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Old 06-14-2011, 02:59 AM   #126
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jonathan Olson wrote: View Post
Well, I train in aikido. I meant the IS/IP/IT/Ki, whatever. But you knew that anyway.

Nothing wrong with showing basics, but when it stops there, you get a "so what" reflex, especially from those that train "hard", as they say. Me, when I see great claims of martial power and effectiveness, I have a gut reaction that says "show me". And demos of basic exercises with cooperative partners don't show that (I've tried to walk mma type youtube commenters through the basics and objectives of my dan exam clips, so I speak from experience).
How refreshing, someone who isn't afraid to say what they is thinking....
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:16 AM   #127
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jonathan Olson wrote: View Post
I don't know Dan, there have been a couple of people who have gone out of their way to put up videos of their own for comparison, but I don't recall anybody with "educated eyes" giving much useful feedback. Chris Hein's videos of push tests and his reproductions of exercises from videos of Akuzawa come to mind. Their is no reason to hold back comments on videos from people asking for those comments. I also think Tony has definitely deserved a thorough deconstruction of his videos (no need to be polite with him, he would see it as weakness I think).

I've been watching these discussions here for years now, it's been a while since anybody really said anything new. For the record, I'd love to see and feel what you do in person to put all this blablabla in perspective. But it bugs me that I don't even know what you look like or have any idea of how you move or what your training entails.

On a more general note, the video I want to see from the aiki folks is not another push test or a bunch of followers falling over for their teachers. I want to see what happens when two people of real skill train with each other, when it's not a given who will end up staring at the ceiling. You claim to train that way Dan, that's what I'd like to see.
Jonathan, I think it bugs a lot of people if they were really honest, I just keep chipping away until I'm satisfied that the person is being upfront about who they are and what they do..... I just don't take it seriously from people who have trained seminars and come away with the "alleluia bit" (The I've discovered god or jesus has come into my life bit comes to mind) Please all Christians don't take that as being offensive I was brought up as a roman candle.....
I don't profess to have something fantastic or have something that no one else has and then market it on a forum without any previous...
I think it's only natural that one would check up first to buy something on the internet.... There are cases of people that have done so and have lost or wasted their money, but don't like to admit they have been taken for a mug, nothing new.....
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:33 AM   #128
john.burn
 
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Attilio Anthony John Wagstaffe wrote: View Post
I think it's only natural that one would check up first to buy something on the internet.... There are cases of people that have done so and have lost or wasted their money, but don't like to admit they have been taken for a mug, nothing new.....
Tony,

When you've been given the chance to sample it for free, no money up front with no need for a full money back guarantee offer, a completely free 'no obligation to buy' trial then why would you refuse such an offer based on your comments above?

Seems like you've never answered that very point yet many have asked and noted it... You could have seen and felt first hand - way better than watching some fake video...

Best Regards,
John

www.chishindojo.co.uk
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:48 AM   #129
oisin bourke
 
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jonathan Olson wrote: View Post
Well, I train in aikido. I meant the IS/IP/IT/Ki, whatever. But you knew that anyway.
Sure. It was my attempt at on-line humour.
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:56 AM   #130
graham christian
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
Graham, I haven't commented on the Tohei video you posted because I don't have much that's useful to say. What I see in it is a lot of bouncy-bouncy external movement. That may be expressive of a certain use of ki and connection for all I know, but it has nothing to do with the kind of connection I'm working on right now. Contrast it with the vid of Numata Sensei I posted (picking on him just to keep away from any IS/IP controversy). What I see there is connection and power delivered through a relaxed structure so easily that there's no need for a lot of external movement. *That's* what I'm going for. So it's a different path.

I have to say in response to Janet, just to rant for a bit, that I'm very tired of schools which say "Oh, we have all that aiki in our basic exercises, it's just that no one does them right." I bought that once, but now I've experienced one system that trains the internals directly--you can't help but practice the right internals unless you're wearing your iPod to class. And another system which doesn't talk the internals at all (so far in my experience) but locks the body movements in in such a way that if you do the exercises at all, you can't help but practice the right internals.

