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akiy
12-24-2013, 12:28 PM
f_ZN67c6oF0

Here's an aikido video of Kazuo Chiba (8th dan, San Diego Aikikai) demonstrating at the New York Aikikai 20th anniversary in 1984 (uke: Juba Nour).

What are your thoughts on this video?

-- Jun

St Matt
12-24-2013, 03:15 PM
Me gusta.

Tim Mailloux
12-24-2013, 07:05 PM
One of my favorite demos with two of my favorite teachers.....pretty typical Chiba sensei demo.

Of all of Chiba Sensei's senior students my teacher (also a senior deshi of Chiba) has always said that Nour Sensei's technique and mentality towards aikido was the closest to Chiba S.. From my own experience the only person that has made me as nervous taking ukemi for them as Chiba S. was Nour S.

sakumeikan
12-25-2013, 11:50 AM
One of my favorite demos with two of my favorite teachers.....pretty typical Chiba sensei demo.

Of all of Chiba Sensei's senior students my teacher (also a senior deshi of Chiba) has always said that Nour Sensei's technique and mentality towards aikido was the closest to Chiba S.. From my own experience the only person that has made me as nervous taking ukemi for them as Chiba S. was Nour S.

Dear Tim,
Merry Xmas. On this video Chiba Sensei is at his best and is in total control of the situation. Nour Sensei [ a dear friend of mine ] does a very difficult job as Uke He displays admirable spirit and endeavours to be aware of the power and intent of Chiba Sensei.Personally I think this is one of the best vids. ever. By the way , who is your teacher?More than likely I will know him/her. Cheers, Joe

sakumeikan
12-25-2013, 11:51 AM
f_ZN67c6oF0

Here's an aikido video of Kazuo Chiba (8th dan, San Diego Aikikai) demonstrating at the New York Aikikai 20th anniversary in 1984 (uke: Juba Nour).

What are your thoughts on this video?

-- Jun

Dear Jun,
\ Great vid.Merry Xmas /Happy New Year.Thanks for all your work undertaken on our behalf on this Forum, Best Wishes, Joe

Cliff Judge
12-26-2013, 09:32 AM
Nice movement, nice control. Terrible, awful, unrealistic use of the sword.

One of the things that is weird is that Chiba Sensei executes a few techniques which, had the swords been real, would have resulted in uke being killed or maimed. My problem with this is that, if he wanted to kill his uke, at no point during this embu would he have had to do anything other than simply extend the tip of his sword forward an inch or so. Because he is in chudan, and his uke is in chudan right up on him, and then his uke decides to make a straight cut to Chiba's head.

I don't know why that ever became a thing - hey the guy in front of me is pointing his sword at my face, I guess i will just move right in for a straight cut to his head.

Tim Mailloux
12-26-2013, 09:56 AM
One of the things that is weird is that Chiba Sensei executes a few techniques which, had the swords been real, would have resulted in uke being killed or maimed.

How is that weird and Isn't that kind of the point?

Tim Mailloux
12-26-2013, 09:57 AM
Dear Tim,
Merry Xmas. On this video Chiba Sensei is at his best and is in total control of the situation. Nour Sensei [ a dear friend of mine ] does a very difficult job as Uke He displays admirable spirit and endeavours to be aware of the power and intent of Chiba Sensei.Personally I think this is one of the best vids. ever. By the way , who is your teacher?More than likely I will know him/her. Cheers, Joe

Hey Joe, sent you a PM.

RonRagusa
12-26-2013, 10:18 AM
I don't know why that ever became a thing - hey the guy in front of me is pointing his sword at my face, I guess i will just move right in for a straight cut to his head.

Or pretty much any other cut that involves large sweeping arm motions. Uke's attacks are no match for the small, concise entering movements of nage.

Ron

Cliff Judge
12-26-2013, 10:25 AM
How is that weird and Isn't that kind of the point?

Re-read my paragraph. if that IS the point, then all of the Aikido techniques are wasted energy since Chiba could have killed his opponent by extending his sword forward about one inch.

kfa4303
12-26-2013, 10:27 AM
Nice movement, nice control. Terrible, awful, unrealistic use of the sword.

One of the things that is weird is that Chiba Sensei executes a few techniques which, had the swords been real, would have resulted in uke being killed or maimed. My problem with this is that, if he wanted to kill his uke, at no point during this embu would he have had to do anything other than simply extend the tip of his sword forward an inch or so. Because he is in chudan, and his uke is in chudan right up on him, and then his uke decides to make a straight cut to Chiba's head.

I don't know why that ever became a thing - hey the guy in front of me is pointing his sword at my face, I guess i will just move right in for a straight cut to his head.

Great demo, if a bit rough around the edges. +1 on the sword "techniques". I'm just gonna pretend I didn't see the upside down bokken at the :18 - :20 mark :/ .........

Cliff Judge
12-26-2013, 11:18 AM
Or pretty much any other cut that involves large sweeping arm motions. Uke's attacks are no match for the small, concise entering movements of nage.

Ron

That is not universally true. The reason why it is true for this entire embu is because Chiba stays in chudan most of the time, not providing any openings for uke to attack. Uke's attacks are suicidal...it is like they are playing a modified version of rock-paper-scissors where Chiba Sensei goes first and uke gets to pick what to do, but he always picks the thing that loses.

Demetrio Cereijo
12-26-2013, 11:24 AM
Uke's attacks are suicidal
Maybe that was the point.

Anyway, it was a entertaining demo.

sakumeikan
12-26-2013, 12:42 PM
That is not universally true. The reason why it is true for this entire embu is because Chiba stays in chudan most of the time, not providing any openings for uke to attack. Uke's attacks are suicidal...it is like they are playing a modified version of rock-paper-scissors where Chiba Sensei goes first and uke gets to pick what to do, but he always picks the thing that loses.

Dear Cliff,
Its not that Juba picks the wrong thing. The fact is that Juba has very few options. Chiba Sensei dictates the game plan.There would be little point if Chiba Sensei picked the short straw and he got hit.Chiba Sensei rarely if ever gave an opening that you as the attacker could exploit, be it in body art or weapons. When Chiba Sensei does give uke an opening it is only for a fraction of a minute, Uke is drawn into the trap[the only word I can think of ] then Sensei neutralises the action of Uke , using an appropriate waza. The opening are very subtle , difficult at times as an onlooker to see, especially in video form. Hope you are well, have a Happy New Year, Cheers, Joe

sakumeikan
12-26-2013, 12:53 PM
Hey Joe, sent you a PM.

Hi Tim,
Received your welcome message.Having visited the U.S.A on numerous occasions I am pleased to say I know Dianne Sensei , from seminars in San Diego State Uni.Other Sensei included here are George Lyons, Archie Champion, Elmer Tancino, the late Jack Arnold and Mark Murashige, Ichiro Shibata, Harvey Konigsberg, Juba Nour , Kristina and Rikko Varjan, Lizzy Lynn, Coryl Crane ,Denis Belt, Frank Apodaca Jr and Alex Peterson Senseis/Shihan to name but a few.Apologies to all who I may have missed out.I send fraternal greetings to all my U.S.A. friends .Cheers, Joe.

Cliff Judge
12-26-2013, 06:21 PM
I re-watched a couple of times and the communication between Chiba Sensei and Nour Sensei indeed seems a bit more complex than I had picked up on initially. Nour always looks like he is already toast as soon as he commits to a cut. That's very high level Aiki.

sakumeikan
12-27-2013, 01:14 AM
I re-watched a couple of times and the communication between Chiba Sensei and Nour Sensei indeed seems a bit more complex than I had picked up on initially. Nour always looks like he is already toast as soon as he commits to a cut. That's very high level Aiki.

Dear Cliff,
As I stated in my earlir blog its not always east to discernn what is going on in the encounter between Chiba Sensei /Juba Nour Sensei. As you said Nour Sensei ihas not much room to manouvre.Chiba Sensei is dictating the situation. .Cheers, Joe.

allowedcloud
12-27-2013, 10:31 AM
I re-watched a couple of times and the communication between Chiba Sensei and Nour Sensei indeed seems a bit more complex than I had picked up on initially. Nour always looks like he is already toast as soon as he commits to a cut. That's very high level Aiki.

Hi Cliff,

Can you point out to me where in that video you see high-level Aiki? Because I'm just not seeing it. All I see is lots of meeting force with brute force.

jimbaker
12-27-2013, 07:50 PM
I was there, standing next to the upstairs camera, and this is filtered through 30 years of memory, but the clip leaves off the first part of the demonstration.
Chiba Sensei and Juba Nour were performing Chiba Sense's sword katas when something went wrong and Chiba Sensei's bokken was knocked out of his hands. He picked it up again and the three people next to me simultaneously went "Uh-oh". Nour resumed the katas and Chiba Sensei didn't. It is quite a testament to Juba's ukemi that he could react when the demo went completely sideways to what he was expecting.
My totally subjective observation and that of the others I spoke with around me was that Chiba Sensei seemed angry at having dropped his bokken and was aiming it at his uke. Of course, you would have to ask one of them directly what they felt, but it left many watching with a bad feeling and there were several boos from the audience.

leefr
12-28-2013, 01:52 AM
The clip below seems to show the whole demo, with Chiba sensei dropping his bokken at around the 2:05 mark. The change in demeanor after that is clear, and I can certainly see why people may have been left with a "bad feeling".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=kwFE3v2Sj7I

Janet Rosen
12-29-2013, 01:59 AM
Hi Cliff,

Can you point out to me where in that video you see high-level Aiki? Because I'm just not seeing it. All I see is lots of meeting force with brute force.

