Breaking Structure

Discussion in 'Aikido' started by K-man, May 30, 2015.

  1. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    I did say 'sometimes' and I did say 'read the body language'. In the situations to which I know you are referring, I agree, no means no.
     
  2. TonyDismukes

    TonyDismukes White Belt

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Agreed. That's what it looks like to me as well.

    My personal experience in hundreds of hours of hand fighting has been very different. Bear in mind that I and many of the people I work with apply similar principles for breaking structure.

    I have read suggestions that many of these sorts of techniques originated in a context where the opponent might be seizing your wrist to prevent you from drawing your sword. I don't know the historical truth of that, but it would seem to give a bit more plausibility to the techniques.

    I have no problem with these sorts of exercises as long as the participants don't start to confuse them with actual application.

    I'd love to see how you approach that.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    And herein lies the answer. In all my training we are training to fight untrained people or at least people who are not training the same way. I am assuming you are training for competition with people of at least a similar standard, if not higher. I would suggest that your techniques would work virtually every time when you have beginners come to your gym, regardless of their physical size or strength. Certainly there are people I can't move also but they are few and far between and all highly trained.

    I have no experience with the sword arts so I am guessing here. We do some work with bokken against the grip trying to prevent the draw. Basically that utilises the handle of the bokken to put pressure on the opponent's wrist similar to using a kubaton. I think the main purpose of training from gripping is to be able to ignore the grip and still perform the technique, something perhaps for a different thread.

    Exactly, and again, I think it is one of Aikido's failings, where a lot of students train solely with a compliant uke. The techniques need to be tested continuously against total resistance, IMO.

    I would genuinely like to show you. You are one of a number of guys here who I would love to train with sometime. In a nutshell, I try and provide a situation where the guys have to recognise what techniques are available to them rather than knowing ahead of time what technique they are going to perform (ie unscripted) and I make sure the guys can perform the techniques against resistance.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  4. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Master of Arts

    Joined:
    May 16, 2014
    Messages:
    1,963
    Likes Received:
    894
    Trophy Points:
    253
    K-man , just as a reminder ...i trained with Fumio Toyota Sensei of AAA. i can assure you and other readers that these aiki techniques work against non-compliant or resisting uke. but that is not exactly the point. when i took uke for Toyota i would attack with power and focus and i was not "falling" for him. but attacks are done in a way that as a karate-ka or as a street fighter i would not do. if we take a typical aiki defense against a right hand punch, the uke will start left foot forward and take a large step forward and punch.

    if i was in an aiki class i would punch like this and if i was going against sensei i would punch full force and full speed, this is not how i would punch outside of aikido. the uke is preconditioned to punch in this fashion which is a predetermined failure. the balance and center is lost from the begining and tori could do any technique and it will work. uke might or could punch full force, so it is not about compliance but rather the structure was lost because of the predetermined bias of the attack not because of tori's technique.

    in the clip the distance was far to great between the two combatants. i would never punch from that distance. this extra distance forces uke to reach with the upper body or to do extra foot work. (notice, the instructor mentions in the clip how he hates when people are unable to reach his body with the punch..and "fan" him)
    and unexperienced uke might lead with his upper body thus he is breaking his own structure. the more advanced uke will understand the need to keep "one point" and will do extra work with the feet to close the distance. but this is incorrect as well. when doing extra foot work it tends to cause a lag in the punch.
    we will notice in the clip there was no "retraction" of the punch. aikido is the only martial art i can think of where the punch is not thrown and retracted or moved back quickly to a cover position.


    while this clip is not great it does point out that other systems have methods to close the distance and that the correct distance to throw a punch is very very close.


    while Art is showing a different kind of punch in this clip you can see the true punching distance is often very close. there is an immediate retraction to a cover position.

    i wonder how a aikidoka would deal with Arthur Rebesa in his younger days? :) good fighters should know how to close the distance and not lose their own structure. will return to a cover position with the same speed as the out going punch.
    this is different than resisting and different than being compliant or being non-compliant. it is simply not being pre programed to act in a way that forces you to break your own structure.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    I am not aware of Fumio Toyoda's Aikido but the fact that he was promoted to such a high rank by Koichi Tohei says it all. That must have been a great experience. To me Koichi Tohei was the best. My background is karate so I do punch properly in terms of not overreaching. However, when we get to this video clip, to me it is not realistic at all and I disagree with a number of his moves from a technical aspect. We could probably have a complete thread on it alone and why his stuff wouldn't work in the real world.

