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Old 02-01-2013, 07:18 PM   #51
hughrbeyer
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Bernd Lehnen wrote: View Post
But…frankly, if you could make this distinction, may be, that would a big leap forward for you, don't you think?
Um... why? I think they're both pointing to the same use of the mind to lead the body. If I'm wrong about that, then yes, there's something to learn.

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Bernd Lehnen wrote: View Post
Have you ever been pushed by a car? If so, you would know, that this has nothing in common with two living beings, pushing each other.
True enough. My point for Chris H was that even in the simplest case--pushing a dead weight on wheels--you don't want to use his preferred structure. You'd never push a car with absolutely straight arms. So even in the simplest case, his block man model fails.

Evolution doesn't prove God doesn't exist, any more than hammers prove carpenters don't exist.
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:50 PM   #52
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

Well, you can find such a skeletal lineup configuration in olympic weight lifting and women carrying loads on the head in the developing world. I guess it works well if the circumstances are right for it.

But it's not a very stable configuration. As soon as the force line moves outside the lineup of the bones, the whole thing falls apart. So in a more dynamic situation, like a martial encounter, it's less useful I think.
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Old 02-01-2013, 11:53 PM   #53
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Christopher Li wrote: View Post
A "few days" and you're already "sure"?

Well, good luck with that.

Best,

Chris
Well, you and I have both been at the study of 'internal' for more then a few days....

I haven't heard you explain how 'internal' resists a push any differently than modern athletics would. Yet, you're sure that it is different...

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Old 02-02-2013, 12:02 AM   #54
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Bernd Lehnen wrote: View Post
So, do you think, Ueshiba Morihei just anticipated modern athletics?

How do you explain his comparatively high success rate at higher age, or the fact that early aikidoka often got better despite them growing older, in view of the fact that normal athletes for the most part often have to retire relatively early in their lives?
I'm not sure what/who it is we are comparing Ueshiba with/to.

If you want to talk about physicality in old age, Ueshiba has some stiff competition. Jack Lalanne 1984 Age 70: Handcuffed, shackled and fighting strong winds and currents, towed 70 boats with 70 people from the Queen's Way Bridge in the Long Beach Harbor to the Queen Mary, 1 ˝ miles.

Ueshiba wasn't competing at anything into old age. He was teaching martial arts, and as he got latter in life, he wasn't actively doing lots of that. So if we compare him to his peers, there are lot's of martial artists like him. If we compare him to top level athletes like Jack Lalanne, who were interested in physical activity late in life, he's coming up short.

Comparisons are interesting things.

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Old 02-02-2013, 12:04 AM   #55
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Well, you and I have both been at the study of 'internal' for more then a few days....

I haven't heard you explain how 'internal' resists a push any differently than modern athletics would. Yet, you're sure that it is different...
And you won't, we've been down this road before and I'm not interested.

Best,

Chris

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Old 02-02-2013, 12:06 AM   #56
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Well, you can find such a skeletal lineup configuration in olympic weight lifting and women carrying loads on the head in the developing world. I guess it works well if the circumstances are right for it.

But it's not a very stable configuration. As soon as the force line moves outside the lineup of the bones, the whole thing falls apart. So in a more dynamic situation, like a martial encounter, it's less useful I think.
But people are also dynamic. We can realign quickly. Think about NFL linemen. They are bombarded with huge amounts of incoming force. Force that is coming in the form of very dynamic defensive tackles and ends. They are not holding static weight, they are pushing back people who are trying to get around them. If you want to talk about people who can push, and push ever changing forces from many different angles, NFL linemen are the best in the world.

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Old 02-02-2013, 12:09 AM   #57
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

It's funny, because to me, it's not a question of which is better. It's a question of what else is there? If you're not using skeletal structure to aid your muscles, you're using muscle alone. Does anyone think it's easier to only use your muscles?

If there is anything else to use besides bones, connective tissue and muscle, what is it? It's not like we have much choice here....

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Old 02-02-2013, 07:23 AM   #58
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Well, you and I have both been at the study of 'internal' for more then a few days....

I haven't heard you explain how 'internal' resists a push any differently than modern athletics would. Yet, you're sure that it is different...
You generally would not resist it, you would float your opponent, or put your opponent in a hole. This is what the aikido waza look like to me. You get underneath or unbalance your partner, then put them into a direction they are weak.

Martially its better to not have force on force on the same angle unless you can generate more than the other guy.

