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Vincent Munoz
09-25-2007, 07:31 PM
Hi fellow aikidoka,

I just moved here in the U.S. and I noticed something in most dojos. Most of there sessions are only 1 hour. I'm not being arrogant here. I'm just curious if it's really enough. In my experience, undos and ukemi practice alone sometimes takes an hour.

What can you guys say about this?

Domo,

Vincent

graham
09-25-2007, 08:10 PM
I can't even imagine that!

I mean, an hour's better than nothing, but we've barely got started after an hour.

Shipley
09-25-2007, 09:05 PM
Most places that I've seen that have one hour training slots have more than one in a row, so you can warm up with the beginners, stay for an open class, and then for an advanced. That could be three hours straight.

I don't think I've ever trained anywhere that had an isolated single hour class for the general membership that wasn't a specialty class of some sort (weapons, beginners, kids).

Cheers,

Paul

Vincent Munoz
09-26-2007, 12:37 AM
"Most places that I've seen that have one hour training slots have more than one in a row, so you can warm up with the beginners, stay for an open class, and then for an advanced. That could be three hours straight."

Sounds good but when the advance students comes, they will start with undos and ukemi as well, so when is the time for techniques? Minus the demo time....

I asked an instructor somewhere in Alameda, CA. He said the way I ask convey arrogance. I just asked sincerely. I told em..."the way you answered is also unaiki". He should have explain to me nicely too. There was nothing wrong with my question. I ask him nicely through e-mail.

Anyway, thanks guys.

Domo,

Vincent

batemanb
09-26-2007, 01:41 AM
Hi fellow aikidoka,

I just moved here in the U.S. and I noticed something in most dojos. Most of there sessions are only 1 hour. I'm not being arrogant here. I'm just curious if it's really enough. In my experience, undos and ukemi practice alone sometimes takes an hour.

What can you guys say about this?

Domo,

Vincent

Vincent,

It's not unusual and I'm sure the classes are adapted to fit the time slot. When I was living in Japan, and when I now visit, many classes are only an hour duration, including Doshu's morning keiko at Hombu dojo.Ukemi practice is taken through out the class, every technique you practice, two people are practicing, one doing the technique and one doing ukemi

Here at our dojo's we are fortunate enough to run 2 hour classes, but we only use 10 - 15 mins for warm ups and 10 - 15 mins for warm downs. I wouldn't worry about it too much, just make the most of the session.

rgds
Bryan

p00kiethebear
09-26-2007, 02:05 AM
Sounds good but when the advance students comes, they will start with undos and ukemi as well, so when is the time for techniques? Minus the demo time....

Our dojo works with multiple 1 hour time slots.

Regardless of your rank or skill level, attendance to the beginner class is mandatory.

If someone is going to miss the first class because of being late for work or something, it's not a problem as long as they spend 15 off to the side stretching and warming up.

Also, to address your first post.

As long as you're somewhat athletic, you can learn beginning to intermediate Aikido 1 hour a day three days a week.

If athletics are an area you struggle in, then you'll need to work twice as hard as everyone else or you are SOL

It also helps if you're mature enough to understand how you learn. That way you know exactly what questions to ask your teacher and yourself and you know how to really 'study' technique while on the mat.

Best.

KamiKaze_Evolution
09-26-2007, 04:21 AM
Such cases happend in Malaysia as well

Walter Martindale
09-26-2007, 04:30 AM
http://www.aikikai.or.jp/eng/index.htm

Schedule at Aikikai Hombu in Tokyo shows one hour classes. I've attended a few (very few). Usually people were showing on the mats about 15 minutes before official start time to do some warm up. Then the sensei of the hour showed, bowed in the class, did a few warm up exercises, and got into the class.
After class people took a few minutes to chat, and yudansha folded their hakama...
Cheers
Walter

Vincent Munoz
09-26-2007, 05:18 AM
Thanks for sharing your ways in your respective dojos. I really don't have a problem adjusting. I'm an aikidoka for more than 12 years. I'm just curious because most of my experience were not less than 2 hours. One dojo that I was able to practice with have sessions twice a week only but about 3 hours per session. Yes I saw Hombu Dojo's schedules, 1 hour as well. I saw few dojo's here having an hour and a half per sessions but they're far from me.

Anyways, thanks guys.

one in budo,

Vincent

Peter Goldsbury
09-26-2007, 06:15 AM
Vincent,

It's not unusual and I'm sure the classes are adapted to fit the time slot. When I was living in Japan, and when I now visit, many classes are only an hour duration, including Doshu's morning keiko at Hombu dojo.Ukemi practice is taken through out the class, every technique you practice, two people are practicing, one doing the technique and one doing ukemi

Here at our dojo's we are fortunate enough to run 2 hour classes, but we only use 10 - 15 mins for warm ups and 10 - 15 mins for warm downs. I wouldn't worry about it too much, just make the most of the session.

rgds
Bryan

Hello Bryan,

A little off topic, but in July we hosted Nakao Shihan at our dojo for a one-day intensive session. When I say, 'our dojo', I mean the dojo I run in Higashi-Hiroshima with Werner and Carolin, but we actually used the large judo dojo at Hiroshima University. Suzuki Shihan froim Ehime also came with a load of students. There were about 50 on the mat in all. It was a very good day.

