View Full Version : New "old" member White Plains, NY

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John Tjia
03-16-2004, 12:45 PM
Just signing on here. I just started practicing again about 5 months ago at the Aikido of Westchester dojo (Douglas Firestone sensei), after an absence of 20 years. I am retesting again for my 3rd kyu in a few months' time, and now I am 50 years old.

The thing that has kept me away all these years is simply that there were no dojos in a convenient location. But now I work within 15 minutes of the dojo (a recent change), so I can even go in for the 7am practice and still be on time -- actually early -- for work.

It's wonderful being back. I still remember some moves, but I certainly have plenty of occasions when my brain says: Oh, I know what to do for this move, but my body says: No, actually you don't...! At least I can still take the breakfalls.

When I practiced before, I never had the thought that I wanted to be black belt. But now that I am back on the mat (and because I'm now 50?), I say: Why not? So it's something I am working towards, and looking forward to. I may be imagining it, but this decision seems to have changed in small ways the way I carry myself at work, in terms of being more willing to state my views and taking the initiative in developing communication with my colleagues.

Nick Simpson
03-17-2004, 02:59 AM
Hi John, glad to hear your back and practicing aikido again, I think you'll find aikiweb a great source of information and disscussion. I think practicing aikido does help with social skills/communication and tends to make people a lot more comfortable with others and perhaps a bit more assertive. My sensei told me that the reason he believes camaradery develops so quickly and so strongly in aikido is due to the closeness of the uke/tori relationship. I think hes right :)