So I say, if you have a bunch of students all of whom are doing the exercises without knowing why or moving with the right internals, your system has failed. Not the students, not even the teachers--the system. This stuff does not have to be so flipping esoteric. And I'd suggest, respectfully, exploring some of the options and see what's worth importing into your style.
Hugh. You are right, you don't know what Tohei is doing and so you see it as you describe.

The specific vid you mention, where exactly is it? I have seen the William Gleason videos and have commented on them, positive I might add.

You are also right in saying this stuff doesn't have to be so flippin esoteric. It doesn't HAVE to be. However mine IS.

Now saying if internals are missing then my system has failed is like me saying if your system doesn't relate the principles spiritually to universal love, loving protection etc. then yours has failed. A silly statement.

I see principles involved in William Gleasons videos and how he's applying them and if his students are loving it and learning and progressing then that's great by me. I also see principles of what I do not in them but for me to say he should explore such and incorporate them into his would be a bit arrogant on my part and totally unnecessary.

Now I'm not saying I cannot learn something from any other system which add to or benefit my own but that's so obvious it doesn't need saying or indeed mean telling others they need this or that.

It's simple really. A biologist may find the answer he is looking for when watching a programme on physics and thus improve his understanding in his field.

Regards.G..
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Old 06-14-2011, 04:02 AM   #131
mrlizard123
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
John Burn wrote: View Post
why would you refuse such an offer based on your comments above?
Apparently because going to a seminar and coming back with any first hand experience leaves you less qualified to discuss the subject (which in this case was not teaching us how to do aikido) due to the delusions you acquire whilst attending; no one has the ability to see through a con or if they do they wouldn't talk about it because everyone is too frightened of what people might think.

It's much clearer now; less exposure = greater knowledge.

Ars longa, vita brevis, occasio praeceps, experimentum periculosum, iudicium difficile
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Old 06-14-2011, 07:08 AM   #132
HL1978
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jonathan Olson wrote: View Post
I don't know Dan, there have been a couple of people who have gone out of their way to put up videos of their own for comparison, but I don't recall anybody with "educated eyes" giving much useful feedback. Chris Hein's videos of push tests and his reproductions of exercises from videos of Akuzawa come to mind. Their is no reason to hold back comments on videos from people asking for those comments. I also think Tony has definitely deserved a thorough deconstruction of his videos (no need to be polite with him, he would see it as weakness I think).

I've been watching these discussions here for years now, it's been a while since anybody really said anything new. For the record, I'd love to see and feel what you do in person to put all this blablabla in perspective. But it bugs me that I don't even know what you look like or have any idea of how you move or what your training entails.

On a more general note, the video I want to see from the aiki folks is not another push test or a bunch of followers falling over for their teachers. I want to see what happens when two people of real skill train with each other, when it's not a given who will end up staring at the ceiling. You claim to train that way Dan, that's what I'd like to see.
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=251
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=155
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=173
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=269
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=311
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=414

Now, no one did an in depth analysis of Chris's video. That being said, read my post, #155. While I wrote that prior to chris's video, the comments on comparing how most new people do that exercise, vs what Ark is trying to do mostly apply.

While a more educated eye may see how Ark is doing his movement, I think most can see how Chris is powering his movement. They don't look the same to me.

Now before anyone ask's where my videos are (they do exist on the QJ forum, but I am not on QJ), I've remodled a house, I just got married, and spent a week at an iaido seminar so not really much chance of filming a video with a partner. When I do a video though, I will try my best to have a partner who outweighs me by 50% or more as I do have some training partners who meet that criteria.

Last edited by HL1978 : 06-14-2011 at 07:13 AM.
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:22 AM   #133
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
John Burn wrote: View Post
Tony,

When you've been given the chance to sample it for free, no money up front with no need for a full money back guarantee offer, a completely free 'no obligation to buy' trial then why would you refuse such an offer based on your comments above?

