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Tubig
07-27-2005, 09:08 PM
In the dojo we have a few ladies that practices with us.

They are not as big as us (males), and do not usually have as thick wrist as us. I noticed that techniques are smoother, less power, more angled better, and centre is low. Also they are more flexible and have to find the right angle to pin them.

We have many a great Aikido Senseis

Pat Hendrics of Iwama Ryu is amazing, technique and weapon wise I put her up there with the best.

Dr.Lee Ah Loi's book of Tomiki aiki is one of my text books in aikido. The master's technique is awesome, I could only wish to see her live in randori.

The reason I started this thread is a few months ago we had a begginer who is scared to do a forward roll. I showed her many times how to do it, and she still is very scared. Finally I asked why is she so scared. Embarrassed and blushing she said 'I am scared with doing forward rolls because I do not want to crush my breast'... I was speechless after that. I really do not have an idea how different aikido might be on the ladies.

Years ago, there was another begginer that do not like hamni handachi. Due to the nature of the technique, one standing and the other one is on their knees. I thought it was a bit immature to think that way in dojo practice, but because of that I became really conscious of the physical aspect of the technique.

I like training with ladies because of many reasons. They are usually shorter and I really have to lower my centre to affect their balance. I cannot just use typical brute power because it is not really aikido, and it really shows when one trains with ladies.

I would like to ask all the lady aikidokas on how different is their side of aikido. How different is aikido to the eyes of the lady that practices the way. Please educate us men (ladies usually do anyway in general) on how can we improve training with you. Also how do ladies deal with big thugs and gorillas on the mat. Do men have to train differently with ladies in comparison to training with other men.

Any input or stories will be appreciated. I can proudly say that I met my ex girlfriend on the mat after a few suwari wazas. :)

eyrie
07-27-2005, 09:27 PM
I am scared with doing forward rolls because I do not want to crush my breast

*shakes head and rolls eyes*
I would have said, "Not to worry, luv, I'm sure the mat won't complain if you do". ;)
And then watched carefully to see if she got the double entendre. :D

giriasis
07-27-2005, 09:44 PM
I would like to ask all the lady aikidokas on how different is their side of aikido.[How different is aikido to the eyes of the lady that practices the way.

It's not really that different than a smaller man, both in height and build. I'm a larger sized woman so I'm not really petite but I'm still smaller than most men in my dojo. For the most part the only real difference is what the person brings with them to the mat whether its just a height difference or an attitude difference (including gender bias towards the opposite gender)

Please educate us men (ladies usually do anyway in general) on how can we improve training with you.

Just train with us like you would train with anyone else. Don't treat us differently JUST BECAUSE WE ARE WOMEN. Treat us according to our skill level. Think how you would like to be treated or how you would like your sister to be treated on the mat.

Also how do ladies deal with big thugs and gorillas on the mat.

If you mean by "thug" and "gorillas" as just big guys, I train with them. If you mean that they are pushing me around and bullying me, I first try to talk to them. If that doesn't work, I talk to other students in class to find out if the issue is with me, or with others including men. If the problem persists I talk to the sensei. But I've noticed that the "bullies" are not the big strong gorilla type guys. Those guys normally are gentle giants or big teddy bears. These gentle giants are really great to train with because they really help me do the technique to them. For the most part if someone is a bully or a tanker they tend to bully/ tank across gender lines. (By "tanker" I mean someone who purposefully tanks in their ukemi just to "prove" you can't do the technique to them. They are also called jerks.) Bullies can also be female. It's just I've trained with less women than men so I haven't experience a female bully.

Do men have to train differently with ladies in comparison to training with other men. No, they don't have to train differently, just take into consideration their size and aikido ability.


Once the guys know I can take the ukemi I've noticed that they throw me they way the do with anyone else. But in the reverse, women (well, this woman at least) tend to go way too hard on the guys thinking that they can't hurt a man. It was a big lesson for me to learn that, "yes, I can hurt a man, even a big guy." How many guys here have taken really hard nikkyos or kotegaeshi from a women and then they expect you to go "easy" on them? I think part of this mind set is that I can't hurt you but I know you can hurt me.

And regarding the ukemi, unless she is really large she shouldn't have problem with injuring her breasts. If she would like to talk to other women, and not to women AND men send her my link found in my signature. It is pretty much like this site except some issues are discussed that would be too much information for most guys here. It's not a "feminist" site, but just a "women's site" where women get together and talk about aikido and a little bit about our lives.

Tubig
07-27-2005, 11:13 PM
It is easy to say treat the ladies like one would treat the blokes. Throw them as hard as one throws a big thug. No need to be gentle. Coming from Australia it is considered a big taboo to hit or throw a woman as hard as one can. Especially atemis that connect. I really tried to do just as you adviced. But my sempais always say be gentle. The thing is I agree with them. Good aikido can be practiced gently. As a woman, do you really want to be thrown as hard as man would be thrown. As a woman do you get offended when one relaxes their grip or the power of their atemis?

Also another thing I want to ask you and all aikido women. I met my ex girlfriend in aikido on the mat (we would still be together if she did not move abroad). Flirting on the mat, as far as I am concerned is a taboo. A lot of ladies get turned off with aikido because it is such a close distance martial art. How did you deal with that? Thank god it has never happened in my dojo, but what is sexual harrassment on the mat?

Another issue that I noticed is Male aikidokas bringing wives and girlfriends to class. They become very protective of them. I find that I have to be extra gentle then, so not to offend the boyfriend or husband. How does one deal with that?

maikerus
07-28-2005, 12:45 AM
It is easy to say treat the ladies like one would treat the blokes. Throw them as hard as one throws a big thug. No need to be gentle. Coming from Australia it is considered a big taboo to hit or throw a woman as hard as one can. Especially atemis that connect. I really tried to do just as you adviced. But my sempais always say be gentle. The thing is I agree with them. Good aikido can be practiced gently. As a woman, do you really want to be thrown as hard as man would be thrown. As a woman do you get offended when one relaxes their grip or the power of their atemis?

I think the point on the mat shouldn't be whether your uke is male or female, but rather how good they can take ukemi.

Good Aikido can definately be practiced gently. I think the time to practice it gently depends on who you are working with and what you are focused on, not what their gender is.

Anne Marie's point about women not realizing that they can hurt men is well taken as well. It's a mental leap in alot of cultures I guess...but it shouldn't be a mental leap within a martial art.

This also applies to beginners who don't realize that the pin that they've just been shown is really effective and try and rip your arm off <sigh>

Perhaps the reverse is also true in that men don't realize that they can be hurt/pushed/controlled by women (or beginners :) ). In the last few years of teaching I have had some men comment on the fact that they were surprised that some slight Japanese female was strong in their Aikido.

My few yen,

--Michael

maikerus
07-28-2005, 12:49 AM
Another issue that I noticed is Male aikidokas bringing wives and girlfriends to class. They become very protective of them. I find that I have to be extra gentle then, so not to offend the boyfriend or husband. How does one deal with that?

I have never experienced this, but I can see how it might be the case. I can remember one time when someone brought their 5 year-old to watch and he went ballistic when his mom was getting beat up :)

I guess the best thing to do would be to talk with them to figure out what they brought them to train for if the issue came up. Seems kind of silly, though...but then again, when is human nature not :crazy:

--Michael

-

maikerus
07-28-2005, 12:53 AM
A lot of ladies get turned off with aikido because it is such a close distance martial art. How did you deal with that?

I hadn't heard about women getting turned off with the close distance thing. Has this actually been stated alot or is it a general impression that you have picked up? Anyone else find this?

--Michael

eyrie
07-28-2005, 01:37 AM
Nah.... it's not gender specific....I have a problem getting anyone (male or female) to stick their hip or butt into uke's crutch for koshi nage. :p

eyrie
07-28-2005, 01:39 AM
Coming from Australia it is considered a big taboo to hit or throw a woman as hard as one can.

Interesting observation. Doesn't seem to reduce the incidence of domestic violence.... :rolleyes:

Tubig
07-28-2005, 02:04 AM
Sad isn't it eyrie. Imagine if a wife basher gets caught in the streets of Sydney on the act of hitting the woman. He will be finished on the spot by the citizens mate. and youre right about koshinage. I had noticed that as well in class. It sort of border lining on cricket or not cricket if you know what I mean mate.

Michael I had a talk to some women that gave aikido a go and then left. One of the biggest reasons is they felt like it is too close for comfort. Some even gave me the example why there are a lot of women doing karate and taekwondo is because of the distance. My answer to that is why are there many women doing judo? The distance is more closed than aiki. I still think aiki is one of the best martial art for women because it does not depend alone on strength and size.

Sonja2012
07-28-2005, 02:08 AM
<gets the can opener> Worms, anyone? :D

Where shall I start? So many good questions and suggestions plus this issue used to be my favourite excuse for ranting about women´s problems on the mat. :) Ok, here it goes:

As some people have already suggested: when facing a new partner in practice we should have our senses open towards the skills and abilities of that person, work as hard or gentle as their ukemi is up to and generally just shut up and train ;) Doesn´t matter if male or female, this applies to *all* training partners, both genders and all ages. IMHO there is no "male" or "female" aikido, there are only lots and lots of people, all doing what they can, all having their personal little weaknesses, all trying to do their best. Each and every one of us has these weaknesses as well as certain strengths.
Equally we should try and take our partners seriously, not patronise or belittle them, and instead practice humbleness ourselves.
If this is followed I doubt that there will be any problem practicing with any man or woman.

