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Old 09-25-2010, 12:05 AM   #1
Amassus
 
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Confused Stat-u? Uke?

A play on words in the title
I'm talking about statue uke, it seems to be a big problem in aikido and I was inspired to write this based on reading the thread about the "step back irimi nage".

Just to clarify...
Uke throws a punch or some other strike where they finish the movement well balanced with their arm out in front of them. As many of you have said before...what the hell? Martially this seems a very strange thing for uke to do. What attacker in their right mind throws out a strike and then stops like a statue?

It appears to me (this is only personal experience/opinion) that some of our more peculiar aikido techniques may have stemmed from being presented with this kind of attack and the reality is that many of those techniques may have no effect on an adversary that is really trying to knock your head off. Therefore this lack of martial effectiveness that aikido gets labeled with may be a result of such situations.

So please, speculate, formulate and ruminate on this and reply.

Thanks for reading.

"flows like water, reflects like a mirror, and responds like an echo." Chaung-tse
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Old 09-25-2010, 11:54 AM   #2
Rob Watson
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

Quote:
Dean Suter wrote: View Post
What attacker in their right mind throws out a strike and then stops like a statue?

So please, speculate, formulate and ruminate on this and reply.
Gotta love free practice. Dump 'em on their ura. Show the way. Rinse lather repeat.

I've found that it develops hard to break habits training with juniors and making concessions to their abilities. Being ever mindful of this helps a bit but free practice (particularly with a helpful senior and eager peers) lets one 'reset' the habits and root them back where the need to be (depending on ones particulars).

Sometimes during regular practice during advanced class some boundaries can be 'expanded' but there is nothing like free practice.

I often remind myself that it takes two to tango. What of the nage that sits by and waits for the statue to setup and settle? Should not the technique have begin in such a way that the statue is never allowed to form? See the strike (can the intent to strike be seen) forming, enter/blend, lead, execute ... when does uke have time to form a statue? Who is blaming uke ... where is the mirror?

"In my opinion, the time of spreading aikido to the world is finished; now we have to focus on quality." Yamada Yoshimitsu

Ultracrepidarianism ... don't.
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Old 09-25-2010, 04:34 PM   #3
Basia Halliop
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

More advanced people I watch generally tend to have started to move and made something happen long before uke has the option to stop and stand there (unless maybe they're working with someone brand new and doing it slowly to show them)... and more advanced ukes (unless they're working with a beginner or for some other reason intentionally breaking things down into steps) tend to continue with the attack to make contact or change to an additional attack if there's that opportunity (i.e., if you haven't done something about their attack by that time, they either hit you or reverse the technique)...

I.e., I think the attack and stand still with your arm out, outside of very specific occasional drills, seems like more of a learning stage many people pass through rather than something that's really taught or that anyone really thinks is the end goal, at least as far as I can see. Assuming I'm understanding what's being described, also.
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Old 09-25-2010, 07:44 PM   #4
RED
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

Quote:
Dean Suter wrote: View Post
A play on words in the title
I'm talking about statue uke, it seems to be a big problem in aikido and I was inspired to write this based on reading the thread about the "step back irimi nage".

Just to clarify...
Uke throws a punch or some other strike where they finish the movement well balanced with their arm out in front of them. As many of you have said before...what the hell? Martially this seems a very strange thing for uke to do. What attacker in their right mind throws out a strike and then stops like a statue?

It appears to me (this is only personal experience/opinion) that some of our more peculiar aikido techniques may have stemmed from being presented with this kind of attack and the reality is that many of those techniques may have no effect on an adversary that is really trying to knock your head off. Therefore this lack of martial effectiveness that aikido gets labeled with may be a result of such situations.

So please, speculate, formulate and ruminate on this and reply.

Thanks for reading.
Are you referring to Tsuki? Which has its origin in jo/spear thrust, or even a bokken thrust. Or any of the shomen/yokomen? Which is based off of sword work.
In any case, no uke is not a statue. He is intended to give a strong committed and well centered attack. If one strike fails, he should be using any variety of technique to deliver another IMO.
EXAMPLE: if some one delivers a shomenuchi, and misses, they might water-shed to deliver a yokomen or tsuki.

However, if you are training with some one you might not want to deliver another strike. It might be inappropriate if the two of you are working on something specific. For the sake of learning, it might be better to stick to the one strike and learn your technique off of it especially at a lower level. As people progress and get better you can increase the level of training, just like every other aspect of Aikido. Plus, the more experienced an Aikidoka, the more fun he is to play with anyways.

MM
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Old 09-26-2010, 07:40 PM   #5
ChrisHein
 
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

All of Aikido's major techniques work very well in the right context. All of Aikido's techniques, as well as the techniques of any other system, do not work well out of context.

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Old 09-26-2010, 10:55 PM   #6
Amassus
 
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

Quote:
All of Aikido's major techniques work very well in the right context. All of Aikido's techniques, as well as the techniques of any other system, do not work well out of context.
Nice, Chris.

I'm going to continue to play devil's advocate here.

Quote:
In any case, no uke is not a statue. He is intended to give a strong committed and well centered attack. If one strike fails, he should be using any variety of technique to deliver another IMO.
I agree, BUT in practice in SOME styles or clubs, I have seen the stop-start motion that I am talking about and it does not need to be specific to tsuki.

Overall I agree with what everyone is saying thus far, but is it always practised?

"flows like water, reflects like a mirror, and responds like an echo." Chaung-tse
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Old 09-27-2010, 05:44 AM   #7
Amir Krause
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

It is all a matter of context:

A beginner, who is just learning the gross mechanics of a technique, should get the best opportunity to learn it, for him, Uke movement adds impossible complexity, and Uke continuing to attack ads way too much pressure. A good Uke should assist a student in this phase, not resist him.

A more advanced student, should practice the kata his sensei just showed, this kata includes a specific sincere attack, specific response timing, movement and reception (Kuzushi), and a specific technique.
Hopefully, if the teacher is worth anything, the timing for the Kuzushi is not after the attack. Hence, once Uke finished his attack without Tori achieving Kuzushi, his role in the kata has ended, and it is obvious Tori has failed!
The question then becomes - which Uke response would be best to help Tori move better the next time theyplay the Kata. In my opinion, all the options suggested above are relevant: Freezing and resisting any movement (to show Tori the last Uke state), Continuing to a secondary attack (to show Tori where he moved to) or letting Tori finish the technique (to let Tori improve his technique in hope it will assist his timing too -improve confidence and remove worries).

Of course, Uke might resist and become static due to ego and power show (let me see this works). Which, as pointed above, is obviously a non martial way as easily seen in free-play (Randori/Kyusho/Jiu-waza or any other name you wish to give it).
But, when you explain the above to Uke, do not forget that actually reaching a situation in which he can clamp on, indicates an error on Tori side too.

Amir
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Old 09-27-2010, 07:06 AM   #8
phitruong
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

read somewhere that in the older koryu arts, the teachers or senior members usually took the role of uke. teachers should know how to attack and how to respond/ukemi. over time, the students will learn how to attack and respond similar to the teacher(s). methink, the uke role is much more difficult than nage, because uke really should be the one who teach.

the statue attack is a common problem of aikido and other arts as well. the other problem is no defensive measure for the attack, i.e. the non-attacking arm dangling on the side. every time i am doing nage role and uke drops the non-attacking arm, i usually reach out and slap nage's face lightly; the intensity of the slap increases if nage doesn't pay attention. the old saying "in every attack, there should be a defense; in every defense, there should be an attack" applies.
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Old 09-29-2010, 03:00 PM   #9
tarik
 
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
read somewhere that in the older koryu arts, the teachers or senior members usually took the role of uke. teachers should know how to attack and how to respond/ukemi. over time, the students will learn how to attack and respond similar to the teacher(s). methink, the uke role is much more difficult than nage, because uke really should be the one who teach.

the statue attack is a common problem of aikido and other arts as well. the other problem is no defensive measure for the attack, i.e. the non-attacking arm dangling on the side. every time i am doing nage role and uke drops the non-attacking arm, i usually reach out and slap nage's face lightly; the intensity of the slap increases if nage doesn't pay attention. the old saying "in every attack, there should be a defense; in every defense, there should be an attack" applies.
You know you've been using FB too long when you want to "like" a specific post without actually offering a full comment on it. ;-)

Best,

Tarik Ghbeish
Jiyūshin-ryū AikiBudō - Iwae Dojo

MASAKATSU AGATSU -- "The true victory of self-mastery."
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Old 11-11-2010, 06:04 AM   #10
ruthmc
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

There is probably a degree of monkey see - monkey do coming into this as well - if the instructor is demonstrating the finer points of a technique, his uke has to freeze at certain points in order to let him get on with the explanation in sequence.

Students may either consciously or subconsciously think that it's ok for uke to move like that when they partner up to practise...

Ruth
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Old 11-15-2010, 10:19 PM   #11
nuxie
 
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

HAHA I am so bad about being a statue.. I am learning to be a good Uke though.. I have learned in Aikido you also have to learn how to be an Uke as well as a Nage!!
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:55 AM   #12
Walter Martindale
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Re: Stat-u? Uke?

I guess it depends on the situation - slow-mo demo or training...

One of the shihan whose seminars I've attended says "all aikido is henka waza" and "Nage initiates" So if Nage initiates with (say) something like a shomen, uke responds with something akin to shomen-ikkyo, nage then changes to iriminage.
ad infinitum.
Cheers,
Walter
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