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Old 04-15-2009, 11:28 AM   #36
Garth Jones
Dojo: Allegheny Aikido
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 163
Re: Dance, Wrist Locks & Sub-Teens

As I said earlier, trying to grab the arm or wrist of a punch is a normal beginner mistake. If it is taught that way somewhere, it is poorly done.

There are many kinds of punches and they require different solutions. A wildly thrown roundhouse might result in a wrist lock, IF the attacker over commits and IF the defender moves right. Trying to do a wrist lock on a boxing jab will fail without a ton of practice. I have seen Saotome Sensei blend elegantly with blindingly fast punches thrown by a 6th dan katate practioner - he didn't bother with joint locks, though, he just drilled his uke into the mat. The punching arm and wrist, especially in a real fight, is likely to be very stiff - turning it for a wrist lock may not be possible. Of course, there are many other techniques that will work just fine. Focusing on wrist locks as a total self defense solution misses 99% of the power of aikido (and the martial arts in general).

Beginners are going to be more successful using joint locks as counters to grab attacks. Even then, steady practice is required.

To me, self defense begins with the right attitude and awareness of my surroundings. I think it's more important to diffuse the situation and give ground rather than 'stand and fight.' Of course, it's possible to be backed into a corner or have to help somebody else - that may force a physical confrontation faster. Even then, that's the last choice - what starts as a fist fight may end up with a knife or firearm involved, and then everybody has a very bad day.

And it's one thing to have a conversation with your over excited drunk friend once you've pinned him on the floor and another with some punk who is trying to beat you up. In the second case, he's staying on the floor until I call 911 and the cops come and arrest him for assaulting me.

Anyway, I will again suggest that you look for good aikido instructors and do some reading on the topic of unarmed self defense.

Last edited by Garth Jones : 04-15-2009 at 11:32 AM.
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