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-   -   Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7050)

John Matsushima 12-01-2004 05:03 PM

Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Hello everyone,
I have heard discussion of the importance of good ukemi to protect yourself. Some people say that good ukemi is to sort of "dive into it" to get ahead of the technique. I have also heard some people complain that X person's ukemi is terrible, and therefore the technique can't be done right. If Aikido techniques are to protect from harm the nage as well as uke, why does one need such good ukemi? My main question is, what do you think are ways that techniques can be executed with someone that has no ukemi ability without harm? :ai: :ki: :do:

John Ashton 12-01-2004 05:56 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Hi John,
good question, IMHO good ukemi doesnt just mean taking good falls, it also means being able to give a good strong comitted attack and be centerd and sensitive enough to respond to what nage is doing without anticipation. so in that respect ukemi teaches you alot of thing that you can use when you are nage such as . timing , sensitivity , responsiveness and conection. pluss the better your ukemi is the harder you can train and still be safe. and there is alot you can learn from taking ukemi from higher ranking people.
if you would like to do some reading on ukemi there is a great article by Tres Hofmeister on the bujindesign web site look under news letter
have fun train hard
JA :D

Lan Powers 12-01-2004 06:12 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
My main question is, what do you think are ways that techniques can be executed with someone that has no ukemi ability without harm? :ai: :ki: :do:


It sure takes a LOT more control!
Often I have had to let my technique "fail" if you want to term it that way, because the uke was disconnected, or unwilling to commit, or .... :drool:
You can make it work without their input/participation in sucessfully completing the technique in hand.
But it takes more skill, more momentum, or just more willingness to "finish" regardless of ukes wellbeing.

Better sometimes to "let it go" than to hurt them.
I hope I get more & more able to control (safely)
and emulate the more accomplished folk I see practice.
Good question
Lan

ruthmc 12-02-2004 05:02 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
If Aikido techniques are to protect from harm the nage as well as uke, why does one need such good ukemi?

Because nage may not have very good Aikido, or may not be too interested in protecting uke. When nage is really good, it doesn't matter how bad uke's ukemi is, because good Aikido will always protect both parties. It's finding a good nage...

Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
My main question is, what do you think are ways that techniques can be executed with someone that has no ukemi ability without harm?

1. SMOOTHLY (no jerkiness)
2. Consistently (no changes of speed)
3. Controlled
4. Using centre (not arm muscles)
5. With sensitivity to uke's movement
6. Using correct principles (circles, uke's body structure, etc)

Ruth

ian 12-02-2004 07:17 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Yeh - I'e questioned this line myself. There are two contradictory arguments in aikido:

1. aikido is non-competitive because the techniques are too dangerous to do in a competitive manner
vs.
2. aikido can be used to restrain or throw an attacker without harm

I think anyone who says uke has to throw themselves into ukemi to avoid harm is not blending with the attack. Uke is unbalanced, and they roll rather than fall flat on their back/face. The force should be there already, with no 'throwing themselves' into a roll (although some effort will be necessary to reorientate the body to make it more comfortable).

What will happen in reality? I think it depends on nage's intention and experience. Having been thrown by Yamada sensei, I would say it was a very interesting experience. I was quite inexprienced at the time, but the throw positioned me perfectly on the floor - he rotated my body so I fell extremely comfortably.

Also, a previous instructor told me how amazed he was when he did kote-gaeshi in the street and the attacker did a fantastic turn (not really a ukemi, more of a breakfall).

My point is, if you are throwing someone well, you can throw them so they will turn and won't land too badly (also a point is made about this in 'dynamic sphere').

P.S. as regards my point - I think aikdio is dangerous if there is a competitve struggle

Alvin H. Nagasawa 12-27-2004 07:07 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
Hello everyone,
I have heard discussion of the importance of good ukemi to protect yourself. Some people say that good ukemi is to sort of "dive into it" to get ahead of the technique. I have also heard some people complain that X person's ukemi is terrible, and therefore the technique can't be done right. If Aikido techniques are to protect from harm the nage as well as uke, why does one need such good ukemi? My main question is, what do you think are ways that techniques can be executed with someone that has no ukemi ability without harm? :ai: :ki: :do:

:cool: {Comment=Alvin Nagasawa} Aloha, everyone,
It is important to have a trained Ukemi, As a Instructor demonstrating a technique, Unlike using a untrained Uke, who may injure the instructor and Uke. If you notice in a seminar, The instructor calls upon a trained uke, He observes the students as they train, and will call up those that has the experience. But I for one will use a person with no ukemi ability, to show ones ability to blend with the lowest kyu rank. One has to adjust to every situation, because every one on the mat has to have your attention to learn aikido. A good Instructor must have that quality.

