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Old 11-23-2009, 08:46 PM   #351
Rob Watson
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
Maybe there's a very telling reason why connective tissue, fascia, etc. keep getting mentioned as parts to condition, along with breath, etc. . . and the answers you've been given should be enough to get you started looking in the right direction.

I think there's more meat in discussions of "how" you condition the connective tissue -- which have already been touched on somewhat with talk of "held tensions", "postures", "stretching" in conjunction with breathwork . . in addition to the importance of not using local muscles . . so if you aren't using local muscle then how are you moving? Ki/Qi? How are you manifesting that, then?
So far the only reason I can be certain of the role of connective tissues is the 'muscle/tendon changing classic' aka Yi Jin Jing and that tendon does not mean just tendons but generically connective tissues being generally considered a primary source for the whole IT business. That is why it keeps getting mentioned - becasue it is brought up in Yi Jin Jing ... the classic appeal to authority!

I'm looking for more reasons that can be supported by technical, scientific and medical means because that is the way I roll. As some consider this type of thinking a diversion or a distraction I apologize for the thread hijack. I've made my piece as clear as I'm able and I'll not disturb this thread anymore.

"In my opinion, the time of spreading aikido to the world is finished; now we have to focus on quality." Yamada Yoshimitsu

Ultracrepidarianism ... don't.
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Old 11-24-2009, 03:35 AM   #352
eyrie
 
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Aye and there's the rub. The "fascia" and the jin/kokyu are interdependent, but they work as a whole in the full banana. In the not-so-full banana breath is just a conditioner of fascia and fascia is an adjunct to the the process (including dantien/hara usage). So 'various breath methods' won't really tell the story by itself, but you don't really get full internal power without practicing correct breath methods. And they take a while to show results.
OK. Then let's define "correct" breathing methods. What makes a method "correct"? What's the difference between said correct method and someone doing, say sanchin and/or tensho from a Goju-ryu tradition (as an example)?

Ignatius
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Old 11-24-2009, 08:07 AM   #353
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
OK. Then let's define "correct" breathing methods. What makes a method "correct"? What's the difference between said correct method and someone doing, say sanchin and/or tensho from a Goju-ryu tradition (as an example)?
That's a good point, Ignatius. Bear in mind that there are a number of approaches to breathing methods by different styles, each of which thinks that it has hit on the *best* way to do breathing exercises. There are also considerations about how to do them so that no physical damage accrues from hypertension, etc., in too-exuberant practitioners. Notice Tohei's methods are of the extremely soft variety, even though he's not very forthcoming on the intricacies of the practices.

What's the correct way? Again, pretend that the fascia is a muscle like the bicep; what's the "correct" way to exercise it so that the muscle becomes strongest? Isolate it and work it in a way that gives the fibers the best incentive to become stronger and with endurance.

This is a discussion that probably belongs on QiJin, BTW. I don't think the background for the discussion has been established on AikiWeb or its archives, so to have a fruitful public discussion would require extensive discussion of background material first. Pretty arduous.

Best.

Mike
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Old 11-24-2009, 03:56 PM   #354
eyrie
 
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Bear in mind that there are a number of approaches to breathing methods by different styles, each of which thinks that it has hit on the *best* way to do breathing exercises.
I guess the question is - what is the "optimal" method for Aikidoka who are interested in pursuing this avenue, and how to approach it. Particularly, if one's teacher (e.g. you mentioned Tohei) isn't being explicit on the intricacies and details. Or would one be better off pursuing other avenues, such as sanchin with Ushiro (again, for example)?

Quote:
This is a discussion that probably belongs on QiJin, BTW. I don't think the background for the discussion has been established on AikiWeb or its archives, so to have a fruitful public discussion would require extensive discussion of background material first.
You're probably right. A fruitful in-depth discussion? It's only taken 353 posts to get to this point, and we haven't even touched the periphery yet!

Ignatius
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Old 11-24-2009, 05:00 PM   #355
Alfonso
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

Hi Ignatius,

Fwiw the first kind of specific instructions on breathing (and the last) were to inhale into the tanden , allow it to relax and fill out while not allowing the chest to rise. I didnt learn the term "natural breathing" until later, outside of the dojo.

One emphasis was on relaxing the abdomen and noticing how this affected the tightness on my shoulders. Another point was to not exhale forcefully just to let the air escape and then fill out again.

During aikido waza I was also taught to inhale while receiving the attack and to exhale while projecting or pinning . This was to be done gently and practice was paced to be at a comfortable level for beginners.

This training was something I remember clearly as a beginner in the beginner classes. A few months later I was already more interested in learning the "techniques" but I was always supposed to keep this in mind and train accordingly.

This is what I remember from 10yrs ago.

This is one method , i think some people will probably be familiar with this.

The strange thing for me is that I think kokyu-dosa is a different method

Alfonso Adriasola
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Old 11-24-2009, 05:16 PM   #356
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

Sure Alfonso, but is it "optimal".... or just what everyone starts out learning?

Ignatius
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Old 11-24-2009, 05:20 PM   #357
Mike Sigman
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
I guess the question is - what is the "optimal" method for Aikidoka who are interested in pursuing this avenue, and how to approach it. Particularly, if one's teacher (e.g. you mentioned Tohei) isn't being explicit on the intricacies and details. Or would one be better off pursuing other avenues, such as sanchin with Ushiro (again, for example)?
Well, I realize that people like Ushiro, Dan, and some others may see an "All Roads Lead to Rome" scenario, but I don't. Neither does Tohei and neither did Ueshiba... there are choices and some of those choices lead in somewhat different directions, even if all of those directions can have some aspects of legitimate "aiki" usage. If any way of training would do it, they wouldn't have specified certain tenets.

As I commented earlier in this thread, "Aiki" as a usage of intent and kokyu skill is not all that hard to do; the whole-body training is a bigger subject than just "aiki".

I'm not saying any particular approach is "wrong" per se. In my opinion some skills, no matter how developed, are better than no skills. However, if someone wants to replicate Ueshiba's skills in Aikido, I think some attention has to be paid to exactly what he did and how he trained. Otherwise you can wind up doing a "hard-style muscle-jin imitation of what Ueshiba was doing" while thinking that you're doing pure "Aiki"-do.

Tohei spent a lot of time up close trying to replicate Aikido as Ueshiba did it, so Tohei's intellectual and physical understanding of Ueshiba's approach to the ki-skills is probably more valid than most peoples'. The problems with Tohei's descriptions though are twofold, in my opinion: (1.) Tohei didn't fully have all of Ueshiba's skills (IMO) and (2.) Tohei's explication of how to train the skills wasn't very complete.

Still, Tohei's general exposition of how to attain Aikido Approved I.S. Skills (tm) had to receive general approbation from Ueshiba or Tohei couldn't have gotten the seal of approval for "This is Aikido".

Tohei's approach can be seen in that 5-part set of videos on YouTube and you can see that it looks nothing like Sanchin. Personally, I could probably use Sanchin as an example and still edge the topic/training around to Ueshiba-like skills, but that has little to do with the choreography of Sanchin... it would involve more of a "here's the basic principles and here's some of the variations" approach. BTW.... remember that "SanChin" translates as something along the lines of "Three Antagonisms": that refers almost certainly to the Three Contradictions or, in other words, Six Directions training.

Another thing to think of: Ueshiba did a lot of private, solo training. He used super-heavy garden implements, weapons, various forms of Aiki Taiso, and so on. Plus he used various breath techniques.

And a last thing to think of: It's unclear how much of the complete hara/dantien usage that Ueshiba had. My opinion of what he knew has grown over the last 4-5 years.

So, what's the optimal training method? I have a general idea that encompasses some "I think Ueshiba may have also had skill "X" that I have to consider, so I'd have to sit down and maybe write out a list. I haven't formulated such a list yet, but I guess I could do it. The problem is that to write it out on AikiWeb would mean that I'd get caught in a morass of explanations in order to explain what some terms, etc., mean to a readership most of whom have no background or common-baseline of terminology. Wouldn't this be easier to do on a forum like QiJin where the baseline is established in the archives and there are a number of people from Aikido who can chip in to the conversation?

Best.

Mike
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Old 11-24-2009, 05:45 PM   #358
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Wouldn't this be easier to do on a forum like QiJin where the baseline is established in the archives and there are a number of people from Aikido who can chip in to the conversation?
Done. I think this thread has pretty much run its course.

Ignatius
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Old 11-25-2009, 01:01 PM   #359
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Well, I realize that people like Ushiro, Dan, and some others may see an "All Roads Lead to Rome" scenario, but I don't.
Mike
You "realize" nothing, and the "view" your erroneously attribute to me is the exact opposite of what I have repeatedly gone on record as saying. There is nothing you can offer to support your opinion either.
From what I know of Ueshiro he doesn't agree with that view either and is quite pointed about differences he sees as well.
This fits in with the pattern of intentional disinformation you spread on public forums just to get a reaction, as you admitted doing publicly on Neijia and E-budo.
Dan
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Old 11-25-2009, 01:14 PM   #360
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Dan Harden wrote: View Post
You "realize" nothing, and the "view" your erroneously attribute to me is the exact opposite of what I have repeatedly gone on record as saying. There is nothing you can offer to support your opinion either.
From what I know of Ueshiro he doesn't agree with that view either and is quite pointed about differences he sees as well.
This fits in with the pattern of intentional disinformation you spread on public forums just to get a reaction, as you admitted doing publicly on Neijia and E-budo.
Dan
Hmmmm... see your own posts about how different approaches don't mean much, Dan, in relation to "Aiki". You're on record as dismissing posts I've made in relation to people understanding that there are differences.

Similarly, Ushiro openly teaches the kokyu-development methods of karate as being indistinguishable in the sense that it's all kokyu.

Your own posts are archived on this forum, BTW. If you want to caveat something you've said, please clarify/caveat without getting off into the personal attacks. If you don't believe you said those things, tell me and I'll do the search to bring them up (they're there). Everytime you've asked for sourcing of something you've said, I've given it; you have yet to respond to one demand for sourcing of things you've attributed to me. I.e., I don't mind digging up your statements (you made them more than once), but given your own lack of sourcing, let's reach an agreement about how to do a fair and logical discussion; one which doesn't always stoop to making some sort of personal remark.

Mike Sigman
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Old 11-25-2009, 02:07 PM   #361
Marc Abrams
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Similarly, Ushiro openly teaches the kokyu-development methods of karate as being indistinguishable in the sense that it's all kokyu.

Mike Sigman
Mike:

Exactly what are you basing this statement on? To the best of my knowledge, you have only observed him teaching at the Boulder Camp. Maybe you have seen some of his DVD's. This statement seems to me to be you jumping to conclusions based upon insignificant and inadequate information. As self-assumed, Master Debater that you present yourself out to be, I am ashamed of you for engaging in such shoddy reasoning used in a debate.

For the record, your statement listed above is erroneous.

Regards,

Marc Abrams
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Old 11-25-2009, 02:14 PM   #362
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Exactly what are you basing this statement on? To the best of my knowledge, you have only observed him teaching at the Boulder Camp. Maybe you have seen some of his DVD's. This statement seems to me to be you jumping to conclusions based upon insignificant and inadequate information. As self-assumed, Master Debater that you present yourself out to be, I am ashamed of you for engaging in such shoddy reasoning used in a debate.

For the record, your statement listed above is erroneous.
Hi Mark:

Let's leave the comments about me personally out of the posts, shall we?

I stand by what I said and I've had discussions about the topic with members of Ikeda's dojo. If you want to explain why there's a mistake or overlap in understanding, please do so. This constant shift to personal attack (it's called "ad hominem") is disgusting.

Mike Sigman
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Old 11-25-2009, 02:28 PM   #363
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
For the record, your statement listed above is erroneous.
BTW, Mark.... if Ushiro is teaching kokyu via Sanchin kata to Aikidoka, can you explain why the type of power developed is the same, for instance, as the "soft" methods that Tohei uses in his style and that Ueshiba espoused? That might be a better approach to your argument than anything else.

Do you understand why the kokyu developed in Sanchin is different from the kokyu developed in, say, Tohei's approach? Incidentally, this relates to some earlier comments I made about the different approaches to internal strength, particularly in a discussion about "teachers" teaching too soon what they themselves are just beginning to study.

Mike Sigman
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Old 11-25-2009, 02:50 PM   #364
Marc Abrams
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Hi Mark:

Let's leave the comments about me personally out of the posts, shall we?

I stand by what I said and I've had discussions about the topic with members of Ikeda's dojo. If you want to explain why there's a mistake or overlap in understanding, please do so. This constant shift to personal attack (it's called "ad hominem") is disgusting.

Mike Sigman
Mike:

I was not aware that any of the students from that dojo are direct students of Ushiro Sensei. So you would like to stand behind your statement because you have had conversations with people from that dojo? You said: "Similarly, Ushiro openly teaches the kokyu-development methods of karate as being indistinguishable in the sense that it's all kokyu."

I said that this statement is simply erroneous. What Ushiro Sensei teaches is not all kokyu, nor is what he does indistinguishable in that it is all kokyu. I frankly think that coming to conclusions based upon inadequate information to be disgusting.

You would like me to to now try and explain how you are wrong. You typically respond to direct inquiry from others about how do to things and how to gain a deeper understanding of things in a cagey manner without giving away details. Here is a good start for you. Kokyu is only one part of a foundational package.

Marc Abrams
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Old 11-25-2009, 03:06 PM   #365
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
I said that this statement is simply erroneous. What Ushiro Sensei teaches is not all kokyu, nor is what he does indistinguishable in that it is all kokyu.
OK, so Ushiro's much repeated comment and demonstrations and teachings involving "no kokyu, no Aikido" were meant to mean something else? I've just checked with some people who have been to a number of Ushiro's workshops (or classes where he taught) and I don't think anyone has a real quarrel with my comment except you. You, of course, now are in the position of calling Ushiro a personal teacher of yours and I don't want to get into a discussion where only a True Acolyte (tm) is permitted to discuss a teacher. So I pass.
Quote:
You would like me to to now try and explain how you are wrong. You typically respond to direct inquiry from others about how do to things and how to gain a deeper understanding of things in a cagey manner without giving away details. Here is a good start for you. Kokyu is only one part of a foundational package.
Check the archives, Mark. I've posted more explanations, definitions, pictures with line drawings, etc., than anyone ever on this forum. What I refuse to do is to go into discussions that require at least a basic understanding of the process; hence, my informational posts have been restricted to what I thought might help people get started. And you know what? While those many posts of mine have helped academically for people to understand some of the processes, I haven't seen where it functionally did more than that, when some of these people came to workshops and showed what they could already do. I.e., there's a limit to what you can tell beginners.

On the other hand, I'm not a beginner. You are. I can follow any explanation you have to offer. I asked you to explain about Sanchin (which I practiced in Uechi Ryu karate) and, as an example, Tohei's training. If you can't explain it, you can't. Either explain it or say you can't. If you don't know the answer and we have the fact that Ushiro teaches Sanchin to Aikido people, then try to find some other factual (no ad hominem) method to approach the problem. If not, it appears that you just made a set of posts with no bearing to the discussion of the thread.

Mike Sigman
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Old 11-25-2009, 04:25 PM   #366
Marc Abrams
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
OK, so Ushiro's much repeated comment and demonstrations and teachings involving "no kokyu, no Aikido" were meant to mean something else? I've just checked with some people who have been to a number of Ushiro's workshops (or classes where he taught) and I don't think anyone has a real quarrel with my comment except you. You, of course, now are in the position of calling Ushiro a personal teacher of yours and I don't want to get into a discussion where only a True Acolyte (tm) is permitted to discuss a teacher. So I pass. Check the archives, Mark. I've posted more explanations, definitions, pictures with line drawings, etc., than anyone ever on this forum. What I refuse to do is to go into discussions that require at least a basic understanding of the process; hence, my informational posts have been restricted to what I thought might help people get started. And you know what? While those many posts of mine have helped academically for people to understand some of the processes, I haven't seen where it functionally did more than that, when some of these people came to workshops and showed what they could already do. I.e., there's a limit to what you can tell beginners.

