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Mark B
12-23-2002, 08:09 PM
I have been doing some reading and was wondering. It seems that Yoshinkan may have retained a little more of the martial side of Aikido. Does anyone have some experience they could share? Thanks

Mark B
12-23-2002, 08:19 PM
I am sorry. I should have said as compared to other styles. Please no mudslinging. Just honest opinions based on experience.

Thalib
12-23-2002, 08:24 PM
I'm not from Yoshinkan.

But, from my point of view, Yoshinkan's training is quite militaristic, discipline- wise that is. That's why it fits in perfectly with the armed forces and police departments.

aikido_fudoshin
12-23-2002, 10:07 PM
I practice Yoshinkan, and after learning about Aikikai and other styles I can see why its viewed as militaristic. My dojo doesnt focus too heavily on ki, and while the spiritual side of Aikido remains important and essential, its not focused upon in great detail. Kihon Dosa is the back bone of Yoshinkan. There is very strict form and a proper way to move your body. The whole idea behind the kihon dosa is to develop the proper muscle strength (in muscles that are not commonly used) so you are able to move yourself in a balanced, stable, and controlled manner. The flowing and harmony parts are still there but Yoshinkan focuses on controling yourself before you can control others. Essentially it teaches us to learn how to move your body in the most effective way when performing every technique.

Yoshinkan Aikido is a physically demanding art. For example, try standing in hiriki no yosei ichi until your muscles give out or performing continuous kihon dosa. You will probably find that high ranked Yoshinkan practioners have very strong legs. Again, the most important reason for developing this muscle strength is so you will be able to control yourself. It is not ment to be used on an opponent. Once the proper strength is developed you will be able to move more effectively and in a more relaxed manner.

So, what really sets Yoshinkan apart from other styles is its focus on form and creating a physically stable, balanced, and controlled body through the kihon dosa.

JW
12-23-2002, 11:19 PM
So, what really sets Yoshinkan apart from other styles is its focus on form and creating a physically stable, balanced, and controlled body through the kihon dosa.
That sounds like Iwama-style, which I have had very limited experience in (but none at all in Yoshinkan).

So what are some major differences between Iwama and Yoshinkan?

--JW

Steven
12-24-2002, 03:59 PM
Bryan,

Very well said. I would however also like to add that before kihon dosa, there is kamae. If you can't move in and out of kamae without falling on your face, then kihon dosa is going to be very difficult. The Yoshinkan kamae teaches from day one the three principles that makeup "KI" or the mastery of balance as Shioda Kancho describes it in "Total Aikido". They are:

o Chushin-Ryoku: The power of the center line.

Keeping your center line straight.

o Shucho-Ryoku: Focused Power

The power that is developed by unifying

the whold body.

o Kokyu-Ryoku: Breath Power

Bringing together the sensitivity,

breathiing, and rhythm into a focused

power.

This, in conjunction with kihon dosa and kihon waza is what makes Yoshinkan different. It is the way we teach Aikido. A very disciplined and structored system that does not require the use of weapons to teach these principles.

... Cheers ...
I practice Yoshinkan, and after learning about Aikikai and other styles I can see why its viewed as militaristic. My dojo doesnt focus too heavily on ki, and while the spiritual side of Aikido remains important and essential, its not focused upon in great detail. Kihon Dosa is the back bone of Yoshinkan. There is very strict form and a proper way to move your body. The whole idea behind the kihon dosa is to develop the proper muscle strength (in muscles that are not commonly used) so you are able to move yourself in a balanced, stable, and controlled manner. The flowing and harmony parts are still there but Yoshinkan focuses on controling yourself before you can control others. Essentially it teaches us to learn how to move your body in the most effective way when performing every technique.

Yoshinkan Aikido is a physically demanding art. For example, try standing in hiriki no yosei ichi until your muscles give out or performing continuous kihon dosa. You will probably find that high ranked Yoshinkan practioners have very strong legs. Again, the most important reason for developing this muscle strength is so you will be able to control yourself. It is not ment to be used on an opponent. Once the proper strength is developed you will be able to move more effectively and in a more relaxed manner.

So, what really sets Yoshinkan apart from other styles is its focus on form and creating a physically stable, balanced, and controlled body through the kihon dosa.

aikido_fudoshin
12-25-2002, 03:11 PM
Oh yes, kamae! The single most important aspect of Yoshinkan Aikido. Its unbelievable what it can teach you. Although there is so much to learn from it, I believe one of the most important points it teaches us is the more relaxed you are the more powerful you become. Not only physically strong, but strong mentally aswell. I think much of this comes through confidence, and the ability to control your pshycological being. The most amazing part of kamae is how this inner strength radiates off of a person once its well developed. I had the opportunity to stand in kamae once with Robert Mustard sensei, although it was brief, I felt as though I was being blown backwards just by standing across from him. I really have no other words to describe it. It made me realize that kamae is much more than just a powerful stance.

aikido_fudoshin
12-25-2002, 03:14 PM
sorry: pshycological = psychological.

Thats better. :)

diesel
12-25-2002, 06:59 PM
Any pictures of the kihon dosa that your talking of? Online? I would like to see examples.. I am familiar with the basic kamea in yoshinkan.

Steven
12-25-2002, 07:49 PM
Any pictures of the kihon dosa that your talking of? Online? I would like to see examples.. I am familiar with the basic kamea in yoshinkan.

Your best source would be Dynamic Aikido or Total Aikido. Or, visit a Yoshinkan school to see and do it first hand.

... cheers ...

