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earnest aikidoka
01-27-2015, 07:02 PM
First, I will define what I mean by striking or striking based arts.

Striking based martial arts differ from grappling/throwing on one simple characteristic, grabbing the opponents is not part of the main syllabus or curriculum. Karate for example has throws and other such takedowns, but its primary offence is applying force through the medium of a fist or leg rather than grab and throw. Judo is the opposite, where force is applied through the grips and the body as it drives into a throw or takedown.Therefore, when I say 'striking', I mean that the style or martial art focuses mainly on delivering force through a punch or kick, notwithstanding any throws or takedowns that may or may not exist in styles repertoire.

Based on this definition, It is my opinion that aikido is primarily a striking art. Now most people would likely point out the '90% atemi and 10% throws' quote from O Sensei, my opinion however, is that Aikido is and always was a striking martial art, akin to karate or boxing forms from both the East and West, rather than a grappling style as most aikidoka, me included, would believe. I will not go into detail here but I would state two of my main points regarding this belief.

Firstly, blending. The idea of blending in aikido is unique when compared to martial arts like judo or jujitsu as both these grappling arts do not have compliance when it comes to techniques training. Granted there may be some compliance when it came to katas or class, however judo for example, practices full resistance when it came to sparring. This is the same for any other similar art such as wrestling or brazilian jujitsu. No grappling art ever teaches 'blending' as Aikidoka understand it throughout the curriculum, sooner or later, resistance will be introduced leading up to full out combat.

However, martial arts like Tai Chi have drills and two man forms where both martial artists would not resist and fight, but blend and flow, these include drills like push hands, two man forms or sticky hands in Wing Chun, all of them espousing the same idea of blending and harmonizing so as to build sensitivity, all prevalent in boxing forms that focus on the 'internal' rather than the 'external' aspects of combat. This is one reason why I believe that Aikido is actually a striking art primarily, rather than a grappling art as most aikidoka have believed.

The second reason is the techniques used in Aikido. As most aikidoka who have tried to use Aikido in combat could attest, trying to apply a kotegaeshi or a nikyo is nigh on impossible, especially if the opponent is bigger and hell-bent on not getting locked in the first place. This is not because the techniques do not work, but it is due to the way we are taught to apply them. A grappler would get in close and use clinches and other such techniques to set up the lock. Aikidoka do not do that, most of the set ups for the locks are unrealistic and involve the opponent over-committing to an attack, which is why when we attempt to apply these techniques in real life, it usually devolves into a wrestling scuffle that is almost childish to look at.

So why do we use such unrealistic training methods in regards to entry? Surely if we were to execute a throw or lock we would use the same methods as ALL grappling arts would use when setting up their throws and takedowns? Two reasons come to mind in regards to this question. One, Aikido is bullshit, which any aikidoka would shoot down in the blink of an eye. Or two, aikido is not a grappling art in the first place.

To describe how each of the techniques are actually striking techniques would be impossible. But I would like to point out that firstly, Aikido's ideas on footwork, speed and timing are based around striking rhythm and movement. Secondly, most of the entering movements are not practical if one were to try to apply a throw, one need only look at judo to see what is a proper throw set-up. However, if one were to see them as set-ups for strikes to vital points or counter-BLOWS rather than counter-THROWS. I believe that it will begin to make a tad more sense for any aikidoka wondering what the heck is going on.

This is just a short preview of an essay I am going to write in regards to my opinion. That essay would be a little more detailed with examples of technical applications. I will leave a link to the essay when it is done.

lbb
01-27-2015, 07:13 PM
I've never thought of aikido as a grappling art. We're often told not to grab. We don't train in grappling techniques. Nor do we train in striking techniques.

Erick Mead
01-27-2015, 07:56 PM
I tend to agree, generally. It strikes me (:D ) that the difference of aikido from conventional striking arts is that the mechanism is not blunt force impact, but cut and thrust. Where karate would have an impact, aikido creates a shear. This aspect has consequences to the mechanics of action. Where impact creates linear reaction mechanics, shear creates spirals and torsion.

Cliff Judge
01-27-2015, 09:59 PM
I think your striking/grappling dichotomy only applies to sports martial arts. Unless there are rules that stipulate how you are allowed to deliver force, there is no sense in limiting your options. Whether you are looking at civilian self-defense systems (Tai Chi, Karate, or jujutsu in the late Edo period) or warrior traditions, the conceptual vocabulary dealing with delivery and reception of force is way more complex than "you can punch and kick, or you can pick 'em up and throw 'em!"

The physical techniques that are trained in a particular martial art are not a really important defining characteristic, either.

I think Aikido aligns better with the older warrior traditions of Japan than with modern sport fighting arts. it makes more sense if you look at it as a distant cousin of a sogo bujutsu school than as a pugilistic or wrestling type system.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:23 AM
@Cliff Judge

I do not mean striking and grappling in the fighting sense but in the context of what we should aim for in the process of training. Presently alot of aikidoka are training with the thought that aikido is some form of grappling or wrestling art when in fact we should be gearing towards being able to strike instead of focusing on the grabbing aspect of training.

I disagree on the point of importance of technique, not in a practical combative sense, but in the sense of training, if we do not know what we are training in or for, it would most likely result in stagnation of a martial art. It is the reason I think, why most martial arts are seen as irrelevant to this day and age.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:25 AM
I've never thought of aikido as a grappling art. We're often told not to grab. We don't train in grappling techniques. Nor do we train in striking techniques.

Which is the point, we should see aikido as a striking art and train towards that.

NagaBaba
01-28-2015, 09:25 AM
@Cliff Judge

I do not mean striking and grappling in the fighting sense but in the context of what we should aim for in the process of training. Presently alot of aikidoka are training with the thought that aikido is some form of grappling or wrestling art when in fact we should be gearing towards being able to strike instead of focusing on the grabbing aspect of training.

I disagree on the point of importance of technique, not in a practical combative sense, but in the sense of training, if we do not know what we are training in or for, it would most likely result in stagnation of a martial art. It is the reason I think, why most martial arts are seen as irrelevant to this day and age.

I completely disagree with your thesis. You are mixing up principles (90% ATEMI 10% IRIMI) with actual techniques (striking in the vital points). Aikido techniques are based on the sword as S.Takeda was a phenomenal swordsman. Actually execution of each aikido technique is in every aspect (position, distance, footwork, timing power generation etc.) similar to cutting with a sword.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 09:41 AM
I completely disagree with your thesis. You are mixing up principles (90% ATEMI 10% IRIMI) with actual techniques (striking in the vital points). Aikido techniques are based on the sword as S.Takeda was a phenomenal swordsman. Actually execution of each aikido technique is in every aspect (position, distance, footwork, timing power generation etc.) similar to cutting with a sword.

And you use a sword as a striking or offensive weapon. So that actually supports my thesis does it not? Aikido is in essence a striking art using principles of swordwork instead of the pugilistic styles that is prevalent in modern combat.

In Bajiquan, fist techniques and spear combat are intricately linked, in the show kung fu quest baji masters prided themselves on spear work. this, in a way, shows the link between weapons and fist techniques. Relating it back to aikido, sword techniques and principles are applied to bare handed concepts. This supports my view that aikido is primarily striking rather than grappling.

lbb
01-28-2015, 09:42 AM
Which is the point, we should see aikido as a striking art and train towards that.

Why? Why should we "see aikido as a striking art"? I've trained in striking arts; aikido is not really like them except, perhaps, in a rather intellectualized sense (and at that level, it's equally "like" many other things as much as a "striking art"). How does it help our training to force aikido into this "striking art" label? Why not just leave the labels out -- it's not as if you get extra points for them, after all -- and just seeing aikido as what it is, without labels?

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 09:54 AM
Why? Why should we "see aikido as a striking art"? I've trained in striking arts; aikido is not really like them except, perhaps, in a rather intellectualized sense (and at that level, it's equally "like" many other things as much as a "striking art"). How does it help our training to force aikido into this "striking art" label? Why not just leave the labels out -- it's not as if you get extra points for them, after all -- and just seeing aikido as what it is, without labels?

This is a personal thing, not just for me but for aikidoka in general. If one wishes to train without labels, train for the sake of training as in health, general fitness, hobby or what have you then go for it.

But for martial artists like me, aikido is first and foremost a martial art, which means that it is effective for combat in any situation, and if we want to make aikido effective, we need to understand in what context is aikido meant to be used. Boxers are effective because they know what are their strengths, and work to maximize that strength to the fullest. Same for BJJ, Muay Thai etc. If we wish to make any martial art, aikido or otherwise combat effective, we need to know what exactly are the principles meant for when the shit hits the fan so that we can focus our training effectively. Otherwise, we are just training pointlessly, which to me is an epic waste of time. Although others may beg to differ and I won't contend on that, because like I said, reasons for training are personal.

Cliff Judge
01-28-2015, 10:30 AM
If we wish to make any martial art, aikido or otherwise combat effective, we need to know what exactly are the principles meant for when the shit hits the fan so that we can focus our training effectively.

This is exactly why I think you have gone off the reservation with this "Aikido as striking art" thing.

NagaBaba
01-28-2015, 10:31 AM
And you use a sword as a striking or offensive weapon. So that actually supports my thesis does it not? Aikido is in essence a striking art using principles of swordwork instead of the pugilistic styles that is prevalent in modern combat.

