Re: flow, or technique
Myself, I spent my first several years training in an “Iwama” style dojo and had it drummed into me that you must train hard, your uke will be holding you like Arnold Swartzenager, and these other “soft” dojo were fooling themselves. When I grabbed my sensei it felt like I had grabbed a mountain and an avalanche was about to unfurl upon me and I knew what the power of aikido felt like. I believed this was the way and scoffed at those poor people who were deluding themselves in so called soft styles (forgive me I was young).
After taking a long break from Aikido I set out to find a new dojo to train in. To select a new dojo I had all that I had be told and learned before and this would serve me well. I went to one dojo and explained my background that I was looking to find a place to train. On the mat in the first lesson I was called up to be uke, and the sensei held out her hand and I took it. I gripped firmly as I would in the past but there was nothing, no resistance, no threat, no impending doom, just a wry smile. This was the point where I realised this dojo isn’t for me. The next moment getting up from the ground wondering where the sensei had gone, and how I got on the ground, was the point where I realised I’d be hanging around this dojo for a while.
What is better? I don’t pretend to know. But I learned there are many ways to get to the goal. I saw some post on the forum that there is no hard and soft aikido just different ways of training the same aikido, and that strikes a chord with my experience. Different people learn in different ways. As for hard and soft training I’ll share the approach from the Yuishinkai Student Handbook (my editing) since it doesn’t seem to be mentioned previously in this thread:
Ko-tai – Fundamentals performed calmly and slowly striving for accuracy and precision.
Jun-tai – Flowing, uke attacks quickly and nage moves swiftly to throw or pin.
Ryu-tai – Large ma’ai both uke and nage close in, nage moves to throw or pin the moment uke attacks.
Last edited by Millsy : 10-01-2012 at 02:29 PM.