Peter Ralls wrote:
This thread certainly covers a lot of issues in aikido, but getting back to how Arikawa Sensei taught, what interests me is what he was trying pass on, and how. He was obviously an intelligent man who put a lot of thought into what he was doing, and what the art was. So why did he teach the way he did?
My guess is that he was not trying to pass down his own style of aikido in terms of a way of doing techniques, or a methodology, but instead trying to create a training environment that would result in the students experiencing certain things that would deepen their understanding of aikido.......
I often think that in aikido, that quality which has been a major topic in this forum, the quality that transcends physical technique that we refer to as kokyu, has been passed on by experiencing kokyu taking falls from ones teacher, rather than any set method of teaching. Thus, Osensei had a lot of kokyu. His students, that experienced him directly, got some of it, though not nearly to the degree Osensei had. And their students in turn, often got a whole lot less. And as the the number of people training in aikido became greater and greater, [b][i]the less people proportionately have had the experience of being thrown with kokyu,[/i to the point now that a lot of people just don't believe in it at all.
So maybe that's what Arikawa Sensei was up to, trying to pass on what he had by letting people feel it from him.
First up learning kokyu is not done from taking falls. I teach it without anyone having to fall down. I teach them to stay standing up. Learning to take falls is Ukemi. Not kokyu.
I understand perfectly well your point about "experiencing" the veracity of Kokyu skills by taking technique. While I understand the model BTDT it is not necessary either. The logic of this sentance escapes me ....snip....kokyu, has been passed on by experiencing kokyu. Taking falls from ones teacher, rather than any set method of teaching. Thus, Osensei had a lot of kokyu. His students, that experienced him directly, got some of it, though not nearly to the degree Osensei had.
Ueshiba learned Kokyu from Takeda and he learned it from learning to do it- not by learning to take falls. But by being taught how to DO it. So to quote you it was " Thus, Osensei had a lot of kokyu."
Aikido folks it seems do not practice solo training do not practice AIki-power as breath power the way it was done with Takeda. Why? They were, for the most part, not shown how. It for this reason they can't do and have less power.
I see nothing compelling to support Arikawa or Chiba's reputation of abuses. Again, and I cannot emphasize it strongly enough. Aikidoka are not truly fighting back as in MMA or Judo whihc creates a different dynamic in the body that protects. Aikidoka when Uke are still offering an attack then taking technique. With that measure of cooperation, there is not justifaction for repeated injury.
To make the point, lets review and pretend we are talking about Arikawa and Chiba having demonstrated now for the last thirty years with Chuck Lidell, Rickson Gracie, and Randy Coutere as their Ukes.
What student injuries do you suppose- we'd be discussing?
Its abuse, and yes, it is that simple. It is just as important to read Peter G.'s reply about training with CHiba in his house or Arikawa in the coffee shop. Why the dichotomy? What was the need in these men to do what they did? Sever training can be dangerous, I have had my share of injuries with students but they were random accidents or done under full fight training. It is different than what has been frequently reported with many of these guys.