A Kicking Grand Ma: Old Age is a Myth

“Old age? There is no such thing!” Mme. Jeanne Lieberman replied in response to a query whether her age of 92 plus was weighing on her. She was martial arts Grand master who lived in France. This was her response to a question by Claude Bobin. He was interviewing her. Check the 1978 September issue of the Indian Reader’s digest and you can read the article. The summary is given here.

Mme. Jeanne Lieberman started learning martial arts at the tender age of 63, when most of us would prefer retiring from the armchair to the sofa- watching the antics of our grand children. But for her, it was the beginning of a new life- a life of conquering and self–discovery plus a whole new vista of opportunities and healing for a lot of people past 60. She had prepared herself though. She was a regular practitioner of Yoga. And she had-Inspiration-lots of it!

She joined a Judo Dojo (martial arts school) in Paris. When she went to enroll, the joke goes that the instructor asked if it was for her son or her grandson.

Imagine his surprise when she replied it was for her!Her astounding progress soon put an end to the apprehensions of her instructor and her younger classmates and she completed her black belt in sharp five years! Inspiration to her classmates!

She didn’t rest on her achievement, though. She went to Japan and started polishing up her Aikido skills that she had started learning in France. Aikido is a non-violent form of self-defense. She practiced under Master Tadashi Abe for four years before she secured her black belt in Aikido(!).

No, that is not the end of the story. At the age of 72, she started learning Kung fu (Wing Chun).She received her black belt in Kung fu at the age of 80, from Master Hoangnam at the famed Shaolin temple, China! Astounding Inspiration, isn’t it? To think how much an old lady would exert, pushing herself to the limits.

Her diet is very simple: a carrot for breakfast, an egg for lunch and a potato and a spoonful of honey for supper.

Mme Lieberman’s dedication paid off abundantly. She achieved such a level of prowess that she was able to perform unbelievable feats. She has demonstrated her prowess in several ways: In one demonstration she pinned a trained (black belt), 1.8 m tall, 200 kg athlete to the ground in less than one second and then repeated the feat nine times!

Pretty tempting skill to acquire isn’t it? This should be inspiration for young and old alike.

Mme Lieberman is not an aggressive person. Her personal philosophy is rooted in silence, tolerance, understanding and love.

She returned to Paris and started her own martial arts class. She developed her own synthesized style based on the three martial arts and Yoga. Most of her disciples are in their sixties or seventies. Some of them have had extraordinary experiences. One seventy year old student was attacked by two young muggers in the dark side alleys of Paris . She was able to ward off their attack easily and hold one of them in a paralysing arm lock, with him begging for mercy.

At a time when we keep hearing stories of estranged and isolated old people, who have been abandoned by their children, Mme. Lieberman’s story is heartening in that it gives inspiration to stand up for ourselves, dig into the resources within ourselves and prove to ourselves and the world that we can take care of ourselves, and much more!

Martial arts are a sure fire way to keep oneself fit and old age at bay. Martial Arts also help to maintain peace of mind and to develop suppleness of the body.

Martial arts are one of the best ways to spend ones excess time. Of course this statement would not appeal to the enthusiastic follower, who has dedicated his life to perfection in martial arts.

The lives of people like Jeanne Liebermann convey Inspiration in us to achieve all that we are capable of. They give inspiration to transcend our limits.

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Publicado en aikido, budo, jujutsu, life. 1 Comment »

Takeno Sensei 8th Dan Yoshinkan Aikido Tokyo Enbukai (1993)

A raíz de que si “el Aikido es la manifestación del movimiento circular”, el compañero Aikidobaturro nos señala el siguiente vídeo de Takeno Takafumi Sensei, 8º dan Yoshinkan.

Un Aikido rápido, preciso y poderoso. Sin muchas florituras pero efectivo. Bonito, puro Yoshinkan.

No sé por qué, pero me recuerda aquella frase de Saito Sensei que decía “Aikido is generally believed to represent circular movements. Contrary to such belief, however, Aikido, in its true Ki form, is a fierce art piercing straight through the center of opposition.”… Por si quedaba alguna duda, vamos.

Un par de entrevistas en http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=300 y en http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=661.

El día en el que fui baneado

Hoy ha sido ese día. Hoy he sido baneado del Aikiforum por decir las cosas claras. Esto me hace recordar aquel post de hace unos meses…

No se pueden negar las numerosas oportunidades que nos brindan las nuevas tecnologías para expresarnos y para aprender. Para informar y divulgar. Pero, como todo en esta vida, la moneda tiene dos caras: el libertinaje, la desinformación y los peligros que de ello se derivan. Como dirían los electroduendes: “vamos a desenseñar, para desaprender cómo se deshacen las cosas”.

Aquel post aquí.

