Howard Popkin & Dmitri Deglas Daito Ryu Seminar 10/14/16 – 10/16/16
Popkin Sensei of Aikijutsu Ginjukai and Deglas Sensei of Shindai Aikikai came to Randall Smith’s dojo, Aikido of Palm Beach County to give a Daito Ryu seminar.
Before I start, let me mention a couple of things. This seminar was a few months ago from the date of this posting. It’s always a pleasure getting to see and train with both Popkin Sensei and Deglas Sensei. Especially at the same time.
I am going off of the notes I had put down the day of the seminar and my recollection, which is becoming more difficult to refresh.
I am becoming a real slacker to posting on my blog.
There were three concepts I put down and that I wanted to write about.
The first concept is to reduce 20%. From what I remember, Popkin Sensei was saying to scale back on two things, the amount of energy in your touch and the amount of pushback you give when your opponent touches or grabs you.
For instance, when you are grabbed and you reduce the autonomic pushback, your opponent falls into an empty spot and his center is compromised. The best part is they don’t realize it happened.
What we want to do automatically when grabbed is to tense up and thereby giving support to your opponent. It then becomes a fight. You gave out too much information.
Its the same concept when touching your opponent. Reduce the amount of your touch so that your opponent doesn’t have the opportunity to react by tensing up.
Popkin Sensei also said to practice the reduce 20% concept by consciously reducing your touch 20% every time you are touched or touching someone.
The reduced touch is an unexpected response with devastating impact. I have noticed it creates the effect of making your opponent stick to you.
The second concept is head past feet. Its one that Popkin Sensei has discussed a number of times over the years and it comes up in every seminar. But it’s crucial and deserves constant discussion.
The idea is simple. Get your opponent’s head past his feet so he is unbalanced.
I have written about this before. It is literally is the practice of unbalancing your opponent by consciously and physically manipulating his body so that you can see his head go past his feet.
Once you see that happen, your opponent is going down. Simple. Sublime. And requires no strength to make it happen.
The third concept is to breathe through your belly and suck your navel into your spine.
It had to do with making your stomach rise and fall to the rhythm of your breathing.
Popkin Sensei was saying how Okamoto Sensei would place a glass of liquor on Popkin Sensei’s belly and make him raise the glass so the he could reach it and take a drink. Pretty funny visual if you know Popkin Sensei.
I have to admit, this third concept is going to take me a while to mull over in my brain. It’s not a new concept to me, but one that I have never been able to get my head around.
There was a good turn out of the usual characters. And they are a good group of people. Dedicated to honing their craft and supporting the survival of this awesome information.