Nathan Pereira
12-26-2002, 12:23 PM
Starting to realize after all those years of endlessly standing in kamae till my legs shook and I felt like puking that everything is just degrees and variations of kamae.

I find myself more and more saying to beginners just do kamae but in a lower posture or with your palms facing up. The feeling in every movement should feel just like kamae. This is so easy yet i still mess it up. oh well more sweating and shaking in kamae i guess.

I have seen a few stills on-line of kihon dosa but not all the movements. Usually the same one for some reason.

Eric Joyce
12-26-2002, 02:51 PM
I think Steve said it best. Another book I would recommend is the Instructors Course on Yoshinkan Aikido. I have this in addition to the others and it really breaks the movements down. I like the fact that I am taught and given a solid foundation. This really helps in executing techniques. Nothing like a good strong kamae eh Steve?

Steven
12-26-2002, 03:05 PM
Nothing like a good strong kamae eh Steven?
Eric -- I wouldn't know. I'm still working on mine. LOL! :D

Instructors course book?!? I don't think I've seen that one.

locknthrow
12-28-2002, 01:46 AM
I live in the western part of Tennessee..Between Memphis and Nashville. Anyone know of any Yoshinkan ppl here? Even if it just a former student?

Steven
12-28-2002, 11:27 AM
I live in the western part of Tennessee..Between Memphis and Nashville. Anyone know of any Yoshinkan ppl here? Even if it just a former student?
Mike,

The Chudokan Aikido Federation whiich is located in Windsor, Canada and headed by Yoshinkan Rokudan Kevin Blok, has an affiliated school in Tennessee. However, this does not mean they are teaching Yoshinkan Aikido.

The following is from the Chudokan website: (http://www.mnsi.net/~chudo/)

Mid South Karate and Aikido Dojo
6041 Mount Moriah
Memphis, Tennessee, USA, 38115

7277 Winchester Road
Memphis, Tennessee, USA, 38125
Phone: (901) 757-0985

Instructors:
Jeff Tackett - 2nd Dan
Jeff Mullen - 1st Dan

locknthrow
12-30-2002, 12:18 AM
Hey thanks alot!

I'll follow that up!

Mike

Eric Joyce
12-30-2002, 07:52 AM
Hey Steve,

I hear you, kamae can be a challenge. The book is called "The Official Yoshinkan Aikido Training Manual - Yoshinkan Aikido Instruction Staff" It is compiled under the supervision of Kyoichi Inoue Dojo-Cho. It's awesome!! It is like the book Total Aikido, but with more explanation and detail. A must have. You can get it on AikidoJournal.com

Peace.
Eric -- I wouldn't know. I'm still working on mine. LOL! :D

Instructors course book?!? I don't think I've seen that one.

Bruce Baker
12-30-2002, 08:52 AM
Be carefull not to surround yourself in a blanket that says everything you can possibly learn is from people who practice in one style of Aikido or in even in one martial art, it will take away from your understanding of how vast a puzzle martial arts is, and where Aikido fits into the puzzle.

That said.

Some of you do get the differences of styles brought into Yoshinkan from other martial arts training, and how the variations of Aikido itself is varied upon in the variation of yet another spin off of aikido students.

I guess it is alright to give a toot on your horn that Yoshinkan is great, and you love it, but don't toot that horn too long, or you will get a ticket for disturbing the peace.

Point being, there are other people out there in the neighbor hood, and some respect for them would be not to keep tooting that horn until the police arrive or you drive them to bring out the shotgun to take a couple potshots at you.

Funny, I don't hear Aikikai this, and Aikikai that ... just discussions about how aikido has so many variations, and different ways that people train to get to the same place?

I hope my point is taken, and not misunderstood.

Last time I got into it with someone tooting the horn, I walked up to the car and told them that if they continued to toot more than two toots, I would have to break their fingers. They still tooted their horn, but they were driving with the windows closed?

It always made me laugh to see this resistence to harmony .... on both sides of the scale?

Maybe that is why the more aiki methods seem to be more appealing in my old age.

Don't get caught up in just tooting Yoshinkan, it is a big world out there.

akiy
12-30-2002, 09:53 AM
Frankly, Bruce, I don't see anyone "tooting their horn" regarding Yoshinkan aikido. What I've seen here in this thread has been a very civil, good-natured discussion on people's thoughts about Shioda sensei's approach to the art. To me, at least, the discussion so far has been quite interesting and I hope it continues in the manner above.

Just curious -- have you trained with Yoshinkan people, Bruce?

-- Jun

justinm
12-30-2002, 10:40 AM
Eric - I see from the book details on aikidojournal.com that the Yoshinkan Instructors course book is multi-lingual. Do you read Japanese, or do you recommend it for the English as well?

Thanks

Justin

Steven
12-30-2002, 10:57 AM
Hi Justin,

The book that Eric is referring to is written in both English and Japanese. It is the only format it comes in. I'll also point out this book is very entry level. So don't expect to find advanced technqiues in it. It is very similar to Dynamic and Total Aikido.

Eric ... I do have a copy of this book but have my own mixed review of it. Basically, I don't like the layout. Too many page turns for a single technique. However the content is excellent.

I will add that this is good reference, as well as Total Aikido, but does not replace being in a dojo with an instructor to explain and show the principle. Practice, practice, practice.

Jun ... domo arigato mi amigo! ;)

... Peace ...

E.J. Nella
12-30-2002, 11:19 AM
In my small amount of experience with Yoshinkan, it seems that the difference is mainly in the instruction of the basic techniques. Once the Yoshinkan practitioner starts moving during Ron Dori, it's very difficult to tell that it is different from any other Aiki "style". I said this before to Miranda Sensei; if I had found Yoshinkan before the Iwama/Aikikai style, I would have fallen in love with it just as hard!

