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graham
06-08-2008, 05:31 AM
I mentioned in this thread (http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=208139#post208139) that I was looking for a "plus-size" gi. I'm actually surprised by how difficult it's been to get one. The jackets either fit round the middle but reach down below my knees, or are the perfect length and leave me looking quite indecent!

That got me wondering how any other "plus-size" folks amongst us have found their aikido experience. The first club I attended made me feel really welcome and would often ask if I was doing okay when I was as red as a tomato and producing a tsunami of sweat. I was impressed by that, but a little embarrassed.

I've never felt excluded for being larger, but there's obviously the self-consciousness of looking around in horror and seeing that everyone else is the pique of physical fitness.

The benefit is that I'm already a ball, so rolling should come easier!

SeiserL
06-08-2008, 08:26 AM
From one big guy to another, greetings.

Yes, we share experience. For the most part people are pretty good about accepting our/my size. And then there are the indirect and direct comments that agree with our/my self-consciousness that we/I need to deal with. The uke on the mat isn't nearly as tough as the one in our/my head.

In the mean time, I am still showing up to train whether they have yet to cultivate empathy, compassion, acceptance, or appreciation of difference. Guess that's the one one in their head/hearts they will have to live with.

So hopefully, one day, we will share space and time on the mat and show everyone how us big guys do it.

crbateman
06-08-2008, 11:39 AM
Speaking as one who is latitudinally gifted, I find that one big advantage is that nobody can get from my front to my back without stopping along the way to refuel, and that's when I get 'em... ;)

graham
06-08-2008, 05:52 PM
Speaking as one who is latitudinally gifted, I find that one big advantage is that nobody can get from my front to my back without stopping along the way to refuel, and that's when I get 'em... ;)

Lol!

graham
06-09-2008, 08:20 AM
The uke on the mat isn't nearly as tough as the one in our/my head.

So true, Lynn.

Thanks.

Robert Draper
06-09-2008, 10:42 AM
Thanks for this thread, being an SFB (short fat "bloke") myself I have been a bit nervous about starting Aikido. I stopped training in Karate about a year ago and just sitting around doing nothing instead of training three times a week has piled on the pounds. At least I now know I'm not the only one.

Two hours eighteen minutes to the first lesson...

graham
06-09-2008, 02:51 PM
Thanks for this thread, being an SFB (short fat "bloke") myself I have been a bit nervous about starting Aikido. I stopped training in Karate about a year ago and just sitting around doing nothing instead of training three times a week has piled on the pounds. At least I now know I'm not the only one.

Two hours eighteen minutes to the first lesson...

Oh, you'll love it, Robert! Just don't be afraid to say you need to stop and catch your breath if/when you do.

Ron Tisdale
06-09-2008, 02:58 PM
huh, one of the hardest throwers I've ever met, and one of the best aikidoka (in my opinion) was a short, fat, bloke. I wouldn't have said it to his face though (the short, fat part...). ;)

Actually, another one just popped into my mind...and he's still alive. And would kick my butt if he saw me typing this... :D

Best,
Ron (chewtoy lives!)

crbateman
06-09-2008, 03:18 PM
huh, one of the hardest throwers I've ever met, and one of the best aikidoka (in my opinion) was a short, fat, bloke.I can think of a couple, too... (The secret is that we have our own gravity... shhhhh, don't tell anybody...) :D

Robert Draper
06-10-2008, 04:50 AM
Oh, you'll love it, Robert! Just don't be afraid to say you need to stop and catch your breath if/when you do.

I certainly did love it! And I only went red while doing rolls one after another. Can't wait for next week.

Dieter Haffner
06-10-2008, 07:10 AM
... The secret is that we have our own gravity... shhhhh, don't tell anybody...) :D
Do you get any different gravitational laws with that?
Only thing I can think of by myself is that when you hit the surface, contact will be a little bit softer.:D

Randy Sexton
06-10-2008, 09:40 AM
Since starting Aikido 15 months ago I have lost weight, gotten stronger and have far faster reflexes, and have a great time to boot! Hurray for the big guys! By the way I have found the short fat guys can usually throw you across the room!
Doc

SeiserL
06-10-2008, 02:30 PM
By the way I have found the short fat guys can usually throw you across the room!

Hey Doc, what about us tall fat guys?

Ron Tisdale
06-10-2008, 02:57 PM
Hey Doc, what about us tall fat guys?

KOSHI!!!!

:D

Best,
Ron

mriehle
06-10-2008, 05:16 PM
Okay, as another fat guy, I have to echo most of the comments here.

Although, it must be said that my sensei has, um, commented on my weight. But that may have something to do with the fact that I gained a lot of it in the four years I was teaching in Rio Vista. Teaching and not showing up for training.

So, any disparaging comments I receive can be classified as self-inflicted. :o :(

graham
06-16-2008, 05:05 AM
Okay, as another fat guy, I have to echo most of the comments here.

Although, it must be said that my sensei has, um, commented on my weight. But that may have something to do with the fact that I gained a lot of it in the four years I was teaching in Rio Vista. Teaching and not showing up for training.

So, any disparaging comments I receive can be classified as self-inflicted. :o :(

Oh, so you had been practicing Aikido with him previously?

I think that if a comment was made now I would be more self-conscious, but not devastated. However, if a comment had been made when I was first starting, I doubt I would have stuck around.

