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    The Arts Martial

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    IngoSmith
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    The Arts Martial

    Post by IngoSmith on Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:30 pm

    I would like, if i may, to install some discussion of the martial disciplines here. Boxing, Aikido, Karate, BJJ (which always sounds dirty to me), MMA, whatever. The catch is this. I want people to be able to use this is a short reference guide for training hints, techniques, FAQ. essentially a General knowledge bin with (hopefully) a tad more accuracy than google, and a tad more of the personal approach to the reponses. I will try and duplicate some of my open letters from a newsletter I sometimes pretend to have a clue about writing for, and place them here for the dissection and amusement of yourselves.

    For now, if you actually are involved in a martial sport/art, shout up. lets get a pool going.



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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by Guest on Mon Nov 29, 2010 8:30 pm

    I've signed up for krav maga (though I went only once because it's far. I'm moving closer to the place in January). It's violent and, more often than not, aimed to break bones or arm oneself with your enemy's weapon and, thus, I consider it more useful than most other martial arts.

    However, the truth is that the base philosophy isn't as obvious or really existent at all. There is no calm or peace like in Karate or Tai chi chuan. It is not an art. It is a means of hand-to-hand combat and nothing more. The joy I got from it was simply knowing that I could kick the average person's ass and/or knowing that I could defend myself to an extent if ever I needed to.

    So the one day I went I got kicked in the ribs and that was... a surprise.
    If we're meant to give advice, I say this: If you've never taken a proper hit before (especially to the abdomen, being winded is not fun), be prepared for a moment of shock where you just stand there with a stupid expression on your face before your mind catches up with what just happened.
    Lucky for me that my opponent realised I was having a DERP moment or I might've been attacked again.

    However, as tiring and painful as that first class was, I'll go again... and again and, etc... I'm no masochist but the feeling of empowerment and the sense of competitiveness was well worth it.

    Tht guy who kicked me? Oh yeah, I'm handing him his ass someday.
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    A short ramble on thee nature of a bipolar martial artist, and a bit of hoodoo

    Post by IngoSmith on Tue Nov 30, 2010 6:58 pm

    I have, in the past, learned to do horrible things to people for various purposes. As with many people involved in the martial arts the possible outcome of an encounter outside of a sport is that one, or more often, both parties, end up ii-uch (hitoshi ishi) that is to say, an equal kill. Musashi attributed a large part of his success in combat to simply accepting the basic truth in battle, that you will be cut. So, entering the martial world we see one path. We fight, and in accepting we will be hurt, strive to hurt our opponent more. To destroy them, and in doing so bear up against injuries in elation. Even modern fighters, from soldiers to self defence students, are taught to chant 'kill kill kill' under their breath in order to line up the fear and adrenaline in the mind to a fighting edge.
    One option, one inevitable set of painful outcomes.
    The Karate-Ka is a good example of this. Train and train in iron hard forms. The black belt able to smash planks and bones with calloused fists while a toughened body ignores fatigue and blows to drive through. Where then, is an option? what if, IF i don't want to bust my opponent wide open, what if i don't want to go to prison. What if we want to END a conflict, instead of escalate it.
    I enjoy looking for that option. My first introduction to choices of this sort were in hard arrest tactics at the hands of the Royal Military Provost, and then in much greater depth under the tuition of Systema Guru all all around weird, friendly dangerous bloke Vladmir Vasiliev ((he's also so russian he pees 7.62mm (soviet) rounds and poops bears. WHOLE BEARS)). Much like Krav Maga alot of emphasis on enveloping an attacker with flexible forms, getting very close to them, THEN killing the poo (or bear) out of them. as Vasiliev says, once you have controll of a situation, you can then 'go to work'. lovely.
    Later I discovered Aikido, Created by a lovely smiling old man known informally as Morihei Ueshiba, and formally as o'Sensei (great teacher) not a long time ago. Having returned from doing horrible things to people in manchuria he returned to find japan ruined by war. Dedicating his life to findind a way to use physical action as a solution to conflict he begun to perfect a method of fighting which took your opponents energy and dissipated it, or if neccecary, broke parts of them, then dissipated the energy. Borrowing heavily from the battlefield techniques of old japan and removing some of the urget violence of it. There is a second path then, somewhere, where a drunken idiot in a moment of madness does not ruin two lives, but ends up spending an hour on the floor being told what a fool he is, with punctuating tweaks to the delicate parts.

    I'm in danger of wandering too far with this. essentially kids, the homework topic from dirty uncle ingo this week is a simple one. Do you think its possible to have a contextual martial response, or is the only 'effective' way to survive a bout of fisticuffs trying to bury your fist so far into your opponent you can squeeze their duodenum?

    answers on the back of a beermat thrown in a northeasterly direction. failing that, post below.