Seguiremos dando guerra…

Publicado en aikido, budo, forums. 6 Comments »

The Most Important Technique in Aikido

Interview with Morihiro Saito (9th Dan) by Mark Binder (3rd Dan)

BINDER: What do you think the most important Aikido technique is?

SAITO: They’re all very important, but the one that makes people really get good is Shihonage, because you have the way of movement and the way of using weapons in Shihonage. O Sensei used to always say you can never do enough shihonage.

B: What is it that makes a strong shihonage?

S: Kokyu. And the hips.

B: Can you explain Kokyu?

S: You can’t really see it. You can’t really show it.

B: What is the biggest mistake that people make with Shihonage?

S: They forget the feeling of the sword when they do it. You need to always have the feeling of the sword when you do it. You have to have it from the beginning to the end.

B: Is there anything that you’d like to correct with people about what Aikido means?

S: I would like to fix in people’s minds that the weapons (ken-do) and the taijitsu (hand-to-hand) come together, and you need both of them for Aikido. It will be a really big mistake if you don’t place importance in both of those.

Publicado en aikido, budo. 1 Comment »

Interview with Kuniyuki Kai (1999)

As a young judo enthusiast, Kuniyuki Kai found that he was regularly defeated by bigger, stronger opponents. This led him to take up karate in order to strengthen his body and confidence. Kai later discovered Yoshinkan aikido which he promptly added to his martial repertoire. Though initially skeptical of the efficacity of aikido’s techniques, this art now forms the central core of his training. Today Kai continues his study of various classcial martial arts in search of a way to realize his dream of integrating these martial systems into his aikido.

To read more visit http://www.aikidojournal.com/article?articleID=479.

For more information on Kuniyuki Kai, visit Seibukan homepage at http://www.seibukanbudo.org.

Nariyama Shihan en el Katsuura Taikai (2005)

Para la mayoría un desconocido, el Aikido Shodokan (también conocido como Tomiki Ryu) es uno de los estilos pre-guerra que guardan de cerca las técnicas de Daito Ryu que O’Sensei enseñaba por aquellos años.

Es uno de los estilos más injustamente olvidados (e incluso marginados) por el colectivo del Aikido debido a que incluye un elemento de competición que, según dicen, O’Sensei no aprobaba. De todas formas, el estilo Shodokan, fundado por el maestro Tomiki Kenji, mantiene la efectividad de los estilos de la pre-guerra.

El curriculum de la escuela contine distintos kata. El kata principal, el Juunanahon no Kata o Randori no Kata, contiene las diecisiete técnicas permitidas en competición. Son técnicas especialmente elegidas de entre las más efectivas, fáciles de realizar y que causan el menor daño posible a uke.

Otros kata de la escuela son los denominados Koryu no Kata o kata antiguos: Koryu Dai Ichi, Koryu Dai Ni, Koryu Dai San (también llamado Koryu Goshin no Kata), Koryu Dai Yon, Koryu Dai Go y Koryu Dai Roku.

Por cierto, los estilistas de Iwama Ryu verán con satisfacción el primer movimiento del Koryu Dai Go 😉 .

Tembién existen kata individuales como el Tegatana no Kata, el Kuzushi no Kata, Unsoku Undo, Tandoku Undo

En definitiva, un estilo muy completo y a tener en cuenta que incluye trabajo de tanto, bokken, jo y taijutsu.

Publicado en aikido, budo. 1 Comment »

Futari Gake

He visto este pequeño vídeo en la página de Stefan Stenudd en el que realiza algunas técnicas de futari gake.

Futari gake son las técnicas, procedentes del Daito Ryu, realizadas contra dos ukes que “agarran” a tori. Normalmente se confunde con el futari dori, que son las técnicas que se realizan sobre dos ukes que “atacan” a tori, sin haber llegado a conseguir un agarre sólido. Así, el futari dori sería un randori contra dos oponentes.

El nivel exigido para realizar este trabajo es alto, ya que nuestros movimientos al aplicar la técnica sobre un uke se encuentran grandemente limitados por el agarre del segundo oponente, así que las técnicas de futari gake son poco estudiadas, si es que llegan a serlo, incluso por grados altos.

Realmente, las técnicas que se pueden emplear en este tipo de situaciones son las típicas del trabajo en kihon: shihonage, iriminage, nikyo, kokyunage… pero es interesante hacer “nudos” con los dos ukes, tirando a uno encima del otro, poniendo a uno delante del otro, haciendo que se estorben entre sí. Es un buen ejercicio tanto para aprender a moverse correctamente, desde el centro, como para buscar la estrategia que nos permita ayudarnos con un uke contra el otro.

Niveles más altos de práctica incluyen el sannin gake (tres ukes), yonin gake (cuatro ukes), etc… Estos ejercicios sólo se ven normalmente en exhibiciones de Daito Ryu.

Si podeis, son muy educativos, así que ya sabeis.

Publicado en aikido, budo. 3 Comments »