View Single Post
Old 02-24-2011, 09:01 PM   #20
Dojo: Aikikai de l'Université Laval
Location: Sainte-Catherine-de-la-J.-C., Québec
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 292
Re: Injury and Responsibility

George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
A very dangerous place in ones Aikido practice is that intermediate place at which your ukemi is just fine... most of the time. Back when I first started I was training with a friend. We started slow and worked up. Both of us were normally careful with our partners but we had each thrown each other a dozen times, taken the break falls with no problem, and neither had any reason at all to expect anything different. Than, out of the blue, I simply froze on one technique. I didn't take the fall. He was going full out and I took the whole kotegaeshi on my wrist joint, heard it sort of crackle as it sprained, and then I took the fall... too late of course.

This was in no way my partner's fault. I had given him a false sense of security by taking all my falls with no problem and then with no warning at all, screwing one up. There was no way to see it coming.

One of my Nidans broke her arm when she panicked when her partner did a koshi on her and it wasn't clean. She mistakenly put her arm down to protect her, which was of course exactly not the thing to do. She landed on it and it broke. Her partner was guilty of nothing more than not having the skill at his level to do a clean koshinage.

Stuff happens. If accidents are truly accidental, they happen randomly across the dojo at all ranks. On the other hand, if a person consistently has partners who experience accidents, then it's not accidental any more. It's a pattern. The teacher is expected to deal with that. Assuming it's not the teacher who has this pattern of "accidents".
I've seen accidents of the type you mention and a few abusive types as well. But the most dangerous types I've run across in terms of number of "accidents" are the indifferent ones. These are usually high kyu or low dan ranks that have very good ukemi themselves. They do the techniques as fast and "well" as they can and figure it is uke's job to survive by matching with good ukemi. This often leads to chronic wrist injury "accidents" much like the one you experienced. I've found this is often paired to aikido that is strong but which has little sensitivity or true connection.

Jonathan Olson
  Reply With Quote