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Old 02-14-2007, 01:45 PM   #51
Josh Reyer
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Kevin,

Honestly, how much is it competition instilling the warrior ethos, versus the entire Army training and indoctrination program?

Let me put it this way. Many bemoan the "sportification" of judo, and feel it turned a viable budo into simply just a sport, a game with rules, and that the "character-building" aspects of judo are then no greater than, say, the character building aspects of baseball. I don't know if I would make this argument, but let's assume it is true for the moment. Compared to that, the Army's CQC is not simply a martial art that uses competition, it is rather a small part of a sogo budo, a comprehensive martial art system, that includes weapons, tactics, and strategy. The Army can afford to play up the competition aspect of the training because a) there is a strict rank based hierarchy to keep egos relatively in check (being the heavyweight champion of the tournament doesn't change your place in the pecking order), and b) there is a HUGE focus on the practical application of these techniques (and others) to neutralize an enemy. In a sense, it's almost impossible for any amount of sport competition in the Army to degenerate it's "budo", if you will, since the practioners are constantly trained for and (these days particularly) put into actual life or death situations. I don't know if you can isolate the CQC from the indoctrination and training the Army achieves in more breadth and depth than any other martial art.

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
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Old 02-14-2007, 02:01 PM   #52
Josh Reyer
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Kevin,

Honestly, how much is it competition instilling the warrior ethos, versus the entire Army training and indoctrination program?

Let me put it this way. Many bemoan the "sportification" of judo, and feel it turned a viable budo into simply just a sport, a game with rules, and that the "character-building" aspects of judo are then no greater than, say, the character building aspects of baseball. I don't know if I would make this argument, but let's assume it is true for the moment. Compared to that, the Army's CQC is not simply a martial art that uses competition, it is rather a small part of a sogo budo, a comprehensive martial art system, that includes weapons, tactics, and strategy. The Army can afford to play up the competition aspect of the training because a) there is a strict rank based hierarchy to keep egos relatively in check (being the heavyweight champion of the tournament doesn't change your place in the pecking order), and b) there is a HUGE focus on the practical application of these techniques (and others) to neutralize an enemy. In a sense, it's almost impossible for any amount of sport competition in the Army to degenerate it's "budo", if you will, since the practioners are constantly trained for and (these days particularly) put into actual life or death situations. I don't know if you can isolate the CQC from the indoctrination and training the Army achieves in more breadth and depth than any other martial art.

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
- Chaucer
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Old 02-14-2007, 02:30 PM   #53
DonMagee
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Nice links, I got a kick out of watching that.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 02-14-2007, 04:03 PM   #54
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Great essay Sensei Threadgill.

Assumptions - there is the kicker.

LC

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Old 02-14-2007, 07:40 PM   #55
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Quote:
Dominic Chapman wrote:
In my eyes, competition is not fighting.
A street fight has no rules, no limits noting.
A competition has all of these. There and time limits, move limits, certain things can and can not be done etc. If you train to compete you are not training to fight.
I agree with these statements but (and I keep saying this) what if you compete to train? Any training method has rules, even if they're unwritten and self enforced. Competition isn't fighting, but nor is kata training, free randori or, well, pretty much any training method used by any martial arts school out there.
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Old 02-14-2007, 11:27 PM   #56
Aiki Liu
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Excellent posts guys,
Thanks very much for your opinions, all of which are very interesting.
Dominic, if I may take issue with your post, you wrote;


In my eyes, competition is not fighting.
A street fight has no rules, no limits noting.
A competition has all of these. There and time limits, move limits, certain things can and can not be done etc. If you train to compete you are not training to fight.

This to me is the difference between sport and budo.
Boxing is a sport
Aikido is budo (except the style you practice, which i consider a sport

Aikido also has rules. Go into your dojo and thump the nearest person in the head and see what happens - youll get kicked out. Bite tori when hes trying to move you in kote gaeshi and youll quickly be thrown out of any dojo in the world. How then does an aikido dojo better represent Budo (having no rules) than any of the sports previously mentioned?
And although there are differences between a competition fight and a street fight, who amongst us wouldnt put our money on a champion boxer or Mixed Martial Artist against a street fighter?
Cheers
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Old 02-14-2007, 11:48 PM   #57
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Sport is new, yes, but it is not the totallity of Budo.

