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#111997 - 06/08/04 10:04 AM Re: Blade tricks and skills
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5821
Loc: USA
Javaman

That is exactly the kind of jackass, jackaround attitude that makes the entire non-martial arts community think we are all a bunch of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers "Wannabes."

Handeling things that can hurt you or others with the attitude of "hey everybody look at ME."
Is often the first step in a call to 911.

I have studied saber fenceing (western) and train with a guy that studies Chinese Wu Shu--a very acrobatic art, that has many "flashy" moves with the blade.

My fenceing teacher was absoultly intolerent of ANY "jacking around" with the saber--fastest way to get your butt kicked out of class was to act in a (I'm quoteing here) "childish, immature manner" with a blade.

My buddies Wu-Shu teacher spends ALOT of time making sure that his students understand that even the blunt weapons are VERY DANGEROUS to be "playing" with.
He backs up his statements with examples of serious injuries caused by people doing "tricks" with potential dangerous weapons.

Look at it this way--a couple of Hollywood guys )Brandon Lee and John Huxcum) got killed by handguns loaded with BLANKS for gods sakes.

Bottom line is that weapons of ANY kind should be handled with respect and care.

Weapons of ANY sort should not be "played with."

People that don't get that should not be handeling weapons.

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#111998 - 06/08/04 03:28 PM Re: Blade tricks and skills
Lokkan-Do Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/10/04
Posts: 1411
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Suppose your thumb comes off?

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#111999 - 06/08/04 03:45 PM Re: Blade tricks and skills
schanne Offline
breaks things

Registered: 02/18/04
Posts: 4370
Loc: Woodbury NJ
Cut myself sharpening the Katana the other day. My blade is so sharp it's scary. What a beautiful weapon, still get goose bumps when working with my katana. We have two beautiful kata's that we do while practing, made them up from a combination of basic Korean and Japanese karate kata's and mixed the blade into the form.

[This message has been edited by schanne (edited 06-08-2004).]

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#112000 - 06/08/04 03:56 PM Re: Blade tricks and skills
javaman Offline
Member

Registered: 07/04/03
Posts: 179
Loc: calgary, alberta, canada
[QUOTE]Originally posted by cxt:

I have studied saber fenceing (western) and train with a guy that studies Chinese Wu Shu--a very acrobatic art, that has many "flashy" moves with the blade.
[/QUOTE]

That is exactly what I study, as well as European renaissance sword arts, and in both those arts, these "flashy" moves are commonly taught in all schools of wushu, and I know injuries do occur, but injuries also occur in kendo, iado and other arts that do not use "flashy" moves.

The basic question is: when does a move with a sword cross the line from exercise, or technique, to trick? What mojo described in his original post does not seem overly flashy or useless, and the exercises I described are not either.


[QUOTE]Originally posted by cxt:

My buddies Wu-Shu teacher spends ALOT of time making sure that his students understand that even the blunt weapons are VERY DANGEROUS to be "playing" with.
He backs up his statements with examples of serious injuries caused by people doing "tricks" with potential dangerous weapons.
[/QUOTE]

That's good, any teacher worth his spit will caution his students very carfully when practicing with weapons; whether his/her students are doing so-called "tricks" or not. That should be expected and demanded by all involved of the teacher. But does this teacher still expect his students to go home and practice these "flashy" moves with a sword, carfully and safely? Again, that is something that should be expected; if you are in a martial art, you should practice what you learn in the dojo at home or some other place away from the dojo as well.

[QUOTE]Originally posted by jimp1969:

'Tricks' with the sword are ok if you want to work in the circus, not for if you want to learn a martial art. Would you do 'tricks' when learning a martial art other than a sword art? Would any Aikido or Judo sensei worth their weight during a lesson let you do some 'tricks'?! I would hope not. And with a sword - certainly not, unsharpened or not.
[/QUOTE]

Many unarmed martial arts teach techniques that are tricks. I don't have any experience with judo but what about "The unbending arm" demonstration I have seen in several aikido dojos, that is a trick.
What about a spinning axe kick? Useless in a real confrontation, but lots of fun to do in the dojo. That's a trick. All martial arts have little aspects of them that are for fun, and to a slight extent to let the students and teachers show off their skills.

[QUOTE]Originally posted by jimp1969:

And as to whether they improve your hand-eye co-ordination, perhaps they do - but that is not the point here surely as correct practice will do just the same, and just for the record - I take my Iai 'seriously', I enjoy it alright - but I certainly don't do it for 'fun'.
[/QUOTE]

It's good that you said that, because in my last post I said:

Yes, sword arts do help with unarmed skills; hand-eye coordination, timing ect. but there are other ways to learn this, mainly practicing the unarmed arts dedicatedly.


So as you can see, I completely agree with that.

And I never said that any martial art should not be taken seriously, It should be taken seriously, and you should have fun with it. My only beef is with people who actually think they are somehow going to get in an actual sword fight one day, and seem to try to prepare for it by taking sword lessons.

And if anyone thinks that these techniques I have described make the martial arts look foolish; these techniques ARE the sword arts; so if that's the case, then I guess it's the art that makes itself look foolish. Although the only times I have seen any art look stupid it was because of bad students and even worse instructors. Not because some student performed a flashy move with a sword in a safe, controlled, and correct way. That just looks cool.

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#112001 - 06/08/04 04:22 PM Re: Blade tricks and skills
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5821
Loc: USA
Javaman

Look at the "trick" described by mojo in his first post.

Sorry, I must say that the move mojo describes seems pretty useless to me.

Perhaps you would care to offer an application??

I don't think I am getting thu so we should just agree to dis-agree.

I have a real problem with useing weapons--ANY WEAPONS, in order, as you put it "to look cool"

Weapons of ANY kind should be treated with respect.

If it can hurt you or others then you should NOT be doing "tricks" "playing with it" or to "look cool."

Anyone that has grown up around firearms knows this.

If you don't, you simply should not be handleing weapons--period.

From my own perspective (and that goes for the either asian or western arts) "playing" with a weapon is foolish.

Its dangerous for the user and others, it makes the person doing it look like an ass, it does no good as a training tool, etc.

Like I said before a person that does not understand that has NO BUSINESS handeling weapons of ANY sort.

Esp not to "look cool."

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#112002 - 06/08/04 04:52 PM Re: Blade tricks and skills
laf7773 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/05/04
Posts: 4064
Loc: Limbo
Javaman,

"laf773, I hate to break it to you, but the only reason you should ever practice a sword art is for fun. Swords are useless in modern combat, and anyone who thinks that actual sword combat is "practical" in the modern world is a fool

Yes, sword arts do help with unarmed skills; hand-eye coordination, timing ect. but there are other ways to learn this, mainly practicing the unarmed arts dedicatedly."

These two statements contradict each other. How can sword training be " useless in modern combat" but still help with hand eye coordination, timing and distance? Aren't these 3 very important things in combat of any kind?

Yes there are other ways to learn these skills but why limit yourself? If you think weapons training is ONLY for fun then you are the fool, not us. While people may enjoy training in the Japanese sword arts, the training, respect and diciplain come first.

How is this "trick" he discribes in his first post not seem overly flashy or useless? Spinning a katana is not a technique, reversing his grip maybe but that doesn't sound like what he ws discribing.

I don't know of anyone who i've met that is actually training under legitamate instructors that think they will ever get into a sword fight. Reducing iaido or kenjutsu to simple fun and games is disrespectfull to the arts. They do serve a purpose.

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#112003 - 06/09/04 10:48 AM Re: Blade tricks and skills
jimp1969 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/08/04
Posts: 64
Loc: Midlands UK
Javaman, you said
"My only beef is with people who actually think they are somehow going to get in an actual sword fight one day, and seem to try to prepare for it by taking sword lessons."

If most of the people YOU have met that do Iai imagine they are going to get into a sword fight one day (as you suggest) - err then I think you have been meeting some 'dick heads' that's all - they just happen to be dickheads with swords.

You'll probably find these are the sort of guys also doing 'tricks'...

Keep it real gents.
Get a Sensei, Find a good Dojo, practice, practice, practice.

Do what you will Mojo but I'd rather spend my available training time doing the art - you can never learn enough so why waste time doing tricks, that's what I think anyway.

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#112004 - 06/10/04 01:27 AM Re: Blade tricks and skills
javaman Offline
Member

Registered: 07/04/03
Posts: 179
Loc: calgary, alberta, canada
What I mean't was, just because some particular move or technique is out of the ordinary, or would not be used in any actual sword fight, does not mean it's a useless trick.

What about board breaking? What about tameshigiri (sp?) (that might not even be the correct name, but I mean test cutting on rolled up mats); what about doing the splits? These are all "tricks" to some extent or another! And yet they are all part of the martial arts. At least in some schools, and no doing these things does not make a school a mcdojo. Or else the shaolin Temple, all Okinawan dojos and all kenjutsu schools are mcdojos.

I'd be willing to bet money, that when the first iai dojo opened up, some old kenjutsu student or instructor dismissed it as being "useless tricks" to impress people. the same thing probably happened with Kendo. So yes I would do tricks if I was in another martial art. These tricks are the martial art.

[QUOTE] Originally posted by cxt

I have a real problem with useing weapons--ANY WEAPONS, in order, as you put it "to look cool"

Weapons of ANY kind should be treated with respect.

