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#345592 - 06/17/07 03:09 AM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: Ames]
aikidonut Offline
Member

Registered: 12/27/06
Posts: 100
Quote:



This thread is about 1)What is effective Aikido? 2) What training methods help to nurture this? 3) What methods ditract?

--Chris




thank you , Chris, for that encapsulation. Much needed !

What is effective aikido?

All aikido techniques are "effective aikido", if done properly. The "armbar" of ikkyo, for instance, if all movements are done with precision, timing, strength, power, is supremely effective in pinning your uke, immobilizing uke, and is the prelude to a successful disarming. In learning and perfomring this technique, nage feels the strength, power, and control of motion, and in doing so, comes closer to a self realization, that all these tools are his to work with, and that training is the means to obtaining it.

Thus the effectiveness is not only in overcoming the attacker, but also in a person realizing that he/she can do so.

In "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintainence", the protagonist takes apart his motorcycle and reassembles it everyday . He uses this repetitive, time consuming physical process not just to ensure the bike's successful operation, but more importantly, to train his body, his mind. To touch each and every bolt and screw, to register and categorize it in his brain. In doing so, he extracts happiness . His brain is gratified, the physical act of contact triggers the proprioceptive pathways of his nervous system, causing a generalized release of endorphins and dopamine to stimulate the neural circuitry pertaining to satiety, and happiness.

I believe that similar to the mind of anybody when doing their particular interest, or hobby, in Aikido one and one's brain is gratified by the pure physical act, which then translates into >> ( music swells ) effective application! An artist just loves the feel of the brush in his/her hands.The gratification is inexplicable , but present.

Similarly,Aikidoka have more than the general population's neurologic craving for the physical act of manipulating a body in 3 dimensional space. There is a type of physical intelligence that has been thought to exist, one that is separate from the cognitive intelligence of Einstein, or the social intelligence of Gandhi. It is that of Michael Jordan, Fred Astaire, or A-Rod ( did I say that ? arrgh!) and of course, O'Sensei had that type of intelligence in spades.

Effective aikido is driven by the mind, the brain. Output ( do the technique ) then input ( see and feel the technique ).

Thus, ikkyo is effective. How to nurture it, later.

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#345593 - 06/17/07 10:56 AM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: aikidonut]
wristtwister Offline
like a chiropractor, only evil

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

Thus the effectiveness is not only in overcoming the attacker, but also in a person realizing that he/she can do so.





That is the most childish approach to martial arts that I've ever heard. No one learns Aikido with the "hope that their technique works", only with the caveat that it works as taught.

All of the techniques of Aikido work well as applied to the specific teaching methods... the reason you train is to be able to execute them and blend with the attackers in their execution. If you need a list, Ikkyo, Nikkyo, Sankyo, Yonkyo, Irimi, kokyu... any throw off that list of principles.

It doesn't have anything to do with "zen in the art of motorcycle maintenance" or any of the other esoteric approaches to life... it has to do with "doing" using those principles... not "kumbayah, kumbayah, kumbayah".

The process is simple...
Learn the steps involved (attack and response)
Practice the steps involved (until you have the timing and movement)
Henke waza (change from other techniques to "this one")
Practice, practice, practice...

Okay, the secret's out... Aikido's no longer magic, so you can get off the kumbayah train.

This thread appears to have been started with you knowing what you wanted everybody to say, and nobody with any knowledge is going to say it because your premise is wrong. Effective Aikido is Aikido that works physically. It isn't magic, it isn't zen (as prescribed by the motorcycle maintenance routine)... it's knowledge, feel, and practice... just like any other martial art.

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

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#345594 - 06/17/07 11:36 AM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: wristtwister]
aikidonut Offline
Member

Registered: 12/27/06
Posts: 100
what is your aikido school/affiliation ?

if you have any video of yourself doing aikdido, why don't you post it, like i did? Talk is cheap.

Mark

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#345595 - 06/17/07 07:39 PM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: aikidonut]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
Mark, I don't know what Hagihara teaches or if he is even teaching anything... Most Japanese don't... they simply smile politely and say polite things, like "good" (meaning "you stink"), "keep practising" (meaning "hopefully one day you'll figure it out")...

From what I've seen, no one on your vids moves like Hagihara - they're all doing something different. Rank and years on the mat aside, there is a distinct difference between how some of your people move and how Hagihara moves. The question is what is that difference? I have already explained in my earlier post. The answer lies in what you see Hagihara doing and what you are not doing.

It has absolutely nothing to do with Zen or motorcycle maintenance. Zip. Nada. There's only Unconscious Incompetence (where most people are generally at) and Unconscious Competence (where most people will never get to).

The first step in getting to where you want to get to is not in repetitive unconscious practice of the same rubbish. Practice does not make perfect. Only by practising perfectly (correctly) can perfection be attained. You need to be conscious of your current level of incompetence before you can start progressing to Conscious Competence.

No Japanese is going to tell you that... they're far too polite.

