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Old 09-28-2001, 11:45 AM   #1
nikonl
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No Competition in Aikido(excluding Tomiki)

What is the philosophy behind that Aikido shouldn't have competitions?
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Old 09-28-2001, 12:15 PM   #2
ian
 
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We had a similar post a while ago asking for the original words that Ueshiba used when saying aikido shouldn't be competitive - to my knowledge there was no definate answer. However there was a bit of a disagreement between Ueshiba and Tomiki when he tried to make it competitive.

A strange thing about aikido is we say that aikido enables us to deal with an agressor without hurting them, but then say competition is not allowed because the techniques are too dangerous and you could seriously hurt/kill someone.

My feeling is that aikido is really a way of improving your bodies ability to deal wih an real attack, rather than improving your sparring/wrestling ability. In real life you have to use everything you've got. What we are training is to improve our reaction, and our uke acts as a guide to make this reaction instinctive and natural.

As soon as it becomes competitive the realism can actually dissapear because, in the dojo, you are not in a life/death situation and you will back of striking uke or nage vicously if they leave themselves open.

One of the ways I teach irimi-nage is actually to teach a rear choke first. Uke soon find out that, although turning out of irimi nage (by turning their back to nage) gets them out of the throw, it is a stupid thing to do as they fall straight into a choke. This dynamic raction between uke and nage must be kept in mind at all times if we are to take advantage of the non-competitive method of simulated fighting.

Ian
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Old 09-28-2001, 01:11 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by ian
We had a similar post a while ago asking for the original words that Ueshiba used when saying aikido shouldn't be competitive - to my knowledge there was no definate answer.
Here's the thread to which Ian alludes above:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...=&threadid=998

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Old 09-28-2001, 02:12 PM   #4
nikonl
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Thumbs down

jun,it would be better if you could make this topic a permanent segment in aikiweb.com
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Old 09-29-2001, 10:11 PM   #5
TheProdigy
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While my knowledge of competition in Tomiki and in general is quite limited, I believe the main reason we don't have competition in aikido (that was approved by O'sensei) is that it seems to go against the philosophy of it all. As an aikidoka you are learning to master yourself and to bring yourself and your surrounding into perfect harmony. This is why we learn how to be soft in our defences as well, so as to not harm our attacker. We neutralize their attack and restore harmony.

To have competition, you now are having people out there with an eye to overcome their opponent. Also, to my knowledge, you can't compete without someone throwing a punch or kick (or themselves) at you. To attack at all with an eye to overcome your opponent seems to go against the principles.

I am not saying Tomiki is bad... for I truly don't know, nor do I have enough experience to pass judgement on any ideas.

Just my thoughts,
-Jase

Jason Hobbs
"As you walk and eat and travel, be where you are. Otherwise you will miss most of your life."
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Old 10-01-2001, 06:43 AM   #6
AikidoNuB
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Hello All!

I recently started studying Fugakukai Aikido. It is a version of Tomiki-ryu, with the main difference being that there are no competitions. Fugakukai was developed in 1982 by Tsunako Miyake Shihan, Takeshi Inoue Shihan, and Karl Geis Shihan. Fugakukai uses kata and a non-competitive practiced randori as a method of applying principles learned by long repetition. The purpose of elimination competion was mainly in my oppinion to allow practice of Aikido by anyone of any age and any size or strength.

Thanks for listening
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Old 10-01-2001, 02:03 PM   #7
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In my opinion, the concept of no competition in Aikido is "cute". I think Osensei set up Aikido as a non -competitive art just because he understood that he couldn't possibly eliminate competition between training partners, so he wanted to limit it as much as possible.

I've been training in this art for twelve plus years, and I still find myself in contests of strength, wills, technique- almost all the time. I would love to report that I had transcended such low behaviors, but I gotta tell the truth.

I understand that the real contest is between the part of me that wants to understand the art, and the part of me that wants to down my partner; understanding and making a change is not the same thing.

Maybe Osensei figured that establishing shiai would take our minds off of the real contest we all need to be working on, and in the process, lessen the intensity of our training in principle.

Last edited by Mike Collins : 10-01-2001 at 02:05 PM.
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Old 10-01-2001, 03:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mikey
In my opinion, the concept of no competition in Aikido is "cute".

Maybe Osensei figured that establishing shiai would take our minds off of the real contest we all need to be working on, and in the process, lessen the intensity of our training in principle.
Somewhere in this forum is a posting by Peter Goldsbury (pretty high up in the Aikikai world and living and training in Japan to boot) discussing the difference between Shiai and Kyou-sou. Ueshiba M. never banned Shiai - and according to the Peter he pointedly used the word Kyou-sou which has a different meaning.