On the other hand, I'm not a beginner. You are. I can follow any explanation you have to offer. I asked you to explain about Sanchin (which I practiced in Uechi Ryu karate) and, as an example, Tohei's training. If you can't explain it, you can't. Either explain it or say you can't. If you don't know the answer and we have the fact that Ushiro teaches Sanchin to Aikido people, then try to find some other factual (no ad hominem) method to approach the problem. If not, it appears that you just made a set of posts with no bearing to the discussion of the thread.

Mike Sigman
Mike:

Sorry, I had to teach a children's class and could not expound on what I wrote earlier.

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
OK, so Ushiro's much repeated comment and demonstrations and teachings involving "no kokyu, no Aikido" were meant to mean something else? Mike Sigman
"No kokyu, no Aikido" and you would like to equate that as equaling Ushiro Sensei's Karate? Sorry, but apples and oranges kind of comparison.

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You, of course, now are in the position of calling Ushiro a personal teacher of yours and I don't want to get into a discussion where only a True Acolyte (tm) is permitted to discuss a teacher. Mike Sigman
Where do you come to that conclusion? To use your own words: "it's called "ad hominem." It was you, not me, who was making definitive statements about Ushiro Sensei and his karate. I just simply called you out as wrong. Nothing has changed there.

Yes you have provided fruitful information to people. You have also chosen to play cagey and secretive as well.

On to some of your lines of thought:
1) Tohei's breathing exercises are very different than the ones used by Ushiro Sensei. I can say from experience (practicing both), that they do different things.
2) You talk about Tohei's soft power and you talk about Ushiro Sensei's hard power. I would not describe Ushiro Sensei (nor would he) as using hard power. Are you referring to his concept of explosive power? The larger issue is that you can have wonderful kokyu skills and be totally ineffective in a fighting situation without some explosive power skills.
3) You talk about Sanchin kata and kokyu power. Ushiro Sensei taught Sanchin kata as a means of developing some genuine softness and kokyu skills with the Aikidoka present. Sanchin Kata (the way that he teaches it) involves a lot more than that. It helps to lay the foundations for developing explosive power. It helps to develop the ability to neutralize the attacker through the establishment of an in-yo relationship between the two people. It involves some other aspects as well. His Sanchin kata is done very differently than the way that it is done in Uechi Ryu karate.

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
On the other hand, I'm not a beginner. You are. I can follow any explanation you have to offer. I asked you to explain about Sanchin (which I practiced in Uechi Ryu karate) and, as an example, Tohei's training. If you can't explain it, you can't. Either explain it or say you can't. If you don't know the answer and we have the fact that Ushiro teaches Sanchin to Aikido people, then try to find some other factual (no ad hominem) method to approach the problem. If not, it appears that you just made a set of posts with no bearing to the discussion of the thread.

Mike Sigman
This would not be another example of you engaging in an ad hominem attack would it? You made an erroneous assumption again. I simply had to teach a class.

Frankly speaking, regardless of the levels that I have or do achieve, I will always consider myself a beginner. The day that I begin to sound like you do at times, I will be ashamed of myself for such arrogance.

Again, the comparison with Tohei Sensei and Ushiro Sensei are not all that useful in my opinion.

In conclusion, you made a statement regarding Ushiro Sensei that I know is simply erroneous. You have attempted to try get me "prove things" according to your standards and tests in order to try and justify your statement as somehow being right. It isn't, and your "tests" will not change that fact.

If you would like some more detailed explanations of the limited understanding that I do have, then I have no problem doing so in a PM format. That comes with the basic respect and humility that both of us need to extend to the other as people who are sincere in their pursuits of their chosen arts. I frankly do not have to prove anything to you to prove you right or wrong, or myself right or wrong.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Marc Abrams
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Old 11-25-2009, 05:07 PM   #367
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

Apart from the fact that Sanchin is a southern chinese White Crane method, and a passing familiarity with the basic choreography, I don't know much else about Sanchin, or how it might be different/similar in kokyu terms, much less if it would be incompatible with Aikido kokyu. I only mentioned Sanchin as another example of a kiko/qigong method - and not to start a fight.

Ignatius
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Old 11-25-2009, 05:30 PM   #368
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

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[[snip]]
On to some of your lines of thought:
1) Tohei's breathing exercises are very different than the ones used by Ushiro Sensei. I can say from experience (practicing both), that they do different things.
Yet I see them as just being different halves of the same apple. Same basic principle, except for one critical area.
Quote:
2) You talk about Tohei's soft power and you talk about Ushiro Sensei's hard power. I would not describe Ushiro Sensei (nor would he) as using hard power. Are you referring to his concept of explosive power? The larger issue is that you can have wonderful kokyu skills and be totally ineffective in a fighting situation without some explosive power skills.
Well, are we talking about Aikido or Karate? I've pretty much seen/felt the gamut of 'explosive power' and I think it's a separate issue from internal power development as a whole... it's more of a tangent. Besides, if you want to hold up explosive power as an example of what to have, I don't think Ushiro shows what I would call the top example of it, so let's put that one aside. I'll be happy to see what you know about explosive power sometime, as a separate discussion.
Quote:
3) You talk about Sanchin kata and kokyu power. Ushiro Sensei taught Sanchin kata as a means of developing some genuine softness and kokyu skills with the Aikidoka present. Sanchin Kata (the way that he teaches it) involves a lot more than that. It helps to lay the foundations for developing explosive power. It helps to develop the ability to neutralize the attacker through the establishment of an in-yo relationship between the two people. It involves some other aspects as well. His Sanchin kata is done very differently than the way that it is done in Uechi Ryu karate.
Well, I can't see a real reason to get into what Sanchin is with you, in that regard. The basic principles are the same, even though Uechi Ryu seems to have strayed from the original. Tell you what, here's a good site for you to see more of what the original San Zhan kata looks like in a village and surroundings that propagate what things really look like:

http://www.yongchunbaihechuen.com/videos.html

If you have some knowledge of Sanchin/san-zhan at a deeper level than "my teacher does it this way", give me an idea in p.m. and let's see if we can find common ground.

Quote:
Frankly speaking, regardless of the levels that I have or do achieve, I will always consider myself a beginner. The day that I begin to sound like you do at times, I will be ashamed of myself for such arrogance.
Forget the p.m. I'm not the one that keeps going to personal attacks.
Quote:
Again, the comparison with Tohei Sensei and Ushiro Sensei are not all that useful in my opinion.
You're entitled to keep your opinions. I deal more with why and how.
Quote:
In conclusion, you made a statement regarding Ushiro Sensei that I know is simply erroneous. You have attempted to try get me "prove things" according to your standards and tests in order to try and justify your statement as somehow being right. It isn't, and your "tests" will not change that fact.

If you would like some more detailed explanations of the limited understanding that I do have, then I have no problem doing so in a PM format. That comes with the basic respect and humility that both of us need to extend to the other as people who are sincere in their pursuits of their chosen arts. I frankly do not have to prove anything to you to prove you right or wrong, or myself right or wrong.
I sometimes think that one of my mistakes is not to claim ranks, teachers, or status, but to try to force conversations to facts. Most people in martial-arts are not serious, though, so I accept that there will always be contention with most people in martial arts who are into the "who I am" stuff. And people who don't play the games are going to be pressured. That's the way of the world, isn't it?

Let me know how much information you get your way, sometime, and I'll let you know how much information I get by avoiding the non-serious (regardless of their status, etc.).

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 11-25-2009, 05:33 PM   #369
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Re: Internal Power Development Methods

Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
I only mentioned Sanchin as another example of a kiko/qigong method - and not to start a fight.
Oh, there's a number of reasons to worry about Sanchin as a training method. If you want to start another discussion on QiJin about that, I'll be glad to toss in my opinions, for whatever they're worth. We could use the Pan website I just mentioned and compare with a Uechi practitioner and with Ushiro and with some others. I think the differences are pretty obvious, but it's worth taking a look at.

Best.

Mike
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