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    Rhosauce
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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by Rhosauce on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:51 pm

    I'm not entirely sure what your question is but if I'm right, then no, I don't think the only way is to beat your opponent into a bloody pulp. It seems that aikido is the sort of philosophy I have. (Just an FYI: the anime History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi is pretty much all about trying to answer this question).

    I actually need advice on this. When I move to NY, I plan on taking up a martial art and I really don't know where to begin.

    This is what I'd like:

    * Teaches self-defense
    * Is not explicitly violent
    * Uses a bo-staff
    * An art whose philosophy is one of non-violence

    From what I can tell, aikido is the way to go but you seem to know a hell of a lot about this so I'd rather seek your advice than go in blind.

    Cheers in advance! Ninja
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    IngoSmith
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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by IngoSmith on Sat Dec 04, 2010 5:50 pm

    Aikido Muchi, o-sensei's technoques in later life, were based on takemusou (which i've more than likely misspelled). The concept is that any attack, if matched with the same direction, speed, and timing, can be turned into a throw or pin with great success and little physical exertion. Essentially takemusou was the answer to the question 'how many techniques are there in aikido?' by being very zen and saying 'how many ways can you attack me?'. Aiki-do, the blended way.
    HOWEVER
    Takemusou is very difficult to understand and even harder to make practical when some nutter is trying to give your forehead a bumcrack using only half a beer bottle. Its FAR easier to close the gap, open palm your attackers face, follow through cleanly with a knee to the groin, hope they double over and use that motion to pull them to the ground and continue the strength based melee. All you have to be is stronger, and lucky.
    So a martial mind looks at this battle and thinks, well, if i can't make it work being gentle then I'll force my oponent around, and make the techniques work with force. This is infact Aiki-Jutsu. blending with force. For example, Yo-shinkan Aikido is DEVASTATING. But not a blending way. Used by japan's police to be effective in a culture where everyone and their granny is at least passinly familiar with one technique of fighting or another. It is taught in a militarized manner and practitioners that survive the course graduate as black belts in a single year. That is of course, six days a week training in a school where if you break an arm you had better be on the mat the next day, using your other bloody arm, or you fail the course and start over. Broken toes, fingers, noses, constant bruises and a strange affliction known as 'knobblies', where tissue swells and hardens around the lower back into tough painful knots as a result of being thrown repeatedly, high and hard. Just some of the lovely injuries carried by the Yo-shinkan students.
    The aikido which I try to larn (read: screw up alot) is in one of the schools not led by brute force. Hooray for me. We are taught what is hopefully the most practical interperetation of the original, and try to understand the why and how of it. where it comes from and how we can apply it in a modern context. We do alot of weapons work, Bokken, Jo staff, and tanto respectively. (nutter with baseball bat/sword, nutter with pool cue, and nutter with knife, 'contextually')but no bo-jutsu unfortunately, not too many people running about with pikes these days. (to be continued)

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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by IngoSmith on Sat Dec 04, 2010 8:25 pm

    (continued) The big bonus is that there is a resurgence in popularity of these context based situationally approapreate type schools, after the largely combat based breakout that seems to have found its home in the MMA crowd. Mosly due to the efforts of a gentleman named Alan Ruddock, whom I understand is one of the last men alive in europe who trained with the founder of aikido himself. This innocuous polite irish pensioner, who I have been very very fortunate to meet on a coupe of occations, has thrown young men all over th mat untill they are too tired to attempt attacking him again. Sensei Ruddock teaches the most basic of basics, his intention is perfection in the very foundations of movement, angle, speed, intent. I have been thrown by him, and I assure you, there are no tricks, no willing audience participance. I have never before without the aid of boozeahol gone from standing to lying on my back. This is acheived with patience, and a lifetime of practace. There is a great gentility in him when he performs his aikido, with the glimmer that if you had attacked that bit faster, the suprise would have been alot more painful.
    Something then for humble bumbling fools such as myself to aim for, before trying to wrench my own arms out throwing a man five stone heavier than myself.

    the tl:dr ; Aikido in the right schoool for you would be perfect, flowing, gentile, effective, and appropreate to the situation. Though lacking bo-kata i feel the jo (a four foot spear) would satisfy your need to be breaking things with sticks at least untill you could find a weapons school (who you could then infuriate by disarming). In an Aiki Jutsu school it would be abrupt, painful, and no less effective, but probably not what you're looking for.

