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Old 12-13-2007, 11:44 PM   #51
xuzen
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

[quote=Chris Hein;195723]
Quote:
Xu Wenfung wrote: View Post

What about Aiki?
What aiki? AFAIK, Kokyu-nage, atemi-waza (these include... Shomen-ate/irimi-tsuki, aigamae-ate/irimi-nage, gyakugamae-ate/sokumen iriminage, hiji-ate etc) and tai-sabaki are part of aiki-do syllabus.

Hence, Chris, what aiki are you talking about?

Boon.

SHOMEN-ATE (TM), the solution to 90% of aikido and life's problems.
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Old 12-13-2007, 11:52 PM   #52
senshincenter
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Boon,

could you please explain that point a bit more - I'm not sure I understand the question.

please/thanks,
d

David M. Valadez
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Old 12-14-2007, 12:14 AM   #53
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Xu Wenfung wrote: View Post

What aiki? AFAIK, Kokyu-nage, atemi-waza (these include... Shomen-ate/irimi-tsuki, aigamae-ate/irimi-nage, gyakugamae-ate/sokumen iriminage, hiji-ate etc) and tai-sabaki are part of aiki-do syllabus.

Hence, Chris, what aiki are you talking about?

Boon.
Those are techniques.

I'm talking about Aiki, the act of blending your energy with your attackers; Aiki.

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Old 12-14-2007, 01:54 AM   #54
xuzen
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

DavidV,

ChrisH asked me this question " what about Aiki" in post #40 and I interpreted he meant what " aiki-do technique I used?" therefore i answered as per post #51.

Sorry guys for the mix-up in understanding.

ChrisH,

wrt aiki... if I recall correctly, what I did when it was my turn as Tori, was to slap hard (make sure uke has welt and plam print as souvenir) away the tanto wielding hand and then irimi/enter with technique (again mostly atemi-waza).

I did not grab uke's armed hand as it was all sweaty. For example, trying to do a kote-gaeshi on a sweaty palm.... good luck with that.

If you are thinking blending as in 180 degrees tenkan, no sir, no time to react. The most I did was just open my body slightly i.e, hips facing the uke's body, and then irimi with e.g., irimi-nage or irimi-tsuki, or as my adjutant sensei's favourite: Hiji-ate.

As none of us are FMA trained, our understanding of knife attacks are limted to straight stabs, over-head ice pick stabs, diagonal cuts and combinations and feigns thereof.

When we are dealing with say three uke's the opportunity to do any techniques quickly diminish to nil, and all i was able to do was just slip around the incoming hordes and push the uke's into each other to buy me time.

Again, I must reiterate, techniques that I personally experince to work in this extremely chaotic circumstances are irimi-tsuki, ushiro-nage, irimi-nage, hiji-ate and kokyu-nage.

Kotegashi, ikkajo, sankajo, nikajo and many more small joint manipulation techniques (kansetsu-waza) are entirely lost once in these extemely choatic scenarios.

The above is a personal account of the exercise I had participated as part of my training. I hope my writing is able to paint a mental picture.

Boon.

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Old 12-14-2007, 01:58 AM   #55
John Connolly
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Chris H.,

I sincerely hope that you take the advice of people who have been critiquing your method/video. It seems like you are on the defensive now in a serious way.

Quote:
Look I never said this drill was the be all end all. I never said my students were awesome or could do anything amazing. I never claimed to be the top notch best fighter around.

I made a non cooperative drill. I personally feel it has lots of merit. If you don't neat, I appreciate your feed back. If any of you can use aiki regularly against noncooperative attacks I'd love to see it. I just want to see Aiki folks leave the security of cooperative drills sometimes. That's what this is all about.
You have to recognize that yours was a massively cooperative drill. See any of the comments earlier about grabbing/striking/knife reactions and try to understand that you have set up a fantasy, not a simulation of reality.

Quote:
I'm talking about Aiki, the act of blending your energy with your attackers; Aiki.
Even if you subscribe to this as Aiki (I don't, many others don't), your exercise seemed to create ONE type of energy, frantic and uncoordinated. I would suggest redefining your methods, slowing it down, and then re-trying this experiment.

