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Old 11-01-2007, 11:52 AM   #176
Will Prusner
 
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Confused Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
Sure, so how are you practicing that when someone is resisting you? Or, perhaps better asked, how do you lead when they don't want to follow?
I am presupposing that the leading occurs before there would be an opportunity for resistance. I thought that "leading" implied that uke was already performing a committed attack and that the "leading" was leading beyond the point of no return that would allow him to re-establish a stable base from which to resist. The question of not wanting to follow, I don't fully grok. If the attack is truly committed, then the uke has little choice, nobody in their right mind would intentionally follow anything that would lead to their demise, and yet people will move from their known stable position in order to attempt to strike or immobilize a target. If it isn't committed, then what is he committing to? Depending on the answer to that question, a solution could be to lead uke off his stable base in whatever direction he wants to go. And if he's committing to nothing, then we are just a couple guys standing around.

To me this is similar to:

Quote:
Napoleon Bonaparte wrote:
Never interrupt your opponent while he is making a mistake.
Maybe in your experience this is incorrect?

Can anyone clarify this?

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration...

ART! - http://birdsbeaks.blogspot.com/
 
Old 11-01-2007, 12:18 PM   #177
Aiki1
 
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
William Prusner wrote: View Post
I am presupposing that the leading occurs before there would be an opportunity for resistance. I thought that "leading" implied that uke was already performing a committed attack and that the "leading" was leading beyond the point of no return that would allow him to re-establish a stable base from which to resist. The question of not wanting to follow, I don't fully grok. If the attack is truly committed, then the uke has little choice, nobody in their right mind would intentionally follow anything that would lead to their demise, and yet people will move from their known stable position in order to attempt to strike or immobilize a target. If it isn't committed, then what is he committing to? Depending on the answer to that question, a solution could be to lead uke off his stable base in whatever direction he wants to go. And if he's committing to nothing, then we are just a couple guys standing around.
Before leading can be engaged, we add the notion of "Tracking" first, so you are in harmony with what is already unfolding, from a safe place. As one follows the movement/intention/energy, where to "lead it" becomes apparent for Kuzushi and Waza to occur, it's what we would call "Avenues of Release."

Larry Novick
Head Instructor
ACE Aikido
 
Old 11-01-2007, 12:46 PM   #178
Will Prusner
 
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Larry Novick wrote: View Post
Before leading can be engaged, we add the notion of "Tracking" first, so you are in harmony with what is already unfolding, from a safe place. As one follows the movement/intention/energy, where to "lead it" becomes apparent for Kuzushi and Waza to occur, it's what we would call "Avenues of Release."
Thanks Dr. Novick. That makes alot of sense. I realize now, that I was thinking about it from a standpoint of "applying" a technique, rather than harmonizing and allowing the appropriate technique to become apparent. All too often I find myself slipping back to the mindset of "doing something to someone". The concepts of "tracking" and the "Avenues of Release" principle are interesting to me. I'm going to attempt some research to further my understanding of these.

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration...

ART! - http://birdsbeaks.blogspot.com/
 
Old 11-01-2007, 12:56 PM   #179
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
William Prusner wrote: View Post
Thanks Dr. Novick. That makes alot of sense. I realize now, that I was thinking about it from a standpoint of "applying" a technique, rather than harmonizing and allowing the appropriate technique to become apparent. All too often I find myself slipping back to the mindset of "doing something to someone". The concepts of "tracking" and the "Avenues of Release" principle are interesting to me. I'm going to attempt some research to further my understanding of these.
Hey! I didn't realize - do you train with Darren Koski?? My old student??

Larry Novick
Head Instructor
ACE Aikido
 
Old 11-01-2007, 01:24 PM   #180
David Yap
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Hi,

So many questions???

The key question is:

HOW DID YOU GET RESISTED IN THE FIRST PLACE?

Quite a few are irresistable while most of us aren't. That's why we are still training and continuing to receive instructions. The passionate practitioners will be determined to isolate the errors to seek prefection of self and techniqes. Some will just move up the ranks with the attitude that they have more than one techniques in the bag (and they will continue to grow the inventory of techniques and students). Some attend seminars to learn while some attend seminars to be seen. Some just enjoy sitting at the center spot at the shomen to be seen by everyone.

