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DoingAikido

byAlanDrysdale,Godan ChiefInstructor,SandDriftAikikai

Foreword
This book is intended for students who are neither total beginnersnoradvancedyudansha.WhydidIwriteit?BecauseI haventfoundabookwhichcoversthematerialIwantourstudents to know. I have pulled together my thoughts on doing aikido based on almost twentyyears ofteaching,andseeingthe same errorsmadetimeaftertime.Someoftheseerrorswerepointedout tomebymyteachers,butmostwerediscoveredthehardway. Thisisofcoursethetraditionalwaytopractice,butitdoesmake progress slower than it need be. Even with the best teachers, aikidoisnevergoingtobesomethingyoucanlearnrapidly.Ifyou reach shodan (first degree black belt) within ten years, youare doingwell. I have made no attempt to make a definitive catalogue of techniques.I'dfinditboringtodoandthebookwouldbelargeas youcandoalmostanytechnique,omote orura,fromanyattack, and there are oftenmanyvariations. Theinformation isaimed moreatrefiningtechniquethanonwhichfoottoputforward.The bookdoesnotcoverbasicinformationsuchashowtobehavein thedojo,asthisiscoveredbyapamphletalreadypublishedby SandDriftAikikai. Thereareasmanywaysofdoingaikidoasthereareteachers. ThisbookisbasedonthewayweworkatSandDriftAikikai.We firmlybelievethataikidoisamartialart,apracticalmethodofself

DoingAikido
defense. Thus there is an emphasis on practicality and effectivenessthatothersmayfindoffensive.Theyarewelcometo theirstylealso,however,OSenseicertainlytaughtapracticalart. On the other hand, excessive violence will limit the scope of practice, both causing early retirement from the art and driving awaystudents.Asisoftenthecase,themiddleroadisthebest. Tomymind,aikidoisnotareligion.Norisitmystical.There aremental andspiritual disciplinesintheart,aswellasphysical ones. Kiisatermusedtodescribepoorlyunderstood,hardto communicateconceptsthatrelatetoallthreeaspectsofaikido.All areimportant,butnotmystical. Aikidoisforbothmenandwomen,formaturechildrenand oldpeoplewhoarefit.Thereisnodifferenceintheartforthese differentgroups,thoughthepracticewillvarysomewhat. Awordaboutpoliticalcorrectness:Ihavegenerallyused"he" asapersonalpronouninthisbook. Thisisnotintendedtobea slighttowomenandthesexesareonlytwodivisionsofaworld thatisincreasinglyandunjustifiablyrepresentedasdivided.Itis stillgrammaticallycorrecttouseittoincludebothsexes.

Disclaimer
Aikidoisphysicalandstrenuous,likeanymartialart. This bookisformoderatelyadvancedstudents,notforbeginners.You should only practice what is described here at a reputable club underanexperiencedinstructor.

Acknowledgments:
ThankstoAnitaandDoc,andallthestudentsofaikidowith whomI'vepracticedovertheyears. ParticularthankstoKelly,

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Russ, Allen, Dart, Chris, and Karl, for being in some of the pictures,andtoAnitafortakingmanyofthem.

1996,AlanDrysdale

Foradditionalcopiespleasesend$15percopyto: 6208WindoverWay, Titusville, FL32780

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DoingAikido

Contents
WhatisAikido?...............................................................................1 Attitude.......................................................................................5 HowtoAvoidGettingintoaFight..............................................7 Calmness,Alertness,Clarity........................................................8 FollowtheRightWay,nottheeasyway...................................10 Practicing.......................................................................................13 StandingandMoving.................................................................15 Ukemi........................................................................................16 Breathing....................................................................................22 SelectingaPartner.....................................................................22 DoingTechniques......................................................................23 Extension....................................................................................35 PracticewithaSword....................................................................37 Suburi.........................................................................................37 TanrenUchi...............................................................................40 ShihoGiri..................................................................................40 KumiTachi................................................................................41 PracticingwithTwoPartners.....................................................43 AttacksforPracticingAikido........................................................45 KatateTori.................................................................................46 KataTori....................................................................................46 RyoteandMoroteTori...............................................................48 ShomenUchi..............................................................................48 YokomenUchi...........................................................................49 Tsuki..........................................................................................50 UshiroAttacks...........................................................................50 SuwariWazaandHanmiHandachi...........................................52

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Kicks..........................................................................................53 MultipleAttacks.........................................................................54 AikidoTechniques.........................................................................56 GeneralPrinciples......................................................................56 Atemi..........................................................................................62 OmoteandUra...........................................................................64 Ikkyo..........................................................................................64 Nikkyo........................................................................................68 Sankyo.......................................................................................72 Yonkyo.......................................................................................76 Shihonage...................................................................................77 KoteGaeshi................................................................................81 KaitenNage...............................................................................83 IrimiNage..................................................................................85 TenchiNage...............................................................................88 KoshiNage.................................................................................89 KokyuNage(SokumenIrimiNage)..........................................91 AikiOtoshi.................................................................................93 JujiNage....................................................................................94 HenkaWazaandKaeshiWaza......................................................96 Weapons.........................................................................................99 SwordTechniques....................................................................100 JoTechniques...........................................................................101 KnifeTechniques.....................................................................102 FreestyleandMultipleAttacks....................................................106 Teaching.......................................................................................113 MovingOn...................................................................................120 Glossary.......................................................................................121 TestRequirements.......................................................................125 ContactInformation.....................................................................127 v

DoingAikido
Index............................................................................................129 ProgressinginAikido..................................................................130

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Figures
Figure1.Hanmi............................................................................15 Figure2.KohoUkemi................................................................17 Figure3.ZempoUkemi................................................................18 Figure4.SlappingBreakfall.........................................................19 Figure5.IrimiEscape.................................................................28 Figure6.TenkanEscape...............................................................29 Figure7.CornerStepEscape........................................................30 Figure8.ShihoGirifromLeftHanmi..........................................41 Figure9.MoroteTori...................................................................48 Figure10.OmoteandUra............................................................64 Figure11.ShomenUchiIkkyoOmote........................................65 Figure12.ShomenUchiIkkyoUra..............................................68 Figure13.Nikkyo.........................................................................70 Figure14.SankyoHandhold........................................................72 Figure15.SankyoTakedown.......................................................74 Figure16.Yonkyo........................................................................76 Figure17.Shihonage:HandHold................................................78 Figure18.KataToriShihonage....................................................79 Figure19.KoteGaeshi.................................................................82 Figure20.KaitenNageOmote.....................................................84 Figure21.KaitenNageUra..........................................................85 Figure22.IrimiNage....................................................................87 Figure23.TenchiNage:Kuzushi.................................................88 Figure24.TenchiNage:Kake......................................................89 Figure25.KoshiNage..................................................................90 Figure26.KokyuNage.................................................................91 Figure27.KokyuNagefromMaeGeri........................................93

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DoingAikido
Figure28.AikiOtoshi..................................................................94 Figure29.JujiNage......................................................................95 Figure30.ShihonagewithaSword............................................100 Figure31.JoTori......................................................................101 Figure32.YokomenUchiGokyoOmote.................................103 Figure33.ShomenUchiGokyo.................................................104 Figure34.KoteGaeshiwithaknife...........................................104 Figure35.SankyoKnifeDefense...............................................105 Figure36.TwoAttackers...........................................................110 Figure37.FiveAttackers............................................................113

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WhatisAikido?
Aikidoisamartialart. Italsoprovidesexerciseandagood dojoislikeanextendedfamily,buttheseareincidental.Amartial artisafightingart.Aikidoisaformofselfdefense,soitisless aggressivethansome,butitisstillafightingart.Itisrigorous,it is physical, and it works. However, there is no competitive sparring. Withsparringyouhavetohaverulestominimizethe chanceofsevereinjuries.Therearenorulesinaikido. Almost anybody can do aikido, but you should be fit and healthy because it does involve energetic movement. Great physical strength is not required, but strength is used when available.Beinganaturalathleteisunnecessary:perseveranceis morecritical.Mentalstrengthandacuityaremoreimportantthan physicalability.Goodcoordinationisimportant. Doing Aikido:Ichosethistitle becauseaikidois apathto followthroughlife.Itisn'taskilltolearnandthenuse,asmostof us treat driving a car. It is something that must be constantly studied, constantly improved. Youwillnever reach theend of whatthereistolearn,thoughyoumightreachtheendofwhatyou individuallyarewillingtoacquire.Ifyouthinkyouhavelearned allthereisinaikido,you'vestoppedlooking.Youmightneedto gotoanotherschool,tofindafreshperspective,butusuallyallyou needtodoistostudyharder. Aikidoliterallytranslatesasthe"wayofharmonyandspirit". Thismeanstoactivelyblendwithanattacktocounteractit. As such it is ideal for a small, less muscular person. However, musclesandmuscularstrengthareveryimportantinaikido.Ikeep finding students whohavebeentold"don'tusestrength, itisn't aikido".Thisiswrong.Strengthcanbeahandicapisinlearning 1

aikido, whenastrongbeginnercanusemusclestothrow down anotherbeginnerevenwithincorrecttechnique. Strengthshould notbeusedverymuchatfirst,butasatechniqueislearned,your strengthshouldbegraduallyfedintothetechnique:justasyougo easyontheacceleratorwhileyoulearntodrive,thenusemoreand morepowerasyouprogress.Bythetimeyoubecomeayudansha (blackbelt),youshouldbeusingallofyourstrengthatleastsome ofthetime,andusingiteffectivelybutwithoutstraining. Acriticalaspectofaikidoisthephilosophy. Itisdefensive. Thisdoesnotmeanthatitispassive:farfromit.Butitdoesmean that you should not use it to cause trouble. This includes not invitingtroublesothatyouhavetheopportunitytopracticeyour artonanunsuspectingperson. Aikidoispracticedinthedojo. Youpracticeforwhatyou hope never happens:anattack onthestreet. Aikidois notthe techniquesthatstudentspracticeinthedojo.Thesetechniquesare toolstohelpyouunderstandanddeveloptheart.Aikidoiswhat happens when you are attacked, and youdo something without thinking,anditworks.Itisunconscious,comingfromMusashis "void",ratherthanbeingsomethingyoudoconsciously. Itsnot somethingyouthinkabout,exceptinlearningit. There are many martial arts. All are worthy of respect becausetheyworkedforsomeone,somewhere.Youshouldstudy otherartsandotherstylesifonlytounderstandhowyoucanbe attacked. You will probably also learn things that can be incorporated into your personal style. However, beware of "tricks". Amartialartisastateofmind, andtricksimplying easylittlethingsthatmaygiveyouanadvantageinaparticular situation are not the way to go. You should accumulate techniquesanddistilloutthecommonelementsandmakeanart 2

WhatisAikido?
outofthem,anartwhichisrobustandeffectiveindealingwith variedattacks,includingthoseyouhaveneverseenorimagined before. Basicprinciplesremainthesame; applicationsvary. WalkerSensei There is only one type of human body, with two major subtypes(maleandfemale).Becausethereisonlyonetype,there is a restricted number of ways someone can attack you and, similarly,alimitednumberofdefensesfromtheseattacks. Asa result,therearemanysimilaritiesbetweendifferentarts.Likethe blindmenandtheelephant,itisamatteroffocusratherthanof absolutedifferences.Ifyoudon'tlikeaikido,youcanstudyoneof theothers.However,don'tcometoanaikidoclassunlessyouare ready to study aikido. Your sensei is there to teach you. He generally gets paid little or nothing to do this. Your fellow studentsaretheretolearn,nottogethurt.Youowethemyourbest also.Inexchange,yougettobepartofthedojo,anorganization ofpeoplededicatedtotheart. Physically, aikido is characterized by circular movement (marui). Evenapparentlylineartechniqueslikeikkyo omote are circular.Veryoften,whenbeginnersarehavingaproblemwitha technique, it is because they are not moving circularly. For example, in irimi nage, the head is pushed down, and often beginnershavetroublegettinguketostandbackupsothatthey canbethrown.Thisisbecausetheyaretryingtoreturnukeshead alongthesamepath,insteadofmakingamorecircularmovement andreturningitalongadifferentpath. 3

OSenseiwasdeeplyreligious.Consequently,heimbuedhis aikido with religious meaning. I am not religious, so I dont address it here. However, any martial art is more than merely physical:itincludesmentalandspiritual aspects. Mentalaspects coverthingslikewhattothinkaboutandwhattolookatwhile doing techniques. By spiritual, I mean everything beyond the logicalmind:whatmakesitworthfightingtosaveyourfamily, what makes a person worthwhile, what makes someone trustworthyandhonest,whatmakeshimdeterminedtowin. Partofthepracticeofanymartialartistodeveloparesolute spirit.Thisiswhatmakesthedifferencebetweenawinneranda loserinmartialartsorinlife.Traditionalschoolsapparentlyspent agreat deal oftime developing fortitudeintheir students,with rigoroustraining,constantdiscouragement,afairamountofabuse, andexposuretounpleasantconditions.Imnotsurehowmuchof theirsuccesswasduetotrainingandhowmuchtoweedingoutthe nonperformers.However,thespiritislikethemindorbody.It doesneedtobeexercisedtobecomestrongandresilient. This developmentwilloccurifthestudentconsistentlypracticeswith determination.

Ai. SofarasIunderstandit,aimeansharmony inphysical,


mentalandspiritual senses. Physically,youshouldnotconflict with your partners strength,even ifyourpartner is anattacker bentondoingyouseriousharm. Instead,youshouldblendwith hismovement,takingovercontrolofhispowerandusingittodeal withhisattack.Mentally,yourattitudeshouldbesimilar,avoiding argumentswithoutconcedinganythingimportant.Spiritually,you shouldavoidclashingalso.Youarethesolejudgeofyourself.

WhatisAikido? Ki.TherearemanymeaningsofthewordkiinJapanese,even

restricting ourselves to the particular kanji (character) used in aikido.Iliketothinkofitasmeaningthesameasthespiritina spiritedhorse.Kiisntanythingmystical,andthisjustreminds methatIhavetobeactiveandaheadofthegameinmytechnique. Onethingthatusedtoinfuriatemeearlyinmyaikidocareer wasthatwhenIaskedabouthowtodoatechnique,peoplewould, moreoftenthannot,saysomethingaboutki.Isoonlearnedthatit meantthattheydidntknowtheanswer,theydidntknowhow bettertocommunicatetheanswerortheywerentabouttoshare their secrets with me. There is no magic in aikido, except in Asimovssenseoftechnologyyoudontunderstand.

Do.Adoisaway,amethodofstudy.Amartialartwithdo

initsnameisgenerallymoreesotericandlesspracticalthanone withjutsu.Aikidocanbeusedtodevelopbody,mind,orspirit, orevenallthree.Itisalsoaveryeffectivemethodofselfdefense. Thereisnoconflicthere,thoughsomepeoplefocusononewayof lookingataikidoandsomeatotherways. Itis,however,inour dojo,notacceptableforpeopletointentionallyhurtotherstudents, nortopracticewithoutdueconsiderationfortherankandphysical ability of others. In the case of aikido, the study, the path, is lifelong.

Attitude
Correctattitudeiscritical toanymartial art. Yourgeneral attitudetolifeandonthematshouldbethesame.Youshouldbe respectfulofothersandofyourself. Beproudofwhoandwhat youare. Thatmeansdevelopingyourselfintosomebodywhois 5

worthwhileaswellasbeingproudofhavingdoneso.Aikidohas nothingtodowithexcessiveuseofforce,andyoushouldnever lookforopportunitiestopracticeitonthestreet,atleastnotthe physicalsideofit. Ontheotherhand,youshouldnotbackdownevenintheface ofdeath fromwhatyoureallybelieve. Eternalvigilanceisthe priceoffreedom.Soisthewillingnesstostandupforyourbeliefs. Aikido is amartialart. Itisdesignedtobefunctional,tobean effective art in the event of a physical attack. If you work to understandit,itwillbefunctional. Occasionally,wehearabout peoplewhosayaikidodoesn'twork.Theyarewrong.Theyhave neverlearnedtomakeitwork.Thefailureisinthem,notinthe art. However,therearenoguaranteesinthisworld. Evendeath maybeconqueredoneday,andyoucanavoidtaxesbynotearning enoughtopaythem. Aikidoiseffective,buttherearesituations fromwhichitisunrealistictoexpecttoemergeunscathedoreven alive.Ifsomebodyintendstokillyouwithagun,youarelikelyto die.Ifadozenpeopleattackyouwithknivesandsticks,youare likelytodie.Butinmoreprobablesituationssuchasastreetfight, aikidowillmakethedifferencebetweenlifeanddeath. Alwaysbeready.Youwillneedaikidowhenyouleastexpect it. If somebody jumps out of a doorway to attack you, your responseshouldbebothimmediateanddecisive:perhapstostiff arm them awayor backfist them in the face, depending on the positioning.Itshoulddefinitelyneverbetoshrinkawayorgivea startledjump.Musashisaid"neverdiewithoneswordsheathed". By this, he meant to useall youhave to succeed. This is the correct attitude, and it has applications well beyond physical confrontations. 6

WhatisAikido?
Thebestpracticeforbeingreadyinthestreetistoalwaysbe ready on the mat. I often see people practicing kokyu ho by shufflingtogether,anduketakesholdofnage,andletshimthrow themdown. Thereisnointentoneitherside. Instead,practice alwaysbeingready,withthearmsextended.Whentwostudents cometogethertopractice,alwayswatchhowtheyapproacheach other. Ideally, nage should give just enough of an opening to inviteuke'sattackatatimeandinamannerofnage'schoosing. Neithershouldbelackadaisicalaboutthepractice. Oneoftenhearstalkaboutnottryingtowin,howthereisno winning or losing in martial arts. This is overstating the case. Thereisnocompetitioninaikido. Therearenoconteststosee whocanwinacup.However,succeeding,achievingyourgoalsno matterwhatstandsinyourway,iswhatmartialartsareabout.Just besurethatwhatyouarefightingforisworthdyingfor.Having saidthis,excessiveconcernforwinningatlittlethingscangetin thewayofprogressinthedojo.Alittlecompetitivespiritbetween peopleatthesameleveltoseewhocanprogressfastestisperhaps good,butitcanbecarriedtoofar. Everybodyprogressesathis ownpace,andbasictechniqueformsthefoundationforadvanced technique. Whatshouldbeavoidedinmartialartsisthinkingin termsofwinningorlosing,ratherthansucceedinginyouraim.As Musashi says, always think of cutting the opponent not of particularstrikesanddefenses.

HowtoAvoidGettingintoaFight
Fights generally come about because people want to fight. Two people frustrated with life rub up against each other and createsparks.Ifnodamagewasdone,thatwouldbefine.They'd justgetsomeexerciseandblowoffsomesteam,andsettledown 7

again.Unfortunately,oncewegetpastearlychildhood,fightsget serious.Peopletrytohurtorevenkilleachother.Thenyouneed tofindabetterwayofsettlingadispute. Thereisalwaysariskofseriousinjuryinafight.Nomatter howskilledyouare,thereisanelementofchanceinvolved.You mighttriponastone,breakyourankle,andloosethefightasa result.Youmightgetintoitwithsomeonemoreskilledthanyou are. You might very well have misjudged how well you can handleaphysicalconflict,particularlyafterafewbeers:ifitgets tothepoint ofaphysicalconfrontationoveratrivialmatter,you have certainly misjudged something. Few things are worth fightingabout. Ontheotherhand,therearethingswhichitisyourmoralduty tofightfor. Thereisnodoubtinmostpeople'smindsthatthey shouldfighttoprotecttheirfamily,forexample. Iwouldagree wholeheartedlythere.Butwhataboutoverwhelmingodds?You should be ready,willing, andable to dieforwhatyoubelieve. However,insomecircumstancesitmightbebetternottofight, eventhoughyouwantto.Youmustdecidewhatyourgoalsare, andyouregoshouldnevercomeintothedecision,andyoushould goforthosegoals.Youmayhavetodecidequickly,sobesureof yourpriorities.

Calmness,Alertness,Clarity
Fightshappenwhenpeoplegetangryattheiropponent,atthe world,oratthemselves,andlosecontrol.Thisiswrong:don'tlet yourselfgetoutofcontrol. Angercanbeusedasatool,toget moreoutofyourself,tospuryouontosuccess.Itcanbeusedto overwhelmanopponentevenbeforeanythingphysicalhappens, butitshouldneverbeallowedtocontrolyou. 8

WhatisAikido?
You should stay calm, in a state of mushin (empty mind). Thiscanbedifficultwhenyouarebeingprovoked,butyoumust choosethetimeandplaceforaconflict. Thefirststeptowards defeatistoletyouropponentmakethesedecisions.Mushinisnot blankness,ratheritisastatewhereyouseewhatisgoingonand respondappropriatelywithoutthinkingaboutthedetails.Afogof angercaneasilypreventyouseeingwhatisgoingon,thenyoucan besurprisedfrombehind. Youshouldremainalert,always. Ifyougetcareless,acar couldhityou,oryoucouldtriponacurbandgetbeatenasaresult. Seewhatisreallythere. Itiseasytobemislead. Madison AvenueandtheentirepoliticalstructureoftheUnitedStatesworks bymisleading.Youhavetolookbeyondtheobvious.Youmight stillbemislead,butnotaseasily. Asacorollarytothis,donotletyourmind getattachedto events.Attachmentcanalsoblindyou.Wehaveatendencyinthe Westtoliveinthepastorthefutureinsteadofthepresent. We throwsomebody,thenworryaboutwhatwedidwrongaswetryto throwthenextone.Orwethinkabouthowwewillthrowthenext personbeforewearefacedwithhim.Attachmentbecauseoftoo muchfocuscanbeasbadasattachmentbecauseofanger.Evenas youdoatechnique,leavepartofyourmindfreetoseewhatis happeningelsewhere.Engageandthrowoneattackerthenlethim goinyourmindaswellaswithyourhandssothatyoucanpay attentiontothecurrentproblem. Similarly,whenyouarefacedwithanattacker,dontlethis eyesorhisweaponcaptureyourmind.Don'tevenlookathisface. Allowyoureyestowatchthewholeofhim,andeverythingelse aroundalso.Observethemovementofhishands,butdon'tfocus exclusively on them. Usually, an attack will be signaled by a 9

movementofthebody,thoughhewillprobablytrynottotelegraph it.Maybethehipmoves.Maybethefoot. Conversely,trainyourselfnottotelegraphwhatyouareabout todo. Certainlydonotpullbackafistbeforestriking. Donot make extra arm movements to "set uke up". Just make the appropriatemovement:nowarning,justmove.Ifyouarerelaxed, youaremoreabletomovewithoutwarningthanifyouaretense. Ifyouaretense,anopponentcanseeyourelax,andknowsyouare abouttomove.

FollowtheRightWay,nottheeasyway
Itiseasytofollowthecrowd.Itiseasytodowhatfeelsgood atthemoment.Indeed,don'tavoiddoingthesethingsjustbecause youfeelinclinedtodothem.Buttherecomesapointwherethe easywaybecomesthewrongway. Ifyoukeepdoingtheeasy thingpastthispoint,youwillpaythepricelater. Inaikido,thepriceisstagnation.Youwillstopprogressing, andmayevengotheotherway.Atsomepoint,yoursenseiwill have taught you all he knows. Then you need to pick up the responsibilityandfigureouthowtomove on. Icertainlyexpect mystudentstolearnallIhavetoteachandtomoveonfurther, thenpassthebatontotheirstudents. Generallyitislazinessthatstopspeoplepracticing,butyou can also overdo training. You can be too rigorous, and hurt yourselfandhavetostoppracticing. Youcanhurtyourpartner, andendupwithoutanuke.Youwon'tprogressthatwayeither. Howdoyoufindtherightway?Yoursenseihastoshowyou atfirst.Untilyougainanunderstandingofyourown,dowhathe says,dowhathedoes,andcopyitasaccuratelyasyouareable, alwayswonderingwhyhedoesitthatway. Gradually,youwill 10

WhatisAikido?
begintoseethewayforyourself. Bythetimeyoureachyour shodan,youshouldhaveanideawherethepathis,butalwayskeep lookingfornewideasandlevelsofunderstanding. Thisassumesthatyouhaveagoodsensei. Therearesome peopleoutthereteachingwhodonothavethewellbeingoftheir studentsinmind. Generallyyoucantellbywatchinghowthey treattheirstudentsandbyhowmanyinjuriesthestudentshave. Youshouldchooseasenseicarefully. Onceyoudochooseone, trusthim.Youmightstillfindthat,asyouprogress,younolonger agreewithhim. Youmighthavedifferentideasofhowtolive yourlives.Thenyouhavetoeitherfindanothersenseiorbranch out on your own. The only guidance I can give you is to be consistentandrigorous.Don'tmakecompromises.Eitherresolve differencesofopinion,orlooksomewhereelse. WhenIsaythis,Idon'tmeandisagreementsoverlittlethings. Forexample,thereisplentyofroomfordoingtechniquesdifferent ways. What I mean is that if you are in a dojo being run by somebodywhomyoudonotwholeheartedlyadmire,youareinthe wrongplace. All too often, people choose the easy way out of laziness. This is fatal to the art. Often, the reason people don't like a particular techniqueisthattheycan'tdothattechnique,orcan't takethatukemi.Ifanything,studythesetechniquesharder.You don'tlearnmuchbypracticingwhatyoualreadydowell.Youdo learnbyunderstandingwhyyoudon'tlikeatechniqueandhowto makeitwork.Ifyoureallyfeelatechniqueisineffective,figure outwhy,andhowtomakeiteffective. Thereisnofastwaytolearnaikido.Alltheteachers,books, andvideotapesintheworldcanonlypointouttheway.Itupto

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theindividualstudenttoprogress,andtheonlywayistopractice, continuallypractice.