I often wonder why I train - I have no idea, I just enjoy it, but what I am after is always something useful self-defence. I do not do sport Budo. It is not what I want. I have tried it but it just is not me. I did enjoy Judo but I was doing it to improve my throwing ability, not to win competitions. I didn't see it as a sport.

If someone attacks my family, say two or three yobbos wanting money, I might just give it them - in fact, it happened, and I gave them $20, yet they knew I had more. If they attack just me, I might just show it them and put it back in my pocket. Part of me would rather die than give in - that is the martial, come what may, even injury or death. And if a fight ensued, what would the boxer do against a knife or if he were taken down? Lose. And what would a BJJ guy do if taken down by three people? Lose. You can't learn everything unless you are 100% committed to training everyday training to become some kind of champion of all styles. If you do that, fine. And how much more of that testosterone will you have to get you into trouble. And what when you are older? Will it all still work? Perhaps.

What I have noticed is that people who do sports intensly (which is of course good) seem to define their whole being around it. If someone asks me what I do, I say I'm an English teacher. That is who I am. I am not a fighter, I am an English teacher. My hobby is self-defence. It is not sport. The people who I am training to defend against are not sportsmen.

Of course, having a competitive element in your training is going to be positive. Can't argue that. But what is it's purpose? To wave a trophy? Not for me.

Last edited by Rupert Atkinson : 02-14-2007 at 11:52 PM.

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Old 02-15-2007, 06:15 AM   #58
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

For the sake of discussion I'd like to point folks to this thread on Aikiweb where we also discussed the question of "competition in Aikido" at some point.

This post by Peter Goldsbury gives an indication of the Founder and his son's feelings on sport and competition
Quote:
Sports are games and pastimes that do not involve the spirit. They are competitions only between physical bodies and not between souls. Thus, they are competitionsmerely for the sake of pleasure.

The Japanese martial arts are a competition in in how we can express and realise love that unites and protects everything in harmony and helps this world to prosper.
The entire entry can be found here - http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=111.

In regard to the above quote and attached thread I would like to refer to my initial post in this thread. I think a big problem with how folks relate Sport and Budo stem from how people generally perceive and define both Sport and Budo.

For example, to say that sports are games and pastimes that do not involve the spirit may be very incorrect when you look at the training mindset of many Olympic level sportspersons or others who compete at the highest level of their game. The same warior spirit required for budo is found in those who take their sport very seriously imho. So outside of how we personally perceive and define the 2 things, what is the real difference based on objective evaluation?

Just a few more thoughts.
LC

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Old 02-15-2007, 06:43 AM   #59
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Quote:
"Sports are games and pastimes that do not involve the spirit. They are competitions only between physical bodies and not between souls. Thus, they are competitions merely for the sake of pleasure."

I find this to be 110% false and full of either ignorance or arrogance, take your pick. It sounds like something that would be said by someone who has never been around athletes at a high level of competition. Sports are often pastimes that involve the spirit. Not all the time mind you, like most things it depends on the individual, but I've encountered more spirit in a high school wrestling team right before a meet than in many dojos.

Keith Lee
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Old 02-15-2007, 06:45 AM   #60
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Quote:
Rupert Atkinson wrote:
Sport is new, yes, but it is not the totallity of Budo.

I often wonder why I train - I have no idea, I just enjoy it, but what I am after is always something useful self-defence. I do not do sport Budo. It is not what I want. I have tried it but it just is not me. I did enjoy Judo but I was doing it to improve my throwing ability, not to win competitions. I didn't see it as a sport.

If someone attacks my family, say two or three yobbos wanting money, I might just give it them - in fact, it happened, and I gave them $20, yet they knew I had more. If they attack just me, I might just show it them and put it back in my pocket. Part of me would rather die than give in - that is the martial, come what may, even injury or death. And if a fight ensued, what would the boxer do against a knife or if he were taken down? Lose. And what would a BJJ guy do if taken down by three people? Lose. You can't learn everything unless you are 100% committed to training everyday training to become some kind of champion of all styles. If you do that, fine. And how much more of that testosterone will you have to get you into trouble. And what when you are older? Will it all still work? Perhaps.

What I have noticed is that people who do sports intensly (which is of course good) seem to define their whole being around it. If someone asks me what I do, I say I'm an English teacher. That is who I am. I am not a fighter, I am an English teacher. My hobby is self-defence. It is not sport. The people who I am training to defend against are not sportsmen.

