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 Post subject: control
PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2000 10:51 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 05, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 988
Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
While reading the interesting comments regarding ashi gatame technique, someone inadvertently brought that nasty little word "control." This brings me to a question that transcends throughout all of martial arts and not just jujitsu. Just when is control taught, learned, and or demanded from the instructors?

This question has bugged me for many years being an instructor as well as a student. I don't get around as much as I used to (marriage and kids will do that to you, right David???), but I do my share. I have been to many seminar and been on my share of a receiving technique; thus, I've experienced those who understand control and those who do not. And for those of you who do not, your day will come ;-)

I've always told my students that you can tell a good instructor by what he allows to happen to himself. Meaning, never study off the guy who simply likes to show the technique and never has anything done to him. How can a person show a technique correctly (kotai gaishi comes to mind) if you don't understand the pain?

We all know of those people out there who relish the fact that they can destroy you on the mat, which is probably true, but, is that real teaching? It certainly isn't budo.

This goes for karate as well, but in jujitsu it's a little more immediate. I don't think there is any lock that can't be done with control, that is why I don't understand why any style would take out a technique from their style just to "fall in line." Control is the ultimate lesson. Those who have it will never be in need of students

Thanks for now,

mike


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 Post subject: control
PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2000 3:25 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 17, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 2071
Location: Boston, MA
The "control", or lack of, by some the folks teaching out there is more than a pet peeve of mine. Image

I've been to a lot of seminars and visited quite a number of dojos/studios/kwoons/gyms or what have you. (Yes. Mike not as much recently.) I posted some of my thoughts before about how to "safely" visit or attend a seminar before and won't rehash much of it again.

First of all, do some research about the instructor. Travel enough in the MA circles, you'll hear the stories. Pay attention. There are some good, well intentioned folks out there we can all learn from. But there are definitely some sicko's too. I don't care how talented they are... Don't go. Don't visit. If you do, stay back and be real low key and still accept you may be taking a risk. Frankly, some of these sicko's aren't interested in teaching more than they are in using someone to bolster their expansive egos and, perhaps, satisfy a dark need to hurt someone. Don't be that someone... unless you are one of those sicko's that need to be affiliated with the other sicko even if it means getting hurt or maimed...

I remember an Ellis Amdur column in Aikido Journal about the late Donn Draeger. Draeger was well respected way back when and was one of the few early "gajins" accepted into some of the traditional training halls. He obviously aroused the animosity of some of the sicko's as well... He was invited to train at an aikido dojo. The sensei invited Dreagar to be uke for a technique. This was/is generally considered an honor -- to feel the sensei's technique firsthand. Draeger was, however, not feeling quite right about it. The sensei assured him that he would do the technique slow. Draeger aquiesced. A mistake in not trusting his own intuition. The sensei performed an elbow lock with full speed, power and the dropping of weight onto Dreager's elbow. As Draeger reported to Amdur, his elbow was never the same again...

Also realize that the damage inflicted may not be just physical but psychological as well. Personally, early on in my training, I have try to develop the mindset that I will not go without a fight. I may not win but I will do my best to hurt if not take any sonofabitch with me to hell that tries to hurt me intentionally. So think about it... You take ukemi -- which by definition requires cooperation-- for some sicko. He hurts you as a result and you didn't even put a fight. For me, that would just not be acceptable and goes against the grain that I've been polishing. If I were not hurt, I would feel compelled to fight the SOB right then and there. And, if I were not capable, there would have to be another time and place. I will simply not accept nor suffer the setback to my own spirit/mindset. ( No lectures please. This is who I am.) My approach to avoiding this whole mess altogether is simply to do my research and to avoid training with such folks from the get go.

david


[This message has been edited by david (edited December 15, 2000).]


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 Post subject: control
PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2000 3:46 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 05, 1998 6:01 am
Posts: 988
Location: Randolph, MA USA 781-963-8891
Good points David. Do your research and listen to a few people and you'll have your answers before you get hurt. Personally, I don't trust anyone other than my students and sensei when they say they will do a technique slow. It doesn't pay to take chances on someone else's version of slow.

BTW, it is not necessarally the black belt instructor that we should be afraid of. I'm more afraid of any white belt in any style I teach than I am from a black belt.

mike


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