This past Saturday 1/6/18 we were treated to a visit from AI alumni Ted Rose and his wife Melissa Siew Rose. Ted and Melissa moved to Southern California a couple years back, and Ted has continued his Aikido training at the Ikazuchi Dojo, which has some interesting R&D going on, including a system for knife defenses and techniques informed by famous martial artist Dan Inosanto.
Ted led class for us and shared a number of the knife techniques that he's learned, including a set of suburi for knife/tanto, a couple of empty-hand defenses, and some knife-on-knife techniques. We even practiced one technique done while holding 2 knives!
Some class notes:
> the interesting notion is presented that there are suburi and weapon-to-weapon partner practices for bokken and jo, but not for tanto. The idea of developing these for tanto practices that align with Aikido principles is awesome and I'm here for it.
> the standard assumption that a knife will be easy to take away from an attacker is rejected; defense is to use the attacker's own blade against them rather than trying to take it away from them. Good to know!
> importance and attention is placed on establishing a touch connection to the attacker's arm at all times, with a feeling of 'keeping them away'. With attacking partner making an honest attempt to cut/slash with the blade, it becomes glaringly obvious why this is important.
I think it's safe to say we all had a blast. This author, for one, instantly fell in love with these techniques and couldn't stop grinning the whole time and after. Even more of a treat to have our dear friend Ted back on the mat if only for one class. We'll look forward to his return and in the meantime we'll be practicing what we learned!