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Practicing
Alwaysbeready.Icantsaythisoftenenough,orstressittoo much.Practicealwaysbeingready,bothmentallyandphysically. Practiceitonthemat,practiceathome,practiceatwork,practice onthestreet. Mostpeoplewhoareattackedaresurprisedthey didntpayattentionuntilitwastoolate. Alwaysmaintaintheextension ofyourarms,especiallythe leadingone.Keepitinuke'sface,sothatukehastopushitaside togetincloseenoughtoattack.Ifyouarebeingharassedinabar, andyouropponentkeepscomingcloserandcloser,sothathecan suckerpunchyou,holdoutyourhandandsay,"Pleasestayaway," orsomesimilarwords. Thenhehastobrushyourarmasideor grabittoattackyou.Eitherofthoseattacksarequitefamiliarby thetimeyouhavepracticedforayear,andwillgiveeasyopenings forapplicationoftechniques. Alwaysmaintainthetrianglestance,withonefootforward, andmaybethirtypercentoftheweightonit.Don'ttaketoowidea stance:atmostoneandahalfshoulderwidthsbetweenyourfeet. Thenyoucanmoverapidlyinanydirection.Especiallywhenyou dokoshinage,don'texceedthisdistance. Otherwise,ukemight fallonyourlegandhurtyourknee.Forkoshinageyoucaneven putyourfeetsidebyside.Youcanexceedtwoshoulderwidthsto performsomeotherthrows,butregainthecorrectstanceassoonas ukeisthrown. Beingukeisashardasbeingnage,andwithoutagooduke littleprogresscanbemade.Ukeshouldbeneithertooeasynortoo hardtothrow.Ukeshouldflowwiththetechnique,neithergoing toosoonnorhangingback. Eitherextremeisfrustratingtonage and,asyouprogress,dangeroustouke.

Practicing
Attackmeaningfully. Don'tgiveasloppyattack:putsome intentinto it,focusingontherequiredattacknotonwhatother attacksyoucoulddo,butdontovercommiteither.Youcanslow downforanagewhoisn'treadyforafullboreattackindeed,you should, but never attack without aiming at the target. With a punch, the target is generally the center of the belly, where a mistake will just wind nage without doing permanent damage. Aimtodrivethroughthetarget.Snappingapunchshortmakesthe attackirrelevant.Withagrab,catchholdasifyoumeantohold nage. Practiceyourattacks.Ifyouarepunching,practicedelivering punches.Eachpunchshouldbeaclean,powerful,focusedstrike. Ifyoumiss,suchasifnagestepsaside,youshouldendupon balance.Afewweekspracticingwithakarateclasswillimprove mostpeoplespunches. Beagoodactor. Whenyouslowdownfornage'sbenefit, don'tcheat. Sure,youcouldchangethetarget. Sureyoucould changeyourbalancetostopthatbeginnerfromthrowingyou.But whobenefits? Certainlynotthebeginner. Notevenyouasuke. It'sacheapboosttotheegoandabadhabitthatwillloseyou friendsandmisleadyouinlearningaboutaikido. Donthurry.Beginnerssoonfindthatiftheyrushthrougha techniqueitwillworkbetteragainstanotherbeginner.However, rushingatechniquepreventsyoufromstudyinghowtomakeit better.Ifyoulearntorushtechniquesinthedojo,youwillgoso fastinthestreet,withadrenalinepumping,thatyouwillbetotally ineffective. Thereisnodangerthatsomebodyyoumeetinthe streetwillbeabletoreversetechniquesonyoubecauseyoudo them slowly and correctly unless they have studied aikido, but

Practicing
there is a serious danger that you will fumble and loose the technique. Take care of your body, its the only one you get. It is important to be able to work through pain, even the pain of a Figure1.Hanmi
Youshouldbeinbalancewith70%oftheweightonthebackfoot.

severeinjury,butyoudonthavetodosoallthetime.Injuriesare madeworsebyworkingthroughthepain. Ifyougethurt,take timeoffthematforfullrecovery.Dontgettooeagertodowild ukemi. Build up to them. Otherwise you might end up permanentlyhurtandunabletocontinuepracticing.

StandingandMoving
The basic posture of aikido is hanmi (halfopen stance) as showninFigure1.Youshouldalwayscomebacktothisposture, eitherleftorrighthanded.Standupright,withyourkneesslightly bentandyourfeetoneandaquartershoulderwidthsapart.Have onefootinfrontoftheother,toesfacingforward.Therearfoot should be crosswise, carrying seventy percent of the weight. Extendthearms. Ifukefacesyouthesameway,withthesame footforward,youareinaihanmi.Ifhehastheotherfootforward (mirrorimage),youareingyakuhanmi. Theexactangleofthefeetvariesfromsenseitosenseiand from time to time. Shioda Sensei shows the front foot rotated slightly out (towards the little toe). At least one picture of O Sensei shows the front foot rotated slightly in. However, you shouldbecomfortableandonbalance.

Practicing
Fromhanmi,youcanfreelyadvance,retreat,movetotheside, orturn. Ifthestanceistoowide,youwillonlybeabletomove one foot freely (at best), and are effectively tied down. If the stanceistoonarrow,youlltripoveryourownfeet.Howeveryou move,evenafterukemi,alwaysendinhanmi. Tomove,youcanstepnormally,leftright(ayumiashi),or,to maintainthesamehanmi,movewithoutcrossingyourfeet(tsugi ashi).Toturn,pivotontheballsofthefeet(insteadoftheheels). As you move, keep your feet in touch with the ground. They shouldskimthematwithoutcatchingonobstacles.However,the mat is generally flat and easy to move on. You should also practicemovingoutside,ongrass,roughground,sand:wherever youare,practicemovingsmoothly,alwaysknowingwhereyour feetarewithouthavingtowatchyourfeet.

Ukemi
Everythingukedoestopreventbeinghurtisukemi,whetherit isaroll,aslaptothemat,orjustloweringyourselfgracefullyto thematfromikkyo.(Ifyoudoubtthelastexample,considerthe effect of your face suddenly meeting the pavement.) Even protectingyourfacewhennagemakesanatemiispartofukemi. Ukemidoesnotendwhenyouhitthemat. Afteranyroll,you shouldendupbackonyourfeetfacingwhereyouwerethrown from.Notonlyisthiseasieronyourback,butitpreparesyoufor thenextattack.Youshouldbelikeaball,bouncingoffthemat, ratherthanlikeasackploppingdown. Ukemi is a set of techniques that must be learned and constantlypracticed.Otherwise,likeanyothertechnique,youwill graduallyloseyourskill. Practicethemsmall andslowatfirst, startingfromcrouchinglow.Asyouprogress,builduptowhere

Practicing
youcanthrowyourselfdownfromastandingpositionandendina smoothrollbacktoyourfeet,inhanmi. Generallywestartwith backward rolls (koho ukemi). Figure2.KohoUkemi. These will Uke should roll smoothly to the mat and back into remain useful hanmi for as long as youdoaikido. Therearetwowaystostartabackroll. Inthefirst,putone footdiagonallybehindyou,instepdown,asshowninFigure2.In thesecond,youputafootdirectlyback,soledown. Ifindthe latter oneawkward,butitmaybebetterifyouhaveaninjured knee. Whichever way you start, you should contact the floor gradually, rather than thumping down on your tailbone. Roll diagonallyfromthebackleg,tothathip,acrosstheback,andoff theothershoulder.Thisavoidsbangingtheheadonthematand hurtingtheneck. Therollshouldbecomfortable. Practiceuntil youcanthrowyourselfbackwardsandrollrightbacktoyourfeet. Ifyouarebouncingfromcornertocornerofyourbodyyouare doingitwrong. Yourbodyshouldbesmoothlycurved,sothat there areno corners tohurt. Imagine rolling abrickalong the ground.Itisthecornersthatgetdamaged. I often seepeople falling backandending flatonthe mat. Thisisdangerous:ifyouarethrownhardanddon'troll,youwill gethurt.Besides,somebodycouldlandontopofyou.Complete therollsothatyouendupstandinginhanmi.Rockingbackwards andforwardsislessdangerousthanlandingflat,assumingthatyou areabletorollallthewayoverifthrownhard,butitisabadhabit togetinto. Ifsomebodythrowsyoudownandyourockbackto

Practicing
yourfeet,youwouldberollingrightbackathimandhe'dkickyou intothemiddleofnextweek. Forwardrolls(zempoukemi)arejustlikebackwardrollsin reverse.Asisshownin Figure3,extendanarm inacurve,thumb back, Figure3.ZempoUkemi elbow forward. Roll Makesurethearmdoesnotcollapseasyouroll. from the hand to the elbow,totheshoulder,thentotheback,hip,andbackontoyour feetwhilerotatingtofacenage.Themainproblemstudentshave isnotkeepingthearmextended.Asitcollapses,thereisariskthat youwillhurtyourshoulder.Usebothhandsinitiallyifyouhave to,anddolotsofpushupstostrengthenyourarms. Again,you shouldinitiallypracticefromcrouching,graduallybuildinguptoa standingposition.Workuptojumpingoversomebodykneeling onthemat,androlloutofthefallbackintohanmi.Onepersonis easy. Twoshouldbewithintheabilityofanybodybythetime theyhavebeenpracticingacoupleofyears.Alsopracticejumping oversomebodystandingbentatthewaistandrollingbacktoyour feet.Extensionisevenmorecriticalwhenyoudothis. Slappingbreakfallsareusefulwhennagedoesnotletgofor uketoroll,orwhenthetechniquewouldendinanawkwardfall. Generally,nageisholdingonearmandukerotatestoslapthemat withtheother.Theslapshouldbegivenwiththepalmdownand thearmrelaxed.Theharderyouhitthematwithyourarm,theless hardyourbodywillhit.Tolearntoslaphard,lieonthematand rollfromsidetosideslappingthemat.Yourarmshouldbeabout 45tothebodyandshouldslaplimplylikeahose. Forthefall,practicebysquattingdownandextendingoneleg infrontsothatyoufallbackandtotheside,slappingasyouhitthe

Practicing
mat.Alwaysexhaleasyouhitthemat.Practicewithlessandless squatuntilyoucandotheukemi fromastandingposition,then you are ready to practicewith Figure4.SlappingBreakfall apartner. Windupandslaphardwitharelaxedarmasyoubreatheout Once youarereasonablycompetentatthisfall,haveyourpartnerhelp you.Firstofall,grasphisgilapelasheholdsyourarm.Throw yourfeetintotheair,andslapasyouhitthemat.Yourpartner shouldbendslightlytoletyoulandonyourbackwithouttoomuch ofathump.Next,holdyourpartnersarminaRomanhandshake (wherebothofyouclaspeachothersforearm).Letyourselffall overhisarmandslapasyouhitthemat(seeFigure4). Finally, haveyourpartnerthrowyouinkotegaeshi.Thefallshouldfeel justliketheonefromthehandshake. Shihonage may be done as a throw or a takedown. It is importanttolearntheshihonagebreakfall,ifonlyforvisitingother dojos or at seminars. Generally, if nage does the technique correctly, uke can always take an easy backwards ukemi. However,ifnagethrowshard,particularlyifthefinalcutisinthe wrongdirection,ukerisksabrokenelbowunlesshegoesoverthe topanddoesamorespectacularukemiendingwithaslapping breakfall. Thetwokeystothisukemiarenotwaitinguntiltoolateand foruketotakehisheadtothehandnageisholding. Takingthe hand to the head is not the same, as uke is holding the hand. Consequently,takingthehandtotheheadisfeltasresistance,and nagecranksthetechniqueonharder.

Practicing
Learntolovetakingukemi.Thismeansthatyoushouldwork to make the falls smooth and clean. It means that you should practiceuntilthefallsarefuntotake.However,takingfallsona hard surface can be a bruising business, unless you are well padded.Workuptoitfromadojomatbyusingacarpetedfloor, thenwood. Dirtisquiteforgiving,unlessitispackedhardoris stony. Begenerousintakingukemi. Evenwhenyouareworking withsomebodywhoyoucanstopeverytime,giveanhonestattack andwhentheymaketherightmovesgowithit.Letthemthrow you.Itisn'tuke'sjobtocorrectnage:thatssensei'sjob.Onlyhelp peoplewhentheyarehopelesslylost,whentheydon'tknowwhich waytomove,orwhenyouareindangerofbeinghurt. Fartoo manyhighkyuandlowdanranksspendtheirtimewithlowerrank peopleinteachingthem"their"way.Thisirritatesbothnageand sensei. Iftheirwaywassuperiortosenseisway,theywouldbe teachingtheclass. Timing isveryimportanttoperformingukemi correctly. If youflygotoosoonevenifyouarebailingoutofapotentially dangeroussituation,nagewillfeelcheatedandwillinfactnotbe developingtherightfeelforthetechnique.Ontheotherhand(and thisiscommoner)ifyouhangbacktoolong,notonlywillitbe harderfornagetodoacleancrisptechnique,butyouarerisking injury. Youlllandharder. Nagemightcontinuethepressurea littletoolongandgrindyouintothemat.Mostimportantly,little injuries will accumulate. You will develop chronic pain, particularlyintheelbowandwrist.Thisisnobenefittoeitheryou ortouke. Resistanceiscommonerwithmalestudents,particularlywhen working with children or women. Uke should flow with the

Practicing
technique.Flowintherightdirectionaswellasattherighttime. If uke decides to fall in one direction and nage throws him in another,ukewillprobablygethurt.Thisisparticularlylikelywith shihonage. Good ukemi is going with the technique, without thinking. Sometimes peopleobject thatifukedoesn'tgiverealistic resistance, in a real situation the techniques will not work. However,thisisgenerallywrongandmisguided.Nagedevelops strong technique byfrequentsuccessfulrepetition, notbybeing stymiedagainandagainandforcedtoresorttotrickstosucceedin completingthetechnique.Thereisadifferencebetweenaforceful attackandmufflingtheperformanceofatechnique. Successful applicationinthestreetdependsmoreonescapingtheattackand takingthebalance thanonmuscularpower. Thewholepoint of martial arts is tosubstitute technique forstrength andnumbers. Youmaydependonforce inthestreet,wherethegoalistowin ratherthantolearn,butyouarenotusingaikidowhenyoudoso. Ukemi is much the same for practicing oneonone and multipleattacks.However,withmultipleattacks,ukemustbeas muchawareofthesituationasnage.Ioftenseeukesinmultiple attacksituationsnotpayingattentiontowhatisgoingon.Theyare theoneswhowillbehurtifanotherukeisthrownclosetothem. Evenoneonone,bothukesandnagesmustalwaysbeawareof whatisgoingonaroundthem,asthereareusuallyotherpeopleon themat. Goodukemiiscrucialfordevelopmentinaikido.Untilukeis competentenoughatukemitobeconfidentaboutnotgettinghurt, progress will be slow. Once uke has developed good ukemi, practicebecomesfarmoreenjoyableforbothukeandnage.Itis

Practicing
asmuch funbeingthrownhalfwayacrossthemat andtakinga cleanrollbackontoyourfeetasitistomakethethrow. Ukemiisalsothekeytocountertechniquesandtochanging techniques (henkawaza andkaeshiwaza). Onceyoucanflow withthetechnique,youcanchangeit,eithertakingoverasnage, or, as nage, flowingfromonetechnique into another. Without good ukemi, youwillneverbecome agoodaikidoka. Beinga goodukeisashardasbeingagoodnage.

Breathing
Itis a goodideatokeepbreathing. Seriously,breathe out when you push, when you exert yourself. Martial arts have traditionally placed a great deal of emphasis on breathing techniques,particularlyonlearninghowtobreathefromthehara (center). Thiswasprobablytogivenewpeoplesomethingtodo whilethesenseicheckedthemout. However,itisimportantto keepcontrolofyourmind,andbreathingmighthelpthis. AtSandDrift,wedon'tplaceasmuchemphasisonbreathing. Breatheconstantlytoavoidbuildingupanoxygendebt:breathing outwhenyouexertyourself,breathingoutwhenyouhitthemat. Oftenpeoplebreathetoofast.Breatheslowlyanddeeply.

SelectingaPartner
Trytoworkwitheverybodyinthedojobeforeyouworktwice withanyoneperson.Itmaybemostfuntoworkwithoneortwo students,buttheothershavesomethingtoteachyoualso,probably more. It is common for people approaching shodan to avoid workingwithbeginners.However,beginnershaveresponsesmore likewhatyouwillfindonthestreet:awkward,unpredictable,and

Practicing
nervous.Studyhowtheyreact.Studythewaystheyfindtoturn outofthetechniques,andseeifyouknowthatcounterandifitis safetodo.Studyhowtonotletthemescape,withoutusingundue strengthorspeed.Ifyouhavetheirbalanceandkeepit,theywon't beabletowriggleoutofthetechnique. Peoplecomeinallsizes. Learnhowpeoplewithdifferent physiqueswork.Learnhowpeoplewithdifferentmindsetsthink. Learnhowtoapplytechniquetothemall. Sometechniquesare hardtodoagainsttallpeople.Somearehardtodoagainststrong people. Some are hard to do against bullheaded people. However,alltechniquesworkagainstmostcombinationsofpeople inthedojo.Agreatlevelerforheightisthattoattackyou,ukehas toreachyou.Thisiswhatmakeshanmihandachiwork.Evenif youdecidenevertouseaparticulartechniqueinthestreet,practice it in the dojo. You might just happen to need it, and it will improvethebreadthanddepthofyourtraining. Youshouldlearntojudgepeoplesabilitybyhowtheymove. Not only will this awareness warn you to be careful with somebody,ortobecarefulofthem,butyouwillbeabletojudge howtheywillattackbyhowtheymove.Coloredbeltsalsogivean indicationofability,butwillinhibityourlearninghowtoseewhat a new person can do. This awareness should extend to the techniqueitself.Youshouldbeabletofeelhowgoodatechnician yourpartneris,toknowwhetherheisgoingtoslamyouintothe matorwhetheryouneedtobecarefulwithhim.

DoingTechniques
Atechniquestartsbeforecontactismade,andfinishesafter contactisbroken.Thisisparticularlyimportantwithfreestyle,but shouldbeconsideredevenwithverybasicstatic technique. As

Practicing
soonasukeisseenandrecognizedasapotentialthreat,youshould be tracking what he is doing, without seeming to. As he approaches ma ai, position yourself suitably. In freestyle, for example,startmovinginawaythatwilldrawhimintoyourarea ofcontrol.Afteryouhavethrownhim,continuemonitoringukeas longasyoucanseehim.Inparticular,keeptrackofhimwhileyou movetoasaferdistance,outsideofmaai. Thereareavarietyofwaysto do even basic technique. Most PartsofaTechnique techniques are learned statically. Escapetheattack Thisissimilartokatainkarateor Takethebalance uchikomi in judo. There is a Throworholddown tendencyforstudentstothinkthat Zanshin uke is controlling the situation, but even at this time, even with static technique,nageshouldlearntocontrol whatishappening, notuke. Thiscontrolisstilldonebypositionandtiming,even though nagesoptionsaremorelimited. Forexample,youcan positionyourhandtoaffectwhereukespowergoes.Forshomen uchiikkyoomote,ifukeattackswiththerighthand,youwantto deflect his hand to your right. For shihonage, conversely, you wanttodeflectittoyourleft. Withnagealreadymovingwhenukegrabshold,itiseasierfor nagetocontrol uke,solongasnagesmovement isintheright directionconsideringthetechnique,ukesangleofapproach,and ukeandnagesrespectiveenergies.Eventually,nagecanmoveso wellthatitseemsasifukebarelytoucheshimandisspunoff effortlesslywhatSaitoSenseicallskitechniques.Thislevel ofproficiencyisthegoalofmostaikidoka.However,itcanbean elusivegoal.Youmustdevelopasoundfoundationbydoingbasic

Practicing
technique, first static, then moving. Too much practice of advancedtechniquewillundermineyourbasictechniqueandyou mustalwaysbeready foranukewhodoesnotblendwell,orin caseyoumakeamistake. There are four parts to a technique: the initial defense or evasion, taking the balance, the actual technique, and zanshin. Alwayspracticeeachoftheseinthewaythesenseiisdoingthem onthatday. Youcan'tlearneverythingatonce,sofocusonthe broad picturefirst,butasyoubecomebetter,copythesmallest details.

Evasion. Everything happens when uke invades your space,


comingwithinmaai.Ifhestaysoutside(recognizingthatmaai canbealongway,saywithagun),heisnothreat.Heentersma ai, strikes or grabs, and the technique starts as you evade the attack. Inaikido,wedon'tnormallyblocktheattack.Especially withapowerfulattackfromabiggeropponent,adirectblockcan bedangerousandineffective,onlysettingyouupforthenextshot. Ifheisswingingaclubatyourheadandyouputanarmintheway toblockit,youwillmostlikelygetabrokenarm.Ifyoudeflect theblow,thenatleastitsforcegoessomewhereelse.Ifyoudirect thatforcesothatitworksagainsthim,youaredoingaikido. Generally, particularly on the street, an aggressor will only attackwhenheseesanopening. Thisiscalledsuki inJapanese. (Tsuki, which soundssimilar, is apunch,andis written witha differentkanji.)Ifyouprovidenoopeningforanattack,theywill notusuallyattack.Thisisthedifferencebetweenamartialartist andmostpeopleonthestreet.Amartialartistshouldnotbeopen toaneasyattack.Onceaconfrontationdoesoccur,byprovidinga sukiyoucantosomeextentdeterminehowtheattackerwillattack.

Practicing
Holdyourhandshigh,andhewillusuallyattacklow.Guardlow, and he will attack high. You should practice this in the dojo, givingukeanopportunitytoattackinthewayyouwanthimto attackbutnotprovidinganopeningforotherattacks. Yourevasion consistsofgettingoutsideofthetargetzone. Thetargetzoneiswhereukeexpectsyoutobe,theplaceheis aimingfor,whenheattacks.Ithaslimitsinphysicaldimensions andintime.Apunch,forexample,isonlyeffectiveinavolumeof spaceabouttwiceasbigasthefistitself. Outsidethiszone,the powerdeliveredfallsoffrapidly.Onceyougetofflinetowhere thefistmisseslaterally,thepowerfallstozero.Thepowerisalso focusedindistancefromuke,particularlywithamorepracticed ukewhowillsnapthepunch.Ifyoumoveclosertoukethanhe expects,thesnaphasnthadtimetobeexecuted,andthepunch becomesashove.Beyondthetargetzone,ukestopshisextension sothathedoesntfallover,andagainthepowerdisappears. Thesameprinciplesapplywhenukesattackisagrab:thereis stillatargetzone.However,youdonthavetobreakawayfrom ukesgrip,althoughthisisoftendone.Achangeinbodyposition isusuallysufficienttoevadethegrab,andmanytechniquescanbe donewhileukeisstillholdingon.Withagrab,youwantuketo losepower,andpossiblytoleadhimtowhereheloseshisbalance. Movinghisgripoutsidethetargetzoneaccomplishesthis. Youwantuketoknowwhereyouwillbewhenheunleashes theattack,andyouwanthimtothinkyoullstillbetherewhenit arrives.Onceapunchisreleased,andthisistruetoanextentwith anyotherattack,ukecannotappreciablyredirectit.Thatiswhen youmove:afterthereleaseistriggeredbutbeforeitarrives.This isalsoanaspectofsuki,whichisanintervaloftimeaswellasa physicalopening. (Seealsomaai,Page52). Thisislikeduck

Practicing
shooting.Ifyouaimdirectlyataflyingduck,ratherthanleading it,youwillmiss.Thistimingputsabigpremiumonseeingwhen andhowukewillattack.Youcangenerallyseethisbywatching ukesmovements.However,ifyouallowuketomovewithinma aiwithoutforcinghimtocommithimself,hewillbeabletostrike withoutyouhavingtimetodoanythingeffective. Alwayskeep ukeatmaaiunlessyouareactuallydoingtechnique. Ifukemoves insidemaaiandhasnotreleasedtheattackyoumusteithermove back,whichisgenerallyapoortactic,oryoumustmoveinanddo atechnique. Inthestreet,youmighthavelegalproblems ifyou makethefirstphysicalcontact. Thelawmaynotrecognizethat approachingwithinmaaiisjustasmuchanaggressivemoveasa swingatthehead.However,ifyouputupahandandaskhimto stay back, he has to either grab that hand or knock it aside to continuetheattack.Ineithercase,hehastheninitiatedtheattack. Therearefewevasivemovementstolearninaikido,themost important being irimi,tenkan,and corner step. These defenses apply to all attacks. They are primarily hip movements. The accompanying arm movements are less important and may, in somecases, beomitted entirely. However,thearmmovements shouldalsobepracticedtoprovideanextradimensionofsafety. Irimiisperhapsmostcharacteristicofaikido.Itisanentering movement. Asukeisattacking,anenteringmovementprovides themostrapidchangeofpositionofnagerelativetouke.Yougo into shikaku, behind uke, as he attacks. Timing is critical in aikido,butespeciallyinirimi. Don'tmovetoosoon,orhewill retargethisattack.Dontmovetoolate,orhe'llhityou.Anirimi escapeshouldbeinthesamebreath asuke'sattack. Itisnota reaction,itisasimultaneousmovement. Anothernameforirimi wasyamabikonomichi,thepathofanecho.Theideawasthat

Practicing
asyouextendki,thekiofyouropponentwillcomebacklikean echo. SaitoSenseiquotesanoldpoemdescribingirimi: Brandishinghissword Myenemyinfront Preparestoattack, Butbehindhim, Iamalreadystanding Thefootworkforan irimi entrance is shown in Figure 5. With an irimi entrance you can pass either in front of uke or behind him. It can be performed with nage facing uke or he canbefacingaway.The most common form is with nage moving behind uke, facing his back. Nage should be close to uke after an irimi entrance, close enough to do technique and close enough to suppressanotherattack.

Nages footprint

Ukes footprint

Figure5.IrimiEscape
Asukeattackswithalefthandfrontpunch,slip behindhisback.Nageshouldmovesoclosely into ukes rear that uke has no room for a strongattack.

