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akiy
06-08-2015, 12:26 AM
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Here is a recent video of Steven Seagal (7th dan, Aikikai) demonstrating at the International Youth Sambo Tournament, in Saratov, Russia.

What are your thoughts on this video?

-- Jun

Cliff Judge
06-08-2015, 09:56 AM
He looks stiff, like he was not really prepared for this demo.

One of the things that makes him look bad is that his ukes are short, skinny, and very agile. It seems surprising to me that in Russia he could not find a couple of guys much bigger than him.

Mary Eastland
06-08-2015, 02:30 PM
He looks bored.

barron
06-08-2015, 05:30 PM
1988 - Not my style of aikido but aikido. After that ........ :(

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86OU9u7O5HI

silversmoke
06-09-2015, 07:55 AM
Looks totally burnt out, uke tapping away seagal seems to ignore them

Asou
06-09-2015, 10:01 AM
his kotegaeshi and iriminage never change

sakumeikan
06-09-2015, 10:11 AM
He looks bored.

Dear Mary,
I do not know whether Mr Seagal is bored .One thing I do know however that as an 'Action Hero"
he sure bores me.Do we the readers have to watch this stuff?i dont suppose so , but the fascination of watching this video is akin to watching a train crash.You know its awful , but you look anyway.I think the good life has taken its toll on his overerall condition.He is not too old is he? As somebody else says he looks burnt out. Its a pity really .Cheers, Joe.

sakumeikan
06-09-2015, 10:14 AM
his kotegaeshi and iriminage never change
Dear Mr K,
Change from what to what?Good to Bad ? Everything changes whether its you yourself or whatever.Nothing ever remains constant. Cheers, Joe

Anjisan
06-09-2015, 04:36 PM
I suppose being 6' 4" and wearing all black tends to convey a sort of brooding vibe. Perhaps, if he were a smaller Japanese shihan it would come across as more -humble? Not sure? I also am not sure or not if he is bored. However, I have seen a similar face on the current Doshu during some demonstrations. Perhaps that is the face one eventually takes on after giving a lot of demonstrations over and over and over again?

The techniques that he demonstrated certainly don't change but then why would they? After all they are his signature moves and he is giving a demonstration. I doubt the audience at a Sambo competition were looking for him to do a "No Touch " throw. The link posted to the opening scene of Above the Law was a real treat! It certainly takes me back! As for the ukes tapping, well if one if putting someone in a compliance position, that can be the signal of the threshold of the application, but nage may not simply let go at that point if there is another technique flowing off that particular technique. Just watch some Yoshinkan (among others) aikido videos for that. Train hard.

Riai Maori
06-09-2015, 05:11 PM
Was that Irimi Nage or a Clothes line?

sakumeikan
06-10-2015, 01:53 AM
Was that Irimi Nage or a Clothes line?

Dear Richard,
Irimi nage or clothes line?i think you could have pinned up the entire washing of a Chinese Laundry on the waza of Mr Seagal. and still have room for the smalls [ie under pants etc ]Cheers, Joe.

me32dc
06-10-2015, 08:20 AM
Not a fan at all of that video. Unfit, overweight, didn't want to do it or be their, no respect for uke, and on and on....

:(

Demetrio Cereijo
06-10-2015, 09:16 AM
Any of the kids in the background could kick his rear end.

Cliff Judge
06-10-2015, 09:52 AM
Not a fan at all of that video. Unfit, overweight, didn't want to do it or be their, no respect for uke, and on and on....

:(

I don't think it is necessary to fat shame him.

Anjisan
06-10-2015, 10:29 AM
I don't think it is necessary to fat shame him.

Indeed, I don't recall Saito sensei (for example) being subjected to such a low blow regarding his weight as he grew older. Seems like low hanging fruit really. There are certainly legitimate criticisms of Seagal sensei that can be made, but then again, one could probably find legitimate criticisms of many Shihan if one digs deep enough and that probably goes for the rest of us too.

I still don't see the lack of respect towards uke issue. I have watched plenty of other interactions of other Shihan throwing ukes around like ragdolls. It seemed that if there were no injuries (which there weren't) then it was like thank you for letting me use your body....next. Not unusual. Perhaps, it is more of an issue of his style of using more break falls (which are more impressive in the context of a demo anyway IMO) than a softer applications especially with more than one uke. That may also speak to his professed practical "street" approach which may not be the focus of some others practicing aikido? Pondering.

Train Hard,
Jason

Mary Eastland
06-10-2015, 01:11 PM
Perhaps if he took ukemi it might be more respectful.

Anjisan
06-10-2015, 03:35 PM
Perhaps if he took ukemi it might be more respectful.

Perhaps, but one doesn't usually see too many 7th dans who take ukemi, especially at a demonstrations (when they are the presenters anyway) and particularly, when they are in their 60's or older.

Train Hard,
Jason

Mary Eastland
06-10-2015, 07:20 PM
Why not? It is just as important as throwing and shows humility and a deep knowledge of the art.

Anjisan
06-10-2015, 08:20 PM
Mary,

I don't disagree with you. Its just that I never ever see that outside of a dojo setting and certainly not at a demonstration. When is the last time you heard of Saotome sensei, Yamada sensei, Chiba sensei, Ikeda sensei, etc. taking ukemi in such a format?? Why would he be held to a different standard?

Train Hard,
Jason

Riai Maori
06-10-2015, 08:31 PM
Why would he be held to a different standard?

Because he is an Action man, like Batman and Superman?:D

Riai Maori
06-10-2015, 08:38 PM
Dear Richard,
Irimi nage or clothes line?i think you could have pinned up the entire washing of a Chinese Laundry on the waza of Mr Seagal. and still have room for the smalls [ie under pants etc ]Cheers, Joe.

Kia Ora Joe.Love the humor and validation!

sakumeikan
06-11-2015, 02:35 AM
Kia Ora Joe.Love the humor and validation!

Dear Richard,
you gotta inject some comedy into this forum.Glad you liked my quips.Cheers, Joe.

sakumeikan
06-11-2015, 04:39 PM
Mary,

I don't disagree with you. Its just that I never ever see that outside of a dojo setting and certainly not at a demonstration. When is the last time you heard of Saotome sensei, Yamada sensei, Chiba sensei, Ikeda sensei, etc. taking ukemi in such a format?? Why would he be held to a different standard?

Train Hard,
Jason

Dear Jason, It should be self evident why the Senseis you mention do not take ukemi at demos. They are normally Tori not Uke. Would you expect them to act otherwise?In a non demo environment I have witnessed on many occasion Ukemi by the late Chiba Sensei.He took ukemi for rank beginners. Cheers ,Joe

Anjisan
06-11-2015, 04:56 PM
Dear Jason, It should be self evident why the Senseis you mention do not take ukemi at demos. They are normally Tori not Uke. Would you expect them to act otherwise?In a non demo environment I have witnessed on many occasion Ukemi by the late Chiba Sensei.He took ukemi for rank beginners. Cheers ,Joe

Joe

That was what I was attempting to explain to Mary. Not outside of a dojo environment. Sorry you missed my point

Train Hard,
Jason

jdm4life
09-24-2015, 07:08 PM
Who do these types practice with ? Im guessing seagal has all but quit aikido anyway..........sad to say but.......he reminds me of Gary Moore shortly before he died..........just looks tired of life. gm ballooned up too......its not a good sign generally.

rugwithlegs
09-27-2015, 11:27 AM
Dear Jason, It should be self evident why the Senseis you mention do not take ukemi at demos. They are normally Tori not Uke. Would you expect them to act otherwise?In a non demo environment I have witnessed on many occasion Ukemi by the late Chiba Sensei.He took ukemi for rank beginners. Cheers ,Joe

Well, I am late to the party here, but I thought this story could get a smile out there.

A girlfriend arranged for me to do a demo at a local high school where she taught. Somehow events conspired and the one Uke got injured moving furniture that morning, and the other two just bailed. I took volunteers from the audience rather than cancelling. I demonstrated morote dori kokyuho with a back stretch, but the kid wasn't getting the back bend idea. I demonstrated bending back after giving him feedback on his Kokyu ho (going gently) - and then the little turd blossom swept my leg and kicked me when I was down. I laughed it off, and he was a weak tiny little precocious urchin that I could have killed in any number of ways that rapidly spun through my mind.

15 years ago. No public demos since. Very much my fault, but lesson learned. Kawahara sensei did take ukemi as well, but never left such an opening.

ryback
09-27-2015, 05:25 PM
He surely looks heavier and slower than what he used to be, but maybe this is partly because of the uke...

If they are not familiar with Seagal sensei's technique or the kind of ukemi they should take in order to...survive it, he naturally would not do his thunder and lightning demo because he would end up...killing them.

