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kokyu
03-28-2005, 10:46 AM
Having trained in dojos in several countries, I have noticed that different dojos have different "standard" hanmi when it comes to shomeunchi and tsuki.

For example, in one dojo, uke and nage would normally stand in gyaku hanmi before uke attacks. So, if nage's left foot is forward, uke's right foot would be forward. Uke would then attack by stepping forward with his left leg and striking with his left arm.

In other dojos, uke and nage would normally stand in ai hanmi before uke attacks. So, if nage's left foot is forward, uke's left foot would also be forward. Uke would then attack off his left foot and arm - the right leg does not step in front of the left.

From what I understand, standing in gyaku hanmi is dangerous because uke or nage can kick each other even before the "main" attack. Of course, in jiyu waza, randori, or even outside the dojo, people aren't going to adjust their hanmi before attacking.

But I AM curious and was wondering what hanmi you tend to adopt for shomenuchi and tsuki in your dojo and why?

Please share your thoughts :)

pezalinski
03-28-2005, 11:57 AM
I've observed the same thing, and was wondering, myself. At first glance, I thought it might be a matter of miai -- distance between attacker and target. Closer target enables you to attack from the front hand rather than a step-in-and-swing.... But at point-of-contact, nage usually is in ai-hanmi, to be able to be on the outside of the attack (rather than the vulnerable inside). Yet, I have seen techniques where nage enters on the inside of the tsuki or shomen attack (for, say, a sumi-otoshi throw).

:confused: Perhaps the hanmi is nage's choice, depending on their preferred response-style to the attack?

rob_liberti
03-28-2005, 12:39 PM
I think we just make some conventions to avoid a lot of noisy conversation about how to set things up. Eventually, the conventions have to go away. - Rob

ChristianBoddum
03-28-2005, 01:03 PM
Hi !
In my dojo Shomenuchi and tsuki is always ai hanmi - as a starting point.
When you are training at higher levels it doesn´t matter,
you should then be able to adjust to whatever is coming your way.

Ron Tisdale
03-28-2005, 01:56 PM
Someone mentioned coming on the 'inside' of the attack...that is certainly doable, but probably a lot safer if you enter with atemi in those cases. I think in the dojo we train in various scenarios, some are more for martial principles, others not so much. In general, if we do a one hand push from a wrist grab, we move slightly offline so that we don't get hit. I've seen this in the yoshinkan, in Shirata Sensei's linneage, and in other martial arts. There are times though when its not the focus of the movement/principal, so not stressed as much.

Ron

Lan Powers
03-28-2005, 06:27 PM
We tend to start shomenuchi from grakyu hanmi, and tsuki from ai-hanmi.....
but then we work on starting "wrong-footed" too as part of it all. :)
As said before And better) it doesn't matter when you get more advanced.
Still matter too much to me tho.
Lan

Amir Krause
03-30-2005, 07:22 AM
No single stance, Shomen Uchi comes from the sword attack, and in the sword work, one could find both options,. Hence we practice both options. I believe the more common attack would be from ai hanmi, but mae and timing may change that attack.

As for tsuki , we normally practice Karate punches, beginners mostly focus on the Ouzuki - a long punch which requires changing legs, but the more advanced students practice both Gyakuzuki (shorter reverse punch - no change of stance while stepping forward) and with a Jab (sorry, I just forgot the Karate name).

In all options we will show beginners the more convenient stance for the technique practiced (some techniques are easier from Ai Hanmi other from Gyaku Hanmi) but the advanced students are encouraged to try the other option as well.


Amir

kokyu
03-30-2005, 11:19 AM
No single stance, Shomen Uchi comes from the sword attack, and in the sword work, one could find both options,. Hence we practice both options. I believe the more common attack would be from ai hanmi, but mae and timing may change that attack.
Amir

You are right... I think from a defense perspective, standing in ai hanmi is safer - both for uke and nage as they are standing "outside" to "outside" - which is probably why attacks are commonly from ai hanmi.

But for practice sake, I'll start insisting (if possible) that my uke switch stances just to liven things up :D

Just wondering about this because when I train at different dojos, the "typical" hanmi for shomenuchi and tsuki are not the same - and some ukes are very insistent that you stand in the "typical" hanmi before they start attacking :) I thought there would be some universal agreement on this basic issue...

Amir Krause
03-31-2005, 10:16 AM
But for practice sake, I'll start insisting (if possible) that my uke switch stances just to liven things up

You can switch the stance as Tori after Uke has decided on his own stance. Sometimes it is important to notice the position Uke believes will be best for his attack.

Amir

csinca
04-05-2005, 12:23 PM
You can switch the stance as Tori after Uke has decided on his own stance. Sometimes it is important to notice the position Uke believes will be best for his attack.

Amir

I agree that it makes more sense as Tori to switch stances rather than insisting that Uke attack a certain way. Learn to move your own feet, don't rely on being able to give verbal commands to your attacker.

Chris

tarik
04-05-2005, 04:46 PM
I find it interesting that no one has mentioned shizentai.

Gyaku vs. ai hanmi is just a convention for learning. Eventually it doesn't matter and you should be able to adjust instantly.

Numerous senior instructors have admonished me, particlarly after reaching shodan, to use shizentai more often. More neutral and flexible.

Tarik

samurai_kenshin
04-05-2005, 06:35 PM
Having trained in dojos in several countries, I have noticed that different dojos have different "standard" hanmi when it comes to shomeunchi and tsuki.

For example, in one dojo, uke and nage would normally stand in gyaku hanmi before uke attacks. So, if nage's left foot is forward, uke's right foot would be forward. Uke would then attack by stepping forward with his left leg and striking with his left arm.

In other dojos, uke and nage would normally stand in ai hanmi before uke attacks. So, if nage's left foot is forward, uke's left foot would also be forward. Uke would then attack off his left foot and arm - the right leg does not step in front of the left.

From what I understand, standing in gyaku hanmi is dangerous because uke or nage can kick each other even before the "main" attack. Of course, in jiyu waza, randori, or even outside the dojo, people aren't going to adjust their hanmi before attacking.

But I AM curious and was wondering what hanmi you tend to adopt for shomenuchi and tsuki in your dojo and why?

Please share your thoughts :)
It's funny you mention hanme right after my own died *cries* it won't work anymore*cries*...Anyway your hanme depends partly on your preferance and partly on your sensei's/style's general rule.

kokyu
04-06-2005, 10:34 AM
I find it interesting that no one has mentioned shizentai.

Gyaku vs. ai hanmi is just a convention for learning. Eventually it doesn't matter and you should be able to adjust instantly.

Numerous senior instructors have admonished me, particlarly after reaching shodan, to use shizentai more often. More neutral and flexible.

Tarik

That's interesting. Maybe I'll try that next time. One thing with shizentai (from the photos I've seen at the Aikido World Journal) is that the arms are at the side, so it seems to take slightly longer to extend them in raised kokyu. Also, in hanmi, the hands more closely approximate the holding of a sword. But yes, shizentai is a more natural way of standing in public and moving comfortably from that position is important.

You can switch the stance as Tori after Uke has decided on his own stance. Sometimes it is important to notice the position Uke believes will be best for his attack.

I agree that it makes more sense as Tori to switch stances rather than insisting that Uke attack a certain way. Learn to move your own feet, don't rely on being able to give verbal commands to your attacker.

I'll remember that. Thanks for the tip :)

Dazzler
04-06-2005, 11:08 AM
Gyaku vs. ai hanmi is just a convention for learning. Eventually it doesn't matter and you should be able to adjust instantly.

Tarik

Spot on!

If you want to make the training easier...and simplify the learning process then use a stance where tori and uke both step prior to execution of chosen excercise.

As the standard improves the stance can be tailored to speed up the attack and response of tori and uke.

Ultimately there is no stance...unless you can stop people and say don't attack me yet...I've not got my stance ready!.

For this reason switching stance is ok for learning specifics ...but not really possible where the attack is with intent. Better to be able to respond with something regardless of how you stood.

Just my thoughts

D

jonreading
04-06-2005, 11:46 AM
To answer the original question, our dojo uses a preferred stance that depends on the technique. For example, I promote footwork to facilitate the movement principle (i.e. irrimi or tenkan) of the technique.

When a student practices shomenuchi ikkyo urawaza, we begin in gyaku hanmi (nage - left foot forward; uke - right foot forward). When uke strikes shomenuchi by taking a step, nage can more easily move to the outside using a tenkan movement without stepping.

Conversely, to perform shomenuchi ikkyo omotewaza, we begin in ai hanmi (nage - left foot forward; uke - left foot forward). When uke strikes shomenuchi by taking a step, nage can more easily move to the inside using a tsugi ashi movement without stepping.

Essentially, we coordinate early movement to minimize confusing footwork. Our early movement focuses on irrimi and tenkan principles, and we use tsugi ashi movement to create distance and timing. Later on, we incorporate ayumi ashi movement to create distance and timing (this is when initail stance becomes irrelevant). Only after students become comfortable with the basic four steps (ayumi ashi, tsugi ashi, ten kan, ten kai) do we encourage them to explore shizentai.

Many dojo follow similar protocol to reduce confusion for new students. It becomes easier for students to learn ashi sabaki when they do not have to concentrate so hard on whan the instructor's feet are doing. To my knowledge, there is not a right/wrong way, as long as it's consistent.

kokyu
04-07-2005, 09:32 AM
Essentially, we coordinate early movement to minimize confusing footwork. Our early movement focuses on irrimi and tenkan principles, and we use tsugi ashi movement to create distance and timing. Later on, we incorporate ayumi ashi movement to create distance and timing (this is when initail stance becomes irrelevant). Only after students become comfortable with the basic four steps (ayumi ashi, tsugi ashi, ten kan, ten kai) do we encourage them to explore shizentai.


Your description of "stages" in stance/movement training is very interesting. To be honest, it's the first time I've heard of such a thing. Actually, I'm envious :)