Of course, having a competitive element in your training is going to be positive. Can't argue that. But what is it's purpose? To wave a trophy? Not for me.

I see this as another rendition of the age old "But what if he has a sword?" argument. What you are saying here is that aikido training covers all situations, and sport training does not. I'd submit that aikido training does not cover all situations either and is just as vulnerable, if not more so the way its practiced by most dojo's. So what is the ultimate answer? I don't know if there is one universal answer.

The answer for me is 'aliveness'. I truly believe that training with aliveness better prepares me for situations I might encounter if I ever do need to prepare myself. I believe all the judo, bjj, mma, and boxing sparing I do helps me deal with taking the fight to where I want it to be, and being used to the stress and adrenaline of someone who wants to hurt you. I believe I would be even better prepared if I could do some aikido sparing on a consistent basis. (For that matter any other kind of sparing). I believe all the live sparing and drills with resistant partners helps me learn to be creative and work around people's resistance and modify my technique on the fly to meet any situation. And I approach this step by step. There is no reason to train against multiple attackers until you can deal with one good smart attacker. I do know a judo/bjj guy however that took down and submitted me and 2 other guys at the same time. Of course at our gym we do a lot of drills with multiple attackers to build take down defenses and submission defenses.

A good athlete is someone of good intelligence's, who never quits until he reaches his goals. A person like that will excel and adapt to most situations. I believe martial arts can turn a person into a good athlete (However, I believe great athletes are born not trained).

Of course I do not advocate that martial arts need to be sports in order to work. I advocate that you need to train with aliveness. Adding sparing, or resistance drills into any art will improve your ability to use the techniques for real. There is no reason to go to competition if you do not desire it. However competition does add a new layer or urgency and stress that club sparing does not. I do not go to competition (such as the judo competition I am going to sunday in chicago) in order to win a trophy or medal. I go to competition to fight against people I have never met, with different approaches and styles to the arts I train in. I like this because I know they are going to give me everything they got, they won't hold back like people do in the club. These people are not fighting to build up my skill level and help me out. They are fighting to beat me.

How many people can say in the dojo they have people who's sole goal is to beat them? You normally can't find that in a dojo, its not helpful in developing skill in training, plus most people are friends and therefor tend to not use the 'jerk' moves you would use on someone you just want to beat. A good example is the first rule of sparing, protect your training partner. In competition the first rule I heard was knock him out. That shows a big difference in mental attitude, which provides a much different experience in the fight. So I would have to say competition can become an important experience in your training.

Some drills I think would be effective for developing good alive aikido. Each of these should be done 2-3 minutes with 1 minute breaks. Possibly 1 station setup for each drill with a higher ranking person acting as uke so he can vary his level of resistance to match the skill of the nage.

1) Try to hit the person.
Start from a good distance apart. Possibly have uke put on MMA gloves or handwraps to protect his hands from injury, maybe boxing gloves to protect nage from injury if nage is new to full resistance drills. Have no set technique to work on. Uke's job is to try to actually hit nage anywhere in the chest as hard as he can as fast as he can as much as he can for 2-3 minutes. Nage's job is to submit or throw or knock down uke. If nage gets a clean technique, reset to starting points and continue. If Uke gets a solid undefended hit, again reset to starting points and continue. DO NOT keep score, this is a drill to help build nage's ability to move in non predictable fashion (aka I can't track you with my punch) and perform clean technique. This is not a competition. This setup should force uke to throw a lot of solid committed strikes, just touching nage should not count as a reset, it must be a solid hard strike to the chest.
2) The lift.
This is another drill to build up nage's ability to deal with minor clinching or grappling. Something people tend to do when adrenaline gets too high. It works simple, Uke has a goal of getting double underhooks and lifting nage off the ground, or pulling/taking him to the ground. He can do this any way he wishes, as long as he does it with double underhooks (both arms under the arms of nage). Nage's goal is to again perform a clean technique to throw, takedown, or submit uke. Once again, if either person achieves their goal, release, reset and continue. I have found that in unskilled attackers they normally attempt to clinch when under pressure. Its one of the two natural instincts a person has, grab on to the thing hurting you, or push away at the thing hurting you. The guys who grab are much more dangerous they the ones that bat and push away. Nage has lots of chances to stop uke from the time uke begins to close distance, to intital contact, to the actual clinch. Uke is forced to be committed because feints will never achieve his goal. Nage can also practice ki mind/body skills here if he does get clinched by working to keep himself from being lifted.