As it is, I'm losing weight doing Aikido (and watching what I eat and generally having a more active lifestyle), but I still have a long way to go.

crbateman
06-16-2008, 06:05 AM
As it is, I'm losing weight doing Aikido (and watching what I eat and generally having a more active lifestyle), but I still have a long way to go.Knowing the destination is good, but make sure you take time to enjoy the journey...

mriehle
06-16-2008, 04:11 PM
Oh, so you had been practicing Aikido with him previously?

It could be said that my teaching in Rio Vista was All His Fault with some truth. The weight gain, OTOH, he had nothing to do with.

I think that if a comment was made now I would be more self-conscious, but not devastated. However, if a comment had been made when I was first starting, I doubt I would have stuck around.

When I first started people made comments about my weight all the time:

"Be careful out there today. There's a pretty strong wind and we'd like to see you here again tomorrow."

"Do you even cast a shadow? Let's see!"

"When was the last time you ate anything?"

I long for those comments today.

As it is, I'm losing weight doing Aikido (and watching what I eat and generally having a more active lifestyle), but I still have a long way to go.

I wish I could train the way I want to. I expect that to get better, soon, but since I had to get a Real Job my training has definitely suffered. :(

Beard of Chuck Norris
06-17-2008, 05:14 AM
Tall fat bloke here too...

-We aren't heightest now are we?

I think i can feel a movement starting, no wait, that's just me getting up.

But back to the gi thing, i find that as a tall, fat guy the uwagi scale up in size quite nicely. It's a shame it doesn't work out for the tall skinny peeps or shorter fatter peeps either.
... solution!
Harmonise with nature.... naked aikido. Awwwww yeah. ;)

Dennis Hooker
06-24-2008, 10:57 AM
Speaking as one who is latitudinally gifted, I find that one big advantage is that nobody can get from my front to my back without stopping along the way to refuel, and that's when I get 'em... ;)

5'5'' 217 and I move like a butterfly and sting like a bee. Got the grace of a young Baryshnikov and the power of a young Ali. It's all in the mind my friend. Check out some of these guys

http://home.earthlink.net/~jimbaker6/aa/index.htm

Ron Tisdale
06-24-2008, 11:04 AM
Dennis, why am I scared to click on that link!?!?!? :D

Best,
Ron

Dennis Hooker
06-24-2008, 11:52 AM
Dennis, why am I scared to click on that link!?!?!? :D

Best,
Ron

Probably because it has Jim Baker's name on it.:D

HL1978
06-24-2008, 02:11 PM
I've seen people in iaido sew in a panel into their hakama, but haven't seen plus sized gi's.

Marie Noelle Fequiere
06-24-2008, 03:21 PM
The late Kensho Furuya Sensei was not exactly skinny, at least not while he was writing in book "Kodo: Ancient Ways". His extra size apparently did not prevent him from becoming a master.
Where did he get his gi?

Dennis Hooker
06-24-2008, 03:43 PM
I use a Shureido Gi. They are made bigger and are top quality. Some other size 5 quality gi are really a size and a half smaller that a Shureido. My students bought me a new top quality Gi that would not fit. I replaced it with the same size Shureido gi and it is a little big but I like a loose gi. All gis are not the same try several.

crbateman
06-24-2008, 04:51 PM
Many loose gi's out there... There are some size 6's that are actually larger than other size 8's. I tried on a double-woven size 6 once upon a time (don't remember the brand offhand), and there was still room enough inside it for me to sublet! :D

JamesC
06-25-2008, 06:35 PM
Seems like the shorter guys would be the ones to worry about.

I would think they'd be able to take my center that much easier. Not hard to do anyway...:dead:

jxa127
06-26-2008, 08:24 AM
huh, one of the hardest throwers I've ever met, and one of the best aikidoka (in my opinion) was a short, fat, bloke. I wouldn't have said it to his face though (the short, fat part...). ;)


I thought Ron might be talking about me here, but I'm nowhere near the best at anything aikido-related, nor a particularly hard thrower.


Actually, another one just popped into my mind...and he's still alive. And would kick my butt if he saw me typing this... :D


Ah ha! The previous fellow is no longer alive, so I Ron talking about me here? Probably not, there's no way I could kick his butt. :D

Seriously, I'm 5' 10" and until recently I was between 300 and 325 pounds. I've been training for nearly nine years now and for almost all of that time have been above 300 pounds. I finally got serious about my weight, joined Weight Watchers, and have lost 55 pounds since September 2007. I'm now at 270. My ultimate goal is to get to 200-220 pounds (at least I think that's my goal).

I've always worn a size 7 gi, but some of my gis have fit better than others. My main problem has been that the pants simply don't want to stay up. I've seriously considered using suspenders! I'll probably Bu Jin makes gi pants with elastic waist bands and either zippers or draw strings. I'll probably buy a pair of those when I next need new pants.

As for training, I've written a bit about my weight in my blog here, but basically I really felt I was at a severe disadvantage for a very long time. After attending a couple of seminars taught by Ellis Amdur, I realized that each body type has different advantages and disadvantages. Being big gave me a great deal of stability and a strong center.

The weight loss has changed my aikido, and I'm still not sure how. I feel lighter (duh!) and ukemi is easier. I don't get as winded as I used to get. But I also don't feel as centered or grounded as I used to feel.

I guess I still need to practice.

Regards,

-Drew