Thursday, 26 July 2012

Compliancy breeds Complacency

How do you go from this...

To this...

The answer: In Aikido the compliancy of the uke brings false security in the techniques and breeds a mindset unable to cope with the full range of attacks found in combat situations. The Turkish Wrestler very easily took the Aikidoka to the ground and from there was able to submit him. The Aikidoka failed to adapt to the grappling strategy employed by the wrestler; had no defence against a take down and was disoriented on the ground. The Aikidoka stepped niavely towards the wrestler with his hands in the Chudan position despite the Turkish wrestler clarifying before the match that they were not going to strike just 'wrestle'. The wrestler employed a much lower stance, giving him the defensive option of sprawling to prevent a take down and an offensive option of lunging with his powerful leg muscles to go for a takedown. The Aikidoka absolutely failed to use his opponent's energy against him and could not redirect his attack.

Where does that leave the Aikidoka? If the philosophy of Aikido is to redirect the attack to restore harmony and yet it cannot successfully defend against attacks outside the Aikido syllabus then does that mean Aikido is redundant? On a purely ideological level then perhaps; but on a practical level it is not necessarily the case.

Contrast this Aikido trailer by Roy Dean to see how effective Aikido techniques can become once they are applied outside of the Aikido paradigm (37 sec, 56 sec onwards):

As a practitioner of Aiki-Jujutsu I appreciate that my art does not have the same philosophical framework as Aikido, but nevertheless it is an Aikibudo; one which must contend with the challenges of other styles and other arts just the same. When dealing with the reality of self-defence one must be pragmatic - the techniques have to work and the practitioner must be adaptable. If we are too rigid in our paradigms of what constitutes the 'art' then we become inflexible and ultimately complacent. A true martial artist must be able to apply Henka (variations) of the techniques to suit the specific situation and threat. This means in training we must challenge ourselves to experiment with techniques from different positions and practice with varying degrees of resistence.

Remember compliancy breeds complacency. 

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