Thread: Atemi
View Single Post
Old 06-19-2002, 06:38 PM   #42
George S. Ledyard
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,670

Originally posted by ca
Just one comment on 'compliant' ukes: yes, some just go where you want, either out of a sense that thay should, or being muscled there (us little folk). Some of them also go because they recognise that to stand there is to be open to atemi (whether or not this is what you all are meaning by non-physical atemi or not, I have no clue). But some of us, especially sized challenged, know better than to stand where we can get pounded by a much bigger nage, and get our body parts out of the way.

I can certainly say, when attacking Ledyard Sensei (or my current sensei) I am well aware any given limb of theirs holds more muscle mass than my entire body, and I do my best not to put the more delicate parts of that same body in the path of all that muscle mass. So from my point of view, compliant just means 'not too stupid to get out of the way of the fist'...something I've found not always true when I have a big uke (by this I do NOT mean Ledyard Sensei or my current sensei , both of whom move real quick for big guys )
I am really not talking so much about practice asa true martial encounter. In training we are of course going to comply with any technique which is close to effective. Who wants to be injured?

But in a real encounter we are talking about a life and death encounter. In class we throw someone and we "win" in a fight a successful technique could mean serious injury or death. You simply can't afford to "go along" you do whatever it takes to stop the techniue, reverse it or escape from it. This is one area in which many non-Aikidoka see a disadvantage to our style of compliant training. Unless you put special attention to the issue it is quite possible to develop quite nice technique without the strength of intention required to execute that technique in a real martial encounter. That's why so many judoka are stronger martial artists than their Aikido counter parts. This is not always true, and as a "sport" judo has it's own problems but strong intention on the part of the practitioners isn't one of them.

For someone of your physical characteristics the compliance isn't a matter of giving in, it is a matter of moving to escape a technique, set up a reversal, and / or gain an opening for an atemi. Since this thread has been about atemi it is important to point out that atemi is the great equalizer. A small person who understands atemi can still handle a larger attacker. Take out the atemi and you find out quickly why the sport martial arts like judo have weight classes.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
  Reply With Quote