Practicing
Topracticethetimingforirimiescapes,bothukeandnageuse asword. Usuallythis practice is donewithabokken(wooden sword),butthereisalottobesaidforusingashinai (bamboo sword). Thenyoucantryhardertohityouropponentwithless concernfortheconsequences. Ifyoudohithim,itwillhurtbut you won't kill him. Whatever you use, the strikes should be serious.Itiseasytogiveahalfheartedstrike,andasnagemoves, tochangeyourmovementandhithim.Thennobodylearns,unless nagelearnsthathistechniquesdon'tworkandthatyouarenota gooduke. Facingeachotheratmaai,swordtipstogether,both ukeandnageliftuptheirswordstogether. Bothstriketogether. Nagemovesinandtooneside,sothatwhilenagecouldhituke, ukestrikesemptyairwherenagewas.Clearly,ifthemoveistoo soon,ukewillhavetimetoretargetandhitnage,justaswitha punch.

Practicing
Atenkan defenseissimilartoirimi,butwithaturnsothat nagegoesfromfacinguketohavinghisbacktohimasshownin Figure6. Thebackfootmovesfirst. Thisrotationalmovement makesitharderfornageto behitsolidly,andprovides impetustoatechniquesuch as kote gaeshi. Again, it can be in front or behind Nages uke,andtherotationcanbe footprint in either direction. However,itisusuallydone behindukewhilerotatingto meshwithuke'smovement. Ukes A tenkan movement is footprint characteristic of kote gaeshi. You blend with uke's movement, escaping, taking the balance, and throwing. Your body rotationtendstobrushoffa blow,andinfreestyleitlets you see who is close enoughtoattack. Figure6.TenkanEscape Asukeattackswithalefthandfrontpunch, Acornerstep(Figure7)is turn and slip behind him, back to back. a movement back out of Moveinfarenoughtobebehindhim,and rangeandtothesideofan turntheheadtofacethesamewayasheis attack.Itisthecommonest facing. defense used against yokomenuchi,butisalsogoodagainsttsuki. Ineithercase,the strikeisknockeddownandukespowerisredirected.Ifnagetook

Practicing
astepdirectlybackwards,ukewouldfollow.Instead,astepback andtothesideallowsyoutogetoutofrangeandupsetsuke'splan ofattackifdonewiththerighttiming. Dont move your feetfirst,movefromthe hips. Dontadjustyour feet before moving, or uke will know you are getting ready to move. Pull the hips back and rotatethemoffline,then putthefrontfootbehind and drag the new front footintoalignment.The final position should be 45degreesoffthelineof ukes attack, and bring you almost back to ma ai. From here,youcan strike down the attack, but are out of range of ukesnextstrike.Ifyou turn too much,youwill Figure7.CornerStepEscape come in range of ukes As uke attacks with a left front punch, other arm or foot and withdraw the hips in a turning movement whilesteppingthefrontfootbehindthebody willgethit. andpullingthenewfrontfootintoalignment, As for any attack, goingfromlefthanmi torighthanmi. Dont dont reach out to get signaltoukewhatyouaredoingbyadjusting uke, or you will be thefoot.Justpullthehipbackoutoftheway, exposing yourself to offlineandoutofrange.

Practicing
otherattacks. Ideally,theonlyopportunityukeshouldseeisthe oneyouwanthimtosee,andonlywhenyouwanthimtoseeit. Thisistheideabehindtheoftenexaggeratedmovementusedtoget uketoattackinmunetsuki,whennagestepsforwardstickingthe stomachout. Similarly,ifyouarepracticingtsuki,dontmakeit hardforuketoreachyou.Youwantuketothinkhehasaneasy shotatyou.Youwanthimtoonlyseethatopening.However,the movementshouldbetoosubtleforuketonoticeconsciously. Likeukemi,evasionstendtobeneglected.Theydon'tresult intheimmediatesatisfactionofsmackingukedownhardonthe mat,buttheyarethemostimportantpartofatechnique.Aclean evasionprovidesthefoundationforthenextpartofthetechnique.

TakingtheBalance.Thisisthesecondpartofanytechnique,
after the evasion. Kuzushi, or taking the balance, tends to be emphasizedlessinaikidothaninjudo,butisnolessimportant. Evenanimmobilization likenikkyo,whichseemstodependon pain,ismostlydependentonbalance. Ifnagefailstogetuke's balance,ukecanresistnikkyoquitestrongly. Itmighthurt,but willprobablynotcauseanimmediatesubmission.Youmightstill make it work, but it will take more effort and time that you wouldnthaveinarealconflict. Ukeisoutofbalance whentheheadorhips areoutsidethe areadelineatedbythefeet.Ifthenoseisinfrontofthetoes,uke canbereadilythrownforward. Iftheheadismovedbehindthe heels,ukecanbethrownbackwards. Ukecanbeoffbalancein anydirection,butonlycertaintechniquescanbedonefromany particular direction. Balance is best felt rather than seen. An excellentpracticeistodotechniquewiththeeyesclosed. (Uke mustthenlookoutforotherpeopleonthemat.)Asyouprogress,

Practicing
youwillbeabletofeelbothyourownandukesbalance.Asyou improve,youwillfeelmoresecuredespitebeingunabletoseeand theinitialuncertaintyofyourownbalancewilldisappear. Anoteofcautiontonage:ifnage'sheadisoutofthesesame limits,nagecaneasilybethrown.Itisquitecommontoseetenchi nage beingcompletedwithnagesheadwellforwardofhisfront foot. Ifukeholdsontonageasheisthrown,hecanthenthrow nage. Similarly,inshihonage,iftheheadisback,ukecanpull nagebackwardsandpreventcompletionofthetechnique. Nage shouldkeephisbalanceevenwhileheistakingukes.Whenyou feel offcenter, relax your legs, resettle your hips, and do the techniquefromyourhara. Itisverydifficulttotakeukesbalanceunlessheismoving. Thus, if uke strikes, try not to block the blow, but redirect it instead.Statictechniquecanbequiteachallengebecauseofthis. Generally,nagemakesalarge movement,gettinguketomakea small movement inresponseandstarting totakeukes balance. Nagethentransferssomeofhismomentumtouke,speedinghim up and completing kuzushi. Finally, nage plants himself and acceleratesukestillmoretoapplythetechnique. Balance alsohas amental component. Asharpatemi will momentarilydistractuke.Onceyoutakehismind,youcanmore easilydisturbhimphysically.However,donotfallintothetrapof thinkingonlyofthementalside.Takingthemindisonlypartofa technique. Once you have uke's balance, you have his strength. You shouldkeepitratherthanhavingtogobackandtakeitagain.You can easily give uke back his balance by poor technique. For example,withiriminageifyoutaketheheadbackalongthesame trajectoryyoutookitdowntotakethebalance,youwillbeputting

Practicing
uke back on balance. Instead, gobackalong adifferent route. Evenifyoumovecorrectly,youcanstillletukeregainhisbalance byinsufficientextension. Thereisamindsetthatseemstothinkthatisitwimpytotake ukemi,thatyoushouldstickitoutforaslongaspossible. The mostobviouswayanukecandothisistonotletnagetakehis balance.Thisisnotagoodwaytopracticeforseveralreasons.It makeslifeundulydifficultfornewstudents,itcausesinjuries,and itmakesithardtopracticekaeshiorhenkawaza.Smallinjuries causedbyexcessiveresistancewillaccumulate.Evenifyoufeel youcantakeit,theywillbuildupandyouwillgetmoreserious repetitive motion injuries. If you cant get the balance of a particularuke,askyourselfwhynot.

Kake: GeneralPrinciples. Thethirdpartofatechniqueis


actuallyperformingthethroworimmobilization.Thisistheleast importantpart,providedtheevasionandkuzushi havebeendone correctly,thoughalmosteverybodypaysthemostattentiontoit. Perhaps this is because it is hard to go into a lot of detail on evasion and kuzushi. True to this tradition, most of this book addressestheexecutionoftechnique. Therearecertainprinciplesthatapplytoanyaikidotechnique. Aikidoiscircular,involvingmomentumtransferfromnagetouke, as well as control ofukes movement. Throwingjust involves extendinguketothepointwherehehastofalldown.Thisisquite powerfulenough,especiallyonconcrete,withoutnageworrying aboutthrowingukehard.Nagemightthrowuketothegroundand movebackoutofrangeofasubsequentattack,orhecouldfollow uketothefloorandapplyanimmobilization.

Practicing
Immobilizations arequite similar tothrows exceptthat uke fallslessspectacularly,butonceukeisonthegroundnagemust maintaincontrol.Todoso,hemustkeephisownbalanceandstay closetouke.Ukehasanadvantagewhenheisonthegroundin thathecanpushofftheground,whilenagegenerallyhastopush down,using hisweight. Nagemustnegateukesadvantageby keepingukeinanawkwardorpainfulposition. Generally,nage should push across ukes power, rather than pushing directly againstit.

Zanshin.Thisisnagesattitudeaftertheendofthetechnique:a

slightpauseattheendofthetechnique,whetherastrikewitha sword orathrow. Asyoucompletethetechnique,yourposture and mental and physical balance must be correct, so that uke cannotpullyouover,evenifheholdson.(Ifthishappens,dont resist,justfallonuke.Inthestreet,useyourknees.)Youshould checkthattheyarecorrectbeforegoingontothenexttechnique. Totestzanshin,nageshouldholdhispositionattheendofthe technique. Ukeshouldthen,usingverylight pressurewiththe fingertips,pushnagetoseeifheisonbalance. Zanshin is most important in oneonone practice, and you shouldtaketimetothinkaboutthetechniquejustcompletedbefore yougetreadyforthenextone.Whenyouareready,focusallyour attentiononthenexttechnique,withoutthinkinganylongerabout howwell(orhowbadly)youdidthelastone. Asalways,youmustbeawareofwhatishappeningaround you. Dontjustturnawayfromukeafterexecutingatechnique. Keepready foranotherattackfromukeorfromanotherattacker. Ifyouhavethrownukeatyourfeet,moveoutofrangeofhim.If youhaveimmobilizedhim,afterreleasinghim,movebackoutof

Practicing
range.Ifyouhavetakenaweaponfromhim,butaregoingtokeep practicing, hand theweaponbackwithout givinganopening as youdoso. Donotoverdozanshin.Turningtooquicklyfromoneuketo thenextwillresultinincompleteandineffectivetechniquesduring multipleattacks,butturning toolate willresultinyounotbeing ready for the next attack when it comes. Zanshin can almost disappear in multiple attacks, but you must still complete each techniquebeforegoingtothenext.

Extension
The use of extension is characteristic of aikido. Almost always,nageispushingoutwards.Almostalways,ukeisextended beyond where he can control his balance, so that his power is reduced. When extension is lost, nage loses power, uke gains power,andsuccessiscompromised. The idea of extension is hard to explain. Full extension generally meansthatnageisdoingtechniqueattheedgeofhis sphereofinfluence,makingukemove fasterthannagedoes. It meansthatukeisextendedsothatwhennagemoves,hehasto movetoo.Ifthereisslackbetweenukeandnage,sothatnagehas tomoveacoupleofinchesbeforehemovesuke,histechniques willbeineffective. Theunbendablearm,wherenageextendshispowerthrough thetipsofhisfingers,isoftentaughtasanexampleofextension. However,thereismuchmoretoextensionthanthis.Topractice extension,performtechniquesusingmovementonly,withoutthe atemi andpressurepointsthatmakeaikidotechniqueseffective: relyonuketoholdon.Mosttechniquescanbedoneinthiswayif nage understands the technique well enough. Uke must make

Practicing
committedattacksbut,moreimportantly,nagemustdrawukeout andmaintainthisextension,usingittocontrolukeuntilhehasto falldown.Onceyouunderstandhowtodothis,startworkingup tothenormaltechniques,andtheywillworkbetter.

PracticewithaSword
Different martial arts stress different aspects of conflict. Aikidocomesfromthesword.Thestressinaikikenisonstrong cuts,thepowerfulcutsnecessarytocutthrougharmorandbones on the battlefield, inordertodevelop stronghipmovement for aikidotechniques.Conversely,sportkendousesshortsnappycuts whichwouldnotprovideagoodfoundationforaikido. Kendo does,however,provideexcellenttrainingintiming.

Suburi
Themostcrucialpracticeofaikikenisthesuburi,aseriesof sword cuts. Theyshouldbeperformedbycuttingtheairusinga regularbokken.Aheavybokkencanalsobeusedtobuildupthe bodyandforhittingatargetsuchasarollofbrushwood(seePage 41). Thesuburiaredescribedbrieflybelow.Theyareshownin moredetailinVolume1ofTraditionalAikido,bySaitoSensei. Each cut, each stroke, should be performed carefully and accurately. A hundredgoodcuts will benefit youmore thana thousand performed carelessly. In particular, perform each cut separatelyfromthenext. Wavingthebokkenupanddownwill onlystrengthenthearms. Correctcutswillstrengthenthewhole body,improveaikitechnique,andteachmentalfocus.Cutsshould belightatfirst,buildinguptostrongerstrikesasyourbodygrows stronger,oryouwillhurtyourelbows. Allofthebodymustbe usedinthemotion,ratherthanjustthearms,butyoushouldbe relaxed:lettheken(sword)dothecutting. Foreachsuburi,thestartingpositionshouldbeintheonguard position.Youshouldbestandinginhanmi.Thehandsshouldbe atbeltlevelandasfarapartonthehandleasyoucangetthem:the

SwordPractice
lefthandcradlingthebuttendofthehandle,therighthandagainst theguard. Mostofthestrength shouldbeinthethirdandforth fingers. Thelefthand shouldholdsecurelybutnottightly. The righthandshouldholdalittlemoresoftly. Thearmsshouldbe almostfullyextended.Thetipoftheswordshouldbelevelwith youropponentsthroat.Imagineyouarefacinganopponent.All suburi strikes are shomen uchi. (Yokomen strikes are similar exceptthatthehipsareturnedasyoucut.) The first and third suburi are most important for aikido. Normally,sword techniques areonlydonerighthanded,though theycanbedoneonoppositefeet.However,asthepracticeisto developouraikido,whichshouldnotfavorrightorleft,Ifeelwe shouldpracticeaikikenleftandrighthanded.

First Suburi. This is a basic shomen uchi strike executed

withoutstepping,althoughthefeetshouldmovealittle.Youcan startineitherleftorrighthanmi. Careshouldbeusedtomake surethatthestrikesaremadeverticallyoverthetopofthehead. Thereisnoneedtohurrytheupwardsstroke.Forpractice,takeit well back behindyourhead. Thedownwardsstrokeshouldbe powerful,deliveredfromthehips.Thekenshouldcutthroughthe imaginarytargetandstopsixtotwelveinchesthroughit,butnot swingtoofarpast.Thus,itwillendupbeinghorizontaloralittle higher. The strike should start at the hips and progress to the shoulders,arms,wrists,andendwiththeswordtipmovinglikea whiplash.Thefirstsuburiismostimportantforikkyo,kotegaeshi, shihonage,andtenchinage.

SwordPractice
SecondSuburi. Thisislikethefirstsuburi,butthesword is
onlylifteduntilitisintheverticalpositionneartheear.Thisisa defensive posture called hasso no kamae. The hips should be rotatedoffthelineofattackastheswordislifted. Atthesame time,move yourfrontfootback. Stepforwardtostrikeshomen uchi.Thissuburiismostimportantforsankyo,yonkyo,andkokyu nage.

ThirdSuburi.Inthis,theswordistakenovertheheadandlaid
backasfarasyoucanreach,windingupforthemostpowerful strike possible. Lift the sword broadly, reaching high as you breatheintothestomach,andlayitbehindyou,compressingthe airinyourlungswhilestillwatchingyourfoe.Thencutandkiai (yell)atthesametime,puttingeverythingintothestroke.Thisis mostrelevanttoiriminage,kotegaeshi,andkoshinage.

ForthSuburi. Strikeasforthefirstsuburithenchangefeetto
strikewiththeotherfootforward,andkeepalternatingfeetasyou makeeachstrike.

FifthSuburi. Asfortheforthsuburi,butprotectthesideof
yourheadanduppertorsowiththebladeofyourswordasyoustep totheside,thencut.

SixthSuburi.Asforthefifthsuburi,butthrustafterthestrike.

Thebladeshouldbehorizontalforthethrust,theedgeturnedaway fromyourbody:onewayforonehanmi,andtheotherwayforthe other.Thissuburiisimportantforshihonageandkotegaeshi.

SwordPractice
SeventhSuburi. Asforthesixthsuburi,butstepforwardto
thrust,sothatyoualwayscutononefootandthrustontheother.

TanrenUchi
This is practicing the suburi, primarily Numbers 1 and 2, whilehittingatarget.Abundleofbrushwoodistraditionallyused andthisfeelsbetterthanhittingatire.Thehipsshouldfeelsolid throughouttheexercise,especiallyforthethirdsuburi.Ifyougrip theswordtootightly,youwillfeeltheshockallthewayupyour arms.Saitoshowsagripwiththehandsnexttoeachotherforthis exercise. Youwillneedastrongbokkenfortanrenuchi.Aflimsyone, onewithcrossgrain,oroneimproperlyseasonedwillbreakaftera fewstrikes. Thebokkendoesnothavetolookpretty,merelybe abouttherightsizeandshapeandbestrong.Ifastraightpieceof oakissplitintofourquartersandroundedoff,itwilldryinacurve tomakeaverystrongbokken.

ShihoGiri
Shihogiri(fourcorners cut)isapracticeforcuttinginany direction.Cutasforthefirstsuburifromlefthanmi.Nowleave thetipofthesword whereitisandpivotthebodythrough180 degrees.Pivotontheballsofyourfeetanddontstep,liftingthe handsabovetheheadforthenextcut.Settleyourhipsandmake the second cut 180 degrees from the first cut. Now turn 180 degreesagain, backtotheoriginalposition,thenslidethefront footroundtocontinueturning thehipsanother90degrees,and makethethirdcut270degreesfromthesecondcut. Turn180 degreesand maketheforthcut. Thusyouhavecuttoallfour

SwordPractice
cardinalpoints.Itisimportanttomaketheturnwithyourbalance controlledandstrikewiththehipssettled.Anotherfourstrikescan bemadebetweenthesefour,bymakingthefifthcutwitha180 degree turn followed by an additional 135 degree turn. The remainingcutsarethenmadelikenumberstwo,three,andfour. ThesequenceisshowninFigure8. The importance of this exerciseistolearnhowtoturn the body freely in any direction. It is critical for shihonage, but is also importantforothertechniques and particularly in dealing withmultipleattackers.

KumiTachi
Kumi tachi is practicing theswordwithapartner.Itis particularly important for Maintainextensioninthecutsandkeep studying distance and timing. thehipsstableduringtheturns. Saito Sensei covers it extensively.ThemostimportantmovementstopracticeareSaito SenseisfirstthreepairspracticesinVolume1,andtheyokomen uchidefense. Forthefirstpairspractice,faceyourpartneratmaaiwhere the ken blades overlap three to sixinches. Lightly touch your opponentskensothatyoucanfeelwhatheisdoing.(Toomuch pressurewillallowhimtoexecuteacircular parryandhityour wrist.) Figure8.ShihoGirifromLeft Hanmi

SwordPractice
Bothpeopleshouldlifttheirswordsandstrikesimultaneously. Uke comes straight in. Nagemoves offline and cuts at ukes wrist. Thisexercise,mentionedearlierinthesectiononirimi,is critical for understanding timing. Both raising the sword and strikingmustbesimultaneous.Ifnagemovestooearlyortoolate, hewillgethit.Itishardtooveremphasizetheimportanceofthis exercise. Thesecondkumitachistartsthesameway.Thistime,asuke liftshissword,nageenterswithathrusttothethroat,takingukes balance.Thethirdkumitachiisthesameasthesecond,butwith nageraisingtheswordandukethrustingatthethroat.Thistime, nagestepsbackasforthesecondsuburi,evadingthethrust,and cuts ukes wrist. The difference between the second and third kumitachiisthetiming. Forthesecondone,nageentersinvery quickly as uke lifts his sword, surprising uke and taking his balance.Forthethirdone,thethrustdoesnotsurprisenage,and heevadesitandstrikes.Youshouldstudythedifferenceintiming and feeling between these two kumitachi exercises. They correspondtodifferentwaysofdoingiriminage. To practice the yokomen defense, Saito shows a kumitachi exercisestartingfromthesameonguardposition. Thistime,as onepartnerattacksshomenuchi,theotherpersondefendswitha scooping thrust to the stomach. The first person defends by steppingback,insteadofforwards,butcontinuestheshomencutto keepthesecondpersonfromdrivinghometheattack.Thesecond personthencutsyokomenuchi.Thefirstpersondefendsbyagain steppingbackandstrikingdowntheattackingswordwithasticky feeling. Thesecondpersondrawsouthisswordfromunderthe othersblade,andmakesasecondyokomenstrike,fromwhichthe firstpersondefendsinthesamemanner. Itisimportantthatthe

SwordPractice
defender notflinchfromthestrike,movingbackphysicallybut remaining mentally strong. This is equally important in performingtechniques.Nomatterhowstronglyandaggressively ukeattacks,nagemustnotflinch. Hecangiveground,butmust maintainhisextensionevenforuratechniques. Foralltheseexercises,itisimportantthattheattackerstrikes attheopponent,notathisopponentssword. Also,performthe exerciseslightlyandslowly. Cheapbokkensbreakeasily,anda bokkenisalethalweapon.Theexercisesshouldbeperformedto learn, not to try to win. There should be no feeling of competition,especiallyatfirst,orbothpartnerswillloose.

PracticingwithTwoPartners
Havingtwoattackersisexcellentforpracticingtechniqueas well as developing an awareness of multiple attack situations. Generally,thepracticeiswithoneukeinfrontofnageandone behind.Bothukesshouldbeatmaaiinthiscasewithjustthe tipsoftheswordscrossingforthefrontmanandtheotheruke shouldbeatthesamedistancebehindnage.Nagemovesfirst.As soonashemoves,bothukestrytostrikehim.Generally,shomen uchiispracticed,butyoucanalsopracticefromayokomenattack.

Shihonage Practice. Shihonage omote comes from a


horizontal cut with the sword followed by a body turn and a verticalcut.Foromote,asyourtwopartnerscomeintocutyou, cutthroughthemiddleofthemanyouarefacingwhilestepping offlineinthedirectionofyourcut.Continuethehipmotionofthe cutintoaturn,leavingthetipoftheswordbehind,andtakethe sword overheadtostriketheotherattacker(whowasoriginally

SwordPractice
behindyou).Keypointstopracticearesteppingthroughwiththe swordtobothcutthefirstukeandstillgetoffline,andtoleavethe swordtipwhereitisasyouturnbeforemakingthesecondcut,just as for shiho giri. Turn your hips through a full 180 degrees betweenthefirstandsecondcuts. Uraisalmostidenticaltoomote,exceptthatthefirstcutis throughthemantotherear,requiring360degreesofturnfrom start to end. Again, step off line and continue the motion by turninginthesamedirection.

KoteGaeshiPractice. Shomenuchi kotegaeshi ispracticed


thesamewayasshihonageura,exceptthatafterthefirstcut,you changedirection,turning backtocutthesecondman(stillwith shomen uchi) rather than continuing in the same direction. Students commonly do kote gaeshi with the hands, which is ineffective,ratherthanusingtheentirebodyasforthethirdsuburi.

AttacksforPracticingAikido
On the mat, the goal is to practice safely and realistically. Therehavetobecompromisesforsafety,andyouneedtoknow where they are so that you can avoid pitfalls in the street. In aikido,muchofthetrainingisslowandmethodical.Ifabeginner isattackedviolentlyhewillgethurtorinjureuke,eitherofwhich wouldbecounterproductive. By working slowly, both nage and uke become reprogrammed,sothattheymoveinamoreeffectiveandpowerful manner.Asthesemovementsbecomemorefamiliar,thespeedof theattacksisincreasedsothattheyaremorerealistic.Bythetime students reach shodan, they should be working at close to full speed.However,theywillstillneedtoslowdowntocheckhow theyareexecutingthetechniques,topracticewithkyuranks,and tolearnnewtechniques. Agoodruleofthumb istodoonerepetitionasfastasboth uke and nage can handle it for every ten slow and careful repetitions. Ifyoucandoitslowly,youcandoitfast,butthe reverseisnotnecessarilytrue. Fastorslow,attacksmustbetrueontargetandextending deepenoughoryouarewastingyourtimeandyourpartners time.Punchingshortwillmaketechniqueshardtodo. Theattacksusedinaikidoareratherstylized,forsimplicityin learning.However,theydocovermost,ifnotall,possibleattacks. The only major weakness in most dojos is not practicing techniquesfromkickssufficientlyoften,andkickscancertainlybe includedwhenworkingwithaclassthatcantaketheukemi.

AttacksinPracticing
KatateTori
Thisisaonehandgrabtothewrist.Itcanbethesamehand (ai hammi) or opposite hand (gyaku hammi). While often practiced as a simple wrist grab, katate tori also provides an openingforablow. Startwellapart,almostatmaai. Nageshouldstartwitha handheldoutstronglyasaguard. Thisforcesuketograspthe handandpushitdowntocontinuetheattack.This,ratherthanthe moreusualgrabbingofalimparmfromtooclose,iskatatetori. Usetheimpetusukeprovidestoperformthetechnique. Beginnersoftenworryunnecessarilyaboutgettingawayfrom agrasp. Thereisnoneedtoactuallybreakaway,asyouarenot heldimmobile. Allthatisheldisyourwrist. Bymovingyour body,youcandowhateveryouwant,andthestrongerukegrips, theeasieritistousehisgriptoupsethisbalance andtwisthim intoanawkwardposition.Thekeyisfornagetomovehisbody aroundthepointofcontactratherthantryingtomovethepointof contact. To understand how to move freely from katate tori, practicetenkanundo:turningaroundthecapturedwristtolineup back to back with uke, facing the same way and with the arm extendedtomatchukesextension.

