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Jamesha21
06-14-2003, 03:33 AM
Greetings all and sundry

This is a very short, to the point question, and pretty important for someone looking to defend himself against thugs on the street. Just how effective is Aikido as a self defense "tool".:(

Jem8472
06-14-2003, 05:44 AM
It depends which style you train in. If you train 100% everytime you go and how you choose to apply it.

Jeremy

www.aikido-dynamic.co.uk

SmilingNage
06-14-2003, 06:22 AM
Here is a short and pointed reply, stay off that street that has the thugs on it. Go looking for trouble and trouble will oblige itself.

As for studying of martial arts, they are for self mastery not mastery of others. I suggest looking at them all. There are many lessons to be had from all the martial arts. More often then not people come to Aikido after studying elsewhere and find Aikido is what they were missing in their training.

So good luck and research the training hall/dojo you hope to attend. Finding the right teacher is paramount.

Thalib
06-14-2003, 07:15 AM
Check my post here:Spiritual > What is your limit for violence? Post #35 (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?postid=48834#post48834)

Ta Kung
06-14-2003, 07:47 AM
James, here's a short and to the point answer: No, the way most Aikido dojos practise will not give you much to use on the street.

If you're looking for self defence only, check out Krav Maga. Granted, Aikido can be used successfully as a self defence tool, but it takes a very long time to get that good at it.

If self defence is your only goal, Aikido is not for you.

Regards,

Patrik

jvadakin
06-14-2003, 09:29 AM
James, here's a short and to the point answer: No, the way most Aikido dojos practise will not give you much to use on the street.

If you're looking for self defence only, check out Krav Maga. Granted, Aikido can be used successfully as a self defence tool, but it takes a very long time to get that good at it.

If self defence is your only goal, Aikido is not for you.

Regards,

Patrik
Hello everyone, I am new to Aikido so perhaps I misunderstand the point of contention here. Aikido is derived from Ju-Jitsu, a rather brutal and battle tested martial art. This derivation was done by Morihei Ueshiba who was considered to be one of the finest martial artists in Japan. Many police officers use Aikido, and as depicted in the book "Angry White Pajammas," Aikido was once the choosen art of the Japanese Riot Police. I realize that Zen and Shintoism were incorporated into Aikido, which led to the elimination of some of the deadlier Ju-Jitsu techniques. I also realize that most Aikido schools do not use any type of sparing but only prearranged cooperative techniques. Are these last two facts sufficient to nullify the effectiveness of the art in a self defense situation? Brazilian Ju-Jitsu, which has proven itself in the UFC, is derived from Ju-Jitsu just like Aikido! Unfortunately this type of "doubting" post is very common on the web, and I considered the problem before joining Aikido. My personal opinion(academic mostly since I'm just a newbie) is that Aikido is effective for self-defense. I think competance in Aikido (i.e. you could actually use it in a fast moving street environment) must take longer than competance in say Karate. Karate is very efficient. I studied Okinawian Karate when I was a teen-ager and the Sensei taught very few techniques, prefering to make us really master the basics (3 level punches, side/roundhouse/snap kick, etc.) In my first several weeks of Aikido, I've been overwhelmed with the sheer volume of instruction. Aikido also seems to require a very high level of coordination and balance. I enjoy the challenge, but then again I'm not training for a looming showdown at high noon. My path in life is fairly unexciting (no street fights etc.), but I like to think that if I'm ever attacked, after say a year or two of Aikido training, that my techniques would improve my chances of successful defense! As a new Aikidoka, I am very disturbed when people reply to internet post questions about the effectivness of Aikido with the rather non sequiter, "Avoiding the fight is victory. Defeat the enemy within." They certainly are correct in their statements, but they avoid the question of effective self-defense entirely. Therefore I'm going to submit a revised question to the forum: 1. Assuming a situation in which escape and negotiation prove impossible, and we have reason to fear the opponent means grave harm. Is Aikido effective in defending against attack? 2. This question is usually answered with the obvious "it depends on the skill of the Aikidoka." Therefore, Assume the average (Competance, size etc.)Aikidoka after one year of training. Also assume average bully :). I think the Aikidoka would certainly be better off than if he had never practiced! I guess the question is sort of relative (i.e. does it take two years of Aikido training to lead to the same level of self-defense as a person would recieve in one year of Karate etc.)?

MaylandL
06-14-2003, 10:57 AM
Hello James

If you are interested in reseacrching self defense and martial arts can I suggest that you have a look at this site. I think Mr MacYoung has a lot of good advice that you may wish to consider.

All the best for training

Alec Corper
06-14-2003, 12:24 PM
With respect we've been here before and although the post is obviously sincere the question is wrong.

The question HAS TO BE "Is MY Aikido effective in the street?", if you are asking about self defense. There is no such thing as an effective martial art, only effective practitioners.

As someone else said very well, Aikido is for mastering self first, and then, perhaps, mastering others. Master awareness, perception and sensitivity and you should not find yourself in the wrong places.

If you really want to learn to fight on the street find a street fighter who is willing to teach you. Street fights usually dont last more than 30 seconds, and the winners tend to be people who are brutal, devious, and where possible, in larger groups.

One last point, and this is a very personal opinion, but trying to learn to fight will prevent learning Aikido, and learning Aikido the way it is taught in many dojos will prevent you learning to fight. This might not be a bad thing, but confusion about reality can kill.

Regards, Alec

Daniel Blanco
06-14-2003, 07:24 PM
TO PATRICK AIKIDO IS VERY EFFECTIVE IN SELF DEFENSE LOOK AT IT IN THIS PERSPECTIVE, IT IS USED AS A SURPRISE ATTACK. AS YOUTRAIN LONGER YOU WILL FEEL THE HANDLE / BALANCE OF POWER IN AIKIDO. I AM A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER AN AIKIDO IS MY FIRST DEFENSE SO CONTINE TRAINING OK .

shihonage
06-14-2003, 08:37 PM
Aikido is effective when

a) You have some level of fitness.

b) Aikido movements have imprinted themselves into your flinch response.

You don't look for Aikido technique, you just MOVE in the way most natural to the circumstances.

c) You have adopted a certain way of behavior which either makes the other guy decide its not worth messing with you, or goads him into getting very angry and rushing at you.

d) You don't neglect reality, and you don't think twice about things like smashing the nose, gouging eyes or hitting the balls, if given the opportunity.
You also don't neglect the use of surrounding objects as weapons.

sanosuke
06-14-2003, 10:08 PM
Aikido itself is effective, the only problem is whether YOUR aikido effective or not.

Don_Modesto
06-14-2003, 11:30 PM
Just how effective is Aikido as a self defense "tool".:(
Welcome to the board. I suggest you explore the search function.

Thanks.

Charles Hill
06-14-2003, 11:43 PM
If you can, check out Elliot Freeman, an Aikido teacher out of St. Louis. I went to a seminar he taught and learned a lot about Aikido and practical self defense.

Charles

Ta Kung
06-15-2003, 05:58 AM
Well friends,

As always one is forced to explain in detail. That's the problem when you chose between short and to the point answers, or long novel ones. :rolleyes:

Please take the time to read my post yet again, and keep in mind that Aikido is one of the most important things in my life. Don't be so quick to defend our art, that you miss the valid points my post has to offer.
Aikido can be used successfully as a self defence tool, but it takes a very long time to get that good at it.

If anyone disagrees, please let me know.
If self defence is your only goal, Aikido is not for you.

Aikido works for self defence, but keep quote #1 in mind. If it is your ONLY goal, then the fact remains, there are other arts (like krav maga) that offers self defence only, and that is quicker to learn.
the way most Aikido dojos practise will not give you much to use on the street.

I guess that if you only read this quote, you might get your pants in a knot. I would to. But I'd also read the entire post.

I'm not really saying Aikido doesn't work in a self defence situation anyhwere, am I? I'm only saying that Aikido is in no way the fastest most reliable way to self defence. If you think otherwise, I'd love to see the way you practise. It DOES take time do get good enough, but it IS possible.

I do agree with the statement that "Aikido works, yours might not". But it is a bit like Freuds strategy ("You either agree, or you're lying to yourself"). I wouldn't use this as my only point to "defend" Aikido.

Keep practising Aikido for whatever reason, it's a wounderful Martial Art, with lots of benefits. Including self defence. I belive it is not the right choice if your ONLY goal is self defence. It takes too long to learn. There ARE better alternatives.

Yours in Aiki,

Patrik

PeterR
06-15-2003, 06:25 AM
If anyone disagrees, please let me know.
I do. There are several training methods out there that have varying times to produce the "effective" aikidoist. It all depends on what you want to do and how deperately you want to do it. Aikido is technically difficult and one of the reasons Ueshiba M. was fired from the Ninja school is he wasn't imparting the skill fast enough. That doesn't mean its not possible or more to the point there are very effective tools in aikidos arsenal that can be taught very quickly.


Aikido works for self defence, but keep quote nr 1 in mind. If it is your ONLY goal, then the fact remains, there are other arts (like krav maga) that offers self defence only, and that is quicker to learn.
Well in addition to the above the best way to get good at a particular situation is to constantly put yourself in that situation. I really don't know much about Krav Maga beyond watching a couple of training sessions but if the average student in those groups were any indication - well they were average. Same can be said for any and every organization.

Ta Kung
06-15-2003, 06:56 AM
Aikido is technically difficult and one of the reasons Ueshiba M. was fired from the Ninja school is he wasn't imparting the skill fast enough.

Goes well with my point "Aikido can be used successfully as a self defence tool, but it takes a very long time to get that good at it." doesn't it? ;)
I really don't know much about Krav Maga beyond watching a couple of training sessions but if the average student in those groups were any indication - well they were average. Same can be said for any and every organization.

True. But the average Aikidoka with 1 year of practise most likely isn't as "effective in the street" as someone who studied Krav Maga for 1 year. Wouldn't you agree?

Mr. Rehese, do you believe that Aikido is the right choice if one is interested ONLY in learning self defence? This is the question as I see it.

Respectfully,

Patrik

PeterR
06-15-2003, 07:26 AM
Goes well with my point "Aikido can be used successfully as a self defence tool, but it takes a very long time to get that good at it." doesn't it? ;)
Hi Patrik;

Just heading off home - I'm seriously hungry but quickly.