I wish you the best in your efforts.
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Old 12-14-2007, 10:24 AM   #56
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Chris Hein wrote: View Post
Look I never said this drill was the be all end all. I never said my students were awesome or could do anything amazing. I never claimed to be the top notch best fighter around.

I made a non cooperative drill. I personally feel it has lots of merit. If you don't neat, I appreciate your feed back. If any of you can use aiki regularly against noncooperative attacks I'd love to see it. I just want to see Aiki folks leave the security of cooperative drills sometimes. That's what this is all about.
Chris,
I think your definition of aiki and mine are not the same.

All in all, best of luck in your endeavors. Takes some thick skin and courage to post vids. Kudos for that.

Mark
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:10 AM   #57
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
John Connolly wrote: View Post
Chris H.,

I sincerely hope that you take the advice of people who have been critiquing your method/video. It seems like you are on the defensive now in a serious way.

You have to recognize that yours was a massively cooperative drill. See any of the comments earlier about grabbing/striking/knife reactions and try to understand that you have set up a fantasy, not a simulation of reality.

Even if you subscribe to this as Aiki (I don't, many others don't), your exercise seemed to create ONE type of energy, frantic and uncoordinated. I would suggest redefining your methods, slowing it down, and then re-trying this experiment.

I wish you the best in your efforts.
All classroom training is "massively cooperative". Everyone has to agree to show up and work together to get better.

I personally don't believe my drill is "massively cooperative" though. I believe everyone involved is honestly trying to attack and defend to the best of their abilities. I believe there is little conscious effort to make someone look better, or attempt to deceive themselves.

That's what it looks like when you put 4 average guys together and tell 3 of them to wrestle one of them to the ground. If you doubt it, try it.

Unfortunately I did go on the defensive. I was feeling kind of boxed in yesterday, and felt like much of what was said was personal. I'm trying to not be on the defensive or offensive though, I would really just like to hear what people have to say.

You've got to understand I left "mainstream" aikido for a reason. I couldn't find what I'm looking for there. Some of you have suggested that I find some kind of hard style teacher. However no teacher I have seen can do what I'm looking for. So I have to do it on my own. If you have footage of an aikido teacher doing noncooperative stuff I'd love to see it.

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Old 12-14-2007, 11:43 AM   #58
MM
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Chris Hein wrote: View Post
All classroom training is "massively cooperative". Everyone has to agree to show up and work together to get better.

I personally don't believe my drill is "massively cooperative" though. I believe everyone involved is honestly trying to attack and defend to the best of their abilities. I believe there is little conscious effort to make someone look better, or attempt to deceive themselves.

That's what it looks like when you put 4 average guys together and tell 3 of them to wrestle one of them to the ground. If you doubt it, try it.

Unfortunately I did go on the defensive. I was feeling kind of boxed in yesterday, and felt like much of what was said was personal. I'm trying to not be on the defensive or offensive though, I would really just like to hear what people have to say.

You've got to understand I left "mainstream" aikido for a reason. I couldn't find what I'm looking for there. Some of you have suggested that I find some kind of hard style teacher. However no teacher I have seen can do what I'm looking for. So I have to do it on my own. If you have footage of an aikido teacher doing noncooperative stuff I'd love to see it.
Hmmm ... I don't think it's a matter of "mainstream" or "hard" styles. Just a matter of finding a good teacher.

Example, I can try to imagine what Chuck Clark would do if he were the one with the knife being attacked by 3 people. And I don't have to guess that he'd handle things very well. Dennis Hooker or Ellis Amdur would do the same. I may not be able to imagine what it would look like, but I know it would be something "aikido"-ish, soft, effective, short and sweet.

All three have different "styles", but all three are good teachers. (I'd say great, but we'd have to widen doorways to get their ego through -- LOL. Just Kidding!)

But, let's change the subject now. Let's say you want to try aikido with a knife. So, how about something like this?

