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Old 12-16-2006, 09:20 PM   #8
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
Re: Ueshiba taking Ukemi

Ellis Amdur wrote:
Whatever the merits of all of this, it's hard to imagine Takeda deliberately creating an opening.
Without taking away from several good points-I'm never one to throw out good teaching or skills due to a man's possible personality deficiencies-particularly from hearsey.
He did claim a positive style of movement and later-just as Ueshiba did- change to a more self defense model-as stated by him personally in his published interview. To not leave openings is hardly anything new in Budo. In the end, he did create some fairly amazing and unusually skilled men.
There is a training method behind the "leave no opening" that is not theory and clearly expressed a way to train, move and respond. It is cogent and has depth and by all accounts his own skills and Sagawa's demonstrated exactly that.

Ellis Amdur wrote:
I think that, as a corollary, as he taught this way, his students did too. Let's imagine his method was showing the technique and giving instruction not only on the technique, but also on whatever exercises were necessary to develop the ki/kokyu. Some people - like Ueshiba -- did get really strong. But the potential pitfall would be a) grandiosity b) that the students are taught to tank, under the illusion that falling that way "has to happen."
Hmmm…are we talking aiki arts only?
With those two the potential for "grandiosity" is explicable in their preeminent skills. Whether or not it is valid is another discussion. I think its a bit shortsighted to discuss their lives and not account and pay heed to the many -real world- exhibitions of considerable skills that had nothing to do with their later students and evolving arts.
From many sources and different arts. There abilities were transparent and undeniable. They (qualifier…they…) didn't need to have guys tank. Takeda more than Ueshiba took on strangers other than his own Uke's routinely and by every account was ridiculously powerful. Odd that that phrase kept coming up.

I never judge them by the standards of their later day students Hell Ueshiba was pissed when he used to come back to the oldhombo. Telling everyone that they were not doing "his" Aikido.
Then, as now, they dismissed……..even him.
Again what were/are the colors of the truth behind that as well? Who knows.

As an aside you told a story of Ueshiba in Kanos dojo. With some guy saying "See that old man? Go try to throw him."
Which leaves me to assume he was saying no one could throw Ueshiba. I couple that, with the Fighting Spirit of Japan quotes I posted a couple of years ago, regarding the 6th dan who they said "could not be thrown". The Aikijujutsu master who could not be thrown
I end with Takeda's many exhibitions where he demonstrated that very thing on all comers.
And in the new age Sagawa who was recorded as extremely potent and unthrowable. And possibly the best in the modern era.

The "power" they exhibited- which lent credibility to the earlier accounts was morphed by Ueshiba's students themselves. Possibly due to their knowing...there were no openings and they started to do that wierd stuff you see in the later videos of him.
But again the earlier accounts were valid.....that they were unthrowable.
Who has their eyes on that goal? Who has a training method to get there that is demonstrable and teachable outside of technique? And can do it without ten years of flopping around taking Ukemi and "catching air." It doesn't take any serious length of time just to learn Ukemi. the rest should be training a bujutsu body. Not rolling around every week
As a model I guess one has to decide which one to choose.
Being a part of the learning to fall for a significant portion of your training career back and forth. Or being --apart- from that. And spending a significant portion of your training learning the ways to build connections in your body to…not be thrown in the first place.
and that has nothing to do with Ukemi-other then largely-not completely reducing the need for it.

And happy holidays

Last edited by DH : 12-16-2006 at 09:33 PM.
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