Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
That's interesting, but it obviously only covers Japan and the last entry was 20 years ago.
I increasingly think that the kind of info I'm looking for will be very hard to find. People directly involved in such incidents probably aren't going to brag, and those who run the dojos and organizations involved aren't going to be eager to advertise serious injuries or deaths on their watch. I also suspect that many people who witness such things or are close to the casualties end up quitting in the wake of such horrible events.
It's too bad, it would be useful data. For instance, shihonage is disprortionately represented on that list. One probably doesn't normally think of it as one of the most hazardous techniques, but it reminded me that the worst injury I ever got in Aikido was to my mid-lower back, when someone cranked down on shihonage while my feet were sort of planted.
I agree, shiho nage is one of the most dangerous techniques. In fact, at our dojo, we probably don't practice it with new folks until a year or more into their practice. If we do it before then, it is usually done in a very slow and controlled manner and only as some sort of introduction to the technique or some other related point. However, when I started training, that was pretty much the first technique we did. Actually, at nearly every dojo I ever belonged do, that was one of the first techniques one did. Looking back, I think that was doable because of how watered-down the version often tended to be. I think that plays a big role in how soon one can actually be introduced to all of the basic elements of this technique - but that probably goes for any technique. However, for shiho nage: The reason it is difficult/dangerous is that, in my opinion, a good shiho nage takes away two very common things folks do to limit the kuzushi: a) allowing uke to turn into the technique in order to post up on the inside foot in preparation for a forward breakfall; and b) allowing uke to disengage his/her center first (i.e. sitting down into the common back breakfall) from their forward progress. This can make things very tough on shoulders, elbows, the neck, and the back of the head. :-(