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Old 01-06-2010, 03:26 PM   #15
Dojo: TNBBC (Icho Ryu Aiki Budo), Shinto Ryu IaiBattojutsu
Location: Seattle, WA
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 927
Re: What is what with Scott Sonnon's material?

Alex, I generally agree with you. I think it is possible though to try and use the frame while doing KB work. It winds up feeling different than when I'm doing a muscular based KB workout. If you look at a basic two armed swing, in the muscular version you can think of using the power of the legs to propel the weight up and out through the arms. At the end of your swing, you have tight glutes and quads. That's how I've been shown to do a 'correct' KB swing. If I'm working the frame with a KB swing, I'm more inclined to begin the swing using pressure from the lower back and feeling that kind of rebound off the ground to propel the swing up. At the end of the swing, my glutes and quads are mostly relaxed and then I try to feel the tug on the frame by the KB reaching its max extension. Just one example. I suppose I could have said I was using the frame to do kettle bells and that might have been clearer.

As for using weights to do the actual Aunkai frame exercises, I again generally agree. I would say that by adding very light weights to some of the exercises you can try to still support the body through the frame. For example, try this: do a few sets of slow tenchijin with no weights, but have two 5- 10 or so lb dumbbells on the floor in easy reach. After a few reps, pick up the dumbbells when at the earth/prayer phase. Hold them gently, now try to use the frame to raise the dumbbell up and over head with no tension in the shoulders, then rise to heaven. I've found that if you do this right, you can really feel how the arms are moved directly from the lower back/ming men. Holding the weights in supporting heaven also gives some nice feedback along the same lines. I don't like dropping the arms to mabu to for the descent to earth with weights though for the reasons you outline, it's much harder to support the weight with the frame there, so I often just come down to prayer and then lower to earth.

Again, I don't do these very often, your mileage may vary...

Chris Moses
TNBBC, "Putting the ME in MEdiocre!"
Budo Tanren at Seattle School of Aikido
Shinto Ryu Iai-Battojutsu
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