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Old 10-31-2012, 03:17 PM   #26
Shadowfax
 
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
That's a good generalization, but we're talking about a specific case here. Speaking to the particulars of this case, I think that it really isn't for a student of your own rank, who is supposed to be acting as your uke, to make the decision that it's time for you to self-develop and learn to be willing and able to adjust and change technique. Your fellow student, your peer, is not the one to make decisions about your training -- even with the best of intentions, which is often not the case. Let's not kid ourselves, there are a lot of people who use the guise of "helping" as a fig leaf for ego-gratifying displays of their own superiority.
And my first post suggested that the student enlist the assistance of their teacher in order to determine if they needed to correct themselves or if the uke needed correcting. At that level a fellow student may simply not understand their role as uke because as I noted in my first post the role of uke is not given enough attention in aikido classes which tend to be a lot more focused on nage's role and how to do technique. It is not the students fault if their teacher has not instructed them thoroughly on just what their job as uke is and so they give bad ukemi.

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Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
I agree with, Mary M. If this was happening in my class. I would stop it and use it as a teaching oppurtunity as many times as it presented.

Many students come in with their own ideas. Which is wonderful if they want to teach them at their own dojo.

When you come to our dojo...we train in a certain way and we spend a lot time teaching how to uke and nage because we have ideas about how to train. So if a person shows up to train at our dojo we want them to try hard to do what we are teaching. A third kyu might not understand enough about the idea of what is being taught to teach it themselves.
Again this is why I first suggested enlisting the instructor's assistance.

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Ewen Ebsworth wrote: View Post
It depends what kind of Jujutsu you're refering to? I've never been taught to force any technique. If a technique doesn't work, you change, you adapt or if its kata you work out where you went wrong, you don't try and compensate with strength or brute force. Jujutsu techniques when performed correctly, even against resistance, should require no strength.
If you ready my post in context as to whom I was answering and what we were discussing in the post of mine that you quoted, you would see that we agree.
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Old 10-31-2012, 03:24 PM   #27
Janet Rosen
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

The OP says that to attacker's actually changing up the direction and intent of the attack to turn it into a yonkyo if he doesn't react in time to the incoming energy. That's a lot of incoming energy and I would say that's probably not the problem the instructor is wanting nage to solve.

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Old 10-31-2012, 04:48 PM   #28
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

I tended to think what was meant was that the grip was just strong enough and in the right spot to trigger the pressure point for yonkyo which would not be that hard to do by mistake in that grab.. Maybe I am wrong and the OP meant that it was intentional in which case I would be having a serious private chat with my teacher about the issue to insure that he was aware of the situation and would pay attention and intervene when he sees it happening. And I know my teachers well enough to know that they would not stand for that sort of behavior in the dojo.

At this point if someone were intentionally doing that to me ( and I was sure it was intentional) I would not put up with it. And if the continued to disregard my requests for proper ukemi after sensei had a chat with him, I would probably do something not so nice about it until he got the point.

Another thought to add is that at 3kyu (in my dojo) one can start doing techniques less static and in motion and you don't have to wait until the grab is on before you move into the technique.

Last edited by Shadowfax : 10-31-2012 at 04:51 PM.
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:41 PM   #29
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
I am positing a moderate training path in which uke stays attached and gives feedback, body to body, appropriate to the level of the partner. Incrementally correct movement by nage shows as a reaction in uke. Uke doesn't try to make nage fail - uke's body guides nage to correct movement.

Note the OP is talking about folks who are still working on basic kihon waza. An attack that is always faster and harder than can be handled is not a learning experience.
Agreed.
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Old 11-03-2012, 12:42 AM   #30
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Szczepan Janczuk wrote: View Post
1. Uke is always right.
2. in other cases look at the point number 1

Of course some people will always find a million cheap excuses to justify their poor technique, don't be misled.

Your partner is very right to introduce ‘difficult' attacks; his job is to guide you out of your comfort zone. This is only way only changes can be done in your body, because such situation force you to find new solutions, and consequently it means a jump to higher level of understanding aikido.
I don't think this is necessarily accurate. There's a great piece somewhere by George Ledyard (I'll see if I can find it) in which he writes that he can throw a yokomenuchi that even O-Sensei couldn't shihonage. Anyone can, if they know what technique is coming and set out to thwart it. That's not being realistic or difficult; that's creating a situation built on the premise that the attacker can read the defender's mind and the defender can't alter his course of action. Obviously, there's not much use to training for that scenario.

