24 February 2011

Aikido and ITF Taekwon-Do

Advanced Aikido (Tuttle Martial Arts)The following is from the book Advanced Aikido by Phong Thong Dang and Lynn Seiser (2006) and is equally relevant to ITF Taekwon-Do.

"The wave motion is a rolling movement. It is continuous. In many advanced aikido movements, one can observe the rolling motion of the wave. The motion of the vertical wave movement is up-down, down-up, down-up-down, or up-down-up. One can also use the wave movement horisontally in an in-out, out-in, in-out-in, or out-in-out pattern" (p. 55).

Had you not known this passage came from an Aikido text, it would have been easy to mistake it for a quote from an ITF Taekwon-Do source.

Here is another quote with emphasis on using one's body weight -- yet another principle shared by both ITF Taekwon-Do and Aikido:

"Eventually, the student of aikido will become technically proficient but will gain the ability to use body weight to make his or her application much more effective and powerful. Rather than force a technique, the advanced student will set up the mechanics of the application and then drop his or her body weight into it. The strength of the entire body is stronger than just the arms. Bring the weight of your entire body, as relaxed dead weight, to bear in the direction of your training partner's kuzushi, or balance point, and it will make throwing your partner an easy task.

"Bending at the waist or using the muscular force of the upper body does not drop one's body weight. Rather, drop your weight by subtlely bending or buckling your knees. Accomplish all vertical movement in aikido by naturally bending your knees to lower you body" (p. 55-56.)

The Taekwon-Doist familiar with such concepts as the wave principle (i.e. sine wave motion) and the knee-spring action will notice the obvious parallels with the principles of wave movement in Aikido quoted above.

Again I affirm my conviction that ITF Taekwon-Do shares many concepts with soft style martial arts like Aikido.
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Ymar Sakar said...

I never saw that or was taught that as advanced things. I was taught that as the basic foundational course material for beginners.

Strangely enough, the history of martial arts secrecy has often made many things advanced only because people would learn them too fast and thus become a potential security threat. Thus it was "held back" and then treated as "advanced". When in fact... that's the stuff people should have learned from day 1 in the dojo... the fact that they don't learn this, is the reason why there are so many application failures in terms of martial arts. The body may follow, but when there's no mind driving the body, then you have a zombie, not a human fighter.

SooShimKwan said...

In my opinion these ["advanced" Aikido principles] are what ITF's sine wave motion tries to instill in the practitioner from very early on.