As far as it being more Martial, I don't know. I think that it just depends on the teacher more than the style.

Eric Joyce
12-31-2002, 09:11 AM
Justin -No I don't speak Japanese, but I am interested in learning a little bit for a trip to Japan one day.

Bruce - You gotta chill out dude, we are not saying that Yosinkan Aikido is "the one and only way" to true aikido. I (and my fellow Yoshinkan practioners and people interested in Yoshinkai aikido) are just explaining the style we practice - nothing more, nothing less. I also practice some Aikikai and it too has some very wonderful aspects (nothing like variety)

EJ - As for Yoshinkai being more martial, your right in your assumption that it is based pretty much on the teacher. I have had both sides of teachers in Yoshinkai (some strict, some more laid back). I think sometimes when someone sees Yoshinkan practioners doing the kihon dosa with the commands, as well as the way we emphasize correct posture, one could walk away that it is as "militaristic". But that's not the case.

Just my 2 bits worth.

akiy
12-31-2002, 09:38 AM
I've only had a few classes in Yoshinkan aikido including a class with Inoue sensei at the Aiki Expo and a few classes with a 5th dan from Toronto. Although I personally shirk away from the step-by-step method of teaching, I found the approach to be very technically sound in explaning many principles of aikido.

As far as the "militaristic" thing goes, I've had it explained to me that the Yoshinkan approach is geared towards "communicat[ing] vast amounts of aikido information to a very large group of people in a short amount of time" -- the kind of classes necessary, say, for the Tokyo Riot Police...

-- Jun

Thalib
12-31-2002, 10:48 AM
I still do believe that Yoshinkan kept a strong budo aspect of Osensei.

My sensei studied with Yoshinkan before and did apply Yoshinkan's sytem in our training, at first. But then, since most of the students have the discipline from within, he saw no longer the need to enforce them.

Actually, the difference between styles are in the method of teaching. I do like the Yoshinkan system on certain occasions, but at other occasions it might turn people away. Used to being a military nut (still a bit), I did like the Yoshinkan system.

Many observed that Shioda Gozo sensei is a reflection of Osensei's earlier days, and Tohei Koichi sensei as Osensei's later days.

aikido_fudoshin
12-31-2002, 10:55 AM
I dont believe we're bashing any particular style in this thread, but I would agree that this bashing does take place. I have noticed that many Yoshinkaners are quick to point out the flaws of Aikikai and vice versa aswell. I believe this is just human nature though. People want to believe what they are doing is the best and most effective way. Personally, I believe one should realize that there are many paths to a common goal and therefore one should choose the style that best suits their personality.

That being said, there are many bastardized forms of Aikido styles that have incorporated many changes either through misinterpretation or personal preference and this can shade the distinction between ones ideas of what a particular style is all about. Just as an example, we have had Aikikai practitioners come to our dojo and they were taught things that were not as effective or could result in personal injury through improper ukemi. This has probably happened in the opposite situation aswell. Is this due to a bastardized form of the style?; a poor instructor?; misinterpretation? I dont know because I have no experience with a pure form of that style. To really understand the difference between them we probably need to look at the way the various honbu dojos teach the art and then make a comparison from there.

Bruce Baker wrote:

"Funny, I don't hear Aikikai this, and Aikikai that..."

If you are referring to the forums on this website then this is probably because most of the Aikido practitioners that post here train in Aikikai. I have seen this simply by the way people use various Aikido terminology. Eg. in yoshinkan the one who performs the technique is refered to as sh'te, not nage. Same with first control and first principle. Also, Aikikai is the most popular style on the planet. I think many people assume you practice Aikikai when there are discussions in forums such as this. Because of this, there is no need to attempt a glorification of the style, which by the way is not something this thread was attempting to achieve in the first place.

Matthieu
01-03-2003, 07:53 PM
I do like the Yoshinkan system on certain occasions, but at other occasions it might turn people away. Used to being a military nut (still a bit), I did like the Yoshinkan system.
This will probably sound very strange, but since I am from a chudokai dojo and having never been to another dojo, what exactly is this yoshinkai system?

BTW, the chudokai is a federation headed by a 6th dan yoshinkai sensei. So I do believe that we must have a yoshinkai system.

But back to my question, what is a yoshinkai system? And how different is it from an aikikai system?

Please do enlighten me!

OSU!!!

Eric Joyce
01-04-2003, 07:30 AM
But back to my question, what is a yoshinkai system? And how different is it from an aikikai system?

Please do enlighten me!

OSU!!![/QUOTE]
Hi there,

The Yoshinkai system was developed by one of O'Sensei's students Gozo Shioda Sensei. Shioda Sensei was a pre-WWII student and was an uchi-desu for 8 years. The style focuses in 6 basic movements called kihon dosa. The kihon dosa are found in all of the Yoshinkai movements. By practicing this basics over and over, one will have a strong foundation in knowing exactly were to move and how to move your body in order to execute a technique. The style does a appear a bit harder than other styles of aikido. The Yoshinaki focuses on very exact and efficient techniques in order to control his attacker.

The differences in the Yoshinkai vs. Aikikai is primarily in the training method. This doesn't make one better than the other, it's just practiced differently. Both styles are very effective at what they do and each one has its pro's and con's.

I hope this answers your question. If you would like, check this site out for more info: http://www.seikeikan.com (a nice free plug for Steve :) Also, there is a book called Total Aikido: Masters Course by Gozo Shioda that may answer more of your questions. Hope this helps.

Osu!

Bruce Baker
01-04-2003, 03:08 PM
Well, if you watch how Gozo Shioda does Aikido, and you watch how his students teach and practice, there is a marked difference.

Most of the time, I call it "the school of hard knocks experience" verses the dojo trained students.

Having experienced the Military in both discipline and training, and exposure to a variety of training systems, I do see the value of having a step by step process, but just the same, allowing the student to experience the variables of a loose practice has great merit also.

I have yet to encounter a good teacher who does not put their own spin on the details needed to have good form and proper practice execution of techniques? Everyone has the same grasp of generalitys, and teaches details at different speeds to different students ... so what is the big deal?

Sitting here at my little desk, I feel like the old man who quietly goes about his bussines while the kids are tooting their horn yelling,"We're number ONE!!" Not for one minute, or just an hour, but for a week every time they go down the street.

When is it going to be over?

When is jerky behavior going to give way to getting on with training in a more quiet reserved manner?

Believe me, I don't begrudge a little tooting on the horn, but when is this party gonna break up so I can get some sleep?

Oh, Well...

This was but an exercise in civility.

It wasn't intended to separate Aikido practitioners, but awaken you to the fact that there is no one way or one style of Aikido that will teach you everything you need to know.

If you knew that already, then why do just the opposite of what you already knew?

Enough of this.

I see the movement of Gozo Shioda being quite different from his students who are more like the robotic forms found in many karate schools.

Eventually, there is fluidity, but when?

Bad student! You missed a movement! Do it again!

Variation? No Variation? Movement by the numbers, or no numbers needed because there is opportunity in whatever is in front of you?

From what I seen, read, practiced in Yoshinkan style, much is based upon the same style of learning found in many karate schools. The question is .... can you see the things that are adapted and changed, or used by other schools of martial arts?

If you can, we have no need to go further.

If you don't?

Well, stop tooting that horn and get busy.

It is a big world, with lots of things to learn.

One day, Bruce ain't gonna be here to goad you into looking beyond boot camp, or the reason you accept bootcamp mentality.

Your choice.

But when you get outside of bootcamp, there are other people out there in the big wide world.

Bruce Baker
01-04-2003, 03:18 PM
Sorry if I am a bit cranky.

But when you have been around for a while, you find there are many people who take bits and pieces of different martial arts to make a new martial art by a new name.

It is not the name that should be remembered, but the small contribution that style of practice makes, and retains for future practitioners.

There are many pieces to understanding how an why martial arts works, and they are scattered about in many different styles, not in any one style.

Give respect to your style and teacher, but don't toot your horn so long I want to break your fingers.

Give the poor old man a break.

aikido_fudoshin
01-04-2003, 04:04 PM
Bruce Baker wrote: I see the movement of Gozo Shioda being quite different from his students who are more like the robotic forms found in many karate schools

This statement alone has destroyed the validity of your whole argument.

akiy
01-04-2003, 07:03 PM
Bruce -- I, for one, have not seen anyone "tooting their horns" regarding Yoshinkan aikido in this thread. What I have seen, though, are people who are experienced in Shioda sensei's approach to aikido discussing their approach both amongst themselves and with people from other approaches.

This website and Forum was created for such a purpose -- to allow people with differing backgrounds to meet and share their experiences and thoughts.

I would appreciate it if you could stop haranguing those who are providing meaningful input into the discussion. I find your remarks disrespectful of those who are sharing their thoughts and to those who are currently training in Shioda sensei's approach. If you must continue in this vein, I will have to ask you to find a different forum in which to present your thoughts.

-- Jun

Chocolateuke
01-04-2003, 07:11 PM
er bruce can I ask you a question? Have you ever been to a yoshinkai class? I mean yes there is disiplin and yes machine like learning but there is flexiblity to. My sensei said " you must make aikido your own, bring life into your movements." yes you learn the basics in a step by step way but eventually you start to see patterns and ideas and then you can explore what kame and the basic movements do, then you explore the throws.

Hey steve! we found some dojo space :) starting a new dojo soon :P

Kat.C
01-04-2003, 09:07 PM
Bruce if it bothers you to read about Yoshinkan aikido then why keep reading a thread entitled Yoshinkan?:confused:

Steven
01-04-2003, 09:10 PM
er bruce can I ask you a question? Have you ever been to a yoshinkai class? I mean yes there is disiplin and yes machine like learning but there is flexiblity to. My sensei said " you must make aikido your own, bring life into your movements." yes you learn the basics in a step by step way but eventually you start to see patterns and ideas and then you can explore what kame and the basic movements do, then you explore the throws.

Hey steve! we found some dojo space :) starting a new dojo soon :P
Hey Dallas,

Great to hear from you and on the news of finding a new space. Since you folks are now back under the Yoshinkan mainstream, I would like to add you to my dojo listing. Please send my regards to all at the Muhu dojo.

... Steven ...

Chocolateuke
01-04-2003, 10:04 PM
thanks steven it may take some time before I can get an officail thing going we have some construction going at the site, but yeah Ill keep you posted.

PeterR
01-04-2003, 11:53 PM
As one of my teachers puts it - when Yoshinkan is good it's very very good. I've been exposed twice and both times I was quite happy with the level of the practitioners and the instructor.

First time was with Mike (Spike) Kimeda at the First (and only) Japan Aikido-L seminar. Then second was the dojo of Mike's dad and a class by Philip Atkin. There was nothing robotic about these two instructors or any of their students. The absolute beginners were like beginners everywhere. In the latter case there was kihon followed by a pretty normal practice seen in any Aikido dojo worth its salt. My non-Yoshinkan sources tell me that's pretty much par for the course.

