Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 06-18-2006, 05:56 PM   #76
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,633
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote:
This seems like a thinly disguised "my aikido is better than your aikido "thread. What works for you.... George. and Ron and Szewhatever..is not going to be the same for a woman who weighs 110 pounds. You all are judging something by how it looks not by how it feels.

I hope men keep thinking the way you guys do so when you get flattened some day by a soft powerful woman you will be caught unawares.
Mary
My Aikido experience has been informed by powerful women since I started. I trained with Patty Saotome when she was a Shodan and now she's a Sixth Dan. No one ever stood in front of Patty and had any doubts about whether she was trying to hit you.

I trained with Mary Heiny Sensei for five years. She'd bop you upside the head quite happliy if you didn't move it. Size is absolutely no reason for lack of intention

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 07:51 PM   #77
Don_Modesto
Dojo: Messores Sensei (Largo, Fl.)
Location: Florida
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 1,267
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Ron Tisdale wrote:
Well, Anne Marie, I feel slightly offended......I did my best to be inoffensive, polite, and stick to things that anyone could see and agree with or disagree with without personal attacks.
This was abundantly evident to me, Ron. Good job.

...would like to see a video of the unpronounceable one. Locals tell me admiringly that he's "dirty". I like him already (well, I've liked him for years for his posts, but...)

Given what I've seen of folk and their awareness of their own shortcomings, I wouldn't be surprised if the ladies in the demo themselves would make criticisms similar to what we've seen re: intent.

FWIW, I felt the intent was absent, too. But geez, there was a WHOLE lot to like there; far too much to dismiss as contemptuously as our enthusiastic gadfly does...

Don J. Modesto
St. Petersburg, Florida
------------------------
http://www.theaikidodojo.com/
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 08:39 PM   #78
giriasis
Location: Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 819
United_States
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Ron Tisdale wrote:
Man Mark, look what you started...



Well, Anne Marie, I feel slightly offended......I did my best to be inoffensive, polite, and stick to things that anyone could see and agree with or disagree with without personal attacks. I specifically did NOT tear anything down. The reason I spent so much time typing and thinking about a response was because I felt the effort of the participants deserved serious thought and evaluation. I think many people here have done the same...thought long and hard about their opinions, and stated them clearly and without malice.

Do you feel George Ledyard is out of bounds with his comments?

Best,
Ron (One of these days I will post some video I hope, though it may be a while yet...)

Hey, an honest critique is one thing, which at least yours was, but the oh, the unpronouncable one...we all can agree that his words are not nearly as eloquent as I hope his aikido should be -- putting his actions where his words are. I hope his aikido is as good and as martial and "death-like" as he expects everyone else's to be. It's not like these ladies posted this here and ask everyone here what they thought and asked for thoughtful critiques. Nope, someone found the link on a video clip site with at least 50 other aikido clips. Why this one? Because it's women? Because it's soft aikido? Who knows the intent of the original poster. Did he know the women and wanted to brag about them or bring them down? I thought it was a nice demonstration.

I'm with Mary here, you won't really know what their attacks are like until you train with them in real life. I've seen myself on video tape and my intent to really attack my partner did not translate to video really well. I was giving energy and intent, but it sure didn't look like it. I'd say that its hard for a video tape to grab the intensity of an attack. Heck, just watching an aikido class the intensity doesn't translate. And the smaller the person, the harder it will be for that to translate. Sure, it will translate for a 6'2" 210 lb Don Modesto, but would it for you, even you smaller guys? What about a 5'1" 100 pound woman? I know the same critique as made towards the female ukes in the Women In Aikido videos. Well, I've been uke and nage for at least on of them and their attacks do translate -- in person.

My point is to give these ladies the benefit of the doubt because at least they have put themselves out there subject to anyone's criticism of their skill.