MaryKaye 12-28-2004 12:55 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
One of the things that "bad ukemi" can mean is that the attacker is not attacking. Then if you want to go through with a throw that normally redirects the attacker's force, you don't have anything to work with. You can substitute force of your own, or accept failure....

In two years training with her I've only seen my fourth dan teacher completely fail at a technique once. She was trying to throw an unranked student kiri-kaeishi, a throw that involves taking uke's energy and bouncing it back in the direction from which it came. like a ball bouncing against a wall. Only, the ball had already come to a stop by the time it reached her, so the "bounce" just didn't happen. (I tried brute force, to my shame; that didn't work either, as uke was bigger and stronger than me.)

I think that if that student actually went after me to clobber me, I could throw him. I also think he might be surprised how well the ukemi would go; I know I was, in similar circumstances. But when he's thinking (as he said himself) 90% about his ukemi anxieties and 10% about "which foot was supposed to be forward on the attack?" that doesn't leave much intent or impetus to redirect.

That said, there are certainly moves where if you don't know what's coming, you're likely to get hurt. I come from a school which doesn't do kotagaeishi and have had a few close calls when cross-training; if your knees are locked and weight back on your heels when nage goes to turn you over your arm, you may not be able to follow fast enough to save your wrist, no matter how well motivated you are. Perhaps better technique from nage would help, but it seems very difficult to be that good.

Mary Kaye

Olaf 12-28-2004 04:16 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
On training techniques including breakfalls...
Have you ever asked yourself what attacker would rather jump over his wrist (kotegaeshi) or otherwise (shiho nage, irimi nage, juji-nage) and risk life-threatening injuries to spine, neck or head, instead of accepting an injury to the wrist (or other parts) -- considering that he has to fall onto a surface with no mats, and likely has had no Aikido ukemi training...
Thinking further, why do Aikido ukes readily jump? Why do Nages apply techniques that can only be escaped when jumping? Or even force uke into a high fall? Are there no better ways of bringing uke to the ground in a controlled manner?
Just a little food for thought..
Olaf Schubert

Tim Griffiths 12-28-2004 09:25 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Uke's shouldn't "jump" into a high fall. The high fall is a natural consequence of them being connected to their own wrist, and the movement of nage. It should be something that is done in a controlled and relatively safe way - nothing jumpy about it. However, I don't expect an untrained attacker to do it - I expect their wrist to break.

Aikido techniques provide a wide spectrum of responses, not just "bringing uke to the ground in a controlled manner". Sometimes we want to do that, sometimes we want to break their arm, or drop them on their head.

As an aside, I was surprised to see the result of someone not following a strong kotegeishi in our dojo recently - broken ulna and radius, but no damage to the wrist joint itself. I'd always assumed there'd be some tissue damage long before the bones went. Ah well (no, it wasn't me).

Train well,

Tim

Bronson 12-28-2004 09:35 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

Olaf Schubert wrote:
Are there no better ways of bringing uke to the ground in a controlled manner?

Yes. Most of the joint lock throws (I'm thinking kotegeashi and shihonage here) have variants where you can set uke down instead of toss them. Just like the joint control techniques have variations where you toss uke.

We are told that we should be able to do most techniques as evasions, escapes, controls, or throws depending on circumstances.