I've said before that carefully choosing which techniques to concentrate on and teaching them with a specific goal in mind one can produce a very dangerous individual within a very short time. That said, one of the attractions of Aikido is its complexity and therefore like most of us it is taking a rather long time to get good at it - I just don't want to train for that one goal.
True. But the average Aikidoka with 1 year of practise most likely isn't as "effective in the street" as someone who studied Krav Maga for 1 year. Wouldn't you agree?
To be blunt I think both would be pretty useless. I would go for a boxer - especially one with the balls to hop into a ring as soon as possible.
Mr. Rehse, do you believe that Aikido is the right choice if one is interested ONLY in learning self defence? This is the question as I see it.
Well see above and it can be. It all depends on the individual (yeah I know I'm tired of hearing that too) and the dojo. I don't quite see the question in the same way in that many groups that claim self defencesuperiority are really not that much better in delivering the goods. At least the Aikido dojos that don't emphasize that aspect are relatively honest about it.

Before I die of starvation let me just say that if you want to learn self defence the best way is probably to get a bit of head protection, a pair of gloves and jump into a ring or anyplace there is a consequence to getting hit. You don't need broken bones just a good ringing of the bells. The mental strength you can obtain from just overcoming that primeval fear is well beyond what you gain from particular techniques.

Ta Kung
06-15-2003, 07:43 AM
To be blunt I think both would be pretty useless. I would go for a boxer - especially one with the balls to hop into a ring as soon as possible.

Ok, you say boxing instead of Krav Maga. At least when it comes to defence against an unarmed attacker, i take it. None of us say Aikido. Then maybe I wasn't that far of the point, after all. :)

Thank you for your reply!

Best wishes,

Patrik

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 09:20 AM
TO ALL CONCERN AIKIDO IS AN EFFECTIVE M.A. AS LONG AS YOU TRAIN HARD AND FOCUS.JUST AS KARATE OR ANY M.A.. WHICH MEANS YOU SHOULD BE TRAINING AT LEAST 3X A WEEK WITH OUT FAIL ALL YEAR LONG AND THATS ANY M.A., AFTER A YEAR YOU SHOULD BE FEELING POSITIVE ABOUT YOUR TRAINING. ANYONE WHO DOESNT FEEL THE SAME WAY SHOULD LOOK REAL HARD AT THEMSELVES BEFORE DOUBTING ANY M.A..

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 09:22 AM
I USED TO BOX FOR TEN YEARS AND THE SAME APPLIES YOU MUST TRAIN HARD TO SUCCED.

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 09:25 AM
SEE YOU ALL LATER I AM GOING TO THE BEACH ITS FATHERS DAY SO HAPPY FATHERS DAY TO ALL YOU DADS.

Charles Hill
06-15-2003, 09:50 AM
Peter,

What is this about Morihei Ueshiba being fired from a ninja school? I have never heard that!

In my opinion, there is no difference between Krav Maga and basic Aikido. From what I have seen and read the principles are the same. I do see, however, a HUGE difference in they way they are usually taught. As for the question of, after a year of training, who'd deal better with a real self defense situation, that of course depends on the school. However, if the people were picked from randomly chosen schools, I'd put my money on Krav Maga.

Charles

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 09:58 AM
ANY REPLY TO MY COMMENTS

Charles Hill
06-15-2003, 10:38 AM
Daniel,

Yes, I have a couple of replies.

1. Why do you always use all capitals?

2. What happened to going to the beach?

Have a good Father's Day,

Charles

cindy perkins
06-15-2003, 11:31 AM
This is a VERY well-worn question, so I will keep my response very short.

My sensei has taught me quite a few techniques and variations that may not be "aiki" but would work well in a self-defense situation. He tells us that if we want self-defense, buy a handgun.

Mel Barker
06-15-2003, 12:05 PM
He tells us that if we want self-defense, buy a handgun.
Well that is interesting advice. If one lives in Vermont, it may be applicable. In most other States there are legal ramifications just for possessing a hand gun that are no trivial matter.

Of course "just buying" a hand gun by no means assures "self-defense". One must learn to use it. Use it well. Use it safely. And under stressful conditions.

Another consideration that is of no small importance is how to carry the hand gun. Invariably, large guns have greater stopping power, but are difficult to carry. Small guns are of little value unless one is highly skilling at hitting an eye socket. Means of carry and gun acquisition will require at least as much training as marksmanship.

Also, there is a much higher legal standard for use of a weapon to defend one's self. Learning the appropriate legal uses of a firearm for self defense is important as well.

Well, obviously it's no small matter to defend one's self with a hand gun.

That said I have met numerous fine martial artists that practice defensive hand gun-do.

Mel Barker

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 02:13 PM
HI CHARLES I DONT KNOW WHY I USE ALL CAPTS BUT WILL JUST CALL IT MY TRADE MARK. THE BEACH WAS GOOD THE WATER WAS VERY COLD DUE TO THE COOL WAETHER WE HAVE BEEN HAVING IN NEW YORK AND ALL THE RAIN. ITS BEEN RAINING FOR 30 DAYS STRAIGHT VERY DEPRESSING. MY FATHERS DAY HAS BEEN GREAT. I AM GOING FOR MY 4TH Q EXAM ON 6/27/03 ANY ADVICE, IF NOT WISH ME LUCK.

Kevin Wilbanks
06-15-2003, 03:03 PM
Daniel,

If I were you, I'd look for a different trademark. Net posting or emailing in all caps is generally considered crude and rude: the equivalent of screaming in someone's ear instead of talking in the context of a normal conversation. While you may have no offensive intent, this habit will find you stigmatized and having to explain/defend yourself everywhere you go.

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 03:09 PM
Ok Kevin no more capts thanks for the info and do you train in aikido. If so how long have you been training.

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 03:11 PM
Charles read post #29 sorry if i offended anyone with the capts I am new to typing.

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 03:14 PM
Kevin my Brother lives in Jacksonville he works for the sheriffs Dept,

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 03:17 PM
Kevin how is the dojo in Jacksonville I plan to visit in 7/03,with my Brother write back,iI would like to stay in touch . I work for the NYPD.

Peter Klein
06-15-2003, 04:13 PM
it depends if you are one of these i know everything better guys. i mean those agressive passefists then i would say good bye. but if u are a true determined fighter who trains in aikido and in a striking art then good bye for the poor soul who attacks him.

shihonage
06-15-2003, 05:56 PM
He tells us that if we want self-defense, buy a handgun.
That's an often-used, however ignorant remark.

Not only it shows that your Sensei himself/herself does not believe in martial application of Aikido, but they also give useless and dangerous advice about self-defense.

A handgun is no guarantee of safety.

It requires time to get ready.

It can, and will be used against you by the attacker, if all you're relying on is the handgun.

What an incredibly ignorant thing to say.

PeterR
06-15-2003, 08:05 PM
Ok, you say boxing instead of Krav Maga. At least when it comes to defence against an unarmed attacker, i take it. None of us say Aikido. Then maybe I wasn't that far of the point, after all. :)
You are misreading my posts - I know Aikidoists that train in only in Aikido that scare the hell out of me. Very linear, very direct and very fast. My Japanese assistant is one such - his previous training was specifically geared to producing effective Aikido very quickly.

Nice guy but after going a few rounds with him I always crawl to the public hotbaths to nurse my wounds.

Its not the technique of boxing (ie. unarmed vs. armed) that I'm talking about either. Its the ability to turn it on when necessary and overcome the fear of injury. Situations specifically trained for in the particular form of Aikido I do although I am sure there are training protocals that do it faster and more effectively.

I am sorry but most self defense schools and that includes what I've seen in Karv Maga the scenarios are pretty set up. Attacker does this - you do that. If they go as far as teaching aggression (ie. out aggress the aggressor) you have a whole series of other problems. I will say that many of these schools instill a feeling of confidence which often is enough to keep you out of trouble but once in I know of too many instances of young bucks getting their asses handed to them.

To be more clear - I know Aikido dojos where if self defence is your primary motivation that is where you want to study.

PeterR
06-15-2003, 08:17 PM
Hi Charles;

He was teaching at a School for Spies during the war years but was replaced by a teacher of Shotokan Karate. Not so much because of skills but that it wasn't being transmitted fast enough to the students in the required time frame. The story is pretty well known although the name of the school escapes me this morning.

Your point about Krav Maga is spot on. Generally Aikido for self defence training could do with a bit more situational training - not so much because the scenerio will actually happen but it at least gets students thinking about it.

My response is a bit reactionary in that the recurrent theme is that Aikido is useless for self denfence or not the first choice. I disagree. There is a whole lot out there and conversely other choices have their weaknesses also.
Peter,

What is this about Morihei Ueshiba being fired from a ninja school? I have never heard that!

In my opinion, there is no difference between Krav Maga and basic Aikido. From what I have seen and read the principles are the same. I do see, however, a HUGE difference in they way they are usually taught. As for the question of, after a year of training, who'd deal better with a real self defense situation, that of course depends on the school. However, if the people were picked from randomly chosen schools, I'd put my money on Krav Maga.

PeterR
06-15-2003, 08:23 PM
Thank you Daniel.
Ok Kevin no more capts thanks for the info and do you train in aikido. If so how long have you been training.

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 10:01 PM
Kevin read post #29-32 and please send me a reply.

Daniel Blanco
06-15-2003, 10:03 PM
Hey Peter whats up are you training hard I am going for my 4 TH Q Exam on 6/27/03 any advice.

akiy
06-15-2003, 11:02 PM
Hi Daniel,

Can you please try to route your personal messages to either personal e-mail or private messages? Thank you.

-- Jun

Charles Hill
06-15-2003, 11:54 PM
Peter,

I can't believe what you made me do. I went to the Aikido Journal web site to look for more info on the spy school. Everytime I was going to get off the site, I found another cool bit of information. Then I looked at the clock and found over two hours had passed!

Anyway, according to Stanley Pranin, Morihei Ueshiba taught at the Nakano school. I assume that means it was in the Nakano ward in Tokyo. There is nothing real concrete, but Mr. Pranin writes that M.U. "resigned" all positions at the schools he was teaching at. So, who knows?

