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Rob Coote
08-20-2002, 04:03 PM
Hello everyone! My name is Rob I'm 26 and just started Aikido last week. I have no previous martial arts experience so I guess I am about as green as they come. :)

I have done a lot of research and have some good books that I am reading on history, technique, training, etc. I hope these help!

My big concern is that my dojo presently holds class only twice per week, fridays and Sundays. Classes seem to be very ?chaotic?, in that we warm up, sensei answers questions, and maybe does a demonstration, and then everyone pairs off until the end of class. Currently I am generally with a senior student being shown how to roll, etc.

I'm really pumped about this whole experience and want to work at it as hard as possible. what I wanted to know is if there are things I can do outside of class to train? What are some good sources of information regarding "beginning Aikido"? Also I would like to delve more into the spiritual side of the art. Zen vs. Shinto vs Bhuddism...where do I start??

Thanks in advance to anyone who responds. I appreciate any and all advice you can give!

-Rob

Steven
08-20-2002, 04:35 PM
Hi Rob,

Welcome to the family.

Q: are things I can do outside of class to train?

Practice obviously. Learning how to roll/fall is extremely important. You can do this at home or where ever you have room. Also, you should be able to practice whatever basic movements your school is teaching. I believe that self study is extremely beneficial to ones practice, even if that means just shadowing the movement of a technique.

Q: Also I would like to delve more into the spiritual side of the art. Zen vs. Shinto vs Bhuddism...where do I start??

Find a temple.

MaylandL
08-20-2002, 07:00 PM
...what I wanted to know is if there are things I can do outside of class to train? What are some good sources of information regarding "beginning Aikido"? ...
Hello Rob

There is lot that you could do to practice at home in your backyard. For example, the basic movements (irimi and tenkan), bokken cuts and jo strikes, basic body conditioning (stretching, running, swimming, cycling, weights, rolls (forwards and backwards) and meditation. There's probably more that can be done but this is some that you could consider doing. Just something to think about, everything in moderation :)

As for information, I particularly like a book titled Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere by Westbrook and Ratti. Have a look on this site under the books and video links for further information.

All the best for your training and welcome to aikido.

Rob Coote
08-20-2002, 07:19 PM
As for information, I particularly like a book titled Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere by Westbrook and Ratti.
Heh. That's the one I am reading right now!

Thanks!

Rob

wanderingwriath
08-20-2002, 07:19 PM
I have to say friend (being a rookie myself) that you should check the web portal on this site. There's one there called something to the effect of Aikido Primer. It's good stuff. Best of luck.

Gregory King
08-20-2002, 09:29 PM
Hi Rob,

Wanderingwraith is on the money I am still a beginner at less than a year and found the aikido primer to be a great source of information and inspiration, Aikido can be done walking, talking, whenever. Get yourself fit and get into it! practise moving whatever and keep the idea of Aikido at the forefront of your mind, I've found that as I do that I keep starting to smile and it feeeeels good.

Jermaine Alley
09-09-2002, 10:34 AM
Rob,

Congratulations for beginning Aikido. I am a short-timer in aikido myself, but might have some helpful information for ya.

You have already found a very reliable source for information by being here on the web. There is such a wealth of experience on this site.

First off, this style of martial arts is not as structured as other systems. Aikido, in my opinion gives the practitioner the ability to "set the tone" for learning. One night your instructor might want to concentrate on one particular defense, and the next night he might want to just talk about the history of aikido. To the newer student, it looks as if there is no direction which can be kind of frustating.

This is not a system that you can grasp really quickly. Timing, centering, atemi, etc, are different areas that you are going to have to learn about prior to becoming a really skilled aikidoka.

Take the time to read as much about aikido as you can. It seems as if you have already been doing that. Training your mind by seeing all of the aspects of aikido will be helpful when you get on the mat...especially around testing time (aikido terminology, history etc.)

Take time to learn to be a skilled uke. Once you have really learned how to take a fall in aikido, your knowledge of each specific technique will improve ten fold. Dont think of it as being trashed, but an oportunity to learn about the intricacies of that particular technique. While doing this you will be unconsciously building your

"rolodex" of defenses. Some techniques you might like better than others, but all of them are important.

A lot of people want to "fly before they can walk" when it comes to martial arts. It doesn't seem that you are like that at all. Take the time to learn how to roll, and how to sutemi....take it easy on your body. Your body has to last twenty plus years in aikido and your back and knees might go to quickly.

Roll with it baby...just roll with it. Try to spend as much time with each particular sensei that you have in class. Each of them brings of variety of experience and advice to the matt. Sometimes they might contradict each other, but in time u will learn how to take a little bit of each of their advice to build yourself up.

Get a notebook.. a big three ring binder and just put things into it on everything about aikido. If you have the time to..set some simple goal and a time line to achieve those goals. That will be benificial.

For example...this month work on falling and rolling. Next month, try to do a lot of shikko. Doing the knee walking will help you build your balance, centering, and your foot work. It will be unconfortable at first, but you are young...hahaha Before and after shikko do a few leg extensions to build the cartilige (sp?) in your knees...

I hope this helps you...

j

mike lee
09-09-2002, 10:56 AM
Where ever one stands, there is the dojo. :do: