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Old 05-09-2002, 01:50 AM   #1
scottiedavies
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Exclamation Can someone please help me!

I need information on research done with regards to aikido. is there any research on boken (spelling)(sword)speed and how to maximise the speed of a strike. If you have any information could you please email me at scottiedavies@hotmail.com

Thank you for your help.

scott davies
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Old 05-09-2002, 02:59 AM   #2
shihonage
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Don't spam.
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Old 05-09-2002, 05:14 AM   #3
scottiedavies
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what is spam

sorry it must have been my mistake. I can't quite remember what it was that i said, but i'm sure that i was asking intelligent people for advice. Obviously not all people are that intellegent and can not recognise a question from someone in need. If my simple asking of an aikido related question has offended you in any way then i am really not sorry. If i cant ask a question like that on a website devoted to the martial art of of aikido then i don't know where to go. So if there is anybody out there with an increased quota of intelligence than those who think that my valid question is spam, then please can you reply to me.

once again i apoligise for asking questions on this site, it will not happen again. No more questions. Can we all just hold on to our knowledge and not pass it on. This way we can keep the world from developing.
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Old 05-09-2002, 05:40 AM   #4
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Re: what is spam

How old are you Scottie.

Reasonbly intelligent people don't need to see the same thing post three times in the forums - once is enough.

Reasonably intelligent people respond to subject lines like How to maximize bokken speed? rather than something that comes across as a whine and has no relation to the content of the post.

Aleksey has nothing against you asking a question and framed right you could get plenty of answers - or none.

Quote:
Originally posted by scottiedavies
sorry it must have been my mistake. I can't quite remember what it was that i said, but i'm sure that i was asking intelligent people for advice. Obviously not all people are that intellegent and can not recognise a question from someone in need. If my simple asking of an aikido related question has offended you in any way then i am really not sorry. If i cant ask a question like that on a website devoted to the martial art of of aikido then i don't know where to go. So if there is anybody out there with an increased quota of intelligence than those who think that my valid question is spam, then please can you reply to me.

once again i apoligise for asking questions on this site, it will not happen again. No more questions. Can we all just hold on to our knowledge and not pass it on. This way we can keep the world from developing.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 05-09-2002, 05:57 AM   #5
shihonage
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Re: what is spam

Quote:
Originally posted by scottiedavies
If i cant ask a question like that on a website devoted to the martial art of of aikido then i don't know where to go. So if there is anybody out there with an increased quota of intelligence than those who think that my valid question is spam, then please can you reply to me.
I'm no specialist on bokkens, but I have a fairly heavy karate bokken that I like to pretend to know how to swing ...

In my (very limited) experience, your question can only be answered by the obvious answers (put your center into it, relax blah blah blah) and the rest you have to experiment with on your own.

I noticed that in the beginning my arms sort of conflicted with one another and I spent more energy to get bokken to move.

They still do, but less.
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Old 05-09-2002, 11:53 AM   #6
Brian Vickery
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Lightbulb Re: Can someone please help me!

Quote:
Originally posted by scottiedavies
I need information on research done with regards to aikido. is there any research on boken (spelling)(sword)speed and how to maximise the speed of a strike.
Hello Scott,

If you're REALLY serious about learning how to handle a bokken/bokuto/katana, you might consider studying Shinkendo.
There's a dojo in Auckland:

26 Clayburn Rd.
Glen Eden, Auckland
New Zealand
B. Thomson Sensei
09-818-4689

For more info on this, go to: www.shinkendo.com

Best of luck with your endevour!

(PS: Now this response is without a doubt SPAM ;^)

Brian Vickery

"The highest level of technique to achieve is that of having NO technique!"
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Old 05-09-2002, 09:56 PM   #7
scottiedavies
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peter, in reply to your statement

"Reasonably intelligent people respond to subject lines like How to maximize bokken speed? rather than something that comes across as a whine and has no relation to the content of the post"

The content of the post was related to a bokken. I thought that this was a weapon. Therefore i started a thread in the weapons section. Was this wrong? I thought that it was related to weapons.

For posting it in the general section, i thought people looking in that area might see that i was asking for help.

I was unaware that it would be posted on the home page three times. For that i am sorry. I am a new user and did not realise this would happen.
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Old 05-09-2002, 10:16 PM   #8
PeterR
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by scottiedavies
The content of the post was related to a bokken. I thought that this was a weapon. Therefore i started a thread in the weapons section. Was this wrong? I thought that it was related to weapons.
I was referring to your thread title (subject). The best place to post a question of bokken was the weapons section but no matter what your post is about choose an appropriate title.
Quote:
I was unaware that it would be posted on the home page three times. For that i am sorry. I am a new user and did not realise this would happen.
Mistakes happen - usually a good idea to lurk a little before diving into internet forums. Like everything in life - there are lots of unspoken rules.

As for the bokken - are you a member of an Aikido club which uses a bokken in practice? Speed comes from practice of correct technique - usually with the realization that you are dealing with a cutting sword rather than a club. Correct technique, be it bokken or Aikido, is not something that can be easily described on a forum. Your teacher should be able to answer the question far easier.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 05-10-2002, 01:07 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterR
As for the bokken - are you a member of an Aikido club which uses a bokken in practice? Speed comes from practice of correct technique - usually with the realization that you are dealing with a cutting sword rather than a club.
I remember our senior student after presiding over some of our kyu exams saying that speed and power come through training of the form and principles in techniques, not from practicing speed and power.

As for swordwork, most people who haven't gone through form and principle training with an iaito or other "non-bokuto" ken won't be able to make the sword "whistle" due to incorrect usage of the sword. Better to focus on learning how to use the sword (and other weapons) correctly first.

-- Jun

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Old 05-10-2002, 01:16 AM   #10
Largo
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Quote:
most people who haven't gone through form and principle training with an iaito or other "non-bokuto" ken won't be able to make the sword "whistle" due to incorrect usage of the sword.
Or if they can, they end up smashing their own toes
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Old 05-10-2002, 08:11 AM   #11
Bruce Baker
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politeness to questions

The rudeness to this question is precisely the narrow mindset to being a clique I speak of when someone asks a question of this little group.

If the subject is off center, refer the questioner to the proper forum and answer the question.

The short answer would be that there are videos, and books that give the proper form and visualization to arcs of proper bokken strikes. Practice, a teacher who has practiced for many years will show you the basic movements and tell you the only real teacher to developing speed is practice.

In fact I will go into the long answer on weapons forum as related to me by many of my teachers. Go there.

If you are reading replies, put your icon on the arrows at the bottom, hold down mouse, and bring up the forum that applies. Weapons in this case.
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Old 05-10-2002, 08:29 AM   #12
Brian Vickery
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Thumbs down Re: politeness to questions

Quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
The rudeness to this question is precisely the narrow mindset to being a clique I speak of when someone asks a question of this little group.
...I agree with Bruce here ...the guy is new & is just looking for answers ...a few people in here were a bit short with him.

...I vote for an atmosphere of 'harmony' in here toward everybody!

Regards,

Brian Vickery

"The highest level of technique to achieve is that of having NO technique!"
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Old 05-10-2002, 08:53 AM   #13
Bruce Baker
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Whistling sword

Funny thing about a whistling sword, it isn't the only stick like weapon that can whistle. In fact, when you have practiced for thousands of hours you can make most objects whoosh or whistle. My child hood was filled with turning objects into immediate weapons, so for a few years not many car radio antennas were safe from fast becoming either fishing rods, or whip style weapons to tear the flesh of knife weilding attackers.

Don't be in a hurry to achieve results, the ability to relax is the key to speed. Of course once you have that speed, how do you let it come to an end without hitting yourself/cutting yourself with a live blade?

I guess you could view it as planned distance. Just like driving a car at high speeds, your practice will allow for changes in direction or planned stopping distances through hours of practice. There is no shortcut.

The other key to to adjust the muscles with the wooden counterparts to the sword. Did you wonder why most people have wooden training weapons instead of metal? Some of it is because of cost and convenience, but on the whole, everything you can do with metal you can practice with wood. My area has laws against certain weapons in public, and except for collection or practice they could invite fines and confinscature by police, but that is another story.

There is a story many people tell about Bruce Lee teaching others to be fast. When you throw a punch, throw it out relaxed as if cracking a whip, but bring it back to yourself twice a fast as you throw it out. Eventually, it will get faster, stronger, until you can put you full weight into the punch and have it back faster than it was thrown.

The point being ... every single method of developing speed involves becoming comfortable with the movements, relaxing so that tension does not slow your movements, and clearing your mind of wanting to be fast so you are fast or at least faster.

If you want confidence of a whistling blade, a foil is a beginning. Fenceing brings many muscles into play that will give you the feeling of moving quickly. Moving to a heavier and more unweildy bokken may not translate easily, but if you begin to make the wood whistle, it will be easy to make metal whistle.

Practice the Seven Saguri strikes until you build confidence and speed.

Give your self six months to a year at moderate speed.

Most books, videos and help info can be found at martial arts sites.

It is a long way to look, but one of the local sensei's (Greg O'Connor) put together a basic beginner's bokken video.

I am sure if you look about, you will find a few teachers with videos near where you live too.
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Old 05-10-2002, 09:16 AM   #14
PeterR
 
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Re: politeness to questions

Quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
The rudeness to this question is precisely the narrow mindset to being a clique I speak of when someone asks a question of this little group.
Don't play the victim here Bruce - we were all newbies to the forum once. Some of us have ideas and attitudes that are different from the main.

The difference is how you walk into a room full of strangers to you who happen to each other through a little bit more exposure.

If Scottie persits and adapts he will be as welcome here as the next.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 05-10-2002, 09:22 AM   #15
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Re: Whistling sword

Quote:
Originally posted by Bruce Baker
Funny thing about a whistling sword, it isn't the only stick like weapon that can whistle.
It's easy to get a stick to whistle; I daresay that a six year old could probably do so without much thought nor experience. But, of course, getting a "weapno" to whistle doesn't necessarily mean you're using it correctly. Just because you can make a bokken whistle doesn't necessarily mean you'll be able to make an iaito/shinken whistle.

In using an iaito or a shinken with or without a hi (which some people call a "blood" groove although many also say it's merely there to make the blade lighter), you start ingraining how to properly use the hasuji (blade angle) in your cuts. I've been witness to many, many aikido people (highly ranked up to 7th dan) who, although they had good "aiki-ken" skills, were unable to properly cut through a single tameshigiri mat. Therefore, just trying to develop speed in one's weapon doesn't necessarily mean you're developing any kind of applicable swordwork skills. Better to start out slowly and relaxedly and build up speed through experience and training, not through just trying to make your sword whistle. (Brian, care to comment on this point?)

On the subject of using a bokuto as a weapon, please realize that the bokuto is a very fine weapon in and of itself. I hear many "shady" people in Asia use it far more often during fights and such and is considered to be capable of extreme damage.

-- Jun

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Old 05-10-2002, 12:46 PM   #16
Brian Vickery
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Blush! Re: Re: Whistling sword

Quote:
Originally posted by akiy

In using an iaito or a shinken with or without a hi (which some people call a "blood" groove although many also say it's merely there to make the blade lighter), you start ingraining how to properly use the hasuji (blade angle) in your cuts. I've been witness to many, many aikido people (highly ranked up to 7th dan) who, although they had good "aiki-ken" skills, were unable to properly cut through a single tameshigiri mat. Therefore, just trying to develop speed in one's weapon doesn't necessarily mean you're developing any kind of applicable swordwork skills. Better to start out slowly and relaxedly and build up speed through experience and training, not through just trying to make your sword whistle. (Brian, care to comment on this point?)
Yikes! ...talk about being put on the spot! ;^)

I totally agree with your statement about starting out slowly and relaxed. Speed is your enemy in the beginning! The student needs to concentrate on proper technique/form, especially if your working on 'tameshigiri' (test cutting). To execute a good cut, the tip of the sword MUST be leading. If the hands are leading the cut, the sword will stick in the target. Your shoulders must be relaxed, so that you can 'throw' the tip out there, which will generate the power & speed required to cut all the way thru the target (The tip is where the speed needs to be, like cracking a bullwhip, not at the hands). This is a EXTREMELY simplified answer, proper blade angle and grip also play a major role in a good cut ...along with hip rotation, weight transfer, ma-ai to the target, ashi sabaki, etc, etc. (...*LOL*...that's why Shinkendo is a comprehensive art all on it's own, and not just a sub-set of aiki-wepons.)

...the bottom line is that speed is one of the least important factors when it comes to learning sword work!



I hope this helped?!?!

Regards,

Last edited by Brian Vickery : 05-10-2002 at 04:16 PM.

Brian Vickery

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Old 05-10-2002, 07:46 PM   #17
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Evil Eyes Re: Re: Whistling sword

Quote:
Originally posted by akiy

In using an iaito or a shinken with or without a hi (which some people call a "blood" groove although many also say it's merely there to make the blade lighter), you start ingraining how to properly use the hasuji (blade angle) in your cuts. I've been witness to many, many aikido people (highly ranked up to 7th dan) who, although they had good "aiki-ken" skills, were unable to properly cut through a single tameshigiri mat. Therefore, just trying to develop speed in one's weapon doesn't necessarily mean you're developing any kind of applicable swordwork skills. Better to start out slowly and relaxedly and build up speed through experience and training, not through just trying to make your sword whistle. (Brian, care to comment on this point?)
-- Jun

Actually I think the groove should make the sword stronger as well as lighter because it creates an I-beam in the steel.

Speed is not what is required for tameshigiri. A good sharp edge and the right feel and you can cut cleanly through a thick mat with very little force or effort.

Most people start out putting too much strength in the right hand. The right hand must stay very relaxed and soft grip. The left hand providing the power while the right help keep the line of the cut straight is the key.

You don't have to cut very fast to make a grooved sword whistle but you do have cut with the edge straight. Knowing that you are cutting straight is why you want to hear the whistle and learn to judge the quality of the sound to mark your success.

One of the great grandmasters of early 19th century (one of the last to have battle experience) strongly advocated practicing very slow, very precise, very relaxed.

Generally, I see too much fast chopping going on when aiki-ken is practiced.

Craig
HKS
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Old 05-10-2002, 10:13 PM   #18
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If you get the chance, grab your cheap Ontario machete, go to the backyard, and take out some weeds. Yes, it's definitely not the same thing as performing tameshigiri with a shinken, but you'll get a few ideas about blade angle (hasuji) by the sound the machete makes when going through a plant, and by the resulting cut. Please exercise a reasonable amount of caution doing this. Might get your backyard cleared up, too...

Let me add a small nit here...I don't believe a groove makes a sword stronger; it'll make a sword stronger in comparison to a blade of the same mass is all. Take two identical swords, groove one, and the one without the groove will be stronger. Anyway, not the most important thing...

Regards,
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Old 05-11-2002, 12:57 AM   #19
Edward
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I have a question here:

I have problems making my bokken and jo whistle, but no problem with an Iaito.

I wonder about this whisteling thing, because it really sounds great and my sensei can make the weapons whistle all the time. But is it essential to produce this sound? And what does it exactly prove? Speed, correct handling, right angle?

I would appreciate any comments.
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Old 05-11-2002, 12:49 PM   #20
Brian Vickery
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Quote:
Originally posted by jk

...I don't believe a groove makes a sword stronger...
Hi guys!

This very topic has been discussed 'ad naseaum' (sp?) at Swordfroum.com ...it's like a 'Seagal' thread in here, it just NEVER goes away!
...some state the groove is for strength, other say it's to lighten the blade, other say it's to allow blood to flow from the victim, others say this is ridiculous, some state its for helping during re-sheathing, etc, etc! The sword forum draws some big guns in the sword community (instructors, smiths, collectors, etc), so if they can't come to any real agreement on this topic, I doubt that we will either!

...just thought I'd throw my 2 cents in before this thread went off to much futher on this tangent!

Regards,

Brian Vickery

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Old 05-11-2002, 11:13 PM   #21
jk
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Probably more than you ever wanted to know about grooves and swords:

http://swordforum.com/sfu/japanese/grooves.html
http://swordforum.com/sfu/primer/thebest.html

So Brian, does Steven Seagal use a shinken with a hi or not?

OK, OK...back to our regular program...

Regards,
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Old 05-12-2002, 12:19 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by jk

Let me add a small nit here...I don't believe a groove makes a sword stronger; it'll make a sword stronger in comparison to a blade of the same mass is all. Take two identical swords, groove one, and the one without the groove will be stronger. Anyway, not the most important thing...
Regards,
You can have all the small nits you want, I really don't care. Whether or not a sword with a groove is stronger or weaker than a sword without one that has more steel is something to take up with mechanical engineers that work with steel. I kind of doubt the claim the one without the groove will be stronger when the mass is equal given what I recall about the reasons for using I-beams in construction.

but all I really care about when doing a thousand cuts is that groove makes the dang thing a little lighter.

of course there are all sorts of physical properties of the sword that people argue over ad naseum. For most people, the issues are not nearly as relevant as discussing the properties of woods and wood shapes.

Craig
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Old 05-12-2002, 12:30 PM   #23
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But would a groove really make a significant difference in weight? I picture the amount of steel that would fill a groove and it doesn't seem like it would weigh all that much.

As for the thousand cuts, I thought the purpose of that was to improve ones form so that the cuts were done correctly, it being difficult to make that many cuts incorrectly without the weight getting to you...so would making the bokken lighter just counter the desired effect?
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Old 05-12-2002, 08:20 PM   #24
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I don't think I've seen an iaito without grooves, Colleen, so I think for those things, the question is largely moot.

Craig - no real disagreement with you regarding grooved and non-grooved swords of equal mass. You carve grooves in one, you reduce the mass.

Back to the main point of the thread, everybody seems to have pointed out that speed should not be the most important consideration in a proper cut...not much to disagree with there. There, we're all in harmony again, aren't we?

Regards,
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Old 05-13-2002, 07:09 AM   #25
Bruce Baker
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Speed, practice, and effectiveness

Most of us seem to agree about learning the various manipulations of cutting with different types of blades for different applications, but we do digress ...

Indeed there is nothing so dangerous as a skilled swordsman who has his/her weapon at hand, but in these modern times ... just how often do people actually carry live weapons about? Really. How often do you carry your sword everyplace you go?

So, as we appreciate the skill of those who are skilled, and practice to hone these skills, our vision should be upon the movements that we transform into Aikido.

If I really wanted to digress I would have started to compare the training methods of the foil, broadsword, scimitar, and other swords of various length and their effectiveness and training methods, but as we are speaking of things related to Aikido, as dull as it may be for you old timers, sometimes simplicity of shomen and yokomen must be covered?

The fact is, most of us will never have the opportunity to use a sword other than training or practicing proper form, that is as it should be for the modern world.

But, none the less, it will still be important to understanding the proper movements in relation to Aikido techniques as they too translate into speed, power, finess, and expertese.

Or should we go into other disciplines such as snap shooting with a reflex bow instead of a compound bow with sights?

Never mind....

I guess I was bit put off by Jun's having a six year old making a stick whistle, and Peter Rehse's comment about walking into the room?

That is not to disrespect the point that skill comes from practice, and practice does not always mean skill, but there will be no skill at all without practice?

Point being, somewhere, sometime practice has to begin.

Let's not kill the practice by spouting platitudes about exemplary skills?

Give the new guy a few hints, a little encouragement, and just pray he doesn't cut his legs off!

Isn't that we start the new guys with wood?

Just kidding ...

But you ain't gonna get a sharpened sword until you can handle a practice weapon.
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