Back to the thread. My knowledge of Krav Maga is limited to a book translated into Japanese on their weapons takeaways, some stuff I saw on tv, a Black Belt magazine article, and the official website. However, it all has been very impressive. It really reminds me of things I was taught early on in my Aikido training, just more efficient in terms of a teaching and training method.

If anyone had doubts as to the efficacy of their Aikido, I would recommend learning what you can about Krav Maga and then incorporating into your training. I think it fits.

Charles

PeterR
06-16-2003, 12:11 AM
Anyway, according to Stanley Pranin, Morihei Ueshiba taught at the Nakano school. I assume that means it was in the Nakano ward in Tokyo. There is nothing real concrete, but Mr. Pranin writes that M.U. "resigned" all positions at the schools he was teaching at. So, who knows?
Nakano. I kept writting down Nagano and I knew that couldn't be right. If you hadn't have done it I would have messed around for 2 hours myself.
Back to the thread. My knowledge of Krav Maga is ..... It really reminds me of things I was taught early on in my Aikido training, just more efficient in terms of a teaching and training method.
This is what I was trying to get at. I don't think Aikido is as limited as many try to make it out to be - it really boils down to training method which varies quite dramatically within the Aikido community. I am less than impressed by a lot of what passes for training in Aikido dojos AND in so called self defence orientated schools.

Patrik just happened to mention Karav Maga but this is a recurrent theme. Aikido sucks because of [insert perceived weakness here] you should all do [insert flavour of the month here]. Sorry I don't buy it. I'll cross-train, I'll explore, I'll even avoid certain Aikido dojos that don't give me what I'm looking for but frankly speaking I have found something that gives me more of what I was looking for than anything I've encountered before or since I started.

Ta Kung
06-16-2003, 03:19 AM
Its not the technique of boxing (ie. unarmed vs. armed) that I'm talking about either. Its the ability to turn it on when necessary and overcome the fear of injury.

Ah. Good point. I've never thought about it that way.
I am sorry but most self defense schools and that includes what I've seen in Karv Maga the scenarios are pretty set up. Attacker does this - you do that. If they go as far as teaching aggression (ie. out aggress the aggressor) you have a whole series of other problems.

In other words, they practise the same way as we do in Aikido. Also a good point.

I guess the only thing I've got left, is "the flavour of the month". I've read somewhere (I know, that didn't sound very convincing. :D ) that some of these self defence schools practise under the "influense" of adrenaline and fatigue. Which we don't, or at least not in my dojo. Fatigue, sure. It happens often. Damn those kokyonages...;)

But what's this about adrenaline practise? I know for sure that the body reacts differently when exposed to a threat. You get tunnelvision, you might freeze in the spot you're standing, and your coordination might become worse.

I'm no expert in Krav Maga, or it's teachings. Just as Mr. Rehese, I've witnessed a few classes. And I've read a few words about it.

Please remeber that I don't doubt the self defence ability of Aikido. I sincerly don't. Just that it takes a very long time to master (time, which people seeking only self defence, might not want to spend more of then they have to)

Mr. Rehese, If you have any thoughts or comments about the "adrenaline training" please let me know. I've never seen it in any Aikido dojo (or any other dojo, to be fair.) I've only read about it.

Take care,

Patrik

PeterR
06-16-2003, 03:55 AM
Mr. Rehse, If you have any thoughts or comments about the "adrenaline training" please let me know. I've never seen it in any Aikido dojo (or any other dojo, to be fair.) I've only read about it.
Facing naked aggression is scary for some it causes you to freeze, for others its liberating. I guess you would not know which way you'ld react unless you'ld been exposed to it in a number of occasions. From personal experience I've reacted both ways in situations not that far apart. I have no idea how I would react the next time. I must say the reason I show up to class really isn't because of a great need for self defence. I mean I live in Japan where I intimidate just by standing up.

Combative sport (ie. boxing, Judo, Shodokan Aikido shiai) can go a long way to address the question of how you deal with adrenaline but in my mind both it and situations contrived in the dojo have the same problem. The dojo is a safe place, you will get home.

I'm really no expert on these things so consider what I say as a matter of debate only - one of which I am enjoying.

gasman
06-16-2003, 09:54 AM
in answer to the original question

i dont like comparing styles in terms of effectiveness. it is really up to the individual. the most important thing in a self defense situation is not to loose your head. any martial arts training will help you in that sense.

comparing aikido to hard styles is equally pointless, since aikido IMHO is a study of the eye of the storm.

in aikido there is little focus on destructive techniques, but more emphasis on mind, attitude and positioning.

i work as a doorman. i have avoided many fights using aikido. had i been trained in kickboxing, perhaps i'd have won some of those fights but ask yourselves: which is best?

Jamesha21
06-16-2003, 03:53 PM
Thank you all for replying to my "little" question. I am now convinced that, after having studied Kimura Shukokai Karate for 10 years, Aikido will be a good "additive" to my martial arts experiences.

yours in budo

James

Kevin Wilbanks
06-16-2003, 04:41 PM
Thank you all for replying to my "little" question. I am now convinced that, after having studied Kimura Shukokai Karate for 10 years, Aikido will be a good "additive" to my martial arts experiences.

yours in budo

James
Now that's a whole different can of worms. Trying to 'add' Aikido to another martial art with dissimilar philosophy, strategy, tactics, and body movement styles isn't likely to amount to much. I've never seen anyone with that mindset stick with Aikido for more than a month or two. Unless that's an unusually soft, yeilding Karate style, or you pick a jujutsu-esque Aikido style, you'll have start over from scratch, and may even need to do a lot of 'unlearning' that martial arts virgins don't have to.

Theoretically, somewhere along the way, you'll have to make some hard choices between the two in terms of what sort of disposition you want to take to an attack, and what responses are going to be programmed as automatic... if you are even able to. I'm recalling one Aikidoka who had about a decade of Karate/TKD before starting Aikido. Even at 2nd or 3rd dan, around a decade later, he still tended to square off against ukes and want to duke it out, especially in randori: usually with disastrous consequences. He was a valuable member of the dojo, talented, and very interesting to train with, but it seemed he would never achieve the sort of yielding fluidity that our style aimed for, and that you need for excellent multiple-attacker results.

SeiserL
06-16-2003, 04:53 PM
Now that's a whole different can of worms. Trying to 'add' Aikido to another martial art with dissimilar philosophy, strategy, tactics, and body movement styles isn't likely to amount to much. I've never seen anyone with that mindset stick with Aikido for more than a month or two. Unless that's an unusually soft, yeilding Karate style, or you pick a jujutsu-esque Aikido style, you'll have start over from scratch, and may even need to do a lot of 'unlearning' that martial arts virgins don't have to.
IMHO, I have been training in Filipino Martial Arts (Kali/Escrima)for many years, Aikido only 8.5 years. Not a problem. Didn't start from scratch or unlearn, just kept them as separate arts unless they blend themselves.

Kevin Wilbanks
06-16-2003, 08:26 PM
IMHO, I have been training in Filipino Martial Arts (Kali/Escrima)for many years, Aikido only 8.5 years. Not a problem. Didn't start from scratch or unlearn, just kept them as separate arts unless they blend themselves.
Doesn't keeping them separate imply learning Aikido from scratch? I suppose the things I observed could have been more about the people than the arts in question, it's hard to tell. The advanced person I'm thinking about also kept them separate, insofar as he could, but when you are talking about programming something into the body as an automatic response, I don't see how multiple options are a possibility. Choosing between options implies stopping to think about it. Also, from what I've seen, Filipino arts seem far more compatible with Aikido than linear, hard-styles of Karate.

Phillip Armel
06-16-2003, 08:46 PM
I would say it's effective. My dojo works alot on self-defense. We normally do one hour of traditional stuff and one hour of odd ball self defense. I know for fact that alot of stuff we do does work. I've been put into a headlock at school and used one of the techniques too get out. Another one my freind kept jabbing my arms and armpit(which is excurciatingly painful if you didn't know) so I used a variation of a aikio move too throw him into the chalkboard-.-. Some people don't get anything but pain. Ask your sensei. I asked a few people at my dojo and we got some techniques too deal with jabs,crosses,hoooks and other punches. I know this is not really aikido, but just dodging a punch too get inside of an opponets defense will go a long way. I take Tomiki Aikido, but I don't know about the other styles. Hmm, think about your techniques. Think about the movements. Think about what you COULD do regardless of not getting a technique on them. If someone throws all their weight behind a haymaker or jab and they're off balance, I'm sure you could think of somehting.

Jamesha21
06-17-2003, 02:20 AM
When I said "add", I didn't mean blending karate and aikido together, thereby forming a new "Karaikido" style, I simply meant that learning new ways of training, new ways of dealing with attackers and, more importantly, approaching situations with a different mind-set (defend without annihalating attacker), could only be beneficial. I also expect to start from scratch, afterall, karate and aikido are two seperate things entirely. The way I see is there's got to be a more civilised way to deal with an attacker (when all other avenues have been exhausted)other than to smash his head in and risk possible legal ramifications.

yours in budo

James

Alan Drysdale
06-17-2003, 04:23 PM
James said: "I simply meant that learning new ways of training, new ways of dealing with attackers and, more importantly, approaching situations with a different mind-set (defend without annihalating attacker), could only be beneficial. I also expect to start from scratch, afterall, karate and aikido are two seperate things entirely."

That works for me. I pretty much keep the two separate, though one art certainly does illuminate how you see the other.

Alan

http://hometown.aol.com/enmeidojo/

http://hometown.aol.com/spitzpublishing/

Kyri Honigh
06-18-2003, 11:07 PM
Hahahahahhehehe

Omg, whats a selfdefence situation?

in school i'm respected after just putting a guy in a sankyo.I think like if somebody is pointing a gun at you from a distance farther away than 2 steps, no martial art will save you.But in order for me to beat one of my classmates MY aikido would work fun.People without knowledge of the Martial arts can kick lot a ass on the street.MA is an addition, it will only make u better at surviving.If it is decreasing ur chances of survivability than it isn't properly taught.

