Sean Orchard (deepsoup) wrote:
Just to add a bit more to the mix:
1. The atemi-waza control an opponent by hitting, thrusting into, or kicking the physiological weak points of the body; while the kansetsu-waza control an opponent by inflicting a sprain or dislocation on a joint. That is to say, these techniques were devised with the purpose of maiming or killing, and so are fundamentally dangerous.
2. The atemi-waza topple an opponent by applying force to the mechanical weak points of the attacker's body in order to gain kuzushi, the breaking balance, and then push him over; while the kansetsu-waza restrain an opponent with a minimum of force by utilizing the limits of joint movement to pin the opponent down.
The first category are probably the atemi waza that most aikidoists think of as 'atemi', but in the terminology used in Shodokan a lot of important techniques are classified as atemi-waza of that second variety.
Actually, the second category is more in line with the usual aikido idea that one can use atemi to distract or off-balance an uke. The first category is more in line with what I experienced at Ellis Amdur's seminar, however, he also showed how being aware of, and training with atemi made the non-atemi version of techniques better.
A couple of examples are irimi nage and tenchi nage (both varieties of aigamaeate in Shodokan terminology), and sokumen irimi nage (gyakugamaeate). And if you think about tenchi nage for example, you can see how it might fit into the first category too - sure your 'heaven' hand can go over uke's shoulder, but it can just as easily smash into uke's face.
I like your example for tenchi nage. The thing is, I can see a strike to the face, in the manner you describe, as fitting into both of the categories. So I guess that atemiwaza needn't be fitted neatly into one category or the other.