tori Archives - Kishinkai
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tori Tag

Giving to receive: uke, a cornerstone of the learning process – by Alexandre Grzegorczyk   It is commonly admitted that a whole life of practice is necessary to understand the essence of budo. This affirmation could be debatable, but it is nonetheless true that learning is a never-ending process. Near the end of their life, many masters reported only starting to understand principles they have been studying their whole lives. For example, Funakoshi sensei, aged 80, stated “I now start to understand face-level blocking”. Such testimonies display lifetimes of studying, with a continuous questioning and constant remodelling of their practice. It is obviously not exclusive to martial arts, as the same mindset can be found with many musicians, painters or artisans. Personal study is a mandatory step in progression; however, practice cannot fully exist without a partner, especially in arts of the body. Having good teachers and good uke is a non-negligible factor of our evolution.   [caption id="attachment_16362" align="aligncenter" width="468"] Gichin Funakoshi senseï[/caption]   Being uke It is often stated that uke and tori are two sides of a same coin, both required for a budoka’s evolution. When one is in class, about half the time is spent as uke and half as tori. The teacher usually...

Challenging the Uke-Tori relationship in Aikido – By Tanguy Le Vourc’h   Since beginning Aikido, I have had the chance to meet a number of Aikido, Budo and Bujutsu masters; the main ones being Master Tamura, Master Kuroda, Master Hino and Master Akuzawa. I have spent a considerable amount of time attempting to develop their unique abilities, to feel and live their ways of moving their bodies. Understanding the meaning they give (or have given) to their practice, their system (physical, technical, strategical, philosophical), gave rise to a strong interest and many questions. Especially during the last 6 years, as my training consistently increased. I have the feeling that these masters have been, and are, mainly sharing the findings of their current research. Or, at least, the personal and subtle interpretations of their arts at their current state. I will always be grateful for their precious teachings.     I have realized that it is important to completely immerse oneself in the various ways of practising available and to separate meaningful information from the less useful one. However, above all, it is essential to study a form that has a personal meaning. A French aphorism, which can be understood as “he who mimics the teacher...