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#237069 - 03/07/06 11:32 PM Realistic attacks in training
wristtwister Offline
like a chiropractor, only evil

Registered: 02/14/06
Posts: 2210
Loc: South Carolina
While I've done martial arts for over 40 years, I've spent the last 20 in a lot of Aikido training. My partner, who trained with Soganuma Sensei, helped me a lot with something that one of his senseis had used in Japan... it was the phrase "hit me... if you can".

Being well ingrained with jujitsu training, I was accustomed to having good attacks to work with for those techniques, but it took a few times for it to sink in that the dynamics of Aikido depend on the attack as much as the defense. As we trained using bokkens, the strength of the attack began to show me exceptional openings in which to use my technique, and it was quite an easy transition to go from sword technique to empty hand aikido.

As the years have passed, I've seen a lot of aikidoka founder in their training because their partners really "gave them nothing to work with" by "deadpan attacks". Aikido is all about energy and movement, so if you want to be good at it, adopt the "hit me... if you can" attitude. It will do wonders for your techniques.

_________________________
What man is a man that does not make the world a better place?... from "Kingdom of Heaven"

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#237070 - 03/08/06 07:47 AM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: wristtwister]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
Good point. But do you ever get strange looks from students when you say that? Or comments like "I don't want to hit you" - perhaps for fear that you might hit them back or for not wanting to hurt you.

How do you approach that perspective?

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#237071 - 03/08/06 07:57 AM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: eyrie]
Chanters Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 06/16/04
Posts: 559
Loc: Manchester, UK
Being female, I get that alot with male beginners. they do an airy strike which either stops short of me or brushes past me. I ask them to try and hit my properly but they say, that they don't want to hurt me. My response to that is if you hurt me, it's my own fault for not moving out of the way!

It's frustrating when people don't commit to their attacks and this often results in the technique not working. But hey, they're only beginners, and the more advanced students really so try and smack you!
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#237072 - 03/08/06 11:06 AM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: eyrie]
wristtwister Offline
like a chiropractor, only evil

Registered: 02/14/06
Posts: 2210
Loc: South Carolina
It's kind of like having to run somebody down and then beat them up.

The last thing you need is to have an uke simply wave an attack at you... which makes me usually stand still until they're finished and then attack them (under control, of course). "If you don't attack me, I'll attack you"... is the followup statement. A few of those, and you'll start getting the job done.

_________________________
What man is a man that does not make the world a better place?... from "Kingdom of Heaven"

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#237073 - 03/08/06 11:25 AM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: eyrie]
csinca Offline
former moderator

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 672
Loc: Southern California
Great topic.

I've been known to tell uke to pretend they were taking a martial art and to hit me. Sometimes they'd say "but this is a martial art" and I'd say "Good, then hit me".

But usually I would refuse to move until uke gave me a good attack. I'd just stand there and let them miss me or pull lup short or whatever they were doing. In most cases the next attack would be on target but soft and I'd have uke hit me over and over, harder each time until they started really trying to hit me.

Of course the curve seems to be different with guys in their early 20s. They'd usually come in very committed by the third attack!

I've also been know to tell uke that they might as well hit me because when I'm uke I'll be hitting them.

An extension of this topic is what do you do when uke is trying to hit you with full intention and there is still nothing to the attack? Most people don't know how to strike with power and balance and when they try, your technique can be way off and it will still work.

For a while I taught the first half of a class every week on basic striking. What kind of striking/atemi practice do you guys incorporate?

Chris

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#237074 - 03/08/06 11:29 AM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: csinca]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Quote:

I've been known to tell uke to pretend they were taking a martial art and to hit me. Sometimes they'd say "but this is a martial art" and I'd say "Good, then hit me".




Classic!
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"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

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#237075 - 03/08/06 06:10 PM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: csinca]
wristtwister Offline
like a chiropractor, only evil

Registered: 02/14/06
Posts: 2210
Loc: South Carolina
Quote:

But usually I would refuse to move until uke gave me a good attack.




I usually tell them, "Let me know when you're ready..." or "my head's over here, not out there" when they "whiff" one of those two feet in front of me.

One of the main reasons to do bokken training is to learn the proper distancing between you and your opponents, and it's translated into "empty hand practice". If you "whiff" with the bokken, you might get cracked on the head or wrist by your partner, so it makes you pay attention.

One of the funny things I do in class is tell everyone that "I only have one instruction... twist the wrist" (hence, my moniker), but you'd be surprised how hard that instruction is to follow. The students will bend, push, pull, press, and do everything except twist when doing techniques, so telling them to hit me isn't much different from that.

At one time, I had a class called "listening". It was designed to teach students to learn to listen to the instructions they were given, rather than just doing whatever popped into their heads. The brunt of it was that every time somebody did something other than what I said, they got thrown by the entire class. Believe it or not, it didn't take long for them to start listening. If not, by the time they figured it out, they had good ukemi from being slammed on the floor repeatedly. Either way, they came out winners.

_________________________
What man is a man that does not make the world a better place?... from "Kingdom of Heaven"

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#237076 - 03/08/06 07:08 PM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: wristtwister]
csinca Offline
former moderator

Registered: 04/16/03
Posts: 672
Loc: Southern California
Somehow the meaning of the word "down" seems to change once people step onto the mat

A few years ago I was at the chiropractor for a little shoulder problem I was having and she had my arm extended straight up over my head. She held my arm and told me to push down. What she really meant was push forward and she was a bit surprised when I dropped my hand straight down - just like she told me to.

Chris

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#237077 - 03/08/06 09:34 PM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: wristtwister]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
It would be uesful for non-Aikido people, like me, to have an idea what "attack" means in Aikido training?
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#237078 - 03/08/06 11:47 PM Re: Realistic attacks in training [Re: ButterflyPalm]
wristtwister Offline
like a chiropractor, only evil

Registered: 02/14/06
Posts: 2210
Loc: South Carolina
Usually strikes are made to the top of the head (shomen) or side of the head (yokomen) and to the wrist (kote) the same as in swordfighting. Thrusting techniques (such as punches or sword thrusts) are also practiced.

Techniques are practiced against lapel and wrist grips, punches, kicks, and techniques are done both standing and kneeling or with the attacker standing and respondent kneeling.

We practice with and against weapons, bokken and jo, and have a special technique designed to disarm someone with a knife (gokyo). We also practice doing the throws and pins with the weapons.

The rest is magic...

_________________________
What man is a man that does not make the world a better place?... from "Kingdom of Heaven"

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