View Full Version : Aikido Vs. (insert art here)
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09-05-2000, 03:42 PM
The recent "defense against a jab" thread got me thinking about something that I have seen posted on various forums through the years. This is, what would an Aikidoka do against someone well trained in boxing, jujutsu, kung-fu, etc etc etc. while it's always interesting to read these threads, just to see others opinions on the given situation, I've always been bothered by them. mainly because, using the recent boxing thread as an example, how many of us are actually going to encounter a trained boxer who is set and squared off and ready to box? How often are we going to be at a bar (where a good many fights get started these days) and bump into a drunk who happens to be 10 years into wing chun? Even in these situations, you aren't going to see the trained stylist fighting under controlled circumstances. What situation can you envision yourself having to face off with someone who might happen to be well trained in another art where it's more than a quick push and a few punches thrown? How many bar fights are going to have a trained boxer circling you throwing lead jabs, measuring you so he can knock your block off? I admit, there are rare situations where it might happen, but rare is the key word here, very rare. We don't live in an age of dojo vs dojo battles anymore.
Having been in some pretty seady clubs and bars in my short years, I've seen my share of fights and they have never been two guys squaring off throwing punches. It's fast and dirty and over pretty quickly. Even on the street, how often are we going to be walking to our car, hear a sound in the bushes and turn around to see some guy in a kung-fu fighting stance saying "gimmie your car keys man!!" Unless you are going into a dojo, challenging their art OR climbing in the ring at a local tough man competition or karate tourney OR starting a fight with someone, who, unfortuantly for you happens to be trained in some other art, how aften would we really evern encounter someone well trained in another art who wants to fight?
What are your opinions on these threads and on finding yourself in a situation where you are face to face battleing another well trained martial artist? Thanks.
09-05-2000, 05:35 PM
About the only art other than Barfightdo that you will see with any regulararity is Highschool wrestling. This can be very dangerous to just about anyone. The simple charge of a drunk translates well to a single or doubleleg takedown. Warstory time...I have a friend who rarely lost a barfight even against guys alot bigger than him because he used common wrestling techniques...later when he started taking Aikido he started to avoid fights...usually by getting out of the way but I'm more convinced that he just grew up. You are correct most fights are over quick smashing the fragile 26 (or whatever) odd bones of the hand into the solid 3 of the human head is not healthly and usually promotes a quick finish on the part of the puncher.
09-05-2000, 10:24 PM
Since I started the "jab thread", I thought I would add where I am coming from. I am a Corrections Deputy, with over 3 yrs. experience. I've seen alot of fights and have been in alot of fights. Let me tell you, some of them are "trained" people, even though they have never stepped foot in a gym or dojo. They practice shadow boxing, talk to each other about fighting techniques and have lots of street experience. Those are the ones I had in mind when I asked it. I was thinking of a trained criminal, someone who doesn't care if he starts a fight and doesn't care what he does to you.
I agree with most of what you said, it is very rare to be in a fight with someone who is trained. BUT, my safety depends on knowing what to do when I do meet someone who is trained. I've seen alot of "trained" martial artists loose to an "untrained" street fighter because they assumed he wouldn't know how to fight.
09-06-2000, 12:11 AM
Ultimately, it never comes down to a question of styles or Arts, it's a question of the participants' skill. Like in the prior post, I have seen "trained" martial artists lose a fight to "untrained" street fighters. The fact of the matter is that what counts in an actual "realworld" streetfight is the participants' experience, skill, speed and cunning. You will never see an Aikidoka beat a Jujutsuka or vice versa, or a Ninjutska beat a Karatedoka or vice versa, etc., etc. What you WILL see is who is a better FIGHTER, not which one is a "better" Art. To say one Art is better than another is a complete fallacy. You could even imply that a 7th kyu Aikidoka could beat a Kung- fu Sifu, because his Art is "better"; which is, of course, complete bull****.
In the end, this sort of questioning is natural, I guess, and at some point or another everyone either asks the same question or runs across someone who is wondering. Or, what's worse, runs across some unmitigated FOOL, loudly proclaiming that his Art is the only true Budo, and is willing to prove to everyone, hurting himself in the process, or even worse, hurting someone else. (We've had a couple bad experiences on this matter in seminars in our Dojo)
In any case, no Art is better than another. We must keep in mind that every Martial Art is a way to "Stop the Blade", just in different ways one form the other. No which way is "better" than another. All Martial Arts are merely different paths to the same destination: peace, enlightenment, the avoidance of violence as a means to resolve conflict, and a way to be more than what we are: to become sincere, earnest HUMAN people.
