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Old 01-20-2002, 12:01 AM   #1
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AikiWeb Poll for the week of January 20, 2002:

If you could be uke for yourself, would you be able to throw yourself?
  • Yes
  • No
  • I don't do aikido
Here are the current results.
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Old 01-20-2002, 05:19 PM   #2
Robyn Johnson
 
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Question

Greetings!!!

When I read this poll my first response is "huh?????". What in the world does this mean??? It seems like plenty other people understand. Can someone please shed some light on this? How can you "throw yourself"?

Thank you very much!

Robyn
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Old 01-20-2002, 07:00 PM   #3
Sarah
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Quote:
Originally posted by Robyn Johnson

When I read this poll my first response is "huh?????". What in the world does this mean???
I understand it to mean that if you met your identical twin on the mat - same time training, same physical size and shape, same attitude and so forth - do you think you could throw them?

Cheers
Sarah
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Old 01-21-2002, 10:05 AM   #4
Robyn Johnson
 
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Cool

Hello!

Thank you very much for telling me! I really appreciate it! Have a wonderful day!

Robyn
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Old 01-21-2002, 05:11 PM   #5
cconstantine
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a more subtle meaning...

...I think there's a deeper question involved here.

The first interpretation (could you throw your identical clone) is important in measuring your concrete progress in Aikido. But, on a deeper level -- and I'm not sure the poll was meant to raise this question -- one's answer is critical of one's uke waza (the practice of being uke.)

While there's a time and place for a very heavy/immovable/imposing (choose your style's favoured adjective) uke waza, making nage smack against a "brick wall" doesn't help them grow. It's my opinion that a good uke can always be thrown by nage because uke blends with nage. Uke brings the aggresive energy to the confrontation. But a good uke is one who can do all of that, and at the same time FEEL nage and be appropriate to nage's techniques and movement.

A good uke ramsp up and up and up as nage grows (over months/ years as well as during one class or a few minutes.) I think its important to believe that uke and nage practice together. Aikido is blending. Please don't interpret my comments to mean I think uke should be wishy-washy, wimpy or fall over at the touch of a finger!

-Craig
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Old 01-21-2002, 05:34 PM   #6
Erik
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Sometimes my imaginary uke is me.

He's, by far, the hardest uke to throw in my imaginary uke collection. I've never had to deal with him when he's grumpy. I can only imagine what that would be like.

He does take good breakfalls though.

Last edited by Erik : 01-21-2002 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 01-21-2002, 06:04 PM   #7
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Knowing oneself.

Before you could even defend yourself against an attacker, you should know yourself first.

I'm not the easiest uke to perform a technique on, and I'm not that much of a nage. I attack seriously with maintaining control, keeping one point, one mind and body, and try to extend the Ki. Since I do not attack blindly, that makes me quite a hard uke to practice a technique on.

At the same time, people that also understands this and becomes my uke, they too become a strong uke. It is not easy to perform techniques when they maintain this composure. This is the time when Aiki is really needed, because strength becomes nothing here, no matter how strong you are.

Would I be able to throw myself? Eventually, with proper aiki, yes. Because as my own uke, I know my own strength and weaknesses and I could use that to stabilize myself all the way through a technique. This would make it the hardest uke ever.

I basically have a twin (not in a literal manner but in a training kind of sense) in the dojo also.
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Old 01-21-2002, 07:31 PM   #8
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Wink

Greetings!!!

It sounds like this could be more complicated than I thought. Actually, I know that I could throw my "uke" but I don't think I could actually blend with myself. I do tend to be a "wishy-washy" uke and when I'm not doing that, I have a clutz attack and fall down on my own. hee hee Oh well, that's what practice is for. Have a wonderful day!

Robyn
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Old 01-21-2002, 07:38 PM   #9
Sarah
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Re: a more subtle meaning...

Quote:
Originally posted by cconstantine
...I think there's a deeper question involved here.

The first interpretation (could you throw your identical clone) is important in measuring your concrete progress in Aikido. But, on a deeper level -- and I'm not sure the poll was meant to raise this question -- one's answer is critical of one's uke waza (the practice of being uke.)

And sometimes things are so subtle they're overlooked completely. You notice the third criterion I included up there - attitude.
ie would you-as-uke be interested in helping you-as-nage improve your aikido by providing an appropriate level of resistance
Or not


While there's a time and place for a very heavy/immovable/imposing (choose your style's favoured adjective) uke waza, making nage smack against a "brick wall" doesn't help them grow. It's my opinion that a good uke can always be thrown by nage because uke blends with nage.


Maybe make that smack repeatedly against a brick wall. I think the occasional smack is sometimes helpful.

I have occasionally been asked by sensei "why are you letting $nage get away with $sloppy_technique".
What I have taken from this is that its my responsibility as sempai/uke to give something that nage can learn something from.
And I have certainly learned stuff from "difficult" ukes, both senior and junior to me.



Uke brings the aggresive energy to the confrontation. But a good uke is one who can do all of that, and at the same time FEEL nage and be appropriate to nage's techniques and movement.

A good uke ramsp up and up and up as nage grows (over months/ years as well as during one class or a few minutes.)


I agree.


I think its important to believe that uke and nage practice together. Aikido is blending.


In your opinion, why does uke blend?


Please don't interpret my comments to mean I think uke should be wishy-washy, wimpy or fall over at the touch of a finger!

-Craig


I understand.
Its sometimes difficult to discuss aikido without sounding altogether too fluffy-bunny ;-)

Cheers
Sarah

Last edited by Sarah : 01-21-2002 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 01-21-2002, 11:23 PM   #10
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I took this question to mean....do you think your nage-waza or your uke-waza is better? For me, both are pretty clumsy but I think I am better at throwing someone than I am at stopping someone.....and I know my own weak points as uke better than I do as nage so I think I could throw myself.
Make any sense????

happiness. harmony. compassion.
--damien--
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Old 01-22-2002, 09:30 AM   #11
cconstantine
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Re: Re: a more subtle meaning...

Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah

(cconstantine wrote: )
I think its important to believe that uke and nage practice together. Aikido is blending.



Sarah asks: In your opinion, why does uke blend?
My uke waza has two conscious purposes. (It may have other side effects, but I'm not intentionally aiming for those.) These are things which, if I find my conscious mind insists on interupting, I will then think about.

1. my training in aikido. Blending with energy met, wether positive or negative, with a relaxed, steadfast and open mind, body and spirit. In this aspect, my uke waza is the same as my nage waza. I try to practice this aspect at all times (and not just on the matt.)

2. helping others train at aikido. This means (when I'm uke) fostering an environment in which others can grow. To this end all of my items in '1.' are important, but I may have to blend with a junior nage. A senior student or an instructor will blend just fine without assistance. These aikidoka (senior to me -- not "senior" in rank, but senior in a particular moment) are best helped by my focusing and extending ki. A junior nage may be just on the verge of grasping or loosing one point, and if I "stay nearby" (physically, mentally, and in terms of blending) I create a spacial (physically) and mental environment where they can learn to blend and to keep one point.

I focus my uke waza depending on my nage. (I was going to say "adapt", but really, I think it's all the same uke waza.) With a senior or "peer" nage I can focus on "my aikido training". With a junior nage, I must also focus on how my "being" relates to their training.

aside: I'm ikkyu. Our instructors (mostly nidan) teach a good number of "no-kyu" students as well as low kyu belts. So I'm frequently practicing uke waza with juniors.

I think this (uke waza with junior nage) is a VERY important and beneficial aspect of my training. But it is (in my opinion) clearly a different flavor of uke waza compared to, say, uke waza with my sensei (a 4th dan).
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Old 01-22-2002, 10:04 AM   #12
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Well from a guy who does a wee bit of full resistance randori I know I am far more capable of shutting down a technique then I am in executing it.

Could I throw myself - yes. But most times no.
I vote no.

I have seen a lot of Aikido practiced where uke launches himself rather than actually being thrown. In these circumstances my vote would of course change.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 01-22-2002, 11:17 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by PeterR
Well from a guy who does a wee bit of full resistance randori I know I am far more capable of shutting down a technique then I am in executing it.

Could I throw myself - yes. But most times no.
I vote no.
Jun needs a fourth option in his polls. Something that would represent maybe.

I don't do randori the same way you do but my experience is very much the same. I said yes, because I could throw myself at least some of the time.

Am I the only one around here with imaginary ukes?
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Old 01-22-2002, 12:10 PM   #14
Robyn Johnson
 
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I have an imaginary friend! Does that count?

Robyn
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Old 01-22-2002, 12:19 PM   #15
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Subtle meaning

I think its important to believe that uke and nage practice together.