Seems like you've never answered that very point yet many have asked and noted it... You could have seen and felt first hand - way better than watching some fake video...
John, why would it be fake? If Dan is as honourable as you all say he is, then what is the problem with putting one up? Dan keeps saying a flat no, I keep saying please, I am trying to be a bit more open, but I am finding it strange as to why he will not? As I have said Graham has made some valid points that seem reasonable to think to me, I'm more blunt and abrasive for good reason as there is no history on the feller yet everybody I have come into contact with in the MA world whether good or bad, you can check up on..... With Dan a big zilch, other than he is a smithy of sorts or what his "followers" give over..... It's not enough for me, sorry.....
The MA world is precarious enough let alone "guru's" who claim such knowledge, is it surprising?
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:51 AM   #134
john.burn
 
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

But what would you have lost in turning up and meeting the guy, a lot of people met up with him prior to the seminar in a park, with no charge for that either lol.

I didn't mean Dan's video would be fake btw, but that might be your interpretation of it. They keep saying unless you know you won't see these things in videos and in reality it might look exceptionally fake to the untrained eye - not that my eye is that well trained either I might add. Forget the video idea, I doubt it will happen anytime soon.

Maybe you should put some video up for people to critique with you clearly demonstrating isometrics / your take on what you think IP is? The one video is by your own admission something that was done off the cuff. Maybe you could demonstrate some very basic low level internal skills - should be easy to show shouldn't it? And no, I won't be doing it on here, this aint about me as I'm just a baby at this stuff but you've been doing it for years...

Back to my main point, why didn't you meet Dan when given the free offer? For me, if I hear someone has the goods in terms of IP then I know who to ask, I know Ikeda sensei and used to ask him, he put me onto a few others who put me onto a few others and you know what, never once did I care about what their background was in terms or art or grade - I took it from personal recommendations from people I'd gotten hold of and felt and thanks to that, met Mike and then latterly Dan. I'll hopefully get over and train with Bill Gleason sometime too over the next year or two as well. Grades don't impress me one bit, we've got way too many self appointed shihans and self graded people in this country it's almost an epidemic - shihan syndrome. Mike n Dan could be ungraded whitebelt yahoo's for all I care (sorry guys), doesn't mean they can't walk the walk. Ikeda sensei regularly gets on the mat wearing a whitebelt and tries new things and new arts to figure more of this stuff out and I'm sure he does it all and meets these people without insisting they put up a video .

Best Regards,
John

www.chishindojo.co.uk
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:52 AM   #135
chillzATL
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Attilio Anthony John Wagstaffe wrote: View Post
yet everybody I have come into contact with in the MA world whether good or bad, you can check up on..... With Dan a big zilch, other than he is a smithy of sorts or what his "followers" give over..... It's not enough for me, sorry.....
The MA world is precarious enough let alone "guru's" who claim such knowledge, is it surprising?
Tony,

what do you mean by "check up on". Sounds to me like just another way of saying "find people who will confirm or deny their skills", yet in Dan's case (and others), that seems to not be good enough for yee.

or "check up on" could also mean that you could get out and get your hands on them and see for yourself, which you also seem to have been offered an opportunity to do and declined.

what gives yo?
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Old 06-14-2011, 10:18 AM   #136
JO
Dojo: Aikikai de l'Université Laval
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Hunter Lonsberry wrote: View Post
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=251
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=155
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=173
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=269
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=311
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showpo...&postcount=414

Now, no one did an in depth analysis of Chris's video. That being said, read my post, #155. While I wrote that prior to chris's video, the comments on comparing how most new people do that exercise, vs what Ark is trying to do mostly apply.

While a more educated eye may see how Ark is doing his movement, I think most can see how Chris is powering his movement. They don't look the same to me.

Now before anyone ask's where my videos are (they do exist on the QJ forum, but I am not on QJ), I've remodled a house, I just got married, and spent a week at an iaido seminar so not really much chance of filming a video with a partner. When I do a video though, I will try my best to have a partner who outweighs me by 50% or more as I do have some training partners who meet that criteria.
I remember your posts from that thread. It was interesting to give them a second look.

