Rik Ellis’s thoughts on Aikido in MMA
I am a MMA fighter trained by Alex Reid, I have a strong background in Traditional Aikido. I have studied Traditional Aikido since the age of 5 yrs with my father Henry Ellis 6th dan Aikido – International Birankai – .My father taught me the art of Traditional Aikido as taught to him by Kenshiro Abbe Sensei in the 1950s/60s.
The modern misguided Aikidoka say ” there is no kicking or punching in Aikido ! “”””” Believe me ! there is in my fathers Aikido “”””””.. .see my photos and fight films. The same sad people say on my video comments ” ” I don’t see Aikido ! ” “…..The reason they don’t see Aikido is because they are looking for their stylised dojo Aikido .
Anyone who has used Aikido in a truly hostile situation will tell you that it looked nothing like the training in the dojo, one needs to be able to adapt himself and his technique to that situation. My Aikido is in my mind and my body, I make no pretence of offering myself on a plate to my opponent with a stylised Aikido posture, the biggest mistake in the cage or street is to offer your opponent your leading leg or arm, you will be down before you know what has happened and all your Aiki nonsense will be pounded out of you. ( welcome to the real world ). Make no mistake, I respect Aikido and its principals. I do not respect the people who over the years with their inflated grades and ego’s have tried to change what was once a martial art into some quasi religion to suit their own purpose. These people use this BS to avoid a real situation or a conflict where they may one day need to apply some of the vapourised bs they have been harmonising and teaching for years.
Your opponent in the cage is for real, as would be your street opponent, the difference being that the mma guy is a professional fighter who has no intention of trying to harmonise with you. You will not see me turn my back on my opponent, I will, and do apply wrist locks and arm bars, nor will you see any large circular movements, if you open your closed Aikido mind to some reality ? you may just see a fighter who is “very“ relaxed before and during each fight, look a little closer, you may just see some “ very condensed `body contact techniques – irmi nage ` or an ` irimi tenkan and other techniques to turn my opponent either into or off the cage wall. My father came from Judo to Aikido, he always says that the best of the early Aikido masters came from Judo such as K Abbe – T Abe – M Nakazono – TK Chiba, the first British student of Aikido Ken Williams Sensei was a 3rd dan Judoka, these teachers know how to apply their bodies to maximum effect in tight techniques. Judo is one of the basic foundations for MMA .
If you think that your pure mind and body technique will help you in a real ` street ` situation ??, you are going to be sadly dissapointed, you don’t have to believe me, just wait, trouble is never too far away in this day and age, or ask my father who has been teaching “ Traditional Aikido “ from 1957. ……If you are a student of Ki Aikido ? don’t wait around for your assailant to fall down, he doesn’t know he is supposed to do that, please don’t tell your opponent that Aiki is love ! when you wake up you will realise that was a really stupid mistake you just made.
Why is it that Aikido now attracts so many of the tree hugging hippy type, Aikido to music and the bizarre example of Aikido movement demonstrated with multi coloured ribbons. My father has said many times that he would never have studied most of the Aikido that he sees on offer today.
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Rik Ellis a professional MMA fighter and a long time student of Traditional Aikido from the age of five years.
His father is Henry Ellis 6th dan Aikido International BiranKai. and a pioneer of British Aikido from it inception in the 1950s as a direct student of Kenshiro Abbe Sensei the legendary Budo Master.