Thread: Chain Punching.
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Old 03-07-2003, 09:36 AM   #6
George S. Ledyard
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Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,670
Re: Chain Punching.

Chris Gee (Kensai) wrote:
I am sure you guys have been asked this a thousand times.

Having only studied Aikido for nearly a year, I am no professional (lol). So I was wondering how Aikido could deal with this.

So for example, a series of quick snappy strikes delivered similar to a Hsing I, Ba Gua or Wing Chun practioner. I only ask because I have resently been reading Park Bok Nams book on Ba gua. And he was talking about very quick strikes. So would the counter be some variation on Tsuki (sp) attack? With lots of blending?

I promise this is not some trolling thread, I am geniunely interested.

Thanks for your time in advance........
The whole issue of combinations or rapid fire strikes still comes down to the first beat. Katsu Hyabi or "instant victory" (one of many meanings for this concept) is the principle which governs Aikido technique. The ideal is to take the opponent's center at the instant of first contact.

At the Aiki Expo last year many people were fortunate enough to attend classes with Ushiro Sensei in which he talked about and demonstrated the principle of kokyu. His emphasis on this was indentical to the way in which I understand it to be used in Aikido.

He consistently emphasized that with proper use of kokyu, the entry placed one in a position, in one movement, from which no other strike from the opponent was possible. Against an attack from someone trained in styles which utilize techniques such as the straight blast as the Jeet Kun Do fellows call it (chain punching as you have referred to it) the principle is still the same but simply more difficult to achieve.

Many styles will referr to the concept of "confrontational ranges". Usually they are considered to be: kicking, punching, trapping, and grappling. The issue with many kung fu or many other south asian fighting styles is that they primarily focus on battle at the trapping range. Their strong points are to get inside normal kicking and punching range to the trapping range at which they can trap, lock, and deliver very powerful close quarters striking techniques (knees, elbows, head bitts, etc.)

Most Aikido kihon waza are practiced at punching range (some peopole work on kicks as well). The Aikido model has been to resolve the conflict, so to speak, at the point of punching range (our grabbing attacks are essentially at punching range).

Now this doesn't mean that Aikido is ill suited for application against arts that utilize closer ranges. It's simply that it reuires a much greater level of skill in order to get to the post at which the attacker's center can be taken. By utilizing closer range fighting techniques they essntially reduce the size of the "safe place" at the center which Aikido practitioners strive to get to using the principle of "irimi" or entering.

It still comes down to the concept of rhythym. Any martial interaction will have a set of movements which can be described as "beats". A non skilled practitioner might be seen as only using whole notes whereas a very skillfull practitioner might be usuing 32nd notes. None of that matters when you consider that all interactions still must have a "first beat". That is the instant at which O-Sensei said victory takes place. If one can train to the level at which he really understands kokyu, as many of us saw demsontrated so well by Ushiro Sensei, and the concept of irimi, or entering, then confl;ict ends on the first beat of any attack. Considerations of combinations and speed of strikes becomes irrelevant at that point. That is one meaning of the term Katsu Hayabi as I understand it.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
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