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Old 12-24-2013, 11:28 AM   #1
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YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei



Here's an aikido video of Kazuo Chiba (8th dan, San Diego Aikikai) demonstrating at the New York Aikikai 20th anniversary in 1984 (uke: Juba Nour).

What are your thoughts on this video?

-- Jun

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Old 12-24-2013, 02:15 PM   #2
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

Me gusta.
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Old 12-24-2013, 06:05 PM   #3
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

One of my favorite demos with two of my favorite teachers.....pretty typical Chiba sensei demo.

Of all of Chiba Sensei's senior students my teacher (also a senior deshi of Chiba) has always said that Nour Sensei's technique and mentality towards aikido was the closest to Chiba S.. From my own experience the only person that has made me as nervous taking ukemi for them as Chiba S. was Nour S.
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Old 12-25-2013, 10:50 AM   #4
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Tim Mailloux wrote: View Post
One of my favorite demos with two of my favorite teachers.....pretty typical Chiba sensei demo.

Of all of Chiba Sensei's senior students my teacher (also a senior deshi of Chiba) has always said that Nour Sensei's technique and mentality towards aikido was the closest to Chiba S.. From my own experience the only person that has made me as nervous taking ukemi for them as Chiba S. was Nour S.
Dear Tim,
Merry Xmas. On this video Chiba Sensei is at his best and is in total control of the situation. Nour Sensei [ a dear friend of mine ] does a very difficult job as Uke He displays admirable spirit and endeavours to be aware of the power and intent of Chiba Sensei.Personally I think this is one of the best vids. ever. By the way , who is your teacher?More than likely I will know him/her. Cheers, Joe
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Old 12-25-2013, 10:51 AM   #5
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Jun Akiyama wrote: View Post


Here's an aikido video of Kazuo Chiba (8th dan, San Diego Aikikai) demonstrating at the New York Aikikai 20th anniversary in 1984 (uke: Juba Nour).

What are your thoughts on this video?

-- Jun
Dear Jun,
\ Great vid.Merry Xmas /Happy New Year.Thanks for all your work undertaken on our behalf on this Forum, Best Wishes, Joe
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Old 12-26-2013, 08:32 AM   #6
Cliff Judge
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

Nice movement, nice control. Terrible, awful, unrealistic use of the sword.

One of the things that is weird is that Chiba Sensei executes a few techniques which, had the swords been real, would have resulted in uke being killed or maimed. My problem with this is that, if he wanted to kill his uke, at no point during this embu would he have had to do anything other than simply extend the tip of his sword forward an inch or so. Because he is in chudan, and his uke is in chudan right up on him, and then his uke decides to make a straight cut to Chiba's head.

I don't know why that ever became a thing - hey the guy in front of me is pointing his sword at my face, I guess i will just move right in for a straight cut to his head.
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Old 12-26-2013, 08:56 AM   #7
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
One of the things that is weird is that Chiba Sensei executes a few techniques which, had the swords been real, would have resulted in uke being killed or maimed.
How is that weird and Isn't that kind of the point?
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Old 12-26-2013, 08:57 AM   #8
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Dear Tim,
Merry Xmas. On this video Chiba Sensei is at his best and is in total control of the situation. Nour Sensei [ a dear friend of mine ] does a very difficult job as Uke He displays admirable spirit and endeavours to be aware of the power and intent of Chiba Sensei.Personally I think this is one of the best vids. ever. By the way , who is your teacher?More than likely I will know him/her. Cheers, Joe
Hey Joe, sent you a PM.
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Old 12-26-2013, 09:18 AM   #9
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
I don't know why that ever became a thing - hey the guy in front of me is pointing his sword at my face, I guess i will just move right in for a straight cut to his head.
Or pretty much any other cut that involves large sweeping arm motions. Uke's attacks are no match for the small, concise entering movements of nage.

Ron

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Old 12-26-2013, 09:25 AM   #10
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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How is that weird and Isn't that kind of the point?
Re-read my paragraph. if that IS the point, then all of the Aikido techniques are wasted energy since Chiba could have killed his opponent by extending his sword forward about one inch.
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Old 12-26-2013, 09:27 AM   #11
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

Quote:
Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
Nice movement, nice control. Terrible, awful, unrealistic use of the sword.

