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Old 10-07-2011, 01:32 PM   #51
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Hi Keith.
Yes you are correct in thinking I am talking training and bokken. Far be it for me to question or think I have anywhere near your knowledge on swords, types, history etc. as I would assume it is one of your specialist fields of study.

Regards.G.
 
Old 10-07-2011, 01:42 PM   #52
Cliff Judge
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Gerardo Torres wrote: View Post
That's not what I meant.

Again, taking the limited example of somebody trying to cut or strike your wrist, a defensive move would involve proper use of the blade, body movement, a possible counter, and other factors. The tsuba might or might not be involved. My point is that while the tsuba might offer some protection, it's besides the point arguing that it should be there or not because it's not an all-defining factor in every situation (it depends on what you're trying to do). Besides, the other person also has a tsuba, so if it offers such a distinct "artificial" protective advantage as some claim here, wouldn't that make it a fair match?

I don't know Chiba's sword techniques so you'd have to go ask those who do why they're using tsuba. That said, the one example shown in the video is not the only way your wrist could be targeted. In many cases, the tsuba is not going to save you or help you much or at all.

If your wrist attack is completely compromised by your opponent having a sword with a tsuba... what kind of sword training is that? It shouldn't matter. Any proper style or technique would consider the presence or absence of tsuba from the onset; so again, it's besides the point arguing that it should be there or not.
Sorry! I thought you meant that slowing down and working on precision was the thing that didn't matter. I find myself in agreement with what you are saying here, so I obviously didn't grasp what you were saying originally.
 
Old 10-07-2011, 01:56 PM   #53
lbb
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Is this the thing we are talking about? It is what I think we are talking about but I am not sure.
Not really. Look at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzDJdKl9PRc at about 24 seconds.

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Is the point to hit uke's tsuba
I believe I already explained that it is not.

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
If you are trying to hit their wrist, then you shouldn't be hitting the tsuba, right?
How would you accomplish that, from that angle, when doing a proper cut? Perhaps by using a rubber sword?

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
If you are trying to hit their wrist, are you trying to hurt them during training? What is the point of the feedback you mention? That is feedback that...what happened exactly?
If you are doing empty-hand practice, and uke attacks with tsuki, is uke trying to hurt his/her partner during training?
 
Old 10-07-2011, 02:04 PM   #54
lbb
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Tell me, do you think relying on tsuba to protect your hands always is right?
Tell me, have you stopped beating your wife yet, Graham?

You continually reframe the question to misstate others' position. This is passive-aggressive and intellectually dishonest.
 
Old 10-07-2011, 02:51 PM   #55
Cliff Judge
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Re: Why no tsuba?

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Not really. Look at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzDJdKl9PRc at about 24 seconds.
lol let him have it with the "behind the back" video clip! That'll teach him to ask too many questions!
 
Old 10-07-2011, 03:04 PM   #56
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Tell me, have you stopped beating your wife yet, Graham?

You continually reframe the question to misstate others' position. This is passive-aggressive and intellectually dishonest.
Woah, so what's that? Active aggressive? It appears your tongue is a sword and it needs a tsuba. You seem to want to prove how you must have and use a tsuba.

The op is why no tsuba. When you can give such possible reasons then we can talk.

Regards.G.

Last edited by graham christian : 10-07-2011 at 03:06 PM.
 
Old 10-07-2011, 03:35 PM   #57
Fred Little
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Why no tsuba?

"Because that's not the way we do it in this school."

Beyond that, I would note that a decent tsuba will cost as much as a bokuto and more than a bargain judo-style keiko-gi, and also note that aikido has had an orientation toward keeping entry-level equipment prices low for 60+ years. Materialist explanation often misses part of the story. That's why I started with the oft-heard quotation above.

Hope this helps.

Fred

 
Old 10-07-2011, 03:48 PM   #58
Janet Rosen
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Fred Little wrote: View Post
Why no tsuba?

"Because that's not the way we do it in this school."

Beyond that, I would note that a decent tsuba will cost as much as a bokuto and more than a bargain judo-style keiko-gi, and also note that aikido has had an orientation toward keeping entry-level equipment prices low for 60+ years. Materialist explanation often misses part of the story. That's why I started with the oft-heard quotation above.

Hope this helps.

Fred

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Old 10-07-2011, 04:25 PM   #59
sakumeikan
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Not really. Look at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzDJdKl9PRc at about 24 seconds.

proper cut? Perhaps by using a rubber sword?
Mary /Cliff,
The vids you quote are basic exercises in Chiba Senseis school.Kiri otoshi, tsuri otoshi and a couple of others whose names I cannot remember at present are done.The main one done atJodan /Chudan , gedan level is kiri otoshi. Uke is Robert Savoca.When we used to train in these movements some people wore hockey gloves to protect wrist, knuckles.They also used gloves when doing Jo work.Maki otoshi, otoshi tsuki in particular could give you a rap on the hands if you were not careful.One of my mates sustained a very swollen hand acting as Uke doing this waza. Cheers, Joe

Last edited by akiy : 10-08-2011 at 02:14 PM.
 
Old 10-07-2011, 04:42 PM   #60
sakumeikan
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
I often screw up the process of articulating what i am trying to say. it certainly does look like I was criticizing the type of practice Joe was describing, but ultimately I have not trained with Chiba Sensei and I don't know much about what he was describing. I suspect his characterization of that type of training was tilted towards his own badassness.

But still: once again, if you are training how to use a tsuba in some way, then you need a tsuba. I am talking about techniques where you use the tsuba to deflect or catch the striking sword's blade, perhaps as a means of taking them off balance and throwing them or something like that.

However, I do think there is something wrong with your training if you are relying on your bokken's tsuba to protect your hands from sloppy or imprecise technique that is not supposed to involve the tsuba.

A general example is where your maai is too small, or your cut is too shallow, and somebody's fingers get tapped. Somebody screwed something up, so do you want to ignore the mistake, or fix it? If you go "whatever!" and keep hacking away at each other, I think that really is lazy.

The description of Chiba Sensei's kiri otoshi is interesting because it doesn't sound like you are supposed to strike your partner on the tsuba, you are trying to hit their wrist. So in this case, it sounds like you want the tsuba there so you learn how to hit the wrist instead. But Joe implied that the tsuba prevents your hand from getting injured by the technique, which is confusing.

If you want to learn how to hit someone's wrist, kote seem to be indicated. But they are not really protective enough for use with bokken.
Cliff,
Its difficult to put into written form what kiri otoshi is within the ryu of Chiba Sensei.I can assure you that in no way is it trying to be a bad ass.In fact care and attention is the key factor .However if one
decides by mutual consent to raise the level of the game[usually experienced guys do this] as a safety precaution tsuba are used.We also use a padded shinai which does the same job as a bokuto ,but needless to say does not cause so much potential for
sustaining a hit on the knuckle.If you look carefully at Chiba Sensei you will note he cuts well down on the hilt of ukes bokuto .Watch the vid when he does this slowly.You will see he takes ukes wrist area.By using a hip twist ,hamni , full extension and with a forward motion in the cut Tori in effect controls uke.
Cheers, Joe.
 
Old 10-07-2011, 05:35 PM   #61
Keith Larman
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Fred Little wrote: View Post
Why no tsuba?

"Because that's not the way we do it in this school."

Beyond that, I would note that a decent tsuba will cost as much as a bokuto and more than a bargain judo-style keiko-gi, and also note that aikido has had an orientation toward keeping entry-level equipment prices low for 60+ years. Materialist explanation often misses part of the story. That's why I started with the oft-heard quotation above.

Hope this helps.

Fred
Yah, so many simple questions I had when I first started with sword crafts were answered that way. Only because later when I learned more I found the questions actually made little sense. Funny how that works.

And I love Kim Taylor's stitched leather tsuba for jodo practice. Those things are beasts...

 
Old 10-09-2011, 05:45 PM   #62
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Re: Why no tsuba?

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
I would say very simply that a tsuba makes you lazy. Learning how to protect your hands and knuckles etc. is all part of the training.
It would be equally accurate (or inaccurate) to say that *not* having a tsuba causes your partners to pull their strikes to avoid injuring you. Learning how to deal with realistic strikes is part of the training, too.

I once had a partner hit my (wooden) tsuba hard enough to split it in half. I'm pretty happy that the tsuba took the blow instead of my hand.

I've also seen quite a few techniques where the tsuba plays an important role. Certainly they are considered essential equipment in both my current and previous dojos.

So I'd say a blanket statement like yours says more about you than about the value (or not) of a tsuba.

Katherine
 
Old 10-09-2011, 06:01 PM   #63
kewms
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Anyone who would use a live blade without a tsuba, please raise your hand...

Yeah, didn't think so.

Katherine
 
Old 10-09-2011, 06:35 PM   #64
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
It would be equally accurate (or inaccurate) to say that *not* having a tsuba causes your partners to pull their strikes to avoid injuring you. Learning how to deal with realistic strikes is part of the training, too.

I once had a partner hit my (wooden) tsuba hard enough to split it in half. I'm pretty happy that the tsuba took the blow instead of my hand.

I've also seen quite a few techniques where the tsuba plays an important role. Certainly they are considered essential equipment in both my current and previous dojos.

So I'd say a blanket statement like yours says more about you than about the value (or not) of a tsuba.

Katherine
I hope it does both.

Regards.G.
 
Old 10-09-2011, 09:47 PM   #65
Michael Hackett
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Re: Why no tsuba?

We don't use tsuba in our bokken work as our aiki ken is intended to relate to open hand technique and movement. One of my dojo mates is a Chiba Sensei sandan and he is the only one in the dojo with a tsuba on his bokken. I asked him about it and he explained that it protected the hands and fingers during bokken waza in their practice. He also said that he personally wore hockey gloves when doing weapons work as protection for his fingers and hands. He explained that weapons work was very vigorous and often resulted in smacked fingers and hands, hence the extra protection. He is great fun to train with and he has yet to strike my hands - a testament to his skill and not mine. From that limited perspective it would appear that we don't use tsuba because our practice doesn't require it, and that it would be very valuable to have one if training in a Chiba school.

Michael
"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
 
Old 10-09-2011, 11:16 PM   #66
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Two points to add, views of mine, and those with other views doesn't mean they have to be offended.

One is that from my view any swordsman in practice who cannot control his sword to the point if stopping it at the strike point is not very good. (whether 5mph or 90mph) Therefore with that amount of discipline and skill there is never the need for a tsuba. This ability to control the bokken, or sword for that matter, should be one of the primary aims before anyone tries 'fast high level sparring'

Secondly I say that the primary purpose of a tsuba is Not the protection of the hands. That's not how it came in to being and not therefore what it was for. They had gauntlets for that.

Regards.G.
 
Old 10-10-2011, 01:34 AM   #67
kewms
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
One is that from my view any swordsman in practice who cannot control his sword to the point if stopping it at the strike point is not very good. (whether 5mph or 90mph) Therefore with that amount of discipline and skill there is never the need for a tsuba. This ability to control the bokken, or sword for that matter, should be one of the primary aims before anyone tries 'fast high level sparring'

Secondly I say that the primary purpose of a tsuba is Not the protection of the hands. That's not how it came in to being and not therefore what it was for. They had gauntlets for that.
A few points.

First, gauntlets were a battlefield accoutrement. You wouldn't wear them on the street, or to a social gathering. The samurai class wore their swords *everywhere."

Second, without a tsuba, the hands become an immediate and obvious target. Sliding down the opponent's blade disarms him or takes his fingers off, rather than trapping you against his guard. That alone makes a significant difference in strategy.

And finally, no matter how good your control is, accidents happen. They happen more often as you approach your personal limits, but if you never test those limits, it's difficult to expand them.

Katherine
 
Old 10-10-2011, 02:44 AM   #68
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
A few points.

First, gauntlets were a battlefield accoutrement. You wouldn't wear them on the street, or to a social gathering. The samurai class wore their swords *everywhere."

Second, without a tsuba, the hands become an immediate and obvious target. Sliding down the opponent's blade disarms him or takes his fingers off, rather than trapping you against his guard. That alone makes a significant difference in strategy.

And finally, no matter how good your control is, accidents happen. They happen more often as you approach your personal limits, but if you never test those limits, it's difficult to expand them.

Katherine
That's fine you say that so let's clarify.