KataTori
Likekatatetori,katatori(ashouldergrab)isjustthestartof anattack,withthecompleteattackgenerallybeingkatatorimen uchi(ashouldergrabfollowedbyastriketotheface).Ifeelthat katatoriwouldgenerallybefromthesideorbehind,orelsenage should nothavealloweduketogetso close. Themenuchi

AttacksinPracticing
striketotheheadisusuallyshomen,butcouldbeyokomenor jodantsuki.Thetechniquesaremuchthesame. Whenattacked,nagemusttakebacktheinitiativeandnotbe hamperedbyuke'sgrasponhisshoulder. Foruke,itisbetterto graspwiththefingers,whicharequitestrongenough,ratherthan withfingersandthumb.Ifyouuseyourthumbitcanbetwisted intothegisothatoncertaintechniquesyoucannotletgo. Katatoriisexcellentfornagetolearnhowtoavoidbecoming entangledbyuke. Thisisparticularlytruewithshihonage,kote gaeshi, and irimi nage. Uke can make these techniques quite difficultbyholdingontonagesgi,andevendrivinghiselbow down. If nage allows uke to control the situation, he will be hopelesslytrapped.Toavoidthis,nagemustmaintaincontrolof hishipswhilekeepingukeoffbalance,andkeepcorrectextension. Thekeytokatatori isastrongstriketoukesface,tyingup his free arm. The importance of this strike can hardly be overemphasized.Nagesshouldershouldbelikeahairtrigger.As soonasuketouchesit,nagesarmshouldbeinhisface.Ukethen hastorespondtonage,ratherthannagebeingdriventorespondto ukesstrike.Asuketriestopushnagesarmaway,nagecaneither overpowerukeor,ifthattakesanyeffort,letukedrivenagesarm away, while steering the arm to where nage can use it for a technique. Ifnageistooslow,sothatukeisalreadystriking,youcan move intoapositionsidebysidewithuke,sothatukesstrike misses, and continue into the technique. However, your arm shouldstillbeusedtoprotectyourfaceandthreatenuke.

AttacksinPracticing
RyoteandMoroteTori
Ryotetoriiswhenukegraspsbothnagesarms.Morotetoriis whenukegraspsoneofnagesarmswithbothhisarms. These attackscanmakenagefeelevenmorerestrainedthanwithkataor katatetori,butwhenyoumove correctlyyouusethestrength of yourlegsagainstukesarms,andthereisusuallynocontest. In responsetoeitheroftheseattacks,nagemovesmuchthesameas for katatetori andsohecanchosebetweendoingaiandgyaku hanmi techniques, because uke is holding on with both arms. However,avoidmovinginfrontofukesbackfoot,asthisisthe moredangerousone. Themostimportanttechniquetopracticefrommorotetoriis kokyu nage (see Page 83). With both his arms, uke has more chancetoholddownnagesarm.Avoidthisbyturningsothatyou canliftthearminawiderarcthanukecanfollow. Themost important practice fromryotetori istenchinage (seePage79). This particular tenchinageallows Figure9.MoroteTori. nage to learn how Noticethatnagesarmisfullyextended. tomoveincloseto uke,goingaroundhisstrengthratherthanagainstit.

ShomenUchi
Thisisanoverheadstrikeatthetopofthehead. Whileit could be with a club or bottle, it is generally practiced with a tegatana. Thestrikecanbestartedwitheitherfootforward,and canalsobethrustupwards(likethedownwardstrikeinreverse). The upwards thrust is particularly useful for initially teaching

AttacksinPracticing
ikkyo.Inpracticalterms,apunchtothefacemaybeeasiertotreat asashomenuchiratherthanasatsuki. Thebasicdefensetoashomenstrikeisarisingblock,withthe energyofthestrikebeingexpendedalongtheangledforearm.If allelsefails,andyoudonthavetimetodoanythingelse,usethis basicblocktoprotectyourhead.Whenyoulearnit,youcaneven absorbastrikewithajowithoutgettingabrokenarm.Allthree evasive movements can be used for shomen uchi. As with all defensesagainststrikes,keepthethumb againsttheedgeofthe handtoavoiditbeingbrokenifyoumisjudge. Becauseukeshand ismovingquitefastonthedownstroke, nageshouldgenerallyblendwiththeelbow,whichismovingmore slowly.Forexamplewithshomenuchikaitennage,theelbowis quiteeasilymanipulated,whilethehandisalmostimpossibleto catch.

YokomenUchi
Thisisadiagonalstrikeaimedatthehead(temple)orneck.It shouldbeperformeddescendingatabout45degrees.Itisidentical inmotiontoshomenuchi exceptthatthehips arerotatedduring thestrike. Thebasicdefenseasdescribedearlierforswordpracticeisto move, using a corner step, back out of range and in the same directionasthestrike.Thissoftenstheblowifitdoesland.Atthe sametime,strikedownukesattack,catchingthemiddleofhis forearm with the back of your forearm, deflecting the strike withoutslowingitdownmuch. Ifnageaddssomeeffortinthe rightdirection,ukeshouldfalldown. Thetechnique,something likethejudoukiotoshi(floatingdrop),redirectsukesforce out anddown.Asyoudeflectthearm,strikeattheface.

AttacksinPracticing
Indefendingagainstyokomenuchi,becarefulnottolosethe extensionofyourarm,orastrongattackmightcrashthroughyour defensetohityourhead.Theamountofdeflectiondependsonthe technique.Forikkyo,donotknockdownukesarmveryfar.For kotegaeshi,strikeitdownandbrushitpastyourbodyasyouenter intoshikaku.Forshihonage,cutthestrikedownandsweepitin frontofukesbody. Forascarfthrow,sweepitfurtherstill,to whereyoucanwrapitaroundukesface.

Tsuki
This is usually practiced with a straight front punch. A reversepunchistreatedmuchthesame,butismoredifficultto dealwith.Thepunchcanbemiddle,highorlow,butisgenerally practicedasamiddletolowpunch,aimedatthestomachwhere thedamagewillbeminimalifitlands. Itsnotverykind,and unnecessary,topracticeachestpunchwithwomen. Thepunchshouldbeonline,andshouldbeaimedatstriking nage,ratherthanatsnappingthefrontofhisgi. Ifukedoesnot punchfarenoughintonagesspace,notonlywouldtheblowbe ineffectiveandnotathreat,butsometechniqueswouldbeharder toperform. All three defenses are usedagainst tsuki. Thearm canbe pushed to one side with the hand when doing an irimi escape, particularlyifukehookshispunches(thoughthesecomecloseto being yokomen uchi), but nage should not come to depend on deflectingukesarmratherthanmovinghisownbody.Youmust getoffthelineratherthanbackingawayfromuke.Backupand hewillfollow.

AttacksinPracticing
UshiroAttacks
Theseareattackswhereukegoesbehindnage,tocatchboth arms,ortogoforastrangulationorakidneypunch.Ifukegrabs both hands from behind, generally it would be because another attacker would be punching nage. Ushiro attacks are ideal for learninghowtomovewellwhilealsokeepingukemoving. Thebasicdefenseisfornagetogetukeinfrontofhim,where hecanmoreeffectivelydealwiththeattack.Generally,itisbetter fornagetokeephishandsinfrontofhisbody,notallowinguketo pullthembehindhisbody,althoughtherearetechniques inthe eventthathedoesnotsucceed. Ukecanonlypullnagesarms back if nage resistsbystraining hisbodyforwards. Whenuke pullsback,gowiththepullandcrowdhim,whilekeepingyour ownbalance. Onceagain,itiscriticalthatnagetakestheinitiativefromuke, otherwiseushirotechniquesarequitedifficulttoperform.Asuke grabsyouroutstretchedarmandstartstomove behindyou,turn towardshimandgotopunchhiminthekidney. Ashemoves awaytopreventapainfulatemi,quicklyturntheotherwaytoslip underthearm.Dontraiseukesarm.Rather,slipyourhipsunder hisarmandyourheadwillfollow.Again,balanceandtimingare thekeys,withnagetakingadvantageofuke'sattempttogetbehind him. Strangulations and chokes from behind are particularly difficulttoescapefromoncetheyareapplied.Whereverpossible, preventukegettingafirmgrip.Withastrangulation(pressureon thebloodvesselsatthesidesoftheneck)youhaveaboutfour secondstoreleasethepressureoryouwillbecomeunconscious even though it might barely feel uncomfortable. Chokes, with

AttacksinPracticing
pressureonthewindpipe,canbeevenmoredangerous.Whileyou maystayconsciouslonger,ifthetracheaiscrushedyoumaystill beunabletobreathewhenyourattackerletsgo.Keyitemsareto strikeukewiththeelbowsandtomove outofthelineofattack, preferablycirclingintoukesshikaku. Ifukedoesgetan arm aroundyourneck,catchhisarmandpulldown,whileturningyour bodytowardstheelbowtoreleasethepressureandcontinuingwith atemi. Ushiroryokatatori(withbothshouldersheldfrombehind)is agoodexercisefornagesbodymovement.Generally,nagehasto movemoreinthisattackthanforushirotekubitoritomaintainuke inextensionandoffbalance.Thearmsshouldhowever,stillmove muchasforushiroryokatate(tekubi)tori,movingtheshoulders more effectively. Ifukestrikes atyourhead,lift botharms to protectitasyoumove.

SuwariWazaandHanmiHandachi
Suwariwazaispracticingtechniqueswhilekneeling.Thisis difficultforpeoplewhohavenotlivedtheirlivesontheirknees,as theJapaneseusedtodo.Themainreasontopracticeitthesedays is to learn how to use your hips and how to move your body, therebystrengtheningyourstandingtechniques. Thetechniques mayalsobeusefulifyouareknockeddowninthestreet,though youshouldrollbacktoyourfeetagainassoonaspossiblerather thanchoosingtostaydowninsuwariwaza. The stances and techniques should be almost identical to standingtechniques.Inparticular,whenyoubow,youfaceyour partner,butwhenyoureceiveanattack,youshouldbeinhanmi: withonekneeforwardjustlikeinstandingtechniques.Justasfor standingtechniques,youmustmove. Aikidokaoftenmove less

AttacksinPracticing
whendoingsuwariwazathanwhenstanding. Asaresult,they dependtoomuchonupperbodystrength,andtheirtechniqueslook sloppyandareineffective. Hanmi handachi is when nage is kneeling, and uke attacks fromastandingposition.Thisisprimarilyanexerciseinhowto deal with an extremely tall opponent. Dontreach upfor uke. Make uke reach down to get you, thereby compromising his balance. Withhanmi handachi,younormallydotheentiretechnique kneeling. However, you can also practice by starting from a kneelingpositionandfinishingstanding.Thisisalsoanexcellent practice, both from the practical point of view and to improve certaintechniques.Nageismuchlesslikelytobendthearmsand sneak under ukes arm (compromising his control) when doing hanmihandachishihonageinthismanner.

Kicks
Kicks are like other attacks in most ways, but have longer range and are more powerful than hand strikes. They are also slower. The main reason that defenses against kicks are not practicedmoreisthatwehavefewclasseswherethestandardof ukemi is uniformly highenough to take the awkward falls that result. Whenthreatenedwithakick,watchthelegonwhichukehas littleweight:ifukesweightisevenlydistributed,hecantkick withoutshiftinghisweight.Thestrengthofakickisgreaterwitha deepstance,butthenecessaryshiftinbalanceisgreaterandmore apparent,unlessukehasalreadyunweightedonefoot. Theback foot is the stronger one, so that is generally the one to watch.

AttacksinPracticing
Becauseukemustunweightonefoottokick,nagecanlimitukes kicksbycontrollinghisbalance. Asforanyotherstrike,thesamebasicescapesareusedfora kick. Linearkicks aretheeasiesttoavoid. Circularkicks,like yokomenuchi handstrikes,canbehandledbymovingoutofthe targetzonebut,generally,movinginonukeandjammingthekick ismoreeffective.Watchukesknee.Ifheistrained,thekneewill pointwhereheisgoingtokick.Thus,youcandistinguishbetween afrontkickandaroundkickbythepositionoftheknee. Thefallfromakickismoreawkwardthanmostaikidofalls, becauseyoudonthaveafoottoputbackandslowyourfall.Sit asclosetoyourheelasyoucanandslaphardasyoufallback.

MultipleAttacks
Aikidoisdesignedmoretodealwithmultipleattacksthanfor fightingoneononewithsomebodyofsimilarcapability.Usually inaikido,wepracticeveryformally,oneonone.Inthiswaywe learn to be very competent in the techniques. If the mat is crowded,wemightpracticeingroups,butstillpracticinginthe sameway,throwingoneafteranotherinthesametechnique.This buildsagoodfoundationfordealingwithmultipleattacks. Avarietyofexercisesareusedtotrainformultipleattacks. Thefirststepsaretodorandoriwithoneperson,thenanumberof people.Randoriisanexercisewhereukeattacksandnagedefends in an unstructured way. Ideally,theattacks andtechniques are entirelyatthediscretionoftheparticipants,andtheattackerscan attackfromanywhere,includingfrombehindnageifhecarelessly givesthemthatopportunity. Tostartout,attacksandtechniques mayberestricted,andeverybodymightworkslowly. However,

AttacksinPracticing
thegoalistodoitwithnoholdsbarred.Thetechniquesmightbe doneemptyhandedorwithajo. Freestyleintestingissomewhatdifferent.Here,nagestarts outfacingthelineofattackers. Whennagebows,theexercise starts. All the ukes might attack at once, orthey might attack howeverthesenseidirects. Inanycase,nagemustcontrolthesituation.Ifnagebecomes toofixed,hewillcertainlygetattackedfrombehind. Nagemust move,asdiscussedingreaterdetaillater(seePage98),soasto limitthesuki availabletotheattackers,allowingonlyoneuketo attackatatime.Hemustavoidbeingtrappedagainstthewall,the edgeofthemat,orinacorner.

AikidoTechniques

GeneralPrinciples
Thereareanumberofgeneralprinciplesthatapplytoaikido techniques.Someofthemaresummarizedbelow.

UsetheWholeBody.Sometechniquessuchassankyocanbe

donewithonehand,butthisisweak.Theentirebodyshouldbe usedinpracticesothatyouwilldevelopstrongtechnique. E.g., forkokyunage,usebotharms,evenifonlyonecontactsuke,so thatallyourbodywillcomeintoplay. Powercomesfromthe ground. Thus, in almost every case, at the point of greatest exertionthereshouldbeastraightlinefromthebackfoot,securely plantedonthemat,touke.Therowingexercise(funekogiundo) andikkyoundoareprimarilydonetoensurethishappens. Asacorollarytothis,alwayspush.Offhand,Icantthinkof anaikidotechniquewhereyoupull.Pullingbringsukeintoandon top of you. Pushing keeps him away. Also, pulling usually dependsonweight,whereaspushingcomesfromthefloor,letting yourlegsusetheirpower.

StudyAikiKen.Aikidocamefromthesword.Learnthesword
toseehowtheyrelate,andstudythetechniquestoseehowthe swordandbodymovementsrelate.(SeePage38.)

AikidoTechniques
BlendwithUkesAttack. Aikidoisusingyourpowertothe
maximum possible effect. To dothis,youmustblend withan attackinordertouseukespowerandstrengthagainsthim.When youarepushed,turn. Whenyouarepulled,enter. Steerukes poweranduseitagainsthim.

DontUseExcessiveStrength.Asaruleofthumb,neveruse
morethansevenpoundsofforce onthemat. Ifyouhavetouse morethanthis,eitheryouaredoingthetechniqueincorrectly,or your uke is not playing fair. Stop working and get help from sensei.However,theoppositeidea,thatyoushouldntusestrength inaikido,isalsoincorrect.Usestrengthefficiently. One particularly invidious use of strength is when uke is cooperating,nagegetsukeintoapositionwherehehastofall,and suddenlynagedrivesukeintothemat.Ifyouabuseukelikethis, hemayquitandyoumayultimatelydriveawayallyourpotential partners.Alternatively,oneofthemmightpayyoubackinkind. Inanycase,youwontlearngoodaikido.Learntodotechnique withaslittlestrengthaspossible,then,withpartnerswhoareable totaketheukemi,graduallyincrease thestrengthyouuse.You must,however,stillbecontrolled,nomatterwhoyouareworking with.Thethrowistheeasypartofthetechnique.Youneedpower leastatthatpoint.

ChangetheTiming toyouradvantage. Ifukewillreach


youataparticularmoment,movetowardsorawayfromhimashe isattacking, sothatthetiming changes. Asyoumovetowards eachother,changingyourpacewillalsoalterthetiming.Youcan dothisbymodifyingthelengthorspeedofyoursteps.Generally

AikidoTechniques
youdontwanttochangethenumberofsteps,however,atleast notforthetechniqueitself.Ifyoudo,youwillprobablyendupin thewrongposition,althoughthereareplacesyoucanputinan extracheaterstep,particularlyforwhenukeismuchtallerthan nage. Changing thetiming isusefulevenoneonone,butis vital with multiple attacks. Then, all the attackers may be moving towards you at the same time, with the goal of attacking simultaneously.Ifyoumovetowardsoneofthem,youdontjust throwoffhistiming,youthrowoffalloftheattackers.Becauseof this,youarealmostforcedtotakeoutthenearestonefirst,oryou willstillbedealingwithonewhenanotherarrives. Evenwhenpracticingoneonone,studytiming.Itisnogood tomovetoosoon,youjustwarnukewhereyouaregoingandhe cancompensateandstillhityou. Obviously,itisnogoodtobe lateeither.Thetimetomoveisafterukeissurehehascaughtyou unready,andbeforehehitsyou. Asyoumove,positionyourselfsothatyouareintheright placeandmovingintherightdirectiontodothetechniquewhen contactismade.Thisisequallytruewhethertheattackisastrike oragrab.

Speedandtiming areoftenconfused. If your timing is

right,youcanmovequiteslowlywithouthavingdifficultyindoing the technique. Always practice new techniques slowly and methodically.Ifyoualwayspracticefast,youwillhaveproblems inthestreet,whentheadrenalinewilldriveyoutogoevenfaster. Ifyoupracticeslowly,youcantaketimetostudythetechnique andimprove.Ifyoucandoitslowly,youcanalwaysdoitfast. Yourspeedshouldmatchukesspeed.Ifheattacksfast,you mighthavetomove fastinitially. Withinatechnique,keepthe

AikidoTechniques
speedconstantratherthanrushingwhenyoueitherhaveaproblem orwhenyouseetheendofthetechniqueapproaching.Especially avoidgoingslowlyuntiltheendandthensuddenlyhammeringuke intothemat.Asyouimprove,youcanvarythespeed,inparticular acceleratinggraduallythroughoutthetechnique.

StudyActively.Youmustconstantlylookforwaystoimprove.

Somestudentsonlydowhattheyaretold. Thisisnecessarybut insufficient.Atfirst,yoursenseiwilltellyouwhattodoandhow todoit.However,youmustgobeyondthat.Idontwanttoleave behindabunchofstudentswhoarelesscapablethanIam.Iwant youtolearnwhatIknow,learnwhatotherscanteachyou,andgo beyondwhatyouhavebeentaught.

KeepYourHandsinFront. Yourhandsaremostpowerful
whentheyareinfrontofyou.Inikkyoura,forexample,itisvital that you keep yourarms fromlagging as youguide uketothe floor. Intenchinage oririmi nage,lettingthearmdriftbackto whereitisinlinewithorevenbehindtheshoulderlinecanresult inapainfultearofthemusclesandtendonsoftheshoulderjointif ukeresiststhethrow. Inalmosteverycase,dothetechniqueinfrontofyourbody. If you throw off to the side, the throw will be weak. This particular problem can usually be corrected merely by rotating yourhipssothatukeisinfrontofthem.

StudyMaAi.Maaiiscritical.Onceyouunderstandwhereuke
canattackfromandwherehecant,youarewellonthewayto beingabletocontrolhim.Maaiisthedistanceatwhichukeand nageareascloseastheycanbewithouteitherbeingabletoattack

AikidoTechniques
theotherinonemovement.Thus,atmaai,nagehastimetoevade ukesattackswithoutbeingcoldcocked,orhitwithoutwarning. Maaidependsontheweaponsaswellasonukeandnages size.Ingeneral,maaiisthedistanceatwhichukeandnagecan justtouchtheirfingertips.Whenoneofthetwohasaweapon,the distanceisextended bythereachoftheweapon. Thusajoadds twotothreefeettomaai. Ahandgunwilladdperhapstwenty feet;arifle,perhapsasmuchasathousandyards. Ma ai is generally applied between two people facing one another. However,thereisazoneofeffectivepower aroundall sidesofaperson.Thekeyistogetwherehispowerisineffective, butyoursiseffective. Onesuchplaceisshikaku,moreorless behinduke,whereheisverylimitedinhisabilitytohityou. If youarealittletoofarforward,youwillbeindangerofbeinghit byanelbowstrike. Maaiisadistance. However,italsorelatestotiming:one impliestheother.

TapWhenItHurts. Macho males often seem to feel they

shouldtakeasmuchpainastheycanduringpractice.Thisisnota goodidea,especiallyasabeginner. Itaggravates yourpartner, temptinghimtosmashyouintothemat.Itrisksseriousinjuryand leadstopoortechnique. Assoonasatechniquehurts,doyour ukemi which might involve going to the floor or tapping. However,iftheupwardsmove ofsankyo omote hurts,donttap andstandstill. Thewholeideaofthethispartofsankyoisto makeyoumove,somoveinthedirectionthatrelievesthepain. Whennagehasyouinthepinonthefloor,tapassoonasithurts. Otherwise,afteracoupleofdozentimesoftakingasmuchasyou canbear,yourarmsmighthurtfordays.

AikidoTechniques
Similarly,whenyouarebeingthrown,dontresisttheukemi unduly.Resistancewillresultinaharderfall.Ifyouresistsome throws,likekotegaeshi,youwillgetarepetitivemotioninjury (liketenniselbow).Itwontshowupforafewweeks,butitwill showup,andyouwillbeoutforafewmoreweekswhileitheals.

All Techniques Are Related. There are many aikido


techniquesandtheytendtoblendintooneanother.Forexample, therearemanysimilaritiesbetweenikkyoandnikkyo.According toJohnStevens,OSenseididnotclassifyhistechniques,sothere isnoreasontoworrytoomuchaboutnames.However,theyare usefulinmaintaininguniformityamongschoolsandinteaching.

DevelopaFeelingfortheRhythm.Anyofthesetechniques
hasarhythm. Youcanwalkthroughthemtogetthearmsand handsright,buttomakethemworkyouhavetofindthisrhythm. Youknowyouhaveitwhenyoucandothetechniquepowerfully withoutstraining (lessthansevenpoundsofforce),andyetuke cant effectively resist. The rhythm ofaikido is therhythm of strikingwithasword,cuttingthroughanyresistance.Iriminage, forexample,isoftenlostattopdeadcenterofthetechnique. Thisisthepoint whereukestartstofeellikeheisgoingtobe thrownandwhereheresists.Donteventhinkofstoppingthere. Thinkofsweepingthearmthroughthispositiontowhereyouwant toendup(inhanmi),bywhichtimeukehasbeenthrown. If you find yourself straining, you could be doing the technique incorrectly, or uke could be resisting through fear or obstinacy.Ifyouslowdown,anditgetseasier,youareprobably doingitcorrectly.Ifyoufinditgetsharderwhenyouslowdown,

AikidoTechniques
ukemightwellbeblockingyou.Thisisusuallyobviouswhenyou watchforit.Askhimnotto.Acommonproblemwithtechnique iswhennagepushesinthewrongdirection.Ifyouarepushingat thewronganglerelativetoyourbodyandfootposition,theharder youpushthemoreawkwarditwillfeel.Infact,ifyoupushreally hard at an awkward angle, you can injure your knee or back. Alwaysgetbehindthepush.

BeConsiderate. Beconsiderateofyourpartner. Justasuke


shouldnotresistunduly(forhisownbenefit),sonageshouldnot applytechniquetoovigorously. Nageshouldconsiderukessize andstrengthaswellasexperience.Thereisatendencytotakebig beginnersasachallenge,butaftertheygethurttheyrarelycome backandeverybodyinthedojo missesoutonwhattheymight havelearned.

Atemi
Atemi is 99 percent of aikido O Sensei said so (Saito, TraditionalAikido,Vol.V,Page38).Atemicanendthetechnique onthestreet. Anytechniqueprovidesmultipleopportunitiesfor atemi. However,thetraditionalteaching ofaikidoassumesthat youknowhowtodoeffectiveatemi,andgoesbeyondthatpoint. Reportedly,OSenseiwouldnotacceptasastudentsomeonewho wasnotalreadyayudanshainsomeothermartialart.Thismeant hedidn'thavetoteachatemi. Wecantaffordtobeasselective,sowedoteachatemi to students. AtSandDrift,wearefortunateinhavinganexcellent traditionalkarateschoolsharingthedojo,whereourstudentscan learnthebasicsofatemifarbetterthanIcanteachthem.

AikidoTechniques
Studentsmustconscientiouslypracticeatemi,bothwhenthey attackstrikesbeingatemiwhetherdeliveredbyukeornage andduringtheperformanceoftechniques.Doingatemiispartof beingbothukeandnage.Watchforopeningsforatemibutdont concentrateonatemiratherthanontherestofthetechnique. It isnotnecessaryordesirabletohitpeoplehard. Almost always, it is enough to tap them lightly, even in the street. However,theatemimustbeaccurateinpracticesothattheywill work on the street. Itis notanatemi ifitflies overuke's (or nage's)head. Ifyouaretostrikeatthehead,strikeatit,evenif youonlydoitslowly.Asuke,movethehead,protectitwiththe arm, or do something. Some schools and teachers use quite forcefulatemi.Bereadyforthis,particularlywhenyouvisitother dojos,orwhenyouareunfamiliarwiththesensei.However,even whileprotectingyourselfdontmakeitundulydifficultfornageto dothetechnique.Yourfocusshouldstillbeontheattack,thenon the ukemi. Nobody will learn if highly ranked or physically formidable ukes stand still and block nages atemi rather than practicingtheirukemi. Ontheotherhand,dontthinkofatemi asmerefeints.You shouldusethemeffectivelywithoutfocusingexclusivelyonthem. A feint is a weakmovement that is neverintended tosucceed. Youratemishouldbepurposeful,drivinguketoprovidingawider suki. Allvarieties ofatemi includingpunches and kicksmustbe practiced. Kicks are useful because they have more range and powerthanhandstrikes.Theyarealsointimidating.However,the samebasicsapplytokicksastopunches. Anumberofnages atemiarekicks,notablywiththekneetotheheadinkaitennage.