There is a fool born every minute on this earth. So be it. If there are no blind men, then there will be no one-eyed kings. What I enjoy the most from aikido is the long hours of aiki forums over beers after the trainings. We have various people from various dojo background training together and I have yet to practise the prefect aiki in these forums.

What am I rumbling on this thread? Good teachers are hard to come by, let alone great teachers. There is a budo saying (Chinese or Japanese) - If you can' find a good teacher, it is better not to train. Some are mostly self-trained but do they have what is needed to teach others either on the mats or in a forum.

Cheers and let's get back onto the mats.

David Y

Last edited by David Yap : 11-01-2007 at 01:26 PM.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 01:25 PM   #181
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Larry Novick wrote:
Hey! I didn't realize - do you train with Darren Koski?? My old student??
Yes, I do. I'm temporarily off the mat while I recover from knee surgery, but I still go to the majority of classes and interrogate him after class about the techniques presented. I hear really great things about your method and philosophy. I enjoyed the videos on your site of Darren with long hair . Hope to be back on the mat soon, I'm hooked! In the meantime, I'm trying to storehouse as much philosophic, theoretical and intellectual knowledge as possible for experimentation and application when I'm able.

Last edited by Will Prusner : 11-01-2007 at 01:28 PM.

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration...

ART! - http://birdsbeaks.blogspot.com/
 
Old 11-01-2007, 02:08 PM   #182
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

A couple things I run through my mind periodically:

1) Is there an assumption that a committed attack must unbalance the attacker?

2) Is it ever a good idea when encountering resistance to be thinking about a technique?

Have fun . . .
 
Old 11-01-2007, 02:23 PM   #183
Will Prusner
 
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
A couple things I run through my mind periodically:

1) Is there an assumption that a committed attack must unbalance the attacker?

2) Is it ever a good idea when encountering resistance to be thinking about a technique?

Have fun . . .
Hey, very useful food for thought! Thanks!

1. I definitely am making the assumption that a committed attack that misses would unbalance the attacker. Kinda like Charlie Brown when the football gets pulled away. I still think in most cases it would, but you bring up a very real point that there is just as much possibility that it wouldn't.

2. I hope that one is rhetorical. Point taken.

Thanks, you have fun too!

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration...

ART! - http://birdsbeaks.blogspot.com/
 
Old 11-01-2007, 02:32 PM   #184
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
William Prusner wrote: View Post
1. I definitely am making the assumption that a committed attack that misses would unbalance the attacker. Kinda like Charlie Brown when the football gets pulled away. I still think in most cases it would, but you bring up a very real point that there is just as much possibility that it wouldn't.
I posted the following in another thread, but I thought I'd repeat it here - for me, someone trained to attack won't simply lose their center if they miss. That's why knowing how to allow the attack to unbalance them (kuzushi) is so important. But it's complicated, because sometimes that can't happen, and then there is more to the process:

Quote:
For me, if one is responding to Uke with "Aiki", the following principles are present and the above, i.e., resistance, is less likely, or in a theoretical sense, impossible, to occur or to get anywhere:

Musubi
Tsukuri
Kuzushi
Release

When this particular process is more difficult to enact, as the skill of the attacker increases, we move more into a process of:

Connect
Blend
Track
Lead/Redirect
Resolve

In my style this is generally all in the service of Kinesthetic Invisibility (a term coined by my late instructor Don O'Bell), or giving no physical reference through connection, flow, moving from center rather than hands, and Ki rather than muscle. Done correctly, there is nothing to resist. If we meet resistance, chances are we just need to clue into one of these elements that we are probably neglecting, and pick up the process again from there and follow it through to its natural conclusion.

Larry Novick
Head Instructor
ACE Aikido
 
Old 11-01-2007, 02:33 PM   #185
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
William Prusner wrote: View Post
Yes, I do. I'm temporarily off the mat while I recover from knee surgery, but I still go to the majority of classes and interrogate him after class about the techniques presented. I hear really great things about your method and philosophy. I enjoyed the videos on your site of Darren with long hair . Hope to be back on the mat soon, I'm hooked! In the meantime, I'm trying to storehouse as much philosophic, theoretical and intellectual knowledge as possible for experimentation and application when I'm able.
OT - Great, please send him my regards.

