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Old 11-16-2006, 09:41 AM   #50
David Orange
Dojo: Aozora Dojo
Location: Birmingham, AL
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,511
Re: Aikido: The learning of natural movement

Christian Moses wrote:
I think I'd start with letting them be a kid. I find it really amusing how you simultaneously talk about how you're child understands the nature of aiki and then immediately afterwards talk about the drills you're using to teach him aikido.
No, Chris, a drill is preset movements that he has to repeat to a count. "Get your Nose" is just a game, free-flowing with no win-or-lose, no right-or-wrong and full of fun and laughter. I'm observing his creativity more than trying to teach him anything. It's pretty amazing to see the amount of determination a child can build and the tricky ways they develop to restrain your hands while freeing their own.

Christian Moses wrote:
How do you know that what you're doing isn't tearing down what he already knows and you've forgotten? It's absurd.
Only if you fail to really see the spirit of what we're doing. I know it's not tearing down what he knows because I'm not covering up his innate knowledge with programming that I'm imposing on him. I'm drawing out his responses and seeing what he does, letting him find out for himself what's effective and letting him discover new approaches by the second. This also exercises his hand-eye coordination without imposing any set patterns on his movement.

Christian Moses wrote:
Wrestling with your kids sounds like fun though. I think more parents should play with their kids like that.
Well, he's still too small to really "wrestle" with, but we can roll around on the floor and have a good time. And I see the roots of a lot of martial arts in the simple defensive movements he uses while we play. For instance, the te gatana. Since he was tiny, and as Mikel pointed out in is first post, he has used the Unbendable Arm in movements quite like you'll find in Tomiki aikido to casually shove my head aside or push up under my chin when he doesn't want to be bothered. Relaxed, yes, unbothered, yes, but STRONG and with the appropriate muscle tensions required.

Whenever I go to get his ribs, his elbow automatically comes back to cover the ribs and brush my hand away from him. This is the root of why karate pulls the elbow back when punching. All martial arts are built on these kinds of defensive reflexes found in babies.

Best wishes.


"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"
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