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Old 10-12-2010, 10:49 AM   #226
Budd
 
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Hi Michael - I've seen Jimmy at two Mike Sigman seminars, but I would be surprised if he pitched himself as a judge of "who's got the internal goods". I've also met Dan Harden. I'd say if you can get hands-on time with either it will be worth your while - and both can quickly show you how this kind of "unusual strength" can make your aiki better (or as some of us believe, how this stuff IS the basis for aiki, ding, pun intended, whatever).

People that I know that have trained with Akuzawa have good things to say about his power level, plus he's the smallest guy in the bunch mentioned so far, so can also be a good indicator how a well conditioned/connected body using this type of "unusual strength" can bring a lot more juice than you'd be expecting.

I can't speak to anyone doing more "traditional" Japanese martial arts as it seems the approach to internal power is interweaved within the curriculum and syllabus of the school/system/style, so it's more often a mix of internal strength mixed in with applications/strategy. Depending on what you're looking for, as well as your ability to discriminate, such a thing may be more or less your cup of tea. I'd include most lineages of Daito ryu that I've seen or experienced, in this mix.

On the traditional Chinese arts side of things, the perceived standard bearers seem to be Chen Taiji, with Chen Xao Wang being something of the top guy (though I believe there's four distinct Grandmaster "lines" even at that level, but I'm speaking way above my paygrade here, as I have no involvement in those disciplines). Chen Bing and Wang Hai Jun are pretty well regarded from the younger generation that are teaching and sometimes make their way here. Do some research if that interests you, but I'd recommend the "push hands" seminars rather than the forms if you want to feel how they express this "unusual strength".

From the standpoint of who's got "rank" in using IS, that's sort of the wrong question to ask, in my opinion. Sure, there's lots of high grade or shihan level guys here in the US that I expect are trying to get up to speed or "incorporate" IS into what they do. But I think at the end of the day, it's about how you retrain/rewire your body to carry itself differently, so rank (especially in mainstream martial arts, today), currently isn't going to reflect that very much.

But how "this stuff" is going to be incorporated (or ignored) in mainstream martial arts going forward into the long term, is gonna be a fun thing to watch, methinks. Whether or not someone's rank in a martial art ever actually means they have applicable skill in this kind of unusual strength . . we'll see.
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:05 AM   #227
David Orange
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Budd Yuhasz wrote: View Post
...both can quickly show you how this kind of "unusual strength" can make your aiki better (or as some of us believe, how this stuff IS the basis for aiki, ding, pun intended, whatever).
You mean peng intended?

David

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Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

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Old 10-12-2010, 11:24 AM   #228
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

What I meant with credibility was a legitimate ranking in a martial art that trained this "internal" power as part of the curriculum such as "Godan in Daito-Ryu."

I am not trying to put words in Jim's mouth or imply he was the only judge of credibility, I just respect his experience along with his relevant questions about people teaching this without any apparent credible ranking as I explained above.

Without the legitimate ranking I tend to start thinking about parlor tricks and stuff that belongs on "bullshido."

But guess the answer really is to attend some seminars.

Last edited by Michael Neal : 10-12-2010 at 11:37 AM.
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Old 10-12-2010, 11:40 AM   #229
Budd
 
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

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Michael Neal wrote: View Post
But guess the answer really is to attend some seminars.
DINGDINGDINGDINGDINGIDINGDING
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:18 AM   #230
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
What I meant with credibility was a legitimate ranking in a martial art that trained this "internal" power as part of the curriculum such as "Godan in Daito-Ryu."
Of all the people mentioned regularly on this forum as 'having the goods' only Chen Xiao Wang would qualify then. Mike Sigman and Dan Harden don't claim any rank in a martial art. And Akuzawa founded his own ogranization, so that doesn't really count.
But perhaps we aren't looking hard enough. I went to a Baji seminar by Wu LianZhi and his son Wu DaWei once. His father looked like he had internal power (didn't have a chance to feel what he could do, though). The son was less impressive. (Interesting detail: the father taught the Jibengong or foundational exsercises, the son one of the basic Baji forms.)

