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Old 11-25-2006, 12:02 PM   #18
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,123
Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Cady Goldfield wrote:
This is a basic example of a lack of understanding about what is going on in the body during training. Contrary to what so many martial arts students believe, there is no such thing as "conditioning and strengthening" the body through thrusting fists into pots of sand, punching boards, or falling and slapping the ground.
Cady.... if I agreed with you on this point, we'd both be wrong.
Slapping the ground does...nothing -- except to burst blood vessels and bruise bone. The long-term outcome of that "conditioning" is, at best, to deaden and kill nerves so you no longer feel pain when doing damage to your arms.
There is a clear distinction made between this type of "low-level" conditioning and proper conditioning, Cady.
Same for punching makiwara (which, by the way, I did for 20 years when I was making an extensive and intensive study of punching and striking).
Heck... the most I could ever do was for 1 hour. You're tough, indeed, if you did it for 20 years.
What DOES help you "condition" yourself, is good technique itself. Form: the angle of the punch or strike, its acceleration, the way you hold and move your body: Those elements are what will determine whether you do or don't injure yourself.

In other words, it is not the hand or the skin that breaks the fall or the board; it's the correct application of technique and good form. Nothing more, nothing less.

Students of all levels mistake the superficial, external practices of striking or slapping hard things -- which is nothing but pseudo-science -- for actual practical method -- due to a misunderstanding of basic physical and physiological principles.

I group slapping the ground with punching bricks and sand. Just another misunderstanding of human physiology and of basic physics.
Oh Cady.... you don't understand about the "ki" and how it's developed. If you do it right, all those things you mentioned are fine. It's sort of like the guys that sit around and "deep breathe" for the oxygen... they're missing the point of what they're supposed to develop.


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