I myself used to work with an uke who, knowing that a kotegaeshi was coming, would stop his tsuki short and plant like a statue to deprive me of any momentum to work with. He would smirk at this as if he had beaten me, but the truth is that he had just performed an incomplete attack that (a) gave me no reason to defend myself and (b) left him open to all manner of attacks.

There is absolutely such a thing as a bad uke. Just like nage, uke has a job to do, and if he does it wrong, there can be no technique.

My martial arts blog: The Young Grasshopper
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Old 11-03-2012, 04:42 AM   #31
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Matthew Story wrote: View Post
I don't think this is necessarily accurate. There's a great piece somewhere by George Ledyard (I'll see if I can find it) in which he writes that he can throw a yokomenuchi that even O-Sensei couldn't shihonage. Anyone can, if they know what technique is coming and set out to thwart it. That's not being realistic or difficult; that's creating a situation built on the premise that the attacker can read the defender's mind and the defender can't alter his course of action. Obviously, there's not much use to training for that scenario.

I myself used to work with an uke who, knowing that a kotegaeshi was coming, would stop his tsuki short and plant like a statue to deprive me of any momentum to work with. He would smirk at this as if he had beaten me, but the truth is that he had just performed an incomplete attack that (a) gave me no reason to defend myself and (b) left him open to all manner of attacks.

There is absolutely such a thing as a bad uke. Just like nage, uke has a job to do, and if he does it wrong, there can be no technique.
I think you are right. But I also think that sometimes it's hard for me as a 4th kyu to distinguish between difficult uke and bad technique. If I'm tori and I fail, it's important that I determine correctly whether it is caused by difficult uke or bad technique.

Sometimes it is a case of difficult uke. Sometimes the instructor corrects uke to change the attack or other aspects of ukemi. In many cases uke may not even be aware that he is being "difficult".

And with some ukes I just know that my first attempts will fail. Then they might give me some advice and sure enough, after that most of my later attempts will succeed. Every time we pair up, I know it will go like that. I think those are situations where both issues are in play. My technique has flaws and they happen to be people who like to "lecture" me on my flaws. I do get frustrated by this on some occasions, but I keep this to myself. Normally I'm an "easy" uke (I think), but lately, when I think they're just thwarting my technique on purpose, I sometimes cannot help myself from thwarting them once in the same way when it's their turn (I know it's wrong that I do it, because I do it out of frustration, not to help them). It's not hard to make someone fail.

But for me, last week something shed new light on this issue. When the instructor had us practising shomenuchi ikkyo omote he stopped the class. Apparently he saw a tori muttering that his uke was being difficult (yes, I too consider that uke to be a difficult uke of the type I describe above). But the instructor said uke was not to blame in this case. It was tori making a very common mistake. He showed us the mistake and showed us how to do it correctly. It was hard to see the difference, but by telling us what he's doing while he's doing it, the difference was clear. It was a real eye opener to me.
On the other hand, the correction of the instructor (6th dan) seemed different in important details from the correction that this uke (2nd kyu) usually lectures me about, so I should not blindly trust the advice of uke, difficult or not. But perhaps this uke tried to tell me the same thing all along, he just could not get it across, I don't know.

So I learned a couple things:
- don't be too quick in blaming uke when your technique fails
- if you think you fail because of difficult uke, ask the instructor to correct your technique. it could be a great learning opportunity for you (and perhaps uke)
- those learning opportunities could be worth the frustration of difficult uke

I still like ukes better if they build up their resistance, so that in my first attempts they are easy to move, but in later attempts they become more difficult to deal with. I like this better than the other way around.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:34 PM   #32
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
The OP says that to attacker's actually changing up the direction and intent of the attack to turn it into a yonkyo if he doesn't react in time to the incoming energy. That's a lot of incoming energy and I would say that's probably not the problem the instructor is wanting nage to solve.
Trouble is, turning the attack into something like a yonkyo is probably the appropriate thing for the attacker to be doing in this situation. What else would they do? Freeze there and wait for you to sock them with your other hand?

So I'm sympathetic to an uke who's trying to make his attack realistic. The trouble is that you have two people trying to practice above their pay grade--an uke who (so far as we know) doesn't really know if his attack is realistic or not, and the OP who admits he can't handle that attack with his current skills.

