“If you use Nikyo in a contemporary self-defence situation, your enemy
may simply stand there, and possibly hit you with their free hand.”
When I first started doing martial arts I trained in a Hapkido dojo (dojang) where the sparring was reasonably intense. We had a lot of injuries. I don’t agree with this sort of training and nowadays my students very rarely injure themselves. But in training like that I learned a few valuable lessons, and these have got me thinking about Kote Gaeshi and Nikyo.
Way back then, I was sparring and my left little finger got caught in the sleeve of my opponents gi. We both heard a crack, but I formed a fist with my left hand, and carried on favouring my right hand until the instructor called break. There was no serious pain (until later), and I was young and tough (and perhaps stupid as well). An X ray later revealed that one side of the second metacarpal bone had been shattered. Lesson: Firstly, it’s surprising how much damage a fluke accident can cause, and secondly – having a finger bone shattered is not enough to stop a fit young man.
Another time I was doing a demonstration, and my partner and I got our timing wrong on a gyaku hiji technique. We both heard my ulnar collateral ligament tear. I knew something was wrong – but hey – it was a demo so I was hyped. Of course I finished the demo (I was young and tough (and stupid). Did it hurt? Not that I remember – I was too hyped up with doing the demo to let it stop me, although I was aware that I no longer had full control over my right arm.