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Old 08-13-2011, 01:31 PM   #1
Mary Eastland
 
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common ground??

[/quote]

This picture is so interesting me as an example of one point testing. I see it pop up from time to time in discussions including Dan, Mike and others. Each person seems to see something different.
Can we suppose for an instant than no one is an expert at what that picture shows and each one of us tells what it shows to us so maybe we can find some common ground.

Here is what I see: Nage is pushing uke's arm down and back in an appropriate test for uke's ability. Uke is keeping one point...shoulders relaxed, no pushing back just extending energy.

I see the value of this exercise as developing a correct feeling that can be used in life for balance, peacefulness and self defense.

Will you describe what you see...with no insults or negative comments?

Last edited by Mary Eastland : 08-13-2011 at 01:31 PM. Reason: so
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Old 08-13-2011, 03:14 PM   #2
Adam Huss
 
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Re: common ground??

Is that Toyoda Sensei?

I'm not really going to comment on what the picture is 'saying' other than it looks like some sort of balance test.

Ichi Go, Ichi Ei!
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Old 08-13-2011, 04:29 PM   #3
Michael Hackett
Dojo: Kenshinkan Dojo (Aikido of North County) Vista, CA
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Re: common ground??

I see a common ki testing exercise required by the AAA. At least in the AAA the tester is pushing directly backwards while the test subject is extending and remaining relaxed. Actually fun to do and almost rises to the level of a parlor trick. I've never experienced it with the tester pushing down and back though. I'll give it a try Monday night. That could be Toyoda Fumio Sensei in his younger days. He trained with Tohei Sensei for many years before breaking away and founding the AAA. Toyoda Sensei kept the ki testing and aiki taiso in the AAA curriculum after leaving Tohei Sensei.

Michael
"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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Old 08-13-2011, 04:41 PM   #4
JW
 
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Re: common ground??

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
no pushing back just extending energy.
I guess my answer is basically the same, but I'm going to go with the other side of the same coin: he is receiving the push into the ground through himself.

Or more colorfully: he has already received the ground into him, and then the push comes, which he receives. Since he is receiving both, they meet in the middle.

I think it is important that tests like this be done in locations like the front of the shoulder, the chest, etc. It is harder, so weaker forces should be used at first, but I think it is worth it. You still have to fully receive the push, but you have less of your body availble to do that with (you know you aren't using the arm if the arm is out of the picture).
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Old 08-13-2011, 05:41 PM   #5
Janet Rosen
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Re: common ground??

Quote:
Jonathan Wong wrote: View Post
I guess my answer is basically the same, but I'm going to go with the other side of the same coin: he is receiving the push into the ground through himself.
My own experience with this specific ki test, doing it and introducing newbies to it, is that grounding is not enough - or let me put it this way: *visualizing* or *feeling* grounding, or as we might express it, mind and one point and dropping center, is not enough - for newbies esp. this results in them dropping away from the contact.
So the "extending ki" is also necessary. Not as a push back against the testing hand or leaning weight into it (you don't want to fall forward if the tester releases quickly) but as a sense of ... well different folks use different ways to express it when teaching, be it hoses with water or engaging triceps or shooting ki from fingertips. Personally I tend to explain it as meeting the pushing hand then reaching out past it, beyond the wall of the dojo to extend oneself so large as to be reaching to and inviting in the whole world.It seems to make folks get a sense of largeness they need....sort of like when I work with beginning painting students and needing to just hand them a much larger brush than they are working with!

Janet Rosen
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Old 08-13-2011, 05:54 PM   #6
Mike Sigman
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Re: common ground??

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post


This picture is so interesting me as an example of one point testing. I see it pop up from time to time in discussions including Dan, Mike and others. Each person seems to see something different.
Can we suppose for an instant than no one is an expert at what that picture shows and each one of us tells what it shows to us so maybe we can find some common ground.

Here is what I see: Nage is pushing uke's arm down and back in an appropriate test for uke's ability. Uke is keeping one point...shoulders relaxed, no pushing back just extending energy.

I see the value of this exercise as developing a correct feeling that can be used in life for balance, peacefulness and self defense.

