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Old 07-24-2008, 08:05 PM   #76
eyrie
 
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Re: Atemi

Quote:
Erick Mead wrote: View Post
My five points are methodological and for greatest effect -- should all be present in a strike....
The strike must occur with:

1. Right shape
2. Right placement
3. Right orientation
4. Right speed
5. Right time
I would say that this is true of any technique. And since we're speaking to such "Noble Truths"... I offer you 3 more to complete the eight.
6. Right angle ("right" as in "correct", rather than 90)
7. Right depth
8. Right power

I'll give you (target) placement, however, I must disagree with your assessment generally.

Firstly, I have an entirely different perspective of shape as you describe, which for me, is far too "external". Whilst some "shape" is necessary, for me, mass and contact surfaces are more important than shape. So, while you speak of hand/fist shapes, and rotational dynamics, I'm talking about the difference between the business end of a blade, stick, club, hammer, or sharp pointy object.

Secondly, although I'll concede right "placement", i.e. target, my view of "target" is far more specific, and speaks to pin-point (pun intended) accuracy, than "swinging members" and articulating body parts.

Thirdly, although you speak of orientation as aligning the body or "weapon" to target, not all targets are struck at 90 (right) angles.

Fourthly, speed has some to do with it... but mass is just as important. If F=ma, or M=mv, either mass or velocity (or velocity delta) can affect the amount of force or momentum. Sure, speed is fine, but with more mass behind the strike, you don't need a whole lot of speed.

And finally... sure timing is everything. But what has that got to do with center of percussion or rotational dynamics? Or resonance, or reverberation, for that matter? I'm not talking about the "garden variety" krotty punch/kick rubbish of high impact physical damage. That's "child's play". The atemi I speak of affects the human body in real physiological terms - shock to the CNS, shutting down cardiac pulmonary and respiratory functions, affecting or even disabling limb mobility and motor function, and altering states of consciousness.

Quote:
So this is one way of understanding aikido as 90% atemi, since the controlling waza should be delivered in the same manner, with the same five factors as a impact atemi.
I think part of the problem is that too many get fixated on "impact" as the only means of delivering atemi. Most people think of it as percussive impact, but there are many ways to deliver atemi.

Here is one way... a percussive one but far more subtle than previous videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVY_-...eature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7meO4...eature=related

And here's another... which is even more subtle:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfGL-...eature=related

Last edited by eyrie : 07-24-2008 at 08:08 PM.

Ignatius
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Old 07-24-2008, 10:52 PM   #77
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post

I think part of the problem is that too many get fixated on "impact" as the only means of delivering atemi. Most people think of it as percussive impact, but there are many ways to deliver atemi.

Here is one way... a percussive one but far more subtle than previous videos:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVY_-...eature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7meO4...eature=related

And here's another... which is even more subtle:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfGL-...eature=related
Good Vids

Not bad for basic pressure point stuff. Glen does a great job of explaining what I have always learned as "vital points".

It's always been a part of of the Aikido I've experienced. "Washing the arm" and pressure points have always been considered Atemi.

Another way to understand Atemi is "Vital Connection" with Uke
William Hazen
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Old 07-24-2008, 11:39 PM   #78
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
I would say that this is true of any technique. And since we're speaking to such "Noble Truths"... I offer you 3 more to complete the eight.
6. Right angle ("right" as in "correct", rather than 90)
7. Right depth
8. Right power
90 is the "magic angle." Any others or any other principle by which to judge "correctness" of angle needs to be elaborated before I can agree or disagree. I don't disagree with "right depth" but really this can be considered a subset of both proper placement and proper orientation. As to right power, this is really involved in the consideration of the "right speed" in terms of the handling of delivered impulse. I go into this in more detail below.
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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
Firstly, I have an entirely different perspective of shape as you describe, which for me, is far too "external". ... So, while you speak of hand/fist shapes, and rotational dynamics, ...
You misunderstand me, or I have not explained myself well, whichever. I am not speaking of the former and latter has application whether there is "external" rotational movement or not, which is one reason why I divide "right speed" from "right time" Shape is driven by the type of dynamic -- which need NOT be "external" in the sense you mean. Shape is the shape of the entire body in initiating and delivering the impact.