As for athletics, it is not my experience that most people can innately do a ground path. Sure they can do it once they are shown, but that isn't their initial reaction.
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Old 02-02-2013, 07:36 AM   #59
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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But people are also dynamic. We can realign quickly. Think about NFL linemen. They are bombarded with huge amounts of incoming force. Force that is coming in the form of very dynamic defensive tackles and ends. They are not holding static weight, they are pushing back people who are trying to get around them. If you want to talk about people who can push, and push ever changing forces from many different angles, NFL linemen are the best in the world.
I meant to give examples of sustaining a load where the rightmost of your pictures of increasing alignment is applied in practise. In my mind we're talking about sustaining a load, not pushing. I don't know much about the job of a NFL lineman. Is he supposed to stop and possibly bowl over or opponents who want to pass him to score?

Anyway, it's not really relevant to me. In my opinion, this ability to sustain a load is about being in a state where you don't align for a load from a specific direction. With push tests, uke can push on different parts of my body while I should not have to change anything. I try to be in a state where it does not matter where the push comes from, I'm just more stable when I'm "on", than when I'm "off".

My stability is different from different directions, because in some directions, body alignment happens to contribute to my stability, but IMO that's not what's being tested. What's being tested is the development of that which does not rely on aligning my body to the direction of the force. Ideally, I would develop that other thing to a point that the contribution of body alignment is more or less inconsequential.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:10 AM   #60
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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You generally would not resist it, you would float your opponent, or put your opponent in a hole. This is what the aikido waza look like to me. You get underneath or unbalance your partner, then put them into a direction they are weak.

Martially its better to not have force on force on the same angle unless you can generate more than the other guy.

As for athletics, it is not my experience that most people can innately do a ground path. Sure they can do it once they are shown, but that isn't their initial reaction.
I agree with this. Ability to resist a push stops making sense at some point.
But Dan also convinced me that you need it to go further. Can one really achieve the bold part without this ability if the opponent does not cooperate?
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:30 AM   #61
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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I agree with this. Ability to resist a push stops making sense at some point.
But Dan also convinced me that you need it to go further. Can one really achieve the bold part without this ability if the opponent does not cooperate?
Sure, if you float someone, they can't push back and they are off balanced, even if they don't quite realize it. You can then make them feel really off balanced by putting them into a hole (a direction in which they are weak). Most of the aikido waza I recall, don't force the person to move in a direction in which they are innately strong.

Even if they person tries pushing harder or leans on you at that point, it just makes it even worse for them.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:42 AM   #62
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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My stability is different from different directions, because in some directions, body alignment happens to contribute to my stability, but IMO that's not what's being tested. What's being tested is the development of that which does not rely on aligning my body to the direction of the force. Ideally, I would develop that other thing to a point that the contribution of body alignment is more or less inconsequential.
I would agree with this. That is one distinguishing characteristic is that people who work on IS feel very strong in compromised positions. They don't need a structural alignment in order to convey power to the ground or into a training partner. My intent is not to pick on Chris H, but he keeps on going back to the structural model, but the structural model fails when there is no alignment. The ability not to have to reset from a compromised position is one unique characteristic to IS movement not found in athletics.

In the following picture, imagine someone has gotten you to a compromised position where structure is not going to help. Some might recognize this from Forrest Chang's SJT video.



Can you counter it without resetting? Obviously while resetting, your opponent can still apply force and make it worse for you. If you know how to move the body in an IS matter, you don't need to reset.
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Old 02-02-2013, 08:44 AM   #63
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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If there is anything else to use besides bones, connective tissue and muscle, what is it?
Mind.

Ted Williams once said something to the effect that hitting a baseball was the hardest thing to do in sports. When the ball leaves the pitchers hand it has to travel roughly 55 feet to reach the plate. The batter has less than 1/2 second to decide whether or not to swing at a 100 mph fastball. Add to that the fact that the pitcher has a variety of pitches at his disposal and there's an awful lot of information for the batter to process in that less than 1/2 second.

So what differentiates an exceptional batter from an average batter? Assuming they're roughly comparable in physical development, mind. The exceptional batter will have a higher degree of mind/body coordination than the average batter. Integration of mind and body is an important factor effecting performance in all human activities. And Aikido is no exception.

When practicing push tests we see a noticeable performance difference when the student consciously lets the mind waver, loosening coordination of mind and body, as opposed to when the student "centers" the mind and closely coordinates mind and body.

Ron

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Old 02-02-2013, 09:04 AM   #64
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Sure, if you float someone, they can't push back and they are off balanced, even if they don't quite realize it. You can then make them feel really off balanced by putting them into a hole (a direction in which they are weak). Most of the aikido waza I recall, don't force the person to move in a direction in which they are innately strong.

Even if they person tries pushing harder or leans on you at that point, it just makes it even worse for them.
I'm really too inept in aikido as well as in internals to say much about floating, but I'm going to do it anyway.
Floating someone requires you to get under them. My thinking was that the ability to resist a push internally greatly enhances the ability to float someone who is not cooperating.
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:13 AM   #65
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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It's funny, because to me, it's not a question of which is better. It's a question of what else is there? If you're not using skeletal structure to aid your muscles, you're using muscle alone. Does anyone think it's easier to only use your muscles?

If there is anything else to use besides bones, connective tissue and muscle, what is it? It's not like we have much choice here....
Depends on what connective tissue we are referring to.

I'll cite this post from RSF from Robert John:

Quote:
If it were simply the tendons that get developed, it doesn't explain why the "skin" seems to get thicker with years of practice. Even Ark himself has a skill where his skin turn rock hard like a statue, but he isn't stiff (IE the muscles aren't really tensed to the degree you'd expect). When I asked him about it, he simply said it was "kin-maku" or "muscle-membrane." (Note: Ark is not on the fascia bandwagon, the comment about kin-maku is something he learned from his own teacher...which implies that people before have kicked this idea around as well...ie nothing's new under the sun)
Mike Sigman has said similar things where he will occasionally tense this layer under the skin that is not muscle while having a massage and see what the masseuse says.

You will also notice that people who train to get their feet very heavy (which by the way implies more than just feeling pressure on the soles), start to have very wirey feet (from tendons) and "thick" feet.



This isn't the best aun statue picture, but you can sort of see the feet in this one. Next time I hit up the Smithsonain, I will try and get a better photo of the aun statue at the Freer/Sackler gallery.

While I think we all would agree that training for different sports leads to different body shapes (swimmers don't look like 100m sprinters), IS training leads to different body development that for most doesn't look like, exhibit nor produce the same characteristics when used as a typical athletic body.
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Old 02-02-2013, 04:43 PM   #66
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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I'm not sure what/who it is we are comparing Ueshiba with/to.

If you want to talk about physicality in old age, Ueshiba has some stiff competition. Jack Lalanne 1984 Age 70: Handcuffed, shackled and fighting strong winds and currents, towed 70 boats with 70 people from the Queen's Way Bridge in the Long Beach Harbor to the Queen Mary, 1 ˝ miles.

Ueshiba wasn't competing at anything into old age. He was teaching martial arts, and as he got latter in life, he wasn't actively doing lots of that. So if we compare him to his peers, there are lot's of martial artists like him. If we compare him to top level athletes like Jack Lalanne, who were interested in physical activity late in life, he's coming up short.

Comparisons are interesting things.
Sure.
But did you simply bypass my main question, or are you saying, modern athletics provides us with everything we need, so we don't need the example of Ueshiba any more in aikido, or we don't need internal training or what?
Not sure.

Last edited by Bernd Lehnen : 02-02-2013 at 04:47 PM.
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Old 02-02-2013, 07:28 PM   #67
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Bernd Lehnen wrote: View Post
Sure.
But did you simply bypass my main question, or are you saying, modern athletics provides us with everything we need, so we don't need the example of Ueshiba any more in aikido, or we don't need internal training or what?
Not sure.
Sorry, I thought your main point was that Ueshiba was very impressive late in life. I see now that your main question was- did Ueshiba anticipate modern athletics?

I guess I glossed over that question because I didn't understand it.

I believe Ueshiba was a guy who used his body a lot. I also believe he had a pretty good working knowledge of how to use it. I don't think he was physically doing anything that many of his peers couldn't also do. I think what Ueshiba was onto wasn't so much about the body, but more about the mind. I think he saw problems of conflict differently than most people do. I know studying Aikido has made me look at conflict much differently than I did before studying it.

I do believe since Ueshiba's time we understand the body much better. So I don't think he was showing us the future in his movements.

I do believe he's an important figure in Aikido, if not the single most important figure. I think the impressive thing about him was not the way he used his body, but the way he looked at the situation.

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Old 02-02-2013, 07:47 PM   #68
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Dave de Vos wrote: View Post
Well, you can find such a skeletal lineup configuration in olympic weight lifting...
That was actually the only example I could come up with. I thought of posting one of those youtube videos of weightlifters breaking their elbows doing that, but decided I'd spare you all.

As for NFL linebackers, we totally see them stiff-arming the opposing linebackers all the time. Yeah, right.

If Chris H's diagrams can't even explain straight athletics, why are we still talking about them?

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Old 02-02-2013, 08:01 PM   #69
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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That was actually the only example I could come up with. I thought of posting one of those youtube videos of weightlifters breaking their elbows doing that, but decided I'd spare you all.

As for NFL linebackers, we totally see them stiff-arming the opposing linebackers all the time. Yeah, right.

If Chris H's diagrams can't even explain straight athletics, why are we still talking about them?
Who is saying your arms have to be straight? I am saying that you use less muscle if you fully align the bones. There are good and bad things about this. If you want to use the least muscle possible, the more the bones are in alignment the better.

This is my whole problem with not using skeletal alignment with the ground, and still use less muscle. You can't do both at the same time.

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Old 02-02-2013, 08:28 PM   #70
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

Well, you did, when you drew the diagram and started treating "efficiency" and "using less muscle" as the goal, and decided that fascia and tendons couldn't play any part in using less muscle (since they aren't accounted for in your diagram).

There's no part of this discussion that makes sense.

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Old 02-02-2013, 09:00 PM   #71
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Well, you did, when you drew the diagram and started treating "efficiency" and "using less muscle" as the goal, and decided that fascia and tendons couldn't play any part in using less muscle (since they aren't accounted for in your diagram).

There's no part of this discussion that makes sense.
Connective tissue is something I've talked about, that is fascia and tendons. I never said they don't play a roll, they are essential parts of the body. When we were talking about using the least amount of muscle possible, the only way I could think of to solve the problem was to align the skeleton with the ground, thus taking some of the stress off of the muscles.

I also said that good athletics uses skeletal alignment. I also said, a number of times that it takes more muscular force to resist a push if you are not aligning the bones of the body. I also said that the better the alignment the less the muscles will have to contract.

If using less muscle is not a goal of internal, then maybe alignment is not not your answer. If you do it in another way I would love to hear about it. Don't put words in my mouth Hugh.

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Old 02-02-2013, 09:03 PM   #72
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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This is my whole problem with not using skeletal alignment with the ground, and still use less muscle. You can't do both at the same time.
I know I haven't been keeping up with the discussions. But I am kind of shocked at how stagnant things are. Chris, this is sort of the whole basic point of the training-- there is something else besides skeletal alignment and muscle. As much as you think people like me are wrong for thinking that, you have to face the fact that we honestly think there is something.

It's fine if we think each other are wrong, but you aren't going to get mechanistic discussion when one group thinks there is something that the other group thinks is fantasy. We know it isn't fully described scientifically yet. It's just that we don't all need to wait for that in order to train!

So regarding the "what is it" question. There is a name for this. "Kokyu ryoku." It's something that appeared to be of primary importance to O-sensei. It has to do with the tanden controlling a surrounding body that is "filled" with ki. Non-scientific words like "ki" and "fill" and "center" get used because we don't have physiological data.

It all hinges on the idea that one can control ki with the intent, ki can control force (like things like rubber bands, ropes and pulleys can), and the center can manipulate a body whose ki is under load. Oh, and of course, the ki can get stronger if it is exercised. (This can be done with or without a lot of muscular activation-- i.e. ki use can be separated from muscle use)

[edit: ps, the question of how the intent controls the "ki" is of course not physiologically resolved. Does the intent make some muscle activate and pull on connective tissue? Maybe. So is it "just muscle?" The Peter Ralston motion-abort demonstration when studied at its extreme really suggests that if muscles are the mechanism by which intent controls ki, this is very different from what happens after. The intent for reaching for a coffee cup causes different things to happen in the body than does the actual reaching which happens after. They may both involve muscle but they are 2 different processes.]

Last edited by JW : 02-02-2013 at 09:12 PM.
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Old 02-02-2013, 11:57 PM   #73
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

Hey Jonathan,

I get it. I tell you what, I'll leave all you guys alone. You're doing your thing, and here I am messing with your fun.

Sorry.

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Old 02-03-2013, 09:50 AM   #74
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Chris Hein wrote: View Post
Hey Jonathan,

I get it. I tell you what, I'll leave all you guys alone. You're doing your thing, and here I am messing with your fun.

Sorry.
But you're not, you're just claiming that it's not possible that we're having "fun" and "doing [our] thing" because it doesn't fit with your understanding; I can assure you there are plenty of people having fun and getting on with it just fine.

It's a shame that you seem intent on disproving at a distance and from your point of preconception what you, by your own admission, cannot explain.

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Old 02-03-2013, 12:10 PM   #75
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Re: "resisting" a push part 2

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Well, you and I have both been at the study of 'internal' for more then a few days....

I haven't heard you explain how 'internal' resists a push any differently than modern athletics would. Yet, you're sure that it is different...
Chris H.,

When I stated in another post that Dan Harden can resist changing forces from a non-cooperative training partner without the need for conscious adjustment to those forces, there was zero metaphor in that statement. No doubt muscles are in play (Dan has repeatedly publicly cited the psoas, for example). If adjustments in his body are happening, they are virtually autonomic; and even then you can't sense or see muscles firing. But none of the athletes I know train like this, and none of the folks with athletic training backgrounds I know who've trained with Dan can relate it to anything in athletics.

Now, many others here can back this up because they've experienced it first hand as well. These are rational, and in many cases formally skeptical people.

But we can't adequately explain it to your satisfaction, so there's only one option left: go get a sampling and conduct the requisite analysis by meeting Dan or a reasonable analogue. The effort to form a western-centric model and rationale is fruitless without you working off the same data points as those with whom you're trying to engage in said effort.

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