Nov 13 2008

My faith in the techniques

Published by at 11:40 pm under Training at Home,Training in Japan

There seems to be questions which many people have about if the techniques can work.  At first I though this was a fooling thing to be asking, but maybe not so much now.  If you have questions of if your techniques will work agaist someone bigger and stronger then either you have learnt the techniques wrong or your are being taught something other than Bujinkan Budo Taijutsu.

Too many people seem to thing that the techniques that they are being taught are ineffective then look at them again.  Find someone who can do them against an opponent while using no strength.  Look for a good Shihan who has the solid technique and understanding of what Hatsumi Sensei and the Shihan are doing.  One who will correct you when you are doing something wrong.

If you can’t get someone who says “no” when you don’t get it, someone who will point you in the right direction you are in trouble.  These techniques, this feeling that Hatsumi Sensei is trying to pass on can save your life.

I was lucky enough to have teachers which built a foundation and desire to look at what is good and even question what I was being taught.  Then I was fortunate enough to go to Japan several times to continue my learning.  The information is out there sometimes it is hard to find bu you can get to it.

Your life is on the line, practice your well.

8 responses so far

8 Responses to “My faith in the techniques”

  1. Scottyon 14 Nov 2008 at 2:47 pm

    I think there is a fine balance here to be drawn. I think it is always important to question how the technique is done, but not its validity.

    I know the way I understand things is by asking questions from all the angles that I don’t understand a technique. Only once I make and understand fundamental mistakes for the techniques, can I begin to understand what is right about them.

    Now there’s an interesting question for the rest of your readers, “When learning a technique, do you learn it by looking at everything that makes it right? Or do you look for everything that could be wrong?”

  2. jasonon 14 Nov 2008 at 3:42 pm


    I disagree with Scotty on this issue though, there is no fine line: question everything. Though do not do so blindly and do not expect that you are capable of determining the objective validity of a technique yourself. A cliched metaphor applies here: you are seeing further (and kicking ass more effectively) because you are standing on the shoulders of giants. That said there is nothing wrong with looking down to see what you are standing on but do appreciate the position you are in to be able to do that.

    I need soup.


  3. Carlyleon 14 Nov 2008 at 6:37 pm

    a truly philosophical question. Is your glass half full or half empty. It seems to me that it is always easier mentally to add to something that is half full rather than being discouraged to try to fill something that is already half way to being empty.

    As a teacher I am sure you strive to build your student’s esteem by what they can do rather than tear them down for all the things they can’t. We must remember that this applies equally to the conversations we have with ourselves.

  4. Antonon 14 Nov 2008 at 8:00 pm

    It is true, it is easier to add often, but no matter how much fresh water you add to the glass if there was salt water in there before you have to dump it out and start fresh.

    There are times when students need to be complimented on what they can do, but there are times when what they are doing is completely wrong and will get them killed. There is no time to dance around the subject, they may need to defend their lives tomorrow. I would like to strike a balance but when it comes down to it, I am all about saving lives over feelings.

  5. Carlyleon 14 Nov 2008 at 10:16 pm

    And yet salt water gets diluted with enough fresh. The balance is to encourage people to improve while at the same time letting them know what to improve. You cannot save someone’s life if they are not around to learn from you.

  6. Someone who knowson 15 Nov 2008 at 3:23 pm

    Flying elbows are way wicked when off the shoulders of giants!

    Hmm, I’m reminded of a certain Zen parable concerning overflowing tea cups. How big of a cup are we talking here? What if the tea got cold and you changed your mind and wanted a hot cup of joe instead? Or, if it was filled with koolaid (don’t drink the kool-aid!) What if there was a turtle racing me for the cup, and he had a knife and…

    …ooh…all these metaphors are making my head swim. Or are they similies? I can never remember. I guess we all learned a valuable lesson here today, which is:

    Don’t get hit in the junk by Paul Masse.

  7. Scottyon 15 Nov 2008 at 8:48 pm

    Someone beat me to it again. at least in principal. Lets not let the analogies take over here.

    The truth of the matter is that you’re all right. Let’s be honest there is no ONE philosophy that works best for any situation, except be accepting of all options and chose the best for that situation. If there is one thing the art has taught me it is that. The same goes for your own training and the same goes for teaching. Now I can only discuss from the internal or teaching academics.

    Anton’s right. sometimes you do have to cut and restart. We’ve all caught ourselves practicing a technique, realized that we were WAY off, and what do we do? Do we try and save the lousy technique? No we reset and try it again.

    And Carlyle has a point. A teacher’s job is not just passing on the techniques. Teaching is about preparing your students. truth is we could all face that one opponent tomorrow that is a little bit faster/better/stronger/bigger. And if we had trained just that bit more faster/better/stronger/Bigger (that doesn’t really work but for aesthetics I had to put it in there) we might have had a better chance. But that philosophy will burn out MOST learners. that is an all or nothing approach to learning. And for you I see how that works, you are that learner. But that is not everyone, and a good teacher sees what that learner needs, not just to learn the subject material, but to keep them wanting to learn some more.

    my two scents…

    …and I want some soup too damnit

  8. BRon 27 Nov 2008 at 12:49 am

    How about, “Shut up and train?”

    Or for the extremely hard-headed ones, people who want to try to “teach” their training partner at a seminar or in their own classes, OR people who are TOO damned “smart” for their own good……”Shut Up and train….”?

    BTW I’m not exempt either, if any smart-alecky readers or commenters of this blog are wondering about myself as well.

    Can’t we just collectively “answer” our own questions by just training and trusting what any one of the four top-ranking Japanese shihan (Nagato-sensei, Noguchi-sensei, Oguri-sensei and Seno-sensei, in that order) AND Soke are saying and admonishing us to do?

    Too many people OVER-analyze what these great men are saying and come up with their own BS theories and conjecture.

    Anyway, just my thoughts on this. I felt compelled to say something here. Sorry, Anton. Please e-mail me when you get a chance.

Trackback URI | Comments RSS

Leave a Reply