Jonathan Olson
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Old 06-14-2011, 10:25 AM   #137
JO
Dojo: Aikikai de l'Université Laval
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Attilio Anthony John Wagstaffe wrote: View Post
Jonathan, I think it bugs a lot of people if they were really honest, I just keep chipping away until I'm satisfied that the person is being upfront about who they are and what they do..... I just don't take it seriously from people who have trained seminars and come away with the "alleluia bit" (The I've discovered god or jesus has come into my life bit comes to mind) Please all Christians don't take that as being offensive I was brought up as a roman candle.....
I don't profess to have something fantastic or have something that no one else has and then market it on a forum without any previous...
I think it's only natural that one would check up first to buy something on the internet.... There are cases of people that have done so and have lost or wasted their money, but don't like to admit they have been taken for a mug, nothing new.....
I don't buy the argument that there are lots of guys out there holding back negative comments because they don't want to admit they have been taken. Complete frauds are usually quickly taken to account.

You calling others frauds without having seen their wares is not a good way of "chipping away", it is needlessly confrontational and will break bridges to people who may have more to offer than you, or I, know.

Truth is you come across not as someone keeping a open but sceptical mind, but more as someone who has made up his mind already.

Jonathan Olson
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:13 AM   #138
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jonathan Olson wrote: View Post
I don't buy the argument that there are lots of guys out there holding back negative comments because they don't want to admit they have been taken. Complete frauds are usually quickly taken to account.

You calling others frauds without having seen their wares is not a good way of "chipping away", it is needlessly confrontational and will break bridges to people who may have more to offer than you, or I, know.

Truth is you come across not as someone keeping a open but sceptical mind, but more as someone who has made up his mind already.
And @ John

I've made my mind up about you's..... And all those who seem to be fans of Desperate Dan..... No one has explained what they have learned from DD or how it might have affected their "aikido" just about what may look fake if a video was put up? How do you know? I might even be quite complimentary. I like some of the stuff that Ark from Aunkai has shown in his video and one can see what he is doing. I have some stuff on my channel but it maybe that it's not up to your expectations. I keep my stuff simple and straight forward, nothing extra sensory or anything like that. I'm sure you have seen it all before. As for isometrics anyone can do them, anytime, anyplace. anywhere...... I call them the "martini" exercises. It isn't difficult once you get the hang of it. One can find tons of isometric exercises on youtube. You can even do them while sat in a car or watching the "box" how hard you make them or how you do them is entirely up to you, what ever suites your needs....
I was first introduced to it during my service with the R.N. and packed on muscle fairly quick. It was a good alternative to weight training as room on-board her majesties frigates at that time was at a premium
By the ways I often lent my torn up worn out old blackbelt to my students when they had forgotten to bring theirs. I always asked them with a smile did they feel any different wearing it? Sometimes a blush, sometimes a sheepish grin..... then put on my spare white belt........ took ukemi for them and even bought the beers for them afterwards if they were skint.....

Just to point out that I believe I was in Nippon when DD was doing his seminar here in the UK so would not have been able to attend anyways, but there you go can't be in two places at once.....

Last edited by Tony Wagstaffe : 06-14-2011 at 11:21 AM.
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:30 AM   #139
hughrbeyer
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Graham Christian wrote: View Post
Now saying if internals are missing then my system has failed is like me saying if your system doesn't relate the principles spiritually to universal love, loving protection etc. then yours has failed.
Just to be clear, what I was saying is that IF you claim to be teaching the internals but most people doing your basic exercises aren't doing them with the internals THEN your system has failed. Not that everyone necessarily has to teach them or has to teach them the same way. That's an interesting point but not the one I was making.

I think I acknowledged that what Tohei was showing in your vid may have its own validity; it's just not what I'm pursuing right now.

The Numata Sensei video is here.
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Old 06-14-2011, 12:24 PM   #140
sakumeikan
Dojo: Sakumeikan N.E. Aikkai .Newcastle upon Tyne.
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
Just to be clear, what I was saying is that IF you claim to be teaching the internals but most people doing your basic exercises aren't doing them with the internals THEN your system has failed. Not that everyone necessarily has to teach them or has to teach them the same way. That's an interesting point but not the one I was making.

