Current events

  • Summer at Union U. (Judo randori and Goshin Jutsu) - Sept 5-7, 2014
  • Fall Aiki Buddies Gathering - Starkville. (November 15 weekend )
  • Winter Clinic @ Windsong (Matl, Lowry, Rea, Bieler, Parker) - Dec 27-30

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Psy-ki-do at Kris Wilder's blog!

Somebody smart told me a while back, that in any self-defense encounter, two fights will occur; one fight between the attacker and the defender, and the other fight between the winner and the loser's lawyer.
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Today I'm guest posting on Kris Wilder's awesome blog, The Striking Post, and my topic is how to defend yourself while simultaneously using Psy-ki-do to help prepare any witnesses to testify in your favor.  Watch out, though.  This is a really cool and interesting psy-ki-do trick, but it might require you to re-think and re-tool some of your ideas about how your martial art works in a self-defense situation.
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Check it out at The Striking Post!
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Karate vs. Kung Fu

Wim posted this today on his blog, which reminded me of a story.  Seems about 22 years ago I was a hottie!  I had trained in TKD and karate and I worked out all the time.  I had done some competition and had had some successes.
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I was at a tournament in Biloxi - and I was a green belt.  They put me in a ring with a kung fu guy wearing the cool-looking black and white sleeveless kung fu suit with the frog buttons and a gold sash (don't have a clue what that gold sash signifies).  Anyway, I was in the zone and they called go and I took a step in.  My strategy in those days was to control the center of the ring so I'd have more space to move and I could force the opponent to work the edges and maybe take a penalty or two.  Anyway, I stepped in and took control of the center of the ring...
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And dude put a spinning hook kick on my temple and knocked me silly.  Stars and fireworks and everything!  I was astounded because the guys I'd been working out with, both karate and TKD, weren't able to do a good spinning hook until purple or brown belt.  I dragged myself back to the starting line, sure that this was going to be a long, hard time with me getting my butt kicked.
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The referree called go again, and I stepped in and dude threw another spinning hook that whooshed past my face barely missing me as I beat a hasty retreat.  Then I got an idea!  I stepped in, almost to his kick range, and whoosh!  Another spinning hook kick.  I stepped back, and then stepped at him and whoosh!  Another spinning hook.
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It's literally the only technique this nutjob knew how to do!
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Needless to say, after I read this guy's playbook, I came back from being 2 points down and humiliated to win the match by a 10-point spread.  I hammered him with reverse punches in the ribs and kidneys every time that hook kick whooshed past me.  I got a dozen reverse punches in on this guy during the time limit.
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So, all this is not to say that Kung Fu guys suck just because that one did.  I'd say that Wim has some pretty good commentary - especially about versatility over at his blog - go check it out.
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Tanjojutsu for real



Photo courtesy of Pay no Mind
Here's an interesting thing regarding the history of tantojutso (a walking-cane adjunct to SMR jojutsu). Note: I'm no historian and I read this history with a skewed view. This is not gospel, and if I can post this without getting ridiculed by the Koryu snobs, I'll consider myself lucky. It's interesting nonetheless. Read with me between the lines of the following (adapted from the Wikipedia article on Tanjojutsu)...
After the Meiji Restoration in 1869 ... Japan [introduced] ... European clothes as a popular new choice of wardrobe. Among the things that were imported, the western style walking stick ... quickly became a very popular item in Japan, especially for former samurai who were not allowed to wear swords anymore as a sign of their high status ... In 1885, Uchida Ryogoro, who was a student of Shinto Muso-ryu (jodo), devised a new set of self-defence techniques for the tanjo [Western-style walking stick] drawn primarily from existing jodo techniques...and organized into a system which was named Uchida-ryū Tanjōjutsu.
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This tells me that tanjojutsu was designed for people who were not crippled. The samurai (and other bigwigs) carried Western-style walking sticks as status symbols - sort of a combination of, "Look at how modern and stylish I am," and, "I might not have a sword but you'd still better not screw with me!"

