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Mike Sigman
07-29-2011, 08:35 PM
"筋长力大" - "The longer the tendons, the greater the force" and “筋长一寸,力大十分”,"When the tendons grow one inch longer, the force will increase ten times." (Yianni Solos translations)

One way to extend the "tendons" (the term is used as a collective for "connective tissue") is through the postures of Aikido and the breathing exercises (few of O-Sensei's actual exercises are usually shown).

Mike Sigman

LinTal
07-30-2011, 08:33 AM
Fascinating, but *why* is it so? I remember reading an explanation for the 'unbendable arm' that explained the strength. Apparently the primary muscles change with extension, allowing those on the surface to absorb tension and bend easier. Mightn't this aspect come into this category too?

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 11:55 AM
Fascinating, but *why* is it so? I remember reading an explanation for the 'unbendable arm' that explained the strength. Apparently the primary muscles change with extension, allowing those on the surface to absorb tension and bend easier. Mightn't this aspect come into this category too?
Why is it so and how is it used in conjunction with the correct basic skills.... that might be a more complete question. The question is just one of several examples I thought of to illustrate my discussion with Rob Liberti yesterday in re: "a person often doesn't know what he doesn't know".

2 cents.

Mike Sigman

graham christian
07-30-2011, 12:08 PM
In Aikido, that seems to be the question yes? Elsewhere there may be certain reasons but in Aikido?

Well in Yoshinkan they may have one reason and in another style they may have another reason.

When studying Ki then it's for set reasons and quite opposite to the view given abt. tendons.

When doing exercises with Ki then the fingers or even one finger is used to extend Ki in a very specific direction, so it's all to do with directing Ki.

As a result the tendons bit by bit gain strength and subtleness and indeed free more and more of blocked Ki. (as in Kiatsu or acupuncture etc)

In this way of Aikido training the body does build up a 'facia' but as a result not an aim.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 12:20 PM
In Aikido, that seems to be the question yes? Elsewhere there may be certain reasons but in Aikido?

Well in Yoshinkan they may have one reason and in another style they may have another reason.

When studying Ki then it's for set reasons and quite opposite to the view given abt. tendons.

When doing exercises with Ki then the fingers or even one finger is used to extend Ki in a very specific direction, so it's all to do with directing Ki.

As a result the tendons bit by bit gain strength and subtleness and indeed free more and more of blocked Ki. (as in Kiatsu or acupuncture etc)

In this way of Aikido training the body does build up a 'facia' but as a result not an aim.

Regards.G.
Well, in my opinion that sort of explanation is where "internal strength" goes wrong. A 'teacher' hears a fact or buzzword and decides they can intuit what the buzzword, demonstration, etc., does and so they teach that reasoning to their students. Unfortunately, the guess is often wrong and we're back down the road to where an art forgets the I.S. stuff (or they never really get much of it to start with).

Not that I discourage people from teaching their students their "take" on things, though. It's fascinating to watch. ;)

I thought the fingers example was a good analogue to the postural examples that Ellis was pointing to in the HIPS Indeed thread.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

graham christian
07-30-2011, 12:38 PM
Well, in my opinion that sort of explanation is where "internal strength" goes wrong. A 'teacher' hears a fact or buzzword and decides they can intuit what the buzzword, demonstration, etc., does and so they teach that reasoning to their students. Unfortunately, the guess is often wrong and we're back down the road to where an art forgets the I.S. stuff (or they never really get much of it to start with).

Not that I discourage people from teaching their students their "take" on things, though. It's fascinating to watch. ;)

I thought the fingers example was a good analogue to the postural examples that Ellis was pointing to in the HIPS Indeed thread.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Mike. Funny thing is the reverse goes for me. The guess from non'Aikido folk thinking they understand. As with you I don't discourage it either. It's fascinating for me to watch too.

The reason is they are not taught the whys, that's all. Ip may have it's reasons so that fits that. To assume that equals Aikido? mmmm.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 12:52 PM
The guess from non'Aikido folk thinking they understand. I get confused about what a non-Aikido person is, in relation to this thread. Could you clarify, please?

Mike Sigman

DodgingRain
07-30-2011, 12:59 PM
the extended fingers seems to be universal in many arts. chinese arts call it something like 'tile pam/hand'; you can see it in taiji, as well as bagua palm positions. ive seen daito ryu practitioners emphasize the extended fingers in some of their exercises as well.

it seems to strengthen (connect) the fingers/hand to the rest of the arm to make it one piece, so the power coming from the elbow or hara or foot can more easily transfer to the tips of the fingers.

just an observation from a beginner. please feel free to correct where i am wrong.

graham christian
07-30-2011, 01:04 PM
I get confused about what a non-Aikido person is, in relation to this thread. Could you clarify, please?

