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Thread: Body Conditioning

  1. #31
    Mark Murray Guest


    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Harden View Post
    Hi Cady
    Took me and Jake three hours to shovel out and plow .....And Mark was going to come train this weekend...HAH!!!
    Three hours? You sure you're not getting old? LOL!

    I would have made it before the snow, too! I could have helped get in the way while you shoveled. Next time, for sure.

  2. #32
    Samurai Jack Guest


    Quote Originally Posted by edg176 View Post
    LOL. Geez Jack, it's almost like you don't realize that plenty of people have gone to work out with Dan and his students and come back with glowing reports.

    And Dan isn't the only one showing things now...

    In this era of the internet and global travel, there's no excuse for ignorance.

    And what do you mean by ''fah jing?" And how does it relate to postural stability?
    I am embarrassed. I didn't realize who I was talking too. I didn't realize he had studied in Japan under the master, and was his top disciple. Those who studied with Dan then must know what so many of us simpletons don't. The millions of us who are clueless to what Dan speaks to, who mindless move in rote as drones never learning, never progressing for our sin. Those of us deprived of the secrets, deprived of Dan's enlightenment on the method to condition our body as delineated in that rare coveted book that speaks so clearly to Dan and that of which Dan speaks of. I guess, I mis-spoke, I have egg all over my face.

    But, I have one humble question that perplexes me, if the philosophy of improvement is to study alone, on ones own, and such little progress under direction is made, and it should be greatly coveted not to be shared for fear of reducing it to the common, as cited in a book that was published and marketed to the public, then why go to Dan? Is he any greater? Wiser? Proficient? Yes, I am truely at a loss and don't understand.

    Fah Jing
    I could be like Dan and be insolent and highbrow and say you’re not worthy to discuss Fah Jing with me. But, I am not a person who wishes to build credibility with though intellectual discussion, and then when challenge to delineate a method becomes insolent- regardless of those impressed. Honestly, if you study CIMA you know how hard it is pin something like this down, or even prove its existance. And in addition, that everyone has their own definition and application of it. Thus, making it almost impossible to establish a standard, muchless use it carelessly. If I try to explain my understanding then I fear I will add to more confusion then what is already out there by use of comparison or otherwise used in broad respects to fill an empty arguement. I use great caution with it. Therefore, I leave it up to the individual to make their own assessments, and judgments. All I was doing is making a simple reference to point that out.

    If you don't already know, there is a Chinese saying that if you know something valuable it is your responsibility to share it. It is my understanding that Japanese don't feel the same- all of course said interms of martial arts.
    Last edited by Samurai Jack; 17th December 2007 at 00:43. Reason: Pyrite is also known as fools' gold

  3. #33
    Dan Harden Guest


    Jack, try to express your frustration in a more constructive manner. We...meaning several of us here...disagree with you and don't think you know what you are talking about. I said it. But without using sarcasm. Disagree and try to move the conversation forward or leave it for a while if it frustrates you. You don't realize that you were being challenged, by Tim-who does know what he is talking about-that Fajing is a different topic than retained balance and structure.
    So while you clearly don't know what we are talking about-which is fine, Jack. you, made it equally clear after being sarcastic, that you didn't have a clear understandiing even of what you were trying to talk about either.

    Listen, this is not an easy, nor welcome conversation on many complex levels. Its not easy to bring it up, nor to say. It has and is being well recieved by some who have trained with Daito ryu teachers, Aikido teachers, and CMA teachers, and it has been also rejected by teachers and schools. But students and teachers who have started to embrace it are seeing results. This is a topic within a topic, and its old stuff, not new ideas, Jack. There are many training this way now, and discovering a truth that is changing their abilties so profoundly that you cannot possiibly alter their opinions or touch them with your words. There's nothing like teaching a man to fish, and giving them real power that changes them. They're not dumb, they did it, they sweated and strived and they have seen it work. Your words about trusting in continual traditional training...which they... almost to a man- have been part of for many years..mean nothing to them. They've heard it all before.
    The difference is now...they see results.
    Last edited by Dan Harden; 17th December 2007 at 01:29.

  4. #34
    Samurai Jack Guest



    It is easy to dismiss. It is harder to prudent and precise. Yet even harder to be true. I still find it difficult after all these years to find the language to express all that I have learned, all that I am capable of, to listen, to understand. It bewilders me those who work within a small scope and who use tactics to thwart inquiry instead of providing answers.