And Szczpcz to the contrary, you're not likely to learn anything useful in this situation. The OP is more likely to learn to muscle through the technique than anything else, and the uke isn't learning how his attack has left him open (if it is).

But, given that people are jerks and you mostly have to deal with them as they are, my strategy is to take them as a challenge--how can I deal with them without muscling up? Has their attack left them open? Can I take advantage of that with a little atemi? How does atemi (gently, bloodstains are a pain to get out of the mat) change the situation? If the attack prevents moving the way I thought, how can I move? How can I unbalance them?

The result may not look a whole lot like the technique we're supposed to practice, but at least it's useful to me, which trying to power through it would not be.

Evolution doesn't prove God doesn't exist, any more than hammers prove carpenters don't exist.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:44 AM   #33
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

Quote:
Matthew Story wrote: View Post
I don't think this is necessarily accurate. There's a great piece somewhere by George Ledyard (I'll see if I can find it) in which he writes that he can throw a yokomenuchi that even O-Sensei couldn't shihonage. Anyone can, if they know what technique is coming and set out to thwart it. That's not being realistic or difficult; that's creating a situation built on the premise that the attacker can read the defender's mind and the defender can't alter his course of action. Obviously, there's not much use to training for that scenario.

I myself used to work with an uke who, knowing that a kotegaeshi was coming, would stop his tsuki short and plant like a statue to deprive me of any momentum to work with. He would smirk at this as if he had beaten me, but the truth is that he had just performed an incomplete attack that (a) gave me no reason to defend myself and (b) left him open to all manner of attacks.

There is absolutely such a thing as a bad uke. Just like nage, uke has a job to do, and if he does it wrong, there can be no technique.
Anyone can dream he surpassed O sensei; there is nothing wrong with this. It is excellent motivation to continue training, and in reality we will never know if it is true or not.

I didn't talk about ‘reality' of attack.

Any attack is simply an attack -- categorization (good/bad, competent/incompetent etc) has no sense, it reinforces the false duality in our mind and prevents efficiently reaching the goal of aikido training…

Yes I strongly believe it is quite possible to do efficiently a technique even if attacker knows what technique is coming. In aikido context is very easy because attacker is not countering your technique. And even in judo (with active countering) it is very common.
That is why I think it is a cheap excuse.

Nagababa

ask for divine protection Ame no Murakumo Kuki Samuhara no Ryuo
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:48 AM   #34
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
And Szczpcz to the contrary, you're not likely to learn anything useful in this situation. The OP is more likely to learn to muscle through the technique than anything else, and the uke isn't learning how his attack has left him open (if it is).
.
If it is true, the sparring as a training tool in combat sports would be inefficient. However anybody knows that without sparring you can't learn how to fight efficiently...
So I believe the facts plays against your believes

Nagababa

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Old 11-05-2012, 09:12 AM   #35
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Szczepan Janczuk wrote: View Post

So Janet, what exactly did you learn with 90% of success? After all these long years of training, can you face with confidence stronger, violent, full of hate, possible with weapon, attacker on the street?
Szczepan:

I respectfully disagree with your position on this. A thorough review in the area of Psychology of Learning might open your mind to some other possibilities. If I am trying to "rewire" the person to respond appropriately to stimuli, I seek to keep the person on the border of success and failure with a gross majority of the time, burning in successful movements. That means that the uke really shoulders a lot of responsibility in the role of the teacher. Asking somebody to "muscle through" something simply interferes with proper, effective movements in our art.

The larger issue at hand,is to address the purpose and goals of the uke. If it is not clearly designed to help the nage improve, then the uke is simply acting like the rear-end of a mule.

Marc Abrams
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:34 PM   #36
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

Learning technique (kata), training technique (kata) and practicing aikido (waza) are different interactions.

First, I think we need to be careful about placing restrictions on uke. As a common-sense answer to the basic fight, we attack because we think it will get us somewhere - in fact, for good fighters it will get them somewhere. To attack someone who is guarded without the desire to defeat the guard makes no sense. In kata, we forgo this preamble to speed up our interaction, but we need to remember that uke's job is not to stick out something for us to grab, but to control our center. If someone can grab you, hunker down, and control your center...

For kata, work with your partner. Learn the movements (both uke and nage). Feel free to say, "slow down", or "not so hard". You're figuring out what's going on and you cannot progress until you know what to do. Uke is a partner in this education.

