Grappling Is A Competition For Freedom

“In a fight, only one person can be comfortable. Your job is to transfer the comfortable from your opponent to you.” —Rickson Gracie The goal in grappling is to maintain and protect our own physical freedom, our ability to move freely and unhindered, while taking away the same in our opponent. Posture, balance, and dynamic…

Grappling Is Measured In Irimi

“Whoever controls the center, wins.” —Ellis Amdur Grappling is essentially a negotiation for space, space that one person is attempting to occupy to the detriment of the other. Takedowns, throws, pins, strangles, and joint-locks, are really all variants of taking space so that we are in control of it and our opponent is not. In…

Cross-Training For Aikido Pt 2: Reigi

If we are truly trying to embody the principles of our martial practice, we must be able to do so in all environments, even, or perhaps especially, within those environments that we perceive as hostile. There is a lot of talk in the aikido community about cross-training in grappling and/or striking arts as a means…

Grapping With (Not Against) Our Opponent

If we want to experience the joy and flow of a mutually beneficial relationship, it is imperative that we allow others to be themselves, but not to the point where it shuts down our ability to also be ourselves. There are many benefits, both physical and psychological, that come from sportive grappling, especially in a…

Cross-Training For Aikido Pt 1: An Uncommon Approach

The goal of cross-training in grappling and/or striking for the dedicated aikido practitioner should not necessarily be to add grappling and/or striking to one’s aikido. That’s a fine goal in and of itself, if one truly feels that what aikido lacks is grappling and/or striking. If one truly loves aikido as aikido, however, and sees…