PDA

View Full Version : aggresive and arrogant aikidoka


Please visit our sponsor:
 

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


aiki-G
10-21-2005, 11:45 AM
Hello to all at aikiweb,

I'm a young aikidoka (in toronto) and I've been training for a few months more than one year. I haven't yet graded, but I'm planning to in the next month (many of the senior grades have told me I ought to double grade to 5th kyu, since I've been showing good progress and am proficient with 1-15 of my randori no-kata. I'm personally not so fussed; whichever grade I get doesn't affect the material I learn).

Aikido is going great, and I am really enjoying it but there's just one tiny thing that gets the better of me every lesson. There's another aikidoka who started a month after I did (so he's been training for 14 months), and he was ok for a while. There was a bit of a problem with training cause he's much larger than me, I think he's an amature body-builder, and I'm still in high school so I'm much smaller than him and had trouble doing techniques on him. As I was saying, he was ok before, but in the past half year I'd been training with other people who were of similar size so I can really focus on my technique (I understand it can be very good to train with larger people so my techniques are more effective, but I still class myself as a beginner so I think I should get a good handle on the techniques before worrying about their effectiveness on someone twice my size). Thing is I've had to pair up with him again cause were training for gradings and he's made it very well known that he want's to go for yellow, so we go through kata cause were doing the same things. Also I have little choice on whether I go with him for randori cause Sensei pretty much says 'you and you up, you two off'. You go with who you're given (which does have it's benefits, I know).

Ok, so to the heart of the matter, he was ok before but now he's become very aggresive. He put's techniques on way too hard (seriously he did a mae-otoshi and drove it through so hard it nearly tore the ligaments in my shoulder. I never got a chance to tell him it was too hard, and I tried to go into my ukemi slightly early so it wouldn't put the full force of it on my shoulder again, but he locked my arm so tightly in place I could only go when he let me). This could be seen as good technique, but only on the right people I think. Isn't part of this about restraint? I mean I'm only like 110 pounds so there's no need for this huge guy to throw me like I'm the next heavy weight champion. He likes to take this as he's a very good aikidoka who can throw anyone as hard as possible... maybe mistaking it for effectiveness. His techniques are effective on me, too effective, but I'm the smallest person in the class and he can't stay standing against many of the other aikidokas.
He's also very... inappropriate, for lack of a better word. He'll make a huge joke out of hikitategeiko (passive) with me; it's great to have a few laughs, sure, but this is more like he'll grab my wrist and just shake it around (which for a guy his size, fair enough it's good enough to get me off-balance) and then start laughing at me. Once in the middle of doing kata he actually tickled me for christ's sake... I had to use so much self-restraint to stop from slapping him one. He also acts a certain way with the small female population of the dojo; another girl at the dojo said she notice how his hands seem to 'have a mind of their own', and with me he just makes very inappropriate comments. One time I messed up hiki-taoshi and he said something like 'girls are meant to be better with their hips, but I guess you'll have to wait till you've had kids'.

Now, everytime I tell him to quit being such a jerk (ok not in those words) he just laughs it off and says he's doing no harm.. my shoulder would disagree. I'd go to sensei, I really would, but no one other than me and the other girl notice it as such a problem; a few middle ranked kyu grades have commented on him being rough, but they don't really complain cause they're similar sizes to him so they can take it. There are a lot of people in our dojo so it's not often noticed by the senior instructors.. I don't want to cause a huge hassle out of it, I'm sure he'll say I never once complained or some other moronic comment like that. I really just want some advice of how to get this issue out and open to the senior instructors. I can just see it as being something that most people wouldn't take seriously/wouldn't really get dealt with... It's not like people in the dojo don't take me seriously; they know I'm serious about it. It's just... a difficult issue to bring up for me; I'm not used to complaining.
Thanks for any help, aiki-G

Jorge Garcia
10-21-2005, 01:07 PM
If I were you, I would talk to the head instructor about it. If he's a smart man, he will talk to that fellow and tell him to lay off. He should do it without saying who said what. If he doesn't like it, then he should be shown the door. He should be given a chance though because some people are boors and don't know it.
Hope things work out for the best.
Sincerely,

Trish Greene
10-21-2005, 01:40 PM
I would have the Sensei use him exclusively as his Uke for a while too... hee!

I have heard from others about how good of an ego check that is for arrogance.....

CaseyD
10-21-2005, 02:43 PM
Sorry to hear about your situation. I'd say you need to confront him (in a calm, rational way). Tell him that you find his behavior very inappropriate, and that he needs to train with people in a cooperative manner. I think you will feel better about yourself if you try to handle it yourself first, and then speak to your sensei if you need to.

Qatana
10-21-2005, 04:04 PM
Talk to Your Sensei. Now.

Pauliina Lievonen
10-21-2005, 05:23 PM
Yes, go talk to your sensei. I know it might feel difficult, but all the teacher's I know, take safety in training VERY seriously. In the end, you'll be doing not only yourself, but also your sensei and even your bullying partner a favor.

kvaak
Pauliiina

aikidoc
10-21-2005, 05:24 PM
From you post it appears you are a young female and he is older. The rough treatment is inappropriate and the behavior may be tantamont to sexual harrassment. I would talk to the sensei and let him know you would prefer not to be paired with him. Not making waves and getting yourself injured would be unfortunate. If he is roughing you up he is likely roughing up others.

Janet Rosen
10-21-2005, 06:50 PM
This is another firm female voice saying Talk To Your Sensei Now.

Qatana
10-21-2005, 07:17 PM
And when you have straightened out the situation, its time to start training with Bigger People. so that if some other newbie comes into the dojo and tries to bully you, you will be able to chuck him across the room.
I'm the smallest person in my dojo and after three years I can handle a little resistance from the Big Guys, sometimes I can actually manage the technique!

Karen Wolek
10-21-2005, 07:22 PM
I'm with the others. Talk to Sensei the very next time you see him. If not sooner.

Simbo
10-21-2005, 09:00 PM
I would say after the next incident write a letter to him and send a copy to your Sensei too. That way if it happens he wouldn't be able to say you've never mentioned it before. Just my personal philosophy on it that if something's in writing its harder to deny.
Also in my opinion, trying to fix a bad situation isn't complaining. Just like tapping out when you're having a technique applied to you. Now if somebody's tapping long after their arm's been let out of the pin and you're begining to bow out, that's more akin to the negative complaining ;)

Lorien Lowe
10-23-2005, 01:01 AM
Be brave. Let us all know what happens, if it's not too uncomfortable.

bogglefreak20
10-23-2005, 05:09 AM
Considering you're serious about Aikido and all of your fellow students and your sensei know that plus given the fact you have already tried to settle the matter with the guy in question, you should IMO talk to your sensei. You have every right to raise an issue about someone who is not able or willing to realise the limits of his training partners. Being focused on one's partner and his/her limitations is essential - out of spirit of Aikido as much as out of the fact that ignoring your partner can cause injury.

Make it clear to your sensei that you have no problem taking ukemi from bigger people in general, it's just this particular person that seems to keen on getting things done his way regardless of the consequences. Also let your sensei know that you have already made an effort to resolve the matter one-on-one but to no avail.

As far as innapropriate comments and/or "hands having their own mind" go make sure you let this guy know clearly that he's stepping over the line and that you find his actions or words offensive. If not sooner, then at the next incident. If that doesn't work, naturally talk to your sensei.

merlynn
10-23-2005, 08:23 AM
hun i think im with every one TALK TO YOUR SENSEI NOW ! on the other hand you could nikkiyo him in to admitting what a jerk he is

Peter Goldsbury
10-23-2005, 08:24 AM
Hello,

I assume you are training under the eye of your sensei, so I am surprised that he/she has not seen what is happening. Is this because there are many people training, or because your sensei is not 'hands-on' in his/her teaching, so to speak?

As a teacher, I would find it unbelievable that one of my own students would have to resort to the Internet for advice on how to solve a problem that should be staring me in the face.

Best regards,

Andrew Espino Sr.
10-23-2005, 11:16 AM
If you deem your sensei un-approachable, go to the asst. instructor or sempai. It may take another session for him to see the incident, and step in. Or, inform the cheif instructor of the behavior. Sound like a slice of humble pie is in order for that boy! Also tell him/her/them of the inapropreiate hands and comments. The sensei MUST be told about this kind of conduct. It is dis-respectfull,as well as unacceptable. Thats how law suits happen; and schools get a bad rep. Although I am not an aikdoka; I am an instructor in our style of m.a. (Hapkido). That is an instructors nightmare! Hopefully the incident can be resolved in a mutually acceptable manner. Also, learn to deal with a larger opponent. You can choose your uke sometimes; but never your attacker. Good luck, and keep practicing! A. E.

justin
10-23-2005, 03:26 PM
i was thinking the same as peter strange this hasnt been spoted before, but agree with everyone else go to the top it will make your feel much better i am sure.

good luck happy training

giriasis
10-23-2005, 04:28 PM
He also acts a certain way with the small female population of the dojo; another girl at the dojo said she notice how his hands seem to 'have a mind of their own', and with me he just makes very inappropriate comments.

