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Old 11-19-2009, 05:58 PM   #1
MM
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YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

I uploaded a new video to YouTube.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_geiIvVYBE

Here is the description of the video:

An exercise to show why we work on push tests. We typically work on push tests to outstretched arms, to shoulders, and to chest. In this video, I wanted to show a progression from a push test to a technique to show or illustrate the applied internal skill.

In this example, I'm working with a medium level push. My partner isn't trying to bowl me over, but he's giving me a decent amount of energy in the push.

First I move away quickly to show that my partner is pushing and not just standing there. Then I let him disengage quickly to show that I'm not pushing back into him.

Finally, while he is pushing, I turn 90 degrees towards him and then apply a simple nikkyo lock. This shows that I am working on internal structure to receive the energy of the push and not give up my center, structure, or balance. If I can use internal skills to, in essence, be unhindered by whatever energy or attack my partner provides, then I am free to move as I wish.

If I can accomplish that, I'm not forced to "physically move" my body to gain kuzushi or to capture my partner's center or to destabilize his structure.

Again, this is a simple example and isn't meant to show any kind of dynamic engagement. However, at a certain level, one can use internal skills in a dynamic manner under freestyle environments.
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Old 11-20-2009, 12:15 AM   #2
Michael Varin
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Mark,

What is the objective of this type of exercise?

Why do you believe it to be valuable?

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote:
I'm not forced to "physically move" my body to gain kuzushi or to capture my partner's center or to destabilize his structure.
I would argue that you do physically move your body.

How are you using that term?

How do you see it as being different than a "traditional" nikyo?

Thank you for posting videos, by the way. It really helps with the discussion. I don't know why there has been resistance towards doing so.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 11-20-2009, 04:17 AM   #3
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
If I can use internal skills to, in essence, be unhindered by whatever energy or attack my partner provides, then I am free to move as I wish.

If I can accomplish that, I'm not forced to "physically move" my body to gain kuzushi or to capture my partner's center or to destabilize his structure.
Could you expand on this? I don't get how your freedom of movement implies you can affect your partner without 'physically moving' your body. (And what do you mean by 'physically moving' your body? Stepping? Any overt physical movement?)
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Old 11-20-2009, 06:35 AM   #4
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Finally, while he is pushing, I turn 90 degrees towards him and then apply a simple nikkyo lock.
If he is pushing you would shift your center downward, backward,( at this point uke has lost his balance) turn while going upward and then forward into nikyo. You would not push into him to force a nikyo.

David
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Old 11-20-2009, 06:55 AM   #5
dps
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Or do an Irimi-nage.

David
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:51 AM   #6
MM
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Michael Varin wrote: View Post
Mark,

What is the objective of this type of exercise?

Why do you believe it to be valuable?
Hi Michael,

We don't do this typically. It was just an example I filmed to see if I could start a discussion around internal skills and external jujutsu methods.

I think it's valuable to note the differences in approaches. Most jujutsu requires movement for kuzushi while aiki does not require it.
One downside is that very high level jujutsu can look like aiki to someone watching. But, for uke, he/she will *always* be able to "feel" the differences. Which is where IHTBF comes into play.

Quote:
Michael Varin wrote: View Post
I would argue that you do physically move your body.

How are you using that term?
Well, yeah. I am moving. But, notice that under uke's pressure, when I turn towards uke, the point of contact between us doesn't really move much. And notice that my shoulder level doesn't change. Even though uke is exerting energy to try to disrupt me, I am free in my movements. It would look silly, but I could "hula hoop" my hips and nothing would change. I'm not resisting uke's attack. As Ueshiba noted, there is no resistance in aikido.

Quote:
Michael Varin wrote: View Post
How do you see it as being different than a "traditional" nikyo?
In a lot of "traditional" nikkyo, you find tori/nage moving to "lead" or unbalance uke to start the technique. Just a quick search comes up with these videos:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ma8oHm2qfE

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jp8LvwfhQkM

Notice how tori moves as uke attacks. Getting off the line, extending uke in some manner, and then apply the lock. Kuzushi, tsukuri, and kake. But, in getting kuzushi, a lot of the times tori must move to try to "lead" uke outside of himself in some manner. Typically that's head out of alignment from shoulders, shoulders out from over hips, etc.

