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Roy
07-16-2005, 12:28 PM
"The bigger they are, the harder they fall." I can just see it, a 130-160 pound Aikidoka not backing away from a 275+ pound attacker(or multiple attackers), and seriously getting hurt; because falsely he/she felt their Aikido would shield them. I would like to pose a few questions that I have been sort of wondering/concerned with. Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)? "In general," might saying this give a false confidence to the average Aikidoka? Just a concluding thought, In most confrontations its not just about the moves you can make, but what you can take.

Don_Modesto
07-16-2005, 01:10 PM
Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)? "In general," might saying this give a false confidence to the average Aikidoka? Just a concluding thought, In most confrontations its not just about the moves you can make, but what you can take.

Advanced Search: Key Word(s): aikido, work

DevinHammer
07-16-2005, 01:14 PM
I think that however mistaken is their initial impression, it will quickly be put into perspective after training for a very short period. They will figure out that "learning" Aikido is not a finite process. They will learn that avoiding an attack has nothing to do with the size of the attacker, and doesn't necessarily involve the execution of physical technique. They will realize that "taking on" an attacker is always the absolute last resort. And most importantly, as a result of their training they will become acutely aware of what they can and, more importantly, CAN'T handle.

NagaBaba
07-16-2005, 01:54 PM
It depends of the level of aikido you are currently:
1. Aikido BEFORE contact
2. Aikido AFTER contact
Option no.2 is available to most of us and there weight (or multiplicity attackers) plays important role. Option no.1 is close to sword work, and here these factors are less important. However it is very sophisticated aikido.

Adam Alexander
07-16-2005, 01:59 PM
1)130-160 pound Aikidoka not backing away from a 275+ pound attacker(or multiple attackers), and seriously getting hurt; because falsely he/she felt their Aikido would shield them.... 2)Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)?...3)In general," might saying this give a false confidence to the average Aikidoka? ....4) Just a concluding thought, In most confrontations its not just about the moves you can make, but what you can take.

1)Isn't that weight match-up similar to Ueshiba vs. Tenru the sumo wrestler...in which Ueshiba wins?

2)I don't think it's any wiser to say that Aikido will be necessarily effective than to say that Aikido would not triumph in that situation. There's too many variables...how do you know the person possessess the intellectual and physical capacity to recognize what they're learning? How do you know they'll practice it enough for them? How do you know they will not freeze-up?

I think if a student asks,"If I'm attacked like this [insert type of attack here], what Aikido technique would be effective?" The response is,"This technique...However, that is purely from a technical perspective. There's many factors--individual to you, individual to the situation--that will have an effect. However, when energy is moving in that way, this response is an option."

3)I think the excellent post that precedes this one covers that well. I'd like to add, however, intellectual capacity and physical capacity to understand the techniques...so that they'll become "consciously incompetent" (I think that's what it's called)--they know they don't know.

4)Was this post a question or an effort to advance an idea?

In my own experience--real life confrontation--it was more about my ability to stay relatively calm and respond with reflex than "what I could take" (that is if you're referring to someone's ability to take a strike).


Just a last thought: I think what you're trying to imply (my interpretation) is true. However, I think it's not an Aikido issue, it's a MA issue--anyone who tries to tell someone else that this art or that art will do the trick isn't doing right by others. However, Aikido is the best:D

Roy
07-16-2005, 03:45 PM
Jean,
A Little of both, an Idea, and to question the idea. I agree that there is allot of this issue, in all MA (maybe even more-so in others). Off-course I am just generalizing. Although, aside form Ueshiba or Kondo etc.., do you think that the general Aikido population would stand a chance against a sumo, or even a much bigger person or group?

mj
07-16-2005, 06:31 PM
Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)?
Nah...but you could say by learning Aikido you will be, possibly, more able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers).

seank
07-16-2005, 07:56 PM
When first starting Aikido, we were told that Aikido is very effective against larger or multiple attackers, but it was said with reference to giving you options.

Where I see a great divergence in Aikido from other martial arts is that you have the option of entering and to keep moving (ie to run away!). You don't have to tie-down/project your attacker or indeed to even try to stop them. Aikido teaches you entry and timing, from where your 130-160 pound Aikidoka could put a lot of distance between themselves and their 275+ pound attacker ;)

CNYMike
07-16-2005, 09:57 PM
.... Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)? .....

O Sensie was bery concerned about multiple attacker situations; that's why that category shows up in Aikido as one of the pillars of Aikido. It's part of the training, like it or not.

As to handling someone bigger than you, I don't know. But I weigh 230 pounds, and I've trained with a 11 year old kid who had no trouble throwing me.

CNYMike
07-16-2005, 10:02 PM
.... do you think that the general Aikido population would stand a chance against a sumo, or even a much bigger person or group?

If Aikido is like most other arts, then for good or ill, up to 90% of the "general Aikido population" are beginners who will quit within a year of starting. If someone has figures to prove me wrong, great, but burnout is a big problem in the arts. :( So from that perspective, statistically, the answer would be "no."

As for dealing with a sumo wrestler, why? Do you know one? :) Martial artists are rare; some are rarer than others. I wouldn't lose sleep over this one.

guest89893
07-16-2005, 10:24 PM
A Little of both, an Idea, and to question the idea. I agree that there is allot of this issue, in all MA (maybe even more-so in others). Off-course I am just generalizing. Although, aside form Ueshiba or Kondo etc.., do you think that the general Aikido population would stand a chance against a sumo, or even a much bigger person or group?

Why Yes, I think there are enough of us to take on and whip the tar out of a sumo - I mean a few hundred thousand against one. ;) :D

The what if's are rather tiring don't you think? I mean, do you run into many Sumo in Canada? A sumo has a sports career to worry about, not try and hassle a passing Aikidoka.
Here in Florida I might run into a Professional football player, in that case I don't want to win. I want my lawyer to win me money in a civil suit. You started this because perhaps your hearing someone at your dojo say these things - probably/possibly in connection in trying to get someone to join? So it's a truth in advertisiing issue- I'm just guessing here. However, to answer your question anyways : Does the general Aikido population stand a chance against a Sumo - yes if the Aikidoka has running room and a bar stool. But you may not perceive Aikido as I do. Does the average Aikido population stand a chance against a bigger person. Absolutely yes! Because the average bigger person is just more mass, not more skill, not more strength (mass does not truly equal strength - mass equals mass), not more speed, not more stamina, not more fighting spirit. Just weight, & size -and the size can go in many directions. Last question do you think the general aikido population would stand a chance against a group. Yes! A much better chance than before they took Aikido and a much better chance than the average person (who here in the states is that bigger by overweight, out of shape, and unwilling to park and walk 2 extra feet for a parking space, and has the martial skill of a turnip that even with a panic button on their car keys and a cell phone if they get attacked someone else would be calling because Joe Average froze. And the main group attack from these people are the dangers in getting hit by them driving their Cars/SUVs/Trucks in an interesection while talking on their cell phone to their overweight spouse to be sure to get two large containers of the "FatFree" ice cream!!
Sorry Roy, I guess I'm ranting. The analogy that to me applies to your question is: A pack of matches will give you a better chance of starting a campfire if your lost alone in the forest. It improves the chances of survival for the person with matches over the person with no matches. Does it mean that now that you have the matches you can hunt, kill, and skin, and cook a bear. Build a cabin, build a canoe, and suddenly have the skills to make your way out of the forest. Well probably not, but some might manage to do better with the matches than without and the same is true for Aikido.
Plus, just for fun have you tried Don Modesto's suggestion of key word search: Aikido, work . You might have had found your answer and saved us all from my ranting :)
cheers,
Gene

Jiawei
07-17-2005, 06:39 AM
In the long run, Aikido does train you to handle multiple attackers. But you don't learn this immediately when you step into the dojo-Its a process that can only be developed through constant practice and improving your level of skill in Aikido.

I wouldn;t say that you would be able to literally "take out and destroy your attackers" but as mentioned earlier, Aikido gives you the option of escaping rather unharmed when in a real situation.

Aikido places emphasis on self defence and not combat. (Of course you could pick a fight with baddies and see how aikido "takes em out".) So all in all, what do you want out of your MA ?
Just self defence or combat or both ? ( But I suppose that everybody does desire to do what steven segal does on tv....heh)

Don_Modesto
07-17-2005, 12:06 PM
The what if's are rather tiring don't you think? I mean, do you run into many Sumo in Canada? A sumo has a sports career to worry about, not try and hassle a passing Aikidoka.
Here in Florida I might run into a Professional football player, in that case I don't want to win. I want my lawyer to win me money in a civil suit....the average person...bigger by overweight, out of shape...martial skill of a turnip...dangers in getting hit by them driving their Cars/SUVs/Trucks in an interesection while talking on their cell phone to their overweight spouse to be sure to get two large containers of the "FatFree" ice cream!!
Sorry Roy, I guess I'm ranting.

ROTFLMAO--Archive this!

....if your lost alone in the forest...now that you have the matches you can hunt, kill, and skin, and cook a bear. Build a cabin, build a canoe, and suddenly have the skills to make your way out of the forest. Well probably not, but some might manage to do better with the matches than without and the same is true for Aikido.

Yup. Thanks, Gene.

Jorge Garcia
07-17-2005, 12:19 PM
Aikido is what it is. So is judo, karate and everything else. You as an individual make it work. It doesn't make you work. A good martial artists can make any art work good. A great martial artist can make any art work great. A crummy martial artist can't make any art work and it won't make him work better either. It's not the method that makes the person. It's the person that makes the method. That's why O Sensei was better than most of us.
Best,

Amir Krause
07-18-2005, 06:19 AM
One tiny addition to the excellent answers above.

Aikido is no magic, practicing it does not promise anyone anything, including the very good practitioners. By practicing Aikido (or any other M.A.) one is improving is odds to survive such an encounter (Bigger attacker, more strength). Another issue is that one is reducing the likelihood of such an encounter ever taking place.

Amir

Michael Cardwell
07-18-2005, 08:31 AM
"The bigger they are, the harder they fall." I can just see it, a 130-160 pound Aikidoka not backing away from a 275+ pound attacker(or multiple attackers), and seriously getting hurt; because falsely he/she felt their Aikido would shield them. I would like to pose a few questions that I have been sort of wondering/concerned with. Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)? "In general," might saying this give a false confidence to the average Aikidoka? Just a concluding thought, In most confrontations its not just about the moves you can make, but what you can take.

Sure it's OK to say this, but it should be pointed out that it works much better if the aikidoka is holding a live katana at the time. In which case it would be more appropriate to say "The bigger they are, the more pieces they make" :p

Adam Alexander
07-18-2005, 12:32 PM
do you think that the general Aikido population would stand a chance against a sumo, or even a much bigger person or group?

Depends on what you mean by "chance."

If you mean chance of survival or chance of not taking a pounding, I think Aikidoka stand a better chance of escaping unharmed than the average person or the average MAist. I believe because we train to move from day one...as another poster said, move away or out of the way.

If you mean chance of survival as in "would the Aikidoka win a match/fight/life-death battle?" I'd say that that's a real difficult question. Although you can develop some ideas about what average is, I don't think you really do justice to anyone, or the art for that matter, by doing it--I mean, what techniques against what types of energy is the average Aikidoka able to pull off? Is the average Aikidoka cool under the threat of real life injury? What kind of shape is the average Aikidoka in?--I don't think you can really answer the question validly.

I can say this with confidence (even if it's false:)), I think the average Aikidoka stands a better chance in any situation (upright) because we train to move.

Also, because of my Aikido training (maybe more false confidence:)), I'm not worried about bigger people or groups.

I hope it doesn't seem like I'm trying to weasel out of the question. It's just the only thing I can come up with.

Roy
07-18-2005, 07:24 PM
Dear Jean,
I agree with your response, a trained person does stand a better chance against any stronger attacker. I don't think you weaseled your way with this question. In fact it is one of the more honest ones. It does not have all that defensive wishy-washy holistic blah, blah, blah, tone that many people, most times respond with. Oh, and prior to reading your response, I did not know Ueshiba beat a Sumo, I find that to be absolutely amassing.

Aristeia
07-18-2005, 08:04 PM
I think the question is a valid one. I come at it from a number of different, and of course possibly contradictory angles.
1. I agree that the "it won't make you invincible but it should improve your chances of survival" approach is a good one.
2. We've all seen Aikidoka strutting around like the the baddest mofos in the world becasue their stuff has never been tested and they're convinced what they can pull off on the mat with a compliant uke translates into street bad assery. So it's an important point and I do think it starts when the student walks through the door. If they are told from day one that it will beat larger multiple opponnents, then think that's what they experience in trainng, and if they're not the type of person to read/investigate widely outside their own dojo then you've got a recipie for the stereotypical arrogant aikidoka in 10 years time (or less)
3. Having said that, I'm often amused at the "what that art/teacher/dojo is teaching is gonna get someone killed" line that comes up so often online. Yes there are arts/dojos/teachers that teach stuff that don't work and give people false confidence - and aikido will have it's share of representitives I'm sure. But I've yet to hear a single credible story of how a student of such a school has been seriously injured as a result of that confidence. <shrug>

Red Beetle
07-19-2005, 02:09 AM
If you have to place a bet between the 130lbs average Aikido black belt in the U.S. vs the 275lbs. Irish Brawler, then go with the Irish Brawler to beat the hell out of the average Aikido black belt in the U.S.

The Irish Brawler has tested his tactics many times in actual combat. The sad truth is that the average Aikido black belt has never even been in a real fight.

Everyone knows what they are going to do if they have to fight, then they get punched in the face.

This is a good reason to keep the challenge match in present day dojos.

Red Beetle
www.kingsportjudo.com

happysod
07-19-2005, 03:39 AM
The sad truth is that the average Aikido black belt has never even been in a real fight. that's a sad truth? This is a good reason to keep the challenge match in present day dojos perhaps it's just me being pedantic, but a challenge match isn't just competitive sparring, or are you advocating dojo storming here? (you've dishonored my senseis hakama, now you must pay...)

wxyzabc
07-19-2005, 04:33 AM
Hya guys

The usual eh?..chuckle...does it work? etc etc

Well imho it all comes down to play of words as usual...someone "learning" or "studying" aikido?...I have to assume you mean a complete beginner?..well chances are their study isn't going to help a great deal.

I think it's safer to say that when you have "mastered" various or a substantial amount of techniques then sure you can take on bigger or more opponents if you're unlucky enough to find yourself in that position....doesn't mean you will win though eh.

Aristeia
07-19-2005, 07:21 AM
Hya guys

The usual eh?..chuckle...does it work? etc etc

.

Actually I'm not so sure it is. This is a slightly different and more interesting question. To whit, are we honest and forthright with our students, kohai, colleagues about the fact that it may not?

seank
07-19-2005, 08:23 AM
Everyone knows what they are going to do if they have to fight, then they get punched in the face.

This is a good reason to keep the challenge match in present day dojos.

True enough- most people will get punched in the face. I squared off with an ex-soldier of nearly 80 pounds heavier than me, whose first instinct was to punch me in the face, followed by kneeing me in the groin, then trying to gouge my eyes whilst alternately punching me to the kidneys.

Fighting like this is not combat or like a sport in any way shape or form. When you have someone seriously trying to hurt you, you very quickly resort to the basics. I had the option of seriously fighting back and causing as much damage as I could, but in this instance my real concern was how to diffuse the situation without either of us getting seriously injured or accidentally killed.

Aikido technique was not used, but my intention to not harm the person was always there. I walked away with a few bruises, a lot of respect for down and dirty fighting, but at least satisfied that I was able to walk away without having injured the other person.

I firmly believe there is no exaggeration in saying that Aikido can help you defend yourself in many ways, but it's how you intend to use it that makes all the difference.

Roy
07-19-2005, 12:29 PM
Dear Micheal Fooks,
Thank you for your response to Lee Price's less then impressive insight. This question is more then your typical "will it work,"or "this-vs-that." I think its OK to be real.

Adam Alexander
07-19-2005, 12:34 PM
Roy,

Yeah, Ueshiba took on everybody it seems like.

In regard to the original post about a dan telling the beginners what they'll be able to do with Aikido (or any other art), I had an instructor who used to talk about what Aikido couldn't do ALL the time. I never really took him seriously (we had a couple instructors). I've always approached it from the perspective that any technique will work against any person--regardless of size--when used correctly.

It's cool to look over all the stuff that Ueshiba did, because it really demonstrates the potential of Aikido.

On another subject:

1)The sad truth is that the average Aikido black belt has never even been in a real fight.

2)Everyone knows what they are going to do if they have to fight, then they get punched in the face.

1)I think you're falling prey to the idea that a black belt means something. After training for a while, I figured out that each belt means something different at each school. My experience is that--and they've all reported it--that a black belt doesn't mean you can "fight," it only means that you know the basics.

Basically, I interpret what you're saying as 'the sad truth is that not everyone has the same understanding of a black belt as me.'

If it was really sad that most dans haven't been in physical confrontations (I mean, sad to the people who matter--the experts) then being in fights would be a part of the test requirements.

Further, if the dan level Aikidoka were out getting into physical confrontations as part of their dan requirements (or for any other reason), there'd be a lot of Aikidoka in jail for felonius assaults...and a lot of bones broken...that's Aikido.

2)Yeah, isn't that Tyson's saying? So what?

When you train in a classic style, there's no "plans" (as the quote goes). It's reflex. If you really have a plan (thinking about what you're going to do) then you'll interfere with the techniques as they unfold.

A good MAist doesn't have plans. He/she has training.

Finally, as part of training, if you're not getting whacked in the face on occasion, then you're not really training. IMO. So, by the time someone is getting punched in the face, it shouldn't be a new experience...just a bump in making the technique work.

Roy
07-19-2005, 12:48 PM
Dear Sean kelleher,
You make a very good point. During altercations, I can remember a strange communication taking place between me, and my opponent/attacker. Oddly, there seemed to be some sort of shared understanding while fighting. So, perhaps your opponent understood that, walking away UN-hurt was more important to you then victory or hurting him. This must have lessoned the tension and cause him to cool down a bit to reconsider his need to continue the altercation.

Jorge Garcia
07-20-2005, 09:32 AM
This link has exactly what some of us have been talking about. The author of the site below has certain "arts" against each other. I find it interesting that they even characterize it as "jujitsu ageist karate" and "jujitsu against kung fu". First of all, I didn't see any art against another. I saw two men against each other. When the jujitsu guy got the upper hand over the karate practitioner, I just wondered how good the karate guy was because that is the crux of the question. All that matters is the skill of the practitioner, not what art it is. Take a look.
http://www.aikijujitsu.ca/multimedia.htm

Roy
07-20-2005, 01:49 PM
Jorge Garcia,
I have been to the Aikijujutsu dojo that created the website you are referring to. The head instructor at the dojo believes BJJ style jujitsu is a strong form of martial art, and thus, likes to substantiate his claims with mpegs etc... Believe it or not allot of fights end up on the ground. That Aikijujutsu dojo is pretty hard core, for they due allot of street realistic training like randori, ground work and no bullshit aikido.

Jorge Garcia
07-20-2005, 04:50 PM
I stand by what I said. It doesn't matter how "hardcore" the dojo is. Jujitsu didn't beat karate. The jujitsu guy beat the karate guy. If I am wrong about that, then you are claiming that this particular jujitsu guy can defeat any karate practitioner in the world. You couldn't convince me of that. I know that there is a karate man somewhere in the world who can defeat the jujitsu guy and if he did, it wouldn't mean that karate beats jujitsu. It would only mean that the karate guy was better at fighting than the jujitsu guy. The method doesn't make the man-the man makes the method. As for your comment on "bullshit Aikido". The Founder of Aikido figured out a long time ago that the very reason to take the way of peace is because there is no ultimate victory in fighting, boasting, and challenging each other into contests to see who is better. I'm not in Aikido because I believe Aikido can defeat jujitsu or any other art. I am in Aikido because Aikido isn't interested in fighting other arts and it shows me how to be strong without fighting. To quote my teacher, "The strength of Aikido is in embracing others."
Regards,

Roy
07-20-2005, 05:27 PM
Jorge Garcia,
(1) Well of course I/we can't assume Jujitsu will always beat Karate or kunfu! Especially based on an mpeg! Although, I do understand, and see your relevance to the thread by bringing this up. It would be like saying if you take Aikido you will be able to beat big guys and multiple attackers.

(2) Aikido is beautiful and flowy, but do you really think thats what it will look like in an altercation?

(3) What I meant by "no bullshit Aikido," was. That dojo trains in Aikido with a real-world, self defense based techniques. (Not to say no other dojo does also)

Dirk Hanss
07-20-2005, 07:11 PM
Jorge Garcia,
(1) Well of course I/we can't assume Jujitsu will always beat Karate or kunfu! Especially based on an mpeg! Although, I do understand, and see your relevance to the thread by bringing this up. It would be like saying if you take Aikido you will be able to beat big guys and multiple attackers.

(2) Aikido is beautiful and flowy, but do you really think thats what it will look like in an altercation?

(3) What I meant by "no bullshit Aikido," was. That dojo trains in Aikido with a real-world, self defense based techniques. (Not to say no other dojo does also)

Well Roy, just from what I've seen in MMA:
A few years ago, most karateka, kickboxers, and Mouai Thai fighters looks preety poor in fights against BJJ/GJJ grabblers. But the recent fights I saw were quite different. Those guys learnt their lessons. Their ground fight still looks poor. They are still kickers and boxers, not wrestler or judoka. Some of them are quite good in avoiding to being taken down, some occasionally get out and stand up again. And very often the hard punches and kicks stopped th BJJ guys from fighting, often enough by ko. Yes, I have seen even BJJ guys with strong and fast strikes.

To your second point:it really depends on how you are practicing Aikido. And it is irrelevant what we believe. If you follow the other threads you might have seen that even the definition of what techniques are aikido-techniques is very difficult to say, as most techniques taught as aikido basics are simple variations from (Daito Ryu) Ju Jutsu and sword fighting. I understand that there are many dojo practicing some kind of "Japanese Dancing" and there are some shodanka, which I would not believe to be violent enough to survive in the street. but even in those "dance clubs" I have seen guys and ladies, I would not try to touch outside the dojo, as I haven't even seen what happened, when I started flying. And some of them looked like week ladies or little old men. There is no proof as these people are too health conscious to go for tournaments. You might get pretty good fighting abilities much faster in other aikido, ju jutsu or "battlefield" dojo. That is, because the "dance clubs" are practicing a DO by self defence techniques for improving their personality and not for searching street fights. And I have seen similar karate dojo. Most karateka there were great kata performer or semi-contact fighters and many of them have never learnt do punch hard in a stress situation. When I practiced karate, I thought it is much over judo, as punches and kicks are much more important. I recognized, that this is not necessarily true. And many other guys of other martial arts would have to agree.

