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Old 02-03-2007, 12:12 AM   #18
ChrisHein's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Fresno
Location: Fresno , CA
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,646
Re: Non-cooperative tanto-dori (Discussion)

I agree with you. No doubt that the best option when facing a weapon (or any physical confrontation armed or not) is to leave. Barring that you must out range or control the weapon. If I am not armed out ranging even a knife is not possible so I must control the weapon. I agree there will probably be plenty of blood and pain, and I may likely die, yes.

Personally I believe that the techniques of Aikido are designed for me to use when I have the weapon. They help me to free up my weapon hand so that I can keep using my weapon. In the practice we are doing, it is not particularly important that it's a knife, it could be a stick or a stun gun, or a pistol that we are using. It's that a knife is an easy thing for us to practice with. Looking at it from the perspective of being the person with the knife (or weapon of any type) you can see that you have the clear advantage, however if there are multiple attackers, and one of them can grab your weapon hand and control it for more then a few seconds, all of his friends can easily bring you down and finish you off. This is why I think these techniques are relevant. This is why I said this is NOT tanto dori, the focus is not on one guy taking the knife away, if anything it's on the knifer freeing himself up so he can cut more. The other guy does get the benefit of trying to control an armed attacker, but that's just a benefit.

If you are facing a man with a weapon all of the cards are stacked against you. You do not have range (even with a small weapon like a knife), you do not have the advantage close in (especially with a short weapon like a knife) so you cannot reasonably apply unarmed grappling methods (headlocks, bear hugs etc.). In short you are in a bad way. The only chance you may stand is to control the weapon hand so your attacker cannot use the weapon against you or your friends. This is done by grabbing the weapon hand.

I am in no way suggesting that it is a good idea to face a man with a knife, I would never choose to do that and I don't recommend it. However if I have to use a weapon, I want to make sure no one is going to be able to control my weapon hand, stopping me from cutting them up. This is what I believe Aikido's technical syllabus is designed to do, free my weapon hand as soon as possible so that if I have to face a mob, it's hard for them to bring me down.

Last edited by ChrisHein : 02-03-2007 at 12:18 AM.

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