Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Resistance is Futile

Went to class Tues, Wednesday, and Friday this week.

Wednesday night at North Shore Aikikai I caught most of Rob's class. He apparently was looking at some old footage of a sensei who used to visit every year from Japan. The exercises/techniques stressed flexibility and strength of your core. Getting ridiculously low was a requirement.

On Friday night I paired myself off with one of the new folks. I was curious how he was coming along. It was excellent practice for me. I had to keep the techniques at a pace he could follow. He didn't seem overly comfortable taking even basic ukemi. For nikkyo when he would go to the ground there was quite a bit of grunting going on. He wanted to resist everything which oddly enough I didn't notice right away. I pulled him aside after class. I suggested to him that at this stage its hard enough for someone to just remember where to put your feet and hands and so forth without worrying about what to do if someone is fighting a technique they know is coming. Then I had him do an ikkyo to me and showed him the difference. The first time I offerred some resistance. The second time I just blended with him like butter.

For those of you just starting out. Your best bet is to offer no resistance at this stage. There isn't a lot of benefit to it right now for uke or nage.

The second class Friday night was a sharp contrast. Mr. Mulligan had us doing some koshinage. I had Tony and Sam for partners. Tony was doing his usual, tossing me around like crazy. Sam too. By the end of the night I was pretty well cooked.


At July 07, 2010 6:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Eric, theSense from Japan was nmed Sekia. 7th dan in his lat 70's when he passed. His practice with us was not flashy, and his emphasis with us was on balance, flexability and become strong in the center. very watery. You would grab his wrist and be on the ground and not know how you got there, like grabing sand. one second you've got something firm and hard the next, gone. He was one of my stongest influences. As watery as I get, like mud compared to him. But I keep trying. He studied under Yamaguchi sense and inaba sense. Endo sense and tessie sense also studied under yamaguchi, but they are not old me like sekia. We also don't know if that was how he practiced, or if that was what he felt was important for us to understand. But I have found over the years that that low soft posture with strong center translates wll to all aikido. A foundational buildiing block. So not necessarily effective for self defense until you put it into a real technique. Then the whole technique changes to be far more effective because you are balanced centered and ready for the next attACK. yOU by virtue of your flexability would do well to incorporate these basic principles into your aikdo. Good to see you. Rob


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