But never call any sport "bullshit", just because they do not seem to fill your view of sport.
Chess is a hard sport, although they do not need big muscles. And aikido does not pretend to be the only efficient technique supplier. If performed well, the techiques are effective and efficient. But even if many people do not search for street applicability it is their serious WAY.
And in the street I do not to be attacked by an unprovoked high graded aikidoka. And probably not by a high graded experienced BJJ guy, karateka, Mouai Thai. If I were done and killed by him, I would say that is not a problem of aikido, but a problem of BJJ, the relevant karate style, Mouai Thai, if the are creating such effective fighters, before leading them on the right way.

Kind regards


Dirk

wxyzabc
07-20-2005, 07:38 PM
"less then impressive insight. This question is more then your typical "will it work,"or "this-vs-that."

Cheers Roy..amazing how much we assume about a person or their thoughts by what we put down in a few sentenses eh? :)

At the end of the day though the basic underlying question is still will it work?...thats the question the new member is thinking and also you too perhaps...just wrapped up a little in deeper thought about your responsabilities as a teacher.

But you know in Japan nobody has ever promised me anything...never said what aikido is for or it's benefits...I personally feel an intelligent person can make their own decision on this and not need ask for reassurance from others. One thing my Sensei has said to me though is "Aikido is life or death"...or "Aikido is philosophy"..again many ways to read into that...it's left to the individual to make of it what they will....

On that note I wouldn't promise a thing to a new member...to do so would be less than responsible imho

Kindest regards


Lee

aikigirl10
07-20-2005, 08:12 PM
I think that in order for you to be a really good fighter , you need to know more than one style. Aikido is great but there are alot of things that aikido doesnt cover. Aikido works with mostly grappling and throwing and pinning not alot of striking is involved and virtually no kicks. ( they should be involved but rarely are from what i've seen) . If you walk up to multiple opponents , or even one stronger opponent, knowing only some aikido, then most likely the odds are against you.

wxyzabc
07-20-2005, 08:24 PM
Hya Paige

Yeah true..but it does depend on the style of aikido too. Nishio style incorporates a lot of atemi and influences from Karate etc which makes it more err "martial" than other styles.

Do we practise aikido to be good fighters though?

Personally if aikido puts me in a position where someone can't significantly hurt me and I have the chance to remove myself from a situation then I'm very happy. Being a "good fighter" hints at causing pain and injury to the other person...something not usually desirable..though again circumstances may dictate the necessicity of this if weapons are involved for example.

I have to admit though the ability to use kicks is of great value...especially in confined areas..on trains etc. My main MA is aikido but it hasn't stopped me investigating Karate etc for this reason.... Some aikido technique do utilise kneeing techniques etc but I think most dojos omit these..

Yet almost every aiki technique gives the opportunity to devastate the opponent if necessary and performed correctly..Kaiten nage for eg allows at least two...

Regards

Lee

Roy
07-20-2005, 10:27 PM
Dear Paige,
I agree, 100%. Thanks for replying to the main point of the thread, without preaching! One thing tho, I truly believe that Aikido is the absolute best for "defending" oneself, whatever your size is! And overtime, (especially if the Aikidoka were to start at a young age) I think any sized Aikidoka could "offensively" take down larger or multiple attackers.

wxyzabc
07-20-2005, 10:44 PM
Agree totally Roy..at the highest level Aikido is in a different league completely :)

Lee

Kevin Leavitt
07-21-2005, 12:32 PM
I starting hitting and kicking much better after studying aikido and understanding how to off balance and take center etc. Before I was just kicking and hitting at my opponent. Now I move, off balance and blast him into tommorrow.

Adam Alexander
07-21-2005, 12:43 PM
Jorge,

You're dead-on. You've got to understand...it's like when an instructor demonstrates a technique...no matter how sensible the technique is, people will have a twisted interpretation...go figure.

1)I think that in order for you to be a really good fighter , you need to know more than one style. Aikido is great but there are alot of things that aikido doesnt cover. 2)Aikido works with mostly grappling and throwing and pinning not alot of striking is involved and 3)virtually no kicks. ( they should be involved but rarely are from what i've seen) . If you walk up to multiple opponents , or even one stronger opponent, 4)knowing only some aikido, then most likely the odds are against you.

1)If Aikido taught you to respond to everything, would it be able to "make you a good fighter?"

2)The issue isn't with Aikido, it's with your training. Aikido has a group of techniques that respond to striking--it's not Aikido's fault you don't train in them frequently.

3)From a defensive position...a strike is a kick as a kick is a strike. From an offensive position, my understading is that it's foolish to reduce your balance and speed to kick...particularly when Aikido offers a technique to fit any hole where a kick would fit.

4)If you only train Aikido for your entire life, you'll only know "some" Aikido...but I still wouldn't approach that person with five of my baddest friends.

p00kiethebear
07-22-2005, 02:33 PM
I think most people are smart enough to know where their abilities are at and are able to assess what they can and are incapable of doing as far as martial arts goes.

Kevin Leavitt
07-22-2005, 03:17 PM
Many do not though! I myself have thought I knew more than I did, until I met someone who kicked my ass into tommorrow. I now study MA with that person/group. It is humiliating and an eye opener, but I am better for it.

It is easy to surround yourself with people that think like you do and pat each other on the back and feed each other compliments about how good each other is etc. You have to watch out for that "group think" mentality!

I also found that while many dojo's consider shodan to be a beginners rank. You will find most BJJ guys are extremely proficient by Purple belt, and by brown they are very extremely proficient. A black belt in BJJ from a reputable organization...well they don't give them away!

MitchMZ
07-22-2005, 03:47 PM
I believe most martial arts to be nearly the same on a physical "technique based" level. However, I think the different ways martial artists train is one of the only key differences between styles. I believe superior training and conditioning wins the fight, not the style.

In many cases, people doing Judo, BJJ, etc. have superior training and conditioning when it comes to physical altercations. Although, I would say arts like Tai Chi, Aikido, etc. have superior training methods when dealing with lots of mental stress, emotional problems, etc. You really need to find a good balance.

Yes, many Aikido dojos are very adept at dealing with physical conflict ;) and many Judo/grappling dojos teach excellent ways to calm yourself internally. It is ALL IN THE WAY YOU TRAIN!

Roy
07-22-2005, 10:23 PM
Dear Mitch,

I like your point. I also have felt for awhile now that Aikido is an "emotionally ball aced" martial art. I have been to the BJJ, mixed martial art style clubs and found the testosterone level to be too high. Although, my experience with Judo clubs were positive, not quite like Aikido, but much better then the others. I remember talking to the members of harder style clubs, and the topic was always, this will stop this, or beat that etc... It was like a freak show in someways, and I felt from then on that thinking in such a violent one sided manner is bad for your karma. Unlike Aikido which emphasizes peace etc...

Adam Alexander
07-23-2005, 01:50 PM
1)In many cases, people doing Judo, BJJ, etc. have superior training and conditioning when it comes to physical altercations. Although, I would say arts like Tai Chi, Aikido, etc. have superior training methods when dealing with lots of mental stress, emotional problems, etc. You really need to find a good balance.

Yeah? Funny, I have yet to see a Judoka or BJJer move as fast across area as I do...with balance under control.

LOL. It's funny how often I see those guys with their ears, eyes and back of neck/head left vulnerable to attack.

I'll say this, I wouldn't want to be on the ground with any of them with some experience. Nor would I say that they're not good arts...both are excellent. However, I think it's inaccurate to say their training is the best for physical altercations...for ring fights? Maybe.

aikigirl10
07-23-2005, 03:17 PM
[QUOTE=Lee Price]Hya Paige

Yeah true..but it does depend on the style of aikido too. Nishio style incorporates a lot of atemi and influences from Karate etc which makes it more err "martial" than other styles. [QUOTE]

This is very true. I guess i should have said In MY style. (which is traditional aikido)

Kevin Leavitt
07-23-2005, 04:26 PM
'll say this, I wouldn't want to be on the ground with any of them with some experience. Nor would I say that they're not good arts...both are excellent. However, I think it's inaccurate to say their training is the best for physical altercations...for ring fights? Maybe.

I wonder why the U.S. Army picked MMA and BJJ as the basis for our training versus aikido. We could have chosen any arts. ...our lives depend on the proper training.

Not saying you aren't any good at aikido, nor aikido is not a legitimate art, but as far as realistic, and effectiveness, and rapiditiy of training....well aikido does not measure up. Sorry.

I have experience in aikido and bjj.

Roy
07-23-2005, 04:30 PM
Paige Frazier,
No style of Martial arts, or style of Aikido is going to be perfect for you. You have to both make the "best," and "most," of whatever style you do. I think you should do kicks/strikes(or whatever) on your own. And when you are at the dojo doing generic stuff, look for the hidden opportunities to strike and kick. This way you will tailor your Aikido to be perfect for you ;) . If this sounds like preaching, I did not mean it to. :)

seank
07-23-2005, 06:46 PM
I wonder why the U.S. Army picked MMA and BJJ as the basis for our training versus aikido. We could have chosen any arts. ...our lives depend on the proper training.

Not saying you aren't any good at aikido, nor aikido is not a legitimate art, but as far as realistic, and effectiveness, and rapiditiy of training....well aikido does not measure up..

Hi Kevin,
Isn't that the point? Combat training (and I'm talking for soldiers and not the "combat" purported to be what happens on the street) is all about making the most effective kill in the shortest time with the minimal at hand. I would suggest that Aikido is not necessarily the easiest martial art to learn, and for this reason would be impractical to teach soldiers in the short time they have to learn/practice unarmed combat.

It's not a question of proper training or effectiveness as virtually any Aikido technique can easily maim or kill a person, but I do have to ask whether this is the reason we practice Aikido. I personally don't have much need to kill people in my daily life and I'm certain that I'm not likely to come into a situation where I must resort to unarmed combat because my rifle has run out of ammunition.

I would ask why most armies still teach close-quarters bayonet drills or perform small-arms training? This type of fighting is kill or be killed, where there are no courtesies, no niceties; you do what you are trained to do. As I mentioned in an earlier post, if nothing else, Aikido gives you the option of entering and to keep running away; do that in the Army and your CO is likely to shoot you themselves.

That said, I believe that Aikido offers a practical means of defence for the everyday person, and moreover an ongoing pursuit for life. I'm sure that were I a soldier, I would hope that my training included techniques to suit a battle-field situation, but as a civilian Aikido is more than enough.

Kevin Leavitt
07-24-2005, 03:44 AM
Good stuff Sean, You sum up well things I am trying to convey as well. The purpose and intent of your training.

In your later post you elluded that soldiers are all about killing and need to learn only techniques that lead to effeciency in killing. That is not entirely true. I'd say in the past a majority of our training did center around this paradigm.

Today, we are finding that this is not true and we must use minimal force or interact with people on a interpersonal level. Our training in non-lethal weapons and combatives is beginning to reflect this.

But, you do well at summing up what I am trying to convey. The right training for the right situation and goal.

Adam Alexander
07-24-2005, 05:03 PM
I wonder why the U.S. Army picked MMA and BJJ as the basis for our training versus aikido. We could have chosen any arts. ...our lives depend on the proper training.

Not saying you aren't any good at aikido, nor aikido is not a legitimate art, but as far as realistic, and effectiveness, and rapiditiy of training....well aikido does not measure up. Sorry.

I have experience in aikido and bjj.

LOL. Yeah, and I wonder why they pay $100 for a regular pair of pliers or why they opted for the M-16 over the AK back when the choice was obvious.

The reason for hand-to-hand in the military is to get the soldier ready to use violence...not to actual be a hand-to-hand killing machine. Think about it...why would you guys spend all the time in basic on the range rather than doing hand-to-hand...even though developing the ability to use a weapon properly is farrrr easier than killing with your bare hands?

I'll tell you a reasonable possibe reason for them to choose the BJJ and/or MMA instead of Aikido...It's easier to use.

Here's another: In ten, twenty years when we're older, we'll be slower and weaker. The military's BJJ/MMA stuff will be much less effective for you to use then...since the military doesn't have forty and fifty yr. olds (generally) out fighting hand-to-hand, the long term use of the MA isn't a concern...so Aikido wouldn't appeal to them for that.

How about another: If (and this is an ENORMOUS if) the military made decision totally off the merit of what was "good" and "bad," rather than egos, what criteria must be met for the hand-to-hand stuff to be "good?" I gaurantee the cost of training is going to a consideration. A soldier's ability to catch onto it will be another.

My experience is that not too many average people really catch onto Aikido very quick...I think they know that too.


So, when you're ready for a sweet MA that'll last you till you're old, come on down to an Aikido dojo.


LOL! I just reread your post. Not effective or realistic? If that's been your experience, then I'd say that your Aikido instructor that you visited once or twice was either 1)not showing you Aikido because you weren't ready for it or 2)wasn't showing you Aikido because he didn't really understand it himself.

Agreed, Aikido isn't a quick learn...Neither is any other MA. If you wan't "killer techniques" go to the bookstore and pick up any defense book and practice them with your buddies.

Kevin Leavitt
07-24-2005, 05:30 PM
Jean Wrote:[/QUOTE]
LOL! I just reread your post. Not effective or realistic? If that's been your experience, then I'd say that your Aikido instructor that you visited once or twice was either 1)not showing you Aikido because you weren't ready for it or 2)wasn't showing you Aikido because he didn't really understand it himself.

Agreed, Aikido isn't a quick learn...Neither is any other MA. If you wan't "killer techniques" go to the bookstore and pick up any defense book and practice them with your buddies.[QUOTE]

Your making a bunch of assumptions that simpy are not true. I am not sure of your experience or background outside of aikido to make these assumptions, but here is mine.

1. I am in the military...for over 20 years now. (ranger, airborne...all that stuff.)
2. I am 40 years old and do combatives training.
3. I have studied aikido for close to 10 years with some very good instructors. Saotome Sensei, Bob Galeone, Jimmy Sorentino (all ASU)...not just a few classes.
4. I have a Blue Belt in Gracie Jiujitsu from Gracie Barra organization.
5. I am a certified Army Combatives Instructor.
6. I have used my martial experiences in real life for detention, self defense, and in competition.
7. I find BJJ to be much easier on my body than AIkido in many respects.

I believe I am better qualified than you to say why the military picked the training methodology that they did. Many of your assumptions are simply incorrect.

Jean, I am not sure you are really paying close attention to my post, or maybe I just don't write that clearly :) I am not bashing aikido, so no need to get offended so easily.

My only point is that you seem to feel that aikido is superior to many martial arts. It is not, it is simply another methodology designed to accomplish the founders philosophical goals. It is a sound and effective martial art. It is not, however, the best art, nor the only art to have the answers many are looking for.

Have you really spent time with a decent BJJ instructor? You will find them to be as soft, efficient, and flowing as aikido. Sure, they spend tons of time on the ground. Sure, they have weaknesses in their stand up game, which is why you will see that most of them have partnered with Muay Thai guys, Kali, aikido, and others that they find offer them things to become more well rounded.

One thing I will say, is I have found most BJJ guys to be more open minded than most aikido guys, you seem to be proving that once again.

Adam Alexander
07-24-2005, 06:27 PM
1)Your making a bunch of assumptions that simpy are not true.

2)I find BJJ to be much easier on my body than AIkido in many respects.

3)I believe I am better qualified than you to say why the military picked the training methodology that they did. Many of your assumptions are simply incorrect.

4)I am not bashing aikido, so no need to get offended so easily.

5)My only point is that you seem to feel that aikido is superior to many martial arts.

6)Have you really spent time with a decent BJJ instructor? You will find them to be as soft, efficient, and flowing as aikido. Sure, they spend tons of time on the ground. Sure, they have weaknesses in their stand up game, which is why you will see that most of them have partnered with Muay Thai guys, Kali, aikido, and others that they find offer them things to become more well rounded.

7)One thing I will say, is I have found most BJJ guys to be more open minded than most aikido guys, you seem to be proving that once again.

Yeah, you got me. I read "Aikido not realistic" and I got p****. LOL.


1)What inaccurate assumptions (specifically) besides your Aikido experience?
2)I think that should be natural being that as uke you take so many throws. However, I think in general, if Aikido is hard on your body, you're doing something wrong (that's why you should be able to practice sh'te as long as you live).
3)I'd agree that you're a better source for what you guys are doing...but I don't expect the people who made the choice of "why" have time to play with me on the internet. However, I was under the assumption that you were referring to basic.
4)I've never gottent the impression that you wanted to bash Aikido. However, my impression is that your perspective is limiting of Aikido and you express it...that's not, IMO, in the best interest of Aikido. If I agreed with your perspective, obviously, I'd have nothing to say...If your position was simply "Aikido is a difficult art to get from 0 to awesome with"...Man, I'd chuckle and post a "here, here." However, your position is to cross-train. Cross-training is the worst thing an Aikidoka can do (unless he/she is at the level where he/she can apply the techniques of Aikido in any situation), and that's why I respond as I do. I think you're doing a disservice to Aikido by your recommendations. The ideology of premature cross-training stumps Aikido growth. (One thing about this: I'm strictly from the position that people are learning under a qualified instructor. If the instructor doesn't get it, it doesn't matter where you train or how many arts.)
5)You're right. I do think Aikido is the best. However, I believe that because Aikido offers a response for every situation...from staying off the ground to handling multiple attackers to handling a bad day at work.
6)No. #4 answers that.
7)LOL. Yeah, like I said, you got me. Sorry for the offense. I am close minded on it. Not trying to be an a**, but when you know you're right, that's it.

However, the only thing I claim to be right on is that you shouldn't cross-train before you're ready. And you're ready when you know your own techniques inside and out.

Colbs
07-24-2005, 11:21 PM
Kevin,

If you look on e-budo I think it was, in their close combatatives forum there was a thread a while ago on the latest (or was it the second latest, I can't remember) US Army close combat manuals, one of the authors (or someone who claimed to be one of those involved with it's creation) explained why they chose what they did.

From memory the primary reasoning was that the combination they chose would make their troops as effective as they could be with the allocated training schedule. Because most toops won't train MA outside of their units (just like police), they have a very limited total number of hours to spend with it. BJJ and it's ilk provide some very simple, highly effective means to get the upper hand on your opponent and also require *far* less practice and precision than most traditional MA to pull off on an untrained or similarly skilled opponent.

The secondary reason was that because it allowed for intense competition with few injuries it was seen as being a good way of getting units to set up competitions during training to help breed the competitve and combative mindset.

Anyway, that's how I remember it on a thread a read a fair few months ago - so it could all be bollocks (and you can't trust a thing you read on the interwebnet anyway).

IMO all arts are valid, and damned useful, grappling is a brilliant skill to have and one I will eventually get around to training (once I get a few more years of aikido under my belt - don't want to start cross training too early).

I see the ground as the last line of defense - it's where I get taken when I screw up, not a place I want to be, as such, it will never be a primary art for me, but something I train as a backup. It's similar with military stuff. If you get into a clinch or grappelling situation, as a soldier it's most likely because you or your squadmates stuffed up. I'm not a military person myself, so again, could be total bollocks I'm talking, but as I see it, the primary art of soldiers is small arms and riflery, not close quarters combatitives. If you get grappled, or have to grapple it's because you screwed up and let a threat too close before drawing arms - or because your leadership failed and put you in a position where you had no ability to draw arms.

As a last line of defence art for soldiers, ground fighting seems to me to be the perfect art. The fact that you will have others around removes part of the risk about being stuck on the ground with one enemy while others proceed to kick your head in.

Jorge Garcia
07-25-2005, 04:38 AM
In reading this thread, it is somewhat surprising to me that some of those posting don't seem to recognize the history of Aikido or what the founder, Morihei Ueshiba taught about Aikido. We have heard from some that see Aikido as the best fighting art, others that like something else like BJJ and some that want to cross train. I guess I am wondering what happened to the philosophy of Aikido for those that claim to practice it? The founder of Aikido practiced many martial arts but came to a point where he realized the futility of trying to be stronger and better than others. He understood that every warrior will fall someday. There is no such a thing as personal invincibility when it comes to fighting. I am not saying that anyone on this thread thinks there is. I am making that point to establish the philosophical premise. If that point is true, then you have to look at Aikido the way the founder did. He saw it as a way to unite people in practicing an art of peace. He philosophically establishes its invincibility in it's refusal to engage in a "fighting" spirit or in competition. Aikido is a martial way rather than a martial art. I think though that there is a philosophical theory here. That would be that the person who loses the desire to win can't be defeated. I know how terrible this sounds to all those who are looking for the very best form of self defense. Again though, the truth is that the best form of self defense is finding ways not to fight. That way, you will never find the end of yourself. There's nothing wrong with wanting to be able to defend yourself. There's nothing wrong with cross training. There's nothing wrong with wanting to be the best you can be. I think though that there is something wrong with a perfectionist streak that tries to establish a peace in mind and heart that the person is now trained in the ultimate and very best possible way to withstand almost any assault. That I think is an unrealistic fantasy bordered by many contingencies and factors beyond any one individuals control. It's an unfruitful way to pursue your life.
Listen friends, you don't need to become the ultimate martial artist.I don't think there is such a thing. There will always be a hundred people within arms reach that can defeat you-no matter who you are. Unfortunately, that's the truth. In martial arts, you're working with percentages and it's true that the more you know and the better you are, you have improved your percentages in surviving an assault. It's just that there are also many other things you can do, that are common sense safety tips that have nothing to do with fighting or martial arts that will shoot your percentages way up there and save you years of falsely pursuing a fantasy of invincibility that will never actually come to pass.
I like what one famous practitioner said in a documentary. He said, "Like many young boys, I got into martial arts for all the wrong reasons."
In my dojo, we train hard and we train realistically. I have had as many as 4 dojo chos of different karate styles training with me. They are all plenty tough guys. We have trained with professional football players, Navy Seals, law enforcement people, fitness people, and one of my best friends in Aikido (a nidan) has even been doing BJJ for many years now. With my advanced people, if they want to rumble and let the techniques go and want to grapple with me, we go for it while the class watches. I'm not afraid to get physical. It's just that I realized a long time ago that I can't guarantee that I or anyone else will win "fights". I am not interested in that. I don't think that's what O Sensei was all about. Carrying a hand gun or even a shotgun would probably be a better form of self defense. It would be cheaper, more efficient and your percentages would shoot straight up (No pun intended).
I personally read Kisshomaru Ueshiba's book, The Spirit of Aikido once a year.It helps me stay grounded in what Aikido really is. I'll close with a quote from a man once called the scariest man at Hombu Dojo. When he was young, most people were afraid to train with him. I happen to know that he trained realistically in private training with people of almost every martial art. He has told me many stories about that and yet, look at what he says about Aikido.

"The strength of Aikido is in embracing others.

