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David Orange
04-16-2010, 12:59 PM
Taking part 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NMqvFeiwzY) for example, the uke is maintaining a light perpendicular push into nage and adjusting with his circular movements. Nothing about nage's movements compels uke to do so.

I had two big surprises with Gleason Sensei last August: first is that he's so small. Second is that he's so strong.

I did the very exercise linked above with him and his movement does compel. The effects on uke are the result of his keeping a steady, light pressure on nage while nage moves.

It's not to say uke couldn't do something else, such as withdrawing the push, etc., but he has to have a reason to do something different. He has to feel that something is not right and that he has to withdraw, but in this case, he doesn't know what he feels. It's a very disorienting feeling to push on someone Gleason Sensei's size and feel that you're pushing on a post in the ground.

Likewise, when I took Rob John's wrists in suwari waza, I got zero sensory input when he raised his hands. I was trying to hold his hands down and he just went straight through my strength with no feeling of effort from him. And if he'd simply brought his hands back down, he could have given me whiplash because I could not have let go because I could not feel what he was doing.

The startling part about "it has to be felt" is that there's so little sense of effort behind powerful effects.

Best wishes.

David

Jonathan
04-16-2010, 01:11 PM
Something doesn’t sit right with me when I read all these comments about “One must feel, one must experience, to understand.” Certainly, I can agree with the idea that feeling someone’s ability to absorb and redirect your energy, to expand their energy so as to counter your own, to bring the ground up, etc, etc, might convince you of the legitimacy of the claims of the exponents of internal power. What I wonder about, though, is the claim that a personal experience of these abilities is vital to actually learning to do it yourself. For example, my shihan has done things to me physically that are astonishing. He has locked me up in nikyo in such a way as to totally freeze my entire body. I couldn’t move a muscle (this was before putting on nikyo osae)! Unfortunately, my shihan speaks English very poorly and couldn’t even begin to describe what it was he had done to me. This has happened to me a few times at his hands but never has he been able to explain what he was doing to make this paralyzing action possible. And simply feeling what he had done to me has not enabled me to replicate it. Without a verbal explanation, his physical skills remain largely a mystery. I saw some of what he did, and with these scant visual cues and an understanding of the underlying principles of Aikido, have been working to unlock the mystery of such incredible nikyo. I have, after some trial and error, been able to do so…somewhat.

So, what would my shihan have to do to communicate his skill effectively to me? Feeling his technique is only useful to a point; his ability to lock me up so completely convinces me that it can be done, but without verbally describing to me what he is doing, I cannot readily decipher his actions so as to reproduce them myself. Sure, I can observe his timing and gross motions, I can see how he stands, how his arm is angled, how his wrist action is performed – all the external, obvious things. How he organizes himself internally, however, to produce the total-body locking effect in me is something I cannot understand simply through feel, or sight alone. Essentially, I only experience the end-product of his ability, not the internal, physical process by which it is accomplished. For that, I must be instructed – verbally.

I guess the thing that I have a problem with is what appears to me to be an over-emphasis on feel as a means of imparting internal power skills. As I have explained, it is not by itself particularly useful for learning, or even absolutely necessary, I suspect. I seriously doubt that an intelligent person, with access to comprehensive visual aids and a careful verbal explanation could not, with dedicated practice, eventually reproduce the skills of Mike S., or Dan H., or Akuzawa sensei without ever actually feeling them do their internal power thing.

My experience in Aikido plays into this point of view, actually. As a result of circumstances beyond my control, I haven’t had a direct teacher of my own in Aikido since I was third kyu. I am now ranked sandan. For most of my training, I didn’t have someone guiding me through all the nuances of Aikido movement and technique. I didn’t get to feel how a technique was done whenever I wanted. I had to employ what I knew of the principles of the art and pour over videotapes and books and practice, practice, practice in order to achieve my present ability and rank. But I did it. I was able to advance in skill without regular opportunity to feel the Aikido of top-ranked aikidoka. Certainly, such opportunity would have been excellent and doubtless would have advanced my training faster than it has advanced, but the fact remains that it was still possible for me to develop skill in Aikido even though my circumstances did not allow me regular access to someone of higher skill than my own who could demonstrate the correct feel of technique. So, I wonder seriously about just how vital having hands-on training with an adept in the area of internal power actually is.

I wonder, too, if there isn’t some resistance to sharing the method of developing internal power openly because those who could share it have had to work hard to develop their own skill and don’t think, consequently, that it should be made readily available to others. Is there a sort of “if it cost me, it should cost you, too” attitude at play in the unwillingness of those who claim skill in this area to share openly and fully how to develop such skill? Maybe…The problem with this sort of thinking is that it doesn’t take into account those who really, truly can’t train directly with skilled teachers of Aiki, but who would very much like to learn how to manifest it. They are simply told, in essence, “You don’t have it and if you don’t come to me, you can’t have it. Tough nuts.” This kind of response makes all the posts by those who are skilled in Aiki that express concern about the loss of this martial element in Aikido quite disingenuous. Their interest can’t be in helping the art regain such an important part of its skill-set or they would be more willing to do all that they could to help any who practice Aikido who wish to develop Aiki to do so. Instead, they say, basically, “I am the mountain. You must come to me,” which seems to suggest, not concern for the development of Aiki in Aikido, but simple self-aggrandizement.

Anyway…I have gone on. Let me say that I would very much like to deepen my Aiki ability. Unfortunately, time and economics prevent me from being able to study with those who could help me to this end. Is there really no other option but to do without any instruction from these folk? It seems so. I guess I’ll have to figure it out on my own as best I can…Here I go again.

Jon.

David Orange
04-16-2010, 01:20 PM
The demonstration you are discussing is cooperative. Just because you don't "think" it is when you are doing it doesn't change that fact. Could he do that on someone with no Aikido training, who wasn't interested in playing along? From what I can see, no.

From what I've felt in person, the answer must be yes.

The only thing, if the partner were not "cooperating" it wouldn't "look" like that. All you would be able to say was that Gleason Sensei dominated the other guy. Because if the other guy is freely oppressing him, he would have to respond freely. A "cooperative" exercise is for the purpose of understanding something isolated and specific. Once that's been absorbed, it can be expressed freely and formlessly and from what I've felt, Gleason Sensei has absorbed it and he continues to seek deeper levels of it. In any case, if you exert strength on him, he can manipulate it along the general lines of the demo clip, but if you watch it on tape, you might be hard pressed to see how he did it.

This could be shown on film very easily. Do it on a street corner, like David Blaine. Ask some passers by to try your "experiment". Sounds like a lot of work, and I wouldn't blame you for not trying it. But the door is open if you'd like to try.

It would work on people who kept up a steady pressure on him and it would look like the demo clip if the uke didn't try to get tricky or slick. If he did, it would still work, but it wouldn't look like the clip, obviously.

The suggestion that this stuff is impossible to show on film leads me, as an objective person, to believe what you are talking about is false.

I don't think anyone meant to say it's impossible to show on film--just that very few people will understand what they're seeing. Further, many might think they understand what they're seeing and make videos that look very similar while lacking the inner content.

Again my video offer stands. If you can do something on video that I can't duplicate, I'd love to see it.

Please use that effort, instead, to visit some well-known names and lay hands on them. It will be a far better use of time and will do more for the aikido world as well.

Best wishes.

David

dps
04-16-2010, 01:45 PM
Something doesn't sit right with me when I read all these comments about "One must feel, one must experience, to understand." Certainly, I can agree with the idea that feeling someone's ability to absorb and redirect your energy, to expand their energy so as to counter your own, to bring the ground up, etc, etc, might convince you of the legitimacy of the claims of the exponents of internal power. What I wonder about, though, is the claim that a personal experience of these abilities is vital to actually learning to do it yourself. For example, my shihan has done things to me physically that are astonishing. He has locked me up in nikyo in such a way as to totally freeze my entire body. I couldn't move a muscle (this was before putting on nikyo osae)! Unfortunately, my shihan speaks English very poorly and couldn't even begin to describe what it was he had done to me. This has happened to me a few times at his hands but never has he been able to explain what he was doing to make this paralyzing action possible. And simply feeling what he had done to me has not enabled me to replicate it. Without a verbal explanation, his physical skills remain largely a mystery. I saw some of what he did, and with these scant visual cues and an understanding of the underlying principles of Aikido, have been working to unlock the mystery of such incredible nikyo. I have, after some trial and error, been able to do so…somewhat.

So, what would my shihan have to do to communicate his skill effectively to me? Feeling his technique is only useful to a point; his ability to lock me up so completely convinces me that it can be done, but without verbally describing to me what he is doing, I cannot readily decipher his actions so as to reproduce them myself. Sure, I can observe his timing and gross motions, I can see how he stands, how his arm is angled, how his wrist action is performed -- all the external, obvious things. How he organizes himself internally, however, to produce the total-body locking effect in me is something I cannot understand simply through feel, or sight alone. Essentially, I only experience the end-product of his ability, not the internal, physical process by which it is accomplished. For that, I must be instructed -- verbally.

I guess the thing that I have a problem with is what appears to me to be an over-emphasis on feel as a means of imparting internal power skills. As I have explained, it is not by itself particularly useful for learning, or even absolutely necessary, I suspect. I seriously doubt that an intelligent person, with access to comprehensive visual aids and a careful verbal explanation could not, with dedicated practice, eventually reproduce the skills of Mike S., or Dan H., or Akuzawa sensei without ever actually feeling them do their internal power thing.

My experience in Aikido plays into this point of view, actually. As a result of circumstances beyond my control, I haven't had a direct teacher of my own in Aikido since I was third kyu. I am now ranked sandan. For most of my training, I didn't have someone guiding me through all the nuances of Aikido movement and technique. I didn't get to feel how a technique was done whenever I wanted. I had to employ what I knew of the principles of the art and pour over videotapes and books and practice, practice, practice in order to achieve my present ability and rank. But I did it. I was able to advance in skill without regular opportunity to feel the Aikido of top-ranked aikidoka. Certainly, such opportunity would have been excellent and doubtless would have advanced my training faster than it has advanced, but the fact remains that it was still possible for me to develop skill in Aikido even though my circumstances did not allow me regular access to someone of higher skill than my own who could demonstrate the correct feel of technique. So, I wonder seriously about just how vital having hands-on training with an adept in the area of internal power actually is.

I wonder, too, if there isn't some resistance to sharing the method of developing internal power openly because those who could share it have had to work hard to develop their own skill and don't think, consequently, that it should be made readily available to others. Is there a sort of "if it cost me, it should cost you, too" attitude at play in the unwillingness of those who claim skill in this area to share openly and fully how to develop such skill? Maybe…The problem with this sort of thinking is that it doesn't take into account those who really, truly can't train directly with skilled teachers of Aiki, but who would very much like to learn how to manifest it. They are simply told, in essence, "You don't have it and if you don't come to me, you can't have it. Tough nuts." This kind of response makes all the posts by those who are skilled in Aiki that express concern about the loss of this martial element in Aikido quite disingenuous. Their interest can't be in helping the art regain such an important part of its skill-set or they would be more willing to do all that they could to help any who practice Aikido who wish to develop Aiki to do so. Instead, they say, basically, "I am the mountain. You must come to me," which seems to suggest, not concern for the development of Aiki in Aikido, but simple self-aggrandizement.

Anyway…I have gone on. Let me say that I would very much like to deepen my Aiki ability. Unfortunately, time and economics prevent me from being able to study with those who could help me to this end. Is there really no other option but to do without any instruction from these folk? It seems so. I guess I'll have to figure it out on my own as best I can…Here I go again.

Jon.

Very well put Jonathan. The "it has to be felt" proponents presupposes lack of intelligent and ability to learn aiki other than with them.

Anyone whose Aikido is strongly influenced by Tohei has done these skills.

They are afraid that videos would show that these skills are not as special and more common than they imply.

David

Mike Sigman
04-16-2010, 01:50 PM
I seriously doubt that an intelligent person, with access to comprehensive visual aids and a careful verbal explanation could not, with dedicated practice, eventually reproduce the skills of Mike S., or Dan H., or Akuzawa sensei without ever actually feeling them do their internal power thing. Hi Jon:

First of all, let me assure you that I have only moderate skills; I know some people that have really good skills and it would be presumptive of me to let people think that I'm in that class. I'm not. The world is full of people trying to leave the impression that they're much better than they are... and I don't want to be lumped in with that group of egomaniacs. ;)

But back to your point about your Sensei, the things you say he can do, etc. Let's assume the way he does them and is indeed unique in, say, the way he does nikyo so that you can't move. I could be some schmoe who says, "Nikyo?.... pooh, I can put a nikyo on you that is godlike in its power, too". But you're talking about something different and until he feels it, you don't really have a common vernacular because the feel is crucial, right? Just using that nikyo as an example, I think you can get a feel for why there's little compulsion to try and put these things into words. I.e., trying to explain in writing how to ride a bicycle to someone who's never seen or been on a bicycle it theoretically possible, but communicating the idea is almost impossible.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

C. David Henderson
04-16-2010, 02:03 PM
BTW,

This link, http://www.iay.org.uk/internal-stren...e-1/how-to.htm, and related articles -- while posted to make a rhetorical point -- I found well worth reading on their own, although they are from the 90's.

Apologies for thread drift.

dps
04-16-2010, 02:07 PM
BTW,

This link, http://www.iay.org.uk/internal-stren...e-1/how-to.htm, and related articles -- while posted to make a rhetorical point -- I found well worth reading on their own, although they are from the 90's.

Apologies for thread drift.

http://www.iay.org.uk/internal-strength/

David

phitruong
04-16-2010, 02:07 PM
For example, my shihan has done things to me physically that are astonishing. He has locked me up in nikyo in such a way as to totally freeze my entire body. I couldn’t move a muscle (this was before putting on nikyo osae)! Unfortunately, my shihan speaks English very poorly and couldn’t even begin to describe what it was he had done to me. This has happened to me a few times at his hands but never has he been able to explain what he was doing to make this paralyzing action possible. And simply feeling what he had done to me has not enabled me to replicate it. Without a verbal explanation, his physical skills remain largely a mystery.
Jon.

if you video the event, folks watched the video and would comment "that's fake!" however, to you, you felt it and it wasn't fake. you felt it first. you might not understand it, but you felt that it could be done. you have the baseline. folks didn't feel it first, have no baseline to work with or even to discuss. that's the point: go feel first, then discuss. with a common experience, a better discussion can take place. communication is difficult even face to face, misunderstanding happens all the time.

MM
04-16-2010, 02:12 PM
William Gleason
http://www.shobu.org/sensei.php
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Gleason_%28aikidoka%29

Started training in aikido in 1970. That gives him, what, about 40 years of training experience. From hombu in Japan with Yamaguchi Seigo Shihan to Saotome Shihan here in the U.S.

I have the utmost respect for Bill Gleason as a highly ranked aikido instructor, as a very skilled aikido person, and even more respect for him as a person.

If you don't know of William Gleason, then start asking other high ranked aikido people in the ASU about him, because Gleason is one of the good people in the aikido world ... and he's training with Dan.

Now, I don't much care what you think of me. I post because I want to. Take it or leave it, you'll do what you want anyway. But, think twice about posting about those people who have gone first hand to meet one of the Internal guys and then started training with them because you're only making yourself look bad -- In the demands for your satisfactions to be met and in degrading the characters of the men who are training.

So, if you think you've been around the block enough to have the same experience, skill, and downright strength of character of people like Bill Gleason, well, go right on posting about how IP/aiki is already being done, isn't that hard to do, can be spotted in video easily, those IP/aiki guys should come to you, yada yada yada. You're just endearing yourselves to ... well, yourself.

Some advice -- dig around to find out just who those people are who are stating that IP/aiki is phenomenal, IHTBF, and is worth going halfway across the country to train. You might just find out that some of your organizations top seniors are doing just that.

bkedelen
04-16-2010, 02:26 PM
I have done this sort of testing and much more stressful ones in gyms with power lifters, in gyms with College football players, in MMA schools, in Judo clubs, with ICMA teachers (who had no vested interest in me succeeding).
Now lets add seminars with oh...maybe 60 or so people who read these pages. ...
Now add twin sticks, knife and sword.
Now add Ark and others to the list who have also done similar things.

Dan, let me preface what I have to say by mentioning that I have been working with a subsection of the Internalati here in Aikiweb for a couple of years and I am in no way questioning the existence of internal skills or the fact that they really cannot be learned from video or explanation.
That said, I can understand why those who do not yet believe that these skills exist are disappointed in the apparent lack of video demonstrating the basics of these skills, the skills being used against the uncooperative, and the skills being used at speed. There are some, such as the Bing video, some good and some questionable stuff from Akuzawa, and some more demonstrative stuff that Mike has released. I am frankly disappointed (skeptical?) that during all of the above mentioned testing, demoing, and seminaring, no one was filming or no one is willing to release whatever footage was captured. Even though I have been working on these skills for a while, I would LOVE to see you or Ark or Mike or whoever else is qualified working some intermediate level skills on some resisting or fast opponents so that I can start to build a more comprehensive skillset. I would also love to see and hear you and others demonstrating preferred solo drills in these areas since the drills that the community are working seem to be diverse and nuanced despite having common themes and goals. In any case, I just wanted to say that I can understand why people are clamoring for more footage, even though I know that it will not do much to sway the contrarians.

Budd
04-16-2010, 03:22 PM
I dunno - I don't get too worked up about it - just going to a seminar with one of the "names" doesn't mean that you no longer suck. Saying that you train with XYZ whether you do internal arts or not doesn't mean you have any abilities. Comes down to what can you do? But having said that, a couple things I do hold true about training in Internals are:

1) Seize opportunities to get hands on time with people of some ability because access to "this stuff" is very unlikely to be delivered to you on your own terms

2) There is an IQ component to training "this stuff" even after you get exposure to someone with ability and have exercises to work on. In addition, there's lots of room for "self perception disorder" with regard to your perceived abilities and actual abilities

YMMV

In addition, I also find it amusing hearing behind the scenes about how many people are scrambling to get their hands on "this stuff" and make improvements, get better, etc. That cat is out of the bag, so to speak, but what will remain to be seen is how much of this seeds back into mainstream practices versus being hoarded by "those in the know", versus blocked by seniors with limited-to-no abilities but status to protect . . interesting times to watch and witness, either way.

Then there's already the population that is already doing this stuff . . in which case there's nothing to see here, anyways, carry on, carry on . . .

Mike Sigman
04-16-2010, 03:24 PM
BTW,

This link, http://www.iay.org.uk/internal-stren...e-1/how-to.htm, and related articles -- while posted to make a rhetorical point -- I found well worth reading on their own, although they are from the 90's.

Apologies for thread drift.I always took pains to write, through the years, only what I knew was demonstrably true because I was well aware that things come back to haunt. However, as in any other skill, what I know now far exceeds what I knew then and I think that there are more concise, broader views of these skills than what I wrote back then. In other words, I don't recommend those old writings because while they're roughly true, they don't present the information that you need, very well. I toss out that caveat in the interests of trying to save people time.

In terms of "aiki" (various jin/kokyu skills and their use), there are various levels and my main suggestion is for people to first get their feet wet and experience what the skills look like. My second suggestion is that no one assume that what they now know is a final or polished view. I've seen a lot of people make the horrible mistake of thinking they already have it and it dooms not only them but the people they teach. This is why arts lose these skills. ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Jonathan
04-16-2010, 04:05 PM
But back to your point about your Sensei, the things you say he can do, etc. Let's assume the way he does them and is indeed unique in, say, the way he does nikyo so that you can't move. I could be some schmoe who says, "Nikyo?.... pooh, I can put a nikyo on you that is godlike in its power, too". But you're talking about something different and until he feels it, you don't really have a common vernacular because the feel is crucial, right?

My post was intended to express my great uncertainty about this. I am not convinced that feeling is absolutely necessary to clear understanding. Couldn't a few clarifying questions determine what people mean? People have done this very thing on this thread with Chris H's videos and his ideas about what constitutes Aiki. People were able, without ever feeling what he was doing, to declare that what he called Aiki actually was not. At the very least, it was made clear that what Chris was doing as far as Aiki was concerned and what others are doing are not the same. This was accomplished quite easily, it seemed to me.

Just using that nikyo as an example, I think you can get a feel for why there's little compulsion to try and put these things into words. I.e., trying to explain in writing how to ride a bicycle to someone who's never seen or been on a bicycle it theoretically possible, but communicating the idea is almost impossible.

Well, I don't know. "Almost impossible" isn't the same as absolutely impossible, right? Sure, I think it would be much more difficult to accurately explain in writing the correct feel of an action or internal position - especially to someone who had no martial training or body awareness at all - than it would be to do so in tandem with something that could be felt, but I am pretty sure it can be done nonetheless. In particular, with those who have had martial training and as a result do understand something of the nature of structural alignment, balance of opposites within one's frame, the mental aspects of ki use, etc, it would likely be far easier to offer effective explanations.

Jon

Jonathan
04-16-2010, 04:14 PM
if you video the event, folks watched the video and would comment "that's fake!" however, to you, you felt it and it wasn't fake. you felt it first. you might not understand it, but you felt that it could be done. you have the baseline. folks didn't feel it first, have no baseline to work with or even to discuss. that's the point: go feel first, then discuss. with a common experience, a better discussion can take place. communication is difficult even face to face, misunderstanding happens all the time.

Hmmm...I think you missed my point. I don't think I said that feeling internal power skills wasn't helpful. I think it is. But I don't think it is absolutely necessary to understanding how to develop those internal skills. If you can't get to the folks who could give you a first-hand experience of these internal abilities, are you really completely unable to train to develop them? I seriously doubt it.

And, yes, misunderstanding happens all the time, which is why people ask questions, clarify statements, think things through, etc. ;)

Jon.

HL1978
04-16-2010, 04:33 PM
I guess the thing that I have a problem with is what appears to me to be an over-emphasis on feel as a means of imparting internal power skills. As I have explained, it is not by itself particularly useful for learning, or even absolutely necessary, I suspect. I seriously doubt that an intelligent person, with access to comprehensive visual aids and a careful verbal explanation could not, with dedicated practice, eventually reproduce the skills of Mike S., or Dan H., or Akuzawa sensei without ever actually feeling them do their internal power thing.


A couple of things,

1) For most people, but not all, what you feel when you get to touch hands, with some of the "named" people is that it is outside most people's frame of reference. I have felt some guys who have elements, but not the whole picture, because they weren't explicitly training this sort of thing. It also made it difficult for them to explain what was going on.

2) Even with explicit instruction and hands on time with some of the "name" guys there is an extermely high chance of not doing it right. I've been totally off the mark myself, and met more than a few seminar participants who didn't improve, or didn't have a solid enough understanding. Regular hands on time with an instructor, or at least other people who have felt this sort of thing helps a lot.

3) There is a particular feeling you get when you do this stuff correctly (not just being on the receiving side), that one likely has not felt before. You might not even be aware of what that feeling is unless someone else you have trained with recognizes it. Once you know what it feels like, then you can differeniate when you were able to effect the other person with that skill instead of merely muscle or timing. The first time I got the pushout exercise to work, I had no idea that I was actually doing it right, Rob and Manabu simply told me I was doing it right.

4) As for video, there are certain things you can see in the video which will give you a clue if the person has an understanding of Internal Skills/Aiki, but there are lots of gradiations. It is possible to reverse engineer some of this stuff, Ark himself has stated as such, but with the pre-requiste that you are already on this path.

