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Old 03-24-2005, 08:55 AM   #76
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

How do you like this posit?

The tenkan or pivot at the beginning of Kote Gaeshi exploits the power of leverage because it's easier to turn uke from their center than from the outside of their arc.
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Old 03-24-2005, 09:26 AM   #77
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Quote:
Bill Danosky wrote:
How do you like this posit?

The tenkan or pivot at the beginning of Kote Gaeshi exploits the power of leverage because it's easier to turn uke from their center than from the outside of their arc.
How about the idea that the real problem with this discussion may be that there is a distinction between "tenkan" and "kaiten"?

Regards,

Mike
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Old 03-24-2005, 12:26 PM   #78
rob_liberti
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Well, I'll take a shot at adding clarity.

I think "ten" kind of means transform, and "kan" kind of means change. Any good explanation for "kai" out there? (or better translations than I gave would be welcome as well!)

When I say kaiten in aikido, I usually mean that I step forward and rotate my body toward my back leg.
When I say tenkan in aikido, I usually mean the same start as above, but then I step back with other leg (that I didn't start stepping with).

Rob
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Old 03-24-2005, 01:05 PM   #79
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

I think Rob is on the right path here. To me in Japanese kaiten generally has the meaning to rotate or go around. It's most often used in a "mechanical" or more tangible sense like kaiten doa (rotating door) or something like that. However, tenkan on the other hand has an additional connotation of change due to use of the "kan" character meaning change. It can also be used in more intangible situations. Such as a turning point in time or a changing turn in feelings. Because of this additional connotation of change I think this is why the term tai no henko (change of body) is used by people who practice Iwama style aikido to substitue which is called tai no tenkan or simply tenkan by the majority of aikido people.

I guess the major difficulty comes because like others I've heard the terms tenkan and kaiten used interchangeably to describe the same movements. For instance what Rob described as kaiten above I've heard to referred to as tenkan as well, sometimes han-tenkan (half-tenkan). I don't know if there is a right or wrong usage.
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Old 03-24-2005, 04:22 PM   #80
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Well, the apparent friction at the beginning of the discussion was the picture of tenkan as a turning entry prior to a technique versus some people viewing tenkan as a spinning envelopment, more or less. I've looked around on the internet and Kisshomaru Ueshiba's book and I think tenkan is sustainably argued as simply the turning, off-line entry. However, Gozo Shioda describes (page 19, "Total Aikido") kaiten as the enveloping spin, etc., as some people viewed tenkan.

FWIW

Mike Sigman
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Old 03-24-2005, 04:59 PM   #81
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

I think I agree with your line of thinking Mike. In my opinion and approach to practice of the initial tenkan movement as an entry prior to technique should be about getting off the line-of-attack and moving into a safer position while simulatneously making connection with your partner. Once you've turned your body and accomplished that, whether I throw them forward or lead them around in a circular path (which you can also call tenkan or kaiten at your discretion) is really beside the point because I should have made connection at that point and should be able to do whatever technique I want and/or comes naturally based on the dynamics of the situation. I have seen some people practice that initial tenkan movement with more of a focus on spinning their partner around them instead. However, my observation is they are depending on timing or upper-body strength and it doesn't seem like a particularly valuable practice approach to me, but to each his own.

Regarding using inertial force or centrifugal "force" to me I think that has some place in aikido practice but it may be overstated a bit. If you have a partner of some significant mass you have to have some pretty good angular velocity for the effect of that inertia to be significant on that mass which is at some given radius from the center of the rotational axis. I guess if the attack and the response is dynamic enough it may create enough inertial force or centrifugal "force" for the person to feel they are being thrown out of the rotational sphere by that momentum, but I don't think that happens all too oftern. Usually what I see is that the tenkan, or kaiten movement if you prefer, I think is used to put the uke in momentum that the nage controls (because he has connection with him) and then to put the uke in a kuzushi situation where he loses his balance at which point the nage can change direction (whether it be reversal like for irimi nage or towards the outside of that rotational sphere like kaiten nage) and then throw the uke with ease. To me that interaction is much more common in aikido but then again others may practice differently, so I don't put any absolutes on any of these observations.
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Old 03-24-2005, 08:54 PM   #82
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Quote:
James Young wrote:
the tenkan, or kaiten movement if you prefer, I think is used to put the uke in momentum that the nage controls (because he has connection with him) and then to put the uke in a kuzushi situation where he loses his balance at which point the nage can change direction (whether it be reversal like for irimi nage or towards the outside of that rotational sphere like kaiten nage) and then throw the uke with ease.
Yeah. That's what I was thinking. More in the instance of moving uke in a circular orbit. Closer to your body as you move them around, then wider as the momentum is built, whether you are letting go or reversing the direction of the orbit. I think the elliptical levers in a compound bow work the same way?
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Old 03-25-2005, 04:06 AM   #83
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Tenkan is a turn. It is an entry into an attack.
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/blog.p...journal&j=6990
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Old 03-25-2005, 06:50 AM   #84
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

It seems just a silly and useless to argue the semantics of an imprecise language as it does to argue over someone's usage of words which are well known like "centrifugal force" and "green". Heck, say "musubi" to a Japanese person who doesn't train aikido (and many who do) and they will probably look to see if their shoelace is tied. A lot of the descriptions are more poetry than science.

Rob
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Old 03-25-2005, 08:13 AM   #85
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
It seems just a silly and useless to argue the semantics of an imprecise language as it does to argue over someone's usage of words which are well known like "centrifugal force" and "green". Heck, say "musubi" to a Japanese person who doesn't train aikido (and many who do) and they will probably look to see if their shoelace is tied. A lot of the descriptions are more poetry than science.
I don't think the argument is semantics, although it appears to be going that way. There are a few "initial" moves in Aikido and "tenkan" is one of them. Since tenkan can be shown by the existence of tenkan-in-combination-with-kokyu-throws not to require enveloping uke in "centrifugal force", then "tenkan" as an initiating move isn't defined by the presence of "centrifugal force". The use of the word tenkan at times other than as the initiating technique isn't germane anymore than is the fact that we can "irimi" later in an attack, too.

Instead of semantics, maybe we should focus on logic. Whoa.... what am I saying????

Mike
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Old 03-25-2005, 08:21 AM   #86
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Re: Equitable?

Well, I thought we started talking about the problems at the beginning of the thread, and I guess I was lead to my opinion about silly semantics by this:

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Ack! What "centrifugal force" is that? Besides, even if there were a centrifugal force (which there's not), I don't think that's the idea behind tenkan; tenkan still uses the opponent's force.
I do agree that you can turn without that having much to do with enveloping people - unless the context of that is that someone is clinging on to you while you are turning. It is just that what one school calls tenkan can be completely different from what another school calls tenkan and they are probably just as correct as each other. Maybe we can say the term we mean, and if it is really unclear, ask politely if the person means whatever we are guessing. Whoa, manners...

Rob
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Old 03-25-2005, 08:28 AM   #87
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
It is just that what one school calls tenkan can be completely different from what another school calls tenkan and they are probably just as correct as each other.
Any word can be "tenkan" and "tenkan" can be defined as anything people want it to be. There.... that should make me as knowledgeable as you are about Aikido, then, since we "are probably just as correct as each other." There are indeed positive sides to moral relativism. My credentials are just as good as... nay, even better than, since my opinions even on that are that are valid... yours in Aikido since there is no real way of defining what your credentials are in relation to mine. Therefore, I trump you until you reply.

Mike
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Old 03-25-2005, 09:04 AM   #88
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Right, there is no rank in a forum.
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Old 03-25-2005, 10:18 AM   #89
Mike Sigman
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
Right, there is no rank in a forum.
"Rank" is meaningless in an open-ended practice called "Aikido", too. This is the same thing that goes on in a lot of Chinese martial arts. At the upper levels, it's considered that most people doing an art are not serious, so "rank" is meaningless, no matter what rank they claim.

The killer to Aikido rank is that in an effort to too-rapidly expand the Aikido organizations, the real meaning of "rank" was lost many years ago. Most of us who have been around for many years know that. To their credit, a number of people in Aikido refuse to test for rank because it's too obvious that "rank" has lost its meaning.