Yep. Alpha dog trashing beta dog. Not Aikido as I understand it.

kfa4303
12-29-2013, 11:04 AM
The clip below seems to show the whole demo, with Chiba sensei dropping his bokken at around the 2:05 mark. The change in demeanor after that is clear, and I can certainly see why people may have been left with a "bad feeling".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=kwFE3v2Sj7I

Wowza! I thought the first bokken gaff at notived at :18 - :20 was bad :/ Clearly it wasn't a fluke. Proof positive that you have stick to what you know. Just because someone has proficiency in empty hand techniques in no way ensures that they can do weapons. After all, you wouldn't expect a great violinist to be a great trumpeter.
I am trying to imagine what would happen if someone messed up that bad in the other art forms/professions. I know the world of professional music, if you balk a note that bad, or demonstrate such a lack of technique you will literally be laughed out of the building. They don't care who, what when where or why. All they know is you can't do the job, so your out. James Brown use to fine his band $10 for every bad note they played in a show, which was a lot of money in the '60s on the chittlin' circuit, but it worked and he had the tightest band in the business. Beethoven was also famous for pushing his musicians to the limit. If they couldn't perform, they were fired on the spot, regardless of weather they were considered a "maestro" of their instrument. The same holds true in medicine. I'm trying to imagine a surgeon fumbling a scalpel as badly as Chiba fumbled that bokken. If that were to happen you'd probably have a dead patient and a malpractice suit the size of Antarctica, and rightly so. None of this hero/sensei worship nonsense in those worlds. You either measure up, or your out. No sentiment. No emotion. Your work speaks for it self, as it should.
On the other hand it's good to see that our idols do, in fact, have clay feet. They're just regular human beings like you and I. They make mistakes.....often. Unfortunately, too many of them believe their own hype and are unwilling to admit their own short comings (i.e. Chiba's reaction in the vid). Humility is hard lesson to learn when everyone keeps bowing, scraping and telling you how great you are despite clear evidence to the contrary.

Cliff Judge
12-29-2013, 03:01 PM
Yep. Alpha dog trashing beta dog. Not Aikido as I understand it.

Nevermind…I am not seeing what I thought I was seeing on the second video. I think I was confusing kiai for aiki.

sakumeikan
12-29-2013, 07:12 PM
Wowza! I thought the first bokken gaff at notived at :18 - :20 was bad :/ Clearly it wasn't a fluke. Proof positive that you have stick to what you know. Just because someone has proficiency in empty hand techniques in no way ensures that they can do weapons. After all, you wouldn't expect a great violinist to be a great trumpeter.
I am trying to imagine what would happen if someone messed up that bad in the other art forms/professions. I know the world of professional music, if you balk a note that bad, or demonstrate such a lack of technique you will literally be laughed out of the building. They don't care who, what when where or why. All they know is you can't do the job, so your out. James Brown use to fine his band $10 for every bad note they played in a show, which was a lot of money in the '60s on the chittlin' circuit, but it worked and he had the tightest band in the business. Beethoven was also famous for pushing his musicians to the limit. If they couldn't perform, they were fired on the spot, regardless of weather they were considered a "maestro" of their instrument. The same holds true in medicine. I'm trying to imagine a surgeon fumbling a scalpel as badly as Chiba fumbled that bokken. If that were to happen you'd probably have a dead patient and a malpractice suit the size of Antarctica, and rightly so. None of this hero/sensei worship nonsense in those worlds. You either measure up, or your out. No sentiment. No emotion. Your work speaks for it self, as it should.
On the other hand it's good to see that our idols do, in fact, have clay feet. They're just regular human beings like you and I. They make mistakes.....often. Unfortunately, too many of them believe their own hype and are unwilling to admit their own short comings (i.e. Chiba's reaction in the vid). Humility is hard lesson to learn when everyone keeps bowing, scraping and telling you how great you are despite clear evidence to the contrary.

Dear Karl,
Any great musician or makes errors, nobody is infallible.As far as Chiba Sensei is concerned I consider him to be a great weapons and body art exponent.The video does indeed show Sensei dropping his sword. On the other hand how many times have you and others watched Chiba Sensei doing sword and Jo work, not to mention his body art? As far as James Brown is concerned and others , he had some bad nights where is singing was dreadful,Sinatra at one point could not fill a telephone box with customers. Do you always do everything 100%perfect ?I think not. Surgeons/doctors make errors,patients on occasion get sutures left inside their bodies, plastic surgeons botch jobs.They are not all stricken off medical registers. I dispute your last two sentences.Personally speaking if I had 50% of the skill level of Chiba Sensei in weapons and body art I would consider myself to be a fortunate aikidoka. Rather than be highly critical why not take the time and effort to review Chiba Sensei and his work more thoroughly?Maybe then you would be more qualified /more objective in making such comments?Cheers, Joe.

kfa4303
12-30-2013, 10:06 AM
Dear Karl,
Any great musician or makes errors, nobody is infallible.As far as Chiba Sensei is concerned I consider him to be a great weapons and body art exponent.The video does indeed show Sensei dropping his sword. On the other hand how many times have you and others watched Chiba Sensei doing sword and Jo work, not to mention his body art? As far as James Brown is concerned and others , he had some bad nights where is singing was dreadful,Sinatra at one point could not fill a telephone box with customers. Do you always do everything 100%perfect ?I think not. Surgeons/doctors make errors,patients on occasion get sutures left inside their bodies, plastic surgeons botch jobs.They are not all stricken off medical registers. I dispute your last two sentences.Personally speaking if I had 50% of the skill level of Chiba Sensei in weapons and body art I would consider myself to be a fortunate aikidoka. Rather than be highly critical why not take the time and effort to review Chiba Sensei and his work more thoroughly?Maybe then you would be more qualified /more objective in making such comments?Cheers, Joe.

I was wondering how long it would take for the apologists to appear. LOL!!!! You only want 50% of that skill level? That's sad. Why not strive for 150%? All students should seek to surpass their teachers, not simply measure up. After all, 50% of ok is just "o".
I'm not perfect, but I'm also not a "world renown teacher" traveling around tooting my own horn and charging people money for my services. Professionals in any industry, are and should always be held to a much higher standard than amateurs and students. The fact that people are obviously videotaping it should have made him even more focused, not less.
When is the last time you saw Itzhak Perlman, Andres Segovia, or Yo-yo Ma drop their instrument/bow during a performance? NEVER, never, never, not ever....NEVER!!! and they aren't even simulating a life and death struggle. When lives are on the line, don't you think the standards should be even higher than the performance of a simple, harmless piece of music? I should hope so. Oh and trust me, if you were to ever see it happen, they would excuse them self from the stage, if not the entire profession, on their own. They certainly wouldn't pretend like nothing happened, scowl at their partners, or try to blame the others on stage like Chiba san.
Aikido will never grow, or be fully respected as an art if all we do is worship rank, praise poor technique, and make excuses for teachers who obviously long past their prime. One can either perform up to the task, or they cannot. Clearly Chiba san cannot, which is fine, but then stop charing money for your "skills". Heck, I can teach you to use a bokken as well as he did in the vid for free.

Step 1: grab bokken (correctly ,or not. He doesn't seem to care, so why should you!)( e.g :18 mark), Step 2: loose focus, Step 3: get bested by your student, Step 4: pretend like it didn't happen, Step 5: scowl at uke and strut around like a petulant child/bully. Repeat until perfection is achieved. LOL!!!!

Are you still happy with 50%?

See it's not that hard at all :)

allowedcloud
12-30-2013, 10:19 AM
I was wondering how long it would take for the apologists to appear. LOL!!!! You only want 50% of that skill level? That's sad. Why not strive for 150%? All students should seek to surpass their teachers, not simply measure up. After all, 50% of ok is just "o".
I'm not perfect, but I'm also not a "world renown teacher" traveling around tooting my own horn and charging people money for my services. Professionals in any industry, are and should always be held to a much higher standard than amateurs and students. The fact that people are obviously videotaping it should have made him even more focused, not less.
When is the last time you saw Itzhak Perlman, Andres Segovia, or Yo-yo Ma drop their instrument/bow during a performance? NEVER, never, never, not ever....NEVER!!! and they aren't even simulating a life and death struggle. When lives are on the line, don't you think the standards should be even higher than the performance of a simple, harmless piece of music? I should hope so. Oh and trust me, if you were to ever see it happen, they would excuse them self from the stage, if not the entire profession, on their own. They certainly wouldn't pretend like nothing happened, scowl at their partners, or try to blame the others on stage like Chiba san.
Aikido will never grow, or be fully respected as an art if all we do is worship rank, praise poor technique, and make excuses for teachers who obviously long past their prime. One can either perform up to the task, or they cannot. Clearly Chiba san cannot, which is fine, but then stop charing money for your "skills". Heck, I can teach you to use a bokken as well as he did in the vid for free.

Step 1: grab bokken (correctly ,or not. He doesn't seem to care, so why should you!)( e.g :18 mark), Step 2: loose focus, Step 3: get bested by your student, Step 4: pretend like it didn't happen, Step 5: scowl at uke and strut around like a petulant child/bully. Repeat until perfection is achieved. LOL!!!!

