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Old 07-08-2012, 01:05 AM   #1
Michael Varin
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Aiki in MMA

Anderson Silva is the best martial artist of our time.

He is the only person who has diplayed aiki consistantly in the UFC, and is really on a different level than most of the top fighters in the world.

Just wanted to say that.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 07-08-2012, 04:01 PM   #2
aikilouis
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Re: Aiki in MMA

... according to your personal definitions of "aiki" and of what constitutes "the best martial artist of our time".

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Old 07-08-2012, 07:21 PM   #3
Michael Hackett
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Anderson Silva is clearly the best MMA fighter at his weight in the UFC, and pretty darned good at BJJ. I don't know that he's the best martial artist of our time since I can't even begin to define what that is. I certainly don't want to try him on for size. I am a big fan of his, but I don't think he belongs on some pedestal as that would be a shaky position.

Michael
"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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Old 07-08-2012, 10:22 PM   #4
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Yeah he is pretty good. michael, can you provide some clips or examples of where he demonstrates aiki? As I have stated in the past the top guys in BJJ I contend get it, if they cannot verbalize or teach it, they have some abilities, IMO. So no doubt I agree, but just wondered how you make that assessment for discussion or argument as we like to do here!

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Old 07-10-2012, 02:20 AM   #5
Michael Varin
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Kevin Leavitt wrote:
Yeah he is pretty good. michael, can you provide some clips or examples of where he demonstrates aiki? As I have stated in the past the top guys in BJJ I contend get it, if they cannot verbalize or teach it, they have some abilities, IMO. So no doubt I agree, but just wondered how you make that assessment for discussion or argument as we like to do here!
Hey Kevin,

I'll get on YouTube and see if I can find them (the UFC pulls a lot of this stuff), but off the top of my head, I would say his fight against Forrest Griffin, his second fight against Yushin Okami, and his most recent fight against Chael Sonnen have very clear and distinct usage of aiki.

Now, let me say that my definition of aiki may be different from some other posters on AikiWeb.

To me aiki is a relational skill; one in which you can produce appropriate and non-random action in response to and cloaked by the opponent's intention/commitment.

Maybe what I am talking about is just his perceptive abilities, but Anderson displays a level of mastery that is rare.

He has many other attributes that make him a great fighter as well. And he sure seems to hit hard!

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 07-10-2012, 02:29 AM   #6
Michael Varin
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Michael Hackett wrote:
Anderson Silva is clearly the best MMA fighter at his weight in the UFC, and pretty darned good at BJJ. I don't know that he's the best martial artist of our time since I can't even begin to define what that is. I certainly don't want to try him on for size. I am a big fan of his, but I don't think he belongs on some pedestal as that would be a shaky position.
Well, I suppose there are many way in which one may define the "best martial artist of our time."

You are correct; he shouldn't be placed on a pedestal. And frankly, can't be if he continues to fight in the UFC.

Here's the thing... Anderson puts himself out there on a level that 99% of us will never approach. And within that environment displays a level of artistry and mastery that is well beyond the label of "fighter."

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 07-10-2012, 08:27 AM   #7
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Re: Aiki in MMA

I wonder how long it will be before Sensei Seagal gives an interview to Helwani and takes credit for Silva's "aiki skills"?
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Old 07-10-2012, 09:08 AM   #8
Michael Hackett
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Michael,

If you are talking about his ability to perceive his opponent's intent, he is superb in that regard, but I strongly suspect that speaks to his BJJ experience and training. I know a number of BJJ black belts and have rolled with a couple and they seem to be physical chess masters. It feels like they are always three or four moves ahead of you and that seems to be the case for Anderson Silva. I will grant you that he does "put it out there", but I think that is the case for all of those UFC guys as well. They play in an incredibly tough environment in a very tough game.

Michael
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Old 07-10-2012, 09:55 AM   #9
Gorgeous George
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Richard Stevens wrote: View Post
I wonder how long it will be before Sensei Seagal gives an interview to Helwani and takes credit for Silva's "aiki skills"?
HAHA!