My personal opinion is that if you are really interested in learning this sort of skill, a seminar is a good starting point and saves a lot of fumbling around in the dark.

chillzATL
04-16-2010, 04:35 PM
My post was really to express my great uncertainty about this. I am not convinced that feeling is absolutely necessary to clear understanding. Couldn't a few clarifying questions determine what people mean? People have done this very thing on this thread with Chris H's videos and his ideas about what constitutes Aiki. People were able, without ever feeling what he was doing, to declare that what he called Aiki actually was not. At the very least, it was made clear that what Chris was doing as far as Aiki was concerned and what others are doing are not the same. This was accomplished quite easily, it seemed to me.

Well, I don't know. "Almost impossible" isn't the same as absolutely impossible, right? Sure, I think it would be much more difficult to accurately explain in writing the correct feel of an action or internal position - especially to someone who had no martial training or body awareness at all - than it would be to do so in tandem with something that could be felt, but I am pretty sure it can be done nonetheless. In particular, with those who have had martial training and as a result do understand something of the nature of structural alignment, balance of opposites within one's frame, the mental aspects of ki use, etc, it would likely be far easier to offer effective explanations.

Jon

No, I agree that it has to be felt. I don't think you're going to get anywhere with this stuff by watching and mimicing what's being done and said in a video. You need someone who has a headstart on you to guide you through the rights wrongs.

Look, I was like just about everyone here when I started reading this stuff. I though "bs, this is just what i've already been doing". I also found it funny that there weren't any real videos out there. I mean if you can do it, then you can record it and we can see it right? I read every thread on Aikiweb and other sites from these guys (and others). I eventually noticed the pattern of high ranking martial arts people with decades of experience who, at one point, were exactly where I was, but eventually met with these guys and had a very clear change of attitude. They have no reason to prop up frauds and could have easily said "this is just more of the same", yet they didn't. NONE of them said that. Hell, instead, most of them wanted to start incorporating this into their own training. I'm a smart guy and I can follow the bouncing ball of logic and that ball was increasingly bouncing towards "you need to get off your ass and experience this".

So I started emailing around and asking questions and I eventually found a local group who had worked with several of those guys. It only took one visit for me to figure out that this was very different from what I had been doing. While there may be a lot of conceptual similarities, the actual application and practice is completely different. Depending on your style of aikido (or other martial art) it could be and entirely different universe to you. While none of the guys I met with had the ability of Mike, Dan or others, I didn't need to experience it on that level to feel the the power potential that it contained or see what it could do for my aikido, which is where my interests are.

It's pretty simple. If you're (you or anyone else reading) interested, start asking around and try to find some people near you who are working on this stuff. If you're semi-intelligent and have an open mind it won't be hard for you to see the value in what htey're showing you. I mean hell, if people with 30+ years in Aikido were able to empty their cups enough to see it, you can too. Then it's just a matter of putting in the work to get it for yourself. It's really that simple.

If you don't want to do that, no harm, no foul. Keep doing what you're doing. If what you're doing makes you happen, then it's the right thing for you.

ChrisHein
04-16-2010, 05:26 PM
I think this feeling thing is getting crazy.

If I see a video clip of a boxer knocking someone out, that doesn't mean I know all about it. But I did get to see the result. That doesn't mean I can punch better, or that I know how it feels to be knocked out, only that I can see a real result.

One could argue after seeing the clip that the guy being knocked out is faking it. That is the limitation of video. But it's a lot better then what we are currently using to convey our thoughts.

I can say, all day long, that I know what is really going on with these IP/IS/ICMA guys. And they can tell me all day that they know I have no idea, no matter what I "think" I know. On my part and theirs, it's really just a bunch of nonsense.

However video clips can get us to start seeing what we are talking about. I feel like the word "Aiki" has been hijacked. All I'm asking is for you to describe and show what you mean by "Aiki" when you say it. I feel like I've done that on my side.

HL1978
04-16-2010, 06:09 PM
I think this feeling thing is getting crazy.

If I see a video clip of a boxer knocking someone out, that doesn't mean I know all about it. But I did get to see the result. That doesn't mean I can punch better, or that I know how it feels to be knocked out, only that I can see a real result.

One could argue after seeing the clip that the guy being knocked out is faking it. That is the limitation of video. But it's a lot better then what we are currently using to convey our thoughts.

I can say, all day long, that I know what is really going on with these IP/IS/ICMA guys. And they can tell me all day that they know I have no idea, no matter what I "think" I know. On my part and theirs, it's really just a bunch of nonsense.

However video clips can get us to start seeing what we are talking about. I feel like the word "Aiki" has been hijacked. All I'm asking is for you to describe and show what you mean by "Aiki" when you say it. I feel like I've done that on my side.

Chris,

I just watched your videos, while I disagree with your video about aiki, I think your video about structure and alignment is a pretty good foot in the door into one approach. I think you should have expanded on what exactly is going on when you connected your hands back onto your partner and what your partner felt when you established that connection. You made it clear that you weren't resisting with muscle, but how do you effect the other guy?

A couple of questions. Anyone can feel free to chime in. Don't think I am trying to lead Chris on one way or the other because as I have said elsewhere there are different gradiations and approaches.

Can you input forces into your partner via structure?

Do you feel that you can manipulate your opponent soley through structure? If so how can you do it? If not what other elements could potentially be added? Are they muscular based or something different?

What does your partner feel when they apply pressure on you when you are using structure, what do you feel? How does this feel different than using muscles?

If you are using structure, how do you handle pushes and pulls which are on an angle on which your body is not aligned ? How do you re-route that force so that muscle does not engage? Is there a way for your opponent to feel as though your center of gravity is lower than theirs even if you haven't lowered your center of gravity by utilizing structure?

Rob Watson
04-16-2010, 06:18 PM
However video clips can get us to start seeing what we are talking about. I feel like the word "Aiki" has been hijacked. All I'm asking is for you to describe and show what you mean by "Aiki" when you say it. I feel like I've done that on my side.

I wonder. Maybe forget about trying to define it and have them simply show the solo and partner drills used to establish a base upon which to build. If one is able to inspect the foundation and find it sound then the gables and spandrels really become irrelevant.

Ark has some on youtube and Mike has some on neijia. Dan has verbally described a little. If that is not enough to see the route to what they do (whatever the definition) then little else besides face time will help.

I like what Ellis Amdur has done ( amongst other stuff he has mentioned some of the basics on neijia - i'm not sure I'm supposed to share much more) and took it on the road. That his arts headmaster thinks it's important enough to work on really takes the cake, again. I don't want to be putting words in anyones mouths so read his postings yourself. Who cares what it's called - just show me how to do it!

All I've been able to do is confuse myself a whole bunch and that is just from a couple of 'simple' drills. I'll let others explain how much I suck.

phitruong
04-16-2010, 06:23 PM
don't have video, but picture this scenario (should be simple enough). two person, one short and one tall.

short person: in forward stand, grab the tall person at the biceps with both hands (kind of like a judo grab), and push the tall person.

tall person: stand naturally, feet almost parallel, shoulder width, arms dangling down.

as you watch, short person keeps bending the knees and go lower and lower. tall person stood still, didn't move.

anyone can chime in and answer this question: what do you think happened?

gregstec
04-16-2010, 07:40 PM
No, I agree that it has to be felt. I don't think you're going to get anywhere with this stuff by watching and mimicing what's being done and said in a video. You need someone who has a headstart on you to guide you through the rights wrongs.

Look, I was like just about everyone here when I started reading this stuff. I though "bs, this is just what i've already been doing". I also found it funny that there weren't any real videos out there. I mean if you can do it, then you can record it and we can see it right? I read every thread on Aikiweb and other sites from these guys (and others). I eventually noticed the pattern of high ranking martial arts people with decades of experience who, at one point, were exactly where I was, but eventually met with these guys and had a very clear change of attitude. They have no reason to prop up frauds and could have easily said "this is just more of the same", yet they didn't. NONE of them said that. Hell, instead, most of them wanted to start incorporating this into their own training. I'm a smart guy and I can follow the bouncing ball of logic and that ball was increasingly bouncing towards "you need to get off your ass and experience this".

So I started emailing around and asking questions and I eventually found a local group who had worked with several of those guys. It only took one visit for me to figure out that this was very different from what I had been doing. While there may be a lot of conceptual similarities, the actual application and practice is completely different. Depending on your style of aikido (or other martial art) it could be and entirely different universe to you. While none of the guys I met with had the ability of Mike, Dan or others, I didn't need to experience it on that level to feel the the power potential that it contained or see what it could do for my aikido, which is where my interests are.

It's pretty simple. If you're (you or anyone else reading) interested, start asking around and try to find some people near you who are working on this stuff. If you're semi-intelligent and have an open mind it won't be hard for you to see the value in what htey're showing you. I mean hell, if people with 30+ years in Aikido were able to empty their cups enough to see it, you can too. Then it's just a matter of putting in the work to get it for yourself. It's really that simple.

If you don't want to do that, no harm, no foul. Keep doing what you're doing. If what you're doing makes you happen, then it's the right thing for you.

:) Wow, Jason has been a member of Aikiweb since 2000 and he only has 140 posts! - To me, this is a man that gives a lot of consideration to his thoughts and just does not shoot from the hip with his opinions - I think we all should just pause and listen; kind of like those old commercials about that investment broker, etc. ;)

There has been a lot of good questions and responses in the last few posts that I won't elaborate on - but I just like to make a few comments.

1. Mike makes an excellent point about the learning is not stagnate - get on the path and don't stop developing - I believe Sagawa mentioned that he continued to develop his aiki up to the day he died. And why not; keep your focus on how you can learn more. As someone mentioned elsewhere, there is always someone ahead of you and behind you on the path - the important thing here is to get on the path!

2. Jonathan brings up some very good points, and Hunter as well as a few others, have provided some good comments accordingly. The only thing I would like to add here is that there are two sides to the 'feeling' point - one side is that you have to feel IS being applied to you and the other is you have to feel what it is like to apply - two sides of the same coin, but two totally different experiences. As to the comment that you can learn this without guidance, well yes and no. Yes, you can stumble on an aspect of it, and I think most of those studying IS today has had some weird experience in this that they could not explain, but no, at best, this can only motivate you to find out more; it will not lead you to a comprehensive understanding - you just just need to get with those of a like mind and interest, with some more experience, to learn more.

3. The last comment I like to make is to apologize for any inappropriate comment or personal attack I may have made in this thread - as those that truly know me will tell you, that next to Phi, I am the next most silly (and warped) person on aikiweb. However, I am a Scorpio, and I can be your best friend or your worst enemy - your choice :D Seriously, I just saw (IMO) some comments that appeared to be of a negative personal nature, and I responded accordingly - If I was wrong in my interpretation, than I am sorry - if not, then I will send a disruptive ki ball your way and you will have bad karma the rest of your life (short lived as it will be) :D

In summary, I think it is a testament to the intense interest of IS/IP that stimulates the motivation to express opinions in this thread - let's just try to keep the exchange informative, thought provoking, and considerate of opposing opions.

Sincerely,

Greg

Abasan
04-16-2010, 08:35 PM
I'll bite...

Tall person - loosening, or basically dropping the force down to earth as such short guy is trying to push horizontally but force is going down. Its dynamic not like pushing a stone wall.

Jonathan
04-16-2010, 11:53 PM
It's pretty simple. If you're (you or anyone else reading) interested, start asking around and try to find some people near you who are working on this stuff.

You're assuming that I haven't. You know what they say about assumptions?

If you're semi-intelligent and have an open mind it won't be hard for you to see the value in what htey're showing you. I mean hell, if people with 30+ years in Aikido were able to empty their cups enough to see it, you can too.

My problem, if you'd read carefully what I wrote, was never with "emptying my cup," or doubting the reality and usefulness of Aiki skills, but with gaining access to such skills.

Then it's just a matter of putting in the work to get it for yourself. It's really that simple

Yes, I know this. Why are you stating the obvious? :straightf

Jon.

Michael Varin
04-17-2010, 12:49 AM
As a result of circumstances beyond my control, I haven't had a direct teacher of my own in Aikido since I was third kyu. I am now ranked sandan. For most of my training, I didn't have someone guiding me through all the nuances of Aikido movement and technique. I didn't get to feel how a technique was done whenever I wanted. I had to employ what I knew of the principles of the art and pour over videotapes and books and practice, practice, practice in order to achieve my present ability and rank. But I did it. I was able to advance in skill without regular opportunity to feel the Aikido of top-ranked aikidoka.

No? This is impossible ;)

This kind of response makes all the posts by those who are skilled in Aiki that express concern about the loss of this martial element in Aikido quite disingenuous. Their interest can't be in helping the art regain such an important part of its skill-set or they would be more willing to do all that they could to help any who practice Aikido who wish to develop Aiki to do so. Instead, they say, basically, "I am the mountain. You must come to me," which seems to suggest, not concern for the development of Aiki in Aikido, but simple self-aggrandizement.

Very well said, Jonathan.

Michael Varin
04-17-2010, 12:55 AM
Regarding Bill Gleason's video part 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NMqvFeiwzY):
I did the very exercise linked above with him and his movement does compel. The effects on uke are the result of his keeping a steady, light pressure on nage while nage moves.

Hmm? I guess my perceptive abilities aren't that bad after a paltry 10 years.

And considering I was able to describe exactly how uke was being affected just by watching the video, I guess video isn't that useless after all.

Who would've thought?

gregstec
04-17-2010, 05:21 AM
I had two big surprises with Gleason Sensei last August: first is that he's so small. Second is that he's so strong.

I did the very exercise linked above with him and his movement does compel. The effects on uke are the result of his keeping a steady, light pressure on nage while nage moves.



In this exercise the amount of pressure on uke is very subjective. You may have presented a light push, but when I did it, it was more moderate to heavy - the result was no different, I was being moved by nage and my movements were not exaggerated at all. However, you hit the nail on the head with the comment that uke had to keep the pressure up if the exercise was to work.

Greg

gregstec
04-17-2010, 06:28 AM
I wonder, too, if there isn't some resistance to sharing the method of developing internal power openly because those who could share it have had to work hard to develop their own skill and don't think, consequently, that it should be made readily available to others. Is there a sort of "if it cost me, it should cost you, too" attitude at play in the unwillingness of those who claim skill in this area to share openly and fully how to develop such skill? Maybe…The problem with this sort of thinking is that it doesn't take into account those who really, truly can't train directly with skilled teachers of Aiki, but who would very much like to learn how to manifest it. They are simply told, in essence, "You don't have it and if you don't come to me, you can't have it. Tough nuts." This kind of response makes all the posts by those who are skilled in Aiki that express concern about the loss of this martial element in Aikido quite disingenuous. Their interest can't be in helping the art regain such an important part of its skill-set or they would be more willing to do all that they could to help any who practice Aikido who wish to develop Aiki to do so. Instead, they say, basically, "I am the mountain. You must come to me," which seems to suggest, not concern for the development of Aiki in Aikido, but simple self-aggrandizement.

Jon.

There is a flip side to all of this too. In my experience, I have found those skilled in this area have been more than willing to freely share what they know, but not at their own expense. These people are not messiahs with a mission in life to spread the word of aiki - they are normal people (well almost normal :) ) with family, jobs, and other things going on in their lives. They are not in it for the money. When you go see Dan, there is no cost other than your own expenses. When Dan did a workshop at my place, the only cost was his expenses - he did not make money on the deal.

I believe 'Come to the Mountain' is not an ego thing, but just simply a matter of economics and practicality since this stuff truly can not be learned effectively from words and videos. Personally, I am grateful that they do post what their aiki is about and do offer to allow you to come to them for more - if they did not, we truly would not know what we don't know, and would just continue down the path of ignorance.

When I go back over this thread and look at it objectively, I see that there are essentially two types of groups posting - those that have some hands on experience in IS/IP from Dan, Mike, or the Ark and those that have not. Those that have not, want to see videos with explanations of how to do this and what it looks like so they can believe it's real. On the other side, there are those with first hand knowledge saying that videos are not the way to teach nor train IS/IP, and that at best, a video could only provide a minor glimpse into what is going on. So, their preferred method of transmission is in person; which is pretty traditional for most (if not all) JMA and CMA. What I find interesting is that no one from the experienced group has ever said what these people are doing is not real, and that most of the people in the experienced group are very accomplished within their own arts and some are very senior ranking members of their arts - and they all are saying the same thing. So, that just begs the question, how can all these people be wrong in exactly the same way? The laws of probability tells me that they are not and that it would be wise to listen them. If those in the other group keep insisting that these people in the know just hand deliver their knowledge to their doorstep because they are part of the I want generation, the experienced people will just fade away and all that would be left is a bunch of people jabbering on the net about what ever happened to those aiki folks? I wish they would come back because I want to learn more...

To me it is pretty simple - if someone has something I want, and I want it for nothing, and the other person is willing to give it to me for nothing, I am going to accept it on their terms - the last thing I am going to do is to insist they give it to me on my terms. Bottom line here folks is that we all need to get real on this issue and just accept it for what it is.

Greg

HL1978
04-17-2010, 07:15 AM
Regarding Bill Gleason's video part 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NMqvFeiwzY):

Hmm? I guess my perceptive abilities aren't that bad after a paltry 10 years.

And considering I was able to describe exactly how uke was being affected just by watching the video, I guess video isn't that useless after all.

Who would've thought?

Looking at video #2 presented earlier. its not so much whether one can see if there is a push or pressure, its understanding or seeing some of the following:

How is the push being generated?
From where does it originate?
What would happen if they were to disconnect to one another? Would one of them move forwards, if so who and why?
Is Gleason sensei actively pushing or is his partners energy reflecting back into the partner? What would happen if he is actively pushing? What would happen if he is merely reflecting?
What would happen if both people were using the body in the same way?

There can be multiple answers for the above.

phitruong
04-17-2010, 07:37 AM
Tall person - loosening, or basically dropping the force down to earth as such short guy is trying to push horizontally but force is going down. Its dynamic not like pushing a stone wall.

NOPE, wrong direction.

i was going to drag this out by giving hints and stuffs like that, but this is a long thread already.

consider a few things first: short person never lost his structure, short person doing the pushing, and (the obvious) short person has center of gravity lower than tall person.

the exercise is a game (also a training scenario) - how to get your center below the other person (internally). the reason the short person kept bending his knee is to get lower and lower (obvious, no?), because every time he pushed the tall person, the short person felt he was pushed from below and floated up, while the whole time the tall person didn't move at all. so, the direction is up, not down (down is too easy considering the height different). if any of you folks got a chance to play with Ikeda sensei, the words of his description is "I pick" *with an accent and a smile* :) thing to consider, as long as the short person pushed, he went up, but if he stopped pushing, then nothing happen. btw, this is a very basic scenario. if you know how to do this, then you know how to apply it in kokyu dosa for aikido folks. for judo/jujutsu folks, this is a silver bullet, to be able to float your opponent at will.

to me this is aiki in static mode, to move another person energy in any direction at will.

*just another traveler on the muddy road of aiki*

dps
04-17-2010, 08:54 AM
NOPE, wrong direction.

i was going to drag this out by giving hints and stuffs like that, but this is a long thread already.


Why not post a video?

David

Erick Mead
04-17-2010, 09:39 AM
Very well put Jonathan. The "it has to be felt" proponents presupposes lack of intelligent and ability to learn aiki other than with them.

Anyone whose Aikido is strongly influenced by Tohei has done these skills.

They are afraid that videos would show that these skills are not as special and more common than they imply. There are a couple of points I would qualify. What is occurring is below the level of conscious perception. That is what makes it martially useful to deploy and likewise difficult to grasp. It is a classic "black box" problem -- you can only directly see the input and the result -- not the process. There are various ways of trying to solve this problem

Way the one-half (not even rising to a proper way) -- You have lots of people trying to simply imitate the input and output respectively -- which is not only wrong but not even useful -- and largely explains the over-compliance tendency -- not some grand collective ego trip on the part of teachers -- but simply uke imitating what he sees "happening" -- regardless whether what actually happened ( which he cannot see) actually occurred to him. Imitation is a very powerful force in human psychology -- and very few people break out of the simple imitative mode.

Way the first -- Other fairly common efforts try to refine one's sense of correlation of various inputs to respective outputs inductively through many examples to infer a process by analogy or allegory to known a process, and then use that as your training guide. That is what we see most people trying to do, either on their own -- or, more profitably, IMO, from traditional sources of collected correlations -- and which Tohei did at a very high level. Problem being that the traditional sources for these correlations translate exceedingly badly into Western thought in their intended function -- both Chinese and Japanese. But making it even worse -- the process in question is not linear -- so one analogy or even a closely related set of analogies cannot fully capture all the known instances. There are many different types of analogy necessary, even mutually contradictory ones, in order to capture a large range of seemingly different observed actions.

Way the second -- The body will learn through its own intuition -- if -- and only if -- it is left completely unguided by the interfering mind... But most people are not capable of letting the body do its learning without the mind mucking it up -- and avoiding that, in the purest sense, is the "Zen" approach, for lack of a better description.

Way the third and fourth (or as I see it, Ways 3a and 3b) -- In addition, we can also use one or both of the only other parts of our mental faculties that can actually enter the black box in a meaningful way -- our mind and its ability to conceive concrete realities that it cannot directly perceive. This takes two forms -- the mystical frame of mind (which Morihei Ueshiba operated from), which uses powerful but VERY concrete natural imagery in deeply relational ways -- or applied mechanical intuition, which generalizes from related phenomena a rule of concrete action that necessarily describes aspects of the process we cannot directly perceive, based on the nature of the structures and actions involved.

People look at the mystical poetic language and think if as woo-hoo, new-agey crap, -- and thus miss that it is just chock full of deeply consistent concrete relational images -- images that map very closely onto a physical reality of mechanics and biomechanical processes of a more general sort and are in agreement with each other when put to this application.

The latter is what I'm doing. DOING -- I emphasize.

Abasan
04-17-2010, 09:46 AM
Hmm I thought you said short person has his knees buckling under him. Not floating. Ah well...

Erick Mead
04-17-2010, 09:59 AM
Looking at video #2 presented earlier. its not so much whether one can see if there is a push or pressure, its understanding or seeing some of the following:

How is the push being generated?
From where does it originate?
What would happen if they were to disconnect to one another? Would one of them move forwards, if so who and why?
Is Gleason sensei actively pushing or is his partners energy reflecting back into the partner? What would happen if he is actively pushing? What would happen if he is merely reflecting?
What would happen if both people were using the body in the same way?

There can be multiple answers for the above.
It is not a push -- if by push you mean a linear extension.
It originates everywhere or nowhere -- i.e.-- it is throughout both bodies in connection or it is not truly present.
Disconnect ? -- And that depends on how you define "forward."
Etc. etc.

It is all in this, statically:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=509&d=1215185239

And dynamically in this:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=508&d=1215184421

dps
04-17-2010, 10:29 AM
Those that have not, want to see videos with explanations of how to do this and what it looks like so they can believe it's real.

Nope, I have not read anywhere on this thread that anyone thinks aiki or the use of the inner workings of the body to do aiki not real.
David

phitruong
04-17-2010, 01:58 PM
Hmm I thought you said short person has his knees buckling under him. Not floating. Ah well...

no. i said the short person bending his knees, not buckling. bending knees = he's doing it himself to get better leverage. buckling = something forcing him. two different things.

Jonathan
04-17-2010, 03:12 PM
There is a flip side to all of this too. In my experience, I have found those skilled in this area have been more than willing to freely share what they know, but not at their own expense. These people are not messiahs with a mission in life to spread the word of aiki - they are normal people (well almost normal ) with family, jobs, and other things going on in their lives. They are not in it for the money. When you go see Dan, there is no cost other than your own expenses. When Dan did a workshop at my place, the only cost was his expenses - he did not make money on the deal.

I didn't intend to suggest that it was solely the hope of making money that was motivating these guys to promote Aiki to the Aikido community. I've never thought this. When I mentioned "cost," I meant the personal sacrifices, the expense of time and effort (and perhaps money, too) required to obtain their skills. Perhaps using an analogy might explain my thinking better. Imagine a guy who has discovered a hidden, jungle paradise filled with natural wonders. He tells others of the incredible place he's found and urges them to see it for themselves. Naturally, they ask him the way. Instead of simply drawing them a map of the path he has already blazed through the jungle, he says, "Oh no! I had to toil miserably for weeks to find this place! If you want to see it, only I can show you the way." Now, it is possible for people to find the paradise without having this fellow guide them there - a well-blazed path now exists - but he is insistent that only if he shows the way will they ever be able to reach his secret garden of wonders. When people suggest that they might find the way if he were to simply provide instructions for doing so, he responds by saying, "The way is complex and difficult and there is no way I could just draw a map that would properly lead you to the paradise. A map would be almost impossible to create. It would be simpler and better if I just showed you the way myself." There is a major problem with this, however. The adventurer can only lead people to his paradise at certain times and there are many who wish to see the paradise but cannot join him at these times. Although he is very strong in his encouragement of people to see his jungle garden of wonders, if they can't journey with him to where it is, well, too bad for them. Naturally, those who haven't been to the paradise but would very much like to visit it, begin to resent the constant urging of this fellow to see the paradise while at the same time throwing up impediments to doing so. They suspect very strongly that a map could be made and that more could thereby enjoy the jungle paradise without the need for a personal guide to it. As a result, the suspicion grows that the fellow urging them to see the paradise isn't really as interested in people reaching the paradise as he is in leading them there.

When I go back over this thread and look at it objectively, I see that there are essentially two types of groups posting - those that have some hands on experience in IS/IP from Dan, Mike, or the Ark and those that have not. Those that have not, want to see videos with explanations of how to do this and what it looks like so they can believe it's real.

I guess I'm part of third group, then, since I haven't had any hands-on experience with Dan, Mike, or Ark and yet am quite convinced that Aiki skills are real.

To me it is pretty simple - if someone has something I want, and I want it for nothing, and the other person is willing to give it to me for nothing, I am going to accept it on their terms - the last thing I am going to do is to insist they give it to me on my terms.

Well, as I tried to explain above, I cannot meet "their terms." I live too far away, and have other responsibilities that greatly limit my time and finances. Also, it hasn't been that I just looked over and saw Mike and Dan and others with Aiki skills that I didn't have and insisted they give them to me for nothing. No, these guys have been pushing the Aiki stuff fairly strongly at aikidoka, going so far as to suggest that most Aikido today is devoid of any real martial power and effectiveness because it lacks Aiki. Okay. But don't tell me there's a problem and then shut the door on finding a way to resolve it.

Jon.

ChrisHein
04-17-2010, 07:24 PM
I guess I'm part of third group, then, since I haven't had any hands-on experience with Dan, Mike, or Ark and yet am quite convinced that Aiki skills are real.

Well, as I tried to explain above, I cannot meet "their terms." I live too far away, and have other responsibilities that greatly limit my time and finances. Also, it hasn't been that I just looked over and saw Mike and Dan and others with Aiki skills that I didn't have and insisted they give them to me for nothing. No, these guys have been pushing the Aiki stuff fairly strongly at aikidoka, going so far as to suggest that most Aikido today is devoid of any real martial power and effectiveness because it lacks Aiki. Okay. But don't tell me there's a problem and then shut the door on finding a way to resolve it.

Jon.

I don't think that you can say it much better.

I for one am certain that Saito sensei and the Iwama crowd are not talking about "Aiki" in the same respect as the IP/IS/ICMA crowd. I don't think the Aikikai is talking about the same thing when they say "Aiki" either. Both of those groups have a very legitimate claim the the word "Aiki".

Mike Sigman
04-17-2010, 07:48 PM
I don't think that you can say it much better.

I for one am certain that Saito sensei and the Iwama crowd are not talking about "Aiki" in the same respect as the IP/IS/ICMA crowd. I don't think the Aikikai is talking about the same thing when they say "Aiki" either. Both of those groups have a very legitimate claim the the word "Aiki". Well, I can appreciate that viewpoint and have more or less looked into it in the past. In return, I'd ask that people look at my viewpoint:

I encountered an unusual form of strength in 1974 and (as an engineering major) I couldn't quite explain it, even though I had a number of years of Judo and Uechi Ryu Karate behind me. I later realized that my Uechi-Ryu Karate instructor had shown me a few clues one night in the mid-late 1960's, but I didn't know what he was trying to tell me at the time.

After a number of years of looking into this unusual strength after 1974, I'd researched things back into the Chinese martial arts and had gathered information that made this sort of an interesting holistic view. I later attempted to tell some of the nicer people I'd met in Aikido that "there was more to the ki stuff than is obvious".

Since then, I've met further 'nice guys' and a very great number of self-absorbed people who already know all the answers or who want me to "prove it" (as opposed to "hmmmmm... let's talk about it"). I try to show the harder-working 'nice guys' what little I know. I tend to greet the "prove it" crowd with "good attitude, but shouldn't you first just go and see, given all the Aikido literature that you're tossing aside as 'ki-tricks'?".

To cut to the chase, I spent a lot of time chasing things down and while I'm open to answering honest questions, a lot of those written questions have been answered and are archived in the AikiWeb archives. They're there to look at.

Taking the other viewpoint, there are a lot of people who already know all the answers and who can't be shown anything new or who are "already practicing that stuff" and all I can say is good luck. Some of those people are the ones posting the "you gotta tell me the answers or there's something wrong with you" people on this very thread. To them I say "good luck with that approach".

BTW... some of those people now have more than 5 years of posting the "I'm a sceptic and you must prove it to me in writing" posts. To them I must post my thanks for making my day.... you just wasted 5 years.

Best.

Mike Sigman

Michael Varin
04-17-2010, 09:10 PM
Mike,

I appreciate your post. It seems timely, and your last point is hard to argue. I stayed away from the internal strength threads for a long time, because I saw a distinct pattern to them. Unfortunately, this thread has followed that same pattern.

I don't believe the purpose of this thread was to debunk, minimize, or even be skeptical of internal strength. I personally, believe it is important to aikido. Nor was the purpose of this thread to assess the level of internal strength anyone has, or how impressive it can be.

What is at issue here is the characterization of aiki -- particularly, the use of video to illustrate and help define aiki.

This discussion has been largely ignored.

After 12 pages and 288 posts, only Mark and Chris posted videos.

Maybe this is a very difficult discussion to have. Maybe the definition is elusive. But far too much of the "discussion" is premised on the conclusion that "aiki" = internal strength = structure.

In my opinion, based on my experience and knowledge, acquired in person from various instructors, my own training, and from research about Morihei Ueshiba, aikido, and daito ryu, and related arts and philosophies, I believe that definition to be incorrect, and actually counter to the weight of the evidence.

I would say that most of what has been described should be referred to as kokyu or kokyu ryoku. I understand that there may not be a clean line between these concepts, and that there is most definitely relation and overlap.

If I'm not mistaken, I believe you (Mike Sigman) even said kokyu is more appropriate, although you prefer to use the Chinese terms when discussing these things.

As for aiki = timing, that is clearly an incomplete definition. What is not so clear is whether timing was all that was being conveyed.

Does the definition, no matter what you think it is, affect the manifestation of the physical skills being described? No. Does it affect our (as aikidoists) art? Absolutely. It is the "way of aiki" -- whatever that is.

Mike Sigman
04-17-2010, 10:05 PM
After 12 pages and 288 posts, only Mark and Chris posted videos. I dunno... IIRC I have put out to the public at least 6 or 7 videos on how to get started with at least the jin (kokyu) side of things. Far more complete and "how-to" than anything on this forum. And the vids I put out don't even begin to approach the whole topic that I think is relevant to the I.S. topic.

Maybe this is a very difficult discussion to have. Maybe the definition is elusive. But far too much of the "discussion" is premised on the conclusion that "aiki" = internal strength = structure. I've never made such a premise. Those topics are related, but they certainly don't deserve the "=" (equal sign) that you're asserting.

In my opinion, based on my experience and knowledge, acquired in person from various instructors, my own training, and from research about Morihei Ueshiba, aikido, and daito ryu, and related arts and philosophies, I believe that definition to be incorrect, and actually counter to the weight of the evidence.

I would say that most of what has been described should be referred to as kokyu or kokyu ryoku. I understand that there may not be a clean line between these concepts, and that there is most definitely relation and overlap.

If I'm not mistaken, I believe you (Mike Sigman) even said kokyu is more appropriate, although you prefer to use the Chinese terms when discussing these things. I stand by that, BTW.

As for aiki = timing, that is clearly an incomplete definition. What is not so clear is whether timing was all that was being conveyed.

Does the definition, no matter what you think it is, affect the manifestation of the physical skills being described? No. Does it affect our (as aikidoists) art? Absolutely. It is the "way of aiki" -- whatever that is. Just as a note:.... don't forget that I did Aikido for around 7 years (not a negligible amount of time, really), so the reference to authority about "our.... as Aikidoists" doesn't really fly. If western Aikido had given me the part of Aikido that I was interested in and could see proof of, I'd still be in Aikido.

I'm sure that some people will disagree with me, but those people are rightfully the subject of some of Dan Harden's comments about how many people go quiet after they see what the topic is. Me.... I met many people that I thought were worthwhile when I did Aikido, back in the old days. My comments about internal strength have *always* been more along the lines of "Guys... I think that here's an important datum we've been missing". In terms of proselityzing other people, I couldn't care less. I actively looked; if they aren't actively looking, screw'em.

Best.

Mike

thisisnotreal
04-17-2010, 11:17 PM
i just thought it was fun to talk about all this stuff.
the human body is amazing; and the 'body-technologies' people came up with are truly fantastic.
i thought the best part of aiki was sharing, that, loosely paraphrased in a douka, was that you had what you needed right here with you, right now, to train, and that you could build your power using relatively simple things, if you knew how to make it hard on yourself.
Thought the exchange of ideas on how to 'build power' or strengthen yourself, or how to move properlike was the best stuffs. The discussion of details on how to train.etc.etc. What should be defined, delineated, how to communicate it,what stuff would help your health, how to bring aiki back into your dojo, without creating havoc/being fun, body changes, etc, etc.

Now; as per the people who think you should get aiki via drive-thru... or whatever : ], well, i wonder how far do you think you should travel to meet Sokaku.

Mike, as to your whormwholes; this is what i have to say; here< (http://www.flickr.com/photos/birdofthegalaxy/3584413562/). re; aiki. your writings and stuff were great, and helpful i agree. i was wondering why sometimes you don't step up more (you say you do, but i challenge that) than you do. if anything good changes in aiki and aikido; for sure you had an important part in it. thanks for what you did help with though. I, for one, definitely am grateful for the information you shared, and your point of view. Definitely the engineering way to go is it, i believe. Not so far as the Erick goes; cause that's just blind jibberjabber tomfoolery. And i do challenge your point of view on oschmann's stuffs. emitted / at-a-distance stuff.. it is the fantasy lie that speaks to the human spirit that enshrines the possibility of godhood, and elevating myth to gnostic proportions.

Rob,
As per how much you should say? It's like the first rule of fightclub. You should have known that. To even insinuate the existence of an IP/Aiki/Qi/Jin black hole (or even it's event horizon within which all IS/ information disappears, to an outside observer) is anathema. : ]

just joking. i'm just jealous of the cool stuffs, Mikey

"Have fun storming the castle" :)

Michael Varin
04-18-2010, 12:39 AM
Hey Mike,

I just wanted to be clarify, most of my last post wasn't directed to you specifically.

I just looked at it and I don't think that was clear. . . My fault.

Most of it was just pertaining to this thread in general.

ChrisHein
04-18-2010, 02:29 AM
Mike Sigman,
You've been an open person with me, thanks for that. I also believe that you are calling the IP/IS stuff jin or kokyu, I believe that this is an important thing for the Aikido community to learn about. I personally don't think that kokyu is "Aiki", that doesn't mean that I think kokyu/jin is unimportant. Or that the Aikido community doesn't have much to learn from people like yourself who have spent a large amount of time really getting a firm grip on this stuff.

General,
The problem I have, and how this all got started in the tread before this one, is the forgone conclusion that when we are talking about "Aiki" we all mean the IP/IS/ICMA thing.

Perhaps the Tohei crowd is. There are also some new groups arising that are. However there is a lot of Aikido out there. Many of them referring to something different when they say "Aiki". This can get confusing.

I wanted to get a clear definition of what everyone was talking about, so all the cards would be on the table.

C. David Henderson
04-18-2010, 08:40 AM
FWIW

I understand the conceptual relationship between "internal strength/power" and "skills" as often used in these discussions to be roughly analogous to that between "kokyu" and "aiki."

That is, they are related, but not identical, and while one concept in each pair of concepts refers to ways of generating power in movement, the other relates to employing power in a martial encounter in an effective way.

What I understand some of the "IP/IS" advocates to say about the difference between "aiki" and "ju" stems from whether the method of employing power in an encounter relies on/springs from an internal manipulation of structure, or in applying techique (waza) that manipulate the structure of uke through timing, leverage, etc.

This is where it seems the perception takes hold that timing, leverage, ma ai, etc., are of less value, since they relate to the "ju" level of the art and not what is treated as the higher, "aiki" level, despite the acknowledgement by virtually all that "jujustu" is a powerful and subtle thing.

W/ respect

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 09:58 AM
The method of setting up a jin path is the basis for a lot of the skills. "Jin" basically means something along the lines of a "trained force skill or force path"; hence it's a basic building block for the power of a "kokyu nage", for the blending of forces in an "aiki", and it's also a basic building block for power-releases like "fa jin". The saying is that "there are many jins (specialized ways of expressing power), but there is only one basic jin."

This basic jin derives it's power from either the solid support of the ground (up, opening power) or from the weight of the body (down, closing power). It's why you'll see people like Kuroda and other Japanese talk about how power comes from gravity, because gravity is what gives you a solid support from the earth and gravity is what pulls your body downward.

"Kokyu" is a term that's actually a little closer to the real full-blown use of the word as a "breath power", but it opens such a complex discussion that it's far beyond anything meant for this type of thread. Let's just leave it that Kokyu is the basic jin power that is augmented by body-training that involves the breath.

"Aiki" is a way of using the same basic jin/kokyu force to vector-add with an opponent's incoming force in such a way that his power is negated (they like to say 'brought to nothing') or his power is used to add to your own power in such a way that he is thrown, etc. His power can help throw him away or it can help pull him forward: you "borrow" his incoming energy to boost your own. Opponent effectively throws himself, in many cases.

Technically you can call just grounding a push as "aiki" because you are essentially blending your intent-derived force with uke's. Kokyu-ho is technically "aiki" if you reply back to uke's push (the techniques and wrist turns, etc., aren't really part of the pure discussion about the forces). Regardless, a lot of the basic-seeming applications of jin will involve "blending" with the opponent's force, making the application an "aiki", but the core power is not "aiki"... it's just the trained force of jin/kokyu.

Incidentally, it's worth noting that there are usually at least three levels to what a word means, but let me just take "aiki" or the english-term "blend" and note that you can "blend" with an opponent with just technique and no jin. That would be the lowest level of the term "blend" or "aiki". If you can "blend" by using intent to manipulate your forces in response to uke's attack, that is the higher level. But technically, "aiki" can denote simple techniqe and external strength or it can denote the higher level with the jin/kokyu forces.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

ChrisHein
04-18-2010, 11:34 AM
Two Great posts!

FWIW

I understand the conceptual relationship between "internal strength/power" and "skills" as often used in these discussions to be roughly analogous to that between "kokyu" and "aiki."

That is, they are related, but not identical, and while one concept in each pair of concepts refers to ways of generating power in movement, the other relates to employing power in a martial encounter in an effective way.

What I understand some of the "IP/IS" advocates to say about the difference between "aiki" and "ju" stems from whether the method of employing power in an encounter relies on/springs from an internal manipulation of structure, or in applying techique (waza) that manipulate the structure of uke through timing, leverage, etc.

This is where it seems the perception takes hold that timing, leverage, ma ai, etc., are of less value, since they relate to the "ju" level of the art and not what is treated as the higher, "aiki" level, despite the acknowledgement by virtually all that "jujustu" is a powerful and subtle thing.

W/ respect

Beautiful!

I think this is a great summery Charles. I personally would like to assert that "Ju" is it's own principle, like "Aiki". Things like leverage, ma ai, timing etc. are things all martial art systems have. However the principle of "Aiki" and "Ju" are more unique to internal martial arts (if we want to umbrella them in such a way).


This basic jin derives it's power from either the solid support of the ground (up, opening power) or from the weight of the body (down, closing power). It's why you'll see people like Kuroda and other Japanese talk about how power comes from gravity, because gravity is what gives you a solid support from the earth and gravity is what pulls your body downward.



Not only do I agree with you, I think this is very nicely said. It's also what Tim Cartmell, and all other good internal teachers (that I'm aware of) say this stuff is. I think we are in complete agreeance here!



"Kokyu" is a term that's actually a little closer to the real full-blown use of the word as a "breath power", but it opens such a complex discussion that it's far beyond anything meant for this type of thread. Let's just leave it that Kokyu is the basic jin power that is augmented by body-training that involves the breath.



Fair enough, and I agree.



"Aiki" is a way of using the same basic jin/kokyu force to vector-add with an opponent's incoming force in such a way that his power is negated (they like to say 'brought to nothing') or his power is used to add to your own power in such a way that he is thrown, etc. His power can help throw him away or it can help pull him forward: you "borrow" his incoming energy to boost your own. Opponent effectively throws himself, in many cases.


I think I have no argument here. I would add that "Aiki" can be done from a distance as well, as "Aiki" can be used to lead the mind, and not just the body. But I don't see why my chair analogy, or any other definition of "Aiki" I have read doesn't agree with this one.

Aiki is the way we interact, in relationship, with another person. The main focus of "Aiki" in my opinion is to understand the rhythms of another person, and be able to interact with the rhythms. I would say time them, but you could also "root" them, avoid them, or anything else you would like. "Aiki" and "Ki Musubi" are very closely related.


Incidentally, it's worth noting that there are usually at least three levels to what a word means, but let me just take "aiki" or the english-term "blend" and note that you can "blend" with an opponent with just technique and no jin. That would be the lowest level of the term "blend" or "aiki". If you can "blend" by using intent to manipulate your forces in response to uke's attack, that is the higher level. But technically, "aiki" can denote simple techniqe and external strength or it can denote the higher level with the jin/kokyu forces.


I don't think there is anything incidental about this! I think this is basically what I have been trying to say from the beginning! You could use external strength to make an "Aiki" interaction, however that is not as refined as "high level" as using good body methods (IP/IS). Structure and alignment are a key foundation to this. I'm sure the well goes much deeper also. This is where experts in this area, like Mike Sigman, come in!

I'm so glad I've stuck with this thread!! Thank you!

gregstec
04-18-2010, 12:03 PM
I didn't intend to suggest that it was solely the hope of making money that was motivating these guys to promote Aiki to the Aikido community. I've never thought this. When I mentioned "cost," I meant the personal sacrifices, the expense of time and effort (and perhaps money, too) required to obtain their skills. Perhaps using an analogy might explain my thinking better. Imagine a guy who has discovered a hidden, jungle paradise filled with natural wonders. He tells others of the incredible place he's found and urges them to see it for themselves. Naturally, they ask him the way. Instead of simply drawing them a map of the path he has already blazed through the jungle, he says, "Oh no! I had to toil miserably for weeks to find this place! If you want to see it, only I can show you the way." Now, it is possible for people to find the paradise without having this fellow guide them there - a well-blazed path now exists - but he is insistent that only if he shows the way will they ever be able to reach his secret garden of wonders. When people suggest that they might find the way if he were to simply provide instructions for doing so, he responds by saying, "The way is complex and difficult and there is no way I could just draw a map that would properly lead you to the paradise. A map would be almost impossible to create. It would be simpler and better if I just showed you the way myself." There is a major problem with this, however. The adventurer can only lead people to his paradise at certain times and there are many who wish to see the paradise but cannot join him at these times. Although he is very strong in his encouragement of people to see his jungle garden of wonders, if they can't journey with him to where it is, well, too bad for them. Naturally, those who haven't been to the paradise but would very much like to visit it, begin to resent the constant urging of this fellow to see the paradise while at the same time throwing up impediments to doing so. They suspect very strongly that a map could be made and that more could thereby enjoy the jungle paradise without the need for a personal guide to it. As a result, the suspicion grows that the fellow urging them to see the paradise isn't really as interested in people reaching the paradise as he is in leading them there.

I guess I'm part of third group, then, since I haven't had any hands-on experience with Dan, Mike, or Ark and yet am quite convinced that Aiki skills are real.

Well, as I tried to explain above, I cannot meet "their terms." I live too far away, and have other responsibilities that greatly limit my time and finances. Also, it hasn't been that I just looked over and saw Mike and Dan and others with Aiki skills that I didn't have and insisted they give them to me for nothing. No, these guys have been pushing the Aiki stuff fairly strongly at aikidoka, going so far as to suggest that most Aikido today is devoid of any real martial power and effectiveness because it lacks Aiki. Okay. But don't tell me there's a problem and then shut the door on finding a way to resolve it.

Jon.

Jonathan,

I appreciate your points and I can understand your position on all of this and I wish I had a good answer for you, but I don't. Unfortunately, it is what it is. However, I do have a suggestion that may help for you to get a foot in the door on this stuff. By the way, I decided to personally call this stuff,"Stuff" since it appears that there will never be any universally agreed upon term for it - although Mike just made an excellent post that goes into a lot more detail on the different terms as they relate on various levels, IMO, it will always be viewed differently by different people - but Stuff is Stuff and nobody can say it is not Stuff :D

Anyway, back on track with my initial thought to you. To get a foot in the door, I recommend that you may want to consider Tohei's model on Mind and Body coordination - Although some people may think this is not the direction to go, both Dan and Mike have mentioned that Tohei was on the right track, but he did not take it further. Although most of his books are out of print, used ones are available and I believe Ki in Daily Life is still in publication. In addition, there are videos of him out there as well. These resources can provide you will all the detail on his approach along with basic exercises and tests to measure your progress. However, I believe it is still crucial to get with someone in person with the skills so you can receive supportive and/or corrective feedback on where your skills are at. Also, as mentioned, Tohei did not take this 'Stuff' to the next level, so at some point, if you want to continue your development, you will need to get with someone like Dan ,Mike, or the Ark. Good luck in you pursuit.

Greg

gregstec
04-18-2010, 12:09 PM
FWIW

I understand the conceptual relationship between "internal strength/power" and "skills" as often used in these discussions to be roughly analogous to that between "kokyu" and "aiki."

That is, they are related, but not identical, and while one concept in each pair of concepts refers to ways of generating power in movement, the other relates to employing power in a martial encounter in an effective way.

What I understand some of the "IP/IS" advocates to say about the difference between "aiki" and "ju" stems from whether the method of employing power in an encounter relies on/springs from an internal manipulation of structure, or in applying techique (waza) that manipulate the structure of uke through timing, leverage, etc.

This is where it seems the perception takes hold that timing, leverage, ma ai, etc., are of less value, since they relate to the "ju" level of the art and not what is treated as the higher, "aiki" level, despite the acknowledgement by virtually all that "jujustu" is a powerful and subtle thing.

W/ respect

All very good points and well presented.

Greg

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 12:09 PM
Not only do I agree with you, I think this is very nicely said. It's also what Tim Cartmell, and all other good internal teachers (that I'm aware of) say this stuff is. I think we are in complete agreeance here! Chris, I'm just trying to show how the terminology is sorted. People who are experts are going to understand immediately the "aiki" is usage whereas it's not really the core/basic strength.

