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#125770 - 08/10/03 11:20 PM Re: Why all these techniques?
sactoaikiguy Offline

Registered: 08/10/03
Posts: 6
Loc: Sacramento, CA, USA
If I could throw my two cents in..
I trained in a very aggressive and realistic style of Kung Fu before I became involved in Aikido and each of us was encouraged to develop a small core of simple techniques that were our "bread and butter," the stuff that was simple, effective, and worked for us. At that time I approached every technique as an audition. From the moment I started practicing and attempting to utilize a new technique I was evaluating it for its realism, simplicity, and effectiveness in my fighting style. This was, I think, a good way to learn to fight.

I think where people miss the boat when having these kinds of discussions about Aikido is that the style is not about producing an effective fighter. It's about learning how not to fight. Aikido as I understand it is a process based upon older martial styles in which the practitioner endeavors to increase her (or his) knowledge of self and discover a different, more harmonious way of interacting with the world around her. Osensei only took students who already came highly recommended from other styles of martial art, so they presumably could already fight. His aim was to show them the fundamental principles behind the techniques and allow them to discover something deeper.

I never had an Aikido technique demonstrated for me as a realistic way to deal with this or that. Instead, my Sensei and I discuss techniques in terms of the principles behind them, how they differ from a more aggressive response, and so on. Each technique is used as a tool with which to study certain aspects of movement and human interaction. While I certainly think that serious training in Aikido can dramatically improve a person's odds of defending themself from attack, I feel that discussing its realism for fighting is somewhat pointless as it was designed to teach us how to avoid conflict.

#125771 - 12/30/04 07:13 PM Re: Why all these techniques?

I'd like to share a quote from the founder:

"The techniques of the Way of Peace change constantly; every encounter is unique, and the appropriate response should emerge naturally. Today's techniques will be different tomorrow. Do not get caught up with the form and appearance of a challenge. The Art of Peace has no form - it is a study of the spirit."

That being said. The founder also said, "Enter through form, exit from form".

Techniques exist to convey principles in action. They exist to create the illusion of form for formless principles.

I don't know how true this story is, but a story is told of a deshi who attempted to catalogue all of O'Sensei's techniques. After he had catalogued 2200 or so techniques, O'Sensei told him to give up - there are over 10,000.

I think what he was referring to was the myriad permutations, combinations and variations of the fundamental principles, rather than the techniques proper - although they are interconnected.

#125772 - 01/05/05 02:34 PM Re: Why all these techniques?
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5843
Loc: USA

Because to certain extent, the more tools in the toolbox the better off you are.

Guy asked me the other day if I had a screwdriver he could use.

Dude had about 9 different sizes of Phillips Head and no Slot screwdriver.

So all his variations did him no good in the fix he was in.

You never know when the lack of something is going to get you "screwed."

And the problem is that you often don't know you are going to need it until its too late.

[This message has been edited by cxt (edited 01-05-2005).]

#125773 - 01/30/05 09:35 AM Re: Why all these techniques?
Robaikido Offline

Registered: 04/27/04
Posts: 158
Loc: Wales
There are so many techniques because they are designed to teach you the principles of entering, turning, maai, zanshin etc from as many situations as possible.

When free sparing as we do in our class, our sensei tells us not to think of technique, just react to the attack, as every attack is going to be different.

If you have favourite techniques, I think you are putting yourself in danger. For example, you are in a nightclub, you can see someone is going to attack you, and you decide to use a simple but effective technique, enter and drive your hand through their chin. This many be in your 6 favourite technique arsenal, but, you are decideing a defense before the attack is thrown.

So, you step to your left, to thrust up to his chin with your right hand, only to walk onto a right handed punch thrown from him, leaving you out cold.

I think it is better to naturally react to a situation, rather than think of the technique your going to use before anything has started, just my 2 cents.

#125774 - 01/30/05 09:07 PM Re: Why all these techniques?

[QUOTE]Originally posted by sactoaikiguy:
I feel that discussing its realism for fighting is somewhat pointless as it was designed to teach us how to avoid conflict. [/QUOTE]

Finally after reading all that was posted on techniques, what works and what doesnt someone brings out the reason a practitioner of Aikido keeps coming to train. Aikido is NOT a fighting art even using the title martial art to describe Aikido is a misconception. Aikido is a martial peace the art of not fighting. No straight out Aikido technique will work in a REAL situation, everyone moves differently everyone reacts differently but by the training methods deleloped in Aikido we learn this. By moving with your attacker, blending and applying the 'principles' in which we train, i find that that is the only technique needed.

#125775 - 01/31/05 04:06 PM Re: Why all these techniques?

oh yeah

Aikido stresses principles (in my school maybe 6-9 principles) not techniques, there are countless techniques, for example there are that i know of 20 or more kokunage's impossible to learn, but once u have the principle u can perform or use any of the techniques. AIKIDO IS NOT ABOUT TECHNIQUES.

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