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Old 06-01-2008, 11:22 PM   #1
Enrique Antonio Reyes
Dojo: Yuugou Aikido Kaisho
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Lightbulb No Gi Aikido

Hi Guys,

Has anyone of you ever considered having classes without the Gi? No Gi training is a usual part of BJJ and personally I though this would be more applicable to Aikido since we seldom grab the lapels to apply our techniques.

I thought about conducting a class this way but is somewhat weirded about it. (still wearing the pants, lose the top and use long-sleeved dri-fit shirts instead)

How do you guys feel about this?

Iking
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Old 06-02-2008, 12:35 AM   #2
CitoMaramba
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

When my Sensei was still living in Baguio, we used to train outside (no mats!) in jogging pants and t-shirt, for taijutsu and weapons.

Inocencio Maramba, MD, MSc
Dangayan Singkaw Aikido Shinzui
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Old 06-02-2008, 05:55 AM   #3
DonMagee
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I think it is a great idea.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 06-02-2008, 10:02 PM   #4
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

At least in my aikido dojo, we don't use the gi all that much. I grab it sometimes to slow my ukemi down when being thrown, but that is about it. The GI in my experiences in aikido is really not much of a factor.

What I do like to do, is to "collapse the distance" and "increase the pressure" to a clinch range in and work the clinch using aikido principles without the GI being a factor.

It is not the GI or the lack of GI that makes the difference in the situation ala "BJJ"style, but more so, the timing, speed, and level of compliance that changes the dynamic.

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Old 06-03-2008, 02:16 AM   #5
John Connolly
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Excellent post by Kevin! I agree!

First off, Aiki techniques should not depend on clothing grabs, or in fact, grabs at all. All the silly ideas of Aiki practitioners being grabbers of Uke's hand, when Uke is throwing combination punches is just dumb fantasy. What the Aiki (or Jujutsu) practitioner needs to do is strike at the power source (Uke's center) of the punch/chop/stab/kick and then, when in control of Uke's collected force, re-direct it or add force to it overwhelmingly, to Uke's disadvantage....

IMO, Aiki happens when you have a stable base and completely connect to uke's center, and you are then able to manipulate that center into a take-down, throw,choke, joint-lock, hold/control, or to receive a strike.

Everything els is just icing on the proverbial cake. That being said, no gi contests are a fantastic way to expand your arsenal of kuzushi, etc.

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Old 06-03-2008, 04:44 AM   #6
Aristeia
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I agree with Kevin. In BJJ you train no gi because it has significant impact on how you roll in many cases. That's why you need to train both. In Aikido I'm not sure there would be much of a difference so why bother?

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 06-03-2008, 07:03 AM   #7
DonMagee
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Well, sweats/shorts/tshirts are MUCH cheaper then gi's and magic pants.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 06-03-2008, 09:08 AM   #8
wideawakedreamer
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I wear either the gi pants or my old taekwondo pants (which is much lighter), or jogging pants. I don't like to wear the top. I prefer to wear a t-shirt.

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Old 06-03-2008, 09:10 AM   #9
wideawakedreamer
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Quote:
Don Magee wrote: View Post
Well, sweats/shorts/tshirts are MUCH cheaper then gi's and magic pants.
If you wear shorts, how do you keep the skin on your knees intact during knee-walking?

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Old 06-03-2008, 02:01 PM   #10
DonMagee
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Re: No Gi Aikido

At this point, my skin is basically immune to the mat. I actually noticed the other day that I spend so much time doing bjj that I no longer actually feel anything on my knees and the tops of my feet have callouses. Unless your mat is made out of carpet (where I practice judo, the mat is carpeted and it hurts) it is not much of a problem. I knee walk all the time in bjj wearing fight shorts and a rashguard.

But either way, sweatpants and a tshirt is still a lot cheaper then any gi.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 06-03-2008, 03:21 PM   #11
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I notice that some of the newer guys will sometimes burn up their knees and joints on my mats in germany. (they are rough).

it happens because they are sliding them across the mat. Not a good thing as it represents lost or spent energy in the form of friction. Moving correctly, you shouldn't get much mat burn.

Yea, occasionally I still drag my toes and burn the tops of them off. I hate that! On carpet it is pretty much darn near impossible to not do because you sink down into it a little.

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Old 06-03-2008, 04:25 PM   #12
Al Gutierrez
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Although some aikido techniques are practiced against gi grabs (sleeves, lapel, etc...) most aikido techniques are more based on directly affecting your partner's body.

The whole gi/no gi issue in BJJ has more to do with traditional BJJ deriving from Judo and it's higher level usage (reliance?) on using the gi as a tool to help control your opponent and/or set him up for techniques. The gi is used both offensively and defensively to hold your opponent and/or restrict his movement while you manuever and position yourself for holds and submissions as well as an aid for chokes. The whole gi/no gi debate really developed because sport bjj practitioners often had a hard(er) time adjusting to no gi submission wrestling and/or MMA because they didn't realize how much of their game depended on using the gi.

It applies less for aikido - still there's some old films of Kisshomaru and Tohei floating around that show them practicing in business suits, and a great demo by Kuroiwa at one of the early Aiki News Friendship demonstrations in a suit as well. Practical self defense should at least occasionally practiced in street clothes as a matter of common sense (imo).