The post can be found under
Home > AikiWeb Forums > AikiWeb: Language > "Competition"

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-01-2001, 06:18 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterR
[b]Somewhere in this forum is a posting by Peter Goldsbury (pretty high up in the Aikikai world and living and training in Japan to boot) discussing the difference between Shiai and Kyou-sou.
Yup. I posted a pointer to it above...

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...=&threadid=998

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Old 10-01-2001, 06:31 PM   #10
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Whoops so you did - sorry Jun


I was staying clear of the thread mainly because its always same old same old.

Some are willing to think and read - some want to make a point.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-03-2001, 06:13 PM   #11
deepsoup
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Quote:
Originally posted by AikidoNuB

The purpose of elimination competion was mainly in my opinion to allow practice of Aikido by anyone of any age and any size or strength.
Like Peter, I've been staying clear of this thread. I dont think there's anything left to add to the debate about competition that hasn't already been said in this forum, and I'm pretty sure most of us are bored of hearing the same old arguments.

I have a couple of questions about Fugakukai though:

Is it just shiai which has been taken out of Fugakukai aikido, or is there no competition of any kind? (ie: are there also no kata competitions, like Shodokan embu events, or maybe like the Taigi competitions held by the Ki Society?)

Does Fugakukai judo have shiai and/or kata competition? If so, is Fugakukai judo exclusively for the young and fit, or does competition deter the older aikidoka but not the older judoka?

Just curious.

Sean
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Old 10-04-2001, 09:35 AM   #12
AikidoNuB
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Sean,

I will try and answer your questions to the best of my knowledge. As I stated I am new to Aikido so I am not well versed yet in all the terms.

1. Fugakukai Aikido has no competitions whatsoever. Even though it is an offsoot of Tomiki-ryu. Karl Geis Shihan believed that the concept of tanto randori had failed as a developmental process in teaching a true and really useful Aikido system. He felt, quote: "That tanto randori, like most sports, by it's rules and nature predicts that the strongest and most athletic person will prevail. Which he believe was not a viable idea if Aikido was to be useful and productive to all who practiced it, large, small, strong, weak. So the techniques that were based on power and/or speed would need to be modified in kata and actual practice in such a way as to make off-balance a realistic part of the technique.

2. As for Fugakukia Judo...all this is, is Kodokan Judo. In fact, you can earn points for rank promotion through competition.

I hope I have answered your questions. If not I would be happy to refer your question to sensei Nick Lowry, 6th Dan.

Thanks..
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Old 10-04-2001, 07:34 PM   #13
deepsoup
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Quote:
Originally posted by AikidoNuB
Sean,

I will try and answer your questions to the best of my knowledge. As I stated I am new to Aikido so I am not well versed yet in all the terms.

1. Fugakukai Aikido has no competitions whatsoever. Even though it is an offsoot of Tomiki-ryu. Karl Geis Shihan believed that the concept of tanto randori had failed as a developmental process in teaching a true and really useful Aikido system. He felt, quote: "That tanto randori, like most sports, by it's rules and nature predicts that the strongest and most athletic person will prevail. Which he believe was not a viable idea if Aikido was to be useful and productive to all who practiced it, large, small, strong, weak. So the techniques that were based on power and/or speed would need to be modified in kata and actual practice in such a way as to make off-balance a realistic part of the technique.

2. As for Fugakukia Judo...all this is, is Kodokan Judo. In fact, you can earn points for rank promotion through competition.

I hope I have answered your questions. If not I would be happy to refer your question to sensei Nick Lowry, 6th Dan.

Thanks..
Thanks John,

I've read Mr Geis' views on tanto (and indeed toshu) randori as practiced in the Shodokan before. Personally I disagree, but thats just my opinion. Shall we just agree to disagree on that point, and move on peacefully? ( I've seen some quite undignified discussions between Shodokan and Fugakukai aikidoka on other forums, and I'm keen not to repeat them! )

While I disagree with Mr Geis' views on tanto-randori, I do understand where he is coming from.

However, I thought that 'off-balance' (if that's the same thing as 'kuzushi') is as important to good judo technique as it is to good aikido technique. Therefore, if I were to accept the argument that competition is bad for aikido, I would also conclude that its bad for judo.

So what I dont get (especially since I've read that Tomiki sensei regarded Judo and Aikido to be essentially the same art ) is this apparent inconsistency in the Fugakukai's attitude towards competition in the two arts.

Is it that judo is different from aikido in such a way that it is "useful and productive to all who practice it", despite the inclusion of randori competition? Or is it that, unlike in aikido, its ok for the 'strongest and most athletic person to prevail' in judo?

Could it be that shiai has come to dominate Judo so much that it isn't possible to attract students to a dojo which does not focus on competition?

Or is it that I've got the wrong end of the stick entirely?

Sean
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Old 10-09-2001, 02:58 AM   #14
AikidoNuB
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Sean,

I am not really sure why Fugakukai has competition in Judo and not Aikido, other than the fact that..."and this is just how I veiw it," Judo is considered mostly a sport as opposed to a martial art. Though it clearly has attributes to be good for both. I think it might be interesting to see Aikido as an olympic sport...lol Would be hard to keep competitors in a ring or on the mat...they'd be tossed all over the place...hehe You have a good question...just one I am unable to answer.

I do believe that sparing or randori or whatever you term it is essential in learning self-defense. But since self-defense wasn't why I took up studying Aikido...I can take it or leave it. Hope I didn't babble too much.

Take care
John
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Old 10-14-2001, 12:17 PM   #15
deepsoup
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Quote:
Originally posted by AikidoNuB
Sean,

I am not really sure why Fugakukai has competition in Judo and not Aikido, other than the fact that..."and this is just how I veiw it," Judo is considered mostly a sport as opposed to a martial art. Though it clearly has attributes to be good for both. I think it might be interesting to see Aikido as an olympic sport...lol Would be hard to keep competitors in a ring or on the mat...they'd be tossed all over the place...hehe You have a good question...just one I am unable to answer.

I do believe that sparing or randori or whatever you term it is essential in learning self-defense. But since self-defense wasn't why I took up studying Aikido...I can take it or leave it. Hope I didn't babble too much.

Take care
John
Hi John and all,

Funnily enough, had the 2008 Olympics gone to Osaka rather than Beijing, Aikido was possibly going to appear as a demonstration sport. (I think it would have come down to a choice between Aikido and Kendo).

Thanks for your answer.

Sean
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Old 10-14-2001, 12:29 PM   #16
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I seriously don't think that Shodokan Aikido would have superceeded kendo - but of course it would have been cool to try.

Unfortuneately the big even held this month in the Osaka Olympic stadium is not going to include me. I can't justify going and moving back to Japan in January. Money and time being precious.

Interesting Tomiki quote by the way put on the Shodokan web
site.http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/shihan/kosyo_e.html

Tomiki sensei was Morihei Ueshiba's top deishi (apprentice) and the first person to receive an 8th dan from Ueshiba sensei. In spite of this, after Ueshiba's death, Tomiki sensei was criticized for his style and type of practice by the elite members of the Aikido association from the main dojo. The association members felt that Tomiki's methods were so different that they wanted him to refrain from using the term Aikido in regards to what he was teaching. I recall Tomiki sensei's strong reaction to this order. "I have only one master and that is Ueshiba sensei. It is he, and only he, who is capable of excommunicating me."

The above war written by Tetsuro Nariyama Shihan of Shodokan Aikido.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-14-2001, 01:24 PM   #17
deepsoup
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterR
I seriously don't think that Shodokan Aikido would have superceeded kendo - but of course it would have been cool to try.
The way I heard it, although Kendo would seem the obvious choice, its considered important that the demonstration sport shouldn't be too heavily dominated by the host nation. The success of non-japanese aikidoka in previous (and, hopefully, future) international competitions might have worked in (Shodokan) Aikido's favour.

Academic now, of course, since the games wont be going to Japan anyway. Another time, maybe.

Speaking as a former judoka though, I'm not sure how keen I'd be to see Aikido (Shodokan or otherwise) in the Olympics anyway. I'm not at all sure its been a positive thing for judo. Its a popular sport, but in many dojos its arguably ceased to be budo at all.

I recently met a BJA shodan who had never even seen let alone practiced kata.

Quote:

Unfortuneately the big even held this month in the Osaka Olympic stadium is not going to include me. I can't justify going and moving back to Japan in January. Money and time being precious.

Interesting Tomiki quote by the way put on the Shodokan web
site.http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/shihan/kosyo_e.html

Commiserations on missing out on Maishima. I take it you're back in Canada for the time being then?

Do you happen to know if the tournament results will be posted on a website anywhere?

I found that quote very interesting too, by the way. I quite often get into discussions about why our aikido is called "Shodokan" rather than "Tomiki-style", and its good to have something authorative to point people at!

Sean
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Old 10-14-2001, 01:35 PM   #18
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Hi Sean

I also would not be happy that Shodokan becomes an olympic sport - right now the Honbu influence is great and shiai complements kata nicely. I would not like to see Shiai become the dominant factor. Maybe we can keep it like it is - but I find olympics scary.

Yeah I went to Japan for three months and knew half way through that I wanted to come back. I should not have left. The budo is that good. I wont be able to train every day at Honbu my work is too far away but will use the opprotunity to explore historical budo.

Seriously cool job there by the way.
Check out http://www.spring8.or.jp/ENGLISH/

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-15-2001, 10:07 AM   #19
andrew
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Quote:
Originally posted by AikidoNuB
Sean,

I am not really sure why Fugakukai has competition in Judo and not Aikido, other than the fact that

I read (actually on some karate site) that Tomiki (and this may be a seriously flawed view of the situation, although I think it sounds broadly correct) divided techniques more or less into two categories, those being "Randori techniques" and "aiki techniques" and that whilst Judo was mainly Randori style techniques which are safe to use in competition, Aikido contains both classes of technique. Basically it said that the Aiki techniques- joint locks or whatever of the type that would be illegal in Judo competition- were too dangerous to be practiced competitively.

Anyhow, I expect a little criticism of at least the way I phrased that...
andrew
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Old 10-15-2001, 10:26 AM   #20
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I really suggest going to the source which is the Shodokan web site. Several articles and diagrams from Kenji Tomiki himself.

The two most relevant to the question are the diagrams

http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/.../kousei_e.html

http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/.../hatten_e.html

and the article

http://homepage2.nifty.com/shodokan/...jyuturi_e.html

It is clear his main division is in the distance between opponents. I have never heard a division of aiki versus non-aiki in the techniques taught at the dojo but it is a question that may be worth asking.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-16-2001, 04:19 PM   #21
deepsoup
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterR

<some snippage>
Seriously cool job there by the way.
Check out http://www.spring8.or.jp/ENGLISH/
That certainly does look impressive.

Sean
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Old 04-07-2013, 10:24 PM   #22
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Re: No Competition in Aikido(excluding Tomiki)

One thing I heard which may (or may not) be enlightening:

While it is true that Tomiki did add competition to aikido, it may not be that he "wanted" to do that. I heard one bit of history (historical fiction?) that stated that Tomiki was required by Waseda University to have competitions in his aikido program if they were going to have it on-campus, and take advantage of university resources.

I can't remember where I heard/read this, but if it does contain a kernel of truth, it could explain the basis for a lot of apparently anti-aikido sort of philosophical stuff which came from Tomiki during that time frame.

Anyone else have any more on this point, either way?

I find it interesting that the kanji character for kuzushi illustrates a mountain falling on a house.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:12 AM   #23
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Re: No Competition in Aikido(excluding Tomiki)

Quote:
John Powell wrote: View Post
One thing I heard which may (or may not) be enlightening:

While it is true that Tomiki did add competition to aikido, it may not be that he "wanted" to do that. I heard one bit of history (historical fiction?) that stated that Tomiki was required by Waseda University to have competitions in his aikido program if they were going to have it on-campus, and take advantage of university resources.

I can't remember where I heard/read this, but if it does contain a kernel of truth, it could explain the basis for a lot of apparently anti-aikido sort of philosophical stuff which came from Tomiki during that time frame.

Anyone else have any more on this point, either way?
I've read some passionate defences of competition in Aikido by Tomiki. More importantly, there is an Aikikai club on campus, and it has been there since 1960 - long before Tomiki went competitive.

Best,

Chris

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Old 04-08-2013, 02:59 AM   #24
ewolput
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Re: No Competition in Aikido(excluding Tomiki)

Hi,
Waseda Aikido Club (Tomiki) was founded in 1958
See : http://waseda-aikido.com/history-e/
Early 1970-ties, with the introduction of tanto randori in competition, some of the older practitioners couldn't agree with this format. Some of them went independently teaching the old style.

Just a thought,
Eddy
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Old 04-08-2013, 05:20 PM   #25
Dan Rubin
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Re: No Competition in Aikido(excluding Tomiki)

Excerpt from:

The Dawn of Tomiki Aikido
by Seiji Tanaka

First of all, I would like to explain how, where and why Tomiki Aikido started. It goes back to the month of April, 1958 when Waseda University approved our Aikido Club as an officially sanctioned sport club (called “Undo Bu” in Japanese), while no other universities recognized any Aikido clubs as such. Instead, all other Aikido clubs were called “Doko-Kai”, meaning a loosely organized club made up with people of the same interest. These unsanctioned sport clubs had neither the prestige nor the status of other sanctioned clubs such as Judo, Kendo, Karate, baseball, soccer, and other major sport clubs.

Prior to April, 1958, there was no Aikido club, even at Waseda University. Professor Kenji Tomiki was the Judo instructor and he taught Aikido to some members of the Waseda Judo Club before or after Judo practice. Obviously this arrangement had many limitations for developing truly well-trained Aikidokas.

I was very fortunate to be a freshman in this historical year of 1958. the Japanese school year begins in April, so that I could receive Professor Tomiki’s instructions from the club’s first day as a fully sanctioned sport club and benefit from his burning desire and profound vision of making Aikido the same as Judo, Kendo, and Karate.

One of the strict requirements attached to this official recognition by Waseda University was a stipulation of being able to measure and/or judge the progress and ability of Aikido students. In other words, any clubs belonging to the official Athletic Association must have competition of some fashion. This prerequisite was most welcome by Professor Tomiki, who had his dream to make Aikido as competitive and as internationally popular as Judo.

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=625
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