1 versus 1. Tori w/knife held in reverse grip in right hand. Uke attacks (you should be able to fit with most attacks) and tori uses right hand reverse knife to trap uke's wrist. Tori's other hand goes to uke's shoulder to start irimi nage. After the initial turn when tori goes to turn back into uke, use the point of the knife in ukes face to employ the downward, spiraling drop. NOTE: Do this slowly and safely. You could possibly do this in 1 vs 3, but again, there's a safety factor.

Or another practice -- use the knife in regular grip to deliver an atemi to uke's midsection while you slip the left arm under uke to finish in kaiten nage? In 1 vs 3, you can hopefully launch uke into the other 2.

There are many variations of using a knife with aikido. It isn't "knife fighting", but it can be free flow drills to get used to employing a knife.

Mark
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Old 12-14-2007, 11:54 AM   #59
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Chris Hein wrote: View Post
That's what it looks like when you put 4 average guys together and tell 3 of them to wrestle one of them to the ground. If you doubt it, try it.
And that's exactly what martial arts (and certainly budo) isn't. That's what middle schoolers do in the basement. Even in very 'freestyle' heavy arts like judo, instruction involves progressive drills which help guide the practitioner forward. Maybe you should focus more on the Dog Bros. stuff since that obviously resonated with you. Lose the Aikido trappings and just see where that takes you.

Chris Moses
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Old 12-14-2007, 12:56 PM   #60
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

at least you are getting a little workout

stan
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Old 12-14-2007, 01:14 PM   #61
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Training is all about imprinting. If you start with chaos you end with chaos. Exercises which teach hesitation, back away, excited emotional state. etc are not what you want to be imprinting.

The use of "aiki" to describe what is happening in these exercises is not how I would use. I often find that folks doing Aikido have little understanding of what "aiki" actually is. It is not avoidance. Many people feel that getting out of the way of the power of an incoming strike is "aiki". I would not consider that to be true. Neutralizing the attack and taking the attacker's center involves "aiki" if done according to certain principles.

The debate about terms is relevant here. I subscribe to the idea that "aiki" is better translated as "joining" than "harmony", at least where we are talking about waza. It involves a method of projecting ones attention and neutralizing that attacker's power at the instant of physical contact. Waza done with "aiki" is largely about moving the mind of the attacker in order to get him to move himself. Technique which is merely operating on a physical basis is simply jiu jutsu rather than aiki.

People need to be very careful about how they design their training exercises because they imprint mental and physical habits with every repetition. As far as I am concerned, the absolute first priority in Aikido work should be physical relaxation and mental calm and projection. The Systema folks accomplish this quite well. They have the lack of any prearranged form which Chris seems to want but they train slow to medium for a very long time. Even the advanced people largely train this way... it keeps the injuries down. Aikido randori practice should also do this if it is done properly.

I'm not criticizing an attempt to develop better practice. I am just pointing out that the exercises used as presented do not necessarily imprint the right things. Students training this way will get very good at avoiding but will not develop high level skills using the principles of "aiki".

The earlier comment about Shu Ha Ri was quite apt, in my opinion.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 12-14-2007, 01:44 PM   #62
Steven
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Take the knife out of his hand and you simply have a jiyuwaza or randori drill. I saw something similar on youtube where Steven Seagal had multiple attackers bull rush some poor soul in the middle. There's a bunch of explaining going on in the background. That's really all I see in the video. Don't see anything that would be classified as tanto work.

Edit:
Here is the clip I was referring to. It's about 3 minutes in.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YziUvBqX-zI

Last edited by Steven : 12-14-2007 at 01:50 PM.
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Old 12-14-2007, 02:06 PM   #63
John Connolly
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
I made a non cooperative drill
This is what I was responding to when saying your drill was massively cooperative. Of course all classroom drills are cooperative on various levels. However, how you structure that cooperation means everything to your success or failure in learning about martial effectiveness.