Larry Novick
Head Instructor
ACE Aikido
 
Old 11-01-2007, 02:36 PM   #186
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Grok! RAH fan.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 03:26 PM   #187
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Larry Novick wrote: View Post
OT - Great, please send him my regards.
Will do. And thanks again for your insight.

I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration...

ART! - http://birdsbeaks.blogspot.com/
 
Old 11-01-2007, 03:55 PM   #188
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
John Riggs wrote: View Post
When someone arbitrarily changes the scenario from cooperative practice to resistive practice we use the available aikido / martial arts options to do the technique. That includes atemi (as you pointed out in discussion on the Tai Chi master) and the use of pressure points to exploit openings or weaknesses in the resistance.
The problem with most people who want to use things like atemi and pressure in aikido is that they think it should go one way: nage doing it to uke. If I am your uke and you want to use these things on me, you should be prepared for me to use them on you as well. If you can't do the technique well enough to take my balance when I am training at semi-compliant level, then your atemi is going to be worthless. I can hit you back as hard or harder than you hit me, or perhaps even counter your technique and put you on the floor that way.

The reason the the TJQ teacher was able to use atemi effectively in the situation I described is that he had a superior relative position as a result of the movements up to that point. I could not strike him with nearly as much power as he could strike me from that position. If you don't have superior position, or worse, you have inferior position, and you attempt to hit or poke your fingers into the other guy, you should be prepared for the same thing coming back at you worse. This is a very basic concept that any competent martial artist, and certainly any teacher of martial arts, should understand. However, most people in aikido, including your student, who want to use that kind of stuff have no awareness of what is necessary to do so effectively. If they did, they wouldn't have any trouble doing the technique in the first place, especially when I am working at a semi-compliant level of ukemi and and giving them direct access to my center from the start.

Quote:
Practicing resistive training in the context of a seminar or with the other person not suspecting what you are doing is inappropriate. If students are not doing the technique correctly it is not your place in the seminar to correct them-unless you are running the seminar. If you provided unexpected resistance while a shihan is demonstrating something in slow motion they are not likely to pursue working with you since you do not understand training levels and contexts and are only interested in proving "mine is bigger than yours".
You make a lot of incorrect assumptions here and state opinions as fact. We could debate whether the appropriate baseline level of resistance at a seminar is compliant or semi-compliant. Personally, I do not like training at a fully compliant level, and since many people in aikido not only like to train primarily at this level and are often unequipped to handle even the most obvious and easy to overcome level resistance (which is to say just not following them around like a monkey on a string), I don't go to aikido seminars much anymore. My opinion is that if you if cannot easily handle such basic non-compliant ukemi after training for more than a few years than your training is likely flawed. If you cannot handle it after a few decades then it certainly is.

Last edited by G DiPierro : 11-01-2007 at 04:00 PM.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 05:32 PM   #189
Stephen Kotev
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Gentlemen and Ladies,

As I read this it sounds all too familiar. I share with you a quote from 2005:

23 Feb 2005
<snip>" Also, Don, I'm not far from Fort Lauderdale and I'll be happy to drop by and give you a personal demonstration of my skills. I'm quite sure that I can prove to you that I'm solidly skilled in every one of the arts which I have made comments upon. Perhaps that would clear up any doubts? Furthermore, I can back up my comments with techniques and situations that will prove to you exactly why I've criticized Aikido and BJJ. I can show you tons of practical situations where we train Aikido, and it is supposed to work, yet it fails. I can show exactly why and where Aikido fails and how to fix it. I can do the same with quite a few techniques in BJJ too. I'm willing to prove that my comments are not just talk. How does that sound? I'm not talking having a challenge match with you or anyone else. I'm talking about testing out and proving the ideas we've been discussing. If you have other students that are interested in these questions please bring them so they can see the results.
Here's a small set of things we can test out. All of them will be tested against weak, moderate and then strong resistance.
Does aikido work against strikes?
Do Aikido armbars like Ikkyo and Kote Gaeshi work against resistance?
Does the BJJ guard and armlocks work against strikes on the ground without a gi?
Does AIkido work against shoves and grabs?
Does BJJ work well against a person with a little skill at avoiding armlocks and chokes?" </snip>

I pulled this from a discussion on Aikido Journal found here:
http://www.aikidojournal.com/forums/...ee7fa363f9a475

This discussion was brought about by this initial posting:
http://www.aikidojournal.com/?id=487

The posters thoughts continue here:
http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=631

Starting to look familiar?

