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Old 07-01-2010, 02:43 PM   #5
Dojo: Sakumeikan N.E. Aikkai .Newcastle upon Tyne.
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,266
United Kingdom
Re: Larger/stronger opponent

Robert Hidalgo wrote: View Post
Hello everyone,

I am new to the forums but have read them with interest for some time now. A bit on my background before I ask my question - I am currently 4th kyu, maybe halfway to 3rd in Aikido. I have done Judo and Shotokan Karate for the last 20+ years. Now on to my question:

In my Aikido class we have a guy who is essentially UFC-Brock Lesnar's size. This guy is 6'4" and 300+ pounds. He is practically impervious to pain. I read with interest the thread about Aikido in real situations and that is what led me to this question - how can one make their Aikido work on someone with this natural size and strength?

We were doing wrist grabs the other night and he was resisting (which I am fine with) but I tried Nikkyu, Kotogaeshi, Sankyu, Shionage...pretty much everything I could think of and he just shrugged off each and every thing I did - they simple had no effect on him. Now granted I wasn't going 100% - because with the typical Uke you can determine pain thresholds by their reaction - I was afraid that this guy was at the point of joint damage or bone breakage and he simply doesn't show pain. I finally got frustrated and took him down with a Judo throw - quite easily.

He wasn't being a compliant Uke, but ok no biggie, he doesn't always resist..but we were testing out stuff (essentially his size) so it was fine...and he of course knew all the Aikido moves as I did them, which made it easier for him to counter. I think this is why the Judo worked - he had no clue it was coming. However, it did sort of set me back a bit as to how much size DOES matter despite Aikido's protestations to the contrary.

Looking for opinions on this, suggestions, similar experiences etc.on how to handle people with extra-ordinary size/strength.

P.S. - on a positive note, I like training with the guy because he is the one guy in class that I cannot possibly muscle a technique on - so it forces me to concentrate on breathing, extension, technique etc. moreso than the average sized person.
The guy you are working with like most really big or powerful guys really in general dont want to be seen to be weak.Hence the resistance to your waza.My question is this how do you think you can both gain from this type of competitive mindset[on his part ]?
I would not be surprised if the guy is as stiff as a board.
Aikido is a mutual exchange between partners.One partner acquires throwing skills etc the other acquires Ukemi skills.
If this guy never learns to absorb the waza from his partner because he wants to be Mr Powerhouse what happens if he runs into a guy who might apply a waza and damage his wrist etc?
He needs to lighten up, and co operate with you.At your level you need to train wisely not get involved in trials of strength.
If all else fails and he keeps on being awkward try applying a well placed atemi prior to your application on areas such as ribs / kneecaps /shins, chin.Of course be gentle here.Use this remedy only if all else fails.After a few clips here and there Mr Powerhouse might get the picture.
Are you the only one in the dojo who has this problem?Do your mates handle the same scenario easily?If the answer is yes , ask them how they sort Big Guy out.Let me know how you get on,
Cheers, Robert, from Joe.
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