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Erik Young
02-25-2003, 03:50 PM
I realise that there is no intant-magic-oh-so-wonderul solution here...but I thought I might throw this out here and see what others have to say.

Anyway, here's my situation. I am an aikidoka from the "bruiser" set. That is, I'm 6'2" and about 220lbs. I'm the big guy the little guys like to throw around (it looks cool :D ).

Anyway, my problem is that I find it very easy (especailly with less experienced uke) to muscle through techniques when I can;t get them to work otherwise. In fact, it was pointed out to me at last night's class that I was doing it unconsciously. Sensie asked me to "relax"...And I thought to myself "hey, I thought I was relaxed!"

This is not a new problem for me...when I trained before, I would often struggle to not use my strength (although I was less concerned about it then). Now, I'm even more aware of the phenomenon. It's particualrly vexing when I'm working wiht one of our higher ranking folks and they are successfully able to resist the tecnique that I thought was working so beautifully before.

I've decided that my current training focus should be on using less muscular strength and really developing precise technique. This will take time.

What I want to know is...does anybody have any suggestions on how best to approach this. Are there any good awareness-raising excerceises I could practice? Any good anecdotes from others who have been up this particualr path on the mountain?

Hell, I'll take whatever advice anyone has to offer. In the meantime, I'll continue trainign with this goal in mind. It's jsut hard becaus eoften, I'm not even aware that I'm using my strength (it's so natural for me to do so.)

Hope this made sense, if not, I'll attempt to clarify.

peace,
Erik

Ta Kung
02-25-2003, 03:58 PM
Hi Erik!

I can't give you any advice, since I also have this problem still. I can only tell you that you've taken the biggest and hardest step; realizing that you actually use to much power. It took me a few months to accept that this was the case. I often thought that "hey, of course I need to use a bit of power". And of course you do, but not nearly as much power as I used. The problem for me was realizing I had this "problem". ;)

I try to do the technique in different ways, when I notice I'm using a bit more power than I should. I stop right there, and try to move in another direction. Sometimes it works, and sometimes not. :)

Not much help, but at least some comfort (I hope). Stick with it and don't give up!

Best of luck,

Patrik

erikmenzel
02-25-2003, 04:28 PM
I have only one advice:

practice, practice, practice, practice.

Sounds corny, I know, but that is the solution to a lot of problems in aikido anyway.

Larry Feldman
02-25-2003, 05:46 PM
A few thoughts...

1. Find someone stronger than you are to practice with, they could counter your strength.

2. Use a senior student to sanity check your technique, they will be able to call you out when you are using muscles. They may be able to counter your strength/stiffness.

3. Lift weights for an hour, swim for an hour, and run a few miles before class - and you will be to tired to use strength.

4. Practice with the smallest, weakest person in class, prefeably a child. It may be easier for your mind to tell your body to relax and not use strength since you are so clearly stronger than they are.

DaveO
02-25-2003, 10:13 PM
I'm in the bruiser-weight class myself; I have the same problem. I've come up with a real weird solution that seems to work, however; practice on a balance-beam.

OK, OK, stop laughing, all of you!! :D

I dunno why, but it seems to work for me - lay a beam out on the mat and stand on it when doing linear techniques - ikkyo for example. The theory is (and it seems to be borne out), that when one has to balance, one must remain relaxed to maintain that balance. If you tense up, you'll go over. Also, if you use strength to push uke through the technique, the leverage will throw you off the bar; whereas a relaxed body will go with it.

Well, I said it was weird! Seems to work for me though. :)

Dave

aikido_fudoshin
02-25-2003, 10:37 PM
Eric Knoops is deffinetly right, but maybe you could add in focus, focus, focus aswell. By focus I mean on continuously thinking of being relaxed all the time. Heres a few things I think about when attempting to relax: 1. When your relaxed you feel things that you cant when your tight. Its easier to feel ukes weak points and the direction of their power.

2. for some reason I find my tension begins in my grip, when I loosen my grip other parts become a little more relaxed aswell.

3. personally I find weight training before a class makes my muscles too tense to relax properly, but that may just be me

4. focus on lowering your shoulders, even if it means tightening your lats at first - your body is in proper balance when your shoulders are lowered.

I think over time (repetition of movements, etc.) things just become more natural and free flowing. Keeping in mind that you should be relaxed when doing Aikido will only benefit you. I noticed with my guitar playing that at first I was very stiff no matter how much practicing I did. It just took time for the movements to become more natural and to build up speed. I think that Aikido is slightly more complex than guitar playing, but I think if you train consistantly and with effort it will just happen over time.