Giancarlo,
I know you. I have personally trained with you in Columbus, Ohio in the late 90's. You were eventually asked to leave that dojo. Starting to become more familiar?

You attended the Seishiro Endo Sensei Seminar in Washington, D.C. last month. I was hoping that things would have changed since I met you last. The consistent experience of those that trained with you was in alignment with your comments; you resisted Seniors and instructed Juniors. Those that practiced with you verified my personal experience; you did not understand what was being taught and sought to ‘practice otherwise.'

I ask you why did you not reply to Peter Goldsbury's offer to ‘reverse a Shihan' here

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...ury#post191905 - its post #32

The reason I mentioned Mr. Tennenhouse in my initial post is he too espoused some of the same critiques that you do of Aikido. He was politely listened to and given credence by those that had never met him. Eventually, after much debate he was given the opportunity to present and test his much lauded ideas at an Aiki-Expo. Many of those here know of the end result…. His skills were made known and he ceased to be given the same credence he had been given in the past.

Here is my challenge to you. Find me those that would endorse your skill and have them post it publicly. Many posters of Aikiweb have met after claims of skill were made that they felt dubious. After meeting they returned to this forum to verify the skill they experienced. Why is no one doing this for you?

When people practice with you personally, they realize that you are a better writer than a martial artist. I really don't know what you are trying to accomplish. You no longer study at a Aikido Dojo. You have started your own school interested in resistance. When people seek to verify your Aikido credentials they find out that you don't seem to stay in one place for very long and no one will vouch for your behavior as their student.

I am asking you in the nicest way possible.

Please Stop.

Regards,
Stephen Kotev
 
Old 11-01-2007, 05:39 PM   #190
aikidoc
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Giancarlo DiPierro wrote: View Post
The problem with most people who want to use things like atemi and pressure in aikido is that they think it should go one way: nage doing it to uke. If I am your uke and you want to use these things on me, you should be prepared for me to use them on you as well. If you can't do the technique well enough to take my balance when I am training at semi-compliant level, then your atemi is going to be worthless. I can hit you back as hard or harder than you hit me, or perhaps even counter your technique and put you on the floor that way.

The reason the the TJQ teacher was able to use atemi effectively in the situation I described is that he had a superior relative position as a result of the movements up to that point.
Absolutely, if I leave an opening you should have the right to attempt to atemi me/hit pressure points or whatever assuming you are in position to do so. Apparently, you must have given Mr. Couch an opening when you locked down on him since he was able to find the pressure point. When we train with atemi and pressure points it is usually due to an opening created by the technique or the ukemi. In fact, if the uke is totally disconnected from their center then atemi may be the only option since such disconnection usually creates an opening or multiple openings while the uke attempts to evade center connection or prevent being thrown or taken down in a katame waza technique.

Since you are always right and we are all wrong or incompetent, I will assume you will be able to do whatever you want-except maybe answer questions posed on your background. However, you will also have to assume the other person is not in position to deal with your attempts to deliver an atemi or counter, which may be an error in judgement. Some of us actually do practice such things even though our aikido is inferior. In my dojo, us rough necks practice delivering atemi or use pressure points pretty much every day, or at least letting the uke or nage know of their openings with a friendly tap or poke in the ribs. It's actually quite fun since the nage has to really focus on not creating openings or the uke will reverse them or show them their atemi openings.

