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Old 03-19-2007, 09:19 AM   #22
Dojo: Aikido Jinsei Dojo
Location: Chelmsford, MA
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 97
Re: Dan, Mike, and Aikido

Hey Murray,

Murray McPherson wrote: View Post
I think Stan's post was maybe too simplistic and provocative
Which is why I was trying to get him to elaborate.

but his point seems a legitimate one for consideration. Actually (and Stan can chime in here and correct me otherwise), he seems to have two points:
The first seemed to be that, without these baseline internal skills, can you even really consider aikido a martial art?
I'm not sure that the inclusion or exclusion of some explicity taught baseline skillset is enough to declare aikido a martial art or not.

But (and I'm reading the spirit of his post here, rather than the letter) what happens when an aikidoka has to mix it up with someone who is trained in another fighting art.
I've done this a bit with my friends who practice a wide variety of traditional martial arts. I usually fair pretty well (meaning I don't get completely dominated) but it doesn't ever look like pretty aikiwaza. I bet the body training I'm learning is going to help this A LOT. My experience dealing with focused aggression from trained martial artists is small but telling. It has told me that *I* don't have the skillset/conditioning to stand toe-to-toe and wipe the mat with equally trained folks. I do however have enough to survive long enough to egress. Since I'm too old and broken to start fighting in a ring, that's good enough for me.

Stan's second point (implied, I believe. Stan, you crafty, subtle devil) is actually encouraging, and supports what Dan and Mike (those crafty, unsubtle devils...all too busy pissing in pools, and ruining dreams of martial greatness) have been arguing. Add in internal bodywork for your average aikidoka, starting from day one, and then put them against students of another style. That would not only level the playing field, but for those aikidoka who train with active resistance against their partners, would possibly tip the scales against "external" stylists.
The baseline skills certainly won't hurt but I'm not sure if it is enough to tip the scales.

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