AikidoTechniques
Veryoften,atemiarethekeytothetechnique.Forexample, in ikkyo omote and kaiten nage omote (see Pages 56 and 75), if youarenotinpositiontodothe atemiyouarenotinpositiontodo the technique either. Atemi can beusedasdistractionsandthreats toavoidukedoingsomethingwe dontwanthimtodo. Theycan be used to break ukes balance. They can also be used to finish Figure10.OmoteandUra. thetechniqueinthestreet,butthat These are positions. Omote is in isnotsomethingwithinthescope frontofuke,uraisbehindortothe side.Maintainstrongextensionfor ofaikido.

OmoteandUra

both.

Thesearepositions.AsshowninFigure10,omoteisinfront. Uraisbehindortotheside. Whenyoudoatechniquefromin frontofuke,youaredoinganomote technique. Whenyouslip behind,itisura. Generally,omotetechniquesaremorepositive andforcefulthanuratechniques. However,nagemustdoboth omoteanduratechniqueswithstrongextension.Also,whenyou doomote,youhavetobecarefulnottogethitasukesweapons hands,feet,orwhateverarepointedmoreorlesstowardsyou.

Ikkyo
Ikkyo is the first principle of aikido because it is the foundationformanyoftheothertechniques.Itisderivedfroma straightforwardshomenstrikewithasword(1stsuburi). Asuke

AikidoTechniques
attacks,youintercepttheattackandliftyourarmsasifliftingthe sword. When you cut down with your whole body, as with a sword,ukeisknockedtothefloor. Whilethisisasimplesetof movements,ikkyo canbeaverypowerfultechnique,potentially driving ukes face into the ground. Timing is very important, especiallyforomote. Asukeliftsthehand tostrike,move asif drawninbythathand.Ifyoumisstimetheomote,dontstruggle withuke:youwillgetpunchedbyhisotherhand.Ifyoufeelany resistance,changetoanothertechnique(suchasikkyoura). Complicating this simple picture is the need to blend your movements with ukes so that uke falls to the floor. This is accomplished with an irimi movement, entering to uke's front. Whenyoucanpunchukeinthestomachwithyourleadinghand Figure11.ShomenUchiIkkyoOmote.
Enterearlyandkeepthearmsextended

(theonegoingtohiswrist)ashestrikesinsteadofliftingitto interceptthestriketodotheikkyo,youareintherightposition. Nowwhenyoudointerceptthearmasyoumovetothisposition, youwillturnukesbodysothathecan'tstrikewithhisotherhand. Thecorrectdistanceisgivenbyhavingthepositiontostrikewitha reversepunchofyourbackhand(theonegoingtohiselbow)tohit ukesfloatingribs.Thisfootworkinvolvesastepforward,intoa positionwherenagecandrivestronglytowardsuke.Thetimingof thestepvariessomewhat. However,onnoaccountshouldnage stepwhileheneedstobepushing.Youwillhavenopowerunless yourbackfootisfirmlyplantedonthegroundbehindyou. The downward strike varies somewhat depending on the relativesizeandstrength ofukeandnage. Thebasicgoalisto

AikidoTechniques
strikedownsothatyoupushukeselbowthroughwherehishead was.(Ofcourse,themovementchangesuke'spostureenoughthat there is usually no impact, although this can happen.) The downwards motionmayneedtobemoreinfrontofuke'sface ratherthanthroughhisheadifukeisverytall,strong,andstiff. However, this variation may leave nage vulnerable if uke is flexible. Ifukeistootallfornagetoreachhishead(whichisquitea large difference in height), nage will probably need to use a differentapproach.Inthestreet,ifukeisbothlargeandflexible enoughtodeflectthemotionofikkyoomote,hisdefensewillput nage into position for a nikkyo nage. (This is a powerful technique. Makesure that ukecanto dotheukemi whenyou practiceitonthemat.) Youcanalsobendukeoverbytwistinghishandonewayand his elbow the other. This onlyworks whennageisatleast as strongasuke.Consequently,itisnotthebestwaytopracticeas youcantdependonstrength. Thedownwardstrikefromikkyo mustendwithnage'sarms fully extended. If you dont extend enough, uke will not be sufficientlycontrolledandcanstandup. Ifyouoverextend,by leaningforward,ukecanreversethetechniqueonyou.Yourhand andshouldernearertoukesbodyshouldbeslightlylowerthanthe otherones,toputthemechanicsofthetechniqueinyourfavor. Ukesarmshouldbesixinchestoafootinfrontofyourthighs. Tooclose,andukecangrabyouandpickyouupinaikiotoshi(see Page85).Toofaraway,andukecanjuststandup. Fromthecorrectposition,thetraditionaltakedownistopush ukeoffbalance withamovementlikeusingabroom,andthen reversingdirectionatanangletolayhimoutonthefloor.Trying

AikidoTechniques
topullukeoverisineffectiveandmayresultininjurytonage's knee.Shorteningthetakedownbycontinuingthefirstdriveallthe waytotheflooriseffectiveandgoodpractice,providedyoukeep your balance. If uke resists, pushing back, this sets him up perfectlyforcompletionofthetraditionaltakedown. The ikkyo holddown is an exercise for nages extension. Kneelbehindthearm,pushitup,rollitforwardsothattheelbow isupwards,andholditdownwithtegatana.Thisisnotacombat pin as it does not make a flexible uke more than mildly uncomfortable.Forcombatsituations,useadifferentpin. Thetimingforshomenuchiikkyoomoteshouldbestudied.If youenterasukeliftsupforthestrike,thetechniquewillworkwith aminimumofforce. Ifyouwait untilukestrikes,thetechnique can still be done, but requires significant effort. If uke really struggles,thetechniquetakestoolongtobepracticalandukecan punchyourribs.Ifyouarelate,eitheruseanatemitodistractuke sothatyoucandoikkyoomote,orchangetechnique. As you make the initial movement to shomen uchi ikkyo omote (an irimi entrance to ukes front, facing him), you must enterquicklyenoughtosuppresshisattackthendriveforwardoff yourbacklegandthrustyourhipforward. Ifyousteptoosoon, ukewillagainhavetheadvantageofbothtimingandpower. Ikkyoura isanidenticalmove totheomote,butwitha180 degreerotationasthearmsarebroughtdown.Nagesfootshould bealignedwithukesfrontfoot,andheshouldturnbacktoback, justasforatenkan escape. (Ofcourse,ukedoesntstayinthe sameposition.)Asukecomesround,nageshouldkneeldown,and ukeshouldfallinfrontofhimwithoutfurtheradjustments. Manypeoplemakeoneofthreemistakesindoingikkyoura: theywrapukesarmacrossthefrontofthethighs,continuethe

AikidoTechniques
rotationbutnotthedownwardsstrike,orlettheirhandsdriftback from in front of their body. Figure12.ShomenUchiIkkyoUra

Allofthese Keepthearmsaheadofthehips. deficienciesareduetoinsufficientextension ofnagesarmsand dramatically decrease the effectiveness of the technique, while invitingacountertechnique.Theurapinissimilartotheomote pin,althoughitislessimportanttopushthearmhigh. Asanexercisetogettheuramovementright,fromkatatetori aihanmi cuttowardsukesfacewithategatanaasyoustepinto shikaku andturnbacktoback. Cutdownasyouturn,keeping yourhands rightinfrontofyourthighs,continuingtheturnand finishingkneeling.Ukeshouldendupfacedowninfrontofyour kneeswithoutyouneedingtoadjusthispositionoryourown.This exercisemaytakesometimetogetright.Ukemustkeepholdof thewrist.Youmustkeepyourarmswellextended,andturnfrom yourcenter.Thewholeexerciseshouldbeasinglesmoothaction: onebreath. Ikkyo can be used as a throw (ikkyo nage)in freestyle by steppingforwardasyoucutdownhard. Byinsertingthehips as youdoso,yougetakoshinage

Nikkyo
Nikkyoisarotationofthebonesoftheforearm(radius and ulna)aroundoneanother,usingukesflexedhand asagripand keeping uke's forearm horizontal. For my first few months of aikidoIthoughtitwasanIndianburn,andwonderedwhythey evenbotheredtoteachsuchanineffectivetechnique.ThenAndy Allen put a real nikkyo on me, and I had a moment of

AikidoTechniques
enlightenment.Beginnersoftenneglecttomakethemovementa rotation, and pushstraightdownwitheither thehandsor,more commonly, the elbow. These moves may be sufficiently uncomfortablethatbeginningukesdogodown,buttheyareweak. Therotarymotionisthereasonwhynikkyoworks,andoncea student figures out how to make it rotary, all of a sudden the techniqueismuchmoreeffective.Thereareanumberofwaysto applythismotion.Themostbasicisprobablywithukeshandto nagesshoulder.BendukesarmintoahorizontalZshape,with 90degreeanglesatthewristandelbow.Pressthebackofukes handfirmlytoyourshoulderjustbelowtheclavicle,usingyour samesidehand.Now,atemitothefacewithabackfistusingthe otherhandanddrawthetegatana backtowardsyoualongukes arm.Donewithadownwardspressure,thiswillbringmostuketo theflooratonce.However,ifthisdoesnothappen,completethe movementbybringingthishandallthewayintoukeswristand grasp the wrist. Now twistukes forearm withboth arms ina rollingmotiondownyourchestasyoubowslightlyandsettleyour hips.Notethatatnotimeispressureofnageselbowontoukes elbowused.Thispressureonitsowniseasilyresisted,particularly byashortstronguke. Likealltechniques,thepowerfornikkyocomesfromthelegs. Thehandsandarmscandosomethingofanikkyo,butnotuntilthe wholebodyisusedtodrivethepowerofthelegsintotherotary movementdoesitbecomeunstoppable.Thedirectionoftherotary pressurewilldeterminewhichwayukewillgo.Thus,ukecanbe drivenstraighttothefloor,backwards,forwards,orevenbrought backupoffthefloor. Variations include trapping ukes hand on your own wrist (graspinghisfingerswithyourownfingersandunderyourown

AikidoTechniques
armwithyourthumb),asshowninFigure13.Nagesotherhand isthenrotatedoverukeswristanddown.Tomakesureyouget thedirectionright,pointyourfirstfingeratukesface,thenrotate yourhand,armandbodytopointitathisfeet.Thisisapowerful technique,providedtheforceflowsaroundukeswristratherthan downontoit. Ifuketriestoresistby straightening the arm, ratherthanchangingthe technique to break the straight arm (which is whatwouldmostlikely happeninthestreeta good reason never to quitestraightenitasuke Figure13.Nikkyo or nage), reach Thisisarotationofthebonesoftheforearm underneath with your aroundeachother. freearmtoatemi tothe faceandthenuseittobendukeselbowwitharotarymovement up and to the rear. If, instead, uke tries to resist by lifting or loweringtheelbow,turnthedirectionofrotationsothattheelbow isforcedbackintopositionbythepain. Onceukeisdown,kneelingonthefloor,transitiontothepin. Ukemustbeoffbalancewithhisweightonhisfreehandaswell ashisknees orhecanspringuptohisfeetwhenyoureducethe pressureonthewrist.Thefinalmovementtobringhimfromhis kneestothefloorislikeikkyoandcanbeeitheruraoromoteso longasyoukeepcontrol. Remembertopushtheelbow around, insteadofpullingonit.Ifyoupull,youwillbehelpingukeback tohisfeettocontinuethestruggle.

AikidoTechniques
Nikkyo ends with uke face down on the floor and a pin applied,ukeswrist trappedbyoneofnageselbows,andukes elbow controlledagainstthebellywiththeothertegatana. The transition from the takedown to this pin must be smooth and controlled.Itcanbeachievedinanumberofways,butthebestis probablytoholdukesshoulderdownwiththetegatanaofyour oppositearm(i.e.lefthand torightshoulder)andlayukesarm intothecrookofyourelbowandtrap ittherebybringingyour handtowardsyourbody. Ifthisisdonecorrectly,ukeshandis caughtinthecrookofyourarmwithhispalmtoyourbiceps.This isfairlysecureonitsown.Toapplythepin,pullukeselbowinto your belly with your other hand and rotate your whole body towardsthedirectionukeisfacingtoapplythepin. Thisisacombatpin,sodoitsmoothlyandstopwhenuke taps. Also, release the pressure on the arm carefully after the technique. If you move it in the wrong direction, you could inadvertently injure ukes arm. Reverse the body rotation and release the arm, moving away while keeping ready for another attackfromuke.Onnoaccountjustletgoandgetup.Ifyoudo, ukecanrolloverandattackagain. Thereisalsoanabbreviatedpin,withthearmstretchedoutin frontofnageskneesasforikkyo.Ifyoubendukeshandtowards hiswrist androtateitforwards,ukewilltapquickly.Again,use your body to apply the pressure rather than just the hand movement. Nikkyocanbeappliedwhetherornotukeholdsontoyourgi orarm:thereisnoneedtotearhishandawaybeforeapplyingthe technique.Fromkatatori,atemiwitheitherhandandreachover withtheoppositehandfromtheoneukeisholdingwith(i.e.ifuke is holding the rightshoulder,reachwiththelefthand). Rotate

AikidoTechniques
ukeswrist intotherightpositionandapplythetechnique. This canbedonewithoutremovinghisgrip.Ifukeisholdingtooclose totheshoulderforyoutoreachhiswristwithyourother(near side)hand,rotateyourelbow aroundhisgriptoapplytherotary force.Hewillbereadyenoughtoletgo,inmostcases,whenthe timecomestoapplythepinbuteventhiscanbeappliedwithout removing the handfromtheshoulder. Ifukegrasps thelapels insteadoftheshoulder(whichwouldbeeritori),youcanusethe gitowrapupukeshandandapplythetechnique.Ukethencannot letgo,sodontapplythetechniquetoovigorously. Nikkyo can be used as a projection nikkyo nage by turningthearmsothatukeselbowisupandcuttinghorizontally backwards.Thisisaveryharshtechniqueandshouldnotbedone onbeginners.Ukemustthrowhisfeetoutbehindhimandslapas helandsfacedownonthefloor.

Sankyo
Sankyoissimilartonikkyo inthatthebonesoftheforearm

Figure14.SankyoHandhold
Becarefulthatukecanthityouinthefaceasyoulifthiselbow.

aretwistedaroundoneanotherbynagesbodymotion.However, inthiscasetheforearmshouldbeheldverticallywiththehand moreorlessinlinewiththeforearm,asshowninFigure14. Thepositionofthehandsisimportant.Nagesfingersshould catchroundtheedgeofukeshand.Theotherhandshouldgrasp ukesfingers. (Anagewithsmall handscanexecutetheentire technique with two or three of ukes fingers. This is painful, however, so usethis cautiously.) Ukes handshouldbe flexed

AikidoTechniques
slightlytowardsukesbody.Thehandmustbeheldsecurely,asif itisaswordhandle,withonehandonthebackofukeshandand theotherholdingthefingers.Thereshouldbenogapbetweenthe back of ukes hand and nages palm. Very often, I see nage holdingukeweaklywiththefingertips,insteadofsecurelywiththe wholeofbothhands. Thebasicsankyo movement comesfromliftingasword so thatthehandleisupbytheear,intoadefensivepositioncalled hassonokamae,andthensteppingforwardandcuttingshomen. The upwards movement takes the balance. Thedownwardone takesthemtothefloor.Thismovementispracticedwithabokken bydoingthesecondsuburi.Itisdonewiththehips. Thereareanumberofwaystochangefromtheinitialevasion tothesankyohold,butasyoumakethistransition beawareof whereukeselbowisinrelationtoyourface.Ioftenseepeople changetheirgripwiththeelbowclosetotheface,whereitwould beall too easyforuketodrive theelbowintothenoseorthe temple. To avoid this, either change yourgrip with the elbow downnearyourwaist,aftercuttingukealmosttothefloor,orkeep ukeselbowwellawayfromyourfacewithyourextension. Generally, go to ikkyo first. You can then slide the hand downandapplysankyoatthefingers,usingthefingerstocontrol uke.Alternatively,youcantakeyonkyo,controllingtheforearm, thengotosankyo.Athirdwayistotrapukesarmonyourthigh byleaningforwardwiththeshouldertocontrolthearm.Allthree ofthesewayswork,allowingforacontrolledchangeoverwithout riskinginjurytoyourface.Youcanalsochangeyourgripwhile on the move, without securing uke. However, then you cant controltheelbowasdirectlyandIdontrecommenddoingsankyo thiswayuntilatleastthemidorhighkyuranks.

AikidoTechniques
Onceyouhavethesankyogrip,youmusttaketheslackoutof ukes arm as youelevate his hand toget theupwards impulse. Thisshouldtakenospecialeffort. Whenyouhavetheposition right, uke will moveeasily. Driveupand backwiththe force coming all the way from the ground. Figure15.SankyoTakedown Totakeukedowntothemat, Cutdownlikeasword cutdownasifhisarmisasword in breaking his balance. Ive seen many variations on this movement, most seemingly because people worry about the effectivenessofthetechnique.Manypeoplewhipthearmdownas iftheyaretryingtoshakeukeshandoff,whilelosingtherotation of the forearm that is characteristic of sankyo. This is less effectivethantheswordcutjustdescribed.Ifyoufeelpressureon yourthumbsasyoustrike,repositionyourhandswiththethumbs rotatedmoreinwardsothattheloadiscarriedbythepalminstead ofthethumbs(asyoushoulddowithasword). Therotationoftheforearmbonesaroundeachothershouldbe maintainedallthetimeuntilukeisonthefloortapping.Onceuke isoffbalanceandkneelingonthefloor,thetakedownshouldbe continuedfrominfrontofukesarm.Todothis,letgohiselbow and step around his hand to face his feet, keeping the rotary pressure on his arm, and catch the elbow with your free hand. Drawukeoutdiagonallyforwardandpushdownatthesametime, movingyourbodyoutofukeswayasyoudoso.Thenoneofthe sankyopinscanbeapplied. Thestandingpinisappliedbyplacingukeshandagainstyour thigh,keepinghisarmstraight,androtatingitbyturningyourhips. Aswithanystandingpin,watchukesshoulderstomakesurehe doesntrollawayfromyou:ifukeisstiffandstrong,youmight

AikidoTechniques
notbeabletogetasecureholdonhimwithonehandfromthis position.Ahandontheelboworadownwardforcealongthearm intotheshoulderwillpreventsucharoll. Thesittingpininvolvesahandchangeandputtingukeshand toyourshoulder.Aswithnikkyo,becarefultokeepcontrolofuke asyoukneelandtransferthehand,keepingtherotarypressureon ukesarm.Obtainasubmissionbydrivingyourfreetegatanainto theshoulderandrotatingyourbodytowardshishead. Sankyocanbeappliedevenifukeholdsontoyou.Fromkata tori,turnunderukesarmtopositionhishand onyourshoulder andturnyourbodytoapplythesankyo. Fromkatatetori,ifthe wristisstillheld,setupukeshandandcutbackagainsthisgrip. Your body movement will apply a forceful sankyo, though not throughanygreatdistanceoftravel. Sankyo ura isappliedinmuchthesamewayastheomote takedown, butwithukestillonhisfeet. Frombesideukeand facingthesamewayasheis,cuthisarmdownbetweenyourbody and his (again, like a sword). As for sankyo omote, keep the rotationonukesarmasyoudothis.Youcanstartthemovement withtwohands,butmustletgowithonehand tocompletethe movement. Uke should be forced to bend at the waist. If he doesnt,youmustuseadifferenttechnique.Ifhedoes,catchhis elbow with your free hand and drive the arm down and round behindhisheels.Itisvitalthatyoucutfirst,andthenpushdown ontheelbow.Ifyoureachupforitwhileukeisstillstandingand onbalance,youaresettingyourselfupforhimtodoacounter techniqueonyou. Pushhisarmdowntothefloorasyoumove roundbehinduke. Sankyocanbeturnedintoaprojection,throwingukeeither backwardsorforwards. Tothrow backwards,getukesbalance

AikidoTechniques
forwardthenbrisklypickhimupwithsankyo andcontinue the hasso movement forcibly backwards, stepping to maintain your position, until uke completely loses his balance and falls. To throwforwards,cutforwardsforcefullyasiftobringhimtothe groundbutmorehorizontally.Thesethrowscanbepainful.Use themcautiously.

Yonkyo
Yonkyo is similar to sankyo, but the forearm is gripped insteadofthehand.Thereisapressurepoint,wherepaincanbe applied,butthatisoflessimportancethanbalanceandtechnique. Thepressurepointisontheundersideoftheforearmwherethe radialnervecrossestheradiusjustabovethewrist.Itcanreadily befoundonyourownarmbygraspingtheforearmwiththelittle fingerjustabovethebaseofthethumb.Pointyourfirstfinger45 degreesacrossthearm,andtwistthejointofthatfingeragainstthe arm. Bytryinganumberofpositions,youwillbeabletofinda painfulspot.Thereisasimilaroneontheoutsideoftheforearm. Inapplyingthetechnique,ifthehandsandbodymovement arecorrect,yourhandwillfindthenerveandukewillfeelpain withoutyoutrying. Donttrytogetthepainwithoutthewhole movement,becauseadeterminedukecanignorethepain,butif yougetthebalancethetechniquewillworkeverytime. Yonkyocanresultinmassivebruisingonthearmifukeresists andnagegrindstheknuckleintothearm.Asuke,godownwhen ithurtsratherthantyingtoseehowmuchpainyoucantake.As Figure16.Yonkyo
Holdtheforearmlikeaswordhandleandstrikedownwiththearmasifitwas asword.

AikidoTechniques
nage,dontgrindyourknuckleintothearm.Ukesarmshouldbe heldwiththeundersurfacebacktowardsnage,asshowninFigure 16. Nage and uke should be facing the same direction as the techniqueisapplied. Thekeytoyonkyoisfornagetogripukesforearmasifitisa sword andtostrikedownwithit(again,likethesecondsuburi), drivingtheelbowtothemat. Thismovement,similartostarting thetakedownforsankyo,rotatesukesshoulderandforceshimto themat.Notethatthejointsatthebaseofthefirstfingersofboth ofnageshandsshouldagainbeontopofukesarm. The pin, once uke is kneeling on the floor, consists of maintaining the grip on the arm and stepping forward towards ukesarmpit, whiledrivingtheelbow intothemat alongaline abovetheshoulder.Thus,inadditiontothepainfromtheradial nerve,ukesshouldercanbeseparated. Yonkyo can also be used for an effective throw from, for example,katatetori aihanmi ormorotetori. Asukestepsinto grabyourwrist,catchhishand,turnitoutwards,andapplyyonkyo soastotakehisbalance outtothesideandbehindhimasfor tenchinage.Extensioniscriticaltothesuccessofthistechnique. Ifyoufailtogetukesbalancehewillstopyou.Yonkyocanalso beusedinapplyingshihonagefromtheseattacks,tobetterposition ukeforthetechnique.

Shihonage
Shihonage,anotherimportanttechniqueforstudyingaikido,is alsobasedontheswordbutinvolvesturningthebodyandtaking ukesarmoverthehead.Thefirstcutishorizontal,followedbya turnandaverticalcut.

AikidoTechniques
Undernocircumstancesgetintothehabitofduckingunder ukesarm.Instead,driveupthearmsothatyoucantakeitover yourhead. Ifyoucannotpushukesarmup,youareprobably doing the technique incorrectly or uke has forestalled you. In either case, you cannot do shihonage from where you Figure17.Shihonage:HandHold arestartagain.Thekeyis Cutoutthenupandoverthehead. to move so that you can comfortablythrowuke.Ifitisdifficult,youorheareinthewrong place. Despitethename,shihonagecanbeanimmobilization ora throw. In either case, ukes body should be stretched by the combinationofupwardsextensionandrotationofhiswrist.Dont damage his armbycutting themovement shortandtakinghim overyourhead. Generally,itisbettertopracticeshihonageusing abackwards(koho)ukemi.Nagecanbetterstudythetechnique, andukehasaneasiertime. Ifnagethrowsukehardwithshihonage,theukemithatmust beusedisdifficultandsomewhatdangerous. However,assome peoplearenotconcernedabouthowtheythroworwhotheyhurt,it isimperativethatadvancedstudentslearnthistypeofukemifor theirownprotection.Indoingthisukemi,ukevirtuallyfliesover nageshead,slappingashelands.Asuke,youshouldbringyour headtoyourhand,nottheotherwayaround.Then,evenifnageis overenthusiastic in applying the technique, uke will survive the throwwithoutdamage.Ifyoutrytopullback(takingthehandto the head) nage will feel it as resistance and will apply the techniqueharder. Shihonagecanbeproblematicalifukeattacks katatori and holdsontotheshoulder. Ifnagethentriestogounderthisarm

AikidoTechniques
(whichisthewrongwaytodothetechnique)ukecandrivedown withhiselbow,oreventrapnagesneckforachoke.Ratherthan rippingthehandoffthegi(whichsometimesworksbuttakesmore strength),usetechnique. Driveupukesotherarm(theoneyou aredoingshihonageon)withacircular movement leadingwith yourelbow,usingtheleverageofukeshandflexed90degreesat the wrist as showninFigure 18. Drive upyourownarm and shoulderuntilthereisagapforyoutostepthrough.Theangleof

Figure18.KataToriShihonage
Drivetheelbow(inthiscasetheleft)uptomakeroomforyourheadandtake ukesbalance.

thethrustisalittlemoreverticalthanusual,butukedoesnthavea freehandtohityouwith. Youmayhavetopullinyourneck slightly,butnotifyouextend ukesarmsufficiently. Thisisan excellentexerciseforavoidingentanglement. Many problems are seen with shihonage. The commonest mustbenageputtinghisarmsoverhisheadandevenleaningback asheturns. Ukecanthenpullhimoverbackwards. Nagemust keephishandswherehecanseethem,particularlywhenpracticing slowly.Later,theexactpositionislessimportant,butthecontrol muststillbethere.Evenwhenworkingwithasmalluke,besure not to duck under his arms. If you have to do something to compensatefordifferencesinheight,keepyourarmsextendedand bendyourknees.Asukesukemiimproves,evenashortukecan gooveratallnageshead. Closelyrelatedtothis,ukeshouldbebentbackwardsatthe end of the technique, as you go to throw. If uke is not bent backwards, heis notoffbalance andyouwouldnotbeableto

AikidoTechniques
finishthetechniqueunlessheletsyou.Agoodindicatorofthisis thepositionofhisupperarm.Ifitisinfrontofhisear,youarenot controllinghim.Ifitispointingbehindhim,particularlyifheis leaningbackwards,youhavethetechnique. Yourinsidefoot(theonenexttouke)shouldbeforwardatthe endofthetechnique.Donotmakeanextrastepwiththeoutside foot:thissetsyouinthewrongposition.Thedownwardmotionof ukesarmshouldbeintheplanehiselbow bendsin. However, adequate turning of the hips will ensure you are in the right positionandthatukesarmisnothurt.Donotmovearounduke untilheisalmostonthefloor,evenifyouaredoingatakedown fromshihonage. Ifyourpositioniscorrect,shihonagewillworkwellnomatter whatsizeukeandnagearerelativetooneanother. However,if ukeismuchsmaller,youmightwanttoadjusthisheighttomake thethrow easieronuke.Todothis,bendyourkneesratherthan losethearmextension. Ifyouaremuchsmallerthanuke,you mightfeelthatyouhaventgotadequatecontrol.Youcandotwo thingsthen. Themainoneistotwistukesarmmore,usingthe flexed hand as a lever, so that uke has to bend more and compromisehisbalance.Theotheristoshuffleforwardastepto makethearmlengthsmorecompatible. Shihonageisquiteliketheshihogiriswordpracticedescribed earlier (see Page 36). The four directions to practice with shihonageareomote,ura,ashallowura,andadeepomote,which shouldletyouthrowtoanyoffourdirectionsat90degreestoone another from the sameattack. Omote should throw ukeinthe directionhewasheaded.Urashouldthrowhimbacktowherehe wasattackingfrom.

