Chicko Xerri Sensei

Aiki Studies: Difference between Aiki and Aikido

At its most basic, Aiki refers to the ability to negate and redirect an attacker’s  power without reliance on specific technique and with a distinct absence of muscular tension usually associated with physical effort.

In our school Aikido techniques are not an end in themselves, but rather a “way” to progress to the study and practice of Aiki.  In essence we study to master form so that we can ultimately become formless in our practice.

In the below video, Chicko Xerri Sensei AKI (6th dan Aikikai) uses the Aikido syllabus technique Shomenuchi ikkyo to explain and demonstrate how the study of Aikido ultimately progresses to the practice of Aiki.

 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Our dojo is an Aikido Kenkyukai Fudoshin dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of  Chicko Xerri Sensei, 6th dan AKI (Aikikai), Tokyo.  Chicko Sensei has been practising and teaching Aikido for more than 45 years and is endorsed by Doshu Ueshiba.

Have a great weekend.

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Fudoshin Warrior Dojo

Aiki studies – Yin yang

The concept of yin yang is typically associated with the practice of Chinese arts. However, it is also an important aspect of Aikido practice, particularly for those of us who seek to use our Aikido as a method of progressing to the study of Aiki.

The importance that Master Morihei Ueshiba, Founder of Aikido (O’sensei), placed on an understanding of yin yang was referenced in an interview in 2008 with Henry Kono Sensei. Kono Sensei recalled the following conversation with O’sensei.

All of us, the foreign students, had cooked up a little party for his birthday with a cake and everything. That day, he was very relaxed and happy so I thought it might be the right moment to try my luck with a question. I asked him “O Sensei, how come we are not doing what you are doing?” He just smiled and replied “I understand Yin and Yang, you don’t”.”  (Source: http://www.guillaumeerard.com).

In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei (Aikikai 6th Dan) provides a brief introduction to, and demonstration of the importance of yin yang to the practice of Aiki.  Chicko Sensei also explains how yin yang interplays with the concept of connection and initiating movement when dealing with an attack.

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES

  • Difference between Aiki and Aikido

At its most basic, Aiki refers to the ability to negate and redirect an attacker’s power without reliance on specific technique and with a distinct absence of muscular tension usually associated with physical effort.

In our school Aikido techniques are not an end in themselves, but rather a “way” to progress to the study and practice of Aiki.  In essence we study to master form so that we can ultimately become formless in our practice.

 

  • Taoist definition of yin yang

Yin/Yang : Two halves that together complete wholeness. Yin and yang are also the starting point for change. When something is whole, by definition it is unchanging and complete. So when you split something into two halves – yin / yang, it upsets the equilibrium of wholeness. This starts both halves chasing after each other as they seek a new balance with each other.

The word Yin comes out to mean “shady side” and Yang “sunny side”.

Yin Yang is the concept of duality forming a whole. We encounter examples of Yin and Yang every day. As examples: night (Yin) and day (Yang), female (Yin) and male (Yang).” (Source: http://personaltao.com/).

 

  • Fudoshin Warrior Dojo students – Aiki practice – Yin yang principles 

 

  • Chicko Xerri Sensei

Our dojo is an Aikido Kenkyukai Fudoshin dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of  Chicko Xerri Sensei, 6th dan AKI (Aikikai), Tokyo.  Chicko Sensei has been practising and teaching Aikido for more than 45 years and is endorsed by Doshu Ueshiba.

Have a great week

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Fudoshin Warrior Dojo

Aiki studies – Hip throws and ushiro attacks

In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei (6th Dan AKI Aikikai) explores some of the fundamental Aiki principles underpinning koshi nage (hip throw) applications, including how to safely receive them.

The demonstration applies koshi nage from a traditional attack whereby the uke grabs the wrists of the nage from behind (ushiro ryotedori).

Chicko Sensei breaks the  balance of the uke by entwining their arms which is reminiscent of another Aikido application – juji nage. Related sword based movements and the importance of an upright posture are also examined.

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES

  • Ushiro ryotedori juji nage 

For comparison purposes, see below a demonstration by Chicko Xerri Sensei of Ushiro ryotedori juji nage.

 

  • chicko-senseiChicko Xerri Sensei – Brief Bio

Our dojo is a Fudoshin dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of  Chicko Xerri Sensei, 6th dan AKI (Aikikai), Tokyo.  Chicko Sensei has been practising and teaching Aikido for more than 40 years and is endorsed by Doshu Ueshiba.

Have a great week

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo

 

“Creating a place to move” – Aiki principles for ushiro training

Ushiro in Aikido training refers to a broad set of attack forms whereby the uke attacks the nage from behind.  Examples of ushiro attack forms include:

  • Ushiro Ryotedori: When attacker grabs both wrists from behind (see photo of O’sensei on right).
  • Ushiroeri katatedori: When the attacker grabs the rear collar and wrist.
  • Ushiro Hiji-tori: When both elbows are grabbed from behind.
  • Ushiro Ryokatatori: When both shoulders are grabbed from behind.
  • Ushiro Tekubitori Kubishime: When the neck is being strangled and a wrist is disabled.

In dynamic Aikido practise an ushiro attack is typically initiated from the front such that the uke enters first by grabbing the wrist and then moves to the rear of the nage.  The grabbing of the wrist can occur intentionally (eg the uke intends to undertake a ushiro ryotedori attack) or as a result of the nage responding to the initial attack by using their hand-sword to make connection and initiate defensive action.

In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei (6th dan – AKI Aikikai) demonstrates the aiki principle of “creating a place to move” at first contact to create immediate opportunity for Aikido technique.  Notably, the approach taken by Chicko Sensei differs to what is often seen in Aikido practise whereby the nage takes the higher risk martial option of allowing the uke to move around to the nage‘s rear.

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES

  • Alternate option for creating space

In the below video, seniors from Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo demonstrate an alternate irimi based option for creating a place to move.

 

  • Other Aiki principles for ushiro practice

Chicko Sensei in the following video provides an overview of other Aiki principles important for ushiro practice. Notably, Sensei uses the sword to demonstrate the origins of the principles.   

 

  • chicko-senseiChicko Xerri Sensei – Brief Bio

Our dojo is a Fudoshin dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of  Chicko Xerri Sensei, 6th dan AKI (Aikikai), Tokyo.  Chicko Sensei has been practising and teaching Aikido for more than 40 years and is endorsed by Doshu Ueshiba.

Have a great week

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo

 

Aiki studies – Balance breaking for shoulder grabs

ian-grant-katadoriIn the absence of full cooperation, an aikido technique can generally only be created if the uke’s balance is first broken.  This principle equally applies when responding to an attack in the form of a shoulder grab (Katadori).

For many students, breaking a uke’s balance from a shoulder grab to sufficiently facilitate the creation of a technique can at times be quite challenging. This is particularly so where the nage wishes to apply a technique relying on an ikkyo (first teaching) intent.

In the below video, Ian Grant and Jeremy Gehrke Sensei demonstrate an Aiki option that may be used to break a uke’s balance from a static attack position. The application involves using kokyu principles to enhance the traditional balance breaking approach that is ordinarily is used for static katadori applications where there is an ikkyo intent.

Also included in the video is a demonstration of how we typically break the balance of the uke using kokyu principles where the shoulder grab attack is more dynamic and under motion. The principles underpinning this method are discussed further in the “Additional Notes”.

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES

  • Katadori – Aiki principles

In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei (6th Dan AKI, Aikikai) explores some of the key Aiki principles that underpin higher level practice of katadori. The principles discussed are particularly applicable to Aiki responses to a shoulder grab where there is an ikkyo intent.

Our dojo is an AKI Fudoshin Dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of Chicko Sensei.

All the best

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo

Aiki Studies – Absorbing and redirecting an attack

In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei explores some of the key Aiki principles and concepts for absorbing and redirecting an attack.  These principles and concepts include:

  •  Waiting until the attack is fully committed before attempting to defeat it;
  • Timing when addressing an attack;
  • Using equal energy contact in Aikido practice;
  • Responding to an attack by welcoming, absorbing and then creating technique.

 

  • chicko-senseiChicko Xerri Sensei – Brief Bio

Our dojo is a Fudoshin dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of  Chicko Xerri Sensei, 6th dan AKI (Aikikai), Tokyo.  Chicko Sensei has been practising and teaching Aikido for more than 40 years and is endorsed by Doshu Ueshiba.

Have a great week

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo

 

Aiki principles – Yokomen is shomen

yokomen-morihei-ueshiba-arm-extende1In the below video Chicko Xerri Sensei explores the Aiki principles underpinning a yokomen strike or cut in Aikido practice.

Yokomen is described in the Founders 2nd text, Budo (1938), as a “blow to the side of your partner’s head or down diagonally across (their) shoulder with your te-gatana (hand sword)”.

The importance of yokomen training in Aikido is also discussed in the text.  Of particular note is the statement that training in yokomen attacks “…contains the essence of all techniques“.

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES

  • Yokomenuchi basics – Mike Jones Sensei – NY Aikikai

 

  • chicko-senseiChicko Xerri Sensei – Brief Bio

Our dojo is a Fudoshin dojo operating under the guidance and mentorship of  Chicko Xerri Sensei, 6th dan AKI (Aikikai), Tokyo.  Chicko Sensei has been practising and teaching Aikido for more than 40 years and is endorsed by Doshu Ueshiba.

Have a great week

Ian Grant
Dojo Cho
Aikido Warrior Fudoshin Dojo