(Okay, before we get too off topic, I am not stating this is bad. I'm trying to compare and contrast aiki, which is internal, to jujutsu, which is external. Both aiki and jujutsu have prominent roles in the martial arts. Both can have high levels of skill.)

So, for me in the vid, I don't *have* to move physically to "lead" uke in order to gain kuzushi. I'm working on internal structure and internal skills to accomplish that.

As a test, if someone is pushing on you, do you *have* to move to gain kuzushi or an off balance? Do you *have* to move because if you don't, you'll get pushed over? If so, then IMO, that's relying on jujutsu methods.
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:54 AM   #7
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Joep Schuurkes wrote: View Post
Could you expand on this? I don't get how your freedom of movement implies you can affect your partner without 'physically moving' your body. (And what do you mean by 'physically moving' your body? Stepping? Any overt physical movement?)
Some of this I covered in my previous post. But, yeah, there's a jump there between "freedom of movement", affecting my partner, and not having to move physically that I didn't go into. That's covered in many, many threads here by Mike, Rob, Dan, etc. Not really part of this thread's topic.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:20 AM   #8
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

We would call this a "centering exercise" or standing kokyu tanden ho.

I use nikkyo ideally to show how the legs may be buckled (aiki-sage) by the flexor reflex before uke is quite conscious of the fact -- the joint lock is wholly secondary and resulting from the action, not the means of accomplishing it. Nikkyo, for me, is a lesson in how one form of that action works -- how it is triggered and how to judge its correct application. Sankyo is the converse -- triggering extensors (aiki-age), FWIW.

What is shown is a rather different manner of nikkyo -- very linear. That is not necessarily problematic, as it can create more instantaneous local buckling behavior at the connection, but that does not appear to be used -- again not necessarily problematic either -- depending on the situationally appopriate use of that connection. Instead, the connection is used to carry uke off his base of support, the "toppling" result in the uke -- rather than buckling the support as in aiki-age, or "springing" it aiki-sage. In fact the more linear nature of the connection shown, and the direction of the longitudinal rotations used is closer, structurally, to a sankyo and which thus sees just a bit of the "springing" reflex behavior in the calves and ankles, mixed in.

Correct rhythm of action is a key aspect of the most effective nikkyo, IMO. The registering of any pain from the applied lock is an afterthought to the triggering of the undercarriage flexor reflex -- which should precede it. As I see it, if uke does not find himself compromised involuntarily before pain is really perceived, it is not ideal. Purest ideal is provoking the reflex with little or no pain sensation at all.

But the order of perception is a good objective gauge of success in developing correct action -- because the spinal reflexes are faster than the cortical pain relays. If you are not getting true reflex action from the connection, then pain is felt ahead of or simultaneous with the body's reaction, and the reflex, if present, is thus mixed with voluntary neuro-muscular stuff, which can override reflex in whole or in part. Lagging pain sensation is a very good test of more "pure" reflex action, from my perspective -- which cannot be easily overridden if triggered in isolation.

Anyway, thems my thoughts and thanks for the video.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 11-20-2009, 10:34 AM   #9
Eric Joyce
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post

I'm trying to compare and contrast aiki, which is internal, to jujutsu, which is external.
Mark,

I appreciate you posting the video and explaining what you are trying to accomplish in the exercise with your uke. However, don't you think the comment above that you made is a generalization?

Eric Joyce
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Old 11-24-2009, 07:10 AM   #10
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Eric Joyce wrote: View Post
Quote:
Mark Murray wrote:
I'm trying to compare and contrast aiki, which is internal, to jujutsu, which is external.
Mark,

I appreciate you posting the video and explaining what you are trying to accomplish in the exercise with your uke. However, don't you think the comment above that you made is a generalization?
Thanks Eric.