AikidoTechniques
Thesefourdirectionsshouldbepracticedwithcaretothrowin exactly these directions. The third and forth directions are the mostdifficult.Particularlyforthese,nagemustkeepcontrolofhis ownhipsandmakeukeconformtothethrow,ratherthantheother wayaround.Thesamecautionappliestoanytechnique,anditis oftenviolated.Learningtocontrolthehipsinthiswayisthemain reasonshihonageisstressedsomuchinteachingaikido. Shihonagecanalsobepracticedwithukeholdingnagesarms as nage wields the sword. This will emphasize the correct movementsanddiscouragetruncatingthetechnique. Thesword cutsshouldbejustlikethoseforpracticingusingswordsandtwo ukes(seePage33).

KoteGaeshi
Kotegaeshiisarotary movement oftheforearmbutinthe oppositedirectiontonikkyo,thoughagainusingtheflexedhandas alever.Thekeyistotakeukesattackandturnitintoahorizontal circleasnagegoesbacktobacktoukewithamotionlikecutting awayfromukewithasword. Thedirectionofthecircleisthen changedtoaverticalone.Thistime,nageturnsbacktowardsuke, insteadofcontinuingtoturninthesamedirection.Frombothuke andnagesperspective,themotionofukesarmisquitesimilarto shihonage. Thedifferenceisthatinshihonagetheturnofnages hips is continued in the same direction to throw,while in kote gaeshiitisreversed.Thethrowingactionshouldbelikethethird suburi, though perhaps with a slightly narrower stance. Nages powershouldcomefromthehipsratherthanonlyfromthearms.

AikidoTechniques
Bendukeshandatthewristanduseitasalevertorotatethe forearm,asshowninFigure19. Toallowyoutodoso,makea pointofnotholdingaroundukeswrist,splintingit,butgripeither aboveorbelowthewrist.Throwukeusingthepalmofyourhand Figure19.KoteGaeshi
Bendthewristandrotatetheforearmwithit.Cutacrossthelineofukes forearmandbehindhim.Ukeisbeingthrowntowardsthecamera.

onthebackofukeshand,notwithtwothumbsonthebackofhis hand:theyarenotstrongenough. Forthethrow, youshouldbeofftoukessidewithhisarm extended andyourinsidefootback. Tothrow,stepforwardand cutdownasifwithasword.Thestepprotectsyourgroinandadds powertothethrow. Thiscuttakesukesarmbehindhisbody, whereitisweak. Thedirectionofnagesmovement shouldbe generallyatrightanglestoukesforearm. Toomuchmovement towardsukewillputukebackonbalance.Toomuchmovement theotherwaywillresultinnagebeinghitontheheadwithukes freehandandlosingcontrolofthetechnique.Push,dontpull. Uke can take a back fall from this technique, but should graduatetoaslappingfallassoonaspossible.Thisisoneofthe easiesttechniquesforuketopracticethisukemi. Butremember, donttaketoomuchforce onthisthrow,gowithit. Ifyouhold backandnagemakesastrongcut,itwillhurtyourelbow. Topracticetheukemi,nageshouldholdukeinthepositionfor thefall. Ukethenfallswhenheisready,goingheaddownover nagesarmjustliketheRomanhandshakepractice.Ashefalls, ukewillrotatearoundnagesarmtolandonhisbackonthemat. Ashedoesso,ukeshouldslapashardaspossibleashelands.To getagoodwindupfortheslap,ukeshouldputhishandonnages

AikidoTechniques
handsandleaveitthereuntilhehastoslap.Onceukegetsusedto thefall,nagecanstartthrowing,gentlyatfirst,buildingupover weeksormonthstoanormalamountofforce. Afterthethrow,nageshouldrotateukefacedownandapply thepin.Topracticethis,letgowiththetophand,takeukeshand acrosshisfaceandpushhiselbow afteritwithyourfreehand. Toomuchupwardsliftduringtheturnwillbringukebackoffthe mat.Toomuchdownwardsforceispainfultouke.Thedirection offorceshouldbeacrossukesfaceinthedirectionyouwanthim toturn,andslightlydown.Movefromthehips. Onceukeisfacedown(makinghisfeetandotherhand less dangerous to you), apply the pin on the straight arm. As for sankyo,careisneededwithastrongukewhohasstiffshoulders. Maintain downwards pressure on the shoulder, holding ukes elbowagainstthejointasnecessarytocontrolastiffuke. Irememberasabeginnerfindingithardtomakeukemovein kotegaeshi.Idgetbacktobackwithhimandhavetostruggleto getanyfurther. Thefirstthingtodotoavoidthisimpasseisto keepukemovingwhichishardtodoasabeginnerandisone reasonwhyukeshouldbereasonablycooperative.Thesecondis tostudytheswordpracticeforthetechnique(seePage36).Take ukesbalancewithasweepinghorizontalswordcuttohisrear.In doingthis,becarefulnottodraghimacrossyourleg,asthismakes yourkneevulnerable.Inpracticingthecut,themoredifficultyyou havewithuke,thedeeperyoushouldenterpasthimbeforethecut.

KaitenNage
Thisisamovementwhereukesarmisusedasaleveracross hisbacktothrow.Withomote,hisarmispushedacrosstheback fromsidetoside,verticallyabovetheshouldersandwiththehead

AikidoTechniques
helddownalmostatkneeheight.Withura,thearmisnotelevated as vigorously, and his head is turned to follow the retreating movementofnageships. Atthesametime,thearmisswung diagonallyupandround,pushingukesbodyroundandspinning himaway. Togetukeintoposition,hisarmiscutdown,bendinghim over.Onthecutdown,nagesfingersshouldtouchthemat.Hold Figure20.KaitenNageOmote.
Lockoutukesarmsquaretohisbodyandthrowacrosshisshoulders.

downukesheadwithyourotherhand,notlettingitcomeupas you continue the cut into an upward rotational movement. (Obviously,thehandontheheadcandeliverastrongatemialso.) Nageshandshouldendupinthenaturalposition(thumbup)for throwingandshouldtrapukesforearmjustabovethewristusing the yoke between finger and thumb. Atemi with your knee to ukesfaceasyoustepinforthethrow. Theukemi isarolling breakfall. Fortheomoteversion,lineupukecrosswisetoyourbodyand thedirectionofyourforce.Thisisbestachievedbydrawingback strongly,withastep,afterthecutdown.Keepukesheaddown and both your and his arms extended. Step forward to throw, aiminganatemiwiththekneeatukeshead. Fortheura,blendwithuke,movingintohissideandturning tofacethesamedirectionheis. Cutdowninthedirectionheis going then continue the movement, bringing his hand up and round,whilepushinghisheaddownandround,untilhefallsdown. Inthiscase,unliketheomote,nagecanreachupforukeshead, butitisstillnotrecommendedasitexposesnagesribs.Itisstill

AikidoTechniques
bettertocutukedownthantoreachup.Ukesheadshouldfinish upclosetonagesthighandthefinalimpetusshouldcomefroma turnofnageshipsandanextensionofhisarm.Theukemicanbe Figure21.KaitenNageUra
Trapukesheadlowonyourthighandturnthewholebodytothrowhim.Uke isbeingthrownbehindnage.

confusingforuke. Heshouldturnandextendhisfreearminto positionforafallfurtherroundthanexpected. Kaitennage lendsitselftosomeprettythrows,withlotsof movement.Consequently,itisagoodtechniqueforsmallpeople. Forexample, fromkatatetori gyaku hanmi,movebacktoback withukewhileextendingthecaughthand.Asukemovesaround to come in front again, slip under ukes arm, maintaining extension. Cutukedown,holdtheheaddown,sweepukesarm up,andthrow.Tobesuccessful,nagemustmaintainhisownand ukesextension,whilecontinuouslyacceleratinguketothepoint whereheisthrown. Thistechniquecanbepracticedwitheither uchi (nage going under ukes arm) or soto (going outside and cuttingtoukesface)movements.

IrimiNage
Irimi nage uses a circular motion that starts horizontally, followedbyaverticalcircletothrow. However,thehorizontal motionmayalsohaveanupanddowncomponenttotakeukes balance. Thekeytoirimi nage iscontrollinguke'shead. Nage cuts down uke's attack and slides in behind him (in an irimi movement).Uke'sheadistrappedonnagesfarthershoulder,and nagesbodymovementthrows uketotheground.Thekeyisto

AikidoTechniques
takeukesbalance and,usehisheadtothrowhim,asshownin Figure22. Theoldwayofdoingirimi nage wastoholdtheheaddown untilukegottiredandtriedtostandup.Nagewouldthenpushuke faster,sothatheoverbalancedandfelldown.Thisworks,andit getsacrosstheideaofharmony,butthereisnoneedtowait for uketotrytostandup.However,itisdefinitelyabadideatotryto force uketostandup. Ifukeisreluctanttostandup,itmaybe becauseyouhavesomuchoftheirbalancethatyoucandrivethem tothematinstead.Thismovement,substantiallysimilartoikkyo ura,exceptforhavingoneofyourarmsonthecollarinsteadofthe elbow,issurprisinglyeffective. Ifyouwantuketostandbackup,donttrytoreturnhishead along the same path you used to drive it down or you will be putting him back on balance. Instead, turn your hips in the directionukeislooking,drawinghimout,beforeliftingthehead circularly. Irimi nage can be omote, where nage steps past uke and throwshimbackwherehecamefrom,orura,whenheusesukes momentum toturnaroundandthrow ukethewayhewasgoing. Kokyunage(describedonPage92),wherenagemovescloseinto ukessideandsweepsukebackwardswithhisarm,isavarietyof iriminage.Fromukesperspective,thethrowisalmostidentical. Fromnagespointofview,themajordifferenceisthatheisfacing the opposite direction, looking thesame wayas uke. Ineither case,thethrowmustbeperformedfromthehips.

AikidoTechniques
Anexcellentpracticefoririminageistodothehalvesofthe techniqueseparately. Ifnageputsonehand behindhisback,he candohalfofthetechniquewiththeotherhand. Thenputthe otherhandbehindthebackanddotheotherhalf.Thekeytothis exercisewiththehandonukesarmistomaintaincontactwith thatarmanduseittosteerukesbody.Thekeywiththehandon Figure22.IrimiNage.
Wheretheheadgoes,thebodywillgenerallyfollow.

ukesheadistopintheheadfirmlytoyourshoulderandtomove ukewithyourbody.Afteryoucandothetwohalvesseparately, putthetechniquebacktogether. Shomenuchiiriminageisagoodtechniquetopracticetiming, asitcanbedonewithanytimingfromearlytolate.Threetimings, early, middle, and late, should be practiced until they become secondnature,sothatyoucanexploitukesfeelingwhetheritis highlyaggressiveorweak.Theearlyirimiinvolvesenteringearly andholdingdownukesattackbeforeitfullydevelops.Obviously youshouldntdothisinthestreetuntilthefighthasstarted,but onceitisgoing,earlyirimiletsyoutakemoredefinitecontrolof ukeandsocontrolthefight. Fromshomen,asukegetsreadyto attack,chargeinwithanatemitotheface,dashasidehisarmand throw. Althoughthetimingisearly,thetechniquemustnotbe rushed. For themiddle timing,blendwiththeattack as ithappens. Againlookingatashomenattack,strikeatthesametimeasuke, blending withukesmovements,slippingintoshikaku,takingthe balance and throwing. This is the timing usually practiced for

AikidoTechniques
iriminage,butpayattentiontothetiming,dontthinkherewego again.Timingisavariabletobemanipulatedjustlikedistance. Alate timingwouldbewhenukesurprisesnage,butitcan alsobedonewhenukeexpectsnagetomoveearly.Nagecaneven feintto draw outuke,andfadeawayfromtheresultingattack. Thennagecanslipinpasttheattackandthrow.Thefeelingislike letting uke push past, sticking to him as he does Figure23.TenchiNage:Kuzushi. so,thensteeringhimwhere Dontletthearmsdriftbehindthebody. youwanthimtogo.

TenchiNage
Thisisabodythrow.Nagesetsupukesothatthereisstrong bodycontactalongoneside,thenstepsforwardandturnsthehips tothrowuke. The name comes from the position of nages arms:onegoingtoten(heaven)andtheothertochi(earth). Thecommonestproblemwithtenchinage iswhennagelets oneofhisarmsdriftbackinlinewithhisshoulders,orevenbehind them.Ifukeresistsatthispointandnageforcesthethrow,nage maytearhisshoulder. Ifyourarmdriftsbackinthisway,turn yourbodytorepositionyourarmwithoutmovingitrelativetouke, andcontinuewiththethrow. Justasiriminageisagoodtechniquetostudytiming,tenchi nageisagoodtechniquetostudydistance.Asukemovesin,nage shouldalsomove in,ratherthanwaiting. Thisgivesnagesome momentum,minimizingthepossibilityofbeingsteamrolleredby uke. However,themostimportantbenefitisthatnagecanthen chosewherecontactoccurs. Bymovingforwardsuddenly,nage canmisleadukesothatcontactisearly,beforeukeisset,andnage willhaveamucheasierthrow. Youwantuketothinkyouare

AikidoTechniques
whereyouarenot.Thisgivesatimingtothetechniquethatuke willhavedifficultyfollowing,settinghimupforthethrow. Do not push against ukes strength. Ifukecomestograb Figure24.TenchiNage:Kake youwithstraightarms,drivein Keepyournosebehindyourbigtoe closetothembutatananglepast them.Ukewillbeforcedtobendhisarms,andyoucangetclose andthrow.Theheavenhandisanatemitotheface.Otherwise, ukecanbendforwardtopreventbeingthrown. Uraisthesameasomote,butnageturnsthebodytolineup withuke.Thisgetshimoutofthelineoftheattack,andturnsuke intoabetterpositionforthethrow. Tenchinageandiriminageoftenlookalike,particularlywhen donefast. Therearetwogeneraldistinctions:iniriminage,you areoutsideukesarmsandyouthrowusingukeshead,intenchi nage,youareinsidethearms,andthrowbybodycontact.

KoshiNage
Hipthrowsarebasicallytrips.Yousetupukeforafall,and ashestepsforwardtorecoveryouinsertahipandhefallsoverit. Yourentranceshouldbelow,sothatthepivotpointisdownnear uke'sbelt,preferablyjustbelowit. Veryoften,beginnersgettheideathatkoshinageisaviolent uncontrolledthrowwhichrequiresbobbinguponthelegs.Itisn't. Itinvolvespositioningthehips correctlywithregardtouke,and ukethenisforcedtofallontothehips.Ifthehipsaretiltedsothat thehipnearertoukeisloweredandthenthetiltisreversed,uke willfloatoffthegroundandovernageontothegroundbeforeuke canadjust.

AikidoTechniques
Thereisawidevarietyofkoshinages.Thebestonetostart withisTform,wherenagebendsdownwithhisbackabout60 fromtheverticalandcrosswiseinfrontofuke.Theotherextreme iswhereukeisthrowninalmostahorizontalcircleratherthana vertical one, similartothejudo Figure25.KoshiNage. ukigoshi. This is Loadukeonthehipsthentiphimovertheotherside. very effective if youenterasforikkyo omote,getinclose,andthrow ukeback wherehecamefrom. Theepitomeofkoshinagescanbedonefromshomenuchi.If nageblendswellwithukesmovements,movinginfrontofukeas heisstillcomingin,ukefallsovernagesback. Unfortunately, thistechniqueisoftendonebadly.Thekeyisnotjusttogetlow, buttopositionthebodywell,sothatevenifukeonlyfallsonto nagesbody,arotationofthehips willdumphimontheother side. Blend with his motion. The technique should be one movement, entering under ukes legs and continuing through wherehislegswere,continuingthemotiontomoveawayafterthe throw.Thus,thechanceofukestoppingintimeareminimal. Resistance on the part of uke is extremely detrimental to learningkoshinage,andisalsoverycommon.Theresistanceis mostly due to fear, as the ukemi can be quite harsh when the techniqueisdoneinapoorlycontrolledfashionbysomebodywho hasnotlearneditwell.Toovercomethisfear,nageshouldstartby simplypickingukeupinaslowandcontrolledfashionwiththe deepTformkoshinageandputtinghimbackdownonhisfeet. Whennagecanreliablydothis,withoutfeelinganystrainorloss ofbalance,ukewilllosemuchofhisfearandbereadytotakethe fall.Atthatpoint,ukeshouldwatchnagesfaceandnageshould

AikidoTechniques
holdonwithanarmaroundukeships(notthechest).Thennage canslowlyrotatesothatukefallswithaminimumofimpact.Uke shouldwinduphisarmfortheslap,andbreatheoutonimpact. Unlessukeismuchbiggerthannage,nagecanputhimdownas gentlyasnecessary.

KokyuNage(SokumenIrimiNage)
Kokyu nage is abreath throw. Move in soclose to uke, facingthesamedirection,thatyoustealhisspace,thensweepthe Figure26.KokyuNage.
Sweepthearmverticallyandwithextensionthroughukeshead.

armup,back,anddown,throwinghimdownwithasteptothe rear.Thistechniqueisoftenpracticedfromkatatetoriormorote tori, when nage must learn to move even when uke is holding nagesarm. Thisisnotdifficultifnagekeepshisarmextended andusesukesgripasthepivotpoint.Thesamesortofmovement isusedasinshihonage,whennagemustnotlethismovementbe determinedbyuke,butmovingfromhisowncenter. Thesame positionisusedagainststrikes,thoughthereisthennogripfor reference.Nageandukemustbealignedatthestartofthethrow. Thismeansthatnagemovestowhereheislookinginthesame directionasuke. Practicejustmovingtoukessideasiftodokokyunage,so that you can move freely whether or not he is holding. The entranceisthesameforkatatetoriandtsuki. Twoproblemsoftenencounteredbynagearenotgettinguke positionedsothataverticalarmsweepwillthrowhimdown,and allowinguketoholddownnagesarm. Whenukeisonbalance

AikidoTechniques
andnageisslightlytoofaraway,ukesheadisnotovernagesarm andaverticalarmsweepwillmissthehead. Theproblemwithnagesarmbeinghelddownisagaindueto uke not working correctly. Knowing what is coming, uke can move hisweight forwardandpushdownonnagesarm,making the upward movement difficult atbest. This does makekokyu nage difficult,butsetsupukeforanumberofothertechniques. However,almostalways,ifnagekeepsthearmextendedandturns awayfromukeasheliftshisarm,themovementcanbeeasily completed. Furthermore,thissamemovementwillputnageina betterpositiontothrowuke. Turningthekokyunageintoahorizontalsweepisacommon problem with beginners, often compounded by pushing against ukeschest insteadofhishead,whereheis strongandnageis weak. Thereareseveralreasonsforthisdifficulty. Oneisthat nageisnotcloseenough. Youmustgetsocloseyoutakeukes space. Anotheristhatthedirectionofthesweepiswrong.You cannotsweepukedownunlessthearmsweepisaimedatukes head(requiringnagetoturnhisbodymore). Athirdisthatyou mustgetukesbalance.Ifyoutakethebalancecorrectly,ukewill leantowardsyou,bringingtheheadcloser,towhereyoucanthrow himdownwithaverticalsweep. Kokyunageisalsousefulagainstmaegeri(frontsnapkick). Be careful to see which way the knee is pointing. It will be pointingatukestargetzone,andtheinitialmoveforaroundkick will look very differentfromthestart ofafrontkick. Asuke strikes,enterinclosebesidehim,asisshowninFigure27.Sweep thelegoutandtheheadback. Yourarmmustbedowncloseto ukesankle,orhewillbeabletodrivehisfootdownandcounter you.

AikidoTechniques
Thefallfromthistechniquecanbequitesevere. Ukemust eitherfallbackandslapthemat,orturntorolloutofit.Inany case,becarefulwhenpracticing.

Figure27.KokyuNagefromMaeGeri
Stepinclosetoukeandsweepthearmsapart.

Kokyu nage is sometimes called the twentyyear technique becauseofthedifficultyofexecutingitwell. However,learning how to move into the correct position for kokyu nage is also beneficial for other techniques and so practice of kokyu nage shouldnotbeneglected.

AikiOtoshi
Aikiotoshiinvolvesmovinginlowtoukessideandpicking uphislegstothrowhimbackwards,asshowninFigure28.The keytothetechniqueis,onceagain,thebalance. Ifyoumovein andtrytopickupalargeukewithouttakinghisbalance,youwill hurt yourself. Move in as if for kokyu nage, but make body contact and lean into him to push uke off balance backwards Then,whenyoumovedowntohisknees,thetechniqueiseasyto perform. Asuketriestostepbacktoregainhisbalance,traphis knees,lifthislegs(notthewholebody),andstanduptothrow. Guidethekneesfarenoughouttoavoidgettinghitintheface. Theresultshouldberatherlikeahipthrowinreverse.Thefallcan bequitesevere.Ukecanslowitdownbydragginghisarmsdown nagesback.

AikidoTechniques
JujiNage
Juji nage or juji garami means figuretenthrow,thenamecoming Figure28.AikiOtoshi. Takethebalancebeforelifting. fromtheshapeoftheJapanesefigure ten or ju. Ukes arms should be crossedintoafigureju(X),wrappedaroundoneanotherwith theinsideoftheelbowstogether.Thisthrowisimportantbecause it is probably the main technique with a noarms breakfall. However,ifukeisthrownoutfarenough,itcanbecomearolling breakfall. Bothukeandnageshouldpayattentiontoukesarm position.Ifthearmsarecrossedwithonearmthewrongway,you couldinjureukeselbowsorlosecontrolofthetechnique. Thehardestpartofthistechniquefromnagespointofviewis howtogetintoit.Remembertokeepbothyourthumbsupasyou do the actual throw. Togetinto the technique from anushiro attack,remembertoleadwiththebackofthehand,catchingukes armwiththeyokeofthehandasforkaitennage.Fromafrontal attack,sayfromryotetori,dontgraspukesarmfromontop,but insteadinsertthearmbelowukesarmandpushup,asfortsuki ikkyoomote. Often,inanattempttomakethepositionmorecomfortable, ukewillturnawayfromnage. Thiscanputukeintheposition wherehecandeliverarearkicktonage,andmakesboththethrow andtheukemidifficult.Nagecanavoidthisbypositioningukes armscorrectly,tightlycrossed,andbyenteringmoretothefrontof uke as he throws. Uke should relax and allow himself to be thrown,sothatthefallisnottoohard.

AikidoTechniques
Ifukeresistsbytensingup,heisonbalance.Togethimoff balance, turn away from him and push him round in the same directionasheispushing(awayfromthetechnique),aligningwith hisforce.Thenredirecthispowerupwardsandreversedirection, throwinghimcircularly.

Figure29.JujiNage.
Makesureukesarmsarewellwrappedaroundoneotherwiththeinsideofthe elbowstogether.