In Bajiquan, fist techniques and spear combat are intricately linked, in the show kung fu quest baji masters prided themselves on spear work. this, in a way, shows the link between weapons and fist techniques. Relating it back to aikido, sword techniques and principles are applied to bare handed concepts. This supports my view that aikido is primarily striking rather than grappling.

Did you ever practice a sword? You donít strike with sword, you CUT. This is completely different world in every aspect from striking. It have nothing to do with offensive or defensive, now you are mixing up with strategy and tactics :)

lbb
01-28-2015, 10:44 AM
This is a personal thing, not just for me but for aikidoka in general. If one wishes to train without labels, train for the sake of training as in health, general fitness, hobby or what have you then go for it.

Meaning if we don't buy your labels, or even the need for labeling in general, we're training for "health, general fitness, hobby or what have you"?

But for martial artists like me, aikido is first and foremost a martial art, which means that it is effective for combat in any situation, and if we want to make aikido effective, we need to understand in what context is aikido meant to be used.

You've just contradicted yourself, first saying that aikido is "effective for combat in any situation" and then that "we need to understand in what context is aikido meant to be used". Any situation? How does aikido do against IEDs? Fuel-air bombs? Bow and arrow at fifty paces?

And then there's your appropriation of the term "martial artist" as if you were the one to decide what that is, and what a martial artist's concerns need to be. Evidently, you feel that to be "martial artists", we must first and foremost be concerned with the arbitrary category into which our martial art fits. This, to me, is like saying that the effectiveness of a truck for hauling dirt depends on the color of its paint.

Boxers are effective because they know what are their strengths, and work to maximize that strength to the fullest. Same for BJJ, Muay Thai etc.

None of which depends on deciding which pigeonhole to jam your "martial art" into.

If we wish to make any martial art, aikido or otherwise combat effective, we need to know what exactly are the principles meant for when the shit hits the fan so that we can focus our training effectively.

That's fine, although I'd submit to you that there are many varieties and volumes of shit for which aikido is quite useless. But it's transparently false that people must have a theoretical understanding of principles in order to do something. You can drive a car, I assume, but how much do you know about internal combustion engines? You've been walking all your life; can you describe in detail the anatomy of your legs? A theoretical understanding may assist your understanding if applied appropriately, but it's not necessary -- much less labeling.

Otherwise, we are just training pointlessly, which to me is an epic waste of time. Although others may beg to differ and I won't contend on that, because like I said, reasons for training are personal.

No, we're not training pointlessly. You may not get the point, but that doesn't mean that there isn't one.

kewms
01-28-2015, 11:14 AM
And you use a sword as a striking or offensive weapon. So that actually supports my thesis does it not? Aikido is in essence a striking art using principles of swordwork instead of the pugilistic styles that is prevalent in modern combat.

No, a sword -- at least a traditional Japanese sword -- is NOT a "striking" weapon. It is a cutting/slicing weapon, as you would quickly discover if you handled a live blade for more than a few seconds. Try to "strike" with it, and it's likely to either bounce off the target or get stuck in it. Slice, and the edge glides right through.

Katherine

kewms
01-28-2015, 11:26 AM
Might I suggest that your time might be more productively spent in training, rather than in analysis?

Katherine

jonreading
01-28-2015, 12:00 PM
A couple of things to consider:
1. Aikido is an "aiki" art. I think the best categorization would be that.
2. You have established several scenarios of aikido that are probably (unfortunately) true, but not the embodiment of the art. I am not sure if this is intentional but it certainly sets up some number of incorrect conclusions.
3. Much of the curriculum of aikido is based upon a variety of initial movements, some body controls and some strikes. Some styles also use weapons, which have their own properties. I would look rather at the variety of contact with which aikido trains, not necessarily a specific attack.

Janet Rosen
01-28-2015, 12:06 PM
But for martial artists like me, aikido is first and foremost a martial art, which means that it is effective for combat in any situation....

Regardless of reasons for training, I disagree with your assertion or thesis that a martial art is by definition effective for combat in any situation (lances against napalm?).
In fact each martial art by definition is a system, with its own curriculum and principles, and will have unique strengths and weaknesses based on its focus.
To call a sword an implement for striking is I think to misunderstand the use of the sword.
At root, your basic fallacy is assumption of dualism: "a martial art must be grappling or striking."

Timothy WK
01-28-2015, 12:45 PM
Ellis Amdur also brought to my attention O Sensei's words: "Aikido is 90% atemi". According to him, understanding it in a way that "Aikido is 90% of strikes" is mistaken, because if one develops what he calls the "Aiki body", one should be able to develop power, perform transfers of forces, and even apply percussion using any body part, and in any position. Philippe Gouttard recently explained to me that since etymologically, atemi is the union of two words: ateru (touch / reach / hit) and mi (body), one should consider that one is executing an atemi every time one touches a partner. We thus find the idea that the essential art of the technique is considered an atemi.
http://www.guillaumeerard.com/aikido/articles/the-origin-and-purpose-of-solo-practice-in-aikido

phitruong
01-28-2015, 01:12 PM
http://www.guillaumeerard.com/aikido/articles/the-origin-and-purpose-of-solo-practice-in-aikido

i was going to mention Ellis Amdur's Taikyoku Aikido video. it's quite interesting with his presentation of atemi hidden in plain sight within aikido practices. the question for the OP is do you recognize it or not? does your aikido practice understand it or not? my aikido practice, through Saotome sensei lineage https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjk_cLB8yHw, is quite flexible in term of what can and cannot.

jurasketu
01-28-2015, 01:27 PM
Man. Maybe I misread the responses here, but I think I see a lot of unnecessary vitriol towards the OP regardless of the merit of his arguments. If we want to promote thoughtful discussion on Aikiweb, I think we need not to be so dismissive and snarky. Just saying.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 02:59 PM
This is exactly why I think you have gone off the reservation with this "Aikido as striking art" thing.

Because I decided to use a my own words as it were? :)

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:07 PM
Did you ever practice a sword? You don't strike with sword, you CUT. This is completely different world in every aspect from striking. It have nothing to do with offensive or defensive, now you are mixing up with strategy and tactics :)

How do you get your sword to cut the opponent? Standing at a distance and swinging wildly? Or using footwork, timing, agility and mental strength? A sword cuts, a fist hits, truly here is a difference. However, does the principle behind behind getting your sword to the target or the fist to the face differ? On a technical level perhaps, but when one looks deeper, the principles are the same. That is why all traditional martial arts incorporate weapons in the training, because what one does with the fist will translate into how one uses a weapon. I am not talking about strategy and tactics here, I am talking about training and how one goes about preparing one's body to utilize effectively, strategy and tactics. By training in weapons, one improves his fist technique. There is a correlation between the two areas and as aikidoka or any other martial artist, this is something that should not be neglected.

Cliff Judge
01-28-2015, 03:15 PM
Because I decided to use a my own words as it were? :)

No, I just think if you focus on moving and organizing your body in such a way that you could deliver strikes, you will work against your goal of developing the effective Aikido you want.

How do you get your sword to cut the opponent? Standing at a distance and swinging wildly? Or using footwork, timing, agility and mental strength? A sword cuts, a fist hits, truly here is a difference. However, does the principle behind behind getting your sword to the target or the fist to the face differ? On a technical level perhaps, but when one looks deeper, the principles are the same. That is why all traditional martial arts incorporate weapons in the training, because what one does with the fist will translate into how one uses a weapon. I am not talking about strategy and tactics here, I am talking about training and how one goes about preparing one's body to utilize effectively, strategy and tactics. By training in weapons, one improves his fist technique. There is a correlation between the two areas and as aikidoka or any other martial artist, this is something that should not be neglected.

At the level where the principles are the same, grappling is the same too.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:36 PM
Meaning if we don't buy your labels, or even the need for labeling in general, we're training for "health, general fitness, hobby or what have you"?

Labels are what people want to place on what they wish to do. By saying that you wish to train in aikido, you are already labeling yourself. When you say 'I want to train for (x) reason." Doesn't that label you as training for that specific reason? But then I may be wrong as I did not really understand that point :p Sincere apologies for that.

You've just contradicted yourself, first saying that aikido is "effective for combat in any situation" and then that "we need to understand in what context is aikido meant to be used". Any situation? How does aikido do against IEDs? Fuel-air bombs? Bow and arrow at fifty paces?

Aikido is a martial art, which means that it was used in battlefield situations way back when. Not bare-handed mind, but alongside weapons, formations and any of the other techniques that concerned military affairs in the day. To translate a martial art effectively from ancient battlefields to modern battlefields is not impossible, but to do so one must understand how the martial art worked, once we understand the principle, we can adapt it to suit whatever situation we face. IEDs? Ukemi maybe to absorb the shock of the fall if you are blown into the air? Bombs? situational awareness perhaps? Bow and arrow? That is a bit harder and depends on circumstances, but stepping off the line of fire would help yes? The possibilities are endless, but to break form, one must first understand the form. Which is why we need to understand the fundamental principle of aikido in order to translate it effectively.

And then there's your appropriation of the term "martial artist" as if you were the one to decide what that is, and what a martial artist's concerns need to be. Evidently, you feel that to be "martial artists", we must first and foremost be concerned with the arbitrary category into which our martial art fits. This, to me, is like saying that the effectiveness of a truck for hauling dirt depends on the color of its paint.

I don't decide what is a 'martial artist', but we are practicing 'martial arts', which I do not think makes us dancers... I'm not sure though... Could be wrong. Your analogy is a tad off. It is the difference between using a car to haul dirt and a truck to run races. A boxer knows that his strengths lie in his punches, so he focuses on punching, and in a combat situation, he does not suddenly kick or try to grapple. So as aikidoka, if we do not even know how our techniques are to be applied in a combat situation, it would be like turning up at the Singapore formula 1 night race with a pick-up truck.

