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Old 12-08-2001, 10:10 PM   #1
arvin m.
Join Date: Apr 2001
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controlling uke in iriminage

Hello everyone!! hope u'all are sincerely and actively still enjoying and training in aikido!!

anyhows, this is the first of my two posts. I was at class yesterday after 2 mths of not training cuz of my A levels, and i had this nasty problem of controlling my uke. As i was turning in irminagem two problems occured: either the uke didnt follow me but just did so because it was "correct" to do so. That means that he did not feel any compulsion to go along with me...
the second more pressing problem is the fact that my next uke swung around me so fast and scrambled all over the place that i couldnt keep him close to me and found it very difficult to throw him. It always ended up that he would be controlling me rather than vice versa, and on my third attempt i decided to go for a rather forceful throw by stopping my turning and just entering to throw...felt icky

was wondering if anyone could address this, oh yeah just a question, when u folks throw do u cup the uke's chin in the crotch of yer elbow or bring him to yer shoulder to throw? Personally i like the former cuz i can use my hips more comfortably, and if necessary, go for the throat...cheers!!
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Old 01-02-2002, 04:04 AM   #2
Tim Griffiths
Dojo: Nes Ziona Aikikai
Location: Suzhou, China
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Hi Arv,

Its always hard to do a 'diagnosis' from an email, but from
what you say I would suggest concentrating on taking
uke's balance right at the beginning - and keeping it
all the way through the turn. You can still do it very slowly,
and it'll work (or they'll fall over halfway through). If you
take their balance you have control.

The best way I know it: if uke's head isn't into your shoulder
then you don't really have his balance and he can resist or
escape. It's also much more powerful in principle, although
it can take practice to get used to. If his head in in then
you've got much better control over it - and if you
control the head you control the body.

Hope this helps,

happy training,

Tim
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Old 01-02-2002, 05:11 AM   #3
guest1234
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I am probably the last one to give advice on this technique, as it makes even my ikkyo look good, but since when has that stopped me?

This may not apply to you, but when I've either been or seen uke responses like that, it is when in the first case (uke goes along and falls) nage is big and strong, using muscle and uke is small, fast, and does not like getting clotheslined. In the second (uke flails out of control, nage not much in control either) uke is usually big and resisting, nage often also big and using force to overcome resistence.

Again, I am really terrible at this technique, but with big strong beginner nages I often am in the first uke category, as they tend to grab my head (with a hand often larger than my head), jerk me in one direction as they swing an arm (as big as I am) horizontally at my trachea or nose from the other direction.

What it feels like to me when nage 'gets' this one is: from the start there is a solid connection to me (hand to neck/shoulder, other to my arm), at the same time feeling like nage just became the central part of us...as we turn my upper body moves up slightly, which lets my feet fly out from underneath. What it feels like on less successful attempts: nage grabs my head, tries to either shove me down or yank me somewhere by it, then swings other arm at me. In the first as uke I feel safe right up until the fall. In the second I am worried about one of us getting hurt the whole time.
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Old 01-02-2002, 06:30 AM   #4
HillBilly
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Talking

colleen he he thanks that made me smile i am jsut like the bigginer nage he he wel mabey not as bad since i consider myself to be a little more controll but at times i have been know to clothsline some o ma uke's lukily they are patient.Only advise arvin stay low keep your ballance take thiers.



HillBilly
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Old 01-02-2002, 07:58 AM   #5
Edward
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My personal opinion on this: I think in Aikido you need 2 persons to cooperate in order to execute the technique. Sometimes Uke's technique is faulty and you feel frustrated because he's not reacting as you expect him to do.

Of course, in the real life you don't worry much about the esthetical part, but during the training, you should just concentrate on doing the form correctly from your part. If Uke follows or not depends on his experience, or lack of it.

The moral: Concentrate on your technique and don't worry so much about Uke.
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Old 01-02-2002, 08:50 AM   #6
Mares
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Re: controlling uke in iriminage

I think I understand the issue at hand. Not really knowing how experienced you are or what style of Aikido you do I shall only make one suggestion. Copy your Sensei's feet movements, first. If you can get that right, you'll find yourself in the right place making the technique easier to execute.

Also if you are uncertain of what u are doing slow it down. If you do it lightning quick it may work, but it will probably have many mistakes in it. It's much nicer on the uke as well.
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Old 01-02-2002, 09:00 AM   #7
Tim Griffiths
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Quote:
Originally posted by Edward
[B[snip] ... during the training, you should just concentrate on doing the form correctly from your part. If Uke follows or not depends on his experience, or lack of it.

The moral: Concentrate on your technique and don't worry so much about Uke. [/b]

Maybe at the very very beginning, when you're trying to tell
your left from your right foot. If you want to do aikido, though,
you need to have awareness of aiki, and for this you need
someone to harmonise with. The whole thing is about
uke and your connection to him. Doing a technique
without paying enough attention to uke ("'Here I take a
step back at 45 degrees....") doesn't work, and isn't
aikido (almost by definition).

Some techniques require a specific reaction from uke,
i.e. raising a hand to protect from an atemi, which you
then take in some way. Others require no co-operation
for the technique to work, and uke's job is just to make
his life more comfortable.
Teaching people to protect themselves from atemi is
eay and fun and they can learn real quick. In our
dojo we try to give a reason for everything uke does,
from a particular roll to why he grabs ushirotekubitori.
The reason is nearly always that the alternative is worse.
Again, pointing this out is both educational (to them)
and fun.

Tim
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Old 01-02-2002, 10:01 AM   #8
shihonage
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tim Griffiths

Doing a technique
without paying enough attention to uke ("'Here I take a
step back at 45 degrees....") doesn't work, and isn't
aikido (almost by definition).
Yes it is Aikido, it is beginner's Aikido.
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Old 01-02-2002, 10:43 AM   #9
guest1234
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My first dojo really stressed uke staying connected and moving in order to save themselves; an instructor at my second dojo made sure you knew the consequences of letting go as uke

My current one doesn't teach this so much, so you get a wide variety of strange uke responses. I use them as a way to work on my staying connected to an uke to is trying to run away, or trying NOT to connect, lets go, or throws her weight around without any control, etc. This may require a bit of variation on the tech (which invariably gets me yelled at, at which point I return to 'move here, turn 45 degrees'but don't try to complete the tech, as I know by giving up connection to uke one of us will probably get hurt if I try just forcing 'the one true way'). I also try noting what openings they are leaving, what alternate tech would work better, but since ad-lib is forbidden, I just do it in my head. Anyway, my way of working with a strange uke response.
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Old 01-02-2002, 12:46 PM   #10
HillBilly
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Colleen-i tried to email you back but it says you have pesifically asked not to get emials through it so yeah i really am from scotland.

HillBilly
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Old 01-02-2002, 07:29 PM   #11
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: controlling uke in iriminage

Quote:
[i]
oh yeah just a question, when u folks throw do u cup the uke's chin in the crotch of yer elbow or bring him to yer shoulder to throw? Personally i like the former cuz i can use my hips more comfortably, and if necessary, go for the throat...cheers!! [/b]
Arvin,

Are you being given a choice by your teacher?

With this last post and also the other one about shihonage, you asked some important questions. In neither post did you mention how your own teacher does the techniques and this makes me reluctant to offer advice.

I would think that with iriminage the position of uke's head is crucial to the success of the technique. For what it's worth, I do not give my own students a choice. Uke's head is firmly in tori's shoulder and tori's arm is fairly straight and at 90 degrees to tori's body. In my opinion problems with iriminage are due to uke not being unbalanced right from the beginning and, also very important, all through the technique.

Happy New Year

P A Goldsbury
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Hiroshima, Japan
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Old 01-02-2002, 07:38 PM   #12
Chuck Clark
 
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Re: Re: controlling uke in iriminage

Quote:
Originally posted by Peter Goldsbury

I would think that with iriminage the position of uke's head is crucial to the success of the technique. For what it's worth, I do not give my own students a choice. Uke's head is firmly in tori's shoulder and tori's arm is fairly straight and at 90 degrees to tori's body. In my opinion problems with iriminage are due to uke not being unbalanced right from the beginning and, also very important, all through the technique.
Happy New Year, Peter.

I agree with your statement concerning iriminage (or aikinage as I am used to calling it) and the taking of uke's balance at first touch and keeping that connection throughout the technique.

By the way, I'm looking forward to meeting you in May at Las Vegas.

Regards,

Chuck Clark
Jiyushinkai Aikibudo
www.jiyushinkai.org
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Old 01-03-2002, 12:44 AM   #13
Tim Griffiths
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Quote:
Originally posted by shihonage


Yes it is Aikido, it is beginner's Aikido.

No, its something you have to learn before you can
start doing aikido.


Tim
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Old 01-03-2002, 12:59 AM   #14
shihonage
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tim Griffiths



No, its something you have to learn before you can
start doing aikido.


Tim
Maybe you're right.
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Old 01-03-2002, 01:22 AM   #15
Erik
Location: Bay Area
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Re: controlling uke in iriminage

Quote:
Originally posted by arvin m.
was wondering if anyone could address this, oh yeah just a question, when u folks throw do u cup the uke's chin in the crotch of yer elbow or bring him to yer shoulder to throw? Personally i like the former cuz i can use my hips more comfortably, and if necessary, go for the throat...cheers!!
This gets done a lot of different ways. My take is that where you do it depends on everything from the attack, the relative size of your uke and personal preference. Personally, I find I tend to do it further out on the arm actually out to the forearm or with the right uke catch it in a very short movement (made famous by someone of notoriety). I think that if you are catching them in the elbow the movement may be more of clothesline but maybe not.

As to control you might find that dropping the elbow behind them can help you direct them towards an upward spiral which will make them more easily moved where you wish them to go. It should happen in conjunction with bringing them to your shoulder/arm. If you borrow a body for a couple of minutes you can find this by rotating the neck and head to see how the body spirals.

The other thing I've found helps is once you've gotten the initial blend is to move into uke rather than away from uke. What I mean by that is that you fill the space behind them by rotating your hips with a focus on the rear hip. If they were brought to your right shoulder/arm this would be your left hip. The tendency is to move with the lead hip and this takes your body away from uke creating space. Just focus on moving the rear hip and you'll fill a lot of this space and have better control.

Of course, take all of this with a grain of salt. I've seen it done every which way and by all manner of folks.
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Old 01-03-2002, 11:39 AM   #16
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I was at class yesterday after 2 mths of not training cuz of my A levels, and i had this nasty problem of controlling my uke. As i was turning in irminagem two problems occured: either the uke didnt follow me but just did so because it was "correct" to do so. That means that he did not feel any compulsion to go along with me...

This does not necessarily mean you made a mistake in your irimi nage. The attacker may not have supplied an attack to which irimi nage was an appropriate response.

the second more pressing problem is the fact that my next uke swung around me so fast and scrambled all over the place that i couldnt keep him close to me and found it very difficult to throw him.

Sometimes a partner will run ahead of you in irimi nage, to highlight what they believe to be a mistaken loss of control on your part.

Understand that a "orthodox" irimi nage, like most Aikido techniques, requires a sensible partner who will try to save themselves. Next time your partner tries to swing off, stay behind them, place your palm lightly on their spine, and smile. Hopefully they will get the message.

oh yeah just a question, when u folks throw do u cup the uke's chin in the crotch of yer elbow or bring him to yer shoulder to throw? Personally i like the former cuz i can use my hips more comfortably, and if necessary, go for the throat...cheers!!

By "go for the throat", do you mean choke?
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Old 01-03-2002, 01:11 PM   #17
jimvance
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Try This...

When you bow in with your partner and say "onegaishimasu", agree right there with them that you will do the best to make the technique and make sure they will do what is necessary for you, that is give a good attack, etc. Most importantly, and this is the point I am trying to make, GO SLOW ENOUGH SO THAT YOU CAN SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE THE KATA ACCORDING TO THE PRINCIPLES THE TEACHER JUST DEMONSTRATED. If you are training at a tempo beyond your ability to control your movements, then you need to slow down. If you are training at a tempo beyond your ability to control uke, ask them to slow down. That should be one of the agreements within the "onegaishimasu", not just "I'll let you do it to me, if I can do it to you."
Once you have the ability to replicate what the teacher is showing, slowly with strong spirit, you have gained something more than just technical proficiency and opens the door to lots of other stuff. I think it is called poise or posture. That is what most people judge you by, self-defense or otherwise.

Jim Vance
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Old 01-04-2002, 07:53 AM   #18
arvin m.
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Points duly taken my friends i shall attempt to incorporate your advice into my training tomorrow and will get back with the results... thank you all very much so far for the extremely insightful detail
Here's wishing everybody a great year ahead and please keep practising this art to the fullest
im really enjoying myself practising it...
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Old 01-07-2002, 03:40 PM   #19
Sarah
Dojo: Aikido Shinryukan Canterbury
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Quote:
Originally posted by ca

Again, I am really terrible at this technique, but with big strong beginner nages I often am in the first uke category, as they tend to grab my head (with a hand often larger than my head), jerk me in one direction as they swing an arm (as big as I am) horizontally at my trachea or nose from the other direction.
I hear you sister!

I think that a lot of these yanking and shoving problems are a result of nage mistiming ukes response to the initial off balancing - usually by trying to go too fast!

I find that the final cut-up-and-throw of the technique is the response to uke's attempt to get her feet back underneath her. This often doesn't happen as quickly as nage is expecting, so sometimes the response of a big, strong nage is to drag uke through the technique by the scruff of her neck (or the throat or the ears, whatever seems most convenient at the time). I really hate being on the recieving end of this!

A better approach is for nage to take his time and get himself in the absolute perfect position to take advantage of the upward motion of uke trying to stand up.

(There are also a small number of interesting things you can do if uke refuses to stand up ;-) )

Cheers
Sarah
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Old 01-08-2002, 01:29 AM   #20
Abasan
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As a big heavy klutz, I find it hard to keep up with ukes who want to spin me around at mach 4. Being sincere is one thing, this is just not real physics.

So now, I tend to keep in tempo with nage by leaning towards them, thus remaining in balance but still following their lead. My gripe is that, if I really wanted to, I could easily elbow/ram nage. This makes me think of my iriminage which is similarly flawed.

Any ideas? Btw, our style of holding uke, is by the side of the neck and close to our nearest shoulder. The spin is generated by moving the front leg around.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 01-08-2002, 07:15 AM   #21
Andy
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Quote:
Originally posted by Abasan
So now, I tend to keep in tempo with nage by leaning towards them, thus remaining in balance but still following their lead. My gripe is that, if I really wanted to, I could easily elbow/ram nage.
If you're able to remain in balance and if you're able to counterattack nage, then you very well should point out such openings as nage's technique is obviously not working. You're not doing any favors by not pointing such things out.
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Old 01-08-2002, 11:04 AM   #22
Carl Simard
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Quote:
If you're able to remain in balance and if you're able to counterattack nage, then you very well should point out such openings as nage's technique is obviously not working. You're not doing any favors by not pointing such things out.
Don't really agree with you on that one. Your partner may simply be studying and watch some precise things, it may doesn't really want to make you fall... He may watch his feet position, his balance, how well he grabs your arm... You don't really know... In short: he may not doing the technique for true... I will only tell if it's really obvious that nage is making something, repeatedly, really wrong. If not, I keep my mouth close and let the teacher correct the situation if needed...

If he was doing the technique for true (like in jiuwaza), you may then find that you wouldn't be able to do anything but follow. This is particularly true if you are whit a more advanced student than you...
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Old 01-08-2002, 04:23 PM   #23
guest1234
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Oh boy, more chances to talk about what I don't know how to do...

I tried to imagine what would happen if I as uke (or my uke if I were nage) made this elbowing attempt. I think it would be what happens in most of these 'well, what if I did THIS' situations: we'd now be doing a different technique. For example, if the elbow was from a fairly heavy throwing back of the arm (and perhaps body weight) then I guess I'd go with where uke was now moving, perhaps into kaiten nage or kata gatame (REALLY not sure I spelled that right). More like uke is turning into me while swinging that elbow...then maybe move sudori under the arm and try sankyo... hey, a big guy elbowing sweet little me while I'm struggling with irimi nage gets what he deserves...

I think as long as uke and nage are sensitive to each other's movements, then each time one changes what he is doing the other can adapt...
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Old 01-28-2002, 12:23 AM   #24
unsound000
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I think you'll find that the more committed/unbalanced your first attack is, then the more trouble you will have with any second attack. Nage should be controlling you at some point. If he's not then something is wrong with the commitment of your attack or his technique. This sounds like an art I used to do, only we would collapse the ear to the shoulder and spin. This would break uke's alignment. Probably different..

Quote:
Originally posted by Abasan
As a big heavy klutz, I find it hard to keep up with ukes who want to spin me around at mach 4. Being sincere is one thing, this is just not real physics.

So now, I tend to keep in tempo with nage by leaning towards them, thus remaining in balance but still following their lead. My gripe is that, if I really wanted to, I could easily elbow/ram nage. This makes me think of my iriminage which is similarly flawed.

Any ideas? Btw, our style of holding uke, is by the side of the neck and close to our nearest shoulder. The spin is generated by moving the front leg around.
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Old 01-28-2002, 04:02 AM   #25
Tim Griffiths
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Quote:
Originally posted by Abasan
...My gripe is that, if I really wanted to, I could easily elbow/ram nage. This makes me think of my iriminage which is similarly flawed.

Any ideas? Btw, our style of holding uke, is by the side of the neck and close to our nearest shoulder. The spin is generated by moving the front leg around.

I'm also a big heavy klutz... But - it sounds here like nage isn't in the right place. Doing iriminage the way you mention, uke's shoulder blade should be in front of nage's chest, *not* uke's shoulder - i.e. nage is behind uke. There should be no opportunity to elbow or ram nage. In fact, nage should be the only thing holding uke up.

All IMHO, of course.

Tim (who had to have the above pounded into him recently).
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