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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2000 9:15 pm 
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Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
Well a decision/no decision was made about the possiblity of grappling on Uechi tests at this past weekend's meeting. What do I mean my that? A discussion was had and it was agreed to take this issue to a committee to hammer out. And this only talked about those candidates who are 50 and above years of age and whether or not in lieu of sparring, they would have to show some form of real self-defense.

This is a great topic, and one that will be hashed out with a concensus, but I hope that we will see freestyle sparring with a grappling component in it as well. Although there were those on the board who agree with me, it never came up for discussion this round. I guess we'll have to wait until a later date.

Things in IUKF are moving in a positive direction thanks to GEM sensei and all the participants who spend so much of their free time sittting at some of these meetings. Anyway, comments??

mike


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2000 11:55 am 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
Quote:
And this only talked about those candidates who are 50 and above years of age and whether or not in lieu of sparring, they would have to show some form of real self-defense.


Obviously the 50 year old body can only take so much. The give and take of freestyle sparring put a lot of strain on even those in good shape. Yet most would want a BB to demonstrate some capability in defending against unrehearsed attacks. I suggested this before and will do it again. Have the older candidate defend/counter against singular, full speed, unrehearsed attacks by different opponents. This will give you a measure of the candidates ability to respond without a full, all out, give and take of sparring. Not as strenuous perhaps, but certainly no less an approximation of a self-defense situation which is often decided in the first seconds/two or three strikes of the encounter, unless one is unfortunate to be engaged by a bear of an opponent.

Sparring is definitely better in giving you a measure of the candidate's spirit as the give and take is drawn out.

david


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2000 9:17 pm 
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David,

I agree. This must be implemented; otherwise, what's the purpose of the test for someone of that age? Gift? Honorary? I don't think so. The object to learning the art, at least in part is to defend one's
self. This MUST be demonstrated to the board.

Unfortunately, there was one or two who thought differently thinking that those candidates could show a weapon's kata or some other exercise/demonstration. I don't think that is the same thing. But look for there being a committee to be set up to discuss it further.

mike


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2000 3:49 pm 
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Just to keep people up to date. The topic is being discussed in a committe to be decided later. It is being worked on.

mike


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2000 1:41 am 
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Location: Sydney, NS, Canada
Should grappling be introduced would there be a basis for techniques used? Our tests now are on material we are all familiar with.

How do we begin to disseminate the moves allowed or disallowed? What happens to a student who gets tested by a board that does grappling but comes from an area that hasn't been enlightened?

When it comes to sparring we know what we are looking for. We watch for good Uechi in both defense and offense. If we allow grappling as an alternative will it degenerate to a pushing/pulling/throwing each other around the floor waltz?

The other concern I have is our style is Uechi, should we be handing out BB's for the ability to use another style/system.

Please don't take this as a closed mind, for I believe we should teach grappling or anything else that will help us develop our own personal style of defense. However at a Uechi BB test I would prefer to grade only on Uechi expertise.

I do like the idea put forward by David.
Gilbert


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2000 10:51 am 
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Gilbert,

Thanks for joining in on the discussion. Let me try to address each question you posed.

How do we disseminate between moves?

Well, with safty in mind (always), the grappling should be looked at as free sparring is. In other words, do we need specific moves? As a grappler, I say no. As a Uechi practitioner I also say no. If it works, it's a good move. If it doesn't, you better reevaluate your techniques.

I don't think anyone is going to be held to such standards as you imply about not having grappling experience. The problem is that people, especially in Uechi (sorry folks), have no idea what being on the floor means. Do you (general) really think that because you are a 15th degree black belt that you will never be on the ground with someone? And then what? My suggestion is that you find someone in your area to teach you and your students something, or simply get on the floor and practice. Moves will come to you. Maybe not designed moves you see a Brazilian Jujitsu grappler might practice, but effective nonetheless.

As for Uechi sparring...We look for good Uechi? Just what is good Uechi sparring? I haven't seen any written material on what "good" Uechi sparring is. Gary K. sensei is working on material that may be out in the near future, but until we have something that tells us exactly what good Uechi sparring is, I think we just fudge it and say, "oh, look how well he moves back and forth," or, "my he absorbs technique really well." Let's be serious, with a few exceptions, Uechi sparring has already turned into the pushing/pulling, dance on the floor you describe. Maybe we should figure out what to do while we are down there?

Lastly, no one is suggesting giving out rank for the grappling. We only say that it's part of Uechi as much as free fighting is. When did Kanbun Uechi sensei start free fighting? Sorry, but I never heard of Shushiwa testing Kanbun sensei on his ability to freestyle spar. So that question could be asked of our freestyle fighting as well. The fact is that we practice Uechi or any other art to learn how to protect ourselves. Don't we? If we don't cover ALL aspects of protection, are we at fault for being incomplete at our training, or teaching of our students? I think so.
As much as I would love to see it, Sanchin will not help you in a fight. Oh sure, the internal aspects of it will play a part, but are you going to sit there and let someone hit you to show you can take it? Uechi can be taken to the floor, it just has to be thought out in a curriculum so that people can practice it. How safe do you feel getting a black belt for being able to do Sanchin, Seisan, Kotekitai, Bunkai, Kumite (prearranged and freestyle), and answering a few questions? I wouldn't feel safe.