Mike Sigman

Well Mike I thought you specialized in internal arts. Your terminology is from those arts no? You're not known as an Aikidoka are you?

What's your confusion?

Remember, this is not a contest my man. I offered a viewpoint on subject and I hope many others will offer their views too.

Let's get real. By your comments about aikidoka assuming they know about internal skills when they don't so it's quite obvious that many ip experts assume they know Aikido when they don't.

It works both ways doesn't it?

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 01:26 PM
Well Mike I thought you specialized in internal arts. Your terminology is from those arts no? You're not known as an Aikidoka are you?

What's your confusion? Well, I did do Aikido for 7+ years, so that doesn't make me "non-Aikido", does it? Applying "non-Aikido" to me is simply more of the same attempts at trivialization that were rampant some years back. Interestingly enough, a number of the people who attempted to trivialize me (and others) are now learning what they can about internal strength skills. Some of the people learning these basic skills (to Aikido) are purportedly Shihans.... is a "Shihan" who is just learning basic ki/kokyu movement skills really a Shihan? If he is now just learning these skills, then was what he was doing actually Aikido, before? I could make a good, logical argument that the Aikido I learned for the 7+ years was really only waza and therefore was not real Aikido, so calling me "non-Aikido" could be accurate after all.

Confusing, ain't it? :p If the basis of Aikido is the ki skills (kokyu, etc.) then someone who has no ki skills or understanding of them would be "non-Aikido" and they shouldn't try to comment about an art that they don't really understand. Could that be you? Don't you love conundrums?

Remember, this is not a contest my man. I offered a viewpoint on subject and I hope many others will offer their views too.

Let's get real. By your comments about aikidoka assuming they know about internal skills when they don't so it's quite obvious that many ip experts assume they know Aikido when they don't.

It works both ways doesn't it?.True, and as I showed above, it cuts both ways, too. The term "non-Aikido", I would argue (as I did above) applies more to you than to me, but I generally avoid the discussions when comments go off the topic and toward personal characterization.

2 cents.

Mike Sigman

graham christian
07-30-2011, 02:26 PM
Well, I did do Aikido for 7+ years, so that doesn't make me "non-Aikido", does it? Applying "non-Aikido" to me is simply more of the same attempts at trivialization that were rampant some years back. Interestingly enough, a number of the people who attempted to trivialize me (and others) are now learning what they can about internal strength skills. Some of the people learning these basic skills (to Aikido) are purportedly Shihans.... is a "Shihan" who is just learning basic ki/kokyu movement skills really a Shihan? If he is now just learning these skills, then was what he was doing actually Aikido, before? I could make a good, logical argument that the Aikido I learned for the 7+ years was really only waza and therefore was not real Aikido, so calling me "non-Aikido" could be accurate after all.

Confusing, ain't it? :p If the basis of Aikido is the ki skills (kokyu, etc.) then someone who has no ki skills or understanding of them would be "non-Aikido" and they shouldn't try to comment about an art that they don't really understand. Could that be you? Don't you love conundrums? True, and as I showed above, it cuts both ways, too. The term "non-Aikido", I would argue (as I did above) applies more to you than to me, but I generally avoid the discussions when comments go off the topic and toward personal characterization.

2 cents.

Mike Sigman

O.K. Mike. That explains your view, and I didn't know you did Aikido for 7 years. So I shall tell you what I mean.

A person who studies and practices Aikido as their main art or only art. It's very simple really.

Someone who gave up football after six years and now plays rugby is now a rugby player and no longer a footballer.

It's not personalizing anything to you, it's a differentiation. You know it too don't you? What do you advertise yourself as? Obviously your area of expertise which is not called Aikido.

So no it's not at all confusing to me.

You did 7 years Aikido so at that time you were doing Aikido. Very simple isn't it?

You did seven years where it was mostly waza, well that's Aikido waza as part of Aikido. Simple isn't it?

A shihan of Aikido is doing Aikido. How can anyone twist that to mean x,y,z.?

Too simple.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 03:12 PM
O.K. Mike. That explains your view, and I didn't know you did Aikido for 7 years. So I shall tell you what I mean.

A person who studies and practices Aikido as their main art or only art. It's very simple really. So your *opinion* is what defines Aikido versus non-Aikido? If Ikeda Sensei quits Aikido today and takes up Tai Chi, his opinion on Aikido matters is now in the realm of "Non-Aikido" opinion? Let's not be silly.

What do you advertise yourself as? I don't advertise myself as anything, if you'll look at it. My area of interest is and has been (since 1974) the type of movement and body skills that fall under the heading of "Internal Strength" (Neijin) and so far I've encountered very, very few Asian martial arts that don't use that type of strength, or at least espouse that type of strength in their literature and lore. That's my area of focus and expertise and, not coincidentally, "Aikido" espouses that same type of skills, so I'm not an "outsider" to Aikido, based on that overlap. Since you don't do those forms of strength, and if I was wanting to rag someone about being an "outsider", I could call you an "outsider to real Aikido", but I'm much too polite to ever let myself slip that low... I won't say an unkind word. :hypno:

Regards

Mike Sigman ;)

graham christian
07-30-2011, 03:41 PM
Anyway Mike, back to topic.

In my Aikido as I've said the extending of the finger is to direct Ki.

Sometimes when I see some more disciplined Ki direction is needed I devote the lesson to this one fact. It's all to do with 'extending' Ki for real rather than imagining or thinking you are.

In these exercises all leading has to be done with the finger or more precisely through the finger.

When leading straight down for example it means two things.

1) Straight down means straight down. Not a slight angle etc.

2) To a specific location ie: Australia. (through to Australia) rather than to the floor. The location may be a specific point on the wall or through that specific point.

There are reasons for this and when done precisely the effect is totally different.

For all the machanics people out there I would say this: Just like in electricity flowing from one node to another. You have to have two stable points for the power to flow.

Regards.G.

graham christian
07-30-2011, 03:51 PM
So your *opinion* is what defines Aikido versus non-Aikido? If Ikeda Sensei quits Aikido today and takes up Tai Chi, his opinion on Aikido matters is now in the realm of "Non-Aikido" opinion? Let's not be silly. I don't advertise myself as anything, if you'll look at it. My area of interest is and has been (since 1974) the type of movement and body skills that fall under the heading of "Internal Strength" (Neijin) and so far I've encountered very, very few Asian martial arts that don't use that type of strength, or at least espouse that type of strength in their literature and lore. That's my area of focus and expertise and, not coincidentally, "Aikido" espouses that same type of skills, so I'm not an "outsider" to Aikido, based on that overlap. Since you don't do those forms of strength, and if I was wanting to rag someone about being an "outsider", I could call you an "outsider to real Aikido", but I'm much too polite to ever let myself slip that low... I won't say an unkind word. :hypno:

Regards

Mike Sigman ;)

Mike. I would call you? You just did.

Your interest is Neijin so there you are, that's what you are, an expert in neijin. Why on earth would you consider me saying that a put down?

If Ikeda or anyone else left Aikido and did Tai chi then they would have a reason wouldn't they? They would quite happily say they were now a Tai Chi exponent. They would also say they used to do Aikido but......

It's not rocket science. Just plain honesty. It doesn't mean they will then be positive or negative towards Aikido.

If I help a Judoka improve his judo that's great. I used Aikido principles to help him, I'M not therefore a judoka or an expert on judo.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 04:41 PM
Anyway Mike, back to topic.

In my Aikido as I've said the extending of the finger is to direct Ki.

Sometimes when I see some more disciplined Ki direction is needed I devote the lesson to this one fact. It's all to do with 'extending' Ki for real rather than imagining or thinking you are.

In these exercises all leading has to be done with the finger or more precisely through the finger.

When leading straight down for example it means two things.

1) Straight down means straight down. Not a slight angle etc.

2) To a specific location ie: Australia. (through to Australia) rather than to the floor. The location may be a specific point on the wall or through that specific point.

There are reasons for this and when done precisely the effect is totally different.

For all the machanics people out there I would say this: Just like in electricity flowing from one node to another. You have to have two stable points for the power to flow.

Regards.G.The idea of the fingers/hand directing the Ki is an old one which was originally important in the scheme of things, but the point is that this facet of Ki is a secondary by-product of the so-called Internal Strength skills being discussed in various forums here and in other places on the internet. Sun Lutang, the famous Xingyi and Bagua expert, changed the way the upper hand is held in San Ti so that the palm is more or less pointing forward; the palm had previously been down with the fingers pointing forward so that the qi would go in a forward direction. The Old Guard protested the change, but Sun simply indicated that they didn't actually understand the fingers-forward relationship to qi. I could explain the situation, but once again it is a topic that to do justice would take several pages.... let me just say that if someone is using good ki/qi skills the whole finger-pointing thing is sort of a non-issue. You'd probably be far better off to explore some of the physical aspects of ki (jin/kokyu).... they're productive studies.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

graham christian
07-30-2011, 05:13 PM
The idea of the fingers/hand directing the Ki is an old one which was originally important in the scheme of things, but the point is that this facet of Ki is a secondary by-product of the so-called Internal Strength skills being discussed in various forums here and in other places on the internet. Sun Lutang, the famous Xingyi and Bagua expert, changed the way the upper hand is held in San Ti so that the palm is more or less pointing forward; the palm had previously been down with the fingers pointing forward so that the qi would go in a forward direction. The Old Guard protested the change, but Sun simply indicated that they didn't actually understand the fingers-forward relationship to qi. I could explain the situation, but once again it is a topic that to do justice would take several pages.... let me just say that if someone is using good ki/qi skills the whole finger-pointing thing is sort of a non-issue. You'd probably be far better off to explore some of the physical aspects of ki (jin/kokyu).... they're productive studies.

