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Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Jay Guerin, 98 words )

This seminar was fantastic. What I most liked about it was how it showed me so many of the weaknesses and deficiencies in my own training system. I also was amazed at the knowledge and expertise of the instructors. To watch Mr. Vasiliev demonstrate and see the calm look on his face, even smiling at times as he was taking his partners to the ground ... that's what did it for me. There is nothing more enjoyable than watching a true "master" at work and then to actually get training directly from that person.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-13 21:26:09
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Frank Fileti, 202 words )

I'm not really sure where to begin to explain my experience at this seminar. But what I can say is my meeting with Mikhail for the first time was a truly amazing experience that touched me way beyond the physical. They say many look, but few see.I did more than that, I saw, felt, breathed, lived, laughed, cried, and sweat. but most of all I believed. It was an experience far more than I expected. Im not really sure what I expected, but I do know it was a true blessing. Thanks to Vlad my good friend and teacher who I'v trained with for about six years now. who has shown me the way of systema in a way that has totally changed my life. Also thanks to Edgars, for bringing every one together! and getting to see and train with all my friends again. I have to say, I have been hit many times before, but this time I was touched in a way that cleansed my soul, and strenthened my spirit. Thank you Mikhail and Vlad for your clean, subtle movements, amazing use of energy, unbelievable insight, inspiring kindness and humour, overwhelming power and absolute control. Thanks! Hope to see every one soon!

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-10 02:04:20
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Mark Jakabcsin, 682 words )

As always after a seminar I find it difficult to write, my mind is so full of thoughts and I struggle to wrap my arms around the material presented. This is a good thing. The shear joy of being exposed to new material and seeing old material in a new light is very exhilarating. This seminar exceeded my every expectation and I can’t adequately express how happy I am that I attended. My deepest thanks to Mikhail, Vladimir, Edgar, Peggy and all those that attended. Each of you helped make it a very special weekend. Thank you. While I have trouble putting everything into words, many of you know I don’t have trouble filling the page with words. Hence I won’t try to review the entire seminar, impossible, and I’ll try to avoid recapping what has already been written, which is lots of good posts. With that in mind, following are a few items that stick out in my mind. - This seminar helped me better understand the use of shoulders when striking. I finally started to see/understand (slightly) that the shoulders don’t move in relation to the body, the body moves in relation to the target. This makes it very difficult for the target to see the punch coming. Hence my inability to move when Mikhail was caressing my jaw and ample chin. Since I am a tactile learner this was definitely the highlight for me, even if it meant eating Jell-O and soup for the past few days.  - During the beginning of one of our long push-ups Vladimir said something along the lines that this exercise will help you learn about yourself. A few weeks before in Toronto I had experienced the joy of the 10+ minute push-up, hence Vladimir’s words took on instant meaning for me and helped a great deal. At the beginning of the exercise I am excited and my ego takes over. I know I can perform well and I look forward to doing well. Then the pain and discomfort kick in and I start making excuses on why it would be OK to stop and I feel sorry for myself. Eventually I simply accept the situation and get down to breathing and simply surviving. Ego, pity, acceptance. Now I just need to figure out how to skip the first two and go straight to acceptance. - Even though others have pointed this out I think it is so important I want to say it again. Mikhail and Vladimir continually stressed the need for precession in our work and the way to learn precession is to slow down. I will be stressing this in class for a long time to come. - Invisible work. In a discussion with Vladimir he stressed the need for me to make my work invisible. I believe this is one of the points Mikhail also stressed, although maybe not verbally but visually throughout the seminar. Making each movement with as little motion as possible and without the telltale early signs. How? Simple. Don’t try to do the work, simply do it. Don’t show the work to the world, simply do it and move on. For me personally this means absence of ego. - The last day when doing push-ups Vladimir made a comment about not doing push-ups from the shoulders/chest but doing the work/motion from the fists. This was how we should punch. I will explore this in the classes to come but it struck a cord of truth for me. - I absolutely loved the drill towards the end where #1 and #2 walk towards each other, then when in range strike each other at the same time. Working on striking and strike absorption at the same instant: awesome. Thanks Mikhail, this will quickly become a standard in South Carolina. While all of the above is great stuff the best part is the energy and attitude of everyone at the seminar. I feel very fortunate to be a small part of such an amazing group and look forward to seeing each of you again. Take care. Mark J.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-11 11:24:10
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by LYLE-M CADY, 106 words )

The Manhattan seminar with Mikhail and Vladimir was an amazing experience for me. Thanks to everyone at Fighthouse who made it possible and of course to Mikhail and Vladimir for their expert instruction. I truly felt like a better person afterwards and could see the change in all who attended. By the end of the seminar we all had smiles on our faces as big as Mikhail and Vladimir's because of all that we had learned about the system and about ourselves. I hope that there will be more seminars of this kind in the future. It was an honor to learn from the best.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-10 20:01:42
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Robin, 203 words )

