Ongoing thoughts on my martial studies and interests, which encompass almost everything.
Sunday, March 5, 2017
Moving from one Aikido technique to a Cjimande series of techniques
This started a long
It began when Charles
Murray was training me for ShoDan. At the time it seemed almost as if he was
shoving a new kata down my throat every month. Then when he returned to the
USAF for his career I began visiting schools of nearby fellow competitors to
train. Not so much as to learn their system, just to work out, but when I saw
something interesting I tended to remember it.
At the same time I
began the study of Tai Chi Chuan with Ernie Rothrock, later to add a variety of
studies in a wide variety of Chinese forms. Having a lot of free time, I
continued to visit a variety in instructors in many traditions.
One of them was Tris
Sutrisno, who I competed alongside many times. He invited me to visit his
school and one dark night I did just that.
I found his Shotokan
program different from what I expected and did my best to follow along. Towards
the end of class he had his students begin to stand in the middle of a circle
of 8 attackers and then perform avariety of aikido drills against striking attacks. And when one sequence
was concluded the next attacker began, frequently they would have to rise from
the floor and meet the attack.
So I observed this
again and again as each student stood in the middle. After maybe 20 minutes
Tris turned to me and asked me if I wanted to try it. Not I had studied any of
these techniques. I said yes and took my place in the middle. Then attacker
after attacker came at me and I ranthe
Where upon Tris then
asked me, “How did you do that”.
I just responded “A
black belt never says I can’t:”
That began a decade
long association with him, learning many things.
Of course after
observing it time after time I had paid attention and having quite a bit of
experience learning new things, their repetition enabled me to get it down.
I went home that night
and wrote it all down, beginning something that has become a tradition with me.
Writing everything down.
I did not receive
further instruction from him, working on my own and eventually learning how to
teach some if to my students at brown belt level.
In time I had to move
to New Hampshire and at times Tris would come and visit and share with my
students. During one of those visits I had the youth perform the first 6 of
Tris could not believe that I had
remembered the drill. (I have done my best to retain everything I have ever
seen him do.)
He did make one change to the 3rd
drill .Told me he was no longer teaching that technique, and shared what he was
It was a solid technique and I made
He never explained why he made the
change, but I believe it was because the students expected the projection and
made to easy for each other jumping into the throw for effect. This was not how
Tris did it, against a focused attack. And knowing what he expected people to
learn chose to use an easier, but effective technique at thekyu level.
So change made. But this lesson does
not stop there.
Human nature often becomes when you
know something has a solid use, you stop there, content with what you have learned.
I just stumbled across this video of
an Indonesian instructor sharing a series of related technique possibilities he
was using. And each of them is using the same opening of the new aikido drill.
A sort of parry and pass. A skill my students have long mastered, but with an
entirely different set of responses.
jurus dan teknik cimande yang telah dikembangkan
That is the real lesson, the mind
must remain engaged always looking for other possibilities. At least to me.
Because I knew what the move was for,
I never took the time to explore the other possibilities.
Whether you explore all of these
options is up to you after all. But this is a lesson I continually keep