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Ah Mike. That just started sounding interesting. Then you have to put down what I say. Shame.

Carry on with your historical explanation, I'm sure some might be interested. Including me.

Once again you have ki skills referenced to other arts so carry on and may all learn.

I however am talking ki skills learned in Aikido and you assume much.

As I pointed out 'when I see someone needing to be more precise in their directing Ki I revert them back to these drills. As far as more advanced not needing it, well that's true. Do I need those drills now? Can I direct Ki without having to use the finger as the tool? Yes. But that's irrelevent to the thread, it's not about me, it's about why extending the fingers in Aikido.

According to you Ki is a by product of the internal skills discussed and you quote some 'famous' people who said so. So that is your belief and your way.

That's not my view, in fact for me it's quite the opposite. Ki can be developed without those methods you are familiar with.

In other words that's not the only way.

Statements of someone good at ki skills then the whole finger pointing is a non issue is a strange thing to say as far as i'm concerned for it's the title of your thread.

It's hardly a non isuue for those who can for they would then understand how to do it from other areas ie;elbow, wrist etc.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 05:46 PM
Once again you have ki skills referenced to other arts so carry on and may all learn.

I however am talking ki skills learned in Aikido and you assume much.


There is no difference between the "ki" referred to in Japan and the "qi" referred to in China and CMA's. The idea that Aikido utilizes some special/unique variety of ki/ki-skills is simply wrong and ill-informed (or worse). It's not a matter of my "belief". OTOH, I have to note that while I'll languidly debate some of the topics with you, I'm perfectly content to enjoy the idea that you have other ideas which you think are valid. It passes the time.... and time does pass. ;)

Mike Sigman

mathewjgano
07-30-2011, 06:26 PM
I just have some loose thoughts in the hopes of others adding something more substantial to relate about them...
In opening the hand and extending the fingers I notice my forearm expands, which opens (very slightly) the grip someone might use to hold it in place, making it easier to undo aite's grip. This seems to tie into the effort of "extending ki" through some line/s in the body, such as the pinky/tegatana and spiraling that/those line/s to create further expansion of the whole...the idea being to create a kind of contiguous expansion along that/those line/s...the ability to expand being key to suppression efforts.
I also like to play around with the feeling of my palm chakra as I expand and contract my fingers. After expanding "well" I get more palm contact; if I have more palm contact I get more of a "full" and "relaxed" grip on bokken and I seem to need less effort to raise or cut; I also get more spring to my cut. So in expanding my hands/fingers, I notice I also get a better grip...and seem to have at least some kind of better connection with hara.
When I practiced regularly (expanding my fingers/hands in this case), I remember I could grab in such a way that would cause the fluid in the arm to be displaced (my best guess) somewhat painfully in my training partner. It was an odd experience. I don't think that's probably quite what we're looking for, but I always thought it was interesting.
Thoughts?
Take care,
Matt

graham christian
07-30-2011, 06:30 PM
There is no difference between the "ki" referred to in Japan and the "qi" referred to in China and CMA's. The idea that Aikido utilizes some special/unique variety of ki/ki-skills is simply wrong and ill-informed (or worse). It's not a matter of my "belief". OTOH, I have to note that while I'll languidly debate some of the topics with you, I'm perfectly content to enjoy the idea that you have other ideas which you think are valid. It passes the time.... and time does pass. ;)

Mike Sigman

Ki is Ki as in Aikido. Chi is chi as in Taichi. Both relate to the same thing.

Ki Aikido for example teaches Ki developement via a different method to you or bagua or neijin. Thus different methods.

Kiatsu also teaches Ki and ki developement. With specific results.

Your attitude to other methods is very dismissive. I wonder why?

How comes I can see and validate the ways of internal arts when shown to me or even described and at the same time know another way?

Could this be what is meant by the student mind?

I have a Tai chi teacher friend who lives less than a mile from me. We meet up and share our experiences. Share being the operative word. We KNOW we are on the same path and we admire each others different methods of achieving the same aims. We even get enthusiastic about the similarities.

Understanding is such a precious thing, it returns you to centre.

Regards.G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 06:43 PM
Ki is Ki as in Aikido. Chi is chi as in Taichi. Both relate to the same thing.

Ki Aikido for example teaches Ki developement via a different method to you or bagua or neijin. Thus different methods.
No, not really different. Same principles, same results. You're probably confused by superficial appearances and the fact that peoples' results cover a wide spectrum of success.

