Feb
22

Brian Kagen pick: “Alpha Male v Predatory Threat”

“I’ve seen a lot of conflicting theories and approaches for a whole range of ‘attacks’ somebody may use. It seems that there is a different counter required for every possible technique an attacker may come at us with! If this were true, it would make the area of Self Protection a very complicated field… Luckily, there ARE some smart people out there who simplify things and make them more likely to succeed under pressure.”

Brian Kagen is an avid web researcher with a particular interest in martial arts. His training background includes both judo and aikido. He has contributed hundreds of article links over the years for AJ readers.

Click here to read entire article.

Feb
21

“New Internet Martial Arts TV Show: Katana” by from budo-warrior.com

“In the dark recess of the Yakuza underworld, a sibling rivalry erupts into a full-blown civil war for control of a Japanese crime family.

In a desperate bid to win, a Yakuza underling (KENJI SATO) does the unthinkable; he kidnaps the daughter of a former assassin, hoping to use him to eliminate his rivals. The assassin however, is his own brother (TOSHIRO SATO), who disappeared years ago to start a new life.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
20

“Interview with William Gleason Sensei” by Pasquale Robustini & Marco Marini

“After the interesting seminar William Gleason Sensei, VI dan Aikikai, has given in Rome on December 13-14, 2008, he kindly accepted to have a chat with us during a Japanese lunch in the Italian capital.
 This inteview was taken from notes and memories of that and preceding conversations, and after a subsequent mail exchange with Sensei to fill up remaining doubts and questions.
 The interview was conducted by Marco Marini (MM) and Pasquale Robustini (PR).
”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
20

“Aikido is the Future, Force, the Obsolete Past” by Nev Sagiba

“When both attacker and defender use force it degenerates
into an unpredictable contest that we see all around us”

There is no doubt that our ancestors left us a legacy of forcing, shoving, pushing, pulling, bashing and anger. Lots and lots of anger. And the skill to hide it by pretending, lying, cheating, stealing and other misdemeanors.

That old operating system has haltingly got us this far, but it is starting to crack at the seams and fail. Look around you. Dysfunction everywhere. Families are no more. Communities are closed and separated. Psychiatric illness is on the rise. People have become aimless, unhappy collectors of things and like to eat garbage and wreck their health, craving to have their bored psyches entertained. Parasitical exploitation is everywhere. Corruption is rife. War and other violence is conducted for profit. And economies everywhere are failing and going to fail worse until they collapse.

The law of cause and effect is mercilessly exact. There is no absolution outside of correcting this morass of errors we have, by immense effort and striving, made for ourselves, before a mass collapse inevitably occurs. But aside from talk, empty promises, living in denial and fantasy, little real evidence that something is in fact being done that will make any meaningful difference. People like to imagine that someone else will do it for them. Or like spoiled children whine that they will pick up their toys only after someone else makes a start. But when someone does, very few help and most either watch or walk away because it means work.
[Read more...]

Feb
20

“Holding with Ki” by by Shinichi Tohei

“Tohei Koichi Sensei has instructed many professional baseball players. One of them is Mr. Sadaharu Oh, who belonged to the Yomiuri Giants.

Mr. Oh entered the Giants team with great expectations for his performance. However, the results of his first year were not good and occasionally he was criticized severely as the “Strike out king”.

Through various connections, Mr. Oh met Tohei Koichi Sensei in his second year and thereafter he studied with Tohei Koichi Sensei throughout his active career.

As a result, and through his own tremendous effort, he became the person who was called as “The world homerun king”.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
19

Best of the blogs: Riots, Violent Assaults and Aikido – by Mark Bilson (November 2006)

As soon as you mention the spiritual aspects of Aikido many people construct a subconscious barrier by assuming that the spiritual and martial aspects are in distinction to each other. In other words, Aikido is either “spiritual” or “martial.”

In my own case I discovered the spiritual foundation through the martial application. I have worked in the punishment and management unit in a maximum-security prison for the last 10 years and it is through being involved in a multitude of violent incidents that my Aikido was transformed.
[Read more...]

Feb
19

“Real Combat is Raw” by from lowtechcombat.com

“Real combat on the streets today is different from combat on the battlefields of today, as has been discussed in my post What is Low Tech Combat? Combat on the battlefields of today involves ‘high tech’ weaponry and equipment.

‘High Tech’ combat on the modern battlefield is mostly (although not always) conducted at a distance where two opposing combatants are away from each other. There is space between them. They are not touching each other in any way. Sure, there may be grenades being thrown at the extreme but there is no contact. Again, not always, but mostly. By far.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
19

“List of Aikidoka” by from wikipedia.com

“It is worth noting that the term aikidōka (合気道家) is rarely heard among native speakers of Japanese, in spite of its common use as a loanword in other countries. In the Japanese language, the suffix ka (家, -ka?), when added to the name of certain activities, indicates an expert or professional in that field. Consequently, the meaning of the term in the ears of Japanese, especially when the field is martial arts, takes on a connotation of one who is exceptionally accomplished and highly respected. Further, because of the connotation of respect, this is a term one would never use with regard to oneself, even if deserved. There is no other word in Japanese carrying the same meaning that aikidōka has acquired as a loanword, namely that of a person practicing the art, regardless of their degree of accomplishment.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
18

“TMA v Modern systems” by from lowtechcombat.com

“I’ve been thinking about traditional martial arts (TMA) compared to more modern systems for a while now and a thread on a forum today has sparked the matter for me. Like many older or less young martial artists and self protection practitioners, I trod my first steps on this pathway by joining a traditional martial art. It was a long process where I began at the back of the class in tracksuit pants and a t-shirt and gradually worked my way through the formation and ranks of the class up to the front where I was often the senior student there of about 40 students.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
17

“A Good Student (part 2)” by by Gregor Erdmann

“Each aikidoka has their own motivations and goals to their practice. For some it may be self-defence, others may be driven by self development. It is the student’s responsibility to a large extent that they find a school and teacher which will satisfy their wants. It is good etiquette that a student conforms to the Dojo culture, and especially relevant to those coming from a different school and different background.

Although the student to teacher dynamic is important, a Dojo’s culture is centred around the student to student relationships. Junior students will always look towards the senior students for guidance on behaviour and Dojo etiquette, and it would be regarded as a last resort if the teacher was required to instruct on this matter.”

Please click here to read entire article

Feb
17

“An Aikido Story for Children” by Richard Moon

“This story was written almost 25 years ago. I had read a book for children about the martial arts. Its focus was the child who had been beaten finally getting strong enough and beating the bullies. What I was learning in Aikido was proving so valuable for me that I decided maybe I could share something of it. So I wrote this story.
Chas did the first few drawings 20 years ago. It took me the last 20 to finally get him to do the rest of the drawings. That’s my fault really, not his. And then it took me five
years to get it into digital form.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
17

“February 16, 2009: Morning Practice at 80″ by Mary Stein

Two days after celebrating my 80th birthday, I’m looking at photographs from the event. There’s a lot of variation in these photos; I look younger in some than in others. In a couple of them, I’m struck by habitual gestures of the hands that I tend to associate with old age. I suspect that they are gestures I’ve had for a while that now look different in an older body. I wonder, not for the first time, how other people see me. Did I detect a question in our instructor’s glance at the dojo this morning, as if he was wondering about my physical situation as I rolled back and forth on the mat during the warm-up? Or was it just me wondering about that as I ventured a bit stiffly into the first Monday morning of my 81st year? Things flowed better once the body became more flexible, and Travis seemed to stop wondering—or maybe I just stopped imagining things. We did some suwariwaza, and knee-walking on the mat went okay for me.
[Read more...]