If it can hurt you or others then you should NOT be doing "tricks" "playing with it" or to "look cool."

Anyone that has grown up around firearms knows this.
[/QUOTE]


I said to use blunt swords, so that is in fact a replica weapon, a fake as it were.

I did grow up around firearms, I have owned, shot and trained proffesionally with them my whole life. And I would never do a trick with a real gun, unloaded or not. I might with some kind of plastic replica, just for kicks, but that's it. Oh, wait I've done western quickdraw... That's a silly trick isn't it. But I did it safely, on a real range where all proper safety precautions were taken. So that would make it ok I hope. But I would never do any fancy hand or grip switching with a real gun, or twirls or spins or anything. That's just real stupid.

And I never said to not treat weapons with respect. You should, they are dangerous.

[QUOTE] Originally posted by laff773:

"laf773, I hate to break it to you, but the only reason you should ever practice a sword art is for fun. Swords are useless in modern combat, and anyone who thinks that actual sword combat is "practical" in the modern world is a fool

Yes, sword arts do help with unarmed skills; hand-eye coordination, timing ect. but there are other ways to learn this, mainly practicing the unarmed arts dedicatedly."

These two statements contradict each other. How can sword training be " useless in modern combat" but still help with hand eye coordination, timing and distance? Aren't these 3 very important things in combat of any kind?
[/QUOTE]


I said swords are useless in modern combat; not sword training. Lots of things improve hand eye coordination, timing and distancing: Football, Baseball, hockey, darts, tennis, video games, typing... many more. But I would not rely on those skills to help in any sort of combat or street confrontation. That's not to say don't do those things, but do them for the same reason you should do sword arts, appreciation of history, self improvement, discipline, fitness and yes, fun.

By the way I thought of another sword trick; this one is from an advanced tai chi sword form that I have practiced for a number of years:

with the sword in a normal right hand grip, point facing upwards, at about armpit-height on your right side; slash downward and vertically until the sword is parrallel to the ground held slightly above waist height. Drop the sword in place and catch it in a reversed grip in your left hand, make a quick stab forward and then another stab behind you on the left side of your body. Then swing the sword vertically in a slash until it ends up facing point up on the left side of your body, then, keeping the sword in place, reach around your face with your right hand and grab the sword from your left with a normal grip (so that your right thumb is at the top of the hilt)

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#112005 - 06/10/04 06:19 AM Re: Blade tricks and skills
jimp1969 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/08/04
Posts: 64
Loc: Midlands UK
Java

Tameshiwari is used to demonstrate Karate - the same as cutting through bamboo mats in Iai demonstrates that art. These are done to get you used to the impact of hitting/cutting, to help measure the power of your techniques and to develop accuracy whilst using maximum force. They are not 'tricks' but you thinking they are may explain why you are saying what you are saying.

If I remember rightly - this post started with Mojo talking about spinning the sword in the palm of his hand. The majority of us have been advising him NOT to do this, to take the art more seriously than that, not to follow this type of practice. We have been advising him to concentrate on the proper art, and that what he has been doing just isn't a 'safe' way to learn a sword art.

Jave - Spinning a sword in the palm of his hand is just simply bollocks.

Mojo said in his post 'I want to learn the 'art' of the sword - let's encourage him to do just that.

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#112006 - 06/10/04 07:58 AM Re: Blade tricks and skills
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5821
Loc: USA
Javaman

Board breaking and mat-cutting are not "spinning a sword between your fingers" like a cheerleaders baton--as mojo posted.
No "trick' but training tools with specific application.
ie. Cutting of material to improve the ability to cut.

Still waiting for you to post an application for this "trick."

And no western "quick draw" was not a "trick"
it was a gunfighting tactic.
Used on a number of occasions to get a firearm into play quickly.

Thats not a "trick" of the type mojo described.

More to the point-"blunt" of "fake" weapon its still dangerous.

A bokken (that would be a wooden sword) in the right or in this case the WRONG hands is a very dangerous thing.

Favorite quote on the subject (can't remember who said it) is "If you don't think a bokken can hurt someone--you don't get to use one in MY dojo."

Need I point out that doing tricks with a "fake" blade only reimforces bad habits when and if you handle a "real" one??

On the subject of firearms--please be aware that Brandon Lee and John Eric Huxcum--both actors were killed by BLANKS for gods sake.

So if as you claim, you have "trained professionally" with firearms you should be doing everything you can to get people TO TREAT WEAPONS OF ANY SORT WITH RESPECT AND CARE.

NOT ENCOURGEING CHILDREN TO "PLAY" WITH THEM, PERFORM "TRICKS" WITH THEM OR AS YOU PUT, TO "LOOK COOL."

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