This was so much fun! It was wonderful to see Vlad again and finally meet Colonel Ryabko. He taught us many things, especially about strikes, although applying his teachings is a whole 'nother story. (Give me a knife any day!) Many friends from all over the country were there and people came from Canada and even Singapore. There were so many people...fantastic! Uri did a great job translating, which couldn't have been easy, as Colonel Ryabko is a big joker and jokes are so hard to translate. But we understood just fine, as Colonel Ryabko is very expressive. There was a lot of laughing and everyone was very relaxed. Many thanks to Peggy and my (always patient) teacher Edgar at Fighthouse for hosting the seminar and the big party afterwards, with wonderful Russian food, lots of good strong wine, and Russian dance music [no comment ;-)]. This time, we did not do the crazy Russian falling-backwards-in-a-chair-trick we did at other parties, thank goodness! Perhaps we needed more wine! I wish that Colonel Ryabko could have stayed with us longer. Maybe I will go to Russia some day, but I don't think I will be rappelling down any cliffs any time soon. Большое спасибо....Robin

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-24 18:27:35
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Paul Bacanovic, 119 words )

This was by far the best martial arts training that I have ever received (and I have studied several different fighting styles over the past decade or two). First and foremost, we were lucky enough to have both Mikhail Ryabko and Vladimir Vasiliev with us. Mikhail and Vladimir’s knowledge and practical experience is unique. I have never seen anyone with their ability to explain difficult and elegant fighting concepts in such a simple and straightforward manner. However, what was truly remarkable was Mikhail’s ability to explain the philosophy behind Systema, and how that philosophy translates into the fluid movements, breathing, striking and weapon techniques that characterize this martial arts form. Thank you very much Mikhail and Vladimir.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-14 12:23:07
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Rachel Klingberg, 284 words )

Unforgettable, indeed! It's been more than a week, but I'm still "digesting" all I learned in those three days. Overall, precision and efficiency were what I remember most from the seminars. Mikhail stopped the class several times throughout the weekend to make this point, asking us to be more precise--"no wasted movement," especially with our strikes. Watching Mikhail demonstrating for the first time on Saturday, I marveled at his subtlety and precision, particularly with the knife disarms. He has this extraordinary stillness, and sometimes appears to hardly move at all, and always smiling. I was also very impressed by the fortitude of all the volunteers who helped with the demonstrations--many thanks to all of them. Please see my post to the forum for the full write-up. I hardly have the words to describe how just plain lucky I am to be training (and living) Systema. It's been such a positive influence in my life. I'm grateful to Mikhail and Vlad, not only for sharing their knowledge with us last weekend, but for bringing the gift of Systema to the Western hemisphere. Special thanks to our gracious hosts Peggy and Edgar for all their hard work, to the Fighthouse volunteers who helped out with registration and the banquet, to Yuri for translating Mikhail's words, and of course to the attendees, many of whom travelled also great distances to be with us. I want to extend a special and personal thank-you to my classmates at Fighthouse, especially to my favorite training partner, my mom, who has always been there for me, and also to Rob, Scott, Janice, Frankie, Denis, and most of all Edgar, for all the encouragement. Till we meet again, *vsego nailuchshego* (best wishes), Rachel

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-14 14:16:39
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Robert Cooksey, 242 words )

I have been practicing the System for only six months but in that short amount of time have experienced a profound shift in the way I experience the world through my body. The seminar in Manhattan was somewhat overwhelming. I experienced one particular eye opening moment on the second day when I realized one way in which time had been taken from me on so many occasions in the past. If you've ever been on the receiving end of one of those flurries of what seems to be more hands and feet than one person can wield, and your body feels as if it is passing through a sausage grinder and it can't comprehend how the next strike is always there waiting, then you know the feeling of which I speak (Systema instructors seem to specialize in this). Mikhail and Vladimir lead us through so many scenarios and observed and pointed out so much that I don't know how much I actually retained. Strangely enough, my body feels differently after the seminar, but I don't really understand what the differences are. After the array of shots I took there, maybe it's a bit less flinch and a bit more breathing (still not enough). I thank everyone with whom I worked and the Fighthouse crew for hosting us. Thank most of all to Mikhail for making the long trip and Vladimir for bringing him and Systema to North America. So much to digest.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-24 18:30:05
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by Edgars Cakuls, 596 words )