Interviewer: What do you think about strength in Aikido?
Kato: Strength is many things, isn't it? Taking other people down is one strength. But persistence in practice, and becoming good at dealing with others, are also strengths. It is holistic, I think. It may be easier to train the body to take people down. Showing strength in Wa (peace) and Musubi (connection) is very different from that. It is more difficult to attain and requires more strength. Unless strength is found in embracing others with a full-fledged humanitarian perspective, it is not pertaining to strength in Aikido. It is important to ask oneself "What is Aikido?" and develop one's own perspective. If you choose not to fight, then why don't you do that? Searching for ultimate answers like that is a necessity in doing Aikido.
Aikido is not Kumiuchi, traditional martial techniques for fighting. If Aikido were like techniques for fighting, the way of practice itself would be totally different. But Aikido practice consists of ways to develop ourselves and each other. Of course, it is not saying that being weak is acceptable-through our experience of strength we are not tempted to fight. Aikido is not about competition. A person who has true strength does not fight.
Again, going back to the regular meetings with Sensei, on one particular day, some writers who were specializing in Japanese tales of Samurai and Shogun came to see the Founder. The authors started to talk about the technique of Sen sen no sen (responding before an attack) and Ato no sen (countering an attack). And the Founder started to say, there are no such things. In Aikido, people win even before their fight starts. He had a view of winning that encompassed everything, that makes it into oneness, and a value system that transcends the concept of winning and losing.."

Best wishes,

Kevin Leavitt
07-25-2005, 03:24 PM
Jorge,

Great post! My thoughts pretty much to a tee. You can revise aikido into whatever you desire it to be, but what the founder intended it to be is what it is....it is a DO. Sure there are side benefits to the art, but as you state, to me is the essence of why you practice aikido.

Colby,

Also a good post. Thanks. I know the authors/founders of the Modern Army Combative Program, what you state above is pretty darn near on the money.

Jean,

My position is not to cross train. I could really careless if someone cross trains or not. I think Aikido is the perfect art for someone whose goals are to study "the way of AI, KI". If that is your goal no need to cross train. However, if you are overly concerned with Self defense, "combat effectiveness" (i hate that phrase)...then my point is this...find another art that focuses on those aspects...aikido is a waste of time for you. To me self defense training is 1. Risk awareness/reduction. 2. Learning to effectively leverage yourself through security, weapons (lethal/non lethal). ...It is time and money better spent if you live in this world.

My point is not about cross training, but not making aikido into something it is not...study it for what it is and what it offers...(see Jorge's post).

What recommendations did I make? Other than "make sure you understand WHY you are training and study those things that best fit those goals".

Many people in aikido are confused as to why they are training, just as many people wander aimlessly through their day working jobs they hate, and not beiing fullfilled as humans beings. We overeat, over drink, and distract ourselves with entertainment etc to make up for that void.

All I am saying is "look inward and outward" make sure you are aligned correctly.

I guess I would disagree with you that aikido has an answer for every situation. It has answers for the situations the founder wanted it to have answers for...(see Jorge's post).

Adam Alexander
07-25-2005, 04:37 PM
If you say so, Kevin.

I know one thing. The phrase I've heard over and over is: One attack, one technique.

Someone attacks you, we train to stop their attack with one technique (not roll around on the ground or exchange punches--stop them). At the same time, we train to be better people. Ueshiba said it was a MA...it's a MA. That's what Aikido is.

Adam Alexander
07-25-2005, 04:42 PM
One other thing I know...Aikido will keep you off the ground if you know what you're doing.

Aristeia
07-25-2005, 07:14 PM
If you say so, Kevin.

I know one thing. The phrase I've heard over and over is: One attack, one technique.

Someone attacks you, we train to stop their attack with one technique (not roll around on the ground or exchange punches--stop them).

That pretty much cuts to the heart of what this thread is about. Just because that's the way we train in the dojo don't kid yourself that that's how you should be fighting. In fact I tell my guys that it's only when they screw up and have to start bouncing between techniques that they actually start doing aikido. Our training method creates a type of fiction. One attack one technique is an ideal - if you think that that's what you'll be doing consistantly in reality against a true bad guy - you've fallen victim to exactly the exagerration under discussion.

Aristeia
07-25-2005, 07:16 PM
One other thing I know...Aikido will keep you off the ground if you know what you're doing.

What if you slip on an uneven or wet surface. What if you're sucker punched and don't know you're in a fight until you're on the ground. What if there's several of them? There's a heap of situations which can have you end up on the ground before even getting to the "what if your technique doesn't work as well as you think it does" part of the discussion.
You've said previously that Aikido has an answer to every situation. "don't be on the ground" isn't an answer to the ground question any more than "don't fight multiples" is an answer to multiple attackers.

Roy
07-25-2005, 08:57 PM
Micheal Fooks.

"if you think that that's what you'll be doing consistently in reality against a true bad guy - you've fallen victim to exactly the exaggeration under discussion." Thanks for steering the thread back to the main point, which is "exaggeration in Aikido." Allot of the responses to the thread actually use exaggeration to defend against the exaggeration of Aikido. Funny? I love Aikido, but why not keep it real(not to say most don't)? I guess to some people, they both like, and feel that they are invincible to multiple, and or bigger attackers! They truly seem to believe ending up on the ground just isn't much of a reality to be concerned with?

Aristeia
07-25-2005, 11:10 PM
I'd like to think it's a training maturity thing and everyone will grow out of it, but then I look around and realise that that's not the case. I clearly remember when I was the same, thought that the theory of Aikido was such that it should be able to handle *anything*. But of course that's not how it works in the real world.
I'm with you, I love aikido, wouldn't stop it for the world. But I'm also realistic about what it is and isn't designed to be used for. And also conscious that all of the initial big names generally had extensive experience in other arts.
Jean said don't cross train until you've got Aikido 100% down - but seems to have a circular argument that if you think there's a gap it means you haven't got it down. So you should only cross train when you decide you don't need to? Anyway I digress. My point is I'm more in the other camp that says perhaps the best approach for Aikido is to come to it with a grounding in another art that gives you a reisistance and alive model foundation to add the finesse of Aikido to. I didn't do that so I'm having to go back and add that in retrospectively.

rob_liberti
07-26-2005, 08:10 AM
I mostly agree with that Michael. Having a really good teacher and access to several others is the best approach.

In the absence of a really good teacher, (maybe just average joes) then I also think the order in which you learn martial arts depends on what level of emotional maturity you are at when you want to start as well. For the majority of the young bucks starting out (again in the absence of a really good teacher), I would like for them to start out in any art that stresses taking it before learning how to dish it out. Aikido is a good one, but there are others like Goju karate. [A really good teacher can of course teach anything and help you learn it in a way that is good for you.] I would like to see more people develop a strong mind of choice to not to harm (meaning they actually have ability to do harm and make the conscious choice not to do so). If we just turn out martial artists who only know how to do maximum damage, you have to wonder if you are sending these people out into the world with a foregone conclusion (justified by something like: 'but only if they push me to far').

My hope is that the people training aikido to continue their martial arts development slowly but surely continue to work towards more and more resistance training and more sophistocated attacks (in a level appropriate way of course). I'm playing around with such things and it's darn difficult to keep my posture, maintain the space I want, and know when to abandon that approach. I don't (personally) wish I learned such things in a different order.

Rob

Roy
07-26-2005, 11:29 AM
Rob Liberti,

Yes, a good teacher is the most important! And I guess a good teacher would not fill your head with the idea you will be invincible.

Adam Alexander
07-26-2005, 12:16 PM
Micheal Fooks: If you're "bouncing from technique to technique" it's because you're trying to think about what technique you're going to use...go back to the dojo and do some kata...because you failed by not practicing enough.

If you slip on the groud, do a roll. If you're sucker punched, absorb the strike and apply the appropriate technique. If you fail to do either of these...go back to the dojo and do some kata...because you failed by not practicing enough.

Regarding "training fiction" in the dojo. Yeah, that's right. Because when push comes to shove, your moves will be tighter that what you trained for because of pressue. We train with big sweeping techniques to compensate for that...I know, I've used it in real life.

Aikido answers the question "what do I do on the ground" by saying "it's irrelevant." That's because, if you really practiced, you'll never be there. The only way a person will take you to the ground is if they offer their balance...if you can't take it when it's offered...go back to the dojo and do some kata...because you failed by not practicing enough.

Same thing with wet surfaces, etc. When you train, it's an exercise in awareness of your surroundings. If you fail to recognize your surroundings...go back to the dojo...you know the rest.

All this, of course, is my interpretation. If anything, this position only serves to limit the definition of Aikido. In all reality, I think it's probably way larger than what I've described...way beyond this.

Roy Leclair: I think being on the ground is a reality to be concerned with...that's why I train to not let it happen.

Roy
07-26-2005, 12:44 PM
Dear Jean De Rochefort,

Because of lack of clearness, every-time I read your posts I can't decide if you are actually taking part of the thread constructively, or if you are just bragging. So, if I'm right, and correct me if I am wrong, you are saying that, its right to say to new beginners that Aikido will make them be able to take on multiple attackers, and or bigger attackers? You are also saying that doing a bunch of kata and training better will again make you be able to take on multiple attackers, and or bigger attackers? Granted, I realize that you do say at the end of most of your threads that this is just your personal opinion. Either way, you have a right to your opinion, and it would be no more wrong or wright to any other opinion. But, I'm compelled to ask you a few questions if I may. How long have you been training, and in what styles? And is it possible you are perhaps compelled to believe the exaggeration described in this thread?

Kevin Leavitt
07-26-2005, 02:05 PM
Jean,

I wish there was a way I could get with you and help you break through some paradigms and misconceptions I believe you have. (in a good way, not vindictive or mean spirited).

I had many of the same misconceptions about karate and aikido with lethal punches and techniques to one irimi/tenkan etc....certainly it is ideal and something to strive for...but unfortunately when you cross the line into reality it does not typically hold water.

I used to have the same notions about balance and standing up until I started working with some really good ground fighters, who also btw are better and stand up aiki techniques than I am.

As a response to the other post..to add....

O'Sensei I don't believed ever professed to turn anyone into the ultimate martial artist, but into a good human being in so many words. He describes aikido as a "path" uses words such as "seek"...no where does he mention an endstate or offer a guarantee or say that it is the only way. If he does, I really would love for someone to show me that!

Kevin Leavitt
07-26-2005, 02:15 PM
Michael,

I was reading through one of your earlier post. It can be both helpful and harmful to have a background in another art. I had a decent karate background before coming to aikido, so I was already a decent martial artist...but I was (still are) in many respects a poor aikidoka. I had to push hard through some paradigms and habits to establish new ones...I had to reprogram many of my intuitions (still do).

So I don't think it is necessary to study another art to be a good aikidoka if that is your goal, and a very worthwhile one!

However, I believe if you endstate is something other than that, then you may want to consider other arts as well.

I agree, most of the aikidoka, sensei, shihan I have respect for seem to have a breadth of experience outside of aikido. I think it allows them to respond correctly to things/attacks that fall outside of the realm/paradigm of traditional Aikido.

I would never advise, or not advise anyone to cross train not knowing them very well. It really is an individual thing. It might be very confusing and harmful to some, but right for others!

Again, that is why I say you must really look hard at WHY you want ot study martial arts or specifically aikido.

Adam Alexander
07-26-2005, 03:06 PM
Kevin, which misconceptions?

Roy, where was I not clear? Yeah, sometimes, I reread something I wrote and I have to think about what I meant...then I have to totally restate it so I understand it.

I think I'm taking part constructive...I'm trying to help construct the idea that dojo time is the only thing that'll give you the real answers.

I'm saying, that it's okay to tell beginners that Aikido offers the framework that could make you able to take on whoever/whatever. However, the whether or not you (the beginner we're talking to) have what it takes to do that...who's to say....but Aikido is the framework.

Regarding kata...same answer as above. Whether or not an individuat can get there, I don't know. However, I do know that kata is that framework.


With regards to my training, considering the last question, it appears to me that you're attacking me. Therefore, I've only responded to the Aikido related questions.

Ron Tisdale
07-26-2005, 03:35 PM
I'm not sure its an attack, I think its more a request for context. Strong statements deserve the appropriate context.

For example: I say I can whoop anyone on this board (People who've met me start to snicker), but I don't say why I think that. Now, if I'd trained in boxing at the golden gloves level, wrestled in division 1 during college, and now train in aikido 6 to 7 times a week for 2 to 3 hours for the last 10 years...and weigh 200 pounds...people might not hesitate to believe I'd do pretty good at whooping board members.

But since the most boxing experience was in gym class, some kickboxing and back yard stuff, the wresling was Div. 3 (and I stunk), I train about 2 to 3 times a week tops most of the time now, and I don't weigh 200 pounds, no, the context doesn't support the statement.

Ron (aw shucks) :)

Kevin Leavitt
07-26-2005, 03:46 PM
Misconceptions such as aikido has all the answers for "real life".

That ground fighitng is invalidated through good balance and posture that you learn in aikido.

That you can rely on "one shot, one kill" in real life through training properly.

I would agree with you in theory..but once you cross into "real life" I say all bets are off. That is all.

Kevin Leavitt
07-26-2005, 03:51 PM
I'm saying, that it's okay to tell beginners that Aikido offers the framework that could make you able to take on whoever/whatever. However, the whether or not you (the beginner we're talking to) have what it takes to do that...who's to say....but Aikido is the framework.

Yea, maybe the framework...but framework is a long way from reality. I'd personally say this:

1. what is "reality" in your perception.
2. Why do you want or need to train for this reality.
3. Aikido is a DO art, therefore meant to use martial arts as a methodology to convey the way of aiki...not learn how to fight based on your reality. Skill gained are secondary. If "reality" fighting is your primary goal, then find another art that makes it the primary goal.

There are much better ways to learn to destroy, hurt, or whoop up on somebody than the Way of Harmony and peace.

Roy
07-26-2005, 05:59 PM
Jean wrote; "Yeah? Funny, I have yet to see a Judoka or BJJer move as fast across area as I do...with balance under control."

I apologies you felt you were being attacked. I am just trying to figure out were you are at in matial arts, to make claims like the one above, that all. Allot of your posts make sense, but I'm just wondering what experience you have to be so sure of yourself? I'm guessing you must be at least a 2nd degree?

Aristeia
07-26-2005, 09:19 PM
Micheal Fooks: If you're "bouncing from technique to technique" it's because you're trying to think about what technique you're going to use

Actually it's the exact opposite of that.

...go back to the dojo and do some kata...because you failed by not practicing enough.

If you slip on the groud, do a roll.

Rolls work when there's momentum in a certain direction. A slip tends to be straight down. Certainly ukemi will help but not let you bounce back to your feet like Jackie Chan. Particularly in a crowded environment. You're stretching here.

If you're sucker punched, absorb the strike and apply the appropriate technique.
Absorb the strike? Do you know what a sucker punch is? Do you really think that if the first you know of a fight is the fist impacting your jaw you'll always be able to stay on your feet.
But I forgot, you've developed Spider Sense by all your good training.

If you fail to do either of these...go back to the dojo and do some kata...because you failed by not practicing enough.

Ok you've said that enough times to make it cute. But given that you've opened the door here on training time being the issue, why not clue us in to how long you've been training.


Aikido answers the question "what do I do on the ground" by saying "it's irrelevant." That's because, if you really practiced, you'll never be there. The only way a person will take you to the ground is if they offer their balance...if you can't take it when it's offered...go back to the dojo and do some kata...because you failed by not practicing enough.
Have you actually put this to the test against a wrestler, or *anyone* outside the confines of your dojo? Where does this faith come from?

Aristeia
07-27-2005, 01:05 AM
Hi Again Jean
I've just happened across your introduction post from earlier this year which has answered a couple of our questions. Specifically I see you've been training 3-4 years and list as one of your reasons to train the ability to fight. That raises a couple of questions in my mind.
1. When the people who are telling you they beleive Aikido is not a magic bullet have significantly more training experience, do you think telling them that their beliefs come from not enough trainng is really a sensible approach?
2. Given that you've said you're doing aikido for fighting purposes, wouldn't it make sense to look at other fighers and what they are doing. Maybe have a friendly knockabout with a wrestler or judoka to get a feel for what it feels like to face attacks from people with a different approach.

Please understand I'm not trying to attack you personally. I know where you're coming from. After 3 years training I know I held similar beliefs. But then I started talking, and more importantly listening to more people outside Aikdo and decided to give something else a go. What I found
1. Those early beliefs I had about how fighting works in theory, had only a passing resemblence to reality.
2. Cross training helped my Aikido immensely
3. Cross training if anything, increased my love for Aikido

I think there's alot of people in the Aikido community who are scared of cross training becuase they think it will take away from aikido. I strongly disagree - done properly it enhances it enourmously.
I've given alot of thought to how Aikido training methods might be changed to offer more resistance, more aliveness etc. The conclusion I've come to is that they can't. Aikido can never have a sparring component like Judo or BJJ without sacrificing much of what it is. (cue shudothugs). But that's all right, the techniques can still be effective. The thing is though they are much more likely to be if the artist in question has also trained ina sparring art. I'm finally starting to get what people mean when they talk about "alive" arts being able to give you a delivery system for techniques that have not been trained with "aliveness"

In summary, please don't think we're beating up on you. Many of us have been where you are, and we're just trying to save you some of the time it took us to start to understand how the theory works in the real world.

dyffcult
07-27-2005, 01:09 AM
Haven't read every response to this post, but skimmed most of them...

The question is exaggeration of instructors regarding what aikido training can or cannot provide.

I think that with the right instructor and the proper time (and the explanation by the instructor of the proper time), aikido can allow the lessor weight/strength person overcome a greater weight/strength opponent. All a matter of mastering technique -- and the time that it takes to master that technique.

(In other words, I am a firm believer that aikido is a masterful martial art, capable of handling all situations, but I also understand that the learning curve for aikido is far longer than most other martial arts....)

Once again, haven't read every response to this post....

The following is offered from my own perception. My original sensei may have different recollections of what he told me. Take it with the proverbial grain of salt.... (BTW, Patrick Cassidy sensei taught Iwama-style aikido at the time....I don't know his affiliation anymore as I have been unlucky enough not to train with him for over 15 years.)

I had wanted to study a martial art since my earliest memories, probably since at least fifth grade (9 years old roughly). However, since I was old enough to afford such training, I recognized a very martial aspect in myself. I did not want to exacerbate that trait, but moderate it. I was lucky enough to encounter a young man who could offer me "soft" training in the martial arts -- in other words, one that focused on defense and self rather than attack and defeat.

My first sensei never told me that I would be able to defeat those larger and stronger than I. He did emphasis however, that strength in aikido was not a requirement. A technique properly performed by the smallest and weakest of students can still break the center and control the largest and strongest of opponents. He never stated that it would be quick or easy. In fact, he indicated that the average student takes three months of dedicated practice before they have their first "ah ha" moment on their first technique (tai-no-henko). This is not to say that the student understood the technique...only that the student had his or her first "ah ha" recognizing a bit of understanding about the technique.

However, he did state that once one learns the basics, and their body learns the techniques, aikido does become a true defense technique, regardless of the size of the opponent. I agree.

Of course, I probably never would have gone to watch that first demonstration if he had not told me that Aikido was a "peaceful" martial art. I knew my own tendencies, and although I had wanted to train in a martial art since I was a kid, I knew that any aggressive art would only exacerbate my combative tenancies. I had wanted to train for over ten years before I met Patrick. Patrick struck me as peace incarnate at the time. He described aikido as something I could embrace -- an art of peace, but a truly martial art. Something I later learned he practiced with great enthusiasm, passion, and emotion -- something he embraced physically -- and spiritually.

Patrick always preached the peaceful aspects of aikido, but stressed its self-defense capabilities with proper devotion and study. I learned this myself. On more than one occasion, I have used my aikido to "control" a situation, where pre-aikido, I might have tried to bead the crap out of someone -- or simply would have shot them had the situation presented.

For most of my time in my US dojo, my favorite practice partner was a six foot plus police officer. I loved throwing his ass all over the mat -- mainly because he was a great uke -- he always gave a good attack and always tried to resist my techniques. If I wasn't doing the technique right with this guy, I couldn't do the technique. I am five foot five and at the time the guy probably outweighed me by forty pounds. He was male. I was female. I have no doubt that he could out bench press me on any given day of the week. Yet I could control him, break his center, and implement whatever lock the technique called for....all with his proper resistence. So yes, a properly trained aikidoka can take down a larger, stronger opponent.

I have also used aikido in real life situations against men far larger and stronger than I. Sometimes against two such opponents (BTW, I was ranked 2nd kyu at the time and had not practiced for over ten years.) Luckily for these other persons, I studied aikido. They walked away with new things to think about rather than being taken out on a stretcher. I controlled the situation and gave them the opportunity to walk away -- using aikido. [i.e. I was at a KISS concert when some idiot (six foot plus) felt the need to be belligerent to every person (particularly another six foot plus) in his vicinity. After about the third body slam, I turned around, had him face first onto the ground and into a wrist lock and his opponent by the throat. (While not aikido, long nails do have their advantage in certain techniques.) I asked them if they were through being pains in the ass and they both agreed to behave. I enjoyed the rest of the concert.]

I don't think that the problem lies with an instructor telling students that such things are possible -- for they are. The problem lies more with whether the teacher can teach such techniques properly and whether they explain to the potential student that they will require extensive training before the use of aikido will prove useful in a real life situation.

As a final comment, I was taught that a black belt in aikido meant that the student was finally serious about the art. (I assume that means that they grasp certain basic techniques, but that they don't truly "know" them body and soul.) The gift of the black belt was simply a recognition that one was devoted to the art and that one would continue to train and learn the art. Not until the nidan was there an understanding that the student truly understood anything -- and then only just.

Okay, final comment..... I do believe that those serious about aikido should not cross train until secure with their technique. I tried a judo class and could not fall like they wanted me to, could not execute technique like they wanted me to. I kept doing aikido technique and aikido ukemi. My body simply responded in certain ways no matter how hard I tried to do what they wanted. (And that whole thing about female students having to wear a t-shirt rather than a tank under the keikogi just drove me nuts when the me were allowed to wear nothing....in the 100+ degree heat.) However, this is just my opinion on cross training and others may have had different results and accordingly different opinions.

rob_liberti
07-27-2005, 08:45 AM
I think you can get nidan in Japan in just over 2 years. In some places, basically anyone - no matter how just barely passable their technique is, you can get a nidan. Most people believe the rubber meets the road at sandan. (Like there are typically people who have been nidan for like 15 years who will never go for sandan - ever.) Unfortunately, once someone hits sandan, many people start turning the ranks into measurements of "time in" and "loyalty" as opposed to ability to do things beyond the way you used to do them. (They become experts of the "shu" level, and run away from any mention of "ha" with their eyes closed tightly, their hands over their ears, yelling "la la la la la ...")

I mention this because while I totally agree with the "pro" side of cross training mentioned here (that it helps you get a much better perspective of martial arts and fighting) I want to bring up the "con" side that in the interest of being battle ready, people tend to only deconstruct just enough to gain a degree of effectiveness from a small degree of flexibility and their new found changed-thinking. Then, unfortunately, to stay battle ready it's really hard to give any of that new found effectiveness up to actually continue to make more progress. They get stuck in the "shu+" level or really graduate to the "shu++" level. But in the big picture, they are stuck too. They just get to feel better about themselves because "shu++" is much better than being stuck in the plain old "shu" level. In my opinion, they really should be thinking about how do I take this to the "ha" level - if they are going to claim to be on a "path" as opposed to a "place".

