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 Post subject: A complete art?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 10:01 am 
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URqne7AZ ... DXXSnP0PkA

Ian Abernethy is a Shotokan practitioner for the UK. I've seen a lot of his stuff and can see that all good karate share some basics, regardless of style. At 10:20 of this video he quotes a Shotokan pioneer about the "completeness" of karate. it got me to thinking about how much more there is in our system that we maybe never tap into in the dojo and how group training limits our understanding of what's the potential of the art we study. And it personally drives me crazy when people, including those that study uechi ryu, dismiss karate as impractical, especially in this era of MMA, Brazilian jiu jitsu, boxing, etc.

Do we train as a "complete" system? Why not?

Thoughts on that quote at 10:20?


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 10:39 am 
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It's not the at that's complete it's the practitioner

The style gives us tools, what we build with them is up to us

Lots of knockers of styles and such,but no one of any worth that I ever met

It's not about having a complete art , it's about training in a complete holistic way and bringing that to your uechi.


was it JFK

It's not what uechi can do for you.......


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 11:21 am 
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I can only relate my experience with several styles over time, and the conclussion that I reached. with Wing chun I found that some people had a very distinct lack of knowledge, and it looked like they were holding back, but they were not, they just didn't know. What had basically happenend over time was that a split had developed, and that comprise of some folks who knew what was going on and some who didn't, I was angry at first with the people who had taught me rubbish, but now I feel sorry for them :cry: they have invested all that time and money and even visited China, they aspire to all the things that they have heard of about the old sifu's and yet at the end of the day they have nothing of real value. They practise forms that they don't understand and have no conception of just how good ( but very violent) the real style is, or how many additional parts to the system there are, they only have the bare bones and yet think they have a complete system.so it's not just with karate that you have this you have it with Kung fu as well......with kung fu you can in part blame this on the cultural revolution, with karate it would be the militarisation of karate for the Japanese army.


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 3:51 pm 
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I believe this is actually a combination of a few different problems. The first problem is the style. I prefer to call it the system, a style to me is the feel of the system like jazz and blues in music. It has a different feel and by the feel you can tell they are related. A martial art example would be Aiki- juijitsu, Aikido and Hapkido. They are different systems but share the same feel. As opposed to Aikido and judo both share similar techniques but have a completely different feel or style.
A system is usually “founded” by one person (even if they didn’t actually invent the system) and the system is a collection of that one persons learning. So what gets passed on is a distillation of that one person’s knowledge. What gets passed down from generation to generation will slowly deteriorate. In science this is called “chaos theory” everything in the universe moves from a state of organized creation to chaos. It’s a universal law that can’t be changed. So any martial art system regardless of how “complete” it might have been won’t be for long.
Also if the system was the brain child of one person how good do you really think he was? How much can any one person absorb in his or her life time, how much information was he able to be exposed to?
This leads me to my next thought. It is human nature or one of the brains flaws that it can only absorb so much information so fast and that most of what is gained is lost before it can be assimilated. This is not unique to martial arts. I am a CNC machinist. (computer numerical control) at my place of employment I have seen many people in this line of work who have been doing the same job for years and years and have not learned anything about their job. It boggles my mind how someone can look at a screen of machine code day in and day out for years and never have it dawn on them to pay attention and learn what all this stuff means. Even more so when they are constantly reminded that they need to learn it so they can progress. The code M08 is to turn on the coolant. They use this every day , they look at it every day but yet for some reason there is no understanding of it and the connection is never made to learn it. The same is true for martial arts. Someone may do something every day at class but there is no understanding and no depth of knowledge. This person in a few years will gain their black belt and maybe begin teaching. where is the growth? How can the system expand? If this person learns something new from a seminar in a different system, what was the ratio of knowledge lost VS what was gained? Your life is only so long and you can only learn so much. In the end I believe we are all our own unique individual system based on the entirety of what we have learned in our life time and if you are good enough maybe they will name a new system after you.


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 6:03 pm 
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Well even with systems there are difficulties and differences. If you take something like aiki Jutsu it is a term for a complete system and Aikido and Hapkido are really only specific offshoots of Aiki jutsu, Aikido and Hapkido have become popular in their own right and have also had offshoots created.
now if you take a specific kata like say Sanchin.I wouldn't know what it was representative of. It could be similar to the "Iron wire" from Hung gar, were the sole intention is a type of isometric bodybuilding or like the first part of the First Wing chun kata, which defines how you stand and your power source....or alternatively if you let me loose on it for a couple of hours I could attribute all sorts of aikido moves to it.based upon the stuff that I know would look like it fitted and which is also part of Wing Chun, which can be called a sister art. It is difficukt because traditionally kata is set moves, but also your interpretation of those set moves...so you could inadvertantly create your own style


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:07 pm 
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aiki-jiujitsu a complete system? i think this is were the falacy begins. aiki would only be a sliver of an over all "Koryu" system. the main system would be a weapons system of sword, knife, bow and arrow and various other weapons of the day along with methods of horse riding, rope tying for capturing, tepo or means of using gun powder, how to wear your armor and the list goes on and on. Ueshiba's teacher Tekeda claimed this was an art passed down for generations but many refute this claim. it is also known that Ueshiba stuided many arts as well even tho he never seemed to mention this. so from a certain perspective there is no end and no begining. aiki is a branch of a Koryu system. judo is a branch of jiu-jitsu. goju- ryu is a malgamation of Fukian kung-fu and so is uechi. shotokan is a collection of kata that was availible in okinawa at the time Funikoshi was studying. Fukian kung-fu is a multitude of branches from one parent system thought to be from the exiled royal family. the bottom line is there is no true pure breed martial art.


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 2:35 am 
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Stryke, hits the nail on the head.

