Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > Non-Aikido Martial Traditions

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 05-16-2010, 03:30 AM   #1
Blake Holtzen
Location: Florida
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 33
Offline
So I started the solo exercises...

Okay, so I'm taking a momentary break from shikko (to let the burn in my legs subside) and my mind started to wander...

I recently got corrections on three of the tanren exercises that the Aunkai does (shikko, tenchijin, ashiage) and it has really opened my eyes to a different training methodology as far as internal strength is concerned. My previous experience has all been CMA based so my paradigm is based on that. Aunkai's exercises seem to be more tension-based which would seem to contradict the CIMA approach. Has anyone else thought this? However, it seems that alot of the descriptions of what is happening in the body and the alignments that one must have are pretty similar across the board. But, this got me wondering about some training questions...

1) What role, if any, does static training or zhan zhuang (standing meditation) play in the development of internal power?

My experience with yiquan is that they tend to develop the three pairs of opposing forces in a static way first. But, Aunkai has one training dynamically from the beginning. Would their method benefit from some static training? What exercises provide one with the most bang for their practice time buck?

2) What role, if any, does auxillary western-based strength training play in the development of the "actualized IP practitioner"?

Surely, if one person that trained only IP (through MMA based Aunkai or Dan Harden's methods) crossed hands with someone that trained IP AND strength trained, would not the second individual come out on top, assuming the same level of skill development? I ask this because I have heard the Ark is well...ripped and I have heard that Dan Harden is a physical beast (I mean this in a good way, no disrespect). It is my understanding that these exercises do not train the superficial muscles as much as the tissues beneath (tendons, fascia, etc.). I personally train in Crossfit-type and High Internsity Training (HIT) workouts.

3) What role does tension play in the development of IP?

Is tension required only in as far as to retain your alignments or is more tension better? It seems some methods use less and some use more. How much is enough?

Anyway, Im stuck in Korea for another year and there is a paucity of good martial arts (you wont believe how big Tae Kwon Do is over here... ) so I will have lots of time to drill the solo exercises. I hope to infuse the IP training into my CMA practice. Hopefully this doesn't put off Dan Harden... I still want to train with him...

So, enough of my rambling, I gotta get back to shikko. I am excited about where this training will lead and I feel I have taken my first step (or stomp? ah I crack myself up...) on the IP path.

Thanks for reading.

-Blake
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2010, 05:41 AM   #2
Jon Haas
Location: South Jersey
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 27
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Blake Holtzen wrote: View Post

2) What role, if any, does auxillary western-based strength training play in the development of the "actualized IP practitioner"?

Surely, if one person that trained only IP (through MMA based Aunkai or Dan Harden's methods) crossed hands with someone that trained IP AND strength trained, would not the second individual come out on top, assuming the same level of skill development? I ask this because I have heard the Ark is well...ripped and I have heard that Dan Harden is a physical beast (I mean this in a good way, no disrespect). It is my understanding that these exercises do not train the superficial muscles as much as the tissues beneath (tendons, fascia, etc.). I personally train in Crossfit-type and High Internsity Training (HIT) workouts.
Hi Blake,

Great question. I actually asked the same one myself last August after my first experience with Dan Harden. Here's the thread:

Solo Aiki Conditioning and Other Exercise

There are excellent replies from Mark Murray, Rob Liberti, and Dan Harden. Check it out!

Hope this helps,

Jon Haas
www.warriorfitness.org
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2010, 09:44 AM   #3
Upyu
Dojo: Aunkai, Tokyo
Location: Tokyo, Japan
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 591
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Blake Holtzen wrote: View Post

1) What role, if any, does static training or zhan zhuang (standing meditation) play in the development of internal power?

My experience with yiquan is that they tend to develop the three pairs of opposing forces in a static way first. But, Aunkai has one training dynamically from the beginning. Would their method benefit from some static training? What exercises provide one with the most bang for their practice time buck?

2) What role, if any, does auxillary western-based strength training play in the development of the "actualized IP practitioner"?

Surely, if one person that trained only IP (through MMA based Aunkai or Dan Harden's methods) crossed hands with someone that trained IP AND strength trained, would not the second individual come out on top, assuming the same level of skill development? I ask this because I have heard the Ark is well...ripped and I have heard that Dan Harden is a physical beast (I mean this in a good way, no disrespect). It is my understanding that these exercises do not train the superficial muscles as much as the tissues beneath (tendons, fascia, etc.). I personally train in Crossfit-type and High Internsity Training (HIT) workouts.

3) What role does tension play in the development of IP?