Bronson

Olaf 12-29-2004 08:00 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

We are told that we should be able to do most techniques as evasions, escapes, controls, or throws depending on circumstances.
Exactly! So the main reason for doing so much trowing in class with ukes bouncing all over the mat is the sheer fun of doing this?! (Or maybe lack of knowledge or interest in searching for controlling techniques?) I like your approach better, Bronson - that's also why we pratice like you described, actual throwing being only a very small portion of the curriculum (an approach which is still very true to the heart of Aikido, I believe).
Are there any reasons FOR doing lots of throwing and breakfalls?
Also, what about the high stress of breakfalls on the body (no matter what flooring is used) - shouldn't we be able to do Aikido still even when getting older? Learning to protect ourselves and others should in my POV include taking care of our bodies while training for many years...
Any thoughts...?
Thanks
Olaf

Bronson 12-29-2004 07:19 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

Olaf Schubert wrote:
Are there any reasons FOR doing lots of throwing and breakfalls?

Well, they are fun :D I think they are an important aspect of the art but I don't think they are the only aspect. There are important lessons to be learned on both the nage and uke sides from techniques with breakfalls. I also think there are lessons that are just as important when we learn to protect the attacker all the way to the ground.

Bronson

MaryKaye 12-29-2004 08:18 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
I think knowing how to breakfall well contributes to the chance that you'll have a long, productive aikido career, because sooner or later nage will put you somewhere where that's your best option. This happens even in schools which discourage breakfall-requiring throws. Or you'll make a mistake yourself, with the same consequences. I once hung on for dear life to my bokken during a ken disarm, because I mistakenly thought it was a throw-away and if I let go I'd fall on my sword. I'm glad I had at least a basic idea how to take the fall from that....

A fact I enjoy, though I can't explain it, is that the most gung-ho breakfaller in my school is 61 years old. Clearly it is not impossible to keep doing them. I would like to look like him when I'm 61!

Mary Kaye

Larry John 12-29-2004 09:07 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Tim,

I guess the nature of the injury depends on the relative geometry between uke and nage at the point that the body fails. I tore a TFCC ligament in my wrist when I was too slow responding to an experienced partner's smooth hip rotation during a kotegaeshi.

And you don't have to use the wrist joint for this throw anyway--you can use the forearm itself (that's how I had folks do them on me while my wrist was healing), or (I'll bet) even the upper arm as the point of connection to uke's center if you do it right.

tarik 12-06-2005 08:53 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
Hello everyone,
I have heard discussion of the importance of good ukemi to protect yourself. Some people say that good ukemi is to sort of "dive into it" to get ahead of the technique. I have also heard some people complain that X person's ukemi is terrible, and therefore the technique can't be done right.

All are true in the correct context. Well.. except _perhaps_ the getting ahead part.

To protect oneself. Yes, always, especially from beginner's whom have no idea of how to perform the technique correctly. It also instructs them, when done properly.

To get ahead of the technique. I have much feeling about this one. I think you should be WITH the technique, not ahead. If you have sente, you can make the decisions to stay with the technique or change it.

X's ukemi is terrible. So what? Except that it might prevent you from practicing the requested technique, you should still be able to practice your aikido (that should still work). Unless it is your place to correct their ukemi.

Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
If Aikido techniques are to protect from harm the nage as well as uke, why does one need such good ukemi?

My feeling is that good ukemi is about 2 things;

1) self-protection
2) deeper study
3) instruction

Yeah, I said 2, didn't I? ;)

Quote:

John Matsushima wrote:
My main question is, what do you think are ways that techniques can be executed with someone that has no ukemi ability without harm? :ai: :ki: :do:

Harm is a choice you make as nage/tori/shite. You can practice techniques that take your partner's balance and then you can 'catch' them and protect them from serious injury if you so choose. You make the choice in every technique; it's certainly a part of the training contract.

Tarik

Ron Tisdale 12-06-2005 11:43 AM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

Are there any reasons FOR doing lots of throwing and breakfalls?
Well, I'm personally coming to the conclusion that what I like about the strong throws and the breakfalls is that they enable shite to express power, and uke to receive power. The better the ukemi (breakfalls, rolls, attacks, movement, ability to absorb power) the more opportunity shite has to explore the power of the waza in question. I don't think powerfull throws necessarily lead to breakfalls either...sometimes they do, sometimes they don't. It often depends on the relationship between the shite and uke. But I like to be able to have my body sufficiently trained so that it will automatically make the correct decision without my monkey brain getting involved, because often that is just too slow.

