I have previously said that the Eight Catchers are the pinnacle of Martial Arts training. And, I have said that you should study extensive fighting disciplines, Karate, Jujitsu, Kung Fu, whatever, before you begin your minimum of two years of practice on just the Catchers. That said, here is a quick write up of the Sword Catcher, it is an Aikido technique, and illustrations can be found in Monster Martial Arts newsletter X-5.
There are two halves to the sword catcher, though, to be sure, you must do them with perfect Coordinated Body Motion and make them into one. The first half is a simple two step into the attacker. The second half is an easy wrist twist technique.
When somebody comes at you with a sword they have the advantage of distance, and you must make up for that advantage. The best way to make up for it is to take two steps. The first step is straightforward, and the second step you turn and let the rear leg move behind you, so you are looking in the same direction of the attacker.
When I first learned this is was described as a ‘mirroring’ technique. Simply, as you stepped you duplicated your attacker’s body, and so that, sometime during the technique, his foot was next to yours, the limbs of your body matched his, as if looking in a mirror. Of course, his image had a sword, and all you had was a picture of him in your mind.
As you conducted this two step towards him, closing the distance and eventually mirroring him, you did the second piece of the technique, a wrist twist. Specifically, your hand looped over his forearm, you hooked his arm with your palm, and you matched his movement. The intent was to go with him, and then take over it, and thus swing him around into a lock.
Timing is, of course, the whole thing. As he attacks, you step, as he swings his arm, you match the swing, as his body follows through, you help it. And you take over it and swing him into a disarming sort of a wrist lock.
This technique can be done against just about any strike, and all manners of weapons. However, it is perfect for a sword because of the exact way it handles distance. And, it is the Catcher of choice because it requires an evolution of the student if he is too make it work. Simply, while there may be other techniques that are quicker and more practical, this one forces the student to evolve in the best manner possible.
Can you read his mind and anticipate his motion? Can you merge with that motion so that he is not jiggled by your touch? Believe me, working on the Sword Catcher Martial Arts technique for a couple of years will evolve you so that you can.
Head on over Over to Monster Martial Arts for more Data on Aikido Techniques.