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Old 02-05-2001, 10:48 AM   #1
Aikidoka2000
Dojo: SEIDOKAN
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Nov 2000
Posts: 59
Offline
Ai symbol

Hello again everyone,
When it comes to Aikido training, it came to my attention recently that there are many schools of Aikido that rely heavily of Atemi, to varying degrees depending on the school. In my particular school, Seidokan, Atemi is really not regarded, in
lieu of altered techniques that focus more on Aiki and have almost no strikes at all. The philosophy behind it being one of total non injury to the opponent.
While this issue works well for my own philosophy, I realize that there are those systems of Aikido that are Atemi reliant.
I would like your personal opinions on how these work for you.
-In friendship,
-Tomu

-When two blades cross points,
There's no need to withdraw.
The master swordsman
Is like the lotus blooming in the fire.
Such a person has inside of them
A heaven soaring spirit.
- Tozan Ryokan
4th verse on the 5 ranks
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Old 02-05-2001, 12:32 PM   #2
Brian Vickery
Dojo: Aiki-Buken Aikido
Location: Gilbert, Arizona
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 208
United_States
Offline
Quote:
Aikidoka2000 wrote:
... I realize that there are those systems of Aikido that are Atemi reliant.

-Tomu
I'm not trying to come off as a wise-guy, but I believe that you will come to realize that your style of aikido is just as reliant on atemi as any other style. Unless what you are learning is not to be used in real self-defense situations, just paired co-operative practice in the dojo.

What I've come to realize is that not everybody in the aikido community study the art purely for self-defense, but for self-improvement without any notions of defending themselves. And that is perfectly fine if you know that that is what you're doing!

....my two cents worth!

Brian Vickery

"The highest level of technique to achieve is that of having NO technique!"
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Old 02-05-2001, 12:56 PM   #3
jxa127
Dojo: Itten Dojo -- Mechanicsburg, PA
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 420
Offline
Smile Atemi is EXCEPTIONALLY important!

Brian,

In my dojo (an Aikido Association of America dojo), we spend a fair amount of time doing atemi -- easily more than half of some classes.

It's obvious that you're talking about atemi during techniques, but it is important to remember that we spend at least half the class doing ukemi, and that most of our time doing ukemi is spent attacking. So, the first way my dojo emphasizes atemi is by focusing on giving really good, committed attacks when we are in the role of uke. We emphasize good strikes with good intent because we have a responsibility to nage to make sure his (and our) training is as real as safely possible in the dojo.

But, we also work on adding atemi to our techniques when we are in the role of nage. We also have an ideal of not injuring our attackers. But, we realize that that ideal is something that will take years of training to be able to achieve. So, we work on atemi in our techniques and realize that as we get better, we may not need the option of using atemi when we perform a technique.

Another point that my instructor makes is that the really good attackers will not be affected by atemi to the same degree that an average attacker would be. So, it is important to not rely heavily on atemi; rather, we should concentrate on make sure our technique is good. That way, we rely on how the attacker's body structure and ours relate. We use physics and gravity to our advantage.

-Drew Ames


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Old 02-05-2001, 01:30 PM   #4
Brian Vickery
Dojo: Aiki-Buken Aikido
Location: Gilbert, Arizona
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 208
United_States
Offline
Thumbs down Re: Atemi is EXCEPTIONALLY important!

Quote:
jxa127 wrote:
Brian,

In my dojo (an Aikido Association of America dojo), we spend a fair amount of time doing atemi -- easily more than half of some classes.

-Drew Ames


Drew,

This is one of those topics where you either write a novel in here to get your point across, or else you cut your response to the bone with alot of 'reading between the lines' required. Well, I did the latter obviously, and have probably set myself up sounding like a know-it-all or some kind aikido tough guy. Actually I am neither.

I believe 'atemi' is a major component of aikido training ...but as you explained in your response, you can't take it too far and be totally dependent on it! But on the other hand, you can't totally leave it out either. Learn it, use it if you have to!

Brian Vickery

"The highest level of technique to achieve is that of having NO technique!"
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Old 02-05-2001, 01:47 PM   #5
BC
Location: Chicago, IL
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 432
Offline
In our dojo we have around a dozen senior yudansha who instruct classes, and each of these individuals has a distinctive style. These differences in style are also reflected in their utilization of atemi. There are some who use atemi in almost every technique, while others who make little or no use of atemi when they teach. One of the yudansha whose class I frequently attend almost always utilizes atemi in his techniques. One of the (many) things I've been trying to work on in my aikido lately has been to try to look for the various potential atemi that could be applied during techniques. Besides the obvious martial and self-defense reasons for this, I think it also can help me to improve my timing, distance, posture and positioning realtive to uke during practice. For instance, during iriminage, when nage has entered behind uke, there is an opening for a punch to uke's floating ribs or kidney. If you are too far away or not in the right position, this atemi is not possible. However, when you are at the correct distance and position with uke, the opportunity for an effective atemi is very apparent. So sometimes one can make use of atemi to identify situations where you can fine tune your technique - kind of a self checking mechanism/method. IMHO.

Robert Cronin
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Old 02-05-2001, 02:03 PM   #6
Aikidoka2000
Dojo: SEIDOKAN
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Nov 2000
Posts: 59
Offline
Quote:
Brian Vickery wrote:
Quote:
Aikidoka2000 wrote:
... I realize that there are those systems of Aikido that are Atemi reliant.

-Tomu
I'm not trying to come off as a wise-guy, but I believe that you will come to realize that your style of aikido is just as reliant on atemi as any other style. Unless what you are learning is not to be used in real self-defense situations, just paired co-operative practice in the dojo.

What I've come to realize is that not everybody in the aikido community study the art purely for self-defense, but for self-improvement without any notions of defending themselves. And that is perfectly fine if you know that that is what you're doing!

....my two cents worth!
Hello Brian,
Thank you for your input, it is well appreciated
On the note of my statement, perhaps the best way to put it would be this:
What I had meant by "Atemi Reliant" where those techniques that relay on an
Atemi to set up for the next movement of the technique. I have seen Atemi used
in certain school of training to parse such moves as Kotegaishi, shiho-nage and
Sankyo, for example.
I hope this helps clarify.
In friendship,
Tomu

-When two blades cross points,
There's no need to withdraw.
The master swordsman
Is like the lotus blooming in the fire.
Such a person has inside of them
A heaven soaring spirit.
- Tozan Ryokan
4th verse on the 5 ranks
  Reply With Quote

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