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MaryKaye
12-14-2003, 09:51 AM
I'd love to hear any suggestions for how to teach people to be less afraid of performing in public, testing, or generally being watched. I hit this in my professional life (I teach college courses) as well as in aikido. I don't have much stage fright myself, just a bit of almost-pleasant nerves beforehand, but I have no insight into how to help students get to that point.

One of my kohei does fine when no one is looking but dissolves into a heap of nerves when under observation, and I wish I could help. Saying "don't be nervous" or "relax" or "it'll be okay" doesn't help. Trying to model the skill by being calm myself doesn't seem to help either--it just makes her conclude "the senior people are so self-confident, they must be much better than me." (Not true in this case--I'm just better at looking composed while floundering!)

Mary Kaye

mj
12-14-2003, 11:25 AM
Not sure there are any 'nice' suggestions.

It is a Martial Art. Constantly failing under pressure is just something that comes with it. Everyone is nervous and no-one is relaxed until they actually feel confident in their abilities. Blood, sweat and tears.

I guess that was the wrong answer though.

SeiserL
12-14-2003, 11:50 AM
IMHO, stage fright and other fears come from a negative internal fantasy that the body then response to. To overcome fear, directly confront and replace the internal fantasy with either a positive one, or better yet, with the idea of just paying external attention and awareness to what you are doing.

Daniel Mills
12-14-2003, 01:10 PM
A method that was introduced at my dojo was that all students above 5th Kyu (we start at 7th.) are encouraged to take it in turns to lead the warmups sometimes, rather than just the most senior student on mat. It works after a little persuasion, and them realising that the rest of the group aren't there to bite them :)

boni tongson
12-15-2003, 02:42 AM
A method that was introduced at my dojo was that all students above 5th Kyu (we start at 7th.) are encouraged to take it in turns to lead the warmups sometimes, rather than just the most senior student on mat. It works after a little persuasion, and them realising that the rest of the group aren't there to bite them :)
this I agree also :)