    I don't have an issue with his call for a committed strike. Without that, the martial aspect goes out the window, however I would suggest that against a punch that he is not expecting there is no way he could catch that wrist. That doesn't invalidate the technique or the training as there are other situations where it could be applied, just that, against a punch like that, this isn't one of them.

    In our training we do punch with full force and speed but also with proper structure maintaining centre. The technique will still work but as I said above tori knows, ahead of time, what punch is coming. FWIW, the video was talking about yellow belt training. Most black belts couldn't make that work against a proper punch even if the did know it was coming.

    No. A lot of Karate has the same stupidity of punch and leave the arm out to dry. In fairness it is kihon but students do tend to keep using it when they shouldn't. Then you get the opposite extreme where someone gives a short sharp punch like a jab but pulls it short then says, "see you can't catch a punch". Just as unrealistic. Again we could have another entire clip on irimi and how to make distance. As I think we both can see, this is not a great advertisement for Aikido.
    Agreed. But obviously you're not going to apply kote gaeshi from a grapple position as shown but there are plenty of other techniques you can use. That's the sort of thing I teach when I occasionally do take over to teach a few advanced classes, when I say I'm trying to show the guys how to make their techniques work in a real environment.

    I think against anyone like Art he would be sitting on his backside dribbling, then again, he might be better than we give him credit for.
     
  6. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Master of Arts

    Joined:
    May 16, 2014
    Messages:
    1,963
    Likes Received:
    894
    Trophy Points:
    253
    As a side note
    This is a good example of how video clips don't always give the whole picture. I know Mr. Rebesa.he is a 9th dan. I will admit this recent clip does not seem impressive in the least. Art in his earlier days could hit like a semi trailer truck. While the abilities he had back in the 60's and 70's may be gone, the point was that he likes to fight (and he has fough a lot of street fights) in close from the clinch distance. This was my point not his ability. A typical akidoka is I'll equipped to deal with the short range fighter.
     
  7. Spinedoc

    Spinedoc Purple Belt

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2013
    Messages:
    393
    Likes Received:
    238
    Trophy Points:
    198
    Location:
    Rochester, MN
    Keep in mind that the technique being demonstrated at the 1:32 mark is called Tai no Henko. It is not a formal technique (although it can be moved into a throw) but is a kihon waza or basic fundamental that we practice EVERY single class. It is designed to teach blending, reinforce the unbendable arm concept, and centering. That's all it's designed to do. What he was demonstrating was the "presence" that uke should feel when he grabs, it is not a push, it is not a collapse, but rather uke should feel that the arm is "alive" when he grabs and it should almost make him move backwards but not so much that he lets go. This is something we practice every class. The arm becomes alive, your center drops, and in Tai no Henko, you instantly tenkan. It's like kokyudosa. Not something you will ever do in a real fight (unless you have a very tense tea ceremony), but is a foundation for every technique in Aikido.

    A very famous aikido Sensei once said that if you mastered tai no henko, kokyudosa, and morotedori kokyunage, you have mastered Aikido, because those movements are found in EVERY single other aikido technique.
     
  8. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Master of Arts

    Joined:
    May 16, 2014
    Messages:
    1,963
    Likes Received:
    894
    Trophy Points:
    253
    i dont really need or want to debate the street viability of aikido or its street effectiveness, i am sure we have done that many times on the forums. i am only pointing out that uke because of the pre conditioned way aikidoka tend to make their attacks they are breaking their own structure rather than working on maintaining it. i do not feel this is a few unexperienced individuals who "dont know any better" i believe it is part of the standard practice. there are many assumptions made in aikido on how a person will move or react and i feel most of them are false. to learn to break a persons structure when they are out of position or out of balance is not hard to do. the question is, is aikido as an art flexible enough to train with uke who are making realistic attacks or within a realistic scenario. i think if that were to happen it wouldnt be aiki anymore and would look more like any other art doing wrist controlls.



    same style controlls but this is not aiki.


    some really good applications but again this is not aiki.
     
  9. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes Senior Master

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Messages:
    4,462
    Likes Received:
    3,075
    Trophy Points:
    448
    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    I'm not an aiki practitioner, so maybe it's not my place to comment on what is or is not aiki. However I do have some idea of the concept based on watching many demonstrations and reading many explanations from aikido practitioners.

    Based on my understanding of that concept the most amazing display of aiki in action I ever saw was, believe it or not, in a sumo match. It was in the finals of a tournament, with an older and relatively small* grand champion up against a huge up-and-comer who was about twice his size.

    They met in the middle of the ring with the customary shoving, and the smaller sumotori gave way while retreating in a tight spiral, much like the opening footwork in the kotegaeshi clip above. He allowed just enough contact so the big guy felt he had something to keep pushing against, but no so much that the small guy lost any structure or balance. The big guy doubtless felt like he was winning and so kept trying to chase the little guy around the spiral up until the point where he overextended, tripped over his own feet, and fell. It wasn't a fluke and the big guy wasn't a klutz. The grand champion had just moved so beautifully as to maneuver the behemoth into throwing himself.

    I watched that and said "Wow. that may be sumo, but it looks like aikido to me."

    *(The "little" guy was actually about 200 pounds, but in a professional sumo context that's pretty small. His opponent was at least twice his size.)
     
    • Like Like x 2
  10. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    I think what we are getting into here is the exact same argument we get into with karate when people say karateka don't fight as they train. That is because they see karate as being the kihon whereas the actual fighting is the advanced version where you apply the basics but they just don't look like the basics in practice.

    Aikido is no different. We learn the basics but when we use them it may well be in a different way using the same principles. Also it may require an atemi. If an Aikidoka was the one in any one of those videos, why would it not be aiki! In the first chin na video the guys were demonstrating a basic wrist control that will only work using aiki principles. I was at a seminar where a highly ranked Hapkido guy had us doing it. It was even failing for him against resistance and none of his students could make it work either because they were all trying to use straight strength. I invite anyone on this forum to grab a partner and try it. Unless you use aiki it will not work unless your partner is untrained or compliant. Using aiki I had no problem with the technique.

    The second video is just a variation of a nikkyo technique mixed with a bit of kote gaeshi. Again, I suggest, against a stronger, non compliant person it will not work without aiki. In a real life situation it could be used to get an arm bar but it may well need the atemi. You might say, well then it's not aiki, but even Ueshiba is quoted as saying Aikido is 70% atemi.

    Third video contains versions of nikkyo, sankyo (into the goose neck)the person used Aiki, kaiten nage (into the shoulder lock) and even a touch of yonkyo. If an aikidoka was performing those techniques under the same circumstances they would look similar. If the person used the principles of aiki it would just make the techniques a little easier. I don't see why aikido wouldn't be aikido when applied in real life or are you expecting to see the same flowing techniques that you see on the dojo floor against a compliant uke?

    I use aiki all the time grappling with my Krav students, I use aiki all the time in the 'Ju' part of my Goju. Every time I want to break a structure in any of my training I am using aiki.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    14,165
    Likes Received:
    2,353
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    ??? What other situation could you be referring to???
     
  12. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    Obviously you don't have flirting where you live. :rolleyes:
     
  13. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    14,165
    Likes Received:
    2,353
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    It's been my experience that no always means no, and flirting is something you do with people who aren't saying no. Maybe things are different in Australia, but in America, flirting with someone who isn't interested isn't flirting. It's harrassing.
     
