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Chris Evans 10-14-2011 08:18 AM

Aikido for MMA?
 
I'm certain that full contact karate (striking: kung fu, boxing, Chinese boxing, Muay Thai, Taekwondo, etc.) and jiu jitsu (submission: wrestling, judo, BJJ, etc.) cross training are essential, to enjoy "fighting" in MMA, esp. for competition, but would Aikido be useful in preparing to play (or "fight," in sports vernacular) the MMA games?

Are there any who practice Aikido and trains or competes in MMA also?

My mind's attached to the notion that when Aikido people get exposed to BJJ or MMA practice then they drop Aikido. Kindly debunk my delusion on this?

(P.S. I have faith in Aikido for self-protection (aka: in real fighting: prevention and survival), although I have my doubts on dojo that cater to overly compliant training, even for 'advanced" students, but this insincerely affects many other "traditional" martial arts, since healthful-exercises-only-mindset, however valid, is a common focus and dilemma in balancing with sincere training).

Dave de Vos 10-14-2011 08:31 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Henry Ellis mentioned his son Rik Ellis a couple of times.

Chris Evans 10-14-2011 08:44 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
also, I am restarting my search for a physically rigorous Aikido dojo, that's open more than 2x week, to complement my "contact" karate dojo and zazen zendo practices in the Berkeley, 94703, area...

ChrisHein 10-14-2011 10:53 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
I've trained and competed in MMA. Training in MMA actually made me go back to Aikido, once I really understood what I wanted and what the two different martial arts taught.

While it's hard to say that Aikido training might not provide any insights or helpful training tools for an MMA fight, it doesn't provide much. If You want to fight in MMA, train in MMA. Sport martial arts, when it comes to the competition aspect are very particular animals. Each training method catering to a particular skill set. For example, if you want to be a competitive boxer, you should train in boxing, not MMA. MMA training teaches striking methods, but those methods are not designed for competitive boxing. While many MMA fighters still train in boxing, someone who only trains in boxing is going to seriously limit himself in an MMA fight. You train for the type of event you expect to be fighting in. Judo training is best for Judo, MMA for MMA, Boxing for Boxing etc. Saying this, you must understand that Boxing and MMA are much much more closely related than MMA and Aikido.

Aikido has little to nothing in common with type of fighting done in MMA. This is not to say that one is better than the other, it's simply to say that they are VERY different. MMA is concerned with one-on-on fighting, done in a controlled atmosphere, with a referee, unarmed, playing by a ruleset. Aikido is concerned with conflict resolution, against multiple attackers, likely armed, in less than ideal settings, at unexpected times. Different.

Janet Rosen 10-14-2011 11:13 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Chris Hein wrote: (Post 294577)
Aikido has little to nothing in common with type of fighting done in MMA. This is not to say that one is better than the other, it's simply to say that they are VERY different. MMA is concerned with one-on-on fighting, done in a controlled atmosphere, with a referee, unarmed, playing by a ruleset. Aikido is concerned with conflict resolution, against multiple attackers, likely armed, in less than ideal settings, at unexpected times. Different.

Very nicely articulated, Chris.

Chris Evans 10-14-2011 02:11 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Chris Hein wrote: (Post 294577)
I've trained and competed in MMA. Training in MMA actually made me go back to Aikido, once I really understood what I wanted and what the two different martial arts taught.

While it's hard to say that Aikido training might not provide any insights or helpful training tools for an MMA fight, it doesn't provide much. If You want to fight in MMA, train in MMA. Sport martial arts, when it comes to the competition aspect are very particular animals. Each training method catering to a particular skill set. For example, if you want to be a competitive boxer, you should train in boxing, not MMA. MMA training teaches striking methods, but those methods are not designed for competitive boxing. While many MMA fighters still train in boxing, someone who only trains in boxing is going to seriously limit himself in an MMA fight. You train for the type of event you expect to be fighting in. Judo training is best for Judo, MMA for MMA, Boxing for Boxing etc. Saying this, you must understand that Boxing and MMA are much much more closely related than MMA and Aikido.

