View Full Version : my first practice and need some advice
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12-18-2003, 12:28 PM
Well last night I went to my first aikido meeting and it was amazing. Knowing that I need some help or pointers on how to improve my sumersalt and my ikkyo nykyo and sankyo. anyhelp would be very much apprieceated.
12-18-2003, 12:43 PM
It's not a somersault, first of all. Never go over your head or let your head touch the ground. Many with gymnastics experience have this problem; they're very comfortable going over their head.
A forward roll is a sideways motion; I find that if I roll forwards and stop in the resultant one-knee-down position rather than getting right back up, I'm facing ninety degrees to the left (if I did a right-side-forward roll) from the original starting line. Your entire body turns into the roll, so that you trace a line from your hand along your arm over your right shoulder (again, for a right forward roll) and diagonally across your back to your left hip.
Seek out a sempai and ask them to help you with your rolls.
12-18-2003, 12:44 PM
DonŽt be hasty. Hopefully is the first class of a lifetime, so youŽll have plenty of time to get things right.
My best advice is don't stop practicing!
12-18-2003, 04:44 PM
Don't worry, just keep showing up with a smile and no expectations beyond learning something new.
12-18-2003, 04:58 PM
Some people learn to roll immediately. Some take a year, or longer. Some people can figure out how to do techniques after seeing it once. Some people have to learn a technique over and over again just to pass a test.
All of them are doing well at their training-cause they keep going back! you will find there are some things that come easily, many that don't.Just pay attention to your own practice, don't compare your progress with other students, and, like everyone else says- Have Fun!
Don't get discouraged. That's the biggest piece of advice I can think of. Eventually, it will start to make sense.
Oh yeah, work on your forward rolls and your backfalls. Trust me, I know, you learn more practicing on the mat than watching everyone else while your separated shoulder heals :p
12-19-2003, 12:28 AM
I admit I didn't start doing this till after my first tests, but doing some stretches and one-person aikido exercises every day at home can help quite a lot. Even ten-fifteen minutes is good. Some of the moves have to be practiced until they are instinctive, and you can get a start on that at home. Then on the mat you have more attention available for fun new stuff.
I do some back stretches, leg stretches, wrist stretches, then work on about five of our tradition's twenty solo exercises (minus the rolls, because my floor is too hard) and end with a couple of minutes of ki breathing. The whole thing is about half an hour, but on days when that sounds too hard I can do ten minutes, just the basics. It's important to pick something you can stick to.
If you're starting with ikkyo/nikyo/sankyo then practicing the wrist stretches every day will help protect your wrists and make the whole experience more enjoyable. They are easy to do anywhere during spare minutes.
Soaking in a hot bath when you get home after a hard class will reduce the possible soreness next day.
One last thing: No matter how keen you are, don't start out by practicing to the point of exhaustion. This is a good way to make a mistake and injure yourself. Listen to your body and don't train more than is good for it; and particularly don't try difficult new things when exhausted. I learned this rule in a fairly cheap way, only ended up with bruises and a sore neck; several of my sempai learned it the hard way with dislocations or broken bones. If you must practice when tired, do safe moves and work on technique; it's the wrong time for fast throws and hard falls.
12-19-2003, 02:12 AM
Be patient with yourself. Allow yourself to look foolish...we all do and it's a lot easier to deal with if you just accept it at the beginning ;) Nobody but the instructor/assistants is watching you anyway the rest of the class is busy trying to fix their own stuff.
It's pretty tough to give advice on how to do techniques as we don't train in your dojo and may (more than likely) do it differently. As an example the description that Paul gave for the forward roll would be considered not quite right in our dojo. We end up facing the direction we were rolling in. Ask the senior students or assistants for help, they'll have a better understanding of what your sensei wants to see and besides that's what they're there for.
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