Having said that, there may be certain issues to which women (and possibly men as well, I guess) with a history of abuse are sensitive, kneeling in front of man who is attacking them may be one of them. Even if it is a mere practice situation, it may trigger memories or whatever. At the same time, even though the (regular) dojo is a place where people mean well and take care of each other, it is not a place of therapy. IMO it would be too much to expect from and to ask for from the regular person on the mat without any experience in that kind of stuff/therapy in general to deal with these issues. So,what would be the best way of dealing with something like that? Any experiences anyone?

I haven´t heard a woman be afraid of hurting her breats during mae ukemi before (how exactly does she roll? my mind boggles ;) ). But as women usually have less strength in their upper arms, they (we :) ) find it harder in the beginning to support ourselves during mae ukemi. One of the few disadvantages that I believe we *do* have, even though I have seen blokes with the same problem.

I have never really seen or experienced sexual harrassment on the mat, only guys trying to prove themselves to me. Lately I have found that I am less and less sensitive to that. Probably because a) I have noticed that they don´t only do that to me or other women but also to ther guys and b) my technique has improved to a point where I can stop a lot of that bullying (most of these guys seem to be lower kyu grades).

Another issue that I noticed is Male aikidokas bringing wives and girlfriends to class. They become very protective of them.
Well, my husband and I started aikido together (though he was the one who got me into it) and I really can´t say that he is protective of me :D We are each others favourite uke and love to throw each other around quite hard. :)

Oh, and on another note, some people seem to think that women like to train gentle. Well, I am sure some do (like I am sure there are guys who would rather not breakfall - I have met some myself), but there are also women who like to train hard, breakfall and like to meet their limits in practice. Which comes back to what Anne Marie said and what I wrote in the beginning: Don´t treat us differently. Or rather: everybody is different, not just women (if that makes sense).

Sorry for the long mail,
<closes can and puts it in the fridge for future use> ;) ,
best regards,
Sonja

happysod
07-28-2005, 04:01 AM
Sorry, but I always get annoyed by the "gender training problems" threads - I've only ever found there to be two types of training partners, those who turn up and truly want to train to the limit of their ability and those who just seem to turn up anyway.

I haven't noticed any split between these two on the lines of gender, the "boys" seem quite as happy to whine over vigorous training as the "girls" (just with different excuses/reasons) so I just have the two groups split in my mind into "partners" and "squeakys".

If you have a problem with training with the opposite sex, it's your problem not the dojos and you should deal with it - whether it's cultural imperatives or religious dogma. We've had loads of threads covering how the dojo is different and how different manners/etiquette should apply, but I'd much prefer the dojo to at least adhere to one major difference - "there's no sex on the mat".

xuzen
07-28-2005, 04:23 AM
Yoshin-Orges and Yoshin-Orclettes look the same, smell the same and speak with the same tone. Some other species has concluded that us Orges have no female and that Orges are born straight out from the rocks. (In case you have not notice, the quote was in parody of what Gimli said to Eowyn in Lord of the Rings: The Twin Tower).

No, in my dojo... the issue of gender is not prominent. And it has never occur to me that the female gender of our species need special gentler attention. But then I will ask a fellow Yoshin-Orlettes next time I meet her in class about this issue.

Boon, the Yoshin-Orge.

Dazzler
07-28-2005, 05:43 AM
Another issue that I noticed is Male aikidokas bringing wives and girlfriends to class. They become very protective of them. I find that I have to be extra gentle then, so not to offend the boyfriend or husband. How does one deal with that?

Seen this and had to deal with some problems caused by it.

I have severals 'pairs' of students in class and generally there are no problems. Sometimes they are 'extra competitive' but they do nothing that disrupts the learning experience of the other students.

Where there is a large skill gap this 'buddying' is very useful...the beginner gets extra 'looking after' until they are at a level where they are self-sufficient and just part of the larger student body.

However....

As soon as something occurs which has a negative impact on the rest of the class then as an instructor you need to deal with it.

Everyone else is there for the Aikido...they don't want to watch canoodling (nice word...) so if something occurs that is making others uncomfortable then it needs to be sorted. Obviously how it is sorted depends on the personalities involved.

A more serious example I experienced was with a very large senior kyu grade who started a relationship with a begginer.

Generally this wasn't a problem, however, on one occasion at the close of class he very aggressively and rudely interjected in the training of his girlfriend and a smaller student and split them up because he wanted to train with his girlfriend.

The look on the face of the 3rd party spoke volumes for how this act was considered.

I found this action completely unacceptable and spoke to the boyfriend about it immediately after class.

His response was that he would choose who he trained with.

Mine was that this was fine ....but not in my class. Train with whom you like elsewhere.

Shortly after this he was asked to leave the dojo for an unrelated reason so I have no idea if he appreciated why I felt it necessary to speak to him or not.

I don't even think he understood that I was telling him not to come back.

Rather sad really.

D

giriasis
07-28-2005, 10:30 AM
It is easy to say treat the ladies like one would treat the blokes. Throw them as hard as one throws a big thug. No need to be gentle. Coming from Australia it is considered a big taboo to hit or throw a woman as hard as one can. Especially atemis that connect. I really tried to do just as you adviced. But my sempais always say be gentle. The thing is I agree with them. Good aikido can be practiced gently.

Please go back and re-read what I wrote. I did NOT say throw them as hard as big bloke. I SAID throw them according to their skill level. But to be able to learn to do that you need to learn to be sensitive to the center of a smaller person. I have discovered that the "big blokes" tend to not have the sensitivity to someone smaller but the "gentle giants" do. Less physical mass means a smaller center. It doesn't necessary mean a weak center though. Train to learn to connect with their center then use their energy to throw them. Yes, if you just plow through someone smaller than you you're just plowing through them. Effective, yes. Good Aikido technique maybe not. Maybe this is what your sempai are trying to communicate to you. For you to have to have good aikido you need to learn to train gently, but train gently with even the guys smaller than you. Find their center, their energy and use ONLY THAT.

As a woman, do you really want to be thrown as hard as man would be thrown. As a woman do you get offended when one relaxes their grip or the power of their atemis?

I joined aikido to learn a martial art so I can learn to defend myself against what I consider a threat -- men who are stronger and/ or bigger than me. Yes, I get offended if you treat me like a defenseless waif. I will continue to feel and be defenseless if I only trained that way with the men in my dojo pulling their attacks and throws.

But once again you attack and throw according to your partner's skill level. Yes, a newbie is not going to know how to hand a strong grip, but this female lady with 6 years of aikido experience and ranked 2nd kyu can. And I definently know that the many dan ranked women in my dojo and surrounding South Florida area can handle it, too -- Wee Wow Dumlao and Penny Bernath both come to mind, and they are no shrinking violets and they are definently not defenseless waifs.

As a woman I want to be thrown to the limits of my skill level. That might mean you throwing me at only 60% of your abilities, rather than the 80-100% that you do with the "big blokes". But if you only throw me at 10-20% don't be surprised if I push you to throw me harder. If we became real good train partners I would trust you to help me push my limits and have you throw me at 65-70%.

Also another thing I want to ask you and all aikido women. I met my ex girlfriend in aikido on the mat (we would still be together if she did not move abroad). Flirting on the mat, as far as I am concerned is a taboo.

Yeah, this can be annoying especially for newer woman. They end up feeling like meat at times. I'm fine with meeting someone on the mat but keep the flirting for after class and off the mat.

A lot of ladies get turned off with aikido because it is such a close distance martial art. How did you deal with that? Thank god it has never happened in my dojo, but what is sexual harrassment on the mat?

Some do have an issue with the closeness of it and others don't. I've seen newbie guys get real nervous when I'm getting ready to throw them in koshinage. So I don't think it's just a female thing either. Just perhaps a different situation. The closeness "issue" was never really and issue for me, but I also grew up with too older brothers. Sexual harassment is not the accidental graze of the breast (for ladies) or the groin (for gentlemen) but the intentional grabbing of body parts (i.e. some moron fool grabbing and squeezing my breast during seated kokyuho who doesn't train at our dojo anymore).

Another issue that I noticed is Male aikidokas bringing wives and girlfriends to class. They become very protective of them. I find that I have to be extra gentle then, so not to offend the boyfriend or husband. How does one deal with that? This really is more of an issue for a boyfriend or husband rather than just you, assuming your trainging with them appropriately. If you are doing what your supposed to do in class with your training partners then you shouldn't have anything to worry about.

But in the end, it sounds like you need to develop sensitivity to your smaller training partners. Yes, you learn to do this by being "gentle" but think about it more as trying to connect your center to theirs, correctly taking their balance, lead them to where you want them to go rather than forcing them there with your own strength, stay relaxed (don't let the tension build up in your arms and shoulders) and keep a good extension. You know practice good sound aikido. Don't think about your partner being female but rather as a partner who is shorter, smaller in stature and build, has a smaller center and is not as physically as strong as you. I have trained with guys who meet these elements and I have trained with women who are rather strong and are a bigger build. Try to feel if you are dragging them around or moving them with aikido principles. Think if they were bigger and stronger than me would the way I'm doing this technique work?

aikigirl10
07-28-2005, 12:34 PM
Bottom line, All women are different. some women might just be those damsels in distress who really do have to be practiced with in a gentle way. But this is just a STEREOTYPE . Just because most women are not as strong as men , does not mean all women are.

Me personally, I want to be thrown just as hard as the next person (male or female) because i know i have good ukemi, And i thank my sensei for doing so. Of course you dont throw a beginner as hard, but this applies no matter the gender.

Im not scared of any man out there. I dont care who you are. Im not saying im stronger or better or faster or anything. I'm saying is that of course i can be intimidated by higher ranks and stuff but never scared. In shaolin , i have sparred with grown men and won and i have seen other women do it too. (man , does that piss them off)

The point of me posting this is not to attack men, but to explain to men the stereotypes that are generally put upon women so that men can work on not doing this.