I know if I was in the Toronto area I would be training Yoshinkan (when I wasn't teaching my style of course).

Matthieu
01-06-2003, 12:05 PM
The Yoshinkai system was developed by one of O'Sensei's students Gozo Shioda Sensei. Shioda Sensei was a pre-WWII student and was an uchi-desu for 8 years. The style focuses in 6 basic movements called kihon dosa. The kihon dosa are found in all of the Yoshinkai movements. By practicing this basics over and over, one will have a strong foundation in knowing exactly were to move and how to move your body in order to execute a technique. The style does a appear a bit harder than other styles of aikido. The Yoshinaki focuses on very exact and efficient techniques in order to control his attacker.

The differences in the Yoshinkai vs. Aikikai is primarily in the training method. This doesn't make one better than the other, it's just practiced differently. Both styles are very effective at what they do and each one has its pro's and con's.
First of all thank you for having taking time to answer my question.

But truthfully, your answer did bother me a little. Let me explain why.

The first part of your answer was exactly what I have been training in for the last seven years. So all you said is very natural for me, to the point of beeing almost like breathing! It's the second part where you say that other style train differently that troubles me.

Of course I know that there are significant difference in the style of movements that are specific to each style. What puzzle me is how other style train. I know how we train in yoshinkai aikido (spiritually and all) but how does other style train was what I really wanted to know.

In a way, I am asking how others are training. With all the emphasis on kamae, Chushin-Ryoku (the power of the center line), shuchu-ryoku (focused power), kokyu-ryoku (breath power) and kihon dosa I can no longer understand techniques without them. It has become very natural after all the training that I was fortunate to have.

Please do tell me how aikidokas from other style approach a new technique.

Hopefully, this message will not be interpreted by aikidokas from other style has a tooting of my horn but simply a cry for enlightenment.

Osu!

Eric Joyce
01-06-2003, 01:26 PM
Hi Matthieu,

I see what your saying. Well, from my experience in the Aikikai and Yoshinkai, what I meant by differences was more so regarding the emphasis on posture, kamae and the kihon dosa (basic movements). The Aikikai school that I attended in Chicago under Akira Tohei, did practice some basic body movements, but it wasn't stressed as much as it is in the Yoshinkai school I attend. I believe the thought process at that particular school was that over time, you learn thru repetition how to move your body by doing techniques (at least that's what was told to me by senior students).

Unlike your situation, I have found the opposite regarding the understanding of techniques. From my personal experience, I have found that by learning the Yoshinkai method, I am now able and have a better understanding on how techniques are executed on the Aikikai side. Of course that's just me. Both methods are equally good. It's amazing. There are so many different ways to do techniques. Quite incredible actually.

And for some of our readers out there, this is not a "horn toot". Just giving info.

Thalib
01-06-2003, 05:05 PM
I'm under the Aikikai system. From what I see, there is no standardization in Aikikai. This is one of Aikikai's weakness but it's also Aikikai's strength.

Each year a shihan from honbu comes here and gives a little seminar. With every different shihan there's a different in form. The difference is only in form though. That's why I guess I haven't found any books on forms from Aikikai.

Each individual is allowed to develop their own form and teach them. Of course there are basic techniques. There are teachers that teaches with systems that are similar to Yoshinkai and there are teachers that teaches with systems similar with Ki-no-Kenkyukai.

So many varieties in Aikikai. That's why I'm still in Aikikai. Now, the problem is how to find the right teacher for oneself.

When I started Aikido, I was actually one of the first students that my Sensei taught after becoming a shodan. Our bunch was first drilled in Yoshinkai style. My Sensei studied a few months with the Yoshinkai. Yoshinkai system is great with beginners.

As we progress, our Sensei uses less and less of the Yoshinkai system and develops his own way of teaching which actually fits me and my fellow students. That's why I hadn't left Aikido and continued on.

From his experience he shared with us that each shihan that comes for the yudansha grading wants to see certain form in the techniques. He usually finds out who's coming for the examination and he tries to find out the shihan's style. This one of the problem of not having a standard.

My sensei do have quite a grasp of basic Aikikai. But when he showed the basic to us, I still see many variations of that basic. It is quite confusing but at the same time it's quite fun.

Now, I'm grading for shodan next month and I asked around about the shihan that is coming and nobody actually have heard of him. Nobody actually know his style. Perhaps some of you guys know him, Kuribayashi Takanori - Shihan 6th Dan.And his uchi-deshi is Suzuki Kojiro, 3rd Dan.

Our Sensei has been brushing up on our basics for this exam. I don't believe Aikikai is picky on forms. I believe Aikikai concentrates around principles. Yes, the form may vary, but as long as the principle is correct I believe there will be no problem. The principle is Aiki.

Just one more note:

The people that brought Aikido to Indonesia studied under Osensei. To them there are no styles, every true Aikido is Osensei's Aikido. In their eyes there are no Aikikai, Yoshinkai, Ki-no-Kenkyukai, etc., there is only one Aikido that is Osensei's Aikido. I really appreciate and have respect for this attitude from them. Because of them we are allowed to expand our knowledge.

With that, I welcome every style of Aikido that has lineage to Osensei. I do not care what system you are under, it is still Aikido.

Bruce Baker
01-07-2003, 06:46 PM
Then again ...

What arguement?

I fail to understand the logic of saying you are not tooting your horn when every reference is to one system, on style, one set of teachers who teach that system, and there are no across the board comparisons that either descibe the subtle differences, or attempt to discuss the subtle differences? Not my fault I have training videos that resemble robots? I didn't make the material?

Never mind....

