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Old 05-31-2007, 06:00 AM   #24
L. Camejo
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Dojo: Ontario Martial Arts
Location: Mississauga, Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,423
Re: Aikido Techniques are Weapons Techniques

I'm sorry Michael. You're still missing my point. I agree totally with you on the comparative effectiveness of a blade over a hand or that of a real shotgun over an airsoft gun. But I am not talking about this.

The literal use of tegatana as a weapon (like a bokken because they are both blunt objects compared to a live blade) is obviously for situations where you have no other weapon. A weapon is most times preferable for defence, this is not a point of contention. When you train in this manner the weapon you have and your understanding of it becomes decidedly more developed. If you train moreso with blades and guns then your greater development will lie there. If one trains moreso with tegatana and applying Aikido's empty handed repertoire then here is where the development will lie. However in my situation the only weapon I am assured of having with me at all times are my hands so I train to use those, anything extra is gravy. There are also times when empty hands are totally insufficient for the situation, here is where on has to get creative.
One of the principles of the striking/thrusting blade is that it is going to severe/pierce its target.
Precisely. So how do you apply this principle of severing/piercing the target to the empty handed tactics of Aikido to effect successful waza? I know how we do it. For example, the thrusting motion is quite powerful in creating kuzushi among many other things. The penetrating/piercing effect is critical to create good kuzushi and empty handed technique. This comes directly from sword and tegatana work, but I guess if you are looking only at the obvious sword movements as a blade technique whose only purpose is to puncture a target then you would miss the host of other applications that the same piercing movements have on a person in an empty handed or other context. This would explain your situation imho.
What possibility does even the best fighter have of surviving an attack by four men with bad intentions? If he uses a weapon his chances increase, because of the effect of the weapon.
This is a very general statement not taking into account a host of variables. But just to address the question of possibility I would say it is quite possible (depending on the variables) because I have not only done this myself when ambushed and unable to get to a weapon but know of many others who have also. There is no question that a weapon increases chances, but where I come from the bad guys and the cops have most of the really good ones (guns) so you are always at a disadvantage and are forced to use what you have, which is most often empty hands or a small blade. Of course if you do have a weapon you'd need to be in good control of your own psycho-chemical reactions. The weapon does nothing if the person weilding it is not all together and ready to use it properly.
You probably hit a lot harder than I do, but my personal experiences, which include Muay Thai, don't really support that.
Well this is also irrelevant isn't it, since I've never hit you. The truth is also that both striking systems do not operate under the same premise. MT is about fighting, Aikido is about not fighting, quite different mindsets and application. Many people go outside of Aikido to find "better" methods without ever understanding what Aikido offers to start with. I also have had a bit of muay thai exposure and it is very good for certain areas of strike fighting but also has its weaknesses within the striking context as well.

To be honest, what I am hearing are people who were disappointed by the "fighting effectiveness" of the Aikido they were taught and instead of digging deeper into the core of the art to find the answer, found other methods to make up for the perceived gap in their training. This is common and is a good approach for someone who just needs practical self defence skills right now and doesn't have the time to go plumbing the depths. However the effect is that you convince yourself that "Aikido" (which really means your Aikido) is not a useful unarmed self defence art and go on to create a psychological structure that supports this theory (e.g. "it is a Do art so it's not meant to be effective or practical" or "that it is only effective when weapons are used"). You then spout this theory to others who may be willing to share your belief, which now helps one feel more secure that the theory is correct since there are more minds supporting it. Only it is not correct, since one has decided not to fully understand Aikido and what it is really capable of. This is ok if one is dabbling in Budo taking bits and pieces from here and there, but if one wants to seriously teach the art of Aikido it is not acceptable imho. An added danger is that when many seek out "effective" arts they find "fighting" arts which teach very different tactical concepts than those embodied in Aikido, even if the strikes and techniques are quite usable in their own context.


--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
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