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Old 09-23-2005, 07:07 AM   #1
John Matsushima
 
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Keep your hands in front of your center?

Try this. Take a piece of paper, draw a circle, then put a dot where the center is. Now mark where the front of it is. Difficult?
This idea came to mind when I thought about the phrase, "Keep your hands in front of your center". The phrase seems to suggest that we are simply two dimensional objects with a front and back. Where is the front of a center of a circle?
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Old 09-23-2005, 07:51 AM   #2
kocakb
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

if you draw a vertical circle, and your dot is still in the center; then there will be only two "normals" (perpendicular direction) to your point; the front and back. As human; you are not able to straight your hands backwards / comfortable (-x direction), so there will be only one front to be in balance...I think
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Old 09-23-2005, 08:04 AM   #3
SeiserL
 
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Theoretically, IMHO, on a three dimensional plane, a circle is a sphere (a ball), the front would be the direction it is rolling.

Since humans are not just theoretical, keep you mind, hands, face, eyes, shoulders, hips, knees, and toes all aligned and pointing in the same direction. That's your front.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 09-23-2005, 08:36 AM   #4
Erick Mead
 
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

I have to say it:

The M18A1 Claymore mine has printed in BOLD letters:
"FRONT TOWARD ENEMY"

Front is where the attack comes from, whatever way you happen to be facing at the time.

This is why, as I see it, koshinage and ushiro waza are hard for beginners to get. They do not immediately understand that subtle projection of energy (vector of force, as you choose) toward the opponents center that makes the techniques work.

Just as with the claymore mine the projection of energy had better be in the direction of uke's center. Even if he is behind you.

Cordially,
Erick Mead
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Old 09-23-2005, 09:05 AM   #5
John Matsushima
 
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Ha ha ha Erick....

You know that's why I got out of the Navy, don't you? They would never let me drive the ship because I could never get that port & stbd thing down either.
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Old 09-23-2005, 10:01 AM   #6
Jorx
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Keep your hands where ever you need to! (as in Erick's post). Good advice from Lynn.

Would be very unwise to have your hands at the centre while an object is about to collide with your head too fast to duck.
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Old 09-23-2005, 11:03 AM   #7
gregstec
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Maybe a better way to say it would be: "Keep your hands in front of you and within the sphere created by your center"

Greg Steckel
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Old 09-23-2005, 02:33 PM   #8
Jorx
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
Greg Steckel wrote:
Maybe a better way to say it would be: "Keep your hands in front of you and within the sphere created by your center"

Greg Steckel
That is a funny comment It'd be very hard to keep your hands outside that range unless detached from the rest of the body
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Old 09-23-2005, 02:47 PM   #9
gregstec
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
Jorgen Matsi wrote:
That is a funny comment It'd be very hard to keep your hands outside that range unless detached from the rest of the body
Well, let me re-word that a little bit. How about, "Keep your hands in front of you and within the range of balance within the sphere created by your center" In other words, do not extend your hands out to any point where they would affect the control of your balance.

Greg Steckel
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Old 09-23-2005, 02:53 PM   #10
Matthew White
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

My sensei's replace that phrase with "get your center behind your hands". Keeps us from trying to "do stuff with our arms" and use good body movement instead.
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Old 10-18-2005, 04:40 PM   #11
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
Matthew White wrote:
My sensei's replace that phrase with "get your center behind your hands". Keeps us from trying to "do stuff with our arms" and use good body movement instead.
This is excellent advice. After doing aikido for a while, is hard to remember how obscure the notion of one's "center" seemed at first. As a first approximation, think of it as being in front of your navel (although higher or lower is OK). Another minor point is that techniques often work easier if the point of contact with the opponent (e.g. the grabbed wrist), rather than your hand, is in line with your center.
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Old 11-10-2005, 11:50 AM   #12
Sam Williams
 
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Keep your hands in front of your center?

Heya, I'm a newbie to and that moving your body thing really helps.

It really helps to think about Ki as well i find. makes me focus more. Remember even if your hands are above your center for a technique they can still be in you center line, I think about the center line as well when ukemi - ing.