I don't mean to attack anyone specifically. I've just seen it a lot - a real lot. My suggestion is to consider that you might want to get all the way into the "ha" level before cross training, and simply hold your tung about your opinions of other arts until you've crossed trained in them.

Rob

Jorge Garcia
07-27-2005, 09:48 AM
I think there are a couple of different ideas running through this thread and I think I may be somewhere in the middle.

#1 Should an aikido instructor tell a prospective student that if they learn aikido, they will be able to do certain things in terms of self defense?
By my way of thinking - No. I believe its not the art that makes you but rather it is the individual that makes the art. No one can promise that the study of any art will make them anything. That depends on the diligence, perseverance, type of teacher, types of training partners, overall coordination and athleticism of the practitioner, his or her height, weight, strength and ability.
Having said that, I would say exactly the same thing for any other art including BJJ, Kung fu, Judo, or Karate. They get the same kinds of people that we do. I think it is OK for an instructor to tell a prospective student what aikido is designed to do such as defend against multiple opponents. You can say that it has both katame waza, nage waza, combination techniques, reversals and changes (henka) and floor techniques. I think it's fruitless to compare it to other arts because that involves intangibles that no one can measure beforehand. I would emphasize that this art is one that emphasizes removing a fighting spirit and personal transformation. If you just want to learn to fight, another art might be better for you.

Secondly, what is aikido's potential. That potential in terms of self defense is limitless. I don't think aikido takes a back seat to any other art. Again though, it depends on the factors I previously mentioned. If you take a big, strong, fast 6th dan in Aikido and put him against lessor endowed BJJ man, the Aikidoist will prevail. If you pit him against a similarly ranked practitioner of any other art, then we can't tell because there are too many intangibles. Remember, Buster Douglas defeated Mike Tyson. I can say one thing though, the Aikidoist would try to stay out of that fight and if he was really high ranked, he would win because that fight would never happen.

Lastly, I don't think a person should cross train until he or she has completely learned the basics of their art and developed that somewhat. I also don't think that a person should cross train trying to round themselves out or add to themselves what they lacked in another art. Any art takes a lifetime to master and diluting your time and efforts like that will make you a jack of all trades and master of none.

Having said that, you should know that I cross train in two other arts besides Aikido. I train in Daito ryu Aikijujutsu and Iaido. I didn't start training in these other arts until I was almost 3rd dan in Aikido. I also didn't go to these arts out of any dissatisfaction with Aikido nor to become a "better fighter" or to improve my self defense skills. I train in Iaido because I am fascinated by the kenjutsu my Aikido sensei teaches us. I want to better understand the relationship and approach of a different style compared to our own so that I can be more proficient and knowledgeable in what we are doing with the Aikido kumi tachis. As in any discipline, a broader perspective helps you understand your own perspective better. For example, I am a Christian but I have spent a lot of time studying world religions. I wasn't dissatisfied with my own religion. I felt no lack in my personal practice of Christianity. I wasn't seeking to mix all these belief's together into some form of syncretism.
I was seeking to see the whole picture better and to establish my own beliefs against a context. That is why I cross train in martial arts.
As for Daito ryu, it is the parent art of Aikido. I am doing it for the same reasons. I am interested in the different approaches to similar concepts such as kokyu-ho and aiki.
In terms of class time, I train 52 hours a month in Aikido, I train 4 hours a month in Iaido and 4 hours a month in Daito ryu aikijujutsu. That should show where I think a person's priorities should be in terms of Aikido and other martial arts. This one is hard enough to learn!

I don't think a person should be filled with self doubt about their martial art. I have none about Aikido. I have seen too many wonderful and powerful people in Aikido. Should we exaggerate? No. Can we trust that this art can handle most contingencies? Yes, but under certain qualifications that are also apply to all martial arts. If you can't defend yourself with this one, I suspect you will have the same problem somewhere else that you had here. You might want to look into handgun training and get a concealed weapons permit. That should solve your problem - unless your attacker has a bullet proof vest! :eek:
Best,

L. Camejo
07-27-2005, 10:49 AM
I think while Jean has quite a few misconceptions of his own, his antagonists also fall prey to this, though maybe not as much.

In both cases the misconceptions come from the experiences, level of understanding and training experienced by those involved. Please remember folks that the results of one's training is a direct result of the goals that one has towards training and the means one employs to get there. "Aikido" in no way is a homogeneous thing with many methods of approach and instruction even within the founder himself. From my experience folks often take a snapshot of Ueshiba M.'s life to define his Aikido (and by extension "what Aikido should be") instead of looking at his entire life's training and understanding how that helped develop his Aikido over time.

Regarding the initial point of the thread-
Is it wise to say to new members at an Aikido club that by learning Aikido you will be able to take-on much larger attackers (or multiple attackers)? "In general," might saying this give a false confidence to the average Aikidoka?

It depends a lot on the skill and teaching level of the particular instructor to deliver on his promises if he makes the claim imo. He/she must have thorough knowledge of what is really involved in taking on multiple and larger attackers in real life and offer consistently effective Aikido-based methods that allow the weaker/smaller person to come out on top every time. This should include of course evasion and awareness training and options of not getting into these situations to start with. Obtaining this degree of understanding in order to teach it comes from well outside the Aikido training paradigm imo and enters the realm of human psychology, body mechanics, awareness, positioning, observation training etc. etc.

Personally I think this can be misleading to a beginner if he thinks he can achieve this in a few weeks of casual practice, but for the student who is serious about achieving these goals and is constantly vigilant to various means of getting there (outside of dojo training) it is very obtainable.

Imo it should be obvious to the beginner that if he is unable to do these things in the dojo with resistant Uke he has almost no hope of doing it with a serious attacker for real. Overconfidence and misleading only appears when the dojo culture starts acting as if the technique done in the dojo during cooperative or low resistance free practice in some way is representative of reality. It's all in how you perceive the goal and results of certain types of training. For those who practice "kata-only" Aikido I think the stated goal is even less obtainable since kata alone does not build one's skill level in spontaneous application of technique, which is what is required for real world defence.

Aikido can never have a sparring component like Judo or BJJ without sacrificing much of what it is. (cue shudothugs).I think this is a gross misconception and generalisation. It depends on what you perceive Aikido to be. If one understands the concept of Aiki in itself (i.e. not allowing oneself to become fettered by the set definition of any particular institution) the "sparring" done in Judo, BJJ etc. is merely one step above what even traditional Aikido schools practice as randori or jiyu waza, with the difference being the free will to resist and counter technique on both sides. If it does not "look" like "Aikido" then this is a testament to the quality of Aikido (or lack thereof) being executed, not a definition of what Aikido is not.

Can Aikido teach one to defend oneself in all possible self defence situations? No imo.

Can application of the tactical and strategic paradigms embodied in the concept of Aiki teach one to defend oneself in all possible self defence situations? Yes imo.

Are these conceptual paradigms learnt in Aikido dojo training. Yes imo.

So I guess I agree with Jean to a point regarding the "framework" concept, but I also agree with the others as well regarding what is truly involved in dealing with attacks in the real world, which is not addressed in many Aikido dojo ime. The fact is, not many Aikido instructors globally have much experience or training in that area or teach in a manner that brings real effectiveness to someone who seeks to achieve the aforementioned goals. As such, if those types made the claims presented at the beginning of the thread it would in fact be misleading to beginners.

Maybe it's just me, but I see no dichotomy in being a highly skilled technician of Aikido to the point of effective multi/larger attacker self defence while embodying Ueshiba M.'s philosophy of peace and protection of all life. It just calls for a very high standard of spontaneous Aiki and serious dedication to correct training. I don't think the multi-attacker practice and kuzushi concepts embodied in Aikido are there just to be played with as a fun game, but provides the core concepts from which one can understand how to apply the concepts which should encompass situations such as real life attacks - physical or otherwise.

Just my thoughts.
LC:ai::ki:

Roy
07-27-2005, 12:03 PM
These last post sure seem to be on target to the heart of the matter.

The main topic was not meant to question the heart of Aikido, it is just a basic general question, that questions whether some Aikido instructors exaggerate. Ultimately, to say you can take on bigger opponents etc.. etc.. kinda goes against Aikido ideals! Not to mention the fact of reality, going against bigger guys/gals, more then most likely wont be good for your health.

Why not cross-train? Ueshiba was not just an Aikido master, but an Aiki jujitsu master as well?

Miguelspride67
07-27-2005, 12:21 PM
I think a Nikyo could break any person defense. How much it weights, is not matter of disscusion.

Adam Alexander
07-27-2005, 12:59 PM
Whoa. That's a lot of posts. I'll not quote...Just paraphrase as necessary and try to keep this to one or two sentence responses.

Larry Camejo: What, me misconception?:)

Kevin:"Real world" misconception: give me just one single example of real world situation where Aikido does not have an answer...except for getting whacked with a pipe in back of the head:)

I never said that it's posture and balance (however, it is significant as it relates to movement) that negates ground fighting (or atleast that wasn't my intent, even if it was the implication). Although, the two play, possibly, integral roles, technique is also huge.

On that, I think the hand portion of technique is huge (I, however, also believe that Aikido does not exclude things such as pulling on an ear, poking an eye or reaching down someone's pants if the occasion arises.). No doubt, your hands need to be connected to your hips to perform a pretty technique. However, if I pulled off a kote-gaeshi--even if it's more a single-finger-gaeshi--barring other MA experience, wouldn't you say I learned it through Aikido?

On "one shot, one kill": If you apply, correctly, a hitting-elbow, is it over? If you apply correctly, all-direction, is it over? If you choose it to be over, it will be over.

As part of that, with every technique in the reportoire, (barring beginners) we should be learning to recognize and take uke's balance. We should also be learning how to recognize and exploit the weak line. (I imagine the two are somewhat the same, but to me, "taking balance" is more along the lines of taking over a body in motion, whereas exploiting the weak line is more controling the uncooperative).

In regard to "real life, bets are off": I know when real life hits, it's different than the dojo. However, the dojo should compensate for that. Amongst other things, as mentioned earlier, the techniques are broader to compensate for how we move when hit with the fight/flight.

I might be crazy, but I don't think Ueshiba and all of his great students would of made it as far as they did if this stuff didn't work in the real world. Just reading Shioda, that guy's been in plenty real life, life threatening situations.

Ron Tisdale: Your example is of you whooping everybody. I think, first, that's principally different from this situation. In this situation, I'm claiming to recognize principals and their applicable context via appropriate technique (or maybe what I just said makes no sense and I just really liked the phrasing and am just going with it). Your example is "me vs. you" type...I'm not saying that I can apply the techniques in any situation...I can just see clearly that they can be done.

Roy Leclair: Brother, I'm beyond rank. I'm about technique and training. The desire for belts left me a long time ago...atleast relatively speaking:). I just train.

On "bragging" and moving faster than...: So, someone says that BJJ is the "best" for actual combat training (or something to that), and I respond that they don't train for speed on their feet like Aikido and here's my example. That's bragging?

In the post you said I was "bragging" in, you said it was 'all' or 'most' my posts. Don't you have more examples?

In either case, I'm not trying to brag. I don't think my skills are all that great. What I believe is that to be "street effective" is pretty easy. People move slow. Because I train and pay attention, I move faster than most. I also believe that people only have to points from which to balance. To grab an arm or head and tug on an angle that's perpendicular to the line that runs between those two points is pretty darn easy.

I don't claim that you will not take a strike in the process. I'm just saying that fighting isn't like it is in the movies...and the UFC isn't realistic.

Ultimiately, a real fight lasts maybe two minutes. Adrenaline's high. People are scared. It's not hard to get a technique in and walk away.

Micheal Fooks: I don't think you know what you're talking about. "Bouncing from technique to technique" is ludicrous. If you get your hands on someone and you can't plant the technique, you used the wrong one. That's not Aikido.

If you selected the right technique (mind you, that's not a conscious process) it's unescapable. That's Aikido.

I do know what a sucker punch. When you're good at Aikido, there's no such thing...you're never a sucker.

Regarding the rolls/falls/whatever...just options.

Regarding the "testing": Yes. I've been in a few situations and stayed standing.

To the numbered: 1)Nope. I don't tell them. I let them believe what they want. 2)It's not necessary. Aikido teaches you the infinite realm of body movement.

rob_liberti
07-27-2005, 01:04 PM
Well, that's impressive. The thread is called "exaggeration in aikido" so who can complain... - Rob

Adam Alexander
07-27-2005, 01:12 PM
where's the exaggeration? be specific.

rob_liberti
07-27-2005, 01:44 PM
I agree with you that aikido is very good and wonderful and can really work.

In regard to "real life, bets are off": I know when real life hits, it's different than the dojo. However, the dojo should compensate for that.Real life is hitting right now. Besides the nitpicking point that it doesn't compensate, or any other action verb for that matter. The dojo is merely a place where you can better prepare for real fights, but as Larry suggested it's really up to how you are training and for what reason. Most people are not doing aikido against sophisticated attacks, multiple attacks with Kamikazes who will sacrifice their safety to slow you down so that the next guy can wallop you, etc... (You know, the things that happen for real...) If you do work on those things then I stand by what I initially said - that's impressive. If not, then that's probably a good example of an exaggeration.

I'm beyond rank.Either you have rank or not. If you are in aikido, the only one beyond rank would be a doshu. You being beyond rank is probably an exaggeration. If you really are a doshu then that's impressive.

Micheal Fooks: I don't think you know what you're talking about. "Bouncing from technique to technique" is ludicrous. If you get your hands on someone and you can't plant the technique, you used the wrong one. That's not Aikido.I've read Micheal Fooks on RMA since the early 90s and he seems to know what he is talking about. "Bouncing from technique to technique" is only _ludicrous_ if you are so much beyond the person who is actively trying to resist your technique that they cannot possibly influence what is going on. Talking about it as if you can make that assumption seems to be either very impressive or another example of an exaggeration.

I can go on, but those cover the basics...
Rob

Roy
07-27-2005, 02:37 PM
Sean wrote, "I don't think my skills are all that great"

Great, thanks for admitting that! Now after saying that, why not try to not be so condescending of others posts as if it is a personal mission to do so. Especially when you don't know what you are saying! Thank You.

"What I believe is that to be "street effective" is pretty easy"
Here's another example of bragging that you requested! Considering your skill are not all that great, How can you assume to know?

And another! "Because I train and pay attention, I move faster than most."

And another! "To grab an arm or head and tug on an angle that's perpendicular to the line that runs between those two points is pretty darn easy."

Let me know if you need more eg's?

Oh by the way, what does this mean? "I do know what a sucker punch. When you're good at Aikido, there's no such thing...you're never a sucker."

Aristeia
07-27-2005, 03:14 PM
Lastly, I don't think a person should cross train until he or she has completely learned the basics of their art and developed that somewhat. .

While I agree with this to a certain degree, (I suspect my threshold for when someone has a good enough handle to start cross traiing is lower), let's remember that the divisions between the arts is somewhat artificial. Specialisation is a relatively modern phenomena and, as Heinlen says, for insects :)

Which is also kind of my next point, you list a couple of arts you cross train in, apparantly because of their relation to, or enhancement of your aikido. I cross train BJJ and am on of those who will argue that it is aikido in a ground setting. But I think if you talk to any one who cross trains in any two arts they are likely to emphasise the similarities between the arts rather than the differences. Because I suspect everything is more closely related than we often realise.

Having said all that to re address the original topic of the thread. The reason cross trainng came into I think, and is a valid part of the discussion is because, if as an Akidoka you are going to make claims about Aikido being able to handle anything, it behooves you to aquaint yourself with some other arts to understand what that "anything" may entail. Otherwise you're certainly in the realm of exagerration. Note this doesn't have to be cross training but could be the odd visit to or from another club.

Thanks for a good post.

Aristeia
07-27-2005, 03:25 PM
I think this is a gross misconception and generalisation. It depends on what you perceive Aikido to be. If one understands the concept of Aiki in itself (i.e. not allowing oneself to become fettered by the set definition of any particular institution) the "sparring" done in Judo, BJJ etc. is merely one step above what even traditional Aikido schools practice as randori or jiyu waza, with the difference being the free will to resist and counter technique on both sides. If it does not "look" like "Aikido" then this is a testament to the quality of Aikido (or lack thereof) being executed, not a definition of what Aikido is not.

Hi Larry, a good post as usual. This may be a topic for another thread, but I'm interested on your thoughts on this. Let me explain what I meant in more detail.
Certainly we can ramp up uke's resistance and make things more realistic. What I'm not convinced we can do to Aikido without losing something, is instigate the sort of sparring where there is no distinction between uke and nage. Where both are concerned with winning a "match". My take is that this kind of sparring has a completely different energy pattern and therefore strategy to what Aikido was trying to accomplish. If someone is attacking me but is just as concerned about watching out for my kote gaeshi as they are about actually hurting me, it's a different kettle of fish. I guess I'm talking about the difference between a sparring match, and an assault.
Now obviously you can set up this kind of a match, but because of the changes that result you are going to doing a somewhat different style of aikido, smaller, in some sense less committed (in terms of commitment to the technique and the action). I guess I can come back to Judo and BJJ - sparring in those arts is not what real fighting looks like. The grip fighting, the feinting etc that is required for competition. No doubt they can translate this to real world effectively, but my point is the sparring and competition focus has altered the arts because it's a different set of techniques and strategy that work on someone that knows your game and is holding back their attacks because of that.

I wouldn't like to see that happen to aikido. It works great with genuine assault type attacks and I'd rather keep it as it is and get my sparring attributes from another art. My understanding is that this is what the competitive schools of aikido do within their own art to some degree? i.e. they type of fighting they use for sparring isn't the only type of aikido they practice, they also devote time to traditonal techniqes agaisnt assault type attacks? Maybe someone can confirm or deny that.

Adam Alexander
07-27-2005, 03:51 PM
You guys are taking this a little personal, don't you think?

Rob: "Beyond" means that I don't worry about it and I've stopped testing. I don't need a certificate to tell me that I know a group of techniques. There's no difference between today and tomorrow if tonight I demonstrate I know some techniques...to me, it's all about the training.

Sure, maybe Micheal Fooks knows what he's talking about. However, from my perspective, as I understand it, he doesn't. Hell, from his perspective, I probably don't know what I'm talking about. What's the difference?

My goal is to be able to use the right technique for the moment. That's my idea of Aikido.

Now, I don't think any of this was exaggerative...only misinterpreted. I offered no misrepresentation of myself. So, enjoy.

Roy: Being that the key element of "bragging" is pride, you're mistaken.

All your examples are things that I consider most Aikidoka to be able to accomplish with equal potential. So, am I bragging about myself (as I think you imply) or Aikido?

If it's Aikido, I think I'm just stating unemotional fact.

If it's about myself, hmmm, seems like I'd of talked only about myself.

Whatever.

Regarding "sucker punch" check my history. Me and Mike Gallagher just had an extensive one on this.

Finally, "condescension" is your misinterpretation.

Aristeia
07-27-2005, 04:02 PM
Micheal Fooks: I don't think you know what you're talking about. "Bouncing from technique to technique" is ludicrous. If you get your hands on someone and you can't plant the technique, you used the wrong one. That's not Aikido.

Ok I'm really trying not to be rude here but you're making it hard. If this is not something you are training then your training is deficient. It's called henka waza. You may be going for ikkyo ura but don't get underneath the elbow so switch to kote gaeshi. Someone may be resisting your juji nage so you switch to shiho nage. There's a limitless range of possibilities but there's also a number of techniques with specific relationships to other techniques depending on how uke is responding. The idea of flowing from one tech to another as uke changes their engergy lines is what makes aikido aikido. The two step drills we do are to teach basic techniques and concepts. In an active jiyu waza against an uke who isn't tanking you need to be much more flexible. This is something you must train.


.

I do know what a sucker punch. When you're good at Aikido, there's no such thing...you're never a sucker.
uh huh. to clarify is this something that is actually achieved or one of those things that Aikido will give you once you know it all (while remembering that no one ever does).



To the numbered: 1)Nope. I don't tell them. I let them believe what they want.

Go back and re read your posts on this thread. you've specifcally told people that things they are saying will happen in reality is because they haven't been training enough.

2)It's not necessary. Aikido teaches you the infinite realm of body movement.
really? Tell me again where in the traditional aikido syllabus I'll find shrimping?

Adam Alexander
07-27-2005, 04:04 PM
Having said all that to re address the original topic of the thread. The reason cross trainng came into I think, and is a valid part of the discussion is because, if as an Akidoka you are going to make claims about Aikido being able to handle anything, it behooves you to aquaint yourself with some other arts to understand what that "anything" may entail. Otherwise you're certainly in the realm of exagerration. Note this doesn't have to be cross training but could be the odd visit to or from another club.

Then what about Shioda's 'if you need to see what else is out there, everytime someone devises a new technique, you'll be helpless?' (obviously paraphrased. If I recall correctly, it's from Aikido Shugyo).

Adam Alexander
07-27-2005, 04:06 PM
Ok I'm really trying not to be rude here but you're making it hard. If this is not something you are training then your training is deficient. It's called henka waza. You may be going for ikkyo ura but don't get underneath the elbow so switch to kote gaeshi. Someone may be resisting your juji nage so you switch to shiho nage. There's a limitless range of possibilities but there's also a number of techniques with specific relationships to other techniques depending on how uke is responding. The idea of flowing from one tech to another as uke changes their engergy lines is what makes aikido aikido. The two step drills we do are to teach basic techniques and concepts. In an active jiyu waza against an uke who isn't tanking you need to be much more flexible. This isn't something you must train.

Yeah, I think training like that is the "dance" people think Aikido's becoming.

rob_liberti
07-27-2005, 04:08 PM
Personally, I might have qualified some of those statements with words like: As I understand aikido's potential, ultimately there should be no need to worry about someone taking you to the ground or sucker punching you, etc.

But I suppose is can be both my and Roy's misinterpretation of your expression. But to me (and Roy) it just seemed more like your mis-representation. I'm not trying to pick on you, but rather point out that a new person joining your dojo might come away with the same mis-understanding of your intended message. (FYI: According to NLP, the responsibility for a failed interpretation is typically placed on the sender.)

Rob

Aristeia
07-27-2005, 04:10 PM
Yeah, I think training like that is the "dance" people think Aikido's becoming.

I understand what you have in your mind when you say that and it's not what I'm talking about. I'm not talking about nage wandering around and uke following like a puppy dog. I'm talking about a resisiting uke who continues to change their lines of resistance necessitating changes in techniques.
As well as the the somewhat prudent approach that perhaps we should train for recovering from a failed technique just in case it doesn't go perfectly either due to environmental factors outside our control or because (some of us at least) are human.

Roy
07-27-2005, 04:11 PM
Michael Fooks,

I agree! Having a judo background, I realize that if I were to use a grip on an Aikidoka's arm, I would be in trouble! Nikyo, Ikkyo could easily be applied. And believe it or not, there are quite a few Judokas that don't realize this (although, many do). The thing that most Aikidoka (Although some do) don't realize is that if they get there center taken (which is what Judokas are masters at), and end up on the ground with one of these Judo guys, they will be in a world of trouble! And lets not forget that higher levels of judo practice various forms of Jujitsu, which is similar to Aikido. BJJ is in my opinion a street-combat ground style Jujitsu that compliments Aikido perfectly!!! Because, you don't necessarily want to be an the ground (that could in itself be dangerous), but if you do you will have the advantage over an unskilled ground fighter.