  14. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    Not sure what people do in America but flirting takes two people, just like good sex. After all, you said it yourself, flirting with someone not interested in flirting is not flirting.
     
  15. Tony Dismukes

    Tony Dismukes Senior Master

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Messages:
    4,462
    Likes Received:
    3,075
    Trophy Points:
    448
    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    I didn't want to derail the thread, but I think Jenna is right that this important enough to need addressing.

    You are correct that there may be times where someone says "no", but means "yes" or "maybe" or "convince me" or "I'm making a token protest for forms sake." There are plenty of people out there who have been socialized to play mind games or send mixed messages.

    Even so, the correct response in every single situation where a "girl" (woman) says "no" is to accept that as meaning no. It doesn't matter if your reading of her body language or other non-verbal cues leads you to think she means something different. If the woman really wants to get laid and was protesting for forms sake, she can learn to say what she means and it will make life better for everyone all around. In the meantime, no always means no.

    Unfortunately, millions of rapes* occur because of a societal mindset that says "no" doesn't count if the guy thinks he detects non-verbal indicators to the contrary. I don't think you were trying to promote this mindset, but it's the sort of thing that gets perpetuated without thinking.

    *(and lesser forms of sexual harassment)
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  16. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    Yes, the correct response is ... no means no.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    14,165
    Likes Received:
    2,353
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Covington, WA
    A thousand times, yes!
     
  18. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2012
    Messages:
    5,054
    Likes Received:
    1,196
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Austin, Tx/Shell Beach, Ca
    I don't know what aiki is but after I goggled it (I think all non-English terms should include English translation), it sounds like "bending with an attacker's movements" (I prefer to call it ability to change and borrow force). If A and B are on the same skill level, 99% of the time the 1st move (whether it's a punch, a kick, a lock, a throw) won't work. But if you use the 1st move to set up the 2nd move, the successful rate will get higher.

    This is why I believe there should be 3 different levels of training.

    1st level - you apply technique X, your opponent is down.
    2nd level - your opponent applies technique X, you counter with technique Y.
    3rd level - you apply technique X, your opponent counters with technique Y, you apply technique Z to counter his technique Y.

    If you train this way, your training will be closer to reality.

    Here is an example of the 1st level training:

    - A's left hand grabs on B's right wrist and take B down with an elbow lock.

    Here is an example of the 2nd level training:

    - A's left hand grabs on B's right wrist.
    - B rotates his right hand to put pressure on A's thumb, break away A's grip, and apply wrist lock on A.

    Here is an example of the 3rd level training:

    - A's left hand grabs on B's right wrist.
    - B rotates his right hand to put pressure on A's thumb, and break away the grip.
    - A takes advantage on B's wrist rotation, let go his left grip, move in and grab his left hand on B's elbow joint.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015
  19. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

    • MartialTalk Mentor
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2008
    Messages:
    6,193
    Likes Received:
    1,219
    Trophy Points:
    248
    Location:
    Australia
    Sorry, not even close. By 'aiki' we mean the basic principles of Aikido. That means not clashing with your opponent's strength, redirecting his force, changing his focus etc. So when I say I use aiki against my Krav students I am not physically trying to wrestle them to the ground. I take their centre and they just fall over by themselves.
     
  20. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Master of Arts

    Joined:
    May 16, 2014
    Messages:
    1,963
    Likes Received:
    894
    Trophy Points:
    253
    I think Kung fu Wang ment "blend" not bend. I Do think this is not far off. Correct me if I am wrong but the Kanji of "ai" means love and harmony. Ki is energy or force.
    So my definition of aiki is harmonizing energies.
    So this goes back to what I said earlier if you do a throw or a controll and you are not "harmonizing" with the attacker then can it be called aikido?
    If uke's job is also to harmonize with nage then is uke breaking his own center and being thrown due to the rules if engagement set up buy the art form?
    If I as uke walked up to nage and did not follow the expected behavioral norm nage would think I was just being an ****.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1

Share This Page