If you were to attempt to pick up tanjojutsu as part of a real self-defense cane system for people who actually carry a cane because they really need it, then it seems to me the techniques would likely have to be modified from their original form. You would have to remove all of the elements that a strong man with healthy legs could do but that a man with a ruined leg or two might not be able to do. What might these modifications look like?
  • shorter, lighter, slower stepping - no lunging and certainly no lunging into a kneeling position
  • the above would necessitate a more acute practice and knowledge of ma-ai
  • hold the cane in the proper hand to support the bad leg - don't define the stick to always be in tori's right hand
  • push back off of uke after every technique instead of standing in zanshin assuming you've destroyed the threat
One of the interesting things about jo work in SMR that carried over into tanjojutsu is that the attacker is always armed with a sword. This was, perhaps, functional self-defense when jojutsu was invented, but swords were disallowed by the time of development of jodo and tanjojutsu. So, why have the bad guy attack with a sword?
  • It's sort of dishonorable-feeling to beat up an unarmed guy using a stick, although that might be reasonable and defensible for someone who actually needs a cane to walk.
  • The sword is a 3-foot long knife. If you let that guy within reach of you then you are in deep trouble. By arming the opponent with such an awesome weapon - a weapon with such fearsome potential, the tanjo-guy is forced to become sharper. He must do everything just right or he will be cut.
So, if I were to attempt to pick up tanjojutsu as a self-defense thing, I'd keep the swordsman as the attacker, but it would probably be wise to do some of the cane-vs-empty hand stuff from hanbojutsu or aikijo.

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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The penultimate self-defense technique

This is one of the greatest self-defense videos I've seen in a long time - The ultimate martial arts self-defense technique is demonstrated starting at 0:49.  Well, at least the penultimate SD technique.  This is the ultimate, best martial arts technique of all.  But still... check out this video and marvel at this master's prowess!

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Psy-ki-do: psychic blood and gore!

Today I'm guest blogging at Marks' Blog!  Hop on over there and check it out for another crazy Psy-ki-do idea.
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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The Legend of the 3000 year-old martial art

I'm sure you've heard this one. "My martial art was invented 3000 years ago and used by noble warrior-monks, who passed it down in an unbroken lineage to us today." The next part of the legend (sometimes implied, but often explicit) is that all other martial arts are inferior, diluted subsets derived from our 3000 year-old martial art. Thus, our 3000 year-old martial art is the best around so you'd better keep paying your dues here and not go study somewhere else.
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Think about it some. You don't have to be a history major...
  • Per Wikipedia, Kalari (claimed by some to be the oldest Eastern martial art) dates all the way back to the 1100's AD (that's only 900 years ago).
  • Chinese martial arts (though there are certainly differences of opinion) are thought to be derivatives of Kalari, so that makes them less than 900 years old.
  • The Chinese are thought to have influenced the development of Japanese, Okinawan, and other SE Asian martial arts, so these are even younger. Karate was exported from Okinawa to Japan in the early 1900's. Taekwando is a Korean brandname of Japanese karate, so it's later than that.  Judo was invented in the 1880's and none of the Koryu ("ancient") Jujitsu styles were too much older. Aikido coalesced into a thing of its own in the 1920's.
  • Of course there were other non-asian heritages. You can find some evidence for European and Scandinavian martial arts dating back to the Dark Ages but the evidence for ancient European and African martial arts is limited.
  • And all this talk about whose martial art is older is kinda stupid anyway.  People have been fighting since there was 2 people and one thing to eat.  And any time some warriors are more successful than others, the successful warriors' technique will be studied, systematized, and eventually turned into artform.
So, when someone tells you that their martial art is 3000 years old and is the mother of all martial arts, they are either part of a kool aid kult, or they want to be the leader of a kool aid kult with you as their follower.
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And besides, who ever said that jump-kicking knights off of horseback has any relevance in today's world?
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Psy-ki-do - Guest post at Dojo Rat


Photo courtesy of Dojo Rat (I don't know where he got it)
Ooh, check me out!  I'm guest posting at Dojo Rat's blog today.  Hop on over and see what you can make of my crazy ideas about psy-ki-do!
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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The Legend of the 8000 techniques