The second danger to Aikido is that it is only a 2-generation (maybe 3) art without a large pool of strong core practitioners in a single setting (like Hombu Dojo or a native village or whatever). Hence we get these "anything goes" definitions. If anything is Aikido, then by definition Aikido is also nothing. It's whatever role-playing game you want it to be and you can entice victims to become your "students" ("call me privately and I'll let you in on the 'secrets'").

Instead of looking for a list of definitions for Aikido, as you've been feeling around for on various threads, you need to start with one definition and build from it, step-by-step. The first definition of Aikido must be that it is a martial art. Since many people that have slipped into Aikido will now dissent over even that basic definition, then you should know that "Aikido" is becoming meaningless and therefore "rank" in Aikido certainly means almost nothing. Instead of a list of core factors, you need to first see if there are even enough people who would agree that Aikido is a martial art and that it should be useable in the parking lot at some reasonable time in their practice. If you can't get a consensus on that, then we're in a pickle even bringing up the word "rank". But, like Ellis Amdur, I realize these kinds of comments will only bring out the attempts to discredit, the personal attacks, etc..... and it only reinforces my points as it did his.

Mike
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Old 03-25-2005, 03:39 PM   #90
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Any word can be "tenkan" and "tenkan" can be defined as anything people want it to be. There.... that should make me as knowledgeable as you are about Aikido, then, since we "are probably just as correct as each other." There are indeed positive sides to moral relativism. My credentials are just as good as... nay, even better than, since my opinions even on that are that are valid... yours in Aikido since there is no real way of defining what your credentials are in relation to mine. Therefore, I trump you until you reply.

Mike
Thre's a large and unfounded jump to be made from "hey thre's differnet usage of various words so lets make sure we have the same understanding of the terms before arguing about them" to complete moral relativism. As I'm sure you know.

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 03-25-2005, 09:52 PM   #91
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

I'm coming in on this thread late, and may have missed something, but unfortunately, there've been so many side-tracks that it's been hard to follow. So if I'm reiterating something already pointed out, my apologies.

To the best of my knowledge, Ueshiba Morihei did not use the word "tenkan" in isolation. Used that way, it means blending and spinning - the common fantasy that our aikido is so superior to other martial arts that we just sweep them up in our circle and they can't recover.

Ueshiba, in his writings referred to irimi ("entering,") which really means taking the opponent's territory - occuping the space he is just moving into. In other words, an aikido atemi is irimi - placing your fist just where his face, for example, is trying to be. The second term Ueshiba used is "irimi-denkan." (The "D" is an alteration for ease of pronounciation, like a contraction.) This means that you enter, as before, with atemi, foot/hip placement, whatever, taking the opponent's territory (I know, "there's no opponent in aikido," but let's save that for another discussion). The opponent, however, is not crushed, defeated, what-have-you, and reoccupies the space or simply takes it himself, and the entering move then flows into the turning move (tenkan). I can't think of a good image right now, but it's like what happens to a wave when it hits the shoreline, and then it "tenkans" around/up/out. The opponent, unlike the immovable shore, and still on the attack, however, "flows with the go," to use Rickson Gracie's phrase. (If they don't continue with an attack, a follow up with further irimi rather than tenkan will naturally be the proper move).

In short, there is no tenkan without irimi. Any attempt to execute tenkan without effectively taking their territory (the meaning of atemi) will result in them countering you - unless they, too, are merely playing the aikido dojo game.

Best

Ellis Amdur

Last edited by Ellis Amdur : 03-25-2005 at 09:54 PM.

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Old 03-26-2005, 02:36 AM   #92
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Yes - that is spot on. Tenkan is preceeded by irimi, or an attempt at irimi. Tenkan is not just avoidance (although many do it as such). When I was a student I asked many teachers about it and never got a straight answer.

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Old 03-26-2005, 09:01 AM   #93
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

I agree with what you're saying, Ellis. The "tenkan" we all talk about as a beginning move is just a variation of irimi. If my memory serves me correctly it was originally called "irimi-tenka", in fact (could have been "denka"... you know how the "t" and "d" get mixed up).

Mike
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Old 03-26-2005, 04:22 PM   #94
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Quote:
Ellis Amdur wrote:
I'm coming in on this thread late, and may have missed something,
Ueshiba, in his writings referred to irimi ("entering,") which really means taking the opponent's territory - occuping the space he is just moving into. In other words, an aikido atemi is irimi - placing your fist just where his face, for example, is trying to be. The second term Ueshiba used is "irimi-denkan." (The "D" is an alteration for ease of pronounciation, like a contraction.)

Ellis Amdur
It is tenkan with a 't' not a 'd' - maybe you got out of the wrong side of bed this morning

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Old 03-26-2005, 04:42 PM   #95
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Rupert -

You read what I wrote. It is correct. Many words in Japanese shift from a "t" to a "d" when coupled with another word. Irimi-denkan is once.

Now I'm up on the wrong side of the bed.

Ellis

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Old 03-26-2005, 05:26 PM   #96
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

An example of "t"s that become "d"s would be how koto tama becomes kotodama. ("k"s become "g"s which is how the "k"imono turns into do"g"i.)

I agree that you are going to do irimi before tenkan assuming someone is attacking you. Now, whether a particular movement is called, "tenkan" or "kaiten" or even "han-tenkan" doesn't matter to me - as long as we define what we mean when we write (and it matters) then that's pretty much all you can expect.

As far as rank being meaningless in aikido - I say it is up to each teacher. And yes, some should be ashamed of themselves, but not all.

As far as there being no rank what-so-ever in a forum, like it or lump it.

Rob
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Old 03-27-2005, 10:14 PM   #97
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

In Korean, the sound changes between words follow a highly regular and predictable pattern. In Japanese, while some have tried to make rules regarding sound changes, the fact remains that there is no discernable hard and fast rule. It is easy to say that /t/ changes to /d/ and /k/ changes to /g/ etc. when in a secondary position; this is the simple thing often said to learners of the language. However, it is a little like the /i/ before /e/ except after /c/ rule -- except when … - and there you have it -- except when. In Japanese there are lots of exceptions, so many in fact that whole theses have been written on this very topic.

Suffice it to say, I am no wiser than the next man but I do realise it is far simpler to just learn the idiomatic irregularities that appear in everyday expressions. In this case, for the average linguist bod like myself, the rule is not worth bothering with as it is just not so readily apparent or well established. Ask a Japanese and they will not have a clue -- just as much as the average Englishman will not be able to explain his utterly confusing spelling system. The smarter guy will explain about voiced and voiceless consonants but that is not perfect either.

Back to the point -- tenkan is of Chinese origin, and of what few sensible rules there are, one is that words of Chinese origin are not subject to this sound change (except when …well, ask Mr. 中田 -- see below).

Someone above mentioned -- kotodama. Well, consider furitama. They also have medama (eyeball), and mizutama (water droplet). Then consider the case of Mr. 中田. Now is that Nakata or Nakada? Well, the only way to find out is to ask him.

Now let's think, should it be sumo-tori or sumo-dori

Conc: irimi-tenkan rules OK

Last edited by Rupert Atkinson : 03-27-2005 at 10:16 PM.

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Old 03-27-2005, 11:58 PM   #98
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Rupert -

The only reason I posted re "d" and "t" is you corrected me. You stated that my usage of the word irimi-denkan was incorrect. In fact, it is not. All the irregularities of Japanese regarding other composite words are irrelevant.

I have never heard irimi-tenkan in spoken Japanese, when the two words are used as a single concept. Doesn't mean it doesn't exist. I didn't even say it was incorrect. I simply wrote it the way every Japanese whom I met in my thirteen years in Japan has used the composite word, and then explained why I didn't use "t" for tenkan, under the assumption that someone would correct me. Evidently my explanation wasn't enough and you corrected me anyway. This is tedious.

Last edited by Ellis Amdur : 03-28-2005 at 12:01 AM.

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Old 03-28-2005, 08:06 AM   #99
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

Hi Ellis,

There is a thread on aikido journal that is speaking to the atemi=irimi concept...would you mind if I quoted your post here and provided a link back to this topic?

Thanks, and Best Wishes,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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Old 03-28-2005, 09:27 AM   #100
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Re: Tenkan and Centrifugal Force

I assume you mean my first post, not the semantic quibbles. Sure.

Best

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