That's probably one of the 'two or three things they thought were illegal'.
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Old 07-10-2012, 10:25 AM   #10
Richard Stevens
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Michael Hackett wrote: View Post
Michael,

If you are talking about his ability to perceive his opponent's intent, he is superb in that regard, but I strongly suspect that speaks to his BJJ experience and training. I know a number of BJJ black belts and have rolled with a couple and they seem to be physical chess masters. It feels like they are always three or four moves ahead of you and that seems to be the case for Anderson Silva. I will grant you that he does "put it out there", but I think that is the case for all of those UFC guys as well. They play in an incredibly tough environment in a very tough game.
I think his striking is far superior to his BJJ. That is to say he is great on the ground, but he is at another level standing. I've yet to see him do anything as spectacular on the ground as he regularly does standing. His last second triangle against Sonnen was more a failure of Chael to recognize what was coming. How long did he have wrist control? I knew that was coming and I have no BJJ background.

Locking Travis Lutter up with a triangle and then ending the fight with elbows was impressive, but not amazing. Getting Henderson's back and submitting him with a rear naked was impressive, but still no where near as amazing as what he can do standing.

I would argue that his ability to perceive his opponents intent should be attributed to his years of training in Muay Thai and Boxing. He undoubtedly has a great ground game, but it's not on the level of say a Vinny Malgalhaes or even Damian Maia. However, his stand-up game is simply unmatched. I can watch the guy throw anchor punches all day long.
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Old 07-10-2012, 11:30 AM   #11
Michael Hackett
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Re: Aiki in MMA

I see it just the opposite Richard. He does have strong striking skills, but he also takes a lot of punishment in doing so. I haven't seen anything spectacular on the ground either, but that holds true for almost all of the submission/BJJ guys as well. He just quietly and competently moves into position and does his thing without any flair or fanfare. Another great skill he has to offer is his tremendous conditioning. He just looks comfortable and capable of doing five or six more rounds without effort. All in all, a tremendous athlete.

Michael
"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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Old 07-10-2012, 12:49 PM   #12
Scott Harrington
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Just saw the Silva / Ortiz fight. Lots of Aiki when you are grabbing the guy's trunks and hitting him. I guess breaking the rules ( and not have the ref calling it) is part of aiki.

Scott Harrington
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Old 07-11-2012, 03:13 PM   #13
DarkShodan
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Scott Harrington wrote: View Post
Just saw the Silva / Ortiz fight. Lots of Aiki when you are grabbing the guy's trunks and hitting him. I guess breaking the rules ( and not have the ref calling it) is part of aiki.

Scott Harrington
Thanks Scott.

Yes, and wiping the Vaseline off his eyebrows onto his shoulders before the Sonnen fight, the shoulder strike to Sonnen at the Weight in, the time he wore the mask at the weigh in for UFC 126 to taunt Vitor Belfort.......I could go on. Yes, nice AIKI there Silva!

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Old 07-11-2012, 04:05 PM   #14
Gorgeous George
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Re: Aiki in MMA

I thought aiki was a physical/mental thing - and not a moral one...
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:04 AM   #15
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Just saw the Silva / Ortiz fight. Lots of Aiki when you are grabbing the guy's trunks and hitting him. I guess breaking the rules ( and not have the ref calling it) is part of aiki.

Scott Harrington
Quote:
Lloyd McWhirt wrote: View Post
Thanks Scott.

Yes, and wiping the Vaseline off his eyebrows onto his shoulders before the Sonnen fight, the shoulder strike to Sonnen at the Weight in, the time he wore the mask at the weigh in for UFC 126 to taunt Vitor Belfort.......I could go on. Yes, nice AIKI there Silva!
All those are little examples to get into the mind of his opponent and throw off their game. In my limited knowledge isn't part of aiki to lead the mind of your opponent? Didn't you both bite just sitting on the couch? Just one way to think about it...

