View Full Version : Training partner thank-you gift ideas to celebrate Shodan?

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03-08-2010, 11:43 AM
I passed my Shodan exam during the weekend and in recognition of the amazing support (not to mention all the ukemi) that I've received over the years from my fellow students, I want to give each of them a small token of my gratitude...well, aside from the inevitable "return on their investment" that they will already be receiving from me in preparation for their future tests. :D

So aside from a little personalized thank-you card that I'll be doing up for each one of them, detailing the unique contributions that I believe each have made to my practice, I want to pick up a small something-or-other for them - nothing extravagant - since the fees associated with the new rank will be considerable enough on their own.

I don't know, maybe a little gift card or certificate for a small amount off massage therapy or something?

Any and all ideas would be greatly appreciated! I'm also crafty/into D.I.Y. (ie. I'm not averse to making something with my hands since I knit, sew, make jewelry, sculpt, etc. already) so it could be something handmade.

Thanks in advance!


03-08-2010, 11:52 AM
Hi Jamie.

I think if you are into DIY etc it could be a good idea to design a club badge ? I wear a badge on my gi representing aiki-budo fraternity and i think its a pretty cool idea.

Not sure if your organization alows badges on your gi however ?


03-08-2010, 12:07 PM
While we don't wear badges (and Sensei is already in the process of designing a new dojo logo) - my slightly-warped sense of humour in thinking of what I would put on such a badge (a squid) has led my imagination towards some promising ideas that play off a bit of a dojo in-joke.

My original sempai (the dojo's founding students) teasingly called their lowest-ranking kohai "squids" - after which, according to them, we graduated to "gumby" and "rubber" status as we ranked. ;)

So now I'm considering creating the Squiddy Awards...how this will manifest itself, I have yet to determine. But keep the ideas coming!

Lyle Laizure
03-08-2010, 01:33 PM
If they partake in alcohol a nice bottle of sake or their favorite drink would be a nice gesture.

ilia rudnitskiy
03-08-2010, 01:38 PM
You could order some small but nice things frm japan.. The shipping might be a bit expensive but I think it will be worth it

Janet Rosen
03-08-2010, 01:46 PM
If you are on a budget but can sew, you could think about making nice weapons bags for them. I had done a how to column some yrs ago for The Mirror column, link here. (http://www.aikiweb.com/columns/themirror/2004_10.html)

03-08-2010, 02:59 PM
Uke is like girlfriends... wine and chocolate.

At least that would please me.

03-08-2010, 03:22 PM
Jamie, perhaps you could buy a few copies of whatever aikido book you like, and then present each uke with a copy in which you have jotted a personal thank you note. I believe that would be a worthy gesture.

Adam Huss
03-08-2010, 06:05 PM
Typically we have yudansha shinsa only two or three times a year so many guys test for black belts. With that, we like to go out for a social dinner afterwards to celebrate. Generally the testing candidate will buy a round for the guys/gals who helped them with their test. Another neat idea I've seen...for the last shinsa I took ukemi for, the candidate made dvd copies of the test and gave them to all the uke. He churched it up on his computer by adding chapters/music etc. It was pretty neat and an inexpensive gift to commemorate the occasion.

03-12-2010, 11:48 AM
Thanks to everyone for all the great ideas - they've certainly given me something to think about and I hope to present all my fellow students with a little something by the time we go out for our celebratory meal together in a couple of weeks or so (we're going for Dim Sum...yum!)


03-12-2010, 01:39 PM
Give them an O Sensei Bobblehead!