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Posted Thursday, August 14, 2008 1:25 PM


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cy (8/14/2008)
Ted Pin (8/14/2008)


This is why every form/kata that I've ever learned or seen begins with a block...


Depending on your way of thinking, there are no blocks, just strikes. ;)


If you have to "block/parry/dodge/whatever," you've already screwed up... You were walking around in condition white and shame on you. That said, I got in more fights managing a Stop-n-Rob while in grad school than I ever did as a cop, since there's no way to avoid a fight that comes through the front door looking for you and/or your merchandise. And most perps have learned the hard way that there's no way to win a fight with the police in the long run.

Although there may be no "shame" in running... There's also no shame in STRIKING FIRST to avoid a fight and protect society from all the future pain this jerk would've otherwise inflicted. If you perceive the fight coming and fear for your safety (in most jurisdictions), you've got the right to preemptively defend yourself. The much-maligned Kobra Kai had it right in principle... their practice and implementation was just a bit off in the movie.

Post #553023
Posted Thursday, August 14, 2008 4:18 PM
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I used to be a kickboxer, Thai style which includes elbows and knees. My Sifu (Chan Cheuk-Fai) is an 9th dan black belt in Go Shin Ryu Karate and a Kung Fu master. His father was the grand master of the Kung Fu style Shaolin Double Dragon. My husband and I are still friends with him and he still tries to get me to train again but the school is just too far away now. I also have a young child to take care of. I used to train 2-3 hours a day, 6 days a week, running, weights, sparring and classes. One of the nicest things my Sifu ever said to me was that I punched and kicked like a man. No girly stuff from me! He also got me to do class demonstrations with him a lot so I took a bit of punishment at times.

I also love running and yoga but don't have much time at the moment to do anything more than a quick walk at lunch time. I think I will investigate Tai Chi as a possibility for the future as it has always intrigued me.


Nicole Bowman

Nothing is forever.
Post #553189
Posted Thursday, August 14, 2008 5:07 PM


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Ted Pin (8/14/2008)
GilaMonster (8/14/2008)

I tried Kendo for a bit, didn't really enjoy it. Too much focus on point scoring and competition and that's not what I look for in martial arts. I'd love to do kenjitsu, but the only instructor in the country is over a thousand km away


Yes, I think you're right; the stopping of rounds each time a point is scored is one reason I hesitated to join kendo. For me, it breaks the flow of the fighting situation.


You went to the wrong dojo then. While competition is a part of kendo, it's not the be all and end all (and dojo should not be encouraging it as such). I've been practicing kendo for about 7 years and while our dojo competes in shiai (competitions) we only concentrate on shiai techniques for about a month leading up to the competition. Our dojo's main focus (and indeed for the other dojo in NZ) is on good technique. It doesn't matter if you get hit by your opponent - that just means you have to refine your technique, improve your focus.

Remember the concept of kendo: A way to discipline the human character through the application of the principles of the katana.

There's a lot more to it than competition.

Plug: Check out www.kendo-world.com. It's a good English language resource for people into kendo, some good books available. My only affiliation with it is I'm a subscriber to their magazine and the editor is a kiwi bloke who used to run the Christchurch dojo.




Scott Duncan

MARCUS. Why dost thou laugh? It fits not with this hour.
TITUS. Why, I have not another tear to shed;
--Titus Andronicus, William Shakespeare
Post #553208
Posted Thursday, August 14, 2008 10:35 PM


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Ted Pin (8/14/2008)
gunna48 (8/14/2008)
Nice to know I'm not the only martial geek out there. And I agree with Grant sparring with a love body or more is much more stress relieving. Love your column.


Sparring was my favorite part as well. Weapons were also very therapeutic; if you don't concentrate, you can (severely) hurt yourself! I preferred bo staff. I still yearn to try Kendo however...


Totally agree there. Weapons do raise the level of concentration, even if not sparring. Try some kana sets with a katana (if you can, try with a "real" one, not the training one) after some of the "Grass drill" style warmups to regain your center, "drowning breath" to regain focus, followed by some slow paced Tai chi chong (a somewhat more martial variant of Tai Chi with some long holds).