I hope this helps,

Osu!

Jason Tonks
02-26-2003, 03:08 AM
Alright there Eric. I suppose there are lots of pieces of advice that could be given but the fundamental one that comes to mind is use your hips to make the technique work rather than trying to use your upper body. Also always with all the techniques, keep your hands aligned with your centre. A good excercise to practise is to have someone grab one of your arms with both hands strongly and to try and stop you moving. You will feel the difference then if you try and use just upper body strength or whether you use your hips and your whole body from your centre. One way is a real struggle, the other with a bit of luck should be Aikido.

All the best

Jason T

Fiona D
02-26-2003, 03:44 AM
In the original post, Erik wrote:

"It's particualrly vexing when I'm working wiht one of our higher ranking folks and they are successfully able to resist the tecnique that I thought was working so beautifully before."

As Larry said in his point number 2, working on this with a senior student who can resist you if you end up using muscle at the expense of technique is probably the best thing to do. A senior student who knows how the correct technique should feel will be able to resist in the RIGHT way (as opposed to the 'you will not move me under ANY circumstances' type of resistance) and will be able to give you useful feedback on the details of what you're doing. It's even sometimes worth specifically telling your training partner "OK, don't let me move you unless I'm using proper technique" so that you can experiment a bit more.

[Interestingly enough, this issue is not exclusive to the big "bruisers". I'm somewhat on the other end of the scale (being 5'0 and barely over 100 pounds) and I find sometimes that bigger students, especially newer people, might 'let' me do techniques on them regardless of whether I'm getting it right (e.g. falling down before I've really broken their balance). In that case I have to ask them for a bit more resistance, otherwise it becomes hard to tell how my technique is holding up - effectively the same problem that Erik is talking about.]

happysod
02-26-2003, 03:47 AM
Erik,

One thing that has helped some of our "bruisers" in the past is change the attack slightly. Unfortunately, this only works for grabs. For example, rather than having your uke grab your wrist, let them take your little finger and try and do the same technique. If you're using strength rather than technique, trust me your finger will let you know.

Otherwise, I wouldn't actually worry too much. Your physical strength is a natural resource just like your technique. If you can manage to use both without them being unbalanced, why not. As you're aware of the potential problems I really don't think you'll allow your strength to dominate.

ian
02-26-2003, 05:38 AM
I find very useful is ai-hanmi ikkyo. Have uke just grabbing then pushing slowly forward. Keeping your hands in front of your centre let this push naturally turn your body (easiest if you turn towards your ungrabbed side).

Now, without letting this movement go to far and USING YOUR FEET move around the otherside (change turning direction) whilst still allowing uke to push forwards and keeping your hands in your centre. Then take the elbow and let uke continue to push forwards and down so you land in an ikkyo pin.

They key is:

-constant pressure should be made at all times - no pulling or pushing

uke should land in the direction that they were pushing all along (though they may change direction as they fall, and then you must move with them).

An alternative is just to try this (or other techniques) with palm to palm contact - thus if there is any pushing or pulling the hands disengage.

hope this helps!

P.S. strength per se is not the problem - forcing uke to go somewhere where they are not already going is.

Erik Young
02-26-2003, 08:02 AM
Thank you all for the advice...I'm going to hopefully try some of this out tonight (assuming the impending snow storm doesn't interfere....)

I'm also goign to talk with Sensei tonight (hopefully)...

Peace,

Erik

ronmar
02-26-2003, 03:16 PM
My advice is dont do aikido. Try something more suited to your build and strength. What percentage of the population is as strong as you? Probably about 10%. If you train in a way that takes advantage of your speed and power (eg judo, boxing) you will end up as a person who is hard to beat. The same might not be true if you concentrate on your obvious weak points.

Judd
02-26-2003, 06:06 PM
Funny, I'm in the exact opposite posistion! I'm 5'9" and 135lbs, so I find it fairly easy to relax (since I can't muscle my way through, even if I wanted to ;)). But when throwing someone larger, it's harder for me to keep my balance and stay grounded compared to someone like you, who's probably much more solid. I wouldn't worry about it too much in any case, we've all got physical obstacles to overcome. :)

Bogeyman
02-26-2003, 09:02 PM
Ian's method worked for me as well. I found that going in slow motion helps, too, because it helps me check my posture at the same time. I also trained with a number of different instructors who each added something to help me. One of them is a large man that will not be moved if you don't do the technique correctly. Last, another instructor included relaxing your face to help relax your body. As crazy as it sounds it helped me a lot. Hope this is of some help.

E

SeiserL
02-26-2003, 09:46 PM
As another one of the big guys (6'4", 220) I also tend towards the muscles. I found that slowing down and really paying attention to the technique helped me find a better sense of relaxation. It take practice and conscious awareness, but worth it. Good training to you.

Until again,

Lynn

PhilJ
02-27-2003, 12:15 AM
I'll just pitch in my quarter and agree with the "doing it slow" ideas. :)

I like to look at the mental side of things too. How hard is it for us to just "let go" of stuff? We often use our strength to cling to things we are comfortable doing, as well as use it for things we aren't comfortable with. (It's how I was raised anyway)

The point is that it's not as easy as all these old pros up there make it sound. :) Don't look for immediate results, and take your time "letting go" -- get to class, and try it in daily life too.

*Phil

mike lee
02-27-2003, 06:42 AM
Help! I use too much muscle...

The practice of tai chi chuan, especially the "pushing-hands" exercise helped me a lot.

If that's not an option, one can work to concentrate more on the lower body while doing waza, rather than on the hands, while maintaining good posture.

No matter who my partner is, I always imagine that they are Superman, and that the only way I can successfully complete the waza is to use proper technique, not an inordinate amount of power.

I also imagine that I'm 108 years old and recovering from the flu in an effort to use the minimum amount of strength. In this way, one will always have plenty of power in reserve.

Aikido practice feels much more enjoyable when people use aiki rather than muscle, which creates tension rather than relaxed power.

rachmass
02-27-2003, 07:29 AM
Mike, I like your imagery. I sometimes pretend I am Audrey Hepburn and use that image to concentrate on my posture and bearing, which in turn helps relax the muscle. Another thing I was just recently shown was about dropping my hands to my center in shiho nage, where I had been previously taught to cut out like a sword strike; it actually made an amazing difference in that your shoulders can't get tight. Just one recent nugget on the never-ending path towards improvement....

ian
02-27-2003, 08:43 AM
My advice is dont do aikido.
ha ha,

you're always trying to wind us up Ron - I wonder why you do aikido!

I think most people don't choose to do aikido because they are weak or small, but because they like the method of training and also it allows them to give a graded response to real situations.

If small people (like me) were going to choose a martial art for their body size they would probably choose a striking art which suits the faster speed and reduces the chance of grappling. However I have never been in a real situation where it is suitable to just start punching people.

Larger people may be better suitted to doing aikido slightly differently, but there is more to aikido than a set of techniques (otherwsie we'd just be doing jujitsu).

Ian

Hanna B
02-27-2003, 09:10 AM
I agree on the slow down-aspect. I would like to add - if it fits with your general dojo profile, that is - how about working with less resistance, instead of more? Working slowly with light contact is IMHO a great way of improving sensitivity.

mike lee
02-27-2003, 09:16 AM
Just wanted to add one more thing. I think that feeling that one always has to follow through on a waza to completion is a mistake. Never force it if it ain't working. Stop and try to figure out what's wrong.

Only if a person is willing to fail, can they gain a new lesson.

jk
02-27-2003, 09:51 AM
To add a little bit to what Jason and Mike mentioned about using the hips/concentrating more on the lower body: When executing the waza, experiment by keeping your elbows down and as close to your trunk as possible. This tends to make you rely on your hips for power generation/displacement of uke, instead of your upper body strength.

BTW Rachel, I like the pretending to be Audrey Hepburn bit...I think I'll give that a shot. :)

Regards,

mike lee
02-27-2003, 09:59 AM
I think that Fred Astaire could have been a sensational aikidoist. What great posture and athletic ability, combined with class and charm! (All areas that I am seriously lacking.)

Alan Drysdale
02-27-2003, 12:05 PM
I don't have the problem of being large and strong, but I have students who have, and students who have the opposite problem.

One thing I tell the strong students is to learn to be economical with their power. See if you can do a technique with half as much power. A concrete goal seems to work better than just a blanket "don't muscle through it". When you get that down, see if you can do it with a quarter of your power. Then I tell them to watch how the small aikidoka manage without power, and to try that way. A change in position or angle will often make things a lot better, then they don't feel as tempted to just bull through.

Alan

Erik Young
02-27-2003, 01:41 PM
Thank ou everybody...this is really good stuff!

I trained last night...tried to keep some of this in mind, what a difference. Slowing down in particular was helpful...but with one caveate. Before, when I slowed down, I tended to break the technique up into concrete steps. This, in and of itself is not a bad thing, except the excecution was like "do step !" wait "do step 2" wait...I lost all sense of flow. WHen I jsut slow3ed down but maintained my flow (a tip from one of the black belts), it felt better.

I had one technique where everything came together. Not sure of the name...yokemunuchi where nage ducks under strikes, moves behind uke and pulls uke backwards from his/her shoulders.

Anyway, I had no problem "muscling" through the technique. However, when I was pointed out that I could just do the "rowing excercise" along with a slight backwards step...Wow! The uke commented that when I dropped my hands on hsi shoulders (no muscle, just gravity and mass) it felt like "king kong" and then the throw had him roll backwards and he nearly lost his balance coming up onto his feet. Much more powerful than when I was forcing it. Too bad I wasn;t able to duplicate it after that.

Anyway, I left class feeling pretty juiced! :)

As for not studying Aikido...not an option my friend. I've studied a lto of things (Aikido for 5 years as a Teen/young adult),Wrestling (High School) kickboxing karate, Goju-ryu karate, Kung fu (some shoalin derivative), Wing chun Kung fu, and tai chi. Being back in aikido, for whatever reason, feels like home. Wing chun/tai chi came close...but there are no schools that I knwo of in my area (not that I have the money or the time, y'know? Maybe some day). Anyway, I'll stick with the Aikido for now...it's making a difference in my life at the moment.

Thanks again for the help. I'll post again with further updates as they happen.

Peace,

Erik

George S. Ledyard
03-04-2003, 09:39 AM
I realise that there is no intant-magic-oh-so-wonderul solution here...but I thought I might throw this out here and see what others have to say.

Anyway, here's my situation. I am an aikidoka from the "bruiser" set. That is, I'm 6'2" and about 220lbs. I'm the big guy the little guys like to throw around (it looks cool :D ).

Anyway, my problem is that I find it very easy (especailly with less experienced uke) to muscle through techniques when I can;t get them to work otherwise. In fact, it was pointed out to me at last night's class that I was doing it unconsciously. Sensie asked me to "relax"...And I thought to myself "hey, I thought I was relaxed!"

This is not a new problem for me...when I trained before, I would often struggle to not use my strength (although I was less concerned about it then). Now, I'm even more aware of the phenomenon. It's particualrly vexing when I'm working wiht one of our higher ranking folks and they are successfully able to resist the tecnique that I thought was working so beautifully before.

I've decided that my current training focus should be on using less muscular strength and really developing precise technique. This will take time.

What I want to know is...does anybody have any suggestions on how best to approach this. Are there any good awareness-raising excerceises I could practice? Any good anecdotes from others who have been up this particualr path on the mountain?

Hell, I'll take whatever advice anyone has to offer. In the meantime, I'll continue trainign with this goal in mind. It's jsut hard becaus eoften, I'm not even aware that I'm using my strength (it's so natural for me to do so.)

Hope this made sense, if not, I'll attempt to clarify.

peace,

Erik
I have trained fairly extensively with Gleason sensei. One of the things I got from him that has helped me more than anything else is the teaching which he received from Yamaguchi Sensei that Aikido is about resting your full body weight on top of the partner when his alignmenet has been broken. So no technique should take any more effort than simply allowing the weight of your arms to fall.

I am a very large guy. Over the years I have done various things as others have described above to get myself to relax and use less physical power (I am your size). Yamaguchi Sensei's student, Takeda sensei, said that the hardest thing about Aikido was forcing yourself to stay relaxed for all those years while your technique didn't work until it finally started to. Great advice.

The advice about finding partners bigger and stronger than yourself is great advice if there are those folks around. I spent years training at Maty Heiny Sensei's dojo where I was as big as the next two students. I forced myself to do technique so that I didn't even feel pressure when I did it. I figured if I used any extra force on someone my half my own size thne I would have been stopped dead in my tracks by someone my own size or larger.

When I finally got to do my police defensive tactics I really made a qualitative jump. My two senior students are quite a bit larger and stronger than I. One competes in police power lifting. He does a three lift combined of around 1400 lbs now. There is ZERO chance that I could muscle him anywhere. I found that I absolutely had to relax. The least bit of tension totally empowered him.

This is the haredst thing for people and why it takes so long to get I think. You have to convince your Mind and Body that relaxing in the face of force is the safe resaponse. It takes a long time to start to really trust that reaction. But as you begin to be successful you will increasingly start to really trust that you can be safe without "defending against" an attack but rather by allowing it to happen and accepting it into your space. At that point your stuff will really start to cook.

drDalek
03-04-2003, 02:16 PM
I too am on the bruiser side of the line, being about 5'9 and 210lbs. I have also considered doing Judo instead of Aikido so that I have a legitimate use for my muscle.

The problem with that is that in jiyuwaza and randori I am already resorting to "dirty" tactics like grabs, bear hugs, trips, hip throws and groundwork (much to my sensei's dismay) to take my attackers down or control them. All without having trained in any form of grappling at all. Dont get me wrong though, I am not bragging because my tactics are rarely successful in a one vs many scenario (although I kick ass in one on one jiyuwaza) but in the heat of the moment I still forget most of my Aikido.

Overall I would rather be challenged by something which is alien to me like Aikido than doing something which already comes naturally like grappling (or for that matter, my interpretation of grappling).

I have made peace with the fact that I will need to practice a lot and practice hard to unlearn my "bad habits" but nothing worthwile in life is free or easy to obtain.

aikidoc
03-04-2003, 03:30 PM
I have found it really helps to relax when you move everything from center. With your center the driving element and everything connected to the center it is difficult to muscle. I try to stress doing everthing from center (including ukemi). Saotome and Ikeda Senseis really stress the use of the center connection in their seminars. I believe some of Ikeda's students have even written a book on the topic. My nickle.

akiy
03-04-2003, 03:47 PM
I too am on the bruiser side of the line, being about 5'9 and 210lbs. I have also considered doing Judo instead of Aikido so that I have a legitimate use for my muscle.
Interesting. Do many people here think that judo is about using muscle?

From what I understand, the principles of judo and aikido overlap greatly. Although these principles may not be very present in "sport judo" these days, Kano sensei and those who study Kodokan judo really seem to emphasize that it's not about muscle but using the principles.

Have you ever watched Mifune sensei? At 110 pounds, he wasn't able to outmuscle his opponents. Yet, from what I've seen of his videos, he was able to throw people with great weight advantages...

Maybe it's just my limited understanding and experience in judo, though.

-- Jun

Mike Collins
03-04-2003, 06:22 PM
There's no advice to give, except to train with the question in mind: "Will I be able to do it this way when I'm 75?" For me, most of the time, the answer is no, but it's getting more possible as I train longer.

One of the side issues this has brought up for me, is that I tend to not finish technique with a ton of "down", and have been accused of trying to be too loose and disinterested.

My take is that I have always got access to strength and power when I want it, but learning how to effectively relax is a lifetime thing (well, so far anyway).

acot
03-04-2003, 09:02 PM
Eric

I find using too much strenth a huge problem. This thread was great. After starting Aikido 8 months ago I am stuggling with loss of balance by the use of too much strength.

Ryan

Erik Young
03-05-2003, 08:19 AM
This is the haredst thing for people and why it takes so long to get I think. You have to convince your Mind and Body that relaxing in the face of force is the safe resaponse. It takes a long time to start to really trust that reaction. But as you begin to be successful you will increasingly start to really trust that you can be safe without "defending against" an attack but rather by allowing it to happen and accepting it into your space. At that point your stuff will really start to cook.
That is a really deep thought. I'm going to think on this concept some more...Thanks!:)

Peace,

Erik

ian
03-05-2003, 11:56 AM
I sometimes pretend I am Audrey Hepburn
Yeh, so do I - but that's another story.

ian
03-05-2003, 12:08 PM
Interesting. Do many people here think that judo is about using muscle?

Have you ever watched Mifune sensei?

-- Jun
Although I've done some Judo, I wouldn't say I know that much about it. However I do believe it is very much strengh/weight orientated. Why else would they have weight categories in competition?

Also, when I've done Judo training I tended to go with slightly heavier opponents due to my aikido experience. However I found it extremely frustrating because I couldn't do wrist locks, throat attacks or atemis. Also once in a close clasp the heavier person seemed to have a massive advantage (I'm sure you'd agree Ron).

When you talk about Mifune doing Judo I think you are talking more about the old Kodokan style. In modern competition it you loose points for being passive and so this automattically puts you at a disadvantage. I find it very easy to resist being thrown by even advanced jodoka if I don't have to throw them, but if you are forced to attack it is very easy to get thrown.

