Aikido......golf....etc.

Spinedoc

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Aikido update.

Going great. No regrets taking up Aikido. Been doing it for 10 months now.

Lost 35 pounds, and gained an infinite amount of flexibility (Both of which sorely needed). Very fast paced classes with sincere, resistive attacks (Even though we are a USAF affiliate, my Sensei is a big Saito Sensei fan, and we really practice more as an Iwama style dojo)

Another benefit has been noted....golf. I have been a rabid golfer since my early 20's (over 20 years ago), and try to play, well, pretty much as much as I possibly can.

The more I've done Aikido, the more I note similarities between the two and how synergistic they really are. I know I am not the first. There is an LPGA touring pro who is also a yudansha in Aikido who has written extensively on this.

The similarities however, using a relaxed focus, a focus on technique, and an avoidance of strength, are striking. The "washing machine" motion with the hips and center creating the energy and momentum used are also similar..

Anyone who has golfed a bit, knows, that if you grip the club as hard as you can, and you swing as hard as you can, you will have no control. You may hit the ball, but you cannot predict where it will go.....Golf works when you relax, when you use your upper body as a coil, and allow it to uncoil with proper weight shifting and transfer, and a smooth swinging motion

Aikido is the same way. I know, when I am practicing with the senior students, or my Sensei, that they will give me a fair amount of resistance. If I try to "muscle" my way through it, and "force it", it won't work. I'll get stuck, and they won't let me apply the technique. When I relax....focus on my center, and proper technique, it just goes.

It works. One of the senior students and I have a habit of going at it hard (he gouged my eye the other night, I elbowed him in the head, he's hit me with a punch-atemi in the mouth, etc.)....and we both tend to fully resist each other. I can sometimes have a hard time moving him, as the technique has to be right, he won't simply "go with it". He can almost always move me, because he's been at this for 14 years, and his technique is flawless....For example, I have grabbed him with morote dori as hard as I can and will put all my weight forward on him and he still raises his arms almost effortlessly doing kokyunage.

Same with golf. One interesting sidebar.....I've always hit a power fade in golf. I've never been the longest hitter (I find most people who "claim" to hit 300 yard drives are full of it, especially considering most tour pros don't do that consistently--except a few) but I could hit about 245-255, and if the gods are smiling, occasionally a 275-280 yard drive.. Ever since my 20's......I've hit a 10-15 yard fade...so I start down the left fairway, and play the left to right shot. I've been good enough that I can hit a right to left shot if I have to, but it's usually a little ugly, and I have to take some out of it, so it's probably 30-40 yards shorter....

Well...now...I'm hitting a draw..a nice 10 yard right to left draw and about 10-15 yards longer per club.... WTF? So, I talked to a a good friend, and college buddy who is a teaching pro now....he asked what was different, and I told him about the Aikido, he laughed, and said that was it. He's had students take other martial arts and notice improvements in their swings. He said my weight transfer was probably crisper and smoother, that I was more flexible, had better timing, and I was probably faster with my hands and rolling them over a little more at impact with more of a closed clubface....

Anyway, thought I'd share as that was an interesting, and rather unexpected change.
 

Carol

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Nice update! I also would not have expected an improvement on the fairway but that's a terrific plus!
 

hussaf

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It causes an increase in overall body coordination, efficiency, and functionality....applicable in many parts of your life. People may balk at direct comparisons from aikido to a no -aikido activity. I feel like they are just being argumentative. The reason people like to make these comparisons is because aikido talks about things applicable to many other activities. These activities, however, don't often emphasize, or even speak about, the same fundamentals. So, to me, it makes sense to compare aikido, to say skateboarding, because when I was learning to skateboard I was never told about "keeping your weight underside," or "maintaining one point.". In fact, I often find the two compliment each other. I've found ways of keeping my center while my body is offset in activities like skateboarding or rock climbing, that improve my aikido.
 

Tames D

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I'm glad to see you're doing well, Spinedoc. I'm not an Aikido guy but I have played a little golf. I don't usually talk about my game but I'll just say that if I have a strong wind behind me, I can get a solid 125 yard drive with my woods. :)
 

Transk53

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I would have never associated Golf with anything else, well I thought Golf was Golf. Interesting Spinedoc :)
 
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