We did a morning 2-hour session and an afternoon session of two hours and a half. However, the pace of training was quite slow because of the heat and humidity. The outside temperature was around 35 degrees Celsius, with 95% humidity. Of course, there was no air-conditioning, so the sweat just dripped and dripped.

I was in the Aikikai Hombu recently and they told me that there had been several cases of severe heat exhaustion requiring rapid hospitalization, so they would henceforth stop training if the outside temperature reached a certain level.

I came to aikido while doing a different activity, namely, marathon running. I used to run over the South Downs around Sussex University, with occasonal trips over Ditchling Beacon into Ditchling, and back. So I came to aikido with good reserves of stamina. When I first came to Japan and regularly attended our university gasshuku in places like Shodoshima, I had no problem with a daily training regime of six hours: one hour running (a.m.), two hours continuous training (a.m.); three hours continuous training (p.m.).

We used to do this at the BAF summer schools in Bangor when Chiba Sensei used to attend. In the UK and places like Italy, this might be possible, but I doubt that I could keep up such a pace in a place like Malaysia.

So I think the question of the optimum time for an aikido training session depends on a large number of factors (as do most aikido questions).

Best wishes,

PAG

SeiserL
09-26-2007, 06:58 AM
Scheduling takes into account many factors. While I prefer longer classes, short ones are fine. Focus on the training and not the clock.

batemanb
09-26-2007, 09:40 AM
Hello Bryan,

A little off topic, but in July we hosted Nakao Shihan at our dojo for a one-day intensive session. When I say, 'our dojo', I mean the dojo I run in Higashi-Hiroshima with Werner and Carolin, but we actually used the large judo dojo at Hiroshima University. Suzuki Shihan froim Ehime also came with a load of students. There were about 50 on the mat in all. It was a very good day.


Hi Peter,

Nakao san and Akiko san told me they'd come down to visit and had a good time. Just sorry that I couldn't be there :(.

Janet Rosen
09-26-2007, 11:25 AM
The last couple of dojos I've been member of, when there is a one hour beginners class and then a one hour advanced class, advanced students have the option of either using the beginners class AS the warmup or of warming up alone off to the side before second class starts - the second class does no or minimal warm ups.

Marc Kupper
09-26-2007, 11:40 AM
Our dojo has a 1-hour class at lunch time as that's about how long most working people can escape for. In the evening it's a 2-hour class but the first hour is basics and the second is more advanced. At the half way point we pause for a moment to allow those that feel they are not ready for the second hour to bow off and then the class continues. Most of the advanced students do both the first and second hour.

There are people that because of life/work scheduling can only come to the mid-day classes. They progress but it just takes longer.

Marc

mriehle
09-26-2007, 11:54 AM
For as long as I can remember, most dojos I've encountered have had one-hour classes with some exceptions. The exceptions tend to be advanced classes.

I think the point made "Focus on the training and not the clock." by Lynn Seiser is the salient one.

Dathan Camacho
09-26-2007, 02:37 PM
One thing that I don't think anyone has brought up is temperature. The air conditioner in our dojo is not working properly at the moment and it's hot enough that 1 hour is about all I can handle.

Mark Uttech
10-07-2007, 05:50 AM
One thing that I don't think anyone has brought up is temperature. The air conditioner in our dojo is not working properly at the moment and it's hot enough that 1 hour is about all I can handle.

Onegaishimasu. Traditionally, dojos in Japan were neither heated in winter, nor cooled in summer. A person then studied how to train. Aikido training is all about adjusting to this or that circumstance.

In gassho,

Mark

roadster
10-08-2007, 05:42 AM
Our classes are 1 hour 15 minutes. Twice a week though I stay another hour to help with the junior college class, and for weapons classes. Add to that thirty minutes of mat cleaning and dusting and I am there close to three hours.

Scheduling for Americans is always an issue. I myself work nights and have to really dig into my sleep time to get to the dojo as often as I do.

RoyK
10-08-2007, 06:32 AM
I read somewhere that there's a difference between working hard and working long hours, and many times there is no correlation between the two.
I find that for me this is somewhat applicable to Aikido as well. Our classes are an hour and a half long, and if I truly try to stay focused and cram in as much effort and attention as possible, it's a pretty good time frame for me. I could take two consecutive classes without being 100% focused, but I think it'd be less effective than one good class.

