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daniel loughlin
09-07-2005, 02:41 PM
im taking yet another gradin in late september but i do not feel like i have developed very much in a long time especially in th ki testing? any advise? kind regards Danny :ki:

DCP
09-07-2005, 10:06 PM
If Sensei says you are to test, then test. Trust your sensei and do the best you can. The best advice I can give (I'm trying to do likewise): control yourself or you'll never control uke. And, don't forget to enjoy it . . .

Camille Lore
09-07-2005, 10:30 PM
Enjoy a test? Eek! :blush: I just hope I can catch my breath!

Nick Simpson
09-12-2005, 01:09 AM
I tested for Ikkyu just over a week ago. It was very hard, but I enjoyed it immensely. Strange that...

I think anxiety before a test is the worst time for it, once you get up there and start doing your thing and getting into the swing of it, then it isnt a problem and you can enjoy it. Afterall, testing is generally the only way you are put under stress (aside from randori/jiyu-waza) and have to perform in aikido, its an opportunity that only comes along a few times in your aiki-life, best to embrace it eh? Or thats the way I feel at least :)

Randathamane
09-12-2005, 07:47 AM
Yes the old grading routine........

Been there- done that and now look- i am told i have to do it again at renshinkan in October. I will be going for my 2nd kyu grading and now i am very familiar with the layout.

I agree full heartedly that it is the anxiety prior that is the killer. It makes you panic and you become unsure about yourself and your abilities.

i am probably preaching to the converted here- but for anyone out in cyberland who is new to this grading thing- just take your time. Even Sensei Smith (shihan) tells dan grades (well- would be dan grades at the yudansha grading) to do this. speed is not an issue- but control and correctness are. Don't rush- Don't panic.
One correct technique is worth 100 rushed, flawed or bad technique. speed comes eventually- with practice. Lots and lots and lots of practice...... and pain for that matter.


:ai: :ki: :do:

Nick Simpson
09-12-2005, 09:45 AM
Speed IS an issue depending on your uke. To control them, you have to slow them down/speed them up to suit your pace. It's your grading, not theirs, dont let them dominate you.

By slowing them down, I dont neccesarily mean that you meet them and blend with them slower, I mean right at the beggining of the grading whack a powerful nikkyo/sankyo on and maybe any other of your favourite techniques done powerfully e.g. kotegaeshi/shihonage/koshinage, done correctly uke will reealise that the faster they come in the harder they fall. Literally. If you respect them in this they will also respect you and strive to be as good an uke as they can for you. Which is nice :)

Len
09-16-2005, 01:30 AM
'...If you respect them in this they will also respect you...'

Just to confrim that I understood you correctly, are you saying that in order to show your uke respect you wind up hard joint locks? And you suggest that they will respect you back for that?

Nick Simpson
09-16-2005, 03:21 AM
In a nutshell: Yes.

I dont mean use excessive force and injure them, but show them that you mean buisness. If you mince around then they will basically 'take the p*ss' out of you and show the examiner that you arent controlling them. This is only what i know based on my actions as uke in others tests and from my own uke's during my tests. They will respect you for putting them down hard without injuring them and will see that you are capable of good technique, this in turn spurns them onto greater efforts as they enjoy the process more than being on the end of an inept/limp Tori. Hopefully.

Thats my thoughts on the process. Your mileage may differ. To qoute my uke from my ikkyu test the other week:

'' He gave me a right good pasting. It was great! '

:)

Edited for spelling, night shift is a bitch ;)

raul rodrigo
09-16-2005, 03:31 AM
I have to agree with Nick. I've been uke for others' exams, and when they're limp and hesitant I have the urge to pour it on even more. When nage is assertive and is sending me flying, it becomes fun and I am just along for the ride. Nage must establish the rhythm at the start. It doesnt mean that he has to injure uke, but he has to assert that he is in control.

Nick Simpson
09-16-2005, 03:34 AM
Everyone should agree with Nick. The world would be a better place ;)

Len
09-16-2005, 06:25 AM
'...Everyone should agree with Nick...'

Well, I don't know about that, mate. I also don't know about the kind of training you get. It's also possible that I misread your previous post. But I do know that at the gradings all you need to do is to demonstrate a clean and accurate technique, not bully your uke. I also assure you, that if your uke is any good he (or she) would block your technique and the demonstration would be ruined.
Of course I've never seen any of the gradings at your dojo. Maybe they look like a bunch of old women pushing aluminum frames and all you are suggesting is to breathe some martial feel into them...? If so - good luck.

