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Old 06-19-2005, 09:39 AM   #26
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Dustin Acuff wrote:
I think I see what you are saying LC. When I was doing kickboxing we would have someone stand behind the bag or beside us and if we did not keep our hands up this person would tap our face as we initiated a technique. Just this touch disrupted the act of initiating a kick or punch entirey and caused the gears to stop for a moment. Is that kind of what you are mentioning?
Hi Dustin,

What you spoke of in the quoted text above is one aspect of using atemi, i.e. as a distraction. Others include balance disruption, pain/injury/shock induced by impact on anatomical weak areas, as finishing techniques and as a psychological disruptor (similar to what Kevin spoke about) where one's intent or hint of applying atemi can affect the attacker's posture, balance, resolve etc. Of course there are probably more ways of applying it than I listed above also.

Quote:
Uke will not grab you "honestly" without the threat of atemi. He can stay centered and lock down on you. you will have a difficult time getting a ikkyo, nikyo, or sankyo if he can come in indiscriminately not having to worry about atemi.
This is pretty true. Someone who knows that you may be able to seriously hit them when they try to grab you will be very cagey about it and only dedicate when they have found a hole in your defence or a safe way to do so without being hit, or at least where the effect of the atemi is reduced.

However, if they do get a good hold on you there are ways of immediately breaking balance via relaxation, timing and proper body movement in Aikido. It in fact uses the applied force of the grabbing attacker to find the means of disrupting his balance through movement (kuzushi). The chances to apply this though may be limited to the point where the grab is initiated or, in the event that you are already locked down, quickly creating movement by using total body coordination to create another opportunity to re-take the initiative and get off an Aikido throw, lock or pin. If one is unable to capitalize and utilize this sort of timing and movement however (i.e. the exploitation of the attacker's weak lines of posture upon his application of force to grab etc.) then the lock down will mark the beginning of a successful technique by the attacker imho.

At yesterday's Jujutsu session we worked a technique using this same principle, based on a diagonal (yokomen, blade upward) knife slash by the attacker, where the defender evades by entering off line (like in shi ho nage omote) and grabs the attacker's wrist to gain control of the slashing hand while bringing his own knife to bear from his right side near his hip (his left hand is holding off the attacker's knife hand). The attacker sees this and grabs the defender's hand to control it before he can raise the blade. The defender is gripping his knife blade downward, edge outward.

Since his arm is immobilized by the attacker (who is trying to trap the defender's knife hand down against his body), the defender relaxes and goes with the grab and forward, downward push of the attacker by stepping backward with the attacker's movement (tsugi ashi) and sinking his own weight. This draws the attacker's grab beyond it's intended point of control.

Using this momentum, the defender brings his knife arm downwards toward his centre, turns his hips to the left (causing a twisting and unbalancing effect on the attacker's body via his grabbing hand, as in shi ho nage or sokumen) and waves it back towards the neck of the attacker, who has no choice but to go with the kuzushi due to the power of his own grab and the timely disruption of his posture. This movement looks like a variation of sokumen irimi nage in Aikikai terminology, but with a knife held in the hand, the basic entry is seen in number 3 (Gyaku Gamae ate) here. The end result is a sokumen style entry with the blade's edge at the neck of the attacker while the other hand still keeps the attacker's knife at bay, throwing him to the ground with the blade at his neck as you kneel next to him and or slicing the neck as necessary.

This was during the practice of the Aiki waza portion of the Jujutsu class, so we got to play around with the Aikido type waza and some applications a bit.

Just some thoughts. I hope the story helps illustrate the use of correct tai sabaki and kuzushi to disrupt an attacker even if he has a strong and focused grab without overextending his own balance. This is one of the strengths of all the arts that apply Ju no ri and Aiki no ri imho, Aikido being one alongside Judo and Jujutsu etc.

LC

Last edited by L. Camejo : 06-19-2005 at 09:46 AM.

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Old 06-19-2005, 10:01 AM   #27
Nick Simpson
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Re: Value of atemi

Well, I nearly got my nose broken yesterday by an elbow strike during kotegaeshi. That atemi worked.

They're all screaming about the rock n roll, but I would say that it's getting old. - REFUSED.
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Old 06-19-2005, 04:54 PM   #28
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Re: Value of atemi

LC, Kevin, my understanding is quite diffrent. People don't attack when they don't think they can win. Unless you are in a situation, like sparring, someone attacking you is going to give you full energy without any regaurd for if you have atemi or not; they don't know or care because they can kick your butt. The full energy is what is needed to apply a technique. Why would someone attack you harder when they know they can and will be hit?

I agree that if uke grabs you and keeps his center he has not taken his own balance, but why does he have to? If he grabbed you you have been given energy. He is either going to pull his energy back or extend more foward via push or strike. Him grabbing you staying centered means nothing. If he has grabbed you and kept his center, he is harmless until he pushes or pulls, at which point his spine will either elongate or compress, either way you can take him. Granted, a quick strike to his throat and he will be as helpless as a baby if you want to try and kote gaeshi him from static motion, but he MUST apply more energy to you to accomplish his goal.

My argument is not that atemi are worthless, I am just debating where they belong in Aiki arts.
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Old 06-19-2005, 08:52 PM   #29
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Dustin Acuff wrote:
LC, Kevin, my understanding is quite diffrent. People don't attack when they don't think they can win.
Again, being specific is important. Now it appears that you are referring to an attack as in a self defence situation and not attack as done in the dojo, in which case of course the person attacking will not do so until they have selected you to be an appropriate target, i.e. an easy one.

Quote:
Dustin Acuff wrote:
I agree that if uke grabs you and keeps his center he has not taken his own balance, but why does he have to? If he grabbed you you have been given energy. He is either going to pull his energy back or extend more foward via push or strike.
Read what I said in my last post again, this is exactly what I indicated earlier.

Quote:
Dustin Acuff wrote:
Him grabbing you staying centered means nothing.
In fact, his staying centred is extremely important since it will effectively mean that a vast majority of Aikidoka will not be able to deal with this sort of attack unless their practice includes a deep study of kuzushi. Grabbing and staying centred does not mean grabbing and not attacking. It is knowing how to control one's body so that one is not easily moved or controlled while still maintaining a powerful enough structure to launch an effective attack. This is the difference between folks who really know how to attack effectively and folks who do not. Difficult to describe, easy to feel.

Quote:
Dustin Acuff wrote:
My argument is not that atemi are worthless, I am just debating where they belong in Aiki arts.
Where something belongs in an art has more to do with the particular ideas and theories of the founder of the art than anything else imo. I can put a lot of things into my Aikido, it does not mean that it belongs in Aikido. So to answer this question it may be best you read up on Ueshiba M.'s understanding and approach to atemi or whoever the head of the style is that you do. I have already indicated how Shodokan (Tomiki) folks see it (generally) in an earlier post. Things may be seen differently in other places.

Gambatte.
LC

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Old 06-20-2005, 08:43 AM   #30
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Him grabbing you staying centered means nothing.
Hi Dustin. Have you ever wrestled a college level competitive wrestler? Believe me...they can grab you, stay centered, and make you wish for a .45...very quickly.

Best,
Ron (now THAT'S atemi...)

Last edited by Ron Tisdale : 06-20-2005 at 08:57 AM.

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Old 06-20-2005, 10:31 AM   #31
Nick Simpson
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Re: Value of atemi

Haha, good one!

They're all screaming about the rock n roll, but I would say that it's getting old. - REFUSED.
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Old 04-23-2007, 11:45 AM   #32
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Re: Value of atemi

one of the ways that we approach atemi in a conceptual/practical method is to offer the concept of 'filling space'. Space is available within technique for any practicioner to observe and utilize. The methods by which we fill this space can be hard (strikes of varying measure) or soft (developed 'ki filled' observation that disguards the others balance or opportunity). This principle of 'space filling' allows us to practice physical technique and philosophical concept in the same practice as well as it allows the student to work within the same practice at different levels of refinement.
In my experience, when I am able to view openings appropriately I can respond with whatever means are appropriate to the moment. An always relative engagement.
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Old 04-23-2007, 11:50 AM   #33
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote: View Post
I am trying to integrate the principles of aikido in the stand up fighting I am learning/teaching in the Modern Army Combatives. I find that without the threat of strikes and kicks, things like iriminage, and kaitenage don't really work so well. Once we go "hot" on strikes and kicks, aikido starts having more relevance.

I would submit based on my experiences that without the threat or intent of atemi, that aikido really does not work very well.
Aikido takes on more relevance whenever we place it in the context of our lives 'other' practices. This is the place where we have a template of effectiveness to our own understanding and we can apply the art in diligent inquiry.

Last edited by jennifer paige smith : 04-23-2007 at 11:52 AM.
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Old 04-24-2007, 12:38 AM   #34
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Re: Value of atemi

I think the whole value of aikido is the fact that it can show us applications more so figuratively than literally. That is, we can interpret the meaning through reaching a deeper understanding of the causes, effects, and the options available in resolving conflict.

That said, in order to reach this deeper understanding, we need to honestly and fully explore as much as possible conflict, in aikido we explore the physical causes and attempt to link them to the many other mental and spiritual aspects as well.

What is important in our learning, no matter how we eventually interpret it, is that atemi is real as possible in the parameters in which work with it.

Anything short of that...we are not being honest with ourselves or uke...and that will cause problems in our ability to grasp the messages of aikido honestly.

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Old 04-24-2007, 12:57 PM   #35
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Re: Value of atemi

Hello
Well, I would say that atemi are the same as if we were fencing with a sword or a knife.
It is of as much use as to do damage than it is to control or opponent movement by restricting it in certain direction and promoting it in other direction as well as creating or increasing our time and distance advantage.

Like Kevin I would say that even if it your aim to reach spiritual fulfilment though aikido as one can develop it through perfecting the tea ceremony, it seems difficult to reach that fulfilment if you leave out the actual tea preparation in the ceremony .
That being said, as we say in France "chacun ŗ son gout" (and not it is not about cooking)

Phil
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Old 04-24-2007, 02:00 PM   #36
Marc Abrams
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Re: Value of atemi

Dustin:

read George Sensei's article: http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/gledyard/2004_08.html

Atemi is a fundamental aspect of Aikido. Taking a person off balance is a necessity, not an option. Atemi achieves that, whether or not contact has been made. A balanced attacker is a bad beginning in which to execute a technique. A good fighter will not get off balance unless YOU take away the fighter's balance in some manner or form.

marc abrams
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Old 04-24-2007, 04:39 PM   #37
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Re: Value of atemi

I would go one step further...than necessity to take him off balance...

It is not necessity to do it, but to possess the ability to do it, AND to make your opponent understand that you possess the ability is sometimes all that is necessary.

Then again, sometimes even if you don't have the ability, creating the perception that you do is all that is necessary.

Deception is a viable option that we have. however, we are talking tactically, and not necessarily philosophically.

Philosophically, I think atemi is important as a tool to teach us things. Without it, what we do is very limited.

The important thing about aikido over many other forms of budo is the concept of maŠi...that is the space that exsist between uke and nage. In BJJ we start with the assumption that the space is gone most of the time. In aikido we always pretty much start with that space present.

With that space presence, both uke and nage have a choice. Choice is an important part of what we are learning in aikido. We can make many choices which affect the outcome of an engagement between uke and nage.

Atemi provides relevance and importance to what happens in that space. Without atemi, bokken, jo...it becomes very limited what we can train physically with respect to choice.

As many philosophers have said, I cannot affect what others do to me, or the choices they make...I can only affect how I react. Atemi is a enabler of this process...it is an option (choice).

As with all choices, we need to be honest with both ourselves and our intentions. That is why it is important to have good atemi when practicing.

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Old 05-24-2007, 11:22 AM   #38
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Dustin:

read George Sensei's article: http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/gledyard/2004_08.html

Atemi is a fundamental aspect of Aikido. Taking a person off balance is a necessity, not an option. Atemi achieves that, whether or not contact has been made. A balanced attacker is a bad beginning in which to execute a technique. A good fighter will not get off balance unless YOU take away the fighter's balance in some manner or form.

marc abrams
Imbalance is the greatest moment of opportunity for training. The model of aikido being 'restoring balance'. Of course we have to create this construct to work it. It is in the benefit of both uke and nage to witness and learn the elements of imbalance. It is best to take it outside of human fighting dimension and to think of it as structural or universal' pieces'. The atemi is not you hitting him (or her) it is a meteor crashing toward the planet drawn in by a vacume.It may also be a black hole. Etc. This concept will give you more tools to work this game.

