Re: Defining Kokyu
I see it this way. The exercises proabably came first and someone down the line probably thought what shall we call these? - "OK - kokyu exercises" etc, so I wouldn't get too stuck in translation of meaning.
To me, kokyu exercises compliment the techniques. They isolate certain movements and allow us to practise simple things - coordinating our bodies and getting our breathing rhythm in order. In Goju-ryu Karate they have Sanchin kata - their form of kokyu-ho, if you like, which is of course related to Karate movement - (shameless plug - in my book, I call that kind of training dynamic tension - full power slow muscle movement). And we have ours, which are softer exercises, yet, after training for some time, we become quite poweful. I say, and I say it strongly knowing some disagree, the power developed in kokyu-ho / kokyu-nage later crosses over to technique - to me, that is its purpose. And if done well, aiki develops. Aiki is a consequence of kokyu-ho/kokyu-nage (in Aikido), it is not a consequence of the techniques, which in the 'beginner' form, are just mechanical. Kokyu allows us to bridge the gap - to steal a phrase from Wing Chun. Further, to me, Aikido is now The Way of Aiki, and nothing else. No peace, no love, nothing else (there 'can be' just the same amount of love in any activity - even tennis etc). Develop aiki and put it into everything you do - Aikido, Jujtusu, Judo, Karate, whatever.That doesn't mean I am an expert, but this has become my direction - before, I was just lost for years, training hard and heading nowhere. I can see that clearly now. Kokyu-ho / kokyu-nage are very useful. In Japan, other Jujutsu arts all have their own versions, albeit with different names. I have a good collection but am always looking for more.