Aikido has little to nothing in common with type of fighting done in MMA. This is not to say that one is better than the other, it's simply to say that they are VERY different. MMA is concerned with one-on-on fighting, done in a controlled atmosphere, with a referee, unarmed, playing by a ruleset. Aikido is concerned with conflict resolution, against multiple attackers, likely armed, in less than ideal settings, at unexpected times. Different.

I'm not interested in competing in MMA (not yet), but I enjoy the training and sparring with people preparing for MMA bouts: Seems like a decent test of karate and motivates me to keep up on fitness.

Martial arts ("... conflict resolution, against multiple attackers, likely armed, in less than ideal settings, at unexpected times..".) skillfulness is paramount, before any martial sports.

Gorgeous George 10-14-2011 04:19 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Aikido for three years; BJJ for six weeks.
I also do an MMA class every week.

I easily handle all other beginners, including a few very big, very strong guys, in BJJ; in my first ever class I sparred with a white belt who's trained for three or four years, and submitted him with a kimura.

I rolled with a very experienced, talented, and respected blue belt on Wednesday; he told me my top-game is on a par with someone who's been training for six months.

So does ability in aikido transfer to other martial arts/martial arts in general?
The answer is very obviously: yes.

sakumeikan 10-15-2011 08:00 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Dave de Vos wrote: (Post 294569)
Henry Ellis mentioned his son Rik Ellis a couple of times.

Dear Dave,
Rik is a powerful guy.Check him out on you tube.He certainly finishes the fights fast cheers,joe.

Rob Watson 10-15-2011 10:34 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Chris Evans wrote: (Post 294570)
also, I am restarting my search for a physically rigorous Aikido dojo, that's open more than 2x week, to complement my "contact" karate dojo and zazen zendo practices in the Berkeley, 94703, area...

Berkeley Aikikai on San Pablo Ave a couple of blocks north of University Ave. Shibata Ichiro 7 dan offers many classes per week. Ask for a private lesson and let us know how it goes.

ChrisHein 10-15-2011 11:00 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Graham Jenkins wrote: (Post 294598)
Aikido for three years; BJJ for six weeks.
I also do an MMA class every week.

I easily handle all other beginners, including a few very big, very strong guys, in BJJ; in my first ever class I sparred with a white belt who's trained for three or four years, and submitted him with a kimura.

I rolled with a very experienced, talented, and respected blue belt on Wednesday; he told me my top-game is on a par with someone who's been training for six months.

So does ability in aikido transfer to other martial arts/martial arts in general?
The answer is very obviously: yes.

Ah, it's hard to say. How much is your natural ability, and how much is the Aikido? When I started BJJ, I had five years of Aikido, and I got tapped out by everyone in class that day. I did make progress very fast, and by my second year was able to give most of the purple and brown belts a run for their money. Lot's of my class mates said that this must be because of my Aikido training, but again, how much is my past Aikido training and how much is my natural ability and dedication to training?

When I did Kendo, Aikido put me a bit behind in a few things. I had to drop a few habits that Aikido weapons work had engrained into me. So that was a problem that came from previous Aikido training. It's really hard to tell.

One thing that is clear, Aikido doesn't teach the kind of techniques and strategies taught in MMA.

Kevin Leavitt 10-15-2011 03:29 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Great Post Chris Hein! My comments are as your's as well as my experiences with BJJ after training in Aikido.

Gorgeous George 10-15-2011 08:00 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Chris Hein wrote: (Post 294631)
Ah, it's hard to say. How much is your natural ability, and how much is the Aikido? When I started BJJ, I had five years of Aikido, and I got tapped out by everyone in class that day. I did make progress very fast, and by my second year was able to give most of the purple and brown belts a run for their money. Lot's of my class mates said that this must be because of my Aikido training, but again, how much is my past Aikido training and how much is my natural ability and dedication to training?