    I am not sure if you can, in complete, tell us step-by-step without the vagueness and special parlance as smoke and mirrors what this body conditioning consists of. This is the second request I have made. I speak of the body conditioning and the Japanese term you cite, which was not known to you until the publication and then the translation of the book. Basically, I am saying, I am not satisfied with your discussion of this topic, nor your credibility as authorized to do so -as said in a matter of fact. You revelation yields no gold, no renaissance, that has not been discover in CMA or JMA. FWIW, it more about the delivery system where the root of the discussion exists. The author of the book states he created his own verison. A bold statement as he had only one life-time, if I am not mistaken . Your zeal seems to serve only seemingly immortal arguments to prove your worthiness, your credibility. I say this because in the circles you reference those that matter, your not mentioned or recognized regardless of those who provide testimonials to you. Again stated in a matter of fact.

    At this impasse I will no longer suffer you the challenges I made, but I wish you comply though I feel it risks exposure. Before I provide credibility to an unknown, regardless of the claim, substantial evidence must be made to the individual’s credibility-when discussing martial arts. I think as I said before pyrite or fools’ gold lay deep in the pages you profess. I believe you are likened to a Miner with gold rush fever. I don’t make that statement with shallow knowledge you post alot, you have left behind a huge foot print here and other places. My statement is also not based on what you currently say in this post, (your claims is old hat) but how you say it. What you have said in the past has drawn serious critiques from reputable individuals. It is a good rule of thumb un martial arts, you must evaluate not only a person’s responses, arguments and knowledge, but also his motives, and those who support him or not as well.

    In closing-

    I remember a man in Japanese martial arts by the name of Dillman. What Dillman did wasn't remarkable if you knew the body. It was his showmanship that sold the show.

    I will suffer you again one last time, have you studied with the master, where you a disipline of his? If not his whom? I say that again as a matter of fact, my ignorance is great in this area, what ualifies your discussion to the frustrated, unworthy and ignorant?
    Last edited by Samurai Jack; 17th December 2007 at 03:33. Reason: additional info

  5. #35
    Samurai Jack Guest


    Dan, if you wish not to reply to the inquiries I have made, I will not persue the matter. I don't wish insults to replace answers or discussions.

    Correction: I will suffer...ualifies it should read qualifies

  6. #36
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Boston, MA USA
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    Default Hmm, is there some secret posting going on?!?

    FWIW, Mr. Harden has only ever been open about those w/whom he's trained, and doesn't so much call people out as offer them the chance to feel what he's discusses on fora such as this... perhaps a step back and deep breath are called for here?

    Be well,
    Jigme Chobang Daniels
    aoikoyamakan at gmail dot com

  7. #37
    Dan Harden Guest


    Hi Jigme
    Guys like this always show up when you present challenging ideas to what they've previously known. It's just too "out there" for most martial artists to fathom. The "idea" has to come from a source they can wrap their heads around. No outsider can know. They simply...can''s a secret. They can't believe its even possible. Ya can't blame em. It's all they know. So far everyone I've met didn't have much to show. For me, since I've been more open, its been interesting, if they show up and train, they shut-up. The truth of it speaks for itself. And then it's on to the next one. The result is in the training, and we sweat together. I've lost track, but many have come back...and folks are realizing there is a better, smarter way to train.
    Even the replies are private. Folks are getting smart and talking amongst themselves to check things out. They don't want their teachers to know.
    Happy holidays, bud

    I don't seek your offering of "credibility" or acceptance of what I am saying in anyway.
    Thanks anyway. And Happy holidays as well.
    Last edited by Dan Harden; 17th December 2007 at 04:42.

  8. #38
    Finny Guest


    Yeah - I know who Dan trained DR with, and I don't even read that many of his posts or anything.

    And if the "Japanese term you cite, which was not known to you until the publication and then the translation of the book" is tanren, I've heard the term before, and I'm not even a fluent Japanese speaker. It just means body conditioning IIRC.