Ryan
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Old 07-13-2012, 02:00 AM   #16
Kevin Leavitt
 
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
I thought aiki was a physical/mental thing - and not a moral one...
I was gonna say the same thing...but to many aiki has many definitions that also gets into ethics.

For me, Silva is a fighter, a damn good one, and understands how to win a fight. You can bitch all day long about vaseline, pulling down trunks and all that...but in the end, they call him "winner" and "undefeated champion".

I think for many in the martial arts community it is more important how you win, not that you do win. I'd say this is important... to a degree....but in the end, it is most important to keep your priorities straight and understand the fine line you have to walk between winning and losing....and walk it.

Michael Hackett's comments about BJJ are same as mine. That is , three or four moves ahead...yeah...good ole OODA at work. Also not being spectacular on the ground? well many examples of him winning fights by submission at that level means he is damn good on the ground. Several of my BJJ friends have rolled with him and I can assure you, that their experiences were that he is one of the best BJJ experts out there. Cael Sonnen is nothing to sneeze at...guy is damn good on the ground himself...so to say that he is not spectacular on ground...well it is realitive to your opponent.

Silva is one of the best balanced martial artist out there...he can do it all stand up and ground fairly easily, and also have a cup of Joe with Seagal Sensei on the side.

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Old 07-13-2012, 08:58 AM   #17
Michael Hackett
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Kevin, when I described Silva as unspectacular on the ground, I take nothing away from him. He simply isn't flashy or over-the-top. The submissions I've seen have been quick, effective and strong. There is no question in my mind that he is superb on the ground, but just quietly efficient.

Michael
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Old 07-13-2012, 09:06 AM   #18
Settokuryoku
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Re: Aiki in MMA

A quick comment from the peanut gallery. Greatest martial artists of our time is....Muhammad Ali.

Personal definitions of Aiki: Ali's bobbing and weaving. His unmatched ability to read his opponents so well he was able to daunt them with fainting punches and superb footwork. Then landing devastating precision punches at will great speed and power. He had skills no other did before him. Be it boxing or Muay Thai, Krav Maga, or even MMA, it doesn't matter what his delivery system is he still would have been the greatest. His Aiki was his electrifying skill and talent, in and outside the ring. A fighter who has not been matched in any fighting sport.

Last edited by Settokuryoku : 07-13-2012 at 09:21 AM.
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Old 07-13-2012, 11:26 AM   #19
Lorel Latorilla
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Its obvious from this thread that most of us need to research what aiki means, and how the people that purported to teach aiki and propagated it (i.e., ueshiba, takeda, sagawa, horikawa, etc.) defined aiki.

Unless stated otherwise, all wisdom, follies, harshness, malice that may spring up from my writing are attributable only to me.
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Old 07-13-2012, 12:06 PM   #20
DH
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Lukas Stark wrote: View Post
A quick comment from the peanut gallery. Greatest martial artists of our time is....Muhammad Ali.

Personal definitions of Aiki: Ali's bobbing and weaving. His unmatched ability to read his opponents so well he was able to daunt them with fainting punches and superb footwork. Then landing devastating precision punches at will great speed and power. He had skills no other did before him. Be it boxing or Muay Thai, Krav Maga, or even MMA, it doesn't matter what his delivery system is he still would have been the greatest. His Aiki was his electrifying skill and talent, in and outside the ring. A fighter who has not been matched in any fighting sport.
I am quite sure that what captivated professional seasoned warriors who were chasing the development of aiki.....was not Bobbing and weaving and timing. They had seen quite a bit of that.

I am equally sure that 99% of all those who practice budo have no idea of what they are talking about. They do not feel unusual, nor are they exceptional, nor can they generate unusual power and aiki...they just "share" observations from wherever they may be in their own journey. I mean, everyone is nice and all. Everyone wants to be friendly, but aren't we in pursuit of unusual people with unusual skills. To that end, does it really matter what most people think about aiki? Has it ever mattered?
Dan
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Old 07-13-2012, 05:46 PM   #21
Settokuryoku
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
[A]I am quite sure that what captivated professional seasoned warriors who were chasing the development of aiki.....was not Bobbing and weaving and timing. They had seen quite a bit of that.

[b] I am equally sure that 99% of all those who practice budo have no idea of what they are talking about. They do not feel unusual, nor are they exceptional, nor can they generate unusual power and aiki...they just "share" observations from wherever they may be in their own journey. I mean, everyone is nice and all. Everyone wants to be friendly, but aren't we in pursuit of unusual people with unusual skills. To that end, does it really matter what most people think about aiki? Has it ever mattered?
Dan
I am really hesitant to make a reply, as I am cautioned by assumptions of a possible precarious inducement. On that caveat, I will afford the benefit of the doubt my assumptions are wrong with a productive positive exchange of ideas with this reply. My personal opinion isn't necessary the same as my professional definition of aiki. My personal opinion was crafted to fit the thread.

Simply it was nothing more in my response than expressing my opinion of who I thought was the greatest martial artist. An unorthodox choice of Ali may have taken some by surprise, by all rights and definitions he is a martial artist.

The addition of a secondary comment to may have gone unnoticed, of what I term as generational lapse. Whereby, for example, what is commonly familiar by a previous generation which becomes the foundation for the development of something important to the proceeding generation they have have further improved. Most 15 years don't know what floppy disk, or a ZIP drive are, those 30 and older do. Ask any 15 year old what a CD and USB drives are, and they can tell you. Generational lapse happens in martial arts as well. Allow me to extrapolate.

Before Silva there was Ali and before Ali there was Osensei before him....Mushashi. No matter what label or term placed on fighting principles it is the person who can put it all together and utilize them in such away it seems effortless, like magic dominating most others with exceptional talent and skill who are termed the greatest.

I really have no inclination to who knows what and how much. Surely I have no interest in partaking in internet contests of budo knowledge. Virtual combat is just what it is, virtual. A martial arts fanatic. as I am, studying Aikido as a hobby besides other arts, my profession is being a sports coach. Before coaching, it was being a top amateur competitive athlete. It all has taught me a great deal what "aiki" is or isn't, among a myriad of other things. My experience both in life and career leads me to similar holistic conclusions as Musashi did. Mushashi’s experience lead him to suggest the study of other crafts and professions to get insight on swordsmenship. Insights applied to most everything that still hold water today. It is not simply cross training, which has different intent. No, it is about seeing similarities of what works and what doesn’t, regardless of sport or art. A point Bruce Lee made when he utilize the Ali shuffle.

My other comments are less detailed. First, nothing is learned over night. You can't teach talent, either some have it or they don't. There are those who need lots of instruction, not equaling the results in the effort to teach the skill. No magic bullets, just tweaks. Those who are talented and gifted go far with the tweaks. Those who lack talent and skill don’t go as far with the same tweaks. They often need more than just a tweak to raise to common play. If you are a coach you know what I mean, by all that. You just can’t teach talent. Hard work and mental toughness and the right attitude is essential to good performance. No tweak or coaching will fix the lack of that in any athlete, because it is essential to improvement and progress. Second, Budo isn't that complicated, it isn't that sophisticated. It is ancient Japanese combat methods, because if it was complex you could train a broad group of varying individuals to preform their duty. Combat skills where simple enough. Only the talented and the gifted survived living to the next day, and the weak fell. Survival of the fittest. Japanese combat skills where turned to an art, and that is where they got complicated, and in my opinion overly complicated. It is my suspicion it was for exploitation as students where not turned out to the battlefield on demand. They longer you dragged things out, and complex they became the long the students stayed. The sensei would profit financially and by reputation. I would be wrong not to mention for the purpose of preservation of combat skills by way of Japanese style sport, termed Budo. Something, no different than the evolution of modern sports the world enjoys.

Modern sports science is far beyond anything developed in budo. Let’s face it, Budo is antiquated on many levels, yet it is what BJJ and MMA is built on. Goes without say, generational lapse applies here too. Most top and pro athletes today would have been the greatest warriors far beyond those of the past like Mushashi. Most practitioners of martial arts are wooed by the mystical asian warrior syndrome. A syndrome selling to millions of people over the centuries martial arts, until the advent of BJJ. In the same way, the term of aiki is an antiquated term that has become commercial value like many other antiquated information and terms relating to budo and other Asian concepts and terms have. Therefore, it is hard to know what budo really means, since many are sold on it. Far too many teachers and leaders in martial arts commercialize it and exploit it to there gain, something Mushashi also mentioned as it happened in his day. OTOH, modern sports philosophy and science can be applied to the martial arts no matter the style. The results built on budo still incorporate the methods and skills from ancient warriors which hasn’t changed, but has been advanced by modern sports and science to levels beyond those of budo. It really doesn’t matter if people understand budo, today unless they want to preserve the Japanese past. It would be my remiss if I didn’t say this includes the good with the bad, dragging out the instruction by making the art overly difficult for personal gain. 

My personal opinion differs greatly than my professional opinion. I curtailed my personal opinion to fit the thread.

From the peanut gallery, I shouted Ali was the greatest martial artist of our time. Ask me who was the most influential, hmmm..... either Osensei or Bruce Lee. A statement better made over a few beers and a game of Texas hold’em with the guys. That would be after debating who is hotter, Megan Fox or Angelina Jolie.

Last edited by Settokuryoku : 07-13-2012 at 05:49 PM.
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Old 07-13-2012, 06:10 PM   #22
Settokuryoku
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Re: Aiki in MMA

I realized now my fault in not expanding further on a thought to avoid confusion. Modern sports, sports science and science can tremendously enhance martial arts performance no matter what style. Look at what it has and will do for MMA. It goes without mention how modern sports approach and science has helped improve clean athletic performance in all areas. I don't see how a modern sports approach would ever conflict with traditional martial arts. Aiki is a term to describe an action and it's results, many define it differently, applying it unconventionally. As a sport minded person for me it doesn't matter what you call it (aiki) it better happen on demand having winning results. Otherwise it is not worth talking about.

Last edited by Settokuryoku : 07-13-2012 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 07-14-2012, 01:58 AM   #23
Lorel Latorilla
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Lukas Stark wrote: View Post
I am really hesitant to make a reply, as I am cautioned by assumptions of a possible precarious inducement. On that caveat, I will afford the benefit of the doubt my assumptions are wrong with a productive positive exchange of ideas with this reply. My personal opinion isn't necessary the same as my professional definition of aiki. My personal opinion was crafted to fit the thread.

Simply it was nothing more in my response than expressing my opinion of who I thought was the greatest martial artist. An unorthodox choice of Ali may have taken some by surprise, by all rights and definitions he is a martial artist.

The addition of a secondary comment to may have gone unnoticed, of what I term as generational lapse. Whereby, for example, what is commonly familiar by a previous generation which becomes the foundation for the development of something important to the proceeding generation they have have further improved. Most 15 years don't know what floppy disk, or a ZIP drive are, those 30 and older do. Ask any 15 year old what a CD and USB drives are, and they can tell you. Generational lapse happens in martial arts as well. Allow me to extrapolate.

Before Silva there was Ali and before Ali there was Osensei before him....Mushashi. No matter what label or term placed on fighting principles it is the person who can put it all together and utilize them in such away it seems effortless, like magic dominating most others with exceptional talent and skill who are termed the greatest.

I really have no inclination to who knows what and how much. Surely I have no interest in partaking in internet contests of budo knowledge. Virtual combat is just what it is, virtual. A martial arts fanatic. as I am, studying Aikido as a hobby besides other arts, my profession is being a sports coach. Before coaching, it was being a top amateur competitive athlete. It all has taught me a great deal what "aiki" is or isn't, among a myriad of other things. My experience both in life and career leads me to similar holistic conclusions as Musashi did. Mushashi's experience lead him to suggest the study of other crafts and professions to get insight on swordsmenship. Insights applied to most everything that still hold water today. It is not simply cross training, which has different intent. No, it is about seeing similarities of what works and what doesn't, regardless of sport or art. A point Bruce Lee made when he utilize the Ali shuffle.

My other comments are less detailed. First, nothing is learned over night. You can't teach talent, either some have it or they don't. There are those who need lots of instruction, not equaling the results in the effort to teach the skill. No magic bullets, just tweaks. Those who are talented and gifted go far with the tweaks. Those who lack talent and skill don't go as far with the same tweaks. They often need more than just a tweak to raise to common play. If you are a coach you know what I mean, by all that. You just can't teach talent. Hard work and mental toughness and the right attitude is essential to good performance. No tweak or coaching will fix the lack of that in any athlete, because it is essential to improvement and progress. Second, Budo isn't that complicated, it isn't that sophisticated. It is ancient Japanese combat methods, because if it was complex you could train a broad group of varying individuals to preform their duty. Combat skills where simple enough. Only the talented and the gifted survived living to the next day, and the weak fell. Survival of the fittest. Japanese combat skills where turned to an art, and that is where they got complicated, and in my opinion overly complicated. It is my suspicion it was for exploitation as students where not turned out to the battlefield on demand. They longer you dragged things out, and complex they became the long the students stayed. The sensei would profit financially and by reputation. I would be wrong not to mention for the purpose of preservation of combat skills by way of Japanese style sport, termed Budo. Something, no different than the evolution of modern sports the world enjoys.

Modern sports science is far beyond anything developed in budo. Let's face it, Budo is antiquated on many levels, yet it is what BJJ and MMA is built on. Goes without say, generational lapse applies here too. Most top and pro athletes today would have been the greatest warriors far beyond those of the past like Mushashi. Most practitioners of martial arts are wooed by the mystical asian warrior syndrome. A syndrome selling to millions of people over the centuries martial arts, until the advent of BJJ. In the same way, the term of aiki is an antiquated term that has become commercial value like many other antiquated information and terms relating to budo and other Asian concepts and terms have. Therefore, it is hard to know what budo really means, since many are sold on it. Far too many teachers and leaders in martial arts commercialize it and exploit it to there gain, something Mushashi also mentioned as it happened in his day. OTOH, modern sports philosophy and science can be applied to the martial arts no matter the style. The results built on budo still incorporate the methods and skills from ancient warriors which hasn't changed, but has been advanced by modern sports and science to levels beyond those of budo. It really doesn't matter if people understand budo, today unless they want to preserve the Japanese past. It would be my remiss if I didn't say this includes the good with the bad, dragging out the instruction by making the art overly difficult for personal gain. 

My personal opinion differs greatly than my professional opinion. I curtailed my personal opinion to fit the thread.

From the peanut gallery, I shouted Ali was the greatest martial artist of our time. Ask me who was the most influential, hmmm..... either Osensei or Bruce Lee. A statement better made over a few beers and a game of Texas hold'em with the guys. That would be after debating who is hotter, Megan Fox or Angelina Jolie.
Question what isyour definition of aiki, what makes the skill of aiki and thus the martial art of aikido or daito ryu aikijujutsu different from other arts, and how does yoru definition of aiki jive with the likes of Ueshiba, Takeda, Sagawa, etc.?

Unless stated otherwise, all wisdom, follies, harshness, malice that may spring up from my writing are attributable only to me.
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Old 07-14-2012, 04:05 AM   #24
Michael Varin
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Lorel,

Question: How much time per week have you spent training martial arts in the past five years? Ten years? What is your current training regimen? Just curious...

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 07-14-2012, 04:41 AM   #25
Lorel Latorilla
Location: Osaka
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 311
Japan
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Re: Aiki in MMA

Quote:
Michael Varin wrote: View Post
Lorel,

Question: How much time per week have you spent training martial arts in the past five years? Ten years? What is your current training regimen? Just curious...
How does this relate to the question? Just curious.

Unless stated otherwise, all wisdom, follies, harshness, malice that may spring up from my writing are attributable only to me.
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