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View Full Version : Book: "Effortless Combat Throws", by Tim Cartmell



Nathan Scott
27th June 2002, 23:04
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Kit LeBlanc
28th June 2002, 04:16
See Tim Cartmell in action:

http://homepage.mac.com/mancheta/imovie.html

The principles and applications Tim teaches in this book and in other stuff he does is just good and solid Chinese internal arts principles. His throwing stuff is especially from Ba Gua and Taiji it seems, arts known for throwing and chin na respectively.

Tim goes one better than most in that he tests his stuff in various levels of full contact training and competition, and he has overcome the prejudice many CMA and traditional jujutsu stylists have and embraced BJJ....he is a brown belt and division winning competitor in that art.

Tim frequently mentions how the jujutsu principles embodied in the relaxation, flow and skilled body movement of BJJ are very much in line with Chinese internal arts principles.

Brently Keen
28th June 2002, 20:47
I've looked at this book before and it is not bad at all for what it presents. However, as always (I find myself repeating my mantra)that the principles and techniques illustrated within that book are those common to jujutsu as well as some Chinese arts.

"Hopefully, a lot of confusion, like what the difference in methodology between aikijujutsu and jujutsu is, will be answered."

How does a book about Chinese throwing arts help to illustrate the difference between jujutsu and aikijujutsu methodologies? I find almost everyone of the principles mentioned to be jujutsu principles. Some of which are opposite (or at least in contrast) with Daito-ryu aiki principles. As such, the book might be useful for aikido and/or jujutsu, but not of much use for improving your aikijujutsu (imo).

"My reason for introducing this book in the AJJ forum is that a great deal of the principles covered in this book are necessary for performing AJJ-type "aiki techniques"."

That entirely depends on what you mean by AJJ-type "aiki techniques". If you simply mean "aikido-like" techniques like kotegaeshi, shihonage, iriminage, koshinage, sankyo/sankajo etc... then whatever. But if you mean Daito-ryu AJJ-like techniques then that's just not the case. Most experienced Daito-ryu practitioners still make distinctions between jujutsu and aiki techniques just as Sokaku Takeda taught.

Having said that, borrowing or incorporating Don's principles relating to physics and physiology and the like, does not make something "ajj" or even aiki-like. Even Don's students have made distinctions between jujutsu and aiki - maybe not exactly along the same lines that I do, but the distinctions are there non-the-less.

Nathan, with all due respect - my concern is that statements like the above only serve to perpetuate myths about aiki, and don't at all reflect orthodox or classical views of aikijujutsu by actual aikijujutsu instructors/practitioners. There are just too many people who will read a book like this, incorporate a few principles, techniques or ideas from it, and then say that they're teaching aikijujutsu. When what they're actually doing has nothing at all to do with authentic ajj (or the arts Tim Cartmell is teaching for that matter), and more often than not they're filled with pure crap, and the public is deceived into thinking that what they in turn are doing is "aiki" because that's what they call it.

No disrespect to the author (Tim Cartmell) intended at all. I think he gave credit fairly enough to Don for his influence, and the title of his book accurately describes what it is all about. I imagine from what I've seen of the book - that his eclectic approach has served him well and that he's probably quite skilled. But recommend the book as useful for improving your throws in general, not as an adjunct or supplement that will help you understand aikijujutsu better, because it's not and it won't.

If you want to understand aiki better, then study aiki with an aiki master, who's willing to teach what he knows, and then read one of their books.

Just my opinion,

Brently Keen

Dan Harden
29th June 2002, 17:40
I'm not going to debate his art since I know nothing about it. The cover speaks volumes to me though. Wherein does that raised leg bent over reaping type technique speak to anyone about effortless throwing?
If you need that type of gross body movement to take someones balance then It is not a jujutsu I would want to look at-much less anything I would consider advanced. It reminds of bad Aikido where the nage moves all over the freakin place just to move the other guys center. Maybe he didn't pick the cover and it's not representative of his art.


I really don't care about anyone attaching their "Aiki" label to anything. Minimul motion and centered-to-center control speaks for itself what ever you want to call it.

cheers
Dan

lemming
29th June 2002, 22:38
<B>From Dan Harden -
I'm not going to debate his art since I know nothing about it. The cover speaks volumes to me though. Wherein does that raised leg bent over reaping type technique speak to anyone about effortless throwing?
</B>

I've got the book, and have read through it a couple of times. I don't think the cover fairly depicts the content, probably they just needed something a bit flashy.

All that aside, 2 years training in aikido doesn't qualify me to have much of an opinion as to whether the content of the book is worthwhile or not. It looks good to me, but then I never tried it, and my throwing skills are deplorable. It would be great if someone with some background and ability were to pick the book up and spend a bit of time analyzing it, hint, hint...

As to any aiki connection, I don't think the overall point of the book was to relate anything significant in that area, and most people reading it probably won't care so long as the concepts in the book are sound.

There was another book, Chinese Fast Wrestling, which in my mind seems to have come out around the same time, and had what seemed to be some related material. I'd also be interested if anybody had qualified opinions on this book as well.

Kit LeBlanc
30th June 2002, 00:16
Originally posted by Dan Harden
I'm not going to debate his art since I know nothing about it. The cover speaks volumes to me though. Wherein does that raised leg bent over reaping type technique speak to anyone about effortless throwing?
If you need that type of gross body movement to take someones balance then It is not a jujutsu I would want to look at-much less anything I would consider advanced. It reminds of bad Aikido where the nage moves all over the freakin place just to move the other guys center. Maybe he didn't pick the cover and it's not representative of his art.


I really don't care about anyone attaching their "Aiki" label to anything. Minimul motion and centered-to-center control speaks for itself what ever you want to call it.

cheers
Dan

I must admit you surprised me on this one, bud. Especially for someone with a judo background. Looks like an uchimata to me (also a popular throw in Chinese shuai jiao). Don't know about you, but I have been thrown with an uchimata that I barely felt...considering the lack of effort the guys put out and the lack of power I felt on taking the ride I would pretty much have called them effortless. Leg in the air or not.

Good luck on that minimal motion stuff against someone who doesn't tank. I know, I know, maybe you do it in YOUR dojo. No else seems to be able to do it convincingly, though. I am making the rounds and trying to find someone who can convince me otherwise, and have so far been disappointed. Not sure when I'll be out east so you can show me how, though I still wanna visit.

These people are skilled, mind you, but give them pressure, give them non-cooperation, adapt to their attempts to catch your center with their minimal motion locking of your joints (like people just seem to do naturally in the real world) and it all ends up looking like rough jujutsu,judo and/or sumo. Chinese styles, Japanese styles....looks like judo or sumo. Even push hands with full contact, when one man is vying to defeat the other, rather than a force-sensitivity experiment, is essentially sumo...at least thats what all the taiji stylists complain it ends up being.

Might be good judo, might be good sumo, but that is what it is. Someone working against you just does that. If you are doing it differently, you are doing what no one else I have ever seen is capable of, arts and people with very good reputations.

I really hope to see that some day.

Cady Goldfield
30th June 2002, 02:30
Hey Kit,

We don't tank. We don't use big, gross motor movements. Minimal motion when applied in the right places is plenty effective.

What about making a machine's parts smaller and less gross in their movement, with the result of the machine becoming more efficient and powerful? Why wouldn't this also be applicable to martial arts principles and human "machines," the functioning of which follows and is subject to mechanical principles?

Chris Li
30th June 2002, 08:13
Originally posted by Cady Goldfield
Hey Kit,

We don't tank. We don't use big, gross motor movements. Minimal motion when applied in the right places is plenty effective.

What about making a machine's parts smaller and less gross in their movement, with the result of the machine becoming more efficient and powerful? Why wouldn't this also be applicable to martial arts principles and human "machines," the functioning of which follows and is subject to mechanical principles?

"Aiki is small"

- One of my instructors :).

Best,

Chris

Kit LeBlanc
30th June 2002, 13:54
Cady,

So I've heard. That's why I want to see and feel your stuff next time I'm in your neck of the woods.

No one else has convinced me so far, maybe you guys can.

Dan Harden
30th June 2002, 15:17
Hey ya bud
Sorry for a lenghty post but I can't seem to shorten it-you know me.

Kit writes
I must admit you surprised me on this one, bud. Especially for someone with a judo background.
__________________________________

me
Judo is not fighting-never was-never will be. Agreeing to tangle and vie for position to throw against someone who knows all the throws is a physical game of chess. Hence there is an agreed sense of cooperation by the limits of allowable technique. It is one of the reasons it has degenerated into such muscle based pull-overs when they resist a throw. Now it is equal to any other form of sport competition. Low line Kicking striking, and feints that lead to set ups, chocking, and throwing- is fighting.
And here's the thing-fighting a fighter who knows all of that is as artificial a response as practicing against half-assed attacks.
This was the source of my comments to you about the level of attacks you face in your line of work. If Joe the average citizen gives you as much trouble as you and your fellow officers have repeatedly written about in these pages-imagine what they would offer you with serious training behind them combined with that much motivation.
___________________________________

Kit writes
Good luck on that minimal motion stuff against someone who doesn't tank. I know, I know, maybe you do it in YOUR dojo. No else seems to be able to do it convincingly, though.
These people are skilled, mind you, but give them pressure, give them non-cooperation, adapt to their attempts to catch your center with their minimal motion locking of your joints (like people just seem to do naturally in the real world) and it all ends up looking like rough jujutsu,judo and/or sumo.


me
Where to begin........

Joint locks; minimul motion or otherwise while fighting are stupid-dojo fair. Where in have you read where I advocated using them? I train them, I work them, I perfect what I can with them. They are a requirement to know here. But I am the fellow who has been rather forward and disdainful or their use and I have said repeatedly that I do not believe they are attainable against a commited attack-and whats more- most of them can be shaken off. (that's my polite version) Over beers I will tell you what I really think of most of this nonsense. Were you to come and fight don't expect to see even one. They are useful in "other" venues. For fighting another fighter I will concentrate on other things far more attainable. I am more interested in pragmatic real world intent to finish. With plenty of failure, humility and real world fustrations to the very same thing. We have discussed this in the past-do you think I was kidding? You can have the dojo fun, for practical combatives-away from the Aiki bunnies Hakama crowd -there are serious ways of using smaller motions to get close, bind, stop, or inhibit his body and then strike, go for the throat or throw and mount.
I'll take your sarcasm about MY dojo in stride Kit. But I offer no panacea to the dilema of CQC-wherein did I ever clame to offer that? I seem to be the voice continually admonishing practical views in these very same pages.
I'll offer you serious training with effective solutions to handling people. Anyone who offers 100% nonstoppable techniques is a fool.
Lets see-am I not the same guy who encouraged you to seek your own solutions "outside" of these ridiculous arts?
I think I am
Did I not advise you as a friend that the solutions are in the principles-just dump the stupid attacks and you will discover Kits Ryu?
I think I did
I believe we reviewed the realistic notions of mindset to enter, and heightened and sustained agression that combined with adaquate training puts you just on this side of a brawl.
Please don't place me in any line up of these other martial idiots who offer "shark attack" unstoppable mayhem jujutsu-I will disavow it at every turn.
If you want to come train that would be lovely.
_____________________________________

Kit writes

Might be good judo, might be good sumo, but that is what it is. Someone working against you just does that. If you are doing it differently, you are doing what no one else I have ever seen is capable of, arts and people with very good reputations.

I really hope to see that some day. [/B][/QUOTE]

I really have grown to be completely diinterested in these people with reputations. I have seen and felt many and I remain distinctly unimpressed. You may continue to travel far and wide but I think several of the fellows I grew up with would lay waste to the efforts of many of these "legends." The whole damn thing is embarassing.

As for resistence having to lead to larger motions and muscle- there sweety-lies our most probable cause for dissagreement. I feel that the above can and should be accomplished with parsimony of technique, flash or fanfair. Training to go through them with the thought of weapons to finish (most of the time)and without using a lot of muscle is not even remotely unique. Its just that most people DO train that way.
I will offer this and this only-I have never felt anyone who feels like I do up close- although I am quite sure they are out there. What I have seen and felt is tamer. But that view is limited by what I have seen and felt isn't it? I like what I have developed. But if you are looking for an art that is unbeatable you will be gravely dissapointed-that does not exist and everywhere you look you will simply set up a straw man and you will once agin be dissapointed.

Again, (as I have written to you about this in the past) I urge you to define what you want and need for your line of work and concentrate on Kit ryu. You may eventually find what you need right at home.

My response is probably to lengthy but it is a deep subject-too deep for this venue.

cheers
Dan

Kit LeBlanc
30th June 2002, 17:00
Originally posted by Dan Harden

me
Where to begin........

Joint locks; minimul motion or otherwise while fighting are stupid-dojo fair. Where in have you read where I advocated using them?

Uhhhh, it sure sounds like it a couple posts up....