Some time back I was surfing and came across an aikido school boasting that they taught their students more than 8000 techniques! Wow! That seems like a lot of value for your money. Tomiki schools (including mine) only teach about 30 unique techniques. Seems like there's no way that someone from the School of 30 Techniques could stand up against someone from the School of 8000 Techniques! Is there?
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Maybe there is. Suppose you get about 3 hours practice per week, drilling 6 techniques per hour. If you don't repeat or revisit or review any techniques, then it would take 8000/18 weeks to spend 10 minutes on each technique. That is, it would take you 8.5 years to get 10 minutes practice time on each thing in the system.
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So, who do you want to bet on? Someone who has tried to learn something for 10 minutes some six or eight years ago, or someone who has spent the same 8.5 years learning and reviewing and experimenting with and delving deeply into 30 things?
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Of course, the schools that claim to teach 8000 techniques don't really practice all those things.  There's no way they could.  That's just a ridiculous lie.  They practice the same things that the guys at The School of 30 Techniques practice.
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So, who would you rather deal with - someone who lies to you about what they're teaching or someone who tells you straight out, "I only have about 30 things to teach you?"

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Intro to psy-ki-do


Inspired by The Men Who Stare at Goats, for the next week or so I'll be writing a series of articles on what I'm calling Psy-ki-do. Sort of the soft science, pseudo-science, or psychological side of combative arts. The first post is already available at my newsletter - if you missed signing up for that, you can catch this newsletter at the archive here, and you can sign up for the upcoming newsletters here.
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Upcoming psy-ki-do ideas include...
  • how to trick an attacker into total commitment (a dream come true for aikidoka)
  • how to sap the opponent's will to fight by making him think you are a predator and making him feel like your prey
  • how to be a better instructor by getting in synch with your students

 
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Southhampton aikido practice

I enjoyed this video a lot.  Not all of it is as I would choose to practice it, but that doesn't make it bad or anything.


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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Early jujitsu video

Possibly the first video of jujitsu (judo) ever recorded!  Pretty cool stuff!

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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The Champion Buster Legend



Photo courtesy of Wendy Cooper
There are legends and stories that pass through martial arts communities. Some are true and some are lie, but most have a kernel of truth. Most of these legends have a moral, or an ideal that they are supposed to transmit. There are lots of these apocryphal stories that seem to have a life of their own. There is one of these stories that I've been thinking about today. I've heard this throughout the years from different people. I call it The Legend of the Champion Buster.
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The premise is that there is this unassuming judo instructor teaching a handful of people in some backwater locale. The instructor hasn't competed in years, if ever, and nobody in particular has really ever heard of him.
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Well, along comes the young, hot, strong, national-level competitor. The type of guy who is used to being alpha-male at his own dojo and every other dojo the rolls into. The young champion is invariably "in town visiting relatives" or something to that effect, and drops into the instructor's dojo figuring to show the local yokels what "real judo" looks like.
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After getting suited-up and taping up all his fingers and doing some vigorous warm-up exercises where everyone can see him and be impressed, he walks out to do randori with the instructor...
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...and the unknown instructor demolishes the champion - smashes him while seeming to hardly move - humiliates the young champion without ever exerting himself, all the time doing "classical judo" instead of "competition judo".
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I've definitely seen judo players that fit that young champion archetype, and I often feel like the unknown judo instructor teaching a handful of people in some backwater locale, although I am definitely NOT claiming to be a champion buster.
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I don't know what brought that story to mind, but I though I'd share it and see how many folks have heard this legend or one like it. What do y'all think of those two archetypes? Have y'all ever met the champion buster? Ever laid hands on him in randori?
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Mokuren Dojo Newsletter

As the year is drawing to a close I have quite a few new things on the drawing board, one of which is a new dojo/blog newsletter! The newsletter will include dojo news and info, thoughts and practice hints for my students, reprints form my blog archives, and articles and other content that won't be available on the blog.
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If you enjoy this blog, I know you'll enjoy receiving the email newsletters 1-2 times per month. Signing up is easy - just click here and enter your name and email address. Mail Chimp will send you an email verification to be sure that you are really opting-in and you're not being spammed -then you're "in like Flynn" (whatever that means anyway).
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The first newsletter will be ready to go out in about a week, so don't delay - make sure you're signed up now so you won't miss any of the great new content!

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Charisma and Intelligence

Kel (left) and yours truly (center background) at the recent yonkata clinic (click the pic for a larger image) Aren't those Mokuren Dojo guys a handsome, intelligent-looking group!


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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Ukiwaza and Koryu Dai Yon



Courtesy of Adam Franco
What a fabulous seminar we had this past weekend!  I got to see a bunch of the old heads - one of whom I haven't been able to lay hands on in about 10 years!  And it's always a pleasure to play under the tutelage of Henry Copeland - a truly great aikido master and heck of a great guy.
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We went over the floating throws and koryu dai yon kata.  Following are my impressions and take-away points. Of course, any mistakes or misunderstandings are my fault...
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I was impressed at the incredible variability in yon kata.  There are apparently very many different acceptable ways to do it.  It seemed to me (and to some of the other old heads) that Henry has taught this thing several different ways over the years.  I suppose that is to be expected as our proficiency and understanding improves and so does his, but it seems as if virtually anything that gets the desired throw with the desired energy or feeling, counts as an okay yonkata.
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We started the floating throws with shihonage because that is where the offbalance changes in junana.  everything up to this point has been catching uke on a downstep and bumping him into offbalance, but the premise in these techniques is that you miss that downstep, and draw him perpendicular to his feet into offbalance, causing him to rise and float for a moment.  That's right.  I usually characterize these things as floating throws because of the distinctive feel of the otoshi throwing action following the offbalance, but Henry was talking about the offbalance being the floating aspect of the floating throws.
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Shihonage illustrates a properly-timed guruma offbalance.  Maeotoshi is rushed and spoiled but you can still float him by lifting under the arm.  Henry was throwing sumiotoshi an instant later than I usually throw it and teach it.  Hikiotoshi is still a bear for me.
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This weekend, YK#1 and YK#2 had wholly different feels - not just "wrong-sided" versions of the same thing.  YK#1 was pushing perpendicular between the feet on the down, into the face on the rise, then pushing through otoshi and into guruma on the next down.  YK#2 was evade, pop the hands up in his face, and turn with him.
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YK#3-4 hang them on their second otoshi step, then  stride through them on their next weight shift.
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YK#5-6 can be a pulling sumiotoshi if tori is shorter than uke.
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Another surprise this weekend was Henry characterized it as a really aggressive, practical, self-defense kata.  That's interesting because I've always thought of it as a compliant uke theoretical drilling type kata.
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We practiced several of the throws from YK part B from 2-hand grabs, where they are usually one-hand grabs.  They work great either way.
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What did you other guys that attended take away from this clinic?
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Nice aikido demo

Very nicely-done aikido demonstration.  Much of what you see in the first half of this video has the same feel, the same energy as the Yonkata material that we'll be working on this weekend.  Much of the second half of the video has a similar feel to the end of Sankata.

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Time to float


Picture courtesy of BekiPe

One of the interesting peculiarities about our particular scope and sequence _ our method for teaching Tomikiryu, is that between Ikkyu (1st brown belt) and shodan (1st black belt) there is a huge amount of time but a relatively small amount of new techniques. Between ikkyu and shodan is at least 90 mat-hours but only 5 new techniques. And those 5 techniques are not really the main idea that the student is supposed to get. So, what is?
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Between nikyu and ikkyo, the student learns the ukiwaza (intensely timing-dependent floating throws, A.K.A. kokyunage the breath throws). Then from ikkyu to shodan, the student is supposed to take the extra time to go back and apply the principles learned in the ukiwaza to all the previous material. Basically, to make everything a floating throw.
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so, what are the characteristic ideas seen in the ukiwaza that are supposed to be transferred to all the previous material? All the floating throws...
  1. have a loose connection between uke and tori - tori is not hooked directly to uke's torso.

  2. have a connection with little mechanical insurance (for instance, unlike kotegaeshi, with a floating throw you can't endanger the wrist to make uke comply.)

  3. require near-perfect timing

  4. require near-perfect synchronization between tori's and uke's footfalls.

