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jss
06-07-2005, 12:53 PM
Just a strange question that popped up in my head yesterday during practice:

Aikido is based on sword movements.
This makes sense if one is a samurai: you only have to learn one set of movement principles.
But aikido was not intended for the samurai, so why base aikido on sword movements?
It leads (or can lead, or whatever ) to an effective martial art, that I don't wish to question. But doesn't it make aikido too difficult? One example would be that aikido often requires a distance in which you would be able to cut with a real sword, if you had one?
So my question eventually is: isn't basing aikido on sword movements in a way overkill? (As in effective, but more difficult than absolutely necessary.)

(I know what I have written above is not completely correct, but it is the closest I can get at this moment to that vague idea I had yesterday. Perhaps I'll do better after some replies. :) )

rob_liberti
06-07-2005, 01:37 PM
My take on this is that people actually learn on every level, but they tend to focus on learning from a methodology they alrady trust. So, for instance, I perfer a more scientific approach to developing my aikido in term of physical practice. My friend, prefers a more phylosophical apprach to developing their aikido. We both need both ways, but we tend to focus on what we trust more.

If O-sensei got some understanding of how to hold his body in the most effective way from sword movements, then he would trust that, and probably prefer to teach in that way as well. I don't actaully think you need an excellent sword teacher to learn aikido - which is probably considered blasphemy by some. But, I do think you would then need some other extra-exercises to develop what is needed. Luckily, some people have developed to a decent understanding with and without auxillary sword practice, so there is a choice for students to focus on what they think might help them most.

Also, please remember that what is typically seen in aikido as far as sword training goes is not generally considered real sword work. Even Saotome sensei who IS probably a sword master, wouldn't say that someone who learned the sword kata in his system knows very much about real swordwork.

The good news, is that if you just don't have enough sempai around, you can get a lot out of swinging your sword in every direction - especially if you do it so much that you can no longer use "normal" strength to continue to make powerful cuts.

Rob

Kevin Leavitt
06-07-2005, 01:54 PM
It leads (or can lead, or whatever ) to an effective martial art,

What is effective from your perspective?

JJF
06-07-2005, 02:24 PM
There is no such thing as a 'proper distance'. The distance that will work in a given situation depends on many factors - the mere physique of the involved persons being one. Practicing the japanese sword can teach you a lot about how to judge and adjust distance. It can also teach you a lot about irimi - the very first step in which the whole thing is decided.

I think the japanese sword can teach you a lot about the principles of Aikido - and that these principles are relevant and unavoidable if one wants to do any martial art. After all there is never a reason to be in a bad position opposing the opponent. Some issues simply have to be fundamental and mandatory.

Of course this could just be me :D

Ketsan
06-07-2005, 04:51 PM
Just a strange question that popped up in my head yesterday during practice:

Aikido is based on sword movements.
This makes sense if one is a samurai: you only have to learn one set of movement principles.
But aikido was not intended for the samurai, so why base aikido on sword movements?
It leads (or can lead, or whatever ) to an effective martial art, that I don't wish to question. But doesn't it make aikido too difficult? One example would be that aikido often requires a distance in which you would be able to cut with a real sword, if you had one?
So my question eventually is: isn't basing aikido on sword movements in a way overkill? (As in effective, but more difficult than absolutely necessary.)

(I know what I have written above is not completely correct, but it is the closest I can get at this moment to that vague idea I had yesterday. Perhaps I'll do better after some replies. :) )

A lot, if not all, Ju-jitsu techniques are based on weapon techniques so really it was impossible to avoid the weapon. All O-Sensei did was revive and popularise the idea that armed and unarmed were the same. Perhaps his thinking in using this idea was that by going back to the weapon he could really get to the core of the techniques a sort of "back to basics" approach.

jss
06-07-2005, 05:00 PM
What is effective from your perspective?

Effective as in 'if applied properly, it works on an uncooperative person'. Which simply moves the problem to the proper application of aikido, of course.
For aikido to be something, it needs to have limits (there have to be things that are not aikido), so the proper application of aikido is only possible if you are able to keep the situation within those limits, i.e. in the realm of aikido. Or as my teacher would say: "You need the correct parameters."

jss
06-07-2005, 05:02 PM
After reading your posts (and thanks for those), I think my question boils down to this: what are the advantages of aikido being based on sword principles, if you're not a sword fighter?

jss
06-07-2005, 05:04 PM
All O-Sensei did was revive and popularise the idea that armed and unarmed were the same.
But are they really?
Of course some elements will not change, but aren't there differences as well?

Ketsan
06-07-2005, 05:49 PM
But are they really?
Of course some elements will not change, but aren't there differences as well?
To be honest my knowlege in this area isn't great but as far as I understand it the differences between unarmed and armed weren't great. Essentially weapons and grappling were interlinked so throwing someone, or putting an armlock on was just positioning the opponent to allow you to use the sword or a tanto. It was very much a combined arms thing.

Stefan Stenudd
06-07-2005, 06:11 PM
I agree with JJF that the sword teaches applied distance. Unarmed one distance, knife another, sword a third. You learn to adapt to the situation.
Also it teaches directions - primarily the need to stay completely clear of uke's attacking direction :)

I do some iaido, parallel to aikido, and find it rewarding in many more ways than I know to explain in words.

And in aikido there is tegatana, the hand as a sword, which might seem odd but actually helps a great deal in learning how to improve the techniques.

And so on, and so forth...

Yes, the sword art relation is quite rewarding in aikido.

maikerus
06-07-2005, 07:53 PM
I have alot of difficulty with people saying "Aikido principles are based on the principles of the sword". One cannot argue that Ueshiba M. trained with the sword and it influenced his understanding and creation of Aikido, however I would argue that both the sword and Aikido are based upon the same principles...not that one came before the other...just that they both use similar understanding of body dynamics and movements.

One of my students trained with the sword in a couple of styles for many years and I mentioned this to him. He looked at me in shock and said something like "Aikido is nothing at all like the sword and anyone who thinks so should go talk to a real sword teacher". He then thought for a moment and said the principles were the same, but the muscle memory (that we speak of so much in these forums) is completely different.

Just my take...and I have only done weapons within an Aikido framework...which does make them Aikido and not a true "sword style"...IMHO.

FWIW,

--Michael

eyrie
06-07-2005, 10:32 PM
One of my students trained with the sword in a couple of styles for many years....

It'd be interesting to find out what Dave Lowry's take on this is.

Amir Krause
06-08-2005, 05:34 AM
Aikido is based on sword movements

It's not just Aikido, it's almost all the Japanese Ju-Jutsu that is based on sword work. Japanese Ju-Jutsu started evolving in a period of internal warfare. Weapons were the main subjects of teaching,rather then empty hand. Even the sword was not the first weapon of choice.

As the internal war subsided, people started having more need for un-armed combat, and they developed it from the basis they had - weapons work. The great emphasis on sword work comes from the place the sword had taken in Japanese culture.

Looking at the technical content Ueshiba Aikido is very similar to Daito-Ryu Ju-Jutsu (As experts who learned both M.A. state, I have not practiced either for long period of time). As such it uses the same basis - sword work.

have alot of difficulty with people saying "Aikido principles are based on the principles of the sword". One cannot argue that Ueshiba M. trained with the sword and it influenced his understanding and creation of Aikido, however I would argue that both the sword and Aikido are based upon the same principles...not that one came before the other...just that they both use similar understanding of body dynamics and movements.

I have to both agree and disagree: learning Korindo Aikido which combines a lot of weapons work and empty hand, the saying goes "When empty handed think of using a weapon, when holding a weapon, think of being empty handed". Almost all the principles of empty hand and weapons work are the same, many techniques borrow from one side to the other, and I have improved more then one empty hand technique after learning a similar move with some weapon and visualizing it when practicing empty hand.
On the other hand, weapons often use different mae (distance). In some ways, learning each weapon gives more emphasis for different principles. A short and very incomplete list of ideas that are more emphasized with some weapons would be:
Boken - one body, taking the center, very exact feeling of mae.
Wakizashi (against Ken)- closing distance, avoiding the center.
Jo - Taking the center, flexibility in changing sides.
Ni-to (2 swords) - Using the body for two semi separate movements.
(It is possible to extend this list, but those are the first things that came to my mind today)


Amir

rob_liberti
06-08-2005, 07:52 AM
I have alot of difficulty with people saying "Aikido principles are based on the principles of the sword". One cannot argue that Ueshiba M. trained with the sword and it influenced his understanding and creation of Aikido, however I would argue that both the sword and Aikido are based upon the same principles...not that one came before the other...just that they both use similar understanding of body dynamics and movements.

I'm pretty much on the same page with you on this one. Historically, it makes sense to say one came from another. But, logically, the entire point of a principle is that it works in all sorts of different situations - sword or empty hand regardless of which one people discovered/developed first. I love history, but it's just one of many valid perspectives, which in and of itself has many valid perspectives. Consider Howard Zimm's books with the perspective of the populous as opposed to that of the tradional "great man" perspective. Studying both probably would give you much better insight into what the principles of the politics were at those times. Similarily, studing sword and empty hand will bring you better insight into the principles.

One of my students trained with the sword in a couple of styles for many years and I mentioned this to him. He looked at me in shock and said something like "Aikido is nothing at all like the sword and anyone who thinks so should go talk to a real sword teacher". He then thought for a moment and said the principles were the same, but the muscle memory (that we speak of so much in these forums) is completely different.

I study classical sword under Gleason sensei (which he learned from his Kashima teacher in Japan - but he's not officially allowed to call it such because of strict rules about who has teaching certificates). What is amazing is that most of the time when the muscle memory differs - that's where I need to be looking for principles - to discover more depth about them by using other principles to guide me. I think a majority of aikido is by necessity an apparent surface level contradiction, which can only be resolved by constantly researching and getting more depth. I understand that people what to "know what they know" - but that's not really a "path", and it is not really "shoshin".

Rob

SeiserL
06-08-2005, 08:31 AM
IMHO, FWIW, yes O'sensei based Aikido off sword movement, he didn't asked me if I thought it was a good idea or not. Since he created it, or actually synthesized it, I guess its his right to do it off the arts he knew and respected.

Rupert Atkinson
06-08-2005, 09:07 AM
Some Aikidoka use the sword more than others - some a lot more. The more you work with the sword the more you see linkage and the more one helps the other. But one has to be careful as Aiki-ken is not Kenjutsu. For most Aikido mortals, their Aikido is 'ahead' of their swordwork so it is obvious that the sword is not 'leading/directing' their training. If it is, they are likely misleading themselves as they are not expert swordsmen etc. Of course, if they are trained swordsmen ... well, who says they are?

mazmonsters
06-08-2005, 11:22 AM
These are some excerpts from an interview with 7th Dan, Steven Seagal Shihan:
Q: I read in an article that kenjutsu is a part of your life?
Sensei: Well, to me Aikido and kenjutsu are the same thing. If you've seen my technique, I'm always cutting. Today we just did a couple of stabs at this and that, but when you watch me a lot you'll see I'm always cutting with the feet and the hand; tesabaki, ashisabaki. The hand and feet angles are all kenjutsu.

Q: What part of Aikido came from swordsmanship?

Sensei: All parts, when I do nikyo, I cut. When I do irimi, I cut, shihonage, it's all kenjutsu.

Rupert Atkinson
06-08-2005, 07:26 PM
Q: What part of Aikido came from swordsmanship?

Sensei: All parts, when I do nikyo, I cut. When I do irimi, I cut, shihonage, it's all kenjutsu.

Yes, because he studied Kenjutsu, so he can relate it to that directly. Many, most Aikidoka do not, they only approximate it. I suspect there is a lot of pretense ... :freaky:

maikerus
06-08-2005, 07:39 PM
Yes, because he studied Kenjutsu, so he can relate it to that directly. Many, most Aikidoka do not, they only approximate it. I suspect there is a lot of pretense ... :freaky:

This is one of the main parts that bothered me when I first starting studying Aikido.

Someone would say to me "oh...this is like cutting with a sword" and I would look at them and say "that doesn't really help me because I have never cut with a sword" and then I would find out that they actually hadn't cut with a sword either, but had picked up a bokken and had learned to make the same hand movements as they do empty handed...

Of course...this got confusing when you tried to do it with the hands in the opposite grip because you wanted to do left side...and you get yelled at that your hands are wrong. What's up with that? :p :( :freaky: :D

--Michael :cool:

Rupert Atkinson
06-08-2005, 07:46 PM
Maybe we should label it reverse engineering ...

