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Old 01-13-2007, 06:05 AM   #30
Dojo: Yoshinkan Würzburg
Location: Würzburg (de)
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 68
United Nations
Re: Backward Roll - Risks and benefits

Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
The concept that we are dealing with here has been parodied in Pink Panther movies, in the form of Clouseau's butler Kato. There's a reason why it's funny. One-upping someone else in terms of surprising them with random, unexpected malevolence is inherently ridiculous.
It might be funny to most people, but I consider this to be very useful training, as long as (a) both parties agree to it and (b) both parties trust each other to have enough control to avoid serious injuries. And interestingly, there was a Clouseau-Kato relationship between Ueshiba and Shioda, as described in "Aikido Shugyo", p.153.

Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
Whipping a fake knife out of one's gi at an unexpected moment strikes me as an exercise in being an arrogant smart ass. It is simply outside the parameters of the practice. I find it hard to see any way to interpet this that does not involve seeing the knife-wielder as thinking he is better and more aware than his partner, and looking to prove it, and/or thinking the training that he and his partner are supposed to be doing is beneath him somehow.

If I'm doing the technique and uke has the ability to pull a weapon and attack me with it during that, then I'm doing something seriously wrong. Of course that applies not to all practiced techniques and not to all ways of practicing (e.g. slow step-by-step detail work), but sometimes such pointers from uke are very helpful.

Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
Onward to the more disturbing. The final two examples you give sound like classic cult behavior. I would not tolerate either one from any dojo I attended. When someone transgresses the implict boundaries of your association or social contract with them, it is a serious matter, and possibly a criminal act. I would say both of the practices you describe meet the legal definition of assault - the first physical and the second verbal... at the very least.
Depends. If everyone knows such a shinai attack is (or may be) part of preparation for a test, then I consider it to be perfectly fine. I can't say anything about the rifle thing -- I read it as the thing just being brought to the dojo, not being pointed at someone (which I would strongly object to as well).

Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
My idea of participating in Aikido is not about joining a cult and allowing people to abuse me in ways that surprise me at every turn, it is about a mutually consensual social contract with two-way respect and clear boundaries.
I'm pretty sure (training in a supposedly similar dojo culture) that Ron's examples were in a dojo with "a mutually consensual social contract with two-way respect and clear boundaries". Just different boundaries than you might be used to

Not trying to be a smartass here. I just wanted to point out that Ron's examples are merely about a higher intensity of training (mainly the mental kind of intensity). And there's a bunch of us sickos who like that
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