  5. require near-perfect directed off-balances

  6. require tori to not support uke

  7. are all otoshi motion - that is, they all happen at the moment of a footfall

  8. incorporate that release feeling from hanasu, which is further refined by practicing koryu dai yon kata.
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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20th anniversary clinic preview

This weekend, five of us are attending the 20th anniversary seminar at the Starkville aikido group with my teacher, John Usher, and our great friend and teacher, Henry Copeland. We will be working on the floating throws in Junana as well as Koryu Dai Yon kata. For a little glimpse of what you'll be getting if you attend or what you'll be missing if you can't make it, check out the following.  I can't wait to see some folks that I might have seen once in the last 10 years, and to work on this awesome stuff with these awesome instructors!




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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Marks on hip motion



Today I'm pleased to have Marks guest posting here at Mokuren Dojo.  Marks' blog has been a consistent source of thoughtful articles on judo, karate, self-defense, and mixed martial arts for years now.  Today he is writing on the importance of hip motion.
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To the untrained practitioner, Judo and Karate look like two completely different arts. After all, Karate leans more towards the striking aspect of combat, while Judo leans more towards grappling. However, to a trained martial artist, who has spent many hours practising striking and grappling, the similarities between the two arts is more than evident. Weather it be performing a perfect ippon winning throw such as Tai O Toshi, or landing a solid power felt strike like Gyaku Zuki, there is one thing that is needed to execute each and that is strong hip rotation.
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Without hip rotation, strikes, weather it be with the hands or legs will be nothing more than soft taps, and throws will be as effective as a man trying to lift up a car.



The above example shows the practise of Seoi Nage in uchikomi fashion using a tree and a rope (a great way to strengthen ones throw by the way). There is an initial step in with his right foot, his left foot then steps behind and in close to his right, and the last part of the practise is to strongly rotate the hips as he bends slightly with his knees.
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It is this strong hip rotation which produces the power behind the throw. It must be noted that in order to produce a strong hip rotation, the body must be facing the opponent as much as possible until both feet have stepped in. In this case, the Judoka’s right leg comes in and the left behind but his body is still facing forward and at the last moment he strongly rotates his hips as he simultaneously bends and pulls with the arms. Against a live opponent and with the full technique using speed, such a strong hip rotation and pull can produce some devastating throws.

The above video shows a demonstration of Gyaku Zuki, one of the most famous of all Karate techniques. Here it is practised in a simple basic way, using a static firm stance and a strong pull back of the non punching arm to the hip. Although many will argue that this is not a practical way of performing the technique, not many can object to the fact that this is one of the best ways to practise the strong hip rotation needed in order to put full power and speed into the punch to make it as effective as possible. This strong rotation of the hips is shown quite clearly if one simply observes the Karateka’s belt. Before the punch begins, the belt is in a ten o clock position and as the punch is executed it is thrust in a circular direction with the same ferocity as an arrow shot from a bow. Without this strong hip rotation, the punch would not be anywhere near as effective and a lot of energy would be wasted trying to use arm strength alone to make it powerful.
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One of the best ways to practise hip rotation is simply through basic training just as these two videos show. By performing basic movements, with emphasise on good hip rotation, one will automatically, eventually start using there hips more when it comes to sparring/randori. So for the Judoka this means many hours of Uchi/Nage Komi with a compliant training partner and for the Karateka, many repetitions of basic techniques in front of a mirror so as to gauge ones progress.
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Hip rotation is the key when it comes to trying to use ones body to maximise power and speed. It is something that all martial artists, regardless of style should keep in mind and should always practise, no matter how many years they have been training.
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Many thanks to Pat Parker for giving me the opportunity to guest post here at Mokuren Dojo. It is a great website, updated frequently with very interesting topics and is an honour to add something to it. - Marks [...and thanks to you, Marks, for a great article on a vital element of martial skill.  Youve given me a couple of good ideas for follow-up posts. - PLP]

www.markstraining.com – Fighting and Training Methods for Unarmed Martial Artists


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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Do yourself a favor - breathe


