Graham Old wrote:
Please, this is not meant to be an 'does Aikido work on the streets?' thread.
Here's the thing: I work part-time in Community Development and part of my role is looking at violence on the estate, from spouse abuse, to bullying, to over-eager debt collectors. I'm expected to make some observations/suggetions regarding self-defence lessons, but I'm a little unsure what to say.
On the one hand, I love the philosophy of Aikido and feel that a non-violent ethic and technique would be ideal. However, I also feel that a short course in something like Judo will more quickly give effective self-defence techniques in the short-term.
Am I making any sense? Are there any Aikido-based (or related) courses/styles out there? If you had to recommend, e.g., a self-defence course for women, what would you go with?
This is not meant to be an 'does Aikido work on the streets?' thread.
For what it is worth,
I think there is a kind of self defeating argument in the question.
From a self defence for dummies point of view, it really boils down avoiding the three "stupids"; Doing "stupid" things, with "stupid" people, in "stupid" places.
The physical confrontation aspect is very very often a matter, as George said, is a feel good factor though has some reason able chance of success, but the idea is to avoid fighting.
So from the problem you describe we are already in a few "stupid" cases, that self defence teaches us to avoid. So I think you need to have a fighting approach to the problem.
Like plenty of other thing, fighting is just doing the right thing at the right time and so is horse riding, flying a light aircraft, caring for animal in a zoo and so on.
Part of the problem is how to do the right thing but this is comparatively very easy to finding when the right time is. It just comes with experience and abilities to conceptualise and transfer knowledge from one skill set to another.
Regardless the martial arts you are talking about, military/riot control system seems to be more effective but it is designed to be used by in situation where you want to obliterate the opposition by people who do not have any qualms using it and where repercussion for the perpetrator will be light or no existent. That system can then be steam lined and only retain techniques that put the earnest on the being broken on the recipient of the technique. This is made easier in modern time by the relative scarcity of efficient hand to hand fighter in the opposite forces.
This is hardly the case, for us, average quidam, as there will be massive repercussion if we are found having been using undue force and we are not usually geared up with the will to inflict harm.
For a reason that escapes me, it seems to me that there is a belief that you can sum up what is most lethal in most art, that a given small set of technique is the best thing since sliced bread in the history of hand to hand or that because exponent of a given art are winning competition at a point in time, it make that composed system, fat free version, or art the ultimate fighting technique.
Open hand technique is like any weapon, it does not work on it's own merit, it is only as efficient as its exponent. Basically it is only going to be as good as you are going to be able to use it. For me techniques are the expersion of what you want,
If you want to make a martial arts works in self defence, you need to have the set of mind of the wanting win and the technical abilities to perform controlling techniques. Basially the result of the application of the technique must be strictly the expression of what you want to achieve. I.e. control.
And I am not aware of any short cut for that. It takes time to learn to recognise the situation and having the technical abilities to conform the technique to the stick result you want to achieve.