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AikiWeb System 10-21-2005 09:48 AM

Article: An Aikido Journey: Part 3 by Peter Goldsbury
 
Discuss the article, "An Aikido Journey: Part 3" by Peter Goldsbury here.

Article URL: http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/pgoldsbury/2005_10.html

NagaBaba 10-21-2005 07:41 PM

Re: Article: An Aikido Journey: Part 3 by Peter Goldsbury
 
Hi Peter,
Interesting story. If I may ask question, how many ppl practiced in daily basic in those early days in NEAikikai?
Did sensei practice iaido? There were formal iaido classes? Has Chiba sensei been practicing Buddhism in England? Have Chiba sensei and Kanai sensei been in contact/meet at that time? How about common ideas that were developed by both shihans in their physical training?

Of course, more details about your practice with Kanai sensei are very welcome :)
Thanx

Peter Goldsbury 10-22-2005 12:37 AM

Re: Article: An Aikido Journey: Part 3 by Peter Goldsbury
 
Hello Szczepan. Here are some answers to your questions, as far as I can remember.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
Hi Peter,
Interesting story. If I may ask question, how many ppl practiced in daily basic in those early days in NEAikikai?

Well. this was before the dojo moved to its present location in Somerville. I would say that there were about 40-50 members on average at each practice. Of course, numbers varied with the time of day. There were fewer at the morning classes, when Kanai Sensei did not teach. Usually Fred Newcombe or Fred Wagstaff taught these morning classes and Paul Keelan taught on Saturday afternons.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
Did sensei practice iaido?

Yes.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
There were formal iaido classes?

Yes. These usually followed the main classes or were held at different times.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
Has Chiba sensei been practicing Buddhism in England?

I was not aware of this at the time. Actually, I got to know Chiba Sensei much better after I returned to the UK in 1975. He certainly did practise Zen at that time.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
Have Chiba sensei and Kanai sensei been in contact/meet at that time?

I would doubt it. Both were absorbed in building up their organizations and did not travel very much. Kanai Sensei did not often leave Boston, though he did travel with Kisshomaru Doshu to Hawaii in 1974 for the meeting with K Tohei Sensei.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
How about common ideas that were developed by both shihans in their physical training?

Well, at the time they seemed very similar to me in their own approach to aikido. Training was a very intense experience, for which one was expected to give 100%, though this was more obviously expected with Chiba Sensei. However, Kanai Sensei expected this with his own core group of students, but I think he had a more realistic view of the dynamics of a large general dojo. There were no kenshusei in the Boston dojo.

Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
Of course, more details about your practice with Kanai sensei are very welcome :)
Thanx

Well, as I suggested in the column, they both seemed to have different ways of doing basic waza. The way Kanai Sensei did kote gaeshi, for example, with a short irimi-tenkan movement as he did the throw, was a trademark. I never saw Chiba S do it this way. Kanai Sensei also seemed much happier to work his way round the entire class and take uke from everybody. It was always very good to try the techniques on the shihan and it was so good when they actually worked! Chiba Sensei preferred to throw people around rather than be thrown, but perhaps this was because of his back injury. Actually, the techniques illustrated in Kisshomaru Doshu's Aikido (1975) were really practised in the Boston Dojo. This is why the book was such a good souvenir.

Anyway, please feel free to ask me further, if I have not answered to your satisfaction.

Best regards,

NagaBaba 10-24-2005 08:51 PM

Re: Article: An Aikido Journey: Part 3 by Peter Goldsbury
 
Thank you Peter, very interesting stuff, indeed.
Do you have an idea, when sensei started to develop those techniques, --goshi(i.e. udemaki hajikigoshi), and –otoshi(i.e. maki otoshi, tai otoshi)?

I saw a demo about 1974, classic aikikai hombu style started to change, we can see more personal style.

How about visiting other dojo/styles? Could you go to practice with other shihans?

Peter Goldsbury 11-05-2005 04:26 AM

Re: Article: An Aikido Journey: Part 3 by Peter Goldsbury
 
Quote:

Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
Thank you Peter, very interesting stuff, indeed.
Do you have an idea, when sensei started to develop those techniques, --goshi(i.e. udemaki hajikigoshi), and –otoshi(i.e. maki otoshi, tai otoshi)?

I saw a demo about 1974, classic aikikai hombu style started to change, we can see more personal style.

How about visiting other dojo/styles? Could you go to practice with other shihans?

Hello Szczepan,

I thought I had replied to your last post, but I hadn't. Apologies.

I have seen some of the tapes that Kanai Sensei made, long after I left the US. We practised some of the techniques you mention, but we always practised these as 'kokyu-nage'. When I was there Sensei did not care so much about names for the techniques he showed.

I think that one of the values of the Aikikai, as interpreted by Kisshomaru Doshu, is that it was not a style in any sense of the word. So the 'style' of Chiba, Kanai, Tohei Akira, and Yamada were all different and even Kisshomaru Doshu's large circles were hardly ever copied. Kanai Sensei's trademark was koshiwaza and seemingly impossible ouyou-waza. I have never seen any of the other three shihans do the kind of waza that Kanai Sensei did. But Chiba Sensei did things that I never saw Kanai Sensei do, like playing cat and mouse with his ukes, which is something I saw much later and experienced first hand from Yamaguchi Sensei.

I trained in the NE Aikikai before Sensei was ill and so I have little experience of Kanai Sensei's aikido since then. I visited the new dojo once since then, in the early 80s. I trained with a lady named Gilda, who was a NEA member when I was there.

Have you met or practised with any of the other NE Aikikai 'stalwarts' who were active then I was there? Here are some more names (some might have changed owing to marriage etc):
Fred Wagstaff (When I met Yamada Sensei recently, he told me he had died);
Fred Newconb;
Paul Keelan;
Jay (surname I forget; he moved to New Mexico);
Lou Periello;
Steve Carrabino (he was a high school student);
Eliot Seligson;
The Wakslers;
Carol (again, surname forgotten: she was a brilliant uke and went to live in the Findhorn community in Scotland);
Marjorie Chasset (wonderful koshi-nage);
Sharon Mann (nicknamed the 'two hips of death' [for her irimi-nage]; went into movie production);
Frank Regan (when I was there, Frank was a 1st kyu like Eliot and myself. I believe he also has died);
Michael Langford, who ran his own dojo in Newfoundland (I think) and used to visit occasionally;
Bruce Stiles (who lived in Toronto);
Max (aka M di Villadorata): another occasional visitor from Montreal.

Best regards,

NagaBaba 11-07-2005 09:28 PM

Re: Article: An Aikido Journey: Part 3 by Peter Goldsbury
 
Hi Peter,
Many thanks for your story. Unfortunately I didn't practice with Old Timers that you mentioned.
Best regards


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