-Paige

cck
07-28-2005, 12:54 PM
Once the guys know I can take the ukemi I've noticed that they throw me they way the do with anyone else. But in the reverse, women (well, this woman at least) tend to go way too hard on the guys thinking that they can't hurt a man. It was a big lesson for me to learn that, "yes, I can hurt a man, even a big guy." How many guys here have taken really hard nikkyos or kotegaeshi from a women and then they expect you to go "easy" on them? I think part of this mind set is that I can't hurt you but I know you can hurt me.

That struck a chord - I am short, and pretty much always train with someone bigger than me. I get stuck by trying to force my will on uke (and fat lot of good that does me, too), instead of working with what I've got in terms of already being lower to the ground. I guess maybe my perception of me as small makes me try to compensate by being strong - which, of course, is utterly irrelevant. I am time and again reminded that size is deceptive, especially when you are training in motion (as opposed to static). This to my mind has nothing to do with gender, but rather with inexperience. The level of training will always override whatever effect gender has.
On the nature of training, I personally prefer classes that are more physical rather than "intellectual" in nature, and working with the big 'uns who could just toss me around forces attention to ukemi. I do sometimes feel fragile, but it depends who I'm working with. Funny, isn't it, how you subconsciously pick up on stuff like that? "Boy, this tosser has it in for me, better get on my toes".
Anyway, no, don't train differently with gals just because they are gals, that would be really silly - and, I would imagine, most would definitely not appreciate it. And it makes training difficult. I can sometimes feel how a bigger/stronger nage (who doesn't know me) restrains himself, resulting in an uncommitted attack that makes for shaky execution of the technique.

Mary Eastland
07-28-2005, 02:36 PM
[QUOTE=Cromwell Salvatera]In the dojo we have a few ladies that practices with us.

They are not as big as us (males), "
You should drop by our dojo.

lol
Mary

Bronson
07-28-2005, 03:26 PM
The point of me posting this is not to attack men, but to explain to men the stereotypes that are generally put upon women so that men can work on not doing this.


I've noticed also that many of these stereotypes are put upon women by other women. Sometimes sensei will show something, ask if there are any questions, and some of the women in class will ask to see a variant because "women don't want to do that" or "women don't want take that fall". I just think to myself "well, not after hearing you say that they don't".

Just something I've noticed.

Bronson

Meggy Gurova
07-28-2005, 05:53 PM
[QUOTE=Sonja McGough
I have never really seen or experienced sexual harrassment on the mat, only guys trying to prove themselves to me. Lately I have found that I am less and less sensitive to that. Probably because a) I have noticed that they don´t only do that to me or other women but also to ther guys and b) my technique has improved to a point where I can stop a lot of that bullying (most of these guys seem to be lower kyu grades).
[/QUOTE]

I totally agree with you.
There is one thing that many women I've met agree with and it is that most of the guys first when they grab womens wrists they don't use any power at all, and we can not do our techniques because of this loose attack, so we ask the guys to hold with more power and when they do so , then they use ALL the power they have so almost as if they wonted to crash our bones. And then we wondered why the guys can not hold just with normal power . Why is it always ALL or NOTHING? (That is usually done by the new guys.)
Then I've noticed that some women use a T-shirt under their gi. Personally I don't feel comfortable using T-shirt. So the only time I feel that I'm a woman is then i lean forward, I try to make sure that my gi is properly closed :D
Then there is the ikkyu pin. In some dojos they teach you that nage has to have the knee very close to ukes armpit. So as uke sometimes when I lay with my face down my breasts squeeze that way and sometimes I get a knee on top of them. So as a woman I try to think of that when I train with other women (not to put my knee very close to their armpit), but I don't think guys are aware of that ;)

Aikiscott
07-28-2005, 07:21 PM
Being an X-skinhead I know that the female of the species can be just as hard as the male. the only real pounding I recieved in 2 years of brawling was 3 fractured ribs from a rather nasty bootgirl.I no longer harbour any doubts that when the heat is on a woman/girl can & will inflict as much damage as most men if not more.

In the dojo I treat all my training partners male or female the same and that is based on their abilities in Ukemi. if their ukemi is weak then I take it easy if they have good ukemi skills then I go a little harder & so on up the scale. The only other consideration is for any known injuries. If a female student trains with me with a high/low level of Ukemi then she would be treated the same as a man of equal skill and I think that is appreciated by the females in our Dojo.

I once had a female student come to me after class to ask that I be careful & not kneel on her breast when doing submissions. I appologised for it happening and told her that to my knee her breast felt no different than the mat & that she should work on ways of taking Ukemi in a way that her breasts were protected & suggested that she talk this over with the Dojo's senior female student.
I said that if I knew that I was doing it that I would make adjustments but ultimately she was responsible for the protection of her body. I explained that I don't see gender on the mat & that she was just someone trying to hit me & I respond accordingly.

Janet Rosen
07-28-2005, 07:28 PM
some of the women in class will ask to see a variant because "women don't want to do that" or "women don't want take that fall". I just think to myself "well, not after hearing you say that they don't".
Wow. Bronson, I sure can't deny what you have heard or seen in your own dojo, but I gotta say in the 3 dojos I've been a member of and in the dozen or more I've visited over the yrs, I've never ever heard anything remotely like that.
Wow. I'd be pretty p.o.'d to hear it, too!

Qatana
07-28-2005, 08:02 PM
The only time I ever sak to see a variation is if the demo uke takes it upon themself to take a breakfall, which I am still "practicing" from 6 inches off the ground.
And a knee on the boob is as effective a pin as any other. Considering that the only time I've ever been attacked it was by another woman, it could very well have come in handy.

Lorien Lowe
07-28-2005, 09:48 PM
I've noticed also that many of these stereotypes are put upon women by other women. ....some of the women in class will ask to see a variant because "women don't want to do that" or "women don't want take that fall".

Unlike Janet, I have seen a (one, single, individual) woman act like that. Not only did she leave our dojo because she felt that she was being thrown too hard, but she had the gall to call our dojo-cho 'sexist' for not being softer on her. She was an ikkyu, for goodness' sake, and was talking about preparing for a shodan exam. Her comments did not go over well at all with the other women at the dojo - not only because we disagreed with her, but because she had presumed to speak for all women, everywhere, without checking with anyone else first.

Thus I would add to Anne Marie's comments about throwing women based on their ability, that their ability should be proportional to their rank. I don't think you should have to throw a healthy, 25-year old female ikkyu more softly than you throw a healthy, 25-year old male 4th kyu.

-LK

Tubig
07-28-2005, 11:26 PM
Thank for the response ladies. My intention for the thread is to find out and see through women's eyes on how different or similar aikido training is; a good example is Meg's post. I was not aware of the ikyo pin with the breast thing. Now I will keep in mind. This is not a gender debate. Even though men and women are created equal. Men and women are not the same.

Keep on posting ladies. Educate us men.

and for the blokes, if you have any insights or stories on the mat about the ladies please share it mate.

:) ;) :D

dyffcult
07-28-2005, 11:43 PM
Hrmmmm......

I personally prefer that people train to my ability rather than my sex. (Actually, I prefer when people train just a wee bit above my ability.) I love it when my partner gives me valid attacks, resists my technique sufficiently that I must practice technique and not strength, and accepts my attack and executes technique according to my level.

I have encountered partners who give me weak ukemi, but generally more because they were beginners who knew no better. I have encountered "thugs" who try to resist my technique through strength -- and generally fail when they are newbies (less so when they are more advanced and I am simply doing a technique incorrectly!). And those same "thugs" who try to power through a technique and are then surprised when my ukemi resists them.

I have had very high ranking sempai utterly resist my technique until done correctly, all with patient instruction and glad smiles when I got it right. Actually, that's how I finally came to understand koshi nage ko ku ho -- I had an uke who would not let me do it until I did it right. I also had bruises on my wrist for a week, but strangely enough no pain. I am still thankful for his ukemi.

The only partner that ever truly executed yonkyo on me was another female. She would try until she did it right and I dropped to the mat like a stone. I also had bruises from that for a week, but I guarantee she had a good idea about yonkyo after that!!! She also refused to drop until I had executed yonkyo correctly, which I greatly appreciated.

I once had a male partner that threw me so hard from a technique that I almost rolled right out of the dojo and down the steps. Of course, sensei thereafter instructed me that I needed to practice my ukemi more rigorously! My poor partner got chewed out for not training to the level of his uke -- not really his fault, we had been going at it like gangbusters and my taijutsu was much better than my ukemi at the time (still is actually). The point here is that I appreciated his level of training with me. He really pushed my training.

Another time, a guy and I were partnered during some kata with the jo. We kept going faster and faster until I finally missed a block. (Thinking to hard...) I had a bruise and a knot on my leg for two weeks. If he had not been the level he was and pulled his strike in time, I probably would have suffered a broken leg. Come to think of it, he also got chewed out by sensei for practicing beyond my ability -- even though I kept encouraging him to go faster.... But again, I appreciated the fact that he would push my training.

While fairly well-endowed, I have never, ever had anyone come even remotely close to kneeing my breasts in any technique. Quite frankly, I can't see how any woman ever would unless they were two to three the times of Pamela Anderson at her biggest! However, that is still the concern of the uke. If a woman knows that this is a potential, I believe it is her responsibility to learn how to avoid it.

I personally have never had a problem with the "closeness" of aikido techniques. Then again, I look to aikido to make connections with my fellow human beings and I have never been abused or assaulted. In fact, until I read this thread, the fact that aikido might involve more contact than other MA never even occurred to me. To me, it has always just been "training." You help me learn and I help you learn and we have to touch in various places to do that.

Actually, I never really consider whether my training partner is male or female. I evaluate size and center and training level. Where is your balance and where do I have to move to break it. In honesty however, I will admit that I tend to prefer male partners because they generally have the strength to resist me, forcing me to execute a technique correctly.

So, after all that blathering what do I really mean? Train to the level of your partner, or maybe a bit above if you are sempai (within reason), regardless of the partner's gender. If they are truly serious about their art, they will thank you for it, even if they walk away with a few bruises.

Possibly relevant aside: There is a general belief in most sports that one trains to the level of one's opponents. (Of course, in aikido we don't have opponents -- only uke!!) In other words, if one always trains with those of lesser skill, one's own skill level will decrease. If one trains with those of higher skill (within reason so as not to discourage) one's own skill will always increase. Of course, the converse of this is that by working with one of lessor skill, one must truly understand one's own art or technique in order to teach or instruct. So while I believe it is great to train with both those of lessor and greater skill, I do believe that training with a partner a step or five (or more) above my own can vastly improve my own technique -- for of course, they know how to resist incorrect technique. Just as I know that trying to assist a rank beginner with tai no henko greatly improves my own understanding....

Aikiscott
07-29-2005, 12:02 AM
While fairly well-endowed, I have never, ever had anyone come even remotely close to kneeing my breasts in any technique. Quite frankly, I can't see how any woman ever would unless they were two to three the times of Pamela Anderson at her biggest! However, that is still the concern of the uke. If a woman knows that this is a potential, I believe it is her responsibility to learn how to avoid it.


Brenda I don't know how it happens either but it has been an issue for a number of the females & even a male I think in our dojo over the years I have been training. Non of the women involved I would say would even come close to the Pamerla Anderson figure type either.
I am guessing that they are slidding/rolling their bodies in some way that pushes them out to the side.

But still it is no different to some one with long hair & it getting knelt/stood grabed during technique.

dyffcult
07-29-2005, 12:21 AM
Ya know, speaking of long hair....

When I first started training in aikido, I had hair so long I could sit on it. I kept it in a braid during training, but certain very high ranking sempai considered it a handle in irimi naga and other techniques until I learned to tuck that braid down the inside of my keikogi! :-) Even then, it was still considered fair game by most of my training partners.

Luckily, I had older siblings who had the same idea years before, so I had a very tough head and it didn't really bother me.

I wonder how Hendrix Sensei deals with it? Maybe her uke just know better. <wicked grin>

Aikiscott
07-29-2005, 12:34 AM
Ya know, speaking of long hair....

When I first started training in aikido, I had hair so long I could sit on it. I kept it in a braid during training, but certain very high ranking sempai considered it a handle in irimi naga and other techniques until I learned to tuck that braid down the inside of my keikogi! :-) Even then, it was still considered fair game by most of my training partners.

Luckily, I had older siblings who had the same idea years before, so I had a very tough head and it didn't really bother me.

I wonder how Hendrix Sensei deals with it? Maybe her uke just know better. <wicked grin>

Our sensei likes long hair on Kaiten Nage for controling the head. I have also seen him use it for a much feared Head throw from a failed Sokomen Irimi nage. A lot of our young males get there hair cut short after there first experiance of that one.

As for Pat Hendrix, I wouldn't try anything that would encourage her to cut loose on my hide. I missed training with her when she was in Australia, hopefully she will make a return visit.

Tubig
07-29-2005, 12:55 AM
Yeh youre right. How does Hendrics' sensei does that. I dont think it is uke faking all those powerful throws with fake ukemis.

I personally had a few request with irimi nage and long hair to take it easy. But that is from both men and women.

When Hendrics sensei was here giving a seminar, her kid ran into the mat. I've never seen so many grown men and women jump and avoid a kid so quickly making sure they do not land or hurt the boy. It was like moses parting the Red sea. :)

dyffcult
07-29-2005, 12:57 AM
I had the great good grace to train with Pat for a few weeks in Japan. She was amazing. Definitly no man would approach her with "gentle" technique simply because she was female. She was respected for her awesome dedication to the art and her level of training. While she demonstrated amazing strength and technique in the dojo, and no one seemed to treat her differently because she was female -- certainly not Saito Sensei, she still exhibited most lady like decorum off of the mat.

I was very impressed with her as a human -- and pleased that she took the burden off of me as the then only female uchideshi :-)

Sonja2012
07-29-2005, 01:41 AM
I've noticed also that many of these stereotypes are put upon women by other women. Sometimes sensei will show something, ask if there are any questions, and some of the women in class will ask to see a variant because "women don't want to do that" or "women don't want take that fall". I just think to myself "well, not after hearing you say that they don't".


One of the most stupid things I ever heard (and from a woman that was as well! :hypno: ) is: women should not take breakfalls due to the anatomy of their secondary sexual organs, meaning that the way the uterus and ovaries are built, breakfalls might damage them.

:freaky: is all I can say to that.....

Oh, and Brenda, I really liked your post.

It is great to read all of you women basically saying the same thing: women shwomen, shut and up, train and get on with it. Love it :)

Dirk Hanss
07-29-2005, 04:21 AM
Not much to add.
I appreciate all the female aikidoka telling us, they want to be treated according to their abilities.
And I cannot recall ever having heard a woman or girl pretending "women don't.."
There might be female beginners, who tell that they are not "tough guys", while the male ones use other excuses for not doing ukemi as being told, etc.

So I try (maybe it does not hold always ;) ) to treat everyone according to his/her ability and wishes. If someone tells me, I am practicing too harsh, I apologize and step back. And usually it is really my fault. When a technique does not work , I still fall back instinctively to power.

And recently I was told twice. Once by a woman and a few weeks later by her husband, both yudansha. Having said it was my mistake, even if my first reaction was thinking, "o dear, another 'Japanese dancer'", I am not their instructor and I try to treat them as they want to.

Dirk

ruthmc
07-29-2005, 04:33 AM
One of the most stupid things I ever heard (and from a woman that was as well! :hypno: ) is: women should not take breakfalls due to the anatomy of their secondary sexual organs, meaning that the way the uterus and ovaries are built, breakfalls might damage them.
I was told this by a senior woman (sandan) when I was a beginner. She didn't say not to breakfall, but she did say there may be damage done if breakfalls were too hard and done too often.

At the time I didn't know what to think, being a beginner with no experience of MA at all. Now I think that harsh breakfalls will damage your body eventually, male or female, so it's a good idea to learn to control your body enough so you don't land like a ton of bricks each time :D

Smoking and drinking too much alcohol will damage your uterus and ovaries far more than breakfalls ever could!

Ruth

Meggy Gurova
07-29-2005, 06:50 AM
While fairly well-endowed, I have never, ever had anyone come even remotely close to kneeing my breasts in any technique. Quite frankly, I can't see how any woman ever would unless they were two to three the times of Pamela Anderson at her biggest! However, that is still the concern of the uke. If a woman knows that this is a potential, I believe it is her responsibility to learn how to avoid it.


That depends on the shape of your body. I talked to another girl in the dojo that also agree with me. And sometimes when I fall very fast I don't have time to adjust.
I would like to hear the opposite, how we women can adjust our training when we train with you guys :D I know I do that :blush:

Dazzler
07-29-2005, 08:58 AM
While fairly well-endowed, I have never, ever had anyone come even remotely close to kneeing my breasts in any technique. Quite frankly, I can't see how any woman ever would unless they were two to three the times of Pamela Anderson at her biggest! However, that is still the concern of the uke. If a woman knows that this is a potential, I believe it is her responsibility to learn how to avoid it...

Its easily done I assure you - as I think someone stated, standard ikkyo immobilisation with knee to side of woman.

Should the knee lift off the ground instead of sliding in then it is possible for a nasty nip to take place.

D

rachmass
07-29-2005, 09:11 AM
Never had a problem with breast in forward or backward rolls, however I know plenty of women (myself included) who have had a knee firmly planted on their breast when pinned on the mat (they will squish out to the side a bit if not held in firmly and you are somewhat well endowed). Not pleasant!

As for practicing; like the others say-to your partners ability, period. Doesn't matter if they are male or female, and I have plenty of men who are mighty afraid of me on the mat :rolleyes: so don't think your gender matters a whit here.

Meggy Gurova
07-29-2005, 09:21 AM
Another thing that make me uncomfortable is munedori, but not when a guy grabs my gi, but when I have to grab a guys gi.Usually when I have to do the technique I offer a piece of my gi, so that it is easier for the person in front of me to grab (and not grab other things by mistake). Then when I train with guys, not all of them offer their gi and sometimes it's very difficult to grab their gi without touching their chest :o

RebeccaM
07-29-2005, 09:47 AM
When I was a kid, Hendricks Sensei came to my dojo. I was 12 or so, my ukemi was bad and my attention span even worse so my dad wasn't about to actually let me participate (nor did I wish to - adults were big and scary until I was 13 or 14). However, Hendricks Sensei did a demo for us, and one of the moves I remember the best was a kotegaishi she did when her partner grabbed her by the braid.

I like hard throws and valid attacks. I think most aikido people do. I've run into misplaced chivalry from time to time, but there's a lot of women in the dojo, and sensei uses women as his ukes as frequently as he uses the men, so I've always figured that the guys who are uncomfortable training with women will either adjust or move on.

I've never had issues with my breasts getting squished. I'm not exactly fulll-figured though. I have shoulder-length hair that is kept in a ponytail, but, wih one exception, no one has ever decided to use hair as a handle. That one exception didn't use the ponytail though - he went for the short hair on the back of my neck. This made me mad. Really mad. Mad enough that after a couple throws like this I noticed that 1) it didn't hurt that bad and 2) he was relying too much on hurting me and not enough on good technique, so I was able to reverse him. Every time. His response? Pull my hair a bit harder each time. I didn't hurt him back or anything, but he was a bit surprised.

Janet Rosen
07-29-2005, 11:20 AM
While fairly well-endowed, I have never, ever had anyone come even remotely close to kneeing my breasts in any technique. Quite frankly, I can't see how any woman ever would unless they were two to three the times of Pamela Anderson at her biggest! However, that is still the concern of the uke. If a woman knows that this is a potential, I believe it is her responsibility to learn how to avoid it..

Happens to me from time to time, even in a really great sports bra; it ain't the size at all, its purely the um...distribution and other factors that I imagine may be age related (I've only ever trained as a peri/postmenopausal middle aged woman).
I don't consider it an issue for my partner to be concerned about and never mention it; I tap out or squirm to comfort.

Ron Tisdale
07-29-2005, 11:36 AM
Then when I train with guys, not all of them offer their gi and sometimes it's very difficult to grab their gi without touching their chest

Its not the touching I mind, its the purple Herbies!!

Ron (no worries) :)

PS There are times with Mune Mochi when I'm *so* glad I don't have much chest hair....

PPS Oops, was that 'too much information'... :o

Jen R
07-29-2005, 12:45 PM
This is a great thread, most gender-related discussions I've seen devolve into stereotypes and recriminations within 10 posts...

I agree with the great majority of what has been said. I love to train hard. My main complaint is that most of our guys don't attack me hard enough. :-)

There was some question earlier on about sexual harrassment. I have been touched accidentally, and it's really easy to tell when a touch is accidental (usually by my partner's blush). No biggie, it happens, you just keep on training.

I've also been touched deliberately. I spoke to my sensei, the individual never came back, end of story. It meant a great deal to me that my sensei listened to me to carefully and openly, and believed me even when I was half-doubting myself. If you ever have to deal with this as a teacher, the most important thing you can do is listen, and not judge. It's difficult and embarrasing to talk about even under the best of circumstances, and even though I knew I was doing the right thing, I still felt confused and guilty. So be patient, and listen.

Keith Larman
07-29-2005, 12:54 PM
Just fwiw... I teach an "advanced" kids and teens class at our dojo. Basically we had kids with some years of experience and good ability who weren't getting challenged working with the newer, littler squirts. But they were usually outclassed (and intimidated) in the general practice/adult classes. Given we have an active kids program we decided to start up the advanced kids class. I was concerned at first about having a bunch of kids fairly evenly mixed of both genders some of whom are either just entering or are fully engulfed in puberty and all that puberty brings with it. But early on I made it clear that it was an advanced class and that meant nage has to assume uke can take the ukemi. Be careful, obviously, but they only get invited to the class if they can demonstrate the ability to deliver a decent attack and take a safe and realistic ukemi. Heck, much of the class is about teaching them to attack better... And as such it seems to obviate any problems between the genders. The bear hugs from behind can be a bit dicey, but I've yet to see anyone abuse or take advantage of the attack to do something improper.

In reality I've only had it come up once in class. We were doing some work with shoulder grabs and one of the younger boys (and sincerely I think he was completely unaware of what he was doing) was grabbing a bit low. Not *that* low, but low enough to make me sit them down.

Anyway, I just told them to be sensitive to where they grab for obvious reasons. And if *anything* happened inappropriately they would find themselves "uninvited" to the invitation only advanced kids class. Some blushed, some laughed, but we went back to practice and I've still never had a problem. Good attacks, sincere attacks, good ukemi... There doesn't seem to be any room left for any problems. And lord knows someone stupid enough to try to take advantage in an inappropriate way would be showed the door rather quickly. And as a father of a daughter myself, well, I may not open the door first before I throw them out... There is *NO* place for that kind of crap on the mat. Period.

As an aside, the only real problem related to gender I see with the kids and teens is a few of the girls trailing this one poor boy around who hasn't quite become aware of the fact that the girls are trailing him around the mat... I'm waiting for the day they get into a fistfight over who gets to pair up with the kid... ;)

aikigirl10
07-29-2005, 01:40 PM
Women may have long hair but men have chest hair :p
That one seems to get em pretty bad self defense wise lol.

Nick Simpson
07-29-2005, 02:11 PM
Great thread but the title really amuses me :)

John Boswell
07-29-2005, 02:20 PM
I'm glad this thread has come up. Obviously, I'm in the right place to ask some questions that have weighed on my mind about training with women. Several questions:

1) Kokyunage - the arm often times comes right across the chest. I would be self-conscious about having my arm brushing a woman's breasts as opposed to upper chest. With guys, I don't have to worry, but with women...??? What are your thoughts on this situation?

2) Lapel grab - when I have trained with women in the past (very few) I had a lot of attention on grabbing up high close to the shoulder, not pulling on the gi at ALL so as not to open the gi in the slilghtest. Have you ladies ever had a problem with someone grabbing your gi and being exposed? (under bra being beside the point)

3) Women's self defense classes - The idea of having such a class has been tossed around our school, but I think we've been waiting to open the new dojo before doing such a thing. What would you recommend us guys to do to put ladies at ease with training in such a class? Right now, we have no women in our classes so those teaching would be the guys... training the women. I wouldn't want them to feel awkward or intimidated... and when you're 6'2" and 255 lbs, you tend to intimidate people not familiar with martial arts. Any advide on this? Dealing with new women students?

Thanks!

Nick Simpson
07-29-2005, 02:41 PM
At first I did find it a little weird to grab a womans shirt collar and particularly the yonkyo pin where you place ukes hand on your center/knot in belt was a bit weird too. But after a while i got used to it and now its normal. As for Intimidating women, just do your best to be polite, positive and happy, use some humor, show them its not all big serious men and macho posturing.

Mary Eastland
07-29-2005, 03:49 PM
I would rather someone just grabbed me above my breast but still on the muscle than on my clavicle. I don't care if uke accicently brushes my breast just don't do it on purpose and try not to do it again after I have told you about it. Sometimes it can really hurt.
I just do technique from whereever uke grab's.
Mir

Jen R
07-29-2005, 04:00 PM
For John:

For the lapel grab, I preemptively offer my lapel. Makes it easier on everyone.

For the women's self-defense course, see if you can't get a couple "ringer" females in there. When you are a beginner, or unfamiliar with martial arts, it can be hard to walk into a room full of men, no matter how friendly. Maybe spouses, daughters, or friends can be drafted for the first few classes?

As for the kokyunage, I dunno, it's just never been an issue for me...

cck
07-29-2005, 04:21 PM
1) Kokyunage - the arm often times comes right across the chest. I would be self-conscious about having my arm brushing a woman's breasts as opposed to upper chest. With guys, I don't have to worry, but with women...??? What are your thoughts on this situation?
Never noticed it, hence no concern

2) Lapel grab - when I have trained with women in the past (very few) I had a lot of attention on grabbing up high close to the shoulder, not pulling on the gi at ALL so as not to open the gi in the slilghtest. Have you ladies ever had a problem with someone grabbing your gi and being exposed? (under bra being beside the point)

My gi often needs rearranging. I wear a sports bra and never feel exposed. I figure that if I am not squeamish about it, nobody else is, either. I just turn around, fix it, and move on.


3) Women's self defense classes - The idea of having such a class has been tossed around our school, but I think we've been waiting to open the new dojo before doing such a thing. What would you recommend us guys to do to put ladies at ease with training in such a class? Right now, we have no women in our classes so those teaching would be the guys... training the women. I wouldn't want them to feel awkward or intimidated... and when you're 6'2" and 255 lbs, you tend to intimidate people not familiar with martial arts. Any advide on this? Dealing with new women students?

I recently took a self-defense class offered at my place of work. It was great. It was taught by guys - seemed to lend realism to the exercise. They took the few guys in the class aside and practised different types of assault with them - back on the ground, pounding fists in their face etc.
The big thing for me was that they were completely padded, so I felt safe kicking, poking, jabbing, etc anywhere I could without hurting them. So, for your class, I would make sure everybody understands that you know how to take ukemi/not get hurt, even if you don't have all the padding on. Only then will people feel that it is safe to participate fully.
The guys also walked us through a very valuable exercise of using voice and body language to deter a would-be attacker.
There were no "techniques" involved in the class, although the defenses against knife-attacks seemed quite familiar. We were basically taught to use whatever we had - fingers, feet, arms, legs - on any "soft spot" - eyes, knees, groin - to inflict the most damage. The eye-ball poking was especially fun.
They started off talking to us, setting the stage for what was to follow. Most responded that they didn't think they could poke someone's eye out even if they were attacked - but that they thought they could if their child were atttacked. The trick then is to convince yourself you are worth the same level of response. At the end of class everybody looked an inch taller, and they all spoke in some way about how empowering it felt.
Generally, I think self-defense is a great gateway into aikido. It was what I was looking for when I first started. It turned into something else, but the very idea that I may have a fighting chance should it be necessary is incredibly valuable to me.

giriasis
07-29-2005, 04:24 PM
I'm glad this thread has come up. Obviously, I'm in the right place to ask some questions that have weighed on my mind about training with women. Several questions:

1) Kokyunage - ...

I've never found this a problem.

2) Lapel grab -

I tend to get pinched a lot and like Jen said I pull up some of my gi and offer it giving your something to grab. I usually wear a tee shirt and workout bra so I'm not worried about getting "exposed". Gis just fall open no matter because they don't close around my size C/D cup breasts unless I'm wearing a Bujin women's gi top.

I'm with Mary though. Don't try to overcompensate because you are afraid that your hand is going to be near a woman's breast. Grab the gi right over the breast. Accidents happen and there is a big difference between something intentional and something accidental. If it's and accident just apoligize and keep on training.

RebeccaM
07-29-2005, 04:45 PM
I take accidental touching in stride. Aikido is full contact. It happens. Intentional groping, OTOH, is another matter and not something I've ever encountered on the mat (and hopefully never will).

I've never thought of the chest hair issue with men, but I'll keep that in mind for the future. I try to be careful with lapel grabs and such, but that's more because one of my pet peeves is getting my skin grabbed and twisted along with the gi, so I try not to do that to anyone else. I also try to avoid getting people by the neck hair, since that hurts too.

cserrit
07-29-2005, 04:50 PM
I would be self-conscious about having my arm brushing a woman's breasts as opposed to upper chest...What are your thoughts on this situation?

In the majority of the times...it goes so quickly that neither of us realizes what really happened...If it is an accident then I let it go...part Aikido is of being "in close" with your partner. Now if they are blatant...then something is said to them.

... I had a lot of attention on grabbing up high close to the shoulder, not pulling on the gi at ALL so as not to open the gi in the slilghtest. Have you ladies ever had a problem with someone grabbing your gi and being exposed? (under bra being beside the point)

I (and I would say, the majority of women), wear a sports (colorful) bra. I wear them when I run (w/o a shirt) so "exposure" is not a problem for me. I would hope that women would come and watch a more advance class and see that having a gi "pulled open" during a grab could be a possibility and decide whether they want to be in that situation. I have not seen the women at our dojo too concerned with this...they are just working on the technique.

... I wouldn't want them to feel awkward or intimidated... and when you're 6'2" and 255 lbs, you tend to intimidate people not familiar with martial arts. Any advide on this? Dealing with new women students?

Which would be more intimidating? 6'2" and 255 lbs in a controlled, safe environment or 6'2" and 255 lbs in a dark alley? ;)

Just my 2¢

-C

Pauliina Lievonen
07-29-2005, 04:54 PM
I think it's really simple - if you grab me too hard, and I say so, please loosen up a bit, if I want to take harder falls, I´ll say so, please throw me harder. I think if my breasts get squeezed or touched, it´s my problem, and if you feel embarrassed about it, that´s your problem!

I usually offer a lapel to my partner to save them the embarrasment, lol.

kvaak
Pauliina

bleepbeep
07-29-2005, 08:43 PM
I think the minute I signed up for aikido I also signed up for whatever happens on the mats and part of all of it are the grabbing, throwing, pinning etc.

i would rather that it would be according to my ability to take ukemi and the skill that I have that my partner deal with me and not my gender. :)

Meggy Gurova
07-30-2005, 07:40 AM
I think the minute I signed up for aikido I also signed up for whatever happens on the mats and part of all of it are the grabbing, throwing, pinning etc.


True!
I still suffer some of the things I had to change in order to train aikido (cut my nails, not use so much make up on the days I practice , not to use jullary)....
Do you guys get some make up on your gi when you practice with women? Sometimes when I train with a little bit more make up than usual I accidentally color the sleeves of my trainings partners, and I always feel so bad about it :(

Mary Eastland
07-30-2005, 07:53 AM
[QUOTE=John Boswell]I'm glad this thread has come up. Obviously, I'm in the right place to ask some questions that have weighed on my mind about training with women. Several questions:

1) Kokyunage - the arm often times comes right across the chest. I would be self-conscious about having my arm brushing a woman's breasts as opposed to upper chest. With guys, I don't have to worry, but with women...??? What are your thoughts on this situation?

It would not bother me.

2) Lapel grab - when I have trained with women in the past (very few) I had a lot of attention on grabbing up high close to the shoulder, not pulling on the gi at ALL so as not to open the gi in the slilghtest. Have you ladies ever had a problem with someone grabbing your gi and being exposed? (under bra being beside the point)

It is just breasts. I think it bothers the guy way more than it bothers me.

3) Women's self defense classes - The idea of having such a class has been tossed around our school, but I think we've been waiting to open the new dojo before doing such a thing. What would you recommend us guys to do to put ladies at ease with training in such a class? Right now, we have no women in our classes so those teaching would be the guys... training the women. I wouldn't want them to feel awkward or intimidated... and when you're 6'2" and 255 lbs, you tend to intimidate people not familiar with martial arts. Any advide on this? Dealing with new women students?


What do you know about women's SD?......It is a lot more than a few techniques.
I am asking this respectfully. I think it is a great idea...I am just wondering if you have any ideas about it yourself.

If you like you can check out my website for some ideas....just follow the link from BHA. It is under my name in instructors.
Mary

maeukemi
07-30-2005, 01:26 PM
Where I train, I am -- very often!-- the only female in a room full of very large men, over half the time. I am not "well-endowed" but not tiny either. The kokyunage issue hasn't come up except once--even then, it was because *I* had done poor ukemi that I was in a position where my chest got squashed. I like training with "just the guys" -- although as today proved, training with " really eager shodan" can get a little iffy ;) I am, personally, more sensitive about giving control of my head and neck and throat up to someone than anything else... Irimi and iriminage and the rare choke-hold practice are more difficult, psychologically, for me than kokyunage. So when we do "choke-waza" (we've only done it once so far), we try to pair up by gender and size; if there's no other female, sensei will pair up with me himself or with one of the kids.

As far as "politeness" goes... I wear a sports bra and a tank top. Most of the other women just wear the sports bra/undershirt under their gi, but I'm not comfortable with that idea yet since I still have problems with gi-tying. I don't get "exposed", ever.

I will say that I do really appreciate those of our shodan who also wear T-shirts, even though they don't "have to." I consider it reciprocal politeness.

I would much rather "train to ability with respect to physical condition" (I'm new so I take minor injuries quite often--I'm learning!) than have someone train with me differently "because I'm a girl". I have run into some difficulties at times because my ukemi isn't at the same level as my atemi. I used to "hold back" because my ukemi is very poor, and I didn't want nage to speed me through the technique because of the strength of my attack, but then sensei would have me do extra turns until I wasn't holding back anymore :)

One of the things I like best about aikido is that ability matters most. And ability is something we can only improve over time.

I have never yet been harassed in that way by any of the other students where I train. If anything we are all over-cautious with each other, and have to ask for stronger attacks... the men are as sensitive about the chest-hair issue as the few women are about the chest issue...'sensitive' in terms of "not wanting to hurt each other."

There are a few techniques that cause me some mental squirms when we do them, because an eye-ful of anyone's chest isn't pretty... and the men's gi's tend to open more easily because they all put a lot of power into their techniques...but I just try to learn the movements very well, as quickly as possible, so uke and I (when I am nage) aren't sitting in those "awkward" positions very long!

Re: lapel grab - Before we do katetori anything, everyone is given the chance to pull out their gi a bit so nobody grabs anything awkward. We also turn the offered shoulder out a bit to make it easier/obvious.

Re: the self-defense classes...well, I'd fall back on aiki-rei if I were you... treat those who enter and express interest with compassion and respect for their individual comfort level.
Our dojo hasn't started self-defense classes yet (will after we move, or so I'm told), but when they do begin, the instructors will be a pair-- one female 5th kyu and our chief instructor. If you have women aikidoka willing to help -- ask them! :)
Hope this helps,
M

dyffcult
07-30-2005, 10:11 PM
On the matter of women and exposure....

Funny thing is, until reading this thread, I never once thought about the contact with my breasts on any technique – it was just part of the technique. I also never considered the fact that executing a technique might “expose” myself.... then again, I always wear a man’s undershirt ribbed tank (referred to as a wife-beater in some circles) under my practice gi. I don’t consider exposing that to “exposing” myself . (Of course, cleavage is still there. Nothing I can do about that.)

I remember the first judo class I took when there was no aikido dojo nearby. I was actually offended when one of the female students came up and told me that my under garments were insufficient – that the women were required to wear t-shirts under the gi..... I sputtered for a few minutes... (Of course, that was their way...as a female, I just found it obnoxious that the guys required no undershirt, and my tank was insufficient....)

If a women wears only a sports bra under her gi, she understands that her sports bra and belly may be exposed to the whole class upon certain techniques. That is her choice. I have no problem with it – hell, I wish I had the confidence to train in just a sports bra. More power to her – and defiantly a lot cooler. However, if this is unacceptable to the sensei and students, it is up to the students to object to the sensei and the sensei to then so instruct.

If a women wears something over her sports bra, then there should be no problem for any male student – whether it be a tank, t-shirt or sweater. Just grab and execute the technique.

Brenda

Amelia Smith
07-31-2005, 01:21 PM
I've never had a problem with kokyonage pins. I mean, there's contact, and there's groping. They're totally different, as far as I'm concerned. OTOH, I sometimes have a problem with guys being too careful around my breasts (which are on the larger side). Some guys won't do the technique properly because they're afraid of accidentally brushing against my breasts... evileyes like they'll jump out and smother the poor bloke.

Sometimes, accidentally, they get elbowed in ushiro techniques. As long as it's not a really hard hit, it's no big deal, and profuse blushing and appologies can get annoying. A simple, "oops, sorry," is fine.

The only thing that really hurts is that knee-pin-pinch thing. I can avoid it most of the time by readjusting my position on the mat or by falling a little more turned-away, but sometimes that's not an option with a really strong pin. If it happens, I let the nage in question know, and he (or she) usually gets very careful after that.

I practice with a sports bra and a T-shirt. I've seen a lot of women practice with swimsuits under their gi tops, which I can't really do, comfort-wise. It never even occured to me that a forward roll could hurt one's breasts. I'm just not getting that, at all.

As for the women's self defense class, I think it would be better if there were some women instructors for it. Is there another dojo (maybe in another martial art) you could pair up with for the classes?

--Amelia

giriasis
07-31-2005, 08:29 PM
I, agree, the pin when you do seated kokyu-ho can be a pin uncomfortable with men. I've noticed the same thing Amelia just pointed out, they're afraid to do the pin. Sometimes I even accidently graze my female partners breast. Acknowledging and appreciating their concern, I just tell them to pin me around the shoulder/ collar bone. And I sometimes get the knee pinch, but not that often. The standing nikkyo pin can be kindof weird, too. Just be open and listen to your female partners, even if they are junior to you when they express any discomfort. Be open and communicate your concerns.

Tubig
08-01-2005, 06:48 PM
Another technique that I noticed is for both ladies and gents.

Koshi nage... went to training last nite. Tori is probably a foot taller than me and he tried to load me. because of my height 5'6" and weight 85 kg he really needed to go low for the load. The load was too high, mid back rather than the hip. He forced the throw by using the other hand to flip me. His hand with a good dose of force went between my legs and hit the family jewels... then I got thrown. I was a bit teary when I hit the mat. :eek:

John Boswell
08-02-2005, 10:23 AM
It is just breasts. I think it bothers the guy way more than it bothers me.

That's just it: it does. A common theme I'm seeing on this thread is that "groping" is unacceptable, but thankfully is VERY rarely seen on the mat. And that's for a reason: we're there to train. HOWEVER, though you may not feel or have any attention on an accidental brushing... we're guys. We DID notice it, it has now taken ALL of our attention and something needs to happen right now to move past it. Yes, the guy should apologize and move on, but often times will be flustered (especially younger guys/teenagers). I would recommend the ladies grab the guy, tell him to "blow it off" or "forget it" or say "it's nothing" and then move on to the next attack or technique.

No matter how much of an accident the "brushing" might be, Yes... we did notice, are sorry for it and are trying to avoid it. Until we get to higher levels and years of practice and are comfortable training with women, we will always be being careful of that subject. (We being the majority of men. ;) )

3) Women's self defense classes -

What do you know about women's SD?......It is a lot more than a few techniques.
I am asking this respectfully. I think it is a great idea...I am just wondering if you have any ideas about it yourself.

What do "I" know about SD classes? Uh... just about nothin'! :D I imagine myself taking a lot of ukemi for such a class so that's why I have these concerns and worries. I will check out your website.

If you like you can check out my website for some ideas....just follow the link from BHA. It is under my name in instructors.
Mary

Another common theme I've picked up on is "pinching" from grab attacks or pins. I've found one solution to this is UnderArmor http://www.underarmour.com/Default.cfm . This stuff is great! Helps prevent pinching, grabing chest hair, keeps everything "in place" (I've got love handles that vanish with this shirt on ;) ) and helps keep you cool or warm depending on which gear you get. This and similar products are very good for the pinching and grabbing that can hurt.

Thanks again for all the feedback! I've learned a lot about training with women here. I can be "professsional" on the mat, but I don't want to offend by accident. If an accident is not offensive, then I'll more than likely just ignore "brushes" and just move on with training instead of stopping to apologize all the time. This is all good to information to have... thanks! :D

Mary Eastland
08-02-2005, 01:14 PM
Thank for the feedback,,,,,John. I never thought about helping the guy feel more comfortable about hitting my breasts. Most of the time I really just keep training.....what a great way to take someone's balance...hee hee. I just did not know it effects guys that way. :D
Mary
P.S.
If you have specific questions about WSD...feel free to e-mail me.

John Boswell
08-02-2005, 04:33 PM
Thank for the feedback,,,,,John. I never thought about helping the guy feel more comfortable about hitting my breasts. Most of the time I really just keep training.....what a great way to take someone's balance...hee hee. I just did not know it effects guys that way. :D
Mary
P.S.
If you have specific questions about WSD...feel free to e-mail me.

Well, like I said... MOST guys! And seriously, as much as women need to be aware, know about defending themselves and all that goes with THAT... guys need to be able to know how not to offend a woman, how to fix it when they do and to be aware, when it comes to martial arts, what their partner may or may not be thinking. :confused:

Take someone's balance? It would be a funny atemi, but I bet you dollars to doughnuts you would find me jumping back and landing on my backside to avoid such a situation. What can I say? My wife has me whipped. :crazy: :freaky: :blush: :confused: :eek: Not that I'm complaining, mind you. ;)

PS: Women are especially intimidating when they are married to your 4th dan instructor. That's the LAST person in the world you want to "offend." :D

Erik
08-02-2005, 07:47 PM
Interesting timing for this thread as I was going to start one similar to it.

I've been off the mat for a while due to a combination of my shoulder, knee and just a general "maybe I'm done with it all" kind of thought process. I've also recently moved. Well, anyways, for whatever reason I felt like being in a dojo last night. Beats a bar, right? Even if I didn't practice I've always found dojos to be mellowing places and since I've been around enough, and knew the instructor, I figured I just go wander into the dojo and watch a class. They were a very welcoming and nice group by the way.

Upon arrival I was struck by something I've seen in so many places without a strong female instructor: no female students (in this case) or few female students. Now one visit does not a "real" study make (maybe they all skipped class that night) but it got me thinking about other arts. I've always seen women in TKD dojos. A Capoeira group I saw, which had amazing gymnastics was well populated with women. One dojo I was part of was adjacent to a TKD place that had lots of young women but they never made it to our dojo 200 feet away.

Adding to that, I have a co-worker who signed up for a Karate class recently but had no interest in Aikido after viewing a clip of Hiroshi Ikeda. "So, Hiroshi is uninteresting but stupid Karate tricks (my extrapolation of some of her comments) were ok?" Her Karate class was all women by the way. Flabbergasted, that our art of harmony was not instantly attractive, I started wondering why and so began my 5-minute informal study.

I hunted down a video clip that would be deemed exceptionally mellow by folks in these parts. The clip has several women in it. I then called together three female co-workers in their early 20's to early 40's. All of them fit, and two of them work out regularly. They looked at the clip with the exact same reactions; it looks boring; it looks like work; it looks like I'd get hurt and what kind of nut (me) asks these questions. One of them explained that she preferred cardio kickboxing because there was music, it was fun, and she could just move. If only we could get aikidoists to just move…..

Take it for what it's worth.

Erik
08-02-2005, 07:49 PM
This stuff is great! Helps prevent pinching, grabing chest hair

As a fellow with plenty of chest hair I've thought those were a great idea, although, I've never used one.

Meggy Gurova
08-18-2005, 07:13 AM
Yesterday we were training kubi shime techniques in my new dojo. The main teacher was teaching the class and I was training with one of the other instructors. For the first time I experienced sexual harassment. Everybody in the club was holding kubi shime without choking :confused: And this person I was training with was holding even feather down (on top of my chest) and he was squeezing my body to his chest, which was very unpleasant. When I trained the other kubi shime techniques with the other guys even thou they were holding me very close and strong I didn't experience the same unpleasant feeling. I didn't say anything, maybe that's his way of holding and maybe he holds the guys the same way. I'll definitely confront him if he does the same approach on another technique.

Hanna B
08-24-2005, 02:38 AM
But in the reverse, women (well, this woman at least) tend to go way too hard on the guys thinking that they can't hurt a man. It was a big lesson for me to learn that, "yes, I can hurt a man, even a big guy." How many guys here have taken really hard nikkyos or kotegaeshi from a women and then they expect you to go "easy" on them? I think part of this mind set is that I can't hurt you but I know you can hurt me.

Many people already commented on this one. This was a new angle on the subject for me. I have been thinking like this, when I meet these women: part of the reason is due to the fact that these women's partners continue to go soft on them while they themselves go hard. Part of it might be, it is difficult to admit a woman is hurting him physically.

A kitten learns to keep his claws in because the other baby kittens have claws too. If a guy is a bit too rough on you, you are likely to do the same to show him how it feels... but in some environments, a "lady" will never experience this. The first time these women meet a woman who does technique on them without extra concern, they sometimes get reallly angry. I'd say it is not only their fault; they have not been given adequate feedback.

I once had a female student come to me after class to ask that I be careful & not kneel on her breast when doing submissions. I appologised for it happening and told her that to my knee her breast felt no different than the mat & that she should work on ways of taking Ukemi in a way that her breasts were protected & suggested that she talk this over with the Dojo's senior female student.
I said that if I knew that I was doing it that I would make adjustments but ultimately she was responsible for the protection of her body. I explained that I don't see gender on the mat & that she was just someone trying to hit me & I respond accordingly.

How I disagree! Yes, it is difficult to feel if the knee is on the breast or just on the mat (when flat on my belly, the breast gets flattened and pushed to the side). If you were doing sparring (in an art where they do this) I do think you would take care not to kick or hit the other guy's crotch - actually, it would be in the rules since the rules assume that most people in the dojo have testicles, that can not take much. Why should not hurting breasts be any different? OK the testicles are more sensitive, but still to most women the breasts are more sensitive than most parts of their body. We should realise this varies a lot from woman to woman though (and not mainly because of size).

Trying to keep track of not hurting the breast is no more different than trying not to hurt people's joints. Some have very tender joints, and you need to go easy on them... and the only way to know who this applies to, is to remember "I need to go easy on Peter's joints". Going easy on someones breasts shouldn't be more difficult to remember. Yes, sometimes a pin can not be performed with the same speed. I see no problem. There are tons on situations where we adapt training to each other's bodies. (btw, from my last teacher I was taught to sit at an angle to uke's body, like almost besides uke's head rather than at his/her side. This way you stay clear of the breast issue also. It is not the only reason why I prefer to do the pin this way, but it is a bonus)

Your student was very frank. In most cases, you take it (I learned to wrench my body away slightly early during the pin if I realised the knee was coming) and don't want to complain since you expect the male reaction to this kind of thing be either denial or, more commonly, complete overprotection.

dyffcult
08-24-2005, 03:54 AM
Okay...someone help me here....

Exactly on which techniques are women finding their breasts pinned. I trained for three months in a dojo full of very high yudanshu and never once had my breasts pinned or even felt like my nage was close to pinning my breasts. Additionally, I never felt as if my nage was moving so as to avoid pinning my breasts.

So, I either I am extremely dense, or I am doing something in my ukemi that avoids this possibility. Since I am not doing it consciously, I would like to know the problem techniques so that maybe I can figure out what I am doing that others are not....and be able to share that information.

I am not being facetious. The other night, we were doing ikkyo and nikkyo techniques, and as the pin would approach, I thought to myself, is my breast out of the way....it always was. So I wonder what I am doing differently then these women who have found their breasts pinned.....However, I am doing technique/ukemi as I was taught....

Just really confused...

Brenda

Hanna B
08-24-2005, 04:23 AM
I don't think you as uke do anything different. I think it is nage who does it differently.

The "pinch" problem appears in sitting nikkyo and sankyo pin. However, it depends on the style. If nage sits perpendicular to uke, facing straight across ukes body then one of nages knees is just below uke's armpit, and thereby at the breast (provided it is pressed out to the side when flat on the belly). If, however, nage sits more at ukes shoulder, his direction not perpendicular over ukes but at an angle, the knee is nowhere close to the breast. If you train in a dojo where this is the style, I am not surprised you have never encountered the pinch.

Maybe there also are subvarieties of the perpendicular version where you don't put your knee so close to uke's body. If so, I am not familiar with those.

dyffcult
08-24-2005, 04:41 AM
Hanna

I am used to nage's knee being shoved into my armpit for the pin -- ikkyo, nikkyo, etc... with the other knee above my shoulder, but have never experienced a "breast pin" regardless.....and I am a double D ....

So, I can only assume that I am doing something different....or wearing something different.

Therefore, if I can avoid the breast pin...others can....

Hopefully we can figure out a mechanism that is more than uke has large breasts and nage should avoid....

Brenda

Hanna B
08-24-2005, 04:54 AM
Possibly. Why don't you do some research to figure it out? I have severe difficulties in believing that uke can change the situation much, if so the garment issue IMO is a more likely explanation. On the other hand, maybe the folks in your dojo takes their knee in from the side rather than slightly from above...there are so many factors to consider here.

I don't buy the conclusion that if you can avoid it everyone can. We are different in a multitude of ways, size not being the only one. Maybe a C usually would have a bigger problem than a double D, regarding pain... I just don't know.

dyffcult
08-24-2005, 04:59 AM
I agree...

I was just hoping that there were set perameters that could be established so that we could figure out why it is happening....

Once we can figure out why...perhaps we can figure out how to avoid....

Brenda

Sonja2012
08-24-2005, 06:34 AM
In our organisation we go down on the outer knee first when pinning uke as opposed to the inner knee, so I never encountered the breast-kneeling problem. The other day we actually tried the other version (going down on the outer knee first) and what can I say :eek: I had my breast knelt on ;) Fortunately it was my husband who did it so I got my revenge later on (don´t ask....) :D

Janet Rosen
08-24-2005, 11:35 AM
Re breast pin: as I said back on page 1, some of us by combos of size, shape, age, etc, go more "to the side" under the affects of gravity or pressure.
If I'm in partial control of my takedown, I can angle to avoid the breast pin. It is not for me a frequent occurance, and two things can make it more likely to occur: 1. nage takes me down really fast or 2. circumstances/angles bring me down more laterally along my outside tegatana/forearm/ribs and my inner side angled up towards nage, so that for the final pin I am rolled towards tummy-down: this tends to roll the inner side breast out laterally.
However....jeez, it is no big deal. Mostly its not as uncomfortable or as longlasting as getting a mammogram! Just another transitory training discomfort.

Aikiscott
08-24-2005, 06:28 PM
Breast pin Issue
The technique that it most commonly happens in is Ikkyo, though I have also done it in a standing pin for Kote gaeshi, but I felt it and made appropriate adjustments.I think it is due to the fact that when we take Ukemi for it(Ikkyo) we look up at Tori/Nage until the very last second when Tori/nage pushes the shoulder into the mat to complete the pin, which I guess causes the displacement of the breast out to one side. It also happens mostly to newer female students though now we have a good group of ladies who help out the newer ladies with advice.
The problem is now fixed after she was advised by a fellow female to purchase a good quality sport bra.
It has actually become a bit of a joke after training when we are all sitting around in the Pub having a beer.

As for Testicles
When taking a break fall a man needs to be careful that his thighs do not slap together, and thus crush his testicles. It is the mans responsibility to make sure his ukemi does not result in this happening, he also has to insure that he wears the right undergarments to aid him in not letting this happen. How is this different to a woman taking care of her own body parts during Ukemi.Though Tori needs to be sensitive to Uke's skill level.
I am always sensitive to my Uke & do not inflict unnecessary discomfort for the fun of it.But I feel that as we are martial artists(whether or not you practice for self defence or not) we (male & female) need to take responsibility for the protection of our bodies.

giriasis
08-25-2005, 07:50 AM
Like, Janet, the breast getting pinched really is no big deal. Usually it happens during the seated nikkyo or sankyo cradle pin when nage puts his or, yes, even her, knee down. It doesn't happen a lot, though. I usually don't have to do any special ukemi to protect them. They're in a very supportive sports bra that keeps them from moving around anyway.

When it comes with guys testicles, I usually watch out where my hand goes during ikkyo or iriminage. Usually, it doesn't go "there" if I'm controlled properly, but accidents happen -- i.e. the hand grazes his privates, but like above it's rare.

scruffy_samurai
04-26-2006, 04:57 AM
ive never had a problem with my breasts being in the way at aikido but at jiu jitsu, they have been groped, knelt on, pinched etc possible because the techniques are different but any hoo....

i am one of very few girls in my club (me and 1 other senior girl and possible 5 junior girls) and have only really felt uncomfortable around two guys at the club purely because they have made some sexist comments to me and to the other senior girl.
luckerly me and the other senior girl have a good understanding of each other's aikido so we train together regually

Hanna B
04-26-2006, 06:37 AM
The reason I started this thread is a few months ago we had a begginer who is scared to do a forward roll. I showed her many times how to do it, and she still is very scared. Finally I asked why is she so scared. Embarrassed and blushing she said 'I am scared with doing forward rolls because I do not want to crush my breast'...
Maybe she recently had implants done, and did not want to risk them? :D

Faith Hansen
04-26-2006, 02:43 PM
Anne-

How does the hand come anywhere NEAR the genitals in Ikkyo or Iriminage?? Do you have a special "happy ending" to your technique? ;) ;)

To put my two cents on the rest: I have fairly large breasts and find that yes they do get squished and stepped on occasionally, but it never really hurts. And you would have to execute a pretty messed up forward roll to squish them. :) I would recommend having a higher ranked female aikidoka help the woman out with her with rolls to begin with. This may help the woman feel more at ease and enable her to connect with someone who understands.

-Faith

giriasis
04-26-2006, 03:22 PM
Anne-

How does the hand come anywhere NEAR the genitals in Ikkyo or Iriminage?? Do you have a special "happy ending" to your technique? ;) ;)

-Faith

It's real easy if they don't do the technique properly. Usually there's a light graze. It is just as much a "no biggie" as my breasts being lightly grazed during other techniques. It's the nature of practicing a physical artform like aikido.

During ikkyo it can happen right after the cut down from ikkyo if the nage doesn't guide your hand past his outside hip/ leg. A friend of mine had an accidental "happy, albeit very embarrasing, ending" where her hand landed directly on his genitals. During iriminage if nage doesn't take efforts to keep your inside arm away to prevent you from hitting them you arm will sort of drop between the legs. (This can also led to a fun counter on uke's part where you can turn around and pick up their leg.) Of course my ukemi for kaitenage requires me to go for a punch to the genitals, but that's a different story. ;)

I have had my breasts pinched a couple of times, but usually that happens when nage just haphazardly drops down to their knees to bring me into a seated pin. It doesn't happen that much though.

Faith Hansen
04-26-2006, 03:51 PM
OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I for some reason thought you were referring to when YOU did the technique on someone. The uke part makes more sense. Silly me. :)

-Fae

Michael O'Brien
04-26-2006, 07:26 PM
Reading through all of the previous discussion was quite interesting and at times even amusing. :)

Like many others, up until this discussion there were a lot of things I had never even thought about in regards to accidental brushing, etc. It did almost immediately make me think of an amusing story that happened this past Sunday in our afternoon advanced class. We were training against uke grabbing both wrists and jerking nage forward. I paired up with one of the females in class and I grabbed the wrists and jerked her towards me. For some reason she totally blankedon technique. When I realized this I tried to stop her momentum but we slammed chest to chest. We both just stepped back and laughed about and went on with training.

Glenda Gill
04-28-2006, 09:08 PM
I am only 5 ft tall? and when I first walked into my class, freaked out mainly because, was the only female, but all the males are so tall around the 6ft mark. First couple of lessons, was lucky to get away with a lot. But after that was just one of the boys.
I prefer doing aikido with really tall people mainly because, I find I can get them onto the ground a lot smoother. Unfortunately in a real fight, I will not have the luxury of choosing a persons height, therefore I feel more confident, because I have trained with men.
The boob thing, yeah, I do worry a bit, but if I get hurt, its my own fault, for not defending myself properly. And it does really hurt.