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View Full Version : YouTube: Seishiro Endo at 52nd All Japan Aikido Demonstrations


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akiy
08-26-2014, 10:29 AM
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Here's an aikido video of Seishiro Endo (8th dan) at the 52nd All Japan Aikido Demonstrations in May, 2014.

What are your thoughts on this video?

-- Jun

lamvien
08-26-2014, 10:41 AM
The philosophy behind Sensei's move is powerful. "not by force but the sense of calm & balance"

Dave Gallagher
08-26-2014, 11:45 AM
I would be interested to hear comments from people who have been been thrown by him or been uke in general.

NagaBaba
08-26-2014, 01:55 PM
I would be interested to hear comments from people who have been been thrown by him or been uke in general.
He is taking for uke only his own students - at least at the seminar where I was present. No explanation, no corrections at all, only those weird movements. Vast majority of ppl was completely unfamiliar with his approach, so you can imagine a chaos on the tatami – everybody did something different with no ressemblancy to presented “thing” (because you can’t call it a ‘technique’).

What a sad change from 20 years ago when his seminars gave me a fresh taste of full energy and joy. Now it is becoming Watanabe-like BS.

Gerardo Torres
08-26-2014, 02:29 PM
Aside from the Jedi Force throw at 2:48 I almost fell sleep watching that demo.

Carsten Möllering
08-27-2014, 04:29 AM
He is taking for uke only his own students - at least at the seminar where I was present.Usually he takes his students as uke for demonstrating in front of the class. And even only some specific of his sutdents. But usually he is going around during seminars so that everybody can grab him.

No explanation, no corrections at all, ... True. For most of the people.
He wants you to grab him and to feel him. Not his technique, but his body, his way of moving, the relation and connection between tori and uke. Things like that.
He wants you to watch him. Precisely. To let your eyes catch his way of using his body. That is why he is demonstrating in front of the class only with certain, selcted students. So you can get an image.
Umm, during the seminars I attended, sensei was talking a lot. A whole lot of explanantions! Be it technical, be it spiritual. How to step, to move your foot, e.g.. How to breathe through the soles of your feet, e.g. . How to practice for unifying stillness and motion or to connect to dao, e.g. .
When he was in spain last time, I think he was even lecturing at university? Not sure about that ...

...only those weird movements. Those "weird movements" have a clear methodology. There is a "canon" of excercises how to learn those "weird movements" which he has taught for years. It's only in the last one or two years that he is teaching kata again.

Vast majority of ppl was completely unfamiliar with his approach, so you can imagine a chaos on the tatami -- everybody did something different with no ressemblancy to presented "thing" (because you can't call it a ‘technique').True. It needs time, practice, learning to be able to work on his approach. When I decided to try to follow his way of aikidō, it was as if starting to learn aikidō again.

What a sad change from 20 years ago when his seminars gave me a fresh taste of full energy and joy. Now it is becoming Watanabe-like BS.My direct teacher started to practice with Endō sensei about 25 Years ago. And I know some other students of his who followed him all those years. This uke (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wisz8oygS0M&feature=player_detailpage#t=153) - shihan by now - is one of them.
When you ask those teachers about how sensei hast changed over the years, they usually answer, that is much stronger than he used to be back then. But that you don't see it from the outside, and - what's more I think - you don't feel it in your bones. It's just that he is easyly able to move you.

Endō sensei is well aware of the criticism you express - as is Watanabe sensei.
And I think even if he actually doesn't like that attitude, it is acceptable for him that he is challenged sometimes during seminars. When is talking about these situations, he states that it is understandable, regarding his very soft and unspectactular movements.
(Personally I sometimes think, he secretly likes "intelligent" challenges. Students who don't believe blindly but want to be convinced, want to get some evidence. Maybe it reminds him of himself being younger ...)
I've witnessed people challenging him quite a few times. He doesn't get angry. And he does not over-react. It is more that he "establishes clarity". Not by fighting back or something like that. It's more like letting loose - only a little bit, as much as "requested" by uke - was is contained in his way of practice. Not holding back too much the power his way of practice can evolve.

So, when I saw the Demonstration of 1995 which I have linked above, it was not new or different ot me. This same power is still there. But kind of tamed, cultivated. Which also means it hast become much more sharp since then ...

As to the energy ... : Endō sensei tries to practice in a way that calms you down. Your mind/heart. He seeks a way of practice that leads to stillness. So you can experience stillness and motion as one. This practice is full of energy - an full of joy. (And when the tatami is not that crowded also very physical.)

George S. Ledyard
08-28-2014, 02:17 AM
I have taken ukemi from Endo Sensei a number of times. I am not one of his students, he knows I am Saotome Sensei's student. But he always comes over and works with me for a substantial time. I don't fall over for people nor am I one of the folks with a disorganized structure that are so easy to move around. At close to three hundred pounds I am twice his size. I don't amplify what nage gives me either.

Endo Sensei has a very subtle touch. But he has no problem at all handling any conventional attack I give him. He is soft in the way that the Daito Ryu people I work with are soft.But he gets kuzushi on contact and you don't feel even the least effort from him. When you train with Endo Sensei you really understand the idea of Aikido as misogi. It is a transformational process for him. Endo Sensei strives to have no change in the calm demeanor he presents no matter how fast or hard you try to attack. He never feels like he tries to be fast or has to hurry, he simply moves at the right time. In that way he feels very much like my own teacher.

I have a huge respect for Endo Sensei and his Aikido. If one is looking to become some sort of fighter, I am not sure his path would be for you. But his aiki is wonderful and I think following his path would help one to be mentally and physically healthy. I think that was m,uch of what Aikido was supposed to be about.