It was a great gift and honor from V.Vasiliev to bring his teacher M.Ryabko to New York. Mikhail does not enjoy traveling, especially going so far as the USA and Canada. He prefers that students come to see and study with him in Moscow. It is hard to get him out of Russia because of his job. Mikhail told me that he was able to come overseas for such a long time because of special permission from Minister of Justice of Russia. So if during his visit in USA and Canada, Systema community and others will respond with great interest to see him again, than we can hope to get him here again for a longer visit. We had altogether 155 participants and 15 spectators at the seminars. Most of the people were Systema practitioners from around United States, but also in attendance were 9 Canadians, 1 Israeli (Hadas Drachli) and 1 Singaporean (Randall Siow). A great team of 19 Systema instructors attended the seminars: Denis Dmitriyev (CT), Ed Whalen (CA), Brad Scornovacco (CO), Andre Baarsma (DE), David Merrell (FL), Saulius Puzikas (FL), Peter Annazone (FL), Robert Green (NY), Mark Jakabcsin (SC), Richard Clear (TN), Kaizen Taki (WA), Yuri Talalaev (AZ), Wesley Manko (WI), Brad Scheel (WI), Frank Filleti (NY), Vali Majd (BC), Emmanual Manolakakis (ON), Scott Connor (ON), and Kevin Secours (QC) were very helpful in teaching less experienced practitioners. Thanks to all known heroes like Juri Talalaev (as the great translator, too), Scott Connor, Kaizen Taki, Saulius Puzikas, Brad Scornvacco, Curt Boyle, and all the unknown heroes who offered their bodies--and saved the lives of others! My student Sergei Maslikhov, who we observed as he was deeply "blessed by Mikhail," is still not showing up for classes! My partner and friend Peggy was upset that I ordered so much fancy Russian foods and many of them were left untouched?! Is it Russian food scarier than punches from Mikhail? Should I serve American foods instead? It was unusually hot and humid weather, like in the Russian bath, for these seminars, not like other years in NYC, but did not make our event less enjoyable since Vladimir and Mikhail did their c-o-o-o-l things. Good step by step instructional material was presented. Our authorities just blew our minds with their simplicity, professionalism and sense of humor. We never got tired...even we were tired! Simple things like correct breathing let us handle punches, become stronger, more relaxed, and eliminate the remains of Vodka from our bodies. Except me, since there is never too much liquor but sometimes too little proper breathing, I was a lazy bastard on Sunday morning and did not get covered completely! This was my first time that I have ever met Mikhail and felt his heavy arm on my fragile shoulders. I am not talking about his punches....I've known Vladimir for years. He is very wise person and sees everything...and gets you everywhere...Mikhail is nevertheless a high-caliber military professional who does not give you inch does not matter if you attack him armed or empty-handed, one person or many people have to pay for your stupidity instantly! For example, during the Aiki Expo, he demonstrated some punches on me and explained in Russian...He got me in jaw while I was looking to Valerie for translation..."Sorry," he said, smiling innocently. "I did not know you do not understand Russian..." Vladimir's and Mikhail's teaching, demonstrations, and goodness to us were priceless. Thanks to everybody for joining us at this unforgettable event. Hopefully we will again meet our masters in NYC on June 2-4, 2006.

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-15 23:31:09
Vladimir Vasiliev Seminar in Manhattan, NY ( by hadas, 404 words )

i just came back recently to Israel, yet memories of the seminar will stay in my mind for a very long body thanked me for coming to the seminar ..and so here am i thanking you. i must admit, i always saw Mikhail Ryabko on DVD's and yes, i have heard about special effects before..u see it, but the mind can't accumulate it. till the seminar, just standing next to this person make u feel as if you have all the knowledge, if you just listen. maybe it's the confidence he gives, that makes you feel you can really make it, maybe it's because of his genuine smile (mmmm, no, it's definitely not because of his rank or life experience or his knowledge or experience or his punches or his wisdom right?.. :-) i was happy and honored to get a lesson from him, it felt as if i haven't done one decent punch till that day and i cant wait to meet him again..and by the way, moscow is closer to israel then NY so i will be more then happy to come to moscow too and beside that i do need to re find my russian roots, there are there!, somewhere... Vladimir wrote in his book that when u practice you dont need to be so serious and tense because then you will not have energy to act in a real serious encounter . valdimir does that completly, in his work he is smiling and relaxed while he punches u, and just by looking at his students u can see how greater teacher he is. all his senior student always smile, and happy to teach you if you just ask, scott and emanuel were so patience with me that in a certain point i was not really sure if it's coz i am blond and u know, they need to speak s l o w l y ? or they just are amazing patient people... :-) and of course last but not least!, edgars and peggy, my teacher and my sifu. thank you for everything, the teaching and the support, it is always good to come back home, to fighthouse. ps my friends, gave me all this compliments how i look healthier and one friend said, " hadas, do u study a russian "killing" art or a russian "healing" art?" well we all know the answer to this question arent we?

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Date Added: 2005-06-18 07:54:12
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