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Old 02-02-2006, 11:08 AM   #51
Nick Pagnucco
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 107
United_States
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Re: Possible Ki & Kokyu Workshop

Quote:
Scott Prath wrote:
Location: Sarchen Somatic Arts
5515 Balcones Drive, Austin, Texas 78731
(at the intersection of 2222 and Balcones Drive)

man... I wish austin, TX was closer to Albany, NY. Or that I had a lot more disposable income

Last edited by Nick Pagnucco : 02-02-2006 at 11:12 AM. Reason: make it clearer / less choppy
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Old 02-20-2006, 09:46 AM   #52
dbotari
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 95
Canada
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Re: Possible Ki & Kokyu Workshop

Can someone who attended please provide a brief review of concepts and exercises coverd?

Thanks,

Dan Botari
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Old 02-20-2006, 10:08 AM   #53
roosvelt
Location: Ontario
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 177
Canada
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Re: Possible Ki & Kokyu Workshop

Quote:
Dan Botari wrote:
Can someone who attended please provide a brief review of concepts and exercises coverd?

Thanks,

Dan Botari
I'd like to see the review too.

I wonder if there is enough interest to put together a workshop in Toronto, New York or Phil.
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Old 02-20-2006, 11:35 AM   #54
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 4,123
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Re: Possible Ki & Kokyu Workshop

Well, I don't normally get into the post-mortems, but in this case, since I vaguely discussed this with a few of the Aikido people there (I don't have all their names in front of me, but Brent Danninger was one of them), let me toss out a couple of thoughts.

The Austin workshop was not really Aikido-specific and there were people from Taiji, Xingyi, Bagua, Aikido, karate, (and maybe a couple of other arts), but I usually don't particularly pay attention to who does what art. And that's the point of why I'm throwing in my 2 cents.... I watched objectively to see in my mind how much I would change the Austin workshop if I was going to do an Aikido-specific workshop. I dunno if I'd change too much. Not that I couldn't do a far more Aikido-specific workshop, it's just that I limited myself (this time; often workshops are quite different) to what I considered were the basic, most important things that I would have wanted someone to show me, regardless of the shiney baubles I sometimes go into. And those very important things were, in my mind, applicable to all the styles that were there. Well, wait, I did throw in one bauble, but it only took about 15 minutes.

I don't get much into styles or protocols in these kinds of workshops. In fact, I don't consider that I "teach" a workshop; I "show what I know about how to do some things" in much the same way that someone shares his knowledge at a carpentry workshop. So the workshops tend to be linear progressions that start with the assumption of zero-knowledge of qi/ki things and then develops stage by stage, building on the previous 2-person exercises, until they get very sophisticated (in relation to the starting point).

Jin/kokyu things are, in my opinion, the most difficult things to learn because they take a deliberate recoordination of the body/mind in order to source forces naturally in a way that is different from what we've practiced since childhood. In fact, since there is a contradiction with our normal mode of movement, it's the part that many people never get because they can't accept the enormity of the changeover and really make the effort. So we started with that and moved forward. Most people were able to do and understand some cute usages of jin/kokyu, being unmoveable, returning jin to the source, manipulating jin/kokyu in relation to incoming forces and putting the resultant force in empty spots, etc.

Along the way, we worked on the ki/qi things and the exercises to develop it without muscle. Of course, since this was a new topic to most people there, all we could do was establish the basics and explain how to continue developing it. The "bauble" I did just for fun, was one of the emitted qi exercises (I'm not a big fan of these things, BTW) that gives a fairly startling ability to the practitioners. But you had to be there to appreciate that one. Also, just for fun and since I use a bokken for my personal workouts, I reviewed how all the basic concepts we covered could be practiced with a bokken workout (in regard to ki and kokyu).

We ended up on Sunday doing a number of nage-uke-type standing drills of reacting to incoming forces, exploring how and where the incoming forces could be neutralized (as a lead-in to techniques, etc.) into various "empty" holes, returning of jin at various angles, etc. And despite the fact that this was not Aikido-specific, it was pretty close to what I would consider material I would want to do at an Aikido-only workshop. You can't do *everything* at one workshop, so it strikes me that you want to show what are the most important things on the first shot and we were fairly close to an ideal curriculum in my opinion. Of course, some of the attendees may have different opinions... I just was happy enough about the total curriculum that I thought I'd throw that in.

At the start of almost all workshops, I ask everyone to put their hands on my chest and push me away from them. The reason I do this is that from their push's purity of jin, the amount of shoulder usage, the feel of extra power from the dantien, etc., I can judge pretty closely what prior ability they have, if any, and I can adjust the workshop accordingly. The vast percentage of the time, there is little prior skill. If nothing else, someone *may* have a little ability to play with jin/kokyu strength, but since they still mainly use their shoulders for movement, the ability is obviously quite limited. Later in most workshops, I go back around and have everyone push me and, sure enough, their pushes are vastly improved. One of the things that tickles me is that invariably there will be a few people who, once they get the knack of how to do a few things, suddenly remember that they already do a lot of these things in their own practice.... which of course explains why they were pushing me with muscle and arms at the start of the workshop.

But it was pretty fun. I didn't go into a lot of techniques this time, nor did I do much in the way of how to hit, release great power, etc., etc. I did what I considered most important and for once I feel better that I didn't confuse the issue (as, sadly, I've done in some other cases) by injecting the bells and whistles that too many people want to focus on prematurely.

Anyway, that's *my* take on it.

FWIW

Mike
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Old 02-21-2006, 07:16 AM   #55
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,614
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Re: Possible Ki & Kokyu Workshop

Nice synopsis, and looking forward to the opportunity to participate. Thanks Mike.

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 02-21-2006, 07:21 AM   #56
Mike Sigman
Location: Durango, CO
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Re: Possible Ki & Kokyu Workshop

Thanks, Ron, but I realized this morning that while I used to be indecisive, now I'm not so sure about that. While I was taking a shower a while ago, I was thinking that an Aikido-specific workshop would have to contain a basic series of kokyu usage in different throws ... so that would be a "must add" and I'm sure there would be one or two other things. I'll ask some of the Aikido people from past workshops to give me some feedback.

Regards,

Mike
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