Aristeia
07-27-2005, 04:11 PM
Then what about Shioda's 'if you need to see what else is out there, everytime someone devises a new technique, you'll be helpless?' (obviously paraphrased. If I recall correctly, it's from Aikido Shugyo).

show me where any of us have advocated learning every technique on offer?

Roy
07-27-2005, 04:23 PM
Michael Fooks,
"This may be a topic for another thread"

I think your right! The subject of, should Aikido be supplemented would make a great thread. I'm looking forward to it.

Roy
07-27-2005, 04:29 PM
Michael, Sean, Rob,

Check the comic on this link out! Its reminds me of what is taking place in this thread :D http://www.bullshido.net/modules.php?name=Reviews&file=viewreview&id=81

Kevin Leavitt
07-27-2005, 05:13 PM
Lots of talk about "real". Real situation, real world.. The problem with real world is that it can mean different things to different people depending on their perspective.


Jean wrote:

Kevin:"Real world" misconception: give me just one single example of real world situation where Aikido does not have an answer...except for getting whacked with a pipe in back of the head

AIkido has no answers...it is a simply a DO and WAY and training methodology. It is not framed around providing scenario based solution sets. Therefore, it is entirely possible to say it has a technique for every situation to it has none. Did I ever say that Aikido was invalid? or did I say "there are better ways to learn self defense? There is a huge difference. Pipes to the back of the head are a great example of reality. also guns.

This is exactly the reason why I find training in MA for self defense kinda pointless. I believe the physical, mental, and spiritual elements you get out of them are far greater benefits than the few things you get out of self defense. But there are strategies and situation in which they are useful as part of a spectrum of defense...say for soldiers and police officers.


In regard to "real life, bets are off": I know when real life hits, it's different than the dojo. However, the dojo should compensate for that. Amongst other things, as mentioned earlier, the techniques are broader to compensate for how we move when hit with the fight/flight.

Not really sure what you mean by this, but you are correct "all bets are usually off' which is why most of us are saying there are many others out there that do not fight from the same paradigm you have grown comfortable with in your training. It is worth exploring them to discover the strengths and weaknesses of your training. It is amazing what you learn. Which is why I advocate cross training...not to learn or confuse yourself with new techniques, but to see new challenges and paradigms.

might be crazy, but I don't think Ueshiba and all of his great students would of made it as far as they did if this stuff didn't work in the real world. Just reading Shioda, that guy's been in plenty real life, life threatening situations.

Again, don't know what your definition of real world is...but I believe you will find that they never professed to use "aikido" for "real" only themselves as a fighter made up of the totality of their life experiences. Which included many other arts.


I don't claim that you will not take a strike in the process. I'm just saying that fighting isn't like it is in the movies...and the UFC isn't realistic.


Always an interesting debate. Don't want to get into a discussion about the UFC being real or not. It is a sport, but what isn't realistic about it? It gets pretty darn close without the parameters of multiple opponents, the ability to disengage and run, and weapons..which I admit is a huge bunch of parameters...but it is still pretty darn realistic for what it is.

Also interesting that you limited my ability in the first quote to leave out ambush techniques such as getting hit by a pipe, which in a sense establishes rules..then turn around and say well UFC isn't real.

My point is there is a spectrum of what reality is..from you can only grapple..to you never no what he may pull and when. It takes experience, wisdom, and maturity to recognize the futility of arguing about this spectrum and at what point constitutes reality.

If you are focused on the DO...then it really is immaterially what reality is.

IUltimiately, a real fight lasts maybe two minutes. Adrenaline's high. People are scared. It's not hard to get a technique in and walk away.

You make it sound so simple...even the UFC is more challenging than this statement. This situation is EXACTLY how most UFC fights go except you cannot walk away since the cage is closed.

I'd be interested to hear what Reality really is (that is why I typically put quotes around "real word"...cause they are emotional words that mean very little, and can cover a whole lot of territory!

Once you establish reality...then you can benchmark exaggeration!

Until then, we are all simply studying a martial way to peace and harmony and anything that effectively leads to that within the martial context acceptable...anything superflous to that is an exaggeration.

Aristeia
07-28-2005, 12:03 AM
I've read Micheal Fooks on RMA since the early 90s and ...

The funny thing is I seem to spend the bulk of my postcount on Aikidweb on the benefits of BJJ type arts and the bulk of my postcount on RMA defending Aikido and traditional arts. *shrug*

L. Camejo
07-28-2005, 01:43 AM
What I'm not convinced we can do to Aikido without losing something, is instigate the sort of sparring where there is no distinction between uke and nage. Where both are concerned with winning a "match". My take is that this kind of sparring has a completely different energy pattern and therefore strategy to what Aikido was trying to accomplish. If someone is attacking me but is just as concerned about watching out for my kote gaeshi as they are about actually hurting me, it's a different kettle of fish. I guess I'm talking about the difference between a sparring match, and an assault.

Very well said Michael. The thing is that the Randori method Tomiki created that is used for tournament or shiai-based training is very easily expanded towards self-defence type training where the limitations of techniques and attacks as found in shiai can be modified to the point where it's less like a sparring match for points and more like an assault by a skilled attacker (i.e. not giving away balance, good targeted striking, aware of what you might do to respond and skilled enough to shut it down or utilise it to further his attack if possible). In this method there is still no Tori or Uke, but one person does have a tanto which will affect how he attacks and uses technique. In this sort of training it is not a match for points but a test of application of skill and technique to control the attacker and stop his assault without injuring him while he tries everything to plunge that tanto into you, resist and counter your technique with his own Aiki waza.

Now obviously you can set up this kind of a match, but because of the changes that result you are going to doing a somewhat different style of aikido, smaller, in some sense less committed (in terms of commitment to the technique and the action).
The thing is that there is no guarantee that says an assault will always involve a committed attack. It depends on the type of assault. Also as far as technique goes, if one is uncommitted then there is a risk involved (i.e. being in position to get sliced/stabbed/hit) that is also existent as in an actual assault. The idea is to be committed in technique but at the same time unfettered by not trying to execute a particular technique after its interval for complete execution has passed or it has been shut down.The idea is to use everything about the attacker's movement, reactions etc. to get off the right technique at the right time. So one is committed in technique, just not mentally bound to executing that technique to the point where the situation is a muscle contest of force vs resistance. One in fact uses the resistance to show the path of the next technique that will work if the first one has failed.

guess I can come back to Judo and BJJ - sparring in those arts is not what real fighting looks like. The grip fighting, the feinting etc that is required for competition. No doubt they can translate this to real world effectively, but my point is the sparring and competition focus has altered the arts because it's a different set of techniques and strategy that work on someone that knows your game and is holding back their attacks because of that.
Agreed. I've come to look at sparring in different ways since doing Aikido, Judo, Japanese Jujutsu and a bit of BJJ also. There is sport sparring and there is "other" sparring imo. Sport sparring adheres to the rules of the game and is designed to develop skill in the sport via tactics which include exploitation of the rules etc. for the purpose of winning the game or bout. This is good for those training for sport and affects all arts with shiai. It will undoubtedly develop habits that will only survive in a rules-based (and protected) environment e.g. the grip fighting you referred to.

"Other" sparring can be tailored to meet other, non sport-oriented goals. This can include "Self Defence" (for lack of a better term) sparring which is designed to mimic the speed and intensity of an assault, where the goal here is to survive the assault and if possible control your attacker. Rules-based protection (for safety reasons) are strictly highlighted so the practitioners know that this is not equal to an actual assault but an approximation and are therefore made fully aware that they or the attacker can do other things in a true "rule-less" environment that are not addressed in the particular sparring exercise. These other aspects may even be addressed in a different type of tailored sparring. This is the same principle that is followed by folks who do scenario-based training, though there are a few differences. The armed attacker of course is encouraged to make a successful assault while the defender 's job is to "survive" the assault.

I wouldn't like to see that happen to aikido. It works great with genuine assault type attacks and I'd rather keep it as it is and get my sparring attributes from another art. My understanding is that this is what the competitive schools of aikido do within their own art to some degree? i.e. they type of fighting they use for sparring isn't the only type of aikido they practice, they also devote time to traditional techniques against assault type attacks? Maybe someone can confirm or deny that. Agreed. And yes we do practice techniques outside the "sport sparring" paradigm regularly as I indicated above.

Great post and question Michael. I think we agree more than anything else.

LC:ai::ki:

Kevin Leavitt
07-28-2005, 04:31 AM
In my trainng we also recognize the difference between sport fighting and reality fighting and use the two to complement each other. Believe it or not, there are people out there that can tell the diffeerence between the two and it causes no issues.

it can be confusing to novices, and that is why we always tell them the "rules" and perspective when training. I spend a majority of my time talking mindset and endstate when rolling.

Aristeia
07-28-2005, 05:39 AM
Thanks for your responses Larry and Kevin, it's reallly helped to solidify my thinking on that topic.

Adam Alexander
07-28-2005, 12:16 PM
Just a note: I made a lot of assertions about the potential of Aikido. Rather than respond directly to them, I think I recieved a bunch of personal attacks and/or malicious responses and responses that didn't really answer the questions I posed.

It's funny because, although I may exaggerate the potential of Aikido (which, if you read from the beginning, all I've ever said about it was that it's a "framework"), you folks have failed to give the least reason for someone not to recognize it as the framework.

Of the questions I didn't answer: They were irrelevant to the conversation.

Aikido still offers a defense for all offense--bigger, smaller and multiple.

Kevin Leavitt
07-28-2005, 12:40 PM
Who attacked you personally? I may not agree with all your statements, but I hope I haven't attacked you. Which ones were malicous in nature? Could you be exagerating? :)

Adam Alexander
07-28-2005, 12:54 PM
No, not you at all. I think that most of the posts in this thread, in response to mine, weren't really responding to my points.

Aristeia
07-28-2005, 12:59 PM
That's puzzling to me, I've just gone back and skimmed them again and they all look to be directly responsive. And while some of us have been challenging some of your conceptions about Aikido I don't see much in the way of personal attacks. Ah well *shrug*

Jorge Garcia
07-28-2005, 01:04 PM
Just a note: I made a lot of assertions about the potential of Aikido. Rather than respond directly to them, I think I received a bunch of personal attacks and/or malicious responses and responses that didn't really answer the questions I posed.

It's funny because, although I may exaggerate the potential of Aikido (which, if you read from the beginning, all I've ever said about it was that it's a "framework"), you folks have failed to give the least reason for someone not to recognize it as the framework.

Of the questions I didn't answer: They were irrelevant to the conversation.

Aikido still offers a defense for all offense--bigger, smaller and multiple.
Jean,
When I made this statement, I felt I was in essence agreeing with your basic premise.

"Secondly, what is aikido's potential? That potential in terms of self defense is limitless. I don't think aikido takes a back seat to any other art."

In other words, I don't feel any other martial art will help me any more that with what I have with Aikido. Essentially, if I was a good enough Aikidoist, I believe that Aikido (in its ultimate form) has all that is needed for self defense against anything.
Best,

Adam Alexander
07-28-2005, 01:07 PM
Gentlemen, let's not turn this into a group hug.

Attacks and/OR malicious responses.

I simply believe that the actual points were disregarded. Nothing more, nothing less.

Roy
07-28-2005, 01:57 PM
Like I said before, it is hard to tell if you are bragging, or constructively taking part in the thread. Keep to the main points, without being "cocky," or condescending and you wont have all these negative responses. Just in case you missed this link to the comic, http://www.bullshido.net/modules.php?name=Reviews&file=viewreview&id=81, you can check it out and see for yourself what my impression is of your posts. As far as a group hug goes, well?? We can't all be wrong!

rob_liberti
07-29-2005, 10:54 AM
Well, to be fair. My impression is that Jean's initial posts on this thread were really good. I didn't take his later ones to be cocky or condescending. I just saw them as he meant to demonstrate his faith in the/his process of learning and developing by means of aikido practice. I thought some of the latter statements were a bit over the top and I wouldn't express them that way to a beginner. But to be fair - this is a "thread", and reading where he was initially coming from in this thread, I can see that I didn't give him the benefit of the doubt that he meant aikido's potential on some of my criticisms. My apologies on that! That's as far as I'll go because his saying someone who has been reasonable for years doesn't know what they are talking about - well that continues to deserve some negative feedback, but it's over and time to let it drop.

Rob

Ron Tisdale
07-29-2005, 11:33 AM
I don't know...Jean kind of reminds me of some of my posts once upon a time...that's probably why I blush when reading some of his posts! :)

Best,
Ron :o

Roy
07-29-2005, 12:46 PM
Ok Ok!! I think I went a litle overbaord here!! Not very Aiki of me! And as mentioned above, it is over, and time to let it drop. Sinceraly, Roy

Aristeia
07-29-2005, 02:41 PM
Virtual Beers all round.

Adam Alexander
07-29-2005, 02:52 PM
I understand what you have in your mind when you say that and it's not what I'm talking about. I'm not talking about nage wandering around and uke following like a puppy dog. I'm talking about a resisiting uke who continues to change their lines of resistance necessitating changes in techniques.
As well as the the somewhat prudent approach that perhaps we should train for recovering from a failed technique just in case it doesn't go perfectly either due to environmental factors outside our control or because (some of us at least) are human.

That's the difference: A compensation for a failed technique.

You said that 'Aikido is bouncing from technique to technique.'

How is it, one minute "that is Aikido" a couple posts later, it's just a recovery?

If you're going to reply to this, please keep it brief. I don't have the time for the long drawn out stuff.

One other thing, when an Aikido technique is done correctly, uke CANNOT RESIST!! There's no base to exercise strength/resistance from...is that false? If not, then how is it that 'bouncing from technique to technique' IS AIKIDO?

csinca
07-29-2005, 03:48 PM
One other thing, when an Aikido technique is done correctly, uke CANNOT RESIST!! There's no base to exercise strength/resistance from...is that false? If not, then how is it that 'bouncing from technique to technique' IS AIKIDO?

But I think a point that someone was trying to make earlier is that when a jab is done correctly, it connects with a face; when a Thai roundhouse kick is done correctly it lands on a thigh... If the aikido technique is done correctly, then the other guy didn't do his thing correctly.

The real trick is who can do their thing correctly and apply it against another person who is also trying to do their thing correctly. For most of us I would imagine it more truthfully comes down to who makes the fewer mistakes, but maybe that would just be me.

Chris

Adam Alexander
07-29-2005, 04:09 PM
But I think a point that someone was trying to make earlier is that when a jab is done correctly, it connects with a face; when a Thai roundhouse kick is done correctly it lands on a thigh... If the aikido technique is done correctly, then the other guy didn't do his thing correctly

Maybe. I don't see exactly where the point was attempted.

The concept I was pushing is that a person who has failed to apply the proper technique has experienced a failure with himself/herself...it's not Aikido that failed.

If I look at your point through the same window, would you say that a missed jab was a failure of Boxing or the boxer? Would you say that the failed roundhouse is a failure of Thai or the Muay Thai fighter?

Roy Dean
07-29-2005, 04:25 PM
"One other thing, when an Aikido technique is done correctly, uke CANNOT RESIST!!"

All techniques can be resisted, and/or reversed. You just need to know how to block one of the critical mechanics necessary to complete the technique.

All techniques have a beginning, middle, and end. It may seem as though a techniques cannot be resisted, because
you may be beginning your resistance at the end of the technique. The greater your awareness, the earlier you'll be able to redirect their attempts for application.

csinca
07-29-2005, 07:35 PM
Jean,

I interpreted an earlier post along the lines of what I wrote but I'm not about to go back through all the recent pages. It doesn't matter that much :)

I do agree that a missed technique is the fault of the person not the art. It could be lack of practice, lack of execution or poor selection/application but it's likely "operator error"

Chris

Adam Alexander
07-30-2005, 02:33 PM
"One other thing, when an Aikido technique is done correctly, uke CANNOT RESIST!!"

All techniques can be resisted, and/or reversed. You just need to know how to block one of the critical mechanics necessary to complete the technique.

All techniques have a beginning, middle, and end. It may seem as though a techniques cannot be resisted, because
you may be beginning your resistance at the end of the technique. The greater your awareness, the earlier you'll be able to redirect their attempts for application.

I'm not saying this to be a smart-***.

If you feel that way, I would suspect you've never had a technique applied to you properly.

To resist requires strength. Strength (for practical reasons) can only be exercised between two points. Two options Aikido offers is 1)performing a technique from an angle that's perpendicular to the strong line (the line between the two points), or 2)apply technique near the same angle of the strong line, but continually stay just off that angle by changing it as uke changes the strong line. There's more, but those are a couple simple examples.

As far as "attempting to redirect": If I stand with my feet shoulder width apart, no matter what I'm aware of, I will not be able to resist the technique if the techniques strong line is perpendiculer to the line running across my feet. Add to that, the spinning motion, and even on uke's best day, they'll never keep up with the lines changing.

That's just how I see it.

Aristeia
07-30-2005, 05:05 PM
The concept I was pushing is that a person who has failed to apply the proper technique has experienced a failure with himself/herself...it's not Aikido that failed.

Hi Jean, thanks for your response both in this and the other thread, it seems as though we're back to constructive discussion which is great.
Let me put my point like this. I think when you're discussing fighting, any system thad does not have the idea of failure from recovery built in is fundamentally flawed. A system that assumes the first technique will work first time every time is never going to be of use. (thankfully Aikido isn't such a system). There are just too many variables in fighting that make this unlikely, even assuming a perfect practioner which in itself is not achievable. It is still useful to train in this way to teach commitment and intent but reality is that on shot one kill is unlikely.

In terms of properly applied technique being irrisistable I disagree. You're right in that technique should attack weak points. But against an educated and trained opponent who may know what you've got in store for them, the adjustments they need to make early in the technique to force you to change to something else, they can do more quickly than you can complete the technique. In otherwords if they're good enough to get what you're trying to do they can get inside your action loop.

I spent yesterday with John Will one of the top BJJ coaches in the world. He makes the point that the difference between advanced BJJ students and intermediates and beginners is that the advanced ones live in the moment. Which means that whatever tech they are attempting, when the situation changes they will instantly change and adapt with it, abandoning what they were doing if necessary as soon as the "picture" changes. I think its the same with Aikido. The good guys are the ones who can feel uke responding slightly differently, adjusting to the kuzushi slightly differently, countering the technique early, and can turn on a dime to change to the next one that is now more appropriate. There are some that argue that this is the very genesis of many of our techniques.
I'll grant you that the phrase "bouncing from technique to technique" does not quite capture what I meant. I'm talking more about mushin - emptly mind that is not narrowly focused on the technique you may enter with but adapts to whatever movement uke gives you.

Beleive it or not - that was the brief version :-}

dyffcult
07-30-2005, 06:55 PM
Michael and Jean --

Every aikido technique can be countered via another technique. I wish my memory were clearer so that I could cite the techniques from beginning to end. But I once saw Saito Sensei and his son Hitohirosan do counter techniques to each other for what then seemed like five minutes straight. Saito Sensei performed a technique, Hitohirosan countered, to which Saito Sensei countered, to which Hitohirosan countered and so on and so on.....

So while I agree that a properly executed aikido technique cannot be resisted, it can be countered. Of course, maybe you were both talking just about resistance and not countering.

If so, mea culpa.

Aristeia
07-30-2005, 08:27 PM
yep, that's pretty much the kind of flow I'm talking about. Nage starts initiating a technique, uke starts countering in some way, nage switches to something that is (now) more appropriate.

dyffcult
07-30-2005, 09:15 PM
BTW Michael...I love your sig...

rob_liberti
08-01-2005, 08:23 AM
To me, as long you you are in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing no one can resist you. I don't see aikido _primarily_ as developing the ability to be like a hydrolic machine where you stand in one place and crank anyone who enters the real estate you are defending - no matter how much kokyu you do it with. I would imagine that is possible if you are _much_ better than the attacker(s), but that's not typically the case (unless you hang out with first graders or something like that!).

In my opinion, at least intermediate level aikido requires you to unfiy with the other person so that you both are contributing to the overall movement. That kind of thing cannot be easily countered. I would say that to counter such a strategy, it would take an attacker who knew what to abandon, when to do so, and when to enter themselves. However, it all comes down to differential in martial ability.

I agree that aikido does not fail, but I would also say the study is typically not oriented to produce great results as rapidly against other people who are trying to hurt you as some other arts. - And I wouldn't trade in my study of aikido for equal time in another art for anything.

Rob

Adam Alexander
08-01-2005, 01:27 PM
1)Hi Jean, thanks for your response both in this and the other thread, it seems as though we're back to constructive discussion which is great.

2)emptly mind that is not narrowly focused on the technique you may enter with but adapts to whatever movement uke gives you.

1)Yeah, it's nice. I overlooked, what I consider, your initiating offense for what I think is the greater good of Aikido.

2)I get the impression that you are/were using the words kata/form and technique interchangeably.

To me, an Aikido technique, once it's begun is an exercise in keeping uke off balance until the technique is completed. Further (in my eyes), an Aikido technique that's properly performed maintains pressure on the periphery of uke's balance so that no matter what uke does, you're there at the edge of him/her.

There's no prearranged script. An Aikido technique isn't defined by the actions of sh'te. It's defined by uke. Where uke goes, sh'te is already there taking it away. That's why it's unstoppable.

For those of you who think a technique can be stopped (I mean this totally sincerely), think about it like that and let me know what you think. If you disagree, give an example of how it would happen.

About techniques being hard to make happen like that, I don't think it is. When you have the balance and stay at the edge of it, you can't hardly help but to stay there--and being that you're continuously changing the line of attack, uke can't compensate. I think as long as the pressure is maintained against the periphery, uke obviously can't do anything about it (uke advances, you automatically take up the slack).

Ron Tisdale
08-01-2005, 01:43 PM
I think in theory that is an excellent way to look at aikido techniques. I also think that in reality, it is fairly rare that I see someone actually performing consistantly at that level (especially below say, 3rd dan). I also think that with yet more reality (uke actively resisting being put in that situation, while at the same time attacking with the intent to sucsessfully implement their own techniques), consistantly performing at that level is even more rare.

It comes back to the aikido practitioner, not the art, that matters.

Ron (kind of like 'everyone's got a plan, until they get hit')

Adam Alexander
08-01-2005, 01:50 PM
Atleast it's not an exaggeration:)

Ron Tisdale
08-01-2005, 02:03 PM
Well, no, not in its pure sense. But when I think about it, any standard, when seen in comparison to the reality, is an exageration. It is rare to see the standard met...that's why its a standard. those who meet it are seen to be 'better' in some way than the existing status quo.

I think...

Ron

rob_liberti
08-01-2005, 04:01 PM
Atleast it's not an exaggeration:)No, but it would be impressive.:)

Aristeia
08-01-2005, 07:52 PM
To me, an Aikido technique, once it's begun is an exercise in keeping uke off balance until the technique is completed. Further (in my eyes), an Aikido technique that's properly performed maintains pressure on the periphery of uke's balance so that no matter what uke does, you're there at the edge of him/her.