Nick Simpson
09-16-2005, 11:34 AM
' But I do know that at the gradings all you need to do is to demonstrate a clean and accurate technique'

Excuse me, but thats what YOU need to show for YOUR gradings in YOUR organisation. There is a difference between bullying uke and establishing that you are in charge. As my instructor says:

'It's your grading, not uke's. Dominate them, dont let them dominate you.'

As you said:
'I also don't know about the kind of training you get.'

Exactly.

More from you:
'I also assure you, that if your uke is any good he (or she) would block your technique and the demonstration would be ruined.'

My uke on my last test was excellent, as I have said, he was more than happy to receive a vigorous level of ukemi from me. There were no injuries sustained by anybody. We both enjoyed ourselves and because he enjoyed the experiance he was a better uke for me than he might have been.I dont see your problem, but then again, perhaps its because you are speculating about me/my tests/our organisations tests/ukes and have no actual knowledge on the subject etc etc etc?

Ito bring the point up, if uke 'blocked' my technique, which is unlikely but it does happen (when technique is generally bad or you are getting tired/sloppy) I would hit them. Atemi. Simple concept. Or counter them. Again, this only gets you extra points in the gradings i am used to as it shows you can deal with an arkward uke or more variables. To be honest, my instructors block/counter my technique when it isnt strong, not when it's correct, so there goes that theory.

Demonstration? We are talking about gradings here...

'Of course I've never seen any of the gradings at your dojo. Maybe they look like a bunch of old women pushing aluminum frames and all you are suggesting is to breathe some martial feel into them...? If so - good luck.'

Come over and have a look some time Len, you'd be more than welcome to watch or take some ukemi i would imagine :) . Do us a favour and dont be so quick to push YOUR way of aikido onto the rest of us though. ;)

Len
09-16-2005, 05:22 PM
'...Dominate them...'
That doesn't sound like Aikido to me...

'...if uke 'blocked' my technique... ...I would hit them...'
That's if they let you... and then they hit you back... and we'll end up with a punch up on mat...

'...I dont see your problem, but then again, perhaps its because you are speculating about me/my tests/our organisations tests/ukes and have no actual knowledge on the subject...'
The problem I have is with what you wrote - '...right at the beggining of the grading whack a powerful nikkyo/sankyo on and maybe any other of your favourite techniques...' Maybe you just tried to show how tough you are, maybe you just tried to cover the grading jitters, maybe I read into your post something that wasn't there... Perhaps you want to rephrase that?

'...my instructors block/counter my technique when it isnt strong, not when it's correct...'
What about when you attempt to break his arm?

'...Demonstration? We are talking about gradings here...'
Grading demonstration, right? Not a life-threatening situation?

'...Come over and have a look...'
I will when I am in the neighborhood... It's such a long walk...

Nick Simpson
09-17-2005, 12:39 AM
This is getting into wordplay now, you disagree with me, thats cool and fine and dandy, thats what life is all about. But just to clarify one last time:

'That doesn't sound like Aikido to me...'

We obviously have different ideas on what Aikido is. Along with every other aikidoka in the world. Nothing new there.

'That's if they let you... and then they hit you back... and we'll end up with a punch up on mat...'

Yeah, thats a possibility of course, but then thats why I train, to become better and prevent this sort of situation happening. So far it has happened during one of my gradings, im not saying it wont ever happen or that I am some godlike aiki practitioner (though I often think that ;) ) but I must be doing something right.

'The problem I have is with what you wrote - '...right at the beggining of the grading whack a powerful nikkyo/sankyo on and maybe any other of your favourite techniques...' Maybe you just tried to show how tough you are, maybe you just tried to cover the grading jitters, maybe I read into your post something that wasn't there... Perhaps you want to rephrase that?'

No. I dont wish to rephrase that. It's what I have been taught by my sensei and by my sempai, all are excellent aikidoka and very nice people. I have absolute faith in them, or as much as one can have in any person these days. We practise a very 'positive' style of aikido, I assume you do not? Please forgive the assumption, its not something I try to make a habit of, but I am led to it by the takemusu aiki association tag on your profile and also your words?

'What about when you attempt to break his arm?'

Please dont be silly. I have never attempted to injure a person in aikido training and much less so would I attempt to do it to my sensei. Afterall, its his turn next...

'...Demonstration? We are talking about gradings here...'
Grading demonstration, right? Not a life-threatening situation?'

True, but there is a difference, subtle albeit, between a grading and a demonstration. Think about it.

'I will when I am in the neighborhood... It's such a long walk...'

