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Old 11-08-2008, 12:55 PM   #1
Mark Uttech
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Aggressive Children

Onegaishimasu. How many of you have been injured by an aggressive child student while demonstrating technique?, and what was your reaction?

In gassho,

Mark

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Old 11-09-2008, 05:40 AM   #2
Enrique Antonio Reyes
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Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. How many of you have been injured by an aggressive child student while demonstrating technique?, and what was your reaction?

In gassho,

Mark
Haven't really experienced that with Aikido. But pretty recently I rolled with a young jiujitsu student who looked like doing Aerobics while on his back. Our head instructor have already emphasized that it was only a light roll but I ended up getting kneed and cut in the lip.

I stopped and told him that it was just practice and not a lot of people could afford to be injured. It wasn't competition or anything and it wasn't even sparring. Lastly, I told him that if I really wanted anyone hurt...I could just take out an eye or something...
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Old 11-11-2008, 09:00 AM   #3
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Re: Aggressive Children

Practice your ukemi state so that he can't injure you. That said, I have been injured by an aggressive adult... and the only reason why is because I allowed myself to be in a weak position. Hmm... maybe you can tell him practice is tit for tat. You take care of my body, and I take care of yours.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 11-11-2008, 08:42 PM   #4
crbateman
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Re: Aggressive Children

I do remember working with a very big-for-his-age teen who was determined to rearrange my fingers and break my arm. No amount of explaining would convince him that "old folks" often break as opposed to bend. I finally had to bite him with my dentures and then beat him senseless with my prostate...
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Old 11-13-2008, 04:06 PM   #5
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Re: Aggressive Children

Encountering the aggressive practitioner---from any of the teacher, student, or peer perspectives---is an interesting topic. Seeing how you personally respond when injured by any of the above is also interesting...

... but since Mark doesn't seem to post frivolously, I'm curious about the circumstances that led to this thread's creation. Is there something worth sharing, Mark?

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Old 11-14-2008, 01:46 AM   #6
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Re: Aggressive Children

We don't allow kids under 18 into class. Pretty happy about that.

If you're hungry, keep moving.
If you're tired, keep moving.
If you value you're life, keep moving.

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Old 11-14-2008, 03:43 AM   #7
Enrique Antonio Reyes
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Lightbulb Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Clark Bateman wrote: View Post
I do remember working with a very big-for-his-age teen who was determined to rearrange my fingers and break my arm. No amount of explaining would convince him that "old folks" often break as opposed to bend. I finally had to bite him with my dentures and then beat him senseless with my prostate...
Hi Clark. Very interesting...I can certainly picture you biting with your dentures, however I'm not so sure about you beating someone with your prostate Is the "very big-for-his-age teen" a female? If she is then I'd understand

But then again as 'abasan' said "tits for tat" oh I mean "tit for tat"...

One-Aiki,

Iking
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Old 11-14-2008, 09:37 AM   #8
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Re: Aggressive Children

Glad you didn't understand, Enrique... It's an "old guy" thing (and strictly medical)...
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Old 11-14-2008, 11:11 AM   #9
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Re: Aggressive Children

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Enrique Antonio Reyes wrote: View Post
Hi Clark. Very interesting...I can certainly picture you biting with your dentures, however I'm not so sure about you beating someone with your prostate Is the "very big-for-his-age teen" a female? If she is then I'd understand

But then again as 'abasan' said "tits for tat" oh I mean "tit for tat"...
You're in mixed company here, fella-me-lad.
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Old 11-14-2008, 12:27 PM   #10
Lan Powers
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Re: Aggressive Children

quote< and then beat him senseless with my prostate... >

Whoa!! Now THAT'S a mental picture I didn't need....
Mental bleach, where is the mental bleach.....
LOL
Lan

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Old 11-14-2008, 04:16 PM   #11
Mark Uttech
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Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Joe McParland wrote: View Post
Encountering the aggressive practitioner---from any of the teacher, student, or peer perspectives---is an interesting topic. Seeing how you personally respond when injured by any of the above is also interesting...

... but since Mark doesn't seem to post frivolously, I'm curious about the circumstances that led to this thread's creation. Is there something worth sharing, Mark?
Onegaishimasu. I started this thread to study this a bit after an eleven year old added unnecessary force to a throw in which I was already falling, and the sudden force caused me to injure my wrist, whereby I angrily took him to task verbally and turned the whole class to the study of ukemi, proper attack, and 'not trying to turn the tables' when learning a new technique, but slowing down enough to learn and help others learn.

In gassho,

Mark

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Old 11-14-2008, 06:38 PM   #12
raul rodrigo
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Re: Aggressive Children

I've had 13 and 15 year olds get frustrated and try to hurt me in the process of a lock. Say, katatedori gyaku hanmi kaiten lock from seiza. The guy fails to take my balance and winds up too far away to take me down. So he starts chopping the back of my tricep with his tegatana to try and force me down. It was more annoying than it was painful because of our relative sizes, but I was pretty irritated. This orneriness, in my experience, tends to come up with kids between 13 and 15, used to training with other kids they can just overpower, but who get frustrated when they move up a bit and start training with bigger uke. In the long run, some wind up quitting when they can't get uke to fall the way they used to. The better kids slow down, pay attention and start learning technique.
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Old 11-14-2008, 09:34 PM   #13
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Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. I started this thread to study this a bit after an eleven year old added unnecessary force to a throw in which I was already falling, and the sudden force caused me to injure my wrist, whereby I angrily took him to task verbally and turned the whole class to the study of ukemi, proper attack, and 'not trying to turn the tables' when learning a new technique, but slowing down enough to learn and help others learn.

In gassho,

Mark
Onegaishimasu. I did similar when I saw a 9 year old try to hurt his little brother. I pretty much barked, "STOP!" and gave the class a small dissertation on my take on aggression and focused on the idea of protecting uke for the rest of the class. I also explained that as their teacher I would always do my absolute best to help them and look out for them and that I hope they would consider doing the same for each other; that I think we ought learn how to hurt/fight only so we can be better prepared at preventing pain and violence; etc.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 11-15-2008, 04:21 AM   #14
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Re: Aggressive Children

Adults suffer the same frustrations when their techniques fail to work against someone larger, more muscular or resisting.

Side note I don't think aggression is bad. I think it was someone here who said Aggression stems from the word aggress, to move forward. Controlled aggression or perhaps aggression without ego or malicious intent is fine in my books. Not sure how well that translates to children. I know it's another argument but I would prefer my daughter defend herself up to and including hitting back rathe than taking it and telling the teacher.

If you're hungry, keep moving.
If you're tired, keep moving.
If you value you're life, keep moving.

You don't own what you can't defend
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Old 11-15-2008, 08:48 AM   #15
Mark Uttech
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Re: Aggressive Children

Onegaishimasu. Saotome shihan once pointed out the aggression of a growing tree and the equal aggression of the bark to stop it. Is it an idea of omote/ura?

In gassho,

Mark

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Old 11-15-2008, 09:40 AM   #16
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Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. I started this thread to study this a bit after an eleven year old added unnecessary force to a throw in which I was already falling, and the sudden force caused me to injure my wrist, whereby I angrily took him to task verbally and turned the whole class to the study of ukemi, proper attack, and 'not trying to turn the tables' when learning a new technique, but slowing down enough to learn and help others learn.

In gassho,

Mark
If I may---and if I recall correctly (which is questionable): You are 50+ years old with 20+ years of aikido? Undoubtedly you've seen instructors handle aggression or violence between students of different ages. Would I be off-base to suggest that you may be conflicted about the feelings that arose and the appropriateness of your response when you found yourself in this situation?

Is the age difference a factor in your thought process?

Last edited by Joe McParland : 11-15-2008 at 09:44 AM.

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Old 11-15-2008, 11:17 AM   #17
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Re: Aggressive Children

A former sensei of mine would make anyone who was too aggressive, resistant, or belligerent become uke for the entire class, demonstrate the technique over and over and over again until uke was exhausted and then ask if the uke understood how the technique was properly done. Also he would ask the other students if they had any questions about how the technique was done and if there were, demonstrate the technique again until everyone understood.

David
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Old 11-15-2008, 11:23 AM   #18
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Re: Aggressive Children

A former sensei of mine would make anyone who was too aggressive, resistant, or belligerent uke, demonstrate the technique (without malice or anger) over and over and over again until uke was exhausted and then ask if the uke understood how the technique was properly done. In this manner he restored harmony to the class.

David
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Old 11-15-2008, 11:55 AM   #19
Mark Uttech
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Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Joe McParland wrote: View Post
If I may---and if I recall correctly (which is questionable): You are 50+ years old with 20+ years of aikido? Undoubtedly you've seen instructors handle aggression or violence between students of different ages. Would I be off-base to suggest that you may be conflicted about the feelings that arose and the appropriateness of your response when you found yourself in this situation?

Is the age difference a factor in your thought process?
Onegaishimasu. Excellent question! This thread is my afterthought reaction to put this situation on the table and study it. It comes from my personal study of the principle: "If you think you understand something, look again."

In gassho,

Mark

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Old 11-15-2008, 03:01 PM   #20
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Re: Aggressive Children

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Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. Excellent question! This thread is my afterthought reaction to put this situation on the table and study it. It comes from my personal study of the principle: "If you think you understand something, look again."
I should properly review your posts before asking rather than rely upon memory, but I'm lazy and in a rush. If I may: Is it not the case that you also make some practice of inward-looking self-examination?

Whether or not that is true, what a wonderful gift this situation is for you!

I'll wait for your answer to the last question---and until I get back from a meal with my family---before exploring deeper.

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Old 11-16-2008, 05:05 PM   #21
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Aggressive Children

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Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. How many of you have been injured by an aggressive child student while demonstrating technique?, and what was your reaction?

In gassho,

Mark
On one occasion a young female student slapped me square across the face as I released her from a kokyu-dosa pin and had moved on to addressing the general students about choosing a partner. She lashed out and was trembling in anger after it happened. A much a surprise as it was, I instantly knew what that action was related to. She was a native american girl and she had strongly objected to my cutting my hair earlier that day. She also was going through the divorce of her parents and that's gotta hurt, too. To her it was an insult that I had cut off my 'sacred hair' and she felt betrayed. I had actually done it as a signal of grief about the loss of two close women friends ( and two other surfing friends) who had died of cancer. It was my way of mourning. I believe the slap was hers.

I accepted the tsuki, cheap and late at is was , and accepted her anger about my expression. Nothing came of it except for the positive consequences of my holding my proverbial ground. I knew better than she did what was at the bottom of the well on that particular day, and we weren't going there.

Last edited by jennifer paige smith : 11-16-2008 at 05:14 PM.

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Old 11-16-2008, 05:12 PM   #22
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Re: Aggressive Children

Quote:
Joe McParland wrote: View Post
If I may---and if I recall correctly (which is questionable): You are 50+ years old with 20+ years of aikido? Undoubtedly you've seen instructors handle aggression or violence between students of different ages. Would I be off-base to suggest that you may be conflicted about the feelings that arose and the appropriateness of your response when you found yourself in this situation?
"The purpose of conflict is harmony."-Terry Dobson

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Old 11-16-2008, 11:30 PM   #23
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Re: Aggressive Children

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Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
I accepted the tsuki, cheap and late at is was , and accepted her anger about my expression. Nothing came of it except for the positive consequences of my holding my proverbial ground. I knew better than she did what was at the bottom of the well on that particular day, and we weren't going there.
That is a wonderful story! It's not the type of cultural flavor I typically encounter in my own practice, and, if I just dropped in, I certainly wouldn't have recognized it.

Sometimes it's hard to know what baggage people bring to each encounter. Then, there may be only an instant to respond. Missing the strike and subsequently accepting it may very well have been the perfect response to the situation---particularly the perfect aikido response to the situation. Keeping this state, to me, is a major objective of aikido training.

Similarly too, Mark's response may have been the perfect response to his own situation. To be honestly upset by a situation and then turn that feeling into a "teachable moment" for the class also sounds wonderful. My question to Mark, though, is whether he feels that what I describe is what occurred, or whether he is now dealing with a sense of regret.

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Old 11-17-2008, 10:16 AM   #24
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Re: Aggressive Children

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Joe McParland wrote: View Post
That is a wonderful story! It's not the type of cultural flavor I typically encounter in my own practice, and, if I just dropped in, I certainly wouldn't have recognized it.
Thanks Joe.
As to culture...well. people are people, no matter what. Big,small.tall,short, ankle high,angry indian.....

Quote:
Sometimes it's hard to know what baggage people bring to each encounter. Then, there may be only an instant to respond. Missing the strike and subsequently accepting it may very well have been the perfect response to the situation---particularly the perfect aikido response to the situation. Keeping this state, to me, is a major objective of aikido training.
In my opinion it isn't necessary to even know what baggage people are bringing. It can be enlightening to know, but then again.....we don't really know what other people need and it isn't our business to fix them, simply because of that......It is only necessary to remain within ones' practice and to experience ourselves in this way. Perhaps as you are also saying?
O'Sensei said,"( in aikido sic.), it is necessary to accept 90% of an opponents force". In so doing many things are exposed in the moment. There is no shame in allowing that exposure before turning the other cheek. In fact, it was deeply enlivening. I learned a lot about my own intention in interaction by allowing that suki that arise: I realized the level of my own tolerance

Quote:
Similarly too, Mark's response may have been the perfect response to his own situation. To be honestly upset by a situation and then turn that feeling into a "teachable moment" for the class also sounds wonderful. My question to Mark, though, is whether he feels that what I describe is what occurred, or whether he is now dealing with a sense of regret.
Well, of course it was perfect . A perfect opportunity for learning, as is the case with practice.

Thanks,
jen

Last edited by jennifer paige smith : 11-17-2008 at 10:24 AM.

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Old 11-17-2008, 02:56 PM   #25
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Re: Aggressive Children

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Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
In my opinion it isn't necessary to even know what baggage people are bringing. It can be enlightening to know, but then again.....we don't really know what other people need and it isn't our business to fix them, simply because of that......It is only necessary to remain within ones' practice and to experience ourselves in this way. Perhaps as you are also saying?
<-- You're question stunned me for a bit! I like that

I might restate what you offered: Remaining within our practice, experiencing ourselves this way, we are free to act.

Consider a hypothetical situation: It's late at night and the neighbors are noisy. I shout out, "Keep it down!"

Did I commit an error in acting as I did---meaning, more specifically, did I act outside of my aikido practice to respond that way?

From one perspective, one could easily speculate that I saw that my neighbors had a problem and I made it my business to act to fix them, all without perfect knowledge; but, is that what actually happened?

It's a tricky matter that has my interest... And it's one reason I'm pestering Mark for more details---he's his own best witness to his own state of mind.

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