Re: Techniques are dead: Living movement vs dead technique
So we start. As the beginning I'd like to underline that following ideas is my own. Many of it's imperfect still and open to critics.
My viewpoint based on views from two sides. First is modern aikido that got well known form after WW II. I see no point to detail it more ‘cause a lot of aikidokas here may describe it better.
Second is Ueshiba Morihei prewar techniques that in Takumakai often calls Ueshiba den Daito-ryu aikijujutsu or Ueshiba-ryu Daito-ryu aikijujutsu. I learn it from my practice of techniques from Soden (formal name "Daito-ryu Aiki Budo Densho Zen Juikkan") books. Ueshiba prewar techniques are in first six Soden books. First five books shortly called "Aikido" and include basic techniques. Sixth book called "Asahi-ryu" and include high level Ueshiba Morihei techniques. On the present day I saw (it doesn't mean that I can do all of them well) techniques of all six books.
I'd like to discuss term "technique" first. I use two different Japanese terms that I may to describe as "technique". First is "kata" that I understand as strict order of moves for some purpose (BTW, nice theme of thread, isn't it?). Second is "waza" that I understand as moves that depend on situation. The difference is that "kata" based on move patterns but "waza" based on some ideas only. Now I try to explain it on example.
I had been practiced aikido few years ago and of course did ikkyo. It was a lot different attacks but still same ikkyo. It's always "grab hand like this and push opponent down". This is the "kata", isn't it? In my Daito-ryu practice I did more than 50 techniques united by one idea. It looks like ikkyo not so often but hopefully uses same idea as ikkyo (BTW, ideas of aikido "lessons" from ikkyo to gokkyo is nice theme of thread, isn't it?). In Daito-ryu we call it ikkajo. The "picture" that illustrate ikkajo I call "waza" ‘cause it depend on different things.
So I'm quite bad student and I can't remember more than 50 different "katas" with all "correct" moves but I got the ikkajo idea. Even so I feel lucky ‘cause I don't have to choose "kata" that is the best in some situation.
Another example comes from Greco-roman or freestyle wrestling. Wrestlers start to learn techniques on standing opponent and use some move patterns. Opponent starts to resist after that. From that point there are no more "correct" or "incorrect" moves in the "picture" of technique. Moves measure by opponent reaction. If he can't to go away or to do some counterattack so it's "correct" moves. One idea of takedown may be illustrated by 5-7 different techniques and different sportsmen do it in own manner/variation.
To sum this if we talk about "technique" so it would be nice to determine what kind of "technique" we try to research? The next is mark of "aliveness" or "efficiency"of technique. "Kata" and "waza" has different purposes and efficient in own way.
It would be nice to take smaller field to research.