When I did Kendo, Aikido put me a bit behind in a few things. I had to drop a few habits that Aikido weapons work had engrained into me. So that was a problem that came from previous Aikido training. It's really hard to tell.

One thing that is clear, Aikido doesn't teach the kind of techniques and strategies taught in MMA.

Good to hear from you Chris. :)

I honestly think it's all due to my aikido background: it took me ages, in aikido, to overcome what was natural - tension; strength; aversion to manipulating someone's body/joints; unfamiliarity with physical contact with random people - and if i'd gone straight into BJJ, i'd have had to overcome those same barriers, and it would have taken me a long time to do that.

Hell, I am still having to overcome the aversion to sitting on someone's chest, or getting a knee-ride, ha; plus, I am quick to apologise if I even think i've caught someone - even a little - with a finger in the face, or anything like that (a courtesy I do not wish to ever overcome) - as opposed to some right lunatics, who go full-whack in sparring, as though it's life or death.
This guy gave me a carpet/mat-burn on my knee the other day, because I was averse to getting into a struggle with him - and he ended up headbutting me; crazy.

Then there's the massive new guy, very toned, and muscular, who started the week after me, who tries to use the strength/muscles of an arm to push my bodyweight off him...i'd probably do things like that, still, if not for aikido - I actually stared BJJ so I could practice aikido, outside of the one class a week I can get to.

To be honest, I love how straight-forward, and effective, BJJ is: I can see what works, and why, and I can then do it myself - and when I do it against a resisting partner, I feel very pleased, and in no doubt that i've just used technique on someone; such a relief from aikido: the minute, hard to comprehend detail; the frequent corrections/being told i'm not doing it right...but it's actually helping my aikido a lot, because I effect BJJ techniques through use of the hips, and alignment between my hips and arm/legs.
Exciting times.

Regards aikido/MMA strategies.
I was in the MMA class the other day, and the teacher explained the intention behind boxing: 'you don't want to be at your opponent's twelve o'clock', is how he put it - i.e., you're always trying to get from in front of him, and off-line...just like aikido, I thought.
He also taught a left jab, right cross, left hook, right roundhouse kick combination - and the left hook set me up off-line, and with my right hip back, to then deliver a kick; the exact same kind of hip movements i've found time and again in aikido, where the back hip is naturally and powerfully rotated forward to execute a technique.

FWIW

MM 10-15-2011 08:57 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Graham Jenkins wrote: (Post 294646)
Regards aikido/MMA strategies.
I was in the MMA class the other day, and the teacher explained the intention behind boxing: 'you don't want to be at your opponent's twelve o'clock', is how he put it - i.e., you're always trying to get from in front of him, and off-line...just like aikido, I thought.
He also taught a left jab, right cross, left hook, right roundhouse kick combination - and the left hook set me up off-line, and with my right hip back, to then deliver a kick; the exact same kind of hip movements i've found time and again in aikido, where the back hip is naturally and powerfully rotated forward to execute a technique.

FWIW

Not specific to you, but the overall point that you brought up.

When boxers encountered Ueshiba, they found something very different than what they'd experienced. These people trained to move, hit, jab, generate power, etc. But Ueshiba was not the same.

When Kisshomaru was studying sword, Ueshiba would later say, with aiki it would be like this. Not kata, not technique, but aiki.

When highly ranked kendo people studied with Ueshiba, they wanted to know how he used his body so differently than everyone else. These kendo people had been around for quite a while and had trained with a lot of people and knew how kendo people moved.

When Tenryu, who was highly respected in sumo, met Ueshiba, he found something completely different. Sumo people trained very hard, yet, Tenryu knew that Ueshiba was unlike anyone he had ever experienced.

These are just basic overviews. But, put them together. Boxers, wrestlers, and swordsmen who tested Ueshiba came away wondering what in the world Ueshiba was doing and really wanted to know how he was doing it. Ueshiba did not move, act, respond, or feel like anyone they'd trained with.