3. The reversal.
Here we actually start with a kata setup. Nage can do any technique he wants. He should not tell uke what he plans on doing. This drill is to teach nage to go with the flow and blend against resistance. Uke will perform the attack nage requests, but at the point nage begins his technique uke should do everything in his power to resist. This includes moving to regain balance, using strength, posture, even reversals to defend. This forces nage to blend and change what he is doing to perform a successful technique. The struggle continues until a statement, throw, or submission happens. Reset and start again. Of course the final goal here is to be effective enough that nothing uke does matters and your first technique is what finishes him.

Finally, each of these could also add another dimension of practice. You could require that you actually pin the uke for 2-3 seconds (with him trying to escape) or submit uke in order to complete your goal. For even more brownie points, try adding 2 more ukes.

Again, none of these should be looked at as competition. They are training drills designed to give you a small subsection of real resistance to work with, similar to how a living person would attack you. We do this by having an actual living person do their best to attack you. Ultimately the final goal would be to just have an uke to tries to throw, punch, kick, takedown, etc on you while you try to use your aikido to perform a clean aikido technique. However, even if you choose not to go to that level of aliveness, these drills I think would help improve technique in a person of any rank. These are only 3 drills I've suckered my friends into working on me with (I wouldn't mind seeing them in the dojo either). I've got at least 3 or 4 more.

Last edited by DonMagee : 02-15-2007 at 06:49 AM.

- Don
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Old 02-15-2007, 07:29 AM   #61
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Those are some nice drills Don. will play with those a bit if you don't mind my borrowing them.

LC

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Old 02-15-2007, 08:00 AM   #62
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

The hardest part about the drills that include striking is that I really want to work in punches to the head, but gloves really limit the ability to control the wrist and even with headgear, I'm not too keen on taking a lot of bare knuckle punches to the head.

A few other skills these drills build are the ability to see a feint. If a person throws a feint, you have no reason to defend it, thus you will really only deal with real committed attacks. This will teach you to deal with combo's as well. Something a trained fighter normally will use. You also learn to deal with the worst case situation, eating a punch and still performing. In fact another level of the punching drill is to simply move, no technique at all, just move and prevent uke from hitting you for 2-3 minutes. With a real determined uke it will be very hard, but you will learn a lot about body movement. In that case, throw on some boxing head gear and a mouth guard, and give him some gloves. Let him punch anywhere.

A couple smaller drills I use for fun are:

1) Grab my jacket.
The goal of this drill is to train you to engage before the grab takes place. And to feel the movement and read your partner. Its simple, if uke grabs your lapel and can give it a solid tug you reset. Your goal is to move or intercept his hand and perform a technique. He may grab you while falling down, because this is not competition, we do not keep track of who won, so it doesn't matter, he fell down, but he also grabbed your lapel, both of these mean reset. So reset.

2) Circle of surprise.
One of my favorite fun drills I do in bjj is this. I am going to modify it to fit aikido. Basically the instructor stands off to one side. Puts one student in the middle. Everyone else walks in a circle around the man in the middle. The instructor places his hand on each students arm as they walk past him. If he squeezes the arm, then that student can engage the person in the middle at any time before he makes it back to the instructor. Because the man in the middle has no idea who is being picked, he has no idea the direction of the attack. You could work this with any actual drill you want. I think for aikido it would work best with a underhook or grab drill. Basically the person squeezed has to take down or lift off the ground the person in the middle. So if the person in the middle falls down, or is lifted for more then 2 seconds, he is taken out of the middle and a new student put in his place. If the person picked to rush in is thrown, submitted, or pinned, he goes back to the circle. If the person in the middle continues to win, or, if the student picked is not being thrown, submitted,or pinned, but can't achieve his goal, the instructor can flag another student to turn this into a multiple attacker situation, until ultimately the student in the middle is defeated. (That's my favorite part about this drill).

2) Worst case scenario
This drill is a modification of the first 3 drills I posted. Basically you pick one of those drills, but start it from a bad position for nage. A good example is have someone start with double underhooks, or over/under (one arm under the arms, one arm over the arms) from behind on nage. When time starts the uke needs to take down nage, or submit him. Nage needs to get him off his back and/or do the same. Once the goal is achieved, they switch places with nage becoming uke and continue. You could combine this with the striking drill. One person holding nage from behind, with another person on a 4 second timer to come in striking. Nage must throw/pin/submit both partners before he is struck, throw, or submitted. In this case the puncher should probably either be smart enough to not drill nage while the other uke is holding him, or wear boxing gloves. Aikido teaches one punch can kill. So if you are are hit, concider yourself dead. You could also start with one person on each arm as if trying to secure nage. If nage escapes both, submits or throws his ukes, reset. If ukes hold nage for more then 30 seconds, or take him to the ground, reset, swaping out one of the ukes for nage.

Basically, just pick a bad spot to start from, and pick a drill. Mix and match at its best, you can incorporate walls, maybe a heavy bag on the ground to act as a obstacle, etc.

Last one I'll post for now

4) knife from nowhere.
This is an add on drill to any of the other drills mentioned. Each uke has a rubber knife tucked away somewhere reachable. Before each drill, the ukes all come together and pick which one of them (or the instructor can choose) will pull the knife during the drill and attempt to stab his nage. It is important that the nages do not know who this person or persons will be, just that they understand the threat that someone 'might' have a knife. The nage's are not allowed to use the knife against uke until the uke pulls the knife (or attempts to). Remeber all ukes need to have the knife on them so nage just can't look and see uke has a knife. He won't know its a knife attack until uke goes for the knife. This is because it is hard to hide a knife in a gi, but on the street it is easy to hide a knife. This drill teaches you awareness and practical knife defense skills in semi realistic drills. To really make this tough, if you are not aware and you do get stabbed, require you do 10 pushups, increasing by 5 every time you get stabbed in later drills that day. (so 10 first time, 15 second time, 20 the third time.)

The most important part in these drills is that you have fun, but stay serious about your goals. And DO NOT keep score!

- Don
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Old 02-15-2007, 08:37 AM   #63
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Joshua wrote:

Quote:
Honestly, how much is it competition instilling the warrior ethos, versus the entire Army training and indoctrination program?
You bring up some good points. You are correct, the Army has a full spectrum of training that would balance out things, so competition is but one piece of a big picture.

However, I think we are addressing the basic argument that competition as it relates to budo, and that it can be a part of it.

If your total focus is sport and winning, well i'd say you are not practicing budo. Can there be room in Judo or other arts for both....I think so, it is all a state of mind or perspective, and how you train.

I train primarily for Budo and reality, however, what I do can very quickly and rapidly be adjusted for sport.

It does not take much smarts or skill to figure out and transition from sport to reality. People have the basic brains to be able to do this for the most part.

There are those that are delusional though for sure.
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Old 02-15-2007, 08:52 AM   #64
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Good drills Don. I am going to work on some of these.

In our Combatives classes at some point in our week of trainng we will introduce a taser. The instructor will secretly slip it to someone, you never know who and then when you are fighting they will pull it out and shock you with it.

It is amazing how it motivates an awareness towards watching for weapons.
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Old 02-15-2007, 09:35 AM   #65
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Kevin, I just spat up water reading that last part. Now I have an image of a GI going for a Kimura suddenly getting a "shock" . . .

Good stuff.
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Old 02-15-2007, 09:38 AM   #66
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Kevin, I'm liking that taser idea. You guys have some good stuff that I can add to some training programs I am developing for security stuff. Application to Aikido training can yield some quite interesting results also.

Gambatte.
LC

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Old 02-15-2007, 11:15 AM   #67
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Up front, I agree with many of the positions stated thus far -- more of them on the "competition" side of things. Additionally, I played sports all my life -- at national and international levels, being invited to the Olympic Training camp in two different sports. Yet, in the end, I come down on the side that there is a distinction between Budo (i.e. Aikido) and Sport -- that there should be.

Mr. Wilson asked, "I'd be very interested if anyone else thinks they have a clearer distinction between sport and budo?"

An answer was given, one I fully agree with, but it seems the discussion has gone on to other things. I wanted to bring some attention back to it, please/thanks.

Mr. Threadgill stated: "Budo performed only as sport is not evolution in my opinion, but degeneration. It reduces the dignity and moral conscience of budo to insignificance, resulting in the competitive element of training becoming an end unto itself instead of a means towards a greater end. To paraphrase a common idiom, competition sometimes becomes the tail wagging the budo dog. With the loss of a greater duty to the moral objectives associated with budo, ego gratification frequently becomes the driving force of the training experience, with all the problems that entails."

For me, what is important to note is the difference being mentioned between "means" and "ends." It is not that one can look at sports or budo and not see every single element that makes each one up being shared between the two. One does. This is why each one can benefit from the other one, should an element be missing for some strange reason. In other words, as was stated, a budoka can make great gains by introducing competitive elements into his/her training, as an athlete can make great gains by pursuing his/her sport via the full investment or application of the heart/mind and/or spirit. Attempting to define and/or redefine what constitutes a "gain" is not going to take us away from the fact that all elements are capable of being shared and are shared at the highest level of each endeavor.

Historically, there is a reason for this, in my opinion -- why there is so much in common between the two. At the turn of the 20th century, folks in the modern world (which included Japan), facing the difficulties of urbanization, industrialization, colonialism, and imperialism, started to take the old political discourse of the Same and the Other to new levels and toward new directions. In particular, folks needed to find a "Same" that functioned according to the emerging international abstractions at the same time that they needed the proposed dominance over the Other, to justify things like national security "naturally." One of the most influential discourses that set out to do this was that of Muscular Christianity. In short, everyone was talking about the role that physical training played not only in the overall wellness of the individual but also in the wellness of the modern state in a growing global economy. From this point on, folks had to start talking like this -- like we are now.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muscular_Christianity

However, while everyone started talking about fixing things through physical activity, discourses like Muscular Christianity, via the uses they could bring to colonialism and imperialism, also started talking about the vitality of competition. The Modern Olympiad was born out of this in fact. Up to this point, in my opinion, while a great many folks could talk about the importance of physical conditioning in regards to the wellness of the individual (since that has had an ancient history), some folks seriously questioned that competition could achieve this as well. Looking at this, Osenei seems to have been one of these people. Debates, both within and outside of sports, were waged -- for example, the professional/amateur dichotomy not really reaching reconciliation until a century later.

In my opinion, the nature of the debates centered on what Mr. Threadgill noted already. While no one was denying that physical training could be part of a technology of the self, folks felt that competition ultimately led things in the wrong direction. In particular, in competition, the spirit is used to gain victory over another, to compete better. In the end, it is the performance of oneself within competition that measures how much spirit or at what level the spirit was involved. Because one only knows the spirit by how well one defeats another with it, for example, folks were heavily skeptical that this indeed could bring individual or international wellness. Folks like Osensei, folks that were into "victory over the self" and "peace and unity on Earth" had an entirely different agenda when it came to the cultivation of the spirit. For them, the spirit was not the means to the ends. It was the end, and all the woes and ills of Modernity could only be addressed by this position.

As it turns out, folks in the know are finally beginning to realize that the losing side at the turn of the 20th century -- folks like Osensei -- were right.

To see what this might mean:

(On how youth sports are setting prescriptions to address the downside of seeing competition/victory as an end. From the National Association of Youth Sports

http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:...ient=firefox-a

(On the down side of what happens to the spirit when competition is the end and not the means. From the Department of Education

http://www.higheredcenter.org/pubs/f...ct_sheet3.html

So, one might want to ask what training with the spirit as the end looks like... Well, while it might include competitive elements, it does not require competition as any sort of defining conclusion. Training with the spirit as the end does not require competition to demarcate the spirit into existence. In other words, the virtues gained come without the need to be contrasted or measured against the lack of virtue in another. For example, one is confident without having to defeat another before knowing that that is true; one is brave without having to defeat another before knowing that that is true. Etc. From this point of view, while facing one's fears in the ring says a lot, especially in light of someone who cannot face such fears, it does not mean that such facing does not present a lessor virtue in light of the person who needs no such contrast.

fwiw,
dmv

David M. Valadez
Visit our web site for articles and videos. Senshin Center - A Place for Traditional Martial Arts in Santa Barbara.
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Old 02-15-2007, 11:54 AM   #68
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

LOL Bud, sorry about that! Yeah it does put the Kimura into a whole nuther perspective and makes you think about that other hand. You see guys that are proficient at grappling become a fish out of water.