    I have barely touched the surface of my favourite art, but i worry about rambling too much. i'll write something else soon about the definitions of 'defense' as it applies to us as normal sane (ha) people on the street and some context for a bit of debate on what constitutes a appropreate action. for now, thanks for your time, and i'm more than happy to clarify points or answer questions. I can do videos too if any actual demonstration is needed.
    thanks
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    ephie
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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by ephie on Sat Dec 04, 2010 8:32 pm

    I just have to say, Ingo, Thank you. Everything you've written has been interesting as well as informing.


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    Rhosauce
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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by Rhosauce on Sat Dec 04, 2010 8:59 pm

    IngoSmith wrote:(who you could then infuriate by disarming).

    My favourite part. Hilarious

    So Aikido. What do you mean by "in the right school"? I can imagine I would want to try aikido in its purest form. I do believe it's something that I would be passionate about.

    Thanks so much, Ingo, please keep posting.
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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by IngoSmith on Sat Dec 04, 2010 9:11 pm

    There are schools who think they are doing aikiDO, but are really doing aikiJUTSU (hey if i twist his arm like that hard enough he's going over anyway right?). If people are bouncing off the floor and theres alot of pain going on without people talking about form and tenchnique its probably time to thank them for the experience and leave. Additionally, people flying through the air is a giveaway. an uke (the person being subject to the aikido, the 'attacker') only has to launch himself into a complex airborne flip if the alternative is having a limb smashed. Looks awesome, yes, but its not Aikido. Aikido is making the guy find the floor. straight down, not taking the long way around it. In a street setting, if you break someones arm, you're guaranteed some very uncomfortable police type questions.
    you're looking for a school where people are rolling and performing breakfalls, and attentive teaching staff who look at small details, not just battering through techniques and quoting dogma like 'if i do THIS then uke will do THIS and then i do THIS and uke performs a delightful double flip' looks great in demos, utterly useless in real life, and probably going to injure the uke anyway.
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    Re: The Arts Martial

    Post by IngoSmith on Thu Dec 30, 2010 3:26 pm

    writing an essay and i;ve hit a wall, so as a preview and because i'm hoping for some feedback, enjoy:

    Aikido has superseded the clip on tie.

    This came about as a combination of my work and leisure activity bouncing together. A good friend of mine on seeing me return home dressed in my usual business suit, complete with extra cheap tie, asked since I was wearing my own noose, wouldn't I be better served by wearing a clip on. To this I smiled and responded,
    “grab my tie”
    To expand on this bold claim to tie-warrior mastery I think perhaps some reflection on my approach to Aikido, and martial arts as a whole may be relevant. I love shifting the patterns set out in conventional security and defence. The phrase 'unconventional warfare' makes me grin in a manner that would worry sharks. The reasoning is simple. Preparation for one set of threats is fantastic, but there are in existence an unlimited number of ways to compromise a defence. From armour plate to complex networks of trained close protection officers there is always an angle. Some means of overcoming or circumventing that which is relied upon to keep people safe. With this in mind then, every possible situation should be accounted for in some way. Becoming adaptable to a shifting situation can only be achieved if the situation can be understood in some way, OR if the idea of adaptability can be somehow learned. Put a very zen way, the plain is there is no plan.
    I've written a little about takemusu before. This is the idea put forward by the founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba that the 'ideal' martial art should have no set form, no set attacks, simply to meet the incoming force with equal speed, equal force, dissipate the attack without panic or struggle. Essentially takemusu is being in a position where you are not at one end or the other of a lever, but the fulcrum. That steady thing about which events happen. Excellent as a state of mind, a lifetime to master in the places where the bullet meets the bone. Certainly something I’m a long way from learning. However...
    If we in defence remove from our most basic approaches, assumptions, all established routines then we can create a weakness in the most fundamental approaches a threat might take. That is to undermine what they expect us to do. Done correctly this can result in controlling the threat in much the way someone with a laser pointer leads a cat. The animal wants to get at the obvious thing. Watch two idiot men in the street fighting. Generally it opens with a bold shove to the chest, then a shove back, then brawling. If I push you, your brain says 'push back'. If I then step back as you push forwards, you are committed to a course of action that if led correctly puts you in a position where I am in control.
    In much the same way, if one is wearing a clip on tie, then fairly enough it can be snatched away without injury to the wearer. But if the tie does not come undone, then the attacker has one, possibly both hands very occupied. If one hand is occupied, one could safely assume the follow up will be a clout around the head. Undesirable at best, fatal at worst. The solution is then not to pull away from the force being exerted on the tie, but to focus on moving with the opponent, away from the incoming blow, into the occupied hand. Techniques in Aikido suggest Kote Gaeshi or Nikyo, respectively a wrist based throw or a wrist lock. Though as practitioners of Systema might say, once things move in your favour, you can 'go to work' in whatever way might be necessary.

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