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Gary David
09-17-2010, 10:58 AM
Event:
" Internal training, Aiki, and empowering Aikido"
Date: November 6th & 7th
Location: Orange County Aiki Kai
Santa Ana, CA

This work shop is a continuation of the workshops already taking place at Dan's Dojo with advance level aikido students and teachers from all over the United States. Dan is making his research into the Japanese arts and the resultant training practices of his private dojo available on a national level. The goal is to offer a workshop in a neutral environment, with an emphasis on learning and understanding internal power and aiki as a basis for martial movement in a global sense, while undertaking the difficult task of taking that first step into personal training and integration of the concepts into your own art.

The work shop will cover introductory basics of the system Dan has developed and taught successfully to hundreds of students and teachers from a wide range of martial arts. Dan will outline the training in such a way as to make the relevancy to martial movement immediate, clear and accessible. Included will be:

• A presentation of how the martial arts take advantage of natural and common postural failures and methods for building a martial body that moves antithetical to the principles most martial arts use as their foundation for defeating the common body frame.

• How the trained body can begin to take care of itself automatically in a live environment.

• An emphasis on specific training tools (solo and paired) to develop internal power, and specifically how it relates to aiki connections in a martial context.

• Creating and maintaining a structure supported on all sides and how to strengthen it with breath training exercises.

The material covered; while benefiting aikido greatly will not be "specific" to just the aiki arts like Aikido and Daito ryu, but any grappling or striking art, so teachers from other disciplines are welcome.

Dress will be sweats or shorts and T-shirts. No Gis, No budo affiliated T-shirts please. This will be very informal, and casual, but I strongly urge you to bring a notebook.

This will be a closed workshop with no pictures, video, or visitors allowed. Participants are required to fill out an application (available by e-mailing Dan @ homeoffice@charter.net ) for further details and to be considered for a spot. People may or may not be accepted by Dan's sole discretion.

Workshop fees are $175.00 for both days, $100.00 for one day on Saturday with no Sunday only training. Fees must be paid in full with your registration.

The schedule:
Saturday 9 AM to 6 PM with a 2 hour break for lunch
Sunday 9 AM, Lunch, until.....with consideration for flights, travel, and condition of the participants.

Please do not direct questions or requests for attendance to Orange County Aiki Kai, which is being gracious with the use of their space while not directly involved in the workshop.

Thanks..see you there.

Aikibu
09-17-2010, 12:02 PM
Gary....Wow! thanks for setting this up. :) And Thanks Dan for coming out to the left coast! I will definitely be there if invited!

William Hazen.

MM
09-17-2010, 01:05 PM
Gary....Wow! thanks for setting this up. :) And Thanks Dan for coming out to the left coast! I will definitely be there if invited!

William Hazen.

You're more than welcome to attend, IMO. Just send Dan an email.

MM
09-22-2010, 08:59 AM
Workshop is nearly full. If you're undecided, better make up your mind fast. :)

Aikibu
09-22-2010, 10:42 AM
Workshop is nearly full. If you're undecided, better make up your mind fast. :)

I sent Dan an email over a week ago and I am just waiting to hear back from him. :)

William Hazen

MM
09-22-2010, 10:51 AM
I sent Dan an email over a week ago and I am just waiting to hear back from him. :)

William Hazen

He got it. You're on the list. He was out of town from last week up through today.

Mark

wka
09-22-2010, 10:30 PM
Same question, sent an email a few days ago but no response. Perhaps I didn't include enough background information or I have the wrong email address. Should I try sending a PM?

Aikibu
09-22-2010, 11:23 PM
He got it. You're on the list. He was out of town from last week up through today.

Mark

AWESOME! :) Yoshida Sensei is here from Japan for our annual West Coast Seminar this weekend and I wish he could have waited a month or so and seen Dan too. :)

William Hazen

MM
09-23-2010, 06:51 AM
Same question, sent an email a few days ago but no response. Perhaps I didn't include enough background information or I have the wrong email address. Should I try sending a PM?

