Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Witchy Stuff

The above title was in the subject heading of an email a friend of mine sent to me today. He is an aikido practitioner and a good friend who started his aikido training at my old dojo here in NZ then continued his practice back in the States. Here is what he had to say:
On Sundays, an old Taekwondo friend and I go to a hunting property that we lease to work on stuff. We always talk about martial arts, our dojos, etc. I started to tell him this story and then stopped. He would think that I'm crazy, delusional, etc.
Erwin had started to push me by stepping up his attacks (in terms of speed, power, intent). Even if I make the correct shape, with the correct distance and the correct timing, he can shut me down almost every time. I started trying something different a few weeks ago (out of desperation!) and it works better each time I do it. The split second before he touches me, I visualize blasting his center with my intent. It's amazing! Many times, he goes down before he can touch me. He swears that he not taking a fall. It doesn't matter what the attack or technique is. To test it, I can make the same shape without the blast and it doesn't phase him. Your thoughts? As great as all of this sounds, it doesn't work as well on anyone else and not at all on others. My theory is that you have to understand the relationship between your center and your opponent's as well as the reverse before it works. It's eerie and amazing. I look forward to your thoughts and experiences in this matter! 

I was excited when he wrote about his revelation because something that is discussed often in TSYR is intent. It appears that as we get more sensitive and our technique gets more subtle, intent and visualisation becomes more important. The mindset of the practitioner is paramount. I do not believe any of this is ki or magic but simply the refinement of physical principles and mind-body connection. In other words, neurological pathways becoming stronger and more efficient with repeated movements.

I certainly know that if I am tired or not focussed my waza is certainly worse for it!

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