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Old 03-21-2007, 09:49 PM   #1
Andrew Prochnow
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Internal Power in your Aikido

I'm going to start this thread off with a few questions for Ron, Mark M, Mark C, Murray M, Stan and Tim.

We have all read about your encounter with Dan (some with Mike and Ron also).
What I want to know is after meeting Dan working with him and experiencing what he and some others are doing, how do you feel this Internal Power can be used in your Aikido? To what degree do you believe using this Internal Power is necessary or relevant in Aikido? As a result from being exposed to this, What would YOU like to see happen in Aikido today?

Best,
Andrew Prochnow
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Old 03-22-2007, 08:21 AM   #2
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Hah!!
I just saw this. For you guys who don't make the connection -Andy was the big, sweet, 26 yr. old. guy who was helping out.
Dan
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Old 03-22-2007, 09:02 AM   #3
MM
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Hi Andrew,

You're asking the easy questions of us.

Q2: To what degree do you believe using this Internal Power is necessary or relevant in Aikido?

IMO, the internal skills are very necessary and relevant.

Q1: What I want to know is after meeting Dan working with him and experiencing what he and some others are doing, how do you feel this Internal Power can be used in your Aikido?

To some, I think they can view this in a different way. If you define aiki as matching energy, then what the internal skills do is allow you to do just that without having to "effect" the other person. Without any external attempt at influencing the other person, one can still be aiki.

Q3: As a result from being exposed to this, What would YOU like to see happen in Aikido today?

The training methodology for developing these skills added to the syllabus. Doesn't mean that all class can be spent on training internal, but those that want to do it at home, can. Those that don't want to, don't have to. You get out of aikido what you put into it.

But, you're missing the hard questions. How do you integrate this training into an organization? How do you introduce it to the organization in the first place? Once there, do you introduce it to shihan first and let it filter down? to everyone at once? How do you fit it into the syllabus? Do you offer special classes for the training? What basis do you use to promote people? What kind of ramifications well be seen by the introduction? Address each of these problems for the varying organizations and countries. It's a nightmare to even think about.

For those in smaller places, what do you do? How do you do it? What happens in a year or so when the technical skill becomes apparent to the organization? etc.

I'm very new to the internal skills and I'm still trying to wrap my mind/body around the exercises. I have just started thinking about the ramifications and it's a headache.

Mark
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Old 03-22-2007, 09:21 AM   #4
M. McPherson
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Hi Andy,

I'm not very qualified to answer from the aikido perspective, as I left the art years ago (although I'll qualify that to say that I think that what Dan and you guys are doing *is* aikido...so from that angle, I hope to be doing aikido again someday). I train(ed) Uechi Ryu...but am taking time off to work on this stuff. I'm also starting to look into some arts that are a bit more, ah, comprehensive, and closer to the ground.
I'm really just posting to say thanks for taking the time to work with us. From the people there (us new folks) I've spoken or emailed with, there is uniform agreement as to not only how good all of you are, but how damned friendly and giving all of you were/are, too. As has been said, given how capable you all are, you people have no business being so damned nice. The nerve of you guys, operating a dojo with no ego, none of that required intimidation factor, or sucking up to rank...
So, again, my sincere thanks to you.

As for your questions, I'll answer them anyway. First, I think this stuff is integral to aikido. If Ueshiba could do it, and some of his students either approximated it or could do it outright, why not everyone? If the koryu model of trying to get the student to approximate if not pass the teacher's ability can hold true (I know, not always the case), why not in aikido? Without it, as has been mentioned here, aikido is not an internal art, and is only a questionably effective form of jujutsu.
Who knows if the current aikido power structure (in whatever organization) will ever embrace this stuff. My opinion is, sadly, that they won't. I think you'll see folks within aikido embrace this stuff, hopefully get good at it...only to be either marginalized at the fringe, or leave outright. Some real schismatic fodder, in other words. As necessary as this stuff is, it's too challenging to the current aikido world view. Maybe in a generation or two...

Last edited by M. McPherson : 03-22-2007 at 09:30 AM. Reason: Sumtimez I cain't spehl wurth a damm
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Old 03-22-2007, 03:24 PM   #5
Franco
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

I don't mean to meddle with a semi-private thread, but how does one begin training this internal strength? Or maybe I should ask: can a regular nobody like me get initiated in this without first needing for the Dan Hardens of the world (of which there seem to be few) to attempt to get some shihans to buy into this, and for the shihans to actually want to listen to someone who is an outsider to their organization (which might never happen), and for them to make up their minds to incorporate this internal training in their organization's curriculum (which might also never happen), and for the knowledge to slowly trickle down to me? (<---that must be the longest question I ever asked)
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Old 03-22-2007, 03:44 PM   #6
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Hi Franco,
Nothing to suggest really...perhaps when someone from the Aunkai, or when Mike Sigman is near your area, make sure to go see them. Learn what you can, and train hard. No worries about messing in the thread...perfectly acceptable.

Hi Andy, you don't seem so big online!

I'm not really worried about all of aikido. I just go to keiko and do the best *I* can do at that moment. There are a lot of things in the world I don't like, such as the situation in Darfor, or the war in Iraq...but I can't do much about them either. So I try to buckle down and deal with me...or maybe my neighbor, or the kid getting hasselled on the street right in front of me. That is more managable.

I think these skill are important to how I see aikido...how others see it is again not that crucial...they either get it or they don't when they feel it. The biggest problem again is me...will *I* make time in a very busy life to do the training you and your mates were kind enough to share.

Like everything else in life...

We'll see

Best,
Ron (waiting now to make a 6:00 pm change in a LAN routing card...ooooh what fun. But it pays good!)

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 03-23-2007, 06:47 AM   #7
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

But the real goal is first and foremost to change you. You guys really hold the keys to what's going to happen. My hope is that you come and train often enough to support your solo training at home. To come and shugyo with us and go back inspired. From early on we developed a system of, testing, then training, test, train. The dichotomy in pursuing power and then doing jujutsu is that it is immediate and constant feedback in what you do. I'll even work on Aikido with you like we did that day with Ron and Mark in kokyu dosa (Aiki age) so you can more readily make a correlation. AIkido is Daito ryu no matter how mad it makes people to say so-it simply...is. So we can work on a central pivot and do ten-chi nage, or Irimi and host of other things as part of creating currents while moving. I did this Sat with an Aikido student with good results. The reason its hard to do -away from somone who focuses on this- is that if folks fail, they to often go back to what they know instead of stopping to correct. You can't have an ego-you have to be willing to stop and fix it.
Supporting your technique with solo work is the best way. When you see the active results of your solo work on your aikido mates-I think you'll be encouraged to train even harder. When you're here we can even work on a very small group of Aikido waza.

Then again we could work on some grappling too- after we stop doing real martial arts-and put our weapons down to fool around with you jujutsu guys
Dan

Last edited by DH : 03-23-2007 at 06:54 AM.
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Old 03-23-2007, 06:51 AM   #8
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Got myself some 5 oz. gloves...fit like a charm...


B,
R

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 03-23-2007, 07:01 AM   #9
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Ron Tisdale wrote: View Post
Got myself some 5 oz. gloves...fit like a charm...


B,
R
Ooh doggies
Old boxing axium
Everyone has a plan...till they been hit!
So does every BJJer. Till they meet the "ground and pound."
I have my own version of the old childrens exercise song
Head... shoulders.. knees and toes.
Head (butts)
Shoulder (throws and jabs)
Knees (in ribs)
toes (kicks to legs and head)
MMA-the great equalizer!

Dan
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Old 03-23-2007, 09:02 AM   #10
M. McPherson
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Then again we could work on some grappling too- after we stop doing real martial arts-and put our weapons down to fool around with you jujutsu guys
Dan
That sounds like it would be a blast.
Wait - did I just say that? And why can't I get the phrase "lambs to the slaughter" out of my head now?
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Old 03-23-2007, 09:24 AM   #11
Franco
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
But the real goal is first and foremost to change you. You guys really hold the keys to what's going to happen. My hope is that you come and train often enough to support your solo training at home.
Dan
Dan Harden:

I just sent you a PM.
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Old 03-23-2007, 04:51 PM   #12
Tim Mailloux
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Ron Tisdale wrote: View Post
Got myself some 5 oz. gloves...fit like a charm...


B,
R
Whats all this about 5 oz. gloves?

Dan,
Do I need to bring some of these my next visit? I can deal with strikes to the body, just not the face. The wife would be very upset if I damaged the goods

Tim
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Old 03-23-2007, 04:53 PM   #13
Tim Mailloux
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Andrew Prochnow wrote: View Post
I'm going to start this thread off with a few questions for Ron, Mark M, Mark C, Murray M, Stan and Tim.

We have all read about your encounter with Dan (some with Mike and Ron also).
What I want to know is after meeting Dan working with him and experiencing what he and some others are doing, how do you feel this Internal Power can be used in your Aikido? To what degree do you believe using this Internal Power is necessary or relevant in Aikido? As a result from being exposed to this, What would YOU like to see happen in Aikido today?

Best,
Andrew Prochnow
Andy,
I really cannot answer your questions as I stopped training in aikido about 6 months ago. I converted to judo, Dan had alot to do with it.

Tim
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Old 03-23-2007, 06:23 PM   #14
tarik
 
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
But the real goal is first and foremost to change you. You guys really hold the keys to what's going to happen. My hope is that you come and train often enough to support your solo training at home.
Go to the well.

Quote:
Supporting your technique with solo work is the best way. When you see the active results of your solo work on your aikido mates-I think you'll be encouraged to train even harder. When you're here we can even work on a very small group of Aikido waza.
Amen. Most people don't have the willpower to sustain the solo work though, even when they believe and want the results. It builds, though.

Tarik

Tarik Ghbeish
Jiyūshin-ryū AikiBudō - Iwae Dojo

MASAKATSU AGATSU -- "The true victory of self-mastery."
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Old 03-23-2007, 06:49 PM   #15
Andrew Prochnow
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Whats all this about 5 oz. gloves? Tim Mailloux
Tim if you want things to be interesting bring some gloves. If you dont have any you can use mine or maybe Dans.

As for Ron, what you read above is true. They do make 5oz gloves my size. Hope to see you guys soon.

see you on the mat

Andrew Prochnow

Last edited by Andrew Prochnow : 03-23-2007 at 06:50 PM. Reason: salutation and name
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Old 03-23-2007, 06:57 PM   #16
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Hey now
I thought the idea was how to put these skills back into your aikido?
I was hoping to help show you that with the addition of these skills and creation of actual aiki instead of that stuff you guys "call" aiki -you guys can start to kick ass WITH Aikido against an increased level of attacks.
Now everyone wants to do MMA?
What's next? Knife and twin sticks?
Hhmmm....
Must be Andy's influence.

Dan

Last edited by DH : 03-23-2007 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 03-23-2007, 08:05 PM   #17
MM
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
Hey now
I thought the idea was how to put these skills back into your aikido?
I was hoping to help show you that with the addition of these skills and creation of actual aiki instead of that stuff you guys "call" aiki -you guys can start to kick ass WITH Aikido against an increased level of attacks.
Now everyone wants to do MMA?
What's next? Knife and twin sticks?
Hhmmm....
Must be Andy's influence.

Dan
Well, I am also training in kali/silat.

Mark
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Old 03-24-2007, 07:22 AM   #18
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Hey guys,

It was a joke....

B,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 03-25-2007, 04:54 AM   #19
Edwin Neal
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

what kind of internal power (ki developement) are we talking about? is it very much more powerful and different from "traditional" ibuki and ki no taiso? i am a late commer to this discussion of "internal power... i don't think it is absent in some aikido, and i think done properly this power manifests over time with sincere practice of the waza... so what are you doing that is new or different?

Edwin Neal


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Old 03-25-2007, 04:09 PM   #20
statisticool
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Dan Harden wrote: View Post
I was hoping to help show you that with the addition of these skills and creation of actual aiki instead of that stuff you guys "call" aiki -you guys can start to kick ass WITH Aikido against an increased level of attacks.
I'm (not really) sorry, but since when is "kick a**" a motivation for learning aikido (that is, the art created and passed down by O'Sensei)? That has more to do with the goals of people who watch combat sports than budo, and is mainly fear based motivation, IMO.

It could be the new aikido. Maybe it is aykido, spelled with a y. -Kind of like like imitation crab is often spelled with a k.

A secret of internal strength?:
"Let your weight from the crotch area BE in his hands."
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Old 03-25-2007, 05:39 PM   #21
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Ueshiba's Aikido never existed "outside" of the extent martial arts. Ueshiba proved its superiority over them by fighting and accepting quasy-challenges in training from many men with and wthout weapons.
From then to now the only thing that has changed is the abilities of the fighters who could come- a-callin
Were they alive, young and kickin I think Takeda, Sagawa, Kodo and Ueshiba would be just the type of men to be out messing with these guys. Why was Ueshiba in his later years showing up at the Kodokan to let Judo men try and throw him? Hmmm.. sound familiar?

Now it appears that many choose to "opt out" of martial challenges or even the thought of them. And "claim" superiority of vision. All while openly stating they don't care about the martial aspects of the art. I find that to be an altogether different take both on Ueshiba's life and the art he demonstrated time and time again against all comers.

Justin
I don't think you should be speaking for the motivatons of thousands whom you do not know. Many have openly stated here and in many interviews I have read over the years they that see Aikido as a martial art.
Your lack of interest or perhaps your weakness in using your Aikido against increasingly able men with or without weapons, and your warped sense of it not being a martial art are your own views Justin.

Dan

Last edited by DH : 03-25-2007 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 03-26-2007, 12:37 PM   #22
Erik Johnstone
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Dan:

I sent you a PM.

Thank you.
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:37 PM   #23
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Thought you guy's might find this interesting and relevant. I don't agree with Jun's view that this has nothing to do with Aikido but I respect his efforts. So I put it here.
I guess this is from an art that has nothing to do with Aikido's "Aiki."
Its from Daito ryu's Aiki. For those that don't know that's just some art Ueshiba trained in..... for twenty years.

".......A seminar was arranged with the help of Horikawa Taiso (Kodo's dad) who had a knack for persuading people and was the one who organized the event. It was this event that Sagawa’s father Konokichi also happened to attend, despite his own age being over fifty. “My father described how Takeda would have people twist his arms behind his back, but all were defeated one after another. My father tried to take Takeda’s legs from out under him. He was promptly crushed by one of Takeda’s knees, almost like he was crushing a frog. He remembered his own demise as being the most unsightly out of all the participants. Takeda also had one person grab the lining on his sleeve, which he said resulted in the person quickly being lifted overhead. Looking on it now, that’s probably an amateur’s take on it. Takeda most likely took advantage of the moment their bodies intersected (ire chigai), smoothly entered and then lifted the person up into the air.”

In any event this was an incredible teacher, so Sagawa’s father created a Dojo in their house that was about 18 tatami mats (30 sq meters) in size, and invited Takeda to live with them. Takeda spent two years at Sagawa’s house. He would practice in the morning and afternoon. Sagawa’s father being the fairly temperamental person he was, often tested his techniques on strongly built workmen at the construction yards. He tried many things, but ultimately decided the techniques were ineffective against a fully resisting opponent unless you possessed Takeda’s “Aiki.”

His father then said to Takeda Soukaku that he “would rather learn Aiki than technique.” Sagawa’s father said at the time that “Takeda’s Aiki is simply mysterious. That skill is definitely one that has been “absorbed” to his body and maybe he is the only one who can do it.” Despite that, time passed and his father received his Kyoujudairi (instructor permit) on March 28, 1914. Sagawa’s father happened to be the Kyojudairi when Yoshida Koutarou (who would later teach the Oyama Kyokushinkai association Daitoryu) brought Ueshiba Morihei to the Kuta Inn. Ueshiba, having already being confident of his skills acted rather arrogant in front of the “country bumpkin martial artists.” So Takeda Sokaku put numerous techniques on him so vigorously that Ueshiba shed tears because of the pain, something that Takeda himself liked to recall. Ueshiba, having experienced Takeda’s skill promptly immersed himself in the study of this Bujutsu. "

Worthy of note are the "trying to take Takeda's legs out from under him, Trying to throw him and twist up his arms." These along with many many other accounts of his life with Judoka and jujutsuka and bandits he killed clearly demonstrated he was not zoned out on mushrooms and farting golden clouds in the garden out back. He and others who trained with him-including Ueshiba- were squarely concerned with "real skills," applicable skills. Not some cooparative playtime of meeting-energies called "aiki." One could easily draw comparisons to Horikawa (Kodo) and Sagawa (Yukioshi) sons of the men mentioned above who in their seventies and eighteirs were throwing Judo men.
Real skills from real men.
Kinda sounds Chinese eh guys?
Cheers
Dan

Last edited by DH : 03-26-2007 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 03-26-2007, 11:46 PM   #24
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Erik Johnstone wrote: View Post
Dan:

I sent you a PM.

Thank you.
Got a group of guys coming Sat I sent you a P.M back
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Old 03-27-2007, 06:21 AM   #25
DH
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Re: Internal Power in your Aikido

Quote:
Edwin Neal wrote: View Post
what kind of internal power (ki developement) are we talking about? is it very much more powerful and different from "traditional" ibuki and ki no taiso? i am a late commer to this discussion of "internal power... i don't think it is absent in some aikido, and i think done properly this power manifests over time with sincere practice of the waza... so what are you doing that is new or different?
I dunno Edwin
I'll write back in a few years after I've met more Aikido teachers. I haven't felt much so far. Sure seems a lot of their students aren't even headed in the right direction. Maybe they just haven't been listening to their teachers.
Here's an Aiki masters take on Waza as as a means to get you there.

Sagawa
"Training must be done EVERYDAY for the rest of your life. That is the meaning of "Shugyo." No matter how much muscle you think you aren't using (you're only misleading yourself.) The true execution of Aiki requires an enormous amount of solo training to condition the body (Tanren). It is not easy to attain.
You won't be able to manifest Aiki unless you continue tanren of the body everyday for decades. You must train the body, ponder and have the techniques "seep out" from the body itself. Even if you train everyday all the while changing yourself, it will take at least 20 years. Ten years or so isn't nearly enough time.
Your body has to truly be ready; otherwise no matter what you do you won't be able to do "Aiki."

Last edited by DH : 03-27-2007 at 06:36 AM.
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