Steven Seagal isn't the best aikidoka but because he does aikido with a temper, nobody is doubting him.Soldiers train for only 9 weeks but they are deadlier than most civilians cause they are willing to kill to survive,fighting outside of the training hall is a mental thing.

(Plz Jun-san delete these kinda threads!!!)

solidsteven
01-27-2004, 02:28 PM
Is Aikido ineffective in real fight compared to other MAs? I hear a lot people saying Aikido is ineffective or hard to use in real combat.

So is it true or is Aikido just harder to learn then other MAs?

Whats your opinion about it?

thank you

John Boswell
01-30-2004, 02:22 PM
The bottom line is Aikido is as effective as the aikidoka. Period.

Have you ever noticed that the ones who know aikido inside and out never doubt it? And when they get on the mat, their technique (usually, or at least should be) is flowing, smooth, dynamic and effortless?

I skipped over the last two pages of this thread to come here and make a single point: everyone has an opinion on their own martial art and all the others. Everyone is entitled to those opinion. But why bother arguing over it when the truth is... the proof is in the pudding?

Get on the mat and train.

That is all.

SeanToner
01-30-2004, 03:14 PM
I thought that aikido wasn't about self-defense, but rather about mutual defense. I also remember a quote that O-sensei said, "I'm not training you to move your bodies, I'm training you to move your mind!". My first comment means that aikido is about realizing that if we think of "defense" and of "saving my life", we're still thinking at a very low and primal level. My second comment refers to the notion that aikido is not about how efficacious a technique is from a physical standpoint, but the mental and spiritual process which is the foundation and intention of our physical actions.

Let me get back to the first point. In Zen at least, you are taught to think neither of victory nor defeat, life or death. From the mindless mind, you simply do what must be done. This is what aikido trains. Not the ability to parry and deflect blows, but to move into a state where we truly harmonize with all and negate ill intentions. If we think of defense, then we think of saving our life, which means that our ego is still strong. If anything, I thought aikido was about "losing one's self", so one could say from a certain point of view that we are killing our ego.

From the second point, I believe that it means that the true purpose of Aikido...to understand budo as O-sensei impoied takes many many years. Precisely because it is something that can not be shown or taught directly. It is something that must be discovered for each student on his own. Musubi, randori, zazen and other practices are simply guides. One could study aikido their entire lives and not understand true budo. Because action must be precipitated by thought, which must be borne of intent, it is our minds that we train. But what is our mind? How do we train it? From endless repetition? Unlike our muscles which will grow from endless repetition, our mind is not the same. And I don't mean just our intellectual capacity, but the ability to give up rational thought (mushin).

I believe O-sensei said that aikido was budo, and that budo was love (compassion). So in essence, we are being trained to be compassionate, and to find our true selves (makoto).

Aikisamurai
02-09-2004, 12:48 PM
I've been practicing Aikido for 7 years now, and I was wondering at what point did any of you feel comfortable enough with your techniques to use them on the street? Im not sure about mine yet. And do you guys think it would look at all like it does in the dojo? If you applied a kote gaeshi on a guy in a bar lets say.

Don_Modesto
02-09-2004, 02:50 PM
I was wondering at what point did any of you feel comfortable enough with your techniques to use them on the street? (1) Im not sure about mine yet. And do you guys think it would look at all like it does in the dojo? (2) If you applied a kote gaeshi on a guy in a bar lets say. (3)
1-It's such a wide open question. There's always someone better or trickier. You can never be prepared for everything.

2-No, failing one of those no-time-to-think-I-just-reacted moments, there'd be a lot more struggle, and probably a lot more punching (kneeing, poking, etc.)

3-Never cared for KOTE GAESHI. I imagine he'd go to his knees, punching me with his free hand as he went.

OTOH, I'm always amused when some grizzled brute whose t-shirt size exceeds his IQ shows up in the dojo and lets out a panicked shout of surprise at even a gentle application of NIKYO.

Who knows?

JasonFDeLucia
02-09-2004, 07:47 PM
Greetings all and sundry

This is a very short, to the point question, and pretty important for someone looking to defend himself against thugs on the street. Just how effective is Aikido as a self defense "tool".:(
if you are willing to spend ten years of sufficient practice to develope the traditional system then you would be able to function in the metephor solely.it might be somewhat streatched ,but funtional.

PeterR
02-09-2004, 08:37 PM
if you are willing to spend ten years of sufficient practice to develop the traditional system then you would be able to function in the metaphor solely.it might be somewhat stretched ,but functional.
Jason - I'm going to disagree.

If you take a handful of Aikido techniques and train in a specific way - it will take six months.

You can debate which techniques but I would lean toward atemi waza and away from kansetsu waza.

The thing is most of us who do Aikido are after the whole package and therefore its going to take longer.

Nafis Zahir
02-09-2004, 11:52 PM
I trained in Kung Fu for 7 years prior to taking up Aikido. Even then, I wasn't so sure if the techniques would work. In the street, nothing goes like it does in class, and nothing seems to happen in a systematical or organized way, like in class. I also know people who study other arts and feel the same way. No matter what you study, it will take time. However, the one advantage I have seen with Aikido is this: Even if you only do the technique 20% correctly, you can still devestate the average person on the street. I once knew a girl who had only been training in Aikido for a few weeks. Someone attacked her at the mall. She managed to grab his had and apply kotegeishi and hold the guy until the cops came! This may be rare, but it can be done. Aikido, as with any other art, is an effective form of self defense. Whatever level you are, be the best at that level.

PeterR
02-10-2004, 12:39 AM
I trained in Kung Fu for 7 years prior to taking up Aikido. Even then, I wasn't so sure if the techniques would work. In the street, nothing goes like it does in class, and nothing seems to happen in a systematical or organized way, like in class. I also know people who study other arts and feel the same way. No matter what you study, it will take time.
I probably, if I knew what I was talking about, say the same thing as I did above about Kung Fu. How you train defines how fast and how well you could put something into practice.

I already mentioned the selection a few techniques.

Class size would be small - one or two people and training would be every day.

Class members would have to be selected for a certain amount of toughness and a desire to go in that special direction. Wimps need not apply.

Lot's and lot's of drills - tsukuri especially.

The total absence of any talk of peace, love and harmony. If that's your thing wait until the end of the six months.

That said - I prefer about a dozen people on the mat, intense but friendly training, and a wide range of techniques. Hell - you can even talk about peace, love and harmony but you will get the "School marm of death" look from me.

Still I disagree completely that it takes 10 years to get competent enough at Aikido to be effective.

PeterR
02-10-2004, 12:44 AM
I once knew a girl who had only been training in Aikido for a few weeks. Someone attacked her at the mall. She managed to grab his had and apply kotegeishi and hold the guy until the cops came!
You are right it is rare. Kotegeishi is one of the techniques I wouldn't bother with in the hypothetical six months. Very tough technique to pull off against a resisting opponent.

indomaresa
02-10-2004, 10:49 AM
yes, kotegaeshi is only good when served with a generous helping of kuzushi first.

RachelCarmack
02-14-2004, 08:53 PM
I am a blue belt in frankfort,ky. I have a love aikido but am afraid at this point i am incapable of defendig myself. i dont feel i would b quick enough to react if in danger. Has Anyone been tried, and what was the outcome?

Jack Robertson
02-14-2004, 09:10 PM
That's the age old question my friend.

Sometimes I get discouraged when I have my friends, who take tae kwon do, send me a punch. They, unlike uke, give a fast strike. I haven't gotten to the point where I can do anything about that. I have faith that one day I will be able to deal with quick strikes.

When it comes to when someone charges me, tries to shove me, or grab me, my technique works quite well. It also works well against clumsy untrained punches.

I think the key factors in dealing with fast, trained strikes, that would be sent at you from someone from a striking art, are awareness and reflex. I'm trying to clear my mind, stay centered, and be aware of what goes on around me. It's hard to practice those things, but it's possible.

darin
02-14-2004, 11:07 PM
Best way is to train in aikido with people who are great at striking, grappling and weapons. Also it doesn't hurt to do some grappling, striking and weapon classes. Even if you don't master these other forms of fighting you will at least have an understanding on how different kinds of fighters move.

You have to look at the big picture. Look beyond the technique.

PeterR
02-14-2004, 11:12 PM
Best way is to train in aikido with people who are great at striking, grappling and weapons. Also it doesn't hurt to do some grappling, striking and weapon classes. Even if you don't master these other forms of fighting you will at least have an understanding on how different kinds of fighters move.

You have to look at the big picture. Look beyond the technique.
Yes. Especially to paragraph number 2.

crand32100
02-14-2004, 11:42 PM
Aikido is kind of funny as martial arts go, because you may spend years, or a lifetime, just trying to figure out what you are trying to master.

Let me ask- what would successfully defending yourself look like? How many bodies would be left behind? Or would everyone somehow miraculously walk away happy and unharmed? Do you even want to know?

My advice to everyone is to practice what is possible. I often times see people very anxious because they are trying to visualize these things working in the street. They struggle because their intuition knows that they are practicing the impossible.

I had a kung fu teacher explain how what I was practicing had to work on Mike Tyson. The reality is that it ain't gonna happen. Even if you can beat all of those tai kwon do guys, there's always someone meaner. Furthermore, people who are good at fighting have a character trait that has absolutely nothing to do with athleticism. Think of it- Someone is attacking you and you have to wait for this image to go to your brain, be translated into some pre-recognized attack that you've practiced, you select a response, and then you try to perform your response. Some people can hit you six times by the time that you have thought of all of this. Of course it isn't going to work.

Now, is aikido a complete loss? The answer is "no". There are some very valuable principles hidden in all of this that you can pick up along the way. Unfortunately, martial proficiency is more of a side effect of moving to the higher levels in aikido. It's not a direct route. My experience is that you can't really start moving to higher levels until you can stop defining success in your practice by what shape you can coerce your partner into. When you start to focus on balancing yourself during these movements, a whole world of possibilities opens up. You'll really start to watch what is happening in the present moment, rather than playing a tape in your head of what you want to see happen. These tapes in your head will almost never coincide perfectly with what's actually happening. Learning to observe all the different ways that your totality responds to an advancing uke- that will take you to new levels.

Hope this helps.

PeterR
02-15-2004, 12:02 AM
Someone is attacking you and you have to wait for this image to go to your brain, be translated into some pre-recognized attack that you've practiced, you select a response, and then you try to perform your response.
If you are doing that - then you are not doing Aikido.

Jack Robertson
02-15-2004, 06:43 AM
Peter nailed it before I could.

crand32100
02-15-2004, 12:58 PM
In response to

tyler crandall (crand32100) wrote: Someone is attacking you and you have to wait for this image to go to your brain, be translated into some pre-recognized attack that you've practiced, you select a response, and then you try to perform your response.

"If you are doing that - then you are not doing Aikido."

and

"Peter nailed it before I could."

That is exactly my point. However, when you see teachers teaching technique, people are thinking their way through this exact process.

Practice does not make perfect.- Perfect practice makes perfect. You have to change yourself and your approach to your practice in order to move to the next level.

In the beginning we have to think our ways through all of these movements, but it takes something else to start to transcend these recorded movements and really move the way our partner is moving.

PeterR
02-15-2004, 07:24 PM
That is exactly my point. However, when you see teachers teaching technique, people are thinking their way through this exact process.

Practice does not make perfect.- Perfect practice makes perfect. You have to change yourself and your approach to your practice in order to move to the next level.

In the beginning we have to think our ways through all of these movements, but it takes something else to start to transcend these recorded movements and really move the way our partner is moving.
Hence the importance of disordered training. We introduce some form of it on day one and quickly increase the complexity.

justinm
02-16-2004, 07:50 AM
Peter, can you clarify what you mean by disordered training? If it was explained earlier in the thread, I apologise - I've not been back though all the notes yet.

Thanks

Justin

Gabriel A
02-16-2004, 01:22 PM
"The techniques of the Art of Peace are neither fast or slow, nor are they inside or outside. They transcend time and space"

I think Osensei forsaw this type of debates, a real wise man! Aikido can give self defense but as an aditional or bonus.

PeterR
02-16-2004, 07:03 PM
Disordered training is randori. I used the English term here because randori to Shodokan people is quite specific and different from the randori of Aikikai for instance. Of course Shodokan randori is best ;) but we have other drills and methods besides randori which break down the kata learning. Aikikai style randori is also good in this regard.
Peter, can you clarify what you mean by disordered training?

fo2sh-nico
02-19-2004, 03:48 AM
hi everybody i just started aikido and i love it, and i was wondering when will i be able to use it in self defense

fo2sh-nico
02-19-2004, 03:51 AM
well i forgot to tell u that i am training with the best sensei in EGYPT , he has been to JAPAN for five years and he really s good, by the way i got into aikido after watching steven seagal in above the law NICO hes the best

vanstretch
02-19-2004, 01:35 PM
just curious Fouad, how old are you, and what is your teachers/dojo name? thank you. good luck to you as well.

Jamie Stokes
02-19-2004, 04:29 PM
Welcome to Aikido and Aikiweb!

Steven Seagal had good moves in his early movies.

But the best isstill O sensei, for starting this art.

Enjoy your training.

Jamie

PeterR
02-19-2004, 07:37 PM
I like that movie too and coincidently or not - I started Aikido not long after. ;)

My initial impression of Aikido was not favourable although I found kansetsu waza (joint techniques) very interesting. If anything those movies hinted that there was more out there.
well i forgot to tell u that i am training with the best sensei in EGYPT , he has been to JAPAN for five years and he really s good, by the way i got into aikido after watching steven seagal in above the law NICO hes the best

Bushi
02-19-2004, 08:24 PM
fouad basem, your homepaige is... um...

...interesting...

Jack Robertson
02-19-2004, 09:03 PM
fouad basem, your homepaige is... um...

...interesting...
interesting indeed.............

Vincent Munoz
02-20-2004, 12:15 AM
Aikidokas,

Learning a technique is different from mastering a technique. It is important to master each technique. And in every tecnique, the principle of aikido must be present, then only your aikido will be effetive. The Keno Nagare (Flowing of Ki). And always practice kamiwaza(not sure of the term), applying a technique without allowing an aggressor to complete his grab or any attack.

75% of what a student can learn is from the student itself, only 25% from the instructor. Burn a fire of interest, focus and be observant.

one in budo

bong

DanD
02-20-2004, 11:16 AM
interesting indeed.............
Is that a new politically correct way to say "tasteless" ???;)

GabrielMar
02-20-2004, 04:14 PM
I am new Aikidoka. I didn't start until after I'd been in many fights. I grew up kinda' rough, fought in Persian Gulf I, and have been a bouncer in many clubs. I didn't realize I needed Aikido until about a year ago and when I was done being a bouncer. I found it to be the next step in my progression and to calm me down a little and stay outta' trouble.

As far as street stuff goes? IMO, Aikido is effective if taken in it's parts as opposed to a whole technique. Training will make all the techniques blend into one and street effective at that point. I know that with knowledge I have now, I'm glad I'm not a bouncer anymore 'casue I really coulda' hurt somebody and I'm glad I didn't. Aikido first taught me that all the fighting I did in the past was potentially deadly and I'm glad that no one got seriously hurt because of me.

-Gabriel

alecellis
02-23-2004, 10:00 PM
Its perfect for the street. It just depends which street....

No martial art will protect you against a bullet; and a crazy suicidal person with a knife or other vicious weapon is best left alone. But the best thing about Aikido compared to more kick and punch style is that you can RESTRAIN people.... thereby not landing in front of the magistrate or judge pleading it was self defence why I kicked his head in!!

We had two nurses train with us, they worked in a mental home, and fortunately for the residents they took up Aikido and not taekwando or whatever.

If you enjoy Aikido and it all clicks, the moves you learn are just a catalyst. You become very confident, you look and feel different to your friends, and an air of warning comes out to potential opponents.

If you are in the habit of going out looking for battle, then practice!!! There are enough who are willing to take you up on it.... but the element of shock is the first thing that determines the result.

My daughter and I practice (for fun she thinks) dodging a rubber knife.... this is a practice knife... I have shown her the basics and she thinks she is so cool being able to get out of the way, and at most times now, able to counter my attack, and is now throwing me... with a little help from the victim <grin>.

BUT... what she is learning besides the obvious is that if or when she is threatened with a knife, the 75% shock factor is in her favor.... she will not (hopefully) be rooted to the spot, she will have the edge, even enough to frighten the attacker.

Then... she can run... or attack... depending on the advantage she has gained.

I agree... if you know where the thugs are then go another way... but in case... most thugs are opportunists, they dare the situation, if you take up Aikido, at the very worst you will gain a confidence, which bullies hate, and perhaps catch the Aikido bug....

Cheers

mantis
02-24-2004, 03:11 PM
Aikido, karate, judo boxing etc...

What matters most is the individual not the art!

NO style will make YOU a good fighter. Real FIGHTING will!

One needs to have developed good reaction skills, and obey certain principles within their art to make their art effective. if you 'lose it' in a fight, then whatever art you study will not help you.

Ted Marr
02-24-2004, 03:34 PM
Alec-

I am worried for your daughter's safety.

While it is all well and good to try to train away the shock response of being attacked, anyone who knows anything about using a knife will not attack the way Aikidoka do during tanto practice. There will be no committed strikes, no shomen- or yokomen- type attacks. Aikido's weapons work assumes that your enemy is wearing armor that must be pierced to affect them. And, more dangerously, that you are wearing armor too. It is dangerous to think that you can deal with a knife wielding attacker with Aikido techniques unless they are unskilled and/or enraged. Watch a few Kali classes and you'll see what I mean.

Nafis Zahir
02-24-2004, 11:32 PM
Aikidokas,

75% of what a student can learn is from the student itself, only 25% from the instructor. Burn a fire of interest, focus and be observant.
This is correct! I have often done the same technique over and over and discovered some interesting ways to make it more effective simply by trial & error. Chiba Sensei once said at a seminar to always search for a better way to do a technique. I have recently realized that how I apply ikkyo to someone big & strong is slightly different than applying it to someone my size or smaller. I learned this in practice one day just by trying. Learning comes thru practice.

Nafis Zahir
02-24-2004, 11:36 PM
Aikido, karate, judo boxing etc...

What matters most is the individual not the art!

NO style will make YOU a good fighter. Real FIGHTING will!

One needs to have developed good reaction skills, and obey certain principles within their art to make their art effective. if you 'lose it' in a fight, then whatever art you study will not help you.
Excellent point James! As you stated, a person must obey certain principles within their art to make it effective. A person must also be "true" to these principles and must understand that these principles cannot be compromised in a street attack. If they are, then that's when you "lose it." As far as fighting goes, if you remain true to Aikido, you won't have to fight.

RachelCarmack
02-25-2004, 06:32 PM
I'm glad you see where i am coming from. I have a question for you Jack, how old are you? I am assuming you're male? Are you of small stature? The point i am getting at is i feel inadequate because i am still at the beginning stages, when muscles are still a valuable asset. i am 130 lbs. and 5'2, and the thought of a hulking, menace of an attacker coming down on me with the fury is a little unnerving. I don't have the strength to match a man, and i freeze when i am attacked with any speed. I am not a naturally timid person, i am assertive and confident, but not with this. If all we have is the art of surprise, what will we do if the are aware of our abilities and can anticipate them? Will they overpower my minimum amount of channeled ki? So many things to worry about :blush:
Rachel

Jack Robertson
02-25-2004, 08:10 PM
Hi Rachel,

I'm 15 years old, male, and I'm about 5'10.

The only real advice I could give you is to just keep training hard.

Slowly try to break the freezing impulse. It's just like dealing with an addiction, you have to keep fighting it. When you train, try to completely empty yourself of any kind of fear. This is easier said than done of course, but keep working on it and it will come in due time.

Don't even worry about your muscle strength. With hard training comes good technique and with good technique there is no need for excessively strong muscles.

If someone is aware of your abilities, there's not much they can do about it, unless they have a gun. I mean, in hand to hand, they would have to be a pretty good Aikidoka themselves to be able to accurately anticipate what you would do and chances are that if they were a good Aikidoka, they wouldn't be attacking you.

A key factor is attitude (shin). Remember, you are a WARRIOR!!! As a warrior, whatever battle you fight, it's a forgone conclusion, you ALREADY WON!!!