Say some thing, NOW. He is one of those Actual Very Real True Jerks (TM). That crosses the line. Trust your instincts on this one. You are getting a very real self-defense lesson on the mat, unfortunately.

ian
10-24-2005, 10:24 AM
to reiterate: Talk to your sensei now!

pezalinski
10-24-2005, 12:46 PM
Talk to your sensei -- and start looking for another place to train.

This kind of behavior, in class, is easily observable -- if the teacher in question bothers to pay attention. As an instructor, you may not see the actual indiscretions, but you'll notice a pattern of behavior in how he parters up with people and how the females tend to avoid him or are reluctant to partner with him again. If his behavior is either acceptable, or in your teachers mental "blind spot," then it's not a healthy place for you to train. Find a less sexually-harassing place to learn Aikido.

roosvelt
10-25-2005, 02:56 PM
Agree with others. Talk to your sensei but look for other jodo.

Your sensei must have known the aggressive aikidoka's behaviour unless he's blind.

I train in Aikikai style of Aikido. I know of a Toronto dojo of rough reputation. My sensei adviced us not to go to their free seminar with a Shihan unless you're real good at ukemi.

There many good dojo in Toronto. You don't have to feel being stuck with a unhappy one. There are also so many good femal instructors that you can go to like Yumi, Laura, and Fran.

Good luck.

Ron Tisdale
10-25-2005, 03:34 PM
I train in Aikikai style of Aikido. I know of a Toronto dojo of rough reputation. My sensei adviced us not to go to their free seminar with a Shihan unless you're real good at ukemi.

If it's the Yoshinkan dojo under Kimeda Sensei, they are tough, but as far as I know, they are a safe place to train. They teach very specific ukemi (like most Yoshinkan schools) so if you're not familiar with the ukemi, just let your partner know, and you should be fine. I've trained with many people from that school, and never had any problem what-so-ever.

Best,
Ron

Susan Marie
10-26-2005, 07:17 AM
I second what Ron has written. I trained at Kimeda Senseiís dojo for a year and a half when I lived in Toronto. Kimeda Senseiís students are very spirited in their training, but still conscious of each otherís safety. He has expelled students for injuring others, even black belts have been told to leave.

Aiki G, talk to your sensei or if youíre not comfortable with that talk to a senior instructor about these incidents. If itís not dealt with then move on to another dojo.

roosvelt
10-26-2005, 08:28 AM
If it's the Yoshinkan dojo under Kimeda Sensei, they are tough, but as far as I know, they are a safe place to train.
Ron

It's not Yoshinkan dojo under Kimeda Sensei. It's a Aikikai style school. I don't have first hand experience with that dojo.

But my sensei told us that when he's a young white belt, the sensei from that dojo was rough with him. This year, a middle aged ungraded white belt from my dojo got similar treatment from his students.

Most people assume a white belt don't know hard ukemi unless prove otherwise. They assume you can do breakfall, you just don't know it yet yourself.

I have no question to doubt my sensei's remark. The aforementioned white belt is a Major from army. He's a sandan in Karate. He's involed in all the recent wars. His last stint was 3 years in Afganistan. If he complaints they're rough, I don't doubt him either.

But that dojo has some instructors (technically) and has produced many good aikidoka (technically). I guess it maybe a different approach to Aikido.

I know nothing about Yoshinkan dojo personally. Mabye this Aikikai dojo is a penut in term of roughness ;)

Qatana
10-26-2005, 10:18 AM
[QUOTE=Roosvelt Freeman]

Most people assume a white belt don't know hard ukemi unless prove otherwise. They assume you can do breakfall, you just don't know it yet yourself.

I have had the opposite experience. I visited my Sensei's "home dojo" to train. I am a 4th kyu & wear a blue belt. I was partnered with a man in a white belt who not only did not pay attention to my request to please let me Roll out of the throw, instead he continued to throw me into higher & higher breakfalls. All The While, beratrng me for "not taking care of HIS needs as uke".
Fortunatly I have no qualmsabout refusing to train with this
person ever again. I would rather simply bow off the mat and go get a bottle of water.

roosvelt
10-26-2005, 11:33 AM
[QUOTE=Roosvelt Freeman]

I have had the opposite experience. I visited my Sensei's "home dojo" to train. I am a 4th kyu & wear a blue belt. I was partnered with a man in a white belt who not only did not pay attention to my request to please let me Roll out of the throw, instead he continued to throw me into higher & higher breakfalls. All The While, beratrng me for "not taking care of HIS needs as uke".
Fortunatly I have no qualmsabout refusing to train with this
person ever again. I would rather simply bow off the mat and go get a bottle of water.

