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Old 01-19-2007, 04:54 PM   #151
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Rear Leg

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Watch Shioda and others and how upright they stand so that they're always balanced. Then look at a few tapes of lower level westerners and watch how dominant the "back-leg brace" has become.
Let's avoid interminable terminology debate, and deal on a point of agreement. To close up the stance forward in the irimi (as Shioda demonstrates).

I find myself regularly correcting this one and students regularly relapsing again. Three reasons to do it, from my perspective:

1) The irimi is then complete, centered and forward, and nage is fully committed to the connection, rather than "holding back."
2) The hips are more free when the feet are together to turn and convert any incoming forces in tenkan
3) The whole body has a smaller inertial radius (easier to turn), and thus is extremely responsive to any degree of offline force (thus easier to sense and exploit that inefficiency in the attack)

The "holding back" thing seem to be the cause for relapse.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 01-19-2007, 05:01 PM   #152
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
... you fairly obviously don't know what we're talking about, ... you probably lose your balance very rapidly when we touch... you don't understand it, ... You simply don't know what we're talking about.
I try very carefully to judge, Mike, by what you say, and what you describe, and try very hard also not to judge by any prescient intuition I may have about what you know or don't -- mainly because I dont have any.

You go ahead and make your judgments, as you will, on whatever basis you like. They will be as good as their foundation is.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 01-19-2007, 05:14 PM   #153
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Re: Rear Leg

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
Let's avoid interminable terminology debate, and deal on a point of agreement. To close up the stance forward in the irimi (as Shioda demonstrates).

I find myself regularly correcting this one and students regularly relapsing again. Three reasons to do it, from my perspective:

1) The irimi is then complete, centered and forward, and nage is fully committed to the connection, rather than "holding back."
2) The hips are more free when the feet are together to turn and convert any incoming forces in tenkan
3) The whole body has a smaller inertial radius (easier to turn), and thus is extremely responsive to any degree of offline force (thus easier to sense and exploit that inefficiency in the attack)

The "holding back" thing seem to be the cause for relapse.
Once again, you are mistaking "baseline" to mean waza and I don't want to go there.

The baseline skills we're talking about are common in Asian martial arts. That's why all the Asian martial arts talk about ki, kokyu, jin, neijin, peng jin, whatever.... all of the arts, including Aikido. That's what we're talking about. If you knew what those things were, there wouldn't be this endless obstruction to the conversation from you in the forlorn position that there is nothing you don't know. Obviously, to many people reading the thread, you just don't know what we're talking about. You're part of the group that has suffered from a dearth of information over the years, as has been discussed, and you're also part of the problem that has been discussed because you find it infathomable that someone of your omniscience could not know something basic. So, in turn, you are presenting your incomplete perspective of Aikido as the whole banana to a bunch of students. See the problem? If it was me... and it has been in the past... and I wanted to dispute something of this magnitude, I'd go find out, just to be sure, because there's too much of an indication already that you're missing something. My best suggestion to you... not just for you, but for the people you're teaching AND your teacher... is to go find out.

We're talking about ki body-skills; not waza.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 01-19-2007, 07:47 PM   #154
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Rear Leg

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
If you knew what those things were, ... conversation from you in the forlorn position that there is nothing you don't know. ...Obviously, ...you just don't know what we're talking about. You're part of the group ... you're also part of the problem ... you find it infathomable that someone of your omniscience could not know something basic. .. your incomplete perspective of Aikido ... there's too much of an indication already that you're missing something.
There I go trying to end a conflict -- and what do you have to do ... ??

The personal attacks speak more than I can possibly say in regards to YOUR understanding of the true principles of Aikido.

You do realize that you are trying to end an argument with someone you are calling an ignoramus, not by demonstrating your superior position, but by calling me names? I think I have heard this before from you, in fact.

Surely, I cannot be that hard to take down on principle if I am that stupid and ill-informed. A bit of advice in the area of persuasive communication -- you detract from any moral strength in your position by attacking the messenger instead of the message. Especially, when you set in to beat up on a poor stoopid fellow like me.