A few personal observations:

All bona fide karate styles were conceived to be extremely violent, the very nature of empty hands fighting. 'Completeness' is another story.

We need to define what 'completeness' is.

'Complete' as to what? What do we envision a style doing for us and under what circumstances?

Why do so many tinker with so many styles in pursuit of the 'Holy Grail"…Something that it hard to get across to anyone, is that the completeness of a style is only as good as what we have been able to 'operant condition' and this takes time and great effort.

It doesn't matter how complete a style is on paper. Our experience of the style is only ever going to be as complete as what we've managed to internalize and operationalize_ for our intended applications, which also includes our body's tooling 'prep' to withstand collisions.

If we want to argue the point, when choosing a style, we would want one that generally addresses techniques and concepts that work against habitual acts of street violence.

But…No style can ever be as complete as we would imagine to want because of the endless variations of conflict as outlined by Rory Miller in his books and seminars.

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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 2:44 am 
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As Hoshin points out, it makes more sense to me to define completeness in terms of your ability to use what you've learned.

It really has to do with whom and what we are…if we can't make certain concepts work for us, then there is little point in pursuing them.

The biggest mistake is in thinking that, in a fight, you can generally go with what you have seen work for someone else in another style, instead of what you have really learned to do with it personally.

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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 3:07 am 
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So I see the 'complete' style having some basic techniques and concepts that have proven to work over and over…such as interception, deflection …combined with tenshin/tai sabaki movements _along with entries to pre-empt, and redirect when tactically sound, depending on the situation and your opponent's type of attack.

Then there is a matter of personal preference.

For me, Uechi has all of those components, v. other styles I had seen, something I recognized in the straight in and circular rote movements, particularly evident in the wauke movements blended into forms emphasizing the tenshin/taisabaki/irimi concepts above…augmented by the foot pivots inherent in the forms, a critical component to ingrain the 'off line' skills.

Going to 'completeness' here's a good example illustrating how the Uechi wauke can be put to work.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SrASNrLi ... r_embedded

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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:48 am 
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Quote:
But…No style can ever be as complete as we would imagine to want because of the endless variations of conflict as outlined by Rory Miller in his books and seminars.


Amen Van , the whole concept of styles , and worse purity , is so far away from reality were really missing the picture

at best a style is a fraternal group pursuing a vaguely agreed group of concepts and principles and practices .

At worst its a hierarchy of thought and practice and a cult of behaviour and denial.

the reality is a style pure or otherwise is a very vague construct.

Physically It is the study of force , leverage , relationship , anatomy , and body mechanics that we really study , that's what the founders really studied .

then we study the mental , tactical , and some the philosophical and spiritual.

the quest for the pure art is a side show , best to pick one that you like , and then chase the questions , sometimes you may need to even change arts to follow your purpose . But don't feel limited by the template find a way to use it to liberate your study and anchor your explorations.

The development of a martial artist , lies first with the student , then the teacher , then the art and in that order IMHO

I have switched styles once , cross trained lots , and tested against many more , and I've never been attacked by a style only men.

after a certain amount of experience one should not only take from the art , but give to it , I don't believe any of the masters would have it any other way , and quite to the contrary I believe they would consider it a failure not too. As they all took this approach themselves.

when someone argues this style vs that style , there is a stereotype that is vaguely true , but in reality they might as well be talking about ghosts and goblins , remove the man you have nothing.

we complicate style and construct , and it does us disservice , there is much to be studied in the details but don't get lost in them , violence at the end of the day is a very simple thing , and to make ourselves closer to the answers I think we need to make it smaller simpler and more honest, and be more personally responsible.

I honestly think that's what's so great about a direct condensed and focused style like Uechi.

solid foundations to build from


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:54 am 
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Quote:
For me, Uechi has all of those components, v. other styles I had seen, something I recognized in the straight in and circular rote movements, particularly evident in the wauke movements blended into forms emphasizing the tenshin/taisabaki/irimi concepts above…augmented by the foot pivots inherent in the forms, a critical component to ingrain the 'off line' skills.


Deserves repeating 8)


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 8:26 am 
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Van Canna wrote:
As Hoshin points out, it makes more sense to me to define completeness in terms of your ability to use what you've learned.

It really has to do with whom and what we are…if we can't make certain concepts work for us, then there is little point in pursuing them.

The biggest mistake is in thinking that, in a fight, you can generally go with what you have seen work for someone else in another style, instead of what you have really learned to do with it personally.



Agree with this as well as Hoshin's point. I think of uechi ryu as a combatives style that was developed before the word combatives was fashionable. I also think that we often cut short in our dojo training some of the potential uechi has for transitioning into a joint lock, throw or takedown. Yes it is up to us as practitioners to develop the potential of what we can do with the base that uechi provides. I think the majority of uechi students are exposed to the basics only. There is obviously a great need for the basics-the basics are what hopefully will come out when sh*t meets fan. How often do we really test what we know or can do in our training? Van often posts things that have made me think and question myself, i.e. what would I do? What can I do instinctively that would come out of the training I've done?

Lately I've been thinking that I should spend more time practicing basics and my bunkai. Drives me up the wall when a uechi student feels that uechi is not practical or that it's not a good self defense system.

Practice pretty but apply and defend ugly.


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:46 am 
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If your looking for practical combative uechi I've got to plug Rick Wilson

WPD-RC.com

If it wasn't practical I wouldn't do it

there are folks that specialise in the combative self protection aspect of Uechi , Folks like Van , Rick , Laird have been walking this road for decades.

yeah it takes a bit of courage to explore.


Last edited by Stryke on Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:53 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:46 am 
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double post


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 Post subject: Re: A complete art?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:44 am 
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Stryke, Josann_ extremely well said with a deep understanding of the subject matter. Thank you.

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