I might be wrong, but I think I once read that O Sensei forbade his students to study sword arts, or even to practice certtain things when he as not present. :hypno: It was in some article when one of his uchi-deshi was saying if they wanted to learn Kendo or something they had to do it secretly. Can anyone verify that I wonder?

jss
06-09-2005, 06:21 AM
To get back to my original question:

can we conclude that the only reasons aikido is based on sword movements are historical in nature?
In other words, the use of sword principles in aikido has no advantages when compared to other martial arts that were not influenced by sword arts?

mazmonsters
06-09-2005, 06:52 AM
I think this is why Aikido has such a bad reputation with a lot of ignorant observers. If you do not connect kenjutsu and aikido mentally, then you can never truly understand technique. Shiho nage came from sword movement, as did sankyo, nikkyo, ikkyo, and the angles of everything is directly from the movement of a swordsman...a samurai. What O-Sensei did was take the beligerency out of the techniques and found a harmonizing way of reconciliation by blending with and controlling the opponent, instead of destroying him. If you are not"cutting" with your technique, there will usually be a way for uke to escape...and by the way, it helps a great deal to practice with bokken...not doing kata, but practicing doing technique in a randori fashion with bokken..everyone using a bokken. This is how I came to understand the similarities so well.

Mike Sigman
06-09-2005, 07:17 AM
I think this is why Aikido has such a bad reputation with a lot of ignorant observers. If you do not connect kenjutsu and aikido mentally, then you can never truly understand technique. Shiho nage came from sword movement, as did sankyo, nikkyo, ikkyo, and the angles of everything is directly from the movement of a swordsman...a samurai. Er, ikkyo, nikkyo, sankyo, kotegaeshi, tenchi-nage, irimi nage, etc., etc., are techniques that have been around for a long, long time in Asia. There were adapted for use against weapons... but because you see them in a weapons context doesn't mean that's where they originated. :)


FWIW

Mike

Dazzler
06-09-2005, 08:08 AM
Aikido is based on sword movements.
This makes sense if one is a samurai: you only have to learn one set of movement principles.
But aikido was not intended for the samurai, so why base aikido on sword movements?
It leads (or can lead, or whatever ) to an effective martial art, that I don't wish to question. But doesn't it make aikido too difficult? One example would be that aikido often requires a distance in which you would be able to cut with a real sword, if you had one?
So my question eventually is: isn't basing aikido on sword movements in a way overkill? (As in effective, but more difficult than absolutely necessary.)

(I know what I have written above is not completely correct, but it is the closest I can get at this moment to that vague idea I had yesterday. Perhaps I'll do better after some replies. :) )

Does it make aikido too difficult? not for me.

My understanding is that the sword base is used to simplify learning.

very simplistically....You get to cut up and cut down...the location of the butt end of the ken should assist in developing an awareness of ones centre on completion of the cut and at the same time promote a hand position that is also central.

weapons and tai jutsu work are complementary, Aikido can be practiced without learning via both but the cross referencing should simplify things.

In terms of movement principles if you see them as two sets and not one then maybe you need to look at the commonalities rather than the differences.

Aikido is not about becoming a master swordsman.

Just my thoughts

D

rob_liberti
06-09-2005, 08:13 AM
To get back to my original question:

can we conclude that the only reasons aikido is based on sword movements are historical in nature?

The only reason any expression of principle can be said to be based on a different expression of the same principle is historical context, yes - you have my agreement there.

In other words, the use of sword principles in aikido has no advantages when compared to other martial arts that were not influenced by sword arts?

I, personally, do not agree with those other words. I think it is advantageous to study the principles from every angle (point of view).

I do agree with Michael, that is you haven't actually studied sword, relating sword practice to anything is kind of pointless. I have seen so many people try to do shihonage against minimal resistance by trying to directly lift my arms. When I ask them why they continue to try to do it that way, many of them inform me that it's just like sword. I ask them to show me, and they just lift their sword up from just about as out-stretched position as possible in an arc until it is over their head. Which is pretty much the same movement they are trying to do empty handed. The answer, to me, is normally do a drill where someone stands in front of you and tries to cut your exposed wrist while you lift the sword up (from a distance where you might stand in sword combat). If the person does it that silly arcing way, you can easily cut their wrist every time. If they bring it in a bit first and lift it up close to their body (like anyone would do lifting weights over their had) then they can start to avoid the cut, but I can still get them by advancing on them a bit. Lastly, when I ask them to thrust at me to back me off a bit, leave their sword tip where it is and advance their body forward so that they can lift their sword up close to their body, I can't get an obvious advantage. If you make shihonage work that way, especially getting a twist in there to continue to give direction to the leg power of the advancing and the thrust (assumes empty handed version is done with the mind still extending feeling to the tip of the imaginary sword) then it's pretty difficult to resist. Then they normally turn, and put all of their energy into their elbows and get stuck again, but I don't cut with all the energy in my elbows either.

