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Old 09-28-2006, 06:41 PM   #45
Dojo: Aunkai
Location: Fairfax, VA
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 429
Re: What is "Aikido"?

Kent Enfield wrote:
Not in any kendo I've seen.

It's all about the lower body. Yes, moving your wrists and arms is important, but that's because they're links between your feet and the sword. Comments along the lines of "you need to strike with your koshi" or "fight with your feet, not with your sword" are very common.

Do low level people (in kendo, that's sandan and below) do this very well? Of course not. But having everythinig work together, "ki ken tai itchi" as we say, is probably the most fundamental principal of kendo. That's why so much time is spent on things like coordinating the timing of the foot and the cut.

Ki-ken-tai-itchi isn't just for strikes, either. It applies to even the smallest of movements during seme-ai. Now those movements are small at the tip of the sword, so they end up being absolutely tiny in the core of the body, but they're still (supposed to be) there. But that's the kind of stuff that distinguishes kodansha from the rest of us.

I would argue that it isn't just the lower body, though certainly the importance of the rear leg and left arm should not be neglected.

Instead I would argue that it is the entirety of the body which should be considered when striking/recieving/feeling out ones opponent, however, since no one longer cuts through their opponnent in kendo, there is less emphasis on this weight transfer, though it is more likely to be found in iaido practice or in practice cutting.

Taiatari striking (for non kendo people, think of a hockey/lacrosse body check) is a perfect example of where maintaining the connections of the body would be extremely usefull, that is in driving your opponent back. Until recently, I thought I was delivering my entire body weight forwards (despite being tall and having a center of gravity disadvantage) by focusing on pushing off my legs harder. Turns out I was wrong here.

Wtih a bit more focus on aikido with regards to this position, upon making contact, you feel out your opponent to find when they are weak and you can either propell them backwards and strike or propel yourself back and then strike an open target.

I agree, this sort of thing isn't discussed much at all, though I think it would be advantageous to everyone if it was. Im pretty much in agreement with the rest of what you wrote.

Last edited by HL1978 : 09-28-2006 at 06:46 PM.
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