Saturday, August 17, 2013
My associate and I went to our recent (local) Shihan Dai this last Saturday. This one was a smaller than average one (when compared to some that we have attended). The advantage to those smaller gatherings, is that it is possible to discuss those subjects that are often “less than popular” and more often relevant to the instruction of student's.
In this case it was teaching methods, and comparing the manner which some techniques are shown to students. For my associate and myself, we are often needing to illustrate (our own) different manners of Tuite application to our students.
Very often (in our class), it is necessary to illustrate the performance of a (Tuite) technique being performed in several (slightly) different manners. Each, is valid (in it's own circumstances) though different enough that some might consider them to be different techniques (when in fact, they are only variances of the same motion/technique).
In our experience, “size” (height specifically) has proven to play a significant difference in how either of us will apply certain techniques. It has nothing to do with strength, only height (limb-length specifically).
Because of variances between the height of the tori, and that of the uke, there will be a difference in how certain techniques will (need to) be applied. The same (instructed) 6 principles will have to be applied, it's just that student's don't always account for the situational variances (ie. “height” differences).
Students (and “people” in general) will tend to gravitate towards training partners that are built similar to themselves. For anyone who has participated in (virtually any) “sporting” activity, this is the norm (if not expected choice to make).
This is also the problem with many people's training methods as well. One should practice their techniques upon someone who would be a (legitimate) threat to them (in a confrontation). But instead, we choose to train with partners who are of equal stature and/or (physical) strength. Those person's are not the (concerned for) “Threat”. It's those great big guys, with the rippling muscles that everyone keeps insisting that “Tuite, won't work on” (that you should be concerned about, and training with them).
The mental belief that something won't/can't work, is easily dispelled when you practice with, and understand those body type's weaknesses (and that they are equivalent to anyone else).
Be careful not to assume that someone is (any manner of) an “anomaly” (an over-used excuse for a technique's failure). More often than not, it's simply a matter of poor technique application.
This is also why it's important to have a wide practice “pool” (of “uke's”, LOL). The greater variance of training partner's that one has, the better. It is easy to become “accustomed” to one's (regular) training partner's (you will learn exactly what it takes to know what each person's particular weakness/susceptibility is, whether consciously or subconsciously).
It is only through varied practice (with numerous training partner's) that one will develop (what we refer to as) “the feel” of correctly applying a technique. Once this ability has been realized, it becomes faster (and easier) to realize when/how a technique needs to be modified to work (or abandoned in favor of another technique).
Through the varied practice (upon multiple uke/training partners), the student will begin to see how the principles (actually) apply. Every principle is explained and demonstrated to be utilized in numerous “common” circumstances, each slightly different, but with the ability to be adjusted to work in each. It is learning to recognize those circumstances that the majority of our student's class time is spent practicing.
Once those circumstances are readily recognized (within an actual Life-Protection situation), performing a defensive counter becomes much simpler, and faster. This can (and will) occur regardless of any (supposed) "anomalies".