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drDalek
07-14-2003, 07:25 AM
Aikido is first and formost martial. That is a set of techniques for use in battle. I believe that Aikido can not be an art without this martial element and if you practice only the art aspect you lost sight of the truth. (Or the aspect of the truth that Aikido exposes to you)

So how can I test whether my Aikido is actually effective? I dont believe that you need to have done it for 10 or 15 years before it becomes effective and I also dont believe that "oh you just know it works" attitude I have seen from some higher ranking members of the dojo and the forums.

Even the great Gozo Shioda once picked a fight with a street "gang" to prove this aspect to himself (according to Angry white pyjamas anyway). How many sensei are out there that are teaching it and have never used it "for real"?

Should I just follow Shioda's example and insult someone's mom in a biker bar?

Sure it does not actually gel with the philosophy of Aikido but there is time enough for philosophy after I am secure in my ability with Aikido. (or dying in a gutter outside said biker bar from massive head trauma)

Kensai
07-14-2003, 07:35 AM
"Aikido is first and formost martial."

Here's me thinking is was about Love, Respect, Harmony, Nature and the Universe.

Ever read anything by O Sensei?

drDalek
07-14-2003, 08:01 AM
"Aikido is first and formost martial."

Here's me thinking is was about Love, Respect, Harmony, Nature and the Universe.

Ever read anything by O Sensei?
I respect your opinion but it is worthless to me because our training goals are obviously different.

jxa127
07-14-2003, 08:07 AM
Wynand,

Your question is fairly common in that, I think, most martial artists have wondered the same thing at one time or another.

I do not recommend picking a fight with someone to see if your training works. Risking serious injury (maybe even death) to yourself and/or your victim just for the sake of your ego is really stupid.

Instead, try some informal jiyuwaza (free technique, any attack) with a fellow student. Spar if you'd like. Train with someone who studies a different martial art.

Regards,

-Drew

PhilJ
07-14-2003, 08:15 AM
About how many fights does one person need to encounter before s/he is satisfied aikido works? Do we all think that one is enough? How about five? Maybe five, with at least one where you're outnumbered 20-to-1. Sure, you can survive a biker fight, but how about a fight with some radical leftists with pistols? Then I'll be convinced.

Or, you could test it everyday on the people around you, at work, home, on the road, on the phone, in the toilet. Seems less dangerous (unless you just ate chili) and definitely more relevant to my life, since I only plan to fight about < 1% of my time on t his planet. If you plan on fighting all the time, I recommend that you just don't stop picking fights, keep going as long as you can.

It just depends what you want out of a martial art. To learn about the essence of a man, train with him for 10 minutes.

*Phil

opherdonchin
07-14-2003, 08:17 AM
Wynand,

my training goals are also different than yours, but I think you have an interesting question. I will venture an opinion, but I want to make it clear that it is not based on any actual fighting experience and may not, therefore, be worth much to you.

Basically, I think one needs to distinguish between being a 'fighter' and being a 'martial artist.' The way I'm using the words, a fighter is succesful when he (or she) wins fights; a martial artist is succesful when he (or she) manages to create a situation where fighting is not neccesary. Now, these aren't mutually exclusive skills. Many of the skills that would benefit a fighter would also benefit a martial artist, and vice versa.

There are some tensions between the two ideas, though. One cannot be a great fighter without fighting a lot of fights simply because you can't win fights without being in them. On the other hand, if you fight a lot then you clearly haven't mastered the art of creating situation where fighting is not necessary.

Another way of saying the same thing is that someone whose Karate is so good that no one dare attack them is clearly an excellent Karateka but we have absolutely no information on how good of a fighter they are. Somone whose Aikido is so good that no one feels any urge to attack them is in the same position. Their skill as a martial artist is beyond question; their skill as a fighter is simply an unknown.

With this distinction in mind, I would say that if you are interested in being a fighter, then you have to learn from fighters and you have to fight. Anything else is like studying violin in order to be good at baseball. It may help, but it's not the same thing.

No matter how much combat training troops have, they are not fighters until they have actually fought. Indeed, some of them may turn out to be lousy fighters no matter how much training they receive.

drDalek
07-14-2003, 08:33 AM
<snip>

Or, you could test it everyday on the people around you, at work, home, on the road, on the phone, in the toilet. Seems less dangerous (unless you just ate chili) and definitely more relevant to my life, since I only plan to fight about < 1% of my time on t his planet. If you plan on fighting all the time, I recommend that you just don't stop picking fights, keep going as long as you can.

<snip>
Just for fun I did a quick calculation on your 1% or less, assuming you live to be 80 you would have to fight for 292 24 hour days in total for it to occupy precisely 1% of your life.

You are a braver man than I.

But seriously, to answer your question, the last time I was in a fight where the party attacking me was actually hostile instead of playfighting was in highschool. If I can come out on top in just one such an altercation, I will be satisfied.

As for testing your Aikido in daily life, a few examples would be emmensely helpfull, (feel free to skip the toilet Aikido examples)

Greg Jennings
07-14-2003, 08:58 AM
Make friends with people in other arts and have friendly, but spirited, shiai with them.

If you really want a challenge, go find a really good high school wrestler that is hard up for money and tell him you'll give him (the equivalent of) $20 for every time he can submit you in five minutes.

Regards,

Carl Simard
07-14-2003, 09:06 AM
Don't forget that although aikido is a martial art, it's a "do", a way or a path in the spiritual or philosophical sense. It's not a "jutsu", or "combat technique".

When you train in a "do", you try to achieve some mental or spiritual state (an "attitude")through your physical training. The physical technique isn't the end of it, but just a way to get to this mental state...

Not sure if the comparison may rightly apply, but in the army, officers and front line soldiers don't get the same training. The goal of an officer isn't to be the best shooter in the regiment. And the goal of the elite shooter isn't to think of strategy or tactiques...

A parralel may also be drawn with the samurai of the old Japan. To be a samurai, you needed to be much more than just a good katana wielder. You also had to have some philosophical and spiritual virtues (the 7 valors...). And these virtues were even more important than the fighting technique because you just don't put a katana in the hands of a guy you don't trust or who can put you in trouble because its lack of judgement...

Hope this make the difference between the "do" and "jutsu" a bit clearer...

So, if your goal is combat effectiveness, your probably better to train in something where combat effectiveness is the first goal...

PhilJ
07-14-2003, 09:06 AM
Seriously, aikido principles apply to folks with colon or bowel complications. It actually has been discussed here long ago.

I'm flattered you spent time with my terrible estimate. :) As you acknowledge, it's irrelevant to your point, so let's stay on track.

One fight is not enough, ask people who do it for a living, like UFC folks, boxers, etc. Your question then seems to be, "Do I know enough to survive one altercation?" which I think is entirely valid.

You already know how to test this in a fight -- insult a biker's mom in a bar. Let us know how it goes.

As for non-physical situations, try finding analogies between your techniques and daily life. Like, getting off the line of attack and cutting once, or, turning tenkan, etc. A really great place to look is Terry Dobson's book, "Aikido in Everyday Life". It's examples are a bit 'ideal' (as the author admits), but it's an interesting read nonetheless.

*Phil

paw
07-14-2003, 10:09 AM
Your question then seems to be, "Do I know enough to survive one altercation?" which I think is entirely valid.

You already know how to test this in a fight -- insult a biker's mom in a bar.

With all due respect, this is generally a poor method. People invariably choose to insult those they believe they can already beat .... so there's an issue about how challenging one's opponent will be.

FWIW, Greg's advice seems most sound to me
Make friends with people in other arts and have friendly, but spirited, shiai with them.

Regards,

Paul

acot
07-14-2003, 10:19 AM
Aikido decides life and death in a single strike, so students must carefully follow the instructor's teaching and not compete to see who is the strongest.

Morihei Ueshiba

This probably doesn't answer the question, but it does go straight to the point of the matter, motive. What are you testing? Aikido or fighting. Aikido isn't something you train in to learn how to fight. Unless your job requires such a skill. Some call Aikido a martial art, Morihei Ueshiba called it the art of peace. It is with only a year of training under my belt that I can say that it is going to take a long time to master even some of the basics. To believe that it is worth my while to take all that time and effort for a moment in my life that may or may not happen is completely insane and paranoid.

In this last year Aikido has help me control my temper and keep my center when things in life aren't going as well. To me I guess the fight or test isn't against anyone but my own worst enemy. ME.

Peace

Ryan

Dave Miller
07-14-2003, 10:23 AM
But seriously, to answer your question, the last time I was in a fight where the party attacking me was actually hostile instead of playfighting was in highschool. If I can come out on top in just one such an altercation, I will be satisfied.As one who was often the object of bullies' agression in high school, I can appreciate your honesty and also how frustrating that can be. However, the longer I train in Aikido, the less important this question seems to be for me. I am finding that training in Aikido has given me something that the bullies can't take away, which is confidence and self-respect that transcends whether I "win or lose" the fight. The mere fact that a bully picks a fight makes him/her the loser, regardless of the apparent outcome.

That having been said, it would still be nice if one of those old bullies tried to pick a fight with me and I just happened to give them a nice hard kote gaeshi or hiji guruma.

;)

PhilJ
07-14-2003, 11:16 AM
Paul,



I do agree with you, I prefer testing my aikido in less dangerous situations, like in a meeting or while walking my dog. You have a good point there.

There is a degree of futility, though, in trying to convince someone to do something contrary to what s/he has already decided to do. Wynand's view are different from mine, so I can't empathize -- I just hope one fight is enough to help someone understand that the beauty of aikido is not solely in its use in a combatative situation.

*Phil

Michael Neal
07-14-2003, 11:30 AM
I test Aikido on my cat, does that count?

Kensai
07-14-2003, 12:06 PM
I also have a cat upon which I test a variation of Tenchinage as well as unbendable arm.

Just as an after thought, the only thing you'll achieve by threatening people in bars is DEATH or meals through a straw for the rest of your life. No doubt Kancho could do this, but I doubt your of that ability as you wouldnt be asking this question.

kensparrow
07-14-2003, 12:33 PM
Wynand,

Just out of curiosity, what will you do if you fight and lose (assuming you're not dead or crippled)? Train harder and try again? Decide that Aikido is ineffective and switch arts? And what will you do if you win? Stop training because you know enough to kick somebody's ass?

You mentioned "Angry White Pyjamas". Do you remember the part about the "fight" outside the bar? They won that fight because Twigger's friend controlled HIMSELF, not the gang leader. That was the only example of REAL Aikido in the whole book.

It's no test of your abilities to psych yourself up, go out, pick a victim and beat him up. Untrained thugs do that everyday (and go to jail when they get caught).

You might also want to be careful who you try to beat up, he just might know Aikido...

jxa127
07-14-2003, 01:08 PM
I also have a cat upon which I test a variation of Tenchinage as well as unbendable arm.
I sometimes end up in two-cat randori. They're really good at grabbing and holding on to me. :D

Regards,

-Drew

deepsoup
07-14-2003, 01:42 PM
You already know how to test this in a fight -- insult a biker's mom in a bar. Let us know how it goes.With all due respect, this is generally a poor method. People invariably choose to insult those they believe they can already beat .... so there's an issue about how challenging one's opponent will be.
The other reason its a poor method is of course that bikers are generally such warm, wonderful, peace-loving people that you'll find it terribly hard to pick a fight with one anyway! (So enough with the stereotypes already:))

Sean

x

PhilJ
07-14-2003, 02:02 PM
LOL Drew. Two-dog randori is pretty scary too. Sometimes I get my foot stepped on (90lb dog x 2) or snorted on... icky.

*Phil

Goye
07-14-2003, 02:36 PM
:D I test Aikido on my little brother since I donīt have cats or dogs!:p

drDalek
07-14-2003, 02:45 PM
Just out of curiosity, what will you do if you fight and lose (assuming you're not dead or crippled)? Train harder and try again? Decide that Aikido is ineffective and switch arts? And what will you do if you win? Stop training because you know enough to kick somebody's ass?
The answer in both situation would be to train harder and try again but the point is kind of moot. I would never pick a fight, I just dont have it in me, the entire question was hyperbole to spark discussion.

I dont think though that I am the only person who ever harbored these kinds of ideas, anyone who has come into contact with violence, either at school or work or in relationships and thus understand the dynamics of aggression and conflict must be able to relate to me.

The problem is how to get rid of these questions in the most honest, straight forward way without getting killed or permanently injured. From suggestions in this thread and my personal limited experience I would say that the answer is to piece together a mental picture from sparring sessions, jiyuwaza sessions and how you handle those daily stresses.

ewodaj
07-14-2003, 02:47 PM
This probably doesn't answer the question, but it does go straight to the point of the matter, motive. What are you testing? Aikido or fighting. Aikido isn't something you train in to learn how to fight. Unless your job requires such a skill. Some call Aikido a martial art, Morihei Ueshiba called it the art of peace. It is with only a year of training under my belt that I can say that it is going to take a long time to master even some of the basics. To believe that it is worth my while to take all that time and effort for a moment in my life that may or may not happen is completely insane and paranoid.

In this last year Aikido has help me control my temper and keep my center when things in life aren't going as well. To me I guess the fight or test isn't against anyone but my own worst enemy. ME.

Peace

Ryan
Aikido isn't something you train in to learn how to fight.

what has made you come to this conclusion? no offense, but this is nonsense right here...aikido is an effective form of self-defense...do you think they teach police officers aikido so that they can be spiritual when it comes to a criminal shooting at them or something like that? a large amount of people take up aikido to learn how to fight, so how can you deny that? remember, aikido is a martial art and its a fighting martial art...it does have different aspects to it, but it involves learning how to control situations and so on...aikido is using your opponents own force/movements against them...;)

AIKIDO is a wonderful martial art used to manipulate your attacker's body away from you while inflicting pain if necessary. Aikido teaches you mainly standing fighting techniques using wrist locks and strikes to the body with extreme force and accuracy. We recommend AIKIDO to anyone that wants to take a self defense class.


enough said...:D :p

opherdonchin
07-14-2003, 02:52 PM
do you think they teach police officers aikido so that they can be spiritual when it comes to a criminal shooting at them or something like that?Does Aikido help with bullets?

I would say that people who take up Aikido to learn how to fight are a little misled, not so much because Aikido can't help them but because that's not a useful thing to learn (except in the limited context of competitions). Maybe a better goal, closer to what you are looking for, Louis, is taking up Aikido in order to learn how to survive fights. It may seem like a subtle shift, but I would claim that it's an important one.

ewodaj
07-14-2003, 03:03 PM
I was giving an example, but it was a bad one at that...;) aikido will help you in dangerous situations like if you are surrounded by 2 men that want to hurt you or rob you for whatever the reason(s) may be or something of that nature...if someone was up close to you and had a gun pointed at you, there are ways you can subdue him and take the gun away from him...im sure aikido teaches people how to do that...maybe not necessarily in that way, but something to that nature...
Does Aikido help with bullets?

I would say that people who take up Aikido to learn how to fight are a little misled, not so much because Aikido can't help them but because that's not a useful thing to learn (except in the limited context of competitions). Maybe a better goal, closer to what you are looking for, Louis, is taking up Aikido in order to learn how to survive fights. It may seem like a subtle shift, but I would claim that it's an important one.

Dave Miller
07-14-2003, 03:08 PM
...if someone was up close to you and had a gun pointed at you, there are ways you can subdue him and take the gun away from him...Would you mind sharing some of those ways with the rest of us?

ewodaj
07-14-2003, 03:09 PM
Does Aikido help with bullets?

I would say that people who take up Aikido to learn how to fight are a little misled, not so much because Aikido can't help them but because that's not a useful thing to learn (except in the limited context of competitions). Maybe a better goal, closer to what you are looking for, Louis, is taking up Aikido in order to learn how to survive fights. It may seem like a subtle shift, but I would claim that it's an important one.
you make some good points opher, but I dont think its fair to say people who take up aikido to learn how to fight are misled...its a martial art and like I said before a large amount of people take up martial arts to learn how to fight and defend themselves...im not talking nonsense here, but you ask a fair amount of people why do you take up martial arts for? one of the main reason they will say is it defend myself if a dangerous or bad situation arises in which I need to protect myself from whatever I see as a threat...I think its fair to say people who take up aikido or any other martial art for that matter just because they want to beat people up are misled...the people who learn martial arts to defend themselves just in case a dangerous situation presents itself are the ones who arent misled:D

ewodaj
07-14-2003, 03:12 PM
Would you mind sharing some of those ways with the rest of us?
im just saying they are ways dave...I never had a gun pointed at me nor have I ever been attacked on the streets...obviously, if someone is shooting at you aikido or basically any other martial art cant help you no matter what...

drDalek
07-14-2003, 03:25 PM
im just saying they are ways dave...I never had a gun pointed at me nor have I ever been attacked on the streets...obviously, if someone is shooting at you aikido or basically any other martial art cant help you no matter what...
I think most tanto disarms where the tanto is pressed against your neck or chest can be adapted to disarm an assailant threatening you with a muzzle pressed against you.

I have tried some gun disarms with a friend with a water pistol, if you get squirted before pointing the muzzle away from yourself then you might as well throw the technique out and try another one.

Further than point blank range and more determined than just "trying to threaten" you and you might as well just run or try and find cover.

Cyrijl
07-14-2003, 03:40 PM
zig-zag

shihonage
07-14-2003, 03:49 PM
...

Here's me thinking is was about Love, Respect, Harmony, Nature and the Universe.

Ever read anything by O Sensei?
Don't forget that although aikido is a martial art, it's a "do", a way or a path in the spiritual or philosophical sense. It's not a "jutsu", or "combat technique".

...

So, if your goal is combat effectiveness, your probably better to train in something where combat effectiveness is the first goal...
Aikido isn't something you train in to learn how to fight. Unless your job requires such a skill. Some call Aikido a martial art, Morihei Ueshiba called it the art of peace. It is with only a year of training under my belt that I can say that it is going to take a long time to master even some of the basics. To believe that it is worth my while to take all that time and effort for a moment in my life that may or may not happen is completely insane and paranoid.

In this last year Aikido has help me control my temper and keep my center when things in life aren't going as well. To me I guess the fight or test isn't against anyone but my own worst enemy. ME.


WARNING: Neophyte Overload !

Abandon ship ! Abandon ship !!

Make friends with people in other arts and have friendly, but spirited, shiai with them.


Or, take example from Bob S., and start abusing little children.

Sorry Bob, I am not letting that one go :)

jvadakin
07-14-2003, 04:16 PM
Unfortunately, the sound point behind this thread is obscured by bad rhetoric. The point, I think, is:

A: Aikido is a martial art.

B: Martial arts should be combat effective (in addition to helpful in avoiding conflict or defusing it or running away etc . . .)

C: How would one judge the combat effectiveness of his Aikido?

Someone somewhere above remarked that the author of this thread was paranoid to concern himself to such an extent with the unlikely event of an attack. The statement about picking a fight in a bar was absurd, and was justifiably flamed. However, it isn't absurd to expect that you are getting some sort of tangible return for your hard-earned dojo tuition! If I am only gaining spiritually and not improving my ability to defend myself in the unlikely event of an attack, then I am not getting my money's worth. I could have stayed home and read the Bible or some such all those hours! The author of the post desires a way to test his gains realistically. Perhaps he should listen to the person who recommended sparing with other martial artists. I'm very new to Aikido myself, and I'm not sure that competition is such a bad thing. Growing up I was never too concerned if my sports teams won or lost as long as I learned something and had a good time. I guess the problem is that it is fairly difficult to execute Aikido techniques at full speed without dislocating a joint. My solution is to cross train in Judo as soon as I can find a dojo. I think I would gain from a synergy of the two.

kensparrow
07-14-2003, 04:40 PM
Unfortunately, the sound point behind this thread is obscured by bad rhetoric. The point, I think, is:

A: Aikido is a martial art.

B: Martial arts should be combat effective (in addition to helpful in avoiding conflict or defusing it or running away etc . . .)

C: How would one judge the combat effectiveness of his Aikido?
Thanks for getting to the heart of the matter James.

I think you can do spirited randori or sparring and get a decent idea what you are capable of from a technique stand point, but it's still a long way from a real life and death situation. You don't really know how you are going to react when you're scared or angry or reeling from a bare knuckle shot to the mouth. Short of the ridiculous bar fight scenario, I think you need to accept the fact that you will just never know until you know.

opherdonchin
07-14-2003, 04:57 PM
you make some good points opher, but I dont think its fair to say people who take up aikido to learn how to fight are misledThanks, Louis. I think James is right, though, and we're getting off topic. In order to keep from derailing the thread (again), I'm going to respond to the rest of your note privately.

Dave Miller
07-14-2003, 05:03 PM
I think you can do spirited randori or sparring and get a decent idea what you are capable of from a technique stand point...We have some "spirited randori" on the boards, from time to time. ;)

Mel Barker
07-14-2003, 05:41 PM
...obviously, if someone is shooting at you aikido or basically any other martial art cant help you no matter what...
Well, if your martial art involves the carrying of a firearm and training in marksmanship and combat tactics, it might be of assistance.

Mel Barker

willy_lee
07-14-2003, 05:42 PM
You don't really know how you are going to react when you're scared or angry or reeling from a bare knuckle shot to the mouth. Short of the ridiculous bar fight scenario, I think you need to accept the fact that you will just never know until you know.
Good posts, Ken and James.

Adrenal-stress training and scenario training can help. But I agree that you will never "know" until you're in it.

=wl

Dave Miller
07-14-2003, 05:45 PM
Well, if your martial art involves the carrying of a firearm and training in marksmanship and combat tactics, it might be of assistance.

Mel BarkerIndeed. The earliest known martial arts system (from Egypt) included training in hand-to-hand combat up to advanced "city seige" techniques, with appropriate weapons training.

willy_lee
07-14-2003, 05:49 PM
zig-zag
By this I take it that you mean, "zig-zag when running away in hope of spoiling the bad guy's aim".

However, it may be worth considering whether it's better to add as much distance as possible instead of trying to spoil the aim of a guy who probably isn't a very good shot anyway. Obviously "it depends" -- and better to have obstacles, corners, to hide behind, as well as get bad guy reeling or eyes watering from a blow -- or return fire to get bad guy looking for cover as well...

=wl

paw
07-14-2003, 06:03 PM
I think you can do spirited randori or sparring and get a decent idea what you are capable of from a technique stand point, but it's still a long way from a real life and death situation. You don't really know how you are going to react when you're scared or angry or reeling from a bare knuckle shot to the mouth. Short of the ridiculous bar fight scenario, I think you need to accept the fact that you will just never know until you know.
Adrenal-stress training and scenario training can help. But I agree that you will never "know" until you're in it.

What is "real"? How do you define "real"? If "real" is just electrical impulses in the brain and adrenaline flowing through the system, isn't that "real" enough to "know"?

Ripping off "The Matrix",

Paul

PS -- the questions are retorical, no need to reply.

Carl Simard
07-14-2003, 08:35 PM
[b]WARNING: Neophyte Overload !
Well, maybe there was a neophyte overload, but, quoting Shiora Sensei from your own dojo (PAF):
Some people join the school to gain confidence in a fighting situation. They have to realize that knowing self-defense techniques and being confident are not necessarily the same. Techniques belong to physical training and confidence to philosophical and mental training. This suggests that you train with breathing exercises and meditation as well as Aikido techniques. In the end the best self-defense for you is knowing techniques and keeping yourself alert and calm
Aikido is one of the East Asian ways of training that tries to lead us to find our true selves and helps us remain undisturbed by the dualism of win or lose, good or bad, by going beyond them.
The purpose of martial arts is not necessarily winning, but rather not losing. This attitude potentially affects how to behave in any situation, and defines a crucial difference between martial arts and sports. Martial arts have a deeper meaning than sport. Particularly Japanese martial arts would be better defined as "martial way (of life)".
All these quotes from the web page of your own dojo... PAF (http://www.pacific-aikido.org/)

Quite similar to what, us, simple neophytes have said... Maybe you should go to your sensei and tell him that his view of aikido is quite "neophyte" and explain him what he has missed all these years...

Ron Tisdale
07-14-2003, 09:32 PM
masakatsu agatsu katasu hayabi.

on the other hand;

sho chiku bai.

Take your pick, but be willing to suffer the consequences.

RT

opherdonchin
07-14-2003, 11:59 PM
Maybe you should go to your sensei and tell him that his view of aikido is quite "neophyte" and explain him what he has missed all these years...The point was nicely made, but there was no need to follow it up with this sarcasm. The sarcasm only undermines the point.

Kensai
07-15-2003, 07:56 AM
How about this, Aikido, is like one of those funny drawings you look at and people see different things.

It is what it is.

Although my eariler post would suggest otherwise, I'm not really into "peace and love". But those Aikidoka or Budoka that "I" am inspired by, have an understanding of such concepts that I'll never really understand.

I see Aikido as more than just martial. Taking away the more martial side of Aikido does indeed take away its fangs, but remove the philosphy of love and understanding that Morihei Ueshiba tried to convey and you take away its heart.

MikeE
07-15-2003, 08:38 AM
Wynand,

You said that if you lost a fight you would rededicate yourself to your training. I find that a very mature attitude. Understanding that it would be you, and not the art that had shortcomings.

Here's a suggestion: Treat everyday as though you have lost a fight. Eventually fighting won't be the center of your training. You will come to realize self-victory is where its at. When this happens then you will be really, really good.

Nick P.
07-15-2003, 09:37 AM
The problem is how to get rid of these questions in the most honest, straight forward way without getting killed or permanently injured.
Like ego on the mat, just let it go.

bob_stra
07-15-2003, 12:09 PM
WARNING: Neophyte Overload !

Abandon ship ! Abandon ship !!

Or, take example from Bob S., and start abusing little children.

Sorry Bob, I am not letting that one go :)
Best Bruce Lee voice -

"Kids...no...hit...back".

(well they do, but you know, puny arms)

Now, back OT...

Is this an actual question or a brain fart? ;-)

The answer is obvious - progressive resistance in training, leading all the way upto full randori.

Here's is a theoretical description (wordy and advitorial as it is -

http://www.rmax.tv/nature.html

I suspect the practicalities of putting this advice to good use is what Wynand is caught on?

In which case, try to find like minded indivduals to practice with. Cross training is also a real and valuable option. Members here will attest to the use of Judo as an adjunct. I prefer MMA & BJJ - more is allowed in standup. (yes, I try to use Aikido in these circumstances. With little success. Thought that's probably just my ineptness)

Failing that, there's always kids and dogs... ;-)

(said in jest, but true none the less. They're unpredictable, fun, and energetic. A game of tag offers a good training session)

shihonage
07-15-2003, 01:56 PM
Well, maybe there was a neophyte overload, but, quoting Shiora Sensei from your own dojo (PAF):
[quotes]

All these quotes from the web page of your own dojo... PAF (http://www.pacific-aikido.org/)

Quite similar to what, us, simple neophytes have said... Maybe you should go to your sensei and tell him that his view of aikido is quite "neophyte" and explain him what he has missed all these years...
You quoting these fragments was in a way self-defeating.

As you can see, Mr. Shiohira does not dismiss the martial validity of Aikido.

In fact, he is known to stress the fact that Aikido is a MARTIAL art, during class.

Moreso, he doesn't refer to is as an "art of peace", or as a "way of life".

In the quote that you cited here, he explicitly says "martial way of life".

There's a tendency that is too common, and that is to completely forsake the martial side of Aikido, and start going off in the direction of "How it makes my life better and I am a lot calmer when talking to my boss. Look, I can make an unbendable finger !".

The number of people going in this direction in this particular thread has exceeded my tolerance threshhold, and hence I posted that reply.

bob_stra
07-15-2003, 02:36 PM
"Look, I can make an unbendable finger!"

LOL

Alfonso
07-15-2003, 03:27 PM
being calm with the boss has "saved my life" many more times than any fighting ability I may have.

so you find this unworthy?

oh well

shihonage
07-15-2003, 03:34 PM
Alfonso, you're using a tactic that I would call "amplifying things out of proportion/resorting to extremities/painting picture in black and white in order to make the other guy's statement look silly".

You're not the first, and undoubtedly you're not the last to use this technique.

However, all this serves is an unnecessary continuation of an unfruitful flamewar which degrades into posters throwing similar, dare I say, cheap tricks on one another until one of them gets tired of typing.

My point is, in fact, if you take time to read my post, is that the martial side of Aikido cannot and should not be neglected.

I'm not taking a stab at Aikido's other benefits, but only at people who praise the other benefits while completely discarding the martial.

Hopefully I have sufficiently explained myself at this point, so the next person to come at me with the same tactics can just be referred to this post.

willy_lee
07-15-2003, 04:56 PM
The Dog Brothers Gathering of the Pack was just this past weekend... ;)

=wl

bob_stra
07-15-2003, 07:32 PM
The Dog Brothers Gathering of the Pack was just this past weekend... ;)

=wl
*Now* that'd be something to see.

Did you go and observe or (*shudder*) participate Willy? How was it? I'd love to go to one of the Gatherings - if they're ever down under.

Nacho
07-16-2003, 12:17 AM
Replying to the original post:

Well if you want to test your fighting skills and pick a fight it's very simple, don't ask

you have a wide range, you can go from your little 8 year old cousin to insulting a bunch of hooligans.

But you always will be asking the same question to yourself all over again. You always will want to know how far you can go... and maybe the "limit" will be the day you "lose". And losing in a fight for real with no rules.. it can be death or serious injuries, perhaps ending handicapped.

I think Aikido is a very difficult martial art, and you have to really master the basics before testing your Aikido for real.. if don't, you will be testing only some fighting skills.

But... you can test your Aikido in ... "testings"... that's what testing goal is, to test your Aikido.

Cyrijl
07-16-2003, 08:55 AM
I think it helps to know what you are capable of. Not every challenge is a fight. So many people on this board abhor the idea of fighting which is why aikido appears weak.

Not everyone wants to sit back and say "I'm too deadly to test what i know".

opherdonchin
07-16-2003, 11:22 AM
Not everyone wants to sit back and say "I'm too deadly to test what i know".Sure, and anyone who feels a strong need to test themselves should certainly do so. I'm even interested to hear how they stack up relative to their expectations.

The basic point is that only you can give yourself a passing grade, and so you will have to figure out what it takes to get that passing grade from yourself. If you pass after you take on a guy with a knife or three guys with sticks, then that's going to be what it takes. As I get older, I find myself lowering the standards. That isn't because I've gotten lazy or complacent (I hope). It's more because I feel that I am more effective when I'm constantly succeeding rather than when I'm constantly failing. Even today, I figure I'm probably too hard on myself. So, my Aikido is succesful when I get to class more than 4 times a week and when I can stay focused on the things I'm trying to learn through the whole class. I can do this 2 out of 3 weeks and 1 out of 3 classes. That seems like a reasonable success rate to me.

Cyrijl
07-16-2003, 12:43 PM
Opher Donchin,

that was a great post and i agree fully

the slayer
07-16-2003, 02:28 PM
hi my boyfriend helps me out sometimes in the park we have a play fight and i try to do some aikido moves to stop him getting me but he cheats and does a mixture of judo and some other i think army training.so this helps me when i am on the mat and when i am outside in the park with my boyfriend.my boyfriend does not do aikido.but it keeps me vigilante cause sometimes he will just try to grab me with no signs to say that he his about to do it. i haven't yet tried tecniques with my dog yet. :-)

Alfonso
07-16-2003, 04:36 PM
Aleksey , I might have gotten carried away by the force of your argument; and I do like to play devils advocate..

however, looking at things from the perspective of those who give *a pox on these aikido weenies* is a bit tyring for me.

Am I being too dense or is testing aikido through fighting not testing aikido?

Thor's Hammer
07-17-2003, 11:04 AM
Interesting to see that even those that claim to adhere to the spiritual side of aikido and resist the duality of competition get caught up in the duality between people who mainly want to fight others and people who mainly want to fight themselves. Painting in black and white you will never find this 'truth' you claim to seek.

In response to the original question, the task of the aikidoka is to build heaven on earth. Ask yourself before you pick a fight if you are prepared to deal with the guilt if they die or are seriously injured.

happysod
07-17-2003, 12:02 PM
Alfonso, I'd question whether "picking a fight" is actually testing your aikido, win or lose, as I'd consider you've already failed by instigating the fight in the first place. Using your knowledge if attacked, different matter.

Bryan, hope to hell that's not the point of aikido, I'm rubbish at DIY. Thanks for the addition of the "how you deal with the aftermath" part, totally agree. I'd hate to train with someone who could feel nothing for someone they've injured.

mike lee
07-17-2003, 12:50 PM
I think that if a person sincerely wants to test his skill, he should participate in a martial art that has sparring competitions, such as jiu-jutsu, judo, karate, kendo, tai boxing, kick-boxing, etc. There are also western fighting systems such as fencing, numerous forms of wrestling, and boxing.

With so many possible ways to test ones fighting skill, I have to question if someone looking to fight is truly a martial artist or just a hot dog. Wannabes who sport frail egos, disguised as macho men, rarely engage in any meaningful competition, because the very thought of losing frightens them to death!

Cyrijl
07-17-2003, 01:03 PM
With so many possible ways to test ones fighting skill, I have to question if someone looking to fight is truly a martial artist or just a hot dog. Wannabes who sport frail egos, disguised as macho men, rarely engage in any meaningful competition, because the very thought of losing frightens them to death!

Give me a break...some people just want to see if they can actually fight. What is 'meaningful competition' in the martial arts world to you? Dancing, debate....it should be fighting.

Alfonso
07-17-2003, 01:11 PM
Ian, I think that's what I meant. When I competed seriously I lost more often than won truth be said; though had to deal with both. In the end I'd much rather have a good time than win; I don't know what happened to my desire to win. I'm happy with Aikido .

willy_lee
07-17-2003, 03:41 PM
*Now* that'd be something to see.

Did you go and observe or (*shudder*) participate Willy? How was it? I'd love to go to one of the Gatherings - if they're ever down under.
Haha... I did not go, but I know a couple guys who went -- one guy works with me, came back with a black eye and some bruises. Also, apparently he cracked someone else's cup. He did four fights this Gathering -- he's been to I think one previous. He does regular fights with a group doing Dog Brothers style fights (every other week) and I've fought in a couple sessions with his group. The group has progressive levels of intensity, so my fights were with non-rattan sticks and aluminum training knives.

The group's website is here:

http://home.att.net/~gints/home.htm

It's really not that bad. With his group we fight in a garage, on concrete. No serious injuries beyond bruises and lumps, and they've been doing this for a couple years. But it can be surprising how tired you get going all out for 90 seconds. Learning how to relax in such a situation can be very valuable.

I would definitely recommend doing something similar for anyone interested.

There was a guy posting on the E-Budo Aikido forum who apparently went and used aiki-jo technique -- he said it worked a treat.

=wl

deepsoup
07-17-2003, 03:51 PM
I think that if a person sincerely wants to test his skill, he should participate in a martial art that has sparring competitions, such as jiu-jutsu, judo, karate, kendo, tai boxing, kick-boxing, etc. There are also western fighting systems such as fencing, numerous forms of wrestling, and boxing.
Or ..ahem.. aikido!

Come over to the dark side, Luke.... evileyes
I'm not allowed to dance. I keep seeing all these openings for uchi-mata.....
My old judo instructor had a story about that, except it was o-soto-gari. There wasn't a second date.

Sean

x

willy_lee
07-17-2003, 05:46 PM
Well, if she suddenly develops an interest, let me know. I know all the tango teachers in San Francisco.
Cool, thanks! I know someone in the flamenco scene, and some swing dancers, but no tangoists.
Just want to widen the "gene pool" as tango dancers are cliquish & exclusive. I need to get more Aikido people & more Rennaisance Faire people into the mix...if i can just get them away from swing dancing long enuff to try...
Haha ... is swing dancing another aikido-linked trait? I mean, I've noticed a lot of aikido motorcyclists and surfers, never knew about the swing dancing link. :)

=wl

Steve Nathan
07-17-2003, 10:46 PM
I train in Australia, and recently received my Shodan ranking. I too once pondered if Aikido would be able to help me out in a real life situation. My sensei Barry Knight 6th Dan replied to me: "If you train regularely, then your instinct will take over. There will always be someone better, stronger & faster out there, so be true to yourself and trust your Aikido training & skills, it will surprise you"!

As for picking fights to test your insecurities, well I think there are other ways to test your Aikido.

Steve

opherdonchin
07-18-2003, 09:12 AM
Holy cow! An on-topic post. I'd forgotten what the topic was.
you know about the historical links between contact improv and aikido, right? In a sense, contact improv IS ukemi....Same-same, but different, as they say. I'd love to get a topic started on the similarities and differences, but I don't figure there are enough Aikidoka who do contact on this forum to make it go.
Ooooh contact improv with ukemi!!! me too, me too i wanna do that!Well, you're pretty near the epicenter. You can find jams and classes near you at http://www.contactimprov.net. I see that there is one in Sonoma and three in San Francisco. Its really been changing and improving my Aikido as I become more able to integrate my body and learn to understand the difference between strong weight and light weight.

jon_jankus
07-18-2003, 03:04 PM
if someone fired a gun at me, i'd tenkan.

Qatana
07-18-2003, 03:38 PM
clarification-

Not that i have any problem incorporating spiritual aspects into Dance- for most of my life Dance was my Only spiritual practice.

But around here there is so much new-age crap it is impossible to discern the truly spiritual rather than slapping any of the new age keywords such as "celtic" or "wiccan" or "natural".

And that many of the participants have no interest in technique, ability, performance, appearance or soap, most of which i feel are necessary in any dance form.ANd i don't call a pile of bodies rolling around each other (possibly after covering each other in ceremonial clay or mud) is neccessarily "dance".

Again, this is possibly a regional thing, i Have studied contact improv in an academic environment and loved it.

when i watch some of the yudansha in my dojo doing blending practice with advanced techniques, however, i want to set it ot music...

shihonage
07-18-2003, 04:34 PM
if someone fired a gun at me, i'd die.
Fixed your post.

akiy
07-22-2003, 03:48 PM
The off-topic posts regarding dancing and the Bay Area have been moved:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=4182

-- Jun