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
Secondly, although I'll concede right "placement", i.e. target, my view of "target" is far more specific, and speaks to pin-point (pun intended) accuracy, than "swinging members" and articulating body parts.
I specifically was not getting into the issue of tuite -- but that art is simply addressing itself directly to the stretch reflex tension organs in the muscle spindles (and Golgi tendon organs) rather than affecting them in a broadcast manner as with atemi, nage waza and osae waza considered without the application of tuite.
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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
Thirdly, although you speak of orientation as aligning the body or "weapon" to target, not all targets are struck at 90 (right) angles.
All strikes involve spiral motion even if it is very, very tight in some dimensions. Spiral motion matches the form of shear stress in a torqued body, (i.e. -- tension stress in one 45 deg. spiral around the surface of the body, limb etc. and compression stree in the opposing 45 degree spiral each at ninety degrees from the other) Therefore to maximize impact stress along an existing stress line, a 90 degree orientation to the less vulnerable shear stress line is the "correct" as well as the "right" angle.

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
Fourthly, speed has some to do with it... but mass is just as important. If F=ma, or M=mv, either mass or velocity (or velocity delta) can affect the amount of force or momentum. Sure, speed is fine, but with more mass behind the strike, you don't need a whole lot of speed.
Mass that is not moving adds no impact. So, momentum is a primary quantity in this setting -- mass and velocity are only analytic components.

Impulse is simply force over a period of time. Sum of forces is the change of momentum with respect to time:

Σ F= dp/dt [momentum (p) time (t).]

Impulse, J = F * dt = (dp/dt) * dt = dp.

So impulse may be considered primarily as change of momentum -- without considering force directly -- and thus, without a derivative analytic quantity like acceleration.

Momentum transfer (impulse) happens most efficiently with addition to the speed component of momentum because velocity carries the square of the energy that the additional mass does. Thus, LESS speed is necessary to transfer the same momentum than the equivalent in additional mass. Thus, if we move a large mass and stop its motion by transferring it to smaller mass (with a resulting greater velocity) momentum transfer is more efficient in striking with the smaller mass, than merely moving the large mass to strike with in the first place. A properly extended chain weapon continues to gain velocity as it goes out (by mass transfer conservation) not additional application of force, even though you only gave it the same initial acceleration you would give a rigid weapon.

Chains weapons are most damaging in momentum transfer for this reason -- and also very unpredictable for this reason. Guess what? Your body IS a chain weapon.

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
And finally... sure timing is everything. But what has that got to do with center of percussion or rotational dynamics? Or resonance, or reverberation, for that matter?
If you do not see the issue of timing in natural reverberation or resonance I can say little more. Hell, we practice body resonance in furitama and tekubi furi, among others. There is a reason for that and it is very clear in sword work. I think you ought not lightly pass the issue by.

If you are going to hit something with something else you had better understand harmonic balance, resonance and reverberations or you will come away with a nasty shock. The center of percussion is a definite break point in every maai I know -- sword or taijutsu.

The point of strike with maximum efficiency of momentum delivery with the sword is the second node center of percussion (or center of oscillation -- which changes for some purposes but let's not deal with that) vice the kissaki with the highest velocity. But a lower efficiency of momentum transfer exists at the kissaki because it has less time IN the target AND because some is being lost back into the wielder through shock reverberation, which does not occur if the point of strike is at the COP second node), which is defined by the half wavelength of the natural (resonant) frequency of the weapon.

If you perform suriage or kiriage at a point of contact between the center of mass and the COP the tsuka (with the whole sword) shifts laterally away from the side struck. If you make contact outside the COP relative to the COM, the tsuka rotates TOWARD the side struck. If you strike directly at the COP of the opposing blade very little if any oscillation passes back to the hands of the opponent to alert him of the manner (speed, direction, etc) of the contact , and you can then let the small off angle aspect of shizentai in your cut//lift shift the blade either way with remarkably little telegraphed feel.

The body is only different in material, not principle. That's one reason why resonance and reverberation and COP all matter.

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
Here is one way... a percussive one but far more subtle than previous videos:
As I said, I did not address tuite, (fascinating in their own right) which while vulnerable TO atemi, are not necessarily applied BY atemi, and so are distinct, even though they do relate through some of the same mechanisms of reflex action.

Last edited by Erick Mead : 07-24-2008 at 11:41 PM.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 07-25-2008, 04:42 AM   #79
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Re: Atemi

That's all well and good Erick... I'm speaking to the purpose and premise of atemi generally (of which tuite and kyusho-jitsu are inter-related subsets) and you are speaking to (your understanding of) the mechanics. Two different things IMO.

Ignatius
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Old 07-25-2008, 04:57 AM   #80
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Re: Atemi

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William Hazen wrote: View Post
Good Vids

Not bad for basic pressure point stuff. Glen does a great job of explaining what I have always learned as "vital points".

It's always been a part of of the Aikido I've experienced. "Washing the arm" and pressure points have always been considered Atemi.

Another way to understand Atemi is "Vital Connection" with Uke
William Hazen
I see... so now it's always been a part of your experience of Aikido? Frankly, Bill, the "me too...we also do this in OUR style of aikido", and essentially, paraphrasing what I write, is getting a little tiresome. Maybe you could offer something a little more substantive and uniquely you, since you are now claiming familiarity with atemi at this level and "not bad for 'basic' PP stuff". Perhaps you could speak to the contradiction in terms of "giving the attacker a choice/opportunity to stop" and the potential lethality of such atemi?

Or is it mere "hand waving" or banner waving?

Ignatius
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Old 07-25-2008, 07:05 AM   #81
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Re: Atemi

whoa! that's a lot of analysis for just hitting someone. Look like I still got lots to learn. I have been doing the simple approach of Billy Jack "I am going take this right foot here and whop you on that side of the face ...." Just out of curiosity, if I slam someone into the wall or the floor or the tree, would that consider as atemi?
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Old 07-25-2008, 07:39 AM   #82
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
That's all well and good Erick... I'm speaking to the purpose and premise of atemi generally (of which tuite and kyusho-jitsu are inter-related subsets) and you are speaking to (your understanding of) the mechanics. Two different things IMO.
That's all well and good. My experience of the mechanics is when I put my fist against someone and unload atemi they are mechanically disrupted. My understanding is consistent with that experience, in general and in the stated detail. I presume you agree that atemi must be premised on sound mechanics, and that its primary purpose is to achieve a mechanical effect. So why is that "two different things"?

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 07-25-2008, 08:50 AM   #83
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Re: Atemi

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Phi Truong wrote: View Post
Just out of curiosity, if I slam someone into the wall or the floor or the tree, would that consider as atemi?
Does it make it sound?

Jennifer Paige Smith
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Old 07-25-2008, 09:21 AM   #84
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
I see... so now it's always been a part of your experience of Aikido? Frankly, Bill, the "me too...we also do this in OUR style of aikido", and essentially, paraphrasing what I write, is getting a little tiresome. Maybe you could offer something a little more substantive and uniquely you, since you are now claiming familiarity with atemi at this level and "not bad for 'basic' PP stuff". Perhaps you could speak to the contradiction in terms of "giving the attacker a choice/opportunity to stop" and the potential lethality of such atemi?

Or is it mere "hand waving" or banner waving?
Atemi "at this level" LOL I did realize Atemi had "levels" To me the is no "contradiction in terms' Only choices for Nage. I don't find such "contradictions" hard to grasp. Getting out of bed in the morning is potentially lethal. In fact Life is potentially lethal. the Beauty of good Aikido is it's technical ability to reconcile such "contradictions" in the hand of a good Nage. That is the whole "point" of Aikido the way we express it, and actually that is the way most Budo is expressed. Beating swords into plowshares. Turning Anger into reconciliation. If one has difficulty grasping such concepts Well...More often than not I have notice these technical discussion devolve into exercises in linear thinking. Like Atemi or Technique can be solely explained through some mathematical equation.

Been There....Done That....and it's....Boring.

William Hazen
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Old 07-25-2008, 09:27 AM   #85
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Re: Atemi

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Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
Does it make it sound?
Only if there's no one listening ...

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 07-25-2008, 09:35 AM   #86
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Re: Atemi

Hi folks,

Let's keep the tone of this discussion civil and respectful, please. Thank you.

-- Jun

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Old 07-25-2008, 11:19 AM   #87
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Re: Atemi

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Only if there's no one listening ...
I'm glad you got the humor.

Jen

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Old 07-25-2008, 05:28 PM   #88
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Re: Atemi

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Erick Mead wrote: View Post
I presume you agree that atemi must be premised on sound mechanics, and that its primary purpose is to achieve a mechanical effect. So why is that "two different things"?
Sure. Sound mechanics should apply to ALL techniques. But a physiological effect is more than just "mechanical"... no?

Ignatius
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Old 07-25-2008, 08:34 PM   #89
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Re: Atemi

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William Hazen wrote: View Post
Glen does a great job of explaining what I have always learned as "vital points".... Another way to understand Atemi is "Vital Connection" with Uke
To clarify, there are (generally accepted) 36 vital points on the body. "Vital" in the sense of being potentially fatal. Not all pressure points are "vital"... certainly not some of those demonstrated by Glen Levy.

Perhaps you could clarify/explain what you mean by "Vital Connection"?

Last edited by eyrie : 07-25-2008 at 08:42 PM.

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Old 07-25-2008, 11:43 PM   #90
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
To clarify, there are (generally accepted) 36 vital points on the body. "Vital" in the sense of being potentially fatal. Not all pressure points are "vital"... certainly not some of those demonstrated by Glen Levy.

Perhaps you could clarify/explain what you mean by "Vital Connection"?
I would love to but I think your description is best with the exception of the semantic use of the word vital which means the same as pressure point the way I have learned and show/teach it.

Vital connection with Uke is simple enough to explain too... Any Aikido technique when examined closely enough has a few pressure/vital points that Nage may use to control/blend with Uke. A very common one is the "funny bone" area of the arm and the one Glen showed above the inside elbow area. When executing KG Omote one starts at the inside of the shoulder near the vital point at the junction of the shoulder and the clavicle with a "tap" and then cuts down washing the inside of Uke's Arm to his/her elbow. There is also as Oyata explained the idea of rotating and leading ukes arm like a sword cut or as he puts it "rowing the boat." A "gentle tap" applied to a vital point can help Uke blend with the technique a little bit better.

William Hazen
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Old 07-26-2008, 02:19 AM   #91
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Surprise

In the martial arts, there is often a tendency of exaggerated belief or disbelief in one or other method. But nothing is foolproof, and few things are completely meaningless.

As for atemi, as well as aikido pinnings and throws, they depend on the element of surprise. Without surprise, they are much less likely to succeed.

It is also my impression that atemi, as well as pinnings and throws, primarily need to relate to the opponent's direction of energy (ki, if you will). That is more important than certain specific points on the opponent's body.

Coming to think of it, there's not much difference between atemi and other aikido techniques.

Stefan Stenudd
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Old 07-26-2008, 04:49 AM   #92
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Re: Atemi

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William Hazen wrote: View Post
I would love to but I think your description is best with the exception of the semantic use of the word vital which means the same as pressure point the way I have learned and show/teach it.
I'd prefer to be semantically correct... less chance for confusion or misunderstanding...

Oh... OK, I thought you meant something else, but I see you were being deliberately obtuse. Thanks for clarifying though.

Quote:
Stefan Stenudd wrote:
IAs for atemi, as well as aikido pinnings and throws, they depend on the element of surprise. Without surprise, they are much less likely to succeed.

It is also my impression that atemi, as well as pinnings and throws, primarily need to relate to the opponent's direction of energy (ki, if you will). That is more important than certain specific points on the opponent's body.
In martial strategems, the element of surprise is always a good, and sometimes, necessary advantage. Not sure what you're trying to say here.

Sure... everything is "relative" to the opponent's direction of energy or "ki"... with the flow, against the flow, orthogonal to the flow. Certainly, specific points provide direct access to the opponent's "ki" in specific ways, but I agree... it's not something one should actively look for or rely on. But like everything else... the more I practice, the better I get at targeting them - without even trying...

Ignatius
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Old 07-26-2008, 07:53 AM   #93
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
In martial strategems, the element of surprise is always a good, and sometimes, necessary advantage.
Surprise in the strict sense is one instance of a more general principle -- superior awareness of the actual (vice perceived) conditions of the engagement (ki musubi). Whoever lacks it ends up being surprised, even when they know there is a battle upon them.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
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Old 07-26-2008, 12:09 PM   #94
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Re: Atemi

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Ignatius Teo wrote: View Post
I'd prefer to be semantically correct... less chance for confusion or misunderstanding...

Oh... OK, I thought you meant something else, but I see you were being deliberately obtuse. Thanks for clarifying though.

In martial strategems, the element of surprise is always a good, and sometimes, necessary advantage. Not sure what you're trying to say here.

Sure... everything is "relative" to the opponent's direction of energy or "ki"... with the flow, against the flow, orthogonal to the flow. Certainly, specific points provide direct access to the opponent's "ki" in specific ways, but I agree... it's not something one should actively look for or rely on. But like everything else... the more I practice, the better I get at targeting them - without even trying...
Ok... I see where at the point of our discussion (again ) where you need to feel like you've "won" the "argument"

Let me know when you've won will you Igo ? This Agumentum Ad Athoritum stuff tends to get in the way of a good discussion between folks with different points of view.

I leave you with a quote from another post of yours.. "Well I thought that was pretty clear... as my teacher used to say... it's all Aikido. One and the same. This "my style, your style, our style" thing is not only divisive, but irrelevant. Everybody does things differently, but at its heart, it is one and the same Aikido."

In context you were suggesting that if you strip "style" away will (yours... ours... theirs....) will Aikido "hold water"... The answer to me is an obvious yes. With regard to what I have read of Atemi I feel the answer is the same it's all Atemi...

A wise man once said to me... Atemi is a smorgasbord One man likes pickles the other peanut butter. The key to good practice is to let the man who likes peanut butter have all he wants...

William

Last edited by Aikibu : 07-26-2008 at 12:12 PM.
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Old 07-26-2008, 12:24 PM   #95
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Re: Surprise

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Stefan Stenudd wrote: View Post
In the martial arts, there is often a tendency of exaggerated belief or disbelief in one or other method. But nothing is foolproof, and few things are completely meaningless.
Very True

Quote:
As for atemi, as well as aikido pinnings and throws, they depend on the element of surprise. Without surprise, they are much less likely to succeed.
Very True

Quote:
It is also my impression that atemi, as well as pinnings and throws, primarily need to relate to the opponent's direction of energy (ki, if you will). That is more important than certain specific points on the opponent's body.
I would call Ki in this case "Intention" Atemi has many uses depending on Nage's reading of Uke's intention. I prefer these three general explanations.
1. To stop the attack (as Nishio Shihan put it "at the moment of contact.")
2. To enter and execute technique
3. To assist Uke with the completion of a technique

Now within those three headings are many different forms of Atemi.. Simple Strikes...Breaking Balance...Pressure/Vital Points... Washing the Arm... No Touch... and on and on

To me it's not hard to understand... but it sure takes along time to master

Quote:
Coming to think of it, there's not much difference between atemi and other aikido techniques.
I totally agree. Thanks Sempai.

William Hazen
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Old 07-26-2008, 01:38 PM   #96
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Re: Atemi

Again, my take is that all these formulas, this what I would like to call a "paralysis of analysis," hints that Aikido (generally, overall) just doesn't take seriously the idea of making striking a part of its training curriculum.

Again, there is a purity to violence which at the practical level defies, may even outright contradict, these attempts to move beyond, "Just hit the f*****."

I know for me, my ignorance of "pressure point striking," etc., was a consciously gained ignorance - one chosen early on out of not being drawn to weapons (of any kind) that are overly specialized and/or excessively situationally specific. Because these types of weapons often turn out to not be very useful within the light of "anything goes" - which marks actual self-defense/offense situations.

For me, general Aikido's ventures into striking has been so minimal that contemporary aikidoka are better served to not try and find out what "Aikido striking" is, or even truly was. Additionally, if "Aikido striking" is, or was, solely, or at its "deeper" level, about pressure point striking (or whatever name you'd like to call it), well, that's just one more reason for contemporary aikidoka to let go and move forward.

Here's more videos that I think folks should always see side by side with the other kind thus far shown:

http://www.dbskeptic.com/2008/05/29/...uch-knockouts/

David M. Valadez
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Old 07-26-2008, 02:24 PM   #97
Aikibu
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Re: Atemi

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David Valadez wrote: View Post
Again, my take is that all these formulas, this what I would like to call a "paralysis of analysis," hints that Aikido (generally, overall) just doesn't take seriously the idea of making striking a part of its training curriculum.
So that explains what happens to me when I try to understand some of these posts.

Quote:
Again, there is a purity to violence which at the practical level defies, may even outright contradict, these attempts to move beyond, "Just hit the f*****."
This is what baffles me about some Aikidoka and the reason why I focus on intent of Uke. If some dude want to flat out f**k you up you better be able to do something about it. Without Martial Awareness of intention and your immediate environment... You're on the floor with someone in the mount beating the crap out of you or a bunch of dudes kicking you in the head. Considering you face these challenges daily I understand your need for purity.

Quote:
I know for me, my ignorance of "pressure point striking," etc., was a consciously gained ignorance - one chosen early on out of not being drawn to weapons (of any kind) that are overly specialized and/or excessively situationally specific. Because these types of weapons often turn out to not be very useful within the light of "anything goes" - which marks actual self-defense/offense situations.
I understand your reluctance given your job. however it is usful stuff to practice in the sense that is does benefit ones Aikido in how and where to apply pressure and use kuzshuzi (spelling?). The fantasy comes in when people think that with a few years of practice they can become so called "death touch" experts or like Oyata Sensei or some of the members of this board who can hit with Aiki Power. It would take a heck of allot of practice for me to reach that level. Washing the Arm however is something simple and easy to teach and it brings an immediate benefit to ones practice

Quote:
For me, general Aikido's ventures into striking has been so minimal that contemporary aikidoka are better served to not try and find out what "Aikido striking" is, or even truly was. Additionally, if "Aikido striking" is, or was, solely, or at its "deeper" level, about pressure point striking (or whatever name you'd like to call it), well, that's just one more reason for contemporary aikidoka to let go and move forward.
Perhaps I am misunderstanding you but I respectfully disagree. Remove "Atemi" from Aikido and you are nothing more than an Aiki Bunny.

Quote:
Here's more videos that I think folks should always see side by side with the other kind thus far shown:

http://www.dbskeptic.com/2008/05/29/...uch-knockouts/
Again I'll use my New York Cop analogy in reverse. There are no doubt a number of frauds and BS artists and they more than likely outnumber the Real Deals but because there are... does that mean all of them are?

I have woken up too many times on the mat and suffered too many deep bruises to believe that. Dan is right. Had I the courage and the focus and the money I would move into Tanaka's or Oyata's or Dan's house!

There are no shortcuts to that kind of power...

For the rest of us...or speaking just for me. I will just do the best I can to keep an open mind and learn to use Atemi with the right intention in our Aikido practice.

Take Care Sempai.

William Hazen

Last edited by Aikibu : 07-26-2008 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 07-26-2008, 05:30 PM   #98
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Atemi

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David Valadez wrote: View Post
Again, my take is that all these formulas, this what I would like to call a "paralysis of analysis," ... there is a purity to violence which at the practical level defies, may even outright contradict, these attempts to move beyond, "Just hit the f*****."
Who said "move beyond?" All that analysis goes into things like windage in sniping and time-on-target in artillery, and many many others -- but they all resolve to "Blow the bastard to kingdom come."

Now the question is one of efficiency and with efficiency comes minimization of NECESSARY violence. I don't need refined striking to destroy a person with blunt force damage -- a car does just fine. Element of surprise, too.

On the other hand if I wish to have effect with minimal damage refinement is the only course, and analysis is necessary to remove the unessential dross.

Cordially,

Erick Mead
一隻狗可久里馬房但他也不是馬的.
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Old 07-26-2008, 05:40 PM   #99
senshincenter
 
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Re: Atemi

I did not mean to dismiss this kind of power development, nor even the practitioners in the videos I posted. Nor do I disagree with the position that such things, as all things are, only open to those that invest and invest heavily. I am sorry if I did not make this clear.

As I said, I chose not to make such investment. However, I did not choose not to because I felt it fraudulent. I understand that the slant in the videos, and in the page that contained them, adopted that position, but I was trying to write on something else. In particular, I was referring to two aspects that are commonly connected to such understandings of striking.

I was first referring to the heavy analysis/theory that in my experience often ends up leading to reducing the amount of time actually spent striking (my "paralysis of analysis" comment), where more real time is spent NOT striking (e.g. as in general Aikido training) than striking.

Secondly, I was referring to the "special" or "rare" conditions, the exactness, of such weapons/strikes (i.e. belief, static electricity present, set-up times, non-athletic folks, tongue position, toe position, etc.).

I find both of these aspects very problematic for a person wishing to pursue the inclusion of striking into their regular Aikido curriculum for reasons of self-defense and/or real-world application.

Again, I do not wish to dismiss such striking (e.g. pressure point, chi blockage, no touch knockout, etc.) as false, and I can easily concede that I am pretty much ignorant of such understanding and skill. However, my point, which lies at the base at why I chose to be ignorant (i.e. not pursuing such courses of study, not seeking out a teacher, etc.), is that such positions seem to inhibit more than support actual self-defense encounters. Again, if one is interested more in acts of artistic preservation - sure, go for it. But, I am no museum curator - hence, my course of practice.

I compare it to handgun and/or rifle selection... Do I want one that goes off every time I pull the trigger, or only when the planets align just right and the wind is coming in the from the north? Do I want one so fine in its manufacturing that dirt and dust cause it to malfunction, or do I want to be able to bury it in the sand and dunk it in water and have it still fire? Am I willing to give up some of the "special" or even "miracle" stuff such fine weapons can do for pure, simple, use and reliability? For me, when it comes to putting your life on the line, as in self-defense situations, which is often the context that raises the issue of "striking in Aikido," one is always better off going with what is pure, simple, and reliable. In my opinion, this could be the unofficial slogan for something like Krav Maga's slant on striking.

To be clear, I'm not against development, nor, of course, the work needed to produce development, but when development, and the related work, raises issues of reliability and/or applicability, a "Hmmmm?," should go off in our heads. Additionally, when we have to say so much to do so little, another "Hmmmm?" should go off in our head. This is my point.

That said, and again I apologize for not being clear, I did not mean to suggest that one should take striking out of Aikido. I'm all for that, for putting striking into Aikido (and definitely as more than what makes a technique work or what allows for a technique to work, etc.). My suggestion, to be blunt, is that outside of the museum curator, aikidoka that are truly interested in striking should look to other understandings and sources than what today is often presented as "striking" in Aikido or as Aikido's striking. What I am suggesting is that folks should become very dissatisfied with what is currently passing for striking in Aikido (generally speaking), moving to the point where one pretty much abandons it for what it is: An overly archaic and extremely embryonic abstraction for what the rest of the martial arts world is doing with striking (both in old and new styles).

Because it's cool :-) (but still, you can hear the "buzz words" by Mack regarding real-world encounters):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZpZryZEiY4

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

David M. Valadez
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Old 07-26-2008, 06:12 PM   #100
senshincenter
 
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Re: Atemi

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Erick Mead wrote: View Post
Who said "move beyond?" All that analysis goes into things like windage in sniping and time-on-target in artillery, and many many others -- but they all resolve to "Blow the bastard to kingdom come."

Now the question is one of efficiency and with efficiency comes minimization of NECESSARY violence. I don't need refined striking to destroy a person with blunt force damage -- a car does just fine. Element of surprise, too.

On the other hand if I wish to have effect with minimal damage refinement is the only course, and analysis is necessary to remove the unessential dross.
What you say is perfectly true here - I can easily concede. But, my point is this: What almost always goes hand in hand with seeking a refinement with or through formula (even if that formula is thought to come after a practical development) is not only a minimal damage or a minimal effort (with maximum effect) but also a minimal amount of time actually training in such developments.

As a result, where, for example, it has been postulated and/or even stated that Aikido is 99% striking or atemi, no dojo I have ever been to even comes close to actually practicing striking even 50% of the time. Instead, what you have are folks relying on formulas, deeper understandings, etc., that are all or often very true, but tend to suggest or support that folks are actually practicing striking WITHOUT striking, or that they could strike if they wanted to, etc., so they don't need to, etc.

Contrast this with your average Karate dojo...? Not sure if they would utter a phrase like "99% striking," but granting that they don't need to, while you may have some formulas regarding the tactics and strategies of striking, you don't often see, "Σ F= dp/dt [momentum (p) time (t).]" What you do see instead is folks doing a hell of a lot of striking. Additionally, you see the instruments of striking development (sparring, bags, etc.) and you see them being used.

When I say "move beyond," this is what I am referring to, this kind of strange jump in practice that at some level seems very related to an over-analyzation of striking, where what often seems the only real thing being supported is a lack of actual striking practice.

Let me try and be clearer: When an analysis more supports folks practicing less than practicing more, I am suggesting that one has an over-analysis, one that goes beyond the pure, simple, and reliable position of just hit the f*****. The reason is this: When you don't have much to say, you got a lot left to do.

If folks want to get a whiff of what I'm trying to talk about, before anyone answers with "strikes are in all my techniques, even if I don't throw them" or "learning how to throw is conducive to learning how to strike," etc., (which are not true), please just truthfully answer the following questions:

1. Out of an hour training session, how many minutes are dedicated purely to striking practice?

2. What strikes do you practice regularly?

3. Does your dojo own heavy bags, kicking shields, focus mits, makiwara, etc.?

4. Does your dojo use such equipment as often as it does not, more than it does not, less than it does?

5. Do you practice sparring in your dojo? How often?

6. Do you consider your dojo an average Aikido dojo?

Granted there is much more to striking that this, but in all the Aikido dojo I have ever trained at as a deshi, taking all of them as one, just with these questions, here is what my answers would look like:

1. None
2. None regularly, but occasionally we threw an upper-cut or middle knuckle strike to the head area (various targets) or the ribs.
3. Only one dojo owned (only) makiwara.
4. The only dojo that owned makiwara used much less than the mat was used.
5. No, never.
6. Yes.

In my opinion, according to the larger martial arts world, answers like these cannot support the position that striking is really part of Aikido practice (which is different from whether it should be or could be) - not at least currently, and not outside of Aikido's analysis and formulas of or for striking.

David M. Valadez
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