This Week In Nihon Goshin Aikido ~ #11
June 6, 2014
Greetings Nihon Goshin Aikido Aficionado!
I hope all is well with you at your end of the great blue aikido mat on this outstanding summer weekend!
Aikido Topic Of The Week
Come Along Throw ~~~~~ What’s not to Love?
In my mind this throw is probably the most dangerous one in our system. Not because of the forward roll escape, but because when you are learning it, the uke does not roll.
In the early stages, the Come Along is a straight lock stressing the shoulder joint, which causes uke to tap when he feels pain.
If the tap is late, or if nage gets excited, uke’s shoulder is strained. Of course, shoulders don’t heal well, so the first strain makes the following strains easier and easier. Now I practically find myself avoiding people who are training on the Come Along, and as I type this newsletter, my right shoulder (in its inherent and nearly continual discomfort) is standing with me in a show of solidarity. “Right On! Right On!” it says.
As fate would have it, a few weeks a go I was reviewing the White Belt Set with Doug Williams (a blue belt who is getting close to testing for the Green Belt ). Invariably, the Come Along came up. He was firing on 80% of the movement, but we all know that last 20% is where the sauce gets hot, and the technique goes from being “okay” to “legitimately dangerous.”
His issue of difficulty was getting the lock to come on like it was supposed to. I suspect many students have this problem also. After a few repetitions, it was evident that one of the issues he was having was that he did not have my elbow cranked down so that it was at his belt level. He was leaving my elbow too high. In addition, my wrist was not pinned between his biceps and wrist nor was it held high enough ~ at patch level. In the typical tap position, I was still relatively comfortable. (Nota Bena: This description is of Mr. Bowe’s Come Along as it was taught to Sensei Weber, and taught to Sensei Carter). You may do it differently (it seems there are a few variations on the Classical Version of this technique....). The video to the left is a 5 minute “class” of how we do it.
Anyway, we were stopping at that point for the tap, but there was no need to tap. Then with coaching from Sensei Bryan Winfree, Doug would drop my elbow to his belt knot, and raise my locked wrist to the level of his patches and SHAZAMMMMM ~ the pain would be there, and I’d roll as quickly as possible ~ but rarely soon enough.
After a few of these, I decided that I was putting myself, as uke, in a compromising position by standing in a squared off stance, so if Doug was doing the technique on my left shoulder, I began the technique (as uke) with my right foot slightly forward. This stance modification made my ability to quickly lower, and transition to the roll much quicker ~ and significantly less awkward. I suggest you try it sometime. I’d love to hear your feedback.
Why Do We Study Aikido?
Well, I generally give people this response: “You never know when you may need to use it or when you may like to use it.” Usually I get a blank stare, and whoever I’m talking to typically asks me if I have ever seen the “Karate Kid” ~ which invariably makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up ~ but we all probably have that issue.....
When I say, “you never know when you may need to use it, or when you’d like to use it,” consider this Marty Delk (a ni-kyu at our school in Lexington SC) story.
(posted with permission)
“Anyway, I'm coming home from work (a few years ago), like any other day. Apparently, wife was sweeping off our driveway and took a break to grab something to drink and some air conditioning. You see, summer in South Carolina normally lasts from January 20th through the following January 3rd. Average temperature is 88 degrees with a heat index in the summer of Hell. However, global warming can occasionally cause us to have a rare real winter, like this year, complete with snow, sleet, ice, earthquakes, and famine (due to there being no milk or bread in any grocery store in the entire Southeast). But I digress. Back to the story...
Wife leaves the broom laying in the driveway. I pull up to the house, see the broom, and speed out of the neighborhood like a bat out of...well you know. An hour later, wife calls my cell phone:
Wife: Where are you?
Me: At the park.
Wife: Why? Why did you tear out of here like that?
Me: Well, I saw the broom in the driveway and just assumed your mother was there, and.......I just couldn't deal with THAT. Not after the day I've had.
Wife: **stunned silence** then, “I wish I knew martial arts.”
This story reminds me of a picture I once saw. Maybe it was in the “Karate Kid!” ~ Anyway, it had a stick figure family all doing a Round Kick, and underneath the drawing it said, A Family that Kicks Together Stays Together!”
I can see all kinds of applications for a t-shirt....
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There is one in Greenville SC June 21st . This one is presented by Joe Beckham. I’ll have more information up soon.
Have You Got A Seminar Planned? Send us the information on it and we’ll post it here for you.
Let's meet on the mat together soon!
Sensei John Carter and me
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Not Exactly the Come Along Of Which We Speak
Wouldn’t This Picture be Better If They Were Kicking and Not Punching????
Also, why are they locking out their striking arms?
Don’t you just feel an
Arm Bar from a Straight Punch Application???? lol
Here is a video explaining the Classical Technique of the Come Along Throw as described in the newsletter. (Elbow at Belt Knot, and Trapped Wrist pinned at Patch Level).
Sensei Carter teaches it exactly the way Mr. Weber taught him.
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