Last edited by aikidoc : 11-01-2007 at 05:45 PM.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 05:46 PM   #191
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
John Riggs wrote: View Post
Absolutely, if I leave an opening you should have the right to attempt to atemi me/hit pressure points or whatever assuming you are in position to do so. Apparently, you must have given Mr. Couch an opening when you locked down on him since he was able to find the pressure point. When we train with atemi and pressure points it is usually due to an opening created by the technique or the ukemi.
Yes, of course I gave him an opening: I was trying to let him do the technique. Trust me, if I had actually "locked down" on him or did not want to give him an opening he would have never gotten his hands on my neck in the first place.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 05:54 PM   #192
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

What is it you want to me to stop, Steve? Posting on aikiweb? Do my posts disturb you that much? I have already said several times (this is probably the fourth or fifth time now) that if you don't want to read my posts then put me on your ignore list and don't come back and visit this thread. I won't mind, really. If you don't like what I have to say then don't read it. But I don't think you or anyone else (except Jun Akiyama, of course) is in a position to tell me not to post here, even if you were to ask nicely (which I don't think you actually did, BTW).

As far as meeting up with people I have no problem doing that. As you point out, I was in DC recently at the same seminar you were at. Nobody there asked me to demonstrate or prove what I can do. If you really wanted answers to the questions you raise why didn't you ask me to do this then? We could have even gotten it on videotape if you wanted.

Finally, Peter's Goldsbury offer was not to try to resist a shihan, but to offer advice on how the aikikai could improve their standards and practices. You might want to reread that post you linked to a bit more carefully. As far as trying to resist a shihan, as I said before I would be very interested in accepting that challenge. I think the problem that you will have is finding a shihan who is willing to do it.

Last edited by G DiPierro : 11-01-2007 at 05:59 PM.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 08:24 PM   #193
Aikibu
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Giancarlo DiPierro wrote: View Post
What is it you want to me to stop, Steve? Posting on aikiweb? Do my posts disturb you that much? I have already said several times (this is probably the fourth or fifth time now) that if you don't want to read my posts then put me on your ignore list and don't come back and visit this thread. I won't mind, really. If you don't like what I have to say then don't read it. But I don't think you or anyone else (except Jun Akiyama, of course) is in a position to tell me not to post here, even if you were to ask nicely (which I don't think you actually did, BTW).

As far as meeting up with people I have no problem doing that. As you point out, I was in DC recently at the same seminar you were at. Nobody there asked me to demonstrate or prove what I can do. If you really wanted answers to the questions you raise why didn't you ask me to do this then? We could have even gotten it on videotape if you wanted.

Finally, Peter's Goldsbury offer was not to try to resist a shihan, but to offer advice on how the aikikai could improve their standards and practices. You might want to reread that post you linked to a bit more carefully. As far as trying to resist a shihan, as I said before I would be very interested in accepting that challenge. I think the problem that you will have is finding a shihan who is willing to do it.
With all due respect Giancarlo...It's not a question of liking what you have to say. It's a question of your Martial integrity and the fact that serious questions about your motives refuse to go away.

Most Shihan will not engage with you it's true until you have proven yourself with thier senior students. So my suggestion would be for you to man up... Go to all the Aikido Dojos in your area.... and ask the instructor for permission to challange the Sempai's to a demonstration of your "resistance training."

At Nishio Shihan's Seminiars we had this Japanese Actor Guy who was a sweet man but refused to practice what Sensei was teaching. He would wander around the edge of the mat and grab an unsuspecting Uke to share his version of Aikido with...It became quite an amusement to us for many years. Nishio Shihan did not seem to bothered by it as this guy loved and supported him... So we saw Nishio Shihan's example, and eventually everyone at a seminar would take a turn with him. No harm No foul. Actor Aikidoka did not make a big deal about his version of Aikido (Ki Society based I believe) and Nishio Shihan was all about love and harmony.

Attitude and Respect....Get It???

You are quite zealous about your version of training ( And a good case could be made for my zealotry as well LOL However when I am "in Rome" I act "Roman" and try not to impose my practice on someone unless I am asked to share it.) How do you expect to be taken seriously at seminars if you "force" people to eat salt instead of sugar?

Bowing down to you Giancarlo.