Kiatsu also teaches Ki and ki developement. With specific results.

Still the same stuff, just different facets of the whole.

Your attitude to other methods is very dismissive. I wonder why?
I'm dismissive of the idea that there are artificial distinctions, as you see them. There is only one Qi/Ki.
How comes I can see and validate the ways of internal arts when shown to me or even described and at the same time know another way?

Could this be what is meant by the student mind? Could be. Could be also that you don't understand the topic, though, right?

I have a Tai chi teacher friend who lives less than a mile from me. We meet up and share our experiences. Share being the operative word. We KNOW we are on the same path and we admire each others different methods of achieving the same aims. We even get enthusiastic about the similarities.
All you've told me is that your Tai Chi teacher friend shares your level of understanding about qi/ki. Given the level of most martial-arts, Tai Chi, Aikido, etc., teachers, is that really a validation? ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

graham christian
07-30-2011, 07:19 PM
No, not really different. Same principles, same results. You're probably confused by superficial appearances and the fact that peoples' results cover a wide spectrum of success. Still the same stuff, just different facets of the whole. I'm dismissive of the idea that there are artificial distinctions, as you see them. There is only one Qi/Ki. Could be. Could be also that you don't understand the topic, though, right? All you've told me is that your Tai Chi teacher friend shares your level of understanding about qi/ki. Given the level of most martial-arts, Tai Chi, Aikido, etc., teachers, is that really a validation? ;)

FWIW

Mike Sigman

Dismissive. Shame.

G.

Mike Sigman
07-30-2011, 07:24 PM
Dismissive.


Bad habit of mine, I agree. I'm also dismissive of the Tooth Fairy. ;)

graham christian
07-30-2011, 07:39 PM
I just have some loose thoughts in the hopes of others adding something more substantial to relate about them...
In opening the hand and extending the fingers I notice my forearm expands, which opens (very slightly) the grip someone might use to hold it in place, making it easier to undo aite's grip. This seems to tie into the effort of "extending ki" through some line/s in the body, such as the pinky/tegatana and spiraling that/those line/s to create further expansion of the whole...the idea being to create a kind of contiguous expansion along that/those line/s...the ability to expand being key to suppression efforts.
I also like to play around with the feeling of my palm chakra as I expand and contract my fingers. After expanding "well" I get more palm contact; if I have more palm contact I get more of a "full" and "relaxed" grip on bokken and I seem to need less effort to raise or cut; I also get more spring to my cut. So in expanding my hands/fingers, I notice I also get a better grip...and seem to have at least some kind of better connection with hara.
When I practiced regularly (expanding my fingers/hands in this case), I remember I could grab in such a way that would cause the fluid in the arm to be displaced (my best guess) somewhat painfully in my training partner. It was an odd experience. I don't think that's probably quite what we're looking for, but I always thought it was interesting.
Thoughts?
Take care,
Matt

I agree with what you experienced. Like water going through a hose it expands. With Ki extended other principles align and thus you become more aware of them ie: center line, hara, etc.

Your training partner experiencing pain is probably due to him not extending Ki and indeed resisting what you were doing. Now here's a key point of Ki developement. Once you find that effect on the other then recognise their resistance. Thereafter find how to use your 'grab' and the Ki from your palm in such a way that it doesn't cause pain and yet is even more effective. This doesn't mean use less Ki.

If you changed your view on grab and more to the hand meeting in a wrapping manner and leading all as one flow then I think his resistance will deminish and you will in fact already be leading his Ki for him.

Regards.G.

graham christian
07-30-2011, 07:43 PM
Bad habit of mine, I agree. I'm also dismissive of the Tooth Fairy. ;)

AH. You need more Ki.

mathewjgano
07-30-2011, 10:08 PM
If you changed your view on grab and more to the hand meeting in a wrapping manner and leading all as one flow then I think his resistance will deminish and you will in fact already be leading his Ki for him.

Regards.G.

It is essentially a meeting and wrapping manner that I mean by "grab," though you may be right otherwise. I could make a similar effect on my own arm where I would barely/gently "wrap" my arm in my hand and cause my finger-tips to suddenly twinge with added pressure. I've been trying it since my last post and don't come anywhere near to producing what I remember.
I'm more interested in how finger extension might relate to fist/hand connection. For example, the tora no kuchi (http://www.google.com/imgres?q=tora+no+kuchi+kendo&um=1&hl=en&rlz=1W1ADFA_en&biw=1366&bih=568&tbm=isch&tbnid=RWoLymVu-TzT8M:&imgrefurl=http://www.mushinkankendo.com/lesson_one.html&docid=ESYXZZ0UWFzCCM&w=339&h=326&ei=JNQ0TtiyB-vRiALJ6bzDCA&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=234&page=2&tbnh=112&tbnw=116&start=28&ndsp=29&ved=1t:429,r:5,s:28&tx=50&ty=50)(tiger's mouth), ippon ken (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strike_(attack)#Extended_knuckle); etc.
I know ippon ken in particular isn't very extended looking, but surely it relates to the "unbreakable circle" I believe Tohei Sensei spoke of?

