View Full Version : Newbie and hard choices

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05-18-2002, 08:35 AM
Hi people,

My name is nelson marques, I am 24, born Portuguese but living in Enschede, Holland.
I would like to ask a couple of questions and for some time that I follow some of the forums here. I was thinking in subscriving for Aikido practice, but before I would make a choise I would like to ask a couple of things and have a bit more of opinion from someone with more insight over this. I learned in a far past Kickboxing for 3 years, and some aditional combat training from the Army Special Forces, would this be a trouble when starting aikido because of "bad habbits" already within me ? Now and far most important I can choose between several dojos, some in Enschede, others in the surroundings, well, this makes me into another choice, Aikikai or Aikibudo. Could someone give me a more insight vision of main diferences between those two styles ? And for the final part, I am in a new country, wich I dont speak the native language, Dutch, but I do speak Portuguese, English and a bit of German, would this be a problem or could this be a valid reason for a denial from the Dojo ?

Many thanks,

05-18-2002, 09:09 AM

your past should not be a big obstacle in learning Aikido. Of course some things you probably need to unlearn, but that also holds true for people with no martial experience!

As for choosing between Aikikai or Aikibudo, well that is a kind of personal choice.
Probably a good thing to do is to visit all places and train there a couple of times (A lot of dojos in the Netherlands have some kind of possibility to try it out, sometimes for free, sometimes you have to pay a little.). See which place suits you best. Maybe finding a place of your liking is more important than choosing on style.

As for language, dont worry about that to much. As you may have noticed by now, the dutch are quite proficient in English and also have a fairly good understanding of german as well.
Another thing is that in training quite often the actual "do the training yourself"-part is more important in learning aikido than the "get all the explination from sensei"-part.

I have never heard of anyone being denied from a dojo on basis of language skills!! Especially in Holland this would be very very strange.

Go to the dojos and experience it yourself!

Gopher Boy
05-19-2002, 05:34 PM
Hi Nelson!

We have a guy in our dojo who holds a blackbelt in Hapkido and stopped due to injuries. He now does Aikido but is forever weighting himself as if preparing to deliver a kick. He is slowly adopting a more 'aikido' posture, but then again - it is hard for beginners to find the correct posture too!

I presume that from doing kick-boxing, you would experience a similar thing - i.e. thinking about delivering a kick and adjusting your stance accordingly. I wouldn't worry about it - I am only just getting into a more correct stance after 3 months.



05-20-2002, 01:28 AM
My worst fear comes in the way that either in kickboxing either in the army, one of the principals was the same, practice everything untill it came out in a instictive way, no matter how beaten up you are, how dizzy you are how "surreal" you became, it has to became out instantly... This is the part wich might be hard to unlearn, if it will come to grabs and locks, I am not used at all to grab or lock, well, it will for sure make a bigger challenge of it :). Looking forward to it.

05-20-2002, 08:15 AM
Welcome, many of us have previous training in "bashing" arts. IMHO, you will have to work on creating a different mind set because Aikido if different. Just don't confuse the two. Train hard. Relax, breath, and enjoy yourself. It's all Budo.

Welcome to origami with people and learning to blend and become one with the mat.

Until again,

Nidan Tenshinkai Aikido
Lucaylucay Kali JKD

Bruce Baker
05-20-2002, 01:30 PM
If you like to interact with opponents, find openings for techniques you already use, and generally clear your mind so that movement transcends thought, simply eliminating the need to think about moving but simply moving, you should find Aikido lots of fun.

The greatest stumbling block to most people who have tried striking arts is to co-ordinate an entire side of the body to move in unison verses striking or kicking from the hip as most boxing and kicking arts do. It will feel awkward at first, but when the clarity of taking the power of strength away from your attacker becomes clearer as you train, you will begin to understand the links between your training in weapons and, most likely, see how other parts of your training can be integrated into Aikido ... or vice versa ... how Aikido can be integrated into what you already know.

There will be a period of adjustment for putting aside many things you have learned to be effecient in other fighting arts, but in time they will creep into practice. They will be just like old friends coming to visit as Aikido practice goes on. That is not to say you can not practice these other arts, but learning how use the movements of Aikido to their full efficientcy might take priority over other training until things begin to allign in both body and mind.

Try not to use distraction techniques that cause pain in practice, and don't crank the jointlocks/wristlocks too tight until you get the feel for muscles tensing up ... if you resist the pain is increased, if you flow with techniques no one will get hurt. Most Aikido people don't crank up as tight as other arts where frantic slapping is not uncommon for overdone techniques, but then again ... If you ride the wave of the techniques, looking for openings, you will find ways to ride a technique or go faster than some techniques so that your submission is the key to turning the tables even when you are recieving technique.

Go and learn like the first day of school, you know nothing. Let the teacher and students figure out how good you are, and be gentler than normal as you get the feel of using entire body movements, which are more substantial than just torso, or hand movements.

Even if you don't like Aikido now, you might want to come back to it later. At least you will have tried it, have an idea of what it is about if you want to try it again? But then again, most people stay with aikido even if they wander about in other arts.

Good luck.