I think I acknowledged that what Tohei was showing in your vid may have its own validity; it's just not what I'm pursuing right now.

The Numata Sensei video is here.
Dear Hugh,
Watched the video. NumataSensei has nice posture.The Ukes I am not too sure of, I do not think they are making any real sort of 'attack.'They seem to me to be quite anxious to bite the dust , a bit
too compliant for my taste.
Cheers, Joe.
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Old 06-14-2011, 12:37 PM   #141
Mike Sigman
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Hunter Lonsberry wrote: View Post
Now before anyone ask's where my videos are (they do exist on the QJ forum, but I am not on QJ), I've remodled a house, I just got married, and spent a week at an iaido seminar so not really much chance of filming a video with a partner. When I do a video though, I will try my best to have a partner who outweighs me by 50% or more as I do have some training partners who meet that criteria.
People posting videos is probably not enough, as witness some of the discussions about Chris Heins' mechanics as he videoed his take on some of the internal-strength common demo's.

Generally speaking, internal strength demonstrations are done without much movement; it's part of the idea that 'movement goes to stillness' and it demonstrates a level of body development/training. Take a look at this video, at the ten-second mark, of Ueshiba bouncing someone away with his thigh:

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

Now, Ueshiba is obviously very old in that video and the actual mechanics of the demo can be seen even by the uninitiated to some degree. I prefer to do a lot of videos with even more obvious exaggeration, a lot of times, so let's imagine 3 levels of that same demonstration (assuming equally overly-cooperative students, just as Ueshiba used): (1.) me doing a very slow and exaggerated bounce, (2.) Ueshiba doing a moderately-obvious demonstration, (3.) Wang Xiangzhai doing a Yiquan version where barely a quiver is seen. The point is that without the person in the video doing some verbal description to accompany the video, there's all sorts of room for the viewers to come up with their own interpretations (right or wrong) of what they saw on the film.

Look at the other side of it.... you can show an explicit film of a demonstration to someone who knows little/nothing and without the helpful description of the mechanics, they can go many years with no development other than the ability to say "that version doesn't look like the other version".

Just a side note on something else, BTW..... "Strength" and "Qi/Ki" always go hand in hand. If someone has great strength they have strong qi/ki. "Internal strength" is about a certain way of using qi/ki, but it is not the only way that qi/ki is expressed. Your local weight-lifter has a lot of ki/qi, but he may never have heard of internal strength and may not be able to demonstrate a bit of internal strength.

FWIW

Mike Sigman
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Old 06-14-2011, 12:45 PM   #142
jester
 
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
Take a look at this video, at the ten-second mark, of Ueshiba bouncing someone away with his thigh:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bCjySZuVDkQ
I couldn't get past the Sith Lightning (without the lightning) Technique at the beginning!

-It seems to be all about semantics!
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Old 06-14-2011, 01:07 PM   #143
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Joe Curran wrote: View Post
Dear Hugh,
Watched the video. NumataSensei has nice posture.The Ukes I am not too sure of, I do not think they are making any real sort of 'attack.'They seem to me to be quite anxious to bite the dust , a bit
too compliant for my taste.
Cheers, Joe.
Ditto....
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Old 06-14-2011, 01:41 PM   #144
Hellis
Dojo: Ellis Schools of Traditional Aikido
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Joe Curran wrote: View Post
Dear Hugh,
Watched the video. NumataSensei has nice posture.The Ukes I am not too sure of, I do not think they are making any real sort of 'attack.'They seem to me to be quite anxious to bite the dust , a bit
too compliant for my taste.
Cheers, Joe.
Joe

I wanna uke like that, at my age I need all the help I can get

Henry Ellis
http://aikidoarticles.blogspot.com/
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Old 06-14-2011, 01:45 PM   #145
Gerardo Torres
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
John Burn wrote: View Post
But what would you have lost in turning up and meeting the guy, a lot of people met up with him prior to the seminar in a park, with no charge for that either lol.