IMO:

Looking at Daito ryu, we have jujutsu, aikijujutsu, and aiki no jujutsu. The base of all is jujutsu. The higher level skill is aiki. aiki is the internal body skill, jujutsu is the external body skill.

When you are required to move to gain kuzushi, you're using jujutsu. Again, I'm not stating this is a bad skill. Really good jujutsu can be formidable, just as the Gracies proved many times over. But it's really good jujutsu and not aiki.

Aiki is an internal body skill that is made up of quite a bit of various things to enhance the way the body works, so that an external delivery mechanism (for example, jujutsu) is made more powerful.

Or perhaps people think that all of those thousands of martial artists who had backgrounds in all manner of jujutsu who met Takeda found that he was just doing very, very good jujutsu? Or that Tomiki, as he was tossed 60 different ways when meeting Ueshiba, just thought, wow, he's got really good jujutsu? Or that those highly ranked kendoka (who had trained for a long time) came to study with Ueshiba because he had really great "tai sabaki" from his jujutsu skills?

The answer is that all those people already *had* extensive backgrounds in jujutsu and they had the experience with high level jujutsu people. Meeting Takeda, Ueshiba, Kodo, Sagawa, etc, they all came away knowing that these people had something very, very different. That difference was aiki. An internal body skill.

All those jujutsu people knew and practiced the manner in which to take advantage of physical positional or postural weaknesses. Aiki trains a body not to have those weaknesses. It's why Ueshiba could not be pushed over, whether to the chest or while sitting. Aiki training changed Ueshiba's body to handle force differently. He didn't *need* to move to affect a person, but chose to move because he expressed his aiki in an outward physical manner via modified Daito ryu techniques combined with a spiritual belief system.

Is it a generalization? No, I don't believe it to be.
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Old 11-25-2009, 12:25 PM   #11
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Interesting, I find that when ukes arm is locked straight in Nikkyo that the technique can be resisted. - Its when there is a bend in the arm at the elbow that severe pain can be rendered to uke with little effort.

- dAlen

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Old 11-26-2009, 07:41 AM   #12
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Dalen Johnson wrote: View Post
Interesting, I find that when ukes arm is locked straight in Nikkyo that the technique can be resisted. - Its when there is a bend in the arm at the elbow that severe pain can be rendered to uke with little effort.

- dAlen
If you have good aiki as uke, it doesn't matter whether your arm is bent or locked out. Joint locks stop working with good aiki. Aiki as in the body skill. Course, if tori/nage has better aiki ...
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Old 11-26-2009, 08:19 AM   #13
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Dalen Johnson wrote: View Post
Interesting, I find that when ukes arm is locked straight in Nikkyo that the technique can be resisted.
Go with the flow and switch to waki gatame - rokkyo.

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Old 11-26-2009, 08:39 AM   #14
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

I thought that the kosher iwama version was to just drop the hip a little more backwards and still do nikkyo.

But switching to rokkyo is also a favorite.

Quote:
Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Go with the flow and switch to waki gatame - rokkyo.
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Old 11-26-2009, 09:35 AM   #15
Maarten De Queecker
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Just a thought: why would you resist if anyone pushes? I'd rather let all that energy get past me instead of trying to resist it with inner strength (or leg strength as I prefer to call it). Then again I'm a lightweight..
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Old 11-26-2009, 10:01 AM   #16
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Maarten De Queecker wrote: View Post
Just a thought: why would you resist if anyone pushes?
Learning to resist it is the first step to learning how to aiki it.
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Old 11-26-2009, 11:27 AM   #17
Allen Beebe
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Re: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post

IMO:

Looking at Daito ryu, we have jujutsu, aikijujutsu, and aiki no jujutsu. The base of all is jujutsu. The higher level skill is aiki. aiki is the internal body skill, jujutsu is the external body skill.

When you are required to move to gain kuzushi, you're using jujutsu. Again, I'm not stating this is a bad skill. Really good jujutsu can be formidable, just as the Gracies proved many times over. But it's really good jujutsu and not aiki.

Aiki is an internal body skill that is made up of quite a bit of various things to enhance the way the body works, so that an external delivery mechanism (for example, jujutsu) is made more powerful.

Or perhaps people think that all of those thousands of martial artists who had backgrounds in all manner of jujutsu who met Takeda found that he was just doing very, very good jujutsu? Or that Tomiki, as he was tossed 60 different ways when meeting Ueshiba, just thought, wow, he's got really good jujutsu? Or that those highly ranked kendoka (who had trained for a long time) came to study with Ueshiba because he had really great "tai sabaki" from his jujutsu skills?

The answer is that all those people already *had* extensive backgrounds in jujutsu and they had the experience with high level jujutsu people. Meeting Takeda, Ueshiba, Kodo, Sagawa, etc, they all came away knowing that these people had something very, very different. That difference was aiki. An internal body skill.

All those jujutsu people knew and practiced the manner in which to take advantage of physical positional or postural weaknesses. Aiki trains a body not to have those weaknesses. It's why Ueshiba could not be pushed over, whether to the chest or while sitting. Aiki training changed Ueshiba's body to handle force differently. He didn't *need* to move to affect a person, but chose to move because he expressed his aiki in an outward physical manner via modified Daito ryu techniques combined with a spiritual belief system.

Is it a generalization? No, I don't believe it to be.
One day my grandfather (who has since passed) walked into his daughter's house and found her lying dead in a pool of her own blood. She had been beaten, strangled, and stabbed. He walked back to his shop next door where he worked and told a close personal friend and employee that he had better go next door and look for his daughter. That person (another dear friend now passed) went next door saw the same thing my grandfather did and immediately called the police.

Now, my grandfather swore that his daughter WASN'T there when he first went over. It was obvious to everyone that her body HAD been there and had been there for a while . . . his mind/emotions just couldn't SEE it even when his eyes could, prompting him at some level of consciousness, to send someone else to go SEE and take appropriate action.

I think there is a parallel here. I have virtually used the same words that you just have to explain the same thing . . . for years . . . to the same ends . . . crickets chirping. I have what I call the 150% rule. That is, one must be able to do something 150% quantitatively and qualitatively beyond the capacity of one's witness before that witness will begin to consider that what one is doing is operationally different than what the witness already "knows" and can explain. (As you know O-sensei demoed the 150%+ rule quite frequently.) Anything less than 150% and, in all likelihood, the witness will place, and explain, what is happening in the context of what they "know." Trouble is, I'm not developed to the extent that I can readily demonstrate a capacity of 150% beyond most folks.

Even still, as with my grandfather's example, I suspect that if a person isn't mentally/emotionally prepared to accept that something completely and fundamentally different from their normal frame of reference is at play, if they are so (understandably) mentally/emotionally invested in having something be a certain way because they devoted their life to THAT WAY they may not be able to SEE "reality" even when it is lying right before them.

And if they can't, thankfully in the case of a recreational "martial" pursuit, it probably won't matter that much anyway.

*Please take a moment to literally count your blessings. It is incredibly uplifting to feel gratitude for all that one has, especially if one has been missing what one has not.*

All the best,
Allen

Last edited by Allen Beebe : 11-26-2009 at 11:33 AM.

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Old 11-26-2009, 11:43 AM   #18
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

One more thing about the 150% rule . . . if the demonstrator doesn't effectively explain/train the observer to do the same thing, the observer will be left to try replicating the demo via known avenues thereby possibly replicating a demo but not the actual substance of the demo, or worse still (from the viewpoint of replication/transference), attributing the demonstrator's ability to something "mystical" since what is outside one's realm of knowledge often appears to be accomplished via magical power of one sort or another.

Of course there is the whole fallacious demo thing but that is a subject unto itself.

~ Allen Beebe
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Old 11-26-2009, 01:51 PM   #19
Jonathan
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

deleted post

I looked again at the vid clip and thought better of my questions.

Last edited by Jonathan : 11-26-2009 at 01:55 PM.

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Old 11-26-2009, 02:53 PM   #20
Basia Halliop
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Interesting.

Of course I can't feel what is happening, only what I see, but from the video it looks like instead of aiming for the normal 'blend' and get off the line thing and slightly redirect uke using minimum force (at least to me it's normal, I mean no particular judgment by saying that) and letting uke's own momentum make things happen, this is more of a direct resistance approach, using good posture, etc, to let nage's legs press against the ground, etc, to more easily create an equal force opposing uke's force?

Or perhaps not quite, but that is what I'm seeing.
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Old 11-26-2009, 04:52 PM   #21
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
If you have good aiki as uke, it doesn't matter whether your arm is bent or locked out. Joint locks stop working with good aiki. Aiki as in the body skill. Course, if tori/nage has better aiki ...
heh, I was at Aikido tonight discussing this clip. [Not that Im that fluid in Hungarian, more like babbling with pantomime]

Anyway I brought up the point I made above, which I thought was valid - till our 1st kyu came over smiling, grabbed my wrist and put me on the ground. lol!

Yeah, that was after I had successfully demonstrated my point - or so I thought. So at the end of the day, arm straight or bent, you can nail the person... I just hadnt been shown how to do so up until now with the arm straight... emphasis has always been on the arm being bent, or I suppose going into another move as mentioned in a previous post.

... much to learn still.

Peace

dAlen

[and happy thanksgiving...]

p.s.
As for Aiki - I have tried something like the unbendable arm with Gokkyo [i.e., when your on the ground and Tori goes to pin your arm/wrist up by your head.] When I had my arm relaxed, yet extending it, my arm could not be bent. I did this with a couple of people and it was fun to see the results as it worked with higher lvl kyu as well. [something I tried on my own, they werent even expecting it, that is what was so cool about it.

Last edited by dalen7 : 11-26-2009 at 04:57 PM.

dAlen [day•lynn]
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Old 11-27-2009, 07:59 AM   #22
MM
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
Go with the flow and switch to waki gatame - rokkyo.
Quote:
Peter Gröndahl wrote: View Post
I thought that the kosher iwama version was to just drop the hip a little more backwards and still do nikkyo.

But switching to rokkyo is also a favorite.
As an exercise, this was just designed to show how the correlation between a push test and a base technique. With structure, tori isn't forced to "move off the line and blend". As tori, I'm not under any load or force and am free to turn into uke's force. My upper body isn't receiving the push at all. Instead of being forced to step off the line, try to extend uke out over his center, blend, and then apply the technique, I'm using Internal Methodology, the beginnings of aiki.

Quote:
Maarten De Queecker wrote: View Post
Just a thought: why would you resist if anyone pushes? I'd rather let all that energy get past me instead of trying to resist it with inner strength (or leg strength as I prefer to call it). Then again I'm a lightweight..
Why did Ueshiba always have people push on him? Wouldn't it have been easier if he had just let that energy go past him rather than trying to "resist" it? Do you think Ueshiba was "resisting" all the people pushing on him? Or perhaps, there was something internal going on that allowed Ueshiba to negate, nullify, or harmonize all that incoming energy from the people pushing on him?

Quote:
Allen Beebe wrote: View Post
I think there is a parallel here. I have virtually used the same words that you just have to explain the same thing . . . for years . . . to the same ends . . . crickets chirping. I have what I call the 150% rule. That is, one must be able to do something 150% quantitatively and qualitatively beyond the capacity of one's witness before that witness will begin to consider that what one is doing is operationally different than what the witness already "knows" and can explain. (As you know O-sensei demoed the 150%+ rule quite frequently.) Anything less than 150% and, in all likelihood, the witness will place, and explain, what is happening in the context of what they "know." Trouble is, I'm not developed to the extent that I can readily demonstrate a capacity of 150% beyond most folks.

All the best,
Allen
Hi Allen,

Can't disagree with you. I'm certainly not developed enough to do the 150%. But, there is interest out there, so I figured I'd toss some video up.
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Old 11-27-2009, 08:09 AM   #23
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

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Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
Interesting.

Of course I can't feel what is happening, only what I see, but from the video it looks like instead of aiming for the normal 'blend' and get off the line thing and slightly redirect uke using minimum force (at least to me it's normal, I mean no particular judgment by saying that) and letting uke's own momentum make things happen, this is more of a direct resistance approach, using good posture, etc, to let nage's legs press against the ground, etc, to more easily create an equal force opposing uke's force?

Or perhaps not quite, but that is what I'm seeing.
Hello,

I consider the normal blend and get off the line as jujutsu. It is a physical attempt (moving your body and purposefully attempting to somehow move uke's body in a specific manner) to somehow get uke off balanced. Jujutsu like that can be very flowing, soft, and use minimal movement, but it's still an outward physical attempt at displacing uke in some manner.

In my vid, I'm actually doing a bit more than just letting uke's force go through my legs into the ground. That's sort of like the ki test of unbendable arm. That's only a one way, single direction aspect. I'm working on having intent go outwards and inwards at the same time. So, yes, while there is intent going from my hand to my opposite leg, which let's uke's force travel to the ground, I also have intent going outwards. Just as my spine is also going in two directions at once.

But, I'm not resisting uke's force. If I'm doing things right, I don't even feel uke's push at all. And I don't push or force any energy back into uke. Everything is done relative to me. Is my intent going out and in, is my spine intent going up and down, is my spine in the center of my body, etc. Even when I apply nikkyo, I'm not thinking of applying a technique against uke, but rather using intent up my spine, out over uke, and then down. Not easy, nor am I very good at it.
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Old 11-27-2009, 08:10 AM   #24
Basia Halliop
Join Date: Jun 2006
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

"As an exercise, this was just designed to show how the correlation between a push test and a base technique. With structure, tori isn't forced to "move off the line and blend". As tori, I'm not under any load or force and am free to turn into uke's force. My upper body isn't receiving the push at all."

I think you're using a different definition of 'force' than I'm used to? I have an engineering background so I'm used to a pretty precise, narrow definition. I.e., he is pushing, so his mass is exerting a force F1. The system is not in motion, so there is an equal opposing force F2 where F2 = -F1, so the net force is 0, since F = ma and you have a mass and are clearly not accelerating... I imagine you're trying to express something more subtle than that with your choice of words (something about what the opposing force actually is? I get that you're saying the muscles are relaxed), but the language you're using isn't matching with my knowledge of the words.
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Old 11-27-2009, 08:14 AM   #25
MM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 1,996
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Re: YouTube: Push Test to Nikkyo

Quote:
Dalen Johnson wrote: View Post
Yeah, that was after I had successfully demonstrated my point - or so I thought. So at the end of the day, arm straight or bent, you can nail the person... I just hadnt been shown how to do so up until now with the arm straight... emphasis has always been on the arm being bent, or I suppose going into another move as mentioned in a previous post.

... much to learn still.
If you look at it strictly from a jujutsu aspect, if the arm is straight, then it can be used as a lever to affect someone's hips. Get the hips to be out of alignment with the rest of the body and nikkyo is easy to apply.

Looking at it from an aiki perspective, the lever isn't going to work. The hips won't be affected because of how the internal body structure is built.

Quote:
Dalen Johnson wrote: View Post
p.s.
As for Aiki - I have tried something like the unbendable arm with Gokkyo [i.e., when your on the ground and Tori goes to pin your arm/wrist up by your head.] When I had my arm relaxed, yet extending it, my arm could not be bent. I did this with a couple of people and it was fun to see the results as it worked with higher lvl kyu as well. [something I tried on my own, they werent even expecting it, that is what was so cool about it.
The unbendable arm trick is only one half of what really should be going on. While it gives some strength when you mentally extend through your arm, it isn't the complete exercise. Intent going outwards should be combined with intent coming inwards at the same time. Not an easy thing to do or keep going in a dynamic situation.
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