Now with part two. The first was a pretty good intro, with the charisma a little lacking. However overall a good setup for any grasshopper to go into Aikido. Now to continue this series.
Shomen, Yokomen, Tsuki
Morotetori and Ushiro
Mini-Review: The Irimi Nage demo was quite good. I keep on being attached to the presenter’s form; very powerful.
The presentation for Kokyu Nage I found a little on the entertaining side. This was because of the spontaneity of the interaction between the presenter and her uke. Especially the accidental punch 0:44; very genuine movement. I’m sure they realized that this would up for thousands to see on Youtube! I disagree slightly with her explanation of “dropping your weight”; although that’s what happens, that’s not how one arrives to performing the technique – or at least that’s not how I was taught. Overall though for this video I like the energy, very light and funny yet informative in its explanation.
For the Shomen/Yokomen/Tsuki video, one of the first things that I notice is that the instructor doesn’t give an explanation of why an Aikidoist would do an overhead strike. I’ve seen a couple of instructors (not mine) that don’t explain the reason for this strike – which will leave any novice wondering why people would want to strike this way. Yes, there is a reason. Despite not providing historically background in these strikes, he does a very good job just “doing it”; performing this techniques and not being “wordy” often. What I’ve noticed with Mike Jones is that he’s very technical when it comes to Tai Sabaki – the footwork. So far I like this series of how it’s presented: there’s a lot of talk from the presenters but it is balanced by the fact that they perform the techniques as they are talking.
Finally the Morotetori and Ushiro presentation is excellent. I felt that this video is extremely spontaneous, thus revealing what really happens in an Aikido school. The way Claire Keller Sensei demonstrates showcases how the uke and nage would normally be conducting a technique. The high point for me was at 1:50 when the movement that she did was random and thoroughly displayed! You don’t see too many Aikidoists willing to admit to randomness in front of an official media medium.
That’s it for now, look forward to part 3. So far there’s already two more videos added to the Aikido list, so there’s the possibility that this review feature will go on to 4 posts. Hope you guys are enjoying this so far and till next time!