So maybe he is holding back...a lot!

PeterR
09-27-2015, 05:43 PM
He surely looks heavier and slower than what he used to be, but maybe this is partly because of the uke...

If they are not familiar with Seagal sensei's technique or the kind of ukemi they should take in order to...survive it, he naturally would not do his thunder and lightning demo because he would end up...killing them.

So maybe he is holding back...a lot!

Serious? I was giving kudos to the uke's. They were doing most of the work. Sure let's blame the uke.

Hellis
09-28-2015, 04:10 AM
I must agree that Segal Sensei looks rather tired, and perhaps a little bored.

This discussion reminds me of a time I was teaching in the US at a USAB.
I was asked if I would do a small demonstration and a talk at the monthly officers wives club dinner. I agreed.
As I finished the small demo, I began to answer a few questions with the 120 wives and guests.
The officers wives asked many varied and interesting questions, until the wife of a colonel decided to ask a snotaquestion, she said " why do you do all the throwing and your students don't throw you, in Japan you a first a servant before you can be a master ".
I replied that at no point had I been introduced as a `master`,
I added, I assume your husband is some 30yrs younger than I am, If he is prepared to strap an 80 lb pack on his back and run up the nearby mountains alongside his men, then I will allow my students to throw me around all day long.
I don't think she was too popular with the other wives as my reply received applause.

Henry Ellis
Co-author of `Positive Aikido`
http://kazuo-chiba-sensei.blogspot.com/
http://rik-ellis.blogspot.com/
http://britishaikido.blogspot.com/

Michael Douglas
09-28-2015, 12:27 PM
... he naturally would not do his thunder and lightning demo because he would end up...killing them.
There aren't enough rolling eyes smiley faces in the world for that!
:eek: :D

Demetrio Cereijo
09-28-2015, 03:27 PM
So maybe he is holding back...a lot!
Me too.

PeterR
09-28-2015, 04:22 PM
Me too.

Go on - you know you want to.

ryback
09-29-2015, 02:16 AM
Steven Seagal sensei is one of the greatest aikido masters I have ever seen and he really was thunder and lightning back in the day so nobody can take away from him his technical achievement, not even the bad side of himself can take it away. He deserves respect, a respect that other fatter, more boring and not even close to him technically teachers have been granted simply because they never starred in an action movies and never had his money, so there is no reason to envy them.

And the funniest thing is that I have seen many of those pathetic, fat, meat eating, stinking so-called teachers, who are simply dragging their huge asses from dojo to dojo playing the master having no technique at all, judging Seagal (and others of course) here on this forum, or in magazine interviews, while they have never put behind them even a tiny fraction of the work that people like Seagal sensei have put in order to achieve that speed and precision, that at least he used to have...

silversmoke
09-29-2015, 09:08 AM
I would tend to agree withYannis on some points, went to a a Sensei Segall demo must be 20 years ago, other than my own instuctors at Ellis Schools of Traditional Aikido, have never seen matched anywhere else his skill at delivering the positive side of a technique, each to his own I've always respected his Aikido.

Michael Douglas
09-29-2015, 02:23 PM
He deserves respect, a respect that other fatter, more boring and not even close to him technically teachers have been granted simply because they never starred in an action movies and never had his money, so there is no reason to envy them..
If there are fatter and more boring teachers : name names!

ryback
09-29-2015, 03:27 PM
If there are fatter and more boring teachers : name names!

I will not because I respect everyone of them with their rights and wrongs... Each one of us is responsible for his choices...

sakumeikan
09-30-2015, 03:20 AM
Steven Seagal sensei is one of the greatest aikido masters I have ever seen and he really was thunder and lightning back in the day so nobody can take away from him his technical achievement, not even the bad side of himself can take it away. He deserves respect, a respect that other fatter, more boring and not even close to him technically teachers have been granted simply because they never starred in an action movies and never had his money, so there is no reason to envy them.

And the funniest thing is that I have seen many of those pathetic, fat, meat eating, stinking so-called teachers, who are simply dragging their huge asses from dojo to dojo playing the master having no technique at all, judging Seagal (and others of course) here on this forum, or in magazine interviews, while they have never put behind them even a tiny fraction of the work that people like Seagal sensei have put in order to achieve that speed and precision, that at least he used to have...

Dear Yannis,
You may have a point about Seagal Sensei having been a talented Aikido teacher /exponent at one time.Sad to say any talent he might have had appears to have diminished considerably.What more can one say?We all get older and time takes its toll.Cheers, Joe.Ps you are a bit harsh on the other teachers.

Phil Van Treese
10-13-2015, 09:10 PM
I agree Steven Seagal is fatter and slower than he used to be and all that. If anyone out there thinks they can handle Seagal Shihan, best of luck. I want to be there when you try. He's probably forgotten more aikido than we'll ever know. Isn't it easy to hide behind a computer and talk about a master?? Anyone up for saying it to his face????? I hope someday I will get to know 1/5th of what he knows.

G Sinclair
10-16-2015, 09:59 AM
To the critical comments: Wow. Just wow. You all must have some amazing Aikido.

For everyone else, I am just going to add my 2 cents. Feel free to take it or leave it.

In 2010 this "unfit", "overweight", "bored" Shihan told me to stop punching him like an Aikidoka and to punch him like I was in a fight. It started off easy, still stepping in and just using hand speed - which is not as fast as it used to be but it is not bad. However, after a few moments I got a little carried away and realized I had slid back into my kickboxing days throwing combos and quick jabs. None of which landed. None. Not one. And when he was tired of deflecting, with a 'flick' of his hips I was upside down. This is who you are talking about.

What is the difference between then and what you are seeing in this video?

Ukemi.

My ukemi was razor sharp (not trying to impress anyone- but this is the key). There was no holding back. He was going full speed, and it was lightening. There was no room for any error in the ukemi. His angles and techniques are so tight it requires ukemi on a different level.

So watching these videos, I often feel sad for for him. It makes perfect sense to me why he looks disinterested, slow and using much looser angles. Not to be harsh or discredit anyone on the mat with him there (as they are all talented), but there is not an uke there skilled enough to allow him to execute his technique at the level he is capable of.

Twenty years ago he might have just broken these guys. Today, he takes the hit to keep them from harm. I refuse to ding him for that. In fact, I personally believe this would have made O'Sensei proud.

ryback
10-17-2015, 04:33 PM
To the critical comments: Wow. Just wow. You all must have some amazing Aikido.

For everyone else, I am just going to add my 2 cents. Feel free to take it or leave it.

In 2010 this "unfit", "overweight", "bored" Shihan told me to stop punching him like an Aikidoka and to punch him like I was in a fight. It started off easy, still stepping in and just using hand speed - which is not as fast as it used to be but it is not bad. However, after a few moments I got a little carried away and realized I had slid back into my kickboxing days throwing combos and quick jabs. None of which landed. None. Not one. And when he was tired of deflecting, with a 'flick' of his hips I was upside down. This is who you are talking about.

What is the difference between then and what you are seeing in this video?

Ukemi.

My ukemi was razor sharp (not trying to impress anyone- but this is the key). There was no holding back. He was going full speed, and it was lightening. There was no room for any error in the ukemi. His angles and techniques are so tight it requires ukemi on a different level.

So watching these videos, I often feel sad for for him. It makes perfect sense to me why he looks disinterested, slow and using much looser angles. Not to be harsh or discredit anyone on the mat with him there (as they are all talented), but there is not an uke there skilled enough to allow him to execute his technique at the level he is capable of.

Twenty years ago he might have just broken these guys. Today, he takes the hit to keep them from harm. I refuse to ding him for that. In fact, I personally believe this would have made O'Sensei proud.
Exactly my point! It's obvious the uke cannot keep up with his full speed demo and that's not blaming them, simply stating a fact...

So...I am not the only stupid, blind person here (for whom there are not enough ridiculous smiling faces ) after all, right? There are other people out there with whom we share the same..."illusions"...

Instead of bad mouthing a grand master like Seagal sensei we should concentrate on achieving his level of effectiveness, we would keep the art true and alive that way! Great post!

ryback
10-17-2015, 04:38 PM
I agree Steven Seagal is fatter and slower than he used to be and all that. If anyone out there thinks they can handle Seagal Shihan, best of luck. I want to be there when you try. He's probably forgotten more aikido than we'll ever know. Isn't it easy to hide behind a computer and talk about a master?? Anyone up for saying it to his face????? I hope someday I will get to know 1/5th of what he knows.

Indeed! Very good post! I am at the same age he was when he did Above the Law and though I try to concentrate on doing fast, explosive yet effective and precise technique, still seems I have a looooong way to go before I am anywhere close to what he was doing back then... So...pure respect is what I got for him...