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Old 04-22-2010, 11:31 PM   #26
CurtisK
Dojo: Aikikai Victoria
Location: Victoria, BC
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

An interesting thing about starting on a path, is that you have to begin from where you are. Alberto or any of us would not need Aikido if we already knew all of the lessons. This is a great place to confirm that his experience is very common.

The important part is that we all agree that it is up to you to take out of each moment, and training session, what ever you can.
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Old 04-22-2010, 11:58 PM   #27
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Curtis Kayfish wrote: View Post
The important part is that we all agree that it is up to you to take out of each moment, and training session, what ever you can.
That's the only way and this is exactly what I'm gonna do.
I will see what extras I may add, maybe over time I can find a dedicated aikido partner with whom to practice more intensively. Maybe.

I just wish the average Dojo could have more to offer as far as being involved in a more realistic combat, and as far as letting pupils (well, 40yo ones lol) experience and follow their own inner needs and not only formal prescriptions, are concerned.

Aikido could have a significant boost, and even a better reputation as far as fighting real effectiveness is concerned, if randori would become a standard part of daily lessons.
But after all, once stated this 2 or 3 times, I cannot expect that everybody immediately understands how significantly this would help Aikido and Dojos as a whole. That's probably the only lesson in Aikido I have truly understood, but I have understood it well: we need randori as a standard.

I thank you all for your useful and meaningful insights. You have been most helpful, and a hearthfelt thank you to those who made an effort to empathize with this need of mine without judging it a freak of nature.

ciao
Alberto
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Old 04-23-2010, 07:40 AM   #28
lbb
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
TI just wish the average Dojo could have more to offer as far as being involved in a more realistic combat, and as far as letting pupils (well, 40yo ones lol) experience and follow their own inner needs and not only formal prescriptions, are concerned.
As Jason already explained, there's a legitimate reason why a dojo wouldn't allow you to "follow your own inner needs": because doing so would cause injury to you and others. I'm not talking about a few bruises, either, but joint injuries that can have permanent effects (and likely will, if you're 40 years old). It may well be, though, that you are one of the many big strong guys who just keep saying, "I don't believe it, prove it to me," and who only find out too late that they were wrong -- after someone is seriously hurt.

One of my favorite pastimes is whitewater kayaking. People who are new to whitewater do not understand its dangers. Some of them "know that they don't know", and even if the dangers may seem exaggerated to them, they act according to the cautions that their guides and instructors give them. Pretty soon they find out that, in fact, the dangers weren't exaggerated -- but because they acted with appropriate caution, their hardest lesson is a cold swim and a few bruises from the rocks. Other people come to whitewater and think that they know about its dangers, because they have paddled a sea kayak, or paddled a canoe around a lake, or they've been a lifeguard in a pool, or they have sailed a sailboat. These people make bad decisions about risk. They believe that their understanding of the dangers of another situation qualifies them to ignore the advice that they are given by experienced whitewater paddlers. They feel that the conventional wisdom of whitewater must be wrong -- they have this bizarre belief that all these people, who have been doing it for years, are doing it wrong and don't know what they're talking about. These people end up getting educated in a very hard school, sometimes with fatal consequences. Most of those who survive are too arrogant to admit that they were wrong and start again, this time with a true beginner mind. It's a shame, but on the other hand, I'm never sorry when one of these people decides that "whitewater is stupid" and stomps off in a huff. I'm safer without them on the river.
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Old 04-23-2010, 08:32 AM   #29
Ketsan
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
I cannot expect that everybody immediately understands how significantly this would help Aikido and Dojos as a whole.
ciao
Alberto
I do Judo as well as Aikido and I don't understand it. I've seen a third dan Judoka struggle to defeat a third kyu Aikidoka. I've seen a third kyu Aikidoka lock down a nidan Judoka with his posture and then pick up and dump the nidan on his arse.

From what I've seen randori actually makes a person less effective.
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Old 04-23-2010, 09:05 AM   #30
Aikibu
Dojo: West Wind Dojo Santa Monica California
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Apologies for being late to the party...

I spent a year looking at Aikido Dojo's and Sensei's before I found one I liked...My only criteria was can this due kick my a** and/or handle himself in a Fight/Martial confrontation?

That's it...

If your Aikido does not teach you how to handle conflict ESPECIALLY physical conflict then don't waste your time.

You say you've been boxing for years? That is excellent! You are the perfect student for Aikido...In the early days most every Aikido student had serious experience in other martial arts before they came to Aikido...

Don't settle...Your head and heart are both in the right place...You will know when you find what you're looking for.

William Hazen
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Old 04-23-2010, 10:13 AM   #31
bulevardi
Dojo: Tobu Chiku Aikikai
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Try the Yoshinkan Aikido? I heard they train a little harder.
http://aikiweb.com/wiki/Yoshinkan

Or otherwise try with something like hapkido or taekwondo ?
That's something harder and more combat-wise.

Aikido is not about fighting: aikido is actually about not fighting.

And if you want to beat someone up, you can go play golf, with a golf stick you can beat someone better than with Aikido

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Old 04-23-2010, 11:00 AM   #32
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
As Jason already explained, there's a legitimate reason why a dojo wouldn't allow you to "follow your own inner needs": because doing so would cause injury to you and others. I'm not talking about a few bruises, either, but joint injuries that can have permanent effects (and likely will, if you're 40 years old). It may well be, though, that you are one of the many big strong guys who just keep saying, "I don't believe it, prove it to me," and who only find out too late that they were wrong -- after someone is seriously hurt.
36 boxing matches, 27 wins, 8 knock outs, 2 even, 7 lost, koocked out once but I sttod up before 10.

Come hurt me with your iriminage

LOL
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:08 AM   #33
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Dirk Desmet wrote: View Post

And if you want to beat someone up, you can go play golf, with a golf stick you can beat someone better than with Aikido
precisely what I don't want to do - I said it several times in my posts, though I fully understand one may not want to read them all in their entirety - however, i said I don't want to hurt anybody.

It seems incredibly difficult to make aikidokas understand that they would only benefit, even in economical terms, if they could do something to make their martial art come out from the closet where so many sense it as utterly uneffective in real combat.

However, by "real combat" I do not mean street fight.
If I practice a martial art, I want to feel the beauty of the fight, of the struggle: it is enjoyable, it is rinvigorating, and I can take quite a lot of punishment without etiehr getting scared or thinking it's wrong.

There is nothing to do, this whole issue is hopeless. We have reared whole generations of aikidokas with fear of getting engaged. To me, this is the utter failure a martial art may stumble into.

Once you relinquish the kinsetetic pleasure of a fight, the self-structuring power it entails, the real respect it elicits in you for your opponent, the real measure of your own vulnerability and limits, once you do that and you do't even realize what you have lost, you're no longer attending a martial art gym, but a tea party.

I think that many aikidokas that have been on the tatami for years, never had a serious confrontation - if they did, they would understand immediately that nearly all they have learnt the easy way with complacent ukes is simply unusable against a determined opponent.

Bha.

Last edited by Alberto_Italiano : 04-23-2010 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:10 AM   #34
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
William Hazen wrote: View Post
Apologies for being late to the party...

I spent a year looking at Aikido Dojo's and Sensei's before I found one I liked...My only criteria was can this due kick my a** and/or handle himself in a Fight/Martial confrontation?

That's it...

If your Aikido does not teach you how to handle conflict ESPECIALLY physical conflict then don't waste your time.

You say you've been boxing for years? That is excellent! You are the perfect student for Aikido...In the early days most every Aikido student had serious experience in other martial arts before they came to Aikido...

Don't settle...Your head and heart are both in the right place...You will know when you find what you're looking for.

William Hazen
Thank you William.
It is conforting seeing that there are a few who still are able to understand that conflict is quintessential to martial arts. And that it has nothing to do with beating guys randomly.
Practicing Aikido without cultivating unceasingly randori or conflict like simulations is like somebody learning how to write a computer program but never writing the actual code him/herself: the first time s/he does, finds out it's all buggy.
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:19 AM   #35
lbb
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
36 boxing matches, 27 wins, 8 knock outs, 2 even, 7 lost, koocked out once but I sttod up before 10.

Come hurt me with your iriminage

LOL
Yeah, okay, I think you just demonstrated what you're all about. You're all that and a bag of chips, dude. Should I stand up to cheer, or may I applaud while sitting down?

(someone clue me in...did I say anything about wanting to or intending to hurt this jamoke?)
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:27 AM   #36
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Yeah, okay, I think you just demonstrated what you're all about. You're all that and a bag of chips, dude. Should I stand up to cheer, or may I applaud while sitting down?

(someone clue me in...did I say anything about wanting to or intending to hurt this jamoke?)
behind the humour there is a serious issue Ibb.
You just refuse to see it, and I can't open the eyes of somebody who wants to keep them closed.

Dojos, Aikido dojos, would benefit immensely from randori as standard practice.

You just refuse to see that simple point: we are (dis)educating our paying pupils deluding them into the very dangerous and false confidence they can defend themselves against a determined opponent who is somewhat combat savvy.

As for my answer, you were mentioning my 40 yo joints - on my nose, eyebrows, and chin have landed the hooks and jabs of 6 feet tall black boxeurs. I was just stating that I haven't such concern with my joints as you seem to have. However, I do would be considerate with those of the others - but since you were mentioning mine, that's where my joints stand.
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:34 AM   #37
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
precisely what I don't want to do - I said it several times in my posts, though I fully understand one may not want to read them all in their entirety - however, i said I don't want to hurt anybody.

It seems incredibly difficult to make aikidokas understand that they would only benefit, even in economical terms, if they could do something to make their martial art come out from the closet where so many sense it as utterly uneffective in real combat.

However, by "real combat" I do not mean street fight.
If I make a martial art, I want to feel the bauty of the fight, of the struggle: it is enjoyable, it is rinvigorating, and I can take quite a lot of punishment without etiehr getting scared or thinking it's wrong.

There is nothing to do, this whole issue is hopeless. We have reared whole generations of aikidokas with fear of getting engaged. Ti me, this is the utter failure a martial art may stumble into. Once you relinquish the kinsetetic pleasure of a fight, the self-structuring power it entails, the real respect it elicits in you for your opponent, the real measure of your own vulnerability and limits, once you do that and you do't even realize what you have lost, you're no longer attending a martial art gym, but a tea party.

I think that many aikidokas that have been on the tatami for years, never had a serious confrontation - if they did, they would understand immediately that nearly all they have learnt the easy way with complacent ukes is simply unusable against a determined opponent.

Bha.
Alberto,
a) Aikido is broken and at 99% of the dojos you will encounter, with twenty years of boxing under your belt, you will be able to knock even the teacher out cold.

b) When you look for that elusive dojo which fits what you are looking for, do not mistake a teacher who hurts you for one whose Aikido is very good. There are some folks out there who are REALLY strong and will crank a technique on you and think that is good Aikido. It will hurt, even injure you but it isn't necessarily great aiki.

The easiest way to tell if you are at the right place is to see if anyone can handle your boxing style attacks. Ask the teacher how they'd handle them. It's all about irimi. If the teacher can't get in on you, then you will not be happy at that place, period. There are whole dojos out there where no one, including the teacher, understands irimi. This lack is immediately apparent to people who have done a lot of some other art. It's why so many people think Aikido doesn't work. I'd look for a dojo which has a ton of students who have done other martial arts and stay away from the ones that everyone has just studied Aikido.

But basically, once you think the teacher, and perhaps the seniors, know what you want to know. Then you'll have to be patient and do the training. Class will still be formalized because that's how you isolate and study principle. If you want to try some sparring with unorthodox attacks, it will be after class. When I trained with Saotome Sensei, that was one of the very best ways to get some virtually private instruction. Sensei would see us working on stuff, be incapable of sitting there while we floundered around, and he'd jump on the mat and show us stuff we'd seldom, if ever, do in class.

There's just no way you can train at a dojo where, as a white belt, you know you can knock anyone in the place out cold. You will never get the depth out of the training you are looking for. If you stay, they will degrade your skills to the point at which you will not only NOT be learning any Aikido that's worth much, but you will lose the edge you came in with.

William H basically said it. You need to look long and hard for the right dojo. I wouldn't have said that, in my case, my only requirement was that the teacher be able to kick my ass... There are many people around like that and most have shitty Aikido. What you need to be looking for is something much more rare... someone who can kick your ass and do so with subtlety and finesse. If you find yourself on the floor after throwing a jab and you are not sure why you are there, you are in the right place.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:35 AM   #38
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Ok let's make a more visual example:

these guys ina real fight are going to be wiped off instantly:
http://www.vimeo.com/3384550

Instead, these guys are going to stand and last:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HB01hhonf8Q
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d8mZo3Qn4ww

I hope this clarifies a bit possible misunderstanding. because I really have a background in fighting and I can tell you, the guys in the first video are going to incur into serious damage if confronted with a real danger.
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:43 AM   #39
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Alberto,
a) Aikido is broken and at 99% of the dojos you will encounter
oh.
Now, this makes sense.
Finally.

I will keep attending one of thosze dojos, we just haven't anything else here. I'll try to get the best out of it anyway. It's just a bit "depressing".

I'm going to tell you this: in the dojo we practiced iriminage. Ukes were complacent. Eventually, they said my iriminage was decent.

I found out an old acquaintance of mine from the boxing gym who is willing once in a fluke to let me practice some aikido with him. The first time I attempted an iriminage on him, there was simply nothing working. His head would simply refuse to turn, and he would simply not lean, even when dodging his jab.

I am grateful for this because now I know my iriminage is good for fighting mosquitoes. Keeping the work out in the Dojo, i would have been deluded into believing it had some degree of effectiveness. It had none.

I prefer this frankness, then fictional iriminages.

I am going to fight this fight. I'll try to learn this aikido, against all odds. I only wish I could meet here more guys like you George.
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Old 04-23-2010, 11:49 AM   #40
Aikibu
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Alberto,
William H basically said it. You need to look long and hard for the right dojo. I wouldn't have said that, in my case, my only requirement was that the teacher be able to kick my ass... There are many people around like that and most have shitty Aikido. What you need to be looking for is something much more rare... someone who can kick your ass and do so with subtlety and finesse. If you find yourself on the floor after throwing a jab and you are not sure why you are there, you are in the right place.
George this exactly what I meant....Thanks for saying better than I did...For me Aikido is a martial art and the best Aikido I've experienced fits your description to a T.

Ending up on the mat with Fowler Sensei's smiling face looking down and asking me if I am ok (with no serious harm being done to me THAT is Aikido LOL) is exactly how I found my practice.

To further clarify my "criteria" Aikido should START by giving you the ability to prevail in a Martial Encounter but it certainly does not end there... That is only the very beginning.

William Hazen

Last edited by Aikibu : 04-23-2010 at 11:52 AM.
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:04 PM   #41
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
behind the humour there is a serious issue Ibb.
You just refuse to see it, and I can't open the eyes of somebody who wants to keep them closed.

Dojos, Aikido dojos, would benefit immensely from randori as standard practice.

You just refuse to see that simple point: we are (dis)educating our paying pupils deluding them into the very dangerous and false confidence they can defend themselves against a determined opponent who is somewhat combat savvy.

As for my answer, you were mentioning my 40 yo joints - on my nose, eyebrows, and chin have landed the hooks and jabs of 6 feet tall black boxeurs. I was just stating that I haven't such concern with my joints as you seem to have. However, I do would be considerate with those of the others - but since you were mentioning mine, that's where my joints stand.
Albert,
This is a common problem who come to Aikido from competitive backgrounds. What usually happens is that their fundamental settings make everyone in the place uncomfortable. Great pressure will be brought to bear until you either change how you act or go away. Either will restore harmony in the dojo. Aikido people tell themselves all sorts of stuff about how dangerous what they do is, hwy we don't compete, etc. Most of it has little grounding in reality, at least the way they train. What they say might actually be true, if they actually had the skills, but in most cases, it's just wishful thinking and an excuse to not be better at what they do.

It's like listening to someone telling you why you don't resist at a certain point in a technique because you are open for an atemi. Except that you know that they could take their best shot and not do anything other than be annoying because they've never actually worked on their atemi. It's just symbolic with no grounding in reality.

You have hit and been hit. That puts you in a reality zone right from the start that most Aikido folks have not experienced. My wife came from a competitive fencing background and she continues to have issues with Aikido people because they can't actually handle it when you really attack. At fifth kyu she had her way with a San Dan in bokken class with Saotome Sensei. She was told to attack, so she ATTACKED. The poor fellow caved every time, much to Sensei's amusement. He kept telling the poor fellow, "Ha, ha ha, you died!"

The fact of the matter is that most Aikido people do not really know the difference between an attack that is really committed and one that is devoid of actual intention to strike. Nor do they have any notion of how a fighter will stand in the eye of the hurricane to fight for the center line in a fight. They are all too busy getting out of the way, which they've been doing in the training since day one. Their mindset is essentially escapist and anyone who really attacks will dominate them.

Then, after you've mauled them, they will tell you that you aren't very spiritual and your energy body isn't very sensitive (this actually happened to me).

That said, Randori isn't the only answer. Not even the most important. If you want to really develop great aiki, there is a huge amount of work to be done which has nothing whatever to do with practical application. The Kata of Aikido should be targeted at developing and understanding of specific principles which, if you are busy focusing on free application of technique, you will certainly never become aware of. There is a reason that virtually all traditional Japanese martial arts were kata based. The problem has been that, unless the person you are training with actually understands what the kata are intended to do, what the "ura" of the kata are and not just the "omote" of the kata, then it all becomes stultified.

Anyway, good luck finding what you need. Everything you have said has been noted by virtually all experienced martial artists when they have entered a typical Aikido dojo. You will not be happy until you find the atypical dojo and teacher. This may entail moving, depending on where you are.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:10 PM   #42
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
I am going to fight this fight. I'll try to learn this aikido, against all odds. I only wish I could meet here more guys like you George.
I will always remember Peyton Quinn's statement about iriminage... (He is an expert on real world fighting with a number of books under his belt and several black belts in different arts, including Aikido).

He said,
Quote:
"You'd be amazed at how well iriminage works when you've bounced the guys head off the bar..."
I have always liked that one very much. When I am practicing the "art" of Aikido it always serves to remind me that there is the earthy side to what we do that is always just a fraction away.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:18 PM   #43
Alberto_Italiano
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post

The fact of the matter is that most Aikido people do not really know the difference between an attack that is really committed and one that is devoid of actual intention to strike. Nor do they have any notion of how a fighter will stand in the eye of the hurricane to fight for the center line in a fight. They are all too busy getting out of the way, which they've been doing in the training since day one. Their mindset is essentially escapist and anyone who really attacks will dominate them.
George, you wrote a masterpiece. Dunno who you are but I can tell when somebody speaks the truth.

I am going to trust your advice: so, supposing(as it is likely) that I can never find a right dojo where I live, and given I am not likely to relocate (well, we are no longer, maybe unfortunately, in those times where a man pursuing inner enlightenment could decide to relocate and change completely life devoting himself exclusively to a martial art), do you think that if I practice a lot of kata alone that would make some difference?

I am going to consider your opinion on this as gold.
You spoke the truth.
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:27 PM   #44
chillzATL
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

This thread is funny to me. Funny because I remember threads from 10 years ago where I suggested that a person should be able to effectively use aikido after 6 months to a year of serious, dedicated practice and was basically told that what I was doing "wasn't aikido" or wasn't "real aikido". I was effectively ran out of a thread where I suggested that a if a shodan wasn't capable of defending themselves then they didn't deserve the rank.

Fast forward to today and we have vets like Ledyard sensei telling Alberto that he should seek out the very same type of training, but I can't find myself in agreement with him!

crazy I says!
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:32 PM   #45
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
do you think that if I practice a lot of kata alone that would make some difference?.
If you can get a chance to get to some workshops with Dan Harden, Mike Sigman or Aukuzawa Minoru, you can get s start on getting some solo exercises that will start to teach your body to power differently than what you've done in boxing. I know that some of them at least are starting to get a following in Europe.

Other than that, do a lot of static technique with partners who are trying to be solid. Your goal should be to be as relaxed and soft as possible while being able to off-balance the partner without having them feel much at all. You have to have someone work with you who can do this to know what it should feel like. If you do lots of static practice and really learn to connect, people like your boxing friend will not be able to stop you.

Aikido folks are great at movement. They tend to be bad at really joining with an attacker's power. They mistake avoidance for "aiki". You need to have technique that attains kuzushi at the instant of the touch. Static technique is to develop an understanding of the proper pathways in your body for accomplishing this. Then, when you put that back in to your movement, you have something that has real content.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:47 PM   #46
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Quote:
Jason Casteel wrote: View Post
This thread is funny to me. Funny because I remember threads from 10 years ago where I suggested that a person should be able to effectively use aikido after 6 months to a year of serious, dedicated practice and was basically told that what I was doing "wasn't aikido" or wasn't "real aikido". I was effectively ran out of a thread where I suggested that a if a shodan wasn't capable of defending themselves then they didn't deserve the rank.

Fast forward to today and we have vets like Ledyard sensei telling Alberto that he should seek out the very same type of training, but I can't find myself in agreement with him!

crazy I says!
Actually, I think that you are reading a lot in to what I said that was unintended. If you looked at how we train at my dojo, it wouldn't look much different than many dojos. I have never seen a shodan who can defend himself in a fight against an experienced attacker using Aikido. My students certainly can't. I am very happy if, by Shodan, my students have an understanding of what the principles are, can utilize them in the formalized setting of Aikido kata, and have developed a process by which they understand how to train effectively to develop their skills further.

I remember the thread you are referring to and what you said then was wrong, if what you wished to do was develop an understanding of how to do Aikido with Aiki. I have said the same thing above to Alberto. Yes, he needs to be at a place at which the teacher, at the very least, is someone who is good enough to teach him what he wants to know. But, I also said that the principles that need to be understood in Aikido, to actually be doing ones technique with what I consider to be a degree of "aiki" take a lot of patience to develop. I do not think that lots of focus on applied technique will do that, in fact it will serve to distract you from what needs to be done.

Applied technique, or what Albert is calling randori, should only become a focus after one has internalized the principles of aiki enough that the challenge of applying them freely, under pressure, doesn't cause one to fall back onto older bad body / mind habits. Otherwise you are simply imprinting the wrong thing in your mind and body simply to win. You may win, but your learning is losing.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 04-23-2010, 01:00 PM   #47
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

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Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
behind the humour there is a serious issue Ibb.
You just refuse to see it, and I can't open the eyes of somebody who wants to keep them closed.
I'm not sure if this is an example of false premise, unqualified expert opinion or perhaps cult of personality. Maybe all three? It's the old "I'm right and you just refuse to see it" line. Now, mind you, it can be true from time to time that person A is right and person B does refuse to see it. What's bogus is when someone just pulls this line out of thin air, as you've done here. You made a post; I responded. You ignored my point and responded to that with irrelevant statistics about how many times you've been knocked out, and a sneering invitation for me to hurt you with my iriminage; I called that childishness what it is. Now I'm the one who's deluded and blindly refusing to see your point? Thanks, I can do without that kind of "enlightenment".

Quote:
Alberto Italiano wrote: View Post
As for my answer, you were mentioning my 40 yo joints - on my nose, eyebrows, and chin have landed the hooks and jabs of 6 feet tall black boxeurs. I was just stating that I haven't such concern with my joints as you seem to have. However, I do would be considerate with those of the others - but since you were mentioning mine, that's where my joints stand.
Nose, eyebrows and chin are not joints. Joints include shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees, hips and so on. Injuries to joints tend to have long-lasting or permanent effects, unlike the injuries you're speaking of. Speaking from experience, I'll take a broken nose any day over torn wrist ligaments. A broken nose is nothing. And what does the race of the boxers who hit you have to do with anything?
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Old 04-23-2010, 01:30 PM   #48
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Actually, I think that you are reading a lot in to what I said that was unintended. If you looked at how we train at my dojo, it wouldn't look much different than many dojos. I have never seen a shodan who can defend himself in a fight against an experienced attacker using Aikido. My students certainly can't. I am very happy if, by Shodan, my students have an understanding of what the principles are, can utilize them in the formalized setting of Aikido kata, and have developed a process by which they understand how to train effectively to develop their skills further.

I remember the thread you are referring to and what you said then was wrong, if what you wished to do was develop an understanding of how to do Aikido with Aiki. I have said the same thing above to Alberto. Yes, he needs to be at a place at which the teacher, at the very least, is someone who is good enough to teach him what he wants to know. But, I also said that the principles that need to be understood in Aikido, to actually be doing ones technique with what I consider to be a degree of "aiki" take a lot of patience to develop. I do not think that lots of focus on applied technique will do that, in fact it will serve to distract you from what needs to be done.

Applied technique, or what Albert is calling randori, should only become a focus after one has internalized the principles of aiki enough that the challenge of applying them freely, under pressure, doesn't cause one to fall back onto older bad body / mind habits. Otherwise you are simply imprinting the wrong thing in your mind and body simply to win. You may win, but your learning is losing.
I think that both our views on training have changed quite a bit in the last 10 years. What I seek to gain from my training, both inside the dojo and at home, has changed quite a bit. I agree with what you said regarding aiki in aikido, but that doesn't change my belief that Aikido, even without what we now consider "aiki", can and should be effective in a much shorter time period than most seem to expect. That's the only aikido I've ever known , so I can't pretend to see it any other way.

anyway, back on topic. My feelings are that Alberto's problems are with that "process". He's not seeing the benefit of slowing things down and feeling his way through the technique. He just thinks that slow and soft isn't going to get him anywhere so he wants to go hard and fast earlier than he probably should. Then again, maybe his boxing background has given him more sensitivity than I am giving him credit for? Maybe he's able to tell that the people he's working with "just don't have it". I'm willing to accept that too.
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Old 04-23-2010, 01:42 PM   #49
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

Ledyard sensei I am thoroughly enjoying your posts, as always.
especially enjoyed:

Quote:
What you need to be looking for is something much more rare... someone who can kick your ass and do so with subtlety and finesse. If you find yourself on the floor after throwing a jab and you are not sure why you are there, you are in the right place.
Mary... why do you always seem to be so angry?

Quote:
It's the old "I'm right and you just refuse to see it" line.
From my perspective what he was trying to say is...."you are not understanding what it is I am trying to say."

And I would have to agree with him on that one. It isn't a case of who is right or who is wrong here. It is a case of this man is looking for something you are not and you apparently are satisfied with a kind of training that ,for him, is not satisfying. He has more than once noted that it is not just sheer brute fighting he is after. it is not just to beat the snot out of someone or to get the snot beat out of him he is looking for. He is looking for aikido, just not YOUR aikido. Neither your style of practice nor what he is searching for is right or wrong. Just different. This man needed to know that what he is looking for does indeed exist. At least then even if he must settle for something less than what he would like for now he at least knows that he has a hope of attaining it in time.

At least that is how I'm understanding it. But then what does a lowly 6th kyu know about aikido?
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Old 04-23-2010, 02:11 PM   #50
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Re: Aikido For Dummies: Desperation, period.

I agree you should mistake some one who can hurt you, for some one who is a fine Aikido teacher.
I've trained with 6th kyus and thrown by Shihans... want to take a guess which ones I've actually sustained injuries from?

I've only ever sustained injuries from kyu students. It is stiff, jerky and they muscle through you with all your might, regardless if you are putting up resistance. Which causes injury.

However, I've been thrown by black belt ranks while putting up GREAT resistance. And I've been thrown 7 feet by Shihan by just turning around to see what's behind me. (Seriously, Shibata Sensei must find it amusing to sneak up on students!)

I'm just saying, you shouldn't confuse pain with effective technique man.

MM
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