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Old 01-09-2011, 04:38 PM   #1
graham christian
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Aikido Weapons

This is some views on the three weapons used in Aikido, namely the Spear, the Sword and the Jo.

Once again I am posting a view of mine for I feel some may benefit from it and many may not have looked at weapons from this viewpoint. Now as it's in the general category I won't translate them spiritually so all those (what's the opposite of Aikibunnies? maybe Aikibulls?) not interested in the ki side of things need not worry.

So first of all-the spear. When you look at the operation of a spear and it's purpose or function you see it is a piercing weapon. It has a point or even two points one at each end and thus we get thrusting actions. All things which have this function ie: darts, bullets even a finger jab work off of certain principles. They follow a straight line. Even if you send a laser beam through a wall or whatever it is piercing and going through.

Now for the view you may not have looked at it from. For all intents and purposes it is operating on ONE dimension.

So when we come to the sword we find it is a cutting impliment and it is fascinating to see it cuts in a straight line yet the tip of the sword always makes a circle. Anyway the point here is that the sword cut is two dimentional. It cuts on a plane.

Then we come to the Jo and we find it is three dimentional. The basic operation of the jo is circular as it turns around its center but it can turn or be turned vertically, horizontally in fact spherically.

Now the difference with the Jo is it can be used as a spear, it can be used as a sword and it can be used as itself. Just seeing this and knowing the differences will improve your handling and understanding of the weapons to that degree.

To me the Jo is like a handle on space, it's diameter, but we won't go there

Suffice to say that as you study and see the difference then you will notice how they fit in with the Aikido techniques that you practice ie; nikkyo and shihonage as the sword, ikkyo as the jo and depending how you finish the technique is whether you keep it as a jo (cicular) or if you finish it by thrusting the person to the floor (spear).

Then you could even take it a step further and notice that when a person is striking or indeed even kicking then he or she is merely giving you a jo (his arm or leg) to practice with.

Much can be learned from these basic views so I hope some find them useful. G. .
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Old 01-09-2011, 05:38 PM   #2
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
This is some views on the three weapons used in Aikido, namely the Spear, the Sword and the Jo.

Once again I am posting a view of mine for I feel some may benefit from it and many may not have looked at weapons from this viewpoint. Now as it's in the general category I won't translate them spiritually so all those (what's the opposite of Aikibunnies? maybe Aikibulls?) not interested in the ki side of things need not worry.

So first of all-the spear. When you look at the operation of a spear and it's purpose or function you see it is a piercing weapon. It has a point or even two points one at each end and thus we get thrusting actions. All things which have this function ie: darts, bullets even a finger jab work off of certain principles. They follow a straight line. Even if you send a laser beam through a wall or whatever it is piercing and going through.

Now for the view you may not have looked at it from. For all intents and purposes it is operating on ONE dimension.

So when we come to the sword we find it is a cutting impliment and it is fascinating to see it cuts in a straight line yet the tip of the sword always makes a circle. Anyway the point here is that the sword cut is two dimentional. It cuts on a plane.

Then we come to the Jo and we find it is three dimentional. The basic operation of the jo is circular as it turns around its center but it can turn or be turned vertically, horizontally in fact spherically.

Now the difference with the Jo is it can be used as a spear, it can be used as a sword and it can be used as itself. Just seeing this and knowing the differences will improve your handling and understanding of the weapons to that degree.

To me the Jo is like a handle on space, it's diameter, but we won't go there

Suffice to say that as you study and see the difference then you will notice how they fit in with the Aikido techniques that you practice ie; nikkyo and shihonage as the sword, ikkyo as the jo and depending how you finish the technique is whether you keep it as a jo (cicular) or if you finish it by thrusting the person to the floor (spear).

Then you could even take it a step further and notice that when a person is striking or indeed even kicking then he or she is merely giving you a jo (his arm or leg) to practice with.

Much can be learned from these basic views so I hope some find them useful. G. .
Me thinks your "ki" is absolute B.S. Graham, the trouble is you just don't realise how deluded you have become. I suggest you go and get some help.... seriously
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Old 01-09-2011, 05:56 PM   #3
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Re: Aikido Weapons

I could maybe accept that the spear is one-dimensional, having never seen its use in aikido (I don't think as used in the ko-ryu it could be called one-dimensional). But I don't see how the jo is any more three-dimensional than the sword. Any argument for the sword as used in aikiken being two dimensional could equally well be applied to the jo; any argument for the jo being three-dimensional could equally well be applied to the sword.

