Yonkyo and the Forearm of Pain

YONKYO: Fourth teaching. Refers to pressure applied on a nerve point in the lower forearm to bring the attacker into a pinning position.

Tonight we mainly worked on Kokyu Nage (Breath Throw) of which the number of actual techniques seem endless. However, for a short time we switched to YONKYO. Yonkyo is a really fascinating technique because while learning it you might say "Yes this could be effective". But once a master of the technique has applied Yonkyo to your forearm you know that somehow a dagger has mysteriously been inserted to the center of bone and you MUST drop to the floor.

All the talk of harmony, flow, blending...it all disappears. All that matters is that you go down. When learning we mostly approximate it and sometimes I suppose the situation will mean Yonkyo is less piercing. And I'm told the more often it is done to you the less fearsome it becomes to you.

But for me the memory of Sidney Sensei softly controlling my arm followed by the stab into the center of my forearm as I dropped, is a reminder of two things.

1. Aikido started as a way to effectively control and manage an attack
2. While techniques can be learned in a reasonable amount of time. A real master is just that. A master of techniques.

The above video demonstrates Yonkyo but watching is such a pale intimation of the real deal.


Bob said...

Did you get the little round bruise on the inside of your forearm? haha. Yes, I've only felt it once, but Yonkyo can hurt!

See you Saturday. I am healed.

ZeppoManx said...

No, we were pretty tame on Monday so I am bruise free.

But those moments of perfect pain live on in my memory.

Anonymous said...

If an aikidoka can get yonkyo it works fine without the pressure point application. The control over the forearm will control an attacker and once the throw has occurred the pin takes care of the rest. Charlie, at Dallas, used to say that the pain is the cherry on top.

Bob said...

The one time I did Yonkyo, I was doing working with Sean, who is really great at easily finding the nerve spot. Sidney, however, told me not to worry about it -- that the most important thing was what Brian said, and taking Uke's balance.

Oiiii -- I'm ready to get back to class.