BTW - our Dojo isn't air conditioned as well, for the same reasons mentioned by Mark. The actual result of this is that many people don't make it through the entire class during the summer. What can we do, we're not Japanese :uch:

stelios
10-10-2007, 03:55 AM
In July we reached 46 degrees C, which is very nasty if you are training Aikido in a small dojo full of people, with no aicon or fans and with the windows shut! Yet, my teacher believes in what Mark said and I find this to be very important, adapting to any situation. And, I have found that once you make it to a good sweat, you barely notice the hot temperature anymore.

Bronson
10-10-2007, 12:39 PM
I guess I would adapt by opening a window and turning on some fans :D

Bronson

Ron Tisdale
10-10-2007, 01:20 PM
I would question the safety of training without even opening a window. I'm used to training with no air...and like that method myself. But no windows being opened sounds like a problem. Especially if there are fans going...wouldn't that just make it like a convection oven?
Best,
Ron

gdandscompserv
10-10-2007, 01:21 PM
Onegaishimasu. Traditionally, dojos in Japan were neither heated in winter, nor cooled in summer.
I can vouch for that.
Mid-summer in Okinawa.
And loved every moment of it.

mriehle
10-10-2007, 02:33 PM
I would question the safety of training without even opening a window. I'm used to training with no air...and like that method myself. But no windows being opened sounds like a problem. Especially if there are fans going...wouldn't that just make it like a convection oven?
Best,
Ron

Depends, I think, on the building.

The building I'm in at the moment is a perfect example. We had a couple of days last summer where opening the doors (no windows in this building) would have been pointless. It was 105F outside, around 95F inside. Turn on the fans and it dropped - according to the thermometer - to around 90F. This was an observable phenomenon.

It's no mystery, though.

The building has a basement and the floor is, well, porous. It's a hardwood floor that's been well used over the years. Lots of holes in it. I actually had to cover some of the holes because the presented a safety issue for students. The cool air comes right up as soon as you get things stirring (along with the dust, unfortunately).

In another building I train in, though, things are very different. Concrete slab floor, modern drywall "box" construction. Better open the doors before turning on the fans. Less dust, though. The mat stays cleaner.

giriasis
10-10-2007, 08:30 PM
Vincent,

Where in Miami are you? I'm in Fort Lauderdale and train at Florida Aikikai. Our main evening classes are 90 minutes. Our Basics classes will spend 30 minutes on warm-up, ukemi and other exercises and the remainder of the class will spend focusing in depth one or two techniques. Mixed has a shorter warm-up, about 15 minutes and we often spend the last 15- 30 minutes on weapons. Sure, they're short and sweet but there is a lot depth in the training, too.

Your welcome to brave the South Florida traffic and come up to Fort Lauderdale for a class. We have classes on the weekend if the weekday traffic is too much. Or you could check out Gold Coast Aikikai near FIU in Miami. I know Wee-Wow Sensei offers at least two classes a night. And you couldn't go wrong training at her dojo.

If you have any more questions about dojos in this area please feel free to send me a private message.

Bronson
10-11-2007, 10:09 AM
I'm really more interested in the quality of the time over the quantity.

A couple of years ago at our summer camp four of us new-ish instructors were given 20 minutes to teach anything we wanted while a senior instructor watched and took notes and later gave us feedback on how we taught. The senior instructor also took a 20 minute block and was able to show us that by properly structuring the class time a lot of information and practice can be had in just 20minutes, something that none of us junior instructors were doing (main comment for all of us was that we talk too much :D ).

A lot of good lessons were learned that day.

Bronson

Mark Uttech
10-11-2007, 11:08 AM
Onegaishimasu. That is a good story Bronson!
In gassho,

Mark

mriehle
10-11-2007, 12:03 PM
(main comment for all of us was that we talk too much :D ).

This seems to be a theme for new teachers.

My teacher does a thing, sometimes, where he will purposely say nothing for the first twenty minutes of class. Demonstrate, invite us practice, demonstrate again, etc.

First time I tried it, it was really hard to do. Worth it, though.

Ika
10-16-2007, 11:26 PM
The same as my dojo, only 1 hour ...
my suggestion, its better if practice in 1.5 hours...
Sometimes, 20minutes only for ukemi
And its better if there is a physical exercise (its infrequently at my dojo)

gregg block
10-18-2007, 05:00 PM
Our classes are 1 1/2 to 2 hours. But quality is more important than duration. You can get some things accomplished in 1 hour

John Longford
11-08-2007, 10:49 AM
As an organisation we now restrict our classes on seminars to an hour at a time with a 15 minute break in between plus an hour for lunch. It seems to work best.
Other than that for individual lessons I believe that one and a half hours is about right. Any longer and the students do not seem to absorb the teaching as well as they should.
Obviously some Dojos do not have the luxury of deciding the duration of a class if they have to fit in with other activities

Aikibu
11-08-2007, 01:54 PM
One and one half hour classes down here with up to another 20 minutes after class answering questions about what we practiced.

William Hazen