One of the things that is weird is that Chiba Sensei executes a few techniques which, had the swords been real, would have resulted in uke being killed or maimed. My problem with this is that, if he wanted to kill his uke, at no point during this embu would he have had to do anything other than simply extend the tip of his sword forward an inch or so. Because he is in chudan, and his uke is in chudan right up on him, and then his uke decides to make a straight cut to Chiba's head.

I don't know why that ever became a thing - hey the guy in front of me is pointing his sword at my face, I guess i will just move right in for a straight cut to his head.
Great demo, if a bit rough around the edges. +1 on the sword "techniques". I'm just gonna pretend I didn't see the upside down bokken at the :18 - :20 mark :/ .........
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Old 12-26-2013, 10:18 AM   #12
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Ron Ragusa wrote: View Post
Or pretty much any other cut that involves large sweeping arm motions. Uke's attacks are no match for the small, concise entering movements of nage.

Ron
That is not universally true. The reason why it is true for this entire embu is because Chiba stays in chudan most of the time, not providing any openings for uke to attack. Uke's attacks are suicidal...it is like they are playing a modified version of rock-paper-scissors where Chiba Sensei goes first and uke gets to pick what to do, but he always picks the thing that loses.
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Old 12-26-2013, 10:24 AM   #13
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Uke's attacks are suicidal
Maybe that was the point.

Anyway, it was a entertaining demo.

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Old 12-26-2013, 11:42 AM   #14
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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That is not universally true. The reason why it is true for this entire embu is because Chiba stays in chudan most of the time, not providing any openings for uke to attack. Uke's attacks are suicidal...it is like they are playing a modified version of rock-paper-scissors where Chiba Sensei goes first and uke gets to pick what to do, but he always picks the thing that loses.
Dear Cliff,
Its not that Juba picks the wrong thing. The fact is that Juba has very few options. Chiba Sensei dictates the game plan.There would be little point if Chiba Sensei picked the short straw and he got hit.Chiba Sensei rarely if ever gave an opening that you as the attacker could exploit, be it in body art or weapons. When Chiba Sensei does give uke an opening it is only for a fraction of a minute, Uke is drawn into the trap[the only word I can think of ] then Sensei neutralises the action of Uke , using an appropriate waza. The opening are very subtle , difficult at times as an onlooker to see, especially in video form. Hope you are well, have a Happy New Year, Cheers, Joe
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Old 12-26-2013, 11:53 AM   #15
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Tim Mailloux wrote: View Post
Hey Joe, sent you a PM.
Hi Tim,
Received your welcome message.Having visited the U.S.A on numerous occasions I am pleased to say I know Dianne Sensei , from seminars in San Diego State Uni.Other Sensei included here are George Lyons, Archie Champion, Elmer Tancino, the late Jack Arnold and Mark Murashige, Ichiro Shibata, Harvey Konigsberg, Juba Nour , Kristina and Rikko Varjan, Lizzy Lynn, Coryl Crane ,Denis Belt, Frank Apodaca Jr and Alex Peterson Senseis/Shihan to name but a few.Apologies to all who I may have missed out.I send fraternal greetings to all my U.S.A. friends .Cheers, Joe.
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Old 12-26-2013, 05:21 PM   #16
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

I re-watched a couple of times and the communication between Chiba Sensei and Nour Sensei indeed seems a bit more complex than I had picked up on initially. Nour always looks like he is already toast as soon as he commits to a cut. That's very high level Aiki.
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Old 12-27-2013, 12:14 AM   #17
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Cliff Judge wrote: View Post
I re-watched a couple of times and the communication between Chiba Sensei and Nour Sensei indeed seems a bit more complex than I had picked up on initially. Nour always looks like he is already toast as soon as he commits to a cut. That's very high level Aiki.
Dear Cliff,
As I stated in my earlir blog its not always east to discernn what is going on in the encounter between Chiba Sensei /Juba Nour Sensei. As you said Nour Sensei ihas not much room to manouvre.Chiba Sensei is dictating the situation. .Cheers, Joe.
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Old 12-27-2013, 09:31 AM   #18
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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I re-watched a couple of times and the communication between Chiba Sensei and Nour Sensei indeed seems a bit more complex than I had picked up on initially. Nour always looks like he is already toast as soon as he commits to a cut. That's very high level Aiki.
Hi Cliff,

Can you point out to me where in that video you see high-level Aiki? Because I'm just not seeing it. All I see is lots of meeting force with brute force.
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Old 12-27-2013, 06:50 PM   #19
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