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 09:10 PM   #79
L. Camejo
 
L. Camejo's Avatar
Dojo: Ontario Martial Arts
Location: Mississauga, Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,423
Canada
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote:
I hope his aikido is as good and as martial and "death-like" as he expects everyone else's to be.
Why does "martial" Aikido have to be "Death-like"?

Overall I think this has been a good thread it is good if one can see different training methods and ways of executing Aikido principles within their own contexts and appreciate what each has to offer and how each manifestation in some way brings to reality a principle of Aiki.

In the same way pretty, fluid Aikido does not necessarily have to be martially useless, martially applied Aikido need not be labelled as "Death-like" imho.

Why can't we find the right balance between the two as the situation demands?

As far as getting an idea of martial intent from video, I think if one knows what to look for it is very possible.

LC

--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
http://www.tntaikido.org
http://www.mushinkan.ca
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 09:19 PM   #80
giriasis
Location: Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 819
United_States
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Why does "martial" Aikido have to be "Death-like"?
I dont' know why. But I was saying that because Mr. Szezcpan always states something to that effect that you have to train with the intent that you are going to die or some such.

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 09:59 PM   #81
Hardware
 
Hardware's Avatar
Dojo: Ronin (sort of...)
Location: Prairies
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 69
Canada
Offline
Re: What do you think?

I have seen some very talented and high ranking people perform many demos. Those young ladies did Aikido proud in my opinion and I believe O' Sensei is proud of them as well.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 10:24 PM   #82
ikkitosennomusha
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 241
Offline
Re: What do you think?

There was some nice techniques in there but it was painfully obvious that uke started flipping before nage had completed the technique. So, uke was too gracious. I train uke not to give an inch. Nage will never learn how to master the technique and "make it work" in real life when uke blatantly lays down for you.

Last edited by ikkitosennomusha : 06-18-2006 at 10:27 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-18-2006, 11:49 PM   #83
Bronson
 
Bronson's Avatar
Dojo: Seiwa Dojo and Southside Dojo
Location: Battle Creek & Kalamazoo, MI
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,677
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Christopher Li wrote:
Anyway, George has certainly been around long enough (30 years?) to feel plenty of soft powerful women.
snicker... giggle... chuckle

Bronson

"A pacifist is not really a pacifist if he is unable to make a choice between violence and non-violence. A true pacifist is able to kill or maim in the blink of an eye, but at the moment of impending destruction of the enemy he chooses non-violence."
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 01:40 AM   #84
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,633
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Bronson Diffin wrote:
snicker... giggle... chuckle

Bronson
Bronson,
Go to your room. You've been a naughty boy...
- George

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 05:46 AM   #85
Mark Freeman
Dojo: Dartington
Location: Devon
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,219
United Kingdom
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote:
Hey, an honest critique is one thing, which at least yours was, but the oh, the unpronouncable one...we all can agree that his words are not nearly as eloquent as I hope his aikido should be -- putting his actions where his words are. I hope his aikido is as good and as martial and "death-like" as he expects everyone else's to be. It's not like these ladies posted this here and ask everyone here what they thought and asked for thoughtful critiques. Nope, someone found the link on a video clip site with at least 50 other aikido clips. Why this one? Because it's women? Because it's soft aikido? Who knows the intent of the original poster. Did he know the women and wanted to brag about them or bring them down? I thought it was a nice demonstration.

I'm with Mary here, you won't really know what their attacks are like until you train with them in real life. I've seen myself on video tape and my intent to really attack my partner did not translate to video really well. I was giving energy and intent, but it sure didn't look like it. I'd say that its hard for a video tape to grab the intensity of an attack. Heck, just watching an aikido class the intensity doesn't translate. And the smaller the person, the harder it will be for that to translate. Sure, it will translate for a 6'2" 210 lb Don Modesto, but would it for you, even you smaller guys? What about a 5'1" 100 pound woman? I know the same critique as made towards the female ukes in the Women In Aikido videos. Well, I've been uke and nage for at least on of them and their attacks do translate -- in person.

My point is to give these ladies the benefit of the doubt because at least they have put themselves out there subject to anyone's criticism of their skill.
Good post Anne Marie,

just a note about my reason for posting this particular clip..I do not know the women on the clip, I was just browsing the clips, as you do, when I came upon this one. I was struck by their relatively young age ( we've all seen the 'old timers' doing their stuff, and they should be good they've been doing it long enough!), their speed, fluidity and general movement. Coupled with the fact that many of the audience were just small children, who seemed to really enjoy what they saw. I liked it for those reasons. It may not be exactly the 'same' aikido as I do, but so what. I was interested to see the opinions of others on the forum, as I know we don't all think alike.

Personally, I find some of the criticisms levelled at the 'softer' styles of aikido to be founded in lack of understanding. However I admit that when seen from the outside, this form of aikido can seem unrealistic. You only have to see O Sensei in the latter part of his life to agree with this.

I have read plenty of posts on this site that cast doubt on the reality of "no touch throws" ( even though O Sensei performed them ) as nonesense, and that O Sensei's uke's were "too co-operative" ( even though many of them ended up the respected heads of their own organisations ). I find it interesting that people want to defend thier 'own' position in the face of evidence.

Some of O Sensei's students taught the more martial aspects of aikido, some of them the softer more flowing style and others major on the philosophical aspects. They all did their best to translate what they learned to us the next generation of students.

I practice the aikido of my teacher who learnt from both 'hard' ( Kenshiro Abbe) and 'soft' ( Tohei) teachers. So he teaches a martially effective soft aikido .

I would love to practice with the aikidoka in the clip so as to feel what their aikido is really like. I suspect that they are perfectly capable practitioners of aikido principles from what I could see of their demo.

Aikido is a force for good in the modern world. O Sensei wanted it that way. My own teacher is no longer really interested in the 'martial' aspects of aikido. He teaches aikido for daily life, a way to co-ordinate mind and body so that life can be lived more fully.

If you want aikido purely for self defence, it is an effective art to learn. If you want aikido for self improvement it is an effective art to learn. They are not mutually exclusive, but are sometimes taught as such.

The growth of video posting websites has given us all access to way more aikido to see than we otherwise would. Some of what we see will be the aikido we know and some of it will not. It doesn''t mean that it doesn't merit being called 'aikido' it is only 'not aikido' if it is not following the principles of the art.

IMHO the priciples of aiki cannot be taught without co-operative practice, in the early stages a student would not be able to perform any of the techniques if the uke was fully resistant. We must learn through years of practice how to blend with our attacker. Attacks start 'very' unrealistic, and work towards more and more realism.

Aikido is an art for all, it can be practiced by young and old alike, we should revel in the fact that this is so. To think that it is only 'real' when practiced at the full on martial level is to miss the point. Not that there is anything wrong with the full on martial level - it must exist and people must train like this for it to be called a Martial Art. However aikido is not restricted to this form of practice. It is an art of non-resistance, of non-competition, a way to reconcile the divisions within oneself. Not just a way to win a fight with another human being.

I have a student who is in her 60's, a frail lady who has had many years of illness. She has been coming for over a year now and has benefitted greatly from her practice. If she was in an environment of full on martial style attacks she would not be there, and her life would not be as rich. The other students in the class ar happy to practice with her as they have to be completely mindfull of her body and what it can and will do. This teaches them awareness and sensitivity. Both qualities that are needed when practicing at the highest levels of aikido. They have plenty of opportunity to go full on with other more 'robust' partners.

Anyway, I urge those who are critical of what they saw in the clip to ask themselves what it is that makes them want to do so. Are they insecure of their own place in the wider world of aikido? Are they concerned that aikido is being 'watered down' and therefore their place in it is denigrated? Do they themselves feel it is their place to put the rest of us right? These are only questions to ponder, which may or may not have merit.

I sometimes think we all take ourselves a bit too seriously and our self importance gets the better of us

regards

Mark

Success is having what you want. Happiness is wanting what you have.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 05:52 AM   #86
Hanna B
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 647
Sweden
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
This video has nothing to do with aikido. It is empty shell. Or healthy gymnastic if you will.
Everyone should know by now how the Unpronouncable one is.

Quote:
David Skaggs wrote:
I would like to take a poll. How many would like to see a video of Szczepan Janczuk doing Aikido?
Oh yes, absolutely. :-) He takes his mouth so full, we want to see some action too!

Having that said, I agree with

Quote:
Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
This topic is not about me, so relax your shoulders and lets go back to the topic.
Right, back to topic.

From the start, the topic of this thread is IMHO a bit problematic. Something is taped and put on the net, and a link is posted on the forum with the accompanying question "what do you think". Well there are so many opinions out there regarding how aikido should be, and someone will say they did not like it... and then they will be seen as mean to the people being put to display on the web.

We know nothing about the people doing the aikido - remember, hakama does not equate yudansha everywhere! I personally believe they are teens. It has more to do with how they move... they seem like teens, and for me this is a spirit I am glad to see teens train in. As has been said it is probably partly choreographed. I agree they are very "light" and the attacks look like the uke is already thinking about the ukemi. This is a way of thinking you easily get into in this kind of practice, although not desirable. They are demonstrating some aspects of aikido very nicely which makes it a good demo. It is not what I would have wanted to see from a 45-years old who has been doing aikido for 15 years, but from the context that I am guessing - since I do not know the true context - it seems like a really nice club demo.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 07:13 AM   #87
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,614
United_States
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Hi Anne Marie,

Thank you for separating what I said from what others said. That's all anyone can ask; to simply be taken at their own worth, for their own actions. I appreciate it, and am open to your critism.

Quote:
This seems like a thinly disguised "my aikido is better than your aikido "thread. What works for you.... George. and Ron and Szewhatever..is not going to be the same for a woman who weighs 110 pounds. You all are judging something by how it looks not by how it feels.

I hope men keep thinking the way you guys do so when you get flattened some day by a soft powerful woman you will be caught unawares.
Mary
Already been flattened Mary. Did you read my review of my training in France? I was training with a woman who was smaller than I am by far, and yet she had no trouble whatever flattening me. So it's not strictly a male female issue then, is it? I still remember my first entry into a kickboxing dojo. The instructor threw me in the ring with a small woman...who proceeded to kick my butt all over the ring. I still have yet to see such a sweet round house kick. In fact, it was kind of hard to see it then!

The point that many are making is that that kind of attack is missing from that video. It's not a crime, but it doesn't correspond to the aikido that some looking for. But I go back to a point that I made earlier...Budo is not a point in time. It's a path. I feel strongly that if those women continue to train, and if they strengthen their attacks, they may well be the ones literally flattening me one day. For the sake of justice, I hope they are!

And Larry is correct...it's not about Death Ray (TM) aikido...just attack straight and true, don't throw your balance away without any aikido on shite's part. It doesn't even have to be able to knock shite down...but at least your best effort, on target, intending to compromise shite so that there is a *chance* for shite to restore harmony.

Best,
Ron (Thank you for your posts George, I think it is important that someone of your caliber is posting in this thread)

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 07:57 AM   #88
Peter Goldsbury
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Peter Goldsbury's Avatar
Dojo: Hiroshima Kokusai Dojo
Location: Hiroshima, Japan
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 1,997
Japan
Offline
Re: What do you think?

I think that much of the issue here concerns the purpose of demonstrations.

The clip actually reminded me of demonstrations that are often held in Japanese universities. Hiroshima University held its annual demonstration a couple of weeks ago and the students spent many hours choreographing all the attacks and the appropriate waza.

I watched these preparations and was something of a fly in the ointment, since the students were torn between my Szeczpan-like comments ("You are not attacking." "You should not announce your intention before you attack." "You are actually holding back before attacking, until tori has finished throwing the previous uke: nobody in the audience will be convinced.") and the need to do a "good" demonstration, full of fluid movements and spectacular ukemi, which would be pleasing to their 'sempai'. (This is important: being pleasing to one's sempai is a very important factor in university aikido clubs.) The students invariably kept to their choreographed scripts and treated my comments with gentle 'mokusatsu'. And this is right. Student aikido demonstrations fulfill a particular purpose. It is a kind of club reunion and follows a traditional pattern.

The annual All-Japan Demonstration is full of such performances and you even have Hombu shihans actually 'causing' their non-attacking uke to perform spectacular ukemi, ukemi such that only twenty-year-olds can perform, even before these uke raise their arms to make a non-attack. But, like the student demonstrations, the All-Japan Demonstration also fulfills a particular purpose.

One eminent Aikikai shihan, Sadateru Arikawa Sensei, actually stopped participating in the All-Japan Demonstration for this reason, though he would always come and make some trenchant comments. The surviving shihans of Arikawa Sensei's generation who give demonstrations at the May event almost inevitably follow a prescribed pattern. They start with taisabaki or basic waza and then add one or two more 'spectacular' waza (like kata-guruma in the case of Hiroshi Isoyama), but their uke are almost always young students or recent students, trained to take ukemi, or are designated uke from the same dojo, who 'know how to attack in the proper way'. So in a spectacular demonstration recorded somewhere on videotape, Chiba Sensei gave a spectacular demonstration of 'free' swordwork. But I think that his uke had been trained to attack with the sword only within certain parameters

I think it is pointless to get all steamed up about whether all this is 'really' aikido or not. Everybody will have an opinion based on how they have been taught.

But one can rightly ask, eWhatfs it all for?f What is the point of a demonstration? How can you actually 'demonstrate' 'real' aikido, if it is supposed to be the spontaneous 'takemusu aiki' etc etc, that we will learn about if we read O Sensei's writings?

Szczepan mentioned the New England Aikikai. There was a tradition of demonstrations in the NE Aikikai entitled gWarrior Arts of the Orienth. They were put together by Fred Wagstaff (Anyone remember him? Wonderful man. Severe 2-kyou. Died of AIDS.) The demonstrations always involved Kanai Mitsunari Sensei (in his younger days, with the long flowing hair, with the brushing back almost a part of the initial technique), but the uke were always chosen carefully and their role was invariably to show the martial qualities of Senseifs technique. This was fine, but you had to attack him ecorrectlyf in order to show this.

I was once uke at another NE Aikikai demonstration, held on the roof of a building, with no tatami. The tori were women members of the dojo and the uke were all men. Koshi-nage featured prominently in the demonstration. I quite enjoyed this demonstration, for I was young and reckless and I quite enjoyed demonstrating that I could take ukemi from koshi-nage on concrete floors. I think we were asked to do this demonstration as part of the incipient womenfs movement (this was the 1970s) and it was important to show that women could hold their own against men in 'real' situations. So the location of the demonstration was actually quite important. I do not recollect the demonstrations being choreographed, only that the uke had to be male (the more macho and hulking, the better) and the tori had to be female (the more petite and esoftf, the better).

So, in this case the demonstration was designed to fulfill a specific purpose. There had been some horrific murders in Boston and everyone felt that women had to take serious steps to protect themselves. So, the demonstration on the rooftop had a serious purpose, and one could then ask whether the attacks, in their turn, were realistic. At that time, my recollection was that I could happily take ukemi from koshi-nage on concrete, and so I was not so concerned about the niceties of attacking. However, as far as I can recall, we did not choreograph the demonstration.

(Anne-Marie, perhaps you might talk to Mr Peter Bernath and see if he remembers Fred Wagstaff. I think Fred moved from Boston to NY after I left the US in 1975. Yamada Sensei recently told me that Fred had died, and had died of AIDS.)

So, I do not want to pass judgment on the demonstration, other than raise a few questions about the purpose.

Best wishes to all,

Last edited by Peter Goldsbury : 06-19-2006 at 08:05 AM.

P A Goldsbury
_______________________
Hiroshima, Japan
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 09:59 AM   #89
Dennis Hooker
Dojo: Shindai Dojo, Orlando Fl.
Location: Orlando Florida
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 456
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Most of the stuff I see at the Aiki Expos, or the earlier Friendship Demonstrations are either choreographed or well rehearsed just as most public exhibitions are . There are a few exceptions which are obvious. At least they are not jumping over machetes or dodging junking looking katana knockoffs. They are giving a good demonstration of technique despite the sarcastic musings of some people.

Dennis Hooker: (DVD) Zanshin and Ma-ai in Aikido
https://www.createspace.com/238049

www.shindai.com
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 10:23 AM   #90
Mark Freeman
Dojo: Dartington
Location: Devon
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,219
United Kingdom
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Thanks for your post Peter, most informative.

It shows how little I know about the wider world of aikido when I say I had no idea that these demonstrations were/are choreographed. In my insular world of aikido from one teacher, I was under the impression that aikido was spontaneous. Of course, much of our practice follows set techniques, but that is the nature of learning the techniques. My teacher no longer gives public demonstrations, but he used to in the early days when promoting aikido to an un aware audience. You only have to read some of Henry Ellis Sensei's accounts of how real some of the demos were. He's even had someone walk onto the mat in his boots and challenge him in front of everyone present. I'm not sure that the word coreography was used much in those days.

Even knowing that the demo was/may have been coreographed, still doesn't diminish my enjoyment of it.

regards,

Mark

Success is having what you want. Happiness is wanting what you have.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 10:50 AM   #91
ikkitosennomusha
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 241
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Aikido should be spontaneous! A well trained nage will take control and be in control of the spontaneous uke. In a public demonstration, which I have done only a few, nothing is choreographed (sp?). I don't believe in it. When you reherse your demo, it will look just like that, rehersed! So, remember, what you train for in the dojo is what you will do elsewhere and if one is training to choreograph movements, the realism is absolutely not there.

It is ok of others disagree with me, by all means, you don't have to agree with me. However, I don't see what purpose a preplanned demo would serve nontheless how it would benefit students of aikido.

Perhaps some are afraid of "messing up" and want to appear flawless. This is behavior of the ego and you have to let that go. If you are truely in a state of "no mind" you will not be concerned with the on lookers and only with iradicating one attack at a time.

I read where someone stated that O-sensei would be proud. I beg to differ. O-sensei despised this type of training and maintained that the every essence of shugyo is pure, hardcore training and that goes for demos. In watching old clips of him, the attacks are real with intent. Sadly, some of today's heirarchy do not display any better of a demo than the one in this thread. This is just my opinion of course. Yes, they are technical and flashy, but that is not what I am looking for.

Last edited by ikkitosennomusha : 06-19-2006 at 10:58 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 06:48 PM   #92
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,633
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Peter A Goldsbury wrote:
But one can rightly ask, eWhatfs it all for?f What is the point of a demonstration? How can you actually 'demonstrate' 'real' aikido, if it is supposed to be the spontaneous 'takemusu aiki' etc etc, that we will learn about if we read O Sensei's writings?
This is an excellent point... Back in the 1930's when O-sensei was asked to demonstrate his art before the Imperial family he apparently demurred at first saying that he didn't want to present something false in such an important occasion and that reality was about life and death confrontation. He was persuaded to present his demo, even though it wasn'r "real". It was real enough, however, that on the first technique he broke his uke's arm and Shioda Sensei had to do all the rest of the ukemi... 45 minutes straight of all out ukemi. All were said to heve collapsed in exhaustion once the demo was over.

Ikeda Sensei took ukemi for Saotome Sensei in the old days in Japan when Sensei was the Honbu Dojo representative at various martial arts demos. I asked him about the ukemi and if they rehearsed their demos. He said no and stated that the only thing he tried to do in his demos with Saotome Sensei was try his level best to kill Sensei. Saotome Sensei did the rest. At one demo at the Budokan in the sixties Saotome Sensei felt that the folks from the other martial arts did not respect Aikido. He proceeded to do a three person randori in which he did three entering movements. Ikeda Sensei's description of the aftermath was "One guy no can talk, one guy no can use arm, third guy sleeping". It lasted under ten seconds.

While this demo would perhaps satisfy the most stringent requirements of the "reality factor", I don't think it is seen as necessary or appropriate these days to take things to this extreme. I have never seen anything like this from Saotome Sensei after he came to the States...

So, somewhere in between movement with absolutely no intention and dangerous and destructive technique is where we should be trying to be. I think that demos should be seen as a form of practice for the people putting on the demo. They should have all the elements you would expect to see on a Dan test in terms of energy and intention but they can't be "real" either. All of our training, if it is to be done safely with no intentional injury will be a form of collusion on some level. My only desire is to see that the people doing the demo execute their techniques "as if" there weren't.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 09:25 PM   #93
NagaBaba
 
NagaBaba's Avatar
Location: Wild, deep, deadly North
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,136
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Peter A Goldsbury wrote:
But one can rightly ask, eWhatfs it all for?f What is the point of a demonstration? How can you actually 'demonstrate' 'real' aikido, if it is supposed to be the spontaneous 'takemusu aiki' etc etc, that we will learn about if we read O Sensei's writings?


So, I do not want to pass judgment on the demonstration, other than raise a few questions about the purpose.

Best wishes to all,
spontaneous 'takemusu aiki' ?? I understand we aren't talking about video from the topic anymore? No, I've never dreamed to ask about such level of practice.

Yes, for me, and for few other ppl demo is only another training, where public is allowed to watch. Nothing very special.
There is very important reason for that -- aikido as a Budo, per definition, is not for the show. Of course, sensei can choose these special conditions to teach something his students. Some will learn, some not, but it is still only normal teachning.

I was uke for few demo in prehistoric times of my practice, and never ever was question about preparation. I would be very insulting to my instructor even to think he must prepare something. These demo were very sever teaching, but I survived and learned tons of stuff for all my life.

One thing I learned among others-- the demo must be done only by very advanced aikido folks.Otherwise we face the disaster.

Quote:
Hanna B wrote:
Oh yes, absolutely. :-) He takes his mouth so full, we want to see some action too!
I practice 3 hours a day, EVERY day, + weekend seminars with shihans.
Watching my aikido practice can be very dangerous for you -- you may discover I move like O sensei himself What would you do??? What would you do???

Quote:
Don_Modesto wrote:
...would like to see a video of the unpronounceable one. Locals tell me admiringly that he's "dirty". I like him already (well, I've liked him for years for his posts, but...)
Well, I didnt plan to release video of my practice very soon, but now discovering excellent business opportunity I'm starting to think about it


Nagababa

ask for divine protection Ame no Murakumo Kuki Samuhara no Ryuo
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 09:56 PM   #94
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2,155
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Szczepan Janczuk wrote:
s
Well, I didnt plan to release video of my practice very soon, but now discovering excellent business opportunity I'm starting to think about it

Will the video have a naked woman, rum cake and cocktails?
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 10:08 PM   #95
Talon
 
Talon's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Zenshin Dojo
Location: Edmonton
Join Date: Nov 2002
Posts: 187
Canada
Offline
Re: What do you think?

I think that IF the video IS of naked women.....Szczepan can make some serious BUCKS!!!
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-19-2006, 11:34 PM   #96
Peter Goldsbury
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Peter Goldsbury's Avatar
Dojo: Hiroshima Kokusai Dojo
Location: Hiroshima, Japan
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 1,997
Japan
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Hello Mark,

When I lived and trained in the UK with the AGB and the BAF, we never did any demonstrations. I think the only one I can remember was held by Terry Ezra in Liverpool to mark some anniversary or other. I also remember being the partner of M Kanetsuka for a demonstration in London, but this involved only Saito Sensei's kumi-tachi.

There was absolutely no question of preparing for or choreographing a demonstration. However, here in Japan it is more likely that there will be demonstrations at important events and that they will be choreographed or prepared for in some way. I once participated in the All-Japan Demonstration, representing the Hiroshima Dojo. My teacher insisted on preparing and vetting every single movement and technique, on the grounds that it would be in front of Doshu. I felt bad about it because I think that a demonstration should be ordinary training, with people watching. So I never volunteered again.

P A Goldsbury
_______________________
Hiroshima, Japan
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-20-2006, 12:08 AM   #97
Hanna B
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 647
Sweden
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Ah Unpronuncable One, you really did not want the thread to leave the subject of yourself... did you?
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-20-2006, 12:18 AM   #98
Hanna B
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 647
Sweden
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
Peter A Goldsbury wrote:
I felt bad about it because I think that a demonstration should be ordinary training, with people watching.
More than 10 years ago I visited a martial arts gala. I do not remember how many hours of demos I watched from different arts. Very few of the demonstrations consisted of normal training - most demos very full of as many spectacular kicks as possible, people jumped up to kick peaches from swords and did arranged "self defence" scenes were someone was assaulted but ended victorious etc. One of the few who showed real training was, in my mind, the most impressive demo, the one I still remember: Wai Po Tang of wing chun showing some ordinary training with kicking on pads and training with the wooden dummy.

My conclusion is, most demos are designed to look impressive to the relatively ignorant audience.

Last edited by Hanna B : 06-20-2006 at 12:25 AM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-20-2006, 12:28 AM   #99
xuzen
 
xuzen's Avatar
Dojo: None at the moment - on hiatus
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 965
Malaysia
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Not sure with other arts, but IMO, it is difficult to show the REAL (TM) aikido to audience sitting comfortably in the spectator booth. All you can do is to show the shell of aikido, i.e., the flips, the graceful ukemi etc...

To really appreciate the functional beauty of aikido, one must get down on to the mat and FEEL IT (TM).

That is why, when seeing aikido demo, just appreciate it for what it is worth, entertainment.

Boon.

SHOMEN-ATE (TM), the solution to 90% of aikido and life's problems.
  Reply With Quote
Old 06-20-2006, 02:33 AM   #100
Peter Goldsbury
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Peter Goldsbury's Avatar
Dojo: Hiroshima Kokusai Dojo
Location: Hiroshima, Japan
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 1,997
Japan
Offline
Re: What do you think?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote:
Back in the 1930's when O-sensei was asked to demonstrate his art before the Imperial family he apparently demurred at first saying that he didn't want to present something false in such an important occasion and that reality was about life and death confrontation. He was persuaded to present his demo, even though it wasn'r "real". It was real enough, however, that on the first technique he broke his uke's arm and Shioda Sensei had to do all the rest of the ukemi... 45 minutes straight of all out ukemi. All were said to heve collapsed in exhaustion once the demo was over.
Yes, and I believe that this was a one-off. I understand that O Sensei was not in favour of demonstrations of aikido given before the general public, for reasons to do with keeping the art 'pure'.

After the war, however, things changed and demonstrations were held in an effort to make aikido better known. I do not think Morihei Ueshiba took part in these demonstration until the the precursor of the All-Japan Demonstrations was held. This would have been in the early sixties. The motivator behind these postwar demonstrations of aikido was Kisshomaru Ueshiba and his colleagues in the Aikikai Hombu.

P A Goldsbury
_______________________
Hiroshima, Japan
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:05 AM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate