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Old 02-04-2007, 05:18 PM   #376
gdandscompserv
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Frankly, Ricky, I would suggest that people find someone who *can* show more than just basic-level stuff and then find out if those people are willing to show anything. At the moment, I'd suggest that people first go get a feel for what is happening... try visiting Ushiro Sensei.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
thanks Mike but Ushiro Sensei doesn't happen to have a dojo in my neck of the woods. and since the only way i know to improve my aikido is through daily training, i'm afraid i'll just have to muddle my way through.
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Old 02-04-2007, 05:36 PM   #377
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Re: Baseline skillset

i did however read this. i would love to learn from Ushiro Sensei so i will keep an eye open for that opprtunity.
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Old 02-04-2007, 05:51 PM   #378
Michael Young
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Ricky,

He'll be at Summer Camp in the Rockies again this year. Excellent opportunity to not only see Ushiro, but if you seek it out, you'll get your hands on him. He changed my entire outlook on things the second I got to experience hands-on with him. Check out http://www.boulderaikikai.org/ for details.

Best,

Mike
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Old 02-04-2007, 06:00 PM   #379
Mike Sigman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Ricky Wood wrote:
i did however read this. i would love to learn from Ushiro Sensei so i will keep an eye open for that opprtunity.
What he says and did (as related) in the article is true. This is the baseline skills that we were trying to talk about earlier in the thread.

From what Rob John relates of things they have done in practice, I know that he does some of these things and that Akuzawa is teaching those things (the fine details of level, direction, etc., I can't tell of course). From what Dan and Cady say, they are doing some of these things. And there are others. The baseline skills are easy to spot by what someone says and what they don't say.

Just to throw in a caveat, I can't be really sure of what Ushiro knows versus what he teaches. What he says is true. What he demonstrates is true. But there seems to be a disconnect in exactly how he is teaching it and how well people are able to "steal his technique".

But anyway, you're looking in the right direction.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 02-04-2007, 06:40 PM   #380
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Ah..... could you suggest the name of someone that will vouch for your having these baseline skillsets, Erick?
When you get around to defining them as anything other than kokyu tanden ho, let me know. You have not so far. I have nothing I need or wish to prove to you. My arguments stand or fall on their own merits, and no amount of "vouching" will make them stronger or weaker. I do what I do, and vouching won't change that either, for good or ill. Is budo a popularity contest?

Is "I double-dog-dare-you" far behind? Or can we move on to some useful discussion.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I know some of your mutual acquaintances and they have not been quietly emailing me to assure me that you have these expertises.
This is about the fourth or fifth time you purport to have secret connections to people who "know me." It was tiresome and misguided the first time. I do not depend on my arguments for the people that I know or don't know, much less those who know you.

I know what I know and I can describe it in detail. You cannot, apparently, without resorting to Chinese esoterica. Maybe that (and devolving into the dozens when asked to respond to specific assertions) is limit of your vocabulary, maybe not. On Ledyard's Sensei's voucher for you, and I have met him exactly once, but enough to respect his opinions, I have assumed that it is not. I would really not like to have to conclude otherwise from what I see here. Let's see.

And come visit, anytime. We play nice. And we have the nicest beaches. Accept no substitutes.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 02-04-2007, 07:02 PM   #381
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Just to throw in a caveat, I can't be really sure of what Ushiro knows versus what he teaches. What he says is true. What he demonstrates is true. But there seems to be a disconnect in exactly how he is teaching it and how well people are able to "steal his technique".
And yet you can speak about what I know from a few pixels ona screen. Really, Mike, does no one measure up to your standards, whatever they are ? Of course, Ushiro believes in the value of working faithfully through traditional forms for the continuity and realization of deep knowledge. You apparently don't. I do.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 02-04-2007, 07:36 PM   #382
Eddie deGuzman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Ricky Wood wrote:
i did however read this. i would love to learn from Ushiro Sensei so i will keep an eye open for that opprtunity.
Quote from article:
A frequent scene at the camp was the involuntary smile that lit up the face of an attacker the moment they were "floated" by Ushiro shihan.

Still not having seen or felt Ushiro sensei's technique, I am nonetheless certain it is similar to what is being taught at my dojo. The smile on the attacker being the clue. Working out with the higher ups every week will invariably leave a smile on your face. Throwing and being thrown, both equally enjoyable.

There are definitely invisible lines drawn that distinguish those who can from those who are trying, those who want to, and those who just don't get it and are finding their own way. It is not required to believe any one way is correct. Even the higher ups are slightly different in what and how they do things, but they barely even talk about it. They just train. It's all good. It's all fun.

Cheers,
Eddie
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Old 02-04-2007, 08:01 PM   #383
Mike Sigman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
And yet you can speak about what I know from a few pixels ona screen. Really, Mike, does no one measure up to your standards, whatever they are ? Of course, Ushiro believes in the value of working faithfully through traditional forms for the continuity and realization of deep knowledge. You apparently don't. I do.
Wait a minute.... none of MY descriptions suit you, although you don't want to consider the fact that your "theory" doesn't ring anyone's bell, even though you are trying to be "exact" and demand that everyone meet your standards of acceptable discourse... and NOW you're saying that you and Ushiro "value traditional forms for the continuity and realization of deep knowledge"????? No one can win with you unless you say they can win, right?

And BTW, it's not the few pixels on the screen that give you away... it's the many pixels that are simply not there; pixels that would be there if you really understood. Give it up.

BTW, Ushiro's descriptions are intriguing. I haven't seen them before, but I continue to be surprised at how so many Japanese use the same traditional pictures the Chinese still use.... yet supposedly they haven't had any real contact for centuries. There's something amiss with the popular histories.

Frankly, Erick, if you know what you're trying to say you know, you could explain how the "floating" works. I've already done it in an earlier, archived post on AikiWeb. It has nothing to do with rotational movement, but everything to do with kokyu.

Mike Sigman
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Old 02-04-2007, 09:17 PM   #384
eyrie
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Eddie deGuzman wrote:
The smile on the attacker being the clue. Working out with the higher ups every week will invariably leave a smile on your face. Throwing and being thrown, both equally enjoyable.
Hmmm.... maybe I'm doing it wrong.... usually I get a look of consternation, followed invariably by "WTF! How the @#$% did you do that????"... oh.... and then the "ouch ouch ouch tap tap..."

Ignatius
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Old 02-04-2007, 10:29 PM   #385
Eddie deGuzman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
Hmmm.... maybe I'm doing it wrong.... usually I get a look of consternation, followed invariably by "WTF! How the @#$% did you do that????"... oh.... and then the "ouch ouch ouch tap tap..."
Hi Ignatius,

I wouldn't(and didn't) say you were doing it wrong. What I was commenting on was the earlier post describing Ushiro sensei's kokyu technique. The description sounded similar to what I learn, and the "smiling" reaction from the article makes it sound extremely similar to my training here.

In my opinion, yours may vary, aikido technique encompass a wide range of things. Very wide. I do not believe there is one answer to describe ALL things that happen in aikido. I believe, from my experience, that there is a gradual progression of understanding and ability. Some techniques hurt. Others do not. Some "ways" of doing things hurt and others do not. Some are easier to do and explain, others are not.

Last year, for example, I was home for a few months and practiced at a small dojo. We were doing shiho-nage. I did it using kokyu. The yudansha who was teaching(not the main teacher who has a good understanding of kokyu in my opinion) stopped me and said that I was not "working the joint" so that uke really feels it throughout the technique. I briefly mentioned I was focusing on centers and manipulating uke's balance at that fine edge just before falling. And as if he hadn't heard a word, showed me the "correct" way of doing it. And since it wasn't my regular dojo, I did it his way, the way I learned first ages ago. I could tell it hurt him. He prefers that. I don't. The same thing happened when I tried to show a lower belt a different, softer way to do another technique. The older gentleman, very set in his ways, quite in my face said that is NOT how he learned it. And I said ok, I'll try it your way, and when he got up off the floor, pissed, said I didn't have to rip his arm off. And then I said maybe I should go back to my way of doing things which also put him on the floor, just with a better atittude afterward.

The "smile" is the awareness that something else is happening. It's weird, hard to describe, absolutely nothing I can do to fight it, and yes, it makes me smile and wonder and reassess my way of thinking/doing aikido. And it is what keeps me here. I should also note that not everyone in the dojo can make me smile like that, just the ones on the far side.

Cheers,
Eddie
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Old 02-04-2007, 10:43 PM   #386
Mark Gibbons
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
.... The baseline skills are easy to spot by what someone says and what they don't say.
......
Maybe for you that's easy. But I've heard the same words used to describe ki related skills in your posts and at a couple dojos. From your descriptions of the lack of these skills in the aikido community at large I've got no way to spot them by what folks say.

As for hands on, I've felt folks that can just bounce me off them (what I think is part of your emphasis) and I've experienced the folks I just can't touch or that can take me over without apparent effort (what I think is Eric's emphasis). Still no way for the less experienced to tell if any particular type of training is good aikido, superb fighting skill, mystical healing energy, or bogus.

Regards,
Mark

Last edited by Mark Gibbons : 02-04-2007 at 10:49 PM.
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Old 02-04-2007, 11:07 PM   #387
eyrie
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Eddie deGuzman wrote:
I wouldn't(and didn't) say you were doing it wrong. What I was commenting on was the earlier post describing Ushiro sensei's kokyu technique. The description sounded similar to what I learn, and the "smiling" reaction from the article makes it sound extremely similar to my training here.....The "smile" is the awareness that something else is happening.
Eddie... I was being facetious. Obviously it's got nothing to do with smiling or not smiling.... as I illustrated.

Awareness? Everybody seems to have an "awareness" of it... when it happens... IF it happens. But no one else seems to be able to cogently explain how to get to "first base".

So, for example when you say you're "using kokyu", what does it feel like? To you... to the other person? How do you, within a short period of time, teach/show someone how to "get" this "feeling" that they can easily understand? How do you know if they've "got" it or not?

It should be pretty obvious to "see" and feel whether someone's "got" it or not... how much they've got... to what degree... and what they need to "correct" and enhance what they've got.

Ignatius
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Old 02-05-2007, 10:21 AM   #388
Eddie deGuzman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
Eddie... I was being facetious. Obviously it's got nothing to do with smiling or not smiling.... as I illustrated.

Awareness? Everybody seems to have an "awareness" of it... when it happens... IF it happens. But no one else seems to be able to cogently explain how to get to "first base".

So, for example when you say you're "using kokyu", what does it feel like? To you... to the other person? How do you, within a short period of time, teach/show someone how to "get" this "feeling" that they can easily understand? How do you know if they've "got" it or not?

It should be pretty obvious to "see" and feel whether someone's "got" it or not... how much they've got... to what degree... and what they need to "correct" and enhance what they've got.
Hard to tell you were being facetious, since I can't see it. And true, the smile is not necessary, just a bonus.

Had class tonight, lots of good stuff all around. The best partner of the night definitely works in the kokyu realm. I only visit it. I wish I knew what it was and how to teach it in a short time, but I don't. I only know when he's got me dead to rights. And I smile. And I try to mimic what he does, and he guides me until I hit the sweet spot, so to speak. It feels...effortless. And I know that explains nothing, yet that's what it feels like. Blending with uke, softly, kinda floating, guiding, and uke is down. One description. It feels a little different with other technique. And this description is of no real value to anyone if they can't relate.

A note about Ushiro shihan. I mentioned him after workout and one of the guys knew a little about him. He said that Ushiro is working with kokyu, but different from what we do. Yet he also said that everyone is different, and their views and how they apply kokyu are also different. So perhaps I was wrong. But a little of his theory sounds a lot like what they say in my dojo:

"Using ki, you can enter into the opponent's center instantly..." and "When one is thrown by such an internal nullification, the throw betrays no sense of direction and uke cannot tell which direction he or she is being thrown. Also "the ability to "enter into the heart" of the opponent ."

Sounds along the same vein of many things said in my dojo, but practically, not a lot of help. Would be nice to see a little video, and nicer to grab his wrists.

I asked a 7th dan tonight after workout how he would describe kokyu and it kept me an hour and a half after class. He said that many things were kokyu, not just one thing in particular. Breathing, zanshin, heightened awareness, good posture, etc. And stilll nothing you can sink your teeth into. But he also said it is impossible to describe to anyone who has not had some experience with it. And he said that there are many walls/barriers that we run up against in training. And everyone faces them. Our responses to hitting a wall will determine if we progress or not.

I asked about exercises to help develop kokyu skill and got the expected answer that all waza should be done with kokyu.(Like that one Eric? ) But also that any motion that one would like to do, as long as one maintains the kokyu "feel" as in seated kokyu ho, will help develop kokyu/ki.

Are there any particular exercises out there people like other than what has been mentioned? Would like to hear more about how it is done in the Chinese arts if anyone has experience.

Thank you and good night!
Eddie
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Old 02-05-2007, 03:37 PM   #389
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Frankly, Erick, if you know what you're trying to say you know, you could explain how the "floating" works. I've already done it in an earlier, archived post on AikiWeb. It has nothing to do with rotational movement, but everything to do with kokyu.
Happy to oblige. First, I will make what I perceive to be your case (mechanically) to distinguish it.

In order for your "grounding" to occur a load path is established between the point of input and the ground. It is basially creating arching action through your structure. You have specifically illustrated this on your website and posted it here before. On that I have never disagreed with you. It is entirely mechanically correct to do that. I just have cause to know that it does not capture the dynamic of kokyu.

Much of kokyu lies not in establishing that path -- but in preventing it from being established in the first place. Once you "fix" me to the ground with a load path -- it is just a question of how much horizontal thrust is necessary to topple me. That may be effective in a brutal sort of way, but it is certainly not kokyu. If do not allow you to "fix" me in that condition, then you have a problem.

First, some simplifying assumptions. Disregard uke's elbow. Disregard uke's hips and knees. Assume that they are rigid and not bendable. You'll see why in a moment.

Draw two stick figures each made of two lines one line with the node at the ground and a node at the shoulder with the second line from that to a node at the wrist. Connect them at the wrist. You now have a figure that looks roughly like an "M." From the hand grab, uke pushes me. Pick oneside of the "M" -- label him the attacker. Draw an arrow along the line of his "arm" pointing at the wrist connection. That is his push. Note: I eprcieve a linear push, but remember that he generates it with a rotation of his shoulder (or from his support at the ground, or both).

One way to maintain my stability is to resist directly, that is, put another arrow head-to-head against his arrow of force -- maybe even a larger arrow so as to topple him backward. It might be applied by causing my arm to rotate from the shoulder into and against his push. Problem with this is the large torque involved on my shoulder joint. (Remember we are disregarding the elbow for this simplified construction.)

It might also be applied by fixing my shoulder rigidly and moving my whole body inward at the support node (and upward if we let Mike have his linear springy legs) That also creates a component of force back up uke's arm against his arrow. This is less direct, and some force is not opposed directly, but there is still force on force resistance.

I interpret Mike's "bounce jin" to be in this mode of the mechanics. But it is resistive. Although the forces on the shoulder are lower and more distributed than trying to lever the shoulder to rotate the wrist upward, they are, in fact, still quite high in order to maintaining rigidity. Thus, if I were to resist in this way -- the equivalent of arch action -- I would ground that force to resist the horizontal thrust backwards, precisely as Mike describes.

I have to make my body essentially rigid, as I indicated. No bendy bit (hinge) at the shoulder. Then there would be three hinges, the grab and the two respective points of connection at the ground. Potentially stable. Hinges can open in a variety of configurations, but typically, if four hinges form, an arch fails. This paper in Figure 1 (p.2) shows a four hinge arch failure. http://www.dur.ac.uk/charles.augarde/pubs/c10.pdf. Problem is, we are full of bendy bits (hinges) to exploit, but the shoulder is the only one I need in order to show this in simple exercise how to destabilize structure without the previously mentioned resistance. You will note that in the "M" simplified diagram I described there are five (5) hinges potentially already operating.

There is another way. Instead of putting your arrow head to head, place that arrow perpendicular to his arrow going down the "arm." He can't stop me because it is perpendicular to his force. I therfore don;lt have to be rigid just be easily able to move the connection around. This causes his arm to tend to rotate from the shoulder, back and downward. If I move my support inward the same amount as I extend his arm perpendicularly, then my condition of vertical support has not changed but his has changed radically. What I have done is to apply a moment to his shoulder, using his outstretched arm to do it.

The problem for him is that he is fixing his shoulder to apply the equivalent moment in the way that allows it to press down and forward at the wrist, which is the same direction of rotation that I am applying by taking his arm down and back toward him. The result is that he cannot stop his shoulder from popping out and turning into my need hinge, since he is setting it to go the way I am taking it. This means all his force that was going down and forward in the push has been instantly transferred to his shoulder going up and forward, literally lifting his own center with his own push rotation that I have just relocated to his shoulder with that famous "pop" of the center rising.

I have thus "floated" him by manipulating the rotational moments of his body, without any component of resistance.

Now in the more conventional seated kokyu tanden ho, the rotation of my wrist is accomplishing that same dynamic at a smaller scale. His grab at my wrist defines a tangential radius. If I rotate my wrist around that radial connection it is the same as the perpendicular tangential force applied at the wrist of the "M" diagram. The combination of wrist rotation (tenkan) and extension (irimi) results in the same reversal of his applied moment as shown in the more simplified model.

The seated kokyu tanden ho exercise does not remove the support hinges entirely, since you can still lift a hip, but it severly restricts them, forcing you to address the moment manipulaiton at the point of connnection rather than just by moving in or down with the whole body rigidly, and missing the necessary alteration of his structure.

Once we move from the simplified model to the fully articulated body, I have even more options for hinges, adn they are fully three dimensional hinges to work with. The 2D arch thrust line becomes a 3D spiral line. The possibilites become far more complex, but the mechanics of ultimate hinged collapse are the same.

Basically, form primarily controls stability (as opposed to strength.) The substance does not really matter to stability (assuming a minimal material strength.) Any place where the thrust line of the applied load moves to the outside line of the arch (above or below) inside or outside, a hinge forms -- hinging at the point where the thrust line intersects the edge of the structure the thrust line, and opening (in tension) at the perpendicular point opposite that. If I locate that thrust line (ikkyo line) at a potential hinge (joint) that is already trying to rotate the way I want it to go, then it instantly enters a progressive structural collapse and I just have to follow it through (irimi), so that he has no room to recover.

I start with two "gimme" hinges at our respective points of support, I get the third by entering (irimi) his attack a,d Connecting ( musubi) with it, and the fourth by displacing (tenkan) his attacking rotational moment using tangential and perpendicular manipulations. The sum of this in intuitive terms is applied kokyu. I can with more experience control where that thrust line (ikkyo line) is felt in order to form one more hinge somewhere in our joint structure (sometimes I volunteer to be the extra hinge -- think kaitennage or koshinage) altering the existing moments by perpendicular/tangential forces (irimi/tenkan) applied at the point of connection (musubi), in the manner described.

For those that want to dig deeper :

Here is a description of a short program that allows you to visualize the load conditions that lead to hinge formation. http://www.brantacan.co.uk/archsim.htm and the link to the simple DOS program that allows you to play with it. http://www.brantacan.co.uk/ARCHSIM.EXE. You can play with the shape of the necessary arch funicular shape (i.e. -- to match the thrust line for a given load under different load conditions) here: http://acg.media.mit.edu/people/simong/statics/ (click on the "hanging cable/arch," and be sure to turn off your pop-upblocker.) If you take that funicular load map and place it on a actual structure you can tell where potential hinges will open.
Both are perfectly safe.

You cannot do aikido with them, by any means, but you will gain a better idea of the concepts that are operating in in these mechanics.

Last edited by Erick Mead : 02-05-2007 at 03:51 PM.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 02-05-2007, 04:27 PM   #390
Mike Sigman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
Happy to oblige. First, I will make what I perceive to be your case (mechanically) to distinguish it.

In order for your "grounding" to occur a load path is established between the point of input and the ground. It is basially creating arching action through your structure. You have specifically illustrated this on your website and posted it here before. On that I have never disagreed with you. It is entirely mechanically correct to do that. I just have cause to know that it does not capture the dynamic of kokyu.

Much of kokyu lies not in establishing that path -- but in preventing it from being established in the first place. Once you "fix" me to the ground with a load path -- it is just a question of how much horizontal thrust is necessary to topple me. That may be effective in a brutal sort of way, but it is certainly not kokyu. If do not allow you to "fix" me in that condition, then you have a problem.

First, some simplifying assumptions. Disregard uke's elbow. Disregard uke's hips and knees. Assume that they are rigid and not bendable. You'll see why in a moment.

Draw two stick figures each made of two lines one line with the node at the ground and a node at the shoulder with the second line from that to a node at the wrist. Connect them at the wrist. You now have a figure that looks roughly like an "M." From the hand grab, uke pushes me. Pick oneside of the "M" -- label him the attacker. Draw an arrow along the line of his "arm" pointing at the wrist connection. That is his push. Note: I eprcieve a linear push, but remember that he generates it with a rotation of his shoulder (or from his support at the ground, or both).

One way to maintain my stability is to resist directly, that is, put another arrow head-to-head against his arrow of force -- maybe even a larger arrow so as to topple him backward. It might be applied by causing my arm to rotate from the shoulder into and against his push. Problem with this is the large torque involved on my shoulder joint. (Remember we are disregarding the elbow for this simplified construction.)

It might also be applied by fixing my shoulder rigidly and moving my whole body inward at the support node (and upward if we let Mike have his linear springy legs) That also creates a component of force back up uke's arm against his arrow. This is less direct, and some force is not opposed directly, but there is still force on force resistance.

I interpret Mike's "bounce jin" to be in this mode of the mechanics. But it is resistive. Although the forces on the shoulder are lower and more distributed than trying to lever the shoulder to rotate the wrist upward, they are, in fact, still quite high in order to maintaining rigidity. Thus, if I were to resist in this way -- the equivalent of arch action -- I would ground that force to resist the horizontal thrust backwards, precisely as Mike describes.

I have to make my body essentially rigid, as I indicated. No bendy bit (hinge) at the shoulder. Then there would be three hinges, the grab and the two respective points of connection at the ground. Potentially stable. Hinges can open in a variety of configurations, but typically, if four hinges form, an arch fails. This paper in Figure 1 (p.2) shows a four hinge arch failure. http://www.dur.ac.uk/charles.augarde/pubs/c10.pdf. Problem is, we are full of bendy bits (hinges) to exploit, but the shoulder is the only one I need in order to show this in simple exercise how to destabilize structure without the previously mentioned resistance. You will note that in the "M" simplified diagram I described there are five (5) hinges potentially already operating.

There is another way. Instead of putting your arrow head to head, place that arrow perpendicular to his arrow going down the "arm." He can't stop me because it is perpendicular to his force. I therfore don;lt have to be rigid just be easily able to move the connection around. This causes his arm to tend to rotate from the shoulder, back and downward. If I move my support inward the same amount as I extend his arm perpendicularly, then my condition of vertical support has not changed but his has changed radically. What I have done is to apply a moment to his shoulder, using his outstretched arm to do it.

The problem for him is that he is fixing his shoulder to apply the equivalent moment in the way that allows it to press down and forward at the wrist, which is the same direction of rotation that I am applying by taking his arm down and back toward him. The result is that he cannot stop his shoulder from popping out and turning into my need hinge, since he is setting it to go the way I am taking it. This means all his force that was going down and forward in the push has been instantly transferred to his shoulder going up and forward, literally lifting his own center with his own push rotation that I have just relocated to his shoulder with that famous "pop" of the center rising.

I have thus "floated" him by manipulating the rotational moments of his body, without any component of resistance.

Now in the more conventional seated kokyu tanden ho, the rotation of my wrist is accomplishing that same dynamic at a smaller scale. His grab at my wrist defines a tangential radius. If I rotate my wrist around that radial connection it is the same as the perpendicular tangential force applied at the wrist of the "M" diagram. The combination of wrist rotation (tenkan) and extension (irimi) results in the same reversal of his applied moment as shown in the more simplified model.

The seated kokyu tanden ho exercise does not remove the support hinges entirely, since you can still lift a hip, but it severly restricts them, forcing you to address the moment manipulaiton at the point of connnection rather than just by moving in or down with the whole body rigidly, and missing the necessary alteration of his structure.

Once we move from the simplified model to the fully articulated body, I have even more options for hinges, adn they are fully three dimensional hinges to work with. The 2D arch thrust line becomes a 3D spiral line. The possibilites become far more complex, but the mechanics of ultimate hinged collapse are the same.

Basically, form primarily controls stability (as opposed to strength.) The substance does not really matter to stability (assuming a minimal material strength.) Any place where the thrust line of the applied load moves to the outside line of the arch (above or below) inside or outside, a hinge forms -- hinging at the point where the thrust line intersects the edge of the structure the thrust line, and opening (in tension) at the perpendicular point opposite that. If I locate that thrust line (ikkyo line) at a potential hinge (joint) that is already trying to rotate the way I want it to go, then it instantly enters a progressive structural collapse and I just have to follow it through (irimi), so that he has no room to recover.

I start with two "gimme" hinges at our respective points of support, I get the third by entering (irimi) his attack a,d Connecting ( musubi) with it, and the fourth by displacing (tenkan) his attacking rotational moment using tangential and perpendicular manipulations. The sum of this in intuitive terms is applied kokyu. I can with more experience control where that thrust line (ikkyo line) is felt in order to form one more hinge somewhere in our joint structure (sometimes I volunteer to be the extra hinge -- think kaitennage or koshinage) altering the existing moments by perpendicular/tangential forces (irimi/tenkan) applied at the point of connection (musubi), in the manner described.

For those that want to dig deeper :

Here is a description of a short program that allows you to visualize the load conditions that lead to hinge formation. http://www.brantacan.co.uk/archsim.htm and the link to the simple DOS program that allows you to play with it. http://www.brantacan.co.uk/ARCHSIM.EXE. You can play with the shape of the necessary arch funicular shape (i.e. -- to match the thrust line for a given load under different load conditions) here: http://acg.media.mit.edu/people/simong/statics/ (click on the "hanging cable/arch," and be sure to turn off your pop-upblocker.) If you take that funicular load map and place it on a actual structure you can tell where potential hinges will open.
Both are perfectly safe.

You cannot do aikido with them, by any means, but you will gain a better idea of the concepts that are operating in in these mechanics.
Ah.... I get a little clearer idea of your apparently evolving ideas, Erick, but no, you're off base. The reason you're off base boils down, in a couple of quick extrapolations that I'm running through my head, to the simple reason the your perspective of all that happens is limited. You're attempting to explain car while not really knowing what a transmission, a hydraulic clutch, a differential, etc., are. You've got an idea of a car and how it can be used... and even some engine mechanics... but you just miss. Incidentally, I hate to miss out on opportunities, but if you'd like to make some sort of substantial bet and are willing to have a mutually acceptable person hold the dough, let me know.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 02-05-2007, 05:11 PM   #391
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Re: Baseline skillset

I'll hold the dough.
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Old 02-05-2007, 07:01 PM   #392
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Eddie deGuzman wrote:
Quote from article:
A frequent scene at the camp was the involuntary smile that lit up the face of an attacker the moment they were "floated" by Ushiro shihan.

Still not having seen or felt Ushiro sensei's technique, I am nonetheless certain it is similar to what is being taught at my dojo. The smile on the attacker being the clue. Working out with the higher ups every week will invariably leave a smile on your face. Throwing and being thrown, both equally enjoyable.
Consider this from an interview with Ushiro Sensei. He gives a five level progression of learning in budo, really almost irrespective of art. It is interesting in that it is largely defined in the first two stages from the perspective of the person applying the art, but in the higher stages more from the person receiving the applicaiton of the art, rather than the person applying it. I know I don't feel the "hardness and rigidity" he speaks of inside or out. I cannot say what people feel like when I apply the art to them, so I could not begin to classify myself otherwise, which would, among other things, also be both presumptous and rude.

The next to highest level he describes as:
Quote:
Ushiro Sensei wrote:
You react to your opponent's attack with softness and flexibility and maintain that state for the duration of your response and counter-attack. From start to finish it will feel to the opponent as if he is simply being lightly touched all over.
The full interview is here: http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=152

Since I can speak in this context as to what I have experienced as uke, this description of Ushiro's next to highest category resonates very much with my experience of most accomplished aikidoka I have known. In contrast, I have grave difficulty reconciling Mike's depiction of "bounce jin" with Ushiro's description of the most advacned physical development of the art as the proper means of kokyu in that context.

Ushiro is at pains to make clear that the "baseline" is not something you "go beyond" or outgrow, but an integral part of the development that remains with you and that you still work with and work on even at the highest levels. In his description the "baseline" runs throughout the progression, merely with grreater and greater realization.

The highest category he describes as "your opponent attempts to attack, but you check, stop, or control him using your ki (energy, intention)." There are only a few I have known enough that I would be able to personally put in the highest category. My first teacher, Hooker Sensei among them, for instance. I would rather get hit multiple times by some people with bokken than be on the recieving end of a harsh glance from that man -- teddy bear though he is in many other respects, his nature remains -- all bear.

Lastly, Ushiro speaks about the integration of theory and practice, a point worthwhile to our discussion:
Quote:
Ushiro wrote:
To formulate a valid theory you first have to consider actual usability, that is, whether you can or cannot actually do something. Only from that perspective can you start building a true theory. Only from there can you ask, "Okay, I can really do this thing; now, why am I able to do it?"
That is the question I dwell on. Anyone here is free judge the specificity of my descriptions, or those of anyone else posting, whether we are asking Ushiro's practical question about an empirical theory or merely an academic, theoretical one.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 02-05-2007, 07:31 PM   #393
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Ah.... I get a little clearer idea of your apparently evolving ideas, Erick, but no, you're off base. The reason you're off base boils down, in a couple of quick extrapolations that I'm running through my head, to the simple reason the your perspective of all that happens is limited.
Thanks Mike, for that carefully reasoned, thorough and well thought out rebuttal.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 02-05-2007, 08:46 PM   #394
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Re: Baseline skillset

Eric
I don't like to get in the middle of your debates simply due to the fact that your responses are overly long and don't work as models for these skills. They are a waste and the wrong direction for folks to take if they are intent on getting to the heart of these arts.

I did follow your links. I read Ushiro's two interviews. I see them as more in keeping with both what I do, and know. And I find it odd that you quote him.... as he is an advocate for being able to train these skills outside of waza.
You have repeatedly stated to Mike, that you think they are to be learned -in- Waza.

As for your theories. No man I know who can -actually exhibit these skills- discusses your ideas. Odd that of 4 world class teachers in 4 different arts, and now one who felt Ueshiba-all agree and openly talk about the commonality of things on very concrete and (here's a tip) easily understood terms. Ya might wonder why none of them share your theories.

As for WAZA and base skills?
I teach these skills completely outside of any waza and they -in the end- enable folks to capture center at a touch and to make it extremely difficult for folks to get theirs and to throw them in anyway. It is a very effective means to get soft and responsive, and powerful all in one. Taiji, Xing-I, Bagua, Daito ryu, and Aikido, at their highest levels do not exist without them. Neither it appears does Ushiro's Karate.

I know I am sounding flat. Please don't misinterpret that as adversarial. I mean no disrespect. I just think it is perfectly clear what direction to take.
I have previously outlined various examples to you of displays of martial strength, as a foundational basis for more advanced moving, capturing connection. The kind of skills discussed by Ushiro and displayed on video by Ueshiba and many Chinese artists. I asked if you could do those examples. You honestly answered that you could not. All due respect, if you cannot do what we are talking about then you simply don't know "what" we are talking about. Your skills are in your hands. I am quite sure that if we meet you will fail and not know what to do. Why? These things only work certain ways. Yours aint it.
Those who know......Know.
You don't.

Its nice to see the internet actually doing something worthwhile-that being- getting folks into places where they can truly learn from folks who will share what they know to tune the basics and reinvogorate their individual arts. It may be a fun decade when we look back. We'll have to see.
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 02-05-2007 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 02-05-2007, 08:52 PM   #395
Eddie deGuzman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
Consider this from an interview with Ushiro Sensei. He gives a five level progression of learning in budo, really almost irrespective of art. It is interesting in that it is largely defined in the first two stages from the perspective of the person applying the art, but in the higher stages more from the person receiving the applicaiton of the art, rather than the person applying it. I know I don't feel the "hardness and rigidity" he speaks of inside or out.Ushiro is at pains to make clear that the "baseline" is not something you "go beyond" or outgrow, but an integral part of the development that remains with you and that you still work with and work on even at the highest levels. In his description the "baseline" runs throughout the progression, merely with grreater and greater realization.

The highest category he describes as "your opponent attempts to attack, but you check, stop, or control him using your ki (energy, intention)."

Lastly, Ushiro speaks about the integration of theory and practice, a point worthwhile to our discussion: That is the question I dwell on. Anyone here is free judge the specificity of my descriptions, or those of anyone else posting, whether we are asking Ushiro's practical question about an empirical theory or merely an academic, theoretical one.
Hi Erick, I read the same article last night after class. The hard/soft theory is interesting. Also interesting is that he numbered them first to fifth, but then says "it's not necessarily a logical progression". It's certainly hard to get a feel for what he means. "hard" could mean strong, solid, centered or even more powerful kokyu as opposed to light, effortless, guiding. Would have to talk to him about it to have a clue.

His thoughts on useability go right to the heart of the matter though. Does it work, and does it work consistently, and does it work in response to any style of attack? If I critiqued my aikido, I would say yes, it works. Consistently, no. Not yet because I need more training, IMO. With any style attack, no, not yet. As Ushiro said, irrespective of aikido, higher level budo doesn't involve technique. The mere extension of one's ki is sufficient. I'm not there...yet.

He says learn through the body, not through the mind. Perhaps the answer lies in more practice.

Cheers,
Eddie
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:00 PM   #396
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
And I find it odd that you quote him.... as he is an advocate for being able to train these skills outside of waza.
You have repeatedly stated to Mike, that you think they are to be learned -in- Waza.
Aikido is an extended set of paired kata. That is the reason it gets criticized for "lacking martial effectiveness" by the guys that Ushiro also criticizes on the karate side of the aisle. What we do is almost completely kata.

And what did Ushiro say about that? Instead of letting you recraft his statements to make your point (and since Mike chooses apparently not defend his own position on the technical merits) -- Let me quote Ushiro Sensei, again:
Quote:
Ushiro wrote:
Over time, the various techniques and secret teachings (gokui) that have emerged from this kind of training have been compiled, and these compilations of physical knowledge gradually led to the formation of the kata (forms) we practice today.

The question we have to ask now is what kind of approach and thinking should we adopt today in order to learn these kata and all that they have to offer?

I personally have found it best to view kata not simply as forms to be learned, but rather as "tools" for studying how to deal with critical situations, and more specifically how to keep myself out of harm's way in those situations. This is how I think about kata, and this is also how kata are viewed within the Shindo-ryu tradition.
O Sensei said, very specifically that the secrets are in the omote forms. I see them there, and have for quite some while now. Increasingly, I can use them with facility from the forms I have learned and unceasingly find new variations from those now that the root forms are clearer. I therefore have reason to trust his assurances on this point.

You and Mike -- not so much. Whatever else may be said -- you do not deliver in kind when pressed. And what sort of budo shrinks from engagement? This is not a fight, but it is supposed to be an honest conflict. And you are trying to lead a contingent of aikidoka toward your promised land of "skills." Things you cannot desribe in modern terms to a modern audience, and which you cannot fit within a coherent tradition of the forms of aikido you both consistently deride as useless "waza."

Nor, do you come to speak with me. Rather you speak at me, to condescend. It is is disrespectful. I say this not to claim any respect that I am due, for I am not. But disrespect of an opponent, even an opponent you believe to be lesser than you -- that is serious suki. That betrays a serious weakness of budo, and confirms my other, lesser opinions about this particular engagement.
Quote:
Dan Harden wrote:
The kind of skills discussed by Ushiro and displayed on video by Ueshiba and many Chinese artists. I asked if you could do those examples. You honestly answered that you could not.
I have analyzed every single vidoe offered in the mechanical terms I see in action. You cannot describe what these skills are in terms that have been common since Sir Isaac Newton got bonked on the head.

And when you purport to say what I "said" -- you quote me.

Otherwise -- it ain't what I said. 'Nuff said.

Your opinion of whether I meet functional "tests" you even cannot adequately describe, is most entertaining. I've read some of Mike's other descriptions of "teacher tests" and entertaining as they are, I am well-satisfied I have your measure. And, no I cannot do some of the nifty gee whiz things I see that O Sensei does on film. And gee, gosh, boy, howdy that really proves somehting doesn't it? But I have learned enough of what he handed down to see how he is doing it when I have stop-motion film to help me out, and thus can explain it to you.

Neither you nor Mike are bothering to rebut me on my descriptions of what they are, and how they fit the forms of aikido as received in tradition. Ushiro's observations from a differnt stream of tradition, only confirm me to return, again and again, to the root forms where the secrets lie. And to oppose your efforts to lead others away from them, for reasons that are most unclear to me.

But better yet, since I remain in my sin, why don't you stop refusing and take up Jim Sorrentino's expense-paid invitation and come down show us the error of our ways down at Shobukan in Washington, since we obviously are not going to be led to the light over the internet.

I am pretty sure the offer is still open.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:37 PM   #397
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Re: Baseline skillset

Erick
When Ushiro is talking about kata he is talking about karate kata. Like their Southern Shaolin ancestors, the Okinawans generally practice their basic kata without a "technique partner." As solo exercise.

Especially Sanchin, which is what I understand he is teaching folks in the aikido community. Of course someone can parse my words and claim that the person testing the shime of the Sanchin practitioner is a partner, and thus, Sanchin practice is like aikido waza practice. It's not. It's building the right kind of body to support Ushiro's karate technique.

Too many people have raised "technique" up as some kind of false god, as superior to "strength" which is denigrated. Ridiculous. Any technique's success or failure is based on the conditioning (strength, flexibility, cardiovascular, etc) of the practitioner, as well as her/his timing to apply the technique. The stronger you are, the better the technique works. Everyone wants timing and "smoothness" but it's not about that....no conditioning, no technique. Strength and conditioning are the foundation for everything. One can have all the timing in the world, and all the smoothness in the world and _still_ fail in application against resistance. The question is, what kind of strength? That is what the solo practice is for, developing the special kind of strength and conditioning. Who cares what something is called...resistance, non-resistance, ultimately what matters is human performance. Although, if one wants to take an Idealistic stance (the capital I is intentional), I can see that performance might not be very important.

Remember-- your legal training teaches you to make procrustean arguments for your client, who must, be definition be correct. In contrast, science is empirical and biology, non-deterministic. You make a lot of bold argument-by-analogy claims about the physics of kokyu etc, yet, you have yet to show _one_ instrumented test or even a proposal for _how_ you would measure and gather the data to either support or falsify your claim. Another key part of any scientific undertaking is reproducible results. You put out a protocol, then see if other people can reproduce the experiment.

Funny thing-- Dan, Mike and Akuzawa (through Rob) have put out protocols which _people who have never met them_ have tried and used to develop results consistent with what the proponents claimed the protocol could develop. I wouldn't have taken Rob seriously, or bought tickets to Japan otherwise. I want you to think really hard about what I'm going to say next.

Your protocols on the other hand, have not had that kind of success, at least, from what I can see here. Maybe the reports of the success of your gyrodynamic training method are simply getting lost in the chatter. That should tell you something-- either your protocol is _wrong_ or you're explaining it poorly.

Now you may not like this and you may think it's a personal attack. It isn't. I'm critiquing your methodology. You have repeatedly said that you are doing things from a western, scientific perspective. I have a lot of friends and family who work as university or graduate level scientists and sometimes they tell me about their research and what goes on during their symposia. I can assure you that from all accounts it is sharp, highly critical, and completely unforgiving.

Probably way more unforgiving than the discussion here on Aikiweb.

Last edited by Tim Fong : 02-05-2007 at 11:42 PM.
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:51 PM   #398
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Re: Baseline skillset

Another pointed quote from Ushiro on the usefulness of paired "step by step" forms such as those used in aikido training.
Quote:
Ushiro Sensei wrote:
... bunkai kumite (step-by-step sparring) based on kata as a system for getting feedback about the usability you've achieved. Techniques that take kata as their starting point can be evolved limitlessly. And limitlessness [in terms of what could happen] is definitely a feature of any real combative encounter.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 02-05-2007, 11:52 PM   #399
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Eddie deGuzman wrote:
His thoughts on useability go right to the heart of the matter though. Does it work, and does it work consistently, and does it work in response to any style of attack? If I critiqued my aikido, I would say yes, it works. Consistently, no. Not yet because I need more training, IMO. With any style attack, no, not yet. As Ushiro said, irrespective of aikido, higher level budo doesn't involve technique. The mere extension of one's ki is sufficient. I'm not there...yet.
O Sensei said in one of the Doka to treat everything he throws at you as "merely seigan." Something that is an idle threat -- not even a real attack -- to be put out of your way to get to the heart of the matter. One thing I have learned is that if you are dealing with the attack then you stop at dealing with the attack, and do not get to the mind/body that is wielding it. If you are dealing with HIM then the attack does not matter. It is merely seigan, becasue the attack will abrely slow you down. Flick away everything that is in the way to get in to deal with the heart of the problem. In kokyu tanden ho, you don't want his arms -- you want him. So shake off the attack, immediately, without losing his connection and just get in and get him. I would paraphrase Ushiros five steps in this way: The first step is learning that you can. The second step is learning how you can. Third step is forgetting that you ever doubted you could. The fourth step is knowing that you will no matter what. And the fifth step is him knowing that without you having to do it.

That is defininitely NOT waza. That is fudoshin -- nothing, absolutely nothing, gets in the way of or slows down your immoveable intent to GET HIM! Then you do the form correctly, and the form increasingly does not matter or is the same essence in everything you do, whichever you prefer. I see this now, and manage to do it more and more. but I still have to DO stuff. That practice of the form with proper intent ultimately becomes the ki extension (intent/energy as Ushiro says) that I palpably sense from people like Hooker Sensei. I know, viscerally, when he looks at me that nothing I threw up in his way would possibly keep him from getting through to deal with ME. And he is sickly old man, too. (Please, nobody tell him I said that.)
Quote:
Eddie wrote:
He says learn through the body, not through the mind. Perhaps the answer lies in more practice.
Actually, he said more to practice with the body and then apply the mind to what you did, and then more practice, and then ..., etc.
Quote:
Ushiro Sensei wrote:
... first you have to have practical fighting experiences, and then it takes time to build words and theories around those experiences. There's also the fact that I've also spent a lot of time testing and verifying the universality of these things from every angle I can think of. Even if you can do something with your body, you still have to do a lot of confirmation work if you want to build it into a theory. I've just recently come to a good stopping point in that process, to the end of one phase in my analysis, so only just now has it seemed a good time to share my findings with others.
Empirical correction combined with conceptual critique, in other words, and it never stops. Both are equally important. As Ushiro said, forms are "processes to be unfolded." And that means a critical component as much as consistent drill. Doran Sensei quoted Musashi in the introductory article to the 2006 Summer Camp as follows:"The purpose of today's training ... is to defeat yesterday's understanding." An endless and virtuous cycle.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 02-06-2007, 12:20 AM   #400
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
O Sensei said, very specifically that the secrets are in the omote forms.
True... the secrets are there... hidden in plain sight.... but certainly not what you think they are.

Tim and Dan are on the money... you OTOH are not... or at least your explanation and dissection of what is happening is not. Clearly from your exposition of Ushiro's words, you don't really understand what he's REALLY saying either. As Mike, and Dan and whoever else has said it... it's pretty clear who knows and who doesn't.

I think it was very clearly established at the beginning of this thread, that we were discussing body conditioning "how-to" to develop baseline skills. You don't seem or want to understand the importance of such conditioning, choosing instead to disavow it on the basis that it is "resistant" - according to your definition.

Yes, the secrets are there... and you may have stolen it... but what have you stolen? Certainly not the understanding that it is the body skills that Ueshiba had and is there for everyone's taking.

As I said before... if the "form" and "kata" provides the secret, then everyone practising the form and kata would be of Ueshiba's ilk. Are they?

BTW, this is not directed at you as an attack, but out of a genuine concern for all those who follow a path... that goes nowhere...

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