Jennifer Paige Smith
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Old 05-24-2007, 02:59 PM   #39
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Re: Value of atemi

Probably beating a dead horse but I'll put my 2 cents in.

As far as the higher ranking people in my dojo are concerned, Aikido doesn't work without atemi in a street confrontation and a fully resisting attacker (who more than likely will be bigger than you). I see no reason to disagree. Since I also train in Muay Thai I'm starting to get pretty comfortable with atemi waza. In a real confrontation, I'd go to Muay Thai first and after the guy is softened up, try some Aikido. I'm not gonna try some complex Aikido technique on a guy trying to knock my head off without atemi waza behind it. In a street situation..simple is best.
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Old 05-24-2007, 07:17 PM   #40
L. Camejo
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
It is in the benefit of both uke and nage to witness and learn the elements of imbalance. It is best to take it outside of human fighting dimension and to think of it as structural or universal' pieces'.
Why is it "best" to operate this way? Imho human "fighting" is one of the simplest forms of human communication that you can get and it makes things quite clear in a very simple manner. From this simple paradigm one can then apply the distilled kernel of information to a wider system such as structural or universal concepts imho.
Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
The atemi is not you hitting him (or her) it is a meteor crashing toward the planet drawn in by a vacume.It may also be a black hole. Etc. This concept will give you more tools to work this game.
Not sure how this can give one "more tools" as it appears to be quite the opposite of actual atemi application. In both examples, the meteor crashing towards a planet and a black hole there is the inference that impetus and direction is uncontrolled as the elements involved react to gravity. Imho this is not atemi, which is a very controlled, precise process of applying force. Not to mention the fact that most meteors dissipate through friction against the atmosphere (force on force) before making any impact, which is the antithesis of Aiki imho.

Imho it may be better to create basic linkages that are obvious and easy to repeat and understand and then relate this to the movement of the universe, nature etc. instead of trying it the other way around. I think this is how Ueshiba M. figured out a lot of his Aiki, not by trying to mimic universal motions, but expressing universal patterns naturally and then realizing the linkages to natural macroscopic systems.

Just a thought.
LC

Last edited by L. Camejo : 05-24-2007 at 07:20 PM.

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Old 05-27-2007, 10:55 AM   #41
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Dustin:

read George Sensei's article: http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/gledyard/2004_08.html

Atemi is a fundamental aspect of Aikido. Taking a person off balance is a necessity, not an option. Atemi achieves that, whether or not contact has been made. A balanced attacker is a bad beginning in which to execute a technique. A good fighter will not get off balance unless YOU take away the fighter's balance in some manner or form.

marc abrams
Here's a thought. The attacker, by virtue of attacking , is already off balance. We are in the business of early detection and exaggereation. How quickly can you perceive the imbalance, and how centered are you when you do? Then, go from there into the appropriate spiral for magnification.
Ow, says the bug, it's hot under here.

jen

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Old 05-28-2007, 03:50 AM   #42
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
Here's a thought. The attacker, by virtue of attacking , is already off balance. We are in the business of early detection and exaggereation. How quickly can you perceive the imbalance, and how centered are you when you do? Then, go from there into the appropriate spiral for magnification.
Ow, says the bug, it's hot under here.jen
Sugar Ray Leonard, Oscar De La Hoya, George Foreman, Evander Holyfield et al do not agree. Now go do some push-up or something.

Boon.

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Old 05-29-2007, 10:03 AM   #43
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Value of atemi

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Xu Wenfung wrote: View Post
Sugar Ray Leonard, Oscar De La Hoya, George Foreman, Evander Holyfield et al do not agree. Now go do some push-up or something.

Boon.
I didn't realize you were a contact peron for such an amazing group of athletes.Can I call them and ask, too?
But seriously, they are in an established arena of relative balance to begin the fight. They have a rolling continuance of that balance throughout the fight and when one of them loses balance in engagement, inwardly or outwardly, they are struck down beyond recovery. End of fight.

p.s. I'm pretty sure you don't want me doing any more push-ups. Maybe I could just go back to the kitchen where I belong and not worry my little head about such important matters.

Jennifer Paige Smith
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Old 05-29-2007, 11:40 PM   #44
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
...<snip>...But seriously, they are in an established arena of relative balance to begin the fight. They have a rolling continuance of that balance throughout the fight and when one of them loses balance in engagement, inwardly or outwardly, they are struck down beyond recovery. End of fight.
Shucks.... shamefully I must ask you to put this in plainer English. HULK no understand. HULK SMASH, HUR HUR <ROARRRRRR!>

Quote:
p.s. I'm pretty sure you don't want me doing any more push-ups. Maybe I could just go back to the kitchen where I belong and not worry my little head about such important matters.
Kitchen GOOD. Kitchen = Food. HULK Happy.

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Old 05-30-2007, 01:38 AM   #45
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
Here's a thought. The attacker, by virtue of attacking , is already off balance. We are in the business of early detection and exaggereation. How quickly can you perceive the imbalance, and how centered are you when you do? Then, go from there into the appropriate spiral for magnification.
Ow, says the bug, it's hot under here.

jen
I don't believe that one can say that an attacker is "off balance" by virtue of his attack. A competent attacker can be quite balanced, in fact a good attack requires being balanced and centered.

It is, however, impossible to attack another without creating a suki or "opening". Using the principle of "irimi" we use that opening to occupy the space which the attacker wishes occupy in order to complete his attack.The action of the irimi will serve to cause the attacker to disrupt his balance.

In other words, you must take the attacker's balance. If he is competent he will not just give it to you. There is nothing inherently "off-balance" about an attack, no matter how erroneous the thinking may be behind the violent action.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 05-30-2007, 01:46 AM   #46
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Re: Value of atemi

Strangely HULK understand George's explanation better...

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Old 05-30-2007, 02:34 AM   #47
Chuck Clark
 
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
I don't believe that one can say that an attacker is "off balance" by virtue of his attack. A competent attacker can be quite balanced, in fact a good attack requires being balanced and centered.

It is, however, impossible to attack another without creating a suki or "opening". Using the principle of "irimi" we use that opening to occupy the space which the attacker wishes occupy in order to complete his attack.The action of the irimi will serve to cause the attacker to disrupt his balance.

In other words, you must take the attacker's balance. If he is competent he will not just give it to you. There is nothing inherently "off-balance" about an attack, no matter how erroneous the thinking may be behind the violent action.
that you even had to write this George. I'm glad you did.

Thanks

Chuck Clark
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Old 05-30-2007, 03:19 AM   #48
Edward
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
I don't believe that one can say that an attacker is "off balance" by virtue of his attack. A competent attacker can be quite balanced, in fact a good attack requires being balanced and centered.
IMHO, an attacker is not off balance by virtue of his attack, but he is off balance because he expected to hit a certain target, and the target vanished at the moment of impact.
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Old 05-30-2007, 03:51 AM   #49
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Re: Value of atemi

Quote:
Edward Karaa wrote: View Post
IMHO, an attacker is not off balance by virtue of his attack, but he is off balance because he expected to hit a certain target, and the target vanished at the moment of impact.
The way I read that comment suggests that the attacker overextends his balance because he expects to hit the target. Is that what you mean?
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Old 05-30-2007, 07:36 AM   #50
PeterR
 
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Re: Value of atemi

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Peter GrŲndahl wrote: View Post
The way I read that comment suggests that the attacker overextends his balance because he expects to hit the target. Is that what you mean?
Hmm - this is tougher to flesh out than appears to be the case.

Two well trained, evenly matched fighters, are not going to easily throw away their balance. However, in maintaining good balance it is very difficult to gain dominance. This is Aiki in the old sense.

At the right moment of attack a good fighter will sacrifice his balance in such away as to (assuming he got the timing right) overwhelm his opponent and still be able to recover that balance quickly.

Larry will know this situation from the Shodokan tsukuri driills.

I suppose that a good Aikidoist will be sensitive to that moment and take advantage of it but I also have to say, if all you have ever done is Aikido, than it is very easy to fool yourself that that attack/response to uke/tori reflects this situation. The training pattern becomes predictable and the value decreases because of this.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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