(for an example, see the kumitachi...ki musubi no tachi, say)
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Old 01-09-2011, 07:18 PM   #4
Andrew Macdonald
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Re: Aikido Weapons

I am sorry but these views on weapons are wrong and not useful at all
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Old 01-09-2011, 07:20 PM   #5
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
So when we come to the sword we find it is a cutting impliment and it is fascinating to see it cuts in a straight line yet the tip of the sword always makes a circle. Anyway the point here is that the sword cut is two dimentional. It cuts on a plane.
Graham,
I hate to be negative... but this simply doesn't make sense...

A sword has everything a jo has and more, except the switching the grip from end to end. There are basically four "actions" with a sword. There is cutting (and a couple manifestations of that), slicing, thrusting, and striking (with the tsuka). Add to that "trapping", both with the tsuka the blade, and you have a very versatile weapon. Each of these actions corresponds directly with an empty hand principle. The sword is certainly no more dimensionally limited than jo and has some principles operating which jo doesn't have.

The jo has thrusting... It also has an action that is the same as one of the two cutting actions of the sword (like a cut in kendo with the shinai) but does not have the other (the cut of the live blade in tameshigiri). Certainly it has "trapping" but not really more than the sword... There is some action with a jo that could be considered "slicing" but largely in jo nage but not as striking too much.

Anyway, in talking about spear, you really didn't come close to describing what is there. First, it depends on how long a yari you are talking about. Some are like a jo but with sharpened tip. Some are 12 or more feet long. The shorter spears have everything a jo has plus the ability to slash with the tip and pierce rather than break. Striking with the butt end is standard in yari and naginata, as is striking with the shaft. In many styles of koryu, the bo work is really meant to be what you'd do if the tip of your sword were to come off... most of what you do with a bo, you do with a spear plus some.

So, I am sorry. It makes a nice, tidy presentation to describe the weapons this way but it simply is wrong. Each of these weapons is used multi dimensionally and your distinctions simply ignore that.

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Old 01-09-2011, 08:53 PM   #6
graham christian
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Graham,
I hate to be negative... but this simply doesn't make sense...

A sword has everything a jo has and more, except the switching the grip from end to end. There are basically four "actions" with a sword. There is cutting (and a couple manifestations of that), slicing, thrusting, and striking (with the tsuka). Add to that "trapping", both with the tsuka the blade, and you have a very versatile weapon. Each of these actions corresponds directly with an empty hand principle. The sword is certainly no more dimensionally limited than jo and has some principles operating which jo doesn't have.

The jo has thrusting... It also has an action that is the same as one of the two cutting actions of the sword (like a cut in kendo with the shinai) but does not have the other (the cut of the live blade in tameshigiri). Certainly it has "trapping" but not really more than the sword... There is some action with a jo that could be considered "slicing" but largely in jo nage but not as striking too much.

Anyway, in talking about spear, you really didn't come close to describing what is there. First, it depends on how long a yari you are talking about. Some are like a jo but with sharpened tip. Some are 12 or more feet long. The shorter spears have everything a jo has plus the ability to slash with the tip and pierce rather than break. Striking with the butt end is standard in yari and naginata, as is striking with the shaft. In many styles of koryu, the bo work is really meant to be what you'd do if the tip of your sword were to come off... most of what you do with a bo, you do with a spear plus some.

So, I am sorry. It makes a nice, tidy presentation to describe the weapons this way but it simply is wrong. Each of these weapons is used multi dimensionally and your distinctions simply ignore that.
Thank you George your view is always welcome. I know each weapon is USED multidimentionally but the main purpose of a blade is to cut and the main purpose of a point is to pierce, thus the differenciation.

When samurai used to test their blades it was through the action of cutting was it not? Need I explain what spears are mainly used for as their primary purpose, just ask a masai warrior.

Now of course I could use a chair like a table but thats not it's primary function. O.k. Having said that I expect a person to extrapolate for themselves the other ways you could use a sword ie: thrusting it like a spear etc. and also look at the slashing of the point of a spear but what is that slashing? Is it not cutting as with the point of a sword for the end portion of a sword is the cutting part.

The point of this thread is to differenciate first and then to see how and when you can use one weapon like another even though they have their primary functions.

When you do a good Nikkyo it is more like a sword cut than any of the other two weapons is it not?

When you do ikkyo it is more like turning a jo and then thrusting it like a spear is it not? Or you could do ikkyo taking the opponents arm back over their head and cutting down with tegatana in which case it would be a cut like a sword would it not? Thus there are two ways to differenciate on the same technique and thus gain a better understanding not so?

I can do shihonage from the viewpoint of the sword and thus do two cuts and get the understanding of it conceptually as well as practically but I can also do it from the way of the jo in a more cicular fashion and I can do it from the way of the spear where I am leading straight out taking their balance stepping through and turning it back to them but this time like a stabbing motion as in psycho. Once again three ways all related to different weapons, they all work as long as the Aiki motion is correct and yet they all have different feelings to both the nage and the uke.

So I put it to you my ideas are not wrong for I pointed out that from the basic differenciation aperson can learn many things. If I had said they were the whole of all there is to weapons then I would indeed be wrong.

As I've said before your views are welcome and respected. However I only say things on this forum that I can personally see and do and demonstrate, otherwise I say nothing. How anyone can criticise when they can't personally do it themselves is what I find strange. If a person doesn't believe what is being said he can always ask for clarification and then agree or not. This does mean I don't look foreward to constructive criticism but the truth of the matter is only those who can already do what is being said can criticise constructively, the rest are on another mission.

Now I believe you already know most of what I've said and so I wonder why you put it down. Or am I wrong?

Regards.G.
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Old 01-10-2011, 12:02 AM   #7
Janet Rosen
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Um ... OK so in the first post you posit a very simplistic view of three weapons. When this is criticized, you reply by offering that - if I am reading it correctly - any given aikido technique, depending on HOW it is applied, can be likened to pretty much any weapon or weapon-like action.
To which my thought is: if anything can exemplify anything, what exactly is the teaching point we are supposed to take away?

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Old 01-10-2011, 12:25 AM   #8
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
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Or am I wrong?
Yes.
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Old 01-10-2011, 01:27 AM   #9
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
When you do a good Nikkyo it is more like a sword cut than any of the other two weapons is it not?
Actually Graham, if you do Nikkyo like a sword cut. anyone with strong wrists will stop it dead. Nikkyo actually has more in common with the staff. The late Koriwa Yoshio used short sticks to demonstrate this action.

Quote:
When you do ikkyo it is more like turning a jo and then thrusting it like a spear is it not? Or you could do ikkyo taking the opponents arm back over their head and cutting down with tegatana in which case it would be a cut like a sword would it not? Thus there are two ways to differentiate on the same technique and thus gain a better understanding not so?
Sure, I can do an ikkyo that utilizes certain principles as the thrust or the cut, In either case, it is not specific to a weapon but to an action with one of several possible weapons. I could perform the action referred to with either a sword or a staff.

Quote:
I can do shihonage from the viewpoint of the sword and thus do two cuts and get the understanding of it conceptually as well as practically but I can also do it from the way of the jo in a more cicular fashion and I can do it from the way of the spear where I am leading straight out taking their balance stepping through and turning it back to them but this time like a stabbing motion as in psycho. Once again three ways all related to different weapons, they all work as long as the Aiki motion is correct and yet they all have different feelings to both the nage and the uke.
I am not saying that you can't do various techniques using the various principles described. You can. I am saying that each of these principles can be found in the various weapons mentioned. You started with overly simplified statements about particular weapons embodying certain of the principles and and ignored the fact that all of these weapons are used variously depending on the situation. One can cut with a sword and one can cut with a jo. One can thrust with a staff and thrust with a sword. Your original oversimplification was incorrectly stated and made it appear that you had little familiarity with the weapons being described.

Quote:
So I put it to you my ideas are not wrong for I pointed out that from the basic differentiation a person can learn many things. If I had said they were the whole of all there is to weapons then I would indeed be wrong.
No disagreement here at all. This isn't what I questioned. I simply said that your categorization of the various weapons was imprecise and misleading and due to that fact the analogies you used were unclear and not very helpful.

Quote:
As I've said before your views are welcome and respected. However I only say things on this forum that I can personally see and do and demonstrate, otherwise I say nothing. How anyone can criticise when they can't personally do it themselves is what I find strange. If a person doesn't believe what is being said he can always ask for clarification and then agree or not. This does mean I don't look foreward to constructive criticism but the truth of the matter is only those who can already do what is being said can criticise constructively, the rest are on another mission.

Now I believe you already know most of what I've said and so I wonder why you put it down. Or am I wrong?
Regards.G.
Yes, I can in fact do what I have been discussing. I bothered "to put it down" because what you had stated was misleading for those here on the forum who do not have the background I have. You throw material out, as if you are sharing your experience and knowledge but don't expect that if what you are saying directly conflicts with the experience and knowledge of someone else that they will say something about it. There are people who post here who really know something about weapons work. I have trained with a number of them. If you want to post and not have critical responses regarding your posts, then you need to sound like one of them because oft times you do not. You may know, I have never met you. But your posts do not indicate that you do and on the forums, barring personal experience with someone who is posting, the verbal expression of your experience is all anyone has to go on. You have kindly added video clips but I have to say that the clips you have chosen have not made it more clear to me than your posts. Tony is less polite... perhaps unnecessarily blunt at times. I am open to having my mind changed but I would have to read or see something I haven't yet.

Last edited by George S. Ledyard : 01-10-2011 at 01:33 AM.

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Old 01-10-2011, 02:15 AM   #10
niall
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Re: Aikido Weapons

This classification of weapons is familiar, clear and normal to anyone who uses weapons analytically.

Spear thrust along a line - one dimension.

Sword cut along a plane - two dimensions.

Jo used as for both of those plus rotating similar to a sphere - three dimensions.

It's the differentiation used in hoplology - the analytical study of combat systems.

Quote:
The system analysis was purely meant as a field tool to provide a shorthand idea of how a system or weapon was being used. It was to be a backup for photos and video. For example, we would look at a weapon, its striking edge or point, the target it was being aimed at, and how it moved to the target. So, for example, you say a curved sword. Well, it is a cutting-edge weapon, and its aimed effect on the target is to achieve some type of trenchant action, a cut; generally speaking, the blade moves through an arc. If we look at a spear, you are not looking for a trenchant action so much as a perforation or penetration effect on the target, and the spear point is going to move to the target in a line. All right, so these were the basics of it, and you can pretty much define any weapon in that manner. http://www.hoplology.com/articles_detail.asp?id=9

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Old 01-10-2011, 07:37 AM   #11
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Niall Matthews wrote: View Post
This classification of weapons is familiar, clear and normal to anyone who uses weapons analytically.
How useful is a system of categorization that ignores what happens in the real world? Not talking about corner cases here, or "well, in theory you could...", but examples of standard techniques that are taught in various ryu, and that defy this "dimensional" categorization of the three weapons.
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Old 01-10-2011, 08:49 AM   #12
Keith Larman
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Niall Matthews wrote: View Post
This classification of weapons is familiar, clear and normal to anyone who uses weapons analytically.

Spear thrust along a line - one dimension.
Sure, but only if you're just talking about one small subset of how the yari was used, ignoring the vast complexity of the weapon as it was made and used. I think what people are pointing out is that it misses a vast domain of how the yari (as an example) was used historically. It is a gross oversimplification. But I'd agree if you're only talking about one movement -- the thrust. But even within that thrust (say you're using a jumonji yari) there's a lot more potentially going on.

If you're only focusing on that in exclusion to anything else and not making any points about anything else such as the larger nature of the diverse weapons systems of Japan, well, fine. But these weapons didn't appear out of the blue. They have a history and an evolution. And there are vestiges of the evolution still contained within. Also, remember that in many martial arts styles there was a consistency of training that reflected that they wanted what worked with the stick to also work with the yari (as an example). So you might see a movement with a jo that looked odd to your eye. You'd be missing the point. The movement is to learn to move a certain way so it would be effective if you're using the jo *or* the yari. You train to be consistent across "weapons platforms" to ensure proper mechanics. But that's probably another post there... Back to yari -- what I wanted to post on having long been a fan of antique yari blades.

Many in the world of nihonto collecting feel the word 'spear' is a misleading word when used to describe the Japanese yari. Most collectors just call them yari knowing full well that saying spear just muddies the waters. Spear brings up images of a stick with a sharpened head and that image often leaves people with a very limited idea of both how they were used and how they might look. In most cultures the spear is just wood with a sharpened head - one of the simplest of weapons. The spear can be used as a thrusting weapon and it is often also used as a projectile (think of a javelin). The Japanese yari is vastly more complex (leave it to the Japanese to take something to the Nth degree of complexity and refinement).

Yari "points" are incredibly diverse reflecting the variety of ways they could have been used with the notion of a 'spear' being only a subset. Even the smallest yari is more than a sharpened point -- they literally have a "ha" (edge) running on at least 2 sides. The smallest of them have a few inches of cutting surface for cutting movements. But beyond that there are a huge variety of yari that are vastly larger, longer, many with multiple, complex blade surfaces. In this day and age of google I'll let you guys do the footwork, but look up the varieties of jumanji yari for example. Within jumanji yari there are probably another 20-30 subtypes of different blade shapes, sizes, proportions, etc. These are yari with cross blades that are incredibly complex and sharpened along *all* those edges. It can cut on the thrust, on the pull, on a cut, heck, I couldn't figure out how the heck the polisher even manages to polish the (literally) bloody things.

And if you want to see some really interesting shapes look up styles like these... Tsukagata. Kuwagata. Tsukikami. Karamata. Kakehazushi (variation of jumoji). Katakama. Or for a really bad nightmarish style, look up the Futamata yari which is actually two very long "katana-like" blades oriented such that the nakago align creating a large "V" going forward with the sharpened parts on the inside of the 'V'. "OFF WITH HIS HEAD!" Yikes.

Sure, they're thrusting weapons. And cutting weapons. And some could take the legs off a charging horse. Some could do massive damage being pulled back. Some even had secondary blades or guards mouted 2/3rd down the pole. All these variations meant a great deal of variation in how they were used. They were certainly not weapons limited to our simplistic notions.

And I've not bothered talking about all the types of ishizuki you'd see on the various Japanese pole-arms, some of which were made to clearly leave a mark on your forehead (over the skull fracture underneath). I remember one I had for a while that I pulled off a really nice naginata. Sharpened point of iron that looked like a hershey's kiss if that helps with the imagery. The thing was hefty. I remember mounting it temporarily on a pole I had and thrusting a tree in my yard. Amazing the damage it could do. I didn't try using it for a strike as it wasn't attached correctly, but imagine having a heavy piece of iron on the end of a long pole hitting you under the chin in a hard rising strike -- soft food forever.

The point is that the yari is a very complex weapon and the usage would vary depending not only on the yari itself (jumoji vs. nata yari for instance) but also depending on the training of the person holding it. Sure, you can focus on a very tiny subset of how the weapon could be used then make some observations about relationships. This is taking this to an extreme, but that would be like saying that a gun can be used to knock out an opponent with its heavy barrel (which is true of course) and building up a nice weapons theory based on guns being a bludgeon. Of course it *can* be used as such, but you're missing a heck of a lot of details about the way a gun works.

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Old 01-10-2011, 09:22 AM   #13
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Thanks Keith. Those details are interesting and really deserve a thread of their own - it would be a pity for them to be lost in the middle of this thread. But knowing all that isn't going to help you deal with a tsuki attack. Thinking of it as a one-dimensional thrust along a line certainly might. Which was perhaps Graham's point.

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Old 01-10-2011, 09:38 AM   #14
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Re: Aikido Weapons

I think the issue for many is that there is simplification for the purposes of teaching (a necessary thing) then there is being overly simplistic (i.e., simplifying to the point of losing essential information and giving what becomes a misleading account).

I think there is some value in breaking down into the dimensions as Graham has done. I've done similar things in a weapons class but always made a point to explain how we're looking only at one very small aspect of a particular movement and cautioning against making any sort of generalizations about how the weapon was or should be used based on that simplification. It might be just fine for a really basic, intro class if presented with a larger context to make sure students don't generalize too much. But that need to contextualize may in fact call into question whether it was a good idea to go that way in the first place.

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Old 01-10-2011, 09:41 AM   #15
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Re: Aikido Weapons

My weapons experience is pretty limited, but I don't know that this model really corresponds with what I've seen either... E.g., where do blocks and parries with the bokken come into this, or more complicated cuts involving rotation of the body during the cut?

Last edited by Basia Halliop : 01-10-2011 at 09:45 AM.
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Old 01-10-2011, 09:45 AM   #16
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
Where do blocks and parries with the bokken come into this?
You mean like watersheds?
Aikiken, doesn't really have traditional parries in its movements from my understanding.

Watersheds are circular means of deflecting and getting under/past some common strikes, which lead back into a cut.

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Old 01-10-2011, 09:48 AM   #17
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Re: Aikido Weapons

I'm probably using the wrong terminology, I'm slow at terminology... roughly speaking I'm thinking of all the times you use your sword to move the other person's sword...

also to get around it, etc
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Old 01-10-2011, 09:59 AM   #18
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Re: Aikido Weapons

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Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
You mean like watersheds?
Aikiken, doesn't really have traditional parries in its movements from my understanding.

Watersheds are circular means of deflecting and getting under/past some common strikes, which lead back into a cut.
I've never heard the term "watershed" used to describe this (I'm guessing you mean things like kiri gaeshi?). What's the origin of this term?
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Old 01-10-2011, 10:29 AM   #19
George S. Ledyard
 
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Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Aikiken, doesn't really have traditional parries in its movements from my understanding.
Hi Maggie,
I think this may be style specific. There might be certain teachers whose sword work doesn't have traditional parries but certainly the sword work I was taught had pretty much all the elements one would find in more traditional sword.

Saito Sensei's break down of O-Sensei's sword forms the back bone of what many folks consider Aikiken. But so many great Aikido teachers didn't follow that model that it's really hard to call anything Aikiken and have it mean anything specific. Gleason Sensei's sword work looks nothing like Saito Sensei's and Saotome Sensei's doesn't look like either one.

In my book what makes sword work "aikiken" is that the weapons technique is utilizing the same principles as the empty hand. One should be able to do a weapons technique and talk about how that applies in empty hand and visa versa. This was, in fact, what Graham was doing and I agree that it is useful for having folks understand their empty hand. The whole logic of Aikido (and Daito Ryu for that matter) is really weapons related since the samurai were really walking weapons systems.

However, given the wide range of what people even consider "aiki" in the first place, I don't see that folks will reach any agreement about what constitutes "aiki"-sword in any very specific sense.

Last edited by George S. Ledyard : 01-10-2011 at 10:35 AM.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
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Old 01-10-2011, 11:01 AM   #20
Keith Larman
Location: California
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Re: Aikido Weapons

FWIW I just remembered that the Northern California Japanese Sword club has a page on Yari on their site. Just fwiw. They list a few of the common yari shapes showing proportions quite well.

Northern California Sword Club page on Yari.

They're a great club, btw. They put on the best sword show in the US IMHO in San Francisco every August.

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Old 01-10-2011, 11:26 AM   #21
RED
Join Date: Apr 2009
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Hi Maggie,
I think this may be style specific. There might be certain teachers whose sword work doesn't have traditional parries but certainly the sword work I was taught had pretty much all the elements one would find in more traditional sword.

Saito Sensei's break down of O-Sensei's sword forms the back bone of what many folks consider Aikiken. But so many great Aikido teachers didn't follow that model that it's really hard to call anything Aikiken and have it mean anything specific. Gleason Sensei's sword work looks nothing like Saito Sensei's and Saotome Sensei's doesn't look like either one.

In my book what makes sword work "aikiken" is that the weapons technique is utilizing the same principles as the empty hand. One should be able to do a weapons technique and talk about how that applies in empty hand and visa versa. This was, in fact, what Graham was doing and I agree that it is useful for having folks understand their empty hand. The whole logic of Aikido (and Daito Ryu for that matter) is really weapons related since the samurai were really walking weapons systems.

However, given the wide range of what people even consider "aiki" in the first place, I don't see that folks will reach any agreement about what constitutes "aiki"-sword in any very specific sense.
My school's weapon work has lineage from Chiba Sensei/DiAnne Sensei (through one instructor) and Sugano Sensei (through another instructor). All I know is what some people traditionally call parries, our instructors have been very clear to point out that what we are performing is not a true parry. They use the term watershed in place of parry, there is some technical difference in which is beyond my grade to differentiate.

MM
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Old 01-10-2011, 11:34 AM   #22
RED
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Re: Aikido Weapons

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I've never heard the term "watershed" used to describe this (I'm guessing you mean things like kiri gaeshi?). What's the origin of this term?
It like what people are calling parry. Defense from an over head attack. There is an issue of terminology. My instructor's have always been clear to say it isn't a true parry what we are doing...that's where me personal confusion comes from.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUfDlFOg74g <-- closest thing I could find.

MM
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Old 01-10-2011, 12:16 PM   #23
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Maggie, I just wondered why the use of the word "watershed", which I've always heard used to describe a drainage basin, or (metaphorically) a dividing point.
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Old 01-10-2011, 12:19 PM   #24
RED
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Maggie, I just wondered why the use of the word "watershed", which I've always heard used to describe a drainage basin, or (metaphorically) a dividing point.
I think it has to do with the movement and the function of the movement. I've heard more than once an instructor that calls it "watershed" describing it as an actual watershed; like a slanted roof shielding your head from rain. The slant in the parry/watershed/whatever deflects a downward attack off and away from your center as you enter to strike. The energy from the attack deflecting off the watershed is also redirected into your own cut to power your counter attack.

MM
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Old 01-10-2011, 01:03 PM   #25
Basia Halliop
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Re: Aikido Weapons

Whatever you call them, they're 3-D .
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