Waza is a microcosm of a relationship between shite and uke...that particular waza at that point in time can focus on the power in the relationship, the control in the relationship, the connectedness between centers, lots of things, and many things at once. The better the ukemi, the more freedom to explore and express all of those things and more.

Best,
Ron

Amir Krause 12-06-2005 12:31 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

My main question is, what do you think are ways that techniques can be executed with someone that has no ukemi ability without harm?
If one is willing to harm the another (for example - when being under attack) there should not be any problem to execute a technique in full.
But, if all you wish is to show a friend, it is a problem, and you would need very good control to stop the technique post the point of pain but before the point of damage.

Amir

bratzo_barrena 12-06-2005 12:59 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
It's a mith that an Aikidoka can perform a technique on someone who doesn't know how to take ukemi and cause no harm on the attacker.
that's just not true.
Ukemi is the ability of uke to receive a technique in a safe manner. Now not only Aikidokas can do ukemi, maybe, someone trained in other art or sensitive enough to movement can adjust his/her body to receive a technique. Ukemi is not exclusive of Aikido. Aikido has some safe ways of receiving a technique, and other arts may have their own ways too.
Having said that, if you perform a technique on someone with no training in ukemi at all, or not sensitive enough to movement, so he/she can adjust his/her body, you will certainly cause a lot of harm. It's unavoidable, considering you perform the technique properly and don't loose the proper form just to avoid injuring the attacker (which in itself is a mistake).
I'll just ask. How many of you would you be willing to perform a technique, properly done, on a new student?
And whe I mean properly done, I mean with the correct angles, speed, momentum, extension, etc.
Don't you think in Aikido we train ukemi exactly for that reason? Don't you think Ukemi exists because otherwise would be too dangerous? Of course, the reason ukemi exist is because Aikido techniques are very dangerous and very harmful if you don't know how to receive them

Bratzo Barrena
Instructor Aikido Goshin Dojo
Doral, FL

roosvelt 12-06-2005 01:56 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

Bratzo Barrena wrote:
It's a mith that an Aikidoka can perform a technique on someone who doesn't know how to take ukemi and cause no harm on the attacker.
that's just not true.


Your problem is that you have common sense.

I think Aikido training is just a two person kata. The nage and uke have to know the form to perform together. Someone here says that you can perform a kata without knowing the form. I think it's strange comment.

The outsiders say Aikido is fake. They're right in a sense. In most dojo and demo, the movement are prearranged to teach certain technique. Some aikidoda get confused and think the training kata IS the technique.

Adman 12-06-2005 11:39 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Well, I almost responded with something very incoherent, until I decided to make sure I read all the posts. Some nice replies by Mary, Tarik, Ron, etc... I particularly like Ron's quote:
Quote:

The better the ukemi (breakfalls, rolls, attacks, movement, ability to absorb power) the more opportunity shite has to explore the power of the waza in question.
But then again:
Quote:

It's a mith that an Aikidoka can perform a technique on someone who doesn't know how to take ukemi and cause no harm on the attacker.
In my experience, I'd have to disagree. At least in the dojo setting. Although, it can be satisfying (I suppose :rolleyes: ) to make someone go splat ... when that is the ultimate goal of the technique ... then, well ... that's when things can go wrong.
Quote:

Having said that, if you perform a technique on someone with no training in ukemi at all, or not sensitive enough to movement, so he/she can adjust his/her body, you will certainly cause a lot of harm. It's unavoidable, considering you perform the technique properly and don't loose the proper form just to avoid injuring the attacker (which in itself is a mistake).
:straightf
That sounds a tad bit absolute to me. There are many "proper" ways to perform a technique without hurting the attacker. And that last part between the parenthesis -- what exactly do you mean by that?

thanks,
Adam

bratzo_barrena 12-07-2005 01:02 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
[quote=Adam Bauder] That sounds a tad bit absolute to me. There are many "proper" ways to perform a technique without hurting the attacker.

