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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2000 1:23 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 05, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 989
Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
I'd thought I just sort of jump right into this moderator/forum stuff with an interesting topic that many of you may know more of than you "think" you know. That is Atemi waza.

Atemi waza literally means "body strikes/tecniques." These strikes are used against vital areas of the body. In reality and during a confrontation, we don't have a lot of time to strike at one of these points perfectly to achieve the desired outcome (paralyse, unconsciousness, or even death); instead, we use these strikes at distractions. So for our purposes, Atemi waza is distracting techniques.

With all that said, just how do people use the Atemi waza? Do we use it Uechi-ryu to any great extent, or are we all tied up on that one strike, one kill myth? Think about it. I have my own thoughts on this, but would like to hear others. In the Jujitsu style that I learn, Atemi is part of the curriculum. Do other grappling arts have it in their's? Should we start emphasizing it in our Uechi training?

A lot of musing, but what a way to kick this thing off.

mike


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2000 3:32 am 
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Location: Dartmouth, MA USA
Let me get this out of the way first - Mike Sensei kicked my rear end on the mat. He submitted me with his version of a pressure point and my face still hurts! Just a round-a-bout way of letting you know that he's as good on the ground as he is from the stand-up position.

Atemi. My only exposure to this was at your dojo. I only played at judo for a month and didn't stay long enough to see the atemi applications, although there are some in the katas.

In Brazilian jiu-jitsu we use kicks more than punches to distract. No real atemi training. My favorite sparring technique is a right roundhouse kick to my opponent's left thigh followed by a double leg takedown. The kick sets up the takedown rather nicely in that it helps you to close the distance, distracts the opponent and gets their weight moving up and back.

From what I've seen (limited), Atemi waza is one of the strengths of Nihon ju-jutsu.


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D. Steven White
swhite@umassd.edu




[This message has been edited by Steve (edited June 27, 2000).]


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2000 5:06 am 
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Location: Ptld OR USA
Cool! I get to air a pet peeve and respond to a legitimate question at the same time!

I get quite upset with the contention that JJ is a grappling art. The old Japanese ryu are battle arts. They are last ditch techniques for the chaos of a battlefield. Grappling works great one on one. Surrounded by multiple scared, armed opponents (and friends) who can't tell which side you're on with the mud on your armor... well, it's alot like falling down in a Texas bar brawl.

JJ did use control techniques. They become more predominate with younger arts as the focus moves away from battle. In older styles, the control techniques are used only to break the joint or to immobilize long enough to kill the opponent with a weapon or your hands/elbow.

Strikes are very important in JJ- and they are meant, at least in our style, to be devestating. Let's see, our first kata, shofu-gaeshi, has a shuto to the carotid triangle, a percussive slap to the base of the skull (GB20), and a power shuto after uke is thrown to the orbital socket, bridge of nose or extended elbow (depending on how uke lands.) Ignoring formalities, Shofu-gaeshi takes about two seconds to perform properly- a defense, three strikes and a throw.

Rory
(BTW - I tried to address this before. If you happen to have a copy of the June '97 Blackbelt, check out the article.)


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2000 6:07 am 
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Location: Newton, MA
When I was doing Aikido, a number of "atemi" were taught, but they were used as unbalancing or distraction techniques. Very few people I ever met actually used them as strikes.

The few Aikidoka that I knew who actually hit used them as a set up to throws. One instructor opened a takedown with a palm to the forehead...it worked amazingly well.

In the style of Kung Fu that I study, throws and locks (Chin Na) are almost always preceded by a striking motion. Sometimes the two even work together.

Food for thought..

Jake



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Defeat is worse than death. You have to live with defeat - Seal Team Slogan


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Wed Jun 28, 2000 12:53 pm 
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Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
Steve:
Way too much credit. You are extremely talented and I can't wait until you get back.

Distraction is what I am talking about as per the modern ear jujitsu. Atemi is the first movement in a series of movements: Atemi (distraction), nage (throw), kansetsu or osae (lock or pin). What I do with any of these techniques depends on me. For example, whether I break or hold for submission, or simply control. But each movement on its own is a viable technique if I want it to be.

RA Miller:

Thanks for popping in and joining our group. I think its going to be fun to discuss this stuff.

You are right about Jujitsu not being a "grappling" art in the modern sense of grappling. We think of Brazilian JJ or Judo as grappling, but not traditional JJ. However, you have to remember what Jujitsu was developed for. It is the art of the Samurai without his sword. What did the samurai do when he lost his sword? Did it turn to a "grappling" match on the battlefield? Probably. Hopefully, his JJ training carried him to victory, but I'm pretty sure it was extremely messy and disorganized along the way.

Your scenario concerning the strikes is what I was speaking about above to Steve. Could you explain what a Shofu-gaeshi is? One thing I have learned is that the termonology from one Jujitsu art to another can be extremely varied.

Jake:

Glad to hear from you. I am always impressed with your informed comments in the other forums. It's good to have you join in.

Regarding the Aikido comment. That Aikido would use the Atemi strikes as an unbalancing strike or such makes a lot of sense to me with what I've seen and trained in Aikido. Ueshiba sensei really looked to the soft side of Jujitsu when he created Aikido so I suppose that concept would fit right in; however, like you, I have seen Aikidoka use the Atemi as hard strikes as well. I suppose it would depend on your instructor.


mike


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2000 12:16 pm 
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Location: N. Andover, Ma. USA
Murphy Sensei, et al.,

Grappling as we see today is not the Art as it was in Fuedal times nor can it be as the legal repercussions will become our next foe. The maiming and Vital Point striking need to be tailored down for our own safety, however distractions and atemi while grappled is still a major focus of the two Jujitsu styles I have trained in (Hakko Ryu and Small Circle).

No one should be delusioned enough to believe that a certain Nage will work on a learned or just highly responsive (reflex wise) opponent without a distraction.

One other point I would like to make is that in our ground fighting we must also teach and utilize Atemi. We must not be comfortable with just grappling per say, but during each match, we must constanly strike at each other to train for the inevitability and to realize when the opportunity avails itself.

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Evan Pantazi
users.erols.com/kyusho


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2000 2:37 pm 
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Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
Evan,

Excellent points!!

mike


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Thu Jun 29, 2000 10:44 pm 
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Are we really that far removed from the "battlefield" when we are speaking of real self defense situations?

The conditions that Rory describes above seem to me to be what a real self defense situation would entail. Think about it. You won't even have time to draw whatever weapon you are carrying. You will probably be outnumbered. What is all this "distraction" stuff? Why not blast the hell out of them with continous powershots, if you can grab onto a limb and spontaneously break it, or throw the cretin, great!


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2000 3:38 am 
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Location: Dartmouth, MA USA
Rory - you're right! If you visit Mike's dojo one of the first things he tells you is that going to the ground in a fight is not good. Especially if the challenger has friends.

He has an excellent group of students such as Dewey, Gene, Rich and Eugene. They all say the same thing - don't go to the ground if you don't need to.

I think that this is what separates combat ju-jitsu from sport ju-jitsu.

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D. Steven White
swhite@umassd.edu


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2000 12:19 pm 
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Location: N. Andover, Ma. USA
Billy B San,

If you are in the scenario you discussed then you are most likely in a secluded spot as well and have no witnesses to see what you do. Personally in a mulitple person attack with the odds so stacked against me I would also resort to physically damaging each to insure a better chance of escape and deal with the consequences later.

However in a Bar or Parking lot dispute (Don't laugh this is why I started my career), with witnesses and no immediate threat on your life, maiming an individual will always come back to haunt you. About a year ago a similar story was posted on one of these forums where a Karateka protected his Wife from a drunk where he broke the drunks ribs with a side kick. Turns out that he was sued and had to pay Doctor Bills and the two weeks or so wages lost by this drunk. Go figure.

PS if you choke someone out leave them face up so you aren't charged with homicide, (possible suffocation of the opponent).

------------------
Evan Pantazi
users.erols.com/kyusho


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2000 9:19 pm 
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Evan-Sensei,

Thanks for the response. I can't help thinking that I would rather pay the idiot's hospital bills and wages for two weeks than allow him to harm my wife! Your point is well taken though, we should really have a good handle on the laws in our area. I am more afraid that I will freeze due to my fears of legal consequences(or other fears) than I am afraid of the actual consequences.

The best way to avoid a bar fight is to not go to bars! Image If you can't/won't embrace that philosophy, than at least pick the more upscale places to go. One thing my girl and I have figured out is that the drinks cost the same whether you are at the best place in town or the local dive! Something to consider, freinds.


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Fri Jun 30, 2000 11:21 pm 
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Location: Ptld OR USA
Mike-
Just got back in town.

Shofu-gaeshi is a two man kata from Idori, our kneeling sword defenses.

Tore begins relaxed, in seiza, wakizashi in belt.

Uke's goal is to walk up to Tori, drop to left knee with right foot braced (bent past 90 degrees for a power pull) with the kneel, uke controls Tori's right shoulder with his left palm in an attempt to stop any draw. Uke then pulls tori's wakizashi from the scabbard and drives it into Tori's stomach.

Tori: The instant uke grabs the tsuka, grab his wrist with your left hand and pin it to the scabbard/your hip. Bend right arm 90 degrees and snap it up to pop uke's hand off your shoulder. Uncoil the bent arm to slam a shuto into the right side of uke's neck. snake around and (variation: slam another shuto into uke's left carotid triangle, then...) slap the left lower rear corner of the skull. Maintaining pressure and keeping the hand to your side so that both bodies are one unit, pivot up 180 degrees to the rear, raising your left knee to a standard drawing position. This will flip uke if your turn brings his center precisely over his braced knee. Finish with shuto to best available target (if he throws far, the extended elbow will still be in range). Break his wrist with a disarming shear and regain feet, maintaining zanshen.

One of the interesting things about our kata is that they seem to have all gross-motor movement. None require especially fine control.

Rory


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 Post subject: Atemi
PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2000 2:53 am 
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Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
Thanks for the info Rory. We too practice a set of Idori techniques, but not that one. I'll have to try it.

mike


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