Where Is Your Hole?
Went to NSA Monday night. The focus over there has been a lot of softer aikido. Getting uke to fall "into his hole". There is a way to move uke such that you alter his balance or force him to take a step that will set them up for falling.
We've been experimenting with a series of "throws" that follow this principle. Is it practical aikido? No idea. For now, I'm just trying to understand the body positioning well enough to make things work.
Class was relatively light Monday night but we were doing several soft flavors of techniques.
One of the things commented on was that I tend to have a dead spot for a tenkan-irimi pull the arm around. Usually, I would tenkan and pull uke around as I move back. A suggestion was made that I keep contact with uke by using both hands. Feed contact from one hand to the other as I pull around. I still need to work with this more before I make a judgment on the thought.
The theory was that my lack of contact give uke a moment to step away and disengage from me for the technique. A very valid concern. The thing I'm wondering about though is that if I maintain contact that strongly, will I be giving uke something to push against or panic that something is happening. By keeping the contact light I was not exerting influence until I need them to come around(which they would presumably want to do anyway). Tough call.... I'll have to monkey around with it before I make some kind of decision.(after years go by I will likely change my thought on this 3 times).
At the end of class, Matt pulled a bit of strangeness out of nowhere. He somehow had me jacked up(almost on my toes) in a funny way before letting me go. You fall and have to take a roll but you don't know what the hell is happening. Even me with years of aikido practice and a reasonable amount of body awareness felt confused. Before I got to explore this coolness we moved on to something else. Dang.