point on the same meridian there is gonna be a fuss ... too late ... )