Quote:
But guess the answer really is to attend some seminars.
Yep. Only problem is as you hint at, you still don't really know what you get. You can go see Mike, Dan, Ark and Chen Xiao Wang and note the similarities and differences between them. Presumably you conclude that on a basic level they do the same things and go in different directions from there.
Yet as an aikidoka the question remains: what did Morihei Ueshiba do exactly? And how does it compare to the people whose seminar you went to?
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:30 AM   #231
phitruong
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Joep Schuurkes wrote: View Post
Mike Sigman and Dan Harden don't claim any rank in a martial art. And Akuzawa founded his own ogranization, so that doesn't really count.
what?!! you meant these guys did not claim to be the grand master guru of IS/aiki stuffs? you meant we have been scammed by them. that's just so wrong! i want my money back! actually, i need to go to a few more of their workshops before asking for money back. the stuffs they shown were so confounding. besides, it's not like we have not done that already in aikido. we have "aiki" in the name of our art, damn it!

of course we wouldn't be as concerned if our art named phido. although, phido has a nice ring to it and rolls right off the tongue. practitioner of phido would require to pay phi good money, cash only please, to get instant title of illustrious master of phido with a cheaply chinese made plague to go with such title and a picture of the grandmaster phi in his pajamas, in some case 1 out of ten where he wore less, while drinking coffee.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:36 AM   #232
Budd
 
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

I could never practice an art called "phido" . . I'm in the doghouse often enough
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:19 AM   #233
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

The thing is I can't rationalize spending good money on a fee as well as traveling costs to go see someone without any credentials demonstrating "ancient lost techniques." Until there is someone teaching with some legitimate authority on the subject I will sit this one out. But I will read Ellis Amdur's book, he is someone I would be comfortable learning from.
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:55 AM   #234
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
But I will read Ellis Amdur's book, he is someone I would be comfortable learning from.
The funny thing about that is, and you will see it for yourself when you read the book's foreword, amongst other people, he thanks two of the aforementioned guys for all their subject matter contributions to the book.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:07 AM   #235
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

I will read it and try to absorb the concept some. Contributing to a book still does not give me confidence in them if they have no credentials.

Last edited by Michael Neal : 10-13-2010 at 09:11 AM.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:37 AM   #236
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
The thing is I can't rationalize spending good money on a fee as well as traveling costs to go see someone without any credentials demonstrating "ancient lost techniques."
Funny, the exact reason I went for the first time to an Akuzawa and a Sigman seminar, is to check their credentials. I remember thinking "If all that stuff on Aikiweb on internal strength is true, it changes everything!" So I wanted to know what they can do and what their training methodology is like.
And I must say: Yes, it changed everything. Not just how I practice, but also how I think about people's credentials. It all comes down to one thing: show me what you got.
Does that mean you have to go check out every John-sensei that teaches some martial art in a strip mall? No, but I think the oft-mentioned people with regards to interal strength have created enough traffic on this site to warrant a visit to one of their seminars.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:38 AM   #237
grondahl
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

I see it the opposite way. Credentials in form of years trained or rank feels pretty useless (of course, it depends on the way the art ranks and trains) but the fact that people from Aikiweb have met them and walked away with a positive impression is a major credential in my book.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:57 AM   #238
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
The thing is I can't rationalize spending good money on a fee as well as traveling costs to go see someone without any credentials demonstrating "ancient lost techniques." Until there is someone teaching with some legitimate authority on the subject I will sit this one out. But I will read Ellis Amdur's book, he is someone I would be comfortable learning from.
IMO, you're just hanging too much on "modern" rankings as the credentials. There was a point in time that word of mouth and relayed experiences were your credentials. If that wasn't enough you simply challenged the person and they either convinced you or not. Few of the people who became students of Ueshiba did so because of any formal rank or credentials. They came to him because of the stories of what he could do and typically, what he was able to do to them.
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:04 AM   #239
Budd
 
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Right, one of the concepts is that . . if you've spent 30 years training in aikido without having gotten the very baseline body skills that a number of people seem to agree was the basis for Ueshiba's power . . what legitimacy does that give your opinion or practice around . . these very same bodyskills?

Michael, I seriously wish you luck in your training, but don't expect to get anything back unless you're willing to make the investment - part of which is doing the self-investigation to figure out things for yourself, rather than expecting someone else to tell you.

The thing is, though, if your goal is to fit in well with mainstream martial arts that's run via organizations and rank-recognized-authority/leadership . . then you probably don't want to make too much of an investment in "this stuff" as the pursuit of it is required to be a personal obsession that you spend hours of your own time burning in and figuring out inside yourself . . portantially in addition to repeating techniques on a mat.