Originally posted by Dan Harden


I train them, I work them, I perfect what I can with them. They are a requirement to know here. But I am the fellow who has been rather forward and disdainful or their use and I have said repeatedly that I do not believe they are attainable against a commited attack-and whats more- most of them can be shaken off. (that's my polite version) Over beers I will tell you what I really think of most of this nonsense. Were you to come and fight don't expect to see even one. They are useful in "other" venues. For fighting another fighter I will concentrate on other things far more attainable. I am more interested in pragmatic real world intent to finish. With plenty of failure, humility and real world fustrations to the very same thing. We have discussed this in the past-do you think I was kidding? You can have the dojo fun, for practical combatives-away from the Aiki bunnies Hakama crowd -there are serious ways of using smaller motions to get close, bind, stop, or inhibit his body and then strike, go for the throat or throw and mount.
I'll take your sarcasm about MY dojo in stride Kit. But I offer no panacea to the dilema of CQC-wherein did I ever clame to offer that? I seem to be the voice continually admonishing practical views in these very same pages.
I'll offer you serious training with effective solutions to handling people. Anyone who offers 100% nonstoppable techniques is a fool.
Lets see-am I not the same guy who encouraged you to seek your own solutions "outside" of these ridiculous arts?
I think I am
Did I not advise you as a friend that the solutions are in the principles-just dump the stupid attacks and you will discover Kits Ryu?
I think I did
I believe we reviewed the realistic notions of mindset to enter, and heightened and sustained agression that combined with adaquate training puts you just on this side of a brawl.
Please don't place me in any line up of these other martial idiots who offer "shark attack" unstoppable mayhem jujutsu-I will disavow it at every turn.
If you want to come train that would be lovely.
_____________________________________

Kit writes

Might be good judo, might be good sumo, but that is what it is. Someone working against you just does that. If you are doing it differently, you are doing what no one else I have ever seen is capable of, arts and people with very good reputations.

I really hope to see that some day.

I really have grown to be completely diinterested in these people with reputations. I have seen and felt many and I remain distinctly unimpressed. You may continue to travel far and wide but I think several of the fellows I grew up with would lay waste to the efforts of many of these "legends." The whole damn thing is embarassing.

As for resistence having to lead to larger motions and muscle- there sweety-lies our most probable cause for dissagreement. I feel that the above can and should be accomplished with parsimony of technique, flash or fanfair. Training to go through them with the thought of weapons to finish (most of the time)and without using a lot of muscle is not even remotely unique. Its just that most people DO train that way.
I will offer this and this only-I have never felt anyone who feels like I do up close- although I am quite sure they are out there. What I have seen and felt is tamer. But that view is limited by what I have seen and felt isn't it? I like what I have developed. But if you are looking for an art that is unbeatable you will be gravely dissapointed-that does not exist and everywhere you look you will simply set up a straw man and you will once agin be dissapointed.

Again, (as I have written to you about this in the past) I urge you to define what you want and need for your line of work and concentrate on Kit ryu. You may eventually find what you need right at home.

My response is probably to lengthy but it is a deep subject-too deep for this venue.

cheers
Dan [/B][/QUOTE]


No martial art in any dojo is fighting. Period. I no longer care to try to define what "is" and what "isn't" better suited for it with the bulk of people who have no frame of reference for "it." You do, from the history you have so far related, that is why I am interested in what you have to say.

Your previous descriptions of the elements that go into the practice at your dojo, minus some of the over enthusiastic endorsements we saw in the aiki-wars, are also very intriguing.

The sarcasm is meant more tongue in cheek, and to draw out your explanation. You generally give opinions that I agree with. But I am seeing more and more opinions on the Net that are not based on what is hard reality. Lately some of the opinions I have heard from people I have come to respect are not jibing with reality when I get to experience it first hand. So I am wondering exactly where you are coming from. I would like to see how you put this stuff to training for practical use....but I should say I don't expect to see anything different from what anyone else is doing, that really works, in *good* jujutsu, or judo, etc.

Last, not sure I would be so dismissive of joe the average citizen. I think our definitions of that term are different in view of resistive arrest and officer assault situations. Even if they aren't, I have learned to have a lot more respect for psychoses, drug and alcohol influence, and weapons of opportunity than for any martial arts training.

Cady Goldfield
30th June 2002, 17:27
Kit wrote:
"Dan wrote:
Joint locks; minimul motion or otherwise while fighting are stupid-dojo fair. Where in have you read where I advocated using them?"


Uhhhh, it sure sounds like it a couple posts up....

If you're referring to my post, I misread what you'd written earlier. I was pointing to small, efficient movements in general, not joint locking, and particularly not jointlocking while fighting. The thread was about efficient throws, and I'm thinking about all the very small, minimal movements I've experienced from others in freestyle, in which very little effort was made to throw me or connect, lock up my body and choke me out. Joint locks and "grab my wrist"? As Dan so aptly has drummed into us, that's dojo practice fare to develop sensitivity and intuitive sense of vectors.

And if you weren't referring to my post... nevermind. :D

Richard Elias
30th June 2002, 19:40
I have no comments on the book but I just wanted to throw in here (no pun intended) that I would agree with Cady and Dan in that I think it is important to draw a line between what is effective self defense and what are training exercises in sensitivity and basically "what I can get away with" -type techniques.
That seldom comes up in these discussions.

The latter is fine for showing off at seminars and such but not practical jujutsu/aikijujutsu.

There are variations to many techniques that can fall into both categories.
Take the sumi otoshi for instance: we have versions that (in a dojo setting) require almost no contact or cause the person to virtually throw themselves based on visual or tactile deception, minimal motion, or very light touch. But there are also versions that are designed to break the opponentís arm and land him on his head with all of his body weight coming straight down on top of it.
My teacher seldom if ever shows the latter forms at seminars because most people want to see the more esoteric techniques he has gotten a "reputation" for.

There are various levels of each and I personally have found that having done some of the "what I can get away with" versions have helped to improve the more practical versions because you have to have it just right for it to work at all, even with no resistance. They have allowed me to see more direct and efficient lines of force that when applied in a more practical form make it come off cleaner and powerful while requiring less effort or strength.

Some techniques are practiced because they can save your life, whereas some are practiced for the lessons that they teach.

I think it is important to study both if you have them available to you, but you should know the difference between the two.

Brently Keen
30th June 2002, 23:55
Wow, I'm sensing a group hug here in the imminent future - I'm agreeing with Dan and Cady, and yikes even Richard here!

Among those whom I respect and like to train with "tanking" is not a regular practice even with minimal motion techniques jujutsu or aiki. Yet, in a sense aiki is a sort of induced tanking. If you want to get good, you've got to become sensitive of your openings and aware of potentials. To some extent uke will have to take a fall if he want's to avoid getting hurt. Other times when uke is a more senior student he will take the fall to show tori how the technique is supposed to work, it's like the instructor role in a sword kata. If the senior throws himself in order to teach the student - then it's beneficial to the student, it's beneficial for training. So just because someone falls doesn't mean the student's technique was real, but it may serve a purspose and still be effective for the teaching and training of the student. In the process the senior also learns much. So there's good tanking and bad. Bad tanking is when is when you take the fall when there is no reason to, when there's no application of technique, or intent. That is what the aiki bunnies and fairies do.

Kit, I think perhaps you need to make a more realistic distinction between training and fighting. Perhaps the problem is rooted in the popular myth that we will always fight as we train/practice. Therefore the more "realistic" oriented arts/practitioners tend to engage in more "realistic" training methods (usually sparring, freefighting, resistive competition, etc...).

The truth is that we train to be able to fight - We don't fight in training so that we can fight in the street. If you're fighting for training, then you're either going to eliminate yourself the first time you train with someone better than you, or you're going to run out of practice partners very quick (if you're very good), or your going to introduce rules/limits to your practice fighting. At any rate, you're not likely to make much progress beyond your present level, because you'll just do what you already know in order to win and/or survive the training.

Just like Richard described, the various ways of doing sumi otoshi in Yanagi-ryu, in Daito-ryu it is very similar. There are basic jujutsu techniques, throws, strikes, chokes, locks, breaks, etc... Try like Dan said, to do those against a trained fighter - it gets a lot more difficult. But that's why those advanced aiki moves and combinations thereof were developed. They had to have some way of securing an advatage against other skilled samurai/fighters. During samurai era's every bujutsu school taught a dozen, or a hundred, or a thousand ways to strike, break, or otherwise incapacitate an opponent. Most were pretty common (since we're all dealing with the same human body's strengths and weaknesses). The advanced secret techniques of most koryu schools were usually subtle and often unorthodox ways of securing an advantage over another skilled opponent who would not easily fall for the more typical tactics.

Aiki training in particular is aimed at developing particular skills to use against this type of fighter. If a basic jujutsu technique is going to do the trick, then that's all that's necessary. Aiki is not needed for such situations. Now if you're dealing with someone who is a skilled and sensitive enough fighter to counter your basic jujutsu, then some aiki will come in handy. If he's not sincerely trying to attack you, and is just playing defensively, then whatever - why bother?

Here is a thread that addresses similar concerns about the only other aiki-like art that I've ever seen:

http://russianmartialart.org/forum/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=185

The response to this fellow's question by James and other Systema practitioners is pretty much the same as my experience in Daito-ryu. One difference between Daito-ryu and Systema is that Ryabko and Vasiliev have very recent and extensive real world experience - using apparently the same sort of very relaxed, sometimes mimimal motion or even "no touch" types of techniques that Daito-ryu masters have been teaching and demonstrating for generations. Granted none of the present day Daito-ryu masters have the same extent of real world combat experience (AFAIK), the experience of Sokaku and his predecessors is at least two generations past, yet the skills and the principles and (to some degree) the methods are apparently quite similar if not shared. The training methodologies differ a little, but they also share many principles, and (imo) what the Russians are and have been doing validates much of what we Daito-ryu aiki guys have been saying for some time.

That is the art is based on sound principles that work. Likewise it is also taught by principles. Training is "principle based" rather than "reality based" so that you can develop applicable skills and attributes to apply in real situations against either skilled or unskilled, armed, or unarmed, and/or even multiple opponents. By "reality" I mean those typically harder, competetive styles, NHB, MMA that square-off and use lots of resistance and sparring, and the like in order to engage in more "realistic" training - to be "as close as possible" to real fighting. I do not mean reality as in the quality of facing nature and facts the way they are and dealing with them practically (of course sound principles are more 'realistic', than contrived/controlled sparring and fighting events events like the octagon and such).

Experienced as someone like Vasiliev is, he's also apparently teaching his students, who in turn (without the same level or amount of experience) are effectively teaching others by a principle based training method. They spar in slow motion - hardly realistic by today's standards, but what they're doing is also very amazing, not unlike aikijujutsu. If you want to learn, you "play the game" or "do the work" as they say. If you don't buy it (what they're doing) then there are plenty of guys who're willing show you how it works - and from what I've heard it really hurts.

Still if their ego's aren't caught up in needing to prove it to you, then they'll likely let you come and go completely unimpressed, but none-the-wiser for the experience. If there's no hard feelings why hurt someone just to prove a point? In Daito-ryu this is more frequently the option chosen with an ignorant challenger, if they can't see or appreciate the value and effectiveness of what is being taught then why bother? Someone who is adept has already seen and had it proven that it works, and knows fairly well what they can and cannot do. Better to be a nice guy and let someone go away in ignorance than be an @ssh*le and cause a fight and hurt somebody. As Neil sometimes says, "Move along move along!"

At any rate, the implication is to let us get back to training quietly, and let the instructor give his attention those sincere students who are coming to learn rather than show that they can stymie everyone else's attempts to do the same. By most accounts I think the more adept Daito-ryu instructors are perhaps better known for their manners and gentlemanly conduct anyway. As opposed to being known primarily for their fighting skills and ability. This is apparently true for masters Ryabko and Vasiliev as well, who apparently are quite frank about the spiritual qualities and characteristics needed to master systema as well. The ability is there, should they find themselves needing it, but there's no need to go around fighting just to prove it. Better to work on polishing your spirit, and keeping your ego in check (imo). People of that caliber regardless of nationality and the art practiced are usually able to make the stuff work on even the most sophisticated as well as dense skeptics - and if they walk away uninjured it has as much to do with their generosity as it does their skill level.

By the way, I checked out the book again last night at Borders - the picture on the cover is fairly representative of the stuff inside. No aiki to be seen at all (imo). Tai Chi Chuan/Chin na, yes. Judo/Jujutsu/Aikido, yes. Shuai Chaio, yes. Aiki/Aikijujutsu, nope. In fact, I question the "effortlessness" of many of the techniques shown in the book - too many large and gross movements (imo). Large movements usually require more effort than small movements (especially against resisting opponents).

While the principles listed and described may be sound, most of the techniques shown don't reflect very good posture - which is very basic to performing effortless throws of any kind. Poor posture always requires too much effort (imo).

Brently Keen

Walker
1st July 2002, 06:37
So Kit, I have a question. Why didnít you ask Don about this and see if he could back his stuff up? You had two days. If you are truly searching how are you going to get anywhere if you donít ask the questions that are bothering you?

MarkF
1st July 2002, 09:04
The truth is that we train to be able to fight - We don't fight in training so that we can fight in the street. If you're fighting for training, then you're either going to eliminate yourself the first time you train with someone better than you, or you're going to run out of practice partners very quick (if you're very good), or your going to introduce rules/limits to your practice fighting. At any rate, you're not likely to make much progress beyond your present level, because you'll just do what you already know in order to win and/or survive the training.


Brently,
And, this is different how? The only difference I see is that y'all have agreed to train in repetive motion, you've agreed from the get-go that any other kind of training is out, and you've also agreed that everyone else is fighting to train. You train to fight. Frankly, this is the same stuff from a couple of years ago which was basically an argument about the value of differing training styles, and not much more.

I won't let myself get into it with the "troll" Dan started but other than doing kata training only or perhaps two person kata or kumi-uchi, it is somehow a superior training method than any type of resistence practice? All sorts of limits are put on every type of training, in the case of all non-resistive training you have agreed not to resist.

I agree with you concerning certain types of tanking just as there are many different manner of randori. It can be an exchange of technique with little or no resistence just as it can be a fully resisting one. It isn't held to nage waza, either, as randori can easily switch to katame waza randori, or tai sabaki (feinting) and Low kicking and striking definitively becomes a part of randori.