Hello,
Email is good. I wouldn't send a PM. As I understand it, there's a flood of emails. If you've sent an email to homeoffice@charter.net, then that should get to Dan. Sending background info on yourself is a good idea. If you think the first email might not have reached him for some unexplained reason, send a second. But don't send multiples after that. :)

Mark

MM
09-23-2010, 10:48 AM
Dan is back from being out of state. He said he will send out replies by Friday. (Unless work, family, etc intervene. Everyone knows how that goes.) There are only one or two spots left.

IMO:
If you've been to a Sigman workshop and it seemed familiar, then I would highly encourage you to attend Dan's workshop because Daito ryu aiki is different (I'm NOT saying it's better or worse, just different). How? Go to the workshop and not only feel/experience it, but get answers.

Mark

wka
09-24-2010, 12:22 AM
Thanks Mark. Talked to Dan and sent some additional info on my background.

MM
09-24-2010, 09:40 AM
All applications have been sent out. If you did not receive one, please email Dan and let him know.

Thanks,
Mark

SeiserL
09-24-2010, 10:43 AM
Oh man,
I used to live in the OC and often attended seminars at the OC Aikikai. Good people. Highly recommend.
Sorry I'll miss it.
Ever get to the ATL (GA)?

chillzATL
09-24-2010, 10:57 AM
Oh man,
I used to live in the OC and often attended seminars at the OC Aikikai. Good people. Highly recommend.
Sorry I'll miss it.
Ever get to the ATL (GA)?

Lynn,

We're supposed to be on his fall/winter schedule. I hope it happens.

Jim Sorrentino
09-24-2010, 04:53 PM
Hello Mark,
IMO:
If you've been to a Sigman workshop and it seemed familiar, then I would highly encourage you to attend Dan's workshop because Daito ryu aiki is different (I'm NOT saying it's better or worse, just different). How? Go to the workshop and not only feel/experience it, but get answers.

Because you brought it up, apparently to encourage people to ask Dan's permission to attend this workshop (and because you've seen Mike Sigman), please describe how Dan and Mike differ, and how Daito Ryu aiki is different from what you believe that Mike does.

Also, are you saying that Dan is demonstrating and teaching Daito Ryu aiki? If so, how does his Daito Ryu aiki differ from other Daito Ryu approaches (for example, that of Okamoto-sensei)?

I look forward to your reply.

Jim

MM
09-25-2010, 01:08 PM
As I said, if you have attended Mike's workshops, then I would suggest going to Dan's. Jim, you should go. I think you'd absolutely love this stuff. For everyone else, I highly recommend attending Mike's, Dan's, and Ark's workshops. The similarity and difference can be experienced firsthand. Not saying good or bad but I've found differences. Everyone will. IMO, that's something best experienced directly.

It's smart to keep an open mind and not prejudge.

mickeygelum
09-26-2010, 11:59 PM
As I said, if you have attended Mike's workshops, then I would suggest going to Dan's. Jim, you should go. I think you'd absolutely love this stuff. For everyone else, I highly recommend attending Mike's, Dan's, and Ark's workshops. The similarity and difference can be experienced firsthand. Not saying good or bad but I've found differences. Everyone will. IMO, that's something best experienced directly.


Mark, have you ever trained under Mike Sigman? If not, please qualify your statement above.

Are you going to answer Jim's question?

MM
09-27-2010, 06:58 AM
Mark, have you ever trained under Mike Sigman? If not, please qualify your statement above.

Are you going to answer Jim's question?

Let me reiterate with a bit of edit,

As I said, if you have attended Mike's workshops, then I would suggest going to Dan's. Mickey, you should go. I think you'd absolutely love this stuff. For everyone else, I highly recommend attending Mike's, Dan's, and Ark's workshops. The similarity and difference can be experienced firsthand. Not saying good or bad but I've found differences. Everyone will. IMO, that's something best experienced directly.

It's smart to keep an open mind and not prejudge.

To the general public:
For all those who haven't been following the long years of Internet discussions back and forth over internal skills/internal power (IS/IP), there are hundreds of pages of Internet posts regarding this subject. None of it has come close to direct first hand experience. Did I find differences? Yes. Will you? Wouldn't it be worth the chance to find out? As I stated above to Mickey, "I highly recommend attending Mike's, Dan's, and Ark's workshops." Not either/or, not just one, but get out and get some experience with them all. Talk to people who have attended them. If you've been smart and kept an open mind, I'm sure people will be open to discussion about it. In the end, though, first hand experience really is the only answer.

statisticool
09-27-2010, 07:58 AM
Please let us know if there will be video posted from it. Or from those who learned at a seminar and recorded themselves afterward using those skills.