This is inappropriate for Aikido forms. Freestyle, maybe.

Aikido is blending.

You can practice Aikido, or you can blend. Sadly you cannot do both.

Watch the video of the founder; there is no attempt at cooperation. Read his book; he creates the illusion of a "response" to an "attack".

"The object of war is not to die for your country, but to make the other bastard die for his." You don't practice Aikido with an attacker; you force that bastard to practice Aikido with you.

I vote No on this poll.

Last edited by [Censored] : 01-22-2002 at 12:25 PM.
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Old 01-22-2002, 01:17 PM   #16
Johan Tibell
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No way! I'm too good to be thrown, even by myself.

Uhm, yeah!

Regards,

Johan Tibell
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Old 01-22-2002, 02:59 PM   #17
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This poll is evidence that we're running out of polls.
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Old 01-22-2002, 04:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by shihonage
This poll is evidence that we're running out of polls.
Nope -- plenty more where they've come from. Besides, I think there's been some good discussion on the topic.

Some polls are focused on the results, while others are focused on the question itself...

-- Jun

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Old 01-22-2002, 06:57 PM   #19
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Re: Re: Re: a more subtle meaning...

Quote:
Originally posted by cconstantine


My uke waza has two conscious purposes. (It may have other side effects, but I'm not intentionally aiming for those.) These are things which, if I find my conscious mind insists on interupting, I will then think about.

1. my training in aikido. Blending with energy met, wether positive or negative, with a relaxed, steadfast and open mind, body and spirit. In this aspect, my uke waza is the same as my nage waza. I try to practice this aspect at all times (and not just on the matt.)

2. helping others train at aikido. This means (when I'm uke) fostering an environment in which others can grow. To this end all of my items in '1.' are important, but I may have to blend with a junior nage. A senior student or an instructor will blend just fine without assistance. These aikidoka (senior to me -- not "senior" in rank, but senior in a particular moment) are best helped by my focusing and extending ki. A junior nage may be just on the verge of grasping or loosing one point, and if I "stay nearby" (physically, mentally, and in terms of blending) I create a spacial (physically) and mental environment where they can learn to blend and to keep one point.
<There's more, but it's a bit long to repeat. You can go read it upthread.>

Um - having read and reread your reply I am still at a loss as to why uke blends.Your answer doesn't seem to address this at all. It just says that when you take ukemi you try to blend.

Come to think of it, I would also like to know what you mean by 'blending'. I thought I knew but I am becoming less and less sure that I do.

I would suggest a rather more prosaic reason for your consideration - maybe put it as point #0 for your list. Uke does what uke does in order to avoid injury.

Cheers
Sarah
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Old 01-22-2002, 08:19 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by Erik


Jun needs a fourth option in his polls. Something that would represent maybe.

I don't do randori the same way you do but my experience is very much the same. I said yes, because I could throw myself at least some of the time.

Am I the only one around here with imaginary ukes?
I only have one, he's over six feet tall (not counting his ears) and we always practice to the music in my head...
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Old 01-22-2002, 10:42 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by ca
I only have one, he's over six feet tall (not counting his ears) and we always practice to the music in my head...
I've been in a class with music and I've been in a class with imaginary uke's. Come to think of it, both have even been around at the same time.

I worry about you and that ear thing though. That's really strange. They don't let you around any big red buttons do they?
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Old 01-23-2002, 03:47 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by Erik
Am I the only one around here with imaginary ukes?
When I practice alone I practice with no uke, not even imaginary ones. Even when I practice with an uke, I try to imagine the uke away, the uke is there but not there.

Give this thought.
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Old 01-23-2002, 10:26 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by Erik


I've been in a class with music and I've been in a class with imaginary uke's. Come to think of it, both have even been around at the same time.

I worry about you and that ear thing though. That's really strange. They don't let you around any big red buttons do they?
Hey, now that you mention it.... I wonder what happens when I push it
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Old 01-23-2002, 01:52 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by Erik


I've been in a class with music and I've been in a class with imaginary uke's. Come to think of it, both have even been around at the same time.

Ah, but have you been in a class with imaginary nages?

Cheers
Sarah


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Old 01-23-2002, 02:05 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah
Ah, but have you been in a class with imaginary nages?

Cheers
Sarah
Yes!

Last edited by Erik : 01-23-2002 at 02:11 PM.
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