Whenever real swords are mentioned you enter the field of battle so gauntlets were hand protection. In the field of battle gauntlets were hand protection and the tsuba was not.

How social gatherings or samurai class fit in I fail to see.

Real swords however is a side issue for it is obvious that if I say no tsuba then I am talking bokken for you can't get a real sword without one. (unless you want to be pedantic then you could find that there are 'some' real katana without them.)

On your second point of hands becoming a target well you say it as if that's bad. I would say that's good 'strategy.' I would also say that bokken sliding down bokken is the result of bad movement. So we differ there, thats fine.

Lastly on your final point I will say this. Doing things based on accidents happen to me is merely a reflection of current unbudolike society. It sounds so reasonable yet can be unknowingly detrimental. Using things to protect or even do a person loses how to do it them-self. Washing machine breaks down, person don't know what to do.

So that last point is actually the one I hoped some might look at without me having to explain in detail.

Basically dependancy. Depend on washing machine, it breaks, lost. Depend on tsuba, one day no tsuba, lost. Depend on sword, one day no sword, lost.

Only on seeing this will a person realize there's more to it than meets the eye. The highest form of sword is empty hands. No sword, no tsuba, no excuse.

By the way I would say the primary reason for the tsuba on a sword is for when it is used in battle or practice to thrust into something like a spear. In this case it would stop your hand slipping onto the blade.

Personally, and I emphasize personally, I would say I see no other reason for it. Also personally I would say that a person pushing themself to their limits includes the point I made on control rather than excuses losing it for losing it shows beyond their limits so those who boast of such things thinking it's something good I can but smile.

Regards.G.
 
Old 10-10-2011, 06:43 AM   #69
mathewjgano
 
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Lastly on your final point I will say this. Doing things based on accidents happen to me is merely a reflection of current unbudolike society. It sounds so reasonable yet can be unknowingly detrimental.
Sure, and living in a safe neighborhood can have the same effect, but I doubt you'd suggest we should all live in Compton, CA, or move to Afghanistan. The question to my mind isn't whether taking the safer road is more lazy, it's "what's the purpose being engaged?" Every facet of our behavior "ought" ideally have a purpose/reason to it. For example, practicing without tsuba is lazy if you haven't taken the time to replace your rubberband thingy (technical term ).
At my school we've done a kind of kirikaeshi which made me very greatful for that piece of wood. Since we didn't know which techniques we would be working on, it was much easier just to leave it on. Plus, I'm of the opinion that it's generally better to develop a good feeling for using bokuto with it on since it can feel constraining if you're not used to it (in my case at least). My personal view is that I should be able to operate the bokuto without having to "choke up on the stick."

Quote:
In this case it would stop your hand slipping onto the blade.
This doesn't fit with my understanding of how grip should work...but then again, accidents do happen!

Last edited by mathewjgano : 10-10-2011 at 06:46 AM.

Gambarimashyo!
 
Old 10-10-2011, 07:30 AM   #70
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Although it did occur to me you might not have meant "lazy" by "unbudolike." Nonetheless, I would say accidents are one of the foremost teachers, so strictly speaking it seems like a good idea to "[Do things based on accidents happenning]." I agree it's a bad idea to allow yourself too much slack though.
I can see how "no tsuba" could be a good specific training method too, though. As you said, showing why the blades shouldn't slide unless you specifically want them to slide is pretty useful. If the practice isn't too forceful/vigorous it wouldn't hurt so much, but it would create a visceral connection when contact with the hand is made, which is I think, invaluable, if not entirely crucial, to the budo learning process.

Last edited by mathewjgano : 10-10-2011 at 07:36 AM. Reason: Lazy spelling makes for bad spelling. :)

Gambarimashyo!
 
Old 10-10-2011, 07:41 AM   #71
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Woah, so what's that? Active aggressive? It appears your tongue is a sword and it needs a tsuba. You seem to want to prove how you must have and use a tsuba.

The op is why no tsuba. When you can give such possible reasons then we can talk.
I'm not really interested in talking to you, to be honest. You started out in this thread judging something you don't know about. When your assertions were refuted, you tried to move the goalposts. When called on that, you blame others. You continually insult and belittle others, cloaking your insults and sneers in newage aphorisms and faux-zel platitudes, and no matter how many times this is pointed out to you, you persist in this incivil behavior. No, I really am not interested in talking to you.

