Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A fight to the distance

It's past time I finished up my series of responses to Sensei Zoran Stojanovski's five questions that he posed regarding the efficacy of aikido, particularly against karate-trained opponents. Today I'll work on the second question:

How much is effective a good aikidoka in the fight to the distance with good karateka?

This is really the hardest of the five questions because I don't understand the idea of "to the distance." I think that could either be a question about fighting "to the death" or fighting in a prolonged, endurance battle.

If it's a question about whether an aikido guy could kill a karate guy in a fight, that's kind of gruesome and awful because it's possible for anyone to kill anyone else regardless of their training. Whether or not it's likely that a aikidoka could win in a fight to the death with a karateka, I couldn't answer. See, that sort of fight is outside of the domain of both aikido and karate. Aikido is about avoidance, evasion, offbalance, and control. Karate is about defense rather than offense. so the question is a tough one if viewed in that sense.
If it's a question about who would win in a prolonged fight requiring great stamina and endurance, I couldn't answer that one either. See, both arts are about self defense, and nearly all self-defense encounters have nothing at all to do wth endurance. Most all fights are over before you can shift from anaerobic to aerobic metabolism (something like 2-3 minutes), and most all exertion that occurs in a fight is anaerobic in nature. So in a fight, "to the distance" would generally be a few seconds, perhaps as much as a couple of minutes.
For more interesting reading on some of my ideas about the efficacy of aikido and karate, check out these previous articles...

And all five of my responses to Sensei Zoran's questions...
Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: or phone 601.248.7282
Suggested great books on aikido, judo, and strategy.
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