I neither defend my comments nor attack yours, I merely give you my opinion on the basis of my experience with people I have met, trained with, experiences of both scholarly studys, interlaced with doses of material distributed by Yoshinkan.

If you were to absorb the entire text of what I have written, then the many mentionings of beginners verses those with much more experience nearly being twins in the performance of their Aikido in other styles would not have escaped your notice.

Point being ....

we spend too much time on the little annoyances, and we, both you and I, should try to fix that bad habit?

Read the entire text, take it with a grain of salt, and put practice, and teaching methods in perspective to what they are .... practice.

I take the warnings of my being out of line as effectly of coming closer to the truth of our egos speaking rather than considering that eventually all methods of training will change ... as someone always comes along with a better way to teach Aikido?

Taking nothing away from Gozo Shioda as a great teacher, but the lessons of history, not the results of the shouting supportors of "We're number, one." are the proof in the pudding.

Humanity only follows those of recent memory, not those who have been eclipsed by newer heroes. I see this as not an arguement, but the opportunity to learn a lesson of humbleness before the fall, not after the fall. I kind of wished I stayed back in the shadows, invisible, but I opened my big mouth, so I take my lumps.

Years ago, we made up a mythical style of martial arts that would surpass all other martial arts,and for those who did not know it was mythical, we would recommend they go do this art if they did not find what they wanted in training in out present art.

It did two things.

One, it separated the talkers from the people who wanted to train, and two, it taught most students not to toot their horn because names are transitory, and training goes on forever, both literally, and in truth, while names do not.

Everyone steals what they need to learn to protect themselves. When it is yours, you can call it what you like.

Fact is, it is never the name of something that makes it what it is, but the practice and dedication of its students who must adapt and change as the practice changes.

Look back upon this time in your Yoshinkan training with rose colored glasses, for tomorrow, it might be called something else, even though the practice is still the same.

This may be uncalled for, but then if this is not the case, we might as well call this forum the Yoshinkai Aikiweb, or the Aikikai Aikiweb, or what ever name is dominant during the current age of practice?

Does that clear it up any?

I know the Aikikai guys don't bring it up, but then I consider most of you my wayward friends, a place where we could speak candidly.

Maybe I was wrong about that.

Some of you see more darkness than I do, and that seems to be the heart of discontent here?

akiy
01-07-2003, 10:57 PM
Taking nothing away from Gozo Shioda as a great teacher, but the lessons of history, not the results of the shouting supportors of "We're number, one." are the proof in the pudding.
Once again, I see absolutely no one in this thread referring to Yoshinkan as "number one." It seems you are the only person so far who seems to think so.
This may be uncalled for, but then if this is not the case, we might as well call this forum the Yoshinkai Aikiweb, or the Aikikai Aikiweb, or what ever name is dominant during the current age of practice?
The site is not "style" specific and, frankly, I resent your insinuations at such. You obviously do not understand the lengths I have personally taken to try to keep this site about aikido and not about any single approach. Frankly, I feel insulted by your statement.

This thread, however, is ostentatiously named "Yoshinkan." If you can't accept the fact the some folks may want to speak about a single topic (eg the approach to aikido that Shioda sensei left us) rather than force the subject to branch out and include everyone under the sun, I will once again ask you to find a different forum to express your views.

That's the last word I'm going to post on this particular subject. I hope people will continue discussing the topic at hand in a contructive manner rather than taking unnecessarily anti-social measures to try to make an off-topic "point." As I've said before, I've found this thread very productive and educational myself.

-- Jun

Chris Li
01-08-2003, 12:02 AM
That sounds like Iwama-style, which I have had very limited experience in (but none at all in Yoshinkan).

So what are some major differences between Iwama and Yoshinkan?

--JW
The differences are small enought that Gozo Shioda once asked M. Saito to be his successor at the Yoshinkan (Saito turned him down because of his responsibilities at Iwama).

It's interesting to note that the Yoshinkan and the Aikikai never formally seperated - just developed along different organizational lines. IIRC, K. Ueshiba was on the Yoshinkan board of directors (and vice-versa), but I don't know how the situation stands today.

"Aikikai" is so broad that it's hard to make a definitive statement, but I would say that the differences are primarily pedagogical. If Yoshinkan is "phonics", then "standard" Aikikai might be seen as the "whole language" approach. What works best depends, IMO, upon the people involved.

Best,

Chris

Steven
01-08-2003, 10:24 AM
Dear Mr. Brookmole,

I hope all is well. Have we been able to answer your question and assist you in understanding how and why we do things in the Yoshinkan?

If not, please feel free to write to me privately is you wish at aysdojo@seikeikan.com or post here.

Kinds regards ...

aikido_fudoshin
01-08-2003, 03:56 PM
Do people really think Inoue sensei, Chida sensei, etc., look like robots?

Anyways, one point about Yoshinkan that I think has been left out is why there is strict form. The kihon dosa are ment to show people how to move their bodies in the most efficient manner. This very much has to do with the laws of physics. The kihon dosa, along with kame show us where we are most powerful, where we have the most stability, and how we can use this to move our ukes effortlessly and most efficiently. It helps us realize where we are most powerful, where this comes from (i.e. your center), and how we can utilize or harness this power.

Anyone can mimic the kihon dosa but there is a much different feeling to it when done correctly. This cant be taught, its very much subjective. Its extremely difficult to get this feeling and even harder to consistently move in this way. This is why we repeat the kihon dosa over and over again with and without a partner.

Yoshinakn takes body diferences into account. The kihon dosa will vary from person to person, but this difference is not large by any means.

