View Full Version : Poll: Do you know anyone at an advanced level in aikido who has never taught aikido in any formal ca

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AikiWeb System
12-08-2002, 01:01 AM
AikiWeb Poll for the week of December 8, 2002:

Do you know anyone at an advanced level in aikido who has never taught aikido in any formal capacity?

I don't do aikido

Here are the current results (http://www.aikiweb.com/polls/results.html?poll_id=143).

12-08-2002, 01:07 AM
Loaded question.

What's advanced? Yondan?

What's a formal capacity? Taught regular classes or any class?

With us, if you are a deshi you teach classes.

I know one person who's yondan that I think has never taught a class. But then I have not been around long enough to know.

Bruce Baker
12-09-2002, 09:11 PM
If we were to unload that question, I guess you had better take a deep breath, drop your caste system attitude and take this in.

It would have to be ...

Someone who has a pretty good knowledge of the pillars of Aikido.

Someone who has learned to use less strength and find the mystical forces of Ki, which are really a set of mind sets along with proper body motions.

Someone who can give you hints and clues about the variations and techniques of Aikido without being stuck in the mode of only imparting what his teacher taught him/her, and his/her teacher taught him/her, and his teacher taught him/ her, and so on, so on, so on.

Someone who can tie together the various tecniques of Aikido in the form of transition but merely practices in class without teaching on a formal basis.

Someone, who may not have rank, but has practiced with many teachers third dan to shihan level.

Someone who asks teachers not to be gentle when doing techniques in practice, but please don't go crazy either.

Someone ... Someone ... well ...

If you are reading this...

that would be me.

So, I guess you will have to put a yes down to the question if you have read this, because you have just met someone who can connect all these things, and can explain many things, but still does not teach, nor do I have any desire to formally teach Aikido in any capacity.

Now, if you want to learn how we misuse many of the basic karate and jujitsu movements in a much softer method for Aikido, I can do that ... but I propably won't.

Most of you barely understand Aikido.

I am just getting a handle on the jigsaw puzzle ... so, no teaching ... just clues on how you can find the puzzle pieces.

Now, go change your answer to yes, if you haven't already?

(If you are not chuckling, you have no sense of humor. We should work on that too.)

12-09-2002, 10:14 PM
Hi Peter,
What's advanced? Yondan?

What's a formal capacity?
All I can say is: the questions asked in the polls are not always objective...

As for the questions you asked, we all know that rank is not a "perfect" indicator of progress in the art. I'd rather hear what you (or others) feel if the poll question matched your definition fo "advanced."

Likewise with "formal capacity." What would you consider to be someone who has served the formal role of "sensei"?

-- Jun

Chris Li
12-10-2002, 12:18 AM
AikiWeb Poll for the week of December 8, 2002:

Do you know anyone at an advanced level in aikido who has never taught aikido in any formal capacity?
All the time, but that's in Japan. The infrastructure overseas isn't built up that much yet in most places, so someone training for a while almost always gets pressed into teaching. Around here it's not unusual to run into folks who have trained 30 or 40 years but have never taught formally. The same parallel probably holds true for most Japanese arts here and abroad.



05-03-2004, 08:00 AM
The answer is yes, I have. And I have always felt that promotion to senior rank (5th dan and above) should be predicated on the levels that you have brought students up to. No one should ever be promoted to rokudan (for example) who has never started a beginner at white belt and taken him or her all the way up to sandan.

I can hear people thinking "waaayyyyy harsh!" but that's just me. Yondan is, or should be contingent on contribution as well, I believe, but again, that's just me. And as long as I'm burying myself, I'll go a bit further and say that godan and above should also be reserved for those who put their butts on the line and go out and create their own dojos. That's where real commitment begins - when you write that first check for $15,000.00 for a down payment or sign a lease.

05-03-2004, 10:55 AM
I can hear people thinking "waaayyyyy harsh!"

Yeah, but then I think "Yeah, you tell it!" and find myself agreeing with you. Luckily for me I'm a loooooong way from that myself.


05-03-2004, 11:22 AM
I totally agree with Mr. Linden. I live in Tupelo Mississippi. I refer to Mississippi as the Aikido Wastelands. There are only 6 Aikido Dojo's in the state with four different styles.

I have never seen a Aikido Dojo where senoir students have never taught class when sensei was sick or taking a break. I have seen senoir students in this area who have high rank and good technique who dont get the opportunity to be the primary teacher for beginners and bring them through the ranks. They instead are not allowed to start beginners or have their own classes and therefore their teaching skills dont grow as they should.

William Gibson

05-03-2004, 07:23 PM
I don't know: this all seems a little narrow-minded.
Why does a business loan make you a better aikidoka?
Peter Rehse was saying that there are people with half a lifetime's aikido under their belt who don't teach. Does that devalue their aikido? Who are we to say?

I have trained under a 6th dan who takes every class, well or sick.
There are several 3rd dans there who have never taught a class.
But they are always helping juniors and in the last few years have brought many through to shodan and now higher. They are always training with them before & after class & are showing them things.

Who's to say that their aikido is less worthy than the equivalent 3rd dan (or the green 2nd dan whose sensei says "right, time to open your own dojo to spread the word") who has people call him sensei?

05-03-2004, 09:28 PM
Not everyone should be teaching. Teaching is special. If you suck as a teacher then your students may suck, unless they think to seek out someone else on the side.
You may understand aikido and may be good at it but that doesn't man you can teach it. It's like any thing else. Just because I can speak english doesn't mean I can teach it in grammar school.