I didn't mean Dan's video would be fake btw, but that might be your interpretation of it. They keep saying unless you know you won't see these things in videos and in reality it might look exceptionally fake to the untrained eye - not that my eye is that well trained either I might add. Forget the video idea, I doubt it will happen anytime soon.

Maybe you should put some video up for people to critique with you clearly demonstrating isometrics / your take on what you think IP is? The one video is by your own admission something that was done off the cuff. Maybe you could demonstrate some very basic low level internal skills - should be easy to show shouldn't it? And no, I won't be doing it on here, this aint about me as I'm just a baby at this stuff but you've been doing it for years...

Back to my main point, why didn't you meet Dan when given the free offer? For me, if I hear someone has the goods in terms of IP then I know who to ask, I know Ikeda sensei and used to ask him, he put me onto a few others who put me onto a few others and you know what, never once did I care about what their background was in terms or art or grade - I took it from personal recommendations from people I'd gotten hold of and felt and thanks to that, met Mike and then latterly Dan. I'll hopefully get over and train with Bill Gleason sometime too over the next year or two as well. Grades don't impress me one bit, we've got way too many self appointed shihans and self graded people in this country it's almost an epidemic - shihan syndrome. Mike n Dan could be ungraded whitebelt yahoo's for all I care (sorry guys), doesn't mean they can't walk the walk. Ikeda sensei regularly gets on the mat wearing a whitebelt and tries new things and new arts to figure more of this stuff out and I'm sure he does it all and meets these people without insisting they put up a video .
Hi John,

Good post. I followed the same approach as you when going out to meet people outside the art: If Ikeda, who has skills and experience far beyond mine, recommends this teacher outside the art, who am I to doubt him? I followed similar recommendations from other 5th, 6th and 7th dan teachers and Shihan, some of them I don't even know personally but I respect their experience and reputation. I know my place, my limitations, and I'm not as self-centered or rude as to look past all these recommendations, research and written evidence, and instead ask for some silly video for no other reason than self-gratification.

People going out searching for superior skills based on recommendations and reviews from fellow artists who've had direct experience with those skills -- isn't that how it has worked for centuries? Imagine Yagyu staying home doing the same thing all his life instead of going out to meet Kamiizumi (who's teacher was a quite mysterious figure I believe -- but did it matter once swords were crossed?). Or imagine Ueshiba never touching hands with Takeda, instead looking at some Lumière film and spreading rumors that "he already did that" or "it's all fake" or that Takeda was "a con artist" based on nothing but especulation. With that attitude there would be no martial arts today. Anyway, not that I'm directly comparing us to the greats or their situations but at least we should try to foster the same idea behind musa shugyo and the natural curiosity and aspirations that go with the process -- the whole Internet/video/arm-chairing culture is killing it...

As for the video requests, it's a clear case of the oft-repeated "people not knowing what they don't know". A video without a proper detailed explanation and eventual hands-on is not going to be much help; it's actually going to make it worse for the uninformed. I see a lot of people posting their aikido videos. Now, I'm a complete beginner when it comes to efficient martial movement, yet with the tiny bit of information I have I can still see the nage in these videos (sometimes very highly-ranked) continuously going out of balance even when throwing a ridiculously compliant uke who's sometimes much lighter than the nage. What I see is that these nage cannot even stand properly on two feet in this too-easy scenario, much less move efficiently, and yet they continuously lecture online about real "martial" aikido, self-defense, aiki/IP, etc. Worse yet, such is their delusion that they look at videos of Akuzawa, Gleason or Ikeda and say that they are doing the same thing or similar, and know this aiki/IP stuff already. No. Not even close, and they cannot see it. In fact they will never see it until they go out and meet somebody who can show them where they are failing. I've been there, done that. All it takes is a few hours with a high-level skills teacher and things will become pretty clear pretty soon… but for some people the possibility of learning that they're not as good as they thought they were is terrifying (all those years invested, all those teachers and lineages on the line...).

As somebody who spends a lot of his vacation time and disposable income chasing these sort of opportunities , I find this fear of challenging our outlook utterly bizarre. In fact the history of martial arts has been written by people who at some point or another had their ego crushed, their belief system shatterd, and had to start anew (Ueshiba, for one), so why avoid this learning possibility? I'm so happy I grew up with teachers who also knew their limitations and encouraged us to go be inquisitive and train with as many teachers as possible no matter the art or organization, and never raised us to hold anybody's word as ultimate truth.

Btw if somebody ever asked me to post any videos of myself my response would be: I suck! Why me, when we have all these wonderful videos of Ueshiba, Shioda, etc. Now, on to a final point: we have all these videos of these high exponents, did they help anybody really understand what these men were doing? Did we get it from looking at videos? Can all these people who ask for videos explain what Ueshiba, Shioda, et al were doing based on these videos?

Last edited by Gerardo Torres : 06-14-2011 at 01:47 PM.
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Old 06-14-2011, 02:09 PM   #146
graham christian
Dojo: golden center aikido-highgate
Location: london
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
Just to be clear, what I was saying is that IF you claim to be teaching the internals but most people doing your basic exercises aren't doing them with the internals THEN your system has failed. Not that everyone necessarily has to teach them or has to teach them the same way. That's an interesting point but not the one I was making.

I think I acknowledged that what Tohei was showing in your vid may have its own validity; it's just not what I'm pursuing right now.

The Numata Sensei video is here.
Watched the video and recognised it. Liked his posture and his calmness and his skill. Liked his ability to adapt to the different uke's with a varied array of techniques and motions.

Uke's? Well it does show they are committing themselves but it appears to me they are very unstable. Just my view.

Regards.G.
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Old 06-14-2011, 02:17 PM   #147
Tony Wagstaffe
Location: Winchester
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,211
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Gerardo Torres wrote: View Post
Hi John,

Good post. I followed the same approach as you when going out to meet people outside the art: If Ikeda, who has skills and experience far beyond mine, recommends this teacher outside the art, who am I to doubt him? I followed similar recommendations from other 5th, 6th and 7th dan teachers and Shihan, some of them I don't even know personally but I respect their experience and reputation. I know my place, my limitations, and I'm not as self-centered or rude as to look past all these recommendations, research and written evidence, and instead ask for some silly video for no other reason than self-gratification.

People going out searching for superior skills based on recommendations and reviews from fellow artists who've had direct experience with those skills -- isn't that how it has worked for centuries? Imagine Yagyu staying home doing the same thing all his life instead of going out to meet Kamiizumi (who's teacher was a quite mysterious figure I believe -- but did it matter once swords were crossed?). Or imagine Ueshiba never touching hands with Takeda, instead looking at some Lumière film and spreading rumors that "he already did that" or "it's all fake" or that Takeda was "a con artist" based on nothing but especulation. With that attitude there would be no martial arts today. Anyway, not that I'm directly comparing us to the greats or their situations but at least we should try to foster the same idea behind musa shugyo and the natural curiosity and aspirations that go with the process -- the whole Internet/video/arm-chairing culture is killing it...

As for the video requests, it's a clear case of the oft-repeated "people not knowing what they don't know". A video without a proper detailed explanation and eventual hands-on is not going to be much help; it's actually going to make it worse for the uninformed. I see a lot of people posting their aikido videos. Now, I'm a complete beginner when it comes to efficient martial movement, yet with the tiny bit of information I have I can still see the nage in these videos (sometimes very highly-ranked) continuously going out of balance even when throwing a ridiculously compliant uke who's sometimes much lighter than the nage. What I see is that these nage cannot even stand properly on two feet in this too-easy scenario, much less move efficiently, and yet they continuously lecture online about real "martial" aikido, self-defense, aiki/IP, etc. Worse yet, such is their delusion that they look at videos of Akuzawa, Gleason or Ikeda and say that they are doing the same thing or similar, and know this aiki/IP stuff already. No. Not even close, and they cannot see it. In fact they will never see it until they go out and meet somebody who can show them where they are failing. I've been there, done that. All it takes is a few hours with a high-level skills teacher and things will become pretty clear pretty soon… but for some people the possibility of learning that they're not as good as they thought they were is terrifying (all those years invested, all those teachers and lineages on the line...).

As somebody who spends a lot of his vacation time and disposable income chasing these sort of opportunities , I find this fear of challenging our outlook utterly bizarre. In fact the history of martial arts has been written by people who at some point or another had their ego crushed, their belief system shatterd, and had to start anew (Ueshiba, for one), so why avoid this learning possibility? I'm so happy I grew up with teachers who also knew their limitations and encouraged us to go be inquisitive and train with as many teachers as possible no matter the art or organization, and never raised us to hold anybody's word as ultimate truth.

Btw if somebody ever asked me to post any videos of myself my response would be: I suck! Why me, when we have all these wonderful videos of Ueshiba, Shioda, etc. Now, on to a final point: we have all these videos of these high exponents, did they help anybody really understand what these men were doing? Did we get it from looking at videos? Can all these people who ask for videos explain what Ueshiba, Shioda, et al were doing based on these videos?
They have certainly helped many, me included..... not as a beginner but as a student of many years. So nothing wrong with video as long as it's backed up by proper instruction.....
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Old 06-14-2011, 02:18 PM   #148
Tony Wagstaffe
Location: Winchester
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote: View Post
People posting videos is probably not enough, as witness some of the discussions about Chris Heins' mechanics as he videoed his take on some of the internal-strength common demo's.

Generally speaking, internal strength demonstrations are done without much movement; it's part of the idea that 'movement goes to stillness' and it demonstrates a level of body development/training. Take a look at this video, at the ten-second mark, of Ueshiba bouncing someone away with his thigh:

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

Now, Ueshiba is obviously very old in that video and the actual mechanics of the demo can be seen even by the uninitiated to some degree. I prefer to do a lot of videos with even more obvious exaggeration, a lot of times, so let's imagine 3 levels of that same demonstration (assuming equally overly-cooperative students, just as Ueshiba used): (1.) me doing a very slow and exaggerated bounce, (2.) Ueshiba doing a moderately-obvious demonstration, (3.) Wang Xiangzhai doing a Yiquan version where barely a quiver is seen. The point is that without the person in the video doing some verbal description to accompany the video, there's all sorts of room for the viewers to come up with their own interpretations (right or wrong) of what they saw on the film.

Look at the other side of it.... you can show an explicit film of a demonstration to someone who knows little/nothing and without the helpful description of the mechanics, they can go many years with no development other than the ability to say "that version doesn't look like the other version".

Just a side note on something else, BTW..... "Strength" and "Qi/Ki" always go hand in hand. If someone has great strength they have strong qi/ki. "Internal strength" is about a certain way of using qi/ki, but it is not the only way that qi/ki is expressed. Your local weight-lifter has a lot of ki/qi, but he may never have heard of internal strength and may not be able to demonstrate a bit of internal strength.

FWIW

Mike Sigman
My experience has told me otherwise.....
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Old 06-14-2011, 02:22 PM   #149
Tony Wagstaffe
Location: Winchester
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 1,211
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jonathan Olson wrote: View Post
I don't buy the argument that there are lots of guys out there holding back negative comments because they don't want to admit they have been taken. Complete frauds are usually quickly taken to account.

You calling others frauds without having seen their wares is not a good way of "chipping away", it is needlessly confrontational and will break bridges to people who may have more to offer than you, or I, know.

Truth is you come across not as someone keeping a open but sceptical mind, but more as someone who has made up his mind already.
Clever frauds are not.....
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Old 06-14-2011, 02:27 PM   #150
Tony Wagstaffe
Location: Winchester
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Re: Strength vs Ki.

Quote:
Jason Casteel wrote: View Post
Tony,

what do you mean by "check up on". Sounds to me like just another way of saying "find people who will confirm or deny their skills", yet in Dan's case (and others), that seems to not be good enough for yee.

or "check up on" could also mean that you could get out and get your hands on them and see for yourself, which you also seem to have been offered an opportunity to do and declined.

what gives yo?
It means that the guy has credentials given to him by a recognised teacher well known throughout the MA world who is known to be genuine. They actually do exist even if not in the states where Macdonalds was born and has spread world wide?
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