But this is something which has been argued many times. The only difference I see is what we all agree to. Geez, even a street fight has rules, you just have to find them. A knife produced changes the rule of the fight just as much as your surroundings, your attacker, and what you can come up with in the seconds or fractions thereof one has to practice to be able to do.

While Dan may be correct when he states (well, he doesn't actually state an opinion, he says it is fact) that a match can be an exercise of the chessSword type, that doesn't say anything about the proverbial street. Sometimes, chess or games like it teach conditioned response, strategy, just as a game of blind attack drills teaches one to feel in a different way. All the "feeling" in the world is not going to teach one to "feel" as one would blind, or rather non-seeing. Most sighted people are "blind" and always will be, but that's another discussion.

Anyway, I'm a professional student and love to learn new things I have found agains after a long break from seminars. I won't deny any claims anymore because it is fruitless, I just wanted to straighten out a grossly over-simplified belief about any kind of fighting/grappling or weapons play. Each one of these one introduces changes the game, but it in no way changes what is. We all agree to certain conditions in training, in the dojo setting, but no one will ever know what, exactly, will get you through until it is over.

It's like grabbing the blade of a knife and cutting your hand badly rather than letting it slash something more inportant to you. It isn't a choice, it is a reflex, or it should be. If you can parry it fine, but no matter what is introduced in training, it is an agreement. No one has the corner on that.


Mark

MarkF
1st July 2002, 09:25
The truth is that we train to be able to fight - We don't fight in training so that we can fight in the street. If you're fighting for training, then you're either going to eliminate yourself the first time you train with someone better than you, or you're going to run out of practice partners very quick (if you're very good), or your going to introduce rules/limits to your practice fighting. At any rate, you're not likely to make much progress beyond your present level, because you'll just do what you already know in order to win and/or survive the training.


Brently,
And, this is different how? The only difference I see is that y'all have agreed to train in repetive motion, you've agreed from the get-go that any other kind of training is out, and you've also agreed that everyone else is fighting to train. You train to fight. Frankly, this is the same stuff from a couple of years ago which was basically an argument about the value of differing training styles, and not much more.

I won't let myself get into it with the "troll" Dan started but other than doing kata training only or perhaps two person kata or kumi-uchi, it is somehow a superior training method than any type of resistence practice? All sorts of limits are put on every type of training, in the case of all non-resistive training you have agreed not to resist.

I agree with you concerning certain types of tanking just as there are many different manner of randori. It can be an exchange of technique with little or no resistence just as it can be a fully resisting one. It isn't held to nage waza, either, as randori can easily switch to katame waza randori, or tai sabaki (feinting) and Low kicking and striking definitively becomes a part of randori.

But this is something which has been argued many times. The only difference I see is what we all agree to. Geez, even a street fight has rules, you just have a lot less time to find them. A knife produced changes the rule of the fight just as much as your surroundings, your attacker, and what you can come up with in the seconds or fractions there of one has to practice to be able to do and agree to (Butch's description of a knife fight noted).

While Dan may be correct when he states (well, he doesn't actually state an opinion, he says it is fact) that a match can be an exercise of the chess type, that doesn't negate anthings about the proverbial street. Sometimes, chess or games like it teach conditioned responses, strategy, and just as a game of blind attack drills teaches one to feel in a different way, chess may help to sieze on the correct tactics and strategy. All the "feeling" in the world is not going to teach one to "feel" as one would blind, or rather non-seeing. Most sighted people are "blind" and always will be, but that's another discussion.

Anyway, I'm a professional student and love to learn new things I have found again after a long break from seminars. I won't deny any claims anymore because it is fruitless, I just wanted to straighten out a grossly over-simplified belief about any kind of fighting/grappling or weapons play. Each one of these one introduces changes the game, but it in no way changes what is. We all agree to certain conditions in training, in the dojo setting, but no one will ever know what, exactly, will get you through the the fight until it is over, and yes, that includes good shiai. Even in DR AJJ, the muscles most used are the shoulders and the hips but after training so long, one learns how much and when. After some time studying any type of grappling, the less muscle activity one needs or uses.

It's like grabbing the blade of a knife and cutting your hand badly rather than letting it slash something more important to you. It isn't a choice, it is a reflex, or it should be. If you can parry it fine, but no matter what is introduced in training, it is an agreement. No one has the corner on that. I agreed recently to have some one use a live blade on my neck while learning to turn out of it. The agreement was that the live part was still sheathed. One of those showing me that principle had scars on his neck from doing it. I'm still not that comfortable with it. I hope I never am, but I'd love to learn more of it sometime.


Mark

BTW: Dan, no offense meant, but it was a troll post whether purposeful or not.

Dan Harden
1st July 2002, 13:09
Mark
No troll meant-your right though I can see where it could go there. You know I love Judo I was trying to define a purely fighting venue vs dojo training-which we all do. And Judo has much to offer. I do like smaller movements and judo offers them as well. Hows that?
I don't like ticking you off-you get so surely :D

Dan

Dan Harden
1st July 2002, 20:13
Hey Mark
To further that thought along-remember where we were talking about artificial response or lets cal them "feed back loops?"
I was using Judo as an example of a chess match? Let me add this to the "Judo as capable art" argument- that I would make on any other day.
The artifial feedback loop of judo (no strikes or kicks per se) and with the opponent knowing what you will try to do- does not detract from some other excellent response training that is within the Judo paradigm-having to throw someone who is full intent on preventing that very thing! Thats a hell of alot better than someone cooperating.
And as for small movements I know a guy that will do you up just fine with the smallest O-Goshi you ever saw, just a cheek sneak and WHAM!

Told ya I wasn't kidding-or trolling. My writing just sucks

see ya bud

Dan

Meynard Ancheta
1st July 2002, 22:57
Effortless Combat Throws is a great book. I think you should all look beyond the samples demonstrated in the book and read deeper into it's content. Tim said a lot of very important concepts, principles and theories in that book that should not be overlooked by any martial artist. IMO Tim's techniques have more Aiki like quality than most people that post here. I don't mean to ruffle any feathers, but that's my opinion based on my experiences with Tim Cartmell and Don Angier. My Teachers.

Nathan Scott
2nd July 2002, 22:25
[Post deleted by user]

4th July 2002, 00:39
Nathan,

Amen!