Good luck Rachel! Train hard!

P.S. Remember, Arnold Schwarzenegger isn't going to randomly decide to attack you! :)

Steven
02-25-2004, 09:11 PM
That's Govenator Arnold Schwarzenegger young lad.

:)

alecellis
02-25-2004, 10:14 PM
Hi Ted,

I agree, there is a huge difference between facing a homicidal knife wielding maniac and "thug" which was the essence of the question. My daughter knows that my policy is "Get out of there quickly if you can", no actually, my policy is dont get there in the first place if you can help it.

As most people know a thug is usually a bully, a person that didnt get punched at school, who thinks they can and still does carry on the threats in their mature life.

A bully relies on people being afraid, a knife and a gun really helps!!

If you tell a bully with a knife to p'off they will suffer the shock themselves, all be it small (maybe) but you have the upper hand.... I have seen this with a bully with a shotgun in the pub I worked in when I was younger. The person that stood up to him was very confident and in fact was a weapon wielder himself.

I lived in Penge, London. Not the nicest of places; where people were tested everyday physically and psychologically by 'opportunists'.

I dont want my daughter to meet some of the types of people I have met, you cant fight them without commiting your life, with these people you have to make the correct decision, backdown or make a stand, its their world.

With thugs, they tend to be out to show off, not really commited to the end result, these types of people can be overcome with a quick slap in the face and a knee to the crutch if you can gain the edge.... this is what I would hope that my daughter might have in a bad situation with a thug.

Still, I have experienced it myself and would like her NOT to be in tht situation.

Conclusion: There are a million diferent situations, its what happens on the day. Aikido I thinks trains you to feel rather than perform. In a fight you have a split second to remeber a move, a counter and a counter to that. If you can feel the flow you can see a bigger picture.

Johnny Chiutten
02-26-2004, 03:23 AM
Enough of talking about if Aikido works or not.Time to prove your theories! There is an individual in Australia by the name of Tony Bonello. He has challenged anyone from any art to fight him. He has offered $50.000 to anyone who can beat him. Any offers? Check him out. http://www.xfc.com.au/fighters.php?view=56

L. Camejo
02-26-2004, 02:38 PM
Well my Aikido worked very well just this week when I got attacked by 8 guys who tried to rob me at the yearly Carnival celebrations in our country.

I learnt something new about multiple attacker randori too - sometimes all you need to defeat/ward off many attackers is to effectively scare the first one with a well-placed shomen ate and kotegaeshi (which is exactly what happened):). I'm happy that they had no weapons though, or things may have gotten nasty. Also realised that their MO was to get me on the ground where they could have encircled me and kicked my brains in.

Also realised that after practicing in class to get attacked on a regular basis (with someone who is resisting), when it happened for real it did not unsettle me at all really. I was back in the party again after a couple of minutes.:)

Anyways, it was fun (for me anyway) and no one got seriously hurt, I think. But I guess they will think twice next time.

Train hard all - you get out what you put in.

L.C.:ai::ki:

Ron Tisdale
02-26-2004, 02:50 PM
Good goin' Larry! Glad it came out alright.

Best Regards,

Ron

Andy
02-26-2004, 03:02 PM
The only real advice [etc etc etc]
Aren't you at least several years too early to be dispensing Aikido advice? Have you even started training yet?

shihonage
02-26-2004, 03:41 PM
If someone is aware of your abilities, there's not much they can do about it, unless they have a gun. I mean, in hand to hand, they would have to be a pretty good Aikidoka themselves to be able to accurately anticipate what you would do and chances are that if they were a good Aikidoka, they wouldn't be attacking you.
Thank you for for visiting my "Self-defense theory and dreams" class.

In case you didn't get my name, it's Jack.

Professor Jack.

Make sure to stay for my next class, "Virgins discussing sex", where you can expect to get the same quality of sharp and life-changing commentary on subjects I have watched videos about.

Jack Robertson
02-26-2004, 03:42 PM
Aren't you at least several years too early to be dispensing Aikido advice? Have you even started training yet?
Andy,

I realize that your only intention with your post was to try and deface me.

Let me address some of your 'concerns'.

If you bothered reading my entire post, perhaps you would find that I said, "The only real advice that I could give.."

"I", meaning at my current experience in life and Aikido (which is somewhat limited, I'll admit). So, I didn't claim to be a wise man, I was simply saying the only advice that I could think of.

Another point is that some of the things Rachel mentioned are not only found in Aikido.

I do not claim to know much, but Aikido is not about trying to deface others. This is what I DO know.

P.S: Yes, I have started training. Thank you for your interest.

Perhaps I am 'several years too early' to try and help others with what I have experienced. But then again knowledge and wisdom do not necassarily equate with age.

Some food for thought.

Jack Robertson
02-26-2004, 03:48 PM
Thank you for for visiting my "Self-defense theory and dreams" class.

In case you didn't get my name, it's Jack.

Professor Jack.

Make sure to stay for my next class, "Virgins discussing sex", where you can expect to get the same quality of sharp and life-changing commentary on subjects I have watched videos about.
I'm sorry Aleksey, I didn't see you try to help Rachel.

Perhaps you should focus your efforts on trying to help others with your 'superior' wisdom, instead of antagonizing others who try to help as much as they can with their limited experience.

P.S. Your depiction is quite crude.

shihonage
02-26-2004, 03:59 PM
I'm sorry Aleksey, I didn't see you try to help Rachel.

Perhaps you should focus your efforts on trying to help others


I did, actually, post a constructive reply to the starter of this thread.
It's on the first page.

Oh, and

i am 130 lbs. and 5'2, and the thought of a hulking, menace of an attacker coming down on me with the fury is a little unnerving.

[..snip..]

Will they overpower my minimum amount of channeled ki? So many things to worry about :blush:

Rachel
1) http://www.nononsenseselfdefense.com/

2) http://www.senshido.com/

^^ Buy their tapes, or if you're near Senshido (in Montreal) then visit their school.

It's not a martial art, it's effective, common-sense self-defense that takes into account many, many factors that traditional Aikido training doesn't.

Andy
02-26-2004, 04:05 PM
I realize that your only intention with your post was to try and deface me.
Nope, no need. Only pointing out what's obvious. You have no formal training in aikido, yet you dispense advice as though you did.
P.S: Yes, I have started training. Thank you for your interest.
Funny. Could've sworn you wrote the following just two days ago.
I get to start taking Aikido in 2-3 months (at this point it's looking like 3).
Who's your aikido teacher? Which aikido dojo do you train at? Or are you still "training" out of a book?
Perhaps I am 'several years too early' to try and help others with what I have experienced. But then again knowledge and wisdom do not necassarily equate with age.
Nope, it comes from experience. And it sure looks like your experience actually training in aikido with a real teacher is zilch. Blind leading the blind. Can't even call you a fifth kyu shihan since you're unranked.

Jack Robertson
02-26-2004, 04:27 PM
Nope, no need. Only pointing out what's obvious. You have no formal training in aikido, yet you dispense advice as though you did.
What is your definition of formal? As far as I can remember, I never said I was an Aikido grandmaster. I have never trained in a dojo.
Funny. Could've sworn you wrote the following just two days ago.
Yes, I did write that. I cannot join a dojo for about 3 months. Very true indeed.
Who's your aikido teacher? Which aikido dojo do you train at? Or are you still "training" out of a book?
My aikido teacher? I will not give his name on an internet message board. I do not train at a dojo. Training out of a book? No, I cannot train out of a book, but it sure helps to fill time between visits to my teacher. I do not get to see him very often.
Nope, it comes from experience. And it sure looks like your experience actually training in aikido with a real teacher is zilch. Blind leading the blind. Can't even call you a fifth kyu shihan since you're unranked.
Now Andy, you cannot say that I do not have a teacher unless I say it and I have not.

What is rank, my friend? Would you respect someone more just because of a rank?

If you are truly empty, what need is there for a rank?

Well Andy, will you and Aleksey push on with your attack?

Chris Birke
02-26-2004, 05:33 PM
Aleksey: Great post on self defense.

Rachel: If you want to not get attacked, avoid violent people... Weight is a huge factor in combat, and sadly you are on the losing end. It's depressing, but true.

I don't know if there really is a solution, other than a combination of ignorance and avoidance.

Seems that the best tactics regarding reality are to not be there, blend in if you are there, and get outta there if you're spotted. Otherwise shoot first, call for help, and ask questions later.

If you're already getting raped (which is likely where you'll be when you realise you're in a fight), its good to know ground fighting (ie, how to crawl outta dodge in duress) - BJJ, sambo, etc.

You don't really need Aikido (or any stand up) because you already know how to walk and run quite well.

Someone out there got a magic solution other than "Keep training =D"?

If you want to get over the freezing thing, my *guess* would be to put yourself in the situation that causes you to freeze as much as possible.

It's not a problem so much in a fight (might save you from getting hit for resisting), but if you do have this problem, it might betray some secret insecurity that might make you more of a target.

In my *opinion* Aikido will help you "stay outta dodge" but it won't especially help you in a fight once you get there. Almost certainly it would get someone hurt (likely you).

Personally, martial arts keeps me active and (maybe) more healthy. I train to fight in nhb matches because its fun for me. Like ping pong. I can fight, and not have to be an asshole to get there. It's pretty useless otherwise. It has the downside of giving me an ego, making me more willing to engage in real fights, and annoyed bad fight depictions in movies and at people who have mystical ideals about fighting. I guess, if theres any other lesson, it was that learning not to be afraid is learning to lose.

To Jack and Regarding Jack: Let it go.

Morpheus
02-26-2004, 10:28 PM
...If you're already getting raped (which is likely where you'll be when you realise you're in a fight), its good to know ground fighting (ie, how to crawl outta dodge in duress) - BJJ, sambo, etc.

....You don't really need Aikido (or any stand up) because you already know how to walk and run quite well.

....In my *opinion* Aikido will help you "stay outta dodge" but it won't especially help you in a fight once you get there. Almost certainly it would get someone hurt (likely you).
Are these comments based on your vast experience and knowledge of Aikido? The first statement has got to be the most interesting comment in your thread.

