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Old 02-13-2008, 11:06 AM   #1
Timothy WK
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"Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

Mike (or other internal people),

I was thinking about furitama while I was reading another thread. The term "soul shaking" reminded me of the subtle "shaking" or "trembling" that people experience (usually more beginner people, like me) while they practice internal exercises.

Is there a relationship/ connection between the shaking of the hands in furitama and the phenomenon of "shaking"/ "trembling" with internal exercise?

--Timothy Walters Kleinert

Hakuho-ryu/ Takeda-den Itto-ryu, & Wujifa qigongs
www.internal-aiki.com
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Old 02-13-2008, 12:39 PM   #2
Mike Sigman
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Timothy Walters Kleinert wrote: View Post
Mike (or other internal people),

I was thinking about furitama while I was reading another thread. The term "soul shaking" reminded me of the subtle "shaking" or "trembling" that people experience (usually more beginner people, like me) while they practice internal exercises.

Is there a relationship/ connection between the shaking of the hands in furitama and the phenomenon of "shaking"/ "trembling" with internal exercise?
For all practical purposes, at first, all you need to know is that the hands must be connected to the tanden/dantien. There's actually a deliberate shaking going on, although to be fair I'd have to note that under certain conditions a sort of "trembling" can legitimately take place. But at first, none of the trembling stuff needs to be even known about.

Best.

Mike
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Old 02-13-2008, 12:49 PM   #3
Timothy WK
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
There's actually a deliberate shaking going on...
OK, thanks. I suspected that was going to be the answer, but I thought I would still ask.

--Timothy Walters Kleinert

Hakuho-ryu/ Takeda-den Itto-ryu, & Wujifa qigongs
www.internal-aiki.com
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Old 02-14-2008, 06:39 AM   #4
Timothy WK
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
There's actually a deliberate shaking going on, although to be fair I'd have to note that under certain conditions a sort of "trembling" can legitimately take place. But at first, none of the trembling stuff needs to be even known about.
I need a little more clarification. In my initial post, I was basically asking about "deliberate shaking", so you did answer my question. But as I thought more about your response, the bit about "trembling" was a little confusing to me. I want to double that we're talking about the same thing.
_____

Pretty much everyone in my class starts to "tremble" after a few minutes of practice. The intensity of the "trembling" varies between individuals, as does the amount of time it takes before they start.

Brand new beginners don't always "tremble", but it doesn't usually take long before they start. I started "trembling" my first class under the corrections of my teacher, but it was a couple weeks before I was consistently "trembling" in my day-to-day practice.

I'm not exactly sure what causes the "trembling", but it's usually related to "energy flow" (as they say in my class), with violent "trembling" usually associated with a "blockage" of "energy".

It is my understanding/ experience that the lack of "trembling" in brand new beginners is because they are still using muscle. As they get used to the practice, they start to relax and rely more on internal connections/ fascial stuff. As that happens, they start to "tremble" more.

But at the same time, this "trembling" is related to muscle tension and weaknesses in one's structure and/or fascial connections. It's a good sign for beginners, because it means that they are starting to utilize the internal stuff. But as one progresses, you learn to relax more and the "trembling" lessons. I've certainly noticed that I "tremble" more when I'm holding tension or when I'm feeling tired, and on my bad days my "trembling" can get fairly violent. But I've noticed that even on my good days, I still get a subtle "trembling".

So this "trembling" is usually associated more with "beginners", though I'm not sure if it ever goes away. One of the more senior students in my class (~5-6 years) says the "trembling" still "comes and goes".
_____

So that's what I was talking about. Your comment that "at first, none of the trembling stuff needs to be even known about" was confusing, because I experienced "trembling" right off the bat. I thought it was common stuff.

Is that the same thing you were talking? If not, what were you talking about?

--Timothy Walters Kleinert

Hakuho-ryu/ Takeda-den Itto-ryu, & Wujifa qigongs
www.internal-aiki.com
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Old 02-14-2008, 06:53 AM   #5
Mike Sigman
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

Quote:
Timothy Walters Kleinert wrote: View Post
Your comment that "at first, none of the trembling stuff needs to be even known about" was confusing, because I experienced "trembling" right off the bat. I thought it was common stuff.

Is that the same thing you were talking? If not, what were you talking about?
I'm saying that all you need to do is do the furitama shaking with the whole body connected. If you tremble sometimes, ignore it... it's not important at first. I'm reluctant to get off into tangents from the basics because I have an aversion to getting drawn into more advanced conversations (not that I'm "advanced", by any means) when someone should be focused on the basic exercises.

Besides, for all practical purposes, the 3 main reasons for a trembling to come into plar are just not that important, in the case of furitama.