But then that re-asserts the question of . . is the way to develop Ueshiba's Power necessitate training in aikido? I guess another thing to look at is . . which are more interested in . . being able to replicate/surpass what others said he could DO . . versus aligning yourself to what was passed down as what he SAID . . neither, both? Something else?

I don't think it's a black and white question, not hardly . . but I think it's going to require a case-by-case assessment and willingness to invest in your own personal mission quest. There's already plenty of options if what you're after is a sense of belonging spiced with some roleplaying.
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:25 AM   #240
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Well I will try to be open minded and see where it takes me. Since my main focus is in Judo right now I don't have any doubts about effectiveness and such, it works. But I would love to help bring back the traditional aspects of Judo when it wasn't simply a jacketed wrestling match, but a display of technical skill over strength. Maybe internal training could help me in this goal, maybe not.

Maybe all traditional martial arts need to go through a Renaissance period to discover what has been lost in many years of practice.
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Old 10-13-2010, 12:31 PM   #241
Thomas Campbell
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

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Michael Neal wrote: View Post
What I meant with credibility was a legitimate ranking in a martial art that trained this "internal" power as part of the curriculum such as "Godan in Daito-Ryu."
Who gave Takeda Sokaku "legitimate ranking" and "credentials"?
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:10 PM   #242
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

I believe his martial arts experience is pretty well documented
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:13 PM   #243
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Joep Schuurkes wrote: View Post
Funny, the exact reason I went for the first time to an Akuzawa and a Sigman seminar, is to check their credentials. I remember thinking "If all that stuff on Aikiweb on internal strength is true, it changes everything!" So I wanted to know what they can do and what their training methodology is like.
And I must say: Yes, it changed everything. Not just how I practice, but also how I think about people's credentials. It all comes down to one thing: show me what you got.
Does that mean you have to go check out every John-sensei that teaches some martial art in a strip mall? No, but I think the oft-mentioned people with regards to interal strength have created enough traffic on this site to warrant a visit to one of their seminars.
+1
Every word!
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:20 PM   #244
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

As I said I will keep an open mind, I would definitely like to try a Mike Sigman seminar at some point.
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:55 PM   #245
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
The thing is I can't rationalize spending good money on a fee as well as traveling costs to go see someone without any credentials demonstrating "ancient lost techniques." Until there is someone teaching with some legitimate authority on the subject I will sit this one out. But I will read Ellis Amdur's book, he is someone I would be comfortable learning from.
I'd view it a bit differently. If you have higher ranking instructors seeking these guys out and saying good things about them and you respect those people's opinions then I would take their advice to heart.

Of course another way is to feel people who have been to seminars/workshops and have been working on their own. If you havent seen them for a few months or years and the next time you meet them they feel different its worth investigating further. Thats basically what happened to me. I didn't feel some of the aunkai students for a year after my initial meeting. When I came back and felt them again and saw the gains in power, I knew there was something to be gained from that sort of training.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:25 PM   #246
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

I agree, the only way to know for sure is to give it a try. I am simply by nature a very skeptical person but at the same time I am capable of changing my mind and admitting I am wrong. So next time a seminar comes to the Northern Virginia area I will be sure to check it out with an open mind.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:44 PM   #247
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
I am simply by nature a very skeptical person
Be skeptical that the training one is doing is the most effective use of ones time. There is always a better way.

"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 10-13-2010, 03:12 PM   #248
HL1978
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Quote:
Michael Neal wrote: View Post
I agree, the only way to know for sure is to give it a try. I am simply by nature a very skeptical person but at the same time I am capable of changing my mind and admitting I am wrong. So next time a seminar comes to the Northern Virginia area I will be sure to check it out with an open mind.
There are a couple of practice groups in the area that you can check out as well.
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Old 10-13-2010, 04:24 PM   #249
Michael Neal
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

Great, where do these groups train at?
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:52 PM   #250
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Re: Ueshiba Morihei's power

In terms of credentials since we are talking about marital arts there is only one thing that counts and that is can you walk the walk? Takeda, by all accounts, didn't wax lyrical about philosophy or spirituality, he simply said attack me. That is all the credentials you need really. I may be mistaken but although Takeda's history is well documented today wasn't he relatively unknown when he started teaching? Otherwise he wouldn't have needed people to "persuade" people to take his seminars.
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