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Demetrio Cereijo
01-28-2012, 11:12 AM
Graham,

Regardeless of the things Dan attributed (erroneously, you say) to you, not answering Dan's main question: "If I wanted to kick your butt, how would you avoid it?" hints to a serious lack of understanding from your part about how things work.

graham christian
01-28-2012, 11:30 AM
Demetrio. Funny how you see that as lack of understanding of how things work.

The question is not very good is it. Hitting, punching x amt. of times and kicking all in the space of 2 seconds with such power that breaks bones etc.

The answer is very clear to that one, it's a no brainer. If that happened to me or anyone they would be there with broken bones wouldn't they. Silly question.

I have been asked many times by students what if someone does this or does that then what would you do?

Should I afford him or you any different reply to what I give them?

I always say 'I don't know '

If that is an attempt at a discussion 'what if I try to kick your butt' then it's not a very good one.

Regards.G.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-28-2012, 11:39 AM
Should I afford him or you any different reply to what I give them?

I always say 'I don't know '

Well, I always say "let's try" or, in some cases, "bring it on".

That's how things work in the (my) martial arts world. Your world is a different one and you don't understand mine.

Regards.

graham christian
01-28-2012, 11:49 AM
Well, I always say "let's try" or, in some cases, "bring it on".

That's how things work in the (my) martial arts world. Your world is a different one and you don't understand mine.

Regards.

Very good. Sounds like yours it getting closer to mine. Ha, ha.

Regards.G.

graham christian
01-28-2012, 12:22 PM
Okay Graham
Your words and thoughts remain inconsistent. You have chosen to participate in a community and have entered into discussions of values and results in practice. You have stated repeatedly you have a superior understanding to pre war aiki and talked about power. That was your choice
I never cared until you participated in discussions of what I do -calling me a fraud. In your reply here you again attempt to reduce my efforts in teaching the community to promotional rhetoric.

Okay
Let's discuss throwing and skills and abilities to actually do so using aiki.

In both pre and post war Ueshiba stated his atemi can kill
Let's say I try to punch you in the face while not only retaining my center but it's moving in several different directions in a flash and in the space of two seconds I kick you and punch you four times.
Lets say that each of those kicks or punches have enough power to not only knock you out, but break bones and also eliminate the effective use of any limb you offer to "connect" with me. Now for clarity I have concussed people, or given them whip lash -even from a wrist grab-using about a tenth of my power.

Let's say, every time you move to stop me... I do not follow
Every time you touch me, I stick to whatever body part you send and I hit you agin and again...

Using the understanding of Ueshiba you claim to know...how do you stop me, much less ....how do you throw me? How do you -with the superior understanding you decided to claim here - in love bring a peaceful resolution to this conflict?

So, you have claimed to know what I do and you walked away from it twenty years ago into something superior. That means you can do what I do and now are better. Great.
Describe for us, how I can do these things? What is allowing it to happen what is the actual skill you are going to use to prevent it from happening?

I am interested in how your superior understanding of Ueshiba would stop Ueshibas pre-war form of aiki. I contend you cannot answer and will not answer....and have no ability to even try.
But, this is a discussion of throwing and aiki right? I not only know the answer to both sides, I demonstrate it and teach it under critical review...within the community and out.
Thoughts?
I am all ears.
Dan

A revisit. This time I will see if I can make sense of any of the above and answer accordingly. My aim is to find what's behind your beef.

Atemi can kill. Yes it can. I fail to see the point in saying that.

You have concussed people and given whiplash by grabbing wrist. Don't see what that clarifies unless you mean you use too much power.

'Lets say you move to stop me' I don't move to stop someone.

That means you can do what I do and now are better I don't do what you do.

Every time you touch me I stick to whatever body part you send. Not sure what you mean there.

How can I do these things? Which things? Sticking to someone? I do it with love. Don't know how you do it.

Prevent what from happening? Most that a person does I let happen. I move.

In the methods you use you should know the how and the how to harmonize with. That's obvious.

So in conclusion I fail to see what you are after. It seems to be all about you but as far as I know I will move according to the principles of Aikido from an attack. Irimi or whatever. I will move to a position of throw by entering or turning.

Regards.G.

Marc Abrams
01-28-2012, 01:30 PM
Imagine the response from the academic/science/research community to the following: A scientist says that he/she has made a remarkable discovery that can be reproducible consistently with the same results. This scientist puts forth wonderful sounding understandings from this depth of wisdom. The academic/scientific/research community says present your findings before us and allow us to replicate you studies so that we can verify the results. The scientist says that this is not necessary and that this has already been done. The scientist refuses to engage in the typical peer-review, study replication model that in universally employed in the sciences. When people refute the findings, conclusions and understanding of that scientist, the scientist simply retorts that they do not understand yet and that by following his/her guidance and words, someday the others will understand.

That kind of nonsense does occur. Not surprisingly, when those people who assume those positions have their "truths"' tested, their results are almost always not replicable. This might come as a surprise to some, but the martial arts community works according to similar principles. When people such as Graham put forth their "wisdom', "experience", and "abilities" and find every reason under the sun to avoid having those things demonstrated to an objective, informed audience, they simply do a disservice to themselves and to the art that they represent. If a person is not willing to allow for the verification of what they claim, then they simply look like deluded fools and charlatans. It is remarkable how much thread space such people take up. Much of the thread space simply involves some convoluted machination avoiding having to objectively demonstrate such "achievements." Our larger community should demand of ourselves and others, the level of empirical reality that helps to ensure that a martial art retains it's integrity. When people find ways to weasel out of having to walk the talk, the community at large should simply continue to provide simple responses that we are still waiting for you to walk your talk before we take anything said and alleged to be done seriously.

Just my 2 cents.

Marc Abrams

Walter Martindale
01-28-2012, 02:30 PM
Marc. Well said. To be 'real' or valid a 'concept' or 'proof' must be communicable to others and reproducible by others...

graham christian
01-28-2012, 02:49 PM
Marc. Well said. To be 'real' or valid a 'concept' or 'proof' must be communicable to others and reproducible by others...

I agree.

Mary Eastland
01-28-2012, 03:38 PM
Imagine the response from the academic/science/research community to the following: A scientist says that he/she has made a remarkable discovery that can be reproducible consistently with the same results. This scientist puts forth wonderful sounding understandings from this depth of wisdom. The academic/scientific/research community says present your findings before us and allow us to replicate you studies so that we can verify the results. The scientist says that this is not necessary and that this has already been done. The scientist refuses to engage in the typical peer-review, study replication model that in universally employed in the sciences. When people refute the findings, conclusions and understanding of that scientist, the scientist simply retorts that they do not understand yet and that by following his/her guidance and words, someday the others will understand.

That kind of nonsense does occur. Not surprisingly, when those people who assume those positions have their "truths"' tested, their results are almost always not replicable. This might come as a surprise to some, but the martial arts community works according to similar principles. When people such as Graham put forth their "wisdom', "experience", and "abilities" and find every reason under the sun to avoid having those things demonstrated to an objective, informed audience, they simply do a disservice to themselves and to the art that they represent. If a person is not willing to allow for the verification of what they claim, then they simply look like deluded fools and charlatans. It is remarkable how much thread space such people take up. Much of the thread space simply involves some convoluted machination avoiding having to objectively demonstrate such "achievements." Our larger community should demand of ourselves and others, the level of empirical reality that helps to ensure that a martial art retains it's integrity. When people find ways to weasel out of having to walk the talk, the community at large should simply continue to provide simple responses that we are still waiting for you to walk your talk before we take anything said and alleged to be done seriously.

Just my 2 cents.

Marc Abrams

For the sake of discussion we could give people the benefit of the doubt. Aikido can be a peaceful art. AikiWeb could be a place where everyone can post respectfully. People can choose what they want to read and who they want to ignore. We don't have to make ourselves look better by degrading others.

Graham practices Aikido on this board all the time. He says what he wants no matter how many times some people try to make him look ridiculous. You could learn a lot from how he posts.

Gary David
01-28-2012, 03:46 PM
Quote:
Walter Martindale wrote: Marc. Well said. To be 'real' or valid a 'concept' or 'proof' must be communicable to others and reproducible by others...

I agree.

Graham
I think with this discussion and with the aspects of Aiki that Dan is talking to communications has to be in person....has to become know through touch and feel.....not by talking back and forth on this forum. If dealing with Dan directly when he come over is not your cup of tea.......there are any number of folks in your area who have worked this Dan and who would share their experiences with you. It is also an opportunity to share your experiences with other that post here on this site. Any other approach is just talk .......talk has little value without shared experiences.

just go straight...

Gary

Marc Abrams
01-28-2012, 04:13 PM
For the sake of discussion we could give people the benefit of the doubt. Aikido can be a peaceful art. AikiWeb could be a place where everyone can post respectfully. People can choose what they want to read and who they want to ignore. We don't have to make ourselves look better by degrading others.

Graham practices Aikido on this board all the time. He says what he wants no matter how many times some people try to make him look ridiculous. You could learn a lot from how he posts.

Mary:

Would any empirical scientist give another scientist the benefit of the doubt? Would any scientist with any integrity whatsoever expect another scientist to give him/her the benefit of the doubt? Your comment stands out as odd when viewed from an empirical perspective. It has nothing to do with personalities. It has nothing to due with how someone views our art either. People are more than welcome to post respectfully whenever and wherever they want to.

It stands out as bizarre to me that you can somehow construe an objective, empirical perspective to be viewed as non-peaceful, disrespectful, or degrading for that matter. Did O'Sensei not put his skills to the test when meeting Takeda Sensei? I think that putting one's skills, ideas and beliefs to objective, empirical tests in the hallmark of integrity and respect.

Your claim that Graham is somehow practicing some kind of "Aikido" is likewise bizarre. Aikido is not about avoiding and escaping reality. Aikido is not practiced through words in absence of actions. In that respect, Graham is his own worst enemy. People have given him ample opportunity to respectfully demonstrate what he believes that he can do and say. People have respectfully given him ample opportunity to experience what others say that they can do and say in an atmosphere of camaraderie and mutual respect. It has only been Graham who has avoided those opportunities. I can find no historical evidence of O'Sensei actively seeking to avoid having his ideas and abilities demonstrated in an empirical and objective manner in an atmosphere of respect.

I frankly find it bizarre that you can somehow describe the request that we, like O'Sensei, and others before him and after him, hold ourselves up to lofty standards. For example, I initially thought that Dan Harden was big on ideas and short on reality of actions. He provided us with an opportunity for a group of us to get together and explore what each of us thought and believed. I was never belittled, nor was upset and hurt to find out that I was the one who was short on ideas and reality of actions (beside short in stature :D ). I had no problem apologizing to Dan personally. Dan never rubbed that in my face, or anybody else's face for that matter. We all met and trained in an atmosphere of mutual respect and camaraderie with the over-riding goal of all of us being able to empirically and objectively define, develop and display skill sets that are at the foundation of our art.

I frankly think that you can learn a lot from stepping away from your keyboard and seeing what people really have and don't have in terms of skill sets and the ideas behind them. In the world of martial arts, words in absence of actions are vapid and ridiculous. People who are not willing to put their words into action in an empirical, objective manner in an atmosphere of respect and camaraderie are the ones who demean themselves and the art that they allegedly represent. Aikido is a martial art and can be defined in one's actions and in one's words. Aikido in not a martial art that can simply be defined through one's words as simply an armchair warrior.

The issue that I raised goes far beyond you, me, Dan, or Graham. It has everything to do with holding ourselves and others up to the standards that have been the hallmark of martial arts throughout the world. The level of respect, integrity and camaraderie that comes from these standards is visible to all. When people do not live up to those standards, it is visible to all as well.

Marc Abrams

kewms
01-28-2012, 08:17 PM
Mary:

Would any empirical scientist give another scientist the benefit of the doubt? Would any scientist with any integrity whatsoever expect another scientist to give him/her the benefit of the doubt?

Yes. It happens all the time. A surprising result from a Nobel Prize winner's laboratory will be taken much more seriously than the same result from a less-respected source. Even though there have been documented cases of scientific fraud in the laboratories of Nobel winners.

Katherine

DH
01-28-2012, 08:35 PM
A revisit. This time I will see if I can make sense of any of the above and answer accordingly. My aim is to find what's behind your beef.
Atemi can kill. Yes it can. I fail to see the point in saying that.
You have concussed people and given whiplash by grabbing wrist. Don't see what that clarifies unless you mean you use too much power.

'Lets say you move to stop me' I don't move to stop someone.

That means you can do what I do and now are better I don't do what you do.

Every time you touch me I stick to whatever body part you send. Not sure what you mean there.

How can I do these things? Which things? Sticking to someone? I do it with love. Don't know how you do it.

Prevent what from happening? Most that a person does I let happen. I move.

In the methods you use you should know the how and the how to harmonize with. That's obvious.

So in conclusion I fail to see what you are after. It seems to be all about you but as far as I know I will move according to the principles of Aikido from an attack. Irimi or whatever. I will move to a position of throw by entering or turning.

Regards.G.
It is a thread on Aikido and throwing,
You said you know what Ueshiba does and how.
Therefore, you have this type of power, how it is trained and accomplished and how it is canceled out, what is required. How you have this unusual power and the greater Aikido community deosn't know is another question all together.

How does atemi attain such power?
How are the things I describe done?
If.....you know Ueshiba's aiki, this is a no brainer.
Describe how these things are done.
Describe how to prevent them from being done.
They cannot be stopped, or prevented with love or with moving or irimi. Turning is an interesting comment. How?
How would Ueshiba's aiki accomplish these things on both sides..
No other comment on me.... is required

Dan

David Orange
01-28-2012, 08:47 PM
Well, I always say "let's try" or, in some cases, "bring it on".

That's how things work in the (my) martial arts world. Your world is a different one and you don't understand mine.

Demetrio, the world you describe is the same as the one I know in budo. It's strange that Graham completely rejects it. Ueshiba had your same attitude, too. Mochizuki. Tomiki, Saito, Shioda. Every real budo man (or woman) I've known has had that attitude. I wonder why Graham does not share it since he is an aikido man.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-28-2012, 08:51 PM
Very good. Sounds like yours it getting closer to mine. Ha, ha.

Really? Demetrio said "I always say "let's try" or, in some cases, "bring it on"."

That's also what Dan says. And what Ueshiba said, what Mifune said, what Sanpo said. Sugino said it, too. (Did he ever.)

But when Dan has invited you for free to attend his workshop (after he has made the effort and undergone the expesnse of coming at least to your own country), you reply along the lines of "Those things are ego and I don't deal with them because I am spiritual."

Sounds like Demetrio's approach (and Dan's, Ueshiba's, Mifune's, Mochizuki's, Tomiki's, Shioda's, Saito's) is really quite opposite yours.

Cheers.

David

graham christian
01-28-2012, 09:02 PM
Quote:

Graham
I think with this discussion and with the aspects of Aiki that Dan is talking to communications has to be in person....has to become know through touch and feel.....not by talking back and forth on this forum. If dealing with Dan directly when he come over is not your cup of tea.......there are any number of folks in your area who have worked this Dan and who would share their experiences with you. It is also an opportunity to share your experiences with other that post here on this site. Any other approach is just talk .......talk has little value without shared experiences.

just go straight...

Gary

Gary.
I like your approach. I still fail to see how or why anyone thinks I want to experience it anyway.However, if I did it would be in a budo and thus respectful manner. I would ask if someone would be so kind as to show me or teach me. Note, I would ask. If I was refused I would respect that also.
All this you should and you must is nothing to do with budo or integrity or any similar such thing.

Secondly may I point out that up to now a few people have approached me from this forum and asked to train with me, just sharing, and I have never said no. Two I openly said it would be an honour and a pleasure. There has only been one other to whom I said I would gladly meet to see what he wants for I had never talked to this person on here yet he contacted me by pm. As yet no one has made it.(By the way, there is one person who has trained with Dan who said he would come too)

Apart from that, if someone wants to learn my way then they always have been welcome, nothing new there. If they don't yet are curious about an aspect of it technically, spiritually, geometrically etc then they are free to ask. If they believe they can tell me what I need or what I should do then I suggest they keep those thoughts to themselves.

Regards.G.

DH
01-28-2012, 09:11 PM
Very few people in Aikido claim this level of understanding...well at least in public. I do have questions of my own that the nature of these claims bring up.

When it comes to throwing and being thrown and being able to use aiki:
1. How does someone who has this advanced understanding escape the attention of people in budo?
2. How can someone possess the body skills required to do these things and cancel them out and not have it show anywhere in their movements?
3. Why, would someone display a body that is a mess and thoroughly disconnected in all of their movements.

I ask because when I play uke I have to change my body in order to have anyone be able to actually do anything to me. This is part of the reason the theory of ukemi teaching internal strength and aiki.... is nonsense.
When I am nage the connection is displayed.
So why would someone demonstrate a disconnected body while being nage... and lumber around one side weighted and shoulder heavy and not actually display moving from center all over the internet? Why do they not teach people how to do it and have students who can do it as well who look and feel different? Where are these people?

Why have so few well known teachers decided to not only pursue it... but to display it?
Inquiring minds want to know.
Dan

graham christian
01-28-2012, 09:28 PM
Very few people in Aikido claim this level of understanding...well at least in public. I do have questions of my own that the nature of these claims bring up.

When it comes to throwing and being thrown and being able to use aiki:
1. How does someone who has this advanced understanding escape the attention of people in budo?
2. How can someone possess the body skills required to do these things and cancel them out and not have it show anywhere in their movements?
3. Why, would someone display a body that is a mess and thoroughly disconnected in all of their movements.

I ask because when I play uke I have to change my body in order to have anyone be able to actually do anything to me. This is part of the reason the theory of ukemi teaching internal strength and aiki.... is nonsense.
When I am nage the connection is displayed.
So why would someone demonstrate a disconnected body while being nage... and lumber around one side weighted and shoulder heavy and not actually display moving from center all over the internet? Why do they not teach people how to do it and have students who can do it as well who look and feel different? Where are these people?

Why have so few well known teachers decided to not only pursue it... but to display it?
Inquiring minds want to know.
Dan

1) By being independent.
2) Different skills.
3) That proves it.

Regards.G.

David Orange
01-28-2012, 09:30 PM
For the sake of discussion we could give people the benefit of the doubt.

Why would we do that? The standard of "put up or shut up" has been a mainstay of budo from the beginning. Ueshiba always gladly proved whatever he said with action. So did Mochizuki, Tomiki, Shioda, Saito, and all the other pillars of aikido. Graham claims to have reached their level, essentially, but he refuses to let experienced people feel his technique and he refuses to come and see for himself (and for free) what Dan actually does. Yet he continually claims that he can do all that even while impugning Dan's character and the spiritual content of what Dan does. And that really stinks to high heaven for a budoka.

Aikido can be a peaceful art. AikiWeb could be a place where everyone can post respectfully. People can choose what they want to read and who they want to ignore. We don't have to make ourselves look better by degrading others.

Mary, it's not that anyone wants to denigrate Graham: it's his claims that we attack. And I find it astounding that you relate his amorphous meanderings and buzzwords to "peaceful aikido". In fact, old Graham is extremely passive-aggressive (which, itself, is very common among the less effective aikidoka of this world). Dan has tremendous power, but he is not only one of the most "peaceful" aiki people I've ever met: he is one of the most joyous. His classes are fun and amazing--and the material he teaches is incredibly effective. Further, he explains in detail how to do everything he does, but Graham rejects it all with "I do that, too." Which is also very common in aikido. Of course, Graham is
free to say whatever he wishes and to post it for international audiences to examine, but no one should consider it an attack on him if experienced and knowledgeable people point out the inconsistencies in what he says and what he does. And senior people always have the duty to point out these kinds of serious errors to prevent less-developed people from misktaking them for the truth. That's why scientific journals have peer-review. No one considers it "attacking" a scientist for pointing out errors in his math or formulae. But what if an infectious disease researcher wrote extensively about how "love" cures all diseases? Or what if a geologist claimed that God put dinosaur bones in the ground to allow liberal intellectuals to be confused? What if a chemistry professor published a paper claiming molecular bonding simply as "love" and claimed that it was not necessary to provide any kind of proof of his claim? Would the ineveitable storm of criticism mean that 1) the scientist's peers just didn't like him; 2) that the peers wanted to "degrade" him; 3) the peer are being disrespectful? Of course not. And excluding a few statements from both sides, no one has disrespected Graham more than Graham, himself, but posting claims that he will not defend in person with great martial ability.

Graham practices Aikido on this board all the time. He says what he wants no matter how many times some people try to make him look ridiculous. You could learn a lot from how he posts.

Mary...what Graham does on the forums is not "aikido" but simply passive-aggression, directed by an ego that is afraid to be tested for fear of failure and afraid to admit that others may actually have something far greater than he, himself "understands". I've just never known any budoka who could hear of something new and incredibly powerul and not be driven to find that great thing and try it out.

But Graham thrives on getting credit for what others have done simply by claiming, "I can do that, too. I've done it for years."

I'm surprised that you can see this enacted repeatedly and not be a little surprised at it, yourself.

Cheers.

David

Mary Eastland
01-28-2012, 09:59 PM
I am not sure about bizarre or empircal...(I barely know what that means.)

For me Aikido is a co-operative practice between uke and nage. Nothing has to be proved to anyone. The connection is discovered as we train together. We fall when we are thrown. We practice Ki exercises together so we both develop correct feeling.

The goal for me is find the off balance of uke so they can be thrown. I don't force it...I pay close attention to each uke in each moment and the throw presents itself....right along with the Fun and Joy!

DH
01-28-2012, 10:08 PM
Hi David
Thanks for advocating, but we all need to be advocating for truth and honesty, not me. These issues are past me or any one person. It needs to be you guys in the community fighting for Aikido.
Pretty much everyone who has gotten out and trained with the people who are actually teaching the things Ueshiba was capable of now know it is all but dead in Aikido.

You have a vast array of people in Aikido moving in the wrong direction that have all but destroyed the reputation of Aikido as a budo in the modern era. Dojo membership is way down and people seeking real skills and abilities are going elsewhere. The pretenders to Ueshiba's vision, while being obvious to us, are not obvious to the public looking. They...don't know how to differentiate the pretenders from good Aikido. So it is a very good thing to keep calling people on their claims and abilities to display anything that ever related to Morihei Ueshiba himself. Others, who just want to do their thing are different, I am talking about those who claim to know Ueshiba's aiki.
If we don't call these people on it....the public will continue to call the entire art on it.

Defending Ueshiba's vision and displaying his power is the only way we are going to move his art into the future as both a martial art...and a way. I am one of many, helping folks to do that.
Dan

Gary David
01-28-2012, 10:14 PM
Gary.
Apart from that, if someone wants to learn my way then they always have been welcome, nothing new there. If they don't yet are curious about an aspect of it technically, spiritually, geometrically etc then they are free to ask. If they believe they can tell me what I need or what I should do then I suggest they keep those thoughts to themselves.

Regards.G.

Graham
A couple of things.....the training I am talking about is the casual gathering of folks to learn, compare, check and confirm principles, waza and just plain what works and what doesn't......no set teacher and the purpose is not to learn another way. Purpose is to make sure your stuff works (most of the time) and if not how to fix that. This has to be a sharing among friends (not talking about best friends), among folks who respect each other. A week ago Saturday we celebrated the 33rd memorial workout for the found on the dojo I started in back in 1974. 8 of the old gray beards, me included, each took about 20 minutes on the mat to teach, tell stories or whatever....300 plus years of Aikido experience between us. What did I think about after it was over? After realizing that each of us had pieces of the puzzle, but not the whole....what I stated at the end of my session....what if the 8 of us had stuck around together for another 15 years after Ishisaka Sensei's passing and worked together informally to get better.....wow....but it never happened. From my point of view, past a certain point real progress comes only with such gathering of folks working together to get better....a study group. It is also a given that sometimes individuals and groups need a kick in the a@% to get past certain blocks.......most individuals and groups don't even see the need.

Being limited somewhat by age and time I can't get around to a lot of folks to see where they are like I would like to and like I did regionally 20 years ago. Of those I know of who are in a position to provide this kick while actually be friendly, helpful and almost casual in their approach....one is Dan and the other is my friend John Clodig. My point here being that all of us need to get hit by the proverbial 2 by 4 occasionally just to wake us up. Having been around Aikido as long as I have, having trained with as many individuals and teachers as I have, having watched as much video as I have, having sat of as many testing boards as I have.......it 'feels' to me that you could benefit from getting out more.

It may be that my wife and I may come to your part of the world in a few years as my family is from Wales and Scotland and her's is from Ireland..... I'll be in my 70's, but will stop by if we have the chance.....

Just go straight

Gary

graham christian
01-28-2012, 10:30 PM
Graham
A couple of things.....the training I am talking about is the casual gathering of folks to learn, compare, check and confirm principles, waza and just plain what works and what doesn't......no set teacher and the purpose is not to learn another way. Purpose is to make sure your stuff works (most of the time) and if not how to fix that. This has to be a sharing among friends (not talking about best friends), among folks who respect each other. A week ago Saturday we celebrated the 33rd memorial workout for the found on the dojo I started in back in 1974. 8 of the old gray beards, me included, each took about 20 minutes on the mat to teach, tell stories or whatever....300 plus years of Aikido experience between us. What did I think about after it was over? After realizing that each of us had pieces of the puzzle, but not the whole....what I stated at the end of my session....what if the 8 of us had stuck around together for another 15 years after Ishisaka Sensei's passing and worked together informally to get better.....wow....but it never happened. From my point of view, past a certain point real progress comes only with such gathering of folks working together to get better....a study group. It is also a given that sometimes individuals and groups need a kick in the a@% to get past certain blocks.......most individuals and groups don't even see the need.

Being limited somewhat by age and time I can't get around to a lot of folks to see where they are like I would like to and like I did regionally 20 years ago. Of those I know of who are in a position to provide this kick while actually be friendly, helpful and almost casual in their approach....one is Dan and the other is my friend John Clodig. My point here being that all of us need to get hit by the proverbial 2 by 4 occasionally just to wake us up. Having been around Aikido as long as I have, having trained with as many individuals and teachers as I have, having watched as much video as I have, having sat of as many testing boards as I have.......it 'feels' to me that you could benefit from getting out more.

It may be that my wife and I may come to your part of the world in a few years as my family is from Wales and Scotland and her's is from Ireland..... I'll be in my 70's, but will stop by if we have the chance.....

Just go straight

Gary

Sounds good, both what you did a week ago and the thought of meeting you in the future.

Regards.G.

robin_jet_alt
01-28-2012, 10:41 PM
I am not sure about bizarre or empircal...(I barely know what that means.)

For me Aikido is a co-operative practice between uke and nage. Nothing has to be proved to anyone. The connection is discovered as we train together. We fall when we are thrown. We practice Ki exercises together so we both develop correct feeling.

The goal for me is find the off balance of uke so they can be thrown. I don't force it...I pay close attention to each uke in each moment and the throw presents itself....right along with the Fun and Joy!

Hi Mary,

Please don't take this as an attack. I just want to clarify.

'Empirical' means that a thing can be measured or tested. I understand and approve of a lot of what you have said about how you train. However I believe the crux of the matter is how do you know when you have "correct feeling"? Is there a way to measure it? What if someone's feeling is more correct than another's? What Dan et al are saying is that they are able to test when their feeling is correct, and show how that feeling affects themselves and others in their training. What Graham is saying is that he knows within himself that his feeling is correct and he doesn't have to prove it to anybody. That is fair enough in my book, however it begs the question of why he is trying to convince us all of this fact? Why bother?

Now, I have no idea whether Dan's or Graham's claims are true. I have never met either of them. However, I do like my aikido to be demonstrable and repeatable. I know I have mistakenly thought I had "correct feeling" several times, when it turned out not to be the case. This was promptly demonstrated by my sensei as he joyfully introduced me to the mat.

DH
01-28-2012, 11:11 PM
Hi Mary,

Please don't take this as an attack. I just want to clarify.

'Empirical' means that a thing can be measured or tested. I understand and approve of a lot of what you have said about how you train. However I believe the crux of the matter is how do you know when you have "correct feeling"? Is there a way to measure it? What if someone's feeling is more correct than another's? What Dan et al are saying is that they are able to test when their feeling is correct, and show how that feeling affects themselves and others in their training. What Graham is saying is that he knows within himself that his feeling is correct and he doesn't have to prove it to anybody. That is fair enough in my book, however it begs the question of why he is trying to convince us all of this fact? Why bother?

Now, I have no idea whether Dan's or Graham's claims are true. I have never met either of them. However, I do like my aikido to be demonstrable and repeatable. I know I have mistakenly thought I had "correct feeling" several times, when it turned out not to be the case. This was promptly demonstrated by my sensei as he joyfully introduced me to the mat.
What is correct...is that what everyone is looking for as "correct feeling" that moves people with ease....IS NOT AN INDIVIDUAL idea. What everyone is looking for:
Has a history
Is known in Asia
Has a language
Has a training method to produce it in you
Has a method to then strengthen it with various added components
And can be replicated in others.
This guy called Morihei Ueshiba knew that and talked about how to do it.
And the results are visable, testable and cannot be faked. Throwing and attempting to throw someone, hell, even touching hands with them reveals everything to those who do know.

What is incredibly sad is that it's very easy to get limited results that work and then get stuck there....for the rest of your life. All while thinking you're doing well...and you..... are missing everything you really wanted. ;)

And THAT is what happens to those who hide from those with better information.
Sadder still is that these people?
Are teaching others
Oops.....
Dan

Marc Abrams
01-28-2012, 11:15 PM
Yes. It happens all the time. A surprising result from a Nobel Prize winner's laboratory will be taken much more seriously than the same result from a less-respected source. Even though there have been documented cases of scientific fraud in the laboratories of Nobel winners.

Katherine

Katherine:

That it happens at all is unacceptable in the scientific community at large. Case in point-> A "world renowned" doctor was advocating a particular class of medications for a particular age group for many years. My colleagues and I railed against this and said something smells like feces for years. Low and behold, this "world renowned" doctor was receiving SEVEN FIGURES of income over those years from a pharm company who made those drugs! This A-Hole is still is a professor at a world renowned university and hospital DESPITE the despicable acts that resulted in the needless medicating (I am talking about serious med.s) of an age group of children who NEVER should have been put on those med's in the first place.

The same standards apply in our community. I find it to be in less than poor taste, that there are not only those who refuse/hide/weasel away from having to put words into actions and pathetic that there are apologists who try and excuse that type of behavior. When you medicate people without real reasons, there are real life consequences from being on those med.'s that are profoundly negative. When you present yourself as a teacher of martial arts and people listen and learn from you and you have no genuine abilities/capacities, there are real life consequences to those who find out the hard way that what they learned was less than useless, but dangerous to their well-being. Our community at large, has a vested interest to the same degree of integrity that is expected in the scientific community.

Marc Abrams

Marc Abrams
01-28-2012, 11:26 PM
I am not sure about bizarre or empircal...(I barely know what that means.)

For me Aikido is a co-operative practice between uke and nage. Nothing has to be proved to anyone. The connection is discovered as we train together. We fall when we are thrown. We practice Ki exercises together so we both develop correct feeling.

The goal for me is find the off balance of uke so they can be thrown. I don't force it...I pay close attention to each uke in each moment and the throw presents itself....right along with the Fun and Joy!

Bizarre and empirical are words that are well defined in the dictionary and I spelled out clearly how I used them in response to your post. If you need further clarification from me, feel free to ask.

For me, Aikido is far more that cooperative practice. None of the O'Sensei's students who I have had the honor of training with, would describe Aikido in that manner. If that is how you choose to define Aikido, then enjoy your definition and your practice. I sincerely hope that you are never in a situation where someone seriously wants to cause you harm, because there will be no cooperative practice in that instance and your definition of Aikido will be of no help to you.

My practice and my teaching of Aikido is always filled with fun and Joy. There is no requirement of cooperative practice in order to execute a technique, while still having fun and joy in Aikido. When the techniques work, regardless of the level or lack thereof of cooperation with the attacker, the real joy of maintaining peace, fun and joy really kick in. Maybe that's just my idiosyncratic view......

Marc Abrams

kewms
01-29-2012, 12:49 AM
Katherine:

That it happens at all is unacceptable in the scientific community at large.

I agree, and I'm not condoning it, just pointing out that it happens.

A certain amount of respect for credentials is helpful, in any field. Not having to personally vet every individual you might come across saves time. Knowing a person's reputation helps you decide how to approach them, even if you believe them to be mistaken on a particular point.

While it's true that there is no substitute for empirical evidence, as a practical matter it is difficult to verify every experimental claim that might be made, nearly impossible for every Aikiweb reader to train with everyone who posts here. Nor does ability to write clearly necessarily have any correlation at all with martial skill. Since the goal of any forum is community and information sharing, I find it more helpful to give people the benefit of the doubt than to demand empirical support for every utterance.

Katherine

graham christian
01-29-2012, 06:49 AM
Hi Mary,

Please don't take this as an attack. I just want to clarify.

'Empirical' means that a thing can be measured or tested. I understand and approve of a lot of what you have said about how you train. However I believe the crux of the matter is how do you know when you have "correct feeling"? Is there a way to measure it? What if someone's feeling is more correct than another's? What Dan et al are saying is that they are able to test when their feeling is correct, and show how that feeling affects themselves and others in their training. What Graham is saying is that he knows within himself that his feeling is correct and he doesn't have to prove it to anybody. That is fair enough in my book, however it begs the question of why he is trying to convince us all of this fact? Why bother?

Now, I have no idea whether Dan's or Graham's claims are true. I have never met either of them. However, I do like my aikido to be demonstrable and repeatable. I know I have mistakenly thought I had "correct feeling" several times, when it turned out not to be the case. This was promptly demonstrated by my sensei as he joyfully introduced me to the mat.

Hi Robin.
Nice clarification of empirical. Do you think I'm trying to convince you or anyone? Really?

It appears some want me to convince them. That's the reverse no? When I see others doing and enjoying their Aikido however they do it or whatever style, I feel good. I admire. We used to have a group of another style Aikido come and borrow our dojo for a while. We never, either group, had any inclination or desire to prove our way to them and the same was for them to us. No need in real life.

We invited them to various events , they invited us. The blinder you are the more you need to be convinced or have something proved in my book.

Regards.G.

David Orange
01-29-2012, 08:20 AM
Your claim that Graham is somehow practicing some kind of "Aikido" is likewise bizarre. Aikido is not about avoiding and escaping reality. Aikido is not practiced through words in absence of actions. In that respect, Graham is his own worst enemy. People have given him ample opportunity to respectfully demonstrate what he believes that he can do and say. People have respectfully given him ample opportunity to experience what others say that they can do and say in an atmosphere of camaraderie and mutual respect. It has only been Graham who has avoided those opportunities.

And unfortunately, Graham often likes to throw in a superior little zinger (ha ha) when skirting the opportunity to show other black belts what he does. He makes these claims, but won't even meet the people he makes the claims to because the people he's talking to are so full of ego and karma....???

I can find no historical evidence of O'Sensei actively seeking to avoid having his ideas and abilities demonstrated in an empirical and objective manner in an atmosphere of respect.

Exactly. And you didn't have to show him too much respect. He would just smile and show you. He was always glad to meet others and spread the same art in person that he broadcast with his words. And you can bet Mochizuki and Shioda were the same.

Why, with so many powerful and sterling examples of what aikido really is, would anyone let Graham show what he shows in his videos and say what he says in his posts and still give him the least credence in aikido? The only reason would be if someone actually met Graham and he showed them convincingly that, indeed, his strange comments actually contained the truth. But, of course, Graham has refused to do that even when Dan crosses the ocean and offers him free attendance.

At that point, it glaringly appears to be a less than honorable situation.

I remember a guy (not on aikiweb, but on the web in general) who claimed to have mastered yoseikan aikido many years ago and modified it to make a more combat-effective art of it. When I wrote and told him I had been uchi deshi at the yoseikan hombu and I had never seen his name anywhere among the hundreds of black belts there from all nations, he changed his website and stopped making those claims.

In another case, someone was demanding that Dan come to his dojo and present himself for examination. Dan, of course refused. I told the guy that when people wanted to check out Ueshiba, they didn't call Ueshiba to come to their dojo and explain himself. They went to Ueshiba and challenged him. And I never heard of Ueshiba refusing to meet anyone. But Dan has visited UK a number of times, now, and he has offered to meet with Graham and exchange knowledge, but Graham won't go, even within his own "house" and for free. The black belts I came up among would always have stepped up. With black belts nowadays, that spirit seems to have vanished.

The issue that I raised goes far beyond you, me, Dan, or Graham. It has everything to do with holding ourselves and others up to the standards that have been the hallmark of martial arts throughout the world. The level of respect, integrity and camaraderie that comes from these standards is visible to all. When people do not live up to those standards, it is visible to all as well.

At that point, you have to wonder, is this guy trolling us just for a laugh? Or does he simply think that everyone with a real connection to Ueshiba is some kind of thug, while simply latching onto some badly translated buzzwords like "love" and "spiritual" will boost him ahead of those with real connections?

No one has threatened Graham. I know Dan has a scary image (and he admits above that he has shaken people up while using only a small fraction of his power), but he is really fun to train with and his classes are among the safest I've ever encountered. In fact, while Dan talks about power and martial effectiveness, the worst, sneakiest and most weasly behavior (cheap shots, attempts to injure) have occurred in dojos where "love" was the standard or where someone had asked me to take it easy on them because they were injured. And then they threw a cheap shot.

Life is too short to waste time with BS artists. Aikido is too miraculous and wonderful for people with real roots to allow others to graft branches of stinkweed onto the tree.

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-29-2012, 08:37 AM
Why would we do that? The standard of "put up or shut up" has been a mainstay of budo from the beginning. Ueshiba always gladly proved whatever he said with action.

In the old days, people quickly learned that if you made any kind of claim, someone nearby would immediately say, "Show me." And if the speaker couldn't do what they claimed, it would become clear--often in an embarrassing way.

This was the standard through hundreds of generations of people training extremely hard for life-and-death encounters with virtual devils for opponents. Just think of the worst thing you've ever heard about Japanese. Those stories only scratch the surface of what you can find in that culture, yet there were also people like Ueshiba, Kano, etc., who upheld extremely high moral values, who would stand face-to-face with really evil (yet physically very powerful and martially very skillful) people and would overcome them--not by talking, not purely by kindness and "love," but by incredibly powerful martial arts ability and an ethic of protection of society. That meant to protect the weak and innocent from the very strong, powerful and devilish--think of the very powerful guy Ellis described meeting on the train, who suggested that Ellis accompany him and they go out and "rape a woman" together. That was not just talk. You can bet that guy really raped more than one woman and probably killed more than one man (as well as some women, perhaps).

If you made any kind of claim of ability in that milleu, the evil ones would seriously hurt you for fun and the seriously great ones would tell you in no uncertain terms to shut up. They wouldn't allow their arts to be represented by BS. Without technical ability and extreme courage, talk of "love" and "spirituality" is just an embarrassment.

Even in Japan, that standard has slacked somewhat, but still, when a guy like the "kiai master" makes too much of himself, someone like the kickboxer will come along.........and the result is never pretty.

Budo is from that culture and the standard of "put up or shut up" is an extremely valuable element of it.

FWIW.

David

graham christian
01-29-2012, 08:56 AM
In the old days, people quickly learned that if you made any kind of claim, someone nearby would immediately say, "Show me." And if the speaker couldn't do what they claimed, it would become clear--often in an embarrassing way.

This was the standard through hundreds of generations of people training extremely hard for life-and-death encounters with virtual devils for opponents. Just think of the worst thing you've ever heard about Japanese. Those stories only scratch the surface of what you can find in that culture, yet there were also people like Ueshiba, Kano, etc., who upheld extremely high moral values, who would stand face-to-face with really evil (yet physically very powerful and martially very skillful) people and would overcome them--not by talking, not purely by kindness and "love," but by incredibly powerful martial arts ability and an ethic of protection of society. That meant to protect the weak and innocent from the very strong, powerful and devilish--think of the very powerful guy Ellis described meeting on the train, who suggested that Ellis accompany him and they go out and "rape a woman" together. That was not just talk. You can bet that guy really raped more than one woman and probably killed more than one man (as well as some women, perhaps).

If you made any kind of claim of ability in that milleu, the evil ones would seriously hurt you for fun and the seriously great ones would tell you in no uncertain terms to shut up. They wouldn't allow their arts to be represented by BS. Without technical ability and extreme courage, talk of "love" and "spirituality" is just an embarrassment.

Even in Japan, that standard has slacked somewhat, but still, when a guy like the "kiai master" makes too much of himself, someone like the kickboxer will come along.........and the result is never pretty.

Budo is from that culture and the standard of "put up or shut up" is an extremely valuable element of it.

FWIW.

David

You watch too many movies my friend.In the old days people respected what others said and only the braggards went around challenging and telling them to prove it.

Put up or shut up? Maybe you need to see the truth of that too. Not the schoolyard version.

You now have my personal invite.

Regards.G.

David Orange
01-29-2012, 09:37 AM
You watch too many movies my friend.

I can tell you I've certainly seen too many of your movies.

But, Graham...I lived in Japan. My experience does not come from movies.

Did you live in Japan? Did you ever know anyone who actually trained with Morihei Ueshiba?

And believe me, it's very different to train in a Western dojo under one Japanese teacher with a bunch of Western white-belts than to train under one Japanese master in a Japanese dojo full of 6th and 7th dan Japanese who train like human tornadoes.

I was uchi deshi to one of Ueshiba's earliest uchi deshi and his dojo was full of highly-ranked men (and some women) who all wanted to be Mochizuki's closest student. Since Mochizuki was supervisor of the uchi deshi in the "Hell Gym," you see, the training at the yoseikan hombu was intense. I trained with people from white belt to judan (in Japan). I trained with police, police instructors, prison guards, MMA fighters, judo champions, karate masters, etc. I went to bars. I met yakuza and I ran into people who were real bad-asses. All I would have had to do was make any little claim and they would have been on me "like ugly on an ape," to injure if not kill. But they went away liking me.

So your views on Japanese culture are at great variance to my direct experience of the culture. And what about Ellis Amdur's accounts of the thugs he met on the subway? Do you think those are his imagination? Those people are real. And there were more of them in the old days.

In the old days people respected what others said and only the braggards went around challenging and telling them to prove it.

Graham....where do you get your ideas about "the old days"?

What experience do you have with the Japanese to say anything like that? It sounds to me like maybe you have been watching the movies or reading pulp fiction.

The truth is, if you said, "I can do XYZ," if someone didn't stand up right beside you and say, "Let's see it," in a week or two someone from elsewhere would show up and say "Let's see it." It was as sure as the waves of the sea.

The truth is, disrespect was far more common than respect. Real respect came only from ONE thing: if you said it, you could do it and you wouldn't hesitate to show it if someone challenged your claim.

In the old days people respected what others said and only the braggards went around challenging and telling them to prove it.

Graham...the braggard is the one who makes the claim to begin with, isn't he?

If you say, "I can lift as much weight as Arnold Schwarzenegger," how is it being a braggard to ask you to show it?

In the old days, the Japanese worked hard from morning to late at night, demanding, physical, hard work. They were all far over-worked and had very little to do for entertainment. And if one were martially minded and trained hard with a powerful teacher, he would have no patience for BS. As soon as anyone made any kind of claim of martial arts ability, ten people would say, "Haaaaaahhhh????" quickly followed by "Misete!" and if the claimant could not prove what he said, everyone would laugh at him to utter ridicule.

And that is the main reason most Japanese just didn't talk: as sure as you spoke, you would certainly be challenged and probably embarrassed.

Just think about how judo was selected to be the training method for police in Japan: competition among several styles of jujutsu. Bloody competition, with serious injuries among jujutsu experts. Your view of the "old days" is quite amusing in that light.

Put up or shut up? Maybe you need to see the truth of that too. Not the schoolyard version.

I know the dojo version, Graham. And I know the street version. I don't claim what I can't do. I have stepped up. After I made insulting remarks to Rob John, I went and met him and he proved what he said. I didn't hide behind distance or expense or moral superiority. I put my life on the line.

I stepped up to Ark and felt the incredible power that radiates from him.

I stepped up to Dan and put my spleen on the line.

In every case, I learned.

But you have made these claims about yourself; you have denigrated other people who I know have the real stuff; and you have refused to meet them and even see if they're doing something different from what you think.

You now have my personal invite.

While I'm sure you would be merciful, your "invite" doesn't really sound so friendly. Your ego is showing again. And you just accrued more than a little karma.

It's unfortunate that I have no plans to be in UK anytime soon, but I know someone who will be there this year. Would it be okay if he takes up the invite in my place?

Cheers.

David

gates
01-29-2012, 09:58 AM
Ridiculous
Is it necessary to insult people before you meet them?

gregstec
01-29-2012, 10:02 AM
IMO, we have different groups using the same terms to define their concepts and principles; paramount of which is the term Aiki. These groups are at polar extremes of each other and will never come together as long as they both retain their different perspectives of term definitions. However, this is not necessarily a problem as long as both sides stay on their own paths and not confuse themselves by saying they are doing the same thing as the other group; this I believe is at the core of the disagreements here. Personally, I do not think either group would be interested in each other if the terms being used were different and more reflective of their actual goals and views of their respective practices.

There is always someone ahead of you and behind you on any particular path you take, and regardless of which group is more correct than the other with their interpretation of things, I believe it is the responsibility of those ahead on the path to honestly guide those behind, and those behind have the responsibility to respect and listen to those ahead (note: I did not say blindly follow those ahead) If you understand and agree with those ahead, then follow - if not, find another path. I also believe it is the responsibility of those ahead to question claims from those behind that differ with their experiences - maybe they missed something or maybe something was misunderstood. This is the only way real knowledge can be known to be fact - and it helps to eliminate the chances of those behind to be mislead off their chosen path.

IMO, if you say you can do the same as someone else, and that person disagrees, then the only logical thing to do is get together and exchange information to find the truth - period. Very simple really.

Greg

Mark Freeman
01-29-2012, 10:18 AM
Secondly may I point out that up to now a few people have approached me from this forum and asked to train with me, just sharing, and I have never said no. Two I openly said it would be an honour and a pleasure. There has only been one other to whom I said I would gladly meet to see what he wants for I had never talked to this person on here yet he contacted me by pm. As yet no one has made it.(By the way, there is one person who has trained with Dan who said he would come too)

Hi Graham,

not sure if I am included in your words above, as you probably quite rightly didn't use names. I would still like to come to your place, and train with you, if the invite is still there.

My reason for doing so is that it will be one small meeting, at the start of a much bigger journey, to get out in the world and see what the world of aikido has to offer, outside of the closed order I have been in for 20 years.

I hope that I come across people who can teach me more than I already know, and I am happy to give anyone my individed attention and sincere approach to learning.

I'll contact you via PM to find out your practice times, as I may be in London in a couple of weekends time.

I have trained with Dan, however, I am not out to 'prove' anything, apart from to myself, that if there is something to be learnt, that will benefit my own aikido, I want to learn it.

regards,

Mark
p.s. Marc and David (and many others), I look forward to meeting, and training with you both too. At this point I will be in some reasonable position, to form an opinion. The interweb is probably the least effective place to really get to grips with aikido. Lots of information, lots of noise, lots of textual intercourse, some of useful, some of it not. I'll be in touch when my tickets are booked.:).

p.p.s. If I have something that others don't, I will be happy to share it.

DH
01-29-2012, 10:36 AM
I think most people don't care about everyone's personal expression of aikido. There is no more "Aikido" as a standard. I never get involved in discussions with the Aiki bunnies (™Meik Skoss) as I don't care and personally think they should be left alone to do whatever that stuff is that they do.

The only time they draw attention is when they state what they are doing is Ueshiba's and as pertains to this thread-will actually throw people. It is unadulterated rubbish. It has never worked and it will not ever work and this is the reason they run from being put to the test.
Their excuses for avoiding exposure are legendary

A new iteration of an older problem
We all know the history of some of these claims. They included the early ki wars when hucksters and self deluded people were trying to cheaply ride the coat tales of Tohei, without doing the work to get his power. What happened? When people met up with these airy fairies they sucked and did a lot to harm the otherwise excellent work of one of Aikido's greats and also others in ki society putting in the work. So a few ruined it for the many. In many Budo circles Aikido has never really recovered from that.

To me this is SSDD.
The difference is now that there are people with reputations for real power and skill- the airy fairies are showing up once again trying to cheaply ride the coat tales and borrow the reputation of those who have done the actual work. The new twist is that they have learned the lessons of the past--that one-on-one exposure destroyed the reputations of the self deluded--so they pontificate on the internet and then run from any chance of being put to the test.

I think we can all agree that making statements that you understand what Ueshiba was talking about and what he was doing and how to do it is pretty damn bold. As a community-Aikido-ka should put anyone who makes such claims to the test.
Put up or shut up.
Why?
Lessons from the past have demonstrated that all you need to do to continue to watch good work be diluted to a meaningless nothing is to let ineffectual wet noodle, airy fairies represent, dilute and then eventually destroy a true visionary's good work. Don't allow it to happen

In short
They cannot throw people
They cannot do much of anything else meaningful in any martial sense either
They really have not one clue of what Morihei Ueshiba was about and they do not belong in any discussion of his work-not the least of which is letting people throw themselves... in a discussion of Budo. Good grief. Do you have any idea of how that sounds to people who actually do understand Budo?

I will say one thing in closing. I had a lot of very experienced friends in Budo who hated aikido and Daito ryu- considering them total B.S. and aiki nonsense because they took you all apart...at will.. None of them, not one, could do anything to stop someone who understands and was truly capable with aiki.
I did my job to change their opinion of aiki by stepping up.
You need to change their opinion of Aikido by doing the same.

Dan

graham christian
01-29-2012, 10:49 AM
I can tell you I've certainly seen too many of your movies.

But, Graham...I lived in Japan. My experience does not come from movies.

Did you live in Japan? Did you ever know anyone who actually trained with Morihei Ueshiba?

And believe me, it's very different to train in a Western dojo under one Japanese teacher with a bunch of Western white-belts than to train under one Japanese master in a Japanese dojo full of 6th and 7th dan Japanese who train like human tornadoes.

I was uchi deshi to one of Ueshiba's earliest uchi deshi and his dojo was full of highly-ranked men (and some women) who all wanted to be Mochizuki's closest student. Since Mochizuki was supervisor of the uchi deshi in the "Hell Gym," you see, the training at the yoseikan hombu was intense. I trained with people from white belt to judan (in Japan). I trained with police, police instructors, prison guards, MMA fighters, judo champions, karate masters, etc. I went to bars. I met yakuza and I ran into people who were real bad-asses. All I would have had to do was make any little claim and they would have been on me "like ugly on an ape," to injure if not kill. But they went away liking me.

So your views on Japanese culture are at great variance to my direct experience of the culture. And what about Ellis Amdur's accounts of the thugs he met on the subway? Do you think those are his imagination? Those people are real. And there were more of them in the old days.

Graham....where do you get your ideas about "the old days"?

What experience do you have with the Japanese to say anything like that? It sounds to me like maybe you have been watching the movies or reading pulp fiction.

The truth is, if you said, "I can do XYZ," if someone didn't stand up right beside you and say, "Let's see it," in a week or two someone from elsewhere would show up and say "Let's see it." It was as sure as the waves of the sea.

The truth is, disrespect was far more common than respect. Real respect came only from ONE thing: if you said it, you could do it and you wouldn't hesitate to show it if someone challenged your claim.

Graham...the braggard is the one who makes the claim to begin with, isn't he?

If you say, "I can lift as much weight as Arnold Schwarzenegger," how is it being a braggard to ask you to show it?

In the old days, the Japanese worked hard from morning to late at night, demanding, physical, hard work. They were all far over-worked and had very little to do for entertainment. And if one were martially minded and trained hard with a powerful teacher, he would have no patience for BS. As soon as anyone made any kind of claim of martial arts ability, ten people would say, "Haaaaaahhhh????" quickly followed by "Misete!" and if the claimant could not prove what he said, everyone would laugh at him to utter ridicule.

And that is the main reason most Japanese just didn't talk: as sure as you spoke, you would certainly be challenged and probably embarrassed.

Just think about how judo was selected to be the training method for police in Japan: competition among several styles of jujutsu. Bloody competition, with serious injuries among jujutsu experts. Your view of the "old days" is quite amusing in that light.

I know the dojo version, Graham. And I know the street version. I don't claim what I can't do. I have stepped up. After I made insulting remarks to Rob John, I went and met him and he proved what he said. I didn't hide behind distance or expense or moral superiority. I put my life on the line.

I stepped up to Ark and felt the incredible power that radiates from him.

I stepped up to Dan and put my spleen on the line.

In every case, I learned.

But you have made these claims about yourself; you have denigrated other people who I know have the real stuff; and you have refused to meet them and even see if they're doing something different from what you think.

While I'm sure you would be merciful, your "invite" doesn't really sound so friendly. Your ego is showing again. And you just accrued more than a little karma.

It's unfortunate that I have no plans to be in UK anytime soon, but I know someone who will be there this year. Would it be okay if he takes up the invite in my place?

Cheers.

David

Yes I have read plenty of experiences of people in Japan including Ellis Sensei. He is a fine example of how to behave.

In all sports there are the ones, the gyms labelled hells this that and the other.

My training partner and friend for eight years was Japanese thank you. A lovely man. He has now returned to Japan.

My teacher was very 'japanese' in his attitude. We went through our own 'hells' training, which was optional.

When I went to visit Kanetzuka Sensei I have a nice funny story, bottom line being it was a demonstration by me to my accompanying friend of how to behave, Japanese style or rather Japanese budo style.

So once again a saying springs to mind: know who you are talking to.

There was even one incident where my teacher had been 'threatebned' or 'challenged' if you will by a then Famous Japanese Shihan. He responded in such a way that said teacher never showed. It's a budo thing, some may call that a macho thing, nonetheless I understand these things. I may agree or disagree, but that's not the point.

The person who makes a claim is not bragging or boasting my friend, merely sharing experience. You are privileged to hear someones thoughts on here as am I. Due to this privilege it is and always will be rude of me to say prove it to anyone.

I know that if I am sincere and polite and respectful to someone that after a few communications with them and if it is of interest to me I can ask if I could come and sample some of their wares. I also know that if my behaviour is not so that I don't deserve that honour.

My invite is based on your assertion of put up or shut up. Lest you forget, my Aikido is not about fighting, not about competition, not about ego. I offer to show the principles I describe, no more, no less.

Your experiences of where you go to test your 'skill' are yours and for you alone. I am quite happy with where I have been to test mine. There's no place like real life, bottom line.

Regards.G.

DH
01-29-2012, 10:55 AM
Ridiculous
Is it necessary to insult people before you meet them?
I will note that it is usually the passive aggressive crowd that does the insulting.
Example:
I have questioned the effectiveness in throwing and doing much of anything meaningful to people who can actually fight by the aiki bunnies.
I have questioned the understanding of Aiki and Ueshiba's teachings by Japanese Shihan
I have challenged those who claim to know Ueshiba's teachings both contextually, historically, and martially, but who cannot do much of anything martially.

For that I have been called a fraud, a liar, a snake oil salesman, a charlatan, and many other things, right here in these pages and it was not only allowed, you, as a community joined in.
I find the double standard to be astonishing as I am the one who stepped up.
What was the result of that?
None of you...not a single one of over 1,100 of you.... have ever done anything to make your case. To a man you stand there dumbfounded to do your aikido on someone who truly understands your founders work and message.

My reaction?
I taught and made friends of former enemies.

I think you all need to differentiate between discussion of abilities (and erroneously calling them personal attacks) from attacking the character and credibility of those who dare to question what you do, as opposed to who you are.

Graham is more of the same with certain people in Aikido. He claims to know Ueshiba's work, but cannot explain it and demonstrates none of his power. Were we to meet, it would be just another aikido person standing their dumbfounded, not knowing what, or how I am doing things to him...with Morihei Ueshiba's aiki
Oh well.
Dan

David Orange
01-29-2012, 10:59 AM
Ridiculous
Is it necessary to insult people before you meet them?

Though no insult to Graham was intended, I do have to say that, in some cases, an insult is the best thing that can happen.

Rob John and I exchanged a number of insulting comments that made me angry and spurred me on to meet him and his teacher. I thought surely that I could at least give Rob some resistance when we met, but in fact, he truly had "transparent" power. I couldn't even feel what he did. I couldn't resist it and I couldn't let go. He had complete control from the moment I grabbed his wrists.

If the insult is of that type, much good can come from it.

A vicious, mean-spirited and unmerited insult, of course, is never necessary.

Nor are the smug, self-assued, superior little insults Graham throw off so lightly.

Nor is the presentation of aikido as a mushy, "spiritual" art without need of relation to human nature or consequeences of our actions.

As I told Graham, my intent is not to insult him but to clarify what the real world is about. Reality is usually quite insulting to the fantasist.

Regards.

David

DH
01-29-2012, 11:20 AM
I agree David
Insult? Now discussing understanding or lack thereof is an insult?
People cannot credibly claim to know Ueshiba's work, but not be able to explain it and demonstrate none of his power much less stand their dumbfounded, not knowing what, or how I am doing what I am doing...with Morihei Ueshiba's aiki.

It's no wonder no one wants to be tested. If they are all grieved and insulted over that-imagine standing in a room and simply saying .....Throw me!
Put up or shut up and being put to the test, was forced upon, Ueshiba. Regretably that is considered rude in todays tender society.
Were it that way in 1935...we would not be here and none of you would have ever heard of Morihei Ueshiba. It's a shame that many of you cannot reconcile the truth of what you are involved in and spent so much of your life trying to do. Ueshiba's teaching is really some incredible work with tangible results that most of you will never know.
Why is one on one the way to go?
Upon encountering such profound work, most intelligent people.....start asking questions.
Dan

David Orange
01-29-2012, 11:26 AM
Yes I have read plenty of experiences of people in Japan including Ellis Sensei. He is a fine example of how to behave.

But have you ever lived there, long enough to get out on your own and run into the kinds of things you don't get from the peaceful, nature-loving, polite image of "the Japanese"?

My training partner and friend for eight years was Japanese thank you. A lovely man. He has now returned to Japan.

OK...so you knew one Japanese man and trained with him for eight years...in what context? And what was his history in aikido? Did he personally know and train with Morihei Ueshiba?

Do you think that training with that one Japanese guy is even vaguely similar to living in a dojo where strong and highly-ranked men come from all over the world to prove themselves and climb to a higher level under a renowned teacher? People came to Mochizuki Sensei not only from all over Japan, but from England, Germany, France, Spain, Holland, the US, Canada, Switzerland, Norway, Africa, just to name a few places. All of them were highly ranked, all piled in together with numerous 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th dan Japanese under a 10th dan uchi deshi of Morihei Ueshiba?

This is not to say "I'm better than you," but to say "there are more things in this world than your philosophy has dreamt of" if you have not experienced it, which, apparently you have not.

My teacher was very 'japanese' in his attitude.

I'm sure he was very "Japanese," but that's usually quite a far cry from Japanese. Where did he get his training?

When I went to visit Kanetzuka Sensei I have a nice funny story, bottom line being it was a demonstration by me to my accompanying friend of how to behave, Japanese style or rather Japanese budo style.

And where did you visit Kanetzuka Sensei?

It's very easy to behave "Japanese style" but, again...that's imitative of an image. A "style," which is really quite different from the essence of being long-term among the real Japanese.

So once again a saying springs to mind: know who you are talking to.

Because you demonstrated to the guy you were with "how to behave in Japanese style"???

There was even one incident where my teacher had been 'threatebned' or 'challenged' if you will by a then Famous Japanese Shihan. He responded in such a way that said teacher never showed.

Could it have been because the Shihan just decided it wasn't worth putting his shoes on to go see the guy? These are very vague claims you're making and reveal nothing of value. Perhaps if you gave some detail and explained the inner working of what happened, it might be more valuable.

And this is the same point where people are criticizing your claims of power. You attribute it all to "your" four pillars of aikido--love, faith, self confidence or something?

What people love about Dan, Ark and others who are out there putting everything on the line is that they explain in detail what they are doing to get the results they effortlessly achieve. All we get from you is claims that pure love gives you great power and it finally sounds like you really don't know how to do it.

The person who makes a claim is not bragging or boasting my friend, merely sharing experience.

No, Graham. Talk is talk. "Sharing experience" is stepping up and doing what you say you can do. If you can't do that, then your talk is "bragging". In either case, the Japanese will definitely ask you to show them what you mean. And they're not being insulting in doing that. They learned from people who do what they say, so there would not be anything insulting about saying "Misete" when you claim that you can do something. What's repugnant to the Japanese is if you say you can do something but then refuse to show it. And when you claim that what you do is too spiritual for them to grasp, you have made the insult.

You are privileged to hear someones thoughts on here as am I. Due to this privilege it is and always will be rude of me to say prove it to anyone.

Bull, Graham. In budo, you have to know that any claim of ability must either be proven or taken as mere BS.

My invite is based on your assertion of put up or shut up. Lest you forget, my Aikido is not about fighting, not about competition, not about ego. I offer to show the principles I describe, no more, no less.

But why didn't you extend that same graciousness to Dan, who will actually be somewhere within reach of you?

My next several trips out of the US are bound to be to Japan, where my wife is from, and where I have family and many other connections. Apart from that, I'd like someday to visit Germany, where my ancestors originate, or Holland, where I also have some good friends, including my old training mate from the yoseikan hombu:

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

After that, maybe France, someday, Italy, Spain.

And if I ever get the chance, I may someday make it to UK.

But Dan will be in UK this year, I believe. So please give my invitation to him.

Best wishes.

David

RonRagusa
01-29-2012, 11:57 AM
I sincerely hope that you are never in a situation where someone seriously wants to cause you harm, because there will be no cooperative practice in that instance and your definition of Aikido will be of no help to you.


No offence Marc, but with regard to Mary's ability to defend herself, you are totally clueless. She researched, studied and taught self defense, apart from her Aikido training, for 15 years. I would not like to be on the opposite side of her in a confrontation.

You, and others, continually equate cooperative practice with weakness. This is incorrect. You, and others, equate cooperative practice with the absence of resistance.This is incorrect. The fact is that by continuing to assert these beliefs you, and others, punctuate your misunderstanding of the nature of cooperative practice.

As incorrect as I think your views are of what cooperative practice entails, I welcome your posts here on AikiWeb. Reading and studying the views of people with whom I disagree allows me to reassess my own ideas and training methods on a continual basis. This can, in the long run (though at 64, perhaps long sprint might be more appropriate ;)), only be of benefit to me.

Keep training and enjoy,

Ron

David Orange
01-29-2012, 12:22 PM
You, and others, continually equate cooperative practice with weakness. This is incorrect. You, and others, equate cooperative practice with the absence of resistance.This is incorrect. The fact is that by continuing to assert these beliefs you, and others, punctuate your misunderstanding of the nature of cooperative practice.

Ron, the problem there is that the most recent champion of the term "cooperative practice" defined it quite stringently as "no resistance in any way, whatsoever, at any time at any level." He explicitly demanded a practice in which uke assiduously follows whatever nage does and throws himself purposely in the exact form "as seen on TV".

He explicitly defined "cooperative" aikido practice as an art in which the techniques are performance kata, rather than as tools to be applied as appropriate to an attacker's movement. So if Mary insists on "cooperative practice," that's the image that comes out.

But how can any practice of aikido be anything but cooperative? We cooperate by coming together in a place to practice. We cooperate by taking roles as attacker and defender and we cooperate by realizing that we are not there to bloody each other and break bones or prove which of us is better, but as a knife and sharpening stone working together for the benefit of the one who owns both tools. We attack one another "realistically," but not "really."

In Mochizuki's dojo, the training was tough, intense and highly resistant (past shodan), but there was a very cooperative atmosphere there, on the whole.

So if we object to the term "cooperative practice," it's the idea that there can never be any resistance that we object to. An uke should resist at least as much as a weed resists being pulled from the ground. Otherwise, it can have no relation to reality.

So maybe a new term is needed because "cooperative practice" has become like a brand name for a type of aikido that can only lead to disintegration of real ability.

Regards.

David

Marc Abrams
01-29-2012, 12:44 PM
No offence Marc, but with regard to Mary's ability to defend herself, you are totally clueless. She researched, studied and taught self defense, apart from her Aikido training, for 15 years. I would not like to be on the opposite side of her in a confrontation.

You, and others, continually equate cooperative practice with weakness. This is incorrect. You, and others, equate cooperative practice with the absence of resistance.This is incorrect. The fact is that by continuing to assert these beliefs you, and others, punctuate your misunderstanding of the nature of cooperative practice.

As incorrect as I think your views are of what cooperative practice entails, I welcome your posts here on AikiWeb. Reading and studying the views of people with whom I disagree allows me to reassess my own ideas and training methods on a continual basis. This can, in the long run (though at 64, perhaps long sprint might be more appropriate ;)), only be of benefit to me.

Keep training and enjoy,

Ron

Ron:

Thank for letting me know I am totally clueless ;) Wow, 15 years....... Those credentials certainly guarantee success..... I have seen enough people who fit that bill simply fall apart when reality strikes in very ugly ways. I recognize that a lot more is necessary in order to best insure that a person remains safe. Unless that training encompasses real attack scenarios to cause the conditions that result in adrenalin dumps, then all of cooperative training, research and teaching in the world will not help the person when their bodies begin to shut down from that dump. Even then, until you are really in a situation, you will not know how you will react. Most encounters that I have witnessed between martial artists and street fighter had the street fighters coming out ahead. Most street fighters and even predators have been in situations when they had to continue the assault/attack after having been struck and hurt. That is not the typical situation with martial artists. One of the great benefits of my many years of wrestling was having to persevere under the worst of circumstances (winning or losing was totally immaterial). The ability to not have your body shut down by adrenalin; the ability to keep on attacking when you are seriously hurt and/or are bleeding; the mental toughness to never, ever give up until they are pulling the person off of you (because you have lost) or you are being pulled off that person (because you have won). These are just some of the larger things that are necessary to survive violent encounters that you have not been able to preempt, or end immediately. My experiences, along with the experiences of a friend of mine (federal victims crime specialist) amount to over 60 years of experience. One of the major things we get across right at the beginning of our women's safety workshops is my saying "if you have to defend yourself, it is probably too late."

Please point out to me where I equated cooperative practice with weakness or lack of resistance. In absence of being able to do so, then you will have to get in line behind Mary to put forth an apology for intentionally or unintentionally distorting what I really said. If you re-read what I said, you will notice that I did say that cooperative practice is an important component in the overall training process. I even have blogs that talk about that quite extensively. I think that you would be in agreement with my blogs about the nature of training and the necessity of cooperative practice with our overall training paradigms.

I think that where you and I may disagree is in my belief that if you are only training in a cooperative paradigm, then you will only remain functionally effective within that paradigm. I have witnessed and have been in the middle of enough real-life, violent encounters to last more than my life time. I consider myself very fortunate to still be in one piece today. Those experiences have also pointed to the greater realization that unless you can employ your skills in the worst case scenarios (that includes some trainings where you are put to the test), then you can only guess and hope what you believe an outcome will be. That nature of training has allowed me to use my Aikido training in several violent and almost violent encounters with success. I have yet to see or experience that your paradigm of only cooperative training leads to a greater propensity of success in real-life violent encounters, than the one I endorse. Then again, it is mostly immaterial considering the odd of most of us being caught up in a real-life, violent encounter. I am very clear with my students about talking about how Aikido training is a bad choice for learning to defend yourself in a short period of time. It can be very valuable in conjunction with a number of other training components. Mixed in with good luck (which is almost always necessary in violent encounters), those training experiences help to place the odds more on you than on the attacker. Even then, feces happens.

Regards,

Marc Abrams

mathewjgano
01-29-2012, 12:49 PM
Ron, the problem there is that the most recent champion of the term "cooperative practice" defined it quite stringently as "no resistance in any way, whatsoever, at any time at any level."
Doesn't this suppose one person's meaning is applied by another?

So if Mary insists on "cooperative practice," that's the image that comes out.
I think that's unfair to her; just as unfair as someone assuming someone else is too physical just because he or she advocates physical potency, or talks against overly-cooperative practice a lot.

...maybe a new term is needed because "cooperative practice" has become like a brand name for a type of aikido that can only lead to disintegration of real ability.

Regards.

David
My view is that the terms aren't so important as long as people ask enough questions instead of applying their own semantics to other people. I personally like "cooperative practice" because it points to what we're getting at (I believe) in Aikido: mutual beneficence; mutual improvement in every way we can manage.
Thoughts?
Take care,
Matt

Demetrio Cereijo
01-29-2012, 01:10 PM
This looks like a budo version of Lettvin vs Leary debate on drugs.

sorokod
01-29-2012, 01:23 PM
No offence Marc, but with regard to Mary's ability to defend herself, you are totally clueless. She researched, studied and taught self defense, apart from her Aikido training, for 15 years. I would not like to be on the opposite side of her in a confrontation.


Context:

http://www.miron-enterprises.com/instructors.html
http://www.youtube.com/user/thermopile85/videos

graham christian
01-29-2012, 01:47 PM
Doesn't this suppose one person's meaning is applied by another?

I think that's unfair to her; just as unfair as someone assuming someone else is too physical just because he or she advocates physical potency, or talks against overly-cooperative practice a lot.

My view is that the terms aren't so important as long as people ask enough questions instead of applying their own semantics to other people. I personally like "cooperative practice" because it points to what we're getting at (I believe) in Aikido: mutual beneficence; mutual improvement in every way we can manage.
Thoughts?
Take care,
Matt

I agree totally here Matthew.

Mary is open and honest about what she does and allows others to do as they do. She invites anyone too.

Mutual is a great term, I like it.

If you haven't read my other thread then let me inform you here on this one so that others may see it too that Mark Freeman will be visiting and training with me very shortly. My firdt meet up with anyone from this 'cyber community'.

He has my full permission to relate anything to anyone with regards to what he finds.

I look forward to it, my first meeting with someone from this 'other' world called Aikiweb.

Regards.G.

DH
01-29-2012, 02:34 PM
I agree totally here Matthew.
Mary is open and honest about what she does and allows others to do as they do. She invites anyone too.

Mutual is a great term, I like it.
There is no....mutual...anything; terms or practice if you cannot display his power and control.
Mary does not nor has ever claimed to understand Ueshiba's power and aiki or to be doing his Aiki

You on the other hand have claimed to understand Ueshiba and claimed power and continue to do so. I have called you on it many times. If you claim it, then you either have his power and control (or something approaching it) or you do not understand what he was doing and talking about.

I will be in England in the spring, As I said before I would be thrilled to cross hands. No martial art or with martial arts. I don't care either way and you won't either....as in about a minute all will be made clear and I honestly think that after touching hands....you will never ask me to do something martial to you....;)
Then... I will explain to you what he was talking about and how to do it, we can train and laugh our butts off then go to dinner.

Dan

Mary Eastland
01-29-2012, 02:48 PM
Context:

http://www.miron-enterprises.com/instructors.html
http://www.youtube.com/user/thermopile85/videos


Thank you, again, David for posting our links....that is very thoughtful of you.

sorokod
01-29-2012, 02:55 PM
Thank you, again, David for posting our links....that is very thoughtful of you.

You are quite welcome, I think these ground the statements.

gregstec
01-29-2012, 03:12 PM
Just a little comment about cooperative training. Even with resistance, no type of training can teach you how to deal with real anger in a real attack; this is the part that collapses most people regardless of their level of expertise and years of training in the dojo - only when you experience real hostilities will you know whether you are a fight or flee type of person - those of the fight type will subconsciously respond with those skills that have been conditioned in them by their training, and those of the flee type will be useless regardless of how much training they have had.

I am not saying you need to go out and get in a fight, but until you do encounter a real attack, you will never know which type you are - it is just the way it is and people need to be honest with themselves so they don't put themselves in a situation expecting their non-realistic attack training to serve them well in a real hostile situation - it may or may not work out the way you think.

Personally, and I may be wrong here, but I believe the majority of those that focus on the love and spiritual aspects of Aikido, just won't have the emotional make up to deal with the anger and will find themselves in the 'flee' group - as I said, just my opinion, and of course there could be exceptions.

Greg

Mario Tobias
01-29-2012, 03:38 PM
I have my own personal interpretation about this statement but just want to "throw" it out there to see what others think.

cheers,

After 300 posts, I realized a small mistake only now. What I really meant was "The goal is not THE throw"

Just to tell you an interesting story (for me that is).

We were in a 3 day seminar led by a 6th dan. The classes were pretty intense. Before the conclusion of the seminar, the sensei told us to form several circles and we would play a "game".

2 people would come up in the middle of the circle and the objective of the game was similar to sumo rules. Whoever hits the mat first or gets pushed off the circle loses. The winner would stay and have another new challenger in the circle. It was a good opportunity to test your techniques but lo and behold during the "game" people, mudansha and yudansha alike, were trying to push and throw each other, no techniques were employed. It looked like whoever got tired first gave up and lost. This would go on and on. You could see Aikido was totally out the door. A relatively pretty simple test imho.

Garth
01-29-2012, 04:08 PM
, and those of the flee type will be useless regardless of how much training they have had.

Greg

Revised, okay so cooperative training is useless for a "real" fight, How about increasingly focused and specific cooperative training and also sped up?
There has to be a beginning for people never exposed to violence. I have seen people change from encouragement and team bulilding, so why not cooperative training?
Of course they have to be focused on the end, which is ultimately, not given a chance to flee, deal with the violence in an appropriate manner.
As soon as a person enters a boxing gym , having never been in the ring in their life, and does or does not get the snot beat out of them , means they have already changed something or decided to .
MHO

Demetrio Cereijo
01-29-2012, 04:08 PM
Just a little comment about cooperative training. Even with resistance, no type of training can teach you how to deal with real anger in a real attack; this is the part that collapses most people regardless of their level of expertise and years of training in the dojo - only when you experience real hostilities will you know whether you are a fight or flee type of person - those of the fight type will subconsciously respond with those skills that have been conditioned in them by their training, and those of the flee type will be useless regardless of how much training they have had.
Sorry but I disagree.

DH
01-29-2012, 04:32 PM
Just a little comment about cooperative training. Even with resistance, no type of training can teach you how to deal with real anger in a real attack; this is the part that collapses most people regardless of their level of expertise and years of training in the dojo - only when you experience real hostilities will you know whether you are a fight or flee type of person - those of the fight type will subconsciously respond with those skills that have been conditioned in them by their training, and those of the flee type will be useless regardless of how much training they have had.

I am not saying you need to go out and get in a fight, but until you do encounter a real attack, you will never know which type you are - it is just the way it is and people need to be honest with themselves so they don't put themselves in a situation expecting their non-realistic attack training to serve them well in a real hostile situation - it may or may not work out the way you think.

Personally, and I may be wrong here, but I believe the majority of those that focus on the love and spiritual aspects of Aikido, just won't have the emotional make up to deal with the anger and will find themselves in the 'flee' group - as I said, just my opinion, and of course there could be exceptions.

Greg
I would agree with all of the above with the caveate that the training can be gradual in a dojo setting to continually amp up the attacks offered (be adequately training people how to attack) while training adequate responses. I have lost track of the men who have cried in my dojo out of shear frustration at being continualy beaten and not being capable of issuing an adequate response with weapons and without until they reached a point where they could.
Ultimately I still think that you need to get out and go to places outside of your school. MMA schools are a good choice.
Most people in the martial arts have no real concept or preparedness for both serious and experienced violence. And there is little to nothing I have seen in the martial arts to prepare people for it.

I am not saying you need to go out and get in a fight,
I...am...saying you need to get in a fight...repeatedly, or as close to it as you can get. And at the VERY least train tih someone who has. They can impart some vaualbel lessons about what is real and what is fantasy, and deal with higher percentage responses.

a. You will find most of the locks and throws you know won't work on someone who knows how to fight well.
b. a lost of your jujutsu doesn't work well when someone who knows what they are dong is kicking and punching the crap out of you. Case in point: you learn to judiciously approach someone and be mindful that when you are using your two hands to do something; lock, choke, grab to throw...their hands and feet are free to do a lot of damage to your person!
c. Every time you move to throw them- they are moving to set you up by pummeling you, throwing you and mounting you or just maybe knocking you out cold while you are standing there trying your schtick on them AND THEY DO NOT LOSE OR GIVE UP THEIR CENTER IN DOING ANY OF THE ABOVE.

Then of course you can go into LEO and military work with mostly untrained people. I had a guy on the internet going on and on about Martial artists not understanding real force on force (he was a cop). I told him just imagine the case you are making here.
You are openly telling all of us, the trouble you are having handling domestics and punks. And WE...don't get it. Now imagine handling people trained to take you apart.
I've trained a dozen cops in my life and the most stress they have EVER gotten in their lives was in our MMA school back in the 90's.
Dan

Garth
01-29-2012, 05:41 PM
I...am...saying you need to get in a fight...repeatedly, or as close to it as you can get. And at the VERY least train tih someone who has. They can impart some vaualbel lessons about what is real and what is fantasy, and deal with higher percentage responses.

Exactly , and most Aikido dojos would most likely instantly lose half their membership instantly.
first time someone gets hit in the face:hypno:
People who consistently have such advice and experience are among the "graybeards" in most dojos.
Been around the block, etc
Not the newly minted Shodans, who are still wet behind the ears and full of the experience of themselves.
Now changing the atmosphere and getting them to share it would be a sea change.!!!!

gregstec
01-29-2012, 06:24 PM
Revised, okay so cooperative training is useless for a "real" fight, How about increasingly focused and specific cooperative training and also sped up?
There has to be a beginning for people never exposed to violence. I have seen people change from encouragement and team bulilding, so why not cooperative training?
Of course they have to be focused on the end, which is ultimately, not given a chance to flee, deal with the violence in an appropriate manner.
As soon as a person enters a boxing gym , having never been in the ring in their life, and does or does not get the snot beat out of them , means they have already changed something or decided to .
MHO

Hi Greg, nice name by the way; I like it :)

I see you have made a significant revision to your first post- no problem with the revision or the first post - However, as retired military, I was going to have some fun with your original military comment - not an issue, I will save that wisdom for a later day :D

Anyway, in keeping with the theme of this thread, IMO the "The goal not to throw" is closely related to "Fight or Flee" (now that should take care of the thread drift police :D )

The basis of my point was that in general there are two types of people - those that respond to an attack with a fight back attitude and those that respond with a flee or back off attitude. IMO, I do not see those with the flee attitude being drawn to a martial art or the military - however, as I said, there are exceptions based on the goals of the MA. Can the type of response with an individual change? Yes, I think so, but it can not be totally accomplished by dojo training regardless of the increasing levels of intensity of simulated real attacks; that does not hurt, but is not totally effective. The only true test is with a real hostile incident - a sink or swim environment.

Greg

gregstec
01-29-2012, 06:25 PM
Sorry but I disagree.

Hey, Demetrio, no reason to be sorry - you are entitled to your opinion - be proud of it :)

Greg

gregstec
01-29-2012, 06:38 PM
I...am...saying you need to get in a fight...repeatedly, or as close to it as you can get. And at the VERY least train tih someone who has. They can impart some vaualbel lessons about what is real and what is fantasy, and deal with higher percentage responses.
Dan

Well, being the gregarious person that you are, I can see why you would say this - however, I strongly do not recommend someone go out and do that. But with that said, I will say that, IME, the best teacher is experience and there is no substitute! People need to make their own decisions based upon their own conclusions, and be held 100% responsible for their actions. (IOW, I do not want see my name on a lawsuit as a certain percent culpable because some 'idgit' went and got his teeth knocked out because he read one of my posts :D )

Overall, I think you got a good perspective on this stuff - keep up the good work! :D

Greg

mathewjgano
01-29-2012, 06:43 PM
There is no....mutual...anything; terms or practice if you cannot display his power and control.


:o Sorry, Dan, I'm trying to understand, but I'm having a hard time following: Reading what you described about gradually increasing intensity seems like a case where cooperative training is being practiced. It's not overly-cooperative where anything one person trys gets a pass, but in order to let someone work on something using your body as the "target" strikes me as cooperative in nature. Taking into account the other myriad goals individuals might have, I'm confused how there isn't anything mutual going on if you don't already know how to move like O Sensei.
Aything you would be willing to add would be appreciated!
Take care,
Matt

robin_jet_alt
01-29-2012, 06:50 PM
:o Sorry, Dan, I'm trying to understand, but I'm having a hard time following: Reading what you described about gradually increasing intensity seems like a case where cooperative training is being practiced. It's not overly-cooperative where anything one person trys gets a pass, but in order to let someone work on something using your body as the "target" strikes me as cooperative in nature. Taking into account the other myriad goals individuals might have, I'm confused how there isn't anything mutual going on if you don't already know how to move like O Sensei.
Aything you would be willing to add would be appreciated!
Take care,
Matt

I guess it all depends on what you mean by cooperative...

For instance, if I want to be challenged in my training and for my partner to allow me to feel what I am doing, is it cooperative if they fling themselves to the floor the instant I twitch a muscle? I would say that is being very uncooperative actually.

mathewjgano
01-29-2012, 07:09 PM
I guess it all depends on what you mean by cooperative...

For instance, if I want to be challenged in my training and for my partner to allow me to feel what I am doing, is it cooperative if they fling themselves to the floor the instant I twitch a muscle? I would say that is being very uncooperative actually.

I completely agree...that's counterproductive for what I want too. I base cooperation on what the individual goal is. The Aikido training system seems to generally go something like this: you attack me in a way that is on the cusp of my ability so I can advance my ability. We generally know what we're going to work on and while we might strip away this or that "rule" there is generally a form involved to shape the focus. We might practice randori to work on something closer to free-form, but that's based on the purpose. What I see as non-cooperative practice is practice in which aite never lets nage work on something. I think both are valuable...and for highly advance students, the latter is probably a lot more useful.
Having resistance doesn't mean it's non-cooperative, in my understanding of the term; just as having no resistance doesn't mean it's cooperative.

DH
01-29-2012, 07:15 PM
Dan Harden wrote:
There is no....mutual...anything; terms or practice if you cannot display his power and control.
:o Sorry, Dan, I'm trying to understand, but I'm having a hard time following: Reading what you described about gradually increasing intensity seems like a case where cooperative training is being practiced. It's not overly-cooperative where anything one person trys gets a pass, but in order to let someone work on something using your body as the "target" strikes me as cooperative in nature. Taking into account the other myriad goals individuals might have, I'm confused how there isn't anything mutual going on if you don't already know how to move like O Sensei.
Aything you would be willing to add would be appreciated!
Take care,
Matt
Hi Mat
You had discussed mutual practice as if it were something between all aikido people in the midst of a discussion between Graham and I.
You then quote my reply I wrote to Graham and assigned it to a completely different discussion I was having with the two Gregs.
Huh?

Sigh...lets clean it up. I don't want to keep going over the same ground Let's use bold for the talking points and underline the issues!!

1. Mary and Ron do what they do and are clear and make no outrageous claims. They are usually well balanced in what they say.

2. I make outrageous claims-that I understand what Ueshiba was talking about and doing with aiki... I get called on it all the time to show and I have been judged from shodan to shihan all over the world

3. Graham makes outrageous claims- that he understands what Ueshiba was talking about and doing with aiki yet he has no one from no where stating he feels like anything more than your average joe, and he produces videos showing he moves with a disconnected body

I contend the following- hopefully for the last time
a. If you show up on an international forum and say you know what Ueshiba was doing and talking about-b. you damn well should get called on it.
c. You should be able to define it, discuss it and do it.
d. If you've got nothing to back it up...that's your problem and not the community who calls you on your rhetoric.
e. Being called on it is good for the community and good for you.
I hope that was clear.:D :D

And hats off to Graham that even with being challenged on these things, he keeps it in perspective and doesn't take challenges to his knowledge and skills as a personal challenge to him as a person. We could all take a lesson from him in how to respond. I can't tell you how many times I have read a reply from him-where I was contending with him..and even though I totally disagreed, I sat there and said..."Good Job man!!!"
_____________________________________________

My thoughts on the gradual increase of stress in martial arts is a totally different topic

Dan

Garth
01-29-2012, 07:56 PM
Hi Greg, nice name by the way; I like it :)

I see you have made a significant revision to your first post- no problem with the revision or the first post - However, as retired military, I was going to have some fun with your original military comment - not an issue, I will save that wisdom for a later day :D

Anyway, in keeping with the theme of this thread, IMO the "The goal not to throw" is closely related to "Fight or Flee" (now that should take care of the thread drift police :D )

The basis of my point was that in general there are two types of people - those that respond to an attack with a fight back attitude and those that respond with a flee or back off attitude. IMO, I do not see those with the flee attitude being drawn to a martial art or the military - however, as I said, there are exceptions based on the goals of the MA. Can the type of response with an individual change? Yes, I think so, but it can not be totally accomplished by dojo training regardless of the increasing levels of intensity of simulated real attacks; that does not hurt, but is not totally effective. The only true test is with a real hostile incident - a sink or swim environment.

Greg

Yes it is a good name;) It actually means vigilant (since Japanese have a problem with R I think or maybe Tozando sold me a bill of goods)and is inscribed that way on my hakama
So I will be keeping an EYE on you Greg:D :D
I just forgot to leave the military comment in thats all, after I reread where you said "Cooperative"
So I understand the military is not mostly cooperative training, but you must admit that there is some, used in conjunction with confidence building. Used to be total immersion in the sink or swim atmosphere and I am sure still that way for special service otherwise anyone would be special forces. And I am sure some wound up on permanent KP duty. Combat has certain necessities to it.
But after the tearing down, there is a buildup process as the confidence increases.
I am not saying as Dan likes to say, that drill instructors start walking around saying "oh you are great" when you "actually suck", but you are increasingly allowed to succed as your skills and confidence grows, Otherwise the all volunteer army would have too high a washout rate. No???
Cowardice (Flee /Self/Fear preservation drive whatever you want to call it) can be weeded out if need be and with a combo of techniques mentioned here, over ridden(rewired)
I can at 47 remember vividly the first time I got my clock cleaned by an older kid.
I was taking a purely romantic heroic stance against an older street tuff based on principle (somewhere between 8-10 years old) Completely unaware of the circumstance( and I was always big for my age size wise)(not mentally though). I must tell you that prudence about the circumstance entered into my thought process after that time. Not that I have run away from fights or sought them out afterwoods, just slower to anger that all. Fighting or Fleeing , all though I cant remember doing the other literally, are worlds that some people can and do switch back and forth between.

mathewjgano
01-29-2012, 08:40 PM
Hi Mat
You had discussed mutual practice as if it were something between all aikido people in the midst of a discussion between Graham and I.
You then quote my reply I wrote to Graham and assigned it to a completely different discussion I was having with the two Gregs.
Huh?
I'll make this my last post on this vein of the topic so I don't muddle it up any further (sorry), but I commented on David Orange's remarks to Graham about using different terms; Graham said he liked the idea of mutual interest in "cooperative training;" and then you commented on his remarks that there is "no mutual...etc." I missed the context of your comments to Graham, sorry about that.

I contend the following- hopefully for the last time
a. If you show up on an international forum and say you know what Ueshiba was doing and talking about-b. you damn well should get called on it.
c. You should be able to define it, discuss it and do it.
d. If you've got nothing to back it up...that's your problem and not the community who calls you on your rhetoric.
e. Being called on it is good for the community and good for you.
I hope that was clear.:D :D

And hats off to Graham that even with being challenged on these things, he keeps it in perspective and doesn't take challenges to his knowledge and skills as a personal challenge to him as a person. We could all take a lesson from him in how to respond. I can't tell you how many times I have read a reply from him-where I was contending with him..and even though I totally disagreed, I sat there and said..."Good Job man!!!"
I absolutely agree! Nicely put!
Captain Myopia signing out.
(Thank you, Dan, and everyone else!)

Lee Salzman
01-29-2012, 08:50 PM
:o Sorry, Dan, I'm trying to understand, but I'm having a hard time following: Reading what you described about gradually increasing intensity seems like a case where cooperative training is being practiced. It's not overly-cooperative where anything one person trys gets a pass, but in order to let someone work on something using your body as the "target" strikes me as cooperative in nature. Taking into account the other myriad goals individuals might have, I'm confused how there isn't anything mutual going on if you don't already know how to move like O Sensei.
Aything you would be willing to add would be appreciated!
Take care,
Matt

I think the idea here is simply this: a connected body (which is not aiki, but presumably is a stepping stone to it) is the most fundamental aspect of cooperation, harmony, love, mutual, yada yada, bla bla. If you can't even make, say, your foot cooperate with your hip or your hand, then how is your body going to even begin to cooperate with another body?

You can't be a hornet's nest of unconscious bad movement habits, or you will take your own body apart in movement, well before anyone else does it to you, or you can even attempt to do it to anyone else. In a sense, every bad disconnected movement habit that comes out as a result of you doing something to them is actually, counter-intuitively, them controlling you. You have to practice erasing that a lot in solo practice, dojo practice won't efficiently fix it by itself.

There was some video of O'Sensei with Terry Dobson where he states something along the lines of "We must put our own houses in order..." So, now, if you haven't, and you talk of harmony, what then?

Mario Tobias
01-29-2012, 10:35 PM
Having resistance doesn't mean it's non-cooperative, in my understanding of the term; just as having no resistance doesn't mean it's cooperative.

Agree. FWIW, for me non-cooperative training is one wherein uke closes an opening once it has been found out so that the center can't be taken. It is the burden of nage to continually look for openings in uke so that a technique can be done. Similar to uke, it is his job to continually close his openings and find weaknesses in nage for a possible reversal.

I'm thinking randori and jiyu waza still fall into cooperative training since nage performs techniques, sure, but is it based on uke's openings? Does nage understand this? You dont know if the technique is valid or not. And uke doesn't put much effort in closing those openings such that nage will have a hard time performing a technique.

mathewjgano
01-29-2012, 11:27 PM
I think the idea here is simply this: a connected body (which is not aiki, but presumably is a stepping stone to it) is the most fundamental aspect of cooperation, harmony, love, mutual, yada yada, bla bla. If you can't even make, say, your foot cooperate with your hip or your hand, then how is your body going to even begin to cooperate with another body?

You can't be a hornet's nest of unconscious bad movement habits, or you will take your own body apart in movement, well before anyone else does it to you, or you can even attempt to do it to anyone else. In a sense, every bad disconnected movement habit that comes out as a result of you doing something to them is actually, counter-intuitively, them controlling you. You have to practice erasing that a lot in solo practice, dojo practice won't efficiently fix it by itself.

There was some video of O'Sensei with Terry Dobson where he states something along the lines of "We must put our own houses in order..." So, now, if you haven't, and you talk of harmony, what then?

That makes a lot of sense to me, thank you, Lee! And in retrospect I don't know why I couldn't pick that up from what Dan was saying. One more reason why it's best for me to read more than write here...or take more time reading, at the very least. The internet is too damned convenient.
My only other comment before I go is that while I personally love that quote, and agree with it, I don't think it's a strict hierarchy or I don't think I would ever leave the house. I am all about focusing on self-improvement and building myself up so I can be of use to the world around me in a positive way, but practicality seems to demand that sometimes I move on to the next step before mastering the one before it.
So to relate this back to the thread OP (rephrased): the goal is not the throw, it's that which the throw is a part: the whole...But each day we should probably begin and end by taking a good hard look at our own home.
Cheers y'all!

p.s. I like that description, Mario! Thank you!

David Orange
01-30-2012, 12:41 AM
Doesn't this suppose one person's meaning is applied by another?

Well, except that Mary's comments don't clearly establish that she doesn't mean exactly the same. She has rejected "testing" in the discussion...so it does begin to sound like purely cooperative following of form with a guaranteed fall.

...I personally like "cooperative practice" because it points to what we're getting at (I believe) in Aikido: mutual beneficence; mutual improvement in every way we can manage.
Thoughts?

Well, I said above that we have to cooperate in many ways just to end up on the mat together. Budo is a social creation for the mutual benefits you describe--whether only for a very small group of members or for society as a whole. No social activity can survive if it is not very much cooperative, but if there is no social tension within the group, something is wrong. It's against human nature, so it can't be a very good group.

Budo cooperates for the purpose of mutually developing martial arts knowledge and ability in the participants. Not all budo is necessarily directly relevant to self defense. Kyudo, for instance, probably has no more than attitude and mental state to contribute to a self defense situation, but it is budo.

Aikido, on the other hand, is a "fighting" art, even if the technique is non-resistance leading into a joint lock or throw. That basic nature is well established. And the basic method of developing that in Ueshiba's time and in all his students up to the late 1940s, was to train the non-resisting technique against a powerful attack and immediate counter attack if the attacker is not instantly controlled.

The resistance is the only way to sharpen the aikido tool of non-resisting control of the attacker.

Cheers.

David

DH
01-30-2012, 01:39 AM
I think the idea here is simply this: a connected body (which is not aiki, but presumably is a stepping stone to it) is the most fundamental aspect of cooperation, harmony, love, mutual, yada yada, bla bla. If you can't even make, say, your foot cooperate with your hip or your hand, then how is your body going to even begin to cooperate with another body?

You can't be a hornet's nest of unconscious bad movement habits, or you will take your own body apart in movement, well before anyone else does it to you, or you can even attempt to do it to anyone else. In a sense, every bad disconnected movement habit that comes out as a result of you doing something to them is actually, counter-intuitively, them controlling you. You have to practice erasing that a lot in solo practice, dojo practice won't efficiently fix it by itself.

There was some video of O'Sensei with Terry Dobson where he states something along the lines of "We must put our own houses in order..." So, now, if you haven't, and you talk of harmony, what then?
Completely true Lee
It is step one. All else fails with the failure of this. What does it say then, that we are watching Japanese and foreign "expert" teachers move ... and they are as disconnected as their students! This isn't even kindergarten, it's baby steps and they still can't do it and they are on forums and in seminars talking about Ueshiba's power and aiki?? And now some of them are teaching internals?? Unbelievable.

There is almost no one teaching connection much less more advanced stuff in any meaningful way. I note that certain people always default to established budo, to find this stuff, even when it is contrary to so much personal experience. Even when I see traditional people who have been completely taken apart by methods they do not understand, they go right back to searching...in the traditional arts with Asian teachers.
It's why I prefer to first meet in public so that years from now when they start telling people they got this from Mr Big shot Japanese guy....and they will.... in order to boost his reputation and establish theirs! We will all remember them...and how much they sucked with Mr. Big shot Japanese teacher's lousy advice, and just who and what fixed them.

Dan

renshin
01-30-2012, 04:44 AM
That's also what Dan says. And what Ueshiba said, what Mifune said, what Sanpo said. Sugino said it, too. (Did he ever.)

Oh yes, Sugino (Yoshio) most certainly did.

BTW, my teacher tells a beautiful story about Minoru Mochizuki sensei and Yoshio Sugino sensei meeting up when they were both in their 80s. This was in Japan in the 1990s, if I recall the story correctly.

The two legends had been friends since before the war, as they were both students of O-Sensei Ueshiba and Jigoro Kano. They also did Katori Shinto Ryu together.

At this particular time, the two masters decided to do some kata from the omote dachi of the Katori Shinto Ryu. Mochizuki sensei had always been a sturdy guy and Sugino a small and slender type. Still so. They proceeded to do the kata, and you could see the masters challenging each other in a friendly manner.

At one point, they got into a position crossing swords, where Mochizuki was able to push his friend backwards forcefully. The smaller Sugino rushed backwards and fell. All of the onlookers (students of both teachers) looked on in horror. They thought Sugino sensei was surely going to be seriously hurt. As I mentioned, he was well into his eighties. The tiny old man surprised them all - did a beautiful ushiro ukemi and stood to his feet. Sword in hand. And with the biggest grin ever on his face, stroking his long beard, he said: "Let's do that again!"

You are never too old or too wise to accept a challenge - and these masters certainly did not shy away from one :)

Garth
01-30-2012, 06:26 AM
The mere fact that people here have trained with people with "power" and "aiki" and not required hospital visits afterwards means that there is "cooperation" in training going on here.:p

renshin
01-30-2012, 07:23 AM
The mere fact that people here have trained with people with "power" and "aiki" and not required hospital visits afterwards means that there is "cooperation" in training going on here.:p

There are more ways to manifest power than to hurt someone (physically, that is) ;)

graham christian
01-30-2012, 07:44 AM
Agree. FWIW, for me non-cooperative training is one wherein uke closes an opening once it has been found out so that the center can't be taken. It is the burden of nage to continually look for openings in uke so that a technique can be done. Similar to uke, it is his job to continually close his openings and find weaknesses in nage for a possible reversal.

I'm thinking randori and jiyu waza still fall into cooperative training since nage performs techniques, sure, but is it based on uke's openings? Does nage understand this? You dont know if the technique is valid or not. And uke doesn't put much effort in closing those openings such that nage will have a hard time performing a technique.

Hi Mario.
Admired your sense of humour and allowance with the thread drift. Thank you.

I wish it was possible to have a clear definition for this strange colloquial term called uncooperative training. I've never seen any and never will. Yet another term I find of no use myself.

Better terminology needed methinks.

Regards.G.

Garth
01-30-2012, 08:31 AM
There are more ways to manifest power than to hurt someone (physically, that is) ;)

Alone that is a true statement, but in context......
Oh I am sorry I thought this was a MARTIAL arts forum
Martial -
of, suitable for, or associated with war or the armed forces: martial music.

3.
characteristic of or befitting a warrior
:D :D

renshin
01-30-2012, 08:44 AM
Alone that is a true statement, but in context......
Oh I am sorry I thought this was a MARTIAL arts forum
Martial -
of, suitable for, or associated with war or the armed forces: martial music.

3.
characteristic of or befitting a warrior
:D :D

LOL - what I mean is that there are ways of getting the guy on the other end to understand you have beaten him, without actually beating him up ;)

Demetrio Cereijo
01-30-2012, 08:50 AM
You can use psychological warfare too... and hurt opponent's mind.

gregstec
01-30-2012, 09:14 AM
Yes it is a good name;) It actually means vigilant (since Japanese have a problem with R I think or maybe Tozando sold me a bill of goods)and is inscribed that way on my hakama
So I will be keeping an EYE on you Greg:D :D

Don't waste your time - nothing really to watch since I don't move much - it is all internal :D

I just forgot to leave the military comment in thats all, after I reread where you said "Cooperative"
So I understand the military is not mostly cooperative training, but you must admit that there is some, used in conjunction with confidence building. Used to be total immersion in the sink or swim atmosphere and I am sure still that way for special service otherwise anyone would be special forces. And I am sure some wound up on permanent KP duty. Combat has certain necessities to it.
But after the tearing down, there is a buildup process as the confidence increases.
I am not saying as Dan likes to say, that drill instructors start walking around saying "oh you are great" when you "actually suck", but you are increasingly allowed to succed as your skills and confidence grows, Otherwise the all volunteer army would have too high a washout rate. No???
Cowardice (Flee /Self/Fear preservation drive whatever you want to call it) can be weeded out if need be and with a combo of techniques mentioned here, over ridden(rewired)
I can at 47 remember vividly the first time I got my clock cleaned by an older kid.
I was taking a purely romantic heroic stance against an older street tuff based on principle (somewhere between 8-10 years old) Completely unaware of the circumstance( and I was always big for my age size wise)(not mentally though). I must tell you that prudence about the circumstance entered into my thought process after that time. Not that I have run away from fights or sought them out afterwoods, just slower to anger that all. Fighting or Fleeing , all though I cant remember doing the other literally, are worlds that some people can and do switch back and forth between.

As far as the military, I think most going in today are in the 'fight' type group - I just don't see the 'flee' type being drawn in that direction. However, back when I first went in, there were a good number of draftees that really did not want to be there.

Earlier I said I think training might be able to help change you from a flee to fight type, but after some thought, I am not all that sure about that . Of course, training can help you with your conditioned response to be better able to fight back, but I still think if you are a flee type person, you are going to freeze initially and all that conditioned training will just not manifest itself in time to be effective.

Maybe we should change 'fight' or 'flee' to 'react' or 'freeze'. It is important to remember that we are talking about a conditioned reflex going on in a real incident, there is absolutely no time to think about anything, those that have been there know what I am talking about. So with that in mind, even the best trained individual will be at a disadvantage if they are a freeze type person when startled - of course, if pushed far enough, I believe the survival instinct will kick in with everyone, but that just may be too late for some. It is also important to remember I am talking about attacks that you do not see coming - A well trained individual will have more awareness than most, so that gives them an advantage in assessing threats and being somewhat prepared for it - in these cases, you are not startled and will have some time to set up some type of initial defense.

As I mentioned before, the real test is in a real situation; anything short of that is pure speculation - so until you know for sure what type you are, don't be too hasty to put yourself in harm's way and expect your training to protect you.

Greg

DH
01-30-2012, 09:31 AM
Quote:
Gregory Gargiso wrote:
Alone that is a true statement, but in context......
Oh I am sorry I thought this was a MARTIAL arts forum
Martial -of, suitable for, or associated with war or the armed forces: martial music.
3. characteristic of or befitting a warrior
LOL - what I mean is that there are ways of getting the guy on the other end to understand you have beaten him, without actually beating him up ;)
Well, the point is that both are true and are not mutually exclusive.
The greater truth, is that IP/aiki does demonstrate it's superior approach without people getting hurt...all the time, and even makes them look at you funny or laugh at loud. It's even more fun when.... for the first time in their lives they actually start moving from center and using connection and aiki...like they have read about and thought they were doing.
From Shodan to Shihan I just shake their hands and say "Welcome to moving from your center." Most of what I see in Japanese Budo is just simply awful. Even embarrasing! When we tell people "We move from center" and "Our center is in our hands".... for the most part...we're not even close.
It's truly astounding that soo very many are so totally off base that you can't even have a discussion about trainng it or about the aspects of throwing in an aiki art. There is no common reference or as I said to Mat: "No mutual approach," at all.
You couldn't pay me to move like the majority of Japanese Shihan I have seen!

Dan

gregstec
01-30-2012, 09:43 AM
Earlier I said I think training might be able to help change you from a flee to fight type, but after some thought, I am not all that sure about that . Of course, training can help you with your conditioned response to be better able to fight back, but I still think if you are a flee type person, you are going to freeze initially and all that conditioned training will just not manifest itself in time to be effective.

Greg

Let me just add to this: Although I do not think dojo training can change your type, I think that real exposures to startling situations may be able to help change your conditioned reflex - something like what happens on a battlefield - after your initial freeze, and you survive, you might just get numb to being startled over and over again - at that point, your training can kick in and take over.

Greg

RonRagusa
01-30-2012, 09:46 AM
Well, except that Mary's comments don't clearly establish that she doesn't mean exactly the same. She has rejected "testing" in the discussion...so it does begin to sound like purely cooperative following of form with a guaranteed fall.

David -

I'm not sure where you got the impression that Mary or I "reject testing" in our practice. It's simply not accurate. As I pointed out earlier, our version of cooperative practice includes resistance training. We also employ many different Ki exercises that involve testing (Maybe you are referring to this statement: "If testing and competing with others is important to you"). I think there may be a disconnect here that confuses competitive testing (win/lose) with cooperative testing where the object is to help your partner grow stronger. We do not engage in the former and regularly practice the latter.

To fall or not to fall is a dynamic that must be evaluated in the moment based on factors that include: safety issues, the object of the exercise being practiced and the relative experience of the players. To make blanket statements (not implying that you have) that one should take a fall only if compelled to do so oversimplifies the issue.

Best,

Ron

DH
01-30-2012, 09:59 AM
I think there may be a disconnect here that confuses
1. competitive testing (win/lose)
2. with cooperative testing where the object is to help your partner grow stronger. Best,
Ron
Actually I think most of us get that Ron.
What we are arguing is that no one will ever achieve the higher order and your stated objectives of #2...to help your partner grow stronger... without #1.
People want to be free to do their practice and not be critiqued and that's fine. But these things are not just merely opinion. When you step into it by talking about self defense and true capability and not underestimating you or your methods (you do so regularly)-all while discussing cooperation-and producing videos- you open yourselves up to scrutiny and comparisons. Then, it is a whole different discussion of whether you can debate certain types of uncooperative training will virtually take apart people who practice less stressful training...or not.
And more so whether certain types of win/ lose martial training will forever dominate cooperative training.

Everyone is free to go have fun, and be left alone. Until they willingly choose to enter into certain subjects where the results are measurable and replicable to the point of being empirical.
To strain a point only to demonstrate an extreme:
1. Cooperative training like the type in your videos will never produce an excellent cage fighter, agreed?
2. Yet there is cooperative training in MMA as well. It is used as a first step in training before the advanced stress training (win/lose) takes place to fine tune and improve skills. Yes...improve...as in grow stronger.

So now it is just a measure of discussing degrees of what cooperative training can and cannot do. And people being self aware. Were someone trained to fight force-on-force to face someone who trained cooperatively? I will bet on the force-on-force guy everytime.
Why? With your own stated obectives?
To help your partner grow stronger .... The win/lose model is superior in producing results. The rest can just be aikido, who cares...until you meet that guy!

Dan

Garth
01-30-2012, 10:01 AM
Greg

I dont know where I just read it ,
and it maybe way off topic of thread, but a "reaction" to an action is what comes from a person naturally based on their experiences in this world. A "response" would be a trained or educated "reaction" not just instinct, based on training or new experiences. So a newborn, in theory, would not "fight" because it has no experience or knows what this is. (See Sparta)
I know that you know that the "freeze up" reaction can be conditioned right out of people .
I am just saying that there was some degree of cooperative training involved in getting them their.;)
So if someone did not cooperative and teach me koshinage ukemi ...... slowly.... I would be in a hospital bed with a broken neck or dead....
Different arts doi it with varying degress of speed and intensity according to understanding age and athleticism, but it has to be there

Garth
01-30-2012, 10:03 AM
Let me just add to this: Although I do not think dojo training can change your type, I think that real exposures to startling situations may be able to help change your conditioned reflex - something like what happens on a battlefield - after your initial freeze, and you survive, you might just get numb to being startled over and over again - at that point, your training can kick in and take over.

Greg

Hence "live fire " exercises? There is cooperation there so you dont get shot or blowed up

Garth
01-30-2012, 10:16 AM
"The limits of cooperative training"
Exactly Dan , thanks
I have always felt that headgear and mouthpieces should be donned at Aikido dojos to increase those limits.

DH
01-30-2012, 10:25 AM
"The limits of cooperative training"
Exactly Dan , thanks
I have always felt that headgear and mouthpieces should be donned at Aikido dojos to increase those limits.
Well I don't think that will be adopted any time soon!! And with certain training, head gear only gets you so far.
Self awareness can occur on many levels. Unfortunately with martial arts it is typically not a very pleasant affair. Martial arts or budo, do not typically produce highly capable people. For most, it's just a hobby. The trouble arises when people think that it does. I have seen dojo kata kings going through the motions in all manner of budo -not just aikido. As a result, people are often very confidant for all the wrong reasons. Their self awarness usually arrives with lumps and bumps or them looking up!:D
Dan

Garth
01-30-2012, 10:35 AM
"Self awareness can occur on many levels"

I hope, because I do not know how many "life and death" type circumstances I have left in me :rolleyes:

thisisnotreal
01-30-2012, 10:40 AM
why does self awareness have to be so hard?

David Orange
01-30-2012, 10:48 AM
I wish it was possible to have a clear definition for this strange colloquial term called uncooperative training. I've never seen any and never will. Yet another term I find of no use myself.

Yours is the first deployment I've seen of that term. I prefer to use the term "resistant training" and many people say "live" training.

In yoseikan, we had shite randori, with set attacks and defenses, jiyu randori, with completely free attacks, and chikara randori, meaning free attacks and defenses, with uke giving continuous, strong follow up attacks if nage does not effect a decisive response in the first instant of the attack. If the attacker doesn't have to fall, he does not and continues the attack. This often went to the ground and newaza, frequently ending in a choke or strangulation. And remember that the yoseikan randori was full of sutemi waza, multiple opponents, bokken, padded pvc swords, knives, bo, etc. I never saw anyone use throwing stars or the claw hands, but most everything else.

It was cooperative, yet when two people were grappling on the ground, they were cooperating by giving the partner a tough opponent intent on choking him out or submitting him. It was basically the same as UFC but without bloodying each other up too much. We placed atemi but generally didn't strike each other heavily. And if you didn't throw someone who punched at you, he might follow up with a foot sweep and attempt to apply a joint lock of a wide variety.

What we cooperated in was a universal commitment to a powerful, meaningful attack allowing nage to develop first-instant throwing or joint-locking--not meaning that the joint is locked in the first instant, but the lead into the lock is established in the first instant, creating kuzushi and control for nage. It was intense and dangerous. And it took cooperative commitment to that danger, courage and calmness to move in it at high speed with lots of people and weapons, and commitment to the well-being of your partner, with the rule of never doing more than necessary to stop a violent person--but stopping him decisively.

Cooperative or uncooperative, whatever you would call it, that was real aikido and, as far as I'm concerned, the only meaningful progression to develop true technique. The internal power considerations are another matter.

Better terminology needed methinks.

I would suggest "kata-only" for those practices in which uke purposely moves in the way he is "supposed" to move, rather than how his reflexes advise him. In "kata-only" training, neither uke nor nage gives any resistance to the other or to the mutual performance of the kata that each technique is.

I can see value in that kind of practice maybe 5% of total time, with another 20% being actual kata training, such as Mochizuki's tai sabaki no kata or his hyori no kata; or Tomiki's "walking" kata and others, such as junana no kata. Another 25% being intense kihon waza training and 50% being randori. The randori levels would increase with the student's experience, with shite or designated randori early on, jiyu randori nearing black belt and chikara randori after that, at which time randori should be liberally peppered with sutemi waza. Under Mochizuki, we regularly did hour-long sutemi-only chikara randori.

So that type of training would fall under what I prefer to term "live" practice.

I would recommend some "kata-only" training from the beginning, with more and more "resistance" from uke when nage's technique leaves that possibility.

Two major points:

In "kata-only" practice, neither uke nor nage resists the other's efforts.

In "live" practice, uke may resist with strength, speed and technique if he can find an opportunity; but nage's training is to move in such a way that he never resists uke in any way, so that uke can find no strength to resist and all his efforts fall into nothing.

Again, this does not address questions of internal power development or use. This is just the omote form of technical aikido training. I do believe that IP/Aiki would make it much easier to bear training of that kind while making every technique a living thing, rather than a form (kata).

But for training solid aikido technique and application, the "cooperation" of uke and nage must be a commitment to development of instant aikido technical effectiveness against a strong and "live" uke, committed to an effective attack.

Cheers.

David

gregstec
01-30-2012, 10:50 AM
Greg

I dont know where I just read it ,
and it maybe way off topic of thread, but a "reaction" to an action is what comes from a person naturally based on their experiences in this world. A "response" would be a trained or educated "reaction" not just instinct, based on training or new experiences. So a newborn, in theory, would not "fight" because it has no experience or knows what this is. (See Sparta)
I know that you know that the "freeze up" reaction can be conditioned right out of people .
I am just saying that there was some degree of cooperative training involved in getting them their.;)
So if someone did not cooperative and teach me koshinage ukemi ...... slowly.... I would be in a hospital bed with a broken neck or dead....
Different arts doi it with varying degress of speed and intensity according to understanding age and athleticism, but it has to be there

Never said cooperative training was not useful - but it has its limits in producing real effectiveness.
As to the response/reaction thing - well, I understand the difference and one or the other can probably be affected by training and or some sort of conditioning. However, I also think we are born with certain instincts that initially mold our conditioning aptitudes. Just my opinion, and of course, YMMV :)

Greg

DH
01-30-2012, 10:51 AM
"The limits of cooperative training"
Exactly Dan , thanks

It's one of the few reasons I actually do get pissed at some budo people. They want to borrow the reputation of the arts or people in them....without putting in the work and pain to produce powerful results under stress. It's cheap. A cowards way out. I used to think you would expect people to look at themselves -without the need for outside correction- and say "Hey wait a minute, I have never been in a real fight in my life, much less with using my so called martial arts skills, so why should I feel so confident?"
But as I met more and more people with these really warped and skewed views of what will actually work, I realized they are true believers. Some idiot sensei-himself a true believer- somewhere, somehow, produced another idiot sensei who produced these people. Hence the truly bizarre movements we see in some aikido schools-with people who are absofreakinlutely confident that they will work. Have you noticed the Aiki-bunnies™(by Meik Skoss) are, for the most part, more and more isolated to practicing among themselves? Why? They found out they can't face real stress.

Thankfully this is happening less and less as the better aikido teachers step in with much more educated training. As the landscape of MMA and what is martially valid unfolds, the good aikido teachers will survive and possibly thrive. The aikido that is left has a whole slew of people cross training and strengthening the art. It's another case of reducing the numbers, trimming the fat, and growing strong again. I see it happening to aikido on two fronts IP/aiki and better fighting skills. I've lost track of the Aikido people I am meeting who train Koryu, BJJ, MMA, FMA ICMA...and still love and practice, Aikido with a whole new awareness of its own strengths, and who can deliver.
Dan

chillzATL
01-30-2012, 11:04 AM
It's one of the few reasons I actually do get pissed at some budo people. They want to borrow the reputation of the arts or people in them....without putting in the work and pain to produce powerful results under stress. It's cheap. A cowards way out. I used to think you would expect people to look at themselves -without the need for outside correction- and say "Hey wait a minute, I have never been in a real fight in my life, much less with using my so called martial arts skills, so why should I feel so confident?"
But as I met more and more people with these really warped and skewed views of what will actually work, I realized they are true believers. Some idiot sensei-himself a true believer, somewhere somehow,produced another idiot sensei who produced this guy. Hence the truly bizarre movements we see in some aikido schools-with people who are absofreakinlutely confident that they will work. Have you noticed the aiki bunnies are, for the most part, isolated to practicing among themselves? Why? They found out they can't face stress.

Thankfully this is happening less and less as the better aikido teachers step in with much more educated training. As the landscape of MMA and what is martially valid unfolds, the good aikido teachers will survive and possibly thrive. The aikido that is left has a whole slew of people cross training and strengthening the art. It's another case of reducing the numbers, trimming the fat, and growing strong again. I see it happening to aikido on two fronts IP/aiki and better fighting skills. I've lost track of the Aikido people I am meeting who train Koryu, BJJ, MMA, FMA ICMA...and still love and practice, Aikido with a whole new awareness of its own strengths, and who can deliver.
Dan

How many of those people are taking that cross-training and using it to change how they teach aikido and how exactly are they changing it? I understand the not giving up their centers like it's their job, making people work through real force and resistance and doing things that are technically, from a fighting standpoint, sound, but that still does not make one a fighter of any note, especially as it relates to MMA.

DH
01-30-2012, 11:07 AM
"Self awareness can occur on many levels"

I hope, because I do not know how many "life and death" type circumstances I have left in me :rolleyes:

Ahh...but self awareness does not always cost the same. There is a host of smart people in budo, self aware, and observing and listening!

Garth
01-30-2012, 11:10 AM
However, I also think we are born with certain instincts that initially mold our conditioning aptitudes"

If that were the case, then gender shoud have something to do with it also. And women would be incapable because their hormones embue them certain instincts? OH NO YOU DIDNT!!!:D
Nature Vs Nurture? That is an arguement better left for scientists.

RonRagusa
01-30-2012, 11:13 AM
What we are arguing is that no one will ever achieve the higher order and your stated objectives of #2...to help your partner grow stronger... without #1.

Hi Dan -

I don't agree with your assertion that without #1 the objective of #2 cannot be achieved. I have trained this way for a long time and am far stronger now than when I began, as are the students who regularly train with me.

People want to be free to do their practice and not be critiqued and that's fine. But these things are not just merely opinion. When you step into it by talking about self defense and true capability and not underestimating you or your methods (you do so regularly)-all while discussing cooperation-and producing videos- you open yourselves up to scrutiny and comparisons...

Well I have never talked about "true capability" since I'm not sure of the context in which you're using that phrase. As far as self defense is concerned, Aikido is but one small component in an overall strategy of self protection. And I don't mind having our video clips picked apart. I didn't post them to prove a point, they're just examples of some of the stuff we do.

To strain a point only to demonstrate an extreme:
1. Cooperative training like the type in your videos will never produce an excellent cage fighter, agreed?
2. Yet there is cooperative training in MMA as well. It is used as a first step in training before the advanced stress training (win/lose) takes place to fine tune and improve skills. Yes...improve...as in grow stronger.

#1 - My type of training is no more likely to produce a good cage fighter than a basket weaving class will produce a good brain surgeon.
#2 - Interesting.

So now it is just a measure of discussing degrees of what cooperative training can and cannot do. And people being self aware. Were someone trained to fight force-on-force to face someone who trained cooperatively? I will bet on the force-on-force guy everytime.
Why? With your own stated obectives?

You misunderstand my objectives. You keep weaving the fighting paradigm into the discussion when you know full well that fighting is not part of my training regimen. When I speak of my strength and power it's always in relation to what it once was compared to now. My strength continues to grow, even as my technique grows softer and more subtle, as I age and practice. I recognize it, my training partners recognize it as I do the changes in them.

To help your partner grow stronger .... The win/lose model is superior in producing results. The rest can just be aikido, who cares...until you meet that guy!

Now it may happen that should I ever meet that guy we'll sit down to dinner and a drink together, have a nice chat and part friends.

All the best to you,

Ron

DH
01-30-2012, 11:17 AM
How many of those people are taking that cross-training and using it to change how they teach aikido and how exactly are they changing it? I understand the not giving up their centers like it's their job, making people work through real force and resistance and doing things that are technically, from a fighting standpoint, sound, but that still does not make one a fighter of any note, especially as it relates to MMA.
Well that's a question to ask them. There are hundreds of them right here and with threads all over the place; Aikido and MMA, Aikido and BJJ, Aikido and weapons etc. Seems to me they're aikido is still aikido.
I hear more trouble from folks doing internal/aiki training. As one Shihan blurted in room.."This is getting ridiculous! I am doing less and less and people are flying, slamming down and I can't move without them locking up and screaming. What am I going to do.. stand still?"
To which one seminar attendee said "Oh poor you!!" :D
Dan

graham christian
01-30-2012, 11:22 AM
Yours is the first deployment I've seen of that term. I prefer to use the term "resistant training" and many people say "live" training.

In yoseikan, we had shite randori, with set attacks and defenses, jiyu randori, with completely free attacks, and chikara randori, meaning free attacks and defenses, with uke giving continuous, strong follow up attacks if nage does not effect a decisive response in the first instant of the attack. If the attacker doesn't have to fall, he does not and continues the attack. This often went to the ground and newaza, frequently ending in a choke or strangulation. And remember that the yoseikan randori was full of sutemi waza, multiple opponents, bokken, padded pvc swords, knives, bo, etc. I never saw anyone use throwing stars or the claw hands, but most everything else.

It was cooperative, yet when two people were grappling on the ground, they were cooperating by giving the partner a tough opponent intent on choking him out or submitting him. It was basically the same as UFC but without bloodying each other up too much. We placed atemi but generally didn't strike each other heavily. And if you didn't throw someone who punched at you, he might follow up with a foot sweep and attempt to apply a joint lock of a wide variety.

What we cooperated in was a universal commitment to a powerful, meaningful attack allowing nage to develop first-instant throwing or joint-locking--not meaning that the joint is locked in the first instant, but the lead into the lock is established in the first instant, creating kuzushi and control for nage. It was intense and dangerous. And it took cooperative commitment to that danger, courage and calmness to move in it at high speed with lots of people and weapons, and commitment to the well-being of your partner, with the rule of never doing more than necessary to stop a violent person--but stopping him decisively.

Cooperative or uncooperative, whatever you would call it, that was real aikido and, as far as I'm concerned, the only meaningful progression to develop true technique. The internal power considerations are another matter.

I would suggest "kata-only" for those practices in which uke purposely moves in the way he is "supposed" to move, rather than how his reflexes advise him. In "kata-only" training, neither uke nor nage gives any resistance to the other or to the mutual performance of the kata that each technique is.

I can see value in that kind of practice maybe 5% of total time, with another 20% being actual kata training, such as Mochizuki's tai sabaki no kata or his hyori no kata; or Tomiki's "walking" kata and others, such as junana no kata. Another 25% being intense kihon waza training and 50% being randori. The randori levels would increase with the student's experience, with shite or designated randori early on, jiyu randori nearing black belt and chikara randori after that, at which time randori should be liberally peppered with sutemi waza. Under Mochizuki, we regularly did hour-long sutemi-only chikara randori.

So that type of training would fall under what I prefer to term "live" practice.

I would recommend some "kata-only" training from the beginning, with more and more "resistance" from uke when nage's technique leaves that possibility.

Two major points:

In "kata-only" practice, neither uke nor nage resists the other's efforts.

In "live" practice, uke may resist with strength, speed and technique if he can find an opportunity; but nage's training is to move in such a way that he never resists uke in any way, so that uke can find no strength to resist and all his efforts fall into nothing.

Again, this does not address questions of internal power development or use. This is just the omote form of technical aikido training. I do believe that IP/Aiki would make it much easier to bear training of that kind while making every technique a living thing, rather than a form (kata).

But for training solid aikido technique and application, the "cooperation" of uke and nage must be a commitment to development of instant aikido technical effectiveness against a strong and "live" uke, committed to an effective attack.

Cheers.

David

Now that was an interesting post. A pleasure to read.

Regards.G.

DH
01-30-2012, 11:34 AM
Hi Dan -
I don't agree with your assertion that without #1 the objective of #2 cannot be achieved. I have trained this way for a long time and am far stronger now than when I began, as are the students who regularly train with me.
Well I know that. But were you that you are happy with who is growing stronger training the way you do now ...
To meet the you that you could be, by training with the same soft power (with more advanced internal/ aiki components in place that are ONLY attained from different and more stressful training) The later you would prevent the other you from doing much of anything at all.
As one 20 yr Bagua guy said. "I didn't know, that I didn't know."
There is more to aiki...do, than most in Aikido™ are doing or will ever find. I sometimes feel like I am arguing that the earth is round. But hey...if everyone's happy who cares, right?


Well I have never talked about "true capability" since I'm not sure of the context in which you're using that phrase. As far as self defense is concerned, Aikido is but one small component in an overall strategy of self protection. And I don't mind having our video clips picked apart. I didn't post them to prove a point, they're just examples of some of the stuff we do.
Well, I haven't picked them apart. I have only used them and Grahams to highlight cooperative training.

#1 - My type of training is no more likely to produce a good cage fighter than a basket weaving class will produce a good brain surgeon.....
You misunderstand my objectives. You keep weaving the fighting paradigm into the discussion when you know full well that fighting is not part of my training regimen. When I speak of my strength and power it's always in relation to what it once was compared to now. My strength continues to grow, even as my technique grows softer and more subtle, as I age and practice. I recognize it, my training partners recognize it as I do the changes in them.
Now it may happen that should I ever meet that guy we'll sit down to dinner and a drink together, have a nice chat and part friends.
All the best to you,
Ron
Well, that guy I was reffering to would be the proverbial fighter or bad guy, not a budo-ka interested in a Chai latte... (Which I love)
I think I am quite clear in differentiating your practice from discussions of fighting and or real stress. I think you and Graham are the ones who step in it by stating your practice can deliver and Grahams love breaks jo and is powerfully effective. You guys say it...not me. Leave that aspect out and most everyone here is not going to care what you do. God bless and have fun. For the record, I am far from the only one who challenges you guys on that aspect.
Dan

chillzATL
01-30-2012, 12:08 PM
Yours is the first deployment I've seen of that term. I prefer to use the term "resistant training" and many people say "live" training.

In yoseikan, we had shite randori, with set attacks and defenses, jiyu randori, with completely free attacks, and chikara randori, meaning free attacks and defenses, with uke giving continuous, strong follow up attacks if nage does not effect a decisive response in the first instant of the attack. If the attacker doesn't have to fall, he does not and continues the attack. This often went to the ground and newaza, frequently ending in a choke or strangulation. And remember that the yoseikan randori was full of sutemi waza, multiple opponents, bokken, padded pvc swords, knives, bo, etc. I never saw anyone use throwing stars or the claw hands, but most everything else.

It was cooperative, yet when two people were grappling on the ground, they were cooperating by giving the partner a tough opponent intent on choking him out or submitting him. It was basically the same as UFC but without bloodying each other up too much. We placed atemi but generally didn't strike each other heavily. And if you didn't throw someone who punched at you, he might follow up with a foot sweep and attempt to apply a joint lock of a wide variety.

What we cooperated in was a universal commitment to a powerful, meaningful attack allowing nage to develop first-instant throwing or joint-locking--not meaning that the joint is locked in the first instant, but the lead into the lock is established in the first instant, creating kuzushi and control for nage. It was intense and dangerous. And it took cooperative commitment to that danger, courage and calmness to move in it at high speed with lots of people and weapons, and commitment to the well-being of your partner, with the rule of never doing more than necessary to stop a violent person--but stopping him decisively.

Cooperative or uncooperative, whatever you would call it, that was real aikido and, as far as I'm concerned, the only meaningful progression to develop true technique. The internal power considerations are another matter.


David,

How much of this type of training do you think Mochizuki sensei brought over from his Kobukan days and how much do you think were things he changed in the name of improving what they did? I was hoping you would offer some insights in the "testing (skill) aikido" thread I started, but this was essentially what I was looking for.

phitruong
01-30-2012, 12:58 PM
I never saw anyone use throwing stars or the claw hands, but most everything else.
David

you guys don't use iron claws? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-XM0NjiNGYo
your aikido stuffs must not be very good then :)

i think the problem with aikido (ok, one of the many problems) is the training paradigm of nage-uke setup. the nake/uke setup dictates a winner/loser scenario whether we want to admit it or not. it creates a subconscious idea of struggle and resolution. if you want to mess up the mind of aikido folks, ask nage to initiate the attack and finish uke off with an aikido technique. just that alone would messing up folks at most aikido dojos (what is the plural of dojo, is it doji or doja or dooh? :) )

so if you look at the taiji push-hand paradigm (taiji has its own problems too), there is no nage or uke. both person started out as equal and proceed to see which one can exploit the other person's weaknesses (mine are foods and women, not necessary in that order), then learn how to deal with the weaknesses, so both person ended up learning through the process.

it's the mindset that needs changing first. it should view at a continuous problem solving process.

Demetrio Cereijo
01-30-2012, 01:04 PM
if you want to mess up the mind of aikido folks, ask nage to initiate the attack and finish uke off with an aikido technique.
This way is basic in Iwama style (and in Budo/Budo Renshuu, the books written by the founder).

it's the mindset that needs changing first.
Seconded.

Janet Rosen
01-30-2012, 04:23 PM
i think the problem with aikido (ok, one of the many problems) is the training paradigm of nage-uke setup. the nake/uke setup dictates a winner/loser scenario whether we want to admit it or not. it creates a subconscious idea of struggle and resolution. if you want to mess up the mind of aikido folks, ask nage to initiate the attack and finish uke off with an aikido technique. just that alone would messing up folks at most aikido dojos....
so if you look at the taiji push-hand paradigm (taiji has its own problems too), there is no nage or uke. both person started out as equal and proceed to see which one can exploit the other person's weaknesses (mine are foods and women, not necessary in that order), then learn how to deal with the weaknesses, so both person ended up learning through the process..

I have every now and then done some push-hand style aikido w/ like minded folks - starting from a neutral and no defined uke/nage role, each looking for an opening/chance to take kuzushi. Requires people to be able to stay very focussed, relaxed and connected or it just devolves into a shoving match - which is a very good reality test in and of itself.

sakumeikan
01-30-2012, 05:49 PM
you guys don't use iron claws? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-XM0NjiNGYo
your aikido stuffs must not be very good then :)

i think the problem with aikido (ok, one of the many problems) is the training paradigm of nage-uke setup. the nake/uke setup dictates a winner/loser scenario whether we want to admit it or not. it creates a subconscious idea of struggle and resolution. if you want to mess up the mind of aikido folks, ask nage to initiate the attack and finish uke off with an aikido technique. just that alone would messing up folks at most aikido dojos (what is the plural of dojo, is it doji or doja or dooh? :) )

so if you look at the taiji push-hand paradigm (taiji has its own problems too), there is no nage or uke. both person started out as equal and proceed to see which one can exploit the other person's weaknesses (mine are foods and women, not necessary in that order), then learn how to deal with the weaknesses, so both person ended up learning through the process.

it's the mindset that needs changing first. it should view at a continuous problem solving process.
Dear Phi,
In shomen uchi ikkayo Tori should not wait for uke to make shomen. Rather than wait for uke to strike, Tori initiates the atemi [both to Ukes face and body ]then if Uke defends against this attack from Tori [by Ukes instinctive action of defending his /her face ] Tori cuts through strongly , taking ukes posture.This is irimi -entering into Ukes centre .Imo this is a case of Tori initiating both an attack
and finishing uke off with an aikido technique.A case of pro active action by Tori. Cheers, Joe.

gregstec
01-30-2012, 06:07 PM
Dear Phi,
In shomen uchi ikkayo Tori should not wait for uke to make shomen. Rather than wait for uke to strike, Tori initiates the atemi [both to Ukes face and body ]then if Uke defends against this attack from Tori [by Ukes instinctive action of defending his /her face ] Tori cuts through strongly , taking ukes posture.This is irimi -entering into Ukes centre .Imo this is a case of Tori initiating both an attack
and finishing uke off with an aikido technique.A case of pro active action by Tori. Cheers, Joe.

Sounds like standard Iwama and some old school styles :)

Greg

PeterR
01-30-2012, 08:50 PM
Yours is the first deployment I've seen of that term. I prefer to use the term "resistant training" and many people say "live" training.

In yoseikan, we had shite randori, with set attacks and defenses, jiyu randori, with completely free attacks, and chikara randori, meaning free attacks and defenses, with uke giving continuous, strong follow up attacks if nage does not effect a decisive response in the first instant of the attack. If the attacker doesn't have to fall, he does not and continues the attack. This often went to the ground and newaza, frequently ending in a choke or strangulation. And remember that the yoseikan randori was full of sutemi waza, multiple opponents, bokken, padded pvc swords, knives, bo, etc. I never saw anyone use throwing stars or the claw hands, but most everything else.

It was cooperative, yet when two people were grappling on the ground, they were cooperating by giving the partner a tough opponent intent on choking him out or submitting him. It was basically the same as UFC but without bloodying each other up too much. We placed atemi but generally didn't strike each other heavily. And if you didn't throw someone who punched at you, he might follow up with a foot sweep and attempt to apply a joint lock of a wide variety.

What we cooperated in was a universal commitment to a powerful, meaningful attack allowing nage to develop first-instant throwing or joint-locking--not meaning that the joint is locked in the first instant, but the lead into the lock is established in the first instant, creating kuzushi and control for nage. It was intense and dangerous. And it took cooperative commitment to that danger, courage and calmness to move in it at high speed with lots of people and weapons, and commitment to the well-being of your partner, with the rule of never doing more than necessary to stop a violent person--but stopping him decisively.

Cooperative or uncooperative, whatever you would call it, that was real aikido and, as far as I'm concerned, the only meaningful progression to develop true technique. The internal power considerations are another matter.

I would suggest "kata-only" for those practices in which uke purposely moves in the way he is "supposed" to move, rather than how his reflexes advise him. In "kata-only" training, neither uke nor nage gives any resistance to the other or to the mutual performance of the kata that each technique is.

I can see value in that kind of practice maybe 5% of total time, with another 20% being actual kata training, such as Mochizuki's tai sabaki no kata or his hyori no kata; or Tomiki's "walking" kata and others, such as junana no kata. Another 25% being intense kihon waza training and 50% being randori. The randori levels would increase with the student's experience, with shite or designated randori early on, jiyu randori nearing black belt and chikara randori after that, at which time randori should be liberally peppered with sutemi waza. Under Mochizuki, we regularly did hour-long sutemi-only chikara randori.

So that type of training would fall under what I prefer to term "live" practice.

I would recommend some "kata-only" training from the beginning, with more and more "resistance" from uke when nage's technique leaves that possibility.

Two major points:

In "kata-only" practice, neither uke nor nage resists the other's efforts.

In "live" practice, uke may resist with strength, speed and technique if he can find an opportunity; but nage's training is to move in such a way that he never resists uke in any way, so that uke can find no strength to resist and all his efforts fall into nothing.

Again, this does not address questions of internal power development or use. This is just the omote form of technical aikido training. I do believe that IP/Aiki would make it much easier to bear training of that kind while making every technique a living thing, rather than a form (kata).

But for training solid aikido technique and application, the "cooperation" of uke and nage must be a commitment to development of instant aikido technical effectiveness against a strong and "live" uke, committed to an effective attack.

Cheers.

David

I like this post and just want to add a couple of points from my experience. Tomiki was pretty clear about the balance between solo drills, paired drills, kata training and different levels of randori. In the last case there are three distinct levels of resistance none by the way considered competition. Competition (points being awarded) was done on occasion just like Judo. He felt that about 10% randori training was correct for most students. Interestingly in the training of the young guns for competition (university students) there is never less kata training or drills just more randori and that was spread out through the different levels of resistance.

Tomiki in fact has been quoted as saying that the amount of randori training in Judo vs. drills and kata would not work for Aikido hence the 10%.

By the way in Tomiki's system there are a few solo drills that are designed to work on IP but I have to admit there is not a whole lot of emphasis on it and more to the point not every student understands the purpose and trains to take advantage of it.

I think what David is getting at is there are different mechanisms out there to bring peoples Aikido alive or a Tomiki liked to say paint the eye of the paper tiger.

hughrbeyer
01-31-2012, 03:01 PM
I have every now and then done some push-hand style aikido w/ like minded folks - starting from a neutral and no defined uke/nage role, each looking for an opening/chance to take kuzushi. Requires people to be able to stay very focussed, relaxed and connected or it just devolves into a shoving match - which is a very good reality test in and of itself.

I adored doing hand-randori when I was training Tomiki. Both sides touch hands, one palm up, one down, and trade simple attacks. Point being to stick to your opponent and use the energy of the attack to pin, choke, or throw. It could turn into a shoving match with lower-level guys but with good people--my sensei for one--using any muscle at all got you into a world of hurt every time.

David Orange
01-31-2012, 11:22 PM
Now that was an interesting post. A pleasure to read.


Thanks. That's where I get my ideas on aikido.

And I wasn't even their in the thick part. Fifteen or twenty years earlier, when Mochizuki was in his sixties, the dojo would have been three times as dense and Sensei would have been much more actively involved in all that. Patrick Auge was uchi deshi in those days and I learned from him over some years before I lived there. Our line of yoseikan comes through a US Army base in Alabama via a Japanese military officer, so the early yoseikan classes were among military men. My line came down through a civilian instructor but we had access to the old military notes and certain philosophies about human conflict and the place and application of aikido.

It's completely decisive and as harsh as it may sound, I came from kyokushin karate (from 1972) and that aikido really was revolutionary to me. As violent as it may seem to you, I had no trouble recognizing a deep and pure spiritual difference in the aikido approach. And when I went to other dojos, I seldom found that same kind of purity in the practice. And the more "spiritual" the attitude of the teacher, the less physical (and the less strategic) the training, the weaker the aikido was. Yet the more people would believe what they said about aikido because they were more "spiritual" than I.

Now think about Henry Ellis, direct student of two incredible martial artists--Kenshiro Abbe and Tadashi Abe ten years after the War with Japan! That blistering training was fresh out of the oven and Abbe and Abe led Henry and the other UK students through it for years. So that stuff was even far purer than what I learned and it was in the very dawn of aikido in the UK. I doubt Abbe or Abe ever made them wonder whether they were supposed to throw.

Anyway, thanks for reading.

David

David Orange
01-31-2012, 11:44 PM
David,

How much of this type of training do you think Mochizuki sensei brought over from his Kobukan days and how much do you think were things he changed in the name of improving what they did? I was hoping you would offer some insights in the "testing (skill) aikido" thread I started, but this was essentially what I was looking for.

I think the general spirit was close to the kobukan, though Kobukan may have been more competetive in the early 30s, with everyone outdoing each other for the Emperor as well as O Sensei. I get the feeling that the general pace and context of the training was similar, especially based on all the videos I've ever seen of the training. And I think that up to black belt, for all the stand-up aikido techniques, the randori looks about the same. But he adds the ground grappling, chokes and sutemi waza. I think Mochizuki was conducting his best version of the training environment of budo he had been immersed in all his life. His dojo personified the qualities you see in every Japanese traditonal art including judo, kendo, kenjutsu, and aikido, as well as the arts like kyudo, naginatado and kobudo, but also things like tea and dance and shodo. I don't mean that he taught all that, but there is a distinct commonality among those things and how they're practiced, and his dojo was steeped in that Japaneseness.

As far as the techniques he was teaching, of course, there's his addition of sutemi and newaza ground fighting, but he also may have deleted a lot of stuff that was in daito ryu. All of our techniques looked like aikido, as Stan Pranin says, like Ueshiba showed in 1935, consistent with Iwama and consistent to me, for the most part, with Yoshinkan. So who took out all the intricate, twisty no-hands pins you see in daito ryu videos? The throws are all pretty much seen in aikido, but not those weird things where uke is bent 90 degrees to the side, both of his arms behind his back and locked in place only by uke's own inability to move. Mochizuki was such a collector of jujutsu technique, I'm thinking he would have kept those techniques if he had learned them. It seems to me that Ueshiba must have deleted those techniques and did not include them in the DR license scroll he gave Mochizuki. Otherwise, Mochizuki would surely have kept such strange techniques.

Unless.

Unless he analyzed the strange pins and found them unrealistic or unreliable. He wouldn't have collected a phony technique.

But look at the 1935 Asahi movie and I don't remember Ueshiba showing those lock-ups himself, like you see Kondo showing sometimes.

I've just wondered about that sometimes.

So did Ueshiba delete that stuff or did Mochizuki?

Cheers.

David

David Orange
01-31-2012, 11:48 PM
... aikido dojos (what is the plural of dojo, is it doji or doja or dooh? :) )

D'oh!

...so if you look at the taiji push-hand paradigm (taiji has its own problems too), there is no nage or uke. both person started out as equal and proceed to see which one can exploit the other person's weaknesses (mine are foods and women, not necessary in that order), then learn how to deal with the weaknesses, so both person ended up learning through the process.

And that's judo, exactly. The difference is that taiji develops the internal powers even when you don't know it's doing it. So the technique application is a good bit different from most modern aikido and a lot of modern taiji as well.

it's the mindset that needs changing first. it should view at a continuous problem solving process.

:D

graham christian
02-01-2012, 05:00 AM
Thanks. That's where I get my ideas on aikido.

And I wasn't even their in the thick part. Fifteen or twenty years earlier, when Mochizuki was in his sixties, the dojo would have been three times as dense and Sensei would have been much more actively involved in all that. Patrick Auge was uchi deshi in those days and I learned from him over some years before I lived there. Our line of yoseikan comes through a US Army base in Alabama via a Japanese military officer, so the early yoseikan classes were among military men. My line came down through a civilian instructor but we had access to the old military notes and certain philosophies about human conflict and the place and application of aikido.

It's completely decisive and as harsh as it may sound, I came from kyokushin karate (from 1972) and that aikido really was revolutionary to me. As violent as it may seem to you, I had no trouble recognizing a deep and pure spiritual difference in the aikido approach. And when I went to other dojos, I seldom found that same kind of purity in the practice. And the more "spiritual" the attitude of the teacher, the less physical (and the less strategic) the training, the weaker the aikido was. Yet the more people would believe what they said about aikido because they were more "spiritual" than I.

Now think about Henry Ellis, direct student of two incredible martial artists--Kenshiro Abbe and Tadashi Abe ten years after the War with Japan! That blistering training was fresh out of the oven and Abbe and Abe led Henry and the other UK students through it for years. So that stuff was even far purer than what I learned and it was in the very dawn of aikido in the UK. I doubt Abbe or Abe ever made them wonder whether they were supposed to throw.

Anyway, thanks for reading.

David

Thanks for another well appreciated response.

By reading your brief outline on your 'history' it fits with your views, excellent. By how you explain your experiences briefly with Aikido places that emphasized spiritual I totally get that too. In fact there is nothing in what you say in each paragraph that I disagree with.

I would say every 'spiritual' Aikido I have experienced I myself and my friend for that matter always thought it was too 'airy fairy' and unreal. Now that means either I didn't visit enough places or a lot had missed the point in my way of thinking. On the other side of the coin we found many others rough and tumbling and 'useless' from our opinion and the same reasons above may also be the case.

However, to understand my 'history' you would first have to understand my training.

I entered Aikido not knowing there was a big political divide going on. My teacher had left the 'organization' and set up privately. His way was very dynamic as shown by the old video of Noro shown by Carsten on the spiritual thread. I therefore had met someone who did this very dynamic and stern art yet at the same time very spiritual.

I found that in his opinion he left because too many would not do the meditation or see the relevence of Ki and that it takes discipline to get those realities. So he was also influenced by Tohei.

Thus I learned a very important lesson throughout that whole period under his influence. One word, discipline. His answer to virtually everything.

So as time went on and I met many who did stern Aikido and yet couldn't do techniques with me and needed my corrections to do so I put it down to they hadn't learned that discipline.

On the other hand when I met or trained with people who did Ki or spiritual Aikido yet it didn't work with me either I had the same conclusion, not enough discipline.

Thus I questioned everything and this led me to understand what discipline is. Just look at the word disciple. Following and sticking to principles. Not data, not try this and try that, not dip your toe in here and there and everywhere and then you will have experience and understand. No, discipline.

From that point on I decided that's how I would teach, emphasis on discipline meaning drills. Drills, drills and drills.

Therefore those who want to fly about dramatically without enough reality on the principles, go elsewhere. Those who want dream loving thoughts not willing to know theres great discipline there then go elsewhere.

Therefore my way is such, different.

Although the principles I use you may not be aware of I will give you an example using Toheis for in the early days it was exclusively those which I used from the view of discipline.

Basic techniques and attacks etc. learned. Then how they are all dependent on the principles. Thus we would do a technique from one principle. Iriminage: Do it from static using the principle of 'one point' If it works then the person holds harder, makes it harder, and on and on. Whenever it doesn't work it's due to no one point and no other reason, none allowed.

Then move to moving attacks etc but if any time doesn't work equals no one point, no other reason allowed. If you get a head ache or are sick or plain worn out it equals no one point, no discipline.

There is no 'this person said or that person said or but my tai sabaki wasn't right or but you moved, no excuses. There is no 'ah that was a good workout' there is only following that one principle and thus getting more and more reality on it. Thus my way is nothing to do with speed or 'power' but only to do with principle and discipline.

If someone runs at you fast, same principle. If someone uses great power, same principle, no excuses. Whatever the other person does doesn't matter, same principle no excuse.

This if inspected shows something quite zen. It shows that if you keep one point then there will be no problem doing any technique any time anywhere with anyone. Yet on further inspection it also says that there are more than one principle and they all work together.

Thus other principles are used 'on their own' in the same manner. Weight underside: All techniques done from that one principle. Extending Ki: All techniques done from that one principle. Etc.

Another I use is Koshi. Tried to explain that once on here, wasn't too successful. However, all techniques done from that.

Now on to another you will recognise. Ma-ai. All techniques done from that as a principle.

Add to these type of things spiritual principles and you can get the picture, or not, of my particular methods.

As an example of a spiritual principle I use I give a very simple standard english worded principle for example: Be with.

So a person does a technique or rather tries to and it doesn't work. That's because they are not being with. (when using this principle) No excuses. The person realizes where they 'went against' or whatever but as a discipline it doesn't matter, be with and that's all. It's actually a principle of love yet it's a discipline. It's a hard discipline. It means there is no against. It means it can't work. It means many logical things. Yet in the end it means itself and it works.

I would rather one student practicing very slowly one principle for twenty years rather than one thousand doing otherwise.

I'm not even interested in one million people telling me I must go out and prove this or that. I am only interested in one person who wants to learn how to apply a principle I use and teach.

So that explanation has either served to give you a clearer picture of me or else it's confused you. Hopefully the former.

Regards.G.

Mark Freeman
02-01-2012, 06:30 AM
Now think about Henry Ellis, direct student of two incredible martial artists--Kenshiro Abbe and Tadashi Abe ten years after the War with Japan! That blistering training was fresh out of the oven and Abbe and Abe led Henry and the other UK students through it for years. So that stuff was even far purer than what I learned and it was in the very dawn of aikido in the UK. I doubt Abbe or Abe ever made them wonder whether they were supposed to throw.

Hi David,

Although Kenshiro Abbe started teaching in the 10 years after the war, Henry Ellis was not there at that time, I believe he was introduced to aikido at the Hut dojo around '57. Tadashi may well have been brought over to the UK to teach the students there, but it would have been later. I will speak to my teacher about the dates. In all my years of listening to his experiences of those days, he has not given an account of Tadashi Abe's influence. He does cite Noro and Nakazono, Tamera and Tada as being influential to the training at that time. I will ask him about Tadashi Abe when I see him next.

Not sure why you say that that stuff was 'purer' than your your own experience?

Kenshiro Abbe was primarily a Judo man, his aikido was very positive and direct. He did have his own spiritual philosophy/theory (kyu shin do), which underpinned his practice. As far as I am aware, when he returned to Japan, he was disappointed that many of the students in the UK just didn't 'get it'.


I entered Aikido not knowing there was a big political divide going on. My teacher had left the 'organization' and set up privately. His way was very dynamic as shown by the old video of Noro shown by Carsten on the spiritual thread. I therefore had met someone who did this very dynamic and stern art yet at the same time very spiritual.

I found that in his opinion he left because too many would not do the meditation or see the relevence of Ki and that it takes discipline to get those realities. So he was also influenced by Tohei.

It seems that quite a few were not that interested in the Ki aspect that Tohei introduced via his own practice method. It seems that many felt that they had all they needed from their practice so far. So when they were being asked to change their approach, they were unable/unwilling to.

I have always been intrigued by this time in the UK aikido history. My own teacher (Williams) was recognised as being the best UK produced aikidoka. When he found a teacher (Tohei) that had something that he thought was beneficial, it meant changing his whole approach to training and teaching. He was willing to do what it took to make the adjustment and take the time to re-examine his own thinking. Much to the benefit of his own aikido. It seems not many of his students were able to stay with him through this change.

Maybe it was lack of discipline, but I doubt that, as the likes of Henry Ellis and his fellows, were put through increadibly robust training, they had to be disciplined to survive, so my guess is that it was for other, more personal reasons.

The UK aikido history is pretty well documented courtesy of Henry Ellis' hard work and commitment to keeping it so. The politics in the late 60's early 70's were pretty messy, and have since led to a myriad of different organisations sprigning up all over the country. The BAB (British Aikido Board) is the governing body for 'all' aikido in the UK. The KFGB under K Williams is completely outside of their influence (unsurprisingly so having read some of the stuff on the Ellis website).

Respect to all who go before us, but we agree, great teachers do not automatically mean great students. I think that covers all of us:D

regards,

Mark
p.s. apologies for the thread drift

graham christian
02-01-2012, 08:02 AM
Hi David,

Although Kenshiro Abbe started teaching in the 10 years after the war, Henry Ellis was not there at that time, I believe he was introduced to aikido at the Hut dojo around '57. Tadashi may well have been brought over to the UK to teach the students there, but it would have been later. I will speak to my teacher about the dates. In all my years of listening to his experiences of those days, he has not given an account of Tadashi Abe's influence. He does cite Noro and Nakazono, Tamera and Tada as being influential to the training at that time. I will ask him about Tadashi Abe when I see him next.

Not sure why you say that that stuff was 'purer' than your your own experience?

Kenshiro Abbe was primarily a Judo man, his aikido was very positive and direct. He did have his own spiritual philosophy/theory (kyu shin do), which underpinned his practice. As far as I am aware, when he returned to Japan, he was disappointed that many of the students in the UK just didn't 'get it'.

It seems that quite a few were not that interested in the Ki aspect that Tohei introduced via his own practice method. It seems that many felt that they had all they needed from their practice so far. So when they were being asked to change their approach, they were unable/unwilling to.

I have always been intrigued by this time in the UK aikido history. My own teacher (Williams) was recognised as being the best UK produced aikidoka. When he found a teacher (Tohei) that had something that he thought was beneficial, it meant changing his whole approach to training and teaching. He was willing to do what it took to make the adjustment and take the time to re-examine his own thinking. Much to the benefit of his own aikido. It seems not many of his students were able to stay with him through this change.

Maybe it was lack of discipline, but I doubt that, as the likes of Henry Ellis and his fellows, were put through increadibly robust training, they had to be disciplined to survive, so my guess is that it was for other, more personal reasons.

The UK aikido history is pretty well documented courtesy of Henry Ellis' hard work and commitment to keeping it so. The politics in the late 60's early 70's were pretty messy, and have since led to a myriad of different organisations sprigning up all over the country. The BAB (British Aikido Board) is the governing body for 'all' aikido in the UK. The KFGB under K Williams is completely outside of their influence (unsurprisingly so having read some of the stuff on the Ellis website).

Respect to all who go before us, but we agree, great teachers do not automatically mean great students. I think that covers all of us:D

regards,

Mark
p.s. apologies for the thread drift

Hi Mark. The ways of anyone else who does the 'resistive' Aikido or whatever the right term is I do not say that means lack of discipline. Someone who comes out of that training of that time and in turn is respected as a teacher is obviously very disciplined and able. As I have said before I respect and admire all forms of Aikido.

In my experience with any person from say a 'resistive' style of Aikido who get's stuck with doing technique on me it doesn't equal their way is wrong to me. It equals this particular person is lacking discipline somewhere. That's my thought process and it in no way equals they are wrong. It doesn't reflect on their teacher or their way either.

There are only two things I have to consider, are they trying to do it my way, according to my principles, or are they trying to do it their way, according to their teachers principles.

If the latter then I would ask them questions and listen. I will get to see how they are applying what their teacher tells them. Most times I usually see how they are thus not doing what their teacher says. I then correct, get them to focus on an aspect they appear to be missing and then they have successs. They usually brighten up and say'that's what he means' or 'that's how he does it'.

Inside I usually feel but don't say that their teacher has probably told them that a thousand times but they are not disciplining themselves enough on that outness.

All I care about in these circumstances is that they go back and get better at their Aikido and the answer if they want to follow that way is not by coming to learn my way but by being more disciplined with the principles of theirs.

I like seeing everyone good at their way. Enjoying their way.

I agree it doesn't mean all great teachers have great students and also that all great students don't necessarily have great teachers. But I do believe all great teachers and all great students have a certain discipline that others haven't yet adhered to or reached. That includes me also.

So rather than being oppressed or undermined may all sentient beings be free, (and disciplined ha, ha.)

Regards.G.

Mark Freeman
02-01-2012, 08:39 AM
In my experience with any person from say a 'resistive' style of Aikido who get's stuck with doing technique on me it doesn't equal their way is wrong to me. It equals this particular person is lacking discipline somewhere. That's my thought process and it in no way equals they are wrong. It doesn't reflect on their teacher or their way either.

There are only two things I have to consider, are they trying to do it my way, according to my principles, or are they trying to do it their way, according to their teachers principles.

Hi Graham,

on my recent holiday in India, I came across just this scenario, and I must say that you have a more benevolent view than me (maybe you are right to have?). When the teacher there ( a very lovely and generous gentleman ) attempted to apply nikkyo to my colleague and myself, it had absolutely no effect. It was pretty clear that their way of doing it, must only be effective against an unco-ordinated uke (they managed to get the technique to work on each other). In my way of thinking, their right way, was pretty wrong to me. When I showed them how effective they could be if they if they used relaxation (particularly of the shoulders), extension and delivering everything from centre. They all agreed that they would try and incorporate this into all of their future training. Maybe their teacher (who had not long passed away) had it and they hadn't got it, maybe he didn't, I'll never know.

They were all good people practicing there and were all sincere about what they were doing. They enjoyed their practice immensely. So from that point of view it is all good. However, although it may be wrong to label what they were doing as 'wrong'. It was only 'right' within certain limited parameters.

regards,

Mark

graham christian
02-01-2012, 10:29 AM
Hi Graham,

on my recent holiday in India, I came across just this scenario, and I must say that you have a more benevolent view than me (maybe you are right to have?). When the teacher there ( a very lovely and generous gentleman ) attempted to apply nikkyo to my colleague and myself, it had absolutely no effect. It was pretty clear that their way of doing it, must only be effective against an unco-ordinated uke (they managed to get the technique to work on each other). In my way of thinking, their right way, was pretty wrong to me. When I showed them how effective they could be if they if they used relaxation (particularly of the shoulders), extension and delivering everything from centre. They all agreed that they would try and incorporate this into all of their future training. Maybe their teacher (who had not long passed away) had it and they hadn't got it, maybe he didn't, I'll never know.

They were all good people practicing there and were all sincere about what they were doing. They enjoyed their practice immensely. So from that point of view it is all good. However, although it may be wrong to label what they were doing as 'wrong'. It was only 'right' within certain limited parameters.

regards,

Mark

Sounds good to me. That would equate with the first option I mentioned ie: they want (or need) to learn how I do it.

As you say, it's all good.

Regards.G.

gates
02-01-2012, 06:19 PM
They were all good people practicing there and were all sincere about what they were doing. They enjoyed their practice immensely. So from that point of view it is all good. However, although it may be wrong to label what they were doing as 'wrong'. It was only 'right' within certain limited parameters.

regards,

Mark
Hi Mark
I agree with you totally... But think right and wrong are terms which have limited use when describing aikido. Either it serves the purpose or it doesn't, martially either it works or it doesnt, with shades of grey, as indicated in your post using slightly different language. What has always interested me is relating those things that make it work martially with non physical applications.
Keith

David Orange
02-02-2012, 08:29 AM
David -

I'm not sure where you got the impression that Mary or I "reject testing" in our practice. ...(Maybe you are referring to this statement: "If testing and competing with others is important to you"). ...

Thay may well have been it. Because, if you look back, the post she was referring to did not mention competition; only testing. But Mary replied "testing and competing with others." So it seemed she was automatically associating "testing" with "competing," and I see no need for that association.

Best to y'all.

David

David Orange
02-02-2012, 08:44 AM
In yoseikan, we had shite randori, with set attacks and defenses, jiyu randori, with completely free attacks, and chikara randori, meaning free attacks and defenses, with uke giving continuous, strong follow up attacks if nage does not effect a decisive response in the first instant of the attack. If the attacker doesn't have to fall, he does not and continues the attack. This often went to the ground and newaza, frequently ending in a choke or strangulation. And remember that the yoseikan randori was full of sutemi waza, multiple opponents, bokken, padded pvc swords, knives, bo, etc. I never saw anyone use throwing stars or the claw hands, but most everything else.

It was cooperative, yet when two people were grappling on the ground, they were cooperating by giving the partner a tough opponent intent on choking him out or submitting him. It was basically the same as UFC but without bloodying each other up too much. We placed atemi but generally didn't strike each other heavily. And if you didn't throw someone who punched at you, he might follow up with a foot sweep and attempt to apply a joint lock of a wide variety.

What we cooperated in was a universal commitment to a powerful, meaningful attack allowing nage to develop first-instant throwing or joint-locking--not meaning that the joint is locked in the first instant, but the lead into the lock is established in the first instant, creating kuzushi and control for nage. It was intense and dangerous. And it took cooperative commitment to that danger, courage and calmness to move in it at high speed with lots of people and weapons, and commitment to the well-being of your partner, with the rule of never doing more than necessary to stop a violent person--but stopping him decisively.

Cooperative or uncooperative, whatever you would call it, that was real aikido and, as far as I'm concerned, the only meaningful progression to develop true technique. The internal power considerations are another matter.

Here is a very recent set of clips from the old yoseikan budo hombu. It's hard to believe I'm looking at a place that was my literal home for 21 months of the five years I trained there. I'm not sure what the place is called now, but these clips show two of the guys I used to get out there with all the time: Terumi Washizu and Kenmotsu Sensei. Washizu was senior and Kenmotsu was always right behing him and Tezuka, who recently passed away. Here, they are training in gyokushin ryu aikido, which Washizu created based on his receipt of menkyo kaiden from Minoru Mochizuki, which included "yoseikan gyokushin ryu jujutsu." In short, this is pretty much what we used to do and you can see white belts to low-level black belt, to mid-level black belt to two guys who were 5th and 6th dan 20 years ago and who both got menkyo from Minoru Mochizuki. Washizu wears the red/white belt and Kenmotsu is the bald fellow with the plain white dogi and black belt. I think they're both about 70 years old, now--mid-to-late 60s for sure. They're looking pretty good.

There are a lot of clips on this page and it takes them a bit to load, so be patient. You can see a variety of people each doing a round of free randori. You can see the level and method of resistance when techniques don't work, occasional follow-up attacks if the aikido does not work in the first instant.

I don't know anything about weapons in gyokushin ryu aikido, but both Washizu and Kenmotsu are very good with the sword, having trained directly with Minoru Mochizuki and Kyoichi Murai in Mochizuki's version of TSKSR for many years (decades). So I'm pretty sure they must do that practice sometimes, even if not part of the gyokushin aikido classes. I'm pretty sure they also have rather more intense workouts than what is shown here.

http://www.geocities.jp/wyttksaiki/douga/douga01.html

Looks like a very good training atmosphere. Not overly formal, but very solid and dignified.

Glad to see it.

David

David Orange
02-02-2012, 09:32 AM
Although Kenshiro Abbe started teaching in the 10 years after the war, Henry Ellis was not there at that time, I believe he was introduced to aikido at the Hut dojo around '57. Tadashi may well have been brought over to the UK to teach the students there, but it would have been later. I will speak to my teacher about the dates. In all my years of listening to his experiences of those days, he has not given an account of Tadashi Abe's influence. He does cite Noro and Nakazono, Tamera and Tada as being influential to the training at that time. I will ask him about Tadashi Abe when I see him next.

I count the war's end in 8/1945 and I think I recall Henry's saying he started at the Hut in 1955, which was the year I was born. I'm not sure about any details, but he does talk about training with both of them. And I know that was some incredible atmosphere.

Not sure why you say that that stuff was 'purer' than your your own experience?

Partly the times. Everyone was less guarded in those days, socially, and more directly real. Also, this was before everyone's little cousin was a black belt and the folks at the Hut had not come up with all kinds of baloney and bad examples in martial arts before they started training. They were fit young men who were introduced directly to the real stuff and they got nothing but the real stuff the whole time. By 1972, when I started martial arts, black belts were still scarce, but we had been exposed to Bruce Lee in The Green Hornet (a TV show here) and the David Carradine TV show, Kung Fu started up about the time I started karate. Also, I started with a guy who was not who he said he was before I started training with a direct student of Mas Oyama in kyokushin karate. I got my first idea about aikido from a George Leonard article in East/West Journal, called "Aikido and the Mind of the West".
So my early ideas did not come from Kennshiro Abbe or Mochizuki, either. And the kyokushin was good, hard karate, but there were elements in those days that it could have done without.

I did get a lot of good instruction, but it was heavily filtered by various people for various reasons and anyway, they could not recreate the mental attitude and the real presence of a dojo like the yoseikan. And when I finally got to live in the dojo with Mochizuki, I was too old for peak learning and he was too old for peak teaching. And while technically very strong, the practice at the dojo was past its greatest days.

Still, I really like what I see of Washizu Sensei's current teaching, so I have hope for the future of Mochizuki Sensei's peculiar art. But I do think that the old Hut training was a much deeper and purer budo than anything you're likely to find today outside certain places in Japan. And even there....in most places, it's not what it used to be.

Anyway, neither am I, but the IS/Aiki discussion and the efforts I've made since hearing of it have done more for me than anything since I left the yoseikan in 1995.

Best to all.

David

David Orange
02-02-2012, 09:35 AM
... My teacher had left the 'organization' and set up privately. His way was very dynamic as shown by the old video of Noro shown by Carsten on the spiritual thread. I therefore had met someone who did this very dynamic and stern art yet at the same time very spiritual.

Well, just to give us some understanding of where you're actually rooted, could you tell us your teacher's name and who he ws with before he taught you?

Otherwise, an interesting approach you describe.

Thanks.

David

graham christian
02-02-2012, 10:54 AM
Well, just to give us some understanding of where you're actually rooted, could you tell us your teacher's name and who he ws with before he taught you?

Otherwise, an interesting approach you describe.

Thanks.

David

Hi, thought I had, Noro, Tohei. His name is Mike Muspratt. Not much written about him on the net though. I managed to find one reference to him in one teachers book and one picture of him at Tohei summer camp 1976 I think, 70s anyway.

Regards.G.

Gary David
02-03-2012, 06:12 PM
From that point on I decided that's how I would teach, emphasis on discipline meaning drills. Drills, drills and drills.

Graham
It would be helpful in understanding your approach to training if you could provide some description of the drills you use and how they are presented to your students. I have accepted that relaxing is at this point the most important to keeping frame, structure and the whole on the right path.....how to you instill this in your students and how do you build on it?
Thanks

Gary

graham christian
02-03-2012, 07:29 PM
Graham
It would be helpful in understanding your approach to training if you could provide some description of the drills you use and how they are presented to your students. I have accepted that relaxing is at this point the most important to keeping frame, structure and the whole on the right path.....how to you instill this in your students and how do you build on it?
Thanks

Gary

Hi Gary, good question. For the answers I would have to start a new thread as it's way off this thread topic. I could say it starts with aiki taiso exercises but then again I explain what they are about, ie: not just physical exercises. Mmmm. To explain we need a different thread.

Regards.G.