So you can continue to practice ikkyo, nikyo, sankyo, yonkyo, gokyo, rokkyo, irimi nage, shihonage, tenchinage, kokyunage, koshinage, aiki otoshi, and hundreds of other techiques for years on end in the same unconscious (i.e. what you believe Zen to be) manner, or you can start all over again from the beginning (i.e. "basic" principles) and CONSCIOUSLY perceive what exactly Hagihara is showing AND not showing you, and consciously practice it.

Otherwise, all you're doing is the external shell of aikido, which may possibly be effective... right up until you meet someone better.

As an example.... learning how to break down a weapon and re-assembling it (vis a vis motorcycle maintenance?) with your eyes closed is not going to make you a better marksman.

What makes you a better marksman is breath control, holding the weapon with soft hands extended by a relaxed but connected structure that is firmly supported by the ground (or other structural support), visualization and intent to connect with the target, and gently squeezing the trigger. The trick is learning how to remember to keep doing all that while under fire.

Does that all sound strangely familiar like some martial art we know?

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#345596 - 06/18/07 12:05 AM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: eyrie]
aikidonut Offline
Member

Registered: 12/27/06
Posts: 100
I will accept that Hagihara doesn't teach everything. But then, all competent teachers will measure what they think their students are capable of, and challenge them just enough to have them progress, yet not repulse them with too much. That is the attitude of a teacher.

So, it's not because he's Japanese that he's withholding something. To say that :

Quote:

Mark, I don't know what Hagihara teaches or if he is even teaching anything... Most Japanese don't... they simply smile politely and say polite things, like "good" (meaning "you stink"), "keep practising" (meaning "hopefully one day you'll figure it out")..




borders on overgeneralization of the habits of an ethinc or national group , something that easily leads into bigotry,war , hatred.. let's keep the military industrial complex in business!

Have you read Zen and the Art of MM recently ? please re read my remarks specifically about the proprioceptive pathways , ( if you want a better definition, I can PM you, and further explain )how they relate becoming one with your weapon, your attacker,extending, and how an artist relates to his/her brush, how a swordmaster relates, becomes his sword.

I wouldn't dismiss zen so fast, many swordmasters were zen adept. The Unconscious state is samadhi,from whence effective application commences.

let's keep this thread on course: effective application:

I ask you to do the same as wristtwister, post a video of what you 're talking about. I'd like to see if you make visual sense.

Mark

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#345597 - 06/18/07 02:57 AM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: aikidonut]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
Quote:

I will accept that Hagihara doesn't teach everything. But then, all competent teachers will measure what they think their students are capable of, and challenge them just enough to have them progress, yet not repulse them with too much. That is the attitude of a teacher.

So, it's not because he's Japanese that he's withholding something. To say that :
Quote:

Mark, I don't know what Hagihara teaches or if he is even teaching anything... Most Japanese don't... they simply smile politely and say polite things, like "good" (meaning "you stink"), "keep practising" (meaning "hopefully one day you'll figure it out")..


borders on overgeneralization of the habits of an ethinc or national group , something that easily leads into bigotry,war , hatred..


A bit of a stretch.... but I'll play... he's withholding stuff because people do... everybody does... whether they're Chinese, Okinawan, or Japanese. Even Sokaku Takeda didn't show/teach Ueshiba everything. (Can't find the AJ quote, but it's there). Yet, Ueshiba worked out most of it. Hagihara isn't showing you stuff, because he's Japanese and you're not. That's only part of it. Even amongst the Japanese, not all get shown the real goods. That's just the way it is.

But it's a vicious circle. If they don't show/teach you, you won't work it out (unless you're extremely gifted). And if you work it out, they won't need to show you.

Quote:

Have you read Zen and the Art of MM recently ? please re read my remarks specifically about the proprioceptive pathways , ( if you want a better definition, I can PM you, and further explain )how they relate becoming one with your weapon, your attacker,extending, and how an artist relates to his/her brush, how a swordmaster relates, becomes his sword.


I've thumbed through it at the bookstore once, many many years ago... didn't see anything in it that I thought was outstanding enough to add to my already burgeoning library of Zen material.... it wasn't something I'd put along side the likes of ChuangTsu or D.T. Suzuki.

And what do you really know about "proprioceptive pathways"? I can tell you that training your proprioceptive pathways requires great conscious and physical effort. If it were as simple as practising physical movement forms repetitiously, then anyone practising such repetitious forms-based martial arts would be great martial artists, the likes of Ueshiba and other truly great martial artists. Sadly, I don't think this is the case. Taiji is a really good example of how "forms-based" training does not equate to martial effectiveness. Look at the multitude of people practising taiji for health in the park. Yet, if you look at some of the big guns in the taiji world, no one moves like them, except for a few of the "in group". It's the same with aikido.

Quote:

I wouldn't dismiss zen so fast, many swordmasters were zen adept. The Unconscious state is samadhi,from whence effective application commences.


I would suggest reading Donn Draeger's Japanese Swordsmanship (Technique and Practice) for a very different point of view. Too much to post here that is actually on topic, suffice to say your point about "many swordmasters being zen adepts" is plain wrong. Draeger's treatment of the subject is certainly worth reading. As far as effective application arising from an unconscious state of samadhi... that is also way off-base.

Quote:

let's keep this thread on course: effective application:


Let's... but you seem to pick the tangential points to argue...

Quote:

I ask you to do the same as wristtwister, post a video of what you 're talking about. I'd like to see if you make visual sense.


What I do would make absolutely no visual sense to you. You simply won't be able to see what I do. Not only do I no longer do "aikido forms", I simply stand my ground and bounce people off, or make them dance in whatever direction I want them to... pain factor is usually extra, if they ask for it. Most people watching what I do would say that's "fake"... until they're on the receiving end of it. The old saying, IHTBSF - it has to be shown and felt.

But, you know, compared to some others, I'm nowhere near what they can do, but at least I know what I'm working on... and it ain't about doing more "forms".

The late Terry Dobson wrote, "The 'form' of aikido is the enemy of aikido". Not trying to put wristtwister on par with Terry, but have a read of what wristtwister has to say about "forms" in the karate section. Unconscious repetitious forms do not equate to effective application. Only effective teaching and training methods can help the average student attain effectiveness in applying the principles and techniques that the forms are meant to teach, whilst under fire. Understanding what "forms" are meant to be training also help.

Don't get me wrong, I have a greater appreciation of "forms" than I did 20 years ago - now that I understand their purpose. But there are other, better and more effective ways of training that thru repetitious forms-based training. If you learn to stand and move correctly (whilst under pressure), the forms begin to make sense. And then you'll start to see all forms as being the one thing. This is what Ueshiba called "enter thru form, exit from form".

Like wristtwister once said, it's when you can slip from jujitsu to karate to aiki and your opponent cannot differentiate what's what, that you'll start to perceive what he and I are really talking about, when we say "effective application". It's not about the "form", or even the distinction between jujitsu, karate or aiki.

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#345598 - 06/18/07 03:33 AM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: eyrie]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
My bad, it was in the Forms & Application section here:
http://www.fightingarts.com/ubbthreads/s...page=0&vc=1

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#345599 - 06/18/07 12:11 PM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: aikidonut]
Gentleman Offline
Newbie

Registered: 06/18/07
Posts: 5
I went to your site (www.liaikikai.com) and read the Bio on your teacher. Who is this guy Yasuo O'Hara? The Bio seems to credit him as the founder of "1st" New York Aikikai. It also says that Edward Hagihara started Aikido in the 1950's. Was the New York Aikikai already in operation before Yoshimitsu Yamada came over from Japan?

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#345600 - 06/18/07 01:10 PM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: Viator]
Gentleman Offline
Newbie

Registered: 06/18/07
Posts: 5
From what little I know about Aikido, it seems very different from most martial arts. The founder was more interested in peaceful resolutions to conflict than we was in contests of strength. So sparing was not permitted by the founder.

How do I want my grade schooler to learn? Do I want him to be forced to go on Jeopardy to see if he is "worth it" as a student? I hope not. I hope he learns in a peaceful environment first before he has to face the difficult challenges of life. I think traditional martial arts should be practiced in the same way. That being said, practice can get more realistic once trust between partners is understood.

I believe the actual self-defense portion of traditional martial arts only makes up a small part of Budo. I think it is a method of finding peace in this world. I've read somewhere that the Japanese character (Kanji) for Budo means "to stop the spear". Since Budo is a way of life that permeates all aspects of our day-to-day experiences, such a practitioner should strive to end strife in all of its manifestations; even in how he/she trains.

Someone one said that experience is the worst teacher; it gives the test before the lesson.

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#345601 - 06/18/07 06:23 PM Re: Aikido: Effective Application [Re: Gentleman]
aikidonut Offline
Member

Registered: 12/27/06
Posts: 100
Hi, gentleman,

welcome to the craziness.
I agree with you 100% about your insights on learning.
I think it reminded me why I did aikido over the other arts>> I don't like the grunting contests. aikido went more with the flow. sort of said , " here, you can take what i'm teaching, and use it, for inner peace, to prevent an attacker from harming you, to learn the mechanics of body movement. it was interactive from day one, grabs, throws, i learned the mechanics of the human body. yes , i think it's the perfect choice for your child.

from what i know , aikido was started in NY , in the 50s , by yasuo O'hara, where sensei hagihara became an initiate to the art. he returned to japan, where he studied under O'Sensei, and had the green tea ceremony with O'Sensei, which is the prelude to receiving shodan. It was at this point that O'sensei told our sensei hagihara "to teach my aikido to the world." Sensei has been doing that ever since. He was dispatched to NY to restart NY Aikikai and then Yamada was sent over to collaborate. At this point, sensei was sent to Long Island, ( suburb of NY) to further aikido there. He continued to hold Saturday classes at NY Aikikai until recently.

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