  9. #39
    Dan Harden Guest


    It's a new concept to many in the Japanese arts. They had no clue, or ignored it. Worse is that for many in the arts that DO know, their teacher-as cited in the book-refused to tell most of their own inner students! Sad state of affairs on the Japanese end. But then again since I have gotten about with CMA folks...Even the #1 students of some very famous guys...stink up the place. They know everything, chapter and verse, and are lineage holders but have no real physical skills. You can stop them and bounce them with ease. After training and talking with them over a few beers, I wonder once again if they haven't been shown, or they don't put in the work either. I've only met a few so far with real power. They feel the same way I do. How do you get folks to do the real work instead of rote forms or kata?

  10. #40
    Dan Harden Guest


    Not that it matters- but I have risked quite a bit, to gain nothing, from people I had never met before. Only to try and help by getting the word out. So far, without exception men are grasping the truth of this and helping change their art forever. Many, if not most of these people, cannot, due to affiliation publicly express ackowledgment.
    Dig around people, check out what I am saying and where you can find it. It's out there. You will be pleased that you did.

  11. #41
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Baltimore, MD
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    Hello Dan et al,

    Wow this thread is really off topic now isn't it?

    Back to the original question. Daito-ryu (and a few of it's off shoots maybe) is the only school or ryu that I know of that uses the name aikijujutsu. That's not to say similar methods do not exist in other ryu but Daito-ryu is the only one that uses the name aikijujutsu.

    Dan, I thought you weren't a student of Daito-ryu?!? How is it you can comment so much on what is missing from Daito-ryu training when you admit yourself you don't do the art? Have you joined the Sagawa-ha Daito-ryu? While tons of people on the net speak so highly about Sagawa sensei I have only heard of how great he is from his own mouth and the mouths of his students. Since students will always sing the praise of their teacher (whether it's true or not) I am forced to discount their opinions. It's also hard to swallow all of his self aggrandizement, even if it is true. Hell, he might be an even better hype-man then Flavor-Flav (Yeah Boy!)!

    On to solo training, tanren etc. Wow Dan you are really opening up a can of worms here aren't you? On one level when you say the secret to good budo is solo training I'd say "duh!?!" On the other hand the expression as you call it (the ryu) is just as important.

    I think many koryu/arts contain the tanren you speak about, developing the proper frame, coordination, kokyu, etc. The problem is that most students don't extract those elements from the kata, and they don't practice the kata enough to gain the benifits as fast as maybe their teachers did. While you suggest that the Japanese teachers are keeping their tanren methods a secret I think most don't know which elements in the kata are the tanren and which are the heiho, thus you get the old "keep doing the kata," because that is how they got it. I also don't think, to them, it really matters which are tanren and which are heiho. It is part of the ryu and that is the training method that has been successful for X hundred years. I think it is a more Western idea to create this duality between the two.

    The other aspect that tanren neglects is the heiho. Learning the strategy and mind set of the ryu is huge and just as important. It is here you learn timing, target, distance etc. Without these aspects all the tanren in the world is useless and you just make yourself some guy who is hard to push over. I have no answer to this but I wonder if dividing the body methods from the strategy is doing yourself a dis-service?

    Ellis Amdur wrote somewhere (Aikidojournal maybe) about native/rural/farm people who show extra-ordinary strength. This isn't a type of strength that you get at Gold's Gym or from throwing dumb bells around. This is the strength that budoka find so important. I think what makes the native/rural people's "exercise" (read as "back breaking work") is how the muscles and body are used. In the gym we grow "stronger" by wearing out the muscles by moving weights and letting them heal. The farmers strength comes from finding ways of moving that weight without wearing the muscles out. This is found in using the frame of the body to support the weight instead of the muscles, and reducing excess movement. I think this is why Ueshiba felt farming was so closely related to budo. This is also why rural samurai (goshi) who worked the field in the day and did kendo at night could come to Edo and beat on their city folk opponents and corn fed farm boys make good football players and wrestlers.

    So maybe us city folk can replicate the farmer movements and create an exercise program to mimick it, but it will still never be as good as doing it in a field or in the right context.

    Dan I think you are starting to make tanren a little too universal and you are losing any impact in your statments. People from all cultures have figured out methods to "get it." There are some boxers who we often refer to as "heavy handed" and they seem almost mysterious. While people try to replicate their outside form they never get what their training model has.

    A few weeks ago we were talking with our Jikishinkage-ryu teacher about learning methods and the speed people start "getting it" (not tanren per se, but understand the ryu). He told us in Japan some people get it very quickly, and other very slowly, but the assupmtion is they'll both get there at some point.