HenkaWazaandKaeshiWaza
Alwaysdoatechniqueasifyouexpectittosucceed,but,in thestreetorinfreestyle,alwaysbereadytochangetoanotherone. Withsufficientpracticeinthebasictechniques,youwillbeableto dothiseffortlesslyandwithoutthought. Henkawazaisstartingwithonetechniqueandfinishingwith another,withoutukeandnagechangingroles.Kaeshiwazaisthe samething,withukeandnagechangingroles.Thus,kaeshiwaza arecountertechniques.Thekeyineithercaseistostayrelaxed, andtoflow withthetechniquewhichiswhatyoushouldhave learnedindoingukemiwhileredirectingyourpartnerspower. Ifyoustruggle,insteadofusingtechnique,thestrongestandmost flexiblepersongenerallywins. Inasense,allaikidotechniques arekaeshiwaza,becauseukeinitiatestheexchangewithanattack, and nage then throws uke down. However, this is a matter of perspective,asnageshouldalwayscontroltheinitiative. A nice series of henka waza is to start with ikkyo and changing sequentially to nikkyo, sankyo, and yonkyo. In each case,cutukedowntotakehisbalance.Asukeresists,changethe technique,lettingtheelbow risesomewhatandapplyingthenext technique. Akeybenefitistolearntogofromonetechniqueto thenextwithoutfumbling,sostartslowlyandgetitrightbefore speedingthingsup. Another series is to throw uke with shihonage,withoutlettinggo,andashecomesbackoffthefloor dokotegaeshi,andasherisesfromtheflooragain,doikkyo,then gobackthroughthesequencewithkotegaeshiandshihonage.The techniquesshouldflowfromonetotheother. Anexcellentexerciseforikkyoandforkaeshiwazaisforuke toturnawayfromthetechniqueasnagestartstodoikkyo,move

HenkaWazaandKaeshiWaza
behind nage and take over the technique, doing ikkyo on his partner,whothenrepeatsthesamemove.Bothpeopleshouldfeel fortheadvantageinthisexercise,tofeelwhenandhowtheycan takechargewithoutmucheffort.Theyshouldbelookingforsuki, ratherthanusingmuscletomaketheirtechniquework. Atypicalkaeshiwaza seriesiswhereonepersonstrikesat anotherandhegoestodoiriminage.Asnagesweepsukethrough 180degrees,ukecapturestheoutstretchedhand,slipsunderthe arm,anddoessankyo.Ahenkawazaresponseisfortheoriginal nage to feel uke slipping away, and to grasp ukes collar, unbalancehimtotherear,andthrowhimdown.Thiscancontinue withseveralexchangesofcontrol. Thekeytoslippingintothe sankyoistoflowalittlefasterthanyourpartnercanhandleandto extendthatarmtotakethebalance.Thekeytotakingbackcontrol fromthesankyoistorelaxintothesankyoandtakeyourpartners balance as he goes under your arm. However, the details are unimportant.Whatiscriticalistofeelwhereeachofyouisweak and where each is strong, and to relax enough to take instant advantage ofanopening (suki). Thisiswhykaeshiandhenka wazaaregenerallypracticedbyadvancedstudents.Youcannotdo themeffectivelyifyouarestillthinkingaboutwhichfoottoput forward. Forkaeshiorhenkawaza,timingiscritical.Insteadoftrying tooverpoweryourpartner,flowwithhim,butchangethetimingso thatyouhavetheadvantage.Youcaneasilyfeeladifference,feel whohastheadvantage,bydoingaseriesofshihonagetechniques. If one person remains nage for the series, there is a different feelingbetweenthetechniquesfromwhenyouarechangingroles, withonepersonthrowingandthentheotherperson.Thefeeling ofcontrol comesearlyinthetechniqueasonepractitionertakes

HenkaWazaandKaeshiWaza
the balance of the other. Learning to feel the difference and learningtomanipulatethatcontrolarecrucialtobothhenkaand kaeshiwaza. Ultimately,ukemiisakaeshiwazatechnique,allowingyouto escape from abad situation andget back toyourfeet ready to continuefighting.Theidealsituationiswhenyoudonteventhink aboutwhoisdoingwhatandwithwhat,butjustflow. Learnto flowwellenough,andyouwillbeabletocontroltheflowandtake controlofit.Thisispossiblythehighestexpressionofaikido.

Weapons
Weaponsareusedastoolstoimprovetechnique,andtheyare alsousedbyattackerstoescalateanattack.Theweaponsusedfor practicingtechniquearegenerallythebokken,jo,andknife.(Use oftheswordtopracticebodymovementsandtimingisdiscussed inanearliersection,seePage33.)Alloftheseweaponsandothers canbeusedinanattackthestudentmaybeunfortunateenoughto beexposedto.Thejoandbokkenarelikeclubs.Theknifeisone of the weapons likely tobeencountered ineveryday life. The same principles also apply to defense against guns. Unarmed defenseagainstanyweaponisdangerousandshouldbeavoidedif possible. In practicing weapons techniques, pay attention to the particulardangersoftheindividualweaponyouarefacedwith,but dontpayundueattentiontotheweapon:avoidbeingmesmerized byit.Theattacksarealmostthesameastheunarmedattackswe practice, and soarethe techniques. Always control the weapon during the technique and finish up holding it, but your intent shouldalwaysbetodealwiththeperson. Thereisatendencyfornagetofeelpowerfulwhenhehasa weapon.Whenyouhavetheweapon,asispracticedwiththejo, donotletitdeterminewhatyouwilldo.Ifukemanagestocatch thejoandstopyourtechnique,bereadytoletgoanddosomething else. This can be figurative, in the sense of changing the technique,partial,lettinggowithonehandwhiletakingcontrolof ukewiththeother,orcomplete,lettingukehavethejo(briefly).

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
SwordTechniques

Figure30.ShihonagewithaSword.
Drivethebladebacktowardshislegstomakehimjumpoutoftheway.

Aswordisdangerous.Thepointandedgearebothpotentially lethal,butthebackofthebladeorthepommelcanalsobeusedto devastatingeffect. Aswordextendsmaai bythelengthofthe blade,sonagemustmovefaster,eitherintodotechniqueoroutof range.Asnagedoesatechniquehemustcontrolthebladeaswell asukesbody. Thisusuallyinvolvestakingholdofthehandle betweenukeshandsandtakingukesbalance:ifyouhaveone handonthehandleoftheswordandukehastwo,hewillcontrol thebladeunlessyouhavehisbalance. Inresponsetoashomenuchi,move toukessideandstrike downwithyourhandashestrikes,matchingspeedbeforegrasping thesword.Asyoucatchthehandle,driveitdowntooverbalance uke,thenliftupbriskly,stepforwardandthrowwithadownwards cut,keepingthesword. Fordoingshihonage,asukeliftsthesword,stepinandcatch bothhishandsandthesword.Thisstopshimchanginghisgripor lettinggoofthesword. Ashecutsdown,donttrytostophim. Instead, deflect thecutawayfromyourbodyandsteptoukes side, pushing in the direction of his cut to take his balance. Continuethecutdownanddrivethebladebackathim,asshown inFigure30,makinghimjumpbacktoavoidgettingrappedonthe shins,thenstepthroughandcompletethethrow,releasingukes handsbutkeepingholdofthesword.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
JoTechniques
Maaiisincreasedfurtherwithajothanwithasword,and nagemustenterstillmorevigorouslytocoverthedistanceintime.

thejoisdealtwithinmuchthesamewayasanyotherattack:get offlineandredirectit.Inthecaseofatsukiattack,youcanslipto thesideinanirimimovement,enteringthroughagreaterdistance. You also have to enter further with yokomen. The jo is most dangerousatthetip,whereitismovingfastest.Youhavetoget insidethisareaandtakeoutukewithoutgettinghitbythetip.The otherendcanalsobedangerous.Whenyouhaveanukewhoisnt tookeentohityouandisholdingback,insteadofswingingthejo, theymightholditstifflyandunintentionallyjamthebuttendinto yourarm.Asmartattackercanalsodothesamething. As for doing techniques with the Figure31.JoTori. AJogivesgreaterextensiontobothnageanduke. sword, trap ukes fingers on the jo. Thenhecantletgo,andyougetcontrolofhimaswellasthejo. However, remember that fingers are easily damaged, and show considerationforuke.

TechniquesWhenAttackedwithaJo.Exceptforitslength,

JoTori.Ifyoucan,takethejoawayfromukeanduseitagainst

him. Ifhethencatchesthejoandyouthrowhim,thisisjotori. Thekeytojotoriistomaintainyourextensionandusethestickto maneuveruke.Ifyouusetoomuchforceyouwillendupwithtwo shortsticks.Instead,feelforhisweaknesses. Oneofthebesttechniquesmostpowerfulandprettiestto seeistosweepukesfeetwiththejo.Whenyoudothis,makea

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
bigmovementtogetukeoffbalancefirst,oryouwilljusthitukes legsanditwillhurt.Inthedojo,hittinghislegswillannoyyour partner.Inthestreet,itwillprobablynotbreakanythingandwill justirritateyourattacker.Asyousweepthefeet,makesurethat youdonottrytotakethelegsatanunnaturalangle,especially whensweepingthelegsfrombehind.

KnifeTechniques
Knife practice should be more focused than other aikido techniques,becausearealknifeattackismoredangerousthan,for example,apunch. Alwayspracticeasiftheknifeisreal. Asa result, the falls are harder and practice is usually restricted to higherranks. Arealknifewithasharpbladeshouldbeusedfor knife technique. Otherwise, students get careless. However, a woodenorrubberknife canbeusedaswelltopracticewithless risk,particularlyatfirst. Youmustpayattentiontowheretheknifegoes,andcontrolit. Could you have been cut with it if the attack had been real? Eliminatefromyourrepertoirethosetechniquesthatresultinclose callsandfocusontheoneswhereitiseasytocontroltheknifeor evenuseittothreatenuke. Whenyouareattackedbysomeonewithaknife,don'tfocus on the knife any more than you would focus on an unarmed attacker. Lookatit,seewhattypeitis,andgobacktoamore general attention on the attacker and your surroundings. Make sureyounoticeiftheknifeissingleedgedordoubleedged,andif thepointissharpornot.Knifeattackscanbeslashingorstabbing. Thepoint oftheknifeisthemostdangerouspart.Theedgeisa little less dangerous, but still to be avoided. If you ever are attackedforreal,youwillprobablygetcut.Don'tpanicoveracut.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
Itisn'toveruntilyoubleedtodeath,whichcantakealongtime.If you can, grab a weapon of your own. A broom stick is quite effectiveagainstaknife.It'slonger.

Gokyo. Gokyoisprimarilytaughtasaknife technique. Itis


Figure32.YokomenUchiGokyoOmote.
Dontstrikethearmdowntoomuchorukewillsliptheknifeunderyour defense

similartoikkyo,withthecrucialdifferencethatukeswrist and weaponaremorecontrolled. Thethumb isappliedtotheinner sideofukeswrist,limitinghisabilitytorotateittocutnages arm. Forgokyo omote,thekeyistoenterearly withanatemi as uke draws backorsoonafterthat. Withyokomenuchi,knock downtheweaponbystrikingthemiddleofukesforearmasshown inFigure32.Tooclosetotheelbow,andtheweaponmightswing roundandclipyourhead.Tooclosetothehand,andtheweapon mightslippastandcutyourarm.Dontknockthearmdowntoo far.Ifyoudo,ukecancontinuetheblowbelowyourarmandcut yourbodyor,atleast,youwillhavetochangetechniques. The atemi knocks uke back, and gokyo can be applied. A late techniqueislesseffective,thereisseriousriskofgettingyourarm cut,andithastobedoneasanura. Gokyoomotealsoworkswellagainstshomenuchi.Asshown inFigure33,stopthestrikewithyourrearhandontheelbowwhile reachingintoatemitothefacewiththeotherhand.Immediately after knockingukesheadback,takinghisbalance,reachupto grasphiswristandstepintocompletethetechnique.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks

Figure33.ShomenUchiGokyo.
Enterearlyandatemitotheface,takingukesbalancebackwards.

Kote gaeshi is an excellent Keeptheknifeawayfromyourownlegasyouthrowuke. technique againstaknife. Onceyoucontrol theweaponyoucanuseitto threaten uke. Certainlymakesurethatthepoint goescloserto ukesfacethantoyours.Also,whenyoudokotegaeshiasaknife technique, shorten the circle you make with ukes arm. A big sweepingmovementlooksquiteimpressiveindemonstrations,but forpracticaluseagainstaknife,shortenthemovementtothepoint whereukegoesstraighttotheground.(Becarefulinthedojo.) The turnover is basically the same as for any other kote gaeshi.However,thereshouldbemoreemphasisonmovinguke. Presumably yourukehas moderately advanced ukemi. Bounce himonthematandturnhimover,tearingtheknifefromhisgrip asyoudoso.Ifukeholdsontotheknife,rotateitoutofhisgrip usingtheleverageoftheknifeitself. Youcanusetheblade for leverage,butthereisgreaterriskofinjury. Figure34.KoteGaeshiwithaknife.

Kote Gaeshi.

Nikkyo. Straight arm nikkyo is probably the most effective


techniqueagainstacommittedthrust(tsuki)withaknife.Unlike otheraikidotechniques,itisappliedagainstthebackoftheelbow (gyaku)andthushaslittleroomforerror.Asukeattacks,slipto theside,catchukesarm,andextenditforwardandthentothe

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
side, trapping it under your armpit and against your hip. If his elbowisincorrectlyplacedrotateitwithbothhands.Driveyour Figure35.SankyoKnifeDefense.
Atemiwiththeelbowasyougounderukesarm.Keepafirmgriponboth ukesfingersandontheknifehandle.

hipdownandback. Practicethiscautiously. Asuke,throw the feetoutbehindandslapasyoufallfacedownonthemat.

Sankyo.Sankyoiseffectiveagainstknifeattackssolongasnage
can grip the hand without getting cut. Against an ice pick shomenuchi attack,whichwouldnotusuallybeusedbyanyone withanyknifefightingexpertise,itdoeslenditselftousingukes knifetothreatenhim.Byguidingtheknifedown,ukemighteven beinducedtosticktheknifeinhisownleg.Ifnot,enterunderthe armasshowninFigure35,strikinganatemiwiththeelbowasyou doso,turn,anddrivetheknifetowardsukesribs.Thiswillmake himjumpoutofthewaywhileyouremovetheknifefromhishand andtakehimtothematwiththeotherhand.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
Oneonone practice lets students develop and refine techniques.However,aikidowasdevelopedtoworkwithmultiple attackers. In practicing for multiple attacks, nage must be comfortablewiththetechniqueshewilluseandhisukesmustbe comfortablewiththeresultingukemi. The key to surviving multiple attacks is to deal with one attackeratatime,isolatingandtakingcareofhimwhileremaining awareoftheothersandtheenvironment. Bythewayyoumove aboutthemat,youcandraweachukeout.Byconstantlyturning, you can avoid presenting an immediate target to the other attackers.Bymovingcircularly,youcanavoidbeingcaughtfrom behind. Byusingoneattackertoblockortakeoutanother,the effectivenumberofattackerscanbekeptdown. Whenyouarefacedbyanumberofattackers,onlyafewcan attackatatimeastheygetineachothersway.Youmusttakeand retaintheinitiative(asyoushoulddoinindividualpractice).This doesnotmeanattackingfirst,althoughthiscangiveanadvantage, butitdoesmeannotwaitingforthemtoattackyoueither. Be particularlycarefulaboutkeepingawayfromwalls,edgesofmats, corners,andobstacles. Theideaofgettingyourbackagainsta wallisnotagoodone.Awallcutsyouroptionsinhalf.Acorner cancutthemtoaquarter. Thefirstruleistomoveconstantlyandcontinuously.Asthey attack,movesothatonlyoneattackercanreachyou.Movesothat astheyconvergeonyou,youarecontinuallychangingthefocusof convergencetoadifferentplaceonthemat.Evenyourmindmust moveconstantly.Ifyourmindiscaughtbyonething,evenifitis howwellyouthrewthelastattacker,youwillbehitfrombehind.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
Students tend to become static when faced with multiple attackers.Theyfocusonwhattheyaredoingtotheexclusionof allelse.Theysetthemselvesonthematandwait.Thisiswrong. Dontwaitfortheattack,move,meetukehalfway.Ifthenearest ukeisslowoffthemark,moveinonhimandcrowdhim,take anotheruke,orjustmovesomewhereelse:whateveryoudo,keep moving.Thiscannotbestressedtoomuch.Themomentyoustop movingyouwillgetattackedfromallsides. Takeoutthenearestattacker,eitherquicklyorusinghimto clearthemataroundyou.Movetowardshimashecloseswithyou sothatthereislessopportunityforanotherattackertoreachyouat thesametime.Keepmovingasyouthrowhim(withoutspoiling thethrow). Andkeepmovingfromwhereyouwerewhenyou threw him, so that youarenolonger where the otherattackers expectyoutobe.Constantlyturntocheckyourbackandbeware ofanukewhostaysoutofthepackwaitingforachancetoget behind you. Most uke are too nice to remind you if you are leaving your back unguarded. This is unfortunate. As uke, in multipleattackpractice,evenifyoujusttapnageontheshoulder tolethimknowyouarethere,dolethimknow. Manyaikido techniquesinvolverotarymovementsofnagesbody.Exaggerate these movements to constantly watch your back and use ukes body to clear a circle around you. Weave each turninto your general movement about the mat. Weave the turn into your techniqueandturnawayafterwards. Whentwoormorepeopleconvergeonyouatthesametime, changethetiming.Moveclosertooneandtakeoutthatonebefore takingouttheother. Useanirimimovementtoslipbetweenthe two,orpastoneontheoutside.Youcantakeoutoneontheway, orjustmovepastandkeepgoing.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
Dontbackupbecauseitdrawsalltheattackersinonyou. Dont let yourself be chased about the mat. Move forward, scatteringthemasyougo.Planyourwayaroundthemat,keeping away fromthewallsandcorners andpracticethesemovements slowly enough to avoid getting confused and caught when you havetodothemfast. Usedifferenttechniques.Itisabadpracticetouseoneortwo techniquesallthetime.Inthestreet,itmakesyoupredictableand tooeasytodefeat. Generally,useshortsnappytechniques,but don'ttruncatethem.Rushingthemwillmakethemineffective.If you hurry your techniques on the mat, they will become even smallerandmorehurriedonthestreetandprobablywon'twork. Certainlydon'tusecomplextechniquesandimmobilizations.They taketoolong.Whatwouldyoudoifyouareholdingsomebodyon thegroundandhisbuddycomesupandkicks youfrombehind? Theexceptionistechniqueslikesankyowhichcanbeusedtoclear aspacebyturningukeinacompletecirclearoundyou. OnetechniqueIdontliketoseeiswhennagedivesatthefeet ofoneoftheattackers,assuminghewillfalloverthetop.Idont like it for two reasons. One is that you are sacrificing your standingposition.Theotheristhatitisntacompletetechnique, soitlookssloppyevenifitworks.Third,itisntagoodideainthe street.Theideais,however,agoodoneifcarriedoutcorrectlyas akoshinage. Youdon'thavetodoatechniqueeverytimeyou touchanukeoroneofthemtouchesyou.Itsnicetobeableto, butanevasionisoftenenough,perhapsfollowedbyapushtoput ukeinthewayofthenextattacker. Paceyourself. Mostfightslastabouttenseconds,butsome dragon.Ifyougetwindedbeforetheothers,youarelikelytolose. Fight smart. In the street, use obstacles to your advantage,

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
throwing peopleintowalls,cars,lampposts,orwhatever. Asan advanced student, you can throw ukes into one another or into walls,butthereisariskofinjurytoyourpartnersifyoudothis. Itisntenoughtounderstandtheseideas.Youhavetopractice them,andthereareexcellentwaystopracticepartsofthesituation. Togetusedtomultipleattackers,workingroupstopracticebasic technique.Throwone,thenanother.Initially,restricttheattacks toasingletype,restrictthethrowstoonetechnique,dontletthe ukesattackallatonce,andkeeptheattacksslow.Asnagelearns howtodothis,increasethedifficultyuntilitisafreeforallwith substantially full speed attacks by the time you approach promotiontoshodan. Incaseyoudogetcrowdedbyukes,thereareseveralwaysto practicegettingoutofahuddle.Oneistohavetwopeoplehold yourarms,andtodotechniqueonbothofthem. Thisletsyou understandhowtohandletheworstcasesituation.Thekeyisto workwithoneofyourukesatatime,pullingwithoneofthemto move theotherone. However,youshouldneverletyourselfget caughtlikethis. Anothergoodpracticeisthesetofkumitachiexercisesshown earlier(seePage36).There,twoukesareattackingnagefrom180 degreesapart. Ifyouwait inthemiddle,youwillgetcaughtby bothatonce.Thekeyistomovesothattheydonotbotharrivein apositiontostrikeyouatthesametime.Forpractice,setupwith bothukesatmaai,readytostrikewhenyoumove.Whenyouare ready,movetowardsoneukeandtakethatoneoutthenturntoface theother. Inthestreet,themovementswouldbelessstructured, but the same principle, of moving to control the timing of the attack,isstillcritical.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
PerhapsevenmoreusefulistheexercisesSaitoSenseishows withonenagesurroundedbyseveraluke,eitherarmedwithsticks ornot.Thekeyistobreakoutbetweentwooftheattackersand pushoneofthemintothemiddle.Particularlyiftheydontexpect it, this is quite easy to do. Generally an irimi escape is most appropriate. As with any other irimi movement, you must not warnthemwhereyouaregoing,orwhen.Withsixattackers,you have six openings to chose from. They should be thinking of hitting you, andnotthinking ofavoiding beingthrownintothe middle. Practice multiple attacks withukesinacircle aroundnage. Startwithkatatetoriattacksandopenhandedtechniques,leading ukesothathegetsoverextendedandfalls.Asyougetusedtothis situationandukesukemiimproves,increasethevarietyofattacks anddefenses.Practicesimilarlywithnageusingajo. AninitialexampleisshowninFigure36.Theexercisestarts outwithnagebetweentwoattackers.Thisisavulnerableposition, asbothattackerscouldbeontopofhimatthesametime. To avoidthis,nagemustmove towardsoneuke,sothattheattacks arriveatdifferenttimes. Heentersbehindoneuke,andthrows himattheother.(Inthedojo,throwhiminfrontoftheotheruke.)

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
1 N 5 4 2 3 5 1 N 4 2 3

1.Nageissurrounded by5attackers.

2. As they attack, nage slips out of the circle, moving to the rear ofone oftheukesandthrowinghimintothe circle,blockingukes1&5.

1 3 5

2 N 4 1 3 5

2 N 4

3. Nage now has all his attackersinfrontofhim. Uke2isnowthenearest. 2and4attack. N 1 5 2 3 4 5 1

4. Nage moves behind 2 andthrowshiminfrontof 3andmovesawayfrom4. 2 3 N 4

5.Ukes1and4now convergeonnage.

6.Allukesconvergeonnage, but only 3 of them are close enough to attack effectively. Nagemovestothrowuke4.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks

Figure36.TwoAttackers Uke2thenmovesrounduke1andattacks,andnagethrowshimat uke1,whoisjustgettingup.Topracticethis,startwithshomen uchiattacks,andiriminage.Neitherukeshouldmoveuntilnage moves, then they should both attack vigorously. Nage should

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
throweachattackerthenstop,asthepracticetendstobecomea freeforallafterthesecondthrow. AmoreadvancedsituationisshowninFigure37,wherenage isattackedbyfivepeople.Again,thefirstthingfornagetodois getoutofthemiddleofthecircle. Hedoesthiswithanirimi movementbetweentwooftheattackers,takingoneandthrowing himintothecenter.Thisblockssomeoftheattackers.Hemoves towards one of the remaining attackers and throws him, again blockingsomeoftheothers. Hekeepspickinganattackerand closing with him, thereby changing his position to avoid being caughtbyseveraloftheattackersatonce. Hekeepsdoingthis, movingroundthematavoidingbeingtrappedinthemiddleofthe attackersagain,whileavoidingthecornersandedgesofthemat. Finally, practice the freestyle as if testing for a promotion. Againstartslowly. Concentrateontheinitialcontact. Ifallthe attackersarecomingatonce,howdoyoudecidewhototakeout first? Thatmatterslessthandoingitcrisplyandwell. Usually, oneattackerwilloutdistancetherestofthepack.Ifheissoeager, takehimoutfirst.Youllhavemoretimetosetupthattechnique thanthenextone.Throwhiminthewayoftheotherswhileyou move to limit your exposure. Usually, this will mean moving towardsawalltoflankthepack.Dontcontinueinthisdirection. Takeoutthenextonethatgetstoyou,andmovethroughthepack togetbacktothemiddleofthemat. Inastreetsituation,theattackswouldbemoreviolent,butso wouldthedefenses.Nagenowhastocontendwithobstaclessuch ascarsandstreetpoles,whichcanbebothadangerandatool.He shouldneverlethimselfbesurrounded.Thereisalottobesaid for taking out the biggest and meanest attacker first and spectacularly. However,itismoreimportanttodowhateveris

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
appropriate forthe situation: dontsetyourmind ondoingany particulartechniqueorstrategy.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks

Teaching
For most martial artists, teaching is the high point of their career. A few, such as policemen, do use aikido in their occupation but for most of us teaching is more important and certainlymorefrequent.Ideally,ourartissogoodthatwenever have to use ittodefendourselves inthestreet. However,few peoplearetaughthowtoteach. Twocommonproblems Ihave seenisforteacherstoteachwhattheywanttodo(ratherthanwhat thestudentsneed),andtooverloadstudentswithdetailtheyarenot readytoabsorb. Perhapsthemostimportantpointtorememberwhenteaching is respect for your uke and for the class. You must create an environmentwherestudentscanlearn,wheretheycanexperiment. Thisisnottraditional,butitisnecessaryforwesternschools,or theywillhavefewstudents.Itincludesavoidingbothphysicaland mentalabuse.Thereisnoexcuseforateacherinjuringhisuke.It merelyshowspoorcontrol andinadequatetechnique. Similarly, whileaccidents willoccasionallyhappen,thereisnoexcusefor allowing students to injure each other. I am not talking about bruisesandscrapes,butinjuries requiringmedical attention and timeoffwork.Studentsdogetcarriedawaywithenthusiasm,and thisisgoodsolongastheyareworkingwithpeopleofasimilar levelwhocanhandletheukemi. However,studentsmustshow reasonable carewhenworkingwithsmaller,less strong,orless experiencedstudents.Itisyourresponsibilityasateachertomake suretheydoso. Classshouldbeenjoyable. Ifstudentsaretenseandafraid, theywontlearnandtheywontstayforlong.Idontmeanclasses shouldbealaughaminutethoughoccasionaljokescanrelax

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
everybody.However,studentsshouldleaveclasswithafeelingof accomplishment.Whatshouldyoudoifyouhaveastudentwhom yourefusetoteach,eitherbecausehecannotorwillnotlearn,or becauseyoudonottrusttheusehewillmakeoftheart?Certainly youshouldnotbeathimupuntilhegetsthemessage.Justaskhim toleave. Whatshouldyoudoifyouarechallengedinclass?Ifeelthat aseriouschallengeshouldberefused.Aclassisnoplacetoaccept achallenge,andIdonotacceptchallengesanyway.WhenIhave been challenged, arefusalhasbeensufficient. Themoreusual situation iswherestudentswanttoseewhoisbetter,anddont havethematuritytorealizethatstrugglinginclasssimplyproves theyarenotasgoodastheythink.Thisisgenerallyharmless,and mightevenhelpseniorstudentsifkepttoalowlevel.However,it doespreventthemlearningwhatyouareteachingandshouldnot beencouraged.Occasionally,Iwilltakeanukeandfindthathe feelshehastoproveheisbetterthanme.Generally,mytechnique isadequatetohandlethesituation.Ifnot,Idaskhimtoholdless tightly,orstrikemoreslowly.ImnottheretoproveIcanbeatup theworld,justtodemonstratewhattheclassshouldpractice. Thekeyinteachingistodemonstrate.Icandotechniquefast or slow. Students have enough trouble seeing what I am demonstratingwhenIdoitslowly. Theycannotseethedetails whenIdothetechniquerapidly.Soteachthedetailsslowly,then teachthemoreadvancedstudentsthecompletemovementatfull speedwhentheyhavemasteredenoughofthetechniquetobenefit fromit. (However,mosttimestheywillfigureouthowtodoit fastontheirown.Youwillonlyneedtoshowitfastiftheclassis fallingintoaspiritlessmodeofexecutingtechniques.)