William Hazen
 
Old 11-01-2007, 10:17 PM   #194
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

To Giancarlo,

LOL @ your weak neck. To strengthen neck, do more body curls or ushiro ukemi or neck weight lifts.

Boon.

SHOMEN-ATE (TM), the solution to 90% of aikido and life's problems.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 10:48 PM   #195
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Giancarlo DiPierro wrote: View Post
Trust me.
Ah, the gist of this whole thread while singing the Richard Durning "Sidestep song". I bow to you because you are definitely a master at it.
 
Old 11-01-2007, 10:52 PM   #196
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Xu Wenfung wrote: View Post
To Giancarlo,

LOL @ your weak neck. To strengthen neck, do more body curls or ushiro ukemi or neck weight lifts.

Boon.
Xu,
I am up late, but I am glad I waited to read your post. Really funny man!:

I am glad I read before I went to bed!

Maybe, he just shouldn't be so compliant to lowly shodans who he has to "give the technique to."

Or leave openings!
 
Old 11-01-2007, 11:01 PM   #197
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Verification G-man! Proof! Proof! Proof! Not just opinions of your self or abilities.

By the way! I would not necessarily Interpret Peter Goldsbury's invitation as you did! It may not have been ment the way you wish it to be.

I thought you had quit going to seminars? At least that is what you said!
 
Old 11-01-2007, 11:25 PM   #198
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Hello,

Since my name has been mentioned in this thread, I think I need to come in here.

This thread was originally about aikido organizations. I took up Giancarlo's offer just before the thread was split. In fact, after the split, my request and Giancarlo's response are now in different threads.

Giancarlo has responded to my request in great detail. My discussion with him will not be posted here, since it is quite irrelevant to the topic of this thread.

Best wishes to all.

EDIT. I took up Giancarlo on his own offer to give advice on improving aikido organizations to those who requested this. I myself did not make any offer to Mr DiPierro.

Last edited by Peter Goldsbury : 11-01-2007 at 11:28 PM.

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Old 11-02-2007, 12:59 AM   #199
xuzen
 
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Wrt strong neck, I think it is very important to us since we are doing throwing art. The force that our neck has to withstand when being slammed onto the mat regularly can be quite substantial. (e.g., from shiho-nage or irimi-nage)

My judo teacher said to me, "You know, the back break falls I asked you to do so much prior during warm-up, it is not just for practicing break fall per-se. You are also making you neck stronger, since when you fall down, your neck is lifted to prevent concussion. That repeated action actually strengthen your neck muscle.

My adjutant aikido teacher, who use to do Kick Box art prior to coming to aikido said he used to bite on a piece of cloth tied to bricks. Then he would lift his head up and down to strengthen his neck. He said, punches to the face even with gloves can really jar his neck.

These acts are actually the conditioning you go through to prepare your body to absorb the punishment sustained during training. Lack of such conditioning will result in said students being whiny about pain and injuries.

Boon.

SHOMEN-ATE (TM), the solution to 90% of aikido and life's problems.
 
Old 11-02-2007, 07:19 AM   #200
DonMagee
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Re: Resisting Aikido Shihan

Quote:
Xu Wenfung wrote: View Post
Wrt strong neck, I think it is very important to us since we are doing throwing art. The force that our neck has to withstand when being slammed onto the mat regularly can be quite substantial. (e.g., from shiho-nage or irimi-nage)

My judo teacher said to me, "You know, the back break falls I asked you to do so much prior during warm-up, it is not just for practicing break fall per-se. You are also making you neck stronger, since when you fall down, your neck is lifted to prevent concussion. That repeated action actually strengthen your neck muscle.

My adjutant aikido teacher, who use to do Kick Box art prior to coming to aikido said he used to bite on a piece of cloth tied to bricks. Then he would lift his head up and down to strengthen his neck. He said, punches to the face even with gloves can really jar his neck.

These acts are actually the conditioning you go through to prepare your body to absorb the punishment sustained during training. Lack of such conditioning will result in said students being whiny about pain and injuries.

Boon.
I use a headband I bought from ringside.com with a weight from my bench to build up my neck. A strong neck is important just for good posture alone in bjj. Posturing out of a submission like a triangle requires a strong neck so you can look upwards.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
 

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