Is tension required only in as far as to retain your alignments or is more tension better? It seems some methods use less and some use more. How much is enough?
Thought I'd chime in since all the questions posed were pretty general questions that I imagine most people have.

1) Mabu is done statically at first, so we do have "static" training.
The static training trains, the 6 opposing directions, dropping the diaphram down, or in essence keeping the weight in the feet (keeping weight underside), while recognizing the pull down the front of the body, and the pull along the back of the body, both of which are used to support the arms, coupling that with a basic force coming up underneath from the ground to support the arms etc etc.

2) Depends what kind of extra strength training you're doing, but for most people I'd say its a no-go (speaking from my own experience as well). If anything, legs are one thing that may benefit from a bit of strength training, but if you do the static exercises correctly the leg strength should automatically be augmented.

Can't speak for Dan, but Ark was originally a gymnast, and therefore was already "ripped" to a ridiculous degree. I've asked him personally and he said that he felt his training as a gymnast actually hampered his development in this stuff, and knowing what I know now, I'd have to agree.
If you follow the logic of this stuff, trying to strength train, while learning Jin/Kokyu skills is kind of like having a skill in a musical instrument, let's say Drums, then wanting to learn to play the Violin. Sure they're both in the realm of music, but use completely different mechanics. Trying to bring the mechanics of Drum playing would only set you back and doesn't really make much sense. Besides which, this stuff is like strength training anyways...and like any strength training, you can gradually increase the loads you work with as you get better. But you need to work with the loads using the "unusual" kind of body-mechanics.

Add to this, you have a whole lot of local muscle responses that act involuntarily to incoming loads, that are typically amplified by normal strength training, and it turns into a one step forward, two steps back deal.
By the by, most southern arts such as Pak Mei, Hung Gar, Uechi etc, use muscle tension to increase the "pressure" created in the body. Not only is that kind of pressure typically unhealthy (pressure can go to the head), the quality of the power created is completely different compared to "purer" approaches. I'd suggest you get hands on time and decide for yourself.

3) The tension is more of a "stretch" tension, building a "suit" of connection first. The amount of tension is something that's best shown. More precisely its the "quality" of tension that's important.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2010, 09:56 AM   #4
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Blake Holtzen wrote: View Post
Okay, so I'm taking a momentary break from shikko (to let the burn in my legs subside) and my mind started to wander...

I recently got corrections on three of the tanren exercises that the Aunkai does (shikko, tenchijin, ashiage) and it has really opened my eyes to a different training methodology as far as internal strength is concerned. My previous experience has all been CMA based so my paradigm is based on that. Aunkai's exercises seem to be more tension-based which would seem to contradict the CIMA approach. Has anyone else thought this? However, it seems that alot of the descriptions of what is happening in the body and the alignments that one must have are pretty similar across the board. But, this got me wondering about some training questions...

1) What role, if any, does static training or zhan zhuang (standing meditation) play in the development of internal power?

My experience with yiquan is that they tend to develop the three pairs of opposing forces in a static way first. But, Aunkai has one training dynamically from the beginning. Would their method benefit from some static training? What exercises provide one with the most bang for their practice time buck?

2) What role, if any, does auxillary western-based strength training play in the development of the "actualized IP practitioner"?

Surely, if one person that trained only IP (through MMA based Aunkai or Dan Harden's methods) crossed hands with someone that trained IP AND strength trained, would not the second individual come out on top, assuming the same level of skill development? I ask this because I have heard the Ark is well...ripped and I have heard that Dan Harden is a physical beast (I mean this in a good way, no disrespect). It is my understanding that these exercises do not train the superficial muscles as much as the tissues beneath (tendons, fascia, etc.). I personally train in Crossfit-type and High Internsity Training (HIT) workouts.

3) What role does tension play in the development of IP?

Is tension required only in as far as to retain your alignments or is more tension better? It seems some methods use less and some use more. How much is enough?

Anyway, Im stuck in Korea for another year and there is a paucity of good martial arts (you wont believe how big Tae Kwon Do is over here... ) so I will have lots of time to drill the solo exercises. I hope to infuse the IP training into my CMA practice. Hopefully this doesn't put off Dan Harden... I still want to train with him...

So, enough of my rambling, I gotta get back to shikko. I am excited about where this training will lead and I feel I have taken my first step (or stomp? ah I crack myself up...) on the IP path.

Thanks for reading.

-Blake
Quote:
1) What role, if any, does static training or zhan zhuang (standing meditation) play in the development of internal power?
A lot or none-depends on what you're doing. I have met any number of ICMA people who practice Solo under master class teachers and had nothing. So how many got it...who knows?

Quote:
My experience with yiquan is that they tend to develop the three pairs of opposing forces in a static way first. But, Aunkai has one training dynamically from the beginning. Would their method benefit from some static training? What exercises provide one with the most bang for their practice time buck?
See below

2) What role, if any, does auxillary western-based strength training play in the development of the "actualized IP practitioner"?

Quote:
Surely, if one person that trained only IP (through MMA based Aunkai or Dan Harden's methods) crossed hands with someone that trained IP AND strength trained, would not the second individual come out on top, assuming the same level of skill development?
Nope!! Not even close.
Quote:
I ask this because I have heard the Ark is well...ripped and I have heard that Dan Harden is a physical beast (I mean this in a good way, no disrespect). It is my understanding that these exercises do not train the superficial muscles as much as the tissues beneath (tendons, fascia, etc.). I personally train in Crossfit-type and High Internsity Training (HIT) workouts.
I think you're confused by what you heard about me. I am only 6' about 218 lb. I am no "physical beast" by any measure.
Now, one of my guys, Andy is 6' 3," and about 260lb. He is extremely soft and a good jujutsu player. He IS a physical beast and when turned loose...quite interesting tp play with, and probably one of the nicest guys you'd ever want to meet.
To answer you about western lifting and IP/aiki
I can tell you that every time of my guys used to go do a six or eight week lifting cycle-their usable power went down, not up and I could "catch them" far easier when grappling. Over a month or so, they'd softened up. Some went back to normal, others it took a long time. It was NOT a better way to go, but young men being vein.....

3) What role does tension play in the development of IP?
For me...none.
Now, pressure applied? Training against tension?
Tremendously useful.

I don't advocate tension in IP/ aiki training. I have felt/seen and had explained in detail some of the tension ideas; some have talked about it as "tension to identify paths first-then soften later" others as a form of "whole body tension" mostly just using the back line (which is limited), and still others count on using a type of relaxed musculature around the bones as the hard frame and work from there. With most of the former you see the use of the hips and same side power, on the whole they make a fairly stable fighter but it is one who has a body type that can be "read" pretty easy and most of the typical moves in TMA are meant to be used against that type of body use. I see it as typical movement-just made stronger. There are people offering exercises I have seen and had explained to me that are like that; the back line is stressed, with hips and shoulders aligned and explained as such, the "same-side-weight" trained as such and laid out; both on video and in the online hand- out fliers from seminars. I had tried a few and quickly dumped them as I didn't like what they were doing to my body. Power is not all the same. I'm not saying better or worse mind you, just that I have personal goals and uses in mind. And while that type of movement can be strong, I wouldn't personally choose to train that way for many reasons- and in particular for weapons and freestyle.

There are particular reasons why certain classical weapons training morphs into empty hand so well and can be powerful if you understand it. Earlier discussions and comparisons with various Koryu I did with Ellis has led to some interesting and revelatory observations on Koryu movement. Most of the good Koryu people do not move the way I outlined in the previous paragraph. Their training has demonstrated that you can't really use long weapons well that way. Most Koryu use a body movement that is quite different and would not generate power in that same-side-weight, one-line hip generated way that you see so often in modern adepts. You can get stuck and not be free enough for moving the weapons and yourself. What is even more interesting is to see more and more of the Japanese teachers now mucking it up, and just about all of the westerners. They don't move like their master class teachers-and they are at a loss to understand why. Further research that Ellis doing is supporting the position that there are more and more power building and solo drills that were -for the most part- discarded. Even with modern adapts acknowledging that some of the old guys were powerful…sound familiar? Next we can get into the idea of projection, and precursers to movement and some rather heady stuff-all in Japanese Koryu.

Anyway, there are many methods out there. And I'm sure everyone of them is pretty sure of what they are doing. Everyone has to make their own assessments. From western body training to Martial arts, to waza to principle based training, we can see there are ways to move that on the surface are powerful. They just are not all the same. Some are now stating that "center based training and movement" is all the same, that it must be. Yet I have heard very little to actually support that assertion.
So, yus pays your nickel and yus takes your chances.

There is simply no reason you have to train tension from the beginning. From the beginning you can train soft. Overall, I think soft-power trained for use in certain ways- wins. The problem is that training this way means you have to let go of perceived notions of power and "learned and burned" movement you are familiar with, and train something different.
I actually think most people should walk away and leave soft training alone. I even tell them so. They won't follow through anyway, and their bodies are going to get stuck in between they really won't do either thing well. If you are approaching it from the DR or Aikido side of things, than soft is best approach and breath-power training is key in doing so. It just so happens I developed a way to use that in freestyle fighting-a place where most TMA didn't go.

The best "connection" (not tension) is a stretchy feel and it happens slowly and is driven by intent based movement. There is a looseness you need to shoot for that later one will allow you to generate power and move without telegraphing. You might want to consider that the main three opposing forces you are training- are all joined by one common opposing force; expansion and contraction. Bear in mind that while intent driven movement has to be largely mental at first, it is most certainly physical later on, and will have increasingly real physical results in your body-you will feel it happening. Tension will just screw it up. Were you able to generate some simple intent-based movement you can experiment and satisfy your own questions; have someone push on your chest and then sink with intent while rising over him with intent. Then stop and start over by contracting muscle groups to do the same thing and see how far you can get with that. Then ask your buddy which one felt more powerful and is harder to "read."
There are other training drills to do to target the shoulders and hips to train them to loosen up and be part of a neutral conduit of power instead of a generator and sticking points. It's pointless to explain them here, you need hands on. I think training to target the hips and shoulders is a major goal for most TMA people. Japanese TMA are almost cookie cutter; move from the hip, use too much shoulder, one-line movement, and stiff-way too stiff. So there is a lot of work to do to soften up.

Don't misunderstand soft training. Most guys I have now met and trained with equate softness with evasion, and release. They had no concept of soft-(truly soft) being In-vasive and controlling. Moreover, their concepts are of single point use, a) soft evading or b) hard entry, occurring as one or the other-maybe in rapid succession but not together against two or three point attacks. Even when we discuss a different model, for them it still becomes a) soft evading b) soft enter. They still had no concept of how it worked together, and how to train it to work together in solo training.

Soft can feel soft and strange to many martial artists both with you absorbing force and generating it, but at times it is anything "but" soft to those putting force into you. Over time (depending on how you choose to train) you will gain a loose snapping center generating quality to your frame) this becomes extremely beneficial in changing forces coming into you or pulling on you. At any point in time you will be ghosty and generating power....at the same time, and at any one point of contact. Overal, they feel a pronounced lack of control when trying to screw with you
Over time your center becomes far more involved and active and the driver to do all sorts of things. It just takes time to change your body and the way it naturally moves. Most do not have the stomach for it and simply quit before the real changes take place.

I dunno if any of that helped.
I hope to hear -years from now- that you had gone out to meet many people with power and come back with opinions and observations of your own and how it affected your practice. There is probably going to be false starts, experimenting, discards, changes, on and on. Be tenacious, get obsessed, just don't stop.
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 05-16-2010 at 10:00 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2010, 06:49 PM   #5
asiawide
Location: Seoul
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 120
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Blake Holtzen wrote: View Post
Anyway, Im stuck in Korea for another year and there is a paucity of good martial arts (you wont believe how big Tae Kwon Do is over here... ) so I will have lots of time to drill the solo exercises. I hope to infuse the IP training into my CMA practice. Hopefully this doesn't put off Dan Harden... I still want to train with him...
Hey there are some guys do Aunkai tanren in Korea. Mostly we practice at home by oneself and together at a gym in Seoul on saturday or sunday. By the way, I live in Suwon and another guy(David) lives in Seoul. I do Aikido and David does MMA. We are planning to visit Tokyo on Aug. I'd be very happy if you join us. Mail me if you are interested (jmin.yoo AT gmail.com)

Jaemin

ps. Good to see Rob John on aikiweb again!
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-16-2010, 08:04 PM   #6
AllanF
Location: Shenyang
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 56
China
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Great posts from Rob John and Dan. Very informative.

Dan wrote "Were you able to generate some simple intent-based movement you can experiment and satisfy your own questions; have someone push on your chest and then sink with intent while rising over him with intent. Then stop and start over by contracting muscle groups to do the same thing and see how far you can get with that. Then ask your buddy which one felt more powerful and is harder to "read." " This is something that we do with my teacher and the projecting intent over your opponent is something i have to work on. My teacher says this is done as part of 'peng' and if you continue your intent to the ground (and under the ground) it becomes 'an'.

I have also started doing supplemental solo exercises (due to a knee injury), i still practice my taiji form. But since the beginning of the year i have also been doing various other exercises such as Hong Junsheng's foundation work (positive and negative circles) and shikko that Ark does (though frankly i am sure i am not doing it right, i try to do it in a very relaxed and controlled manner - due to my knee - with no movement of the arms and legs only from the hara). I have noticed a jump in my push hands skill. That said i am still not sure what the intent of Shikko should be. To that end i would be grateful if Rob could me some pointers?

much obliged
Allan
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2010, 04:57 PM   #7
Blake Holtzen
Location: Florida
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 33
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Thanks everyone for the great posts. Good stuff being said.

I forgot to add number four though...

4) What relationship do the internal connections trained in IP execises have with Chi/Ki?

Is all the talk from old masters about chi/ki just a different way of describing what is happening in the body or is their the other half of the internal power equation working with chi/ki? I know some people have said that all the chi/ki talk is just mystical fluffy bunny poopoo and that really the only "internal" there is is based solely on structure, groundpath, fascia, etc. But, some of the old masters from both JMA and CMA talked at great lengths about chi/ki and how to use it and develop it. Was this just a grand delusion or ignorance of biomechanics?

Thanks again to all who posted.

-Blake
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2010, 08:12 PM   #8
bernardkwan
Dojo: Aikido Doyukai Hong Kong
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 35
Hong Kong
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

My personal expereince of Qi is the increased blood flow to the extremities, thus the muscles of the forearms and the fingers expand like they have been pumped full of blood like a balloon. Also I in zhan zhuang I can feel the resistance in the ball (magnetic field?) between my fingers and my arms.

My theory is that increased solo training increases the blood flow to the muscles / fascia and strengthens the nerve signals and connectivity, supporting and facilitating the connections in the body. Thus when my Qi is strong it is easier to establish a connection to the ground. When I am sick or when I have been indulging in too much sexual activity, my body is sluggish and my qi is affected - it is difficult to increase the blood flow through intention and I am easiy pushed over / collapse.

Also the muscles / fascia in their expanded rubbery state act as good protection for the internal organs, like in iron shirt qigong. It is like wearing a a rubber suit and some of the impact is asorbed or bounces off.

My personal attempt at a very rudimentary description of what I feel when I train qi. I may be wrong and off the track completely. I do believe there is a whole area of using the Qi to lead your opponent and to take his centre or attention which I am not proficient in yet and am not able to comment.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2010, 08:36 PM   #9
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Bernard Kwan wrote: View Post
Also the muscles / fascia in their expanded rubbery state act as good protection for the internal organs, like in iron shirt qigong. It is like wearing a a rubber suit and some of the impact is asorbed or bounces off.
Maybe another mental picture is that of force not so much being absorbed at that "point of impact," but rather being spread out and absorbed over and particially through a trained surface. I think most people think it is being absorbed deep inside when that is not the case. It's good to have people beat the hell out of a trained stomach, feel it expand-sometimes with a sudden shock- and also grab it and feel it being moved independantly then what it can do "attached" to the extremeties.
Cheers
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2010, 10:43 PM   #10
JW
 
JW's Avatar
Location: San Francisco CA USA
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 510
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Blake Holtzen wrote: View Post
Is all the talk from old masters about chi/ki just a different way of describing what is happening in the body
I am nearly certain that this is correct.
Yi leads the qi. As in, that feeling in your body that you control with "intent" is what qi means. On this board, a lot of people talk about using intent-- that is functionally equivalent to saying use the qi.

I think.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 08:01 AM   #11
Budd
 
Budd's Avatar
Dojo: Taikyoku Budo
Location: Williamsville, NY
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 931
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

On top of that, intent, while a mental exercise, needs to be manifesting in the body as a trained response . . which is why the conditioning is so important to build the connections to allow this to happen . . therefore allowing the mind to lead the qi . .
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 08:34 AM   #12
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
On top of that, intent, while a mental exercise, needs to be manifesting in the body as a trained response . . which is why the conditioning is so important to build the connections to allow this to happen . . therefore allowing the mind to lead the qi . .
Hmm...I think that is VERY true, exceedingly so, but there are also latent qualities in your body that get burned in and are part of you. They become both present and active -without thought- as well. There are times when guys are trying to throw me and things happen very fast without thought, or they may be striking with a weapon, but it is the body conditioning they run into, other times there is thought involved, but there again the cancellation and entries feel more like autopilot at times since the spirals are constant and I am just moving and things sometimes just take care of themselves. IOW, the overall body conditioning and movement naturally creates effects on contact, which at speed, ...just happen, while I am focusing on other things which may pop up.
Dan

Last edited by DH : 05-18-2010 at 08:48 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 08:53 AM   #13
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Edit time ran out
There are any number of times where guys end up on their backs and I don't even know what I did. Or the reverse happens.
This happens to many, many people when grappling in the external arts as well. How many times did someone ask you "Do that again!" and you said "Do what? I don't know what I did." So why wouldn't internal conditioning and movement offer the same benefits?
Make sense?
I think intent driven movement is key to changing and conditioning the body and key to some powerful movement in freestyle, but other benefits of intent driven body work is that the mind / body "become" conditioned and carry certain qualities in and of themselves.
Dan

Last edited by DH : 05-18-2010 at 08:58 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 10:45 AM   #14
Budd
 
Budd's Avatar
Dojo: Taikyoku Budo
Location: Williamsville, NY
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 931
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Dan, that makes a lot of sense and seems like the logical "next step" of what to work for after you have spent time conditioning the basics, etc. Hoping to have more to say on that in the near future. Still just doing the conditioning work, right now.

If I remember right, you have also commented how you needed to spend time "failing" in competition settings (against grapplers, etc.) until you'd moved past the trying-to-win-with-old-instincts phase. Was that to give your body a chance to adapt the new methods of "carrying itself" to that more-at-speed paradigm?
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 12:04 PM   #15
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
Dan, that makes a lot of sense and seems like the logical "next step" of what to work for after you have spent time conditioning the basics, etc. Hoping to have more to say on that in the near future. Still just doing the conditioning work, right now.

If I remember right, you have also commented how you needed to spend time "failing" in competition settings (against grapplers, etc.) until you'd moved past the trying-to-win-with-old-instincts phase. Was that to give your body a chance to adapt the new methods of "carrying itself" to that more-at-speed paradigm?
Yes. As I state publicly in large rooms, "I learned this from the flat of my back, don't think you will skip that phase."
I almost quite and went back to the way I trained before. I just went through this with an MMA guy with a fight record I played with who was very intrigued by it. "How do I adopt it into fighting?" To which I replied "You can't. Not for a long time.
I tell guys over and over NOT TO TRAIN THIS WAY. In fact last year I trained a guy for his first sanctioned fight and I didn't train him one bit in "this stuff," but rather with western methods with some "twists" to his training.

I would make an addition to your comment about "old instincts." It isn't just about trying to win and fighting old instincts alone. "You are not necessarily going to win with the new instincts either." There are ways to train this stuff that are real and genuine and part of the TMA that will work and others that will not, I have my own opinions and experiences about "this stuff" and what are some important differences that I have found that work all the time and others that are marginal and still others that are crap.

Some claim it's all the same, I'm betting that you and some other sharp guys here -in the end- are going to have some of the same opinions and experiences that I and some of the guys who trained with me in certain venues have had. I am looking forward to reading and hearing your feedback in the years ahead of what you think is really excellent training, and what turned out to be for crap, for use in TMA or MMA, and then read your views on what was supposedly "all the same" about the stuff and what turned out to be anything. but!
Good luck in your training.
Cheers
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 01:50 PM   #16
Budd
 
Budd's Avatar
Dojo: Taikyoku Budo
Location: Williamsville, NY
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 931
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Thanks for the comments, Dan. Either way you cut it, just a lot more work to do.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 02:24 PM   #17
mathewjgano
 
mathewjgano's Avatar
Dojo: Tsubaki Kannagara Jinja Aikidojo; Himeji Shodokan Dojo
Location: Renton
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,108
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

I've really enjoyed reading this thread. Thanks folks!

Gambarimashyo!
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 02:30 PM   #18
thisisnotreal
 
thisisnotreal's Avatar
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 692
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
I've really enjoyed reading this thread. Thanks folks!
Me too..Very much so.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2010, 03:27 PM   #19
ChrisMoses
Dojo: TNBBC (Icho Ryu Aiki Budo), Shinto Ryu IaiBattojutsu
Location: Seattle, WA
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 906
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Maybe another mental picture is that of force not so much being absorbed at that "point of impact," but rather being spread out and absorbed over and particially through a trained surface.
Interesting Dan, and thanks for the very useful thread btw. I was noticing just in the last year or so that instead of it feeling like I was able to run pressure into the ground through the bones (say when resisting in pushout) it started to feel more like I was wrapping the incoming pressure around myself through the skin and then it kind of just went around me. Kind of like when the input coming in my right side collided with the input coming in my left side they just nulled each other out across my back. Hard to explain, but I've been told it does feel different to those folks pushing.

Chris Moses
TNBBC, "Putting the ME in MEdiocre!"
Shinto Ryu Iai Battojutsu
TNBBC Blog
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2010, 02:32 PM   #20
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
Interesting Dan, and thanks for the very useful thread btw. I was noticing just in the last year or so that instead of it feeling like I was able to run pressure into the ground through the bones (say when resisting in pushout) it started to feel more like I was wrapping the incoming pressure around myself through the skin and then it kind of just went around me. Kind of like when the input coming in my right side collided with the input coming in my left side they just nulled each other out across my back. Hard to explain, but I've been told it does feel different to those folks pushing.
Hello Chris
The stretchy feel can be things connecting and that is good. What and how things are connecting may not all be the same. I don't know how you train but after watching you move I have an idea. I don't usually deal with left side/ right side, instead I train the left hand to be controlled (through the center) into the right foot and vice versa. The joining that you are "sensing" is and can be just felt across the back if that is all you're training. But their are connections deep in the front as well. There is a limit to just training, pulling, using the back line that can lead to problems / potential weaknesses etc. If you consider central equilibrium (what I used to call "zero balance point") the back must be supported by training opposites. Some people do up/down, side/side, and front/ back one way, and some do it differently. It isn't all the same.
One can lead to back problems, flat feet, overly stretched and tucked sacrum and double weighted hips. Other ways lead to very flexible hips that are very difficult to throw and with a power absorbtion/ generation that is markedly different from the previous approach, IME it is also just about the only way to do Koryu weapons -truly effectively- while leaving the feet and weight free.
I tend to demonstrate going from long weapons in rational use (not as a training tool) to sword, to twin sticks to empty hand, and how the body method is rational and consistent throughout.
I have not seen many methods that have a cogent rational throughout that makes consistent sense with the types of men I usually converse with. Many times they are art specific, spotty and will not translate well.
Cheers
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-20-2010, 08:36 AM   #21
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

I was teaching in a Birenkai Aikido dojo last night and subject of "exercises" came up and why I don't do a lot of them.
Has anyone considered the nature of these various "exercises" and what they are and are not doing to and for your body?
Have you considered not doing exercises, or at least augmenting them with standing still and manifesting intent?
How about standing still with someone pressing on your arm and other body parts and changing the pressure both you and they feel by changing what you are doing in your body...without you moving at all?
How about at several body contact points at once like a judo set up and then slowly changing them constantly or at the same time.
Has anyone considered how this intent driven movement would generate power of a type or open up an idea for something completely different,
That they are not all the same even with the same type of core intent driven movement?

There are different ways to manifest intent. And in joining it with movement there are also different ways to move the body WITH intent that are not all the same or IMO, even equal.
Power can be an interesting idea. but it is not the real end game.
Dan
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-20-2010, 01:23 PM   #22
Lorel Latorilla
Location: Osaka
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 311
Japan
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
I was teaching in a Birenkai Aikido dojo last night and subject of "exercises" came up and why I don't do a lot of them.
Has anyone considered the nature of these various "exercises" and what they are and are not doing to and for your body?
Have you considered not doing exercises, or at least augmenting them with standing still and manifesting intent?
How about standing still with someone pressing on your arm and other body parts and changing the pressure both you and they feel by changing what you are doing in your body...without you moving at all?
How about at several body contact points at once like a judo set up and then slowly changing them constantly or at the same time.
Has anyone considered how this intent driven movement would generate power of a type or open up an idea for something completely different,
That they are not all the same even with the same type of core intent driven movement?

There are different ways to manifest intent. And in joining it with movement there are also different ways to move the body WITH intent that are not all the same or IMO, even equal.
Power can be an interesting idea. but it is not the real end game.
Dan
Good point Dan. I think some of us are so eager to get the skills that we approach the exercises like little kids opening presents during Christmas. I think that's what I did my first year of doing this stuff. I got 'strong' doing the exercises, but because I wasn't practising intelligently, I ended up tensing parts of the body that I shouldn't tense (instead of 'tensing' the shoulders I'd tense my chest or my lower back).

More and more am I interested in simple pushing exercises that you speak of. Although it's hard to find some people who will push on me . Guess I'm gonna have to join a BJJ gym for some people to push on me.

Unless stated otherwise, all wisdom, follies, harshness, malice that may spring up from my writing are attributable only to me.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2010, 06:56 AM   #23
Budd
 
Budd's Avatar
Dojo: Taikyoku Budo
Location: Williamsville, NY
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 931
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Well, I think you need some basic exercises with "shapes" that help stretch and amplify the connections you are trying to train, at least initially - since those connections aren't very strong and need to be conditioned over time. Once you've made some headway in that area, I think you can do more of the "intent driven" work. Best case, you have some simple iterative/feedback/loop exercises that don't require a lot of gross movement, but then train the desired fundamentals and can be applied in progressively less constrained paradigms.

The disconnect, I think is that people put too much value in the "exercise as technique" as opposed to the exercise being a way to trick the body into moving a different way (at which point the mind should be smart enough to go "aha!! something's afoot!" and then chase the hell out of that feeling).
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2010, 07:36 AM   #24
DH
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 3,394
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Ark is pretty popular with his exercises so I don't want people to think I am focusing on Ark. I am talking about a host of internal arts exercises out there that includes everyone practicing. I'm having this discussion with some friends training with an expert who continue to get confused between the attributes of the physical movements meant to stretch, train, open and loosen the body and what is actually internally intent driven, and THEIR TEACHER makes the same argument I am making here.

Then I have other people I've met and trained with who stand, who now realize all these years all they have been doing under their own expert teacher, is just standing there...... oh well,

It is mind / body that we are discussing so of course, in the end, the mind has to do...a thing. The intent driven and trained body is learning to physically move tissue, so there is a huge physical componant, but I would argue just where we are going to get the most bang for our buck, and it isn't in doing a series of exercises! It's in intent driven training, then adding-in / augmenting with certain physical movement exercises that are intent driven and the movements and goals and how your body ends up....are not all the same. And some -I think- are actually harmful in the long run.

So, as Lorel noted some are getting stronger through certain exercises, but I am not talking about just getting stronger. If strength were all there was what would be the big deal? I think intent is the big deal. And intent is a real bear, and it is hard for a lot of people to conceptualize and activate in themselves and even harder to lead it where you need to go, so they substitute with tension-all the while convincing themselves that, that weird opposing tension "feel"....is good.
IME, in the fullness of time people are going to discover that what was trained softly was the best way to internal. IMO it is also the most powerful, most controling, most profound and the healthiest for you as well.
Otherwise we might as well do cardio and lift.
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 05-21-2010 at 07:50 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-21-2010, 08:44 AM   #25
chillzATL
Location: ATL
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 847
United_States
Offline
Re: So I started the solo exercises...

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Ark is pretty popular with his exercises so I don't want people to think I am focusing on Ark. I am talking about a host of internal arts exercises out there that includes everyone practicing. I'm having this discussion with some friends training with an expert who continue to get confused between the attributes of the physical movements meant to stretch, train, open and loosen the body and what is actually internally intent driven, and THEIR TEACHER makes the same argument I am making here.

Then I have other people I've met and trained with who stand, who now realize all these years all they have been doing under their own expert teacher, is just standing there...... oh well,

It is mind / body that we are discussing so of course, in the end, the mind has to do...a thing. The intent driven and trained body is learning to physically move tissue, so there is a huge physical componant, but I would argue just where we are going to get the most bang for our buck, and it isn't in doing a series of exercises! It's in intent driven training, then adding-in / augmenting with certain physical movement exercises that are intent driven and the movements and goals and how your body ends up....are not all the same. And some -I think- are actually harmful in the long run.

So, as Lorel noted some are getting stronger through certain exercises, but I am not talking about just getting stronger. If strength were all there was what would be the big deal? I think intent is the big deal. And intent is a real bear, and it is hard for a lot of people to conceptualize and activate in themselves and even harder to lead it where you need to go, so they substitute with tension-all the while convincing themselves that, that weird opposing tension "feel"....is good.
IME, in the fullness of time people are going to discover that what was trained softly was the best way to internal. IMO it is also the most powerful, most controling, most profound and the healthiest for you as well.
Otherwise we might as well do cardio and lift.
Cheers
Dan
Dan,

When people talk about tension in relation to"this stuff" aren't they usually (or shouldn't they be) talking about a relaxed, non-muscular tension? I've read you use the explantion of "feeling like wearing a wet shirt" and others have similar explanations. Isn't that just another form of tension in the body, ableit one that is relaxed and free of any muscular force/use?

It's been my understanding that all of these exercises, at least the ones I've been exposed to, are designed to condition that feeling or structure in the various layers of the body (skin/fascia/bones/etc) so that it can effectively accept/transmit/manipulate forces without using muscular tension, which is what we want to avoid. There has to be some level of tension/form/etc there though, otherwise it's just empty, lifeless and incapable of transmitting anything. Doesn't that have to be in place before one can really move on to manipulating anything via intent or otherwise?
good thread btw.
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Basic Internal training exercises? Shane Goodrich Non-Aikido Martial Traditions 9 01-06-2010 11:31 AM
Aikido Warm Up Exercises dps Training 7 10-22-2009 10:18 PM
Solo Training Exercises gdandscompserv Non-Aikido Martial Traditions 26 09-05-2007 06:51 AM
Ueshiba on the future of Aikido DH General 151 05-23-2007 12:15 PM
Solo ki exercises theflyingheadbuttsuplex Training 4 05-17-2005 05:34 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:36 PM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate