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Ken, Jo, Taijutsu, and Body Movements

Before practice, it is important to mention that ken, jo, and taijutsu techiques are not intended to be done with just the hands. Therefore, one should not use the hands too much but practice as the basis of technique body movements that will turn, throw, or upset the balance of an opponent.

Generally, it is said that the main aspect of Aikido is "empty handed" technique. Instead the idea is advanced here that the main aspect is body movement. "Empty handed" means literally not to be holding anything. However, "empty handed" may perhaps also mean that even while holding a ken or jo one should not rely only upon the weapon. The person who can use a ken or jo as a part of his body will be able to do "empty handed" technique. For, in Aikido, it does not matter if the techniques are "empty handed" or if one is actually holding something.

It is hoped that the concept of Kiai as presented in the first volume has been understood. That is, ken, jo, and taijutsu movements have been combined from three parts into a single body. If this book is read completely,

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Ken Suburi

it is felt that one will develop another relationship — control of the opponent through body movement. For instance, when holding a jo and facing an opponent who strikes with a ken, one must be able to control him. Conversely, when one holds a ken and faces an opponent with a jo the same is true. If both are without weapons, the attacker still must be controlled. If one bears in mind the above concepts, inconsistencies will not arise. One will be able to control an opponent without fail regardless of whether a weapon is involved or not providing the idea of body movement is grasped and understood. Emphasis on body movement unifies ken, jo, and taijutsu techniques into a single Aikid5.

If must be pointed out once more that too much dependence upon jo or ken is not a good idea and is to be avoided.

Because jo movements are more varied than those of ken, the tendency is to think they are more difficult and different. Therefore, one must practice basic techniques as autlined in Volume I until the jo and ken are felt to be it<7)±T*<i, *tiüföt&'J# fc J: & fc cr>X'b i. «iL*^ tttöl HLoä'H t ig^ü > tTUÄH oco X'b bo

Tanren Uchi

part of the body. A minimum of two years practice of the basic suburi is recommended. One should by all means practice the tanren uchi exercise. Those practices will develop a stability of the hips that is most necessary in taijutsu. Body movement must be accomplished from the hips.

Aikidö is an art of non-resistance. In technique this is done through body movement. Body movement is developed through the basic practices.

Hold bothhands together as shown


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Tanren Uchi

Tanren Uchi

Tanren Uchi Old Tyre

For tanren uchi practice, the easiest object on which to strike is a tire (preferably, the tire is a small one, like a motorcycle tire, capable of deflecting about 10cm when struck.)

The purpose or tanren uchi practice is to develop stability of the hips and to improve the grip on the ken.

Reference should be made to the pictures for the proper method of striking. When practicing tanren uchi, modify your grip on the ken so that both hands are held close together. The bokken used for this practice is usually rounder and thicker in shape.

ram rnz&w-m The Founder, Professor Morihci Ueshiba.

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7>ie way ( jg -Do) is like the flow of blood inside the body. As it is contained in the body, it is in unity with the Divine Spirit (Love). Realization of the Divine Spirit is accomplished through practice. If there is the smallest separation from the Divine Spirit then the way is not being followed

From a spccch by the Founder


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Before Practice Kumitachi

The kumitachi came originally from an old sword school. They were modified to include the concept of Aiki by the Founder, Professor Morihei Ueshiba, who left them as a legacy.

There are many possible variations of the kumitachi. The Founder, when he taught, called these first attack and second attack variations. These variations are naturally used with the ken but are soon adapted to taijutsu. Consequently, the kumitachi are considered to be the personality of ken, jo, and taijutsu basic techniques. If one does not have a good understanding of suburi, it will be useless to practice the kumitachi. If practice is done everyday on the kumitachi and partner practices, stability of the hips will not be attained, and an important point of practice will be missed. Therefore, begin each practice session with the suburi as shown in Volume I.

Uchitachi (Attacker) and Uketachi (Defender)

The kumitachi are not to be considered competition. They are practices, and the partners do not vie for an attacking or superior position. It was said that one should be uchitachi for lOyears before being allowed to become uketachi. It was felt that this was the proper may to learn.

Sword Techniques

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  • Max
    How to use a tanren uchi?
    7 years ago

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