Getting out of the way is fundamental to the effectiveness of Aikido techniques. Also called blending , getting out of the way either avoids the problem altogether or gets the motion started that’s needed to redirect the attacker’s energy. Getting out of the way by physically moving is the easy part, to avoid the problem altogether can be a lot trickier and takes much more practice.
Sometimes you can’t avoid a physical confrontation. There are times when things happen that are beyond your control. But, if you pay attention and are aware of what’s going on around you there may be opportunities presented that will allow you to disfuse a potential problem. For example, if you pay attention to a person’s body language and listen to their tone of voice you can get clues as to their mood. Also, by listening to what a person is actually saying (really listen as opposed to just hearing them) you can pick up on a general feeling they may be experiencing. And, if you think before you speak or act you may be able to redirect a conversation away from a possible physical confrontation.
This nonphysical stuff is much harder to do than techniques. It requires real effort on your part to take in all the information you gather from the other person and then decide what to do with it. The thing that makes it really hard is the emotions that are involved. Either you or the other person are angry, frustrated, sad, anxious, scared and that makes it hard to think straight. You just want to react. This is when ki breathing comes in handy. By practicing deep controlled breathing on a regular basis you can create a habit that may help you in time of need like when you are emotionally stressed.
Teresa Mastison Sensei
I just want to express my sincerest gratitude to all the students who participated in the Mesa demonstration on Fri., Mar. 30. We had over 50 participants and over 75 spectators. It was an awesome display of Aikido. We had students from all three of our dojos demonstrating a wide variety of techniques and skill levels ranging from basic open hand techniques to kick and ground defenses, weapons work and randori. It was exciting to see all the hard work the students put into their preparation pay off. I am so proud of them all and to be the chief instructor of such a dedicated and committed group of people. Thank you.
A huge thank you also goes out to all the parents of the children. Without you their involvement would not have happened and I am so thankful. Thank you for caring and showing your support by encouraging them and bringing them to class consistently. I was so proud of them for getting up in front of all those people and I could see they were proud too. What a wonderful experience for them and thank you for allowing them to be a part of it.
We totally forgot to take a group picture, but here are a few pictures that I hope will give you an idea of how the evening looked. You can view all the available pictures on Aikido of Phoenix’s Facebook page or you can copy and paste the following links to access pictures taken by Chandler student Nick Shiopu. Nick has a camera that takes multiple focal plane pictures. Check out the links below to see them and you can play with the focus of foreground vs. background. If you have any pictures that you would like to share please send them my way. Thank you.
The following links will show you some more pictures.
Thanks again for making Aikido of Phoenix look so good!
Teresa Mastison Sensei