Quote:
f you have footage of an aikido teacher doing noncooperative stuff I'd love to see it.
How about "less" cooperative, or differently, purposefully cooperative? Just look up Shodokan or Tomiki Aikido on You Tube. You will find lots of great examples of tanto work in an Aikido paradigm that you may be able to follow the example of in your process.

The cooperation structure that I can determine from your exercise is the tacit agreement between all of you to ignore the knife, not attack in any realistic fashion, and respond to advances with twirling. This may sound rough, but if you want to advance your abilities and your students abilities, you will consider the purpose (what you want to develop), and then tailor your exercise to that. Begin with a simple 1, 2, 3 step type drill and gradually expand, adding more factors progressively until you are able to approximate randori.

I don't necessarily think you should "look for a sensei" to guide you. But again, if you want to truly get better, you have to analyze what you are doing. Be hyper-critical. Try to develop a systematic approach that includes questioning motives for movement and technique application. Go back several steps before randori and build up gradually, logically, until it is effective.
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Old 12-14-2007, 02:23 PM   #64
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Chris,

Read very careful what George Ledyard Sensei is saying. Please read it several times...carefully and intently to make sure you see what he is really saying.

I train Soldiers in the military in Modern Army Combatives, and spent a huge majority of my time training individual and small unit fighting skills.

In teaching our basic combative course, we are very, very careful to get across to students that you have to be very careful in your training. Everything is a simulation. Within simulation, you will always have untended affects. Those Affects will get you killed if you do not recognize them for wihat they are.

So, I try to educate and make my students/soldiers aware of those things, and come up with ways to mitigate them.

We have a saying in the Army "Train as you fight", however, it is really not possible to do that is it?

Anyway...

Personally I had no issue with your video. It is hard to comment on what was really going on there not fully understanding the intended outcome or training point. Maybe you are simply getting across to students that it is damn near impossible to avoid a fast moving knife!

That is why I won't comment on the video, as I cannot understand the training endstate.

That said, one thing I think many in martial training get confused on is ENDSTATE. That is training with a definitive goal in mind.

The teacher has one in his head, the students have one in their heads. In most cases. yes I say most...they both think that they understand that they are training from the same perspective with the same focus on endstate...and they are NOT!

Most students will turn themselves over to their instructor as a blank and say "teach me". They then proceed down the teaching/training path for a session, weeks, months, years. Maybe on the right path, maybe not.

The instructor may have a perspective and the students quite another!

Anyway....

What I like is that you are being open and honest in your approach to trainng. You seem to be asking questions and trying things out, and experimenting with innovation etc.

Sounds like you might have set up your own shop because you did not get fulfilled through studying in a organization that "stayed within the box".

It is good to be innovative and experiment.

Just be careful and train with endstate and good intent and everything will work out in the long run.

Encourage your students to think for themselves and to seek answers and train critically and sketpically.

Take Ledyard Sensei's advice, read it, and look at it carefully.

Thanks for taking the time to share with us!

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Old 12-14-2007, 02:38 PM   #65
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Hi Chris,

Have you spent any time with Chuck Clark or Karl Geis(sp)? I believe both have schools that came out of the Shodokan/Tomiki lineage, and they have more of a presence in the States. From your stated goals, I think you would be well served to do some exploration there.

I can fully sympathize with your search for non-cooperative training given some of your background, even if my goals are quite different. I still think that at least having someone as a mentor who has been down this road before would help a great deal.

You may want to build a relationship with someone like David Valedez, who has already spent a great deal of time building an independent dojo and curriculumn. And his material is easily recognizable as aikido, even though he addresses (in my opinion based on video) many of the things you seem to be concerned about. He is also in California.

Best,
Ron (hey, what the heck is up with the spell checker???)

Ron Tisdale
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:28 PM   #66
Larry Feldman
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

I am with Craig and George on this.

If you are trying to teach movement and flow, I would look to randori practice (without the knife). George does in fact address how to effectively do randori in a seminar (and DVD) he offers. It would serve you (and most of us) well to attend, as it is rarely taught through principals that can be practiced. It sure beats trial and error...
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:37 PM   #67
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Getting people moving is important but my feeling is that all exercises need to develop a forward attitude, no backing up, and the need to imprint the idea that your Mind is always "inside" the attack. These exercises don't do that, to my way of thinking...
Hello Sensei
I have not yet had the opportunity to learn from you in person, so I take this time now. I highlighted a part of your statement. I use a word all the time in class "Suikomi" Which if I am not mistaken means "to lead or to bait" which is a common aikido practice.

My question to you is, Would the forward thinking and not backing up apply to that, or are they two seperate things?

Are you saying "Mentally backing up" and moving forward?
I agree with your statements about the video and am just asking for more of your opinion.

In Aiki
Jjo
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Old 12-14-2007, 04:41 PM   #68
Paul Sanderson-Cimino
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
And that's exactly what martial arts (and certainly budo) isn't. That's what middle schoolers do in the basement.
Arguably, the middle schoolers in the basement are ahead of much of the aikido world in their training methodology.

I think the real issue here is: everyone who's criticizing these training exercises really ought to be posting exactly what they do that's better. Preferably, they should also state what their training allows them to do that an untrained person could not. Grapple with a keikogi? Grapple without? Strike? Grapple and strike (MMA)? Fence with swords? What?

Last edited by Paul Sanderson-Cimino : 12-14-2007 at 04:43 PM.
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:11 PM   #69
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Training is all about imprinting. If you start with chaos you end with chaos. Exercises which teach hesitation, back away, excited emotional state. etc are not what you want to be imprinting.

The use of "aiki" to describe what is happening in these exercises is not how I would use. I often find that folks doing Aikido have little understanding of what "aiki" actually is. It is not avoidance. Many people feel that getting out of the way of the power of an incoming strike is "aiki". I would not consider that to be true. Neutralizing the attack and taking the attacker's center involves "aiki" if done according to certain principles.

The debate about terms is relevant here. I subscribe to the idea that "aiki" is better translated as "joining" than "harmony", at least where we are talking about waza. It involves a method of projecting ones attention and neutralizing that attacker's power at the instant of physical contact. Waza done with "aiki" is largely about moving the mind of the attacker in order to get him to move himself. Technique which is merely operating on a physical basis is simply jiu jutsu rather than aiki.

People need to be very careful about how they design their training exercises because they imprint mental and physical habits with every repetition. As far as I am concerned, the absolute first priority in Aikido work should be physical relaxation and mental calm and projection. The Systema folks accomplish this quite well. They have the lack of any prearranged form which Chris seems to want but they train slow to medium for a very long time. Even the advanced people largely train this way... it keeps the injuries down. Aikido randori practice should also do this if it is done properly.

I'm not criticizing an attempt to develop better practice. I am just pointing out that the exercises used as presented do not necessarily imprint the right things. Students training this way will get very good at avoiding but will not develop high level skills using the principles of "aiki".

The earlier comment about Shu Ha Ri was quite apt, in my opinion.
I agree and disagree with this.

I also believe training is about "imprinting". I also believe training is about self discovery.

I'm all for working on the finer points of technique. But I'm also about finding things out for yourself, instead of just hoping your teacher (or whoever) is correct . If you're worried about "imprinting" something wrong you'll never do anything.

When you first walk into an Aikido dojo, your first tai no henko sucks. But the instructor doesn't say "stop, sit down before you imprint something wrong". The instructor says "here try it like this", and a decent student learns from that and dose it a little better next time. Trial and error it's what has brought us out of caves.

You never know what you will do in a high pressure situation until you face some. If you spend all your time training in a comfortable environment, with everyone talking softy, and happily falling for you even when you don't quite get the technique; how are you going to learn anything for yourself? You cannot "imprint" anything worth while until you personally know what is worth while.

My personal definition of Aiki can be found in my blog, it's pretty complete so I'm not interested in reposting it here.

In my video clip there are very few moments of "aiki". This is because in a situation where people are allowed to make "non committed attacks" opportunities are few. To further the complication, many times the "nage" is so stressed that he can't see the opportunity when it arises. To complicate it even further all of the attackers are aware of what "nage" is trying to do, and are attempting to thwart him.