I have no idea what Tim Cartmell knows, although I know a couple of people who studied in the same classes with him. Would you say that what you showed on the video agrees with Tim Cartmell's understanding of how internal mechanics work?
I think I have no argument here. I would add that "Aiki" can be done from a distance as well, as "Aiki" can be used to lead the mind, and not just the body. But I don't see why my chair analogy, or any other definition of "Aiki" I have read doesn't agree with this one.

Aiki is the way we interact, in relationship, with another person. The main focus of "Aiki" in my opinion is to understand the rhythms of another person, and be able to interact with the rhythms. I would say time them, but you could also "root" them, avoid them, or anything else you would like. "Aiki" and "Ki Musubi" are very closely related.
Well, bear in mind that Ueshiba called his distance throws "ki throws", not aiki. There's a reason for that. So I would disagree with you about aiki being done from a distance because it causes a conflict with the root definitions again.
I don't think there is anything incidental about this! I think this is basically what I have been trying to say from the beginning! You could use external strength to make an "Aiki" interaction, however that is not as refined as "high level" as using good body methods (IP/IS). Structure and alignment are a key foundation to this.My only comment would be to point out that Ueshiba himself pointed to the higher-level jin manipulation as the true secret of Aikido. If someone is using the baser definition of aiki/blending (i.e., physical technique), then Aikido becomes mainly undifferentiated from many other martial-arts.

Best.

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
04-18-2010, 02:55 PM
Definitely the engineering way to go is it, i believe. Not so far as the Erick goes; cause that's just blind jibberjabber tomfoolery. If it is as difficult to grasp as you admit in other terms -- what possible reason could you have to believe that is simplistic in mechanical terms...? :) If you believe that -- put a hole in it. Whether I am right or wrong -- you might learn something by trying -- and who knows, you might even put a hole in it, for which I would actually thank you... that's how things progress. :D

Mike's point about vectors (though perhaps useful by analogy) I have disagreed with because it is quite demonstrably wrong. The key thing about aiki mechanics is that they are NOT reversible by merely opposing when applied. If it were merely vectors, as Mike's training image suggests, they would be reversible -- because vectors commute ( i.e. -- it does not matter in which order they are applied -- the end result does not change) A larger vector can always counter or reverse another vector. Aiki cannot be countered that way, hence, aiki does not involve vectors.

I understand why he uses them, and analogy is useful, as long as it remains analogy. Having said all of that, the concept of jin path tracks very closely to the idea of a funicular load curve.

Real world loads and movements are more subtle, and in critical ways do not commute -- they are not linearly reversible. Though video game designers have only recently had the processing power to rediscover the importance of this point for discrete movement and the limits of linear vector matrices -- this problem has been known since 1843, when Hamilton carved the formula into a stone bridge in Dublin.

One does not have to calculate maths on the mat to understand the consequence of this fact practically and conceptually -- when a bridge column buckles it is not reversible -- and when the applied dynamic is cyclic (a bouncing truck over the bridge, for example) its angle of departure from the centerline is not trivially predictable (i.e. -- Mike's use of pure statics has a similarly limited utility -- not useless -- but limited.). Mike studied engineering -- I was an naval aviator with a physics background. The thing is -- things really are different in a dynamic frame of reference. Hamilton's point confirms something about practical uses of relative motion in the real world -- because even "static" frames of reference are affected by related dynamic problems at critical junctures. And martial art is nothing if not interested in critical junctures.

The difference is YOU can actually check up on the concepts that I use, from independent sources that are in general agreement as to what they mean. I can't hide behind jargon -- because it is not MY jargon -- it is straightforward mechanical vocabulary -- if you trouble to understand it -- or not, as you prefer -- it is perfectly accessible.

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 03:39 PM
Mike's point about vectors (though perhaps useful by analogy) I have disagreed with because it is quite demonstrably wrong. The key thing about aiki mechanics is that they are NOT reversible by merely opposing when applied. If it were merely vectors, as Mike's training image suggests, they would be reversible -- because vectors commute ( i.e. -- it does not matter in which order they are applied -- the end result does not change) A larger vector can always counter or reverse another vector. Aiki cannot be countered that way, hence, aiki does not involve vectors.
[snip]
I understand why he uses them, and analogy is useful, as long as it remains analogy. Having said all of that, the concept of jin path tracks very closely to the idea of a funicular load curve.I think the problem here is that whatever it is that you're doing, it's not what I'm doing. Statics is a great way to look at these things and Ueshiba and Tohei both spent a lot of time showing static examples of how these skills (at a basic level) work. Take a look at all the examples of static "ki demonstrations" they both used. If static analyses are just not the right thing to do, tell it to Ueshiba.

I have a pretty good idea where you're hung up, after watching the trend of your math/physical examples for while, and I think you'd be extremely happy with Chen Xin's book, "Chen Family Taijiquan". When it comes to reeling-silk and some of the physical mechanics, I think you will have found your Holy Grail because it addresses (obscurely, unfortunately) many of the same things you're interested in.

The problem is that those aspects of ki mechanics (remember, I've always stipulated that I broke the analysis of ki mechanics into two parts for ease of discussion and "jin" is only part of the story) we have never really broached on this forum. I'll cut to the chase by saying that it's impossible to discuss that aspect of body mechanics if you don't understand the part that starts off with simple vector analysis (vectors are very good for incremental analysis, too, BTW). If you understood the jin/kokyu part, I think I would have caught it after all these years, because I've looked for it.

Over the years a number of people have suggested that you meet up with someone with some skills (of whatever level) and get the conversation started. Frankly, as long as I know (from experience) it takes to get good skills, I'm sort of bemused at how many people sit perched on this forum thinking that this is just some sort of "once I see it, I'll know it and have it" exercise.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

dps
04-18-2010, 03:58 PM
Excerpt from the article,

"The Mechanics of Martial Arts"

"The symbol of strength for western culture is the Greek god, Atlas. After a mythical war between the Olympians and Titans, Atlas, one of the losers, was condemned to stand as a pillar and support the universe on his shoulders for all eternity (Figure 1).
ImageFigure 1. Atlas holding the world

Following this model, strength, in western thought, is characterized as a rigid, unyielding and unmovable column. Western thought has the rigid column, the lever, and brute force, all concepts familiar to us since childhood when we built our first stack of blocks, rode a seesaw and smashed our first toy. In eastern thought, strength comes from deep within and is flexible, yielding and mobile; it flows. This difference in philosophy of strength is expressed in a difference in approach to combat sports. But eastern philosophy has not had a physical model for martial arts that a western trained mind could wrap a thought around. That is, not until biotensegrity."


"Much of what seems unexplainable about the forces generated in martial arts are readily explained when the body is understood as a biotensegrity structure rather than as the common western post and lintel model."
http://www.biotensegrity.com/martial_arts_mechanics.php

David

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 04:06 PM
this was fun > excerpt from Advanced Silk Reeling 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZDGW4_vm-sA)On a 1-to-10 I'd only give that explanation a 5. I didn't want to start a tangent on reeling-silk, BTW, although some years from now the larger conversation in Aikido will have to deal with it peripherally. RS is not completely in the Aikido bailiwick (although it's not completely missing, either, IMO).

The overarching point in my comment to Erick is that I think his definition of "aiki" is just too far removed from the discussion the discussion. "Aiki" can be demonstrated statically, so that's the best place, IMO, to start the definitions. Some of Mark Murray's attempts to show skills would fall into good 'video definition' categories if, in my opinion, he could get away from the very subjective descriptions he attaches to his actions.

I still like the one-legged-stance picture of the Tohei students. A very great bit of information can be deduced from that picture:

http://www.neijia.com/OneLegPushOriginal.jpg

Here, I'll kick off the analysis:

http://www.neijia.com/OneLegPush.jpg

FWIW

Mike Sigman

C. David Henderson
04-18-2010, 04:13 PM
Hi Chris,

Thanks for your reply; please call me "David."

I think I understand what you are saying based on the distinctions you've made, not only here, but in a related thread.

I'm glad, for one, that I've gotten clear enough on what you mean that I feel I get what you're saying.

I don't know what to call it, except perhaps,"takemusu aiki," but your comments make me recall footage of O Sensei in randori (I recall in particular a stop-motion time analysis someone did that got posted on Aikido Journal).

That level of art, in any event, does seem almost magical in combining power and movement in the midst of chaos.

My guess is that using different "movement grammars," the best martial artists develop overlapping abilities on this level.

Ironic, in a way.

My sense is that what you mean by "ju" involves the sort of body skills that good grapplers tend to share. I think those skills can overlap with the skills the IP/IS adhernent would consider constituent parts of the skill sets they aim to develop.

BTW, my sincere thanks to you and Mark for posting videos.

Regards,

Keith Larman
04-18-2010, 06:16 PM
If you're referring to this image...
http://www.neijia.com/OneLegPushOriginal.jpg

...then, I think the one standing on one leg is Iwao Tamura.

Ding ding!

Sorry to resurrect this older aspect of the thread, but since the image has come up again... Yes, it is Tamura. I spoke with Rod Kobayashi's family including someone who trained a lot with Tohei back in Japan at that time and they said that yes, it looked a lot like Kobayashi but it was in fact another student of Tohei's -- Tamura (who was a good friend of Kobayashi as well as an aside). They also talked about dusting off and working on some of the more varied ki tests they used to do "back in the day". So I'm hoping to see more sometime soon.

Just fwiw. Now back to your regularly scheduled discussion. All in the interest of historic accuracy and credit where credit is due.

It is Tamura.

gregstec
04-18-2010, 06:53 PM
Here, I'll kick off the analysis:

http://www.neijia.com/OneLegPush.jpg

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Gee, Mike, how does that line get from the center straight to the hand without going through the shoulder and arm? ;)

Greg

oisin bourke
04-18-2010, 07:09 PM
I was thinking about the other part of it. How is the force conducted along the leg to the foot? What part of the foot should bear the pressure?

HL1978
04-18-2010, 07:18 PM
Gee, Mike, how does that line get from the center straight to the hand without going through the shoulder and arm? ;)

Greg

i know you're joking but....

The way the drawing is shown has meaning, in part with respect to what the pusher is feeling (and its relationship to how its being generated).

So why might that drawing bypass the shoulder and arm and go directly to the hand?

raul rodrigo
04-18-2010, 07:23 PM
In that example, the pusher can feel the difference between the pushee using his shoulder or not. What he should feel, ideally, is a path of force rising from the ground--a groundpath, in Mike's terms.

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 07:27 PM
The red line is the line from the ground to the hand. The force to the hand from the middle is a vector force. How do you utilize the force from the ground in this way and control it? How do you bypass the shoulder? What happens to the "stable base" you'd normally need and want in a 2-legged stance? Why don't you need one now? How does the upper-body 'structure' support what's going on?

Here's a chance for all the people that already know these things to show how well they know them. ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

phitruong
04-18-2010, 07:32 PM
Here's a chance for all the people that already know these things to show how well they know them. ;)

Mike Sigman

what is this? a pop quiz? do i get to graduate afterward or have to go back one grade? :)

Erick Mead
04-18-2010, 07:33 PM
I think the problem here is that whatever it is that you're doing, it's not what I'm doing. You seem very sure of that for someone who says I can't judge by what you write what it is you are doing -- sauce for the goose, etc. I have seen several of your videos, and they are what my concepts -- developed from my own observations -- (over the last twenty five years of training) lead me to expect. Certainly, I find nothing surprising -- but in fairness you illustrate basics -- I just have a different way of looking at the way those can be described.

Statics is a great way to look at these things and Ueshiba and Tohei both spent a lot of time showing static examples of how these skills (at a basic level) work. Take a look at all the examples of static "ki demonstrations" they both used. If static analyses are just not the right thing to do, tell it to Ueshiba. Like I said, it is useful, but as analogy not actually as descriptive. It is perfectly useful (though essentially false) to assume the same kind of static balance about lift, drag and thrust equilibrium on a wing as well -- until you are close to the stall margin -- in which the useful assumption and the actual fact collide with unpleasant results.

We are talking about something more akin to that kind of dynamic equilibrium than the static load on a cathedral buttress. In point of fact, the purpose of the discussion is about making such ideas about support -- and the structures they rely on -- collapse catastrophically.

I'll cut to the chase by saying that it's impossible to discuss that aspect of body mechanics if you don't understand the part that starts off with simple vector analysis (vectors are very good for incremental analysis, too, BTW). If you understood the jin/kokyu part, I think I would have caught it after all these years, because I've looked for it.You assume too much. I have moved somewhat past incremental analysis, to simply improvising on the spot according to these principles that I describe. Personally, I don't see a distinction in what you have pointed out -- nor in any of your videos -- to address the thread topic specifically. Please feel free to point out one that I have missed that illustrates your point or my deficiency in your eyes more particularly.

But more to the point -- I have made a conscious point not to try to delve into your uses of jin as an operative concept -- not because it is not sensible (it is, and very deep in the kind of traditions of correlation data I spoke of earlier), but simply because it would only substitute the same basic category of understanding as the Japanese have -- but in Chinese terminology. In other words, nothing new is to be gained in that effort -- and much is to be gained in a true analytic description. The point was never the analysis itself, but to make a sound foundation for a proper Western understanding to describe and extend physical intuitions developed in training (and to check them).

phitruong
04-18-2010, 07:36 PM
don't forget, the red arrow go in the opposite direction and meet the green. it's not just accepting/receiving.

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 07:55 PM
what is this? a pop quiz? do i get to graduate afterward or have to go back one grade? :)No, let some of the people who use terms like "extend ki", etc., have a chance to objectively think about what is going on. There are people who 'know good internal strength when they see it'... here's a chance to objectively figure out just the basics. Here's a chance for people to explain how or why they think of something like "six directions" for something this simple. And so on. Because the two people in the figure are not moving, then all forces cancel out... should be an easy figure, but there are a number of very deep details that can be inferred just from that one picture.

There's a reason for the adage about "steal this technique". It means that you have to figure out what is really happening; i.e., a person has to be smart enough to figure these things out traditionally. And this is a classic situation where people can show if they're adept at stealing techniques. ;)

Best.

Mike

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 08:10 PM
You seem very sure ...I am. So are a number of people, Erick. If you have moved so far beyond all this, then I'm sure you can do a very nice breakdown of the one-legged stand photo and what it infers. It infers a lot. The only problem is that if someone doesn't really understand simple jin/kokyu, how it's done, and the other questions I posed (there are even more), then they're only going to be able to fumble around.

Essentially, you think Aikido is about moving. Think back to Ueshiba and Tenryu in the static situation.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

ChrisHein
04-18-2010, 08:17 PM
Hey Mike,
What were you referencing when you said Ueshiba called his distance throws "ki throws"?

Erick Mead
04-18-2010, 08:17 PM
The red line is the line from the ground to the hand. The force to the hand from the middle is a vector force. No. It isn't a vector and it isn't a force. The vertical shear resulting from the connection creates a pseudo-vector, you could call it, but it simply is the sum of both the weights, his push and the resultant shear -- not of two forces, and thus not of two independent vectors -- the shear exists only as long and in proportion to the amount he pushes and you control the eccentricity of the connection. Control the eccentricity and so control his attack. The amount of applied displacement is very slight -- and grossly disproportionate to the shear that results -- and vectors simply don't do that.

To topple the target requires (in your diagram) a counterclockwise moment about the point of support. There is no countering force other than gravity and there is no counter vector -- because the perpendicular shear keeps the push from being applied into developing an actual toppling moment. Vertical (more properly perpendicular) shear at the connection "eats" the applied moment of the push into another plane of action, and draws the moving side out of equilibrium -- and it does not matter whether the shear is up or down (or sideways for that matter) -- or -- all of the above cyclically in sharp alternation. See Ikeda. The latter can also be a larger but partial cycle in the shear plane, creating a unresolved torque in the pushing arm along the line of push -- which is what Gleason is doing in that video with the push to his chest.

The shoulder isn't doing anything except being a hinge -- it's good at that.

Erick Mead
04-18-2010, 08:32 PM
... I'm sure you can do a very nice breakdown of the one-legged stand photo and what it infers. It infers a lot. ... Essentially, you think Aikido is about moving. Think back to Ueshiba and Tenryu in the static situation. I appreciate your confidence. It implies -- but you infer -- and the same applies to Ueshiba. Compressing a connection and shearing it is the same as being pushed and shearing it -- which is the same as tautening a connection and shearing it. Compression or tension are the same for responding in shear because shear always has both -- always -- inyo-ho -- perpendicular to one another -- juuji, and when they reach a physical limit or discontinuity they simply swap signs -- kokyu ryoku.
.

gregstec
04-18-2010, 08:55 PM
i know you're joking but....

The way the drawing is shown has meaning, in part with respect to what the pusher is feeling (and its relationship to how its being generated).

So why might that drawing bypass the shoulder and arm and go directly to the hand?

Yeah, that's me question, how does the pushee do that ...:)

gregstec
04-18-2010, 09:00 PM
Here's a chance for all the people that already know these things to show how well they know them. ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Well, I think Erick would just lay some type of quantum formula on us - I think it is just fricking magic - but Tohei might just call it ki...:)

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 09:03 PM
No. It isn't a vector and it isn't a force. The vertical shear resulting from the connection creates a pseudo-vector, you could call it, but it simply is the sum of both the weights, his push and the resultant shear -- not of two forces, and thus not of two independent vectors -- the shear exists only as long and in proportion to the amount he pushes and you control the eccentricity of the connection. Control the eccentricity and so control his attack. The amount of applied displacement is very slight -- and grossly disproportionate to the shear that results -- and vectors simply don't do that.

To topple the target requires (in your diagram) a counterclockwise moment about the point of support. There is no countering force other than gravity and there is no counter vector -- because the perpendicular shear keeps the push from being applied into developing an actual toppling moment. Vertical (more properly perpendicular) shear at the connection "eats" the applied moment of the push into another plane of action, and draws the moving side out of equilibrium -- and it does not matter whether the shear is up or down (or sideways for that matter) -- or -- all of the above cyclically in sharp alternation. See Ikeda. The latter can also be a larger but partial cycle in the shear plane, creating a unresolved torque in the pushing arm along the line of push -- which is what Gleason is doing in that video with the push to his chest.

The shoulder isn't doing anything except being a hinge -- it's good at that.Let me table this one for the moment, Erick. It seems to be mostly chaff in terms of the real "what's going on" analysis and quite frankly you're making a mountain out of a molehill. I'll come back to it sometime, perhaps. You're missing the point and you didn't really address *how* to do anything at all.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 09:20 PM
Yeah, that's me question, how does the pushee do that ...:)Well, why not tell us your analysis, Greg? Look at pusher's general angle of push. Something has to meet it and from a certain direction in order to keep everything in stasis. How does pushee do it? "Extend ki"? How does it work? ;)

Oh.... it works in the same way that Ueshiba stopped Tenryu, BTW. But if you know how it works, there are more sophisticated variations. Shioda liked to play with variations a lot. That's why he has some obscure (and often improbable in terms of actual effectiveness) on a lot of his old films.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 09:21 PM
Hey Mike,
What were you referencing when you said Ueshiba called his distance throws "ki throws"?It's a tangent to the subject, Chris. I'll try to p.m. you something when I get a minute (maybe tomorrow if not tonight).

Best.

Mike

ChrisHein
04-18-2010, 09:37 PM
I'm not trying to be rude here, but most of what is being said is tangent to the subject.

You guys are talking about the finer, or grosser points of alignment, and that seems like the subject matter of a different thread all together.

This should be a thread discussing "Aiki" definitions, and other related terms via video.

I'm really not trying to be a jerk, but we are WAY off the subject here. Siting Ueshiba, in reference to what he would or would not call "Aiki" is much closer to the main subject of this thread.

thisisnotreal
04-18-2010, 09:51 PM
You think that's off topic? How's this< (http://i.imgur.com/uYnyz.jpg) for off topic? Mad scientist analyzing groundpath forces, upside down, with furry little cats and rats with magnets on their feet. booyaah. offtopic + 10

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 10:12 PM
I'm not trying to be rude here, but most of what is being said is tangent to the subject.

You guys are talking about the finer, or grosser points of alignment, and that seems like the subject matter of a different thread all together.

This should be a thread discussing "Aiki" definitions, and other related terms via video.

I'm really not trying to be a jerk, but we are WAY off the subject here. Siting Ueshiba, in reference to what he would or would not call "Aiki" is much closer to the main subject of this thread.Chris, it's exactly on topic. Why do you think Tohei and Ueshiba kept showing these static examples? These static examples are the basis for the dynamic examples using the same skills; everything is interrelated.

Notice how the one-legged stance doesn't require the spine and things you asserted as your view of how these things work. You asked a question and there's your answer, if you can figure out how the one-legged stance and structure actually work. If the intent can rig that structure for stasis it can also rig force situations where when Uke attacks with a force he is immediately negated or is thrown by his own force. That's what "aiki" is. However I'm aware that a number of people reading this already knew the answer.

If you're set on the idea that "aiki" is something that must be what you've already defined it to be, that's fine. But can you explain how the one-legged stance thing works? Why do you think Tohei and Ueshiba kept showing these kinds of examples? Something to pass the time? ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

bob_stra
04-18-2010, 10:15 PM
I'm not trying to be rude here, but most of what is being said is tangent to the subject.

You guys are talking about the finer, or grosser points of alignment, and that seems like the subject matter of a different thread all together.

This should be a thread discussing "Aiki" definitions, and other related terms via video.

I'm really not trying to be a jerk, but we are WAY off the subject here. Siting Ueshiba, in reference to what he would or would not call "Aiki" is much closer to the main subject of this thread.

On the other hand, if Aiki = unification of forces, then the one legged thing seems pretty much exactly that, done statically.

ICBW

Mike Sigman
04-18-2010, 10:29 PM
This should be a thread discussing "Aiki" definitions, and other related terms via video.
Incidentally, even though to the untrained eye a person might think that Ikeda Sensei is doing something different than the one-legged stand photo, all of his demonstrations of aiki ... even some of the very exotic-appearing ones... are based on the same principle as the one-legged stand photo. So are the exotic-appearing ones done by Saotomi Sensei that are on film (from last Summer) on George Ledyard's site. People get hung up on the physical technique, the "timing", the entry, the turning, etc., and miss the basic principle. With the basic principle you don't have to rely on technique.

No takers on how the one-legged stance works? Tut tut. ;)

FWIW

Mike

ChrisHein
04-18-2010, 11:34 PM
Just when I thought we were making headway...

I can do the one leg stance, I did it the other day in class. Back leg first then front leg. How does it work? I align my body, or more directly the force coming into my body into the ground.

I can't do it with as hard of a push as I can the other variation I showed, but I'd guess thats just a matter of practice. Although I'm amazed at how much better my alignment has gotten over the years even though I haven't been practicing it.

So Mike you think Alignment and structure (as I call it) is "Aiki"? That is, as long as someone is pushing on you, and you physically root that into the ground, it's "Aiki". Is that what you are saying? Before you were talking about blending, which is a much better description of "Aiki" as far as I understand it. Now you are talking about rooting again.

dps
04-18-2010, 11:39 PM
The Aiki starts at the connection of Tamura's hand and Tohei's wrist.

http://i44.tinypic.com/168eg0i.jpg

Notice the shape of Tohei's hand.


David

dps
04-18-2010, 11:46 PM
Notice Tohei's arm is not straight.

http://s5.tinypic.com/11t954x_th.jpg

David

dps
04-19-2010, 12:05 AM
Tamura's arm is not horizontal.

http://i40.tinypic.com/sxlsf6.jpg

David

dps
04-19-2010, 12:06 AM
Notice Tohei's arm is not straight.

http://s5.tinypic.com/11t954x_th.jpg

David

Here is a better picture.

http://i41.tinypic.com/11t954x.jpg

dps
04-19-2010, 12:54 AM
By Tohei curving his wrist he is adding tension to the fascia that runs along the top of the arm

http://www.anatomytrains.com/explore/galleries/show/id/200?page=2

connects to the fascia that runs down the back of the body

http://www.anatomytrains.com/explore/galleries/show/id/160?page=2

eventually end up connected to the facia that runs along the bottom of the foot

(http://www.anatomytrains.com/explore/galleries/show/id/160?page=5 ).

The added tension in the fascia increases its structural integrity.
The force of Tamua's push is transmitted along this fascia line to the ground.
This does not use any tension in the muscles other than the normal resting tension of the muscles.

David

raul rodrigo
04-19-2010, 01:21 AM
David, what role does the dantien play in your analysis? Is it all a matter of fascia?

dps
04-19-2010, 02:05 AM
David, what role does the dantien play in your analysis? Is it all a matter of fascia?

Since it is a static demo the center is where the transfer of the push from the fascia running down your back to your legs to the ground.

If you maintain whole body connection from the waist up, as your center moves so will any point on your body from the waist up, like a pantograph.

If you scribe a circle in space with your center so will any point on your body above the waist.


In the picture above when Tamura pushes on Tohei's wrist his push is adding tension to the already tense fascia adding to its structural integrity, by Tohei's design. Aiki.

bob_stra
04-19-2010, 02:20 AM
I'm leery of saying anything that can later bite me in the ass - and make me appear even more of shmuck then I am - but perhaps the following can be used to illustrate the logic

Let's define aiki as 'unification of forces' (I'm aware there are other translations of ki, but simplicities sake, let's use 'force.' Unification implies an means to an end as well - neutralize, project etc)

If person A is standing on one foot and person B pushes on him (which is a demo to show the principle)...and person A doesn't topple over - then the static equilibrium must be maintained. The question is - how does A generate the counter-balancing forces? For example, if B pushes with 400Nm of force, how can A provide a counter-acting force from a compromised (ie: not in ideal alignment) position? Where is that 'strength' generated from?

If you can grok the 'how' of that, then the following should make perfect sense (even though it doesn't explicitly tell you 'how to'. Personally, I watch clips with volume off the first time - you may to try that).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RLB9TxuQ4kk

(it's all good viewing, though 3:20 may be especially obvious)

From there, agete etc should be an obvious extrapolation

As always - ICBW

dps
04-19-2010, 02:31 AM
[QUOTE=Bob Strahinjevich;255884]

If person A is standing on one foot and person B pushes on him...and person A doesn't topple over - then the static equilibrium must be maintained. The question is - how does A generate the counter-balancing forces? For example, if B pushes with 400Nm of force, how can A provide a counter-acting force from a compromised (ie: not in ideal alignment) position?

[/QUOTE

If A can direct the force so that at the point of contact his foot has with the ground the forces is completely vertical he will not have to generate any counter force.

The force from B reinforces the facia's structure.


David

bob_stra
04-19-2010, 02:51 AM
If A can direct the force so that at the point of contact his foot has with the ground the forces is completely vertical he will not have to generate any counter force.

The force from B reinforces the facia's structure.

David

Be that as it may, the next person to use the 'fascia' buzzword in this discussion gets a picture of Joey Karate in his underwear as a prize

Second place - two pictures

:D

jss
04-19-2010, 02:55 AM
So Mike you think Alignment and structure (as I call it) is "Aiki"? That is, as long as someone is pushing on you, and you physically root that into the ground, it's "Aiki". Is that what you are saying? Before you were talking about blending, which is a much better description of "Aiki" as far as I understand it. Now you are talking about rooting again.

Technically you can call just grounding a push as "aiki" because you are essentially blending your intent-derived force with uke's.

Here's one way of putting it.
When you ground a push, you blend your force with the pusher's force so that they add up to zero. (Think vectors here.) When you 'aiki' a push, you blend your force with the pusher's force so that they add up to more than zero. How much above zero you need the sum to be, depends on what you want to do and where you're aiming the resultant vector at.
And that's why you can say that grounding is the most simple example of aiki. However, to be honest, I think that's clarifying some aspects at the expense of others, but YMMV.

p.s.: The above is also the reason that 'alignment' and 'structure' may be misleading terms. You can chance from grounding a push to 'aiki-ing' a push without overt movement. (It's all done internally! :eek:) One's definitions of 'alignment' and 'structure' may allow for that or not.
p.p.s.: I realize that I'm saying that aiki = blending, but am not using the words as synonyms in the above post. Couldn't think of a better word.

jss
04-19-2010, 02:57 AM
If A can direct the force so that at the point of contact his foot has with the ground the forces is completely vertical he will not have to generate any counter force.
But is that physically possible?

dps
04-19-2010, 03:20 AM
Be that as it may, the next person to use the 'fascia' buzzword in this discussion gets a picture of Joey Karate in his underwear as a prize

Second place - two pictures

:D
Does Joey have an older prettier sister?

David

phitruong
04-19-2010, 06:45 AM
if you freeze the play of this video at around 12 sec mark, you will see Ikeda sensei on a one-legged stand with his structure and position completely blown http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaLBxrv6Wh4&feature=related
so for folks who think aiki is structure, you might want to revise that thinking.

btw, i have seen him, Ikeda sensei, with my own eyes did that same stunt with two big ukes hold on to him.

Mike Sigman
04-19-2010, 08:59 AM
Wow. Some really good discussion stuff.

David S. made a couple of good observations about the forces must balance out (very correct, of course) and one about the hand (which isn't important in the way David mentioned, but worth a closer look). The one thing I'd say about the hand conjunction between Uke and Nage is that if you look at that area and look at the lean of Uke, you can get a reasonably idea of the direction of the force he's applying to Nage. Essentially, Nage has to exactly meet and reply with a force and direction exactly counter to the incoming force. If Nage does that well, the one-legged stance demonstration is obvious in roughly how it works.

But there are a number of ways that a replication of the demonstration might look (to the casual observer) like it's the same thing while in actuality it's not.

First of all, Uke can collude too much. Secondly, Nage may not really be generating his responding force from low in his body and may be adding parts of the response from a too-stiff lower back, shoulder muscle, a forward lean, and so on. If I saw 10 people do a re-enactment of that demonstration, I'd be 9.8 of them would be adding elements like I just mentioned. Few people can generate force from low in the body without being taught how.

Secondly, if you look at Nage's shoulder, there is a force there because Uke's incoming force has a downward component. How do you handle the force at the shoulder without just tensing the shoulder? That's a very important point.

BTW, this *is* just a static example allows people to look at the forces, etc., involved. Doing all of the correct things while moving and while controlling the forces from the middle would be the next big step. Doing all of these things in the midst of good Aikido technique would be a further step. But if the basics are wrong, the wrongness will carry forward into the techniques.

Joep's comment about letting forces add fruitfully to more than zero is the key to "aiki" and the key to proper technique. Take a look at some of the instances in the good Ikeda vid that Phi points to.... Ikeda uses a slight "add forces to more than zero in a bad direction for Uke" that causes uke to off-balance and drop. That is "aiki".

FWIW

Mike Sigman

gregstec
04-19-2010, 09:03 AM
Well, why not tell us your analysis, Greg? Look at pusher's general angle of push. Something has to meet it and from a certain direction in order to keep everything in stasis. How does pushee do it? "Extend ki"? How does it work? ;)

Oh.... it works in the same way that Ueshiba stopped Tenryu, BTW. But if you know how it works, there are more sophisticated variations. Shioda liked to play with variations a lot. That's why he has some obscure (and often improbable in terms of actual effectiveness) on a lot of his old films.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Well, I don't have a clue as to how all this is working on a sub-atomic physical level; I will leave that to Erick :) However, I think I can explain how Tohei would present it. First, I would like to mention that there has been a lot of posts explaining how to route uke's jin to ground. In my opinion, I think you need to bring ground to his jin to neutralize it.

In order to understand Tohei's view on this, you must understand that Tohei's Mind and Body Coordination approach was very Ki centric; every thing he talked about was centered around Ki. So, it is important to look at Tohei's view on Ki, which he viewed as an actual substance that was in all things that could be controlled by the mind. As been mentioned before, since jin is a physical manifestation of ki, the mind leads the ki that manifests into physical jin, which is uke's push in this picture.

With that in mind, we see that Uke's push comes into nage at the nexus of contact, the hand/wrist area. At this point, Nage can simply push back at the same point with his jin (a totally physical approach where the strongest will win) or he can route uke's jin to ground with structural alignment (which can be physical as well) or he can bring his jin to Uke to neutralize uke's jin before it enters nage. At this point, Nage can connect with uke and take his center to help establish a neutral balance between the two. Also, to do this with Tohei's model, nage blends with uke's ki and simply extends it along with his own ki from his center back to uke at the nexus - this is what I think is being shown with Mike's line from center to hand.

This can also be accomplished by simply extending ki from your center into uke's center and then trough uke to some point beyond him - this concept is what was taught when performing techniques. Some say to just extend ki into uke's center to take it, but I was taught to extend trough uke, this is much more powerful when performing a technique because uke does not have a clue as to what is happening because he can not feel anything to resist.

So now the question is how to extend ki - sorry, but I tried to explain that in another post without too much success. However, I think the main point here is to realize that there is more going on that just the physical body alignments to this push and that there is an equally important mental part that not too many get into with these posts about Aiki IS/IP, or as I call it, Stuff -

As others say: FWIW and YMMV :)

Greg

Mike Sigman
04-19-2010, 09:18 AM
This can also be accomplished by simply extending ki from your center into uke's center and then trough uke to some point beyond him - this concept is what was taught when performing techniques. Some say to just extend ki into uke's center to take it, but I was taught to extend trough uke, this is much more powerful when performing a technique because uke does not have a clue as to what is happening because he can not feel anything to resist.

So now the question is how to extend ki - sorry, but I tried to explain that in another post without too much success. However, I think the main point here is to realize that there is more going on that just the physical body alignments to this push and that there is an equally important mental part that not too many get into with these posts about Aiki IS/IP, or as I call it, Stuff -

OK, but regardless of all the ki jargon, these things ultimately can all be analyzed in physical terms. I can personally to a lot trickier things than we're talking about in this picture and I can shift forces and directions at will (and more tricks yet), but the key to understanding and to set up a basis for definitions is to find a common parlance. I think western physics is better suited than the ki paradigm, overall.

If someone says something is "ki" or "jin" or etc., I first try to make that person tell me in some way at least vaguely related to western physics what they're talking about. Then, up to a point, I can communicate. It's better in person because then you can occasionally stop and say, "Show me what you're talking about".

And many people theorize with little or no real abilities, too... that's a big problem. Vague terms like "extend ki" from someone who only has poor skills are meaningless. Someone who has good skills should be able to logically describe at least the general elements of what is going on in terms that other people can understand.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
04-19-2010, 09:23 AM
You're missing the point and you didn't really address *how* to do anything at all."How" is simply sending the push elsewhere -- which takes practice -- and on which there is, I think, no debate. While a counter-push would indeed end the push elsewhere also, and WOULD be a vector, a counter push exposes your structure to the push and sufficient impulse will topple you. A response in pure shear does not expose your structure and sends the entirety of the push elsewhere.

"What" to practice takes understanding. Once you understand it, Shear can be seen, felt and understood -- and practiced. Shear is a systemic condition caused by applied force -- but not an applied force itself. I am saying nothing new, nor indeed different from what you intend with your explanations of jin etc. -- I am simply saying it ina way that doesn't involve the mediation of three languages and two foreign cultures to do it.

The trick is to see and follow shape of the resulting condition without having to add force -- or conversely, to apply just a little force to create that systemic condition you wish to exploit, and then exploiting that -- not adding more force.

The last bit in Ikeda's video -- starting at 00:57 -- he creates the shear without almost no force in their connections at all -- which requires a generating movement. If they had been pushing into the connection, he would have buckled them where they stood with an almost negligible wrist twitch -- because they created the shear he then used -- requiring almost nothing at all from him but redirection.

The bit at 00:12 - 00:15 he exaggerates to show the shape of the dynamic that redirects it -- which he usually employs in a sharply compressed pulse into a live connection that involves barely any movement at all. Compare what Gleason did in the expansive shape responding to the chest push.

Incidentally, even though to the untrained eye a person might think that Ikeda Sensei is doing something different than the one-legged stand photo, all of his demonstrations of aiki ... even some of the very exotic-appearing ones... are based on the same principle as the one-legged stand photo. I believe I said that.

Mike Sigman
04-19-2010, 09:47 AM
"How" is simply sending the push elsewhere -- which takes practice -- and on which there is, I think, no debate. The question is how, though. While we're talking about "forces", it sounds simple, but it's not.
"What" to practice takes understanding. Once you understand it, Shear can be seen, felt and understood -- and practiced. Shear is a systemic condition caused by applied force -- but not an applied force itself. I am saying nothing new, nor indeed different from what you intend with your explanations of jin etc. -- I am simply saying it ina way that doesn't involve the mediation of three languages and two foreign cultures to do it. I understand quite well what shear is, but I'd prefer to keep the discussion in as simple terms as possible. While a shear is applicable in some of the discussions, in reality more happens than that, so rather than get into a needlessly intricate description (like a college sophomore writing a wordy English paper), I'd prefer to talk about forces and vectors. Sort of a minimalist set of terms that can be enjoyed by the most people. [/quote]
The trick is to see and follow shape of the resulting condition without having to add force -- or conversely, to apply just a little force to create that systemic condition you wish to exploit, and then exploiting that -- not adding more force. [/quote] "to apply just a little force"... and "not adding more force"? You can't do both. Besides, most times you add a little bit of force in technique, even though ideally it's minimal, in good technique. The "how" to source and generate forces is critical to the discussion. There's no way to stand and present a shear without generating some forces within the body, so it's simpler to just say "forces".
The last bit in Ikeda's video -- starting at 00:57 -- he creates the shear without almost no force in their connections at all -- which requires a generating movement. If they had been pushing into the connection, he would have buckled them where they stood with an almost negligible wrist twitch -- because they created the shear he then used -- requiring almost nothing at all from him but redirection. So how do you redirect while "sinking your ki"? Then how do you move dynamically while doing those things?

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
04-19-2010, 11:34 AM
.... the key to understanding and to set up a basis for definitions is to find a common parlance. I think western physics is better suited than the ki paradigm, overall. Amen and Hallelujah. FWIW, vectors, historically, are degenerated forms of Hamilton's quaternions. Assymmetries matter because the order of action changes the result (non-commutative):

A simple exercise of applying two rotations to an asymmetrical object (e.g., a book) can explain it. First, rotate a book 90 degrees clockwise around the z axis. Next flip it 180 degrees around the x axis and memorize the result. Then restore the original orientation, so that the book title is again readable, and apply those rotations in opposite order. Compare the outcome to the earlier result. This shows that, in general, the composition of two different rotations around two distinct spatial axes will not commute.

Mostly, vectors work the same in the case of gross rotations -- but not in dealing with assymmetries, (like, say, gravity) -- or at cusps or reversal points. Like navigating close to a pole -- the grid references change scale (or sign in the case of assymetry) too fast to disregard and small changes in inputs have increasingly disproportionate outputs. Since that area of critical change is what we are interested in -- it makes sense that vectors, as such, become less and less useful at those critical points -- even though they are related.

gregstec
04-19-2010, 11:35 AM
OK, but regardless of all the ki jargon, these things ultimately can all be analyzed in physical terms. I can personally to a lot trickier things than we're talking about in this picture and I can shift forces and directions at will (and more tricks yet), but the key to understanding and to set up a basis for definitions is to find a common parlance. I think western physics is better suited than the ki paradigm, overall.

I can't disagree with this, but since there is no agreed upon definition of ki in western physics, I can only relate to what was taught to me and how it was presented. Sorry, but I am afraid I will have to leave the physics to those much smarter than me in that area - like Erick :)

If someone says something is "ki" or "jin" or etc., I first try to make that person tell me in some way at least vaguely related to western physics what they're talking about. Then, up to a point, I can communicate. It's better in person because then you can occasionally stop and say, "Show me what you're talking about".

OK - for Jin, I look at it like this: " basic jin derives it's power from either the solid support of the ground (up, opening power) or from the weight of the body (down, closing power)." - more or less a physical force manifested by ki/chi that can be felt. As for Ki, please see my post above - if there was an agreed upon definition for ki, I don't think we would be having this discussion :) so, I have to look at it from Tohei's perspective if I am following his model. Absolutely agree 'it is better in person' - I believe that is an underlying theme throughout this thread as well as other threads on this "Stuff" :)

And many people theorize with little or no real abilities, too... that's a big problem. Vague terms like "extend ki" from someone who only has poor skills are meaningless. Someone who has good skills should be able to logically describe at least the general elements of what is going on in terms that other people can understand.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Fair enough statement, but to present an extend ki process is not that easy, it just is not that black and white of a description since it is very subjective within the mental realm - I mean, just how do you explain to someone in detail the process on how you think. With that said, I will try to elaborate as best I can. Since I use Tohei's model, I first visualize ki as a substance and try to see it in my mind's eye where it exists within my body as well as external to my body. Since the mind can control ki, the next step is to use mental intent to actually move and project ki internally as well as externally; again it is important to actually visualize this happening when doing it. Of course, you have to follow Tohei's other principles of Mind and Body Coordination at the same time. This is basically the mental process I follow when extending ki as taught by Tohei. Now as far as that actually being the way everything is working within the definitions of western physics? I have no clue nor I am qualified to even speculate to any deep extent. All I know is that I have had positive physical and verbal feedback during in person exchanges with people that had no idea I was extending ki as taught by Tohei - all they thought was that I was using mental intent in the exercises since that was the term used in those exercises. So, it appears that extend ki is synonymous with mental intent in this case; which now leads to the question: "How do you and others define and use mental intent?"

Oh, one other minor thing about the picture I thought I would bring up: I do not think Tohei is the nage in this picture. I initially never did, but when Dave called him Tohei, I took a closer look and thought well, maybe due to a bad angle - but I still was not sold on it - so I found some more pictures at this link: http://www.scarsdaleaikido.com/files/Ki_in_Daily_Life_-_4_Basic_Principles_to_Unify_Mind_and_Body.pdf

If you look at fig 4e, you will see a picture of nage in our one leg push picture sitting in the center of this picture. These pictures all look to be taken about the same time as our one leg push test. Now look at figs 6, 7, 9, and 10 where you definitely see Tohei all in black and the guy is fig 4e is definitely not Tohei. Not a big issue, just thought it should be mentioned for the record, etc...

Greg

Erick Mead
04-19-2010, 11:54 AM
So how do you redirect while "sinking your ki"? Like this http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=509&d=1215185239 A push received in shear squishes the body down along a spiral of compression (illustrated in the isolated element in the diagram with the two arrows head to head) while extending it along the 90 degree spiral going the other way (illustrated by the two arrows tail to tail) Compression in one shear stress axis one is relieved by extension in the other -- and vice versa. Both Ikeda and Gleason are following these lines in forms exaggerated enough to see clearly.

Then how do you move dynamically while doing those things? Try releasing a cable held in tension or a sprung column in compression (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpost.php?p=243470&postcount=125) -- like whips and chains (http://www.aikiweb.com/blogs/but-why-7854/whips-and-chains-2960/), brother ... like udefuri.

gregstec
04-19-2010, 12:57 PM
Fair enough statement, but to present an extend ki process is not that easy, it just is not that black and white of a description since it is very subjective within the mental realm - I mean, just how do you explain to someone in detail the process on how you think. With that said, I will try to elaborate as best I can. Since I use Tohei's model, I first visualize ki as a substance and try to see it in my mind's eye where it exists within my body as well as external to my body. Since the mind can control ki, the next step is to use mental intent to actually move and project ki internally as well as externally; again it is important to actually visualize this happening when doing it. Of course, you have to follow Tohei's other principles of Mind and Body Coordination at the same time. This is basically the mental process I follow when extending ki as taught by Tohei. Now as far as that actually being the way everything is working within the definitions of western physics? I have no clue nor I am qualified to even speculate to any deep extent. All I know is that I have had positive physical and verbal feedback during in person exchanges with people that had no idea I was extending ki as taught by Tohei - all they thought was that I was using mental intent in the exercises since that was the term used in those exercises. So, it appears that extend ki is synonymous with mental intent in this case; which now leads to the question: "How do you and others define and use mental intent?"

Just to elaborate some on this. First, I am not stating that Tohei's approach to Ki is absolutely correct - all I am saying is that to follow Tohei's model, you have to follow Tohei's vision of ki to make his model work. I have no idea that ki is truly a substance nor can I say for sure that it is not - but it is what makes his model work to some extent. Now is there other stuff going on here? Yes, I believe there is, but I have less experience in that area so that is why I am taking Tohei's model to the next step by training with Dan. What I am convinced of is that there is more mental aspects to this that is crucial in making IS/IP work - and that is where the mental intent is used to internally move these energies around in ways that are not so obvious simply based on observation of external structures. I think someone mentioned elsewhere that the mind tricks the body in routing energies via alternative paths than what would normally occur based on normal body conditioning - therefore, the training focus on new body conditioning that is not focused on the normal muscular path. In summary, I believe the main aspects of Tohei's approach that are important is the focus on relaxation and the objective of coordinating the mind and body to function as one.

Greg

Rob Watson
04-19-2010, 04:29 PM
The added tension in the fascia increases its structural integrity.
The force of Tamua's push is transmitted along this fascia line to the ground.


That would put the fascia in compression, not tension, so not quite.

Erick Mead
04-19-2010, 05:51 PM
That would put the fascia in compression, not tension, so not quite. Weeeeelllll -- actually to speak up for David here -- though I don't agree with all of his thesis -- the compression of the body does result in tension in the ligaments and other connective tissue -- healthy bones and connective tissues actually do have some aspects of the tensegrity that David analogizes, though not as perfectly or as ideally as I think he is trying to apply it.

Within limits, the point is that the compression of a live body provokes simultaneous compression and tension in different elements, which may be useful in these terms. In my terms the coincidence of tension and compression in the same structural member define a shear.

Essentially, a pure tensegrity structure eliminates or minimizes internal shears by isolating axial loads into pure tension or compression. In a true tensegrity structure -- there is no continuous compression load path to the ground (nor a continuous tension load path, if suspended from a support). For this reason the body is not an ideal tensegrity structure -- it has sub-elements that use some tensegrity -- but these are are composed into larger load members, which do not use that principle. Also in ordinary structure -- like a marshmallow if you squish it vertically it extends laterally by some proportion -- a positive Poisson ratio -- and this is a result of internal shear. A tensegrity structure has no internal shears so it collapses or expands under stress uniformly in all axes -- a Poisson ratio of -1. Very few materials or structures do that, and the body does not do that, either.

Limbs can also furl and unfurl as well as extend and retract by longitudinal torques in ways that are not muscle-bone lever-actuated -- but are not really symmetric in action like tensegrity, either -- the Japanese describe this action by the word asagao (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuJfhhaxdz8) -- A relict of ancestral mollusc movement, if you will, like octopus arms.

Mike Sigman
04-19-2010, 06:58 PM
I think you guys are shooting at imaginary ducks. There are a number of people crashing on the shoals when they go after the "fascia" thing. Don't join them. Stick to "aiki". ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

bob_stra
04-19-2010, 07:52 PM
"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction". - Albert Einstein

dps
04-19-2010, 11:10 PM
From, "The Intelligent Body" The Sutherland Cranial College

http://www.intelligentbody.org.uk/edavies.php

Dr Stephen Levin took this thinking one step further, maintaining that the body "is" a tensegrity structure, with tension provided by a matrix of connective tissues - ligaments, muscles, blood vessels, nerves and fascia (in sheets, making compartments), giving strength, integrity and pre-stress. Compression is provided by the bones and incompressible fluids in compartments. The bones act like spacers, providing the divergent forces needed to hold the spaces open. He sees the body as "A soft tissue entity, with local bony spacers, rather than a hard tissue entity with soft tissue motor units".

Muscles induce motion and help maintain the pre-stress which we call "tone". When muscles shorten, they also expand width-wise, which puts more tension on the fascial/tensional element, increasing stability. We can deliberately increase tone by contracting muscles, increasing pre-stress before lifting heavy objects. Water in its structured form contributes to tone. Enclosed in fascial compartments, it provides shock-absorption and resists deformation. The fact that joint facets cannot be forced into contact in live subjects is compatible with what we know about the properties of synovial fluid, alternating in state between sol and gel. Viscosity determines the rate at which fluid responds to motion demands and how it performs its role in the tensegrity matrix. Levin also maintains that ligaments act like rubber bands, their elastic rebound contributing to the "spring" in our joints, thus also acting as"movers", e.g. in the foot and knee when walking.

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=12855

....Roughly speaking, the strength from the ground goes through the bones (ki of Earth) and the "connective", "down-pulling" strength (ki of Heaven) goes through the fascia/ki arrangement (which is more complex than that simple statement implies).


David

Michael Varin
04-20-2010, 03:02 AM
if you freeze the play of this video at around 12 sec mark, you will see Ikeda sensei on a one-legged stand with his structure and position completely blown http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaLBx...eature=related
so for folks who think aiki is structure, you might want to revise that thinking.

btw, i have seen him, Ikeda sensei, with my own eyes did that same stunt with two big ukes hold on to him.

What exactly do you think is happening? How would you gauge the level of resistance by the uke? Their intention?

Michael Varin
04-20-2010, 03:05 AM
Ikeda uses a slight "add forces to more than zero in a bad direction for Uke" that causes uke to off-balance and drop. That is "aiki".

I think this is a good example of how video can help us define these concepts.

However, I think the main point here is to realize that there is more going on that just the physical body alignments to this push and that there is an equally important mental part that not too many get into with these posts about Aiki IS/IP, or as I call it, Stuff

I happen to strongly agree with this.

This raises the following questions.

Why doesn't this mental aspect extend to pre-physical contact?

If it does, wouldn't that infinitely expand aiki's usefulness? (And put it more in line with Morihei's philosophy, the record we have of him and his art, and the realities of the sword?)

Finally, why is this not seriously addressed in any discussions about "aiki"?

jss
04-20-2010, 06:33 AM
This raises the following questions.

Why doesn't this mental aspect extend to pre-physical contact?

If it does, wouldn't that infinitely expand aiki's usefulness? (And put it more in line with Morihei's philosophy, the record we have of him and his art, and the realities of the sword?)

Finally, why is this not seriously addressed in any discussions about "aiki"?
I don't think there's any point in seriously addressing this until a large number of people have sufficient skill in the physical contact kind of aiki. (I include myself in the not sufficiently skilled group, btw.) Main reason is that the pre-physical stuff is even easier to 'fake' with different means than the physical stuff.

p.s.: I'm not sure I'd want to call the pre-physical stuff aiki, but that's a different matter. Morihei probably would call it aiki.

phitruong
04-20-2010, 07:53 AM
What exactly do you think is happening? How would you gauge the level of resistance by the uke? Their intention?

good question. since i can't duplicate his feat (maybe), i don't have much. although, i would said he used the energy that uke employed to hold him up and redirect it somewhere else, in this case, up. in the case of two ukes (each was bigger than him), he sent them to the weak spots in front or back. resistance and intention by uke? mostly staying in one place and holding him up which is what he told them to do. he liked to play with big ukes, methink, just to prove the point of it's not about muscling or normal aikido stuffs. :)

phitruong
04-20-2010, 08:01 AM
Why doesn't this mental aspect extend to pre-physical contact?



if you look at Ikeda video, there are lots of mental stuffs happened before contact. you can see it that his ukes went somewhere else immediately at the contact point in time. he's already setup where they need to go before contact made. this is the next level of aiki. he was not reactive.

gregstec
04-20-2010, 12:19 PM
This raises the following questions.

Why doesn't this mental aspect extend to pre-physical contact?

If it does, wouldn't that infinitely expand aiki's usefulness? (And put it more in line with Morihei's philosophy, the record we have of him and his art, and the realities of the sword?)

Finally, why is this not seriously addressed in any discussions about "aiki"?

Very good question! - if you consider the amount of push back you get when asking for a video of the internal physical stuff, just think of what you would get if you asked these folks to provide a video of what is going on inside their mind :eek: I find that vision somewhat frightening :D

Seriously, your post brings out some very good points.

Greg

phitruong
04-20-2010, 02:42 PM
just think of what you would get if you asked these folks to provide a video of what is going on inside their mind :eek: I find that vision somewhat frightening :D

Greg

god forbid, i don't want to know what going on inside of my head. it's bad enough i have to live with the bastard, don't want to know how he think. :)

make this fight scene more interesting, don't you think?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Peh74sXQjs&feature=related#t=2m23s

gregstec
04-20-2010, 03:01 PM
make this fight scene more interesting, don't you think?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Peh74sXQjs&feature=related#t=2m23s

yeah, that is how the 'Stuff' is done! :D

dps
04-20-2010, 04:30 PM
That would put the fascia in compression, not tension, so not quite.

My apologies. My post was made at around 4 am after more than 24 hrs without sleep and I had trouble focusing.

By Tohei curving his wrist it increases the tension in the fascia. In a tensegrity structure when the tension elements increase in tension this increases the compression in the compression elements, the bones. The increase compression in the bones increases the structural integrity of the bones allowing them to receive stronger loads of force.

Tamura's push is transmitted along this fascia line through the bones associated with the fascia line to the ground, not the actual fascia line.

The added force of Tamura's push increased the compression of the bones adding to their strength.

In addition Tohei curving his wrist makes it harder for Tamaru to push horizontally than if Tohei's wrist was straight.

Try it and see.

David

Keith Larman
04-20-2010, 06:18 PM
David:

The man in the image with his bent wrist was the late Iwao Tamura, not Koichi Tohei. Tohei is not in the image.

I do not know who the woman is.

DH
04-21-2010, 11:26 AM
This notion of the bent wrist increasing the tension path on a facial line is not the way to go. It might help you at the very beginning stages "feel" certain things (some well known internal guys taught something along that path with some detailed explanations why) but you don't "live" there, it was a training tool. The involvement of fascia is -let's say- a more "fuller" understanding than that "tension path" idea. So overall, the bent wrist is sort of meaningless; neither here nor there as you move along. Looking at these "tests" you can miss the point. What if he was "contacted" on his forearm, or shoulder, or rib cage, or head? Were he to be developed enough, the contact point becomes meaningless and the freedom of movement while maintaining that, remains absolute. There is no "rooting on a single foot" or needing to "do" things to the other guy, or "pre-empt" the contact with the notion of blending with it before it hits you.

In fighting under pressure (with weapons or without) you are much better off to sustain balance and pressure in yourself and sustaining that while in motion. It's like being balanced at a "zero" point with all energy coming-in/while going-out. In that held state you have a far greater chance of moving under external pressure without resorting to muscling through. Done correctly you aren't loading on them you're just moving through them, or drawing them -till they fall, disconnect, or re-engage to attack again. In sparring there is no local tension or local sticking point whether it is hitting, kicking, or throwing. Done well, it can lead to some very interesting uses that create quite effective-even stunning-ways to handle people trying to hit and throw you in ways most have never seen or even thought were possible. The reason for that is that this type of movement is simply alien to what they can currently do, so their bodies and their minds-reject it.

Anyway, since the ability to make change can be done externally (and anyone can do it) people equate everything to what they know and dismiss the rest. And why not? The ability to make change internally and capture center on contact is rare (percentagewise) in the martial arts so most have never felt it. To make change with IP/ aiki under certain, limited pressures in movement (kata, push hands)- is rarer still. To see it done against experience fight pressure at full speed.....is very hard to find. People who can pull that off with IP/Aiki are very rare.

So, again- the greater chance of producing aiki on contact with an opponent in freestyle is not by pre-empitve movement and timing. It is better to hold aiki in yourself. With that, any contact point will have an inherent negative/positive aspect instantly that you are able to absorb, move with, or around, and manipulate without thinking about much at all-it just happens. Thus all the "preemptive" school of thought takes on a whole new meaning.

Too many times you see all levels of martial arts expressed as energy out (unsupported) or energy-in and evading -while unsupported as well. It makes entering on these "martial artists" relatively easy to do, and their entering in on you damn difficult. That is not a condition I wish to change in the vast majority of those who think they "get" high level martial arts or even aiki-when all they are really doing is jujutsu. Sometimes it is VERY good jujutsu, but that's all it is. I'd rather leave them believing they got it, than endlessly debate it- it tends to make enemies among people who have never even met.
Cheers
Dan

Keith Larman
04-21-2010, 12:35 PM
FWIW that test pictured is a fairly test for ki development, at least at where I've trained. Fascia and all that is interesting to talk/think about, but really, the wrist bending, etc. isn't a major big deal. Sometimes the test is done as pictured, other times you extend your arm (making sure you extend enough so you don't "cheat" by resting your elbow against your torso) and let them grab your wrist and push. The idea is to start feel flat on the ground. The lifting of the leg should be done with no apparent change in nage's posture/position/etc. When you do it with someone who is fairly good at it what you notice is that when you grab and start to push nothing changes. Meaning uke doesn't feel things compressing and engaging -- nage is engaged *already* before the moment of contact. The same is true if uke lets go at any point -- nage shouldn't change.

Just to think about what I feel inside when we do this I'd have to agree with what I think is Dan's discussion of a sort of internal balanced pressure feeling. You feel almost like you're "cast in resin" (to borrow something from someone else yet again). I find it difficult to do if I focus too much on doing too much. I have to just "be" in the right state of extension and control.

Now all the talk about structure, alignment, etc. I have to make the observation that having all those things is a very good thing. And certainly make it easier. Timing too. All those things are really good things. But I'm not so sure they're sufficient to explain what's really happening because there are things going on inside the body to make it happen. At first (for me at least) I fought constantly to regain/control/whatever. It was difficult. But over time you start to get better at simply "being" in the right state. Our late sensei changed the Ki Society principle of "Relax Completely" to "Controlled Relaxation" because (in part) he felt relax completely wasn't really accurate and often gave people the wrong idea. The "controlled" part is critical. You're not "flexing" and tightening muscles to "react" to things, just maintaining some degree of control while "extending ki". So there is extension along with relaxation but all in a controlled fashion...

But now I'm rambling around in circles... So I'll go back to work since I find this stuff remarkably difficult to discuss in this context.

So just fwiw from my own meager experience.

Keith Larman
04-21-2010, 04:40 PM
Just noticed something from my post above.

First sentence *should* read... "FWIW that test pictured is a fairly common test for ki development, ..."

gregstec
04-21-2010, 06:36 PM
FWIW that test pictured is a fairly test for ki development, at least at where I've trained. Fascia and all that is interesting to talk/think about, but really, the wrist bending, etc. isn't a major big deal. Sometimes the test is done as pictured, other times you extend your arm (making sure you extend enough so you don't "cheat" by resting your elbow against your torso) and let them grab your wrist and push. The idea is to start feel flat on the ground. The lifting of the leg should be done with no apparent change in nage's posture/position/etc. When you do it with someone who is fairly good at it what you notice is that when you grab and start to push nothing changes. Meaning uke doesn't feel things compressing and engaging -- nage is engaged *already* before the moment of contact. The same is true if uke lets go at any point -- nage shouldn't change.

Just to think about what I feel inside when we do this I'd have to agree with what I think is Dan's discussion of a sort of internal balanced pressure feeling. You feel almost like you're "cast in resin" (to borrow something from someone else yet again). I find it difficult to do if I focus too much on doing too much. I have to just "be" in the right state of extension and control.

Now all the talk about structure, alignment, etc. I have to make the observation that having all those things is a very good thing. And certainly make it easier. Timing too. All those things are really good things. But I'm not so sure they're sufficient to explain what's really happening because there are things going on inside the body to make it happen. At first (for me at least) I fought constantly to regain/control/whatever. It was difficult. But over time you start to get better at simply "being" in the right state. Our late sensei changed the Ki Society principle of "Relax Completely" to "Controlled Relaxation" because (in part) he felt relax completely wasn't really accurate and often gave people the wrong idea. The "controlled" part is critical. You're not "flexing" and tightening muscles to "react" to things, just maintaining some degree of control while "extending ki". So there is extension along with relaxation but all in a controlled fashion...


Nice post Keith - I agree, the relax completely principle can come across as misleading and confusing to those with a purely physical analytical perspective - the use of the 'controlled' term does help to define things more appropriately. Just one other comment on the other body principle of Tohei's four principles of Mind and Body Coordination, which is keep weight underside. Although this classified as a principle of the body, I view it as the principle that links the body into the mind since not only are you keeping you weight underside, you essentially do that by mentally dropping your ki with your weight - think about that and I think you will see the connection I am trying to point out.

Greg

Keith Larman
04-21-2010, 07:39 PM
Nice post Keith - I agree, the relax completely principle can come across as misleading and confusing to those with a purely physical analytical perspective - the use of the 'controlled' term does help to define things more appropriately. Just one other comment on the other body principle of Tohei's four principles of Mind and Body Coordination, which is keep weight underside. Although this classified as a principle of the body, I view it as the principle that links the body into the mind since not only are you keeping you weight underside, you essentially do that by mentally dropping your ki with your weight - think about that and I think you will see the connection I am trying to point out.

Greg

FWIW Rod Kobayashi also changed "weight underside" to "settle down" to convey what he felt was important both physically and mentally.

DH
04-21-2010, 08:46 PM
Weight underside
An important distinction is that you do not have to be in stances or upright with that sacrum tuck (something which I avoid)- even upright at all- in order to make weight underside happen. Nor is weight underside always just your own. You can be in impossibly weird positions-including fighting on the ground- and not even using your own body parts for ground like using your opponents leg for your own leg to find ground and use your weight.
Dan

Tim Fong
04-22-2010, 03:30 AM
Dan,
Without tucking the sacrum (i.e. tilting the pelvis), how are you generating the stretch of the "backside" of the body against the "frontside?"

Thanks,
Tim

Lorel Latorilla
04-22-2010, 03:38 AM
Weight underside
An important distinction is that you do not have to be in stances or upright with that sacrum tuck (something which I avoid)- even upright at all- in order to make weight underside happen. Nor is weight underside always just your own. You can be in impossibly weird positions-including fighting on the ground- and not even using your own body parts for ground like using your opponents leg for your own leg to find ground and use your weight.
Dan

Interesting post Dan. For me lately, activating the up and down contradictory force is achieved by slightly tucking in the sacrum or 'tiltlng' the pelvis and slightly pulling up and activating the psoas (the long strips of muscle in the abdomen area). I also interpret your idea of "energy in" as activating the back side by expanding your lower back and tucking in the sacrum, and energy out as activating the front by pulling up with the psoas.

Is this how you achieve the up and down contradictory forces? Also how do you achieve 'weight underside' if not by tucking in your sacrum?

I'm curious about yoru views on this.

Lorel Latorilla
04-22-2010, 03:39 AM
Dan,
Without tucking the sacrum (i.e. tilting the pelvis), how are you generating the stretch of the "backside" of the body against the "frontside?"

Thanks,
Tim

Dammit, just got ahead of me.

DH
04-22-2010, 08:23 AM
Tucking the tailbone continually can lead to back problems. There are some well known internal guys with well known back problems! It's worth checking behind the scenes a little bit at who does what for a method and what their health and life is like!

Also (and more important to me) tucking when fighting and moving at speed is "all in" -something to avoid like the plague. Bringing power up/down. in/out should always be supported by other things (I would rather not go into here). If not, and you function with the hips and sacrum "all-in" you will be strong till you are gotten around or hit a stronger guy. Power releasing is not all the same. Doing certain things will get you caught by any grappler with the slightest sensitivity.

It is better to think of the sacrum as relaxed and stable and fluid, in-and-out itself, and then where and how it functions with musculature going round to the proverbial "center" and how that functions when the lower back draws on the psoas, which draws on the....? None of which requires a tuck.
And power down the front does NOT require tucking the tailbone to support the back line in my book. For that matter I don't even consider up and down without intent in other directions that are not requiring physical tensioning of the body. That ties in nicely with the differences in power releases. The result in feel is more fluid in supporting the back and loading and releasing in different ways where you never wind up as a one legged army bowed back guy or stuck on two feet and double weighted, or stuck on certain store and release ideas -which are great to demo but most good grapplers could feel it happening at its inception and either cancel it out or change positions. It's the same with joint locks and throw attempts. Some internal guys are just too obvious to ever be good fighters with it. They have power, sure, but......
There are ways to train to move that are much more subtle and hard to feel...till the opponent finds themselves done in.
Cheers
Dan

Lorel Latorilla
04-22-2010, 09:11 AM
Tucking the tailbone continually can lead to back problems. There are some well known internal guys with well known back problems! It's worth checking behind the scenes a little bit at who does what for a method and what their health and life is like!

Also (and more important to me) tucking when fighting and moving at speed is "all in" -something to avoid like the plague. Bringing power up/down. in/out should always be supported by other things (I would rather not go into here). If not, and you function with the hips and sacrum "all-in" you will be strong till you are gotten around or hit a stronger guy. Power releasing is not all the same. Doing certain things will get you caught by any grappler with the slightest sensitivity.

It is better to think of the sacrum as relaxed and stable and fluid, in-and-out itself, and then where and how it functions with musculature going round to the proverbial "center" and how that functions when the lower back draws on the psoas, which draws on the....? None of which requires a tuck.
And power down the front does NOT require tucking the tailbone to support the back line in my book. For that matter I don't even consider up and down without intent in other directions that are not requiring physical tensioning of the body. That ties in nicely with the differences in power releases. The result in feel is more fluid in supporting the back and loading and releasing in different ways where you never wind up as a one legged army bowed back guy or stuck on two feet and double weighted, or stuck on certain store and release ideas -which are great to demo but most good grapplers could feel it happening at its inception and either cancel it out or change positions. It's the same with joint locks and throw attempts. Some internal guys are just too obvious to ever be good fighters with it. They have power, sure, but......
There are ways to train to move that are much more subtle and hard to feel...till the opponent finds themselves done in.
Cheers
Dan

Hi Dan, interesting.

For the most part, my training now consists of conditioning the middle part, mainly the psoas are and the lower. I do that because I want to make that area strong enough to pull my punches (instead of bringing intent to the shoulders and punching from there or punching from the waist). Is this the area that initiates movement for you? Which means that (and maybe I'm doing this wrong) if I punch from this part of the body, there will be a tension in the middle. Do you get any of that? I mean, the up-down (energy in-out) thing you're talking about I think might require some physical tension in the body does it not? Increase tension in the middle means that most of the up-down action is in the middle. Do you distribute the tension throughout the body? If so where is the movement initiated?

DH
04-22-2010, 05:09 PM
Hi Dan, interesting.

For the most part, my training now consists of conditioning the middle part, mainly the psoas are and the lower. I do that because I want to make that area strong enough to pull my punches (instead of bringing intent to the shoulders and punching from there or punching from the waist). Is this the area that initiates movement for you? Which means that (and maybe I'm doing this wrong) if I punch from this part of the body, there will be a tension in the middle. Do you get any of that? I mean, the up-down (energy in-out) thing you're talking about I think might require some physical tension in the body does it not? Increase tension in the middle means that most of the up-down action is in the middle. Do you distribute the tension throughout the body? If so where is the movement initiated?

"Conditioning" is a loaded word. I am not an advocate of the "tension path" idea I keep reading about. I avoid the feeling of tension altogether. There are different ideas of what constitutes IP/ aiki out there. I have seen and had detailed explanations of some of them from the source and have even practiced them for a while, but quickly rejected them as I didn't like what they were doing to my body. I like the soft approach as I think it delivers more power and ability to make change in the end.
.
Cheers
Dan

Mike Sigman
04-22-2010, 06:06 PM
I am not an advocate of the "tension path" idea I keep reading about. I avoid the feeling of tension altogether.I think you've heard something and misunderstood it, Dan. It doesn't refer to muscular tension. My understanding from a number of people is that your own 'approach' involves more muscular tension than I would recommend, so obviously we're doing fairly different things, in a lot of respects. Hope that clarifies the topic you brought up.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

gregstec
04-22-2010, 07:27 PM
My understanding from a number of people is that your own 'approach' involves more muscular tension than I would recommend, so obviously we're doing fairly different things, in a lot of respects. Hope that clarifies the topic you brought up.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Gee, Mike, not sure where those 'people' are coming from, but in my experience and training with Dan, there is no muscular tension in any of his applied aiki.

Greg

DH
04-23-2010, 09:51 AM
I think you've heard something and misunderstood it, Dan. It doesn't refer to muscular tension. My understanding from a number of people is that your own 'approach' involves more muscular tension than I would recommend,
Regards,
Mike Sigman
Interesting. I...misunderstood nothing. I have been shown certain methods in detail and had follow up explanations from the source...in detail as well. I even tried them and stopped as I didn't like what it was doing to my body. It is not what I do or am interested in.
So, now
1. Tell me the people and the methods I am talking about?
My training involves muscular tension??
2. Tell me how and where.

so obviously we're doing fairly different things, in a lot of respects. Hope that clarifies the topic you brought up.
Yes, we probably are. Tension is a poor training tool, even for identification of pathways and will get you caught and thrown; frequently in the hips and shoulders or them being hit due to their bodies being controlled by their arms. Intent and breath power is better. I don't personally like to go on what I have "heard" , but suit yourself. I've "heard" your approach has gotten you locked up by mid-level aikido guys and you could not get out. Any sort of tension will do that sort of thing to you as you will get caught in your wrist or arm instead of the whole body. My personal training has proved out well against TMA experts and western style fighters alike. So I remain convinced that soft is a better way to build connection for actual use in real fighting as well. Something you might discover for yourself someday. Since you freely admit you are just another fellow "amateur" like me, and you don't have fight experience with IP/Aiki it's understandable to have glitches along the way. I know I did.

Mike and I may disagree but overal I think soft is better.
FWIW, the real experts I have met who had power- advocated the soft approach as well; in solo training, movement drills, and martial movement as well. With rapid accelleration and changing, most people amp up, disconnect, isolate and then get caught. The way to avoid that is to train whole body connection in a soft manner then train statically, then take it out for a spin in freestyle. That's how you can better train to avoid getting caught, hit, thrown and locked up.
I think too many people going out to teach forget they are still students. "The one eyed man is king among the blind" sort of thing is not the way to go. I hope and trust people get out to meet some real experts in their fields. This is just amatuer hour debating among fellow students and researchers.
Good luck in your own search.
Dan

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 12:29 PM
Interesting. I...misunderstood nothing. I have been shown certain methods in detail and had follow up explanations from the source...in detail as well. Too bad Stephen J. Goodson took down his page "exposing" something I'd said about the "Teacher Test", based on what a couple of newbies thought they'd understood about a basic (not final) approach to a problem. You could learn from his efforts. I don't personally like to go on what I have "heard" , but suit yourself. I've "heard" your approach has gotten you locked up by mid-level aikido guys and you could not get out. Sure, and I know the lardass with no skills that told you that. I often get "locked up" after I deliberately give a lock to someone and then watch (sometimes too long) in order to see how they use their body to effect a hold. I often get "pushed", too, while I observe how someone is using their body... but again, I give myself. If you want to say that proves something, you're as petty as your self-brags.
Any sort of tension will do that sort of thing to you as you will get caught in your wrist or arm instead of the whole body. My personal training has proved out well against TMA experts and western style fighters alike. Frankly, you need to go back to where I said you misunderstand and think about it. I know why you misunderstand and I'm not saying anything about it because I know, as I told you in the past, that these things come back to haunt later, some years after you've taught a lot of 'students' the wrong way to go.
So I remain convinced that soft is a better way to build connection for actual use in real fighting as well. I think we've discussed the "I am a fighter" noise fairly well in the past. You see the conundrum, I'm sure, in trying to mix a discussion about internal strength with who won what fights. As the Chinese always ask... "what big name fighters did you beat?".
Something you might discover for yourself someday. Since you freely admit you are just another fellow "amateur" like me, and you don't have fight experience with IP/Aiki it's understandable to have glitches along the way. I know I did.

Mike and I may disagree but overall I think soft is better.
Well, good. Since it seems to be important to you to leave the impression that you're far advanced, I leave it to you.

Mike Sigman

Erick Mead
04-23-2010, 12:49 PM
T-minus Jun. Marking.

Jun .... in 5, ... 4, ... 3, ... 2, ....

gregstec
04-23-2010, 12:55 PM
T-minus Jun. Marking.

Jun .... in 5, ... 4, ... 3, ... 2, ....

Damn, that is the first thing I read from Erick that I could understand :D

Lorel Latorilla
04-23-2010, 01:04 PM
Too bad Stephen J. Goodson took down his page "exposing" something I'd said about the "Teacher Test", based on what a couple of newbies thought they'd understood about a basic (not final) approach to a problem. You could learn from his efforts. Sure, and I know the lardass with no skills that told you that. I often get "locked up" after I deliberately give a lock to someone and then watch (sometimes too long) in order to see how they use their body to effect a hold. I often get "pushed", too, while I observe how someone is using their body... but again, I give myself. If you want to say that proves something, you're as petty as your self-brags. Frankly, you need to go back to where I said you misunderstand and think about it. I know why you misunderstand and I'm not saying anything about it because I know, as I told you in the past, that these things come back to haunt later, some years after you've taught a lot of 'students' the wrong way to go. I think we've discussed the "I am a fighter" noise fairly well in the past. You see the conundrum, I'm sure, in trying to mix a discussion about internal strength with who won what fights. As the Chinese always ask... "what big name fighters did you beat?". Well, good. Since it seems to be important to you to leave the impression that you're far advanced, I leave it to you.

Mike Sigman

Mike I thought it wasn't about names? Why don't you spark the discussion and talk about why you think Dan is doing the internal power thing the wrong way? Not to show him out but to enlighten us on how to approach us 'amateurs' the right way to go about things.

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 01:10 PM
Mike I thought it wasn't about names? Why don't you spark the discussion and talk about why you think Dan is doing the internal power thing the wrong way? Not to show him out but to enlighten us on how to approach us 'amateurs' the right way to go about things.Actually, if you go back in the AikiWeb archives a few years, you'll find where I've explained it several times. In terms of bringing up the subject, Dan brought it up while trying to take an oblique swipe, so get him to explain how the tension he's talking about affects "aiki". As I said, he's misunderstood something from someone he's de-briefed about my workshops.... the "tension" that someone was trying to talk about was more about tensegrity, but with a tensile connection method that not a lot of people know about.

Well, perhaps you know about it since you're a student of Ark's. Why don't you and Dan explain things? It's actually very germane to what "aiki" is.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Lorel Latorilla
04-23-2010, 01:39 PM
Actually, if you go back in the AikiWeb archives a few years, you'll find where I've explained it several times. In terms of bringing up the subject, Dan brought it up while trying to take an oblique swipe, so get him to explain how the tension he's talking about affects "aiki". As I said, he's misunderstood something from someone he's de-briefed about my workshops.... the "tension" that someone was trying to talk about was more about tensegrity, but with a tensile connection method that not a lot of people know about.

Well, perhaps you know about it since you're a student of Ark's. Why don't you and Dan explain things? It's actually very germane to what "aiki" is.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

There's a whole archive of it, but can you tell me what's wrong with his approach in brief? You talk about about it being 'muscle-based', but I think you're basing this on hearsay and deductions from Dan's posts, but I doubt you're basing it on real information. I don't think you know what kind of exercises that Dan does. So I'm curious, how do I make the jump from his posts and hearsay to an assured opinion that his method is not 'internal' or that it's 'muscle-based'?

Also, just because I study Aunkai as a system, does not mean that I have to explain anything to you. I have my own moments when I'm explaining or discussing things for the purpose of aiding my own training, but yeah, I don't need to explain anything to you.

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 01:48 PM
Also, just because I study Aunkai as a system, does not mean that I have to explain anything to you.

No one said you had to explain anything, Lorel, but you're on a public forum and you've posted to this discussion on "Aiki". Why not toss in a few insights, as they relate to Aikido of course, on Aiki from the perspective of the Aunkai system?

Well, maybe it'd be better to post it to the non-Aikido forum, but I still think your sharp, analytical perspectives would be worth reading.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Marc Abrams
04-23-2010, 01:55 PM
I second Erick's prediction. It is very unfortunate that this topic is degrading to Dan and Mike taking it to a personal level. I can only hope that both of these gentleman who are very valuable to our community at large, can learn to stop at agreeing to disagree regarding ideas, beliefs and actions.

Taking these ideas, ideals and goals to the level of how we live our lives is ultimately more important that enacting them at a body level. Failings at this level results in the great things that people can teach us becoming lost amidst the personal rancor of petty disputes. I think Lorel is trying hard to place this thread back on track.

Marc Abrams

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 02:10 PM
I second Erick's prediction. It is very unfortunate that this topic is degrading to Dan and Mike taking it to a personal level. I can only hope that both of these gentleman who are very valuable to our community at large, can learn to stop at agreeing to disagree regarding ideas, beliefs and actions.

Taking these ideas, ideals and goals to the level of how we live our lives is ultimately more important that enacting them at a body level. Failings at this level results in the great things that people can teach us becoming lost amidst the personal rancor of petty disputes. I think Lorel is trying hard to place this thread back on track.
Actually, as I've said before, many threads weave on and off of a topic, Marc, and it's always surprising (as long as things stay on a reasonably civil level) how if you're patient enough, a few valuable nuggets come out of many threads that deviate off track.

Of course, nothing can come if no one really has anything to say about the topic and is really only interested in personal observations or oblique swipes.

There are a lot of people who are on record (archived) that they understand this topic as related to "Aiki" and it's worthwhile getting people to add their expertise to the discussion. The comment I made to Greg Steckel is one I've made before... if someone really understands the topic (in this case "Aiki"), they should be able to add to the definition in a way that at a minimum can use western science's perspective about how things work. Heck, even Tohei was able to describe being "unliftable" by saying "sink your middle". That's a lot better than someone saying "extend your ki".

My point is that everyone who's in the conversation should be able to contribute something of substance. What, for instance, is your take on approaching a consensus definition of "Aiki", using what you've learned from Ushiro Sensei and Dan?

Regards.

Mike Sigman

Marc Abrams
04-23-2010, 02:37 PM
Actually, as I've said before, many threads weave on and off of a topic, Marc, and it's always surprising (as long as things stay on a reasonably civil level) how if you're patient enough, a few valuable nuggets come out of many threads that deviate off track.

Of course, nothing can come if no one really has anything to say about the topic and is really only interested in personal observations or oblique swipes.

There are a lot of people who are on record (archived) that they understand this topic as related to "Aiki" and it's worthwhile getting people to add their expertise to the discussion. The comment I made to Greg Steckel is one I've made before... if someone really understands the topic (in this case "Aiki"), they should be able to add to the definition in a way that at a minimum can use western science's perspective about how things work. Heck, even Tohei was able to describe being "unliftable" by saying "sink your middle". That's a lot better than someone saying "extend your ki".

My point is that everyone who's in the conversation should be able to contribute something of substance. What, for instance, is your take on approaching a consensus definition of "Aiki", using what you've learned from Ushiro Sensei and Dan?

Regards.

Mike Sigman

Mike:

I agree that valuable nuggets are obtained from these threads. That is why I supported Erick in asking you and Dan to refrain from personal attacks that result in Jun shutting threads down!

I am finding that I do not know what I do not know until I experience some of this stuff! Aiki, in my VERY LIMITED understanding from all of the people with whom I have and had trained with (not just Dan and Ushiro Sensei), can best be described as allowing the force of the attacker to pass through me, and/or allowing me to neutralize the force of the attacker, and/or allowing me to simultaneously use the attacker's energy as a direction into attacking the attacker. All of this happens while I am still capable of moving freely. I am discovering that in the beginning of this learning process, shisei, proper breathing, and not engaging in intentional muscle contraction is critical in experiencing these possibilities. I am working on expanding my knowledge and experience base so as to hopefully develop a deeper understanding that I can talk about. Right now, I have a lot of ideas that I am trying to flesh out.

Regards,

Marc Abrams

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 02:53 PM
I agree that valuable nuggets are obtained from these threads. That is why I supported Erick in asking you and Dan to refrain from personal attacks that result in Jun shutting threads down! Jun will do what he will do.
I am finding that I do not know what I do not know until I experience some of this stuff! Aiki, in my VERY LIMITED understanding from all of the people with whom I have and had trained with (not just Dan and Ushiro Sensei), can best be described as allowing the force of the attacker to pass through me, and/or allowing me to neutralize the force of the attacker, and/or allowing me to simultaneously use the attacker's energy as a direction into attacking the attacker. All of this happens while I am still capable of moving freely. I am discovering that in the beginning of this learning process, shisei, proper breathing, and not engaging in intentional muscle contraction is critical in experiencing these possibilities. I am working on expanding my knowledge and experience base so as to hopefully develop a deeper understanding that I can talk about. Right now, I have a lot of ideas that I am trying to flesh out.
Well, as I said, Dan misunderstands what the term "tensioning" refers to (in relation to what I've shown at workshops), but the point is that I certainly have nothing to do with muscular tension.

In terms of I.S. in general, there are a number of posts I've made on AikiWeb and other places where I've described exactly *why* you can't use muscular tension and have relatively "pure" internal strength. Basically, what happens when you interject, for instance, some shoulder strength into a simple push, you've changed the type of force and where it is sourced from. It's what the Chinese would refer to as "your qi rose upward".

However, that being said, most of the earlier discussion in this thread was about a definition of Aiki. Using Ueshiba's meeting with Tenryu as an example of a static usage of "aiki" would seem by far the best place from which to define "aiki". It's pointless to get into dynamic examples of what Aiki is because of the entry of other factors.

Some of the people in this thread think that "aiki" is defined by movement, breath, technique, and so on. I'd point again to Ueshiba and Tenryu. If Ueshiba did an "aiki" with Tenryu, then it's logical that "aiki" can be defined without getting into a study of dynamic encounters, right?

Besides, in my experience many people can do static examples of internal strength.... but when they start moving, no matter how well they can exhibit static examples of "ki tests", they go back to arms, shoulders, bulling through someone, technique, and so on. What I call "maybe good fighting, but a dead end for I.S. development".

But back to the point I previously made.... if someone really understands I.S. parameters, they should be able to at least roughly describe how their I.S. skills are done. That seems only logical, doesn't it?

Regards,

Mike Sigman

gregstec
04-23-2010, 03:12 PM
The comment I made to Greg Steckel is one I've made before... if someone really understands the topic (in this case "Aiki"), they should be able to add to the definition in a way that at a minimum can use western science's perspective about how things work. Heck, even Tohei was able to describe being "unliftable" by saying "sink your middle". That's a lot better than someone saying "extend your ki".

My point is that everyone who's in the conversation should be able to contribute something of substance. What, for instance, is your take on approaching a consensus definition of "Aiki", using what you've learned from Ushiro Sensei and Dan?

Regards.

Mike Sigman

Ok, Mike, you made that comment and I responded with more detail on how I extend ki, which I believe provided more detail than your comment of Tohei just dropping his middle for being unliftable. Along with my response, I posed some questions about mental intent, which I closely tied to extending ki in my process along with a layman's terms of how I do it. Now I do not profess I am an expert in this, just that I have had positive experience with it. So, in order to keep the conversation going and on track, what is your take on how you use and develop mental intent from a western physical perspective?

Greg

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 03:37 PM
Ok, Mike, you made that comment and I responded with more detail on how I extend ki, which I believe provided more detail than your comment of Tohei just dropping his middle for being unliftable. Along with my response, I posed some questions about mental intent, which I closely tied to extending ki in my process along with a layman's terms of how I do it. Now I do not profess I am an expert in this, just that I have had positive experience with it. So, in order to keep the conversation going and on track, what is your take on how you use and develop mental intent from a western physical perspective?
Well, wait a sec. As I read your earlier post, you basically said that you "visualize" such-and-such and it works for you; then you indicated that you can't describe how it works in terms of a western-science paradigm. So I'm not sure how you provided a lot of detail. Having felt what you could do at a workshop, I'm sort of at a loss to find a real commonality with what we're talking about. I.e., I'm flummoxed and suggest that we all generally work (as best we can) within simple western-physics concepts.

The central idea is/was to try and develop some sort of consensus definition for "aiki", as per the O.P. My position is that a static example will best serve for a definition of actual "aiki", but we need to get a common language, so I'm suggesting we sort of aim for ideas that can be worked out with western-science being the base language.

Yes, I can define "intent" very clearly and pretty much how it works, but that's a different topic. Ask Dan to explain to you what it is. ;)

Regards.

Mike

DH
04-23-2010, 04:05 PM
I second Erick's prediction. It is very unfortunate that this topic is degrading to Dan and Mike taking it to a personal level. I can only hope that both of these gentleman who are very valuable to our community at large, can learn to stop at agreeing to disagree regarding ideas, beliefs and actions.

Taking these ideas, ideals and goals to the level of how we live our lives is ultimately more important that enacting them at a body level. Failings at this level results in the great things that people can teach us becoming lost amidst the personal rancor of petty disputes. I think Lorel is trying hard to place this thread back on track.

Marc Abrams
Hello Mark
I appreciate the sentiment. Lets review:
I made comments about my own training experiences. In this case, specifically regarding the tension idea in internal and quasi-internal arts based on three different (undisclosed) arts methods and two teachers I dealt with.
None of which has anything to do wIth Mike Sigman

Mike being Mike, (he thinks all things internal draw unto him) he placed himself once again into a discussion where he had no place and does not belong (substance of his post unecessary)

My response; asking him to tell me a) Who I was discussing b) describe what it is I am doing- went unanswered, because he simply is unable to answer. I found it humorous.

The best resolution to your post is to ask Mike to never respond -to-me or -about- me. End of problem I do not engage Mike in anyway in my now limited time here-he engages me.

Lorel had it quite right; Mikes comments to me, and about me, are continuously negative and unsupported assertions and supposition that are meant to defame, so I respond.
With that, feel free to have a discussion with him about...whatever.
Take Care
Dan

dps
04-23-2010, 04:45 PM
Hopefully this will give a place for those who are trying to push their ideas about "Aiki" to post some videos, to help clear up what it is that they are talking about.

The problem is that in threads like this one the same people can not accept any other model for explanation other than their own and try to dominate the subject and guide it to their way of thinking.

David

gregstec
04-23-2010, 05:20 PM
Well, wait a sec. As I read your earlier post, you basically said that you "visualize" such-and-such and it works for you; then you indicated that you can't describe how it works in terms of a western-science paradigm. So I'm not sure how you provided a lot of detail. Having felt what you could do at a workshop, I'm sort of at a loss to find a real commonality with what we're talking about. I.e., I'm flummoxed and suggest that we all generally work (as best we can) within simple western-physics concepts.

Well, I provided detail on a process that I follow using English; so in some form that was a western explanation - albeit, it does not meet your standards of a western paradigm - which is what exactly? - please provide a definition so we all can use that as a standard when responding to your questions.

As far as your workshop comment is concerned, we did not have a lot of hands on there - unfortunately, I could not stay for the whole session, but I believe the only time I had hands on you was in the beginning when you walked around and had people push on your chest to see if they could move you, and when I did that you said (and this is a quote) "Good, very good" as I moved you back a bit; which was not an extend ki thing but simply a dip of my center and then a simple wave back up into you - something I picked up from training with some aikijujutsu folks. Now based on that short contact, I do not think you have enough information to form much of any substantial opinion about my skills in this area. Other than those I train with and my current teachers, I do not care what anyone else thinks of my skills - but I do have issues with those that make assumptions based on incomplete information, or even old information.

In addition, I would just like to state that although no one on this web questions the level of your skill in this area, a common theme in most of your posts is you taking the superior position to others - I find this a bit arrogant. We are all on the path to understanding aiki and some on that path are ahead others and those that are ahead should not be looking back at those behind with arrogance, but more with a mentoring attitude. Now I know you are going to jump in here with "But Dan does that too" - maybe, but two wrongs don't make a right, and IMO, Dan only gets that way with those that openly state he is wrong - you have more of an "Equal Opportunity" approach to it.

Yes, I can define "intent" very clearly and pretty much how it works, but that's a different topic. Ask Dan to explain to you what it is. ;)

Regards.

Mike

So, only you can ask questions and expect some answers?

I am sorry Mike, but IMO, you may have great aiki skills and you may be a great guy in person, but your internet personality sucks - I personally view your behavior in most cases no better than a sophisticated troll. Sorry, I tried stay neutral and objective, but I am tired of the way threads with you and Dan in them end up; and it appears to me that it is your posts that are the ones that start the mud slinging in this area.

As you are fond of saying "FWIW"

Greg

I apologize to the rest of the readers for the thread drift, but I was just following up on someone else's drift :)

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 05:30 PM
Greg, look at the quotes from me you provided and then look at all the personal observations you started making. I realize that you're a fan and student of Dan's, but please don't try to bring me into the fray.

Mike Sigman

gregstec
04-23-2010, 05:37 PM
Greg, look at the quotes from me you provided and then look at all the personal observations you started making. I realize that you're a fan and student of Dan's, but please don't try to bring me into the fray.

Mike Sigman

????? :freaky:

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 06:07 PM
????? :freaky:

Er.... let me add that I had heard about well before you went and studied with Dan, Greg. Fortunately, over all this time, I've refrained from making any real comments about you personally. OK? Got that?

Now see if you (or Dan) can get away from the personal stuff and try and back up what you say you "know" with some facts we can all digest. If everyone keeps going back to the personal crap (like Skaggs' comment about "the same people"), we get caught in an endless cycle of commenting about the personalities of people that we personally don't like. There's a lot of people I either don't like or don't respect on many forums, but at least I'll debate the issues (if I'm drawn to the issue) with them. If you (the general "you") can't argue the facts or support the facts with more than vague, subjective feelings, then simply say it. Don't try to trivialize someone who doesn't kiss your butt and pretends to you that your unsupported opinion is as good as gold.

Incidentally, AFAIK, I've tried to treat you more than fairly, based on the criteria above, despite everything I've heard, felt, seen, etc. I.e., if you've got a complaint with me personally, please come and complain to my face, not to my keyboard.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

gregstec
04-23-2010, 08:13 PM
Er.... let me add that I had heard about well before you went and studied with Dan, Greg. Fortunately, over all this time, I've refrained from making any real comments about you personally. OK? Got that?

Mike, the above statement is exactly what I referred to in my last post - you just imply negativity in your posts. Your less than subtle implication states that you refrained from saying something negative based on hearsay. As I mentioned before, I do not care about your opinion nor those of your sources - it is not complete knowledge and it is not current. And as I said, I do not propose to be an expert, but I do have experiences that you nor your source have and that is where I am focusing my training on now to rediscover and grow from there.

Now see if you (or Dan) can get away from the personal stuff and try and back up what you say you "know" with some facts we can all digest. If everyone keeps going back to the personal crap (like Skaggs' comment about "the same people"), we get caught in an endless cycle of commenting about the personalities of people that we personally don't like. There's a lot of people I either don't like or don't respect on many forums, but at least I'll debate the issues (if I'm drawn to the issue) with them. If you (the general "you") can't argue the facts or support the facts with more than vague, subjective feelings, then simply say it. Don't try to trivialize someone who doesn't kiss your butt and pretends to you that your unsupported opinion is as good as gold.

Again, as I see it, you are in the personal stuff here as well - you just did it with the above. Your comment about me trivializing is a good example that you do not have a clue about me - I do not trivialize anything - I can get silly and joke with the best of them, but trivialize is not in my nature - I am a Scorpio, and nothing is trivial to us :)

You keep asking for the facts, but when you are questioned, you dodge it. If you want other people to provide their views, you must reciprocate - maybe even provide it first.

Incidentally, AFAIK, I've tried to treat you more than fairly, based on the criteria above, despite everything I've heard, felt, seen, etc. I.e., if you've got a complaint with me personally, please come and complain to my face, not to my keyboard.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Again, you bring in the implied negativity - what do mean despite? that whole approach is negative - Mike, I did not attack your skill, but you have attacked mine based on hearsay and a brief encounter that proved nothing. All I have to say about that is that it probably comes from people that may have known me before they were even into the internal stuff, and it was extremely short lived. About five or six years ago, I hooked up with a few Aikido dojos looking to actively get back into organized training - I was looking for a place that had a focus on ki and the internal stuff - I did not find any. As a matter of fact, some of them even made fun of it and openly ridiculed it - now I understated some of them may have been enlightened and have been getting some training in IT - I imagine your hearsay source may be from this environment.

As I started to say, I did not attack your skills and I did not attack you personally, but I guess I did attack your cyberspace spirit/personality. I am sorry, but I find most of your posts to be essentially troll like in nature designed to stir the pot (especially with Dan) and really not that sincere in offering actual knowledge to share.

I would love to meet with you again in person, and I will give you the first shot - you mostly likely will knock me on my ass, but I may learn something from that; more so from your posts :D also, I may even surprise you as well:)

Greg

Mike Sigman
04-23-2010, 08:30 PM
You keep asking for the facts, but when you are questioned, you dodge it. No, Greg. Look in the archives. The problem with the archives is that I've provided most of this stuff time and time again while everyone else has hidden behind "I've taken an oath to the Koryu" or "Here's my subjective thoughts". It doesn't work for you, the archives. You have to, at a minimum, admit that they are there and that you haven't bothered to read them yet you want me to spend the time writing things again so that you don't have to search, right?

If you want other people to provide their views, you must reciprocate - maybe even provide it first. I asked the question. But only because I knew that I'd already provided my views. At some point in time you have to understand that "attack the other person's personality" only works to a limited extent. At another point in time you simply turn people against you.

Again, you bring in the implied negativity - what do mean despite? that whole approach is negative - Mike, I did not attack your skill, but you have attacked mine based on hearsay and a brief encounter that proved nothing. Pooh. You misrepresented that meeting and the impression you left on people. Don't take advantage of silence. You, after all, are the one interjecting your views and 'expertise' throughout the thread All I have to say about that is that it probably comes from people that may have known me before they were even into the internal stuff, and it was extremely short lived. About five or six years ago, I hooked up with a few Aikido dojos looking to actively get back into organized training - I was looking for a place that had a focus on ki and the internal stuff - I did not find any. As a matter of fact, some of them even made fun of it and openly ridiculed it - now I understated some of them may have been enlightened and have been getting some training in IT - I imagine your hearsay source may be from this environment. But the problem is always with "the other people" isn't it, Greg? You belong here on this forum with people like Skaggs and others. If you want to discuss issues, please discuss them. So far, you have only tried to trivialize everyone who is not currently in your favor. As I started to say, I did not attack your skills and I did not attack you personally, but I guess I did attack your cyberspace spirit/personality. I am sorry, but I find most of your posts to be essentially troll like in nature designed to stir the pot (especially with Dan) and really not that sincere in offering actual knowledge to share. Plonk. I just tired of it, Greg. You've been kicked off of QiJin months ago and even then you were only let on out of politeness. Now you're simply another guy who took advantage of diplomacy to think that your views were worthwhile. They're not.