What is nice about the taser is the immediate feedback. With plastic, rubber, or wooden knifes, there simply is not enough feedback for the guy being stabbed to react appropriately, however the taser provides good feedback via the temporary and sudden pain.

We found the same issue in training with blanks and MILES lasers with weapons. MILES is accurate and provides feedback, but without real bullets soldiers simply ignore suppressive fire, or don't realize they have effective fires being placed on them...so it becomes all or none...either they are alive or dead.

Once we got simunitions (plastic bullets) into the mix, it changes how someone being shot at reacts dramatically!

Even with projectile weapons training...there are varying degrees of aliveness!

Anyway, this gets off subject! so I will leave it alone now.
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Old 02-15-2007, 01:25 PM   #69
me32dc
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Quote:
James Wilson wrote:
Excellent posts guys,
Thanks very much for your opinions, all of which are very interesting.
Dominic, if I may take issue with your post, you wrote;


In my eyes, competition is not fighting.
A street fight has no rules, no limits noting.
A competition has all of these. There and time limits, move limits, certain things can and can not be done etc. If you train to compete you are not training to fight.

This to me is the difference between sport and budo.
Boxing is a sport
Aikido is budo (except the style you practice, which i consider a sport

Aikido also has rules. Go into your dojo and thump the nearest person in the head and see what happens - youll get kicked out. Bite tori when hes trying to move you in kote gaeshi and youll quickly be thrown out of any dojo in the world. How then does an aikido dojo better represent Budo (having no rules) than any of the sports previously mentioned?
And although there are differences between a competition fight and a street fight, who amongst us wouldnt put our money on a champion boxer or Mixed Martial Artist against a street fighter?
Cheers
Putting the issue of which is best (boxing, aikido etc) aside as that is another discussion completely.

What you are discussing is training. Training has to be done under strict control so people do not get hurt.

Competition is different.
Gozo Shioda puts it best when he answers why aikido does not have competition in his biography Aikido Shugyo:

"Aikido must not make the same mistake as Judo which, although it has achieved growth as a sport, places too much emphasis solely on competitions. It has abandoned effective techniques that could actually be used in a real fight and has become ineffective today as a martial art."

This is only a short extract (and i highly reccomend reading the rest) but the long and short of it is that even though competition can be hotly contested it can never compare to real combat which budo tries to train you for. Rather than training to be good at competition.

Although i can not personally comment because i have not been training long (in Yoshinkan), but i have heard that other forms of aikido and dojos are as far removed from budo as most modern sport. Even dojos in japan.
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Old 02-15-2007, 01:39 PM   #70
DonMagee
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Actually, being a judo and a bjj man. I do the see the problem judo has created for itself. It was not the competition that caused the problem though, it was the changing of the rules to prevent outsiders from winning judo competitions. Because of rule changes to beat wrestlers, sambo, non traditional newaza guys or jj guys, and to place nice with Olympic boards, then watered down what was effective into something less effective. In preparing for this upcoming judo competition most of my training was in what was illegal. I had to constantly go over what I couldn't do. This has really highlighted to me the weakness in judo sport vs the art of judo. And why I love bjj competition where a much larger range of things are legal (leg locks, wrist locks, neck cranks, ankle locks, tons of throws that are illegal in judo, etc) However, I fear bjj might eventually head down that same path. I already know people that have never practiced a leg lock in their life simply because it is illegal in white and blue belt competition.

This is even a smaller issue though in MMA. By nature of the mindset behind MMA the only things that are made illegal are things that either A) would cause a large amount of deaths or perminat injurys that can not be recovered from (like blindness) such as striking to the base of the skull or eye gouges, or B) Are really just annoying or disfiguring, but rarely change the outcome of a fight such as scratching at the face, or pinching.

But I think what is to be stressed here has been said a thousand times. You can compete and have budo, but if you do nothing but train for competition, it will be hard to have budo. I personally do not train for competition. I train to improve my ability to fight, only when competitions get close do I switch focus to how to win in competition. Of course I also do not concider what I do to be budo.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 02-15-2007, 02:02 PM   #71
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Quote:
In our Combatives classes at some point in our week of trainng we will introduce a taser. The instructor will secretly slip it to someone, you never know who and then when you are fighting they will pull it out and shock you with it.