Answer; of course there are diffrent ways to properly performed a technique, I didn't say they weren't. So by properly I mean, using Aikido principle, correct posture, timing, control, unbalancing, etc. Didn't ean or suggested that the way I do it is the only proper way.
So of course in class we have time to stop, wait for uke to adjust his/her body, tell him her, which foot to move, in which directioon to bend, yeah is 100% safe, but just doing the technique and expecting taht for the 'magic' of Aikido nobody gets ever hurt, is foolish.


[quote=Adam Bauder] And that last part between the parenthesis -- what exactly do you mean by that?

Answer: I meant that not performimg your technique properly just to take care of uke is silly, there are save ways of training without disrupting proper technique. just have to expalin and wait for unexperienced uke to adjust.

Bratzo Barrena
Instructor Aikido Goshin Dojo
Doral, FL

Adman 12-07-2005 03:07 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

Bratzo Barrena wrote:
Answer; of course there are diffrent ways to properly performed a technique, I didn't say they weren't.

Your right. You didn't say that in so many words. Instead you said:
Quote:

... you will certainly cause a lot of harm. It's unavoidable, considering you perform the technique properly
So do you disagree that it is possible to perform a technique properly on an untrained uke without causing (unavoidable) harm?
Quote:

How many of you would you be willing to perform a technique, properly done, on a new student?
I have to do it all the time. It's called "teaching."

thanks,
Adam

P.S. I figure you do a lot of copy/paste like the rest of us. If you make sure a quotable block ends with a closing "[/quote]" tag, your posts will appear as the way (I think) you intended.

bratzo_barrena 12-07-2005 03:32 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Adam,

let me try to explain myself. Consider English is not my native language, ok. I'll do my best.

you quote me here:
"... you will certainly cause a lot of harm. It's unavoidable, considering you perform the technique properly"

But I said is unavoidable to harm A PERSON WHO DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO TAKE UKEMI OR WHO IS NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH TO ADJUST HIS/HER BODY. In taht case is unavoidable.
So, If you're going to quote me, do it fairly, and DO NOT MANIPULATE THE CONTEXT.

You asked me: "So do you disagree that it is possible to perform a technique properly on an untrained uke without causing (unavoidable) harm?"

Yes, if we consider in PROPER TECHNIQUE the spped, angles, body movements, etc, necessary to make it effective.


then you tell me, Quote:
"I have to do it all the time. It's called "teaching."" (refering to performing a technique on a new, non-ukemi trained, non-sensitive-enough-to adapt uke)
Of course, when you teach (as I said before, but seems you distort my statements to make them invalid) to such an uke, you as teacher are careful, and adjust your technique so you don't harm him/her, which is the way should be. If he/she cant take ukemi, you explain and give him/her time to adjust. We agree 100% on that.
But a technique properly done (outside extrictly teaching purposes) DO NOT IMPLY THAT ONE HAVE TO WAIT FOR ATTACKER TO ADJUST, THUS A PERSON WHO DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO TAKE UKEMI OR WHO IS NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH TO ADJUST HIS/HER BODY, IS GOING TO BE HURT, DEFINATELY.

Bratzo Barrena

Adman 12-07-2005 03:53 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Quote:

Bratzo Barrena wrote:
So, If you're going to quote me, do it fairly, and DO NOT MANIPULATE THE CONTEXT.

I haven't manipulated anything. In fact, I quoted what you suggested I should have quoted, two posts ago. Given you said that English is not your native language, I've tried to make sure I've understood you correctly.
Quote:

But a technique properly done (outside extrictly teaching purposes) DO NOT IMPLY THAT ONE HAVE TO WAIT FOR ATTACKER TO ADJUST, THUS A PERSON WHO DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO TAKE UKEMI OR WHO IS NOT SENSITIVE ENOUGH TO ADJUST HIS/HER BODY, IS GOING TO BE HURT, DEFINATELY.
You don't give your language skills enough credit. I understand you perfectly. I just happen to disagree.

thanks,
Adam

bratzo_barrena 12-07-2005 04:03 PM

Re: Ukemi vs. Protecting your attacker
 
Adam

great, so you have your pint of view, I have mine, we don't agree, and that's it. It was nice arguing anyway.
That's the point of a thread, I guess. Give arguments, points of view, not everyone is going to agree with other pionts of view, but that's ok.
thanks for your interest in this thread

bratzo barrena


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