#83 Message for beginners part 2 - 初心者へのメッセージ その二


1. Atemi:
Aikido is said to be 70% "Atemi" (30% technique), and when O-Sensei was young, he used to practice "Atemi" so hard that he would hit his opponents from a dead angle, breaking their teeth or knocking them out. The fact that his students were all experienced Judo and Karate fighters must have had something to do with this. Traditionally, in martial arts, the idea of training is to learn and withstand pain.
However, in the present Aikido, the majority of the members have no experience in martial arts, and the training methods have changed a lot. First of all, we don't actually hit the opponent. We use the action of "Atemi" to gain an advantaged position and use the opponent's reaction to throw him off balance.
In short, the purpose of "Atemi" is not to knock the opponent down with a Karate punch, but it's a trick to make the sequence of movements smoother. So, if you are not ready for the next move when you use "Atemi", the meaning of "Atemi" is lost.
It's also important that Uke doesn't ignore "Atemi", but reacts naturally, for example by swaying his upper body. If your opponent doesn't actually make any avoiding motions because he thinks he won't be hit, then you may need to hit him lightly to make him learn.
By the way, the technique to hit the opponent's throat or the face and throw him is called "Irimi-nage Omote".

2. Nage and Uke relationship:
If your opponent is completely free to move, it's obvious that you will be punching and kicking each other from the start. If you are allowed to hit him, he should be allowed to hit you. It would be practically impossible to practise the techniques, it would be just like a children's fight.
The idea that "you can't request the attacker's actions, so Uke's movements are free" is just nonsense. There is a role for Uke, and it's only by respecting this role that practice is possible.
You are not free when you are aware that you are the Uke. The act of holding Uke down or throwing Uke by force is just ugly. That is not the Aikido you should be aiming for.
Why did O-Sensei prohibit matches? Why did O-Sensei divide the training into Nage and Uke, giving each the role? If you are a beginner, you should first be able to answer these questions clearly.

3. Don't push or pull:
If a suspicious person suddenly grabs your arm and tries to drag you somewhere, you will reflexively pull your arm back and resist. That is the natural reaction of a person. Similarly, if you push or pull the hand that is being grabbed, it's also natural reaction for the other person to resist in response.
So, how do you perform a technique without pushing or pulling the grabbed hand? Let's find the answer to this question by using your elbows, knees, hips and positioning.

4. "Hanmi" stance to "Hanmi" stance:
If a suspicious person suddenly steps behind you, you should immediately turn round because you feel in danger. That is the natural reaction of a person. Only a martial arts master, or a very blunt person, would not mind turning his back on aggressive opponents.
In Judo and Karate, there is a great fear of getting a painful attack the moment that your opponent enters behind you, but in Aikido many people are unaware of this. Particularly in the practice of Irimi-nage Ura, many Uke just stand there and wait for Nage's next action even when Nage is already behind you. That is not the natural reaction.
Make it a habit to react and face your opponent in "Hanmi" stance when the opponent enters your blind spot. Nage uses that reaction to break down the posture of Uke.

Aikido is characterized by the use of the person's natural reactions to lead the opponent as if he was thrown by himself. Uke should work faithfully with his natural reactions, Nage should utilise Uke's natural reactions and apply them to the techniques.

Thank you for reading.

Related article: Message for beginners part1

[ 初心者へのメッセージ その二 ]

1. 当身:

2. 投げと受けとの関係:

3. 押したり引いたりしない:

4. 半身と半身:


関連記事:初心者へのメッセージ その一


テーマ : 合気道
ジャンル : スポーツ



初心者にも分かりやすく、理論的に基礎知識を説明します。なんとなく他人の動きを真似るのではなく、普段から考える力を育てていくことを目的としています。In this blog, I explain the basics in a theoretical way that is easy to understand for beginners. The aim is to help you to develop your ability to think, not to copy the movements somehow. Aikido is not magic. I will explain things that are not so clear, such as Ki and O-Sensei's philosophy.