It is amazing how it motivates an awareness towards watching for weapons.
Funny...I posted something similar (using a wooden tanto) not long ago, and was accused of belonging to a cult... You sure that doesn't equal assault?

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
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Old 02-15-2007, 02:02 PM   #72
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Don,

When I prepared for the European's over the past two months, I had to spend time playing to the BJJ rules and reminding myself that I could not do leg locks, and a few other things like put two hands on the belt etc.

When I got to the tournament I saw a ton of people jumping guard. I asked my instructor, Jacare about this as I do not condone jumping guard in practice, he said, it was valid if you have a good guard game.

I found out in my second fight in the open why you want to do this in competition when I fought my opponent who would not fight me for the take down for about 3.5 minutes of a 5 minute round. The ref stopped the fight and said we had to fight...so I did, shot, he sprawled, eventually I rolled to guard, and he passed...got the points for the pass and one the fight.

In retrospect, I could have won the fight if I would have done several things that were in the spirit of the game...not reality...however, I do not train BJJ this way.

As far as leg locks go...I saw why you do not do them in BJJ at the lower belts. No less than five guys were carried off the mat on stretcher due to leg locks.

In the BJJ schools I am in...we don't practice for the game/comptetion, but for reality. We augment our training to do well in tournaments, however that is not the purpose of us going to tournaments...to solely play the game to win.

My local German Judo school: I don't train with them, because like you said, they have watered down so much of what they do, I cannot begin to even train with proper ettiquette with them as it scare them when I do things sometimes, and I cringe when they do some of the things they do in the name of sport....AND they do not know the difference! that is what is scary.
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Old 02-15-2007, 02:19 PM   #73
Cyrijl
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

The most ridiculous quote of the day goes to:

Quote:
"Aikido must not make the same mistake as Judo which, although it has achieved growth as a sport, places too much emphasis solely on competitions. It has abandoned effective techniques that could actually be used in a real fight and has become ineffective today as a martial art."
As opposed to aikido?

In my judo classes I would call most of what we do 'effective'. We also do a fair amount of newaza and have an entire night dedicated solely to newaza randoori. You can quote whoever about whatever, it does not excuse poor training and weak technique.

melior est canis vivus leone mortuo
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Old 02-15-2007, 02:31 PM   #74
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Agreed Joseph. we really get ourselves in a bind when we use the word EFFECTIVE don't we?

To me, at least when you say effective, it means physically martially effective.

You have opened up a whole other can of worms once you go down this path.

One in which I do not think the so-called budo arts especially, really adequately prepare their students to be physcially martially effective.

correct posture, principle, technique, and practice, is all good and may translate to reality, but that does not mean it equals reality or effectiveness.

I just wrote a thesis paper on the military decision making process....part of one of my points on choosing courses of actions and decision making in the military is that we sometimes get caught up in making the most efficient decision based on cost, or over all percieved efficiency, with very, very detailed analysis. This is done at the expense of time.

Sometimes you simply need a plan that works, not the best one, or the most efficient..simply one that does the job!

Martially Effective works the same way, we don't always need the BEST solution or the most principally sound one...but one that works.

effectiveness...one word...with sooo, sooo much meaning and implications behind it.
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Old 02-15-2007, 03:23 PM   #75
Cyrijl
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Re: Sport is the new Budo

Some people are just in denial. They dedicate their lives to something and do not want to adimt they may have made a mistake or have had some misunderstandings. So, they try to appeal to some other authority in order to justify themselves since they have no means by which to demonstrate their point.

All these quotes from old aikido masters and anecdote after anecdote, especially the 'assumptions' one, make me realize even more that the art form is full of people with delusions. Unable to defend their own opinion or training they seek to disparage others.

At the end of the day...if you are training for self-defense...budo...whatever euphemism you wish to use....how do you KNOW your training will be effective? Failing certainty (someone will say you can never know...which is part of their problem), by which standard do you measure your training?

For me, i have been hit. I know what it feels like. I can tell when someone else is going to hit me since the body moves in certain ways. I know what I am capable of doing in terms of reactions times and flexibility. From judo I know how to instinctively fall in the correct manner as to now smash my head on the ground.

Last edited by Cyrijl : 02-15-2007 at 03:25 PM.

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