Tobs

INFINOO
4th July 2002, 03:28
I have been lurking on this thread/ forum for some time. My background in Aiki type arts goes back some 11 years. Before that I was involved in western grappling arts and for the lack of a better word street fighting. At present I own/operate my own combative company Rogalsky Combatives internatioal(RCI).
I offer this bakground to feel that I have somthing to offer to this discussion as I have been on the floor with both Soke Don Angeir who I lucky enough to take Ukemi for at a seminar in Calgary several years as well having the oppertunity Dennis Rovere who is a chinese military stylest. My interst in chinese systems where mostly edged weapon based knife/bayonet but I did have a chance to slog my way through about 3/4 of the Yang long form in Tai-chi, complete with applications, not all the applications mind you(its not like I didnt try) which Im sure would be infinite. So with this out of the way I will offer my 3.75 cents Canadian convert that to US funds, 2 cents.
Aiki arts, western combtives and the chinese systems all have different training meathodologies. In my experience the most rewarding part of trying to learn and experience differnt combat arts first hand is not what they do, but how they do what they do . When they do what they do, and why they do what they do and most importantly how they train to do what they do.
From personal experience I can say if your want to experience the application of other combat arts(have tech done on you) then one must take steps to insure your own survival. Many teachers along my path would say stuff like I could show you the throw but the fall would kill you. The breif time spent taking Ukemi for Soke Angier gave me a clear map for the quality of Ukemi I wanted to make my own.. Soft gental landing while holding weapons have been a great asset in staying alive in many training situations since than. For instance not every where I trained had soft mats to train on , many times it was hard dirt ground, hardwood floors and concreate (Tai-chi,).
The word "tanking" has been brought up. From my own experiences the skill of taking soft Ukemi with or without weapons is a great asset. The fact that many teachers didnt break my arm or neck first(And I felt they could have on many occasions) before they threw me to the ground didnt hurt either.
I wanted to post more about the science of throwing and i will later , but a migrane that feels like an ice pick behind my eye is telling me to get some down time.

Regards
Gregory Rogalsky
Rogalsky Combatives International

INFINOO
4th July 2002, 15:19
There is a common "quality" of movement that is universal to those that incorperate effective throwing into there art. I would also say that while arts like Tai-chi and Aiki type arts share the same quality the way that the way two differnt arts get the other guy on the ground is clearly differnt. Somtimes clearly people dont know or understand what they are lookin at, so they say things like "thats just like we do it". However, when the two tech are under closer scrutiny, they are clearly differnt. Im not suggesting one is better than the other, only differnt. If any art appears to be working "to hard" than there are things that could be changed to make the tech more effecient. For instance some of my major progress in understanding the throwing arts were made after studing Tai-chi for some time and changing my stance a little here and adjusting foot work there. This didnt change my core beleifs about the importance about (head controll,elbow controll, triangulation, and attacking on the pull )that I learned from Aiki and wrestling. It just made them work a little more effecient and harder for the other guy to counter. And isnt that what we all want? So from my perspective effortless combat throws are possible but to get to that point in training and in a fight, somtimes require lots of hard work to make it look easy.

Regards

Gregory Rogalsky
Rogalsky Combtives International
Calgary Alberta Canada

Brently Keen
6th July 2002, 02:30
Nathan wrote:

"Wow, quite a controversial book."

I don't think the book is all that controversial - I just disagreed with the premise of the original post on this thread - and that is that the book in question might be useful for helping to understand the differences between jujutsu and aikijujutsu.

1) Hey we agree!! :toast:

2) (I) wrote: "How does a book about Chinese throwing arts help to illustrate the difference between jujutsu and aikijujutsu methodologies? I find almost everyone of the principles mentioned to be jujutsu principles."

Nathan responded: "I don't know. The book was written by a Chinese stylist, but as he explains, the principles of throwing are based on universal physics, and reading through the text I found a lot of familiar principles that were explained rather well."

The principles are universal. I think that's why they're "familiar", not because they are "aiki-principles". If Cartmell explains these principles rather well, then that speaks rather well for him and his book, if he likewise gives Don credit for his ideas, then he also has more class than many other people do.

There are many people in Jujutsu and Judo that focus on breaking/sweeping the foundation out from under the opponent to throw or that focus on techniques involving picking up or displacing the opponent's center directly (like "Koshinage" or Judo's "Ogoshi") rather than connecting to the opponent's center externally by using various methods of levering/connecting to the center indirectly (if that makes sense).

My comment was geared towards these people, since many of the principles described in this book relate to indirect center connection (c), and though this idea is included in many throwing arts, is rarely understood or felt by exponents."

That actually makes a lot of sense Nathan. In fact, I would say these observations are quite astute, and I agree whole-heartedly with what you're saying there.

"My experience has been that those that excel in indirect center connecting tend to be those in the aiki arts, and aiki relationships..."

I'm not arguing with that.

"... (and aiki relationships) seem to be most commonly established through this method."

It's often said that with aiki, "what you see is not what you get", I would simply add that what "seems to be" may or may not in fact be the case. So it's also how they're going about "connecting" and what it is they're connecting to that makes them excel. In other words, aiki relationships may "seem" to be commonly established via these principles, when in actuality (or at least in my experience, I should say) they may or may not.

"Therefore, understanding these principles (double weighting, etc.) will, in many cases, help the reader better understand methods commonly used in establishing aiki relationships with an opponent. But, that is not to say that most of these principles cannot be found in jujutsu as well (depending largely on the style)."

Here is where things get sticky, and I find myself needing to draw more distinctions. Universal principles (like double weighting, etc...) are just that universal - so yes, you can find them jujutsu as well as in all sort of arts including Chinese ones. The problem comes when we equate aiki with certain principles, and the use of certain principles (as is done in some popular tapes). IMO, aiki does not equal principles nor do principles equal aiki. Aiki may be based on principles and principles can be used to explain how aiki works, but they are not the same thing. Aikijujutsu will often make use of principles like double weighting, but it accomplishes the double weighting with aiki - not leverage. Therein lies a crucial difference between jujutsu and aiki. Both use principles, but often in different ways, and often they'll also use different principles altogether.

One person uses skeletal locking or levers (jujutsu) to accomplish double weighting and uses the double weighting to set up and accomplish his throw and/or finishing move - popular opinion might call that "aikijujutsu", but as I've been trying to say all this time, in Daito-ryu a distiction is made between jujutsu and aiki. In Daito-ryu Aikijujutsu, "aiki" generally needs to be applied to establish an "aiki relationship". As a side note: this isn't a new Roppokai modification BTW - in the mokuroku it states often to "apply aiki"... when describing various techniques.

To follow the above example, aiki might be used to double weight the opponent, and thus accomplish the throw. In another situation though, jujutsu might also be used to double weight the opponent, but then aiki might be applied at some other point to either finish the throw/takedown, or to otherwise immobilize the opponent with a pin. Both these examples, having applied aiki along with jujutsu cover what I'd call aikijujutsu.

"As James Williams has pointed out, arts like Shishin Takuma ryu Jujutsu, as taught by the Kuroda family, clearly employ aiki principles, but they do not choose to term the methods as anything but good "jujutsu". I would recommend watching any of the many Japanese language video tapes he has available for reference."

