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Old 02-23-2008, 11:45 PM   #125
Aiki1's Avatar
Dojo: ACE Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 346
Re: Strategy and Aikido

At this level (technical) I work with three things - loss of balance where an attempt at recovery can occur, loss of balance where there is no way to recover, and a loss of structural integrity where there is no way to recover. For me, this is done through two processes, depending on the nature of the attack - either full on, or more controlled.

If full on attack, the process I teach is Musubi - Tsukuri - Kuzushi - Release. In the process of Musubi (connection and flow), my positioning and angles (part of Tsukuri) allow for the Kuzushi (my definition is allowing someone to lose their balance) to take place, then one just releases what ever anchor Nage is giving them and they fall.

If the attack is more "sophisticated" meaning not over-extended etc., the process becomes Connect - Blend - Track - Lead - Resolve. This can take a little more time, because Nage must process the interaction such that through tracking Uke's movement, speed etc., Uke "tells" nage exactly where the Avenue of Release (as I think of it) is as the interaction unfolds, and thus Kuzushi etc. happens.

Loss of structural integrity is a little more subtle, in a sense, in that Uke doesn't necessarily perceive why the loss is happening, he just experiences falling down, or more often, collapsing down or inward....

All of the above, for me, depend on what we term "Kinesthetic Invisibility" - the skill of not giving any reference to Uke as a result of "proper Aiki" i.e., at this level, Musubi and Tracking - thus there is nothing for Uke to react to, nor is Nage "doing anything" per se, to Uke. Nage is "going along 'with' the ride" and allowing a somewhat different outcome to occur than originally intended by the attacker.

As far as Square, Circle, and Triangle, for me they flow into each other - Nage starts in the Square, aware of the eight directions that are possible for attack - moves into a Triangle entry for proper position and angle, and then allows the Circle - or actually Sphere - to manifest, which is the proper execution of Technique, or in my mind, the Release.

This addresses some of the "physical" elements - for me there are other levels that can be taken into account as well.... emotional, mental, energetic, and spiritual....

Anyway, just a few random thoughts....

Larry Novick
Head Instructor
ACE Aikido
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