There's no prearranged script. An Aikido technique isn't defined by the actions of sh'te. It's defined by uke. Where uke goes, sh'te is already there taking it away.

Ok now we're getting to it. Where uke goes nage (sorry I'll keep using my langauage for the sake of my own consistancy), is already there? How can this be possible on a conceptual level? If uke turns right, nage is there, if uke turns left nage is there? How can he be in both places.

What I'm getting at is Aikido techniques are based around uke reacting to the unbalancing in a certain way. First of all you have to do the unbalancing correctly. Lets assume that's a given. Now lets freeze the picture. Nage is moving slightly ahead of uke, so that uke's next movement sucks them deeper into the technique. This presumes uke will react in a certain way. The overwhelming number of people will move in that way. But some of them won't. For two primary reasons.
1. they don't have the co ordination to actually recover.
2. they have a clue, know whats coming and are good enough to try and move in a different way.

So lets go back to our frozen picture. Nage has taken uke's balance. Usually by some sort of cut to the third point. To recover uke can do a number of things. Move one leg. Move the other let. take a knee. Try and rolllout. Blend with the unbalancing to keep going to ground and bring nage with him. There's a number of things.
Nage meanwhile is in the process of moving to the next stage of the technique. Oftentimes the adjustment uke needs to make is so small, if they know what they are doing, and they are good, they can do it before nage can continue to keep them off balance. In short uke can make a small movement for nage's long movement and win the race - get insided the action loop.
Thankfully this doesn't mean Aikido fails, it just means that Nage has to move to another technique.



About techniques being hard to make happen like that, I don't think it is. When you have the balance and stay at the edge of it, you can't hardly help but to stay there--and being that you're continuously changing the line of attack, uke can't compensate. I think as long as the pressure is maintained against the periphery, uke obviously can't do anything about it (uke advances, you automatically take up the slack).
How long in terms of training time do you think it takes people to develop the sort of competence you're talking about?

Aristeia
08-01-2005, 07:55 PM
One final point, just to endorse what a previous poster has said (forget which thread). An art that is based on the initial technique having to work perfectly may be interesting on an intellectual level for discussing how gods and ubermensch may fight, but as we are all human and prone to the odd mistake (even the "masters"), it doesn't hold much interst human beings learning how to fight. Thankfully Aikido is not such an art.

Kevin Leavitt
08-02-2005, 02:25 PM
When it come to fighting...I have pretty decent skills. Qualified on many different NATO and soviet based weapon systems, unarmed fighting, knifes, empty hand...etc...I am a pretty decent shot with a sniper rifle, not the best, but I can kill a guy from 800M. I can rig a mecury switch and make a pretty mean malatov cocktail. These are all technique based skills. I didn't need to study principles to understand how to do them.

However, I suck at aikido.

What does practicing a DO based art have to do with reality? It teaches you things about yourself and others. An important part of developing a warrior..but not for the reasons of learning how to kill someone or be "combat effective". There are much faster and better ways to prepare yourself for that.

The ability to make decisions properly and learn the subtle nature of conflict resolution require more than learning techniques.

rob_liberti
08-02-2005, 02:51 PM
Okay, understood, but for curiosity sake, how do you think you would have done if you had been in a situation like the pizza parlor attack? I think that is the average beginner is asking about. -Rob

Adam Alexander
08-02-2005, 06:40 PM
1)What I'm getting at is Aikido techniques are based around uke reacting to the unbalancing in a certain way. First of all you have to do the unbalancing correctly. Lets assume that's a given. Now lets freeze the picture. Nage is moving slightly ahead of uke, so that uke's next movement sucks them deeper into the technique.

2)How long in terms of training time do you think it takes people to develop the sort of competence you're talking about?

1)That's not my impression of techniques. Sort of, but not identical.

When I say sh'te is there, I mean 1)sh'te chooses that spot amongst others--it's like walking through water--there's a resistance that stops you from moving too fast, but you can pretty much go anywhere, and 2)my experience has been that it's not so much moving ahead as moving with...when I've experienced it nicely, I was more just guiding it in a direction--almost like my options were limited. So, I wouldn't say that you're necessarily ahead (maybe someone at the top experiences it that way) but just right.

Yeah, I know that's not a very good explanation, but it's the only way I can think to describe it.

2)Sh*t, if I knew I wouldn't be posting here...I'd be training to meet the deadline:)

I don't even have the vaguest clue. I think I've advanced quicker than most people...However, I'm thinking Aikido 24/7...I wake up at night thinking about techniques, when I change direction walking down the street I think about it's relation to Aikido, when someone walks within striking distance...I think Aikido. Hell, last week, I spent four days at 2 hours per day working on two movements...and that's not counting the other days of the week. I've been practicing a few years and I'm not there.

I believe that I can take someone's balance pretty easy (muscling it). I also beleive that I could manage to walk away from a multiple attacker situation (walk away--not necessarily take all of them...Again, this is all probably false confidence:)) because I can move.

But, the average person's training? I have no clue. But, that's why I get p*ssed when people talk negatively about Aikido...it's not Aikido, it's the training people choose.

I don't know if my life story was what you were looking for...but, anyway, I imagine if Aikidoka's training was as intense and focused as I hear BJJ's is, the timeline to proficiency would be much faster.


In regard to the pizza parlor: first of all, that guy got what he was asking for...he tried to play the macho role. Myself, I'd of handled it differently. But, if someone took that approach and that swing, I don't think it would of been a problem.

If you were to wait until the guy started swinging to defend yourself, then you could of delivered a palm-heel when he reared back. You could of waited for it to start coming and guide the punch across and then do whatever you want.

I think, from the standpoint of Aikido, that was a real easy assault to deal with. Probably easier for an Aikidoka who could off-balance or guide the guy a lot easier than a pure striker who'd go head-to-head with a whole lot of power.

Roy
08-02-2005, 07:22 PM
Sean wrote,
"I'm thinking Aikido 24/7...",

I do not question your commitment, but "doing" not theorizing is whats going to give you reality based Aikido skills.


"if Aikidoka's training was as intense and focused as I hear BJJ's is, the timeline to proficiency would be much faster."

For me at least, the key word here is "focused;" because, an MA like BJJ and its training involves the physical, mental and intuition. All these senses are being used both in harmony, and to there maximum. Rarely, does their training involve just a simple discussion, followed by an artificial controlled exercises (to be safe of course!!). With the training described for Aikido, you are left to ponder about the reality of the technique.

Roy
08-02-2005, 09:05 PM
Can someone direct me to the "Pizza Parlor" attack, that's being brought up in this thread? Maybe a page number or post number?

Thank you :)

Kevin Leavitt
08-03-2005, 12:09 AM
Heck Roy...I saw this a few months ago. Not sure where it was discussed sorry. Might try Bullshido.net...I am sure it is on there somewhere.

rob_liberti
08-03-2005, 10:44 AM
It was in the general section right here on aikiweb. Search for pizza! (which are words to live by)

Adam Alexander
08-03-2005, 12:18 PM
Sean wrote,
"I'm thinking Aikido 24/7...",

I do not question your commitment, but "doing" not theorizing is whats going to give you reality based Aikido skills.


LOL. One day, I think you might get it. And just because I'm such a sweetheart, I'll give you a hint:)

No matter what you're doing, if your balance is moving north and you move to change direction to the east, that'll give you info to implement in practice.

Now, try moving to the north and changing to the west...it's a whole new world.

Good luck, little fella. Keep the ax to the stone and I'm sure, one day, you'll figure it out.

BTW, I figured since you neglected the point of my dedicated practice (you know, 2hrs. a day, etc), you needed a little boost.

Roy
08-03-2005, 12:28 PM
Thanks for all the posts people :D , and please remeber to thank Jean for being a shinning example, of what the heart of the thread is all about "exageration in Aikido";)

Aristeia
08-03-2005, 07:01 PM
Jean you're right about well applied Aikido technique limiting uke's movement options. Where we disagree is that I don't think you can limit them as much as you think. But there's no way I can prove that to you. I can tell you to get someone to try and really spar with you, but your response will be that you're just not good enough yet. I can ask you to point to someone who can do what you're talking about - consistantly do perfect technique without any chance of error or counter, and you can still tell me it's just because no one can do aikido properly. My point is that if that is the case, it's the same as saying don't expect to get these skills in a timeframe you can use them.
Which is way I'm so pleased that Aikido gives me so many great options for recovery from failure.

You're training hard which is great. Don't kid yourself that it's that unusual. Most of the people on this board will have a similar level of obsession with their budo. At this stage in your training you're very focused on the micro picutre, making each technique as effective as possible. That's great too. But trust me, as your training progresses what you'll start to do is become more interested in the macro picutre, how different techniques fit together, what the similarities are, how one branches into another, or several others depending on uke's response. That's what I'm talking aboutn.

Oh and BTW regarding the doing vs theorizing thing. There is some good evidence that visualisation is almost as good as physical practice in some areas. But this is for rehearsal of a physical skill that has already been, in some sense acquired, rather than coming up with brand new stuff. Not directed at anyone in particular just thought it interesting.

Ketsan
08-03-2005, 08:52 PM
The easy part in martial arts is perfecting technique the hard part is using the technique. In an Aikido sence learning to apply a technique on an uke is the first part, given long enough we can probably learn to do that very well. Where things get interesting is when you start training with people that have no training in taking ukemi. Noobs are great for this. I've seen people tense up and fall over when I try ikkyo, that to me is probably more in line with reality than the uke that blends with your technique and ends up pinned.
The reaction of tori to this complete failure of uke to take ukemi is what seperates fighters or warriors out from martial artists in my humble opinion.
I think I've said in other threads that I rarely find anyone that can catastrophically break my balance. I find myself in situations where I have pleantly of options after my balance has been "broken" but the only acceptable one from an ettiquet point of view is to fall over.
Even when you have broken uke's balance it doesn't mean that you have them under control. If you take for example irime nage omote cutting through jodan, uke's balance is broken, they may fall onto their knees. They're then expected to try and get up but there's nothing stopping them rolling over and booting you in the nuts or taking the hand thats on their neck and doing something with it.

If there's exageration in Aikido it's that uke behaves as an ordinary person would.

Roy
08-03-2005, 09:04 PM
Michael Fooks wrote,

"There is some good evidence that visualisation is almost as good as physical practice in some areas. But this is for rehearsal of a physical skill that has already been, in some sense acquired, rather than coming up with brand new stuff."

Well, exactly! Visualizing or reminiscing learned techniques, will only strengthen you're memory/insight to the techniques. But to ponder-up Aikido moves that will theoretically take down a Ju-doka, or BJJ ground fighter based on "Zero knowledge" is both wrong, and will not be anywhere near as effective as actually going to a Judo, or BJJ club, to get a true sense of what Judo/BJJ is all about. If you agree with the above, then perhaps you will agree that to try and convince others of, or make arguments against others, about something you know nothing about, is double wrong; at least, it is in my mind. Would you agree or disagree with me here on this?

P.S I am always open to opinions, negative or positive!! ;) This is what forums are all about :D

Say what you mean, mean what you say.

Roy
08-03-2005, 09:10 PM
Alex,
That is true! Just because someone is on the ground does not necessarily make them vulnerable, especially if they train in ground fighting.

rob_liberti
08-03-2005, 09:15 PM
Hmmm..., when I do iriminage, I expect the person to stay down the first time their balance is broken. If they happen to maintain some degree of control, then I try to lead them up on the edge of their balance (which they are chasing) back up. They then have the option of being led inside the arc (as Michael suggested a few posts back) of my free arm, or going into a much more dangerous spot.

Now, for me to get into iriminage position against someone who is actively trying to knock me down, well that's a horse of a different color. I'm not there yet. In that case, well, it's just not as pretty as I wish it were!

Rob

L. Camejo
08-03-2005, 09:56 PM
Can someone direct me to the "Pizza Parlor" attack, that's being brought up in this thread? Maybe a page number or post number?

Thank you :)

Just for folks who wanted to know - Pizza parlor attack - http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7653

LC:ai::ki:

rob_liberti
08-04-2005, 08:09 AM
Well, I think a discussion specifically about the pizza parlor attack probably belongs on that thread. I just meant that the original post in thread was (IIRC) about what you can say to a beginner who is asking about using aikido to defend yourself. I agree with Kevin that aikido is not the answer to armed combat, but my point was I think we can assume the beginner is more thinking of a pizza parlor attack situation rather than a Rambo situation. (I understand that Kevin was explaining a rather large exaggeration.)

I know this is an aside as well, but are there specific chokes or other things that cause bodily damage you would expect to learn in ground fighting schools (like BJJ) that would send someone to the hospital - especially things that you wouldn't see too much from people not trained in that methodology? I'm interested in trying to figure out a way to determine just how many "trained" ground-fighters are actually fighting.

Rob

Ron Tisdale
08-04-2005, 09:05 AM
Most blood chokes would not send most people to the hospital...if they are released once the person is out. There are some people with wierd stuff going on with their arteries (say, a weakened artieral wall) who might suffer unusual damage, but I think that is rare. If you use an air choke, there's probably a good chance of damaging the trachea, but not if you know what you're doing. So you might see some problems there.

Probably arm bars taken to the breaking or dislocation point would be more of what you'd expect, on a guess. But in reality, none of the bjj people I'm aware of go out looking for fights, any more than most of the aikidoka I know. Silly idea from the get go.

What you *could* do, however, is look at the damages from competition.

Best,
Ron

L. Camejo
08-04-2005, 10:08 AM
Larry Camejo,

Thank you, for the link to the Pizza Parlor attack! That was one big mother f%#&er!! I see the relevance to that video here. If the victim would have known Aikido, would it have helped him to defeat the guy, or would it have maid the big guy even more mad/insane? Are you really sure that big guy was really that slow? Sure, sure, I know the confident Jean De Rochefort with his theories would of came out victorious, but what about the rest of us?

Hi Roy,

I agree that guy in the video was huge. I think the main reason that the assault even happened successfully had a lot to do with the psychological state and assumptions of the victim, which led to a serious case of un-awareness or denial which placed him in a position that was hard for anyone to defend against once things got started. Imo he should have quietly walked out as Bubba came walking in.

As far as what the rest of us would do in that situation I cannot say. Most MA-ists I know are not trained to handle that degree of focussed, powerful aggression and intent to injure while staying calm, regardless of technical repertoire and training method. The styles with hard resistance-based randori and competition type practices may have an edge on dealing with the adrenal stresss that may come into play in such an encounter, but it really depends on the individual imo. In my personal case, failing the best option of conflict evasion, I offered Shomen Ate as a particular technical option from Aikido in that thread. This is one of the first techniques learnt by anyone in Shodokan and is very simple, linear and straightforward. Does it mean that a beginner can pull it off in situation like the Pizza Parlor attack? Not necessarily. It depends on how it is taught and also the understanding, clarity, resolve and willingness of the student in applying it when under real threat. A couple of my beginners have exhibited this ability, but it does not mean that all can do it. The mind/body/spirit of both Instructor and student must provide fertile ground for this sort of teaching to take root and grow if it is to become part of one's training.

In the case of all SD situations that have degenerated into physical altercation and being effective at surviving it, I quote Peyton Quinn of RMCAT - "Perfect intent is better than perfect technique." The majority of Aikido training I've seen does not teach about developing the right intent to deal with severe SD situations imho. Mushin is a great concept that can easily be applied to this, but I have met very few from any art who are able to actually maintain it under serious imminent physical threat. I have seen though that those who engage in some sort of regularl "sparring" or randori where there is a modicum of danger become a bit more effective at adapting to SD if necessary.

But in reality, none of the bjj people I'm aware of go out looking for fights, any more than most of the aikidoka I know. Silly idea from the get go.
None of the BJJ folks I met have this problem either. However, I have been made aware by a student of mine who lived in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil until recently that there are gangs of teenagers and young adults mainly who study BJJ and use it as a means to go around terrorising and robbing people. Maybe it's a new kind of Musha Shugyo, maybe it's the (lack of ??) ethical direction in their training curriculum, or maybe it's just the impetuousness of youth, who knows?

LC:ai::ki:

Aristeia
08-04-2005, 10:51 AM
I know this is an aside as well, but are there specific chokes or other things that cause bodily damage you would expect to learn in ground fighting schools (like BJJ) that would send someone to the hospital - especially things that you wouldn't see too much from people not trained in that methodology?

Chokes are generally considered the compassionate response. Even air chokes are very unlikely to cause permanent damange (although striking to the trachea will) or so I've been told.
To send someone to the hospital you're probably looking at the "snap" rather than "nap" side of the equation.
Damaging the elbow, shoulder, knee or ankle.
But even that is the end point. If you can control position it's then up to you whether you finish via a joint lock (break), choke, or bounding down with fists, elbows, headbutts etc.

Kevin Leavitt
08-04-2005, 01:21 PM
Damn, self defense questions are hard to answer!

Good discussion guys!

I think even the best BJJ guy would have worked his way to the door and disengaged in that situation. The big dude would have "gassed" trying to walk toward him at a brisk pace!

Adam Alexander
08-04-2005, 01:22 PM
I swear Kevin, you never answer those questions! LOL.

Kevin Leavitt
08-04-2005, 01:30 PM
There is no anwer that is why! it is situational! It is easy to arm chair quarterback the situation for sure. Especially when both parties are pushing egos and neither have Martial skill...how do you respond with what would be appropriate?

I tend to follow the continum of use of force theory. You attempt to disengage, use words, run, etc....in that theory, force is the last resort. If you have not tried these things first..then I'd say any one of the things prior to force is what should have been done.

If it is an ambush attack...well you are probably screwed and need to do whatever you can to recover! (that is why I like my BJJ skills :)) (had to get that one in Jean :))

L. Camejo
08-04-2005, 03:38 PM
If it is an ambush attack...well you are probably screwed and need to do whatever you can to recover! (that is why I like my BJJ skills :)) (had to get that one in Jean :))
Good point Kevin.

Of course doing "whatever you can" to recover will vary from person to person. One will tend to instinctively utilise what one is (or at least thinks they are) most capable in, for some it's BJJ, Judo etc. for others it's Aikido, for others it's a knife or a gun etc. The question becomes though - "Is capability to defend oneself from physical attack really a product of training methods and technical repertoire alone or is the resolve and survival mindset of the person defending a major, if not more important component?"

I see different types of training as tools. The situation determines what tool works best. But one must be able to open the box first and get the tool working to use it. Often the flight/fight/freeze response can stop/hinder us from ever opening the toolbox and finding the right tool.

Getting back on thread point - I think ANY training method that makes self defence claims against larger/multiple attackers must fully understand what is truly involved in these sorts of encounters and aim to really address the various elements in training, otherwise they are all guilty of exaggeration and misrepresentation. It does not matter whether the method is "Do", "Jutsu" or "other", physical techniques alone do not equip one with self defence skill. The force continuum options Kevin outlined above are not common knowledge to all "Instructors" who teach "self defence". It should be however, since actual self defence starts long before physical contact is engaged and the force continuum and similar concepts are pivotal to actual self defence methods.

Imho of course.;)
LC:ai::ki:

Adam Alexander
08-04-2005, 04:25 PM
LOL. Yeah, yeah.

When I answer that question "what, as an Aikidoka, would you have done?" I'm taking it for granted that the mental side is in order...I mean, when we discuss those questions, what's the sense of bothering if we have to go through a "mentally prepared" waiver with every post? It's a given.

And, BJJ for ambush?!? You're just pulling my chain:)

Ron Tisdale
08-05-2005, 08:28 AM
This was recently posted to AJ.com:

http://members.shaw.ca/tmanifold/ritualized.htm

I'm going to go back to the PP video and see how many of these indicators are there...

Best,
Ron

Roy
08-05-2005, 11:28 AM
Brenda Allen wrote,

"While I think that her boyfriend is an idiot buffoon who needs his ass kicked by a much smaller guy so that he will abandon his belief that might is right."

And this is at the heart of the tread, should a smaller Aikidoka feel he/she can take on a buffoon like that, just because they took Aikido?

PS. Wasn't that woman a real peach :drool:

Adam Alexander
08-05-2005, 01:15 PM
Roy, I think this thread reached the agreement that...No. You can not kick anyone's a**--bigger, smaller or out-numbered-- because you take Aikido. However, Aikido is a platform from which the ability may develop.

Back on track...my aikido training would have told me to leave the shop the moment the woman got belligerent with that guy standing behind her..... that sucker punch from nowhere would have left me out on the floor stone cold.

My Aikido training would have told me to affect the necessary level of physical domination in order to allow me to live my life freely. I think that's one of the important points of Aikido...nowhere have I ever heard that we should run from conflict...we should resolve conflict that seeks to impede us when we're acting in an appropriate manner...Aikido is not passive (my interpretation...also seems to be the interpretation [or atleast my misinterpretation of it's interpretation:)) of "Aikido Exercises for Teaching and Training"].

Further, I think if you take emphasis off the attacker and put it on the woman, then the you could logically follow it back to the initiator...the "victim." That's why I say he asked for it...he handled it offensively.


Whoops, one other thing...On Aikido and avoiding conflict. I think people use Aikido as an excuse to not face their fears. Not that that's what you'd be doing, but I think most people who say they'd leave "because of Aikido" are doing that...I think that might be part of the bad rap Aikido gets (not that Aikido has a real bad rap, but that's just one of those little things out there).


One more thing (I'm long winded)...Aikido offers the platform by which that "sucker" (at best (if you think a sucker punch is dirty) when two guys come toe-to-toe--atleast one in an aggresive position, it's not a "sucker" punch...unless, you're saying, as I always do, that the only sucker there is the one who's being wiped off the floor.)punch wouldn't have left anyone but the attacker on the ground...he offers so much easy to harness energy:)

akiy
08-05-2005, 02:22 PM
Can people please take the discussion specific to the Pizza Parlor (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7653) incident to that thread?

Thanks,

-- Jun

PS: I'll be moving some of the Pizza Parlor thread specific posts from this thread to that thread...

Roy
08-05-2005, 02:34 PM
Alex Lawrence wrote,

"My training would have told me to take the dude down as soon as he stepped onto the scene"

I understand where you are coming from! If it were me at the pizza shop, I would have made sure, I was "at-least," paying closer attention to the "big dude." But, I'm not sure I would have lashed out the moment he stepped in the shop/scene.

Sean wrote,

"Roy, I think this thread reached the agreement that...No. You can not kick anyone's a**--bigger, smaller or out-numbered-- because you take Aikido. However, Aikido is a platform from which the ability may develop."

So, you would concur that Dojos making these claims may be exaggerating? I do agree in the statement that "Aikido is a platform from which the ability may develop." But why even say this, for any MA may give you this ability?

Roy
08-05-2005, 02:37 PM
Jun,
I understand your concern! It just makes for a good case-study.

Ron Tisdale
08-05-2005, 02:38 PM
But why even say this, for any MA may give you this ability?

