View Single Post
Old 10-20-2007, 11:54 AM   #18
George S. Ledyard
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,670
Re: VOE: Active Resistance

Hiroaki Izumi wrote: View Post
Works for me George. And I will take that point about conceptual baggage with certain words under advisement. I can see now why you would choose to use a word other than active resistance.

I guess my views have been coloured by the way the word resist has been used on me by my previous martial arts teachers. It is also coloured by the way I had to learn to resist in Judo, Karate and Kendo in my younger days. It was always a matter of resisting by getting out of the way and flowing with the attack since my opponents were always adults and there was no way a five to ten year old person was going to out-muscle a full-grown adult.

I guess I do understand the issue over here in North America is a little different. Kind of like the difference between International Football and North American Football - finesse and speed versus pure power.

Absolutely Rocky,
If the folks I am talking about ever had to actually compete in anything, they'd get destroyed because of the tension and it's lack of speed and flexibility but since it's Aikido practice they can indulge themselves by using far too much strength to show their partners that they can't do their technique. Good Judo is an excellent example of what I am talking about ukemi should be. There are some clips of the great Mifune up on YouTube. These young guys twice his size can't throw him and he's as relaxed as can be. Then every once in a while, he launches them, without an ounce of tension. It's a beautiful thing to see.

When I train, I often have folks ask me how I got so "fast". I have to reply that I am not fast but that most of the folks in Aikido are pretty slow. I am a 300+ pound guy. There is simply no way I should be faster than a 175 pound fellow. But everyone is so tight and they don't have particularly good body mechanics to boot and they end up being quite slow. While I am not a believer in making Aikido competitive generally, I do think that the experience of competing would give a lot of these folks a whole new idea about what they should be doing. (Although I haven't competed, I worked out a lot about how to move by trying to get Saotome Sensei. I've never gotten him empty handed but I have a few times with weapons.) Tension is the enemy of speed and you sure as hell need to have speed to compete in arts like kendo, karate and judo.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
  Reply With Quote