*plonk*
 
Old 10-10-2011, 09:39 AM   #72
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Whenever real swords are mentioned you enter the field of battle
Not true. After the establishment of the Shogunate (1600 AD), there was very little large scale combat in Japan. Rather, swords were much more likely to be used for personal self-defense: on the street, in one's home, or in social disputes.

Quote:
Real swords however is a side issue for it is obvious that if I say no tsuba then I am talking bokken for you can't get a real sword without one.
If you don't consider real swords relevant to your bokken practice, then exactly what are you studying?

Quote:
On your second point of hands becoming a target well you say it as if that's bad. I would say that's good 'strategy.' I would also say that bokken sliding down bokken is the result of bad movement. So we differ there, thats fine.
"Good" from the point of view of the attacker, "bad" from the point of view of the person whose hands are exposed. And I would say that understanding bokken-to-bokken sliding is essential, and wonder, again, exactly what you're studying if you don't think so.

Quote:
Personally, and I emphasize personally, I would say I see no other reason for it. Also personally I would say that a person pushing themself to their limits includes the point I made on control rather than excuses losing it for losing it shows beyond their limits so those who boast of such things thinking it's something good I can but smile.
*shrug* Your practice, your choice.

Katherine
 
Old 10-10-2011, 09:44 AM   #73
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
Not true. After the establishment of the Shogunate (1600 AD), there was very little large scale combat in Japan.
And even before, swords were not the main weapons in the battlefield.

 
Old 10-10-2011, 06:38 PM   #74
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Ha,ha. You are funny some of you.

Obviously you want to talk about swords. Amazing.

Obviously you don't want to offer any reasons for no tsuba. Equally amazing.

Have fun. G.
 
Old 10-10-2011, 08:25 PM   #75
graham christian
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Re: Why no tsuba?

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
Although it did occur to me you might not have meant "lazy" by "unbudolike." Nonetheless, I would say accidents are one of the foremost teachers, so strictly speaking it seems like a good idea to "[Do things based on accidents happenning]." I agree it's a bad idea to allow yourself too much slack though.
I can see how "no tsuba" could be a good specific training method too, though. As you said, showing why the blades shouldn't slide unless you specifically want them to slide is pretty useful. If the practice isn't too forceful/vigorous it wouldn't hurt so much, but it would create a visceral connection when contact with the hand is made, which is I think, invaluable, if not entirely crucial, to the budo learning process.
I like your logic that accidents are a good teacher but the conclusion?
Not for me.Quite the opposite.

When you have an accident it is telling you something was out. No zanshin or no correct movement or no connection or.......

Now as you already know what they are then the accident tells you you were lazy. To think it's good to have more accidents?

Many places have many accidents and call it real tough training. Lazy. Ill disciplined.

The other point I made earlier is that good control of the 'blade' is primary. To move it fast and stop it at will is primary. Not secondary, not well sometimes, not yeah but when, always.

The first lesson to learn and admit is that when you make a mistake, when you hurt someone 'by accident' you were lazy in one way or another.

I choose this terminology to do with the bokken or any dangerous weapon because from my point of view that is the attitude necessary for you to have with both self and partner with such things if you really want to learn self discipline and self control. Depend on nothing except your ability. Blame nothing except youself.

If you use tsuba fine but everytime yours gets hit then it isn't lucky it's bad movement. If you acknowledge this to yourself then it's all good and you can carry on using tsuba. If you don't look at it that way then you are either unaware that you should or not disciplined enough. Lazy.

Such is my view and such is my view on people who have used tsuba for a while but never questioned it or looked at it in the way I describe above.

The tone of this post Matthew is merely a reflection of the discipline I insist on and not directed at your response or you.

By the way, in your nice safe neighbourhood do you therefore leave your doors open, keys in the car, notes on your front door of your whereabouts? Do you DEPEND on that safe neighbourhood?
No of course you don't and that's my point. If you did what would you call yourself?

Anyway, enough on this topic from me. I'll put my sword away now.

Regards.G.
 

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