Now, if we take modern aikido training and find that hip generated power is very similar to boxing/MMA hip generated power, then shouldn't we be wondering why? If what Ueshiba was doing was vastly different, why is it that hip generated power in Modern Aikido is similar to boxing/MMA? Brings up the question, is Modern Aikido doing the same thing as Morihei Ueshiba ...

Gorgeous George 10-15-2011 09:43 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Mark Murray wrote: (Post 294647)
Not specific to you, but the overall point that you brought up.

When boxers encountered Ueshiba, they found something very different than what they'd experienced. These people trained to move, hit, jab, generate power, etc. But Ueshiba was not the same.

When Kisshomaru was studying sword, Ueshiba would later say, with aiki it would be like this. Not kata, not technique, but aiki.

When highly ranked kendo people studied with Ueshiba, they wanted to know how he used his body so differently than everyone else. These kendo people had been around for quite a while and had trained with a lot of people and knew how kendo people moved.

When Tenryu, who was highly respected in sumo, met Ueshiba, he found something completely different. Sumo people trained very hard, yet, Tenryu knew that Ueshiba was unlike anyone he had ever experienced.

These are just basic overviews. But, put them together. Boxers, wrestlers, and swordsmen who tested Ueshiba came away wondering what in the world Ueshiba was doing and really wanted to know how he was doing it. Ueshiba did not move, act, respond, or feel like anyone they'd trained with.

Now, if we take modern aikido training and find that hip generated power is very similar to boxing/MMA hip generated power, then shouldn't we be wondering why? If what Ueshiba was doing was vastly different, why is it that hip generated power in Modern Aikido is similar to boxing/MMA? Brings up the question, is Modern Aikido doing the same thing as Morihei Ueshiba ...

I absolutely agree that aikido is something different - something internal/subtle; that's why I said that the external techniques in BJJ are a relief - they are manifest.

They are, however, helping me to understand, and work on, things I believe are an essential part of aikido - such as opening your hips, relaxing your body, and body alignment, as stressed in Yoshinkan/pre-war aikido...these are all things i've struggled with in aikido training, and my forays into other martial arts have helped me to understand why judoka etc took up aikido, and how it could have helped them to understand/take to it.

FWIW: I (try to) learn aikido as exemplified by Yamaguchi sensei, and his students Endo, and Yamashima senseis, as I believe what they teach is something truly beyond 'the norm', and close to what O'sensei possessed.

sakumeikan 10-16-2011 02:53 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Robert M Watson Jr wrote: (Post 294628)
Berkeley Aikikai on San Pablo Ave a couple of blocks north of University Ave. Shibata Ichiro 7 dan offers many classes per week. Ask for a private lesson and let us know how it goes.

Dear Robert,
Having known Shibata Sensei for many a year I can state that anybody looking for non compliant , serious Aikido training would be accommodated by Shibata Sensei.Relly nice man and a powerful aikidoka. Cheers, Joe.

sakumeikan 10-16-2011 03:04 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Mark Murray wrote: (Post 294647)
Not specific to you, but the overall point that you brought up.

When boxers encountered Ueshiba, they found something very different than what they'd experienced. These people trained to move, hit, jab, generate power, etc. But Ueshiba was not the same.

When Kisshomaru was studying sword, Ueshiba would later say, with aiki it would be like this. Not kata, not technique, but aiki.

When highly ranked kendo people studied with Ueshiba, they wanted to know how he used his body so differently than everyone else. These kendo people had been around for quite a while and had trained with a lot of people and knew how kendo people moved.

When Tenryu, who was highly respected in sumo, met Ueshiba, he found something completely different. Sumo people trained very hard, yet, Tenryu knew that Ueshiba was unlike anyone he had ever experienced.

These are just basic overviews. But, put them together. Boxers, wrestlers, and swordsmen who tested Ueshiba came away wondering what in the world Ueshiba was doing and really wanted to know how he was doing it. Ueshiba did not move, act, respond, or feel like anyone they'd trained with.

Now, if we take modern aikido training and find that hip generated power is very similar to boxing/MMA hip generated power, then shouldn't we be wondering why? If what Ueshiba was doing was vastly different, why is it that hip generated power in Modern Aikido is similar to boxing/MMA? Brings up the question, is Modern Aikido doing the same thing as Morihei Ueshiba ...

Dear Mark,
In general I would say no to the idea that modern aikido is the same as O Senseis aikido.Perhaps a few people are trying to preserve Aikido but in general the art I feel is being diluted.When Osensei was alive you needed character references etc in order to enter his school.Nowadays Aikido is open to all
[not saying thats bad ] but how many people are really serious about mastering the art?The life of an uchideshi of O Sensei was harsh. Not many people nowadays could /would be willing to under severe training on a full time basis.Cheers, Joe.

Rob Watson 10-16-2011 12:20 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Joe Curran wrote: (Post 294649)
Dear Robert,
Having known Shibata Sensei for many a year I can state that anybody looking for non compliant , serious Aikido training would be accommodated by Shibata Sensei.Relly nice man and a powerful aikidoka. Cheers, Joe.

I believe there as also zazen and iaido classes offered in addition to the many aikido classes. Also a rarity, lunch hour training. I don't train there anymore but 'rigorous' would be an understatement.

To follow up with the OP's query... I've known many aikidoka who went to BJJ or originally came from TKD and many other arts. They do tend to keep coming back to aikido - some take longer than others.

Dave de Vos 10-16-2011 01:13 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Joe Curran wrote: (Post 294619)
Dear Dave,
Rik is a powerful guy.Check him out on you tube.He certainly finishes the fights fast cheers,joe.

Dear Joe,

I checked out a few of his clips. I don't know much about MMA, but Rik sure looks like a capable fighter to me, so I thought he might fit what Chris Evans was looking for.

Cheers,
Dave

Chris Evans 10-18-2011 11:26 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
thank you for the information that lead me to this interesting site:

http://rik-ellis.blogspot.com/2010/0...ion-sites.html
"...AIKIDO IN MMA
By Rik Ellis

I am a MMA / Aikido Cage Fighter..."

I'm interested in a local (Berkeley/Oakland) Aikido dojo that can integrate karate-do practices: Be able to work with kicks and punches (& their defenses) in an Aikido dojo. I think I can keep up with karate and attend an Aikido dojo about 3+ times per week.

They're plenty of karate-ka that pursue "delusional" karate for comfort and for health only (which is fine), but, if you're lucky, you can find enough advanced students that want to learn complete, a more truthful and practical, karate in some dojo: I assume Aikido to be the same, human nature being reliable, that they're Aikido dojo with some Aikido-ka that will work with "sharing" pain and managing fear, from "pressure" testing.

:)

Demetrio Cereijo 10-18-2011 12:08 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Chris,

Don't know if it is too far but in Suginami Aikikai in San Francisco it seems they offer Aikido, BJJ and Muay Thai classes. Maybe you could find the place appropiate for your interests.

Chris Evans 10-18-2011 12:53 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Demetrio Cereijo wrote: (Post 294747)
Chris,

Don't know if it is too far but in Suginami Aikikai in San Francisco it seems they offer Aikido, BJJ and Muay Thai classes. Maybe you could find the place appropiate for your interests.

Really: Aikido, BJJ, and Muay Thai! Cool... I'll look into that dojo, since I work in 'Frisco. Thanks.

sakumeikan 10-19-2011 05:57 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Chris Evans wrote: (Post 294742)
thank you for the information that lead me to this interesting site:

http://rik-ellis.blogspot.com/2010/0...ion-sites.html
"...AIKIDO IN MMA
By Rik Ellis

I am a MMA / Aikido Cage Fighter..."

I'm interested in a local (Berkeley/Oakland) Aikido dojo that can integrate karate-do practices: Be able to work with kicks and punches (& their defenses) in an Aikido dojo. I think I can keep up with karate and attend an Aikido dojo about 3+ times per week.

They're plenty of karate-ka that pursue "delusional" karate for comfort and for health only (which is fine), but, if you're lucky, you can find enough advanced students that want to learn complete, a more truthful and practical, karate in some dojo: I assume Aikido to be the same, human nature being reliable, that they're Aikido dojo with some Aikido-ka that will work with "sharing" pain and managing fear, from "pressure" testing.

:)

Dear Chris,
Read Rik's article.He is a chip from an old block inasmuch as he sounds like his dad .I know Mr Ellis , he is a good fiend of mine.He often states that there are Plastic Samurai going around nowadays.All I can say is this , if you have trained for years with Sensei like Tamura, Chiba Sensei, Saito Sensei etc I think its safe to say you are not a shrinking violet when confronted by potential aggressive people.Of course no one sensible tries to get involved in a skirmish, however if you do happen to be involved in one, no point in doing orthodox?aikido waza.Just keep it simple.A well delivered hit or a short kick to a kneecap usually works a treat.Cheers, Joe.

sakumeikan 10-19-2011 06:02 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Joe Curran wrote: (Post 294786)
Dear Chris,
Read Rik's article.He is a chip from an old block inasmuch as he sounds like his dad .I know Mr Ellis , he is a good fiend of mine.He often states that there are Plastic Samurai going around nowadays.All I can say is this , if you have trained for years with Sensei like Tamura, Chiba Sensei, Saito Sensei etc I think its safe to say you are not a shrinking violet when confronted by potential aggressive people.Of course no one sensible tries to get involved in a skirmish, however if you do happen to be involved in one, no point in doing orthodox?aikido waza.Just keep it simple.A well delivered hit or a short kick to a kneecap usually works a treat.Cheers, Joe.

Dear Folks,
Of course I forgot to mention this, deliver any hit, kick with affection.If you have to chastise someone be firm but kind.Do not take it too personal.The other person is simply misguided.I think this is the essence of Aikido.To cause minimum harm to your enemy if humanly possible.Joe.

Chris Evans 10-19-2011 09:48 AM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Joe Curran wrote: (Post 294787)
Dear Folks,
Of course I forgot to mention this, deliver any hit, kick with affection.If you have to chastise someone be firm but kind.Do not take it too personal.The other person is simply misguided.I think this is the essence of Aikido.To cause minimum harm to your enemy if humanly possible.Joe.

Hmmm...

My back ground has been in from taekwondo-karate & hapkido (which, I believe, combines elements of karate, jujitsu, and aikido), my defense 'contacts' over the years have displayed restraint: None involved kicks (i manage to resist a wide open low round kick to his head after he got knocked down and I actually apologized to the aggressor, mostly in fear of the scary bouncers). In the most recent case, in a commute BART train --Richmond bound, mere jumping in the middle of a beating was enough (resisted the urge to come in with a hook punch) to stop that battery-in-progress, but felt glad to be ready enough, and that perp quickly waked away (I got lucky).

I used to think kicks were my assets until I started sparring with competitive UFC "fighters" and kyokushin-karate "fighters", both types of players employ kicks to legs, which made me realize the "cost" of kicking and the earnestness of staying in balance and sabaki movements.

I'm still sorting out the "..To cause minimum harm to your enemy if humanly possible..." idealism: sounds good, but at times, naive. That's my Zen koan: Is the killing of a psychotic Icchantika (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Icchantika) "blameless" since we are all Icchantika, in some ways. I agree with restraint, yet I have attachments to the notion that felons that have demonstrated selfish killer intent need not be granted mercy during the felon-in-progress.

Martial arts are fun way to holistic health, but if I spend the time I want to learn the practical, effective, ways, while balancing risks to injuries.

Rob Watson 10-19-2011 01:19 PM

Re: Aikido for MMA?
 
Quote:

Chris Evans wrote: (Post 294806)
BART train --Richmond bound.

Even O'sensei declined to dodge bullets and never stepped foot in Richmond.

You originally said Berkeley but now expand to the full greater bay area? Too many places to list as there are so many really good places to train. Why not kajukenbo in SF (1819 Polk St) is pretty tasty!


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