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Old 11-13-2010, 07:09 PM   #14
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,697
Smile Re: Golden Center Aikido for your pleasure

Mark Freeman wrote: View Post
Hi Graham,

I think the title of the clip "Two Masters at Play" leaves you open to some criticism. The title of 'Master' can be a curse as well as a blessing. After 18 years I consider myself to be a competent student and teacher, but I certainly wouldn't want to go anywhere near the 'M' word, it's way above my pay grade. I can see what you are trying to demonstrate, I just have a bit of an issue with the grandiose title. For me Masters are few and far between. Maybe I am misreading it and you have a bit of tongue in cheek that I am missing.

I uderstand that when you fully get the kokyu principles, that some of what can be done can seem unbelievable to the onlooker, but not to those who know from the inside. You either feel it or you don't.

Still, like some of the comments that have been made above, there seems to be certain aspects missing from the demo that calls what is being seen into question. The attacks seem pretty un convincing and uke does not show a great deal of structural integrity throughout the technique, particularly when being thrown.

You speak of power being shown, I must admit I am at a bit of a loss to see it. I am definitely not looking for physical power, I want to see mental extention/ki (hard to fully appreciate in a video I know, but I watch my teacher demonstrate it so I know what I am looking for)

I say this as a Ki Aikido student of a teacher who may well qualify for the title of Master after over 50 years in the art, however I have never heard him use it of himself.

We practice and teach in a very similar manner to yourselves in that all of our techniques are (or we try) applied with the spirit of loving protection and much of my teachers original hard/damaging training has been modified for modern practice. However, we still strive to maintain the martial integrity of committed attacks, intent, extention, balance, aiki, moving from the centre, and control of uke throughout.

Having said that, we do teach from the soft side up, emphasising relaxation, flow, and following, trying to eliminate all tension and physical force. There is a point where this has to evolve to be able to deal with some reality. Without complete control of uke's centre coming from your own immovable mind and solid/fluid body, then a strong resistant attack will not be effectively dealt with. And if I am to be honest I was seeing a number of 'reversal opportunities' in your clips.

Interesting to watch and good luck with your training, remember though, there are some very experienced long term aikidoa on these fora from just about every type/style that has come into being, so no need to educate everyone.

Why, were you expecting negative ones?


p.s. where does your particular style come from?
Hi Mark, thank you for giving such a well constructed and thoughtful reply. I owe you a proper response.

Firstly the title of the video. I have a number of them on youtube and all of the titles I put on them are artistic titles rather than technical, except for my last two which are more technical.

Now on the attacks of the uke I will first say that I teach firstly from static techniques, then from 'offering' and leading and finally from full moving striking as I'm pretty sure you do also in Ki Aikido.

The uke is taught not to go anywhere unless he has no choice.(as you probably know too many throw themselves with great breakfalls) So it may look like the uke is not doing much but if I was not fully in harmony he would either stop or just carry on through.

When you mention the point about a strong resistant attack being harder to deal with, again a valid point, I can only say this;
I personally find them much easier to deal with and thus teach my students to concentrate on developing their Ki and center etc. and to handle all kinds of attacks and they learn bit by bit that the more centered calm attacks are the hardest to deal with.

As for me and my particular style then I can only say it is one I have developed over the last ten years. I started 30 years ago training under Sensei Mike Muspratt in Watford who had been in Aikido from the start of it's introduction into England at a place called the hut. He was taught by Tohei Sensei and by Noro Sensei originally and thus my influences are of the early Aikikai and of KI Aikido. In fact the first book I read was' Ki in daily life' by Tohei Sensei and still have a Hakama sent to Mike by Tohei Sensei and handed on to me which I keep as a matter of honour and respect. It was also there where I was taught Ki-atsu and have practiced that ever since.

O.K. Hope I haven't bored you too much(joke).

Keep living it and loving it. G.
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