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evergrey
Brown Belt
Brown Belt

Joined: 21 Jun 2010
Posts: 734

Styles: kyokushin

PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:03 pm    Post subject: Sparring between two very different styles Reply with quote

OSU!

So my dojo has an open sparring day every month where we invite people from all different styles of martial arts to come and play. We do friendly sparring- stand-up, grappling, or a mix of both. Sparring partners can agree on things like no head punches, or no kicks, or no grabs and throws, or whatever.

It's generally a good time, and there are rarely any problems.

There are some kinds of martial artists we haven't had drop by yet though, as far as I know. The Capoeira thread got me to thinking about this... that's one style we don't have come by. Unlike the kind of karate fighters that were described in the thread, we are a knockdown style, so unless we're also purposefully pulling things, we strike with power, heh. There are some kicks that end up being slowed down because we're using control too...

Anyway the thing I'm thinking about is Aikido. I haven't really sparred Aikidoka. I've only let them demonstrate on me, while being compliant.

I wonder how actually sparring one would go though? I am told there's a really steep learning curve when it comes to this style, so let's just say both people participating are experts, and the other participant was a full contact knockdown fighter.

What I imagine is that the knockdown fighter would kind of be faced with two options... either go slow and compliant and get grabbed and pulled around a lot, or go fast and hard, remaining balanced, throwing multiple strike combinations so that even if their first strike is "caught," they'll be throwing a second strike to hopefully knock around their opponent.

Maybe I'm wrong though. Any cull contact fighters ever spar an Aikido person?

How does one spar effectively in a FRIENDLY, mutual learning kind of way, with a martial artist whose style is very very different from one's own? Have you done that, and how did you make it work? How do both people manage to display the virtues of their style?

One thing for sure though... it'd be a great way for people to learn where the holes are in their respective styles...

Anyway, let's discuss this.
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"If you can fatally judo-chop a bull, you can sit however you want." -MasterPain, on why Mas Oyama had Kyokushin karateka sit in seiza with their clenched fists on their thighs.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 29040
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2012 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think at times, looking at different training strategies and scenarios might be more beneficial than just openly sparring.

However, with the sparring idea in mind, I think an Aikidoka would benefit greatly by having some proficiency in some strikes to set up their locks and manipulations.

That's what I like and dislike about Aikido; the style of training isn't conducive to sparring, but the randori style they use can be a good training tool. However, the idea of sparring would also open their eyes as to what it would actually require to pull off their techniques in a more offensive (as opposed to defensive) manner.

One of the things that I like more about Hapkido is that things aren't based as much on the other person's energy to do the moves. Hapkido stylist tend to create the energy they need, when they need it.
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JusticeZero
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 02 Apr 2005
Posts: 2166
Location: AK
Styles: Capoeira Angola

PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've tried; it's a complete failure.
I throw a kick at 10% force - it goes slllooooowwww as molasses and I have to hold it up, which worsens my form, they go flickflick!flickflickflick! and then tell me how ineffective my style is because i'm so slow.
I throw a kick at 30% force - it goes whoosh through the air at a moderate clip. I try to slow it down at the end, but really that's not much more effective than saying "We're going to spar with pistols using live ammunition, you should have enough control to pull the bullets before they hit". I get "OMG, you have no skill at all! You have no control! You're just trying to muscle through and make cheap shots, i'm much more skilled than you are."
I try to restrict myself to techniques I can "control" - it comes out about as well as you would expect from say, sparring an Aikido guy and telling them "No throws, only punches and kicks."

I don't even bother to try anymore. It can do nothing but make them feel that what I do is inferior, no matter how I attempt it.
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MasterPain
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 26 Oct 2010
Posts: 1949
Location: Parts Unknown
Styles: Bujin Bugei Jutsu, Backyard Kali, Satsui no Hadou

PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aikido is a do art, based on aikijutsu. Sparring is possible, and while not really compliant, it does require control and honesty. Control of power for the obvious reasons, and honesty because it is unfair to punch someone who could have just broken your arm but chose to release. Here's a point to consider- why finish the throw? Get your body position, redirect, capture and isolate the limb- at this point the throw is secure, so in a semi-competitive environment there is no need to risk hurting your partner by actually throwing them.

Try this. Start with compliant randori, and gradually make your attacks more random, add timing and rhythm and try to avoid being thrown. Pretty soon you'll have a good sparring match that everyone can learn from.

