View Full Version : intense training for excellence

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01-08-2003, 04:31 AM
we are all aware (or most of us are) of the japanese tendancy towards very intense training. the majority of japanese shihans (im not sure about westerners, but i think it applies to them too) have usually undergone a period of what i consider incredibly intense training. usually as an uchi deshi for some period of time.
whilst in western countries we generally have jobs or studies or other distractions and no matter how intensely you train at your dojo i still think it is not quite the same intensity as an uchi deshi in japan.
now my question is, do you think a period of intense training like this is required to excel or reach a certain level of profeciency in the art?

01-08-2003, 05:22 AM
I'll have a go.

First let's agree that excellence can be achived in more than one way. You can become excellent at performing aikido-techniques, but if you want to become an excelent aikido-ka all in all, then other aspects are needed too. Therefore I believe that growing as a human being is just as neccesary as finetuning your technique.

I once heard someone quote some sensei (his name escapes me for the moment) for saying that in order to become a complete person it is neccesary to have a life besides Aikido. My greatest personal aikido-inspiration (and former sensei) often told me, that the long haul is far better than intense periods of hard training.

Personally I think you need time to reflect upon your training and to let it 'sink in' into your body, in order to really progress in Aikido. Off course I am forced to think this way since I have got a few things to take care of apart from Aikido (a family, a full-time job and exams at the university :D).

I think it can be very beneficial for at person to do short periods of intense training, perhaps a month or two, but if you loose contact with the world around you for years, it might be difficult to get your feet back on the ground.

These were my thoughts on the matter. Hope you can use it for something (and be certain that a lot of the other users dissagree with me)

01-08-2003, 06:08 AM
Generally agree with JJF's points with regard to reaching a "certain level of proficiency", but with a couple of caveats.

Firstly, speed of reaching your goal. I think the intense training style will let you reach a good proficiency quicker (at least if you don't burn out first).

Secondly, it depends on what your goal is. If you're wanting to be mystic warrior man, I think the intense training regime (and maintaining it) is the only way to go.

Having said that, I'll take being a normal member of society (well, as normal as aikiweb forum people seem to get) over becoming a "pure" MA so I doubt I'll ever be a "uchi deshi" anytime soon (unless the dried frog pills run out)

Ta Kung
01-08-2003, 08:36 AM
I think that some people (ie me) gets "stuck" after so many ears, that they don't evolve. Or evolve so slow, that they no longer notice it. This happened to me in my previous martial art. I chose to quit and find a new path, but not for that reason. I'm sure it will happen to my aikido aswell, in the future.

This is when an uchi-deshi programme would be great. I won't go as far as to say that it is a requirment for success, but it won't hurt either.

Point of rambling: It will surely get you there faster. And I belive you might have to at some point, depending on what level you want to reach.


PS. Or perhaps not? :)

01-08-2003, 08:41 AM
I see what you mean Friis-san.

Train the body, train the mind, and train the spirit.

None should be neglected.