Showing posts from May, 2012


I've had a blast in recent years exploring various aspects of the arts I study. Like what, you may ask. Well...

Slipping judo nage waza into aikido
I say "slipping" because I don't really think I intend to add judo into aikido, or combine them in anyway. Though they do go nicely together, they're slightly different animals, and prefer to regard them as such. That being said, there are occasions when a little leg or hip action can augment a technique nicely.

I also say "slipping" judo in because I'm not really interested in trying to teach students who only study aikido how to do proper judo throws. Learning judo throws is a complex best reserved for, as you may have guessed, judo class. Rather, I want to a wee bit of judo principles to their aikido; just enough to augment what they already know, but not so much that it confuses them or complicates things.

Bringing more renraku waza into judo throwing
One of the things that really made my aikido (and t…

Getting the fit

Funny how our ideas and our approach to a given thing change and evolve over time. "Truth" seems to be more and more elusive: what I accepted as gospel one day, I can't help but doubt the next. Okay, maybe it's more like years than days, but still.

If there's anything I've learned from budo that is absolutely permanent and unmovable is that nothing is really permanent and immovable. Just when I think I "understand" a thing, I find a new perspective (typically through the eyes of someone else). I almost want to go back to students I've taught and say, "Hey, remember that thing I taught you? Well, here's another way of thinking about it..."

This time, I happen to be thinking of the concept of the stage of a throw in judo. I'm sure you've heard it:

First, kuzushi—off-balance
Then, tsukuri—fitting in
Finally, gake—the throw

For a while now, I've been thinking of it in terms of a sort of math problem: 1 + 2 = 3

In other word…


Yes—budo, at it's heart, is very simple. It's just not intuitive. That is why we train.