Sunday, January 8, 2012

Weapon Techniques

Beauty and Aikido ©
In the picture you can see lame me, hit on the head with a jo...well not really hit. Senpai was trying to remind me that I was not moving aside. We were doing the 4th jo kata I think, and I could not decide quick enough how and in which direction to move on. I bet you also found yourself in similar situations when you blacked out and were not really sure how to move on in a technique. In my case, I think it is because I cannot really get myself to concentrate. I should be working on that. If you have any tips, do let me know. I am that type of aikidoka who trains, in the hope that some time soon something (besides a jo) will remain in my head. I can see so many other people in the dojo who concentrate and learn everything so fast, that I am ashamed of my attitude. Sometimes it is so hard for me to focus on the fact that this is a school of teaching and that I should be more persevering in actually learning what is being taught...

Not all aikido dojos practice weapon techniques. Ours is a traditional dojo, so we tend to do quite some techniques with weapons also. Our Friday trainings are centered around the training with the jo, bokken and tanto. As I did not always have the chance to join the Friday training I am still legging behind on this chapter.

Let me sum up the benefits of the weapon techniques:

1. Trains  your muscles

Well...after a set of  50+ shomenuchis with the bokken or swirling around your jo, you will sure have worked on the muscles of your arms. I have also read that weapon techniques are supposed to help you perfect your bare hand techniques. For me, weapon techniques also help me get the stress out there with the kyai and clear my mind.

2. Helps develop good coordination of movements and concentration

You need to concentrate on what you are doing with the weapon, how you hold it, swirl it, what steps you make.You need to connect the given movement or set of movements with its name and be able to perform it whenever Sensei requests you to do so. Most of the time you have to do it together with the others and on top of that at the same time with them, so that you are synchronized. 

3. Advantage in case of street fight

Most probably, nobody is really likely to attack you with a sword or wooden sword (bokken) let alone with the end of a broomstick (jo like thing). What about the tanto? The tanto is the imitation of a small knife. I find that the techniques we learn for disarming a tanto attack can be really useful if you master them well enough. It can help you disarm an attacker coming at you witha knife or with any sharp object.

Can you think of other benefits? Do you have weapon trainings at your dojo?

Last but not least, stay tuned for the Aiki giveaway on my blog. Sneak peak into what I will be giving away in the Aikido Package. Hope you join!

Shaolin patch against muscle pain

My blog is soon turning one years old, so please join the celebration with me next week.

Update: This post became a really hot topic on reddit where I also posted it. Check the conversation thread here!


Thanks for taking time to read my blog and that you are considering to comment. I make sure to read and reply to each and every comment you leave! ^.^y

The Voice of Aikido


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