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
Aikido is no different for men and women. However, the teaching ofaikidomustbesomewhatdifferent. Womenhavea differentattitudetolife,anddifferentphysicalabilitiesthanmost men. Theyarelookingfordifferentthingsinlife.Womenneed morecoachinginthingsthatarephysicallydifficultforthem,like ukemi.Menneedtolearnhowtouselessmuscle,particularlyat first.Techniquescannotbelearnedcorrectlywhenastudentusesa lotofstrength.Ofcourse,astheirtechniquesimprove,theyshould learnhowtofeedmorestrengthintothetechniquewithoutlosing controlofit. Many people in our society have a problem with being physicallyclosetostrangers.Itishardforsomepeopletotakea strangersheadandputitontheirshouldertodoirimi nage. Be patientandgentlyencouragethemtogetoverthisfeeling.Also, encourage all members of the class to respect dojo rules for cleanliness. Everybody has a characteristic smell, some more pleasantthanothers,butnobodywantstoworkwithasmellyuke inadirtygiandhavinglongtoenails. Anotheraspectofrespect istostartontimeandtofinishon time.Peopledohaveotherlives,andoftenhavetightschedules. Itisdiscouragingforpeopletohurryfromworktogettoclasson time,tofinditstartedearly,orforsomebodytohavetoleavewhen theclassisstillgoingbecausetheyhavetogettowork.Classes shouldrunasscheduledunlessthedojo burnsdown. Eventhen, you can work intheparkinglot. This isparticularly truewith seminars,whenpeopletravelmilestocome.Ifaclassscheduleis published,sticktoit. Whenyoustartaclass,takealookatthepeoplefacingyou. Ideally,thereisanarrowspreadofrankandability.Moreoften, thereisawiderange. Ivehadarangefromtotalbeginnersto

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
sandan in a single class, with everything in between. This is challenging. However,Ihaveneverseenahighrankedaikidoka whocouldnotbenefitfrommorebasictrainingmyselfincluded. On the other hand, the beginner cannot be expected to do complicatedtechniqueswithscarybreakfalls.Asaresult,thereis a tendency to always teach basics. Classes should be mostly basics,buttherehastobeenoughhigherleveltechniquetokeep theadvancedstudentsinterested. Partoftheansweristobemoredemandingofhigherranks.A sandandoingshomenuchiikkyoomoteshouldbedoingthesame basictechnique,butshouldbedoingitmorepreciselyandstudying itinmoredepth.Asyouwalkaroundthemat,watchhowpeople dothetechniqueandgivepersonalinstructionappropriatetothe studentsability,physique,andrank.Keepadvicedowntooneor twopointsofdirectionforanyoneatanyonetime.Morethanthis willconfuseyourstudents. Often,justacommentisneededto alertastudenttosomethinghethoughthewasdoingandisnt,or to push him to the next step forward. Unless they are totally wrong,IleteverybodytrythetechniqueacoupleoftimesbeforeI help. Youknowwhatyoutaught,becauseitisyourtechnique. Others,evenadvancedstudents,mightneedafewtriestofigureit out.Pushthemtoosoonandtheywillreverttotheirway. Someteacherstalktoomuch. Aikidoisanactiveart. Your studentswontlearnitbylisteningtoyoutalking. Perhapsthe Japanese talked toolittle, butmanywesterninstructors talk too much. We spendlittleenoughtimeonthemat. Allthattime shouldbeusedproductively. Whenyoudemonstrateatechniqueinaparticularway,have everybody do it in that way. It is confusing to beginners if everybodyisdoingavariationonthetechnique,andifsomebody

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
comestoyourclass,theyshouldbereadytolearnfromyou.They wont do so unless theyare practicing yourtechnique. Ifthey dontlikethewayyoudotechnique,theycangotoadifferent teacher. Your lesson should be consistent, starting at a point appropriate for the class and moving step by step to a more advanced point. Jumping around, teaching a set of unrelated techniques, shouldbeavoidedas it confuses people. However, thereisanexceptionwithhigherrankedpeople.Ifyoufindtheir freestyle too predictable, you might want to teach more randomizedtechniques. IusethesamebasicclassplanthatIwastaughtwith:warmup, ukemi,simpletechniques,andhardertechniques. Ialsodoknee walking(shikko)everyclass.Iliketofinishwitheithermultiple attacksorkokyuho.Ithinkadisciplinedapproachtoteachingis important,becausenoteverybodyconsistentlyandconscientiously practiceswhattheydontlike.Forexample,westernersgenerally dislike knee walking,andsodontlearntomove thehips well enoughforgoodstandingtechniques.People LessonPlan tend to arrive late and dont warm up Aikitaiso adequately on their own. They tend not to Ukemi practiceukemi,anddontimproveitasmuch Shikko as they should. Stretching (increasing joint Techniques mobility),ifdoneatall,shouldbedoneatthe Randori end of the class, when people are warm. However,Idontseemuchneedforstretchinginaikido.Warmup, ontheotherhand,getsmoreimportanteveryyearasIgetolder. Manyinjuriesarecausedbyinsufficientwarmup.

FreestyleandMultipleAttacks
Teachukemiwiththesameattentiontodetailandstyleasfor nagestechniques.Probablymorestudentsquitaikidobecauseof gettinghurtasaresultofpoorukemithanforanyotherreason. Insistonrespect.Informalityisfine,butlackofrespectisnot. Aikidopractitioners(andIincludethesenseihere)shouldbowon andoffthemat. Theyshouldbowtoshomenandtoeachother. Studentsshouldbowtoeachotherbothbeforeandafterpracticing. Theorderofdoingthesethingsandtheformarelessimportant thanthefeelingbehindthem.Senseiandadvancedstudentsshould showbyexample. It is a good idea to study henka and kaeshi waza before teachingregularly.Thenifoneofthestudentstriestogetoutof thetechniqueyouaredoing,youcanamazetheclasswithapretty countertechniqueandavoidshowingtheschoolinapoorlight. However,nothingismoreimpressivethanhavingadifficultuke andeffortlesslyandslowlydemonstratingcorrecttechnique. Iliketostarttheclassslowlyandfinishslowly,buildingupto themorepowerfultechniques inthemiddlethenslowingdown again.However,nowandagain,itmightbeworthwhiletothrowa curve at the class, because there isnt time to warm up on the street. Thereisatremendousfeedbackfromaclassverypositive feedbackwhentheclassissuccessful.Remember,onceyouarea teacher,peoplejudgeyoubyyourstudents.Ifyouaredisciplined andagoodtechnician,theywillshowthattoo.

123

MovingOn
Everybodyfindscomfortableplaces andweallliketostop there.That'sokayforawhile.Enjoythem.Butthenletthemgo andmoveon.Practice,continualandfocusedpracticeistheonly waytokeepgettingbetter. Eachofusowesadebttothepeople,bothsenseiandstudents, whotaughtus.Thedebtisn'tpaidoffbythemonthlyfee,norby cleaningandotherchores:thosearesothatweallhaveaplaceto practice.Itisonlypaidoffbypassingonwhatwehavelearnedto otherstudents,andbeingaspatientandcaringwiththemasour sensei was with us. In doing so, we should be developing our techniquesbeyondthelevelweweretaught. Theroadleadsonwards Thebestwecandoinlife Istofollowit.

Glossary
aihanmi aikidoka aikiken aikiotoshi atemi ayumiashi bokken breakfall chudan dan eritori funekogiundo gedan gi godan gokyo gyakuhanmi gyaku hanmi hanmihandachi hara happogiri hassonokamae henkawaza ikkyo mutualobliquestance anaikidopractitioner methodofthesworddevelopedbyOSensei backwardshipthrow strikes normalwalking:leftfoot,rightfoot woodensword anythingukedoestoavoidbeinghurt(same asukemi) middleposition blackbelt lapelgrab rowingexercise lowposition uniform fifthdegreeblackbelt fifthtechnique opposite(mirrorimage)obliquestance againstthejoint obliquestance ukestanding,nagekneeling centerofthebody eightdirectioncut defensive sword posture with the sword pointedupwardsandthehandlebytheear changingtechniques firsttechnique

ikkyoundo irimi jo jotori jodan jujinage kaeshiwaza kaitennage kake katatori katatorimenuchi katatetori ki kohoukemi kokyunage koshinage kotegaeshi kumitachi kuzushi kyu maai maegeri marui morotetori mushin nage nidan nikkyo

exerciseforikkyo enteringmovement fourfootstaff techniqueswhenukegrabsnagesjo highposition technique involving crossing ukes arms in theformofaletterX countertechniques rotarythrow actual execution of the technique, after kuzushi grabtotheshoulder grabtotheshoulderwithastriketothehead wristgrab spirit(manyothermeaningsalso) backwardsrollingfall breaththrow,alsokokyuho hipthrow wristturnoutthrow pairspracticewithswords(orbokken) breakingukesbalance studentwhohasnotachievedablackbelt fightingdistance frontkick circularmovement ukegrabsnagesarmwithbothhands calm(literallyempty)mind throw,thrower seconddegreeblackbelt 2ndtechnique:wristturnin

omote randori ryotetori sandan sankyo shihogiri shikaku shinai shodan shomen shomenuchi soto suburi suki suwariwaza tanrenuchi tegatana tenkan tenchinage tsugiashi tsuki uchi ukemi undo ura ushiro ushirotekubitori

infront unstructuredpractice,oftenmultipleattackers bothwristsheld thirddegreeblackbelt thirdtechnique fourdirectioncut ukesblindspot:behindandtotheside bamboopracticeswordusedinkendo firstdegreeblackbelt highpositionortokonoma verticalstriketothehead outside individualpracticewithasword anopeningforattack(seetsuki) practicingtechniqueswhenkneeling practicingstrikingatargetwithabokken literallyknifehand rotaryescape heavenandearththrow shuffling movement where the feet do not crossoneanother punchorthrust inside anythingukedoestoavoidbeinghurt(same asbreakfall) exercise behind behind both wrists grabbed from behind the back (alsoushiroryokatatori)

yokomenuchi yondan yonkyo yudansha zanshin zempoukemi

strike to the side of the head or neck; 45 downwards fourthdegreeblackbelt fourthtechnique:forearmhold peoplewithablackbelt ashortpauseattheendofatechniquetore settleyourmind forwardrollingukemi

128

TestRequirements
Aikido test requirements for Sand Drift Martial Arts Associationarelistedinthedojo handbook. Theserequirements areadvisoryonly.Thetestersmaywaiveanyoftherequirements or add any otherrequirements, thoughthis is not usually done. Physical disability will be taken into consideration to a limited extent. However, we expect our students to be competent in defendingthemselvesinthestreet. Support to the dojo will be takenintoconsideration. Foreachtest,therearesomethingswelookfor.Forfifthkyu, allwereallyrequireisthatthestudentscanmoreorlessdothe requiredtechniqueswithoutpromptingfromukeorwatchingother tests.(Ofcourse,weexpectandliketoseeabettertestthanthis minimum.) Advanced students should demonstrate an understanding ofmaai andtiming,aswellascrisptechniques. Testingisnottoseeifyoucanbeatupyouruke,butratherto demonstrate correct form in the techniques. However, students should show proper martial spirit in the execution of the techniques,notbeingslowandstudied. Forshodan,thestudentmustshowthathecandemonstrate each technique satisfactorily in order to teach other students, emphasizingevasionandtakingthebalance,aswellasthrowing. Weaponstechniquesshouldshowthatthestudentunderstandshow to defend against these techniques: it isnt enough to merely demonstratethesetechniques.Thebladeoftheknifeshouldnotgo anywherenearnage. Thebladeofthesword shouldbeusedto atemiatuke.Thelengthofthejoshouldbeusedtonagesbenefit ratherthanseenasahandicap.

In freestyle, nage must demonstrate the ability to control multipleukes,avoidingbeingchasedaroundthedojoandintothe corners.Nagemustnotignoreattackersbehindhisback,ortake excessive time to deal with each uke. He must demonstrate a varietyoftechniques,notpredominantlydoanysingleone.

ContactInformation
forsomeSandDriftMartialArtsAssociationDojos Dojo
Hombu

ContactAddress
323S.WashingtonAve.,* Titusville,Fl32780 48MartiniqueAve., TampaFL33606 1104N.E.3rdSt., Gainsville,FL32601 200LochLowDr., Sanford,FL32773 BalstonSpa,NY

ContactName

Phone

American Butokukan American TomMcMorrow,nidan Butokukan American KarlF.Vierck,shodan Butokukan K.ChristopherVierck BalstonSpa DebbieHumphrey TaeKwonDo Atlanta 155CavanWay, ShermanPhillips,shodan Bodokan Marbleton,GA30059 BocaKarate& 100AS.W.2ndSt.,* KerwinWright FitnessCenter BocaRaton,FL33432 Curacao 2Reigerweg,Curacao, DoccoEngels,sandan Budokan NetherlandsAntilles MartialArts 725BranchAve.,* GlennWebber,yondan Center Providence,RI02904 Melbourne 950PineTreeDr.,Indian* BillVintroux,shodan Aikikai HarbourBeach,FL32937 NewOrleans 227RiverviewDr., LarryPohlman,nidan AikidoClub St.Rose,LA70087 Northeast 61AParkhurstRd.,* LouisE.Perriello,godan Aikikai ChelmsfordMA01824 SandDrift 2533GrassyPointDr.,Apt KellyBoaz,shodan Orlando 207,LakeMary,FL32746 PalmBayPD/ P.O.Box500432, GeorgeMelius,shodan SandDrift Malabar,FL329500432 SandDrift 250127thAve.,UnitF11* RussDavis,sandan Aikikai(Vero) VeroBeach,FL32960 SandDrift 5139ShastaWay, JohnBailey,shodan WestAikido KlamathFalls,OR97603

DrH.T.Walker,director (407)2681467 DrAlanDrysdale,godan (407)2692394 ToddJones,yondan (813)2516987 (352)3775421 (407)3232095 (518)8849475 (770)9487454 (407)3945181 (5999)368907 (401)4543325 (407)7771011 (504)4663523 (508)4533485 (407)3307115 (407)5371887 (407)5696366 (541)8832434

TampaAikikai 16603PlumRoseCt., Tampa,FL33618 Universityof CoralGables,FL Miami

DanFernandez,sandan SherwinMena

(813)9601651 (305)6616066

*Dojoaddress

Index
A
aihanmi 15,68,77,121 aikiken 56 aikiotoshi 93 atemi 16,32,36,51,52,62,63,64,67, 69,70,71,84,87,89,103,104, 105,121,125,130 attachment 9 awareness 23,43 ayumiashi 16,121 dojo 1,2,3,5,7,11,14,20,22,23,26, 62,63,102,104,110,115,116, 125,126

E
elbow 18,19,20,37,47,49,52,60,61, 65,66,67,69,70,71,72,73,74, 75,77,79,80,82,83,86,94,96, 103,104,105 escalation 99 evasion 25,26,31,33,73,108,125 extension 1,7,13,18,26,33,35,38, 41,43,46,47,48,49,52,60,64, 65,66,67,68,73,78,79,80,82, 84,85,91,92,101

B
balance 14,15,21,23,24,25,26,30, 31,32,33,34,35,41,42,46,47, 51,52,53,64,66,70,73,74,75, 76,77,79,80,82,83,85,86,87, 90,91,92,93,94,95,96,97,98, 100,102,103,104,122,125,130 blade 39,42,100,102,104,125 blending 87 bodyrotation 30,71 bokken 29,37,40,43,73,99,121,122, 123 breath 27,68,91,122 breathing 22

F
flow 13,20,22,96,97,98 force 6,21,25,49,57,61,67,70,72, 74,75,82,83,84,86,95,101 fourpartstoatechnique 25 freestyle 23,54,68,96,106,111,117, 126

G
gokyo gyaku gyakuhanmi 103,121 15,46,48,85,104,121 15,48,85,121

C
center 14,22,32,61,68,91,111,121 chronicpain 20 circularmotion 3,33,41,79,85,122 combatpin 67,71 control 4,8,22,24,33,34,35,36,47, 53,55,59,70,73,75,79,80,81, 82,83,87,94,96,97,98,99,100, 101,102,104,109,114,115,126, 130

H
hand ii,6,8,13,18,19,20,27,29,35, 38,46,49,50,53,56,63,65,66, 68,69,70,71,72,73,74,75,76, 78,79,80,81,82,83,84,85,87, 89,94,97,99,100,103,116,118 hanmi15,16,17,18,23,30,37,38,39, 52,53,61,121 hanmihandachi 23,53,121 happogiri 121

hara 22,32,121 harmony 1,4,86 hassonokamae 39,73,121 heightdifferences 58 henkawaza 22,33,96,97,121 hips 30,31,32,38,39,40,41,44,47, 49,51,52,59,68,69,73,74,80, 81,83,84,85,86,88,89,90,91, 118 horizontal38,39,43,68,69,77,81,83, 85,90,92

I
ikkyo 3,16,24,38,48,49,56,59,61, 64,65,66,67,68,70,71,73,86, 90,94,96,103,116,121,122 ikkyonage 68 ikkyoomote 3,24,64,66,67,90,94, 116 ikkyoundo 56,122 ikkyoura 59,65,86 immobilization 31,33,34,78 initiative 47,51,96,106 irimi 3,27,28,29,33,39,42,47,50, 59,65,67,85,86,87,88,89,97, 101,107,110,111,115,122 iriminage 3,33,39,42,47,59,85,86, 87,88,89,97,110,115

katatetori 46,48,68,75,77,85,91, 110,122 kicks 45,53,63,108 knife 99,102,103,104,105,123,125 kohoukemi 17,122 kokyunage 39,48,56,86,91,92,93, 122 koshinage 13,68,89,90,108,122 kotegaeshi 19,29,30,38,39,44,47, 50,61,81,83,96,104,122 kumitachi 41 kuzushi 32,33,88,122,130 Kuzushi 31

M
maai 24,25,26,27,29,30,41,43,46, 60,100,109,122,125 martialartist 25,113 marui 3,122 mat 5,7,13,15,16,17,18,19,20,22, 23,31,32,45,46,54,55,56,57, 58,60,66,76,77,81,83,84,86, 98,104,105,106,107,108,111, 116,118 mental ii,4,32,34,37,114 mind 2,4,5,9,11,22,32,106,112, 122,124 mindset 23 momentum 32,33,86,88 morotetori 48,77,91,122 movement 1,3,4,9,10,13,16,20,23, 24,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33, 34,35,37,38,39,45,46,47,48, 49,51,52,55,57,58,60,63,65, 66,67,68,69,70,71,73,74,75, 76,78,79,80,81,82,83,84,85, 86,87,88,90,91,92,93,96,100, 101,102,104,106,107,108,109, 110,111,118,120,130

J
jo 49,54,60,99,101,110,122,125 judgement 4,23,119 jujinage 94,122 jutsu 5,29

K
kaeshiwaza 22,96,97,98,118,122 kaitennage 39,49,63,64,85,94,122 katatori 46,47,52,71,75,78,122 katatorimenuchi 46,122

multipleattacks 21,35,41,54,58,106, 107,110,118 Musashi 6,7 Musashis 2 mushin 9,122

S
sankyo 39,56,60,73,74,75,76,77, 83,96,97,108,123 selfdefense 1,ii,5 shihigiri 40,41 shikaku 27,50,51,60,68,87,123 shinai 29,123 shomenuchi 24,38,39,42,43,44,48, 49,67,73,90,100,103,105,110, 116,123 size 1,16,32,66,72,79,85,93 sizeofpeople 23 soto 85,123 speed 23,45,57,58,100,109,115 spirit 1,4,5,7,122,125 spiritual ii,4 stamina 108 straining 2,51,61 strength 1,4,21,23,33,38,48,52,53, 57,62,65,66,75,79,89,115,130 suburi37,38,39,40,42,44,64,73,77, 81,123 suki 25,26,63,97,123,130 suwariwaza 52 sword 6,28,29,34,37,38,39,40,41, 42,43,49,56,61,64,73,74,75, 76,77,80,81,82,83,99,100,101, 121,123,125

N
nikkyo 31,61,66,68,69,72,75,81, 96,104,122

O
obstructions 17,40,55,106,108,111, 126 omote i,43,44,60,64,65,67,68,70, 75,80,83,84,86,89,103,123 opening 7,25,26,31,35,46,97,123, 131

P
pain 15,31,60,70,76,77 point 8,10,11,21,33,46,53,54,56, 57,61,62,70,82,85,86,88,89, 90,91,94,100,102,104,113,117 pressurepoint 36,76 problems 27,58,79,91,113

R
radialnerve 76,77 radius 68,76 randori 54,123 ready 3,6,7,8,13,14,19,25,30,34, 35,63,71,72,82,87,90,96,98, 99,109,113,117 religious 4 repetitivemotioninjuries 33 resistance 19,21,33,61,65,78,90 respect 2,113,115,116,118 rhythm 61 rolling 17,18,69,84,94,122 rotationalmovement 29,69,70,72,74, 75,81,107,122,123 ryotetori 48,94,123

T
takedown 19,67,71,74,75,77,80 targetzone 26,53,92 teaching i,11,20,48,61,62,81,113, 114,115,117,118,131 tegatana 48,67,68,69,71,75,123 telegraphingmoves 10 tenchinage 32,38,48,59,77,88,89, 123 tenkan 27,29,30,46,67,123

throw 2,7,9,13,17,19,20,22,30,33, 34,54,57,58,59,68,72,75,77, 78,79,80,81,82,83,84,85,86, 87,88,89,90,91,92,93,94,96, 97,100,101,105,107,109,110, 111,119,125 thumbs 18,45,47,49,57,70,74,76, 82,84,94,103 timing ii,5,8,13,19,20,24,27,29, 30,35,37,41,42,51,57,58,60, 65,67,87,88,97,99,103,104, 107,109,116,118,125,130 transition 70,71 trap 32,71,73,79,84,93,101 tsugiashi 16,123 tsuki 30,31,47,48,50,55,91,94,101, 104,123 turning 30,35,40,44,46,48,52,72, 74,77,80,81,84,106,108,113

yokomenuchi 103,124 yonkyo

30,41,42,49,50,53, 39,73,77,96,124

Z
zanshin 25,34,35,124 zempoukemi 18 zoneofeffectivepower 60

U
uchi 40,44,85,87,123 ukemi11,15,16,19,20,21,22,31,33, 45,53,57,60,61,63,66,78,79, 82,84,85,90,94,96,98,104,106, 110,114,115,117,118,121,123, 130 ulna 68 urai,43,44,64,67,68,70,80,84,86, 103,123 ushirotechniques 50,51,52 ushirotekubitori 52,123

W
waiting 67,86,107,109 weight 13,15,34,53,56,70,92 wrist 20,41,42,46,65,68,69,70,71, 72,75,76,77,78,79,82,84,103, 122

ProgressinginAikido
Beginner: Maybetooaggressiveornotaggressiveenough Mayusetoomuchortoolittlestrength Oftenuncoordinated Notechnicalabilityunlessknowledgeofotherstyle Ukemi:easilyhurtevenifstrong Technique:doesntknowany,onlyseesbroadoutlineswhenshown Atemi:mayhaveexcellentatemifromotherstyleornone Learningbasics:howtostand,howtomove,attacks,escapes,takingthe balance(kuzushi),throwsandholds(kake),ukemi Expandingrepertoire:additionalattacksandtechniques,moreadvancedukemi unarmed,weapons,multipleattackers Polishingrepertoire Shodan:keylevel Shouldknowalltechniquesfromallattacksorbeabletofigurethemout Ukemi:fairlyindestructible Technique:soundexecutioninallphases Atemi:goodcleanfocusedattacksasuke,correctatemiasnage Readytoteachinownschool Abletodothemaintechniqueseffectively Increasingtechnicalability: Ukemi:fairlyindestructibleandcannotbesurprised Technique: Improvingindepthandbreadthofknowledge Learningthesubtleties Mushin:nothoughtnoconception,neversurprised Atemi:increasingpowerandfocus Increasingattentiontowhenandhowinsteadofwhat Lookingforsuki Manipulatingdistancetocontroltiming Manipulatingsukitodirecttheattack Increasingunderstandingofotherstylesandarts

Strikes Stranglesandlocks Weapons Tactics Improvingteachingability Master(walksonwater): Alwaysawareofsurroundings Neveranunplannedopeningforattack Perfecttechniquewithouteffortorthought