Yellow Bamboo? Hmmmm......

RT :)

Adam Alexander
08-05-2005, 02:51 PM
1)So, you would concur that Dojos making these claims may be exaggerating? I do agree in the statement that "Aikido is a platform from which the ability may develop." 2)But why even say this, for any MA may give you this ability?


1)Absolutely. I thought that was settled long ago. I think it's rather irresponsible for an instructor, especially with no knowledge of an individual's intelligence, athletic ability, etc., to say that "you too can learn...."

2)In a sense, I suppose any art offers that. However, I think in relation to Aikido's emphasis compared with other arts (not all), is more towards handling the energy of larger/multiple attackers more efficiently....I think...I don't know for sure.

Roy
08-05-2005, 05:37 PM
Jean,

True; I agree, Aikido does strive to train against such attacks.

Ketsan
08-05-2005, 07:01 PM
Jean,

True; I agree, Aikido does strive to train against such attacks.

That's why we have the whole Zanshin thing.

Aristeia
08-06-2005, 07:09 AM
2)In a sense, I suppose any art offers that. However, I think in relation to Aikido's emphasis compared with other arts (not all), is more towards handling the energy of larger/multiple attackers more efficiently....I think...I don't know for sure.

I think this is where people need to be more conversant in other arts. And by people I don't mean Jean but lots of single art stylists. Almost every art will make similar claims that [i] this ]/i] art is unique because it allows a smaller person to defeat a larger one. When the Gracies hit the scene they trumpeted this like it was an idea they'd just came up with. Which means we have a slightly silly situation where every art is claiming the same thing as they're point of difference.
Comes from lack of understanding. Pure Aikidoka don't understand BJJers, pure BJJ'ers don't understand Aikido, or silat or whatever.
I think we're still just starting to see the ramifications fromt the UFC. The last 10 years where characterised by competitors stepping out of single art frameworks for a sporting environment. I suspect the next 10, with technology bringing down borders everywhere and disseminating information, may be characterised by non sporting practioners gaining much more appreciation for a wider variety of approaches in MA
Such is my hope anyway.

Kevin Leavitt
08-06-2005, 09:00 AM
I agree with your points Michael. The hard part is dealing with the ego of "letting go" of what makes us comfortable. It is easy to surround yourself in a dojo with instructors you are used to, doka you are used to, and doing the same routines you are used to....you can spend your whole life within that paradigm and work on refining and perfecting a handful of things that are very important.

I equate this to a monastery mentality. You can live in a monastery your whole life trying to reach a higher plane of exisistence...only to one day leave and find out there is a whole world out there that thinks differently than you do...and you are not prepared to deal with the challenges that situation brings to you.

like it or not...UFC changed martial arts as we know it today. You may not see it if you stay in your dojo surrounded by "group think"...(I have been guilty of this)! But the world of MA is evolving and there are a multitude of legitimate training techniques out there that help you do whatever it is that you want to achieve.

That said, if your goals are to study the DO...as in aikido....or Taji....then I would not waste my time with those other things...since there is plenty within the DO to learn from. But that does not negate what the rest of the world is doing around you, and you need to be able to respond to that outside world from time to time.

I think this is what is good about exposure. It helps you think hard and critically about what you are doing.

Aristeia
08-06-2005, 02:24 PM
Well put kevin, great post.

Roy
08-06-2005, 03:23 PM
Kevin wrote,

"I think this is what is good about exposure. It helps you think hard and critically about what you are doing."

Yes I agree! And as the saying goes, "Knowing is half the battle." And sometimes its not what you know, but what you don't know that's the trouble.

Adam Alexander
08-06-2005, 04:10 PM
I think you guys are nuts.

UFC changed MAs? I think they changed MAs in the same sense that tournament karate or sport judo changed them...they changed a segment...there's a lot of sport arts out there...simulated MAs...but MAs--proper--haven't...unless you mean that they expanded a segment of the "art."

However, the same as Kano said that "this isn't my Judo," I say that what you call MAs in that sense isn't MAs. They're fight sports...not MAs.


In regard to the thinking "outside the art," it's never been my intent to discourage looking into other arts when you're ready...and that's when you've grasped the pebble:)


Earlier in this thread, my "credentials" were questioned because of what I was asserting. Now, after offering a couple posts that highlight the differences in training levels (me three years or so demonstrating what I know because of focused training) vs. what the cross-trainers have offered after much longer durations of training. Seems to me that the question of "considering the source" is demonstrated clearer now than thus far in this thread.

And, one last thing, again, do you guys/girls really think you know enough to be touting cross-training? Do you KNOW Aikido? Or, do you know some techniques from your part-time training and part-time focus?

Roy
08-06-2005, 04:47 PM
Jean,

What exactly is your point here?

Aristeia
08-06-2005, 08:05 PM
Earlier in this thread, my "credentials" were questioned because of what I was asserting. Now, after offering a couple posts that highlight the differences in training levels (me three years or so demonstrating what I know because of focused training) vs. what the cross-trainers have offered after much longer durations of training. Seems to me that the question of "considering the source" is demonstrated clearer now than thus far in this thread.


In a couple of posts you seem to allude to a beleif you have that you have demonstrated a high level of Aikido knowledge and ability by something you've written an that this justifies your stance. Is that interpretation correct?
Because if it is, I beleive you are mistaken. It would be interesting to see if anyone else that's read this thread thinks Jean has demonstrated he has a deeper knowledge of Aikido than the "cross trainers". I'm really not trying to slam you here, it's just that I get the impression you think you've demonstrated something you haven't.

DustinAcuff
08-07-2005, 12:00 AM
I'm not going to comment on if Jean knows what he is talking about or not, frankly I don't know or care.

I do know that alot of the flack involved on both sides of the "aikido is/is not the ultimate art" is based on personal belief and experience. The bottom line here is that I cannot speak for aikido. I do believe that by the time you reach shodan in DR you can effectively handle a real confrontation on the street, and probably even if you are dealing with more than one attacker. The level of technical proficiency required is incredibly high, higher than any other school of martial arts I have ever seen or heard of. But the key is belief. I believe that at shodan I will be able to handle almost any real situation that comes about, and that combined with a drive to survive no matter what is probably what will make my belief truth. If you don't believe that your aikido will work, it won't. If your sensei does not believe that his/her aikido will work in reality, it won't.

O Sensei was quoted near the time of his death as saying that nobody was doing his aikido they were all doing their own. Like it or not it makes sense since the aikido world fractured after his death. As I understand it there are around 50 basic schools of aikido that came into being after his death. Some are reality-based. Some are spiritual. Some are practically cults. Some promote atemi, some don't like atemi at all. In some the ukes fall before they are even touched. All of these things are under the banner of aikido.

I think that Aiki is at the top of the combat pyramid. When applied correctly you should be untouchable. What can hit you if you are not there to get hit? If you don't get hit then how is your opponent's stregnth or training going to bother you? I will not deny that it takes many many many hours of dedicated practice and many many more hours of working things out on your own. Honestly, I doubt that 1/1000 people have the type of potential needed to truly get to that level, and of those who do have the potential to get there how many of them are in other arts, other schools, small towns with no dojos, or simply never looked for that kind of proficiency.

I also think that crosstraining may (keep in mind, I know I will probably offend someone here, but it is the farthest thing from my mind) be a result of either a lack of belief, dedication, information, or time. If you have to be proficient in two weeks with grappling, striking, and a weapon, crosstraining is the way to go. If you want abilities now that you won't get for a few years, crosstrain. If your sensei does not believe in their ability, crosstrain.

Just training for a month or two will not allow you to handle multiple trained knife fighters in a dark alley. Everyone I know, reguardless of number of years trained, would rather run or have a gun. But no one will deny the proficiency of O Sensei or the powers that be in the aikido world.

rob_liberti
08-07-2005, 12:05 AM
I don't mean to be brutal here but it looks like I'm seeing a bit of blind faith and hard work for a short amount of time. That's not the equation I have come to respect. That saying is: it takes great faith, great doubt, and hard work.

Good luck in your training - Rob

dyffcult
08-07-2005, 12:34 AM
Dustin stated:
"What can hit you if you are not there to get hit? If you don't get hit then how is your opponent's stregnth or training going to bother you?"

I remember Saito Sensei commenting on a less than sincere attack during the demonstration of a technique in weapon’s class -- uke never even reached him although he stood completely still during the attack. He simply stood there smiling benevolently and then commented something akin to “See, I practice aikido. Without an attack, I need do nothing.” (Translator was present:-)

I also remember watching Saito Sensei occasionally simply step out of the way of a committed attack. He simply turned and watched the attacker fly on past. (He often emphasize blending – at least I assume that was what he was emphasizing, but then again, I didn’t speak Japanese, so what the heck did I know ?? Night keiko was seldom translated.)

Two things I learned from this. If an attacker is committed to a specific attack, and you can get out of the way, he or she is unlikely to be able to abort or change the attack. (Doesn’t mean they can't change the attack, just that it is unlikely. And it difinitely doesn't mean that they won’t come back. Just means that he or she probably won’t get you on that first attack.)

And, blending is a very good thing.

Brenda

DustinAcuff
08-07-2005, 12:43 AM
If you are referring to me...

I don't take much of anything on blind faith. Sufice to say that I believed enough in the abilities of the people I train under to train under them. I started TKD because I was untrained and looking for discipline. I was training BJJ by someone who was taught directly under Carlos and Royce and who held some rather amazing credentials. I trained MT under people in the same place because after being kicked lightly by them a few times I decided that they were better than I was. I am training under the person I am training under right now because I know that I cannot physically touch him, on the ground I have reliably been tapped out in less than 20 sec, and that his reputation consistently says the same in the local bars, the local MA places, and that people whom I know and respect and are highly trained all admit that he is the only person they have ever met that they fear.

I don't believe in blind faith. I also don't believe in training in something less effective unless there is a specific goal in mind. So far I am training in the most efficient and effective system I have found. I cannot do BJJ or Muai Thai on stairs, in my car, or when someone has already sunk a choke in on me from behind. I can do DR in those same situations pretty reliabily.

dyffcult
08-07-2005, 01:07 AM
Hrmmmm....

Uh, Dustin, I was supporting your position. If the attack is not there....which is pretty much the converse of ... not being there for the attack.

Very generally speaking, aikido is about blending. And if one is truely attacked, and steps out of the way of that attack...one has blended.

Does my post make more sense now???

Brenda

dyffcult
08-07-2005, 01:12 AM
Okay, there is a reason I always run my posts through my wordprocessor....

Try the following instead:

If there is no attach .... that is pretty much the converse of ... not being there for the attack.

Brenda wanders off to find another beer muttering about having to work on a Saturday and the day before her birthday...

dyffcult
08-07-2005, 01:14 AM
:rolleyes: Oh drat....I give up...

:-)

rob_liberti
08-07-2005, 08:46 AM
If you are referring to me...
Dustin, I actually wasn't referring to your posts. -Rob

Kevin Leavitt
08-07-2005, 10:24 AM
Going back to the start of the thread.....on exagerrations (sort of)...

I truely believe if you are focused on....or if you are promised by an instructor that aikido will someday make you combat effective (again, that is an emotional term that is thrown around very loosely)...your are totally missing the point of studying aikido.

Empty hand arts, be it aikido, bjj, MMA, whatever..will not do this adequately. Yes, there are benefits...but anyone holding this out as a primary reason to study arts is exagerating the reason for studying the art.

There are many benefits for studying MA...but the least of which, IMHO, is for the skills that you will garner out of the art for physical protection or self defense.

The ultimate goal is to understand yourself and others, achieve a level of personal fitness, and generally become a well rounded and happy person. They also are an awesome way to develop the warrior spirit that is a necessary component for self preservation.

I'd be more focused on reducing cholesterol, body fat, or preventing heart disease...they simply are greater risk factors than being jumped in an alley by a 310 lb attacker!


The problem is, we get caught up in the emotion of a personal attack and focus on that aspect as being the "holy grail" of why we train. I know I did in the past!

You will probably notice on these boards a lack of participation by high ranking aikidoka...there is probably a reason for that!

Think long and hard about why we study martial arts...and really what they promise to offer us!

Lyle Bogin
08-07-2005, 10:34 AM
I think it is fair to say that aikido training helps make it possible to take on larger opponents or multiple opponents.

Roy
08-07-2005, 01:02 PM
Lyle,

Yes! We have all come to that conclusion!

DustinAcuff
08-07-2005, 01:21 PM
Brenda, I was in no way referring to you. We agree and are saying the same thing.

Rob, sorry, my family has an intresting way of discussing things, I am used to having to defend every point I make.

Kevin, good post and good points. I think the purpose of learning any form of self-defence is to condition an effective primary response to a violent situation. Martial Arts in general just depend on what you are looking for, but I do draw a line in the sand between MAs and self-defence.

Adam Alexander
08-07-2005, 03:03 PM
In a couple of posts you seem to allude to a beleif you have that you have demonstrated a high level of Aikido knowledge and ability by something you've written an that this justifies your stance. Is that interpretation correct?
Because if it is, I beleive you are mistaken. It would be interesting to see if anyone else that's read this thread thinks Jean has demonstrated he has a deeper knowledge of Aikido than the "cross trainers". I'm really not trying to slam you here, it's just that I get the impression you think you've demonstrated something you haven't.

Hey Michael,

I didn't take it as anything more than a question...and opinion.

I don't think I'm at a high level (I'm chuckling at the thought), however, the exchange over the couple posts have demonstrated sufficiently for me that you guys aren't at the same stage.

For me, your perspective on what an Aikido technique is--1)your use of "technique" where the conversation, I believe, called for the designation of "kata" or "form" 2) your perspective on performance of a technique 3) the questioning on the significance of the "heel"--leads me to believe that, although I may not know a great deal, I don't think you guys are knowledgeable enough about Aikido to give recommendations.

I mean no offense, but although you guys have trained for a long time, if your understanding exceeds what I believe it does, I do not believe it to be expressed in your posts.

As far as "others," I think the real question is, of those that we know understand, what do they think...not those who have been in this conversation.

Kevin Leavitt
08-07-2005, 03:28 PM
My aikido serves me at the level that I am currently working at. there is always more to learn. To me, "high level" constitutes an understanding deeper than any amount of technical knowledge we could impart on the web.

There is probably a reason we don't see higher level people responding to these post. Frankly they probably find it boring and sophmoric.

While I don't profess to have any great knowledge of aikido...I certainly don't feel I have a narrow view of the my own personal expectations about what I currently know and what I hope to know in the future. I think that is a dividing factor between many of us and our conversations Jean.

Hence, the term exaggeration. Should be exaggeration of expectations!

aikigirl10
08-07-2005, 03:28 PM
Jean,
I know you hate to believe it , but you CAN be a crosstrainer and have a great insight on how aikido works/is done/should be done, etc. Why dont you clue me in on your level of experience or the amount of time you've doing aikido so i can better understand why you might think you have a better understanding of aikido than everyone else?

Aristeia
08-07-2005, 04:32 PM
Jean's been training for 3-4 years.
But apparently he's been training properly whereas the rest of us have been groping in the dark. This is evidenced by his use of the word "heel" in a number of posts.

aikigirl10
08-07-2005, 05:41 PM
thanks michael

Roy
08-07-2005, 07:31 PM
Michael, Paige,

Please don't encourage the young lad! If he can take blows on the street the way he can take them in this forum, then perhaps he is a budding "Master of Aikido" :rolleyes:

Keith R Lee
08-07-2005, 11:17 PM
http://www.straightblastgym.com/newbook.htm

Very relevant to this thread I think.

Kevin Leavitt
08-08-2005, 06:28 AM
Very relevant...unfortunately...some people just won't get it. (Gotta go press my hakama now! :))

rob_liberti
08-08-2005, 09:56 AM
Great article, I almost wish this were a new thread.

"Why do others persist so adamantly in training methods, progressions, and ritual, that serve no purpose, and are simply ‘dead patterns’"

It's a thin line between "dead patterns" that allow for little of no progress what-so-ever and "so alive" that progress in sophistication of movement gets stifled just beyond the mundane. Given the two extremes, I would chose very alive, but I think there is a middle ground here, where the training can be alive without being so constantly pressure tested that the person has time and space to process and develop better sophistication in their movement.

For the most part, I am against 'dead patterns'. The patterns are needed, but the 'dead' part needs to be discarded. My teacher uses what looks like the typical training methods, progressions, and ritual. Of course his methods look like the ‘dead patterns’ that other "aikido" teachers are using. (I've been there, done that, got the tee-shirt, etc.). However, I see/feel what he can do without muscling things and without relying on evasion to accomplish non-muscled technique (principle expression) and I'm amazed. He says his teaching methodology is the best way he can come up to show his students how to get like that too so I (and I assume his other students) believe him. He actually tried very hard to avoid dead patterns to the point of criticism. When he teaches, he switches techniques rapidly and is often accused of "too many techniques and not enough time to work on them". Are these people just comfortable in relatively 'dead patterns'? I asked my teacher about this, and he explained that when he sees no one (or almost no one) is getting it he moves quickly on to another technique to try to approach the point in a different way before the people end up practicing wrong habits any longer (and ingraining them deeper).

Given my experience, if we trained much more alive than that, we (assuming the level of martial ability we typically see in aikido students) would need to over-use our muscles (our normal-strength as Mike Sigman likes to say). Maybe I'm wrong here, but I have not met anyone who has gotten a sophistication of movement like my teacher using more pressure testing than his class provides some people in different arts I know of have similar sophistication in their movement, but I'd say the pressure testing provided in their class is quite similar to what my teacher provides from what I can see.

Rob

Adam Alexander
08-08-2005, 12:26 PM
Kevin Leavitt, did you mean something by that?:) Because if you did, I noticed that the article said..."Understanding what motivates YOU is the important issue. The first thing you must do is avoid the temptation to use this information as a way to judge others. To the degree that you say "that guy is all image based" to another persona, is the degree to which you need that persona to view you as something better."


Anyway, I thought that was a pretty good article. However, the author, I think, slid some ideas/opinions in that didn't really seem to belong. Nonetheless, cool article.

What's hilarious is that I agree with him. I was in the shower today after training and thinking about these two threads. As already stated, I think my training is somewhere else (I hope I don't need to rephrase that for some smart-a**es:)). And I realized, what's the difference of what a couple of people think? Initially, I believe I entered the thread for the best reasons, but it turned into ego.

Maybe my way is best for me, maybe it's not best for you all.

I was doing my cuts today--same one, over and over--and I realized, maybe practicing techniques have the effect on ourselves like an Aikido technique has on uke. My goal is to control uke. However, just like an Aikido technique, my goal moved and I found out where, as uke, I am.

Good stuff.

Good luck with your training.

Roy
08-08-2005, 12:27 PM
Rob,

Good points here! I also can remember a particular Aikido club that would "micro manage," everything. They would stop you right in the middle of the technique and adjust your big toe slightly to on side or the other. I often felt this was discipline, or fine tuning, but really all it did was make me hesitant and confused.

Keith R Lee
08-08-2005, 01:02 PM
It probably is worth its own thread honestly. Matt Thornton has written some really great stuff about training. Specifically his opinions on "live" training, one that I whole-heartedly agree with. Without "live" training, training becomes only conjecture. It's very easy to accept the norm if one has never been to another dojo, let alone another style of MA.

Kevin I think you said it best earlier:


The hard part is dealing with the ego of "letting go" of what makes us comfortable. It is easy to surround yourself in a dojo with instructors you are used to, doka you are used to, and doing the same routines you are used to....

I think ego plays a big part in it.

Kevin Leavitt
08-08-2005, 01:34 PM
thanks keith.

Good points Jean. I agree things got a little screwy in that article, but overall it is good.

I had the discussion about live and dead forms years ago with several of my dojo mates in karate. I think, at least in my karate practice, much of the forms/kata we practiced were dead as a door nail.

I have not found that to be so with aikido. The so called kata that we practice is pretty decent if you ask me. Most of it centers on teaching correct fundamental principles. so, therefore, I do not find it dead. Where I think things go astray sometimes is when we focus on bunkai..or hidden techniques, or looking for meaning/effectiveness in kata. It is usually hidden because the reason for doing it was lost!

Jean got me to thinking. Cutting sword cuts over and over is good training if done properly. It develops muscles and habits or posture that are necessary for performing empty hand in correct alignment.

I think what is important in all of this is to consider WHY YOU are training (as Jean points out). If you are practicing for the wrong reasons, your training is dead and a waste of time.

Adam Alexander
08-08-2005, 01:55 PM
Yeah, if I understand what he meant by "dead," I've never experienced that in Aikido (except with beginners...and that's for good reason). Generally, it's a misunderstanding of individuals who do not train in the art,"oh, you guys train with "cooperative" ukes."

My experience is that with the solo-kata (bokken strikes in the previously stated example) lead you to "secret techniques." Just my experience.

In that sense, LOL, I bother my girlfriend daily by saying,"I'm unlocking the secrets of Aikido with every training session." I think it's true. Although you might even be lucky enough to have someone tell you how to do something literally, it really doesn't mean anything until you "unlock" it for yourself.

I guess the point was: What makes it a secret technique isn't that someone is withholding it, it's that you don't see it.

Keith R Lee
08-08-2005, 02:20 PM
"Live" training is generally considered to be two people enganging in a fully resistant manner. Meaning a grappling match, boxing, kickboxing, MMA etc.

Only in an environment in which both parties are competing and attempting to win over the other person can techniques and theories be proven. Techniques that are never "put to the question" so to speak remain hypothetical only because they have been put to use in a setting where they are tested.

It's the difference between empirical knowledge and deductive knowledge. I think many of us have seen or been a part of Aikido dojos that are based purely on deductive knowledge.

Adam Alexander
08-08-2005, 02:26 PM
Well, if that's the case, I don't think the person who supports that ideology has a real clear grasp.

But, that's just me.

rob_liberti
08-08-2005, 03:29 PM
Well good luck with that. Training that is level-appropriate in terms of "resistance" is "live" in my book. The idea is that you stop the person if you can, but never 100% stop them so they can work through the problems - without engaging their normal strength (or if you are far superior to them, let them go for it until they exhaust their muscles a bit and have to find something else to continue) Eventually they figure out how to get pasty those problems and you turn up your resistance.

As I see it, ukes tend to either under or over resist and nages tend to either learn how to dance or how to over compensate with their muscles - which is why it is difficult to learn from a book.

Rob

aikido funky monkey
08-08-2005, 03:54 PM
you right. In my class their is someone who shall remain nameless who when uke always gives one hundred percent in preventing me from doing the throw and I have talked to sensei about it but this person still does it even its the first time iv e done that technique

rob_liberti
08-08-2005, 04:12 PM
You should: Avoid this person for now while you fanatically work out like a mad man even before and after every class developing your ability until the day comes when you are finally ready to mop the floor with this uke. Or you can just ask the person to help you after class themselves.

Rob

DustinAcuff
08-08-2005, 04:13 PM
Make better kuzushi and let him practice his ukemi. You can do any throw on a resistant opponent if you know how to take balance. If all else fails do a tenchi nage by his eye sockets just to prove to him that his resistance is useless.

Everyone, good points about dead training. Tradition should be honored to an extent, but I have heard that "tradition is the living rememberance of the dead while traditionalism is the dead rememberance in the living". Meaning the past should be honored but change should happen to. As to kata, I have not done any in years. In my current dojo kata is a four letter word, so all of our practice is live and with a partner. The result is alot more free form and a better understanding of body mechanics.

Whoa..just realized the implications of tenchi nage by the eye socket if you don't know how to do it safely for him. Here's a substitute, put your thumb long ways between his upper lip and nose and cut up then down while moving center foward. He should drop like a rock.

Keith R Lee
08-08-2005, 04:20 PM
Well, if that's the case, I don't think the person who supports that ideology has a real clear grasp.

But, that's just me.

That's fine. You'll have deductive ideas about what would happen in a physical conflict and hypothesis of what might occur.

People who engage in a "live" training manner will have empirical experience to deal with the situation.

I'd rather have real experience than just hypothesis of what might happen. With having trained in a 100% resistence environment I'll know, not have theories, not have gameplans, not have hypothesis, I'll know what techniques, strategies, and movements of mine work becuase I've already engaged in training with a fully resistent partner. Not only one who was resistant, but one who was trying to submit me as well.

I much prefer real experience to hypothetically creating situations.

That's just my preference.

aikigirl10
08-08-2005, 04:41 PM
"Live" training is generally considered to be two people enganging in a fully resistant manner. Meaning a grappling match, boxing, kickboxing, MMA etc.

Only in an environment in which both parties are competing and attempting to win over the other person can techniques and theories be proven. Techniques that are never "put to the question" so to speak remain hypothetical only because they have been put to use in a setting where they are tested.

It's the difference between empirical knowledge and deductive knowledge. I think many of us have seen or been a part of Aikido dojos that are based purely on deductive knowledge.

I completely agree with you.

Lee Mulgrew
09-18-2005, 07:48 PM
The fact is that Aikido does not work in it's 'dojo' form, I mean when will anybody ever attack you shomen uchi style? And why do you think atemi is so important? If you get into a fight it is going to get messy, non Akido people do not respond to techniques like aikidoka do. Aikido helps you to move out of harms way and manipulate your attacker so that you will recieve as little injury as possible (but chances are you will get a thump in the face!). It's not perfect, and none of the techniques are without fault, but that's not what it's about really is it?

dyffcult
09-19-2005, 01:56 AM
If I remember correctly, this thread started as the result of someone questioning what dojo's and the dojo's sensei promised as a result of training....

My sensei didn't promise me immediate street fighting abilities. In fact, he told me that a number other arts could provide "faster self defense." He told me that aikido takes time before it can be used effectively as a self-defense.

Less than a year after starting practice, I used my aikido to save my then brother-in-law's life. I have used it numerous times since then.

I was not promised immediate effectiveness. But effectiveness was implied. And received.

Brenda

elastoman
09-29-2005, 11:11 PM
Please nobody takes this as personal
Talking about this 'ground figth' stuff, in real life things goes very different from what jiu jitsu teachs.If the guy wants to go to the ground with you, he is doing one of the most stupid things ever, he is picking all of his weak points and giving for you to use it against him.You can brake his fingers, blind him, kick his eggs and so many other things that the only real secure position in a life and death situation, ( wich is far miles away from those ultimate figth)for him is stay away from you, so that you cant reach those weak points
What the gracies dont say to you is that jiu jitsu is only that efective if you close your eyes to those real life problems and pretend that a real life or death situation would follow a bunch of rules(do this is not allowed, do that is not allowed, and so on) that will not be there.

Kevin Leavitt
09-30-2005, 01:46 PM
James,

Welcome to aikiweb!

I'd recommend that you go through and read some of the arguments and post that have occured on this subject as recently as last couple of months.

I'd love to debate and argue this point with you, but frankly I just finished it not too long ago.

I will say this, anyone in the Gracie organization pretty much understands that UFC is not real. They also pretty much know now to fight and how to teach people to fight. While many of there dojos are geared toward competition and NHB events, that is how they have chosen to center their art. I have not found the "gameness" of it all to dilute it effectiveness.

I believe you will find that anyone that holds Dan rank in the Gracie Organization will pretty much demonstrate that they can effectively fight and can address your concerns effeciently.

At least that has been my experiences with them.

Aikido or BJJ is not about "us versus them" or "ours is better than yours". It is about methodology and approach, how you view budo, what you like and what is important to you.

No I am not taking it personally, just that I have been around at least for a little while now, and I for myself have discovered that things in martial arts are just simply not as simple as you state!

I hope your travels have been as productive as mine have been.

Kevin Leavitt
09-30-2005, 04:46 PM
Here is a quote from Ken Shamrock from an interview he conducted when training some Marines at Quantico. I think it sums up nicely about UFC and groundfighting.

"The techniques have to be adapted to fit their needs,” Shamrock said. “The Marines are more in real life. When we fight in the UFC, it's on a nice clean mat. When the Marines fight, they're in the dirt, and it's not quite the same when bombs are going off and bullets are flying over your head. From the time you engage to the time you finish has got to be 3 to 5 seconds. You don't have much time. You either throw the opponent down or take them down with a body throw, and once they hit the ground, immediately snap the neck or knock them out. It's going to be clench, take down and finish quickly.”

mathewjgano
09-30-2005, 11:43 PM
With having trained in a 100% resistence environment I'll know, not have theories, not have gameplans, not have hypothesis, I'll know what techniques, strategies, and movements of mine work becuase I've already engaged in training with a fully resistent partner...I much prefer real experience to hypothetically creating situations.

I agree. Theory is only as good as reality proves it to be. Though, theory allows us to evolve our approach and learn from reality, often in a relatively quick manner. Often in the dojo we're learning principles and to better illustrate those principles we sometimes can exagerate a movement to give the mind enough time to become intimately familiar with it, such as over extending someone's posture so we can "punch" right through it. I look at it this way: theory allowed us to predict Neptune and other planets. It's perfectly viable. But we couldn't prove its viability without actually finding them.

Keith R Lee
10-01-2005, 09:51 AM
Somehow...these threads never die.

I agree with you as well Matthew. Theory training, drills, kata, whatever you want to call it, IS an essential part of any training. Whether it is budo or MMA. However, to really know and understand techniques, to be able to have the working knowledge of how to apply them, one needs to practice them in a fully-resistive environment. It's the final step in the process, and it has to be done.

Kevin Leavitt
10-01-2005, 11:08 AM
I would agree with you Keith, but then it also depends on your goals of what you want to get out of your study. To some it is much more important to fully understand the dynamics of aikido and principles of movement, and to study Budo.

Others will care more about putting there training through a cauldron of so-called 100% resistance, which cannot be acheived 100% without risk of injury.

mathewjgano
10-01-2005, 11:09 PM
Somehow...these threads never die.

Of course they don't die when people continue to have something to say about the issues they deal with. Is that a bad thing? I don't think it's any worse than any other topic one can speak about when instead they could be practicing. If I take your implication correctly and you mean this is somehow an annoying thing for you to discuss, then maybe you shouldn't bother yourself with it? As for me, I find it a compelling topic. Perhaps you're at a point in your training where you're beyond this topic, but I'm not quite there yet.
Take care,
Matt

SMART2o
02-17-2006, 02:36 PM
[QUOTE=Roy Dean]"One other thing, when an Aikido technique is done correctly, uke CANNOT RESIST!!"

QUOTE]

Watch advanced black belts train sometime, if you have the opportunity. Techniques can be resisted and countered.

SMART2o
02-17-2006, 03:27 PM
[QUOTE=Lee Mulgrew]The fact is that Aikido does not work in it's 'dojo' form, I mean when will anybody ever attack you shomen uchi style?QUOTE]


Beer bottles and other blunt objects come to mind.

Adam Alexander
02-17-2006, 03:29 PM
[QUOTE=Roy Dean]"One other thing, when an Aikido technique is done correctly, uke CANNOT RESIST!!"

QUOTE]

Watch advanced black belts train sometime, if you have the opportunity. Techniques can be resisted and countered.


LOL. I think you quoted that from me...and since I'm on a tirade anyway, I'll respond:)

I imagine it varies school to school. What you call Aikido isn't the same as what I call Aikido.

In the Aikido I've witnessed, it's infallible when applied correctly...but, hey, that's the style I see.

Aristeia
02-17-2006, 03:42 PM
to clarify Jean - you have witnessed "infallible" aikido? It's not an ideal that no one has yet reached?

Edwin Neal
02-17-2006, 04:16 PM
there is no infallable aikido... kaeshi waza clearly shows this... no one is perfect, but you could be better (less fallable) than the other guy... or not...

tarik
02-17-2006, 05:07 PM
In the Aikido I've witnessed, it's infallible when applied correctly...but, hey, that's the style I see.

As great as cooperative training is, one issue with purely cooperative training is that one can miss the openings.

There is no technique that does not have openings, no matter how well applied the technique.

Adam Alexander
02-17-2006, 05:28 PM
As great as cooperative training is, one issue with purely cooperative training is that one can miss the openings.

There is no technique that does not have openings, no matter how well applied the technique.


I like that one!

I totally agree. When all you ever know is cooperative, then it's consistent with my experience, that you totally overlook integral parts of techniques.

However, moving in such a way as to avoid those openings is part of a properly executed technique.

When I say that "I've witnessed" it, it's more having to do with my definition of technique. If you read back through this thread, I've cited it already.


Michael,

Why bother? You'll not understand anyway.

Edwin,

Agreed. It's the artist that executes the right technique. The right technique is Aikido.

tarik
02-17-2006, 06:08 PM
However, moving in such a way as to avoid those openings is part of a properly executed technique.

I don't believe it's possible to avoid all openings, but certainly for me, 'moving in such a way as to avoid those openings' is ever so slightly a misleading.

Of course, we work to 'eliminate' openings in our technique, but every technique has vulnerabilities that cannot be removed.

Another layer of training is to simply change when our partner moves to use an opening we cannot eliminate. The technique that results is not chosen by us, by our interaction. I guess that's as close to properly executed technique as I can imagine currently.

Takemusu Aikido?


When I say that "I've witnessed" it, it's more having to do with my definition of technique. If you read back through this thread, I've cited it already.

I'm still reading my way back. Or forward. :)

Edwin Neal
02-17-2006, 06:26 PM
infallability is one of the exaggerations that is most common in aikido parlance... there is no such thing... everyone is fallable... any technique from any art is 'infallable' if applied correctly... but that is simply a trick of phrasing it as a logical truth... a choke is infallable, a knock out punch is infallable, a trash can over the head are all infallable if applied correctly... the statement means nothing... it applies to everything if you fill in the blank...

Aristeia
02-17-2006, 07:13 PM
good point Edwin

Adam Alexander
02-18-2006, 02:09 PM
The technique that results is not chosen by us, by our interaction. I guess that's as close to properly executed technique as I can imagine currently.

Exactly!

When you've mastered the movements so well that the proper movement is reflexive, sensing uke's utilization of a hole is next (as it pertains to this discussion). For instance, while moving for a first control throw, uke resists prior to breaking his balance (bad technique, but good example), you, instead of forcing your way through him, change to circular movement to take advantage of resistance.

This is not an instance of "bouncing from technique to technique." You can look at it two ways: It's an instance of sh'te bouncing from kata to kata...but in reality it's an instance of one technique applied correctly.


I'm sure with this description in mind, you can see how it's not possible for a "technique" to fail...only the practitioner's failure to apply the techniqu...And on that, we all are fallible:)


Edwin,

I wouldn't say that "infallibility is an exagerration of Aikido", it's part of the misdefining of Aikido.

The practitioner fails to execute the technique (technique as described above).

Aristeia
02-19-2006, 05:48 PM
Ok, Jean now I'm really confused. You seem to be defining "technique" in kind of an odd way above. It sounds to me like you want to define it as "everything that happens from the attack until you have controlled the attacker (e.g. throw or pin)". Is that fair? If so it is a perculiar definition I hae neer seen used before.

And of course as I think Edwin has been saying, if you have built success in as part of the definition then of course it is "infallible" but only in a semantec senses.

But more confusing is the arguments you've had that "bouncing from technique to technique" (my words) is bad and leads to the aiki dance. At the time I thought I knew what you meant by that, but this new light on what you mean by "technique" confuses me. If that is indeed the definition you're running, what sense does it make to even talk about "bouncing from technique to technique"? Under the definition I'm seeing above, I struggle to see how you could comment on that concept other than saying it doesn't make sense (as opposed to being good or bad). Care to clarify?

tarik
02-21-2006, 11:24 AM
For instance, while moving for a first control throw, uke resists prior to breaking his balance (bad technique, but good example), you, instead of forcing your way through him, change to circular movement to take advantage of resistance.

This is not an instance of "bouncing from technique to technique." You can look at it two ways: It's an instance of sh'te bouncing from kata to kata...but in reality it's an instance of one technique applied correctly.

Hmmm.. I am currently approaching this as.. the technique does not begin until balance is fully broken. Everything before that is not technique, it's connection, kuzushi, etc.. but it's not yet technique.

It's a hard practice though, because I am very used to wanting to perform technique that I sometimes get caught up in that.

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 11:52 AM
Technique does not begin until the balance is fully broken? That's almost the exact opposite of what I would have thought. breaking the balance surely *is* the technique. It's the most important thing we train to do. Everything else is just cake.

tarik
02-21-2006, 12:21 PM
Technique does not begin until the balance is fully broken? That's almost the exact opposite of what I would have thought. breaking the balance surely *is* the technique. It's the most important thing we train to do. Everything else is just cake.

I agree that learning kuzushi is just about the most important thing we train to do.

I also agree that everything after kuzushi is cake (I would say gravy normally).

However, I disagree that the 'waza' (technique) is the kuzushi.

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 12:51 PM
fair enough.

Don_Modesto
02-21-2006, 12:52 PM
infallability is one of the exaggerations that is most common in aikido parlance... there is no such thing... everyone is fallable... any technique from any art is 'infallable' if applied correctly....

Amen.

I've offered some criticism of the aikido of "name" players (on videos here and there) and the response by other posters has been very defensive.

I think it's a healthy exercise to see the weak points of the Shihan. I saw Saito flub a grab once with UKE remaining still so he could recover. I saw, was it Isoyama? flub a throw completely and UKE didn't stand still waiting.

He threw himself.

(Blush)

I even saw a video where Osensei pulled his hand out of UKE's grip but UKE (Chiba?) followed in pantomime and took the fall.

I think it'd be healthy and certainly interesting to document such things, but I think most people would feel presumptuous to do so.

Don_Modesto
02-21-2006, 12:56 PM
Technique does not begin until the balance is fully broken? That's almost the exact opposite of what I would have thought. breaking the balance surely *is* the technique. It's the most important thing we train to do. Everything else is just cake.

Inaba of Meiji shrine gave a very interesting interview to Stanley Pranin and touched on this. In his scheme of things, stopping an attack--breaking balance--is AIKI. Preventing further attack is JUJUTSU. If you stop attack and follow with technique, this is AIKI JUJUTSU. If the balance break is enough to end it, that is AIKI (NO) JUTSU.

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 02:47 PM
Interesting concept....

Adam Alexander
02-21-2006, 03:15 PM
the technique does not begin until balance is fully broken. Everything before that is not technique, it's connection, kuzushi, etc.. but it's not yet technique.

It's a hard practice though, because I am very used to wanting to perform technique that I sometimes get caught up in that.

Well, I'd say that if uke offers his balance, the movement/s to capture the balance would be part of the technique (as long as the movements are efficient).

Anything done after the balance is controlled would be a technique as long as control is maintained. If control of uke's balance is lost during the technique, then it ceases to be Aikido.


Michael Fooks,

I hope the above post is enough to clarify. If it's not, I don't know what to tell you.

Maybe...The aiki-dance isn't Aikido because it's just two people who are failing to gain control of uke's balance.

This is why I believe Kancho Shioda says 'If you think about it, the moment has passed.' Individuals caught up in the dance are demonstrating the technique of individuals who have yet to have their context-appropriate techniques reflexively memorized. You can call it technique if you like, but it's not Aikido technique as far as I'm concerned.

As far as not hearing a similar definition (if that's the case still), I'd say maybe that's the reason for widespread misunderstanding that Aikidoka don't ever take hits. LOL.

I've never heard anyone of rank say stuff like "if you miss this entry, then..." It seems to me that it's simply implied that good Aikido technique only takes once.

So, I guess "infallibility" is built in. However, I imagine that we each have to experience what makes it infallible to understand why it is.


On "breaking balance" being the most important thing, I'd say that that's important, but what makes it Aikido is keeping it once you've got it.

tarik
02-21-2006, 03:17 PM
Interesting concept....


This might seem like semantics, but I think there is something worth exploring in our training by breaking things down in this direction. I certainly didn't think it up. :)

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 03:23 PM
I agree Tarik. I've thought for a while that alot of what we call "kokyu" throws, are really just the off balancing part of the technique done so effevtively that nothing else is required - what would correspond to Aiki in your example. And that the waza are only necessary when either uke is good enough to recover, or your off balancing hasn't been 100% and they have been allowed to recover.

Edwin Neal
02-21-2006, 03:29 PM
in judo they break the technique (waza) into 3 phases, kuzushi is 1st phase of the waza, then tsukuri or entry/positioning, then kake or the execution/completion of waza... i wouldn't call any phase of the waza cake, you must have each phase and build up to sucessful application... the name of different waza and the more general use of the term 'technique' referring to the entire event of being nage are a little confusing, even if you flow from one technique(waza) to another ie ikkyo into sankyo... it is only one flowing instance of techinique(nagemi)...
Don, i know what you are talking about, but that is kind of different from what i was meaning, though similar... there is a difference in a shihan looking at some idiot uke who just bungled ukemi and is not trying to demonstrate the technique for the classes instruction, and faking it in say a randori setting... its a relative kind of thing... certainly you should never 'fake it' for anyone... but try to be honest and understand the context of the situation... this doesn't mean the technique is fallible, but was incorrectly applied... applied correctly by definition means waza suceeded...

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 03:50 PM
Perhaps the fallability question can be illuminated by going back to an ealier discussion point on this thread. There is obviously no problem with techniques being designed to suceed. It could be argued that it follows that there is no problem with success being a part of the definition of a technique, and consequently and art.
The question in my mind is do you then assume all techniques will (by definition) succeed and claim no one is doing the art if they ever experience failure;
or does the art have built into it's theory and practice the possibility of failure and make recovery from failure a decent chunk of what they do.

The former is delusion, the latter is learning how to fight imo.

Adam Alexander
02-21-2006, 04:06 PM
There is obviously no problem with techniques being designed to suceed.

and claim no one is doing the art if they ever experience failure;

does the art have built into it's theory and practice the possibility of failure and make recovery from failure a decent chunk of what they do.

The former is delusion, the latter is learning how to fight imo.

If it 'is' a technique, it already succeeded. If it's not a technique, it failed.


I'd claim that they practice Aikido in class...However, if they "use" Aikido in a confrontation, then you'd only know after the altercation was over.


I'd just assume spend my time on practicing doing it right the first time.


I believe that if you find yourself up against someone who's trained to do it right the first time, you'll not get a second chance except in some amazing scenario (READ: Piano falls on sh'te's head.).

tarik
02-21-2006, 04:09 PM
Well, I'd say that if uke offers his balance, the movement/s to capture the balance would be part of the technique (as long as the movements are efficient).

This is perhaps why we differ. I agree with Edwin's comments about how judo breaks down technique, kuzushi, tsukuri, and kake. Technique (waza in Japanese), doesn't begin until kake and is only the last 3rd of the 'technique' as we so inprecisely call it in English.

Anything done after the balance is controlled would be a technique as long as control is maintained. If control of uke's balance is lost during the technique, then it ceases to be Aikido.

So if you fail, it isn't Aikido?

There is a huge difference between practicing Aikido and doing Aikido. I would expect there to be.

There is similarly a huge difference between practicing [football] and doing [football]. Fill in any activity for [football]. What we do in the dojo, naturally, is practice.. almost always, and we certainly should be aware of the difference.

Tarik

tarik
02-21-2006, 04:12 PM
I agree Tarik. I've thought for a while that alot of what we call "kokyu" throws, are really just the off balancing part of the technique done so effevtively that nothing else is required - what would correspond to Aiki in your example. And that the waza are only necessary when either uke is good enough to recover, or your off balancing hasn't been 100% and they have been allowed to recover.

Or when you deliberately wish to retain control of uke instead of letting them fly off somewhere. :)

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 04:17 PM
Or when you deliberately wish to retain control of uke instead of letting them fly off somewhere. :)

Yes there is that.

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 04:18 PM
I'd just assume spend my time on practicing doing it right the first time.



And that's why you'll always be vulnerable. Certainly good globs of time should be given to perfecting things. But equally good amounts of time should be given to adapting in the moment to the chaotic nature of fightng.

Aristeia
02-21-2006, 04:20 PM
I believe that if you find yourself up against someone who's trained to do it right the first time, you'll not get a second chance except in some amazing scenario (READ: Piano falls on sh'te's head.).

Are you aware of any such person living today?

Adam Alexander
02-23-2006, 04:03 PM
And that's why you'll always be vulnerable. Certainly good globs of time should be given to perfecting things. But equally good amounts of time should be given to adapting in the moment to the chaotic nature of fightng.

Sure, sure. Then I suppose I'm also vulnerable to being under attack by twenty dwarves while standing on one foot under a table.

LOL. Your posts are still dull. You still shouldn't be giving out advice.

Unfortunately, all the details are there to be discovered...not explained. Go practice and think really hard about this stuff. Maybe you'll get it one day.

Aristeia
02-23-2006, 07:52 PM
Maybe you'll get it one day.

But then again, maybe I won't right? Because last I heard you were saying that it may well be that no one is actually capable of doing Aikido as it is meant to be....

Adam Alexander
02-25-2006, 05:42 PM
But then again, maybe I won't right? Because last I heard you were saying that it may well be that no one is actually capable of doing Aikido as it is meant to be....

That's what I like about you, Michael. You don't let your lack of understanding get in the way of forming an opinion. Nor do you let context of a quote limit it's application.

Aristeia
02-25-2006, 10:28 PM
I believe that if you find yourself up against someone who's trained to do it right the first time, you'll not get a second chance except in some amazing scenario (READ: Piano falls on sh'te's head.).

Are you aware of any such person living today?

eyrie
02-26-2006, 03:22 AM
...
LOL. Your posts are still dull. You still shouldn't be giving out advice.

Unfortunately, all the details are there to be discovered...not explained. Go practice and think really hard about this stuff. Maybe you'll get it one day.

"Go practice, think hard and you'll discover it".... I love it! The classic defence for (a) the inability to articulate or (b) the inability to communicate understanding and (c) when cornered for an answer to which (d) you don't know the answer to.

LOL. Perhaps, you should go practice and think really hard about this stuff. Maybe one day you'll get it too.... in the meantime, I think your advice for others to go practice should be taken under advisement.

:rolleyes: