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Old 08-09-2010, 05:22 PM   #1
chunie
Dojo: Sho Shin Aikido Dojo
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Go with the flow or....

...try to muscle the technique?

For example sensei shows us Katatedori shihonage omote and ura, so we proceed to do the waza. Now when uke comes barging at me, grabs my hand and tries to to punch me in the face it felt like I had the ura part down, I connect, step in to the side, turn ura, control uke's centre and guide him down, at least I think I can handle that .

It's the omote part that I'm having trouble with. My problem is that when I find uke giving a lot of energy I tend to bump in to him when going for omote, often uke almost goes, or bumps, into udekiminage position with me only leading, which doesn't need to be bad as udekiminage naturally can go to shihonage, but it's the bumping part that's ticks me off. I always try to go for flowing movements without bumps or hickups, but here I can't seem to figure out what's going on. Unfortunately sensei stopped before I could do some more shihonages.

Does that bumping sound familiar? When uke gives a lot of energy and speed I don't feel like stopping his energy just to be able to 'force' omote is the right thing to do, or any other technique for that matter. Perhaps I'm just off with the timing or is it uke giving me to much to handle. Next time I could try entering sooner when uke comes barging at me. Perhaps I'm just missing something here, katatedori shihonage omote should also be possible when uke comes barging at you, right? Or should I do ura endlessly until uke provides the right energy?

And to broaden the issue, when uke gives a lot of energy is it more sensible to do a different technique, one that fits the energy being given or should I stick to the technique sensei showed us?

Your 2 cents are very much appreciated
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Old 08-09-2010, 08:26 PM   #2
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Go with the flow or....

Your uke probably wanted to see if you could handle quicker response to an attack...was he a senior? If so, that is my guess...and he likely would do so if he thought you could handle working that speed.

Anyway, there are millions of ways to do katatedori shihonage omote...depending on your teacher you may be expected to do it a certain way. In my school, its almost always an omote variation when uke pulls or nage/tori moves into uke's space....whereas its almost always a ura/tenkan variation when uke pushes or attacks into tori/nage's space. That's just the way out kihon waza is set up.

I suppose it would be best to ask a senior what Sensei wants (or ask Sensei himself). Perhaps he is all about nage's discretion...and given the dynamic nature of aikido many teachers are...but there will be some who will expect an ability to execute certain techniques in certain situations. If it were my school and we were doing katatedori ganmentsuki shihonage...if uke rushed forward grabbed hand and continued forward attempting to pin it to body and punch face, we would pivot or step to the rear. If uke grabbed hand and pulled tori toward them to off balance and punch in face, we would move forward and offline for omote/shomen variation of technique. But its always best to ask what sensei would want YOU to do...sometimes there's something specific, sometimes there's not.

Best,

A

Ichi Go, Ichi Ei!
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:12 AM   #3
Amir Krause
Dojo: Shirokan Dojo / Tel Aviv Israel
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Re: Go with the flow or....

As a rule, when you train and aim to learn, you should not force a technique.

Given your description, and assuming your Sensei demonstrated a variation without a "bump" (In some cases/variation Tori intentionally bumps Uke in order to get a stronger Kuzushi in a non gradual manner) or if this "nump" affects your own balance and ability to continue. You should find your mistakes in order to reduce the "bump":
A. Ask your Sensei to take a look.
B. Work slowly with Uke. He should attack with low energy, but emulate more energy (he should be very soft\sensitive). And you should find out how to harmonize with him.

Amir
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:30 AM   #4
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Go with the flow or....

One of my first teachers used to always break techniques up into two part; first is the negation of the attack and off balancing of uke, the second is the actual application of the technique.

Ichi Go, Ichi Ei!
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Old 08-10-2010, 09:47 AM   #5
chunie
Dojo: Sho Shin Aikido Dojo
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Re: Go with the flow or....

Thx for the replies!

Adam, uke is indeed a senior and he has been gradually increasing speed and energy for a while now. Regarding the space the of pushing and pulling of uke I have the same view, doesn't seem logical to try to go ura when uke pulls....

Amir, forcing a technique didn't feel aiki to me too, so I knew I was doing something wrong. Sensei demonstrated the variation without the bump.

I got a few insights since the last session, heck even when describing the situation.

I'm off to a 5 day seminar, so ample opportunity to 'test' the technique. Will post my findings soon

Have a good one!
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:26 AM   #6
Adam Huss
 
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Re: Go with the flow or....

Enjoy your seminar, I am currently recovering from one over the last few days and it was one of the best seminars in my 10+ years training!

Ichi Go, Ichi Ei!
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Old 08-10-2010, 01:21 PM   #7
dps
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Re: Go with the flow or....

Quote:
Chuntug Taguba wrote: View Post
...try to muscle the technique?

For example sensei shows us Katatedori shihonage omote and ura, so we proceed to do the waza. Now when uke comes barging at me, grabs my hand and tries to to punch me in the face it felt like I had the ura part down, I connect, step in to the side, turn ura, control uke's centre and guide him down, at least I think I can handle that .

It's the omote part that I'm having trouble with. My problem is that when I find uke giving a lot of energy I tend to bump in to him when going for omote, often uke almost goes, or bumps, into udekiminage position with me only leading, which doesn't need to be bad as udekiminage naturally can go to shihonage, but it's the bumping part that's ticks me off. I always try to go for flowing movements without bumps or hickups, but here I can't seem to figure out what's going on. Unfortunately sensei stopped before I could do some more shihonages.

Does that bumping sound familiar? When uke gives a lot of energy and speed I don't feel like stopping his energy just to be able to 'force' omote is the right thing to do, or any other technique for that matter. Perhaps I'm just off with the timing or is it uke giving me to much to handle. Next time I could try entering sooner when uke comes barging at me. Perhaps I'm just missing something here, katatedori shihonage omote should also be possible when uke comes barging at you, right? Or should I do ura endlessly until uke provides the right energy?

And to broaden the issue, when uke gives a lot of energy is it more sensible to do a different technique, one that fits the energy being given or should I stick to the technique sensei showed us?

Your 2 cents are very much appreciated
I hope this is helpful.

If uke is barging in then don't take a step to change hanmi, just pivot on your feet to change hanmi. If uke is coming in real fast then taking a step backward may be required to change your hanmi.

David
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:18 PM   #8
Michael Varin
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Re: Go with the flow or....

Quote:
Chuntug Taguba wrote:
when uke gives a lot of energy is it more sensible to do a different technique, one that fits the energy being given or should I stick to the technique sensei showed us?
I think you have identified two issues that I'm sure you will revisit throughout your training.

First, that omote and ura variations exist for a reason, not simply so you have a wider array of choices. Like the techniques themselves, omote and ura are, in a sense, chosen for you.

Second, the tension between learning technique that must be refined, and learning how to be aiki, or to use techniques spontaneously and appropriately.

A related issue is the appropriateness of uke. If sensei asks you to do a specific technique, but for whatever reason uke gives an inappropriate energy, nage often feels that they must force the technique, which, of course, is interfering with the overall goal.

This is one of the reasons that I like to drop the uke/nage paradigm at times and add a sparring/aliveness/resistive (whatever you want to call it) element to my training. This gives students the proper vehicle to challenge each other, and adds clarity when working on technique.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:30 PM   #9
raul rodrigo
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Re: Go with the flow or....

When confronted with an uke lurching forward, my sempai steps back at, oh say a 30 to 35 degree angle at the instant of contact. The step back "bleeds off" the momentum and the angle creates the opening for his entry into omote. It works for him.
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Old 08-11-2010, 11:10 AM   #10
crbateman
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Re: Go with the flow or....

It's good for uke to attack with energy and conviction, as you must learn to deal with it, or the technique will be useless to you. You must avoid and redirect the energy to your advantage. One of the best ways to do this is to use finesse and remove yourself from uke's point of attack, while staying close enough to it to gain control and seize the opportunity to do the technique using his energy, not yours. This is why we practice, because repetition makes for more polished and effortless execution. Overpowering a technique will not lead to you really learning it.
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:35 AM   #11
Buck
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Re: Go with the flow or....

Quote:
Chuntug Taguba wrote: View Post
...try to muscle the technique?

And to broaden the issue, when uke gives a lot of energy is it more sensible to do a different technique, one that fits the energy being given or should I stick to the technique sensei showed us?

Your 2 cents are very much appreciated
This is interesting question. Here are my thoughts.

1. Protocol of the class is important. Some dojo's not flexible will frown upon switching out technique during the practice of another. Others more flexible don't, especially if the Uke changes his attack. Others dojos will allow a change in the technique while performing another only after a certain amount of experience. It is totally subjective and up to the discretion of the Sensei. Knowing what the protocol is important before any changes like this are made. I tend to feel the third type of dojo is what I like.

2. Because I favor the third example, and the following is within that context, I have found it very beneficial to redirect the energy, and not absorb it. Which would mean adapt to the energy, and that is what dictates the change in technique. A very old, common and widespread principle found in martial arts and sports, which gave rise to many Asian martial arts.

3.The issue is this, and it is about energy you face. A tennis ball or like ball one it leaves a surface, like a tennis racket, it energy changes and as it travels over a distance and time is losses that energy- Physics 101. I point that out to contrast an Uke's energy isn't like a ball, it is constantly changing, and adjusting increasing and decreasing over time and space.

The Shi's energy is also changing and adjusting to the situation, even doing the same technique. So really you never are doing the same technique twice-fwiw. When those energies meet a successfully done technique is when the Uke's energy is controlled by Shi. The failure of a technique is when the Uke's energy dominates and shut's down the Shi's faster than the Shi can counter or adjust. That is there is a constant countering of energies going in Nano seconds or less. Being able to handle those energies to a desired end result is what we call technique/waza.

Point is you on some level you are always changing the technique, unless the Uke's energy is predictable like a the energy of a tennis ball. A technique is the some of change and adaptations to the Uke's energy. The practice of a named patterned technique is the cause of why people struggle, experience frustration, and have those "I got lucky" moments during the learning of a technique. That is the great learning curve, when we think we have to copy, emulate exactly the gross movement we observe, what we see when a technique is demoed. That can only be done if the Uke energy and attack never changes.

So we often think of when a technique changes along the lines of patterned gross movement. I don't think that should be the case. Thinking along the lines of adjusting and changing the Uke's energy and loosely framing it within the demonstrated technique and not concerned with replication of gross movements as stamped as a particular technique, is a resolution. A resolution to the all too often and common conundrum of whether to "stick to the technique shown," or change it as a result of the Uke. IMO it really is a matter of dealing with the every changing energy of the Uke and the Uke's attack that results in "technique."

Don't want to sound arrogant, or any kind of expert or alike, it is that I am not good at the tone of writing. Please see this as a suggestion offered.

Last edited by Buck : 08-12-2010 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 08-13-2010, 01:53 PM   #12
TreyPrice
 
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Re: Go with the flow or....

My take is that the more stregth means less technique - or as Greg Jennings would tell me "if you have to muscle it, you did not use Aikido." As for "bumping" Uke, that is a matter of speed, and timing. I would say - evade the initial attack, or turn the attacker. When you have him in a situation where he is getting off the ground or making a 180 turn to attack again you will be more able to apply a technique. Here is the kicker - you should not have a programed technique in your head, his attack should "inspire" the technique. TAKEMUSU BABY!

My $.02
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Old 08-25-2010, 01:41 PM   #13
Bratislav
 
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Re: Go with the flow or....

From my practice: Doing any tehnique on many different ways (with or without strenght, resistance and speed), give You feeling for aikido. Only after that You can start to learn. Strict limitations are limitations in our skills.

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Old 08-26-2010, 09:56 PM   #14
SteveTrinkle
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Re: Go with the flow or....

QUOTE Does that bumping sound familiar? When uke gives a lot of energy and speed I don't feel like stopping his energy just to be able to 'force' omote is the right thing to do, or any other technique for that matter. Perhaps I'm just off with the timing or is it uke giving me to much to handle. Next time I could try entering sooner when uke comes barging at me.
END QUOTE.
Here is a concept that I try to do: 吸い込む、 吸い込んで "suikomu," or "suikonde" = Inhale, breathe in, draw in, absorb.)

I am trying to catch uke's center before he begins to move. Then draw him in using funakogi undo movement. If I can absorb his energy/center (draw him in to my center) then no bumping. Or maybe he bumps, but I don't. Timing is fun to try to get just right. This is just something I am trying to work on and get better at. Very fun stuff for me, but only my two cents.

Last edited by SteveTrinkle : 08-26-2010 at 10:03 PM. Reason: Didn't seem like the quote part was distinct enough...

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