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Old 02-08-2011, 11:06 AM   #8
jonreading's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido South (formerly Emory Aikikai)
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,139
Re: Really, grab my wrist!

Somehow, katatedori has become the attack in aikido. I think the purpose of katatedori is to connect to your partner and use that connection to faciliate your attack (a punch, kick, throw, lock, stab, cut etc.).

Initially, we learned this connective attack and said, "don't worry about the rest," implying a focus on the connection and not the followthrough attack. Now we have reached a point where many of us didn't worry about it for so long we forgot what was it's purpose.

If my partner does not establish and maintain a connective state [using katatedori], it is fair for me to establish that connection for her (this may mean atemi). Sometimes we become overly focused on the vehicle of connection and not the connection itself.

I think when we become overly focused on the venue of connection, we become vulnerable to the fragility of the connection. If my focus remains on the katatedori attack, then I am at risk to lose that connection when uke breaks the grip. If I remain focused on the connection to my partners center, then I only risk the venue through which I am connected to my partner.

As for the grabbing attack... there is a limit to the martial application of grabbing without a secondary attack. There needs to be a then what after someone grabs you which I also believe is lacking in aikido. That makes for a longer conversation on what a "strong grab" means... For example, I would rather have a strong grab from an aikido person any day over a strong grab from a judo person...
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