I remember when the UFC first came out and how we would finally see which style would win out. What was very interesting is that because they were in a results based situation none of the participants gave a damn about style after maybe the second one. They went out and studied what worked and what they didn't know. In other words, they left the concept of who had the better style to the philosophers.
Sometimes I think a good dojo brawl might help things. It would get people out of the BS and into the realm of what's really important--like not getting into dojo brawls or fights for that matter.
Tony Peters wrote:
You are correct most fights are over quick smashing the fragile 26 (or whatever) odd bones of the hand into the solid 3 of the human head is not healthly and usually promotes a quick finish on the part of the puncher.
So much for putting the hands in the flaming coals. :)
[Edited by Erik on September 6, 2000 at 11:04am]
09-06-2000, 05:46 AM
A long time ago, the Japanese realised something. After winning a fight, there would always be another one. Victory was and is fleeting. What was the point of training constantly in Budo when the goal was an unlasting illusion?
So pretty swiftly they realised that learning Budo for the purpose of fighting was a bad plan, and the goals of Japanese martial arts changed.* The question should not be "Which art is more effective?" or even "Which art would I be most effective with?" It is (yawn) "which art is RIGHT for me?" Martial arts can't make you invincible (ask a bomb) and these kind of questions shouldn't even arise.
(*I was reading about this in Kissomarus "spirit of aikido")
Thank you ChillzATL!!! I was wondering when someone would get around to asking that question! Very well put.
Kevin73, I now understand why you asked the "jab" question. Maybe train that question during free practise in your dojo....?
Stratcat comes through again with (I paraphrase) "It's not the martial art, it's the martial artist..." who decides a given situation. The answer that I hope all students come to after asking the Aikido vs ??? question for the first and last time.
See you on the mat!
George S. Ledyard
09-06-2000, 12:01 PM
How often are we going to be at a bar (where a good many fights get started these days) and bump into a drunk who happens to be 10 years into wing chun? Even in these situations, you aren't going to see the trained stylist fighting under controlled circumstances. What situation can you envision yourself having to face off with someone who might happen to be well trained in another art where it's more than a quick push and a few punches thrown? How many bar fights are going to have a trained boxer circling you throwing lead jabs, measuring you so he can knock your block off? I admit, there are rare situations where it might happen, but rare is the key word here, very rare. We don't live in an age of dojo vs dojo battles anymore.
There is always discussion about whether Aikido is a martial art. When I had the good forune to do some training with Ellis Amdur Sensei in some classical systems he defined "martial art" as training to fight another professional. That certainly was the model for the samurai. They were professional warriors who had every expectation that they would fight other samurai, warriors who had trained since childhood in the arts.
I was taught that Aikido was definitely a martial art though not limited to that alone. So when I train I do so to develop effective technique against the most skilled attackers I can practice against. Most systems of self defense are basically designed to be used in civilian situations in which the attacker may be dangerous but is not expected to be formally trained. These systems are inevitably simplified systems based on more sophisticated martial arts systems. They can be learned more quickly than a true martial art because they have been simplified but they have the disadvantage that against highly skilled attackers they are too simplistic. A classical ryuha was usually a complete system of mutiple weapons, empty hand, strategy etc. A swordsman wouold train , not only against other swordsmen but also against any weapon that a swordsman might encounter. Asking why you would practice Aikido against boxing techniques is like asking why a swordsman would practice against an opponent with a kusarigama or a jo.
In the classical days a student who had completed his training in a given system would often embark on a period of discovery in during which he would engage in challenges with practitioners from other styles. This allowed him to test his understanding against styles different from his own. O-Sensei clearly had the ability to do his technique regardless of the background of the opponent before him. We don't have other ryuha to test ourselves against any more. In fact we don't do challenges or competition. So the closest thing we have to assist us in developing the widest range of effective technique is to keep the Aikido training context but ask the uke to utilize non-standard attacks. Not to do this is to either give up on Aikido as a valid martial art altogether (which many people have done) or to train on the general principles of martial application without really researching their specific application in different types of confrontation. That may the choice of a given Aikido student but they should not be fooling themselves that they are doing Aikido as a martial art.
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