I look forward to meeting you and hopefully training with you, perhaps we could discuss this difference in opinions over training styles/attitudes over a cold beer or two? Im sure i'll be visiting Oz to train at some point in the next few years! :)

Peace.

Len
09-17-2005, 04:12 AM
'...we'll end up with a punch up on mat...'
'...So far it has happened during one of my gradings...'
So, what has that taught you?

'...We practise a very 'positive' style of aikido, I assume you do not?...'
Whatever 'positive' means...
And how can you possibly assume anything?
And what's wrong with takemusu aiki?

'...there is a difference, subtle albeit, between a grading and a demonstration. Think about it...'
I assure you, that I've had a much longer time than you to think about it. And the impression I got from your original post is that YOU haven't thought about it long enough, if at all.

'...Im sure i'll be visiting Oz to train at some point in the next few years!..'
I don't drink beer, but drop me a line - I look forward to a discussion and training. Things may look very different on the mat. A couple of my students are poms and my very good mates, by the way :)

Nick Simpson
09-19-2005, 04:56 AM
Whoops, typo, what I meant to say was:

'So far it has happened during none of my gradings'

Blame nightshift for that one :P

'Whatever 'positive' means...
And how can you possibly assume anything?
And what's wrong with takemusu aiki?'

Well, by positive I mean, direct, powerful, controlling, martial and effective. Taking the initiative, being positive as opposed to negative. That sums it up as best I can.

Well, im only human, and as such, we all make assumptions. I have already apologised for the assumption mate, im only basing it on the impression I get from your words. I have already acknowledged that this is not definate.

There is nothing wrong with Takemusu aiki. I never said there was.

'I assure you, that I've had a much longer time than you to think about it. And the impression I got from your original post is that YOU haven't thought about it long enough, if at all. '

No offence Len, but who is making assumptions now? I do not doubt that you have had longer than myself to think about it, my credentials are on my profile, I make no effort to pretend I am more qailufied or experianced than I am. Assumption again: Your obviously an instructor of some level, you have students, you must have been practising longer than me due to the qouted statement, you could even be the head of your dojo or whatever. I'm not calling you into question about your experiance, Its not needed, however, it doesnt change my point of view on the issue's we are discussing here.

'I don't drink beer, but drop me a line - I look forward to a discussion and training. Things may look very different on the mat. A couple of my students are poms and my very good mates, by the way '

Cool, I also enjoy a vareity of non-alcoholic beverages :)
I look forward to training at your dojo in the future and experiancing rather than discussing our differing ideas of aikido/aiki :)

Len
09-19-2005, 07:36 AM
'...Well, by positive I mean, direct, powerful, controlling, martial and effective...'
Ah, good, we are on the same wavelength here :)

'...I do not doubt that you have had longer than myself to think about it...'
I've updated my profile to avoid any assumptions.

'...I look forward to training at your dojo in the future and experiancing rather than discussing our differing ideas of aikido/aiki...'

I think that it would be a great idea. But I'll expect you to show me what you meant by '...whack a powerful nikkyo/sankyo...' and earn my respect as a result. I would also like a demonstration of the 'Dominate them' concept :)
The funniest thing is that I might use terminology like 'apply hard and fast', or 'lead and control' meaning very similar things... Anyway, the only way to clear it is on the mat, I recon :) :)

Nick Simpson
09-19-2005, 07:43 AM
Good stuff :)

There really should be a better method of communicating than the english language I think! Oh yeah, while my knowledge of takemusu aiki is limited, if you had had Iwama Ryu on your profile, I would have been a lot more clued up :p

Best wishes,

Nick.

Len
09-19-2005, 06:10 PM
Nick, you've touched on high politics in Aikido here (something I try to avoid). While our school follows Saito Sensei's teaching in all aspects (empty hand and weapons), our gradings are being administered by Aikikai in Japan. So, politically, we are not Iwama Ryu, while technically... :)

I also found that talking about Aikido (especially in writing with no prior contact with the person or their school) could be quite confusing. And I don't think that English itself is the problem here. It's just that we can't see the face, or the body language, nor can we demonstrate what we are talking about. So, it requires some patience... :)

Nick Simpson
09-20-2005, 02:16 AM
Dont use the words aikido and politics in the same sentance please :p

I understand the situation with Iwama and aikikai. Kind of.

Yeah, body langauge does not translate on the net and neither does humor generally :)

Len
09-20-2005, 07:26 PM
'...Dont use the words aikido and politics in the same sentance please...'

Now, there is an EXCELLENT idea! I wish everyone would do that. :-)))