The pen is mightier than the sword.
But a sword
Dipped in ink,
Now,
That's a good compromise.
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Old 11-10-2005, 01:05 PM   #13
Lan Powers
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
John Matsushima wrote:
Try this. Take a piece of paper, draw a circle, then put a dot where the center is. Now mark where the front of it is. Difficult?
This idea came to mind when I thought about the phrase, "Keep your hands in front of your center". The phrase seems to suggest that we are simply two dimensional objects with a front and back. Where is the front of a center of a circle?
Not being truly "round" yet, (tho I am getting that way!) I would say the side that has a face on it.
Sorry, couldn't resist.
Although I like Eric's point as well.

Play nice, practice hard, but remember, this is a MARTIAL art!
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Old 11-10-2005, 03:12 PM   #14
Mike Haftel
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

There is a concept called "centerline" and "center-line triangle."

Having your hands in front of your center means having your hands along centerline and structured in a way that they move with your center and not independant of it. Centerline triangle is formed when you outstretch your arms in front of you and touch your fingertips together to form a triangle with both arms as sides and the linde between your shoulders as the base. Most of the efficient power generated by the body is manifested within this space formed by the triangle. And to avoid incoming strikes all you have to do is move the tip of this triangle out of the way and the rest of your body is also safe. Think of a wedge.

There are other uses of these concepts in every technique you can imagine.
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Old 11-10-2005, 03:38 PM   #15
Sam Williams
 
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

The real reason for everything being in your center comes from the 2 handed Katana. Center cuts were the strongest.

The pen is mightier than the sword.
But a sword
Dipped in ink,
Now,
That's a good compromise.
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Old 11-10-2005, 08:45 PM   #16
pezalinski
 
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Talking Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
Sam Williams wrote:
The real reason for everything being in your center comes from the 2 handed Katana. Center cuts were the strongest.
I think you are putting the cart before the horse -- without two hands (and the rest of the bipedal human body structure) to grasp the katana, there would be no centerline for your hands to occupy.

However, even a radially designed creature like the octopus understands the principals of "front toward enemy" and "centerline(s) is where you can most effectively apply energy from both/all sides of your body.

I propose that (yet another viewpoint) your 'center' can be thought of as the intersection of all the centerlines created by your ability to effectively strike an opponent with any pair of limbs or extremities you possess, whether forwards, to the rear, above, to the ground, or to the sides. As such, the center is not a fixed point within your body under all conditions, not an absolute, but can be thought of as a "strange attractor" bound by the equations of your limbs -- the location of your center is relative to your posture and the position of your limbs at any moment in time. It may be bound within a limited region, but it cannot be fixed as an absolute to any one point.

Chew on that one for a while.


A little danger is a knowledge thing...

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Old 11-10-2005, 08:47 PM   #17
Mike Haftel
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
Sam Williams wrote:
The real reason for everything being in your center comes from the 2 handed Katana. Center cuts were the strongest.
The sword is not the reason why we have power along our centerline. The reason why we hold the sword the way we do is because that is where our centerline is, not that our centerline is there because we hold a sword.....you have the cause and effect backwards.

And no matter what martial art you study, centerline is important and that is where efficient power is generated, even in arts that do not come from the sword. So obviously, the sword is not the cause.

Yes, I know a lot of aikido and jujutsu comes from sword movements.
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Old 11-20-2005, 10:48 AM   #18
Sensei Phil
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Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

when your body and mind work as one you are the centre so you put your hands in front that has always worked for me and my students in and off the mats.I have had practical experience off the mat several times
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Old 11-20-2005, 04:50 PM   #19
RobertFortune
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Thumbs down Re: Keep your hands in front of your center?

Quote:
John Matsushima wrote:
Try this. Take a piece of paper, draw a circle, then put a dot where the center is. Now mark where the front of it is. Difficult?
This idea came to mind when I thought about the phrase, "Keep your hands in front of your center". The phrase seems to suggest that we are simply two dimensional objects with a front and back. Where is the front of a center of a circle?
Aloha John,

You made that one too easy. It's dynamic (as opposed to static) continually changing as the event unfolds. (*See A. Westbrook and O. Ratti's "Aikido And The Dynamic Sphere"). Next question please?

Aloha,

-Robert
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