Al Gtz.
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Old 06-03-2008, 07:01 PM   #13
Ketsan
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I'm not sure it would make any difference, except that mayeb you'd get through 45 of t-shirts in the same time it'd take to wear out a 40 keikogi.
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Old 06-03-2008, 08:38 PM   #14
rob_liberti
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I like the dogi for 4 things. These are not in any particular order.

1) having the people wear black from the middle down, and white from the middle up helps me focus on always directing what is black down and what is white up (never the same direction, or the reverse).

2) My pants have a tendancy of ripping when I work out without my dogi

3) I like to work on quite/silent rolling. The whole dogi/hakama get up makes that more of a challenge.

4) I find it helps contribute to the whole "experience" in terms of the hero's journey mythalogical experience. You go to some strange place have an experience, and come back to your normal life a bit changed. The "get up" contributes to the strange place. Kind of like when some Church used to be in Latin.

Given all of that, I'd still not care al that much if no one ever wore dogis/hakamas again.

Rob
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Old 06-03-2008, 08:39 PM   #15
Joseph Madden
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Since many techniques are based on shite being proactive and moving just as the attack occurs, no gi aikido seems completely practical, especially in 90 degree weather.
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Old 06-04-2008, 08:30 AM   #16
Enrique Antonio Reyes
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Lightbulb Re: No Gi Aikido

Quote:
Joseph Madden wrote: View Post
Since many techniques are based on shite being proactive and moving just as the attack occurs, no gi aikido seems completely practical, especially in 90 degree weather.
Thank you for the post Joseph. The post is really about testing the acceptability of this. I agree that is completely practical and I'm probably worried about the backlash of straight-up/hard core/ultra-traditional aikido practitioners. Have a nice day.

Iking
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Old 06-04-2008, 08:34 AM   #17
Enrique Antonio Reyes
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Lightbulb Re: No Gi Aikido

Quote:
Michael Fooks wrote: View Post
I agree with Kevin. In BJJ you train no gi because it has significant impact on how you roll in many cases. That's why you need to train both. In Aikido I'm not sure there would be much of a difference so why bother?
Thank you for sharing your thought. I actually share the same question "why bother" but more on why bother wearing the gi?...aside from the obvious traditional reasons (and the 4 cool reasons rob posted)

Sincerely,

Iking
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Old 06-04-2008, 08:35 AM   #18
Enrique Antonio Reyes
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Lightbulb Re: No Gi Aikido

Quote:
Alex Lawrence wrote: View Post
I'm not sure it would make any difference, except that mayeb you'd get through 45 of t-shirts in the same time it'd take to wear out a 40 keikogi.
This is another dimension (of practicality) to consider. Nice one Alex. Thanks
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Old 06-04-2008, 11:07 AM   #19
Aristeia
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Re: No Gi Aikido

yep you're right -the only reason is tradition. I had thought you were suggesting a bjj approach - where you'd do some classes gi and some no gi - in bjj there's reasons why both are trained, in Aikido I guess it would make sense to go with one option and run with it - if for you that's no gi - I personally don't see an issue. You will of course get dissapproval from anyone who is staunchly in favour of tradition. *shrug*.

As to practicing in street clothes occassionally for self defence application as someone suggested - fair point. I would suggest practicing in shoes would be the biggest transition?

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 06-04-2008, 11:20 AM   #20
Mark Uttech
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I've always considered 'informal practice' a bad idea. I've noticed folks going from: 'no hakama' to: 'no gi' to: 'no showing up at the dojo for class'.

In gassho

Mark

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Old 06-04-2008, 12:07 PM   #21
Budd
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I think you should be practicing 24/7 in and out of a gi. Make everything you do . . . practice.
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Old 06-04-2008, 12:12 PM   #22
lbb
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
I think you should be practicing 24/7 in and out of a gi. Make everything you do . . . practice.
Hey, whatever works for you. Me, I like to sleep 7 hours a night, 8 if I can get it. I like to ride my bike, play tennis, paddle my kayak, work in my garden, write stories, drink wine, and hang out with friends. When I'm doing each of those things, I want to be doing that thing, not practicing for something else.
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Old 06-04-2008, 12:15 PM   #23
Budd
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Mary, whatever works for you. Right back atcha
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Old 06-04-2008, 12:28 PM   #24
JeffDuncan
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Re: No Gi Aikido

Quote:
Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
I've always considered 'informal practice' a bad idea. I've noticed folks going from: 'no hakama' to: 'no gi' to: 'no showing up at the dojo for class'.

In gassho

Mark
Have you actually seen this, Where people care more about what clothing they wear than the instruction?

In my dojo I take every student once they get to nikkyu out to the park at least once, so they can practice in an imperfect environment.
For day to day Classes I have some folk that Borrowed a Dojo loaner GI when testing included lapel grabs, but haven't owned one in well over a year

Aiki, as I know it to be is not clothing dependant in any way shape or form. the only thing it depends on is your honest internalization of the principals.
One thing you may find as I did, when you do the "No GI" days is that participation goes up and you (if you allow it) have more and more visitors some friends of and some from other dojos.

Ikei,
Jeff Duncan
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Old 06-04-2008, 03:14 PM   #25
CitoMaramba
 
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Re: No Gi Aikido

I remember posting this before...
"Look Ma! No Gi!"


Inocencio Maramba, MD, MSc
Dangayan Singkaw Aikido Shinzui
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