So yes there are very few moments of "Aiki". There are some there though, little tiny ones, and to me this is very exciting. Much more exciting then seeing someone in a preset situation do beautiful Aiki all day.

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Old 12-14-2007, 05:29 PM   #70
jason jordan
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Paul Sanderson-Cimino wrote: View Post
Arguably, the middle schoolers in the basement are ahead of much of the aikido world in their training methodology.

I think the real issue here is: everyone who's criticizing these training exercises really ought to be posting exactly what they do that's better. Preferably, they should also state what their training allows them to do that an untrained person could not. Grapple with a keikogi? Grapple without? Strike? Grapple and strike (MMA)? Fence with swords? What?
Well i will post what we do at our school, it is not better it's just what we do.

We execute every attack with serious intention and serious control. "Refering to the older deshi of course.

We strive to train with real effectiveness..."Not falling just to fall, or to make others look good." We also incorporate combination strikes to learn how to identify intention versus feignts.

I also go over to the BJJ guys and we train together.
As well as the Karate guys.

What we don't do, is sacrifice the developement of good technique, and dedicated practice for the sake of "making it real" Take a shomen attack for example.
Uke should have full intention of hitting nage in the head. If you irimi. it should be intentional, and uke's attack should be followed through. If uke throws tsuki there should be intention behind it. Conversely I expect for uke to also exercise enough controll to pull his punch should nage not execute properly.

I admire Chris for their willingness to train effectively.
But I also feel that maybe they should have a better base to work from.

Question to Chris.
What does your Sensei think about your training?
Are you still a student as well as a teacher?

My humble opinion
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:45 PM   #71
ChrisHein
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Jason Jordan wrote: View Post

Question to Chris.
What does your Sensei think about your training?
Are you still a student as well as a teacher?
My former Aikido teacher and I no longer have a student teacher relationship. Tim Cartmell, is the only person I still train under, he seems to like what we do quite a bit.

You guys are only seeing half of our class structure. We do a whole class dedicated only to forms and techniques. We do Jiyu waza all the Iwama weapons forms, kihon and ki no nagare "tai jutsu".

Here's us doing some techniques.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJdVUdLSgg0

This is the demo video for the school, about half forms, and half randori.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQdgtiOQWYk

Last edited by ChrisHein : 12-14-2007 at 05:55 PM.

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Old 12-14-2007, 06:12 PM   #72
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Chris Hein wrote: View Post
My former Aikido teacher and I no longer have a student teacher relationship. Tim Cartmell, is the only person I still train under, he seems to like what we do quite a bit.

You guys are only seeing half of our class structure. We do a whole class dedicated only to forms and techniques. We do Jiyu waza all the Iwama weapons forms, kihon and ki no nagare "tai jutsu".

Here's us doing some techniques.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJdVUdLSgg0

This is the demo video for the school, about half forms, and half randori.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQdgtiOQWYk
That's fair! The only reason I ask about your sensei is because it is always good to remain "Accountable" to someone higher and more experienced. As a teacher we have to remember that we also have to be students.
Seeing the clip you posted alone, is quite a bit scary to me. Not for you, but for the students. Beginning students have the tendency to believe that what they learn from the sensei is the "end all be all".

If we are not careful they will believe that they have obtained a certain amount of "Magical Ability" and go out and get their A$$3$ handed to them.

We have to make sure that we are teaching them "Imprinting" on them quality technique.

Please don't take this as critisim.
Take care and be blessed
Train hard.
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Old 12-14-2007, 06:41 PM   #73
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Jason Jordan wrote: View Post
If we are not careful they will believe that they have obtained a certain amount of "Magical Ability" and go out and get their A$$3$ handed to them.
My main worry, and why I train the way I do.

One of my students was asked the other day:
"so what have you learned thats practical from your training"
he replied
"don't get into a fight you can't win. Make sure you have numbers and a weapon on your side. If possible run away".
Hearing that brought a big smile to my face.