Are you still happy with 50%?

See it's not that hard at all :)

I'm reminded of a quote from Saotome sensei (paraphrasing): "Give a Tokyo taxi driver a plane ticket to America, put a bokken in his hand, and you have an instant sword expert"

kfa4303
12-30-2013, 10:49 AM
I suppose it goes both ways. You could give an American a ticket to Tokyo and he'd be considered a "gun expert". Come to think of it, imagine a firearms instructor, or even a grunt Marine, who dropped his weapon, spun around and inadvertently pointed it at their students whilst simultaneously failing to acknowledge their mistake, and finally accepting money for his "skills". Now that takes chutzpah!
After all, a bokken, should be thought of as no less deadly a weapon than a pistol, or rifle. Shoot (sorry, I couldn't resist the pun:/) , when's the last time you heard Yo-Yo Ma so much as play a bad note, much less drop his instrument/bow mid performance and that's not even a matter of life and death. Surely we shouldn't lower the standards when the consequences are higher?
If people are going to travel around the world teaching others how to wield deadly weapons, fine, but they better dang sure know what they're doing, or acknowledge their limitations and step away. Failure to do so will not only result in diminishing the art through the formation of bad habits, but it could ultimately lead to a student being seriously injured, or killed.

sakumeikan
12-30-2013, 05:58 PM
I was wondering how long it would take for the apologists to appear. LOL!!!! You only want 50% of that skill level? That's sad. Why not strive for 150%? All students should seek to surpass their teachers, not simply measure up. After all, 50% of ok is just "o".
I'm not perfect, but I'm also not a "world renown teacher" traveling around tooting my own horn and charging people money for my services. Professionals in any industry, are and should always be held to a much higher standard than amateurs and students. The fact that people are obviously videotaping it should have made him even more focused, not less.
When is the last time you saw Itzhak Perlman, Andres Segovia, or Yo-yo Ma drop their instrument/bow during a performance? NEVER, never, never, not ever....NEVER!!! and they aren't even simulating a life and death struggle. When lives are on the line, don't you think the standards should be even higher than the performance of a simple, harmless piece of music? I should hope so. Oh and trust me, if you were to ever see it happen, they would excuse them self from the stage, if not the entire profession, on their own. They certainly wouldn't pretend like nothing happened, scowl at their partners, or try to blame the others on stage like Chiba san.
Aikido will never grow, or be fully respected as an art if all we do is worship rank, praise poor technique, and make excuses for teachers who obviously long past their prime. One can either perform up to the task, or they cannot. Clearly Chiba san cannot, which is fine, but then stop charing money for your "skills". Heck, I can teach you to use a bokken as well as he did in the vid for free.

Step 1: grab bokken (correctly ,or not. He doesn't seem to care, so why should you!)( e.g :18 mark), Step 2: loose focus, Step 3: get bested by your student, Step 4: pretend like it didn't happen, Step 5: scowl at uke and strut around like a petulant child/bully. Repeat until perfection is achieved. LOL!!!!

Are you still happy with 50%?

See it's not that hard at all :)

Dear Karl,
i find you comments somewhat insulting and a tad vitriolic. Rather than continue this debate?? I bid you adieu.I would be grateful if you do not respond to this messge.

Hilary
12-30-2013, 06:21 PM
While Perlman may have never dropped his bow, I suspect nobody ever tried to hit is out of his hand with a bokken (really poor analogy). I am relatively sure he has played the wrong note on more than one occasion or even spaced out while playing and screwed up the tempo etc. How you recover from the mistake is what counts because you are going to make them, pretty sure O Sensei made few.

Many of the videos out there have high level guys taking a really long time to make some fancy throw. To me it often looks like oops that one is going to suck move on, keep uke moving and do what comes next. The invincibility of the shihans is always questionable because on any given day some guy with fast hands gets lucky and lands the punch that knocks him out; top assume anything else is a supreme act of hubris.

That having been said, I have witnessed Chiba being a bit of an {fill in your preferred description here} myself. And the story in one of the "similar threads" links talking about Chiba breaking the arm of a knife fighter he was working out with is appalling. The guys seems unnecessarily rough on his ukes and has a personal style of muscling things a bit much from my taste. But is seems to have worked for him, at least he is not throwing uke with his mind.

Cady Goldfield
12-30-2013, 06:24 PM
Are there any videos of Chiba that were made in the past year or two? A Google search didn't turn anything up for me, but that doesn't mean they're not out there. I'd be more interested in watching them than these old clips.

Edit: The first one in this series looks like it's from 2010. Compare and contrast this to the old videos. It looks like there are some interesting changes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rpq42dxj1po&list=PL38A220BBCC1AC4DE

(sorry - couldn't find an icon for embedding video...)

Peter Goldsbury
12-30-2013, 06:54 PM
When I was younger, I took ukemi for Chiba Sensei and there was always the feeling that you were never quite sure what was going to happen. However, I was recommended to train in the Hombu classes of Arikawa Sadateru Sensei, one of Chiba S's early instructors, and I had a similar feeling then.

I did not learn the kumitachi being demonstrated from Chiba S, but from Saito Morihiro Sensei and from Chiba's successor in the UK, Minoru Kanestuka Shihan. Kumitachi 5 is more complex than the others and there is scope for the ma-ai to become quite close. However, I did not sense a marked change of attitude after Chiba S dropped his bokken. Clearly, it was something that should not have happened in a demonstration, but Chiba himself would know that such things can happen. He once hit Morihei Ueshiba himself on the head with his bokken during a demonstration and everybody was waiting for the blood to flow and the sparks to fly. But nothing happened, at least during the demonstration. Like Arikawa S, Chiba S always gave the impression of being out to bring his ukes close to death from the word go and he was regarded by his senior Hombu colleagues as being closest to embodying the samurai ideal expressed by Yamamoto Tsunetomo in the Hagakure.

Brian Gillaspie
12-30-2013, 06:56 PM
Maybe he was just having a bad day? Professionals in all fields are just people and people make mistakes. I'm not making an excuse for him but I'm also not going to write him off as not being good at aikido or having a horrible attitude because of some old video on the internet.

Cady Goldfield
12-30-2013, 07:07 PM
I would suggest that the past is the past, and it is more interesting (to me, at least) to see how Chiba is practicing aikido now.

Peter Goldsbury
12-30-2013, 08:03 PM
I would suggest that the past is the past, and it is more interesting (to me, at least) to see how Chiba is practicing aikido now.

Hello Cady,

Well, the thread deals with a video made nearly 30 years ago and for me, the video has some sentimental value.

Joe Curran can probably give more accurate information, but I understand from contacts in the USAF that Chiba Sensei is not in the best of health at present and has turned over the running of the dojo to his students. Presumably we will not see a similar video for the NY Aikikai's 50th anniversary, which I assume will be be next year.

Cady Goldfield
12-30-2013, 08:34 PM
Peter,
Yes, there is something to be said for sentiment and sentimental reasons. :)

Hilary
12-30-2013, 09:37 PM
Wow, my typing skills really deteriorate when I'm rushed. Sorry for the word salad above.

It is my understanding that Chiba Sensei has retired, twice at this point (apparently had to come back when his successor fell ill). I would not expect anyone to question his ability, or indeed his station in the history of the art. We may choose to embrace or eschew his approach to the art, but the man clearly has skills. I have some issues with his sense of restraint, then again I'm not really old school in that manner.

Cliff Judge
12-30-2013, 10:43 PM
Chiba S always gave the impression of being out to bring his ukes close to death from the word go and he was regarded by his senior Hombu colleagues as being closest to embodying the samurai ideal expressed by Yamamoto Tsunetomo in the Hagakure.

Ahh. This makes a lot of sense.

Andrew S
12-30-2013, 11:36 PM
I did not sense a marked change of attitude after Chiba S dropped his bokken.
Neither did I.

Clearly, it was something that should not have happened in a demonstration
Ideally, he wouldn't have let that happen (grip too loose while changing kamae?), or maybe could have improvised a throw.
But after picking up the dropped weapon, he and uke continued like nothing had happened. THAT shows composure.

sakumeikan
12-31-2013, 02:36 AM
Are there any videos of Chiba that were made in the past year or two? A Google search didn't turn anything up for me, but that doesn't mean they're not out there. I'd be more interested in watching them than these old clips.

Edit: The first one in this series looks like it's from 2010. Compare and contrast this to the old videos. It looks like there are some interesting changes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rpq42dxj1po&list=PL38A220BBCC1AC4DE

(sorry - couldn't find an icon for embedding video...)

Dear Cady,
There must be something wrong with your Browser.Check out Birankai /Biran online.There a lots of clips dated after the video we are commenting on.I myself have loads of video material of Chiba Sensei .The vvideo of Chiba Sensei and Juba whiie interesting is not entirely representative of Chiba Sensei's skilll. Thats why I have suggested that others look for more vids , as you appear to be doing.
Cheers, Joe.

sakumeikan
12-31-2013, 03:02 AM
Are there any videos of Chiba that were made in the past year or two? A Google search didn't turn anything up for me, but that doesn't mean they're not out there. I'd be more interested in watching them than these old clips.

Edit: The first one in this series looks like it's from 2010. Compare and contrast this to the old videos. It looks like there are some interesting changes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rpq42dxj1po&list=PL38A220BBCC1AC4DE

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Hi Cady,
It me again. You are quite correct when you state there are changes in the way Chiba Sensei trains and his approach to training.In the early days when I first met him[1970] Sensei was a force of nature , so much power and he had as Peter Goldsbury states a warrior spirit.
As time passed by Chiba Sensei has mellowed .He is currently inactive.Over the last few
years he has been transmitting his method of Aikido , in body art and weapons, concentrating his efforts on establishing sound Aikido principles to students , thus ensuring hopefully that the students have a good understanding of Aikido as and when or if they choose to be teachers in the future.On my own part I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Sensei for all that he has given me over the last 43 years. I am sure that many others feel exactly the same as I do. Rather than focus on a minute part of Chiba Sensei's aikido [the video with Juba ] one should review and look at the broader picture before making judgements about his work.Cheers, Joe

sakumeikan
12-31-2013, 03:18 AM
When I was younger, I took ukemi for Chiba Sensei and there was always the feeling that you were never quite sure what was going to happen. However, I was recommended to train in the Hombu classes of Arikawa Sadateru Sensei, one of Chiba S's early instructors, and I had a similar feeling then.

I did not learn the kumitachi being demonstrated from Chiba S, but from Saito Morihiro Sensei and from Chiba's successor in the UK, Minoru Kanestuka Shihan. Kumitachi 5 is more complex than the others and there is scope for the ma-ai to become quite close. However, I did not sense a marked change of attitude after Chiba S dropped his bokken. Clearly, it was something that should not have happened in a demonstration, but Chiba himself would know that such things can happen. He once hit Morihei Ueshiba himself on the head with his bokken during a demonstration and everybody was waiting for the blood to flow and the sparks to fly. But nothing happened, at least during the demonstration. Like Arikawa S, Chiba S always gave the impression of being out to bring his ukes close to death from the word go and he was regarded by his senior Hombu colleagues as being closest to embodying the samurai ideal expressed by Yamamoto Tsunetomo in the Hagakure.

Dear Peter ,
The clip of Ny Aikikai is years old.While it is an interesting vid, one of my favorites , it does not show clearly the 5 Kumi tachi as well as I have seen the waza done in recent times by Chiba Sensei.In the NY vid, Chiba Sensei is very martial.Clearly this demo was not one where a rehearsal
was done.Both parties I feel were simply reacting to the situation at the time.Juba I feel coped really well.To many people it may well have looked a bit rough and ready but to me I feel that it embodies a spirited ,martial example, certainly not a sanitized demo which we often see today.
Hope you have a Happy New Year, Cheers, Joe.

sakumeikan
12-31-2013, 03:35 AM
While Perlman may have never dropped his bow, I suspect nobody ever tried to hit is out of his hand with a bokken (really poor analogy). I am relatively sure he has played the wrong note on more than one occasion or even spaced out while playing and screwed up the tempo etc. How you recover from the mistake is what counts because you are going to make them, pretty sure O Sensei made few.

Many of the videos out there have high level guys taking a really long time to make some fancy throw. To me it often looks like oops that one is going to suck move on, keep uke moving and do what comes next. The invincibility of the shihans is always questionable because on any given day some guy with fast hands gets lucky and lands the punch that knocks him out; top assume anything else is a supreme act of hubris.

That having been said, I have witnessed Chiba being a bit of an {fill in your preferred description here} myself. And the story in one of the "similar threads" links talking about Chiba breaking the arm of a knife fighter he was working out with is appalling. The guys seems unnecessarily rough on his ukes and has a personal style of muscling things a bit much from my taste. But is seems to have worked for him, at least he is not throwing uke with his mind.
Dear Hilary,
While Chiba Sensei may not be everyones cup of tea, at least as you say he never throws ukes with mind power. As far as being rough is concerned ,I think this is all relative.I cannot recall any of his Ukes ever getting upset about Sensei's treatment of them. Chiba Sensei really takes his Uke to the limit but I have never known him to injure anybody. I think there are some Urban Myths knocking about concerning Chiba Sensei.Happy New Year, Joe.

Cady Goldfield
12-31-2013, 10:07 AM
Hi Joe,
One of the annoying realities of the Internet, these days, is that the search engines and browsers don't always show individual users all of the options from a search. For some reason, I had to really dig to find very recent clips of Chiba. I finally wised up and did a search directly on YouTube. It turned up a number of accounts with lots of videos cached. Then I weeded through those to find what I was looking for.

Chiba seems to have changed on many levels, and for the better. Among other things, he can "do more, with less" in his techniques now; Instead of using hard force to power his techniques, he is going "softer" and getting better (yet less "overtly violent") results. You don't need to act hard to be martial. I see cues that he has gone outside of the constraints of his original Aikikai-method upbringing to explore aiki.

kfa4303
12-31-2013, 01:41 PM
Now this is how you do it. A true master of his craft and he doesn't miss a note ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZSefNl2MpA

Chris Li
12-31-2013, 02:17 PM
When's the last time you saw a marine drop his/her rifle? NEVER that's when, and I think they're under a wee bit more stress than Chiba san's rehearsed kata. I'm just sayin'.......

Well, it happens (http://youtu.be/o9q7b_2tkMo?t=2m28s)...just sayin...

Best,

Chris

akiy
12-31-2013, 02:19 PM
Hi folks,

As always, please be welcome in being passionate and even contrary in expressing your thoughts here on AikiWeb -- and, please be sure to do so respectfully without directing your posts at people themselves.

Thank you,

-- Jun

phitruong
12-31-2013, 05:32 PM
i liked this video better http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwxBlFu-pbo . in the first video, distance was way too far, not much in way of control the center line, and uke's attack posture was over committed. this video is in his later year, shown a better maai and center line control. uke's attack posture is better, but uke still bleed his power out of his back foot. don't care much for the extra flip of uke's bokken, but that's just me. i like this video for the less is more approach.

sakumeikan
01-01-2014, 09:21 AM
i liked this video better http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwxBlFu-pbo . in the first video, distance was way too far, not much in way of control the center line, and uke's attack posture was over committed. this video is in his later year, shown a better maai and center line control. uke's attack posture is better, but uke still bleed his power out of his back foot. don't care much for the extra flip of uke's bokken, but that's just me. i like this video for the less is more approach.

Hello Phi,
Happy New Year!! The video you use herein is one whereby Chiba Sensei is teaching the kumi tachi movements showing the actions/reactions to each others moves.ie the responses to whay is taking place. The tempo shown here is much slower.Care is taken to emphasis the moves.Not too sure what you mean by your last two comments regarding Robert Savoca Sensei , Chiba Sensei's Uke.
Watched closely Robert's footwork, maybe I missed something but I diid not see any loss of power.In fact the vid was not about generating power , more about response, timing , maai and control of centre. Must watch again to check regarding flip of bokken by Mr Savoca.Cheers, Joe.

phitruong
01-03-2014, 11:14 AM
Hello Phi,
Happy New Year!! The video you use herein is one whereby Chiba Sensei is teaching the kumi tachi movements showing the actions/reactions to each others moves.ie the responses to whay is taking place. The tempo shown here is much slower.Care is taken to emphasis the moves.Not too sure what you mean by your last two comments regarding Robert Savoca Sensei , Chiba Sensei's Uke.
Watched closely Robert's footwork, maybe I missed something but I diid not see any loss of power.In fact the vid was not about generating power , more about response, timing , maai and control of centre. Must watch again to check regarding flip of bokken by Mr Savoca.Cheers, Joe.

Hello Joe,
Happy New Year to you and yours! Regarding the video, the power bleeding is from Mr Savoca. a couple of times, as he made the cuts, his back leg swing around like a counter balance of sort. to me, the power came from the back leg, and if it swing like that, meant it bleed the power in the opposite direction of the cut. if it was an empty hand strike, the power generated from the back leg, and if it swing, then a loss of power.

the flipping of bokken came from Chiba sensei. after the deflection, he flipped Mr Savoca's bokken further away. from my point of view, which doesn't mean that much, is unnecessary. it created a two beat move: 1 - deflect and flip, 2 - come back to the center line for attack. now if you can deflect and come back into the center line for an attack, that would make a 1-beat move. we called this a spiral deflection. a 1-beat move almost always beats out a 2-beat move. plus, if someone flipped my bokken like that, i would use the momentum to cut upward toward the center line and take out the wrist or arm from underneath. Then again, it might be a required kata move.

then again, i might miss something there based on my inexperience with the subject.

Gary Small
01-03-2014, 12:25 PM
I think its a very honest and intense embu! and I like seeing Chiba sensei in his prime. Chiba sensei keeps sente and why not! Nice find!:ai:

Cliff Judge
01-03-2014, 01:24 PM
i liked this video better http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwxBlFu-pbo . in the first video, distance was way too far, not much in way of control the center line, and uke's attack posture was over committed. this video is in his later year, shown a better maai and center line control. uke's attack posture is better, but uke still bleed his power out of his back foot. don't care much for the extra flip of uke's bokken, but that's just me. i like this video for the less is more approach.

The bleeding power out of his back foot thing is actually a maai problem. He is doing that because he is too close. Looks to me like when he takes steps they are too large and deep. Could just be because this is Aikiken and not "real" swordwork....the fixes i can think of to the maai problem involve him moving in a way that aren't going to be good training for Aikido.

A peeve of mine is letting the left wrist "break" or sort of get into nikkyo, which is something Chiba does a couple of times here. I don't like it because for one you put yourself at risk for having your sword knocked out of your hands. :D