None of which depends on deciding which pigeonhole to jam your "martial art" into.

:confused:

That's fine, although I'd submit to you that there are many varieties and volumes of shit for which aikido is quite useless. But it's transparently false that people must have a theoretical understanding of principles in order to do something. You can drive a car, I assume, but how much do you know about internal combustion engines? You've been walking all your life; can you describe in detail the anatomy of your legs? A theoretical understanding may assist your understanding if applied appropriately, but it's not necessary -- much less labeling.

If you were driving for general purposes, then you do not need to know about engines. But what about if you are a mechanic? I may have been walking all my life, but if I need to help people to walk after an injury, I would need to know anatomy would I not? This then is the difference between training for leisure, and training to bring your art to the next level.

No, we're not training pointlessly. You may not get the point, but that doesn't mean that there isn't one.

Perhaps I put it wrongly, the term pointlessly refers to people like fighters, who need to focus on training what works, people who want to teach martial arts, in which case they need to know what we are training and why we are doing so, so that they may pass on the art to the next generation, and idiots like me who hold delusions of bringing the aikido to the next level because of passion and love for the art, in which case, I need to know what the path was, so that I might forge the trail that is to be.

I'm poetic, apologies. :p

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:38 PM
Might I suggest that your time might be more productively spent in training, rather than in analysis?

Katherine

and what then do you hope to achieve with training?

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:43 PM
A couple of things to consider:
1. Aikido is an "aiki" art. I think the best categorization would be that.
2. You have established several scenarios of aikido that are probably (unfortunately) true, but not the embodiment of the art. I am not sure if this is intentional but it certainly sets up some number of incorrect conclusions.
3. Much of the curriculum of aikido is based upon a variety of initial movements, some body controls and some strikes. Some styles also use weapons, which have their own properties. I would look rather at the variety of contact with which aikido trains, not necessarily a specific attack.

1) What is 'Aiki'. Its one thing to say it if you have been training aikido for decades and your understanding is so high, it passes back to simple. And saying it because we don't know what aikido is and are just parroting our senseis, all respect due to them of course.

2) I just feel that it is rather rubbish that an aikidoka could not hold his own against a untrained but resisting opponent. Either we are training wrongly or we have been wasting our time, which is nonsense of course.

3) Variety of contract?

Jonathan
01-28-2015, 03:47 PM
I agree with Robin about the snarky and dismissive responses to the OP's thoughts. Dial it down a bit, people. Sheesh!

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:49 PM
Regardless of reasons for training, I disagree with your assertion or thesis that a martial art is by definition effective for combat in any situation (lances against napalm?).
In fact each martial art by definition is a system, with its own curriculum and principles, and will have unique strengths and weaknesses based on its focus.
To call a sword an implement for striking is I think to misunderstand the use of the sword.
At root, your basic fallacy is assumption of dualism: "a martial art must be grappling or striking."

Why is everyone bringing in napalm and other weapons of mass destruction? Seriously? Why not talk about nuclear bombs while we are at it?

Each martial art is a system with a purpose. Kenjutsu's purpose is to use a sword. Sojutsu, spear. karate, the body as whole weapon and so on and so forth. What is aikido's purpose? we train ikkyo to gokyo, we practice shiho nage, irimi nage, standing and kneeling waza, and ukemi but for what purpose? What do we aim to do with all that training? That's what I classed martial arts according to grappling and striking, not as categories, but as to their primary focus that is being trained towards.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:52 PM
i was going to mention Ellis Amdur's Taikyoku Aikido video. it's quite interesting with his presentation of atemi hidden in plain sight within aikido practices. the question for the OP is do you recognize it or not? does your aikido practice understand it or not? my aikido practice, through Saotome sensei lineage https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjk_cLB8yHw, is quite flexible in term of what can and cannot.

Hidden atemi? good! how many dojos actually train atemi as a focus rather than as a by the way to the main aikido techniques. I am putting across that atemi should be the main aim of aikido training and throws come from atemi, rather than the other way round.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 03:58 PM
Man. Maybe I misread the responses here, but I think I see a lot of unnecessary vitriol towards the OP regardless of the merit of his arguments. If we want to promote thoughtful discussion on Aikiweb, I think we need not to be so dismissive and snarky. Just saying.

Thank you.

earnest aikidoka
01-28-2015, 04:12 PM
No, I just think if you focus on moving and organizing your body in such a way that you could deliver strikes, you will work against your goal of developing the effective Aikido you want.

But what if Aikido was a striking art in the first place?

In most of the recorded duels between in Aikido annals involving O sensei, has it ever been on record that he actively threw opponents in the manner of grabbing and throwing? Or did the throws just... happened? We see a lot of demonstrations where O sensei would utilize sweeping, soft movements to fling ukes around but is that how O sensei actually fought?

Another thought, in one of Gozo Shioda's biographies it was recorded that O Sensei spoke of Shioda as having the 'strongest basics amongst his students'. Now in demonstrations, Gozo Shioda never utilized the sweeping movements that characterised his sensei's technique, instead his demonstration repertoire is all atemi or very straight, no-nonsense movements. Could this mean that aikido fundamentally was a striking art?

Very circumstantial I know, but more research will be done definitely.

At the level where the principles are the same, grappling is the same too.

The rhythm of a karate match is very different from a judo or wrestling match I'm afraid.

phitruong
01-28-2015, 04:43 PM
Hidden atemi? good! how many dojos actually train atemi as a focus rather than as a by the way to the main aikido techniques.

why would you care how many dojo train in atemi? budo isn't a group thing. it's mostly personal, as in, for that person only.

Erick Mead
01-28-2015, 04:57 PM
A sword cuts, a fist hits, truly here is a difference. However, does the principle behind behind getting your sword to the target or the fist to the face differ? On a technical level perhaps, but when one looks deeper, the principles are the same. I support your broader observation about the primacy of striking -- even in the non-striking applications -- wholeheartedly. But at the point of drawing equivalence \between the principle of the fists and that of the sword, I would strongly argue that they are NOT the same and it is that distinction that drives the difference of action involved in the respective arts. A fist impacts bluntly, a sword penetrates and separates. Two entirely different mechanisms of action. And the underlying physics and mechanics of the sword -- not blunt impact -- operate in aikido, even when the sword is not actually present.

There is a correlation between the two areas [weapons and empty hand] and as aikidoka or any other martial artist, this is something that should not be neglected.On this I agree but my ordering is the inverse, and the nature of the sword defines aiki. Even the work with the jo is applying the principles of the sword in a different medium as taijutsu applies it in yet another.

Another way of looking at it is that it is simply aiki being applied across all three domains in aikido, which is not wrong -- but apart from the unnecessary tautology - the sword is the source, in my view.

kewms
01-28-2015, 06:42 PM
Aikido is a martial art, which means that it was used in battlefield situations way back when. Not bare-handed mind, but alongside weapons, formations and any of the other techniques that concerned military affairs in the day.

You might want to familiarize yourself with the history of aikido....

Katherine

kewms
01-28-2015, 06:46 PM
and what then do you hope to achieve with training?

The question is actually what you hope to achieve through your analysis. It seems to me that a deeper understanding of the art in general, and of its relationships with sword, striking, and grappling traditions in particular, can best be discovered through practice.

Katherine

kewms
01-28-2015, 06:52 PM
Each martial art is a system with a purpose. Kenjutsu's purpose is to use a sword. Sojutsu, spear. karate, the body as whole weapon and so on and so forth. What is aikido's purpose? we train ikkyo to gokyo, we practice shiho nage, irimi nage, standing and kneeling waza, and ukemi but for what purpose? What do we aim to do with all that training? That's what I classed martial arts according to grappling and striking, not as categories, but as to their primary focus that is being trained towards.

The focus (道) toward which aikido (合気道) trains is to join (合) with the energy (気) of the situation in order to bring it back into balance. Grappling and striking are both means toward that end.

Katherine

Jonathan
01-28-2015, 08:04 PM
The focus (道) toward which aikido (合気道) trains is to join (合) with the energy (気) of the situation in order to bring it back into balance. Grappling and striking are both means toward that end.

Well, this is one focus, but not the only one - or even necessarily the primary one - of Aikido. And how do you see the "energy of a situation" brought back into balance with, say, a knock-out punch to the face of your attacker, or a neck-breaking throw of your enemy? :confused:

Janet Rosen
01-28-2015, 08:04 PM
Each martial art is a system with a purpose. Kenjutsu's purpose is to use a sword. Sojutsu, spear. karate, the body as whole weapon and so on and so forth. What is aikido's purpose? we train ikkyo to gokyo, we practice shiho nage, irimi nage, standing and kneeling waza, and ukemi but for what purpose? What do we aim to do with all that training? That's what I classed martial arts according to grappling and striking, not as categories, but as to their primary focus that is being trained towards.

Still a false division. Sorry. Complete traditional martial arts systems (koryu) include empty hand, weapons, use of voice, etc. It is a false dichotomy to categorize them as focused on grappling vs striking; I also think it won't get you far to categorize an art as being "about" either grappling or striking. However if it works for you to investigate in this way, have at it...just note that many of us would consider it a blind alley.

Modern martial arts like karate, aikido, judo were never battleground martial arts.

lbb
01-28-2015, 08:47 PM
Labels are what people want to place on what they wish to do. By saying that you wish to train in aikido, you are already labeling yourself. When you say 'I want to train for (x) reason." Doesn't that label you as training for that specific reason? But then I may be wrong as I did not really understand that point :p Sincere apologies for that.

Hey, not to worry. The reason I replied as I did -- and I admit I may be very unusual in this -- is that I don't really train for a reason. I don't have some kind of goal or objective. For me, it's "the doing of the thing". And yeah, martial effectiveness, striving for same, is part of that (among other things, there are many parts). But it's not a goal as such, and it's not why I train. I dunno, maybe that's all just a lot of semantic babble. Maybe I'm completely aimless.

Aikido is a martial art, which means that it was used in battlefield situations way back when.

I don't think this is historically true, but I suppose it depends on what you define as "aikido". The name itself certainly hasn't been around that long.

lbb
01-28-2015, 08:54 PM
In most of the recorded duels between in Aikido annals involving O sensei, has it ever been on record that he actively threw opponents in the manner of grabbing and throwing? Or did the throws just... happened? We see a lot of demonstrations where O sensei would utilize sweeping, soft movements to fling ukes around but is that how O sensei actually fought?

There are other options than "grabbing and throwing" and "the throws just happened". In my admittedly limited experience, aikido techniques are mostly (entirely?) expressed in those other options.

Maybe the word "throw" is throwing you off, if you'll pardon a pun. It implies that I pick something up and fling it through the air. Consider, instead, what happen if you come running at me and you encounter my arm at head height -- not a strike, necessarily, but there and too solid to ignore. Imagine the result. Did I "throw" you? I certainly didn't grab you.

kewms
01-29-2015, 12:54 AM
Well, this is one focus, but not the only one - or even necessarily the primary one - of Aikido. And how do you see the "energy of a situation" brought back into balance with, say, a knock-out punch to the face of your attacker, or a neck-breaking throw of your enemy? :confused:

Attacker lying on the ground unconscious is no longer attacking and therefore no longer contributing negative energy to the world.

Or, if you prefer more precise terminology, all of his kinetic energy has dissipated harmlessly.

Katherine

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 03:01 AM
why would you care how many dojo train in atemi? budo isn't a group thing. it's mostly personal, as in, for that person only.

But that person, learns from the dojo, and what the dojo teaches will stay with that person for the rest of his martial practice. All martial arts moves from the dojo, whether it be big, small or modern, therefore the practices in the dojo must be constantly examined for any flaws and weaknesses. Why do you think finding a good dojo is such a priority for martial artists?

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 04:12 AM
You might want to familiarize yourself with the history of aikido....

Katherine

Unless you are telling me aikido is not based of Daito-ryu aikijujitsu, which was taught by Takeda Sokaku to O sensei and that aikijujitsu does not have a lineage of perhaps 900 years starting from yoshitsune minamoto and that aikido was not developed from O sensei's studies in swordsmanship, spearmanship, and aikijujitsu and his experiences in Mongolia, against rifle wielding soldiers in the middle of a civil war where he developed a liver condition after being forced to drink salt water which plagued him to his dying day.

I'll concede that aikido is quite recent and it has deviated from aikijujitsu, but it's history is most definitely martial and in fact it has been used in modern military and law enforcement today, which are modern battlefields if nothing else. And if you are saying that that is wrong.

Fair enough:)

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 06:52 AM
There are other options than "grabbing and throwing" and "the throws just happened". In my admittedly limited experience, aikido techniques are mostly (entirely?) expressed in those other options.

Maybe the word "throw" is throwing you off, if you'll pardon a pun. It implies that I pick something up and fling it through the air. Consider, instead, what happen if you come running at me and you encounter my arm at head height -- not a strike, necessarily, but there and too solid to ignore. Imagine the result. Did I "throw" you? I certainly didn't grab you.

What is a strike? If not introducing one's face into another's hand? Why not call that a strike? A strike by any other name will bruise just as easily.

phitruong
01-29-2015, 07:42 AM
But that person, learns from the dojo, and what the dojo teaches will stay with that person for the rest of his martial practice. All martial arts moves from the dojo, whether it be big, small or modern, therefore the practices in the dojo must be constantly examined for any flaws and weaknesses. Why do you think finding a good dojo is such a priority for martial artists?

again, why do you care? and it's not about finding "good" dojo, but finding dojo that fits you.

if you look at O Sensei students, everyone of them did/does aikido differently from each other. same teacher, but different results. why? because each one of them favored a certain thing that fit with their personality. similar with foods. there are certain foods you like, some dislike. i'll bet that some foods i like but you would hate. the student finds the teacher that fit them. if you like atemi, then find the teacher(s) that favor atemi. as i said before, budo is a personal thing.

in my dojo, i do internal stuffs. folks in my dojo aren't interested in it, so i do my things. sometimes they asked why my aikido worked better than their. i said because i worked on these boring internal stuffs. i shown them some of the things i do. they shrugged and went back and did their things.

those who seek find.

jonreading
01-29-2015, 07:51 AM
1) What is 'Aiki'. Its one thing to say it if you have been training aikido for decades and your understanding is so high, it passes back to simple. And saying it because we don't know what aikido is and are just parroting our senseis, all respect due to them of course.

2) I just feel that it is rather rubbish that an aikidoka could not hold his own against a untrained but resisting opponent. Either we are training wrongly or we have been wasting our time, which is nonsense of course.

3) Variety of contract?

In this thread you reference Daito Ryu, so I assume you have some familiarity with aiki arts. The defining characteristic being the use of energy in interaction. And yes, there is a large number of people who are imitating seniors without success in learning aiki, but that does not change what is aiki. If you've never seen the color blue, how do you describe it to someone who has also never seen the color blue?

It is rubbish that more aikido people are not able to cross train with success. Again, pointing to training habits and people who are clearly not intended to cross train and exclaiming "see, they can't cross train" is not the best approach to that argument. And yes, I think there are training opportunities that are both a waste of time and being done incorrectly. You're looking very close at what is wrong in aikido, while not holding the same scrutiny for your comparative arts.

Contact. Aikido is an exploration of contact and interaction. If I have aiki, the manner in which my partner contacts me is not critical. Punch, kick, grab, tackle, whatever. I think the best way in which we define the interaction in aikido is contact. This is why we can perform the same core technique from a variety of initial movements. From one technique springs 1000, and all of that.

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 07:51 AM
Still a false division. Sorry. Complete traditional martial arts systems (koryu) include empty hand, weapons, use of voice, etc. It is a false dichotomy to categorize them as focused on grappling vs striking; I also think it won't get you far to categorize an art as being "about" either grappling or striking. However if it works for you to investigate in this way, have at it...just note that many of us would consider it a blind alley.

Modern martial arts like karate, aikido, judo were never battleground martial arts.

No martial art is ever a battleground martial art if you want to put it that way. All martial arts are focused towards preparing a soldier towards the use of weapons in war and the demands of a battlefield so martial arts as we know it are not battleground arts. Technically.

However, aikido at least, is being used in modern battlegrounds. Police forces, the Russian army and the Singapore Ghurka contingent if memory serves, so in that sense, aikido is a battlefield martial art. In practice.

You are right in the sense that traditional martial systems included all aspects of combat, however, there are still divisions as to how a throw is executed or a punch is thrown. Could one punch properly in a clinch? Can one clinch at punching range? Pankration involves multiple elements of combat and each must be understood seperately by pankrationists in order to bring it into a cohesive whole. If Aikido is a complete martial art, we need to understand its component parts before we could bring it together into something that transcends the divisions, and to understand the components we need to identify what exactly is 'striking' or techniques meant to be used as atemi, and 'grappling', techniques that is the traditional form of aikido.

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 08:05 AM
In this thread you reference Daito Ryu, so I assume you have some familiarity with aiki arts. The defining characteristic being the use of energy in interaction. And yes, there is a large number of people who are imitating seniors without success in learning aiki, but that does not change what is aiki. If you've never seen the color blue, how do you describe it to someone who has also never seen the color blue?

It is rubbish that more aikido people are not able to cross train with success. Again, pointing to training habits and people who are clearly not intended to cross train and exclaiming "see, they can't cross train" is not the best approach to that argument. And yes, I think there are training opportunities that are both a waste of time and being done incorrectly. You're looking very close at what is wrong in aikido, while not holding the same scrutiny for your comparative arts.

Contact. Aikido is an exploration of contact and interaction. If I have aiki, the manner in which my partner contacts me is not critical. Punch, kick, grab, tackle, whatever. I think the best way in which we define the interaction in aikido is contact. This is why we can perform the same core technique from a variety of initial movements. From one technique springs 1000, and all of that.

1) I think as intelligent practitioners of Aiki and aikido we should make the effort to explain what is aiki in proper, layman terms, to the best of our ability. This is how reasonable men think and aikido is a reasonable martial art.

2) Of course I am looking closely at aikido, I love it and I want to bring it higher, aikido is me and I am aikido, why would I not scrutinize the flaws in my own person to further my development?

3) One technique springs 1000. Very true, what is that one technique? From a punch, a thousand possibilities, from a tackle a thousand holds. But from what physical technique in aikido springs forth the thousands?

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 08:31 AM
again, why do you care? and it's not about finding "good" dojo, but finding dojo that fits you.

if you look at O Sensei students, everyone of them did/does aikido differently from each other. same teacher, but different results. why? because each one of them favored a certain thing that fit with their personality. similar with foods. there are certain foods you like, some dislike. i'll bet that some foods i like but you would hate. the student finds the teacher that fit them. if you like atemi, then find the teacher(s) that favor atemi. as i said before, budo is a personal thing.

in my dojo, i do internal stuffs. folks in my dojo aren't interested in it, so i do my things. sometimes they asked why my aikido worked better than their. i said because i worked on these boring internal stuffs. i shown them some of the things i do. they shrugged and went back and did their things.

those who seek find.

That is a rather personal question. Well I love aikido, and since dojos are the place where we learn aikido, shouldn't I care about what a dojo is teaching? Its not just about what suits others, but dojos are responsible for inspiring aikidoka to constantly train and improve, passing on a heritage that extends centuries, and teaching life lessons to the people who step through the doors. Even if it is for a day, even if it is for an hour, even if the student learns other martial arts, a minute spent on the mat should be a minute where one is exposed to a new possibilities and knowledge, this is a standard that all dojo should meet on a general basis, because the art we practice demands that standard, regardless of how we train.

It does not matter if you focus on internal or external, but the fundamentals must be there, if not, you are just doing yoga or some health thing, not martial arts. The martial aspects must be taught, even if you do not focus on them.

phitruong
01-29-2015, 08:42 AM
1) I think as intelligent practitioners of Aiki and aikido we should make the effort to explain what is aiki in proper, layman terms, to the best of our ability. This is how reasonable men think and aikido is a reasonable martial art.


the fact that we practicing aikido brings the whole intelligent thing in to question. if we are smart about it, we shouldn't go anywhere near it, but we are here.

men aren't reasonable or even rational which kinda questions the whole martial arts thing, which includes aikido. reasonable men shouldn't be wearing skirts, except for the scotts, but they have an excuse. reasonable men should spend time and money on foods, drinks, and comely member of the opposite sex or even the same.

then the whole question on the explanation of aiki. asking 10 aikido folks on aiki and you got 11 answers. there are threads about aiki on aikiweb that went back to the dawn of time, when men first step out of the cave, scratching their privates and wondering if left over mammoth still good for breakfast. aiki wars had been fought over aiki that burned down half the net, and the other half went looking for a place to carouse and be a public nuisance. many of us still have scars and in therapy with other uggly men armed that with uggly sticks with nails on them. we don't like to talk about it other than over a pint or two or three. you really don't want to know about aiki. i would suggest that you stick with "do", and perhaps, re and mi come along for the rescue.

lbb
01-29-2015, 08:58 AM
What is a strike? If not introducing one's face into another's hand? Why not call that a strike? A strike by any other name will bruise just as easily.

Well, now you're humpty dumptying, and I'm not really interested in playing that game. Have fun with it.

Jonathan
01-29-2015, 09:09 AM
Attacker lying on the ground unconscious is no longer attacking and therefore no longer contributing negative energy to the world.

Or, if you prefer more precise terminology, all of his kinetic energy has dissipated harmlessly.

And the balance in this? How does preventing one person's "negative energy" bring anything into balance? Why/how is dissipating an attacker's kinetic energy an act of bringing balance?

men aren't reasonable or even rational which kinda questions the whole martial arts thing, which includes aikido.

I think you have overstated - perhaps for humorous effect - the fact of the matter. Men may do things or think things that are not reasonable or rational but this by no means precludes them from ever being reasonable or rational, nor does it excuse them from making the effort to be so. I don't see my martial arts training as irrational or unreasonable. Quite the opposite, in fact.

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 09:10 AM
the fact that we practicing aikido brings the whole intelligent thing in to question. if we are smart about it, we shouldn't go anywhere near it, but we are here.

men aren't reasonable or even rational which kinda questions the whole martial arts thing, which includes aikido. reasonable men shouldn't be wearing skirts, except for the scotts, but they have an excuse. reasonable men should spend time and money on foods, drinks, and comely member of the opposite sex or even the same.

then the whole question on the explanation of aiki. asking 10 aikido folks on aiki and you got 11 answers. there are threads about aiki on aikiweb that went back to the dawn of time, when men first step out of the cave, scratching their privates and wondering if left over mammoth still good for breakfast. aiki wars had been fought over aiki that burned down half the net, and the other half went looking for a place to carouse and be a public nuisance. many of us still have scars and in therapy with other uggly men armed that with uggly sticks with nails on them. we don't like to talk about it other than over a pint or two or three. you really don't want to know about aiki. i would suggest that you stick with "do", and perhaps, re and mi come along for the rescue.

Uh?

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 09:16 AM
Well, now you're humpty dumptying, and I'm not really interested in playing that game. Have fun with it.

Alright, apologies. I have a habit of playing with words abit, lets talk academically. What then is a strike? if what you described as putting an arm out and someone running into it is not a strike or throw, what is it?

Erick Mead
01-29-2015, 09:20 AM
... there are threads about aiki on aikiweb that went back to the dawn of time, when men first step out of the cave, scratching their privates and wondering if left over mammoth still good for breakfast. aiki wars had been fought over aiki that burned down half the net, and the other half went looking for a place to carouse and be a public nuisance. many of us still have scars and in therapy with other uggly men armed that with uggly sticks with nails on them. we don't like to talk about it other than over a pint or two or three. you really don't want to know about aiki. i would suggest that you stick with "do", and perhaps, re and mi come along for the rescue.

HEY, MAN!!! The first rule of Aiki Club is, you don't talk about AikiClub ... !
:p

NagaBaba
01-29-2015, 09:26 AM
How do you get your sword to cut the opponent? Standing at a distance and swinging wildly? Or using footwork, timing, agility and mental strength? A sword cuts, a fist hits, truly here is a difference. However, does the principle behind behind getting your sword to the target or the fist to the face differ? On a technical level perhaps, but when one looks deeper, the principles are the same. That is why all traditional martial arts incorporate weapons in the training, because what one does with the fist will translate into how one uses a weapon. I am not talking about strategy and tactics here, I am talking about training and how one goes about preparing one's body to utilize effectively, strategy and tactics. By training in weapons, one improves his fist technique. There is a correlation between the two areas and as aikidoka or any other martial artist, this is something that should not be neglected.

As somebody already pointed out, when you cut with sword, in the moment of the contact there is a slicing movement, you are not pushing like in striking. This is rather basic knowledge. You seem to lack it. Generation of the power inside of human body for slice with sword is very different then when striking with fist. Consequently you have to use different principles to create such power.

That is why your thesis about aikido as striking art is fundamentally wrong IMO.

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 09:37 AM
As somebody already pointed out, when you cut with sword, in the moment of the contact there is a slicing movement, you are not pushing like in striking. This is rather basic knowledge. You seem to lack it. Generation of the power inside of human body for slice with sword is very different then when striking with fist. Consequently you have to use different principles to create such power.

That is why your thesis about aikido as striking art is fundamentally wrong IMO.

I believe that aikido is an art that has managed to combine sword principles with hand to hand combat, and that us what I wish to explore, through this and other means. Though we may strike with the fist, we move with the sword and aikido combines both these into a total martial art, and that is IMO :)

lbb
01-29-2015, 10:04 AM
Alright, apologies. I have a habit of playing with words abit, lets talk academically. What then is a strike? if what you described as putting an arm out and someone running into it is not a strike or throw, what is it?

Hansel, you've got no need to apologize. This is just not a discussion/debate that I'm at all interested in, that's all. It has no resolution, and leads nowhere that I'm interested in going. I simply don't care to argue the nuances of what is and isn't a strike. I have my own commonsense definition of it, and that's good enough for me. If I'm running down a trail and I hit a tree limb, the tree limb didn't "strike" me, as I see it. You see differently. OK. I don't accept your definition and I don't care if you accept mine, so there's nothing more to talk about.

kewms
01-29-2015, 10:45 AM
I'll concede that aikido is quite recent and it has deviated from aikijujitsu, but it's history is most definitely martial and in fact it has been used in modern military and law enforcement today, which are modern battlefields if nothing else. And if you are saying that that is wrong.


I am saying that aikido, itself, has never been a battlefield art. To claim that it is because it derives from older arts is to completely ignore Ueshiba Sensei's contributions, and in particular the many many changes in aikido between his experiences in Mongolia -- his last personal battlefield experience -- and his death 65 years later.

The differences between modern law enforcement and any battlefield -- modern or otherwise -- are so vast that attempting to equate them is likely to lead to disastrous mistakes in both strategy and tactics. (See many recent US examples.)

Katherine

kewms
01-29-2015, 10:47 AM
3) One technique springs 1000. Very true, what is that one technique? From a punch, a thousand possibilities, from a tackle a thousand holds. But from what physical technique in aikido springs forth the thousands?

Ikkyo.

Katherine

phitruong
01-29-2015, 11:20 AM
Ikkyo.

Katherine

nooooooo not ikkyo! anything but ikkyo! that's too horrible a punishment! we usually beat up folks who suggesting ikkyo! although i heard Saotome sensei said "ikkyo for life!" which i was going to make a t-shirt with that quote, after he dropped a bunch of different versions of ikkyo on me.

jonreading
01-29-2015, 11:40 AM
1) I think as intelligent practitioners of Aiki and aikido we should make the effort to explain what is aiki in proper, layman terms, to the best of our ability. This is how reasonable men think and aikido is a reasonable martial art.

2) Of course I am looking closely at aikido, I love it and I want to bring it higher, aikido is me and I am aikido, why would I not scrutinize the flaws in my own person to further my development?

3) One technique springs 1000. Very true, what is that one technique? From a punch, a thousand possibilities, from a tackle a thousand holds. But from what physical technique in aikido springs forth the thousands?

First, I would argue that aikido is not a lay-art and that its education is not consumable in lay terms. Much like an advanced education, there is some necessary prior education that must exist. For me, that is a prior experience feeling aiki from someone who possesses it - It Has To Be Felt (IHTBF). I think part of aikido's problem is that there are plenty of people who will tell you what is aiki in proper, layman's terms to the best of their ability.

Scrutiny is not bad as long as it's applied evenly. To Phi's point, keep the interest in you and what you want to get out of aikido. Aikido is a big tent with plenty of people that want something different from their training. Most arts have strengths and weaknesses and most arts have some segment of the training population that does not represent the art.

Katherine beat me to the classic technique that comes to mind. For variety's sake, I'll say aiki is the one technique from which springs 10,000, which I believe is the actual quote.

kewms
01-29-2015, 12:24 PM
Katherine beat me to the classic technique that comes to mind. For variety's sake, I'll say aiki is the one technique from which springs 10,000, which I believe is the actual quote.

I would agree, except that I don't see aiki as a technique. It's a fundamental body skill.

Katherine

kewms
01-29-2015, 12:33 PM
First, I would argue that aikido is not a lay-art and that its education is not consumable in lay terms. Much like an advanced education, there is some necessary prior education that must exist.

I agree. My work involves "translating" very technical material for non-specialists. Without *some* level of prior understanding, the necessary simplification necessarily leaves the research I'm writing about sounding either obvious or silly. Same with aikido. I can't explain sub-wavelength optical lithography to someone with no prior understanding of optics, and I can't explain aiki to someone who isn't willing to get on the mat with a skilled teacher. At some point, it's a waste of everyone's time to try.

Katherine

kewms
01-29-2015, 12:42 PM
I believe that aikido is an art that has managed to combine sword principles with hand to hand combat, and that us what I wish to explore, through this and other means. Though we may strike with the fist, we move with the sword and aikido combines both these into a total martial art, and that is IMO :)

I think you've got it slightly backwards.

Empty hand techniques are what you do if you're unfortunate enough to lose or break your sword, or if you're in a situation where you don't have it handy.

That is, sword is not an evolution from empty hand, empty hand is an evolution from sword.

Katherine

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 03:25 PM
As interesting as this thread has become, I would like to set some parameters as to what I am hoping would be discussed.

The main topic is:

Was aikido meant to be a striking art in the first place? Based on the points I raised in the original post;

Whether you agree or disagree, please make sure that your points or comments link back to the above topic.

Any questions regarding my motivations for such a thread, my apparent lack of experience as some would say, any post that has stock answers that are pulled out of an aikido book, or one word answers like 'aikido is aiki' will be ignored and deleted once I figure out how to do it on this forum.

This is not meant to be a bashing on other people's beliefs and ideas, merely a chance to get people thinking and hopefully engage in some meaningful discussion that will help us all learn something. I admit my wrong in encouraging the derailment of this thread and apologize with promises that it will not happen again. Please abide by this or don't bother posting.

Thank you. :)

Erick Mead
01-29-2015, 03:37 PM
Uh?
The answer to the question "Uh ?" -- is almost always: "Phi."
... which I am sure he would have said had I not said it first...

:D

kewms
01-29-2015, 04:36 PM
Sorry, this is a public forum, not a blog or a Facebook post. You don't "own" the conversation and don't get to decide what responses are "allowed."

Katherine

Janet Rosen
01-29-2015, 05:18 PM
As interesting as this thread has become, I would like to set some parameters as to what I am hoping would be discussed.

The main topic is:

Was aikido meant to be a striking art in the first place? Based on the points I raised in the original post;

Whether you agree or disagree, please make sure that your points or comments link back to the above topic.

Any questions regarding my motivations for such a thread, my apparent lack of experience as some would say, any post that has stock answers that are pulled out of an aikido book, or one word answers like 'aikido is aiki' will be ignored and deleted once I figure out how to do it on this forum.

This is not meant to be a bashing on other people's beliefs and ideas, merely a chance to get people thinking and hopefully engage in some meaningful discussion that will help us all learn something. I admit my wrong in encouraging the derailment of this thread and apologize with promises that it will not happen again. Please abide by this or don't bother posting.

Thank you. :)

This IS a public forum; several of us have tried addressing your points from very specific logical or historical perspectives and it appears you simply want validation....as for how it is run, it is moderated by the owner/moderator for egregious nastiness and ad hominen attacks, and if he sees a thread really going off tangent, he may spin off a separate thread.
Personally, having made my point and found you unwilling to engage in a way I find productive, I am bowing out. I wish you the best in your training and your investigations - that is meant sincerely - and suggest you may want to ponder, keep training and investigating, and come back in 6 months or a year to let us know what you find.

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 06:49 PM
http://www.guillaumeerard.com/aikido/articles/the-origin-and-purpose-of-solo-practice-in-aikido

I would first like to ask for your pardon that I have failed to properly reply to you and your post. I have allowed myself to be distracted by replying non-essential comments and failed to notice the comments that are worth replying or pursuing.

The quote you placed about atemi from Guillemard is interesting and on the surface coincides with my views, could you perhaps elaborate on the quote? I am not entirely sure of its meaning.

earnest aikidoka
01-29-2015, 06:56 PM
I support your broader observation about the primacy of striking -- even in the non-striking applications -- wholeheartedly. But at the point of drawing equivalence \between the principle of the fists and that of the sword, I would strongly argue that they are NOT the same and it is that distinction that drives the difference of action involved in the respective arts. A fist impacts bluntly, a sword penetrates and separates. Two entirely different mechanisms of action. And the underlying physics and mechanics of the sword -- not blunt impact -- operate in aikido, even when the sword is not actually present.

On this I agree but my ordering is the inverse, and the nature of the sword defines aiki. Even the work with the jo is applying the principles of the sword in a different medium as taijutsu applies it in yet another.

Another way of looking at it is that it is simply aiki being applied across all three domains in aikido, which is not wrong -- but apart from the unnecessary tautology - the sword is the source, in my view.

1) but power generation in swinging a sword and power generation in throwing strike is the same in aikido right? Is that not why we train using shomen and yokomen bare-handed cuts? If we use the same hip and leg motion when striking with blade and empty hands, does that not indicate a link between knife hand strikes and punching? I won't speak about kicks because aikido traditionally does not talk much about kicks in general except in regards to defences against them.

Erick Mead
01-29-2015, 09:09 PM
1) but power generation in swinging a sword and power generation in throwing strike is the same in aikido right? Is that not why we train using shomen and yokomen bare-handed cuts? "To a point, Lord Copper, to a point..." -- which is a literary and diplomatic way of saying, "No." Cutting action is about seamless momentum, core stability, and a smoothly reducing radius of cut -- not "power" in the sense of maximizing impact force, which is the root principle of blunt striking -- and results in really bad cuts -- as in not cutting at all.

Truly efficient hand strikes and aikido strikes are for this reason in different universes. Shomenuchi is NOT a shuto strike (who strikes a hard skull with an open hand for criminy's sake!) One reason our striking is criticized from a fisticuff perspective is that it is (wrongly) assumed to supposed to be like them, when it isn't. The weapon aspect is always implied, and never absent -- shomenuchi is actually a length of rebar, a chain, tire iron, knife, a beer bottle... This is not the case in most striking arts, in which the weapons principles are largely handled as adjuncts -- here, it is the foundation -- even when not taught that way.

This is also the reason why aikido and aiki arts are not truly grappling arts either -- a knife cannot really be grappled. It's too damnably fast. A knife strike CAN be counterstruck safely in one way though, and it is on this principle that tanto-dori depends to work effectively when practicing aiki -- same as in the kihon waza. Strike and counterstrike must mesh -- like scissors -- and in that configuration,neither blade can harm the other. And so entry (irimi) MUST continue without ceasing, mirroring the other on a tangent -- because if you reverse action, the knife cuts you on the reversal as you withdraw. The only safe way is further in, and the only way to go continually inward in a finite space between opponents is a spiral.

If we use the same hip and leg motion when striking with blade and empty hands, does that not indicate a link between knife hand strikes and punching? Yes, in the sense they both involve the hand -- other than that -- not so much...

I won't speak about kicks because aikido traditionally does not talk much about kicks in general except in regards to defenses against them.Mainly,kicks have an advantage against a true hand-striking art -- but not in anything with a serious weapon -- a piece of rebar, bat, staff or even a 2x4 will pretty much end the kicking portion of our show -- and probably destroy the kicker's mobility into the bargain.

Jonathan
01-29-2015, 09:26 PM
I'm not convinced Aikido was intended to be primarily a striking art. This isn't to imply, though, that striking plays no role at all in Aikido. I believe striking is vital to the effective application of Aikido technique. Especially against any skilled martial artist, it is a fantasy to believe one could apply Aikido technique without the distracting, confusing and corrupting effect of a well-placed blow (or cut, if one is fussy about the relationship between Aikido and sword-work). But the Aikido I was taught revolved around blending, entering, spiraling and locks, pins and throws, not striking. We learned the three basic cutting strikes derived from sword-work, but no hooks, jabs, crosses, straights, or combinations thereof. And as I have been exposed over the years to a broader spectrum of Aikido, I have observed that my early training in Aikido is quite common. Very few dojo place any more than the most cursory emphasis on striking. You can see the atrocious results in thousands of Aikido videos where the attack that is given to nage by uke is clumsy, weak, ill-focused and insincere. Regardless, I still do not think Aikido is fundamentally a striking art.

Mary Eastland
01-30-2015, 10:41 AM
In Aikido as I train strikes are implied and respected. Correct distance is considered very important and is emphasized as what makes aikido different from others arts. So the strike is respected but not emphasized so I would have to say no it is not a striking art.

JP3
01-30-2015, 06:36 PM
The O/P said, "Based on this definition, It is my opinion that aikido is primarily a striking art."

To which I'd respond, maybe your aikido is, mine isn't. I understand your logical basis and I think it is sound in the direction it is going. However, unless you define when I put my hand on someone to find them/feel them and their direction of movmeent and intent (fast or slow, I don't care) as a "strike" then I think what I do is more akin to grappling than striking.

Note, I can strike plenty good if/when the opportunity would present itself, but I don't think of that as very aiki, as that sort of impact doesn't seem "blendy" to me at all, except in the motorized sense.

earnest aikidoka
01-31-2015, 07:47 AM
The O/P said, "Based on this definition, It is my opinion that aikido is primarily a striking art."

To which I'd respond, maybe your aikido is, mine isn't. I understand your logical basis and I think it is sound in the direction it is going. However, unless you define when I put my hand on someone to find them/feel them and their direction of movmeent and intent (fast or slow, I don't care) as a "strike" then I think what I do is more akin to grappling than striking.

Note, I can strike plenty good if/when the opportunity would present itself, but I don't think of that as very aiki, as that sort of impact doesn't seem "blendy" to me at all, except in the motorized sense.

How would it change your views if I clarified the meaning of 'striking' as being more offensive, regardless of whatever medium (fist, foot, grasp) through which aiki is expressed, rather than being a defensive art as most aikidoka would state of aikido? And as a result of this offensive nature, most of the techniques like ikkyo for example, are meant than as an offensive strike and their movements are exaggerated for training's sake?

kewms
01-31-2015, 12:50 PM
How would it change your views if I clarified the meaning of 'striking' as being more offensive, regardless of whatever medium (fist, foot, grasp) through which aiki is expressed, rather than being a defensive art as most aikidoka would state of aikido? And as a result of this offensive nature, most of the techniques like ikkyo for example, are meant than as an offensive strike and their movements are exaggerated for training's sake?

I would tell you be to careful of generalizations. I don't know if "most" aikidoka see aikido as a defensive art, but I don't, neither of my primary teachers does, and very few (if any) of the senior teachers in my lineage would describe it that way.

Yes, I agree that "real" techniques are likely to be somewhat abbreviated relative to the kihon waza as they are usually taught.

But I still hold that aikido movements derive from sword, and that cutting with a sword is quite different from striking with a fist.

Katherine

MRoh
02-01-2015, 05:50 AM
There are some basic principles in aikido that can be used for striking as well.
Kuroiwa Sensei for example grounded his aikido on striking movemements he had internalized as a boxer. Nishio used karate techniques. It both worked.
The basic principles seem to be universal and translateable.
In times when swords were used, they were adapted to swordswork principles.
In aikido they were adapted to taijutsu principles, and body, stick and sword were united under the same basic priniples. That was called riai.

MRoh
02-01-2015, 08:19 AM
According to the history of daito-ryu which is passed down since ancient times, the origin of daito-ryu was a grappling art called tegoi, which is also the origin of sumo.
The myths of the origin tell about a duel between two gods in which the distinguished element was the grabbing of the opponents arm.
Takemikazuchi no kami won the contest by transforming his arm into a sword when he was grabbed (tegatana), and when he himself grabbed the opponents arm, he crushed it, he didn't cut with a sword.
Dosn't sound like the evolutionary history of a sword fighting art.
That reminds me of storys about how O Sensei used to show his power and how he was "duelling" with people, for example with the famous sumotori Tenryu.

earnest aikidoka
02-01-2015, 11:04 AM
According to the history of daito-ryu which is passed down since ancient times, the origin of daito-ryu was a grappling art called tegoi, which is also the origin of sumo.
The myths of the origin tell about a duel between two gods in which the distinguished element was the grabbing of the opponents arm.
Takemikazuchi no kami won the contest by transforming his arm into a sword when he was grabbed (tegatana), and when he himself grabbed the opponents arm, he crushed it, he didn't cut with a sword.
Dosn't sound like the evolutionary history of a sword fighting art.
That reminds me of storys about how O Sensei used to show his power and how he was "duelling" with people, for example with the famous sumotori Tenryu.

whats the story?

JP3
02-01-2015, 11:45 AM
How would it change your views if I clarified the meaning of 'striking' as being more offensive, regardless of whatever medium (fist, foot, grasp) through which aiki is expressed, rather than being a defensive art as most aikidoka would state of aikido? And as a result of this offensive nature, most of the techniques like ikkyo for example, are meant than as an offensive strike and their movements are exaggerated for training's sake?

I would say that I tend to agree with Katherine.

I would also say that by changing the definition of the word, you change everything about your original question. That's what I do (lawyer) so I'm familiar with that argument tactic. Nothing wrong with it, the tactic I mean.

to get back on point, I just did a quick google of the two words seeking basic definitions of both being used in verb form. I got the below as a sampling, though there are various others available of course.

Striking: hit forcibly and deliberately with one's hand or a weapon or other implement. To cause a forceful impact with limb, tool or weapon.

Grappling: seize hold of (someone). engage in a close fight or struggle without weapons; wrestle. to seize, hold, or fasten with or as with a grapple. to seize in a grip, take hold of:

MRoh
02-01-2015, 11:59 AM
whats the story?

No striking-art-story.

earnest aikidoka
02-01-2015, 06:03 PM
I would say that I tend to agree with Katherine.

I would also say that by changing the definition of the word, you change everything about your original question. That's what I do (lawyer) so I'm familiar with that argument tactic. Nothing wrong with it, the tactic I mean.

to get back on point, I just did a quick google of the two words seeking basic definitions of both being used in verb form. I got the below as a sampling, though there are various others available of course.

Striking: hit forcibly and deliberately with one's hand or a weapon or other implement. To cause a forceful impact with limb, tool or weapon.

Grappling: seize hold of (someone). engage in a close fight or struggle without weapons; wrestle. to seize, hold, or fasten with or as with a grapple. to seize in a grip, take hold of:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=APgF-DZ8nBM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fmZ-h_9EQ5Y

Which, I'm sure you'll agree, the latter is being demonstrated here. At best this is a limited demonstration of Aikido and at worst it is wrong. I'm in between actually in regards to this.

But this is what I meant when aikido is seen as a grappling art or defensive art and I feel that it should look a little more like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_geK-z-zgP4

The key minutes are the beginning and 5:20.

MRoh
02-02-2015, 08:29 AM
But this is what I meant when aikido is seen as a grappling art or defensive art and I feel that it should look a little more like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_geK-z-zgP4

The key minutes are the beginning and 5:20.

In the beginning I see a kokyu-nage throw like many aikidoka do in randori.
At 5:20 I see a tai-chi form.
Why should Aikido look like a tai-chi form?

earnest aikidoka
02-02-2015, 09:01 AM
In the beginning I see a kokyu-nage throw like many aikidoka do in randori.
At 5:20 I see a tai-chi form.
Why should Aikido look like a tai-chi form?

Watch the two other videos first. it is aikido sparring and some of the better ones I have seen so far.

I am just using the video to illustrate how aikido would have looked like. The beginning is sparring and 5:20 is a tai chi form that comes from shrinking the basic, circular sweeping movements of taichi into linear techniques. So I am using that as an example of how aikido's sweeping movements as demonstrated by morihei ueshiba and the short linear movements of Gozo shioda's movements could be connected.

I am not, NOT saying that aikido is tai chi or like tai chi in anyway or anything of that sort, I am just using it for purposes of visualisation.

jonreading
02-02-2015, 11:32 AM
Striking is a different concept than order of interaction. I can strike while acting defensively or offensively. I can make offensive and defensive movements outside of the order of interaction.

While a point of contention, I would argue that aikido is both offensive and defensive, a unison of movement which offers no openings. I think the "defensive" thing is largely an issue of the structure of our kata, which generally allows for the attacker to initiate the interaction.

Below are two links to Shioda videos, both of which illustrate some contact one could argue was a "strike":
http://youtu.be/XxPlQGxvoy0
http://youtu.be/kj0TgZTs2cg
In the second video, I believe he actually flash knockouts one of his uke, who is escorted off the mat.

There are a number of videos, many available on YouTube, that demonstrate how O Sensei and some of the senior people used atemi. Most of them do not demonstrate a strike in a traditional punch fashion, but rather a whole body movement (which is somewhat explained by Chen Xiaowang in your video).

Travers Hughes
02-02-2015, 04:47 PM
What a rabbit-hole of a conversation! I don't post here much any more, but wanted to ask OP a couple of questions if I may:
Have you trained in sword arts? If so, what and for how long?
Have you trained in striking arts? If so, what and for how long?
Have you trained grappling arts? If so, what and for how long?
Striking arts can be trained solo. Can your ideal striking aikido be trained solo? If so, how is it different to common aikido training today?

Sorry to bombard with questions, but I find that I simulatenously agree and disagree with a lot of positions here from all posters - all of which are valid, depending on how you want to train. I tend to find there are no absolutes, just trying to understand you better so I can provide meaningful contribution to your OP (and let the thread run its course).

Erick Mead
02-02-2015, 05:56 PM
...I can make offensive and defensive movements outside of the order of interaction. ... I would argue that aikido is both offensive and defensive, a unison of movement which offers no openings. For reasons practical and neurological -- I explain it this way: movement in aikido begins with imitation -- both in training and in <<ahem>> **unscheduled** engagements.

If you move against the attacking opponent you see in the mirror (and how can you not):

Who is attacking whom?
Who is defending against whom ?
How can the mirror image attack itself?

In a sense, the distinction of offense and defense becomes meaningless in these terms-- forensic categories that have no really immediate application to the interaction -- and moral categories that depend on things far more involved than mere question of who moved first or last and how.

There is a neurologically deep and highly strategic premise involved that keys on mirror neurons that go around inhibiting motor pathways at a root level, and powerfully prompts any patterned action that begins in such "naive" imitation (nothing says it ends that way).

This is (IMO) the basis for Ueshiba so pointedly doing away with the whole martial hierarchy of sente -- sente is an answer to the wrong question from this perspective.

earnest aikidoka
02-02-2015, 06:21 PM
What a rabbit-hole of a conversation! I don't post here much any more, but wanted to ask OP a couple of questions if I may:
Have you trained in sword arts? If so, what and for how long?
Have you trained in striking arts? If so, what and for how long?
Have you trained grappling arts? If so, what and for how long?
Striking arts can be trained solo. Can your ideal striking aikido be trained solo? If so, how is it different to common aikido training today?

Sorry to bombard with questions, but I find that I simulatenously agree and disagree with a lot of positions here from all posters - all of which are valid, depending on how you want to train. I tend to find there are no absolutes, just trying to understand you better so I can provide meaningful contribution to your OP (and let the thread run its course).

My only legitimate martial art is aikido, 12 years and counting and everything I know is based around aikido. Videos of fights, experience in fights and getting beaten up trying to use aikido complements what is legitimate.

I have no other training in sword and grappling other than what is taught in any aikido curriculum, but I have taught myself the basics of boxing over the same period of time I have been learning aikido and am sparring regularly, trying to apply my knowledge of aikido into sparring in general.

beyond training, I research and watch videos of other aikido masters and their methods of application. If you want, I can give you a list of the senseis I admire and try to adapt from in terms of aikido.

My ideal striking aikido is this, that it can be applied both in real life and in the ring, it is an answer rather than a boast. To be able to receive a question such as 'how does aikido work in such and such a situation' and answer in a solid, logical way rather than spouting things like 'aikido avoids combat' or 'Aikido's solution is Aiki'. This, I feel, is lazy, narrow-minded and shows that the person who gives that answer is afraid of really understanding what Aikido can be. That or he is an old master who has transcended fighting and other such petty concerns.

Practically, yes, my striking aikido can be trained solo, through weapons and katas (which I am not very sure about including yet) however, it cannot be entirely solo and will still need the basic elements of harmony, etiquette and working together in order to improve and develop. It is about going past rote training and what is seen from demos into practical applications, and it is about showing aikido's capability to be applied in any situation, to any weapon, to any limitation.

How will my aikido be different? first, it will look long and hard at itself. If it does not work in a given situation, the fault is mine and I will investigate thoroughly as to why a technique or principle failed. secondly, atemi is not something that one does if one has the opportunity, striking will always come first, hitting an opponent or seizing the initiative will always be paramount, the throw will come in and of itself. Lastly, whatever principles applied in life, will apply in the ring with the requisite modification, rules and etc... It would not be an art that falls to a simple boxer because 'It is not meant for the ring.' I do not subscribe to that idea, not anymore.

Please don't be afraid to ask such questions, as long as it is relevant and asked in the spirit of knowledge and discussion, I will answer to the best of my ability.:)

earnest aikidoka
02-04-2015, 09:05 AM
I'm not convinced Aikido was intended to be primarily a striking art. This isn't to imply, though, that striking plays no role at all in Aikido. I believe striking is vital to the effective application of Aikido technique. Especially against any skilled martial artist, it is a fantasy to believe one could apply Aikido technique without the distracting, confusing and corrupting effect of a well-placed blow (or cut, if one is fussy about the relationship between Aikido and sword-work). But the Aikido I was taught revolved around blending, entering, spiraling and locks, pins and throws, not striking. We learned the three basic cutting strikes derived from sword-work, but no hooks, jabs, crosses, straights, or combinations thereof. And as I have been exposed over the years to a broader spectrum of Aikido, I have observed that my early training in Aikido is quite common. Very few dojo place any more than the most cursory emphasis on striking. You can see the atrocious results in thousands of Aikido videos where the attack that is given to nage by uke is clumsy, weak, ill-focused and insincere. Regardless, I still do not think Aikido is fundamentally a striking art.

do you post videos on youtube? Specifically aikido defences adapted to various strikes and situations? Aikido adapted I think those videos are called?

Timothy WK
02-04-2015, 12:50 PM
... I feel that [Aikido] should look a little more like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_geK-z-zgP4

The key minutes are the beginning and 5:20.
Are you aware that taiji is a "grappling" art at it's core? (Here's Chen Xiaowang performing some freestyle push hands (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5IcDZQCMls&t=28s).)

The quote you placed about atemi from Guillemard is interesting and on the surface coincides with my views, could you perhaps elaborate on the quote? I am not entirely sure of its meaning.
I posted that quote to suggest that some of the distinctions between "striking" and "grappling" break down when one develops an Aiki body. That quote suggests that Aikido techniques don't need to be "adapted" for striking---rather, they are already "atemi".

Jonathan
02-04-2015, 01:29 PM
do you post videos on youtube? Specifically aikido defences adapted to various strikes and situations? Aikido adapted I think those videos are called?

Yes, that's right. I do have a collection of "Aikido Adapted" YouTube videos. You've seen some of them, I take it?

earnest aikidoka
02-04-2015, 04:49 PM
Yes, that's right. I do have a collection of "Aikido Adapted" YouTube videos. You've seen some of them, I take it?

You are one of the teachers that I draw inspiration from. Seen them? I learn from them.:D

earnest aikidoka
02-04-2015, 04:53 PM
Are you aware that taiji is a "grappling" art at it's core? (Here's Chen Xiaowang performing some freestyle push hands (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5IcDZQCMls&t=28s).)

I posted that quote to suggest that some of the distinctions between "striking" and "grappling" break down when one develops an Aiki body. That quote suggests that Aikido techniques don't need to be "adapted" for striking---rather, they are already "atemi".

Indeed, but have you seen Master Chen's cannon fist form? Tai chi may be 'grappling' in the sense that it involves the unbalancing of an opponent to execute the throw rather than grabbing or pulling. Which I believe is how aikido should be.

In regards to your quote, there are many aikidoka who do not practice or embody what you just said, as evidenced by the earlier posted sparring videos. I hope to bring the point about your quote out and make it a bit more accepted. To the point where others may look into doing the adapting.

Jonathan
02-04-2015, 05:15 PM
Glad to be of service on your Aikido journey!

Travers Hughes
02-04-2015, 07:23 PM
My only legitimate martial art is aikido, 12 years and counting and everything I know is based around aikido. Videos of fights, experience in fights and getting beaten up trying to use aikido complements what is legitimate.

I have no other training in sword and grappling other than what is taught in any aikido curriculum, but I have taught myself the basics of boxing over the same period of time I have been learning aikido and am sparring regularly, trying to apply my knowledge of aikido into sparring in general.

beyond training, I research and watch videos of other aikido masters and their methods of application. If you want, I can give you a list of the senseis I admire and try to adapt from in terms of aikido.

My ideal striking aikido is this, that it can be applied both in real life and in the ring, it is an answer rather than a boast. To be able to receive a question such as 'how does aikido work in such and such a situation' and answer in a solid, logical way rather than spouting things like 'aikido avoids combat' or 'Aikido's solution is Aiki'. This, I feel, is lazy, narrow-minded and shows that the person who gives that answer is afraid of really understanding what Aikido can be. That or he is an old master who has transcended fighting and other such petty concerns.

Practically, yes, my striking aikido can be trained solo, through weapons and katas (which I am not very sure about including yet) however, it cannot be entirely solo and will still need the basic elements of harmony, etiquette and working together in order to improve and develop. It is about going past rote training and what is seen from demos into practical applications, and it is about showing aikido's capability to be applied in any situation, to any weapon, to any limitation.

How will my aikido be different? first, it will look long and hard at itself. If it does not work in a given situation, the fault is mine and I will investigate thoroughly as to why a technique or principle failed. secondly, atemi is not something that one does if one has the opportunity, striking will always come first, hitting an opponent or seizing the initiative will always be paramount, the throw will come in and of itself. Lastly, whatever principles applied in life, will apply in the ring with the requisite modification, rules and etc... It would not be an art that falls to a simple boxer because 'It is not meant for the ring.' I do not subscribe to that idea, not anymore.

Please don't be afraid to ask such questions, as long as it is relevant and asked in the spirit of knowledge and discussion, I will answer to the best of my ability.:)

Thanks for your reply!
Great that you're trying and testing new things. Can I suggest (without trying to sound condescending becase that's not my intention) that in order to better understand sword and grappling you could learn from qualified instructors and then bring that back to aikido (rather than studying them yourself with your aikido lenses on?) Same thing for your boxing. Otherwise you could be holding on to preconceived ideas that are holding you back from new discoveries. You may even change your perspective on what your aikido is to you.
Best of luck to you