    I think a lot of people have figured out shortcuts to creating these body methods to help increase thier aiki power. They have extracted the tanren and they have been able to advance more quickly. More power to them. "If this snail wants to climb to the top of Fuji surely he will get there!" ~ Tesshu.

    It's late so I'll comment more another day. Look forward to your feed back.

    Best regards,
    Christopher Covington

    Daito-ryu aikijujutsu
    Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryu heiho

    All views expressed here are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the arts I practice, the teachers and people I train with or any dojo I train in.

  12. #42
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Harden View Post
    It's a new concept to many in the Japanese arts. They had no clue, or ignored it.
    Ricky Wood

  13. #43
    Dan Harden Guest


    Hi Chris
    I think everyone agrees on the name, particularly in context of Japanese jujutsu. No, I don’t do it anymore. As for Sagawa I think its fine to use his own words to discuss his views but ad hominem attacks post mortem?? Yikes!! I’ll let your comments sit there. Three people I know went to see him and test him. One witnessed others test him as well. What they came back with, and their subsequent statements and choices supports everything said about him; that he was an amazingly skilled man, and that he was doing Daito ryu Aiki, not some whiz-bang invention of his own.

    Well I agree with your points, or should I say you agree with what I have been saying. While a big advocate of tanren, where did I ever say to stop doing an art and just do tanren? As I said repeatedly I think we are talking about a topic within a topic. Tanren as opposed to the whole art. Did you miss that?
    As for leaving an art or just doing tanren-In public and private I have said exactly the opposite. Stay in the art of choice and learn and train tanren. The big difference between us may be the level of importance you may place on tanren VS me. Also we may have gotten completely different results from our own training methods. It is my view that Tanren is so profound that it is the key to all the arts, it is the engine that drives them. The heiho while important, is of lesser importance overall. Were folks in a pinch Tanren will give you better chances than spending equal time learning techniques and strategy. Thousands of crappy martial artists pretty much have made that case. It is the reason so many stories point to men going off to the mountains and coming back as these monster artists. But wait...these guys and these stories happened in cultures that were agrarian cultures already. They were supposedly all versed in smart labor.
    Farm boys
    The farm boy stuff Ellis was writing about has been discussed in depth by me and many others in several forums. It’s no ones new idea. More important than recognizing it is to know just what it is and what it means. I was raised by a farm boy who became a contractor and knew ways to use the body that generate greater strength in general labor without flexation and where and how to assign load. That they are key to martial arts is true, but not all is to be found in labor. It won’t cut it. Hence the martial retreats and enlightenment I discussed earlier.
    Martial tanren is different, but not goals for it from one art to the next. It is the key to producing all the attributes of Aiki people are looking for. But mores the point the method, is in Daito ryu. My overall point is to get it from your teacher or get it somewhere else…but use it…in the art.

    I also agree with your ideas of who gets it. I have discussed “heavy hands” before. But can you say you have heavy hands? Can you discuss how you got there? Or how to get others there? It is well defined in Daito ryu. Anyone doing Daito ryu should have heavy hands. The old "one strike can kill stuff" While a bit over the top as a comment still expresses a point. While your Jikishinkage teacher’s comments were true- they are also presumptive, not all snails make it. Mores the point is that if there are ways to help the snails that are known why not teach them.
    Why be a snail?.
    Happy holidays
    Last edited by Dan Harden; 17th December 2007 at 13:22.

  14. #44
    Dan Harden Guest


    The martial tanren needed has largley been ignored. And other arts where it is absolutley essential- it is not taught too much later. In Karate, Ushiro is a good example. The many Western guys flexing through not. All based their own admission...which cultures teaching? China.

  15. #45
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Rhode Island
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    Not that it matters- but I have risked quite a bit, to gain nothing, from people I had never met before. Only to try and help by getting the word out. So far, without exception men are grasping the truth of this and helping change their art forever. Many, if not most of these people, cannot, due to affiliation publicly express ackowledgment.
    Hey there Dan!

    Actually, it does least to those of us who've been given the chance to come and visit you. Your willingness to share with those who have come to see you has, for many, made irreversible changes in their view of training, I am sure. I am certainly one of them.

    See you soon & Have a happy Christmas Season!


    Erik Johnstone

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