And here I thought that criticism supported by some knowledgeable authorities of certain stated positions in a discussion forum was a useful part of the advancement of knowledge. Silly me.

Have a really good day, Mike. I will go about my pathetic life and bear the ashes of my ignorance in shame.

... or not.

More likely, not

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 01-19-2007, 08:24 PM   #155
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Re: Baseline skillset

This thread was going along nicely and was becoming informative. Now it is becoming difficult to find anything of value with the kyudo arrows flying back and forth. Agree to disagree and leave it at that-there is also a block function, or used to be, that can be used to avoid the comments of those you don't want to see. Just MHO.
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Old 01-19-2007, 08:47 PM   #156
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
John Riggs wrote:
Now it is becoming difficult to find anything of value with the kyudo arrows flying back and forth. Agree to disagree and leave it at that-
Yabusame, definitely yabusame. But fair enough, for me.

Let me agree with Mike -- again -- and then focus some related questions to the panel to which I have (at least one) answer to suggest.

Many do use a rear leg "brace" which they should not. I agree this tendency needs to be addressed in training. When Mike started talking about "rear leg" weight he summoned this very image for me. Thus, my subsequent and heavy criticism of it as a training method. Mr. McCaslin was helpful to explain some why's and wherefore of what Mike may have meant by saying that. And that's all I'll say about that.

Why would you think this tendency is so widespread?

And why does it so often recur even after repeated corrections?

And the answer is not "because they don't know better body skills." I find that they keep doing it even at a point when they should "know" better, and sometimes even begin to catch themselves doing it after they have already done it, so there is a definite visceral reason why they keep doing it.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 01-19-2007, 09:19 PM   #157
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
A I'll just have a running objection to the training use or model or any "bounce" modes of action that are actually resistant. I've made my point. Counterforce is too tempting, even to just "train with" even if it is just ground reaction. It warps the nature of the connection in Aikido -- in my view. It blurs the sensitivity to all that information -- literally in your hands -- about what your opponent is actually doing.
Actually, Erick, what I've found is that resistance training of pushing and power walking that we got from Shingo Nakao has made me more sensitive to my partner, not less. As tori, I can find his center quickly and "attack" it. As uke, I can now offer detailed feedback to tori ("That's the shoulder you're using, not the hara." "Your biceps are clenched and stopping the flow of energy.") that I couldn't do before. It has heightened our understanding of the center to center connection that should be going on in aikido.


best,


RAUL
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Old 01-19-2007, 10:01 PM   #158
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
Why would you think this tendency is so widespread?

And why does it so often recur even after repeated corrections?

And the answer is not "because they don't know better body skills." I find that they keep doing it even at a point when they should "know" better, and sometimes even begin to catch themselves doing it after they have already done it, so there is a definite visceral reason why they keep doing it.
I'll say this about why they're doing it. Two things:

(1.) They really *don't* know better body skills. So they compensate. If somebody "corrects" them, but really doesn't show them how to do better body skills that compensate for the loss of that "brace", they'll go back to the brace.

(2.) They're copying a perceived difference. I deleted an earlier post that I started to make but which I thought infringed too much on something people should figure out for themselves, but it went roughly like this:
Many people see an expert do his finished product, such as a strike, and interpret it in terms of what they already know for body skills, so they wind up doing the "finished product" (let's say "fa jin" or "power releases") in a way that is really not what the expert is doing. So while someone may see a forward-weighted stance and copy it, thinking of the "forward weight", they miss the fact that what's going on is more about the kokyu-path or a way of 'releasing' that they don't know... and not so much about the weight-shift. So they build a highway where there was none, and it leads to nowhere in particular.

FWIW,

Mike Sigman
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Old 01-19-2007, 10:05 PM   #159
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
John Riggs wrote:
This thread was going along nicely and was becoming informative. Now it is becoming difficult to find anything of value with the kyudo arrows flying back and forth. Agree to disagree and leave it at that-there is also a block function, or used to be, that can be used to avoid the comments of those you don't want to see. Just MHO.
It's a good point, John, but sometimes (and I've noticed this from years of experience, particularly on the famous old Neijia List) you just follow the bickering because it's like a path that appears to close down in the forest, but suddenly it opens up and leads to interesting places. You just never know. It's a coin toss. It's that gamble at the horse-race that sometimes you win and sometimes you waste your money. But it's better than sitting at home and not betting because you're afraid of losing 2 dollars. Assuming you know how to bet the right horses.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 01-19-2007, 11:58 PM   #160
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
(1.) They really *don't* know better body skills. So they compensate.
(2.) They're copying a perceived difference...
I think it is more fundamental and unconscious than that. People antipicating a force directed at them naturally prepare to one of two things 1) oppose it, or 2) evade it entirely. The brace is the natural posture to oppose a force.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
...they miss the fact that what's going on is more about the kokyu-path or a way of 'releasing' that they don't know... and not so much about the weight-shift.
On that kokyu formulation we agree, although I think we probably disagree on what we each mean by it. The weight shift merely gives energy to the form of the action already established by the kokyu "shape" in that particular interaction. "Releasing" is in your terminology set, and not in mine, nor that of most aikidoka I have known. you should elaborate that to unbundle what you mean by it. To me the feel is more of a breaking wave as the collapse of structure commences.

We all seem to be discussing the third option between opposing force and running away from it as a treatment for the underlying problem. I don't think that we necessarily have to resolve, you and I, whether the figurative "germ" theory or the "bad air" theory of the disease in question is the right one (or whose is which) to come to some useful discussions of treatments that help a mutually acknowledged problem in training.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 01-20-2007, 08:52 AM   #161
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
On that kokyu formulation we agree, although I think we probably disagree on what we each mean by it.
That's why I keep suggesting you go find out from someone, Erick.
Quote:
"Releasing" is in your terminology set, and not in mine, nor that of most aikidoka I have known. you should elaborate that to unbundle what you mean by it.
You can see O-Sensei gather slightly and then "release" power in the bounce-away demos that he does. It doesn't need much explanation. You envision some rotational thing... it's pretty easy to see from the obvious "spring" or "bounce" that there has to be a "release" phase to the power. Just watching the videos of Sum and Ueshiba shows a clear "release", so why belabor it?
Quote:
We all seem to be discussing the third option between opposing force and running away from it as a treatment for the underlying problem.
I'm discussing nothing or the sort. I'm discussing how to develop that forces that are used in every movement, whether those movements are a "bounce" or a "technique" or an "atemi". I'm talking about a baseline skillset that pervades all the Asian martial arts, irrespective of the tactics and strategies of the many differences in Asian martial arts. The "baseline skillset" I'm talking about is also the one used by all legitimate movement-qigongs. That's why I'm talking about "baseline" and refusing to get into "aiki".

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 01-20-2007, 10:38 AM   #162
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Re: Baseline skillset

Yabusame? Can't find it in my Japanese dictionary-what does it mean?

I understand this is a difficult and controversial area and a much needed area of discussion. What I was trying to convey is that with strong personalities, the subliminal barbs detract from the discussion and result in marching in place on disagreements rather than moving the discussion ahead. Perhaps, reframing the conversation or explanation can help come up with a progressive discussion that synthesizes what we do know. Also, both points of view may have validity and often times in such discussions people are not that far off but it becomes a matter of how each is expressing their views.

As to why people keep doing things the same way over and over, I feel this is an issue of neurological conditioning-old habits die hard. The body's nervous system responds in a reactive way to what it has been trained to do or has developed as a neurological trace in response to the force. To get people to do it correctly, the pattern has to be broken and replaced by a new neurological memory. That comes with a lot of repetition, conscious awareness and patient instruction. That's why we train-if it was easy to break or develop neurological and muscle memory patterns we would all be able to master the techniques after the first showing. Yet, even after thousands of practice sessions going over the same kihon we still find ourselves learning new things and making corrections (hopefully).

JMHO.

Last edited by aikidoc : 01-20-2007 at 10:40 AM.
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Old 01-20-2007, 11:16 AM   #163
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
John Riggs wrote:
Yabusame? Can't find it in my Japanese dictionary-what does it mean?
Horse archery. In Kamakura at the Hachiman shrine they do it every spring. It's something to see -- successive shots at targets as they come in range with the horse running full tilt. Not a lot of reflection involved -- unlike kyudo. Worth the trip.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 01-20-2007, 01:41 PM   #164
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
That's why I keep suggesting you go find out from someone, Erick.
Fortunately, I did not read that so as to be tempted to respond.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
You can see O-Sensei gather slightly and then "release" power in the bounce-away demos that he does. It doesn't need much explanation. You envision some rotational thing... it's pretty easy to see from the obvious "spring" or "bounce" that there has to be a "release" phase to the power.
What you see as a linear "store/release" I see as parabolic or elliptical path reversal. I know you don't want to talk about "waza" but the principles of these skills as I see (and do) them are right there in the kihon. This is most obviously seen in the yokomenuchi shihonage entry and in any number of other kihon. He simply makes the parabolic or elliptical conversion very, very small the angular momentum manipulation immensely magnifies the input attacking energy that he returns whence it came.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Just watching the videos of Sum and Ueshiba shows a clear "release", so why belabor it?
A release of what? Generated how? Those are the questions you raise Because the evidence on the tape supports my conclusion on a valid mechanical principle, as does my training in several lineages of aikido. He is doing what I have seen done and can do, albeit to a lesser degree of precision or power, on my part.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I'm discussing how to develop that forces that are used in every movement, whether those movements are a "bounce" or a "technique" or an "atemi".
So am I. The arms, the torso, hips and legs are obligated to rotate around one or more joints in action. Several of these rotate in more than one axis. So does the connection of the feet against the ground and the connection(s) between uke and nage. The spine is a collection of small joints that transfers tiny angular righting and settling moments up and down the torso when you breathe in and out -- kokyu, which can be further channeled down the limb joints rotating in turn.

You cannot move your body without undergoing a series of progressive joint rotations. It cannot be done. That is the basic level of movement I am addressing -- and it is entirely consistent with the prinicples of the kihon in which O Sensei said the secrets of the art are to be had -- including the "bounce" issues you use as illustrations of a supposed linear action.
Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I'm talking about a baseline skillset that pervades all the Asian martial arts, irrespective of the tactics and strategies of the many differences in Asian martial arts. The "baseline skillset" I'm talking about is also the one used by all legitimate movement-qigongs.
If you assume linear, reciprocal action in the very compressed motions you observe, it may appear that way, because of your assumption of linear reaction. In which case you have a sense that there is discontinuous "secret" skill of linear action. It also appears that the sun circles the earth, but only because of the assumption that you are not moving.

If you assume, instead that there is no discontinuity and that the principles of action in the kihon are the "secrets"also in the actions you illustrate, you can find a consistent physical explanation that explains them both, which I have done. It would merely then be a training problem in terms of correcting practice and emphasis on kihon -- as Morihiro Saito and Gozo Shioda both specifically thought, BTW.

To accept your conclusion I would also have to assume that O Sensei was incorrect when saying that the secrets are in the kihon. That is something I am not prepared to do without a heap big pile of unambiguous contradictory evidence, which is far more than you have shown, so far.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 01-20-2007, 03:28 PM   #165
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Re: Baseline skillset

Hello all,

Thought I might throw my hat into the ring. There is a lot that I would like to address in this thread however coming in so far down the road I can probably only hit upon bits and pieces.

I have been following this thread [as far as I can understand it] as well as others like it. I feel somewhat compelled to add to the discussion about the Yoshinkan approach to Kihon dosa [basic movements] and other references to the "braced" rear leg.

1st off I would like to note that I think that Mike has hit upon an important observation as to the braced rear leg. I too share his feeling that many are emulating the "finished product" so to speak.

To me it seems that many are replicating only the final aspect for the accumulation and application of "power" that shite uses to generate and then apply in which ever manner to capture uke's center [that of course being the last stage which calls for the extension of the back leg to further shift the weight forward to the front leg].

To hopefully help further the conversation and to perhaps add a "new" angle, I am attaching a few scans from a translation of Yoshinkan Aikido Kiyoyuki Terada sensei's Aikido primer "Zukai Aikido Nyumon" [http://www.seiseikai.org/book.html].

The scans are from a translation that was made available when Terada sensei made a visit to London, Ontario back in April 2000. I particularly like this translation because:

1. It is the only one that I know of!
2. It was done by people that where not life long students of Terada sensei and as such reads as a fairly direct translation of his written words.

For the record: Victor Wagner is the copyright holder of this translation.

Also for note: Terada sensei's book is intended to be used as an introduction to Yoshinkan Aikido and as such remains focused on the "basics".

The scans are describing how to do the 6 Kihon dosa movements that comprise all the techniques of Yoshinkan Aikido. All the movements are being described as a two person exercise involving Shite and Uke.

The dosa are:
Elbow power 1 and 2 [Hi Ryoku no Yosei omote and ura]
Body change 1 and 2 [Tai no Henko omote and ura]
Fixing movements 1 and 2 [Shumatsu Dosa omote and ura]

[throughout the book Terada sensei uses the older name variations for many different techniques and sometimes differs from Modern day Yoshinkan honbu].

http://www.myaa.info/scans/page7.jpg
http://www.myaa.info/scans/page8.jpg
http://www.myaa.info/scans/page9.jpg
http://www.myaa.info/scans/page10.jpg
http://www.myaa.info/scans/page11.jpg

My immediate question to some here is what purpose do they see uke providing shite in these exercises?

My personal understanding is that shite learns to perform the movements solo with no resistance to learn the correct principles. Uke is added later to reinforce correct lines and principles learned and then add resistance to the training to help facilitate keeping relaxed with correct posture and everything else essential to maintaining correct form for "power" accumulation and application.

In all of these Kihon dosa exercises it seems clear to me that they are teaching one to shift the weight from the back foot to the forward foot [and vise versa] while maintaining posture and not to be in direct conflict with uke's center.

That being said, I don't feel that it means that there is no resistance at all. You have to learn to move uke's center around your own by utilizing correct placement of a myriad of different things. It is probably the biggest deficiency that one can see in how many perform these basic movements. In many peoples inability to correctly manipulate uke's center they resort to bracing and muscling to compensate for the lack of "power' generated from their diluted incorrect movements.

Also, when reference is made to Shioda's stances being forward based it seems that many interpret this to mean that weight is completely forward ALL the time. That is just not true. The modern day teaching is a 60/40 split with weight forward. Terada sensei writes that "the weight is not in the middle but slightly forward of middle".

Terada sensei's writings also allude to that the exercises go beyond just learning to shift weight properly but to be able to shift weight properly with the intention of coordinating the power generated from lower abdomen, feet, hip and elbows and apply it wherever needed throughout the body.


FWIW

Charlie

Charles Burmeister
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Old 01-20-2007, 04:45 PM   #166
eyrie
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote:
What you see as a linear "store/release" I see as parabolic or elliptical path reversal.
I dunno Erick, the shortest distance between 2 points is... a straight line? As Mike said before, each joint robs a little power, so it makes perfect sense to transfer the force in a straight line. Think vector forces - i.e. triangles and squares.

I wasn't going to talk about kihon or waza, but at this point it might be appropriate to discuss your favorite kihon - kokyu tanden ho....

If you start with your arms already extended, can you still off balance uke and how would you do that?

Quote:
I know you don't want to talk about "waza" but the principles of these skills as I see (and do) them are right there in the kihon.
I don't think we're even talking about principles... we're talking about the basic mechanics which powers kihon movement.

Ignatius
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Old 01-20-2007, 06:32 PM   #167
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Re: Baseline skillset

Hi Charlie, excellent post. I'm on low bandwidth just now, but once I get a better connection, I'll review the material you posted.

Thanks,
Ron

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Old 01-21-2007, 12:30 AM   #168
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
I dunno Erick, the shortest distance between 2 points is... a straight line? As Mike said before, each joint robs a little power, so it makes perfect sense to transfer the force in a straight line. Think vector forces - i.e. triangles and squares.
There are many areas of mechanics in which the most natural and efficient shape or path of force is not a straight line, and which can often be the very worst in efficiency. A falling leaf in aerodynamics, a tree, arch action, a cable, a hurricane, and there are many others. Generating or transmitting power without losses requires efficient shape for the load, not a straight line, per se.

Effective energy in a rotational mode, can be increased (or decreased) easily four or eightfold, wholly by manipulating the radius of the path taken or altering the center of the motion. The basic shomenuchi sword cut relies on this -- the radius of cut from the top of the cut to the tsuka hitting the navel is constantly decreasing. At the top the radius is the length of my arm plus the sword. At the bottom of the cut it is the length of the sword from my hara. The shape does the work for you.
Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
... to discuss your favorite kihon - kokyu tanden ho...

If you start with your arms already extended, can you still off balance uke and how would you do that?
I extend underneath with breathing in and gather him out of his sphere, and into mine. It is the same way as when my arms are closer to my body. As long as he connects within the length of my arm I can perform kokyu tanden ho.

The intake of breath begins, the fingers and then wrists turn in kokyu, in pace with the breath, gathering it in from as far away as possible. As the wrists reach a limit, the forearms begin to rotate the same way, turning together now with the wrists. They reach a limit, and the upper arms then turn together with the wrist and forearms. I have been given to understand this aspect of kokyu tanden ho as part of hiriki or hi ryoku. I just describe it in the mechanical terms as I see them.

If you pull or push with the arms, the forearms and upper arms are necessarily rotating in different directions, and kokyu will never work. Cutting with extension or gathering with extension are movements with only one direction of rotation in every limb or body segment down to the hara . this same thing is seen in cuts performed by trying to push the sword into the target at the end of the cut. If you put a bokken on uke's shoulder and try to push him with it, you will find the tsuka levering opposite the direction of your cut. If you let the sword follow the hips without arms pushing, it will not do that.

At the next limit, the torso's rotation now takes over the whole construct by the further expansion of the breath driving the righting moment of the spine, bringing the posture more erect. The hara is now rotating forward in irimi from the hips as the floor of the pelvis is taking its complementary rotation down and back at the same time. Actual breathing, only indirectly involved earlier as the motivator of the progessively altering posture of the arms in connection with the in-breathing torso is now directly engaged in the body's response.

The rotation in the same progressive direction never stops. At every limitation, the radius of the applied rotation gets shorter, closer to the center, and thus more powerful. The more strongly uke tries to limit me, the faster the kokyu gets its advantage and becomes more powerful and centered. It is the inverse of the sword cut, dissipating his energy, rather than concentrating mine. All my energy is going around his attack, and everytime he tries to stop me it just moves me progressively around him further just from a slightly different position.

By this point kuzushi is achieved, I begin to exhale with reverse extension and the rotations cascade back the other way for the throw, cut or other induced movement on uke, driven by the settling moments of the spinal column as the balloon of my breath relaxes underneath it.

Last edited by Erick Mead : 01-21-2007 at 12:39 AM.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 01-21-2007, 01:03 AM   #169
eyrie
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Extend underneath (how?), breathing in, gather (how?) out of his sphere, connect (how?) with length of arm... tells me NOTHING. I'm afraid, if I were your student, you've lost me....

I said with your arms ALREADY extended - i.e. start from the position where uke is pushing/holding down on your already extended arms. It's really quite simple.... here's a clue... [spoiler]it's EXACTLY the same concept as receiving a push from the chest and grounding it in the rear leg, except you now have 3 points to ground to.

OK, I'll give you the breathing part, but I'm pretty sure you don't understand that either. Breathing is part of the power chain, but not as you described. If you understood how breath plays a role, you'll understand how it is possible to throw someone in that position, even with your arms fully extended and locked, without resorting to any torso rotation, wrist rotation, elbow power or pelvic rotation - just by simply breathing in, holding your breath, or breathing out.
[/spoiler]

Ignatius
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Old 01-21-2007, 06:12 AM   #170
raul rodrigo
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Re: Baseline skillset

Tell me more about the breathing part. I was uke for that kind of kokyu tanden ho for a Hombu shihan last year and I couldn't understand it. He said to me as he was doing it: "You can resist my body, but you cannot resist my breath." There was no wrist or forearm rotation and his hara expanded as he did it. And thats all I know about it.
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Old 01-21-2007, 09:08 AM   #171
Mike Sigman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Developing kokyu has got nothing really to do with rotating the arms (which are pretty much guaranteed to just be local-muscle rotations... i.e., "technique"). And while developing full kokyu does involve breath, used correctly, I don't think a beginner should worry about the breath at first. Not for baseline skills. From Ignatius' comments, he already understands most of this.... this is what I mean by the idea that these general-knowledge, baseline skills should be more widespread.

Kokyu development needs to start with linear. From what people are saying, they should avoid all involvement with "spiral" anything until they understand what it really means, not the obvious (and wrong) most people are talking about. O-Sensei's art was very sophisticated, not something that the campfire crowd can just guess at and have it right, IMO. And don't get me wrong... in terms of guessing wrong on a simplistic level... been there, done that.

FWIW

Mike
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Old 01-21-2007, 11:17 AM   #172
Tim Fong
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Any curve is an infinite series of infinitely small straight lines, each one at an infinitely small angle to the next.

Therefore if you can't do something linearly, you can't do it in a spiral.

Q.E.D.
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Old 01-21-2007, 12:03 PM   #173
Mike Sigman
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Raul Rodrigo wrote:
Tell me more about the breathing part. I was uke for that kind of kokyu tanden ho for a Hombu shihan last year and I couldn't understand it. He said to me as he was doing it: "You can resist my body, but you cannot resist my breath." There was no wrist or forearm rotation and his hara expanded as he did it. And thats all I know about it.
Hi Raul:

The real problem with "Ki" as a word is that it can be translated as "breath". And you can't develop ki without using breath (breath exercises) to do it. So it's very confusing when someone says "breath" sometimes.

Best.

Mike
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Old 01-21-2007, 01:34 PM   #174
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
Extend underneath (how?) , breathing in, gather (how?) out of his sphere, connect (how?) with length of arm... tells me NOTHING. I'm afraid, if I were your student, you've lost me....
I generally show it and do not describe it at all in class, but this forum is a different opportunity for communication, whihc is why it is so much fun. You all who are so convinced of the "lost secrets" so doubt my bona fides, I try to break it down into what I actually do in the movement. That's what the rest of the post was describing -- in specific, step by step terms what I summarized generally at the beginning. Address the specifics, please, if you have further questions.

Essentially, the progressive rotation of the limbs and ultimately the torso from the center is like letting his force roll tangentially forward over the the top of a sphere back to me, which is the necessary complement of the forward and upward rotations I am creating underneath his point of conection. Like applying backspin on the bottom of a cue ball, only more subtle. It is aiki-otoshi in miniature.
Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
I said with your arms ALREADY extended - i.e. start from the position where uke is pushing/holding down on your already extended arms.
... which is what I gave you. Admittedly you were unclearl of the poositon (straight forward, down and out, to the side, or what have you.) A step my step description of the movements of my body as I perform kokyu tanden ho -- with my arms extended out and down. It is easier in fact, if my arms are extended straight forward already since my center is engaged directly at that point, and the righting moment of the spine in breathing in is directly engaged through the extended arms. In that mode the first breath at contact can pop him up like bread from a toaster. Ryotedori kokyunage begins with this dynamic, aprticulalry eveidemnt in ki no nagare -- he grabs me already at extension. The same is true of ryokatadori kokyunage, the expansion of the breath in the righting of the spine and center extension is just shortened to the shoulders, that's all.
Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
OK, I'll give you the breathing part, but I'm pretty sure you don't understand that either. Breathing is part of the power chain, but not as you described.
Who's playing hide the ball? Fine, you describe the action from your perspective -- preferably without the nod and wink, nudge, nudge.
Quote:
Ignatius Teo wrote:
If you understood how breath plays a role, you'll understand how it is possible to throw someone in that position, even with your arms fully extended and locked, without resorting to any torso rotation, wrist rotation, elbow power or pelvic rotation - just by simply breathing in, holding your breath, or breathing out.
Yes, as I said, if my arms are already fully extended, the breath (righting of the spine and extension of the center) comes up already under him directly, wihout any "drawing in" required.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 01-21-2007, 03:29 PM   #175
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Baseline skillset

Quote:
Raul Rodrigo wrote:
Tell me more about the breathing part. I was uke for that kind of kokyu tanden ho for a Hombu shihan last year and I couldn't understand it. He said to me as he was doing it: "You can resist my body, but you cannot resist my breath." There was no wrist or forearm rotation and his hara expanded as he did it. And thats all I know about it.
Sit in a chair without arms. Feet underneath the chair close to you center point. Let your arms hang down at your sides. Now slump. Exceedingly bad posture, curved "C" -- chin on chest and everything. Breathe in. Let your relaxed body respond to the internal rearrangement of structure caused by the intake of breath.

The vertebrae of the spine straighten you up like some mad tower of dominoes. The normal liveness in the arms cause them to rise and move forward with the righting of the spine, the lordosis of the lower spine becomes more pronounced and the hara extends forward, rolling out from the hips. This same dynamic occurs in any arm postion you care to adopt, if the same "liveness" (not stiffness) is kept in the arms, shoulders, and torso (and undercarriage when standing.) You exhale and it the structures of the body all settle back again in reverse.

I am big on the mechanics of the isolated actions, and concrete examples of action, but when O Sensei and many of his students (particularly Saotome Sensei, in my background) write or talk about kokyu in physical "law of nature" terms they are not kidding.

There was a show on Discover last year about volcanos. It showed (with a pile of damp sand and a big inflation jack buried at its base) how the mere inflation of magma within the structure caused the static stability of the outer elements to be lost (because they lose integrity (fracture) and are rotated out of line with the required support). It collapsed in a massive landslide outward.

Through kokyu, uke is removed from his isolated center and is obliged to occupy the the outer portions of the mutual center of a joint structure. Kokyu properly applied causes the same collapse of the portions most removed from the center. They may collapse rotating outward as with the volcano -- or inwards when the kokyu support goes away. For the inverse operation in geologic terms -- think of a sinkhole. When the inflating hydraulic "breath of waters" subsides -- the structure collapses (rotating inward) to the center under its own weight.

It is a law of nature. It cannot be successfully resisted, as your teacher said, because if it is operating properly, it is a pressure operating all over at once throughout all elements of the structure, like hydraulic pressure under the soon-to-be-sinkhole or the magma under the volcano. FWIW, the exercise I described at Ignatius' request is of the "sinkhole" variety. There are kokyu tanden ho movements that cause the collapse outward, and as everyone knows, variations of all sorts..

There is consequently no particular place to "put" effective resistance. Conversely, resistance (as I have complained about) requires a point of application, and is therefore anthithetical to kokyu.

The progressiveness of the kokyu tanden ho exercise I described helps to understanding how the links of your frame can transmit that inflation/deflation power to the periphery by coordinated limb rotations responding to breath without resistance. It is a means to understand the integration of the structural rotations communicated throughout the whole body by the fundamental structural rhythm of breath.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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