Regards,

Mike
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Old 02-14-2008, 08:51 AM   #6
ChrisMoses
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

Quote:
Timothy Walters Kleinert wrote: View Post
I need a little more clarification. In my initial post, I was basically asking about "deliberate shaking", so you did answer my question. But as I thought more about your response, the bit about "trembling" was a little confusing to me. I want to double that we're talking about the same thing.
_____

Pretty much everyone in my class starts to "tremble" after a few minutes of practice. The intensity of the "trembling" varies between individuals, as does the amount of time it takes before they start.
Hey, I could be way off here, but I think you're just talking about some of the signs of muscular fatigue. I'm assuming you're describing the muscle tremors while in static postures? If so, these are just a sign of the muscles fatiguing and no longer being able to hold an isometric contraction smoothly. I don't know how much physiology you have studied, but muscles can't actually hold a static contraction, they have constantly contract/release, contract/release. When they have lots of energy and few waste products, they can do this very very fast, effectively appearing to hold a constant contraction. As energy reserves are depleted and toxins begin to build up, the muscle becomes less capable of such precise contractions. It also starts to override your input to hold the contraction because the mechanism for pulling nutrients in and flushing waste out works more MUCH better when the muscle is able to contract and release as a unit. So when you begin to fatigue the muscle during an isometric posture, they start to visibly tremble. There may be some traditional CIMA explanation for this too, but this is the (simplified) modern explanation. If this is what you're talking about, then I think it's different from a larger intentionally shaking motion (like found in the CK) where (at least one possible interpretation/exploration) is that you're using an isolated motion (bouncing/shaking the hands) in order to begin to feel how that vibration can propagate throughout the body if you have established a dynamic tension throughout your structure. Mary Heiny showed me a related exercise where you walked around stamping and trying to feel how far up through your body the vibration of that impact was able to travel. The goal was to feel it through the peak of your head at the moment your foot struck the ground.

So all the usual disclaimers apply: I may not have gotten what you were saying here, there's probably a better CIMA explanation within that paradigm, I don't claim to have deep understanding of how the CK relates to internal skill building, um, that's all I can think of now.

Related reading:
Muscle Contraction at wikipedia
Isometric Exercise at wikipedia

Chris Moses
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Old 02-14-2008, 09:40 AM   #7
Haowen Chan
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Christian Moses wrote: View Post
Mary Heiny showed me a related exercise where you walked around stamping and trying to feel how far up through your body the vibration of that impact was able to travel. The goal was to feel it through the peak of your head at the moment your foot struck the ground.
Sounds like an interesting exercise. Did she offer any tips on what to change / focus on if you couldn't get the vibration to the top of your head? Or was it more like, if it stops at the quads, try more to relax the quads.Thanks!
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Old 02-14-2008, 10:00 AM   #8
ChrisMoses
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Haowen Chan wrote: View Post
Sounds like an interesting exercise. Did she offer any tips on what to change / focus on if you couldn't get the vibration to the top of your head? Or was it more like, if it stops at the quads, try more to relax the quads.Thanks!
I think this is kind of indicative of how I've been taught in Aikido. The test (stamping) was presented as the exercise. It was a private lesson when I was preparing for my nidan (along with a training partner who was preparing for his sandan). She perceived a disconnect between top/bottom in both of us and this exercise was her recommendation to fix that. There wasn't really any further exposition, you were supposed to just keep doing the test over and over until you got the result you wanted, then you were supposed to keep doing it to try and figure out what you did differently. I think there are a lot better ways to actually teach this kind of connection. At this point, I can basically control how far through me and where this kind of connection/vibration will go. Most of that awareness has come from the Aunkai exercises (shiko and tenchijin primarily). In the jin phase/posture (the squatting arms raised X shape, if memory serves, that's the 'man' posture, please correct me if I'm wrong) of tenchijin, when you get the structure (mostly, again not claiming mastery) right you can almost swear you feel the pressure of the mat under your heels kind of echoed (for lack of a better term) along the pinkie edge of your palms. Once you start to be able to feel this, you start to develop a sensitivity for it all the time and you don't really need a vibrational impact (like the stomp) to tell you if you're connected.

Chris Moses
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Old 02-14-2008, 10:13 AM   #9
Timothy WK
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
Hey, I could be way off here, but I think you're just talking about some of the signs of muscular fatigue. I'm assuming you're describing the muscle tremors while in static postures? If so, these are just a sign of the muscles fatiguing and no longer being able to hold an isometric contraction smoothly.
I've thought about that, and I do think simple muscle fatigue is part of it. Speaking of myself, it's obvious that most of the violent trembling comes as my quads tire.

But I don't know if muscle fatigue explains everything. The funny thing is that as I progressed, it started taking less and less time for the "trembling" to start, at least the subtle trembling. You would think that if it was just muscle fatigue, one would gain endurance, and the "trembling" would take longer and longer to set in.

But it's possible that I'm simply learning to relax the major muscles, which strain the minor muscles more, which have less endurance/ strength. I'm totally open to the possibility of a simple explanation.

(And to be clear, this all would be "involuntary shaking", and Mike has said furitama involves "deliberate shaking".)

--Timothy Walters Kleinert

Hakuho-ryu/ Takeda-den Itto-ryu, & Wujifa qigongs
www.internal-aiki.com
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Old 02-14-2008, 11:42 AM   #10
Haowen Chan
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Christian Moses wrote: View Post
There wasn't really any further exposition, you were supposed to just keep doing the test over and over until you got the result you wanted, then you were supposed to keep doing it to try and figure out what you did differently. I think there are a lot better ways to actually teach this kind of connection.
I see. Thanks!

Last edited by Haowen Chan : 02-14-2008 at 11:56 AM.
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Old 02-14-2008, 02:08 PM   #11
ChrisMoses
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

Quote:
Timothy Walters Kleinert wrote: View Post
But I don't know if muscle fatigue explains everything. The funny thing is that as I progressed, it started taking less and less time for the "trembling" to start, at least the subtle trembling. You would think that if it was just muscle fatigue, one would gain endurance, and the "trembling" would take longer and longer to set in.
Another possibility is that as your awareness and proprioception has improved, you've gotten better at noticing this phenomenon? I know I feel stuff that I never used to.

Chris Moses
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Old 02-14-2008, 03:08 PM   #12
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
For all practical purposes, at first, all you need to know is that the hands must be connected to the tanden/dantien. There's actually a deliberate shaking going on, although to be fair I'd have to note that under certain conditions a sort of "trembling" can legitimately take place. But at first, none of the trembling stuff needs to be even known about.
Here's an interesting question. Assuming there is some level of connection there, does the tanden shake the hands, do the hands shake the tanden, or does everything shake together? I feel like I can source it all three ways. What does everyone else think?

And while were at it, where is my soul and can it dance?

-Doug Walker
光道館 高村派新道楊心流
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Old 02-14-2008, 03:11 PM   #13
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Doug Walker wrote: View Post
And while were at it, where is my soul and can it dance?
What is the "funk" and how will I know if I'm faking it?

Chris Moses
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Old 02-15-2008, 07:23 AM   #14
Ron Tisdale
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Christian Moses wrote: View Post
What is the "funk" and how will I know if I'm faking it?
If you have to think about it, you're faking it.

It's kinda like feeling the weight of the ground in your crotch...

B,
R (oops, did I say that out loud???)

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
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Old 02-15-2008, 07:42 AM   #15
Mike Sigman
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Doug Walker wrote: View Post
Here's an interesting question. Assuming there is some level of connection there, does the tanden shake the hands, do the hands shake the tanden, or does everything shake together? I feel like I can source it all three ways. What does everyone else think?
The dantien is the main control; the hands are "connected" via the slightly-stretched cohesiveness of the body.
Quote:
And while we're at it, where is my soul and can it dance?
You broke my heart cause I couldnt dance;
you didnt even want me around.
And now im back to let you know i can really shake 'em down.

Furitama (I can really move)
Furitama (I'm in the groove)
Ah do you love (do you love me)
Now that I can dance (dance)

Watch me now, oh (Aiki Aiki)
Ah, work it all baby (Aiki Aiki)
Well, you're drivin' me crazy (shikko boogey)
With a little bit of soul now (work!)
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Old 02-15-2008, 07:52 AM   #16
Ron Tisdale
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

swingin'


Ron Tisdale
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Old 02-15-2008, 09:51 AM   #17
Walker
 
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Thanks Mike.

BTW - caught a glimpse of the soul and it was dancing Swan Lake...

-Doug Walker
光道館 高村派新道楊心流
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Old 02-16-2008, 07:55 AM   #18
Timothy WK
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Re: "Soul shaking" (furitama)? A question for Mike Sigman (or other internal people)

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Christian Moses wrote: View Post
Hey, I could be way off here, but I think you're just talking about some of the signs of muscular fatigue.
I talked with my teacher about this some more. He said the trembling *is* muscle fatigue, BUT there's more going on with it as well.

He said that as people learn to manifest and utilize the internal stuff, they tend to continue to hold on with their muscles, which causes the body to work against itself. It is this fighting between the internal and muscular forces that strains the muscles and causes them to tremble.

He then relayed an analogy that I guess Chen Xiao Wang likes to use. He said that ki/energy (the internal stuff) is like water in a river. If you have no flow (if you're not utilizing it), everything is quiet (no trembling) because there's simply no activity. If there's flow, but there are obstacles in the way (muscular tension, bad structure, etc.) you get turbulence (trembling). But if you clear up the pathways (relax the muscles, etc), everything becomes quiet again (no trembling).

--Timothy Walters Kleinert

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