Rob

Dazzler
06-09-2005, 08:30 AM
To get back to my original question:

can we conclude that the only reasons aikido is based on sword movements are historical in nature?
In other words, the use of sword principles in aikido has no advantages when compared to other martial arts that were not influenced by sword arts?
I think that 2 questions... ;)

Nope - can't agree that its there for a history lesson. If its not relevent to learning aikido NOW then theres no point doing it.

No advantages? Well lets look at one...Kamae...relationship between uke and Tori.

While it can be hard to get some students to grasp the concept of getting off-line from a punch or kick and instead block it...this is so much more readily grasped when the attack is with a bokken or jo.

So theres an immediate advantage.

I'm sure others can come up with many more.

Cheers

D

SeiserL
06-09-2005, 09:12 AM
In other words, the use of sword principles in aikido has no advantages when compared to other martial arts that were not influenced by sword arts?

IMHO, if you truly begin to accept, understand, and apply the sword principles, Aikido has an advantage over other non-blade arts.

I am just now beginning to get a glimpse of this in Aikido.

I saw this in FMA training, where we begin with weapons. Then when we took the weapon out of our hands, the hands and movements where efficient and effective.

Fred Little
06-09-2005, 10:29 AM
To get back to my original question:

can we conclude that the only reasons aikido is based on sword movements are historical in nature?
In other words, the use of sword principles in aikido has no advantages when compared to other martial arts that were not influenced by sword arts?

To the extent that aikido is "based on sword principles" the system of movement has the implicit premise that in addition to a sword, both parties may have shorter edged weapons available. With regard to both weapon retention and what constitutes "appropriate" ma-ai, this has significant implications that go well beyond the simple mechanics of applying any particular technique.

If an encounter does not involve edged weapons or cudgels, maybe "the use of sword principles has no advantage."

Conversely, if you were to add straight razors to Ultimate Fighting competition, a great many close quarter grapplers would have to re-evaluate their technical repetoire from the ground up.

Outside practice, I've never had anybody attempt to close the range on me when there was a visible blade in my hand, though I have had people close on me when I appeared to be unarmed.

rob_liberti
06-09-2005, 12:50 PM
Now that brings up a good question to my mind. I am told that I am do crate that feeling as if I have a sword "the mind-blade of aikido if you will". Here's the problem. I can do it from my perspective, in that I can hold myself in the same way I do when holding a sword, and make movement, rhythm adjustments, to allow myself to move in much the same way as if I had a sword. I cannot maintain that against a kamikazi who challenges how sharp my mind-blade is, and I wonder if anyone really can. What do you think?

Rob

NagaBaba
06-09-2005, 04:05 PM
Sword practice is closely related to empty hands practice. Aikido is really based on sword work.

If one observes carefully of evolution Founder techniques, we may see that at the end of his life his techniques becomes more and more simple, direct, on straight lines. Particularly in jyu waza. One opponent one atemi. Sunadomari sensei showed that also concept during Friendship demo. He expressed that way a concept how you cut with sword.

Entering in the attack and cut no counter possible.
Clean cut that is how one must do any aikido technique one movement, no hesitation possible.
You redirect any attack in the first moment of contact --- just like cut down or cut up, or horizontal cut.
You throw somebody the same internal feeling clean, sharp, quiet cut through his center.
How you turn hips exactly as in sword work.

But even on very low technical level one may see that irimi and atemi come from basic cut shomenuchi with sword to the wrist or to the head (kiritsage and kiritske sp?) against shomenuchi attack.
Straight posture as in sword work, not like in wrestling.
Never turn back to your opponent as in sword work, not like in sports.
Every gesture in aikido is like kokyu --- directly from sword work.
Economy of movement to extreme -- directly from sword work. In sword you cant do dancing movements.

There are many more, but one must study sword in deep many years to be able to see, or more exactly to feel and do all this with his body.

mazmonsters
06-10-2005, 07:56 AM
Well said.

eyrie
06-10-2005, 08:09 AM
Now that brings up a good question to my mind. I am told that I am do crate that feeling as if I have a sword "the mind-blade of aikido if you will". Here's the problem. I can do it from my perspective, in that I can hold myself in the same way I do when holding a sword, and make movement, rhythm adjustments, to allow myself to move in much the same way as if I had a sword. I cannot maintain that against a kamikazi who challenges how sharp my mind-blade is, and I wonder if anyone really can. What do you think?

Rob

Well, the kamikaze had better have *really good* ukemi.... :D
See Szczepan's comments above....

rob_liberti
06-10-2005, 08:13 AM
That was a very good post. I'm specifically asking about this idea:Entering in the attack and cut -- no counter possible. I like the theory too! I'm wondering if you have actually tested this particular idea out for yourself under any pressure? I'm sure there would be more than a few people willing to let you try that out on them while they get to kamikaze you to take you down. You see, if I'm actually holding a 30 inch razor and someone advances, I'm pretty sure I'll be okay. But, my arms are not all that "sharp" and my striking is okay, but it won't have the same physiological effect as the 30 inch steel razor either. I understand the idea of creating the same feeling with your mind, but to actually implement that idea is quite a non-trivial task if you ask me.
I'm always looking for insight on that one.

Rob

eyrie
06-10-2005, 08:41 AM
That was a very good post. I'm specifically asking about this idea:I like the theory too! I'm wondering if you have actually tested this particular idea out for yourself under any pressure? I'm sure there would be more than a few people willing to let you try that out on them while they get to kamikaze you to take you down. You see, if I'm actually holding a 30 inch razor and someone advances, I'm pretty sure I'll be okay. But, my arms are not all that "sharp" and my striking is okay, but it won't have the same physiological effect as the 30 inch steel razor either. I understand the idea of creating the same feeling with your mind, but to actually implement that idea is quite a non-trivial task if you ask me.
I'm always looking for insight on that one.

Rob

Hi Rob,

I read somewhere a quote from a karateka that goes something like this: "hands like swords". However, it would be more accurate to say "cut with the body", since the act of cutting with a sword is done with the entire body behind the sword - the hands merely guide the cut.

In a word, practice. I've had it done to me before, by Takeda Sensei. All I can say is "WOW. What an amazing feeling!" :D

I have been able to replicate it occasionally - it depends on how good uke is. Not many are interested in being good uke though... :(

Under pressure? To be quite honest, I've haven't been under pressure for a long time... if you have some really good ukes prepared to kamikaze me, I'd be happy to give it a shot. :)

It's a bit hard to do this to the little kiddies with proper kokyu extension, even if they have no qualms about kamikazying me given half the chance! :D

rob_liberti
06-10-2005, 08:51 AM
Ignatius,

I have absolutely no doubt that Takeda sensei's ikkyo and iriminage work; I've been fortunate enough to experience them for myself. However, there seems to be *just a bit* of a gap between his abilities and my own!

Hey, I think it *should work* if they are bad ukes with thick skulls in a steroid rage because they just lost a UFC or PRIDE title match for breaking the rules due to dismembering their partner who was trying to give up. Enter in the attack of that guy and cut - and show me there are no counters possible. I'm not sure it can be done by many people with me attacking - of course I feel that way _everytime_ I attack Gleason sensei and well, I guess I'm just thick... (but there is a *bit* of a gap between our relative abilities there as well!)

Rob

mazmonsters
06-10-2005, 09:02 AM
Hi Rob,
I understand what you are getting at here, and the big factor is the strength of your kokyu...you have to cut with your mind and body as one, past uke, 30 miles down the road, right through his very core being...and when you can understand that principle (not just knowing it in your head, but knowing it as you know how to breath) then your arms now become swords.
-Matt

eyrie
06-10-2005, 09:04 AM
Ignatius,

I have absolutely no doubt that Takeda sensei's ikkyo and iriminage work; I've been fortunate enough to experience them for myself. However, there seems to be *just a bit* of a gap between his abilities and my own!

Hey, I think it *should work* if they are bad ukes with thick skulls in a steroid rage because they just lost a UFC or PRIDE title match for breaking the rules due to dismembering their partner who was trying to give up. Enter in the attack of that guy and cut - and show me there are no counters possible. I'm not sure it can be done by many people with me attacking - of course I feel that way _everytime_ I attack Gleason sensei and well, I guess I'm just thick... (but there is a *bit* of a gap between our relative abilities there as well!)

Rob

Yeah, yeah, you and I both :)
As Musashi wrote.... just cut....the moment you think "UFC.....steroids... oh, schiess!" is probably not a good time....;)
Sensei probably know he can do this with you coz your ukemi is good (I'm assuming). I have not seen Sensei try this on someone who he does not know can take the ukemi.... so, if you're ever down here, or I up there, we should get together and experiment. :D

mazmonsters
06-10-2005, 09:11 AM
I actually had the painful pleasure of learning my ukemi by taking that type of technique. It taught me how to fall very well, very fast. The first time it happened, i almost blacked out...I saw lots of stars, had a headache for 3 days, blurred vision, bloody nose, the whole bit...but I learned how to be non-resistant by taking that ukemi, over and over again.

rob_liberti
06-10-2005, 09:59 AM
Agreed! I want to meet everyone on these forums eventually. I know I wont have any trouble convincing my wife to go to Austrailia. Internet and Airplanes make the world a (better) smaller place! I suppose it all depends on my financial situation, but I'd love to come visit. I'd also like to experience anyone whose arms are like swords (that allows visitors)!

I can do the mental imagery of 30 miles out, and I can actually "inflate" well enough to be pretty soft and powerful in my waza more so than the majority of the people I typically meet at seminars. However, I suppose I'm on the low end of this ability in that I have no faith that my cut would work against the level of martial arts I am interested in eventually playing with.

The funny thing is that I was walking to my car this morning and I was specifically thinking about how my ukemi needs to dramatically change. I am fairly stong and flexible, and can take pretty much endless ukemi from my center and maintain pretty good connection with my partner, and pretty much train at whatever level of intensity they want and all that. But, I realize that I don't hold myself in ukemi the way I do for any of my kokyu nage - well pretty much any of my nage waza anymore. I think I made a jump on the nage side that my ukemi hasn't caught up to yet. Regardless, I think I need to swing my sword a lot more, and really check my feeling there as well. Back to the main topic here, I think that might be one of the best reasons to keep sword work in aikido - if someone is capable of getting certain feelings into your body by that means, you should do it - and then you can have a whole other avenue for checking your feeling out for yourself.

Rob

NagaBaba
06-10-2005, 03:01 PM
I understand the idea of creating the same feeling with your mind, but to actually implement that idea is quite a non-trivial task if you ask me.
I'm always looking for insight on that one.

Rob
You see, sword work make you learn "real" aikido basic. Irimi and Atemi. Not tenkaning around, going back under pressure, staying shy, hesitate to apply a technique.......no, all this garbage you simply don't do anymore.
Your aikido techniques become ONE step forward. That's it.

To apply such theory in practice I ask EVERY uke to attack me with all power, every time. It doesn't mean suicide, overextended attack, contrary, well balanced, strong, difficult attack. These ppl has KK, Kung Fu, TKD and other MA background, but we still manage to stay in realm of aikido. They have no mercy for me even when I instruct a class. It is very difficult practice for me at any level.

I'm not living in kind of UFC dream, we simply practice tons of weapons, and ppl start to understand and use they weapons rooted skills against me :cool: :cool: :cool:

Not very many like this kind of practice, it demands a lot of effort from uke as well.

To make no counter possible you must enter in special timing without any hesitation from certain angle right to attacker center to take his balance instantly. Sword exercises will teach you all about that. But you need a very good sword teacher. Sugano, Chiba and Kanai sensei from USAF created such systems that allow you to learn very advanced skills combining sword and empty hand techniques.

rob_liberti
06-10-2005, 03:40 PM
That sounds really great, but I wonder if we are talking about the same thing now. I certainly do not have a UFC dream either, it's just that "no counter possible" means _to me_ that it must work there too.

I have heard and experienced the idea of "enter and cut" from one of Tamura sensei's people I met in Japan, and that was really great. Also, I have felt that Donovan sensei enter and cut in an unstoppable way when the attack was kata-tori. That was truly awesome and I have nothing but respect for him. Unfortunately, I haven't personally felt anyone from any of those systems do that in a free randori. Can you recommend anyone anywhere near Connecticut to visit who might be both willing and able to give such a lesson. (I think very highly of Ray Ferrinato sensei, his aikido, and his dojo for that matter, but I haven't experienced an enter and cut that I thought could not be countered in any way. Of course, I like to take ukemi, so maybe I didn't notice that the enter and cut techniques _couldn't_ be countered.)

Rob

NagaBaba
06-10-2005, 09:01 PM
That sounds really great, but I wonder if we are talking about the same thing now. I certainly do not have a UFC dream either, it's just that "no counter possible" means _to me_ that it must work there too.
I think it can work very well, however you need special practice to adapt this principle for this event.

I have heard and experienced the idea of "enter and cut" from one of Tamura sensei's people I met in Japan, and that was really great. Also, I have felt that Donovan sensei enter and cut in an unstoppable way when the attack was kata-tori. That was truly awesome and I have nothing but respect for him. Unfortunately, I haven't personally felt anyone from any of those systems do that in a free randori. Can you recommend anyone anywhere near Connecticut to visit who might be both willing and able to give such a lesson. (I think very highly of Ray Ferrinato sensei, his aikido, and his dojo for that matter, but I haven't experienced an enter and cut that I thought could not be countered in any way. Of course, I like to take ukemi, so maybe I didn't notice that the enter and cut techniques _couldn't_ be countered.)

Rob
What you mean by "free randori" ? Aikikai jyu waza? Tomiki randori? Judo randori? other type of randori? Any rules applyed?

I can't speak for other ppl, me I approach this interesting problem in very progressive way in empty hand techniques.
1. Grabs by "light uke"
2. grabs by moderate "heavy uke"
3. single strike by "light uke"
4. single strike by moderate "heavy uke"
5. any attack* by "light uke"
6. any attack* by moderate "heavy uke"

* not repetitive striking, no counters

For the moment this 6 points seems to be a limit for safe practice and students still can learn something (about how to use their body to cut attacker down in one shot). Feints, counters and full power "heavy uke" is too much for now (we did it, but it's been non constructive practice yet), but it will come for sure.

But before even you go to point 2 students must work a lot with bokken to understand how to enter physically against shomen, thrust or kesa single attack(weapon against weapon and empty hands against weapon). Without that they get stack against moderate "heavy uke". For some take 2-3 months for others 2-3 years to train their body to react automatically depends o lot of background.

There are special tachi dori exercises that must be trained before one can go further (feints, counters..) because in our aikido we don't have sparring.

In all my post I'm speaking only about time/space before contact and first moment of contact.

xuzen
06-10-2005, 10:38 PM
Nagababa said:
You see, sword work make you learn "real" aikido basic. Irimi and Atemi. Not tenkaning around, going back under pressure, staying shy, hesitate to apply a technique.......no, all this garbage you simply don't do anymore.
Your aikido techniques become ONE step forward. That's it.
I like this idea. That is why irimi nage or sokumen iriminage when done properly has such beautiful effect. Also I have done in jiyu waza, just as uke is getting up, but his legs are not yet stable on the ground, you rush in and irimi-tsuki or irimi nage, the effect is just plain beautiful.
Nagababa siad:
Entering in the attack and cut -- no counter possible.
Clean cut --that is how one must do any aikido technique -- one movement, no hesitation possible.
You redirect any attack in the first moment of contact --- just like cut down or cut up, or horizontal cut.
You throw somebody -- the same internal feeling -- clean, sharp, quiet cut through his center.
How you turn hips -- exactly as in sword work.
Nagababa, if you have watched video of G. Shioda, his atemi techniques are just brilliant. Is that the outcome when one apply the principle of sword to ones' aikido?

Boon.

NagaBaba
06-11-2005, 05:55 PM
I like this idea. That is why irimi nage or sokumen iriminage when done properly has such beautiful effect. Also I have done in jiyu waza, just as uke is getting up, but his legs are not yet stable on the ground, you rush in and irimi-tsuki or irimi nage, the effect is just plain beautiful.
This is first step to have total control of uke in one to one jiyu waza. If you do it again and again, every time just before he stands up, you will learn a feeling of such control. Uke will collapse after 2-3 minutes, not only because of physical but mainly because of psychical pressure.
Then apply it to multiple attack.

Nagababa, if you have watched video of G. Shioda, his atemi techniques are just brilliant. Is that the outcome when one apply the principle of sword to ones' aikido?

Boon.
Every of his movements during multiple jiyu waza is like cutting with sword. Straight to the center. He is a real inspiration for me, in spite of the fact Im not yoshinkai student.