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Old 08-09-2018, 10:49 PM   #16
Rupert Atkinson
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Dojo: Wherever I am.
Location: New Zealand
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,000
United Kingdom
Re: Origin of ushiro ryote and ryokata dori

I have long since had a different take, and have trained accordingly. First, I like the way Aikikai attack from the front to get to the rear. I dislike those methods where uke comes up behind, or where uke turns his back for them. Both are useful, but I prefer the Aikikai way. Now for my take on it, and before anyone claims such and such a person also does it - in 20 years of training in Asia I have never seen it.

My take is that everything prepares us for counters. Maybe not everything, but many things. So, for example, consider katate-dori ushiro eri-dori (catch a hand then the rear lapel behind the neck). This is the one that woke me up long ago. Basically, tori learns various escapes using various waza, but to me, in essence, it is (or can be) an escape to irimi-nage. It is therefore, with a change of attitude, a counter. If you look carefully at what we do, our view (of the simple attacks) in many cases can be changed from just doing plain waza to doing kaeshi-waza. I have shown these ideas to a few people; few seem interested - they prefer tradition. I don't know if that was ever the original intent of the attacks, but it works for me. Try it and you will discover an entire new syllabus extension to add to your training.

To start, take a tradition attack, then add a little ... something / movement. For front ryote-dori, uke might try tenchi-nage / or a kick / or a head butt / or a pull -- just standing there is pointless. Then, the way you move to evade that kick will most likely provide the natural beginning to a suitable technique. So it can be almost like you are countering a tenchi-nage type attack. It is not hard to come up with more ... Hmm ... might not be the best one to start with anyway.

When (no club now) I taught morote-dori, I would first have the students take each other down ikkyo-esk style, using the morote-dori attack. Then, do your waza against that - ?or would that now be a counter? - it is more dynamic and a lot more fun.

Last edited by Rupert Atkinson : 08-09-2018 at 11:01 PM.

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