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Old 12-14-2007, 06:48 PM   #74
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

Quote:
Jason Jordan wrote: View Post
Hello Sensei
I have not yet had the opportunity to learn from you in person, so I take this time now. I highlighted a part of your statement. I use a word all the time in class "Suikomi" Which if I am not mistaken means "to lead or to bait" which is a common aikido practice.

My question to you is, Would the forward thinking and not backing up apply to that, or are they two seperate things?

Are you saying "Mentally backing up" and moving forward?
I agree with your statements about the video and am just asking for more of your opinion.

In Aiki
Jjo
Personally, I don't have more than a smattering of Japanese technical terms, so I pick up descriptive terminology all over the place. The one I like for this is "zoning out" which I got from the Jeet Kun Do folks. It basically refers to the act of increasing space or moving out from the opponent.

I use the term to make a distinction between "backing up" which I take to mean not only backing away or escaping physically, but also mentally retreating. It's a collapse of your energy field, if you will.

"Zoning out" is different in that it does not entail any change in your forward attitude. To have any hope of achieving technique using "aiki", you must have your Mind "inside" the attack. Mentally retreating usually involves a change in focus from the attacker's center to the attack itself. This makes "joining" impossible.

I would highly recommend getting Ushiro Kenji's book:
Ushiro sensei's Book
Also, Ushiro Karate is available on two DVD's in which he explicitly explains this principle.
Ushiro Karate Videos

Also, if anyone's interested, I did a seminar on this topic and it's just been released on DVD. It's called Aikido - The Power of the Mind (Putting Content into Your Technique).
Aikido: The Power of the Mind

Anyway, proper "leading" or "drawing in" in Aikido involves a yin movement with a balancing yang mental projection. In this manner the opponent gets drawn in a bit more than was intentional. That is my primary objection to the exercise in the original video in that it is not really teaching or making the practitioners aware of this principle. "Escaping", while definitely a valuable martial skill in certain situations is not "aiki". It does not result in the joining which the Japanese call "ittai ka" or "single body" which is required for technique to be done with "aiki" principles.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
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Old 12-14-2007, 07:05 PM   #75
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Re: Love to hear your oppinions on this video.

I think I have to disagree with a lot of what is being said, unfortunately, for me, but also for everyone that has said it, everyone has said pretty much every basic status-quo slogan one can ever say.

When you want to develop yourself, truly making the art your own, you are going to have to throw all these slogans out the door. To make an art yours, you are going to have to deconstruct yourself, and that, somewhere in the process of making the art yours, will mean that you will have to deconstruct the art. This will include deconstructing every facet that holds or presents the art as a construct (which can only ever be something other than you). This means, for example, at some point you are going to have to move beyond your teacher, the founder, tradition, your students, techniques, etc. This is not a bad thing, and, believe it or not, the world will not end. Nor will you end in ruin, nor will you ruin your students, nor will the Founder turn over in his grave.

I can't speak for everyone, but I think Paul's statements need to be heard. Folks, in a conversation like this, need to understand that there will inevitably be a propensity to discuss things as if everyone is talking about the same thing - when they are not. This is how the status quo is maintained. For better or for worse, Chris' video is presenting things (i.e. randori) in a way that is quite different from what is more commonly seen in dojo all over the world. In fact, outside of my own dojo, the only other place where I've seen folks take seriously the charge of neutralizing nage is Chris' video and the one by Segal. If someone else has a clip of such training - please share it. If you have a clip, it will undoubtedly add to the conversation - or if you can find one.

Still, with all this talk of irimi and striking, etc., I have a strong suspicion that folks are not attempting to neutralize nage like they are in Chris' video (i.e. Irimi and striking is not the best tactic for when folks are set on neutralizing your ass so that they can gang up on you). So, while there may be a lot more to do (which I'm sure Chris does),Chris video, for me, seems to be attempting to address something that is not at all commonly addressed in the Aikido world.

In short, let's get more clips going here (let's do some youtube searches) so we can have a more established context.

d

David M. Valadez
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