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Old 11-20-2010, 06:25 AM   #1
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
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Smile YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Four videos for your musings.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LiRfJppQJcQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jt-aqDPqF7M

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fTSjj8eQkI

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPidmEdPTNM
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:36 AM   #2
Marc Abrams
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Re: Golden Center Sword

maybe it is just my "bad eyes"..... The Aikido and sword work appears to be missing a lot of basics in your clips. The sword work itself, demonstrated a genuine lack of understanding of proper use of swords.

Simply looks to me like collusive training which makes people feel good, while imparting precious little in terms of any martial skills.

Marc Abrams
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Old 11-20-2010, 06:53 PM   #3
Janet Rosen
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Re: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Simply looks to me like collusive training which makes people feel good, while imparting precious little in terms of any martial skills.
Yep, just as I saw in the empty hands vids.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:36 PM   #4
kewms
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

If I were going to post a demo video of myself, I would find more skillful ukes than shown here. Without a decent attack, I could be the second coming of O Sensei and I'd still look terrible.

Also, was there a reason for speeding up the last video? It looks kinda silly, honestly.

Katherine

Last edited by kewms : 11-20-2010 at 07:45 PM.
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Old 11-26-2010, 12:54 PM   #5
graham christian
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Wink Re: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
maybe it is just my "bad eyes"..... The Aikido and sword work appears to be missing a lot of basics in your clips. The sword work itself, demonstrated a genuine lack of understanding of proper use of swords.

Simply looks to me like collusive training which makes people feel good, while imparting precious little in terms of any martial skills.

Marc Abrams
You're welcome. 1)What is collusive training? 2) All training should make people feel good in Aikido. 3) Martial principles are hard to see by the uninformed.
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Old 11-26-2010, 12:55 PM   #6
graham christian
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Re: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Yep, just as I saw in the empty hands vids.
Never heard of that.
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Old 11-26-2010, 01:06 PM   #7
graham christian
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Wink Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
If I were going to post a demo video of myself, I would find more skillful ukes than shown here. Without a decent attack, I could be the second coming of O Sensei and I'd still look terrible.

Also, was there a reason for speeding up the last video? It looks kinda silly, honestly.

Katherine
If I wanted to do a demo video of myself blah blah blah. Been there, done that. All looks great and 'wow look at him' but not for me now.
I prefer just clips taken from normal training where it all looks too easy.

Plus, what's wrong with looking silly?
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Old 11-26-2010, 01:25 PM   #8
Russ Q
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
I prefer just clips taken from normal training where it all looks too easy
Graham, it all looks so easy cause it is....the way you are doing it....Looks like you and your mate were running the dojo that day. I know this is unsolicited advice:-) but you should show what you know. Clearly sword word, the most basic of basics in sword work, requires more study on your part before you instruct it.

I love your laid back attitude (my perception). Take of your hats though. Move your body, connect with your training partners and make yourself sweat...every time you're in the dojo. Don't look back ten years from now only to discover you weren't really training aikido...that's such a huge blow to the ego when you only need chip away at it bit by bit, everyday.....

Good luck to you,

Russ
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Old 11-26-2010, 01:48 PM   #9
kewms
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
If I wanted to do a demo video of myself blah blah blah. Been there, done that. All looks great and 'wow look at him' but not for me now.
I prefer just clips taken from normal training where it all looks too easy.

Plus, what's wrong with looking silly?
Honestly? If that's what your normal training looks like, you're wasting your time.

Katherine
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:12 PM   #10
Chris Covington
 
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

What's with the hats? They look like they should be at a Ziggy Marley concert not in a dojo.

Chris Covington
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:25 PM   #11
Richard Stevens
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

This type of training may not be everyone's cup of tea, but if he and his training partners are getting something out of it and are happy with their methods, more power to them. I personally like intense training sessions involving some pain and lots of sweat, but others may not.
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:55 PM   #12
graham christian
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Thumbs up Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Russ Qureshi wrote: View Post
Graham, it all looks so easy cause it is....the way you are doing it....Looks like you and your mate were running the dojo that day. I know this is unsolicited advice:-) but you should show what you know. Clearly sword word, the most basic of basics in sword work, requires more study on your part before you instruct it.

I love your laid back attitude (my perception). Take of your hats though. Move your body, connect with your training partners and make yourself sweat...every time you're in the dojo. Don't look back ten years from now only to discover you weren't really training aikido...that's such a huge blow to the ego when you only need chip away at it bit by bit, everyday.....

Good luck to you,

Russ
Interesting thoughts Russ.You are quite right, it is easy. To me reading is easy which shows I went through the discipline of learning how to read, the same goes for everything in life.
When I see a person doing something all too easily, be it a golfer, a football player, a martial artist or even a car mechanic who just looks and listens to a car and diagnoses what's wrong with it, then I see someone who has been through the mill.
Now by what you say about sword work I think I can safely assume you think the basics of the sword are to do with physical subari or set cuts of some kind or another, or kata. Mmmmm. Not my way I'm afraid.
First I teach how to cut with Ki, from center and with weight underside from the view of cutting through the universe. Without this then the sword training is a waste of time.
Secondly, as with attacks without the sword, I teach two things to start with:1)He who holds back gets hit. 2)He who runs in, rushes in with great intention and force gets hit harder.
Watching this, especially the second one above all looks very good but is not basic, not worth jot.
Even he who enters with superb technique gets hit.
Then I teach about center line, for the key to Aikiken is ALL to do with center line for the true sword doesn't protect YOU it merely protects center line. It operates from center line, it returns to center line.
Then, more important than all of this is to learn how to enter with no mind, with zanshin, and the spirit of loving protection reaching out and cutting through the universe from the void.
If you understand this then I bow to you. If you don't then it's all good, don't worry about it.
Now, for a time, a period of about ten years, I trained four times a week in the fashion you describe and learned many things. I learned how to relax, how to face and welcome the opponent for to me he is no longer an opponent. How to give myself completely and thus allow the opponent to strike without resisting and thus to see what is happening almost in slow motion so theres no need to rush. Just a simple motion, an aiki motion, and all is done.
So finally let me ask you this: 'Have you ever differenciated between Aikido Technique and Aikido Motion?'
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Old 11-26-2010, 04:59 PM   #13
graham christian
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Chris Covington wrote: View Post
What's with the hats? They look like they should be at a Ziggy Marley concert not in a dojo.
All are welcome in my dojo. If you are a Sikh then you too are welcome with your turban. If you are a robot then you will be confused.But don't worry, I'll still love you.
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Old 11-26-2010, 05:09 PM   #14
graham christian
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Richard Stevens wrote: View Post
This type of training may not be everyone's cup of tea, but if he and his training partners are getting something out of it and are happy with their methods, more power to them. I personally like intense training sessions involving some pain and lots of sweat, but others may not.
Well said. I enjoy watching all types of Aikido for I appreciate what others are doing. In fact I like to learn both ways, but that's me. I show students two ways of the same thing, one I call Samurai and the other I call Buddhist and give them the choice of which they prefer.
Most want to learn the 'soft' way for it's more of a challenge and takes Aikido into the realms of self developement.
G.
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Old 11-26-2010, 05:11 PM   #15
graham christian
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
Honestly? If that's what your normal training looks like, you're wasting your time.

Katherine
Your cup is indeed full, but thank you anyway.
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Old 11-26-2010, 05:40 PM   #16
Russ Q
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Hey Graham,

Clearly you're happy with your training so that's great! I agree one can't tell a whole lot from video...that said, when I look at what you've posted I don't see committed attacks, anyone protecting their center line, any kind of kuzushi or decent timing for that matter....This is just my opinion. One more thing, be careful of being complacent in your practice....sounds like that's what's happened....big time.

Cheers,

Russ
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Old 11-26-2010, 06:45 PM   #17
Abasan
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Graham, I just noticed in the last video that you had your blade down when you drew your ken from your belt. Just practice or is that how you normally do it?

Anyway, I'm not here to sound off on what's good or bad about the way you practice, there's a time and place for relaxed practice and I guess this place is it. You probably could get away with how you set up your dojo in this setting, but if you were to ever do more rigorous training, you might consider protecting that furniture next to the mats. The corner looks like an accident waiting to happen.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 11-26-2010, 06:46 PM   #18
graham christian
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Russ Qureshi wrote: View Post
Hey Graham,

Clearly you're happy with your training so that's great! I agree one can't tell a whole lot from video...that said, when I look at what you've posted I don't see committed attacks, anyone protecting their center line, any kind of kuzushi or decent timing for that matter....This is just my opinion. One more thing, be careful of being complacent in your practice....sounds like that's what's happened....big time.

Cheers,

Russ
Hi Russ.
'I don't see, looks like, sounds like.' Well done1
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Old 11-26-2010, 07:04 PM   #19
graham christian
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Wink Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Ahmad Abas wrote: View Post
Graham, I just noticed in the last video that you had your blade down when you drew your ken from your belt. Just practice or is that how you normally do it?

Anyway, I'm not here to sound off on what's good or bad about the way you practice, there's a time and place for relaxed practice and I guess this place is it. You probably could get away with how you set up your dojo in this setting, but if you were to ever do more rigorous training, you might consider protecting that furniture next to the mats. The corner looks like an accident waiting to happen.
Hi Ahmad.
Not sure what you mean about the sword blade being down.

Granted the corner could be padded up. Rest assured that all students are taught as a priority that it is their duty to protect their attacker in my Aikido. This means they are made fully responsible for the attacker. Peace. G.
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Old 11-26-2010, 07:43 PM   #20
SeaGrass
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Is this the new age aikido i heard about?
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Old 11-26-2010, 07:50 PM   #21
Janet Rosen
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Re: Golden Center Sword

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Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Never heard of that.
Um yes the videos you posted earlier showing training without weapons. Like others who posted in that thread, my teacher's lineage is Tohei Sensei and we include his 4 principles and are explicit about ki in our training- but we are also equally explicit about sincere attacks and martial intent, which I believe is what several of us are saying we don't see in your videos.

Janet Rosen
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Old 11-26-2010, 08:39 PM   #22
graham christian
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Re: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Um yes the videos you posted earlier showing training without weapons. Like others who posted in that thread, my teacher's lineage is Tohei Sensei and we include his 4 principles and are explicit about ki in our training- but we are also equally explicit about sincere attacks and martial intent, which I believe is what several of us are saying we don't see in your videos.
Well done Janet, thats a bit more specific and clearer. So let me say this: You will never see sincere attacks with martial intent in an Aikido video unless you see an Aikidoka using it in a real life situation from some street happening or such.

Then there is what you mean by sincere. A 'slow' sincere cut with tegatana using Ki or weight underside is far more powerful than a fast super physically strong cut believe it or not.

Until a person has experienced this then of course they can't see it. As for the martial intent, well I can only tell you this: Once O'Sensei said true budo is love and then formed Aikido I believe at that point the whole purpose of this martial discipline changed. No longer was it to defeat the enemy or to dominate or to win etc. It was now to harmonise and thus the spiritual side of the techniques and motions needed to be fully understood and experienced which takes far more discipline than mere physical.

Anyway, now that you have pointed out your viewpoint regarding those who say about Tohei and Ki etc. I see where you and others are coming from.

Thank you. G.
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Old 11-27-2010, 01:43 AM   #23
kewms
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Re: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Then there is what you mean by sincere. A 'slow' sincere cut with tegatana using Ki or weight underside is far more powerful than a fast super physically strong cut believe it or not..
I entirely agree.

But I don't see either type of cut in the videos you posted.

*shrug* Enjoy your training.

Katherine
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Old 11-27-2010, 02:47 AM   #24
sakumeikan
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Dear Graham,
Please do not take offense here.Nothing personal.You and your group seem to enjoy what you are doing .Your later blogs indicate that you have some idea of philosophical origins of Aikido. However in my humble opinion[for what it is worth] you are lacking in basic skills both in body art and weaponry.Tohei Sensei
certainly concentrated on relaxation, one point etc but no one ever stated that his waza was ineffective.
Still I am sure you have good intent.I wish you and your students well.
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Old 11-27-2010, 07:24 AM   #25
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: YouTube: Golden Center Sword

Quote:
Bien Nguyen wrote: View Post
Is this the new age aikido i heard about?
I think Graham is beyond new age aikido.

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