Anyone who believes Yoshinkan is not about blending, feeling, and harmony is dead wrong. Yes, the training method is done step by step, and may look ridgid, but its done to coincide with the kihon dosa and help people understand where they have to be to take uke off balance. These movements should be effortless when we have learned how to move ourselves efficiently and at the same time feel out our opponent. Yoshinkan does not only practice in this step by step method, there is Jiyu waza and various blending techniques, but these are done in co-ordenance with the kihon dosa. The kihon dosa should be very smooth and flowing.

I feel all styles of Aikido still follow the same principles, and If observed with an open mind I feel one should notice they are not all that much different. Really, the name says it all.

Im not "tootin my horn" about how Yoshinkan is better, im merely stating the way Ive learned or interpreted the philosophy behind it. If anyone would like to make any corrections or additions to this please feel free to comment. I feel the dialectical or discursive process is the best way to learn. :)

MAH
01-08-2003, 05:01 PM
Enough with the stupid "tooting of the horn" comment. IT gets a little old when you repeat that over and over again and it starts to sound antagonistic.

Mark B
01-08-2003, 05:29 PM
Mr Miranda

Yes, this has been a great exhange. Of course, with almost every post comes more questions, but I have decided to join a Yoshinkan dojo and work those questions out on the mat. I am sorry if my lack of replies or input seemed to show a lack of interest. I was just taking the shut up and listen approach.

Thanks to everyone that has contributed and please continue.

Steven
01-08-2003, 09:41 PM
Hi Mark,

Welcome to the family. May I ask which dojo you are attending? Any of the ones in CA are great.

No problem with the silence my friend. I certainly understand the approach. Good luck in your training and tell your instructor I said hello.

... Cheers ...

Mark B
01-09-2003, 06:04 PM
Mr Miranda,

The name of the dojo is Shobukan. My first class will be this Saturday morning. I am looking forward to it.

Eric Joyce
01-10-2003, 08:54 AM
Well said Bryant.
Do people really think Inoue sensei, Chida sensei, etc., look like robots?

Anyways, one point about Yoshinkan that I think has been left out is why there is strict form. The kihon dosa are ment to show people how to move their bodies in the most efficient manner. This very much has to do with the laws of physics. The kihon dosa, along with kame show us where we are most powerful, where we have the most stability, and how we can use this to move our ukes effortlessly and most efficiently. It helps us realize where we are most powerful, where this comes from (i.e. your center), and how we can utilize or harness this power.

Anyone can mimic the kihon dosa but there is a much different feeling to it when done correctly. This cant be taught, its very much subjective. Its extremely difficult to get this feeling and even harder to consistently move in this way. This is why we repeat the kihon dosa over and over again with and without a partner.

Yoshinakn takes body diferences into account. The kihon dosa will vary from person to person, but this difference is not large by any means.

Anyone who believes Yoshinkan is not about blending, feeling, and harmony is dead wrong. Yes, the training method is done step by step, and may look ridgid, but its done to coincide with the kihon dosa and help people understand where they have to be to take uke off balance. These movements should be effortless when we have learned how to move ourselves efficiently and at the same time feel out our opponent. Yoshinkan does not only practice in this step by step method, there is Jiyu waza and various blending techniques, but these are done in co-ordenance with the kihon dosa. The kihon dosa should be very smooth and flowing.

I feel all styles of Aikido still follow the same principles, and If observed with an open mind I feel one should notice they are not all that much different. Really, the name says it all.

Im not "tootin my horn" about how Yoshinkan is better, im merely stating the way Ive learned or interpreted the philosophy behind it. If anyone would like to make any corrections or additions to this please feel free to comment. I feel the dialectical or discursive process is the best way to learn. :)

Steven
01-10-2003, 09:26 AM
Mr Miranda,

The name of the dojo is Shobukan. My first class will be this Saturday morning. I am looking forward to it.
Hello Mark,

You will be in good hands at the Shobukan. I have had the pleasure of knowing Berg Sensei for some time now. Please send him my regards.

... Peace ...

norman telford
01-11-2003, 11:41 AM
just while were all talking yoshinkan i dont practise it my self but i would like to if i could find a dojo in my area it seems to be quite popular in southern england but nothing up here in the north east of the uk i practise what is refered to as traditional style aikido and would like to incoperate yoshinkan if i can any suggestions will be appriciated thanks:D

deepsoup
01-12-2003, 02:35 PM
just while were all talking yoshinkan i dont practise it my self but i would like to if i could find a dojo in my area it seems to be quite popular in southern england but nothing up here in the north east of the uk i practise what is refered to as traditional style aikido and would like to incoperate yoshinkan if i can any suggestions will be appriciated thanks:D
It does look like all the British Yoshinkan dojos are way down South, doesn't it? Maybe you'll get lucky and an instructor will move North.

I was looking a while back, and I came across a Yoshinkan offshoot called Shudokan. (With a "U" - thats not a typo, for once I'm not banging on about Shodokan. :))

It seems the Shudokan was founded by an early student of Gozo Shioda's, a Malaysian gentleman by the name of Thamby Rajah. Can anyone comment on how close this is to 'mainstream' Yoshinkan?

One of my google searches turned up their UK website (http://www.shudokan.org.uk) and I'm not sure quite what to make of it (there are a few things on the website that seem a bit, um.. odd), but they do have clubs a bit further North. (Still a fair way South of you, though. Their northernmost club seems to be in Bedale & Leeming (http://www.shudokan.org.uk/uk/clubs/bedale/index.htm) in N.Yorkshire.