I was there, standing next to the upstairs camera, and this is filtered through 30 years of memory, but the clip leaves off the first part of the demonstration.
Chiba Sensei and Juba Nour were performing Chiba Sense's sword katas when something went wrong and Chiba Sensei's bokken was knocked out of his hands. He picked it up again and the three people next to me simultaneously went "Uh-oh". Nour resumed the katas and Chiba Sensei didn't. It is quite a testament to Juba's ukemi that he could react when the demo went completely sideways to what he was expecting.
My totally subjective observation and that of the others I spoke with around me was that Chiba Sensei seemed angry at having dropped his bokken and was aiming it at his uke. Of course, you would have to ask one of them directly what they felt, but it left many watching with a bad feeling and there were several boos from the audience.
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Old 12-28-2013, 12:52 AM   #20
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

The clip below seems to show the whole demo, with Chiba sensei dropping his bokken at around the 2:05 mark. The change in demeanor after that is clear, and I can certainly see why people may have been left with a "bad feeling".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=kwFE3v2Sj7I
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Old 12-29-2013, 12:59 AM   #21
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Joshua Landin wrote: View Post
Hi Cliff,

Can you point out to me where in that video you see high-level Aiki? Because I'm just not seeing it. All I see is lots of meeting force with brute force.
Yep. Alpha dog trashing beta dog. Not Aikido as I understand it.

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Old 12-29-2013, 10:04 AM   #22
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Frederick Lee wrote: View Post
The clip below seems to show the whole demo, with Chiba sensei dropping his bokken at around the 2:05 mark. The change in demeanor after that is clear, and I can certainly see why people may have been left with a "bad feeling".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=kwFE3v2Sj7I
Wowza! I thought the first bokken gaff at notived at :18 - :20 was bad :/ Clearly it wasn't a fluke. Proof positive that you have stick to what you know. Just because someone has proficiency in empty hand techniques in no way ensures that they can do weapons. After all, you wouldn't expect a great violinist to be a great trumpeter.
I am trying to imagine what would happen if someone messed up that bad in the other art forms/professions. I know the world of professional music, if you balk a note that bad, or demonstrate such a lack of technique you will literally be laughed out of the building. They don't care who, what when where or why. All they know is you can't do the job, so your out. James Brown use to fine his band $10 for every bad note they played in a show, which was a lot of money in the '60s on the chittlin' circuit, but it worked and he had the tightest band in the business. Beethoven was also famous for pushing his musicians to the limit. If they couldn't perform, they were fired on the spot, regardless of weather they were considered a "maestro" of their instrument. The same holds true in medicine. I'm trying to imagine a surgeon fumbling a scalpel as badly as Chiba fumbled that bokken. If that were to happen you'd probably have a dead patient and a malpractice suit the size of Antarctica, and rightly so. None of this hero/sensei worship nonsense in those worlds. You either measure up, or your out. No sentiment. No emotion. Your work speaks for it self, as it should.
On the other hand it's good to see that our idols do, in fact, have clay feet. They're just regular human beings like you and I. They make mistakes.....often. Unfortunately, too many of them believe their own hype and are unwilling to admit their own short comings (i.e. Chiba's reaction in the vid). Humility is hard lesson to learn when everyone keeps bowing, scraping and telling you how great you are despite clear evidence to the contrary.
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Old 12-29-2013, 02:01 PM   #23
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Yep. Alpha dog trashing beta dog. Not Aikido as I understand it.
Nevermind…I am not seeing what I thought I was seeing on the second video. I think I was confusing kiai for aiki.
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:12 PM   #24
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Wowza! I thought the first bokken gaff at notived at :18 - :20 was bad :/ Clearly it wasn't a fluke. Proof positive that you have stick to what you know. Just because someone has proficiency in empty hand techniques in no way ensures that they can do weapons. After all, you wouldn't expect a great violinist to be a great trumpeter.
I am trying to imagine what would happen if someone messed up that bad in the other art forms/professions. I know the world of professional music, if you balk a note that bad, or demonstrate such a lack of technique you will literally be laughed out of the building. They don't care who, what when where or why. All they know is you can't do the job, so your out. James Brown use to fine his band $10 for every bad note they played in a show, which was a lot of money in the '60s on the chittlin' circuit, but it worked and he had the tightest band in the business. Beethoven was also famous for pushing his musicians to the limit. If they couldn't perform, they were fired on the spot, regardless of weather they were considered a "maestro" of their instrument. The same holds true in medicine. I'm trying to imagine a surgeon fumbling a scalpel as badly as Chiba fumbled that bokken. If that were to happen you'd probably have a dead patient and a malpractice suit the size of Antarctica, and rightly so. None of this hero/sensei worship nonsense in those worlds. You either measure up, or your out. No sentiment. No emotion. Your work speaks for it self, as it should.
On the other hand it's good to see that our idols do, in fact, have clay feet. They're just regular human beings like you and I. They make mistakes.....often. Unfortunately, too many of them believe their own hype and are unwilling to admit their own short comings (i.e. Chiba's reaction in the vid). Humility is hard lesson to learn when everyone keeps bowing, scraping and telling you how great you are despite clear evidence to the contrary.
Dear Karl,
Any great musician or makes errors, nobody is infallible.As far as Chiba Sensei is concerned I consider him to be a great weapons and body art exponent.The video does indeed show Sensei dropping his sword. On the other hand how many times have you and others watched Chiba Sensei doing sword and Jo work, not to mention his body art? As far as James Brown is concerned and others , he had some bad nights where is singing was dreadful,Sinatra at one point could not fill a telephone box with customers. Do you always do everything 100%perfect ?I think not. Surgeons/doctors make errors,patients on occasion get sutures left inside their bodies, plastic surgeons botch jobs.They are not all stricken off medical registers. I dispute your last two sentences.Personally speaking if I had 50% of the skill level of Chiba Sensei in weapons and body art I would consider myself to be a fortunate aikidoka. Rather than be highly critical why not take the time and effort to review Chiba Sensei and his work more thoroughly?Maybe then you would be more qualified /more objective in making such comments?Cheers, Joe.
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:06 AM   #25
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Re: YouTube: 1984 NY Aikikai 20th anniv demo Chiba-sensei

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Dear Karl,
Any great musician or makes errors, nobody is infallible.As far as Chiba Sensei is concerned I consider him to be a great weapons and body art exponent.The video does indeed show Sensei dropping his sword. On the other hand how many times have you and others watched Chiba Sensei doing sword and Jo work, not to mention his body art? As far as James Brown is concerned and others , he had some bad nights where is singing was dreadful,Sinatra at one point could not fill a telephone box with customers. Do you always do everything 100%perfect ?I think not. Surgeons/doctors make errors,patients on occasion get sutures left inside their bodies, plastic surgeons botch jobs.They are not all stricken off medical registers. I dispute your last two sentences.Personally speaking if I had 50% of the skill level of Chiba Sensei in weapons and body art I would consider myself to be a fortunate aikidoka. Rather than be highly critical why not take the time and effort to review Chiba Sensei and his work more thoroughly?Maybe then you would be more qualified /more objective in making such comments?Cheers, Joe.
I was wondering how long it would take for the apologists to appear. LOL!!!! You only want 50% of that skill level? That's sad. Why not strive for 150%? All students should seek to surpass their teachers, not simply measure up. After all, 50% of ok is just "o".
I'm not perfect, but I'm also not a "world renown teacher" traveling around tooting my own horn and charging people money for my services. Professionals in any industry, are and should always be held to a much higher standard than amateurs and students. The fact that people are obviously videotaping it should have made him even more focused, not less.
When is the last time you saw Itzhak Perlman, Andres Segovia, or Yo-yo Ma drop their instrument/bow during a performance? NEVER, never, never, not ever....NEVER!!! and they aren't even simulating a life and death struggle. When lives are on the line, don't you think the standards should be even higher than the performance of a simple, harmless piece of music? I should hope so. Oh and trust me, if you were to ever see it happen, they would excuse them self from the stage, if not the entire profession, on their own. They certainly wouldn't pretend like nothing happened, scowl at their partners, or try to blame the others on stage like Chiba san.
Aikido will never grow, or be fully respected as an art if all we do is worship rank, praise poor technique, and make excuses for teachers who obviously long past their prime. One can either perform up to the task, or they cannot. Clearly Chiba san cannot, which is fine, but then stop charing money for your "skills". Heck, I can teach you to use a bokken as well as he did in the vid for free.

Step 1: grab bokken (correctly ,or not. He doesn't seem to care, so why should you!)( e.g :18 mark), Step 2: loose focus, Step 3: get bested by your student, Step 4: pretend like it didn't happen, Step 5: scowl at uke and strut around like a petulant child/bully. Repeat until perfection is achieved. LOL!!!!

Are you still happy with 50%?

See it's not that hard at all
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