Mike Sigman

Marc Abrams
04-23-2010, 08:35 PM
Hello Mark
I appreciate the sentiment. Lets review:
I made comments about my own training experiences. In this case, specifically regarding the tension idea in internal and quasi-internal arts based on three different (undisclosed) arts methods and two teachers I dealt with.
None of which has anything to do wIth Mike Sigman

Mike being Mike, (he thinks all things internal draw unto him) he placed himself once again into a discussion where he had no place and does not belong (substance of his post unecessary)

My response; asking him to tell me a) Who I was discussing b) describe what it is I am doing- went unanswered, because he simply is unable to answer. I found it humorous.

The best resolution to your post is to ask Mike to never respond -to-me or -about- me. End of problem I do not engage Mike in anyway in my now limited time here-he engages me.

Lorel had it quite right; Mikes comments to me, and about me, are continuously negative and unsupported assertions and supposition that are meant to defame, so I respond.
With that, feel free to have a discussion with him about...whatever.
Take Care
Dan

Dan:

I am not interested in taking any side in this matter. Sometimes nothing said is better than something said. I was simply trying to implore both of you to avoid having to address each other in this matter. Nothing was gained by either of you addressing anything having to do with the other.

Marc Abrams

gregstec
04-23-2010, 10:38 PM
Plonk. I just tired of it, Greg. You've been kicked off of QiJin months ago and even then you were only let on out of politeness. Now you're simply another guy who took advantage of diplomacy to think that your views were worthwhile. They're not.

Mike Sigman

Thanks for the notice - I have not tried to access your QiJin forum in a long time - nice to know that I should not bother now - I guess you were just being polite since I made a donation to the site - so much for your sincere thanks in that email you sent me at the time.

dps
04-24-2010, 01:12 AM
How strain is moved across a joint using the biotensegrity model of the body.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOyu3KqaK9g&feature=related

David

bob_stra
04-24-2010, 06:03 AM
How strain is moved across a joint using the biotensegrity model of the body.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOyu3KqaK9g&feature=related

David

I warned you, David

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-Vw7c42HiM&feature=related

(may be NSFW)

:p

phitruong
04-24-2010, 06:50 AM
*sigh* a bunch of internal guys get together and a shoving match happens. surprise?

i think the word tension has a negative connotation. it tends to associate to tightness in musculature, i.e. lots of muscle contraction. since tightness creates blockage, tension is bad (from muscle point of view). i liked the word "pressure" better. pressure as in an inflated balloon or car tire. too low pressure, and structure collapses. too high pressure, and it explodes. same goes for human body. human body can adapt. you start with low and slowly increase to certain point where each person has different level depends on his/her/its genetic disposition. we Asian are normally short and stocky so we can handle a bit more pressure than youse tall, lanky Caucasians. therefore, we Asian are better at internal stuffs. logical no? :D

might want to give some thought on a shelve bracket where one end attached to your hara/dantien and the other to your limbs. one end moves, the other end must move, i.e. not fixed. of course it depends on the quality of the shelve bracket, right? what if you wrap the shelve bracket with a bracket shape of steel reinforced tire? interesting thoughts, no? better than the bickering, yes? ;)

gregstec
04-24-2010, 06:52 AM
I warned you, David

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-Vw7c42HiM&feature=related

(may be NSFW)

:p

Now that is what I call a front man :eek: I wonder how he would define Aiki :D

gregstec
04-24-2010, 06:57 AM
*sigh* a bunch of internal guys get together and a shoving match happens. surprise?

i think the word tension has a negative connotation. it tends to associate to tightness in musculature, i.e. lots of muscle contraction. since tightness creates blockage, tension is bad (from muscle point of view). i liked the word "pressure" better. pressure as in an inflated balloon or car tire. too low pressure, and structure collapses. too high pressure, and it explodes. same goes for human body. human body can adapt. you start with low and slowly increase to certain point where each person has different level depends on his/her/its genetic disposition. we Asian are normally short and stocky so we can handle a bit more pressure than youse tall, lanky Caucasians. therefore, we Asian are better at internal stuffs. logical no? :D sure, why not :)

might want to give some thought on a shelve bracket where one end attached to your hara/dantien and the other to your limbs. one end moves, the other end must move, i.e. not fixed. of course it depends on the quality of the shelve bracket, right? what if you wrap the shelve bracket with a bracket shape of steel reinforced tire? interesting thoughts, no? better than the bickering, yes? ;)

Yes :)

dps
04-24-2010, 07:10 AM
I warned you, David

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-Vw7c42HiM&feature=related

(may be NSFW)

:p

He gets out of breath just talking.
Is he one of Mike's or Dan's student? :)

David

RED
04-24-2010, 08:57 PM
He gets out of breath just talking.
Is he one of Mike's or Dan's student? :)

David

pffff, nah man... he for reals!

Erick Mead
04-24-2010, 09:52 PM
*sigh* a bunch of internal guys get together and a shoving match happens. surprise? ... Comes from holdin' it all in allatime -- whaddya'spect??

thisisnotreal
04-24-2010, 10:23 PM
... Comes from holdin' it all in allatime -- whaddya'spect??

that's hilarious

thisisnotreal
04-24-2010, 10:29 PM
... Comes from holdin' it all in allatime -- whaddya'spect??

yes; there are admonishments about it, aren't there?'

like when you are young, to guard against aggressiveness.. wanting to fight.
-there was a warning for the middle, too( right?;;; can't recall)
-and when are are old, (i think) it is to guard against acquisitiveness.

how did that ... work?

thisisnotreal
04-24-2010, 11:28 PM
.. misunderstands what the term "tensioning" refers to (in relation to what I've shown at workshops), but the point is that I certainly have nothing to do with muscular tension.
hi Mike,
So i've tried from the archives to put that together. What would you say if i said interpreted it to be is more or less (i.e. a 'generous' interpretation) the tension that is carried within the body, coincident along the axial length of bones. isn't that the 'groundpath' tension?
(M2C: that it is a critical force in that there is a tension relationship to your own structure, in this way. (i.e. for instance, where all joints are Held together by these sorts of axial 'cohesion' structures, in the body). the groundpath...in reverse, is the ground strength in your body.

Do you have an exemplar of a record to point at, as something you'd say was your definitive statement on 'what tensioning' refers to?

I mean...it has to be all tied together, right? it is interesting in....that, that tension that can get stronger and stronger with age, and could be counted as a 'skill based strength'...., no?
yeah.

Is fajin the way to 'loose the arrow' of the _tension_? held in the body? the tension, again here is the six-directions tension (i.e. hunyuan?) is given a directional-preferential expression and explodes out along a line, into a point? the 'coccyx' tilt/tip/lift(?) triggers the dantien into the mingmen. i have no idea, so here' it is is a sincere set of questions. I thought what you did was trigger a 'reverse ground path' explosion along that line, by elongating your structure for a fraction of a second, into-the-guy. a 'punch' by 'growing' and sending entire weight of your body's frame, into the guy.

I thought Dan talked about it in terms of contradictory tensions, body held in balance, 'expressing aiki', dual spirals, ever evolving.
I personally match that with, for example, chen taiji silk reeling movement. fajin in his movement (above my pay grade, i'm just yapping from what i understood from the text) is more like gears in yourself, inside your body. left-to-right and front to back any way you want, via dual spirals in opposition. no tuck-and-dantien-to-mingmen 'load and fire'.

Now, in your opinion, you say the 'one jin' is the one jin. The source of all jins. The groundpath jin.

Now...the tension being argued about here, is this the brute force *li* coarse strength? 'muscling through' / 'expression local muscular tension'. is , that you're snippy about?

naah. i believe it must be some thing more complex that i'm not getting. could you clarify for this turkey (me) ?
:straightf.

i think both of you guys are talking about spiralling strength-body-method, with no coarse li strength.

i may have somet ypos. so please forgie them. the subject is hard, and my fingers fail me.
i have prune fingers at the moment. that may be a factor.

Mike Sigman
04-25-2010, 10:03 AM
So i've tried from the archives to put that together. What would you say if i said interpreted it.....

Josh, it's not just some old Neijia List comment about "It Has To Be Seen" (IHTBS) or "It Has To Be Felt" (IHTBF) ..... there are a number of Asian sayings that have the same implication. E.g., you can only learn through the oral tradition; writing won't do it... and so on. This also works, BTW, for people who are trying to add things into their system that they have 'heard about' or 'read'.

In other words, some of these discussions and outright guesses by people on this forum who have never even bothered to go to a workshop or exposition.... well, let's just say that I roll my eyes. ;)

Basic jin isn't that hard to do if someone really applies themself. Yet, the number of people who 'got' jin skills from the various video sets that I put out was minimal; hence I quit selling the videos, as close as they were (closer than written description) to 'oral transmission'. Even *with* hands-on explanations, the percentage that 'get it' can be pretty small because this way of moving (if you're going to do it right/fully) is just more than they ever really accept or understand. So they never make it.

When it comes to the fascia-related discussions, I've made a couple of posts that define the issue, in years past. This sort of discussion is simply too far outside of what people can do martially, without having accomplished the basics. On a starter/health level, I made a couple of very explicit posts on AikiWeb.... but those are just for someone to get their foot in the door for elementary development.

My problem with the current discussion is that I see everyone (including some of the self-styled experts) floundering around making guesses, or making statements that show that they're far off track. If you get off-track it's very difficult to come back to the main track. Why keep trying to get information that you can't use? Why have you not, after all these years, gone out to see what's going on?

I'm pretty interested in peoples' skills and, if they teach, their approach to teaching. I took the time when Ushiro Sensei was in my state to drive over and watch for a while (at the Rocky Mountain Summer Camp) in order to see how much he was teaching, how well he was teaching, if he had some new/interesting method of explication, and so on. The point being that I didn't waste a lot of time questioning people on AikiWeb about what Ushiro was teaching.... I took the trouble to go see. I've taken the trouble to go see many people, over the years, and I'll be going to see another person next month. Instead of "putting together" and "interpretting", why don't you just go see for yourself.

Oh, and please do me a favor. If/when you do get a little knowledge, please go somewhere and practice so that you have demonstrable skills before you start preaching and putting out how-to's. I'm already afraid that the incidence of instant experts is going to do as much damage to I.S. topics in Aikido and when there was almost no knowledge among the western "teachers". ;)

I've stood bemused in front of guys who obviously had zero (or miniscule) I.S. skills giving me advice about who was good, how to teach students, how good their teacher was with these skills, or how they "already teach this stuff". If they knew anything they could at least demonstrate a simple ground path (it's very easy to feel the difference between jin and 'structure') or I could at least feel things in their body as they moved. Do what Dale Carnegie advised about not giving speeches until a person "has the right to talk about the subject". It takes a while.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

dps
04-25-2010, 01:31 PM
In the human body the connective tissues like muscles, tendons, ligaments etc and the fluids like blood plasma interstitial fluid and cellular fluid do not act like you would assume using Newtonian mechanics, linear reactions to tension and compression.

In fact the components of the body act nonlinear, Non-Newtonian.

The fluids of the body are Non-Newtonian fluids, they act like a solid when under stress and like a fluid when not.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5SGiwS5L6I

David

Budd
04-25-2010, 01:37 PM
In the human body the connective tissues like muscles, tendons, ligaments etc and the fluids like blood plasma interstitial fluid and cellular fluid do not act like you would think using Newtonian mechanics, linear reactions to tension and compression.

In fact the components of the body act nonlinear, Non-Newtonian.

The fluids of the body are Non-Newtonian fluids, they act like a solid when under stress and like a fluid when not.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5SGiwS5L6I

David

Furthermore, a bold new study shows that . . the thigh bone is connected to the hip bone . .

v=9swztI5m0k0http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9swztI5m0k0

dps
04-25-2010, 01:44 PM
Furthermore, a bold new study shows that . . the thigh bone is connected to the hip bone . .

v=9swztI5m0k0http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9swztI5m0k0

They are singing about dry bones. If your bones are dry they will act Newtonian ,you are dead and you can hear the word of the lord personally (IHTBF). :)

David

thisisnotreal
04-25-2010, 01:54 PM
um, ya. thanks for the specific links of reference posts and for discussing the jin/body topic, and nothing but...but specific details. deftly handled, as always
always informative arguing, i mean, talking, with you, you magnificent...
this < (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7S_XWuKpHc)

thisisnotreal
04-25-2010, 01:58 PM
um, ya. thanks for the specific links of reference posts and for discussing the jin/body topic, and nothing but...but specific details. deftly handled, as always
always informative arguing, i mean, talking, with you, you magnificent...
this < (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7S_XWuKpHc)

(i really loved that skit...recently, was reminded of it by debates here)

Tim Fong
04-25-2010, 04:28 PM
Dan,
Thanks for the advice. You've posted a lot of information here and I'll have to practice and mull things over more.


Also (and more important to me) tucking when fighting and moving at speed is "all in" -something to avoid like the plague. Bringing power up/down. in/out should always be supported by other things (I would rather not go into here). If not, and you function with the hips and sacrum "all-in" you will be strong till you are gotten around or hit a stronger guy. Power releasing is not all the same. Doing certain things will get you caught by any grappler with the slightest sensitivity.
Right, I definitely am not spending a lot of time on back-bow driven ''power releases.'' In fact I spoke with a CIMA teacher who said explicitly that people who focus too much on power releases "look good for demo" but won't be able to apply it freestyle because of being "too stiff."

It is better to think of the sacrum as relaxed and stable and fluid, in-and-out itself, and then where and how it functions with musculature going round to the proverbial "center" and how that functions when the lower back draws on the psoas, which draws on the....? None of which requires a tuck.
Hmm. Going to have to train and reflect on that one for sure.


And power down the front does NOT require tucking the tailbone to support the back line in my book. For that matter I don't even consider up and down without intent in other directions that are not requiring physical tensioning of the body. That ties in nicely with the differences in power releases.
Are you talking about a forward tilt to the pelvis? The opposite of tucking it in?

The result in feel is more fluid in supporting the back and loading and releasing in different ways where you never wind up as a one legged army bowed back guy or stuck on two feet and double weighted, or stuck on certain store and release ideas -which are great to demo but most good grapplers could feel it happening at its inception and either cancel it out or change positions. It's the same with joint locks and throw attempts. Some internal guys are just too obvious to ever be good fighters with it. They have power, sure, but......
There are ways to train to move that are much more subtle and hard to feel...till the opponent finds themselves done in.
Cheers
Dan

This different approach to power releases that you're explaining is interesting to me; however, totally understand that you don't want to explain more on the details here in a public forum.

For me, one thing that has been difficult lately is to figure out how to integrate bodyskill training, cardio, weights and fight training (MMA and kickboxing) into a cohesive training plan. I've been trying periodization, some months focusing on fight training/cardio and others on bodyskill training during rest months. Haven't lifted weights in a couple of years, and considering going back to o-lifts (the IHS program I ordered off their website) or joining some kind of crossfit based program.

Any thoughts on this? Totally understand if you don't want to discuss it in a public forum.

Thanks,
Tim

gregstec
04-25-2010, 06:48 PM
(i really loved that skit...recently, was reminded of it by debates here)

:) Got to love SNL - they can bring to the surface that which we all yearn to say and display it in a manner that truly shows why it really should stay suppressed - unfortunately, there are things that can tip the scale of good manners and bring out the worst - the important point is to realize that and to move on with a focus in establishing a bi-directional atmosphere of mutual respect and exchange of ideas regardless of preconceived positions and assumptions of what is being discussed - due to the unique nature of things, everyone has a right to express what they feel is what they have experienced and no one can truly question that because they could not have had the same experience since they are not you - do not look down and disrespect that experience, just share what you can for what it is worth to whomever :)

Greg

DH
04-25-2010, 07:19 PM
Dan,
Thanks for the advice. You've posted a lot of information here and I'll have to practice and mull things over more.

Right, I definitely am not spending a lot of time on back-bow driven ''power releases.'' In fact I spoke with a CIMA teacher who said explicitly that people who focus too much on power releases "look good for demo" but won't be able to apply it freestyle because of being "too stiff."

Hmm. Going to have to train and reflect on that one for sure.

Are you talking about a forward tilt to the pelvis? The opposite of tucking it in?

This different approach to power releases that you're explaining is interesting to me; however, totally understand that you don't want to explain more on the details here in a public forum.

For me, one thing that has been difficult lately is to figure out how to integrate bodyskill training, cardio, weights and fight training (MMA and kickboxing) into a cohesive training plan. I've been trying periodization, some months focusing on fight training/cardio and others on bodyskill training during rest months. Haven't lifted weights in a couple of years, and considering going back to o-lifts (the IHS program I ordered off their website) or joining some kind of crossfit based program.

Any thoughts on this? Totally understand if you don't want to discuss it in a public forum.

Thanks,
Tim

Hi Tim
Computer crashed...typing on my phone.
I"ve all but given up talking in anything but general terms here anymore. There is one too many amatuers pretending to be more advanced than they really are. IP people are just as open to martially inane movement and theory as any external artists. Some people see power they haven't before and their brains go on tilt and swallow everything without appropriate discernment.

There are some interesting thoughts on power releases, and the guys who do certain things to wow seminar attendies aren't worth crossing the street for...IMO. Some poeple sure eat it up though.
I'll have to wait to get up and running to write more.
Hey...you can always "breath in and relax" ...more great "archived" advice I"ve read here...and see how that works for ya!
Talk to you soon.
Dan

thisisnotreal
04-25-2010, 09:57 PM
:) Got to love SNL - they can bring to the surface that which we all yearn to say and display it in a manner that truly shows why it really should stay suppressed - unfortunately, there are things that can tip the scale of good manners and bring out the worst - the important point is to realize that and to move on with a focus in establishing a bi-directional atmosphere of mutual respect and exchange of ideas regardless of preconceived positions and assumptions of what is being discussed - due to the unique nature of things, everyone has a right to express what they feel is what they have experienced and no one can truly question that because they could not have had the same experience since they are not you - do not look down and disrespect that experience, just share what you can for what it is worth to whomever :)

Greg

yes. it's true.
I'm sorry Mike. Didn't mean to give offense. Just sometimes; about the; `sophisticated troll', but? well,...maybe more like i think you are a deliberate wormhole creator!. To spark the conversation. Like Erick and the shearses. For you, though:: maybe ..more like one of Buddha's Attendant warriors guarding the path. With aiki skills. -Guarding the Path-. Like, in maybe in going so far as misdirecting. Subtly though. i.e....Your site is called QiJin, right? Like as in those 2 things. The + and the - of the Yin Yang. Like how you rated the Chen Silk Reeling vid a 5 out of 10? ...um...like, as in exactly half the story? Like, as in not mentioning the qi bit. Do you -really- want to discuss nuts-and-bolts? I wouldn't blame niether you or Dan, in fact. You guys are serious experts both of you, and doing this seriously.Why would you give it away? Especially when it's hard, and its -so easy- to mis-communicate, nevermind in text to strangers. but: What am I, as a member of the peanut gallery to take from all the -t-y-p-i-n-g- on the screen we see? I think it's neet to see how people could use their bodies. Do you want to talk nuts-and-bolts? No worries, if you don't want to get into it here, as well. But your thoughts would be interesting to hear, that's for sure.
(yes; it's just photons on a screen, almost nobody would get irradiated by your aiki) :]

For instance this< (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRs5budNvxg&feature=player_embedded)
Anything you could offer about his movement that reminded you of? In any way, is there anything aiki about it? I, honestly could not say; but would guess no. you?
I've never seen a human move so fast. At any point, Is he doing a 'power release', or is it always an external movement?
;)
Truly, it is always interesting,
Best to you,
Josh

p.s. Would you be able to point me to an explanation of silk reeling that would have rated a 10 out of 10?

p.p.s; About the one-legged standing static aiki display? I didn't try to explain it because i didn't know how to explain it in terms that the discussion was going in. I thought you had to use the qi bit to do it. I didn't think groundpath, used as a 'battering ram' (thanks CM) alone would explain it. You basically have to activate your dantien. Float your muscluature about self-rotation. Allow dantien to wind, etc. Then you 'open' your body lines into uke. Somehow (can't type it); you 'get under', and capture uke's dantien. If erick is reading; definitely there is shear involved.

Mike Sigman
04-25-2010, 10:06 PM
yes. it's true.
I'm sorry Mike. Didn't mean to give offense. Just sometimes; about the; `sophisticated troll', but? well,...maybe more like i think you are a deliberate wormhole creator!.
Josh:

You have continued to comment about what you think of my personality. I haven't said a word about what I think of you. If you want to talk about your perceived idea of my failings, please come see me. If you check back into the 1990's, you'll see that I have a history of visiting the people who want to veer off-topic into insults.

Would you like to go back on topic, now? And please... don't send me any more private apologies. You're done.

Mike Sigman

thisisnotreal
04-25-2010, 10:11 PM
Ok. I am sorry.

i do want to hear about aiki;

<grumbles>but why oh why does it always get personal? <sorry, for real yo>
Take care. No ill will.
I'm out too.
Josh

thisisnotreal
04-25-2010, 10:20 PM
and, by the way, last thing. just to be specific. I like wormholes. I find them very interesting. They are a source of much interest, education, and enlightenment. Deep science, too. I agree that wormholes are interesting, and I like them too. I agree with the theory.
Good bye, and -apologies- for real.Wishing you the Best.

Josh P.

Lorel Latorilla
04-26-2010, 02:26 AM
No one said you had to explain anything, Lorel, but you're on a public forum and you've posted to this discussion on "Aiki". Why not toss in a few insights, as they relate to Aikido of course, on Aiki from the perspective of the Aunkai system?

Well, maybe it'd be better to post it to the non-Aikido forum, but I still think your sharp, analytical perspectives would be worth reading.

Regards,

Mike Sigman

Mike, not to get personal, but if you think my sharp, analytical perspectives are worth reading, why did you ban me from your QiJin list?

Michael Varin
04-26-2010, 04:13 AM
For instance this< (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRs5budNvxg)
Anything you could offer about his movement that reminded you of? In any way, is there anything aiki about it? I, honestly could not say; but would guess no. you?
I've never seen a human move so fast. At any point, Is he doing a 'power release', or is it always an external movement?

Jesus.

I had forgotten how frightening Mike Tyson was. I was a huge Tyson fan in the 80's. Not only was he incredibly quick, but so powerful.

There is no aiki there because he is working in isolation, but I doubt any internal expert could handle what Tyson was bringing, or produce results that are even approaching what he displayed.

And that's not a slight on any one. Tyson has a level of talent, genetic ability that 99.9% of us don't have access to.

That's why Teddy Atlas (the trainer in that clip) brought a gun when he confronted Tyson about his behavioral problems.

ChrisHein
04-26-2010, 11:34 AM
That's why Teddy Atlas (the trainer in that clip) brought a gun when he confronted Tyson about his behavioral problems.

Strange that weapons comfort a man who is physically inferior...

Keith Larman
04-26-2010, 01:32 PM
Strange that weapons comfort a man who is physically inferior...

Yeah, right, I guess only a "real man" would be unarmed when he confronts a sometimes psychotic Mike Tyson...

You guys crack me up...

akiy
04-26-2010, 02:02 PM
Thread closed due to too much personal discussions and too little actual content.

-- Jun