PeterR
02-26-2004, 11:13 PM
Are these comments based on your vast experience and knowledge of Aikido? The first statement has got to be the most interesting comment in your thread.
Actually the first comment is about right.

Really really serious confrontations you don't see coming - there is no posturing. What there is is a knife slammed into the kidneys or a fist punched into the face. You talk to people that have been victims of serious assault (which rape is) and they often have no clue what happened immediately before or at the point of attack. That's not selective amnesia - they really don't know.

The attacker knows that surprise gives a serious but very temporary advantage. To keep that advantage he must hurt you bad and keep hurting you.

This is why one of the best lessons of any self defense class is situational awareness.

Grappling arts like BJJ or Judo also are very good because they teach you how to recover from disadvantagous positions.

Aikido works on the assumption that you have control of the situation and know how to keep it.

Larry (today in this thread) wrote about taking on 8 guys trying to rob him. In this case numerical superiority over-rode the need for surprise or so they thought. Larry won because he surprised them.

L. Camejo
02-27-2004, 10:06 AM
Very very well said Peter.

In fact they did surprise me in a sense, it was dark and very noisy, at this point I still can't give a definitive description on more than the 3 who were directly in my line of sight. Although I was aware of their presence around me, even before the initial attack, the attack itself did come as a surprise.

The thing is that the follow up after the initial surprise was weak. They tried to push me off balance to get me on the ground where they could go to town on me all at once. The first push landed and I merely stepped back (but not towards the main group of attackers which was their plan), the second push resulted in the pusher getting a shomen ate (putting him off balance) and the third attack was a rush to grab my arms and go for my pocket (which resulted in a kotegaeshi that had him heading for the asphalt).

By this time the others were trying to land kicks and punches to get me to stop moving, fall or have some effect on encircling me, but their pal in the kotegaeshi wanted to get away and was able to pull his hand out before he hit the ground (I had a grip with only one hand at that point). When he ripped his hand from my grip (and my shirt sleeve to try and keep his balance), I let him go and ran into the street where there was better illumination and more distance to see them coming at me. By this time however they decided to scatter intead of pressing the attack, so I merely kept an eye on them until they got out of sight in case they decided to double back.

The whole thing lasted about 6 seconds. I truly believe that if they did get me on the ground, even with my Judo/Jujutsu ability they would have closed in and kicked the sh** out of me. To me, ground fighting is good to escape and get back on your feet, not much else in a multiple attack scenario - this encounter verified that to me.

However, I do not agree with the concept that one does not need a stand up fighting system because you can "walk and run" - there will be environments where escape is a limited option unless you can create an opening by using some sort of weapon (empty handed or otherwise) on your aggressors. Had I been encircled (which I had already planned on being when I ran out into the street) I don't know what would have happened, but it would not be nice. Had they had weapons the outcome may have been much different.

I had always believed that our particular training system was great for situational awareness and application of technique under resistance, which was proven to me when those guys attacked as well.

As said before, it is not a question as to whether Aikido works, it's about the individual and what he/she wants to extract from the training. One can learn the techniques in any style of dojo, but then try to train them under different types of pressures and this is what determines whether they will serve you in the street or not. If the pressures you use to train are similar to those on the street, then something should work.

There is no cure all for self defence. Like aikido, one has to take the principles and APPLY them to situations. Aikido, like many other martial arts, does include the principles of dealing with street attacks, but one has to understand and drill these principles so that they can work under the real pressure of the street itself, which may or may not be focussed on in the dojo.

Just a few thoughts.

L.C.:ai::ki:

wendyrowe
02-27-2004, 02:22 PM
Rachel,

I've been taking aikido for less than a year and am 5'3 1/2" and 125 lbs in a class where nearly everyone is strong, male, 180-200lbs and close to 6' tall.

We do a lot of randori. The more I do it, the less I get that "he's going to kill me" feeling -- you know, the one that pops into your head as everything you know about aikido flies out of it. So, I think we really can train ourselves out of panicking/freezing.

I work really hard on my technique since I'll always have to rely on technique not muscle. Morihei Ueshiba was little, too, but that didn't stop him. But I'll still stay out of back alleys and bad neighborhoods.

akiy
02-27-2004, 02:44 PM
I work really hard on my technique since I'll always have to rely on technique not muscle. Morihei Ueshiba was little, too, but that didn't stop him.
It's true that he was pretty small at under 5'2" (156cm), but it is said that at his prime, the founder weighed in at around 180 pounds making him a rather muscular little fellow. Even when he was older, he was said to be quite strong; I believe it was written in one of Saotome sensei's books that the founder, seeing Saotome sensei going to get help in moving a very heavy and large stepping stone, came up and moved the thing himself with his bare hands...

-- Jun

L. Camejo
02-27-2004, 03:33 PM
Rachel,

I've been taking aikido for less than a year and am 5'3 1/2" and 125 lbs in a class where nearly everyone is strong, male, 180-200lbs and close to 6' tall.

We do a lot of randori. The more I do it, the less I get that "he's going to kill me" feeling -- you know, the one that pops into your head as everything you know about aikido flies out of it. So, I think we really can train ourselves out of panicking/freezing.

I work really hard on my technique since I'll always have to rely on technique not muscle.
I like Wendy's post. The majority of the girls in our dojo fall into this height/size range and have similar issues on being attacked by a larger aggressor.

I tell them to use the dojo experience to get over the fear of someone coming at them in a safe environment. IOW - make all your mistakes on the mat and learn how to fix them there, rather than making them outside where someone might actually hurt you in the process. If you get hit (by rubber tanto mostly) learn from it and move on, don't let it catch you the same way next time.

The freeze response is something that goes away as confidence in one's technique and overall tsukuri and kuzushi skills improve. Confidence in individual techniques comes from practicing techniques slowly, then increasing the level of resistance once a basic understanding is achieved. Key to this is understanding the underlying principles among different techniques, allowing the final result to be the technique that is most suited for the situation. For a small person, resorting to upper body strength to make Aikido techs work is generally useless, so technical prowess is key.

Confidence in tsukuri and kuzushi comes from drills. Basic, non technique-oriented body movement and avoidance drills (such as tanto tai sabaki etc.) to get certain reactions programmed into muscle memory so that when attacked one will not freeze, but fall into a different reactive mind/body action.

In the area of freezing, mental approach is important as well. From Rachel's post I got the feel that she was thinking too much when being engaged, especially about what can go wrong. From my Qigong experience I understand that this sort of thought pattern blocks the clear flow of energy through one's body and actually helps in creating the negative muscle responses that make you freeze. It's sort of like willing yourself to fail before you begin. It is important in these cases to focus on things like ma ai and having confidence in your training to this point, thereby not allowing the other stuff to enter one's mind. Here breathing deeply and controlledly helps a bit.

I remember reading in the Book of Five Rings that it was important for small persons to understand what it was to be big and vice versa. Even if one feels small in body, project a large mental self image. Kinda hard to explain, but I've realised that this big vs. small thing can be poisonous to one's training over time and should be dealt with swiftly.

Hope this helps.

L.C.:ai::ki:

indomaresa
02-28-2004, 03:18 AM
grrr...

I wish I could test my aikido somehow

too much training, too much simulations, not a single encounter.

BEFORE I study aikido, I got beaten up 3 - 4 times on the street. All of them multiple attackers randori.

...

I guess I'll keep training then.

PeterR
02-28-2004, 04:02 AM
However, I do not agree with the concept that one does not need a stand up fighting system because you can "walk and run" - there will be environments where escape is a limited option unless you can create an opening by using some sort of weapon (empty handed or otherwise) on your aggressors.
Just for the record it's not me he's disagreeing with. ;)

Going to ground by choice is a serious mistake. Learning how to maintain your feet is essential. Aikido rules.

And like Larry says there are times were running/walking away is not an option.

Chris Birke
02-28-2004, 05:08 AM
I'm just of the opinion that if you have a choice in the matter, it's during the time you can freely choose to run away.

Once you miss that time, good luck. Ain't impossible, but good luck, esp. at 130 lbs.

I'd guess that learning to see the inital oppertuni to exit is more valuable than how to deal with the split second that might give you a second chance. (yes, awareness is part of aikido)

If, however, you're looking for a fight, then by all means, you need to know stand up. I thought we were talking about self defense, though.

By the way, no one advocates taking a street fight to the ground as a means of defense, why do people love to keep bringing that up?

Taking someone to the ground is an offensive on the street, often coupled with the "having lots of friends" strategy.

PeterR
02-28-2004, 05:24 AM
By the way, no one advocates taking a street fight to the ground as a means of defense, why do people love to keep bringing that up?
Talk to some BJJ people some time.

In fact the part of your post that I quoted sounded an awful lot like that. In a nut shell you said you need ground fighting techniques, you don't need standing techniques.

To be clear with respect to self defense, you do need to develope ground skills and you do need to avoid using them at all costs. The Aikido I know gives you a reasonable chance of doing just that.

wendyrowe
02-28-2004, 05:39 AM
Chris,

I don't think people are recommending going to the ground as a means of defense. I think they're saying, "You're likely to wind up on the ground, so you need to know what to do once you get there." At least, that's what the ones I listen to are saying.

Unless they're talking about defense in a refereed fight -- in which case you'd take it to the ground if that would give you the advantage.

Chris Birke
02-28-2004, 02:39 PM
I think I'm being misunderstood, so let me reiterate.

Most self defense is this: you feel unsafe in your present situation, so you calmly and quickly get out.

By learning to recognize bad situations and compromising terrain (recessed doorways, unlit paths, etc) you can do the most for yourself.

Most violence against women is from someone they know and trust. The fact that you won't initially resist against someone you know is exploited until you have to fight defensivly. (it's not exactly the position aikido deals with)

The rest of the serious unavoidable encounters are the kind you don't see coming. You end up on the ground in pain, and that's where your self defense starts.

Encounters where you are forced to use stand up (and for some reason you can't simply run) are rare when compared to the former two.

If you face off against another guy in a bar, it is not self defense, its a fight. Then you need standup. Understand where I'm coming from?

Morpheus
02-28-2004, 06:01 PM
If, however, you're looking for a fight, then by all means, you need to know stand up. I thought we were talking about self defense, though.

....Most violence against women is from someone they know and trust. The fact that you won't initially resist against someone you know is exploited until you have to fight defensivly. (it's not exactly the position aikido deals with

....If you face off against another guy in a bar, it is not self defense, its a fight. Then you need standup. Understand where I'm coming from?

I don't understand these statements.

You seem to be implying that if you don't go to the ground that it isn't self defense.

Do you or have you ever studied Aikido?

BTW, before you ask, I haven't begun my study yet, but I have a jujutsu background.

L. Camejo
02-28-2004, 08:10 PM
Most self defense is this: you feel unsafe in your present situation, so you calmly and quickly get out.
This is true. Of course most folks who are successfully attacked don't get the early warning that an attack is imminent, to "calmly and quickly" escape. They only get to react to the aggression - at which point if there is an outlet from which to escape, most may take it. The thing is though, a person seriously intent on hurting you will try to avoid telegraphing his intentions as much as possible, minimising the chances of your early warning system to alert you.
The rest of the serious unavoidable encounters are the kind you don't see coming. You end up on the ground in pain, and that's where your self defense starts.
This is an interesting comment since earlier you referred to awareness being a part of Aikido. In my book one's awareness can trigger responses at different levels, depending on how sensitive/aware one is of his surroundings. Human beings have at least 5 gross senses, not being able to "see" an attack coming does not mean that one is gonna "end up on the ground in pain." From my experience much of Aikido training teaches one to be aware with as many senses as possible, giving us a few options to at least respond to an aggression by getting out of the way, at least partially.
Encounters where you are forced to use stand up (and for some reason you can't simply run) are rare when compared to the former two.
I would like to see some sort of evidence that backs up this claim. From my experience and of others who have been in some of these situations the only folks who get taken to ground are those who don't know how to maintain their balance and defend themselves from the outset, resorting to desperate tactics in a hope to gain an advantage. Often these tactics are sacrifice techinques that put both individuals on the ground.

As far as I'm concerned, when one is attacked and is forced to defend him/herself, the technique (whether stand up, ground fighting, chair and table tactics etc.) is determined by the environment and situation of the particular encounter. To assume one does not need stand up tactics to defend oneself while attacked and standing up (other than a bar fight)is a bit myopic in my humble opinion. I can understand not needing stand up techs if someone attacks you while sitting in your car however, but again there is no infallible rule of thumb that says that one set of tactics can't be applied in a different scenario.

Just my 2 cents.

L.C.:ai::ki:

Chris Birke
02-28-2004, 10:40 PM
I'm not trying to argue that Aikido is valuless, I'm just saying it's value should be perceived differently when you take a realistic view of casual self defense.

In my estimate of self defense (which, is only my estimate, so if you wish to attack me instead of my logic, continue), awareness is 90%, 10% then then fighting from disadvantagous position (ie, the ground, or once you're already somehow compromised that you cannot easily escape), and 1% is stand up blending and atemi (thus .1 being locks / throws).

Aikido is superb in that it teaches awareness and avoidance, as well as blending footwork etc - but I feel things beyond this fall into the 1% (or .1) catagory.

In the long run, (after decades) I've heard these catagories subsume eachother, and awareness is part and parcel of successful jitsu, but as far as immidiate gains in self defense for beginner goes (especially when considering sexual assault), I think this view is valid.

If anyone read the link Aleksey posted, its purpose was to despell the myth that combat is a mainstay of self defense (self safety perhaps?), when in fact it's almost the smallest element of it.

I think part of the confusion is that some of us are operating with different definitions of self defense.

//

I also feel it's very dangerous to rely on combat for self defense, as often it raises the seriousness of the situation to a point where someone is greviously injured.

There is a great passage in the book "The unbearable lightness of being" which cleanly illustrates a reality I've seen before - A judoka (wwII era judo no less) is mugged in an ally, he checks the scene, is rushed, executes a perfect throw, and is then clubbed over the back of the head by someone he hadn't noticed. He dies later in the hosptial.

Had he simply complied, he would likely have lived, it was his very martial skill that got him killed. Does this help clarify my perspective on matters?

Kevin Leavitt
02-29-2004, 01:06 PM
Good points Peter. I too think you need to learn ground fighting techniques, but avoid using them if possible.

Most of the situations I can think of that I would become involved in, the most dangerous place I can think of is on the ground.

I believe in 1. staying out of physical altercations, 2. running if I can, 3. extricating myself from the situation as fast as possible with minimal effort and starting over with number 1 again!

creinig
02-29-2004, 02:19 PM
In my estimate of self defense (which, is only my estimate, so if you wish to attack me instead of my logic, continue), awareness is 90%, 10% then then fighting from disadvantagous position (ie, the ground, or once you're already somehow compromised that you cannot easily escape), and 1% is stand up blending and atemi (thus .1 being locks / throws).
This would mean that someone attacked either (a) can use his awareness to avoid any fight altogether or (b) doesn't notice anything until he's more or less disabled ("on the ground in pain"). IMO that's way too simplistic.

Many (or most, even) attackers won't give you clear "I/we want to beat you into a bloody pulp" signs from far away. They'll look suspicious (if the "defender" has appropriate awareness), but you can't run from everyone who looks suspicious (that'd make many shopping tours in the city a pretty exhausting experience ;) ). So often the awareness is used to recognize potential attackers, situations that could be dangerous etc and allows you to be prepared for an upcoming attack.

And then there are of course these situations where you can't just run, because the exits are blocked, because you have to protect others etc.
If anyone read the link Aleksey posted, its purpose was to despell the myth that combat is a mainstay of self defense (self safety perhaps?), when in fact it's almost the smallest element of it.
I don't think anyone here disagrees with that. The problem is more with your assertion that stand-up combat / fighting / "physical discussion" almost never happens.

L. Camejo
03-02-2004, 10:02 AM
I think Kevin and Christian both stated what I wanted to state very well.

I agree with Chris' idea of self defence being 90% awareness, but the 10% of fighting from a disadvantageous position being linked ONLY to situations of being on the ground or in cases where stand up is useless is to me simplistic, as Christian pointed out.

Take the case of a possible rape victim, assuming that awareness does not work and the perp is able to get close enough to the person to do the crime, there is a time interval between when the initial contact is made and when the person gets into a disadvantageous position where the only option is ground fighting or cooperating.

Unless the perp rushes you, drops you to the ground on the spot where you are standing and tries to commit the crime right on spot, there wil be a time between being initially engaged and either taken to a place where it is easier to commit the crime or at least moved out of possible public sight. If due to extremely poor judgement you have given the perp the opportunity to do it on spot (i.e. being in a dark, isolated place where no one will hear you scream), this is where the ground work comes in as there is no need to commit the crime in a more accomodating environment.

If one is standing up during the time of initial engagement, then stand up tactics, of which running away is always an option among others, is a plausible avenue and hardly falls into the 1% category imho.

From personal reference I have a female friend who has had 3 serious rape attempts made on her over time, all of which were thwarted by stand up tactics. Her training is in Shotokan karate, judo and some aikido. Never did it get to the ground or to that "disadvantageous" place where stand up techs could not work. Maybe its because she is merely very capable in her stand up abilities or maybe its something else.

As far as the Judoka who died after being mugged, again awareness of environment is the first stage in any threat assessment towards self defence. His poor judgment of the threat is what got him beaned from behind, some might say that it was his LACK of martial skill that got him killed.

A similar situation happened in this country over a year ago and resulted in a very skilled, popular, young upcoming martial artist being killed by 3 gunmen. His mistake - not assessing the level of threat properly. This also happened to me 3 years ago at a client, I also did not realise that we were in fact dealing with 3 perps instead of 2, but then again, in that situation compliance and keeping the aggressor calm so as not to do something stupid is what allowed all of us to get out of that one safe, not physical technique.

Like I said before, there is no simple rule of thumb for self defence.

L.C.:ai::ki:

Ron Tisdale
03-02-2004, 03:47 PM
Good thread, and good points by all.
From my experience and of others who have been in some of these situations the only folks who get taken to ground are those who don't know how to maintain their balance and defend themselves from the outset, resorting to desperate tactics in a hope to gain an advantage.
I'm not so sure about this statement...I think balance is not so much the issue as is ma ai, or proper distance and timing. I can have the best balance in the world, but if I let someone larger and stronger get ahold of me, or set up a good tackle, I've severely limited my own options.

I also have to say the only time recently when I had a 'self defense' situation, I could not run (my 82 year old aunt who is mostly limited to a wheelchair would NOT have been happy), and going to the ground with 3 opponants, possibly armed, on the street in North Phila. is NOT a credible option. Getting taken there would have been worse, and I highly doubt any amount of BJJ would have helped (and I don't say this to denigrate a fine art and a valuable componant of some modes of self-defense).

What was key was

1) noticing the moment the three thugs started to cross the street, and letting them know I saw and was tracking them.

2) not escalating the event by confronting them too directly

3) not ignoring the situation and subtly letting them know I was VERY aware of their presense and possible intent.

If it had actually come down to a physical attack, standup would have been the ONLY reasonable option. It might have given me the opportunity to get in my trunk and get a staff. Short of that, I was probably toast. The best option was to find a non-physical resolution, which is thankfully what happened.

Ron

L. Camejo
03-03-2004, 09:47 AM
Good points Ron, happy that turned out all right for you and your Aunt too.

My statement about balance had to do with when one is already being physically attacked and has already lost control of ma ai, timing etc.

From my experience (and this is all I can quote from) many folks who are not sure how to maintain balance while launching a counter attack, or in response to something like a tackle, are unable to set their posture in a manner to deal with the attack and keep their footing, tend to be taken to the ground.

I guess it is something I see because it is something we specifically train to avoid. Often when engaged we can put ourself off balance by how we respond to an attack and therefore make it easier to being taken to the ground where, unless we have a single attacker and some grappling skills, desperate tactics tend to be used as the situation becomes increasingly desperate for us.

Your first point about letting someone bigger set up a successful tackle is right on the money. In the event that the tackle does come however, it is important to maintain dynamic balance (i.e. while moving and dealing with the attack) to ensure that one does not end up on the pavement.

Great points all around.

L.C.:ai::ki: