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Old 06-06-2007, 09:58 AM   #1
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Technique of running around nage

Quote:
David Valadez wrote:
That version you see around for any attack - matters not what technique follows - but the one where your technique expects uke to run around you but for their own reasons.
dmv
Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Oh yeah, even in a training "non real world" environment that one always drove me nuts - especially as a short slow uke being told that I'm SUPPOSED to WANT to run in a big circle around some big person trying to catch up with their wrists. huh?!
I wanted to get people's input on why this kind of technique *would* be a valid training tool. Don't care to hear why not, just good solid reasoning on why it would, what would be gained, proper technique to practice, etc.

Thanks,
Mark
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:12 AM   #2
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Re: Technique of running around nage

That technique is a valid training tool in as far as that it allows beginners to learn how to respond to ushiro katate dori (as it is called). And I'm being optimistic here.

A proper (cannot stress that enough) ushiro katate dori attack, however, is a valid training tool. It goes something like this:
1) Nage in right hanmi.
2) Uke controls nage's right wrist to get a clear punch in.
3) Nage steps to the side or turns.
4) Uke realizes that punching isn't that interesting anymore, so decides to move to the back side of nage.
5) Nage moves a bit forward to unbalance uke somewhat and now has the opportunity to enter with his left elbow towards uke's face.
6) Uke realizes this and decides to control nage's left wrist.

I'm not entirely satisfied with this explanation.
Ushiro katate dori performed this way seems to be more of a follow-up to a failed ai hanmi kata te dori attack than an attack in it's own right. Perhaps we should start focussing more on allowing uke to actually attack from the rear? They ain't called ushiro for nothing...
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:22 AM   #3
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Why would you run around nage when you could use the kosa dori to make nage turn their back toward you?
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:50 AM   #4
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Re: Technique of running around nage

With Mark on this one, someone please describe a decent reason for it as it still baffles me. The reasons I've been given to date are

a) You're forcing them to run round by doing [insert various options here, from stepping to kokyo to I've got something stabby in my other hand which you also want to trap]
b) It's a method of training a particular set of movements, basically just a kata - fine with this one up to a point, but I still haven't identified the particular movements it gives "good practice" practice for which can't be duplicated with a less intriguing attack.
c) My ki leads you round (let's not go there please)
d) I'm holding on to you for a friend whose behind me...
e) 'cos I told you to! The only one which makes complete sense and is internally consistent for me, but generally leads me into providing a rather overblown attack worthy of the death scene in the mask, which generally seems to irritate people.
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Old 06-06-2007, 10:59 AM   #5
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I've been told in the past that Ushiro Ryote-dori attack was initially an attempt by Uke to control or halt a sword draw by Nage. Maybe someone with more experience can confirm that or refute it.

While I can agree that this doesn't seem all that necessary or realistic attack/defense today, I think the technique feeds into other attacks we might see. Ryokata-dori and Ushiro Kubi-shime are examples we could see, or some variation of these two attacks.

So why do we run all the way around Nage? I think, for me at least, it teaches us to move, not to mention does it get your heart rate up. All that running around. It attempts to teach us how to keep the flow and timing of aikido technique. Probably a more realistic version of this type of attack would be someone approaching from behind and initiating the attack.

Combining the timing experience and the experience of being grabbed/attacked in the manner of Ushiro-waza helps prepare us for that type of encounter in the end.

Just my opinion.
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Old 06-06-2007, 11:13 AM   #6
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Re: Technique of running around nage

David Valadez wrote:
That version you see around for any attack - matters not what technique follows - but the one where your technique expects uke to run around you but for their own reasons.
dmv

Interestingly David has written something about this on his website:
http://senshincenter.com/pages/vids/ushirowaza.html
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Old 06-06-2007, 11:47 AM   #7
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Hi All,

For what it's worth, I see a difference between uke running around nage and ushiro waza. I'm not sure if Mark meant for there to be a difference, but my original comments were particular to those training paradigms where uke is not attempting to attack from the rear but simply "inspired" to do a 1/2 a lap to more around nage of their own will. Please also remember that my original comments were solely referring to martially practical manners of applying Aikido waza - not to everything about Aikido. Tactically, my assumptions for ushiro waza are very close to those listed by Joep above. This is something different, and I feel that difference should be brought to the surface, as I feel some of us are not talking about the same thing here.

dmv

Last edited by senshincenter : 06-06-2007 at 11:55 AM.

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Old 06-06-2007, 11:59 AM   #8
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Quote:
David Valadez wrote: View Post
Hi All,

For what it's worth, I see a difference between uke running around nage and ushiro waza. I'm not sure if Mark meant for there to be a difference, but my original comments were particular to those training paradigms where uke is not attempting to attack from the rear but simply "inspired" to do a 1/2 a lap to more around nage of their own will.
Yeah, I didn't take your quoted comments the same as many others have. Ushiro waza (from motion) has a much different dynamic than say munetsuki kotegaeshi where uke is led all over the mat before throwing themselves, which is the kind of thing I *think* you were getting at initially.

As for what it's good for, all I can think of is cardio conditioning...

Chris Moses
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Old 06-06-2007, 12:07 PM   #9
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Re: Technique of running around nage

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Ian Hurst wrote: View Post
c) My ki leads you round (let's not go there please)
Hmmm. How about "Your keys lead you around"? It's not always you that their after; Maybe they want what's in your hand. I've had similar experience with a friend that was too drunk to drive.

Virtually every time I've worked out with kids, they've run around me trying to grab my wrist. They weren't told that they had to run around me, they just did. Not everybody does it, but some people do.

A life threatening attack isn't always the context in which aikido is used. Sometimes someone is just trying to get a ball-point pen that they think belongs to them.

"The only difference between Congress and drunken sailors is that drunken sailors spend their own money." -Tom Feeney, representative from Florida
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Old 06-06-2007, 01:07 PM   #10
Marc Abrams
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I suggest that another way of looking at ushiro techniques is the ability to take a strong linear attack and disperse the energy by the nage creating a centripetal movement.

When a person makes a committed attempt to grab your wrist, elbow, shoulder in a linear manner, your change of direction by a tenkan movement that creates centripetal force results in the attacker moving behind you in a circular manner. Techniques evolve from that perspective.

This is one manner in which I teach how ushiro techniques can both occur and be relevant to real-life scenarios.

marc abrams
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Old 06-06-2007, 01:18 PM   #11
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Quote:
David Valadez wrote: View Post
Hi All,

For what it's worth, I see a difference between uke running around nage and ushiro waza. I'm not sure if Mark meant for there to be a difference, but my original comments were particular to those training paradigms where uke is not attempting to attack from the rear but simply "inspired" to do a 1/2 a lap to more around nage of their own will. Please also remember that my original comments were solely referring to martially practical manners of applying Aikido waza - not to everything about Aikido. Tactically, my assumptions for ushiro waza are very close to those listed by Joep above. This is something different, and I feel that difference should be brought to the surface, as I feel some of us are not talking about the same thing here.

dmv
Hi David,
Yes, I think there is a difference in ushiro waza and the uke running around nage.

The point of the thread was just to get opinions from people on how they view the uke running around nage as a valid training tool.

I have a couple of views that I think apply but wanted to see what other people thought. I did like a few of the posted comments so far and Marc Abrams' post was along the lines of one of my views.

Stopping the sword draw was interesting. I was hoping someone with experience could expand on that idea.

Thanks all,
Mark
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Old 06-06-2007, 02:01 PM   #12
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Well, I believe the Ushiro Katate Dori as well as its little sister Kosadori are traditional apprehension techniques used by law enforcement officers worldwide, and most probably those of ancient Japan. Which makes most of aikido techniques defenses against apprehension by Police

Now regarding Ushiro Katate Dori, I do understand the reason behind the running around, but I have always been taught that make Uke run for more than 1 second and you're good for a good choke or other obnoxious attacks.

The only good reason I find for running around is that it teaches Nage how to build the momentum and use it to throw Uke effortlessly, as illogical and silly the running might be.
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Old 06-06-2007, 02:13 PM   #13
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Re: Technique of running around nage

It would be nice - humbly suggested - if this thread could get back to the actual topic - away from ushiro waza - as this would allow us to discuss the matter more accurately, with a single topic. (See Chris' post for a description with a clear distinction.)

Referring to that topic, I'm a bit surprised that more folks have not chimed in and that folks seem unclear as to what is being discussed here. The surprise comes from my experience being that most folks actually train this way - with the minority of aikidoka, world-wide, being those that don't expect uke to run around them as nage.

dmv

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Old 06-06-2007, 02:17 PM   #14
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Here is the video I posted in the related thread as an example of what was being discussed - for all to see:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ylrcUJc7MIA

So, you see, folks do this, and those folks, at least some of them, must know why they are doing it - know what I, for one, do not know. Some sharing would be greatly appreciated. True, I have my opinion claiming it is not very martial, but there are many aspects of Aikido training, with some not necessarily having to do with what is martial. I'm wondering, should this be the case, what this might be (in this case). This is how I understood Mark's original post, at least. From an outsider point of view, it looks like one is dealing with timing and spatial aspects, also sensitivity cultivations. Is this the case? If it is, what is the reason for looking for timing, spatial, and sensitivity cultivations in a manner so far removed from the more universally accepted martial understandings? There must be a benefit from it, one would think, that one cannot get from training under more martially viable situations. What is that - that is what I thought this thread was looking for.

The only time I've ever heard anyone explain it, I got the impression more that they did not know what they were talking about - both were 5th dan. One said the usual, "it's just a training exercise" (i.e. I don't know), and the other one, embarrassingly, said it was related to making uke/the attacker dizzy, which was posited as the source for the fall/throw in Irimi Nage. Someone has to have better answers than these - right?

dmv

Last edited by senshincenter : 06-06-2007 at 02:25 PM.

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Old 06-06-2007, 03:03 PM   #15
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Re: Technique of running around nage

The whole running around thing seemed like nonsense to me.

Keith Lee
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Old 06-06-2007, 03:31 PM   #16
Marc Abrams
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Re: Technique of running around nage

David:

That video clip was a demonstration and it allowed the spectators to be able to observe many things that happen with Aikido. Had it been done at high speed, much would have been missing for people to observe.

That being said, I think that there is a lot of relevance to practicing in that manner. First and foremost, it takes a lot of training to become sensitized to not tensing and stiffening up when being attacked. Techniques that are executed by beginners in a fast manner are typically done rough-house style because they have no idea as to how they have violated certain basic aiki principles that do make the techniques work at any speed. Equally important is the necessity for the uke to learn to be pliable and respond to a technique. This allows the uke to learn how to stay safe, later to learn to the escape the technique and finally to be able to reverse a technique with a technique. For the nage, learning big movements helps to teach energy patterns that once ingrained, can remain in absence of big movements. I have not found a way to teach big energy movements without first getting the students to make big movements. I am clear that as they get better, they will increase their speed and the movements will become smaller and more subtle.

The reality is that a person who attacks hard and fast to someone who is really good at aikido typically ends up hurting him/herself because of an inability to recognize what is happening and respond in a safe manner. For example, many kokyu-nages typically result in the uninitiated catching the ground with the face. Bad for teeth, good for dentist's earnings. My teacher recently said that if you move properly, you typically do not need to do a technique. Your initial, proper movement (some aspect of atemi necessary in my opinion) typically results in a person becoming so off-balance so as to fall.

I believe it is important to have students attack sincerely. Hard, rough-house practice by beginners typically masks the training that they really need to make aikido work in a "martial" manner. It is not uncommon for me to have to demonstrate Aikido working with someone seeking to attack me in what ever manner that they choose. I prefer to have students who know the rudimentary basics in safe ukemi be the ones to attack for their own safety sake. Sometimes a novice needs to feel it work by experiencing more pain than should be necessary.

This is simply the manner in which I am teaching Aikido and reflects the Aikido that is taught to me by my teacher. I make no pretense that the way that I am doing it is "The Way." What ever floats peoples' boats is fine with me. The only "Aikido" that I do have a problem with is the version in which the students are brutalized based upon some sadistic tendencies of that particular teacher. I say this having spend a significant amount of time in hard arts and wrestling. NONE of my teachers hurt their students like I have heard and seen some Aikido teacher do to their students.

marc abrams
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Old 06-06-2007, 03:31 PM   #17
Pauliina Lievonen
 
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I don't know why people would do this on purpose either, but I can think of at least one example where people started doing this unconsciously:

A couple of years ago at a seminar with Patrick Cassidy sensei we did an exercise where the "assignment" was: Uke should move in a straight line towards tori, and tori should move so that uke ended up moving in a circle or spiral. We did this from a wrist grab.

After doing this a while most uke were running around tori in a circle, having completely forgotten their part of the interaction.

I think what happened was that people started to unconsciously anticipate the direction they were going to be moved in. This happens a lot in aikido practice, and in my experience most people are not really very aware of that they are doing it unless someone points it out to them repeatedly. I know I often am not. So in a dojo where seniors are aware of this tendency to anticipate, juniors will have partners who will help them by pointing this out repeatedly, but in a dojo where the seniors are not aware of this themselves, the tendency will get passed on and become a part of a style. And then techniques will evolve accordingly and so on....

That's one theory, at least.

kvaak
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Old 06-06-2007, 04:20 PM   #18
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I thought of something else in addition... in the above example that I gave, uke's assignment was to move in a straight line towards tori - but once tori had moved once, the line uke needed to take in order to still be moving towards tori had of course also changed. And at that point, uke could either just turn sharply and pursue the new line, or turn along a shallower curve, not actually moving towards tori immediately even though maybe having the intention of doing so in a minute so to say. I think in the second case uke also ends up running ion circles, all the while sincerely believing that they are moving towards tori. Just another example of how what is happening and what seems to be happening are not always the same thing.

If it seems like I'm just concentrating on one little anecdote, this is how I think about generalities... I need to bring them to some practical example in order to be able to think about them at all.

kvaak
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Old 06-06-2007, 06:13 PM   #19
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I guess what made me think the original post was about ushiro technique was the quoted reference that stated, "SUPPOSED to WANT to run in a big circle around some big person trying to catch up with their wrists." Screams ushiro-waza practice to me...

As for the impetus for uke to run around nage during other techniques. Some of that I feel arises out of uke's role in following nage's movement. In fact that's probably the largest contributing factor from my prospective. Uke has an active role in the technique and is responsible for blending with nage's technique. Martial application has been explained this way to me: by blending with nage's movement and staying connected uke is in fact limiting nage's responses. If nage moves uke around in a full circle, then uke follows that movement. If uke breaks connection there is an opening that is left open.

Now that being said, if an attack is extremely forceful and nage's timing is truly impeccable, then it's not difficult to make a lap around nage without uke adding an extra distance. It's part of the fun in watching all those shihan clobber the yudansha without seeming effort.

Last edited by Just Jamey : 06-06-2007 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 06-06-2007, 06:37 PM   #20
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
I wanted to get people's input on why this kind of technique *would* be a valid training tool. Don't care to hear why not, just good solid reasoning on why it would, what would be gained, proper technique to practice, etc.
Thanks,
Mark
Impossible for me to say since Koichi Tohei Sensei disagreed with it and would state that it came out of misunderstanding and he taught that it was an incorrect practice. So I have never had to think of any justification for it.

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Old 06-06-2007, 07:01 PM   #21
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Re: Technique of running around nage

Thanks Marc for your reply.

For me, I have no problem with demonstration allowances, nor do I require that everything “real” or “martial” or “valuable” has to be done at high speed or intensely, etc. – far from it. Additionally, while I can understand the benefit of big movements, and/or the need for responsiveness and pliability, and while I can accept that these things are indeed related to issues of training safety and even tactical reversals, I still have a hard time accepting why uke has to adopt this kind of willful positioning in order to make room for demonstration allowances, or in order to go slow, or in order to have big movements which allow for responsiveness and pliability to be cultivated. For me, one can totally accomplish all of the things that you rightly point out as being of value without having to adopt this kind of training culture.

That said, I think, based upon the little bits and pieces I’ve experienced over the years with this type of training culture, what Jamey is discussing is what we are seeing here. I think there is some notion of “connection” that is taking place, only, perhaps agreeing with Craig, there’s a misunderstanding going on concerning that notion.

For me, a connection exists between nage and uke because nage, via his/her technical and spiritual maturity, becomes one with uke. This happens at a base level ultimately by the emptying of nage’s self-attachment and thus by a larger uniting with All. Uke is not the active agent in this union. Uke, for lack of a better phrase, is the calibration tool used in the seeking of this union/emptying of self. To be this “tool,” uke must simply maintain the integrity of their given attack, as this is aim or direction or catalyst for nage’s process of unification/emptying and thus of connection. In other words, uke MUST remain other to nage – constantly (from uke’s point of view). When uke has more concern than the integrity of his/her attack, such as when it becomes uke’s job to unite with nage, nage loses his/her catalyst for an emptying of self, as well as everything else, as the need for such emptying is gone. In this absence, what remains is a type of “connection,” but in comparison to that type of connection that comes via a union that comes via an emptying of self, this other type of connection is entirely artificial and superficial. This “artificial” and “superficial,” in my opinion, would refer to both martial and spiritual achievements.

This is very much akin to the life lived by Prince Siddhartha while under his father’s care, when all the ailments of life and existence were kept from him – which achieves a certain kind of wellness/peace – vs. that peace/wellness achieved by an emptying of self as experienced when said prince became a Buddha.

dmv

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Old 06-07-2007, 01:16 PM   #22
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I don't think the posted clip of Seishiro Endo is a good example of "running around nage". His uke's are extremely nice and over-responsive, but they are responding to being physically unbalanced by Endo. They are not (and that's the topic of this thread, I think) running around nage because they are holding nage's wrist and nage is turning. This does indeed happen quite a lot and it's a poor excuse for aikido.
What Endo is doing is quite good, his uke's are just trying really hard to make him look good in too much of a puppet/dummy-like fashion. And perhaps the teachers who prefer the "running around" are just doing their best to do aikido like Endo does. Unfortunately, visual emulation is a dead end; without analysis, thought and understanding you'll get nowhere.
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Old 06-07-2007, 01:20 PM   #23
Marc Abrams
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Re: Technique of running around nage

David:

I would be surprised if that manner demonstrated in the video reflected the entirety of the training atmosphere. I would think that the ukes in that video were accenting the leading and connection from the nage. I have yet to see a dojo that would spend all of their time training like that. I always emphasize to my students that they must be able to work-up to performing techniques in a phone-booth sized space and will hopefully get them to a point where dulled knives are also used (my school opened this Jan.) I too believe that Aikido is remarkably practical and useful in real-life situations. My fear is that too many people focus on learning waza without any time spent on understanding at a DEEP level the internal principles that make Aikido such a powerful art. Many people use speed as a substitute for an inadequate understanding of those principles and their techniques utterly fail when faced by a REAL fighter. My continued focus is to have them work at a speed where they can remain connected and centered (as you much more eloquently described). Varying speeds is a good means of testing to see where the students "failure" points are so that they can understand where fear and tension enters into their movements, neutering their techniques. This has helped them to move at a pace where they are really learning how to apply the internal principles of our art.

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Old 06-07-2007, 02:00 PM   #24
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Re: Technique of running around nage

I find the cross grab moving to ushiro useful when the grab is followed by a strike towards nage, either open hand, or with a knife.
If nage moves strongly away from uke, pulling into his/her own center, it tends to bring uke around behind pretty quickly.
Followed up by nage with an atemi from the other hand as uke goes around (and nage gets out of uke's path), & uke can be pretty well unbalanced.

Clear as mud?

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Old 06-07-2007, 02:21 PM   #25
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Re: Technique of running around nage

At the end of one seminar, I asked Chiba sensei why in ushiro waza attaker is not attacking from behind LOL

Now I think it is only very efficient irimi training, and as O sensei said that irimi and atemi are basics of aikido, it makes sense. Doing such unusual; attack. attacker must learn to enter linearly, as fast as possible and smooth behind nage. In the same time he should unbalance nage and deliver decisive attack to control, kill or simply put him down. It must be resumed in max. 2 steps at most. Ideally one step.
Doing it, he is learning a whole lot of most important thing for aikido.

Unfortunately, very many instructors have no clue about it and train uke to literary run AROUND in big circles. That is killing O sensei creation.

Nagababa

ask for divine protection Ame no Murakumo Kuki Samuhara no Ryuo
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