For waza, have at it. Your partner should be able to work within the parameters of the interaction; you can to. He throws atemi... Turnabout is fair play. He prevents the natural development of technique...Henka waza and practice something else. This is where things usually get tricky because accidents can happen. You need to be vocal with your partner about expectations, "You can stop and hold me, but that makes me feel like I should step into your teeth with my unguarded foot. Try moving to regain your balance and posture so you can push my center. "Or, "When you step there that naturally defends my inside movement. If you deliberately step inside to prevent me from stepping inside, I will just step outside and do something else. Sensei wants us practicing inside step, so let's stay within the movement."

Also, role playing sometimes give us bad habits. It is a natural state for us to be balanced and stable. To require uke to hold an unbalanced, undefended state while we crank their wrist is BS. Uke should want to righten themselves, get back their balance and continue the pressure. Eventually it doesn't matter.

To George sensei's point, I have read several articles of the old deshi who implied they would attack O Sensei and have him dead to rights, right up until he closed his suki. Attacking makes sense; otherwise, don't attack.

Last edited by jonreading : 11-05-2012 at 12:37 PM.

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Old 11-05-2012, 01:27 PM   #37
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Szczepan Janczuk wrote: View Post
If it is true, the sparring as a training tool in combat sports would be inefficient. However anybody knows that without sparring you can't learn how to fight efficiently...
So I believe the facts plays against your believes
Sparring in a combat sport is a totally different situation. In the OP's case, he's asked to practice a specific defense; in sparring, you defend (and attack) to exploit whatever situation arises, using whatever you think will work.

Evolution doesn't prove God doesn't exist, any more than hammers prove carpenters don't exist.
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:13 PM   #38
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
Sparring in a combat sport is a totally different situation. In the OP's case, he's asked to practice a specific defense; in sparring, you defend (and attack) to exploit whatever situation arises, using whatever you think will work.
We are talking here about LEARNING, so no, situation is not different...
There are many kinds of sparring, one of them is to do predefined technique against countering opponent - can ppl doing such sparring learn something even if they can't do a technique at all?
It is kind of intermediary step between learning technique in a static situation(typical for aikido training) and dynamic application any technique against any attack....

Nagababa

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Old 11-05-2012, 06:30 PM   #39
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Marc Abrams wrote: View Post
Szczepan:

I respectfully disagree with your position on this. A thorough review in the area of Psychology of Learning might open your mind to some other possibilities. If I am trying to "rewire" the person to respond appropriately to stimuli, I seek to keep the person on the border of success and failure with a gross majority of the time, burning in successful movements. That means that the uke really shoulders a lot of responsibility in the role of the teacher. Asking somebody to "muscle through" something simply interferes with proper, effective movements in our art.

The larger issue at hand,is to address the purpose and goals of the uke. If it is not clearly designed to help the nage improve, then the uke is simply acting like the rear-end of a mule.

Marc Abrams
Hi Marc,
I'm not psychologist so I can't comment. I personally don't want to "rewire" anybody, this is a role (if necessary) of the techniques not mine.
The situation is that nage MUST do everything, even "muscle through", to be sure, that whatever he does, his technique is inefficient. He must be convinced by himself, by his own experience not by somebody 'external' - like i.e. instructor. He must repeat this experience many times, to be without any doubt. He has to hit a wall.
Only then, a jump on higher level is possible.

Nagababa

ask for divine protection Ame no Murakumo Kuki Samuhara no Ryuo
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:54 AM   #40
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Re: Difficult uke or bad technique?

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Szczepan Janczuk wrote: View Post
Hi Marc,
I'm not psychologist so I can't comment. I personally don't want to "rewire" anybody, this is a role (if necessary) of the techniques not mine.
The situation is that nage MUST do everything, even "muscle through", to be sure, that whatever he does, his technique is inefficient. He must be convinced by himself, by his own experience not by somebody 'external' - like i.e. instructor. He must repeat this experience many times, to be without any doubt. He has to hit a wall.
Only then, a jump on higher level is possible.
Szczepan:

I am a psychologist so we obviously come from different places. I do want the person to be rewired and have that expressed through technique. The repeating a mistake many times position is not only inefficient, but it hard-wires in bad response sets. I literally ask a student to walk into the cement-block walls of my dojo and ask the student how many times they want to do that. I also "tap" the person with strikes as a means of allowing their bodies to experience "the wall" in a safe manner so that the reprogramming happens early in the cycle of learning.

Regards,

marc abrams
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