I believe Judo lost alot when it left its Kodokan roots.

aiki_what
03-05-2003, 12:21 PM
"I think that Fred Astaire could have been a sensational aikidoist. What great posture and athletic ability, combined with class and charm! (All areas that I am seriously lacking.)"

Actually, I think Ginger Rogers would have been even better....she did everything Fred did backwards and wearing heels! ;)

akiy
03-05-2003, 12:35 PM
When you talk about Mifune doing Judo I think you are talking more about the old Kodokan style.
Yup. That's why I wrote, "Although these principles may not be very present in "sport judo" these days, Kano sensei and those who study Kodokan judo really seem to emphasize that it's not about muscle but using the principles."

-- Jun

paw
03-05-2003, 01:42 PM
Although I've done some Judo, I wouldn't say I know that much about it. However I do believe it is very much strengh/weight orientated. Why else would they have weight categories in competition?

Part of competition is "fairness". To that end, competitors are arranged by experience and skill levels as well. Weight categories are just another way of leveling the field, of ensuring the competition is "fair". There are some tournaments where there are no weight categories (the All Japan Open comes to mind), but such "open" weight competitions are never (rarely?) won by small competitors (Koga may be the only exception). Light heavyweights and above tend to be the champs.
I find it very easy to resist being thrown by even advanced jodoka if I don't have to throw them, but if you are forced to attack it is very easy to get thrown.
I'm curious how advanced the judoka were if it was easy to resist. Short of running away, one fellow I trained with was capable of throwing me at will, hard enough that I would not be able to continue. He would have perhaps been good enough to place in the top 3 in a state meet. In a regional meet or national meet, he'd be cannon fodder, and the US isn't a top tier judo country.
I believe Judo lost alot when it left its Kodokan roots.
How did judo lose it's roots? The entire Kodokan cirriculum is still taught, other competitive formats (ie Kosen Judo) exist. Judo continues to evolve and florish, does it not?

Regards,

Paul

Nacho_mx
03-05-2003, 04:20 PM
How did judo lose it's roots? The entire Kodokan cirriculum is still taught, other competitive formats (ie Kosen Judo) exist. Judo continues to evolve and florish, does it not?

Now that you mention it I was looking at the book "Judo a Pictorial Manual" by Ms. Pat Harrington and it pretty much covers all of Kodokan curriculum step by step. I donīt mean to disrespect or offend any fellow budoka, but some aspects of it just look outdated, specially goshin-ho (womenīs self defense) and kime-no-kata (the forms of self defense). My sensei has a background in judo and sometimes he spices up his technique (specially while showing kaeshi waza)with a leg sweep or hip throw, still his technique flows effortlessly. My point is, did Judoīs technical evolution just stopped cold? If so, should a judoka look into other arts to expand his/her vision? To me Aikido is still a living, evolving art, solidly rooted by its philosofical/religious background.

mike lee
03-06-2003, 03:11 AM
Kano sensei and those who study Kodokan judo really seem to emphasize that it's not about muscle but using the principles.

The first time I used a judo hip throw in the street, there was absolutely no resistance. Looking back, it was probably the best aikido waza I ever did — and I was only 10 years old!

paw
03-06-2003, 05:29 AM
I donīt mean to disrespect or offend any fellow budoka, but some aspects of it just look outdated, specially goshin-ho (womenīs self defense) and kime-no-kata (the forms of self defense).

How much as Iwama style aikido evolved, technically? How relevent is it to train with bokken and jo in an age of firearms, chemical sprays and tactical folders?

I think you'll find, much like aikido, that some people are preserving the tradition as it was passed down to them, while others are extending the tradition into other areas.
To me Aikido is still a living, evolving art, solidly rooted by its philosofical/religious background.
As is judo, to my way of thinking. Mutual benefit and welfare. Maximum result, minimal effort.

Regards,

Paul

deepsoup
03-06-2003, 01:36 PM
As is judo, to my way of thinking. Mutual benefit and welfare. Maximum result, minimal effort.
Hear hear.

Oddly enough, my Judo instructor (I practiced from childhood until I was about 20) was very interested in the 'philosophical' aspects of budo practice. My current Aikido instructor on the other hand, is much more focussed on physical technique.

Consequently, my own experience is of judo as a 'philosophical' budo and aikido as a 'no-nonsense', practical martial art. Pretty much the exact opposite of what some people would expect.

As for judo having lost its roots, not so, they're alive and well and living at the Kodokan.

There are dojos out there that have lost their judo (those where they practice randori to the total exclusion of everything else, for example), but thats a different matter.

Sean

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