I'm curious to check out some Yoshinkan too, but I dont have the time or the energy for serious cross-training, (apart from semi-regular visits to my local traditional dojo)especially not with commuting involved. I think the best bet for me to indulge my curiousity is probably to take in a seminar sometime. Anyone know of a Yoshinkan course/seminar in the UK that might be suitable?

Sean
x

Nathan Pereira
01-13-2003, 04:37 AM
Sean,

What was it is you found Odd on their website. Being one of the "Southerners" in Yoshinkan I might beable to point you to who's who and who is worth training with. I think I've pretty much trained with everybody down here. Without getting into politics there are some big differences in the teachers/organizations. Please feel free to mail me privately.

deepsoup
01-13-2003, 07:41 AM
Sean,

What was it is you found Odd on their website. Being one of the "Southerners" in Yoshinkan I might beable to point you to who's who and who is worth training with. I think I've pretty much trained with everybody down here. Without getting into politics there are some big differences in the teachers/organizations. Please feel free to mail me privately.
Hi Nathan,

Theres a thread running about the use of 'sensei' as a title just now, and thats one of the things that seemed a bit odd on this site. They seem to use 'sempai', 'sensei', 'shihan' and 'soke' as titles, and seem to apply them before people's names: "Sensei Fred", "Shihan Barney" etc..

The other thing is that some of the photos are a little cheesy - people throwing three ukes at a time in the woods - a guy in gi and hakama posing in front of a jet fighter at an RAF base - that kind of thing.

There's a bit of a military 'macho' vibe about the whole thing, the same kind of thing I've seen on some very dodgy American MMA sites. Nothing that would qualify them for a mention in a 'bad budo' forum or anything, I just get a slight subjective feeling of 'cheesiness' when I look at the site. :)

I hope that makes sense.

I'll probably take you up on your offer, and ask you a couple of questions privately later.

Thanks
Regards
Sean

Nathan Pereira
01-13-2003, 08:07 AM
Yes I do know what you mean. I'm not associated with that organization but I have met and trained with the RAF guy [think he might be their head teacher in the UK]and he was a nice guy as I recall. Have met a few of them over the years and they all seemed really friendly to me [and I don't think that about many people].

They are more Yoshinkan based then true "Hombu" Yoshinkan. If you make it down to London I'm sure you would be more than welcome to have a bash. My teachers taught at the Yoshinkan Hombu in Japan [both mentioned in Angry White Pyjamas unfortunetly] so its about as close as you'll get in the UK.

deepsoup
01-13-2003, 03:28 PM
If you make it down to London I'm sure you would be more than welcome to have a bash.
Thanks very much, I hope I'll get a chance to take you up on that. :)

norman telford
01-14-2003, 12:03 PM
nathan why unfortunately featured in angry white pyjamas? i enjoyed reading the book which two instructors is it i think i can guess one of them (paul the met policeman?) but the second ive no idea. what id really like to know is how does yoshinkan differ from the traditional style that i practise in the UKAU? not an easy question to answer i know so if you want to contact me on yahoo messenger you can find my yahoo nickname in the profiles

Nathan Pereira
01-15-2003, 03:20 AM
Norman,

I too enjoyed the book and it gave quite a good reflection of how Yoshinkan is practiced, its just that I know, have met ,know of alot of the people in the book [including the author] and just don't think any were portrayed accuratley is all. You are correct on who my teacher is and as he was teaching on the course I know more than most about what went on. As I said I think it is a great book for those from outside but my enjoyment of it was tainted by the reality.

Wouldn't like to comment on the diffrences as I have no idea on your school. Not all Yoshinkan schools are the same either so this further muddies the waters.

I have also trained in an "Aikikai" school but know this is more an organisation than "style". I was told here and at another very well known club I trained at that I didn't do "Traditional" Aikido it was more Aikido Jujutsu whatever that is. What is considered a "Traditional" school. I know "Traditional" is used alot aswell and I have no idea what makes one more "Traditional" than the other or what makes it "Traditional" at all. There have been numerous comments I've encountered at BAB meetings etc some good mostly bad but each to their own. I'm sure 10 minutes on the mat would quickly highlight any differences/similarities.

Duarh
01-15-2003, 05:25 AM
As a writer, I can forgive Mr. Twigger if he's spinning a tale that is not entirely true to reality in "Angry White Pyjamas" :). A writer needs not only to consider the truth, but also to think about style & commercial issues ;), which isn't nice but is inevitable. And the book's very nice reading.

Besides, no person's account of any period in his or her life can be OBJECTIVE as everything is always filtered through the eyes & mind of the beholder :confused:.

norman telford
01-15-2003, 08:53 AM
nathan thanks for the reply does the author still practise? i know what you mean about "traditional styles" i should probably get a book or video of gozo shioda to get a better idea there seems to be so many different styles of aikido it all gets confusing! if you feel like it give me a shout on yahoo mesenger or msn9my deatails are on the aikiwall somewhere) and we can have a chat

Steven
01-15-2003, 08:58 AM
I met Paul back in 1993. He accompanied Chino Sensei who had been invited to Southern California by Geordan Reynolds. I doubt he remembers me though. Like now, back then I was a lowly nobody. At the college where we trained, I was the one with the birds-eye view of the event. I was sitting on top of one of the weight machines filming the entire event.

Please do send my regards ...

... Cheers ...

Nathan Pereira
01-15-2003, 09:08 AM
He does indeed remember you ,just, as for everything non Aikido his memory is awful. Geordan visisted once about 5 years ago. Very nice man with nice technique.

Ron Tisdale
01-15-2003, 10:16 AM
"traditional" aikido often refers to Iwama "style"...

FWIW

RT