PDA

View Full Version : a question for the old-timers


Please visit our sponsor:
 

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!


daniel chong
10-01-2004, 12:06 AM
Hello everyone,
This question is directed at those of you who have been practicing for 10 or more years.

Basically, I am wondering how many of you are still able to pursue an active, "spirited" practice, with lots of ukemi, etc. and how many of you have had to slow down due to any wear and tear caused by the years of aikido. I know there have been other threads about injuries in aikido, but mine specifically has to do with the idea of wear and tear. I'm basically wondering how your bodies have fared over the years and what I might expect if I continue aikido for 10, 15, 20 more years. I know one can adjust their practice to fit what their body is capable of, as you age, but my point is that I don't want to have to. In other words, I don't want to have to "take it easy" because my body is messed up from aikido, and I'm wondering just how likely it will be for that to happen. I am hoping that what I've seen of the older practitioners in my dojo (most have chronic pain) is the minority and not the majority.
Thanks for the info,
Daniel

xuzen
10-01-2004, 02:39 AM
Hello everyone,
This question is directed at those of you who have been practicing for 10 or more years.


Hi Dan,

My aikido journey is one year short of your target, looks like I am not qualified...but I am saying this on behalf of my sensei...

He is nearing his 70's and he is built like a bull. His limbs are hard as tree trunk. Other than the occasional cough and flu and food poisoning, he has no chronic illnesses. I also know that he is not on any prescritive medication for any illnesses.

With regards to wear and tear, he has a knee injury which he obtained in his younger days doing karate and kick boxing. The other wear and tear problem that I think maybe directly linked to aikido is 'plantar facialitis', pain at the sole of foot, mainly from the tsugi ashi movement found in the kihon dosa syllabus.

Regards,
Boon.

happysod
10-01-2004, 02:41 AM
19 years (this month - happy aikido birfday to me...) - only aikido pains from too much kneeling work(don't do it as much any more) and mat-related toe problems (admit to a constant toe pain here - walking far = not much fun). Ukemi -related injuries, none and I can only think of one in the association (collar bone) - most of the injuries I've seen have been caused by mountain-biking...

philipsmith
10-01-2004, 03:08 AM
36 Aikido years old. Still taking ukeme when I can. Ache (a lot) if I've had a hard session with youngsters but otherwise OK. Just keep going and never let your age catch up with you.

Phil

batemanb
10-01-2004, 03:31 AM
Just passed my 12th Aiki birthday. I`m suffering a lot of pain in one knee at the moment, although it is something that I`ve had for many years (after many years of soccer). I`m sure it`s cartilage (should probably get it checked ;)), certain techniques make it worse, I avoid doing shikko completely, and excessive suwari waza at the moment. Other than that I teach and train as normal.

One of my sensei in Japan was 75 when I was training there, he trained every day and took ukemi for anyone. One day I was taking it easy on him i.e. letting the nikkyo off early being conscious of the technique against brittle bones, I was scolded heavily and instructed to do the technique properly.

rgds

Bryan

Greg Jennings
10-01-2004, 06:52 AM
Coming up on 12 years and am 42 years old. I do a nice aerobic ukemi practice every class and take all the ukemi that I did when I first started. I notice the general aches and pains more now.

Best,

SeiserL
10-01-2004, 08:22 AM
I am almost 54 years old, over 37 years in martial arts, almost 10 years of Aikido. IMHO, we all get wear and tear (mileage) from just growing older, with or without Aikido. Don't worry about it. Most of us keep up very well. Some of the problems we have (knees, backs, shoulders, etc.) the general public have, especially those active in any athletic endeavor. There is no real way to avoid wear and tear. But many of us old-timers have great stories to tell about ours.

Aikidoiain
10-01-2004, 09:07 AM
Hi Daniel,

I'm 41. I've been involved in various MAs on and off for 25 years. The only physical problems I have are arthritis in my knees and not being able to keep up with the "younger ones"!

I was injured years ago during a Hapkido session. The Sensei decided to throw me around like a rag doll (I was only a white belt then), thus causing trauma to my neck and an over-extension injury to my elbow. I could have sued him, but I just complained to the head Sensei about the guy.

I still get the occasional neck twinge since then. That guy was an animal. I wish I had sued him now!


Iain. :ki: :)

NagaBaba
10-01-2004, 02:33 PM
Hello everyone,
I'm basically wondering how your bodies have fared over the years and what I might expect if I continue aikido for 10, 15, 20 more years.
Daniel
If you learn correct (not this sloppy aikikai ukemi) ukemi(included breakfalls and high flying breakfalls), with every day regular practice, I think you must slown down a bit when you are 64. Otherwise, non, full power training.

pointy
10-01-2004, 04:23 PM
If you learn correct (not this sloppy aikikai ukemi)

and what is characteristic of this sloppy ukemi may i ask?

Lyle Laizure
10-01-2004, 07:50 PM
This question is directed at those of you who have been practicing for 10 or more years.
I have been practicing for a bit longer than 10 years but this is a drop in the bucket for most. Anyway, I think if you are careful in general you should be able to continue to have a vigorous practice no matter the age. I think the key is that you never stop.

Charles Hill
10-01-2004, 07:58 PM
Hi Daniel,

I strongly recommend Donovan Waite`s video series on ukemi. He addresses this very topic. It really turned my head around as I hadn`t realized how some of the things I had (mis)learned were affecting me now. One non ukemi example is I had always done the irimi-tenkan movement in a circular fashion. I realized that this has contributed to a lot of wear and tear in my knees. I`m still in the middle of researching this, but I have greatly improved in the last few months.

Charles Hill

Jeff Baldwin
10-01-2004, 08:34 PM
I'm pretty active on the mat. The only thing I notice now is that it takes me longer to heal from injurys.

NagaBaba
10-01-2004, 10:06 PM
and what is characteristic of this sloppy ukemi may i ask?
It will be better to take a look at good example of ukemi:

Kanai Sensei's Video, "Technical Aikido" from
http://www.neaikikai.org/videos.html

and Donovan Waite`s video series on ukemi.

Ukemi has very important role to preserve uke in good health, so it is absolutly crucial to study it and master it, in context of getting older on the tatami.

crbateman
10-02-2004, 01:07 AM
Fifty years old here, with 35 in the arts, although not all in aikido. I have experienced aches and pains, injuries and deteriorations of body, although most occured while training in the hard arts, where strong contact and opposition of force were prevalent. But I know many guys my age with similar or greater troubles, who do not participate in the arts at all.

Who is to say that what I have experienced is a result of training? It could have (and probably would have) happened anyway. The body is not built to last forever, although I certainly would think that a body accustomed to physical activity through training would stand up better than an untrained one.

What is different about Aikido is that, done properly, it is as much a spiritual activity as a physical one. And the spirit need not diminish with age. I have seen more older guys still actively doing Aikido than I have any other art, with the exception of Tai'chi. This observation alone should help to reduce your worry level.

Just a sidenote about ukemi: If you're getting hurt doing it, you probably aren't doing it right (although taking a lot of ukemi with a pre-existing injury is probably not a good idea)... Strive to take "quiet" ukemi. Your tires won't last if your rims are square!

Hope this helps...

pointy
10-02-2004, 10:46 AM
It will be better to take a look at good example of ukemi:

yeah, thought so :D

hehe

batemanb
10-02-2004, 11:21 AM
If you learn correct (not this sloppy aikikai ukemi) ukemi....


It will be better to take a look at good example of ukemi:

Kanai Sensei's Video, "Technical Aikido" from
http://www.neaikikai.org/videos.html

Umm, forgive me if I`m wrong, but wasn`t Kanai Sensei Aikikai?

Ukemi has nothing to do with style or association and everything to do with the person performing it. The better your ukemi is, the longer you will be able to practice.

rgds

Bryan

Don
10-02-2004, 06:40 PM
12 years in aikido. 2 in college, 10 since my son wanted to do judo. He quit judo, I stayed in aikido. I'm 49 now and I don't back away from any throws. Proper ukemi and lots of stretching keep me going. If I fail to do good ukemi, the results show up a lot sooner and hang around for a lot longer now! I'll let the kids take the high, flat breakfalls. I keep telling them that pavement doesn't feel like a mat, but you know kids don't listen to old farts until its too late. Guess that's just how you learn and burn testosterone. Anyway, as long as the knees keep going, so will I.

balazs
10-06-2004, 01:15 PM
I have been practicing for 20 years, starting at age 16, so -as you can work out- I am 36.
When I was 28 (after 12 years of Aikido practice) I had some ache in my waist so I went to see a doctor. X-ray revealed that I had a problem in the lower parts of my backbone - an open vertebra, actually - which I had been born with.
The doctor said that with this problem I hadn't been expected to do any hard physical training, so my Aikido career was a miracle to her.
She said that muscles in my back were quite strong (never did any sports except Aikido) and freed my spine of the burden.
I have been continuing my practice since then - my waist aches sometimes when it's tired, but nothing I cannot live happily with.
Breakfalls hurt, so I prefer silent ukemis, that's all.
So Aikido changed my life in every aspects - I just don't want to imagine what my life would have been without it ...