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Old 10-15-2004, 08:58 AM   #1
DaveO
Dojo: Great Wave Aikido
Location: Alberta, Canada
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 543
Canada
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Clubs

'Lo all!

Recently I've been adding something a little extra to the classes I teach at our dojo: clubs.

We've got a couple nice ones - 12" wooden clubs with a 2" diameter and rubber handguard. They work quite well for the intended purposes.

I decided to try this; for these reasons: The set attacks we train for in aikido - shomenuchi, yokomenuchi, etc. are not very realistic; they're designed to teach nage to deal with an attack coming from a specific direction - in other words; in a specific vector. This makes them valuable; because by learning those vectors we learn to deal with anything that comes along that vector. Also; if in real-life conflict we see a hand coming at us in something like a yokomenuchi or shomenuchi; chances are there's gonna be something in it - a weapon, IOW.
The club reinforces both points - first; it amplifies the force coming at nage; so there's something real and tangible for him to work with. Second; it clarifies the attack - we all know what a newer person's shaky half-yoko, half-shomen wobbly strikes look like; using the club with its greater inertia reduces that. Third; it provides a tangible threat to nage - even done under close scrutiny and safety; the perception of threat is very real; requiring nage to perform with confidence. Fourth; it teaches uke the right way to do the attack empty-handed. (closely related, but different to #2.)
Fifth, of course; it's a lot of fun.
Our Sensei showed up late the other day and I wound up with the class. After working on fundamentals for a bit ('bout an hour); we worked on a basic shihonage; then on to a favourite of mine; yokomenuchi ude-oroshi tenkan. The technique (highly valuable for real-world engagement) requires nage to get inside the weapon; tenkan, blend with the attacking arm and bring uke down backside first.
We did it empty-handed first; then added in the clubs. Even familiar with their use as I am; I was impressed at how much more rapidly my charges began picking it up - they were sharper, quicker, and after the intimidation waned; a lot more confident in their defense. Quite impressive, really.

Does anyone else use clubs in this manner? Or have opinions on the matter?

Cheers!

Answers are only easy when they're incomplete.
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Old 10-15-2004, 10:02 AM   #2
kienergy1234
Location: asheville nc
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 24
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Re: Clubs

we dont use clubs in our dojo,just wooden swords and tantos,as well as the staff,but i think aikido can be very realistic in street combat,especially when handed any wooden weapon or empty handed strikes also.
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Old 10-15-2004, 01:21 PM   #3
Magma
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 168
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Re: Clubs

Not specifically clubs, but I know that in the weapons bags of me and my friends you'll find baseball bats, escrima, chain, etc. While we have trained with these weapons on our own, we have never introduced them into the class environment. What you say here does give me pause to think, though.

Tim
It's a sad irony: In U's satori, he forgot every technique he ever knew; since then, generations of doka have spent their whole careers trying to remember.
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Old 10-15-2004, 02:33 PM   #4
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
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Re: Clubs

Frankly, I'd prefer to learn defense against a banana! You can't eat a club!

Ron (sorry)

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 10-15-2004, 04:23 PM   #5
DCP
 
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Dojo: Inaka Dojo
Location: Land of Lincoln
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 135
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Re: Clubs

Ron:

I rather enjoy a good club (sandwich). Did I miss your point?

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety.
- Aesop
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Old 10-15-2004, 07:44 PM   #6
senseimike
 
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Dojo: Rising Star Aikido
Location: South Bend, Nebraska
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 81
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Re: Clubs

I use clubs, ball bats, sticks, and other "real world" weapons. It does make the training take on a more serious mood due to the added threat. I would also agree that shomenuchi and yokomenuchi are for the most part not practical attacks, but they make sense when you add a weapon.

Mike Taylor
Godan
Chief Instructor, Rising Star Aikido
South Bend, Nebraska, USA
www.risingstaraikido.com
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Old 10-15-2004, 09:50 PM   #7
MaryKaye
Dojo: Seattle Ki Society
Location: Seattle
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 522
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Re: Clubs

We have a couple of padded baseball bats which we use occasionally, especially with the kids. It's easier to show a variety of angles of attack with one of these than open-handed.

Any kind of weapon really does up the intensity; if a student is inclined to get hasty and panicky under pressure, tanto-dori hightlights the problem nicely. The first time I got to try randori, the ukes had tanto. They were very gentle with me, but it was still a major adrenaline rush.

Mary Kaye
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Old 10-16-2004, 01:07 PM   #8
Lyle Laizure
 
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Dojo: Hinode Dojo LLC
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 560
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Re: Clubs

Why does adding a weapon to our practice take our practice to a higher level of seriousness? Shouldn't we be training in the same serious manner with or without a weapon? That being said I too use clubs, ball bats etc to further make the connection from mat to street.

Lyle Laizure
www.hinodedojo.com
Deru kugi wa uta reru
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Old 10-18-2004, 09:43 AM   #9
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,614
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Re: Clubs

Hi Daniel,

You just missed some of my (bad) humor...there was a Monty Python skit where the instructor is teaching the class to defend themselves from being attacked with a banana (as opposed to a pointy stick).

Ron (If ya have to expain it...) T

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 10-18-2004, 10:52 AM   #10
Richard Cardwell
Dojo: Belfast Aikido Circle
Location: Belfast
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 39
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Re: Clubs

Yep, pointéd sticks should become more integral to practice, I think. Mind you, if sensei wheels out a tiger, I'm outta there.
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Old 10-18-2004, 11:51 AM   #11
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,614
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Re: Clubs

Now see, *that* was funny!

RT

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 10-18-2004, 01:46 PM   #12
kironin
 
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Dojo: Houston Ki Aikido
Location: Houston,TX
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Posts: 1,032
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Re: Clubs

Quote:
Ron Tisdale wrote:
Frankly, I'd prefer to learn defense against a banana! You can't eat a club!

Ron (sorry)

Yeah but those 16 Ton weights are rather expensive equipment !


Craig

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