I brought a bunch of his tapes home with me from Japan in '94 and I showed them to James shortly after that. Little did I know that a few years later James would be inviting him here for seminars! And I think that's really great, although I respectfully disagree with James, on the use of the term "aiki principles", and instead agree with Kuroda sensei that what he teaches is jujutsu. I don't disagree about the similarities or the characteristic's that he says the two arts share, only that I don't think that it's ajj. You guys seem to be saying that a rose by any other name is still a rose - when I think we're all using the same term "a rose", but some of us are talking about another kind flower altogether. Semantics yes, but it's important if we're going to understand each other better.

Back to Kuroda, the principles in common are certainly shared, but what makes them belong to "aiki" or "aikijujutsu"? I simply classify them differently. I would say that among those principles (and perhaps some other things) that Kuroda sensei's arts share with ajj is primarily a very soft, relaxed (ju) approach and application of techniques - he also shares an uncanny sort of speed & timing. These things make his jujutsu appear very aiki-like and perhaps even makes them quite compatible. I won't even bother getting into other characteristics of his jujutsu that are clearly different from (Daito-ryu) aikijujutsu. I think think there are a number of Kuroda sensei's former and current students who've also trained in Daito-ryu that would agree with my distinctions though. Likewise, I know a few koryu practitioners that think jujutsu was always (and still is) supposed to be done softly, more like Kuroda sensei does. But it's still jujutsu not aiki.

3) "Brently, as usual you are the only one that is stating with authority what is and is not "DR Aiki". I did not say anything about how the material written about in this book relates to DR Aiki, and in fact did not mention Daito ryu at all.

First off, I have no "authority" whatsoever. I'm a nobody, I know a few things, but I'm not very good. My opinions are my own, based on what I was taught and what I've learned and experienced. In your first post though, this is what you said:

"My reason for introducing this book in the AJJ forum is that a great deal of the principles covered in this book are necessary for performing AJJ-type "aiki techniques"... <snip>

Those curious about Aikido, Jujutsu or Aikijujutsu would be well served to have a look at this book, IMO. Hopefully, a lot of confusion, like what the difference in methodology between aikijujutsu and jujutsu is, will be answered."

So while you did not say "Daito-ryu" you did say "aiki" and "aikijujutsu". When you say "aikijujutsu", you've got to know that most people are thinking of Daito-ryu, the predecessor of aikido or Yanagi-ryu. Granted some folks might think of R.D. or G.L. or some other phony baloney, but that's beside the point - I don't think you were referring to those. Now I make the distinction of Daito-ryu Aiki/AJJ simply in order to separate what I'm talking about from other legitimate ajj like Yanagi-ryu which I'm not really qualified to comment at a length about, or aikido, and aikido related arts, and all the other so called ajj that is out there. I make this distinction, because we have never been able to agree on this board (or any other) about the definition of "aiki". Since the understanding of aiki in Daito-ryu differs significantly from the common or popular understanding of aiki - in aikido and other arts, I choose to say "Daito-ryu Aiki" for clarity, in order to be better understood.

If some people think I say "Daito-ryu" aiki in order to be arrogant or to lend more "authority" to my posts - whatever. My intent is simply to be as clear as I can be, granting that clarity is severly restricted by the constraint of words and language written on a screen. Hence another oft-repeated mantra of us Daito-ryu practitioners - is that these sort of distinctions are always better shown in person than conveyed in writing. Still most of us are separated by long distance and time zones so we enjoy meeting here on the www to discuss topics of shared interest - we have to do the best we can.

Now while I certainly learned from Okamoto sensei in the Roppokai, and was active in running a dojo in California, and did represent the Roppokai as a member and shibu-cho, I'm not actively teaching now, due to other personal obligations. So please let me clarify again that I do not officially represent the Roppokai or Okamoto sensei in anyway when I post on this board - I have often stated that my opinions are my own. I have however, taken seriously my teacher's admonition to me to only teach that which I know. Such is not only the limit of what I can teach, but also in a practical sense, the limit of what I can truthfully talk about in a forum such as this. In other words, I don't make a habit of "theorizing" on the boards about things that I haven't already discovered myself in training, and taught in class.

"Incorporating such principles will not "give you or make aiki" automatically - no. But if you are studying aiki under a qualified instructor, then the explanations and terminology used by Angier Sensei and books like this may be quite useful..."

Sure, explanations from YOUR qualified aiki instructor should be helpful. Explanations from other instructors may or may not be helpful - depending on the instructor and their respective style and it's similarity to your style. There's no disagreement here from me, except that the usefulness of this particular book is limited to it's general usefulness regarding throwing (in general), not aikijujutsu in particular.

It was not my intention to imply that you could learn "aiki" from this or any other book! Obviously, this would be impossible. Anyone that would try to use a few catch phrases and tricks while selling themselves as doing "aiki" would be a fool and hopefully proven as such eventually.

Ah Nathan, you let the cat out of the bag... all this time I was thinking you were hoping to spawn more self-made ajj masters just so you all could have more tapes (ala R.D.) to watch at the next aiki expo. Seriously though, you did say you thought the book might be helpful for improving one's ajj-like throws and ansering some of the confusion surrounding aikijujutsu and jujutsu. ;)

5) While the book does not seem to make mention of aiki, I would disagree that such principles will not improve Aikijujutsu, based on my own experience.

However, in order to discuss "aiki", we would of course have to define it, which has been attempted on this list to great lengths in the past. Without this common ground, it is very difficult to share intelligent debate over the subject.

Perhaps we can agree to disagree on this, because obviously our experiences differ, as do our definitions of aiki. But then again, that's why I've been choosing to clarify all my opinions and posts by referring to "Daito-ryu" aiki/aikijujutsu in particular. Unless someone can come up with a better way to differentiate between the different views, then I'll need to continue to attempt to make myself more clear by delineating what kind of aiki/aikijujutsu I'm talking about.

By the way Nathan, no offense has been taken from ya, nor intended in return - as tiring as these discussions can be for some folks, I think they're helpful for others, so I carry on. I feel a real sense of gratitude and wonder towards Daito-ryu AJJ and my teacher - I only hope I can give back to the art as much as I've gained from it.

To Tobs and Meynard: I hear ya. You guys are just too cool!

Gregory, I'm out of time today, but I think you made some rather good observations. More later.

Brently Keen

Nathan Scott
6th July 2002, 02:55
[Post deleted by user]

Chris Li
6th July 2002, 02:59
Originally posted by Nathan Scott
the same way as DR Kodokai, or if the DR Kodokai defines it the same way as the DR Roppokai, or if the DR Roppokai defines it the same way as the DR Sagawa dojo? Is the aiki performed the same way between these DR groups?

:eek:

Depends who you talk to - but some of the people in the groups above would say definitely NOT, so YMMV.

Best,

Chris

Arman
6th July 2002, 05:59
Nathan,

Sooner or later I just knew you would try and pull us out of the wood work on this :) I've been trying to resist. I'm still waiting for one of Dan's infamous "deleted" posts, where I can only wonder at the content of a post he completely deleted.