Just a few things to consider.

mike


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2000 11:17 pm 
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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
Quote:
Just what is good Uechi sparring?


Well, I was talking about "good Uechi" in sparring. Which is control, elbows in, balance, kicks.

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
Quote:
Let's be serious, with a few exceptions, Uechi sparring has already turned into the pushing/pulling, dance on the floor you describe.


I have seen the type of sparring you're talking about, but the truth is I have seen many good matches. I should say I am in Canada and we don't have the concern for law suits that seem to govern most things in the states,I understand the concern, we just seem to be free of it. That said I have witnessed many hard hitting "chess matches" that make you shudder with each punishing blow.

Still I don't take issue with your argument that we may end up on the floor and have to defend ourselves. I think I stated I was a proponent of teaching the grappling techniques in the dojo.

My concern is including grappling as part of a Uechi BB test. If we are testing for Uechi-Ryu then we should stick to our expertise. If not where does it end and at what point will there be more non Uechi at a BB test than Uechi.

Once again I love the idea of teaching/learning grappling but does it belong at a Uechi BB test. I reserve final decision.
Gilbert.

[This message has been edited by Gilbert MacIntyre (edited December 04, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by Gilbert MacIntyre (edited December 04, 2000).]


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2000 12:09 am 
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Gilbert: Good points. Our Federation's stance on this is that regions determine their dantest standards.

In New England, we are in agreement that the dantest must evolve to take groundwork into consideration. It is not something that has gone into effect though, or will be in the near future. But we are working on it.

------------------
GEM


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2000 2:13 am 
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Mattson Sensai:
I would certainly be interested in your progress. If there are positive changes I'm sure my mind is not set.
Gilbert.


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2000 10:48 am 
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Gilbert,

I understand what you are saying about the test being "Uechi" in nature, but again I emphasize that a grappling componant would be no different than your jiyu kumite that is a test requirement, only in the fact that it would be more realistic.

Sure, you can take "good Uechi" into your sparring, but you can do the same thing when you find yourself on the floor. So what's the difference? The point is that we shouldn't limit ourselves to some mystical thought that Uechi-ryu is written in stone. It changes and evolves like everything else. We must be willing to change with it or else risk being left behind.

mike


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2000 8:39 pm 
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I don't mind change...it's just things being different I hate.
Gilbert.


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2000 11:18 pm 
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Have to admit, I'm sort of torn on the idea of grappling being a part of the test...

If it's included, how do I know that if I throw someone (or take them down in any other way) that they know how to take ukemi? I suppose we could get into limitations of what waza are, and are not, acceptable ("...okay, only O Soto Gari will be allowed during the test..."), or 'how hard is too hard,' but under the rush of the test, people get pumped, and people will get badly hurt...

On the 'not knowing how to take ukemi front,' let me be brutally honest - I have seen very few Uechika who I would feel comfortable throwing (I'll use the term generically for any kind of technique utilized to bring uke to the ground) with any confidence they will not fall directly on their heads. At the same time, there are a lot of individuals out there who will say "sure I know how to fall...feel free to use takedowns..."

Personally, I will continue to train sparring with throws and groundwork with those partners whom I know can take ukemi - and will continue to stand up spar those whose ukemi I have not personally observed.

greg


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2000 10:54 am 
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Greg,

I understand and concur with all your concerns; however, I fail to see the difference between what you mentioned and the free sparring on the test as it presently stands.

If you have to spar someone on the test, do you know how good they are? Do you know if they can take a shot? Do you know if they can land properly if you sweep them to take them down? The answer to all those questions is no, you don't. But since you are who you are you demonstrate the proper control of the techniques until you know how much the person can take. The same applies to the grappling question. If someone doesn't know anything about grappling and you throw them with whatever throw you wish, you show the proper control on the throw. Having tossed people for many years now, there is throwing and there is throwing (you know what I mean).

The problem I find will be the proper control on any joint lock. With so little room for mistakes, we have to be extremely careful. But,,,, it can be done.

mike


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2000 2:18 pm 
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Just a follow up on earlier posts. I broached the subject to the senior ranks at our dojo. Expressing my concern over something other than Uechi being included in the BB test.

After discussing it for awhile this is how we walked away. First, Uechi is like anything else it is constantly under going some change. Next, who are we to think we should direct where it is or isn't going.

Most importantly though, was the acceptance of the fact that Kanbun showed three kata from the Pangainoon style. So how did we end up with all the other material we cover on BB tests? The stlye will grow and change, what is good will last. In fifty years grappling may feel as uechi as Seirui.
Gilbert.


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 Post subject: decision???
PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2000 3:20 pm 
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Gilbert:
A most enlightening attitude regarding the nature of Uechi-ryu or, for that matter, anything. If we don't examine and explore, the style will atrophy and die.

Think what would happen if the runners, ballplayers and other athletes took the attitude of preserving the 'ways' of the 'masters'!

We still honor the old timers and play the games pretty much the way we did a hundred years ago, but that's where the preservation of the art ends.

In the traditional martial arts, we will always perform kata, but the rest is open to interpretation and improvement.

------------------
GEM


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