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Old 07-11-2004, 06:54 AM   #46
L. Camejo
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Dojo: Ontario Martial Arts
Location: Mississauga, Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,423
Re: Tales of Judo Sparring Aikidoists

Michael Neal wrote:
Larry, I would have to honestly say that one weakness of Judo training is the lack of training against striking techniques. I have pointed out how I feel Aikido has weaknesses but Judo certainly has them as well. However, a striker would only have one or maybe two hits against a good judoka before they are grabbed, and these hits would be against a moving target coming rapidly in on them. There are very few people that can just knock somone out under such a circumstance with 1 or 2 panicking hits, so I still think the striker is still at a disadvantage.
I can agree with that. All I am saying is not to stereotype a "striker" or an "Aikidoka" or "judoka" into a pre-set pattern, else other things that they practice outside the obvious may come to shock you.

Michael Neal wrote:
The Judoka that put himself out of balance to grab your arm made a big mistake. Judoka rarely overextend themselves or put themselves off balance to grab somoene. In a situation where someone was keeping a typical Aikido distance I would personally probably just shoot for your legs and if that failed I would already be in the right distance to move on to another technique immediately.
Again, I totally agree. I knew he could shoot for my legs, which is why I made sure my arm was close enough to him so he could not ignore how easy it was to get at. It's called leading. A more experienced Judoka may have seen through the set up for an easy kuzushi and done something else. The shoot would not have helped him much either though imo, but it would have made things a little more difficult, all things considered. Like Paul said - it's what you decide to focus on.

My instructor used to practice a lot of judo to improve his competition Aikido, as a result he also learnt how dangerous certain Aikido practices could be if one is faced with a competent grappler. As a result we sought to minimise these openings in our own training from a long time ago. Maybe all these things are factors that come into play. Like I said - anomalies.

Also, one thing about "typical Aikido distance". In Chinese MA training I learnt that I could manipulate my ma ai to different ranges and be able to react effectively once I did a few things to make sure my CNS could detect things early enough and send the signals to my limbs. As a result, I tend not to always operate at Aikido ma ai, but play with it depending on who I am dealing with. I also apply this during Tanto Randori. Remembering my little thing with the Judoka, I don't think I was exactly using typical ma ai - I was pretty close, which helped him to think he could get the arm before I could react.

Michael Neal wrote:
I also would like to again say that you are a Nidan in a style of Aikido that regularly practices randori so you understand how off balancing applies in fluid situations.
Though at the time of the encounter I was a Shodan, but I see your point.

Michael Neal wrote:
Most Aikidoka do not practice this kind of randori on a regular basis and would not be prepared to spar with somoene like a judoka who on avergae spends at least half of each class doing free sparring.
And this is the crux of your argument, which makes sense - resistance randori training (not just kakari geiko aka basic randori as practiced by most Aikido systems) lets one develop things that are hard to develop otherwise, usually in the area of reaction, adaption, application of kuzushi etc. These things, when applied against someone like a Judoka may increase the Aikidoka's chances of success against the Judoka. This type of training however, is not in the mainstream. Is that correct?

If it is, let me know. I agree with this, but like I said earlier, beware of the anomalies who cannot be categorised, classified and catalogued.

Bateman: If you looked at the context of my post, I was replying to something that Michael said specifically about the training practices of Shodokan, my post was merely to qualify, not indicate that other styles didn't use kuzushi.

Also, I believe when Michael says randori he is implicitly referring to resistance randori, which is not what you are referring to in your post. In my experience, most folks from other schools catch sheer hell with Shodokan resistance randori, which is still Aikido. Michael's point is because of the absence of this sort of training in many other styles, it removes and edge that one may have against a Judoka.

As far as Michael's feelings go about the majority of Aikidoka, based on the training methods used, it appears that he has come across more than a few Aikidoka whose technique basically couldn't cut it when put under the pressure of resistance - Judo or otherwise. Sadly, I can't say that I have had dissimilar experiences. But this does not mean that we can generalise - there are many many anomalies out there.


--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
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