graham christian
07-31-2011, 07:09 AM
It is essentially a meeting and wrapping manner that I mean by "grab," though you may be right otherwise. I could make a similar effect on my own arm where I would barely/gently "wrap" my arm in my hand and cause my finger-tips to suddenly twinge with added pressure. I've been trying it since my last post and don't come anywhere near to producing what I remember.
I'm more interested in how finger extension might relate to fist/hand connection. For example, the tora no kuchi (http://www.google.com/imgres?q=tora+no+kuchi+kendo&um=1&hl=en&rlz=1W1ADFA_en&biw=1366&bih=568&tbm=isch&tbnid=RWoLymVu-TzT8M:&imgrefurl=http://www.mushinkankendo.com/lesson_one.html&docid=ESYXZZ0UWFzCCM&w=339&h=326&ei=JNQ0TtiyB-vRiALJ6bzDCA&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=234&page=2&tbnh=112&tbnw=116&start=28&ndsp=29&ved=1t:429,r:5,s:28&tx=50&ty=50)(tiger's mouth), ippon ken (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strike_(attack)#Extended_knuckle); etc.
I know ippon ken in particular isn't very extended looking, but surely it relates to the "unbreakable circle" I believe Tohei Sensei spoke of?

Hi Matthew.
Ippon ken? Well when holding the bokken in such a way you are extending through the centre of it, through it's centre line.

So no it's not to do with the unbreakable circle if you're talking about Ki extension.

The hands wrapping around form the unbreakable circle yes but the Ki extension actually comes from tegatana.

The elbow may lead but tegatana extends and cuts. When your tegatana becomes one with the sword then it becomes one with you and thus is no longer a heavy object but merely part of you.

As far as the effect on your fingers when you hold the arm or wrist well that happens basically on a 'dead' arm so to speak. It's due to the simple cutting off of blood flow, the fingers wondering what's going on. Sometimes it could be you pressing on a nerve.

More importantly though is when your wrist is held then your hand should automatically come alive and not be some 'dead' or lethargic twitching thing.

In fact extending and getting that expanding effect is one side of the equation because letting the energy or power from the hold come in to centre first and then extending back out is the whole.

The extended knuckle strikes etc. are not of much concern to me.
Of course they would be the extension point for ki but their use is more to do with specific points or pressure points. Any knuckle or elbow or knee etc could be used in such ways so it's not that significant really. In Aikido for me it's more a matter of being aware of such things and even how to handle such things rather than use them for they are not exactly harmonious.

Having said that I find tegatana a much more powerful thing and even an extended finger.

Heres something you can practice if you feel the need. Hold a piece of paper, just by one edge say with your left hand and jab your finger through it with your right hand. If you are using force it will dent or crumple to a degree but the aim is for you to be able to put your finger straight through it leaving a hole. The paper must be held mainly by thumb and finger so there is no tension in it.

When you can do this you will know ki extension through the finger used as a weapon.

Regards.G.

JW
07-31-2011, 12:52 PM
I have some thoughts on this matter though they may not be in the original spirit of the thread. Mike, I know you saw Sunadomari's AJ Friendship Seminar demo/lecture. This was a BIG topic for him, he actually spend a lot of time discussing it.
I took away this as a basic understanding:

From the point of view of outward force from you, the finger extension is involved in the mechanism of your generation of strength. There are 2 contexts in that demo that you will see Sunadomari's hand extended: when he shows you what is "wrong," and when he directs ukes around him, by using some outward force. So why is one wrong and one is actually what he does in application?

When you want to put out outward force (obviously it will be into a direction where there is no ability for uke to resist) then this kind of expansive mechanism is used. But then there is the receiving of incoming force, which is a different matter. This is where Sunadomari's harping on what is not right comes in. If uke is coming in with strong force, then receiving the grab correctly involves a mechanism marked by hand closure, rather than hand opening. He shows this many times. It seems to be the case that by fully and actively receiving the incoming force, his influence can 'enter' into the attack. He shows how using strength (with the hallmark extended fingers) in this case is exactly the wrong thing to do, and you just get pushed around.

I took it like, if someone gives you the 'yang' tomoe from the diagram, you complete it by mating it to the 'yin' tomoe. But vice versa when they are weak-- in that case they present only the 'yin' tomoe so you fit that puzzle piece with the correctly matching 'yang' tomoe.

Mike Sigman
07-31-2011, 02:11 PM
I have some thoughts on this matter though they may not be in the original spirit of the thread. Mike, I know you saw Sunadomari's AJ Friendship Seminar demo/lecture. This was a BIG topic for him, he actually spend a lot of time discussing it.
I took away this as a basic understanding:

From the point of view of outward force from you, the finger extension is involved in the mechanism of your generation of strength. There are 2 contexts in that demo that you will see Sunadomari's hand extended: when he shows you what is "wrong," and when he directs ukes around him, by using some outward force. So why is one wrong and one is actually what he does in application?

When you want to put out outward force (obviously it will be into a direction where there is no ability for uke to resist) then this kind of expansive mechanism is used. But then there is the receiving of incoming force, which is a different matter. This is where Sunadomari's harping on what is not right comes in. If uke is coming in with strong force, then receiving the grab correctly involves a mechanism marked by hand closure, rather than hand opening. He shows this many times. It seems to be the case that by fully and actively receiving the incoming force, his influence can 'enter' into the attack. He shows how using strength (with the hallmark extended fingers) in this case is exactly the wrong thing to do, and you just get pushed around.

I took it like, if someone gives you the 'yang' tomoe from the diagram, you complete it by mating it to the 'yin' tomoe. But vice versa when they are weak-- in that case they present only the 'yin' tomoe so you fit that puzzle piece with the correctly matching 'yang' tomoe.Hi Jonathan:

Well, we're getting off into techniques and strategy and that's not what I was getting at in the O.P. While jin/kokyu forces are strong, particularly if you add to the opponent's force ("harmonize", or something similar, because that is what the first two characters of "Ai Ki" actually mean), the actual techniques/strategies of Aikido are meant to also follow the traditional admonitions: don't use force; deflect a heavy attack with a very light force; no resistance. I.e., even though you can generate powerful force with kokyu, it would classically be considered 'low class' if you used "walk through the opponent" type response to an attack. Ueshiba knew that traditional ideal and included it in his art. The same ideal is found in many other Asian martial-arts.

But all of that to the side, I was talking about the physical purpose to the physical extension (not necessarily the 'ki' extension). How one responds to an attack is a different topic.

2 cents.

Mike Sigman

dps
07-31-2011, 04:07 PM
And now time for some comic relief.

Why the extended fingers in Aikido postures?

Because you just recognized uke as the jerk that cut you off in traffic on the way to the dojo.

dps

mathewjgano
07-31-2011, 10:20 PM
But all of that to the side, I was talking about the physical purpose to the physical extension (not necessarily the 'ki' extension). How one responds to an attack is a different topic.


So the physical purpose is to create greater power capability by extending the tendons (connective tissues); breathing exercises can develop this, but most of the exercises taught by Ueshiba are scattered about or otherwise not readily available for the average aikido-ist. Is this a good summation of the topic being covered by the thread so far?
Based on what I've seen so far, I'm not sure what to ask to learn more...would you be willing to elaborate a bit further?

Mike Sigman
07-31-2011, 10:26 PM
So the physical purpose is to create greater power capability by extending the tendons (connective tissues); breathing exercises can develop this, but most of the exercises taught by Ueshiba are scattered about or otherwise not readily available for the average aikido-ist. Is this a good summation of the topic covered by the thread so far?
Based on what I've seen so far, I'm not sure what to ask to learn more...would you be willing to elaborate a bit further?

That's a pretty good summation, really. There are a few basic approaches (with varying degrees of sophistication), but I think my original purpose was to point out that some phyical extension (a la Yoshinkan and also in Aikikai and others) helps to knit the body together for the reason indicated in the translation in the O.P.

If you look at Akuzawa's training and a number of similar trainings in a variety of Japanese and Chinese arts, you'll see that extension approach fairly commonly. Of course, a person has to be careful that they don't over-extend themselves into stiffness, non-use of the hara, and so on.

2 cents.

Mike Sigman

MM
08-01-2011, 07:57 AM
Shirata gives a very apt description of why he is spreading, or extending, his fingers when he talked about Suwari kokyu-ho. Shirata states, "Spread the fingers of both hands like 'a pair of blooming flowers' and inhale ..."

Now, the translator translated it as "blooming flowers", but I would venture to say that the original Japanese held a certain phrase that meant a specific kind of internal training.

In fact, I found mention that one of the common internal training exercises for aiki age was to use this principle.

Why the extended fingers? Looks like there might be multiple reasons, depending on what you're trying to accomplish or train. Me? I'd tend to lean towards Shirata and try to find out what the original Japanese version was rather than the watered down translation.

IMO anyway,
Mark

Mike Sigman
08-01-2011, 08:14 AM
Shirata gives a very apt description of why he is spreading, or extending, his fingers when he talked about Suwari kokyu-ho. Shirata states, "Spread the fingers of both hands like 'a pair of blooming flowers' and inhale ..."
Depending on what a person knows, that statement is fairly straightforward and is congruent with the OP comment/translation. I actually showed (albeit with slightly different terminology) how that was done in the Hawaii workshop.

Mike Sigman

Ellis Amdur
08-01-2011, 08:37 AM
Mark - I, too, would be curious not only of the original Japanese (Shirata may well have changed the terminology) but also what he was taught. Why? Because asagao - morning glory - is the name of a "gokui" associated in the positioning of the hands and fingers in Daito-ryu. I read a debate in which it was asserted that the blooming of the hands was (of course) a manifestation of opening and extension within the entire body.
Best
Ellis Amdur

Eric in Denver
08-01-2011, 08:59 AM
Shirata gives a very apt description of why he is spreading, or extending, his fingers when he talked about Suwari kokyu-ho. Shirata states, "Spread the fingers of both hands like 'a pair of blooming flowers' and inhale ..."

Now, the translator translated it as "blooming flowers", but I would venture to say that the original Japanese held a certain phrase that meant a specific kind of internal training.

In fact, I found mention that one of the common internal training exercises for aiki age was to use this principle.

Why the extended fingers? Looks like there might be multiple reasons, depending on what you're trying to accomplish or train. Me? I'd tend to lean towards Shirata and try to find out what the original Japanese version was rather than the watered down translation.

IMO anyway,
Mark

I am guessing that the "blooming flowers" extension means the "asagao" or "morning glory" finger extension from Daito ryu.

Budd
08-01-2011, 09:51 AM
Mark - I, too, would be curious not only of the original Japanese (Shirata may well have changed the terminology) but also what he was taught. Why? Because asagao - morning glory - is the name of a "gokui" associated in the positioning of the hands and fingers in Daito-ryu. I read a debate in which it was asserted that the blooming of the hands was (of course) a manifestation of opening and extension within the entire body.
Best
Ellis Amdur

I'm of two minds about this - from the investigative and "data point collection" frame of mind, it's fascinating to get more intel on how translations differ from the original intent as well as different "clues" that different systems use to measure achievement or proficiency.

Then on the other hand . . I can see where people might focus so much on the blooming of the hands that they miss the opening/extension of the body that achieves this. Like when folks try to duplicate the shaking power of a Chen style fajin without having the middle controls, connected body or leg strength to really issue power.

Or even in mainstream aikido where the softness that's trained may miss the underlying strength that makes it powerful without the foundational work.

lbb
08-01-2011, 09:57 AM
Then on the other hand . . I can see where people might focus so much on the blooming of the hands that they miss the opening/extension of the body that achieves this. Like when folks try to duplicate the shaking power of a Chen style fajin without having the middle controls, connected body or leg strength to really issue power.

In other words, a necessary but not sufficient condition. Life is annoyingly full of those :D

DH
08-01-2011, 10:01 AM
Asagao is a beautiful combining of breath power, the use of fure aiki and elbow power. For the purposes of a drill you can do some interesting things dividing the energy, but every one of those principles are displayed anywhere in the body. Extendin ki into the fingers is meaningless without a developed body and understanding of how to use it.
Dan

Steven
08-01-2011, 07:54 PM
And now time for some comic relief.

Why the extended fingers in Aikido postures?

Because you just recognized uke as the jerk that cut you off in traffic on the way to the dojo.

dps

Now that's funny. Thanks

aikidark
04-02-2016, 12:36 AM
My apologies for resurrecting an old thread. So which fingers are extended and when? Like during the technique at which point is which finger extended and when? Is it the right or left hand? Grabbing hand? What if you have a bokken? Just out of curiosity.

Cady Goldfield
04-02-2016, 07:47 AM
My apologies for resurrecting an old thread. So which fingers are extended and when? Like during the technique at which point is which finger extended and when? Is it the right or left hand? Grabbing hand? What if you have a bokken? Just out of curiosity.

Refer back to post #38. The extended fingers are a by-product, not a "thing that you do" with them. The hands and fingers are a conduit for power generated by an entire-body process. Remember the little trick about the "unbendable arm" so popular in aikido? That's the tip of a very deep iceberg. :)

It doesn't matter "which hand," or whether you are holding a bokken. It's about the body itself and how you are activating a structural condition that facilitates the manipulating and directing of force. The arms, hands and fingers are providing the route to the point(s) of contact where you are sending that force. Breath and structural "shaping" of the elbow, hands and fingers facilitate that direction and process.

aikidark
04-02-2016, 09:15 AM
Cady, thanks very much. I can relate to your deep iceberg analogy.