I've done a lot of this type of sparring, actually.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
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Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 29040
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Sat Oct 20, 2012 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JusticeZero wrote:
I've tried; it's a complete failure.
I throw a kick at 10% force - it goes slllooooowwww as molasses and I have to hold it up, which worsens my form, they go flickflick!flickflickflick! and then tell me how ineffective my style is because i'm so slow.
I throw a kick at 30% force - it goes whoosh through the air at a moderate clip. I try to slow it down at the end, but really that's not much more effective than saying "We're going to spar with pistols using live ammunition, you should have enough control to pull the bullets before they hit". I get "OMG, you have no skill at all! You have no control! You're just trying to muscle through and make cheap shots, i'm much more skilled than you are."
I try to restrict myself to techniques I can "control" - it comes out about as well as you would expect from say, sparring an Aikido guy and telling them "No throws, only punches and kicks."

I don't even bother to try anymore. It can do nothing but make them feel that what I do is inferior, no matter how I attempt it.


Its not just Capoeira, Justice. Although I don't experience this quite to the extent that you do with every technique, there are some that I get it with.

When I throw a spinning heel kick, with all my 250+ lbs behind it, I make sure its either not full speed, or I try to "slow up" the kick when reaching the target. I'm not always flexible enough to kick over the other person's head, so what usually happens is it gets blocked, or they swerve out of the way of the slower kick, then hop in and punch or kick or whatever. There have been a few times when I have told someone, "hey, next time, I won't pull that kick." Then it kind of registers with them. But its always after the fact.

MasterPain wrote:
Aikido is a do art, based on aikijutsu. Sparring is possible, and while not really compliant, it does require control and honesty. Control of power for the obvious reasons, and honesty because it is unfair to punch someone who could have just broken your arm but chose to release. Here's a point to consider- why finish the throw? Get your body position, redirect, capture and isolate the limb- at this point the throw is secure, so in a semi-competitive environment there is no need to risk hurting your partner by actually throwing them.

Try this. Start with compliant randori, and gradually make your attacks more random, add timing and rhythm and try to avoid being thrown. Pretty soon you'll have a good sparring match that everyone can learn from.

I've done a lot of this type of sparring, actually.


This is a very good idea. I've had some impromptu things like this happen in some DT stuff we've done, but never in Aikido class. This would be a good idea for Combat Hapkido.
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evergrey
Brown Belt
Brown Belt

Joined: 21 Jun 2010
Posts: 734

Styles: kyokushin

PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haha, spinning heel kicks huuuuuurt. At my dojo we tend to strike hard enough to leave some pretty big bruises, but we try to not go so far as to break bones.
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"If you can fatally judo-chop a bull, you can sit however you want." -MasterPain, on why Mas Oyama had Kyokushin karateka sit in seiza with their clenched fists on their thighs.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
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Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 29040
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We don't even get a whole lot of bruising going on. I'd love to spar without the damn pads on; they mess with the way I move so badly.
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JusticeZero
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 02 Apr 2005
Posts: 2166
Location: AK
Styles: Capoeira Angola

PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right, Ev, I could probably spar with *you* to some extent, because I could throw kicks hard enough to actually look like a valid kick and not worry that i'm going to break you or your ego into itty bitty pieces. But you would be left with a lot of bruises, i'd be left with a lot of big bruises that i'm not nearly as used to getting, and i'd probably end up jacking up your knee again somehow and worry that we'd end up breaking something because of how hard it can be to gauge force with those. You're used to taking hits from the *kids' class* that nth degree black belts in the usual schools consider a demonstration of poor skill.
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Alpha One Four
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 24 Oct 2012
Posts: 37
Location: Joplin, Missouri
Styles: Karate (Various Styles), Kuk Sool Won, American Boxing

PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bushido_man96 wrote:
We don't even get a whole lot of bruising going on. I'd love to spar without the damn pads on; they mess with the way I move so badly.


I know exactly what you mean. I went from a street fighting thug to karate point sparring in full gear. The two are miles apart. I'm used to going all out without fear of getting hit. I don't mind taking a few to get in close.

As far as the dance fighting, I imagine it would be a little like fighting a kung fu master using drunken monk. I'd go for powerful low kicks.
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JusticeZero
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 02 Apr 2005
Posts: 2166
Location: AK
Styles: Capoeira Angola

PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The issue isn't so much 'how to fight X' as the fact that I, and various other styles, can't have a "friendly sparring match" with other styles. "Sparring" heavily favors certain techniques and discourages others, but not because they are or aren't effective; instead, it is because some techniques can be done as flicky play-jabs, but others only start to work at speeds that start to hit uncomfortably hard and cannot be "pulled". If your art primarily uses the latter sort've techniques, you end up looking like a fool in "sparring".
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