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Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?
Post #553254
Posted Friday, August 15, 2008 2:51 AM
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Chalk up one more for the martial arts geeks, I did about 5 years of Ju Jitsu and about 3 years of TKD a number of years back, and even though I gave them up years ago I think what I learnt there still helps to improve me as a person today.

These days my stress reliever of choice is to go out for a run at lunchtime, we're lucky enough to have a shower in the office and there's nothing more calming than to spend half an hour running the backroads with nothing but my mp3 player for company, helps negate the effects of my other love too (beer) :)

Our office has an unofficial sports night one day a week as well, where a number of us knock off early and play tennis or badminton depending on the weather - there's nothing like slamming an ace past the colleague who criticised your work earlier that day ;)
Post #553300
Posted Friday, August 15, 2008 2:54 AM
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We had a tradition (probaly local)
Of doing a thousand strokes with bokken on the anniversity.

I was elevated to first dan after Sensei Chiba witnessed a perfect throw (irimi tenkan. kotogase)

So, i was entitled to the hakama.. During a demo I faced a woman (and womem wear hakama)

I hit the wall about six feet up... Ouch..
Post #553301
Posted Friday, August 15, 2008 8:12 AM
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physic77 (8/15/2008)
Chalk up one more for the martial arts geeks, I did about 5 years of Ju Jitsu and about 3 years of TKD a number of years back, and even though I gave them up years ago I think what I learnt there still helps to improve me as a person today.

Our office has an unofficial sports night one day a week as well, where a number of us knock off early and play tennis or badminton depending on the weather - there's nothing like slamming an ace past the colleague who criticised your work earlier that day ;)


Likewise, TKD benefits my life on a daily basis. I find it interesting how many of us note how influential martial arts has been on our lives.

A good portion of my department at work plays basketball together on Mondays and Tuesdays each week. It's great stress relief and bonding.


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Posted Friday, August 15, 2008 8:44 AM
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I agree with what Steve said about taking care of your body and how it will help the rest of your life. In so many ways I feel that the mind, body, and soul all need to be healthy in order to achieve the higher ground.

I had a phone interview the other day and the person on the other end asked me how I dealt with stress. My answer came in two parts. First I addressed how I handle the stress immediately in a work environment (I figured that was more important to the person on the other end) and then I also added that I do physical activity. In my case it is swimming. It's obvious that the physical activity makes me feel better but it also helped me nail that question. So there you have it. Physical activity helping out in ways that I had not even imagined until the unknown became obvious later on.
Post #553549
Posted Tuesday, August 26, 2008 8:57 AM
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I enjoyed reading all the posts. When I first saw the "SQLSERVER" email, I thought I was seeing things when I saw O'Sensei in it. I have the same picture.

I have been doing martial arts my entire life. Started with TKD and some others in my younger years. I started Aikido about 20 years ago. It's a very interesting martial art. It is entirely defensive and used to end the incident without doing harm to anyone. Don't be fooled it is a very powerfull art. My sensei is 2 from the founder (took from Tohei).

Relating this to IT and the business world. Aikido and any art is a great way to relax and blend with others. Many IT people have a hard time dealing with others. I know many IT programmers that just code all day and don't really know how to relate to others. We are geeks. It's good to relate and get some exercise for stress reliever. Plus, you learn how to protect yourself.

What make Aikido different is the "ki" side of it... Some schools don't teach it. I was lucky my sensei learned it from the original students (Tohei) of O'Sensei. Being relaxed and learning how to focus have helped me in the business. How many times does a meeting get heated or people start to argue. Having good "ki" is very important in life. You are at your strongest when you are relaxed. One other point of "ki"... As we age, our mind and body seperate. A young baby has great "ki". Try taking a rattle away from a 10lb baby. It's hard. I have heard stories about women lifting a car to save their child. When the mind and body come together, we are very powerfull.

The bottom line is to take care of yourself (exercise your body and mind). Relax.........
Post #558967
Posted Friday, June 21, 2013 1:19 AM


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I agree with the article, finding some stress reliever after work is important for me. I do lot of mountainbiking, mainly enduro and downhill. We are about 4-5 DBA's/developers/sysadmin on the group I ride with, so seems to be a good sport to do to release stress. You must be concentrated when going fast downhill, avoiding trees, rocks, landing the jumps, taking corners, etc.
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