Anyway, in response to your question,

I still wonder if the DR Mainline defines aiki the same way as DR Kodokai, or if the DR Kodokai defines it the same way as the DR Roppokai, or if the DR Roppokai defines it the same way as the DR Sagawa dojo? Is the aiki performed the same way between these DR groups?

my understanding of what I have learned so far in the mainline school (which isn't very much, I'd like to qualify), is yes, there are differences big and small, depending on the branch you are comparing the mainline with.

At the most basic and introductory level, but upon which all other "aiki principles" build upon, is Kondo Sensei's maxim that the moment you come into contact, or the moment just before contact, with your opponent, you must immediately unbalance him/her. "Aiki" represents the varying levels of subtlety in accomplishing this task. Of course the big question is, "Well, just how is this different than jujutsu?" I can only respond that the difference in aiki-unbalancing lies in the peculiar method of application. These "methods of aiki-application" are comprised of varying levels of subtlety and difficulty. One would have to practice or experience the technique to understand how it is different than jujutsu kuzushi - and I won't go into any details about these methods.

A major difference you might have noticed in earlier discussions on this topic is the "scope" of aiki in the varying schools. For example, Kondo Sensei teaches that one must have the highest grasp of aiki-principles in order to adequately perform the techniques in the hiden mokuroku, especially the ikkajo. Other schools appear to maintain that the hiden mokuroku are comprised primarily, if not entirely, of Daito ryu jujutsu techniques; in other words, no aiki. For this school of thought, aiki only appears in the higher level techniques, or is applied differently than the manner in which the techniques of the hiden mokuroku are performed.

In the mainline tradition, however, one could perform the ikkajo using just DR jujutsu, or one could perform the ikkajo using DR ajj -Kondo Sensei clearly believes that the ikkajo (as well as the hiden mokuroku as a whole) cannot be done properly utilizing only jujutsu. Most beginners start learing the hiden mokuroku using only DR jujutsu principles. Only later do students start to learn how to do the hiden mokuroku kata using DR ajj principles. Some, you might guess, never learn the DR ajj principles.

So while some aiki techniques are very subtle, and others are not so subtle, the scope of aiki in the mainline school is not as restricted in definition as in other schools. One need only watch practitioners of different schools perform kata from the hiden mokuroku, or even just ippon dori, to see a difference in the teachings. Furthermore, even an untrained eye will notice the more jujutsu type from the ajj type, even if he doesn't know why they look different.

I would like to add here that I don't want to make any claims on the validity of the mainline interpretation vs. other branches. Nor do I wish to denigrate any other branch's interpretation. I am more than happy to "agree to disagree." But I did want to offer some thoughts on Nathan's question regarding what little I have learned studying the mainline school.

Respectfully,

Arman Partamian
Daito ryu Study Group
Maryland

Tim Cartmell
9th July 2002, 09:42
First of all, I'd like to thank Nathan for recommending my book.

I'd like to take the time to clear up a couple of points. I finished writing the book while I was still living in the Republic of China, before I met Soke Angier. I met him shortly after returning to the States and he was gracious enough to spend some time with me showing me his art and explaining its principles. My thanks to him in the foreward of the book was in gratitude for the time he spent with me. I have no formal training in the Aiki based arts, and any shortcomings in the material should not reflect on Soke Angier.

The ideas and principles in my book are based on my own training in the Chinese martial arts as I learned them from my Chinese teachers. My intent was to present some of the principles of body use and throwing strategies (as I understand them) in a unified format, hopefully so that practitioners of different arts could find something of use. I chose the simplest techniques I could think of to illustrate the principles outlined in the book, and principles of body use and throwing are the focus of the work. Some of you who decided the value of the book after glancing at the pictures may find reading the text more worthwhile.

Regards,

Tim

Kit LeBlanc
9th July 2002, 15:11
Tim,

Good to see you here.

I think it should also be noted that Tim has had the courage to test the principles of his internal arts practice under pressure: he won two full contact fighting tournaments in Taiwan in 1986.

Tournaments in Taiwan are NOTORIOUS for their roughness. Some time in the 80's there was a big expose in one of the rags on an international Taiwanese tournament due to the rough tactics and the injuries they produced in the participants. Despite what non-combatant practitioners and non-competitors may like to think, this kind of thing is in many ways a realistic measure of practical ability.

Tim has also embraced the study of Brazilian jujutsu since returning to the States and is a brown belt in that art (probably equivalent to a Judo 3d dan in relative terms of time in art/demonstrated skill vs. others of similar background), and recently won that division in a tournament in California.

Tim has always maintained that there is great deal of commonality between internal MA principles and the non-resistance, soft fluidity and understanding of angles, point of contact and control over the opponents body in good BJJ, which as anyone who has practiced BJJ and Japaanese jujutsu knows, are simply "jujutsu" principles.

We would do well to hear him out.

Now back to the nascent Aiki War III (or is it IV?).

Brently Keen
9th July 2002, 17:20
Tim,

Welcome to the discussion, glad to have you here.

Just for the record, I did read through your book, in addition to looking at the pictures, and I actually enjoyed it. FWIW, I think it presents the concepts and principles of the subject better than many other books about Chinese martial arts.

I simply disagreed with the original post that implied the book would help answer questions pertaining to the differences of jujutsu and aikijujutsu (both Japanese traditions, and ajj as I'm sure you know, is a rather peculiar and unusual Japanese tradition).

My observations regarding some of the techniques pictured have much more to do with stylistic preferences and their respective interpretations of principles, which are different - hence my opinion that your book is of greater practical value to practitioners of arts other than aikijujutsu.

Respectfully,

Brently Keen

PS: Kit, although we're not wrapped up in group hugs, we haven't escalated to Aiki War status yet. So I'm thinking we're closer to a state of "wa" than war at the moment.

Neil Yamamoto
9th July 2002, 17:55
Brently posted: "So I'm thinking we're closer to a state of "wa" than war at the moment."
--
Ha, I live in the state of WA,you don't. Brently, you live in a state of CO, which is known for fires and burning, and Kit lives in a state of OR but works in WA.

Bad jokes over and back to topic, Tim's book is worth getting.

jellyman
10th July 2002, 23:06
FWIW,

I have tim's book, too. First book I got that talked about throwing in terms of mechanics as opposed to just techniques. After reading it, I added 3 throws to my sparring artillery that I was able to use in JJJ sparring (sort of like jacketed MMA with a 30 secind time limit in the ground) right away. In my honest opinion, well worth the money. I am not an aiki man, although I do have a jujutsu and judo background, nor am I a CMA man, although I have done some TJQ. I have no affiliation with Tim, although the one time we talked, I found him to be civil and intelligent. I currently study systema, so this is my honest evaluation...

the Khazar Kid
13th July 2002, 18:35
Great thread!! I remember looking at "Effortless Combat Throws" in a bookstore one time, reading this thread makes me feel like I should get the book soon!

Jesse Peters