Photo courtesy of Simmr
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When I first started judo, we did all the rocking back and forth on your back and mat-slapping exercises and we learned a couple of breakfalling techniques. But in all of my breakfalling practice, somehow they failed to mention one key point - relax and breathe out when you hit the mat. Why is this important?
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Well, soon after that, we were working on taiotoshi. I was partnered with a cute, but tough, girl who was a couple of ranks ahead of me. We were supposed to do uchikomis - turning into throwing position nine times and then throwing on the tenth rep. My partner sailed thru her reps and then came the fateful tenth rep! She whipped me around and absolutely smashed me!
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Let me take a moment to assure you that it is completely normal when someone whips you into the ground, to say, "Oh, Sh...", then hold your breath and tense up in anticipation. Being a natural-type guy, that's what I did.
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I hit the ground tensed up with a lung full of air, and blood and snot and slime and goop exploded from my mouth and nose, covering my cute partner's uniform sleeve. It looked like the ghost-slime from Ghostbusters, only mixed with blood! Gross is the merest of understatements!
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But her reaction was one of the coolest, most unusual things I've ever seen. Frowning, she inspected the goop that was sliming down her arm, said, "Hmmm." Then she wiped that sleeve on the back of her uniform jacket and matter-of-factly held out her arms to me and said, "your turn."
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The moral of this story is simple - Relax and breathe when you fall, and maybe you can avoid sliming some cutie and embarassing yourself.

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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Koshiguruma


Awesome private class tonight.  For a while now I've been avoiding subjecting my faithful readers to my training logs, but I felt like I should write this one down.  Tonight we reviewed the basic stuff - deashi and a bunch of combos including deashi-kosoto, deashi-osoto, deashi-hiza.  Then we got to the coolness - koshiguruma.
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Koshiguruma has never been my thing, but recently James Wall gave me and Whit a good lesson, teaching Whit and reminding me how cool and useful it can be.  Tonight we worked on koshiguruma, emphasizing the guruma and the similarity between hizaguruma, ashiguruma, and koshiguruma.  It's got me excited about the gurumas again!
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Effective choke

What do y'all think of this choke? It seems to me like it took an awful long time for the ref to stop the match after the girl was obviouslly knocked out or at least not making any effort to defend or fight.  But upon second watching, she sets the choke at about 0:12, the girl appears to be knocked out sometime before 0:30 and the match is stopped sometime arouond 0:47.  Still...


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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Subscribe now for free updates from Mokuren Dojo

We have a winner!

A few days ago I changed my blog template and said I'd give away a copy of a great book to one lucky, random commenter who would leave me a comment or suggestion about the new look during October.  I got a number of very good pointers, and fear not - I'm not through tweaking this theme, so just because you haven't seen the changes yet doesn't mean I'm ignoring your comments.  In general, I think the following changes are in the works:
1) darken the background from white toward a very light grey or perhaps a light creamy eggshell color.
2) darken the body text from a medium grey toward a dark grey or black.
3) for right now the left sidebar will remain floating, but I took the picture out of that banner and it seems to move smoother and more unobtrusively.  I'm likely to put a variant of that hanging banner somewhere else above the fold.  Currently I have my secret band of techie ninja working on an alternate theme much similar to this one, but with a static left sidebar - we might try that theme out later.
4) all links are now red, to match the kanji in that aforementioned banner.
5) will reorganize the right sidebar links over time to point to links pages instead of labels.

And more... Thanks for the help and suggestions!

Now, for the big winner!  It is... drumroll please...


Bob Patterson of the Striking Thoughts blog!  Bob, send me an email with your address and I'll send you the book.  As an added bonus, Kris Wilder, the author, has graciously offered to autograph the book and write you a nice note, so give me a couple weeks shipping time after you send me your address to get it out to Seattle to him, and then for him to get it to you.  Congrats, Bob!
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Patrick Parker is a Christian, husband, father, martial arts teacher, Program Director for a Cardiac Rehab, and a Ph.D. Contact: mokurendojo@gmail.com or phone 601.248.7282 木蓮
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Subscribe now for free updates from Mokuren Dojo

Other blogs (not as good as mine, but they try awfully hard!) :-)