Will you describe what you see...with no insults or negative comments?
Mary, there are a number of connotations of the whole qi/ki paradigm that are involved in what is translated as "extend ki". I have seen (and can show a limited few) of some of the facets of the larger context of qi/ki, but in the photo you're showing there is a physical act... which must be explainable by a physically logical reason. I.e. "peacefulness" or similar intangible concepts *may* be there, but they are tangential to the physical phenomenon being demonstrated.

What I'm saying is that let's look at the physical phenomenon alone. First of all, there is a generally discernible incoming force from Uke. Nage is not leaning, but for some reason is not falling over backward. A quick general evaluation of the static situation shows that Nage's only point of contact to something substantial other than himself is at the point where his one foot is in contact with the ground. The major idea is that somehow an incoming force is balanced at a not-vertical angle into the ground. Hmmmm ... somehow Nage has chosen to respond (and can actually do it!) at some angle that is not vertical to the incoming force such that everything is in equilibrium. If things are not in physical equilibrium, then they must move in some direction.

So let's think about the situation where a native porter of some country carries a large load settled on the top of his head. There have been studies showing that many native porters can carry loads on their heads much more efficiently than an untrainded westerner can. To cut it short, the big difference is probably that a trained porter simply relaxes and lets the force of the load go through his skeleton so that the ground carries the main load. An untrained westerner, on the other hand, starts worrying about actually holding the load against gravity, and hence does something quite different from what the native porter does, *even though a picture of the two of them will give them impression that what they're doing is the same thing.*

In the case of Nage in the picture, he simply lets the incoming force go through to the ground at an appropriate angle rather than "holding" it. In other words, most (if not all) of the "ki tricks" that you see Ueshiba, Tohei, the picture above, etc., do is to allow an incoming force go directly to the ground. This allowing the ground to hold a force, or to use the ground's force to push/hit someone, is what is called the Ki of Earth and why O-Sensei references it in his writings.

FWIW

Mike Sigman
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Old 08-13-2011, 06:56 PM   #7
graham christian
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Re: common ground??

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
My own experience with this specific ki test, doing it and introducing newbies to it, is that grounding is not enough - or let me put it this way: *visualizing* or *feeling* grounding, or as we might express it, mind and one point and dropping center, is not enough - for newbies esp. this results in them dropping away from the contact.
So the "extending ki" is also necessary. Not as a push back against the testing hand or leaning weight into it (you don't want to fall forward if the tester releases quickly) but as a sense of ... well different folks use different ways to express it when teaching, be it hoses with water or engaging triceps or shooting ki from fingertips. Personally I tend to explain it as meeting the pushing hand then reaching out past it, beyond the wall of the dojo to extend oneself so large as to be reaching to and inviting in the whole world.It seems to make folks get a sense of largeness they need....sort of like when I work with beginning painting students and needing to just hand them a much larger brush than they are working with!
I agree. I will add this one caveat though. When it comes to said principles I work from the view of one out all out. Meaning they are all interdependent. As you say if students need to concentrate more on one then that is the one they need to get more reality on.

Regards.G.
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Old 08-14-2011, 05:32 AM   #8
danielajames
 
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Re: common ground??

Quote:
Adam Huss wrote: View Post
Is that Toyoda Sensei?
Tamura (L) and Maruyama(R) Sensei's of the Ki no Kenkyukai at the time I think.

To me the picture shows Tamura setting(toppling) Maruyama Sensei back on his heels so that he cannot be pushed effectively.

dan

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Old 08-16-2011, 06:47 AM   #9
ryback
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Re: common ground??

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post

Well, to be honest, i have absolutely no idea what it shows... What it could be showing is an exercise for grounding the uke's force without resisting it but then again i'm not sure.What puzzles me is the tori's stance.Standing on one foot, he is compromizing his ballance, but that could also be part of the exercise.Strange though, because steady base and solid ballance are fundamental to aikido and you must maintain them in order to practice the unbendable arm, the unmovable body and other ki extending or ki grounding techniques.So it actually seems that i've made my point:I have absolutely no idea what it shows!

Last edited by ryback : 08-16-2011 at 06:50 AM.
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