Thanks,

Justin

MM
09-27-2010, 08:01 AM
Please let us know if there will be video posted from it. Or from those who learned at a seminar and recorded themselves afterward using those skills.

Thanks,

Justin

No video at workshops.

Search for Bill Gleason vids. There is at least one out there somewhere.

MM
09-27-2010, 08:07 AM
To clarify ... these are my *personal* opinions. Please don't associate them with Dan Harden. As Dan has posted, he doesn't teach an organized system, he does MMA. My personal opinion and that of others is that what we have felt/experienced is Daito ryu aiki.

If you are interested in an organized Daito ryu approach, I would highly recommend contacting Howard Popkin of the Roppokai. Great teacher, great person, skilled, open, generous, and well worth knowing.

MM
09-27-2010, 08:10 AM
The application sent out exceeded the expectations. The seminar is full. Thank you for your time and interest.

Nicholas Eschenbruch
09-27-2010, 08:31 AM
Mark, good point....

Some years ago, both Mike and Dan (plus many „followers“) were on my ignore list. Then I got hooked on the aiki debates, and followed them closely. Finally, I decided that apparently there was something - either worth finding out, or worth laying to rest for good. So I went to see both of them. It was a great experience. It was worth finding out – for me.

Did I understand fully what they do? Of course not. Are there differences in what I saw – of course. Similarities? I venture to say, yes. Did I like some stuff more than other stuff? Sure, anything else would be surprising. Do I know them well? Not at all, I was just a seminar participant.

Most of all, I found both Dan and Mike, when I experienced them as teachers, made an impression on me that was quite different from their internet persona. Much like I probably would myself, or anybody else.

I really regret that I did not make up my mind to go and see a lot earlier. I wasted time reading a lot of writing here on aikiweb that appears in a totally new light when things are experienced first hand. And I delayed meeting two teachers who can be experienced first hand, while siding in my reader’s mind with all sorts of speculative opinions and judgements, and opinions and judgements about opinions and judgements, here on aikiweb. What a waste of time.

I still dont get why people who are neither Dan nor Mike themselves need to turn this into some type of pro/con sniping. For me, what they do is neither salvation nor the devil, just incredibly interesting ways to train. And I did not get the impression any of them wanted people to think otherwise.

So if you read all that stuff.... just go and see, its more interesting.

thisisnotreal
09-27-2010, 08:50 AM
.. a lot of writing here on aikiweb that appears in a totally new light when things are experienced first hand. ...

So if you read all that stuff.... just go and see, its more interesting.
Agreed. Good post Nicholas.

akiy
10-04-2010, 11:21 AM
The line of discussion of Jim's questions regarding Dan has been moved here (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18764).

-- Jun

Thomas Campbell
10-10-2010, 11:49 PM
Anyone interested in the Santa Ana workshop should contact Dan (homeoffice@charter.net). Due to cancellations, there are three spaces currently available.

Thomas Campbell
10-11-2010, 08:04 PM
Anyone interested in the Santa Ana workshop should contact Dan (homeoffice@charter.net). Due to cancellations, there are three spaces currently available.

The spaces have been filled and the workshop is again full.

Aikibu
11-02-2010, 09:47 AM
Folks,

A rumor's floating around that I will not be there. On the contrary.... I will be attending and bringing my application and money with me. I have been super busy with a new gig so I am sorry for my lack of communication.

Thomas let me know if I am still invited.

William Hazen

MM
11-02-2010, 10:09 AM
Folks,

A rumor's floating around that I will not be there. On the contrary.... I will be attending and bringing my application and money with me. I have been super busy with a new gig so I am sorry for my lack of communication.

Thomas let me know if I am still invited.

William Hazen

Hey,
Good to hear from you! I lost your number and have yet to find it. Glad to hear you can make it. I'll verify with Dan but I don't see a problem.

Mark

Jeremy Hulley
11-02-2010, 01:45 PM
I'm really looking forward to meeting folks. See ya'll soon.

MM
11-02-2010, 01:56 PM
I'm really looking forward to meeting folks. See ya'll soon.

Yeah, same here.

Howard Popkin
11-02-2010, 01:57 PM
Jer,

Don't let Dan hit you if you can help it :)

See you soon !

Howie

Michael Varin
11-03-2010, 04:16 AM
I will be attending and bringing my application and money with me.

Humph.

Aikibu
11-03-2010, 09:16 AM
Humph.

Don't know what this is about...If you have something personal to share with me feel free to PM me. :)

William Hazen

MM
11-03-2010, 10:02 AM
To clarify, William, you've been on the list since the beginning. It was always assumed you would be there. There were at least six people who were turned down because the list became full (rather quickly) and Dan wanted to keep the numbers small so that he could get more hands-on time with everyone so that those attending would get a better chance of retaining what was learned and shown. If there is enough interest generated, he would return for another.

Thanks,
Mark

Aikibu
11-03-2010, 05:28 PM
Thanks Mark. :)

It's an honor. :)

rob_liberti
11-05-2010, 10:09 PM
You are going to have fun. I was really hoping I'd be able to make it out there, but the timing just wasn't right. -Rob

rob_liberti
11-08-2010, 05:59 AM
How did it go?

Aikibu
11-08-2010, 02:24 PM
Hopefully it went very well. I did not attend.

My Bad. I just assumed since I was invited ( I was super duper busy with work so I must have missed the deadline announcement) that I would be able to show up with my money and application. It got very confusing there for a little bit but apparently I did not get my application in "on time" and my spot was given to someone else.

There were some PM's back and forth saying not to worry about it but the last PM I got asked me not to attend as the seminar was "full"

Bummer for me. :( I emailed Dan and hopefully I will get the next one. :)

William Hazen

Gary David
11-08-2010, 02:30 PM
It went very well. Dan is an excellent teacher, presented a structured and progressive approach to getting an idea of what was involved. Dan left us with a number of solo and paired exercises that with practice over time will give us a foot in the door. With the exception of a couple of Saturday only folks everyone stayed until the end on Sunday. Several of Dan's students, Mark, Tom and Leon, were there to provide assistance which was helpful. I can't speak for the rest of the attendees, but It didn't seem that anyone was disappointed. On a personal note I found Dan to be a gentleman while injecting an east coast sense of humor through the two days. Dan made it clear that we were all on the same road and needed to travel it together. As for Howard's advice......there were a few who didn't take it.........

Howard Popkin
11-08-2010, 03:06 PM
you mean about the hitting ??? Ouch man...

As far as humor.....:D

Rob Watson
11-08-2010, 03:56 PM
As for Howard's advice......there were a few who didn't take it.........

you mean about the hitting ??? Ouch man...

I'm not so sure I would agree with this since Dan was clearly pulling the hits and left plenty of juice in the bag. While one or two did take a modest shot or two the really interesting part about it was the way the hits only resulted in Dan being ready to let out a few more - no windup to speak of and no 'release' to have to recover from.

I took a weenie little shot to the chest (weenie in terms of the 'effort' Dan put into it) and it was pretty danged solid ... I would not want to receive a 1/2 power punch - forget about a full power shot with evil intent driving it

I got exactly what I wanted out of the seminar - a set of solo and paired drills along with a reasonably cogent explanation of what to do and how to do it.

I'll be going to another of Dans seminar when he comes back around this way and I heartily recommend others get some hands on time as well.

I don't know the whole story but basically Dan has been pressured to get out and share what he does because it is pretty nifty. That someone could put that kind of pressure on Dan surely means alcoholic beverages were involved (FYI-that's a joke). I think Dan has done an admirable job of putting together a seminar friendly syllabus. Be sure to take notes because after the first day your brain will be too full to comprehend.

I could go into the aspects and impressions I had that could be classified as negative comments but I don't see the point (besides I'd rather go over that with Dan). If one does not want to go see Dan I'm not going to be able to convince you and if you do want to see Dan nothing I'd say would dissuade. Fence sitters ... keep sitting because the drills are too much exertion for sitting around on a fence and you don't want to get all sweaty.

For now my new goal is to train my fanny off until I can kick Dans butt (with appropriate amounts of loving intent). I don't think he is going to be losing any sleep over that ... for now.

A good bunch of folks who only wanted to help us get better. What's the best way to say thanks for that? Train your tail off so next time Dan won't point and say 'fail'.

Walker
11-08-2010, 07:31 PM
What they said — two times.

Really, nothing more needs to be said beyond that which was promised was delivered. I am positive that everyone learned something and enjoyed the company. I did.

Hats off to Gary and the other local folks who made another great training opportunity possible in Orange County.

Personally, I was thrilled to finally meet the famous Dan Harden who's maddening and illuminating posts I have been reading and enjoying for many years. He is a great example of what a combination of good information, perseverance and hard work can produce.

Keith Larman
11-08-2010, 08:18 PM
Personally, I was thrilled to finally meet the famous Dan Harden who's maddening and illuminating posts I have been reading and enjoying for many years.

Unlike that Walker dude who looks different every time I see him. I swear he was 2 inches shorter this time... All that down power must be affecting his build...

Keith Larman
11-08-2010, 08:20 PM
Seriously, what everyone else said. Had fun, learned stuff, lots to do.

phitruong
11-09-2010, 06:47 AM
Seriously, what everyone else said. Had fun, learned stuff, lots to do.

the important thing, did you get the T-shirt to show for it? :D

Keith Larman
11-09-2010, 07:32 AM
the important thing, did you get the T-shirt to show for it? :D

There was swag? No one ever gives me a goodie bag...

gregstec
11-09-2010, 08:25 AM
I'm not so sure I would agree with this since Dan was clearly pulling the hits and left plenty of juice in the bag. While one or two did take a modest shot or two the really interesting part about it was the way the hits only resulted in Dan being ready to let out a few more - no windup to speak of and no 'release' to have to recover from.

I took a weenie little shot to the chest (weenie in terms of the 'effort' Dan put into it) and it was pretty danged solid ... I would not want to receive a 1/2 power punch - forget about a full power shot with evil intent driving it



Been there myself a few times - those weenie little shots have a tendency to stay with you for a awhile - no pain or damage, but you do feel where he hit you for a few weeks afterwards :) I am not going to comment on the true effectiveness of Dan's humor since I am going to see him in a few weeks and he just may make those weenie little shots a little less weenier :D Also, Dan does do a windup of sorts - you just can't see it because it is internal after all :)

On a serious note, I want folks to understand that these shots Dan gives are not designed to show how strong he is, but more for him to feel and see how you handle the incoming energy - also, his shots are not damaging in anyway, although with very little added effort they could be - I don't want those that have not met Dan get the wrong impression that Dan is rough and potentialy dangerous to the trainees - he goes to great extremes to keep the training safe and enjoyable for all.

Now for Howard Popkin, I just spent a good part of last Sunday with him and I am still hurting from all those falls :D

Greg Steckel

MM
11-09-2010, 10:13 AM
A good bunch of folks who only wanted to help us get better.

Hi Rob,

Just wanted to touch on this part of your post. Most of us know that a martial art should be bigger than us (the individual). But because of the way in which some things have been handed down (in both Japanese and Chinese martial arts) - or more specifically have NOT been handed down - the "art" is failing us.

I want to see that changed. When I'm at these things, I want to see everyone there surpass Ueshiba Morihei. I want everyone to have the ability to surpass Takeda, Chen Fake, etc. I want the art to be what it should -- the shining example of the best of all of us.

I would love to see hundreds of Takedas, Sagawas, Ueshibas, Kodos, Chen Fakes, etc popping up all over the world showing that the art is still bigger than us. Seeing those people pushing the boundaries of what we can accomplish and going beyond those Giants of the Martial Art World.

The only way I see that chance is to get out there and help each other. To help us be better than ourselves and push each other beyond what we thought possible, what we had never envisioned; to change "I didn't know that I didn't know" into knowledge and training.

Thanks,
Mark

Lee Salzman
11-09-2010, 10:25 AM
Been there myself a few times - those weenie little shots have a tendency to stay with you for a awhile - no pain or damage, but you do feel where he hit you for a few weeks afterwards :) ...snip...

On a serious note, I want folks to understand that these shots Dan gives are not designed to show how strong he is, but more for him to feel and see how you handle the incoming energy - also, his shots are not damaging in anyway, although with very little added effort they could be - I don't want those that have not met Dan get the wrong impression that Dan is rough and potentialy dangerous to the trainees - he goes to great extremes to keep the training safe and enjoyable for all.


I would like to caution here. When you say, "his shots are not damaging in anyway, although with very little added effort they could be", I'll play devil's advocate to that. While Dan does try to keep everyone safe, if you are not prepared to dissipate the flavor of force he is putting out, there are no guarantees. People can get hurt. Let's not give the impression that this is a "come one, come all, come feel the legendary Dan-fu strike" carnival event going on. There are always risks involved. As Howard says, don't let Dan hit you if you can help it. :p

Rob Watson
11-09-2010, 11:45 AM
On a serious note, I want folks to understand that these shots Dan gives are not designed to show how strong he is, but more for him to feel and see how you handle the incoming energy

As Howard says, don't let Dan hit you if you can help it. :p

What, you mean a bunch af MAers get together and someone might get hit and even thrown to the ground .... maybe even hurt?

Yeah, don't get hit and don't get thrown ... that's what I'm working on. I really have no idea how it is possible to work on that without someone trying to hit and throw you. Fail means getting hit and thrown. Learning from failure means getting hit and thrown less are steps in the right direction.

I don't know about the rest but I can tell if someone wants to hurt me just by looking into their eyes. When looking deep into Dans eyes I can't help but bust out laughing (my own personal training effort is to not laugh in those situations which is why I always look constipated).

If I gave the impression that Dan was out to hurt folks ... well, I almost always give off a funky vibe that gives the wrong impression. I'm wired weird or something. My momma loves me so I'll be alright.

PS My momma hits way harder than Dan and she means to hurt. It's for my own good.

gregstec
11-09-2010, 12:41 PM
If I gave the impression that Dan was out to hurt folks ... well, I almost always give off a funky vibe that gives the wrong impression. I'm wired weird or something. My momma loves me so I'll be alright.
.

My comments were not really directed to you or anyone else in this thread, and yes Lee is right, there is always a potential for someone to get hurt in MA, but my comment was really to let others know that Dan is not a dangerous person to train with, as has been mentioned various times in other threads mostly by people that have not met Dan - that was all.

Greg

Rob Watson
11-09-2010, 01:06 PM
Dan is not a dangerous person to train with

Dan is one of the most dangerous people to train with because he might make you rethink everything you thought was true and make your world view crumble around you. You let someone like that get inside your head there will be damage

There are a few people around this forum that are just like that. They make you think and sometimes that can be painful indeed.

gregstec
11-09-2010, 01:22 PM
Dan is one of the most dangerous people to train with because he might make you rethink everything you thought was true and make your world view crumble around you. You let someone like that get inside your head there will be damage

There are a few people around this forum that are just like that. They make you think and sometimes that can be painful indeed.

Yes, that is true - he can hit you hard internally in the head and you will never be the same afterward - his training always hurts my head :)

Greg

Jeremy Hulley
11-09-2010, 02:05 PM
Yes, that is true - he can hit you hard internally in the head and you will never be the same afterward - his training always hurts my head :)

Greg

Agreed...shring notes on the plane home and some Powers after and my head still hurt..

Lee Salzman
11-09-2010, 02:06 PM
My comments were not really directed to you or anyone else in this thread, and yes Lee is right, there is always a potential for someone to get hurt in MA, but my comment was really to let others know that Dan is not a dangerous person to train with, as has been mentioned various times in other threads mostly by people that have not met Dan - that was all.

Greg

Sorry, I didn't mean to be a stick in the mud. I guess it didn't come out quite right. It was just a public service announcement as penance for my own personal guilt in the matter. :o

By the way, did I mention how much Dan loves it when we talk about him in the third person? :D

gregstec
11-09-2010, 02:19 PM
By the way, did I mention how much Dan loves it when we talk about him in the third person? :D

Yes he does - and the next time I see him he will remind me how much he likes it with a few love taps to my chest :eek:

Greg

Keith Larman
11-10-2010, 09:15 AM
Well, I'm one of those idiots who likes to feel things myself. Sometimes Toby Threadgill does stuff at his seminars and I'm usually the thick skulled guy who'll raise his hand -- I just need to feel it. But then again I've been injured, cut, broken and bruised so many times it's just "par for the course" for me. But this time I was coming off breaking my tailbone a month or so ago. I had just hit the point when the doctor said I could resume "light" activity. And just from trying to rock a little on my butt on the mat I can tell you any falling would have been a *really* bad idea. Heck, I had to sit out a few things solely because I could feel it reverberate into the tailbone. So while I would have loved to have felt a push or punch (not at full power), I had to pass. Which I was disappointed at. Next time assuming I don't break something else along the way I'll be first in line. The point is sometimes feeling the "tonal quality" of things. Threadgill damned near breaking my wrist "gently" taking a sword away. Yes, I said gently. Meaning on his end he used very little power. On my end, well, I couldn't let go fast enough. Sore for 2 weeks. But that's okay, it answered a doubt I had when I saw it demonstrated on someone else ("hmmm, he's letting go early in anticipation -- he's not really holding on well"). I'm a firm believer in reality checks. And from what I could feel from Dan, he certainly has power, structure, and the ability to deliver it quickly and dynamically in motion. Which is devilishly difficult.

And you know, this is supposed to be martial arts. I know, loving protection and all that good stuff. But if you're training sincerely things will happen. Get used to it.

There is something I like to tell students. One great reason to study the martial arts and to really push it up a notch is to learn that getting into a fight *really* hurts. That helps you avoid them. But training getting hit a few times helps you realize that you can still function even after you've been punched. I've seen guys with many years of experience (but without ever having really sparred) get dazed by one good punch and stand there like a punching bag. I think it is a *really* good thing to get punched a few times. To learn that you can continue to function even when in pain. Or when knocked back. Have that attitude changing experience with a friend rather than someone trying to do you harm. Then maybe you can handle it when the person who wishes to harm you comes at you. I want to know what Dan's punch feels like so I can respond appropriately should it ever happen. Or, of course, so I can have it in my repertoire should I ever need it. Short distance powerful strike with no cocking and chambering and no loss of center. Good stuff.

I only wish I hadn't busted myself up the month before so I could have enjoyed more of it. The stiffness and the still swollen area around my lower back really messed with my ability to feel things like alignment. I felt off from my normal ability the whole weekend not to mention the fact I was trying to learn all new stuff.

John Bickerstaff
11-12-2010, 03:25 PM
I'd like to add my two cents... Great seminar! Lots of fun. LOTS of work. Dan did a heck of a job and made it really enjoyable... if you're goofy enough to sign up for two days of sweat and brain-bending, counter-intuitive body movement (which we clearly all were...)

I partook of a sample of the power Dan can put into a punch... :D (and I'm clear he wasn't trying too hard) but I bowed out before "level 4"... Clearly a man who can do what he says. And yes, there was a very different quality to the feeling, much more penetrating than any other hit I've taken...

This is the real deal. It's what I've been looking for since I was 18. To anyone who wants to understand how to begin to train your body to do the "magic" of martial arts, I strongly recommend attending a seminar with Dan as soon as you can.

I wanted to leave a big thank-you to Dan's students Mark, Tom, and Leon who helped me a lot. Also, a strong second to Mark Murray's comments! Yes - let's find a way to make this common instead of something wrapped in mystery.

John Bickerstaff
11-12-2010, 03:33 PM
By the way, did I mention how much Dan loves it when we talk about him in the third person? :D

-- Oops! Dan - great seminar! Thanks for the energy and time you put into it. I've attended plenty and this one is at the top of my list in terms of the value and quality of the experience.

I'm looking forward to training with you again. Please announce any upcoming seminars - especially if you end up in Seattle!

MM
11-22-2010, 11:47 AM
Posted this on RSF and thought some might want to read it here.

People there got to experience what "internal" meant in the way of martial movement. How "internal power" (IP) can be generated without physical windup, how IP can be instantaneous, and still generate a considerable amount of force. Dan showed levels of "hitting" from structural power to dantien delivered power. Most on the receiving end had very wide eyes after the hit. :) Funny thing, though, is that Dan was really just "tapping" people. I've seen him deliver some force into his punches and he wasn't even close to doing that at this seminar.

One thing that, I think, stuck in people's minds was how seamless Dan's internal skills were from unarmed to armed. The internal skills drove the movement, whether it was from a fist or twin sticks or a sword. As a former kali student (and there was at least one other arnis/escrima/kali guy there), I had felt that experience first hand a couple years ago. But, those there could see it without having to get hit with a stick. :) Much better than me, who had to get hit repeatedly.

As someone who's been to several of these workshops, this one had an exception. Dan went over dantien development. So, kudos to some of the people there who were advanced enough for this stuff. I hadn't seen him do that at a workshop before. I thought it was funny (in a good way) that, at one point, when Dan was explaining dantien stuff, two people had hands on his abdomen area, and then whoosh, there were four or five people pushing to get hands on Dan.

Some of the people got to try to push on Dan with no effect. Some got to try to block his incoming punches, to no effect.

Overall, the people there were very bright, quick minded, hard working, and seemed to soak up a lot of the stuff that was thrown at them. And there was a lot of info. Of all the workshops I have been to, this one had the most people taking notes, and the most notes taken by each person. People seemed to be able to tell where the internal skills/internal power fit into their martial art without directly being shown, how IS/IP is at the base of their martial art, etc. Again, a very impressive group of people.

Shiko was one exercise that Dan went over. I had to laugh when someone said (paraphrasing), "like I need shiko to be more difficult to do". This version of shiko is not like normal Sumo shiko that most people see. Similar outward form, but not exactly.

Intent is one of the harder points to get across and train, but intent driven training was repeated throughout the weekend. Intent training is done in a relaxed manner, not with tension. Some noted that, while they had intent started, what we were working on was stronger and more refined.

Cross body work was shown and taught. How it goes from hand to opposite foot. Opposing forces was shown and taught. How there is never just one direction, but always two. Even when there is power being generated, the legs never are both open. One is opening while one is closing.

Bunch of other stuff, but I can't remember more off the top of my head.

AllanF
11-23-2010, 06:52 PM
A great time! Although in many ways a bitter sweet experience, in that it made me re-evaluate and reconsider everything i had been doing up to this point in time. But at least i now have a much clearer idea of what i should be aiming for.

Thanks to one and all, and to all those who made the trip from China worthwhile. And i hope to be able to train with Dan again in the future.

Allan

Keith Larman
11-23-2010, 07:03 PM
I'm still working on exercises and integrating/digesting what I learned/saw. Great workshop, highly recommended.

Funny thing was that I didn't think I understood much of anything about reverse breathing. Found out I was right. :) I have no idea what I"m doing.

Interesting also that I have found all sorts of new parts of my body to make sore.

MM
11-24-2010, 06:41 AM
Hi William,

Apologies all around. First for the delay in responding. I've been all over the place, mentally, since I got back. I should have posted this sooner.

And the mixup was my fault. I apologize for that. I had kept your spot but didn't realize Dan was filling application spots, so the mis-communication was my fault.

Again, I'm very sorry for the trouble I caused. I had really wanted to meet you and twice now it hasn't worked out. Let's hope third times the charm rings true.

Thank you,
Mark

Hopefully it went very well. I did not attend.

My Bad. I just assumed since I was invited ( I was super duper busy with work so I must have missed the deadline announcement) that I would be able to show up with my money and application. It got very confusing there for a little bit but apparently I did not get my application in "on time" and my spot was given to someone else.

There were some PM's back and forth saying not to worry about it but the last PM I got asked me not to attend as the seminar was "full"

Bummer for me. :( I emailed Dan and hopefully I will get the next one. :)

William Hazen

mathewjgano
11-26-2010, 04:12 PM
Funny thing was that I didn't think I understood much of anything about reverse breathing. Found out I was right. :) I have no idea what I"m doing.


Would you be able to describe some of the differences in the way you were reverse breathing before and after the seminar?