I said "Most people assume a white belt don't know hard ukemi unless prove otherwise. They (those guys from aforementioned dojo) assume you can do breakfall, you just don't know it yet yourself."

I don't understand what's your point in your "counter" example.

Anyway, let's not hijack this thread into something unrelavent.

I hope the original poter sovled her problem to her satisfication. Keep us posted.

Special appreance
10-26-2005, 01:18 PM
Dear young lady,

I don't think you want to grow up and become an angry woman hating men- stereotyping all males as the enemy. This is one guy. It seems you have brought this up before, and you may be looking for an answers that fits you. Let go of all of this, generating negativity in your life hampers you and your training. A disiplined mind is what is required to hike up that mountain called Aikido.

Aikido, isn't instant soup. Too often we as beginners don't realize the mountain that is aikido. You really have to train with many different people of various size and builds. You have to train with different people of different attitudes and strengths. Growing up we are told from an early age to share and be fair. This lesson ( a good one ) can stay with a person as late as early adult. When we are laten teenagers to young adults, we are conflicted between what we are taught behave in the world ( strict morals and ethics ) and the real world ( dog eat dog ). We are idealistic and inexperienced with a moral and ethical note pinned to our sleeve when we are young. Upon realization that the world isn't so moral or ethical, or is the way we think it should be, we are often get angry when we find out the world isn't so nice. Kind of like finding out Santa Claus isn't real. An event such as that causes us lots of angst, and we cry foul! My advice is to push you young ego to the side, and look at each cloud for its sliver lining. You will live happier. It is hard to live against the world
What you have described there is the smell of fish and chips in that dojo-a red flag, in my personal experience. Others my disagree. But skipping grades isn't the issue, it is the playing to your young ego done by your sempai. Stroking you ego leads to you being arrogant and self-centered. The option would be like any thing else is to keep working hard at it, to teach humility. Difficulty leads to sharpness. Ease and comfort leads to complacency and lethargy. Do believe the hype or your own hype, it results in a hard fall. Being careful of what you hear and believe is the point.

Since we are telling stories, I have had woman try and belittle me on the mat, for simple being male. in fact, I went willingly to a quilting class/club with my wife. It took the woman 2 weeks to run-me off. The rude woman shunned me, the nice ones back-stabbed me and my wife in the back. They all made inappropriate sexist comments which where far more cutting and insulting then what you described to me and my wife. We both left the class, and not once did I feel the need to assault anyone. Who did it hurt the most? It was my wife.

Special appearance
10-26-2005, 01:56 PM
Since my wife was the one who lost out because of a group of woman who didn't want a "guy" in the class. She felt betrayed, we each paid for the class. I was there to participate and learn. I wanted to take another step in sharing in my wife's hobby.

My wife complained to the instructor about the treatment we got, well I got. The instructor being a female was very nice to our faces and very understanding yet nothing changed.

I am I bitter? Did I clash with any of those woman, no. I ignored their comments. I was there to learn, and for myself and my wife. It was my wife who was concerned about the treatment I got. As an Aikidoka and having my share of difficulties with people in and outside of the dojo, I was not effected. But because my wife loves me, she decided that it was too difficult for her. And because I love my wife, I respected that and we with drew from the class.

I have worked and dealt with all sorts of men and woman ranging in a board range of experiences, other then what I have described. I look at people individually, and with each bad experience I am grateful for it. As I have gotten older, I do less crying foul and unfairness, because I feel difficult situations with people only strengthens and sharpens me. But most of all it brings character and wisdom.

I realize not everyone is like me. Some people cry foul because they want control or power usually over others. An element that is very dominate in the world. For many this is why they take Aikido, or martial arts for that matter. But true control and power is over ourselves. We really don't have power or control over others, as these others are fighting constantly against that power and control. All great empires fall. All controlling and powerful leaders fall. Both are constantly challenged by those who are more hungry. A competition that never ends and it doesn't lead to peace or harmony of the world or of ourselves.

My advice then would be to push the ego aside, and see the red flag of your sempai stroking your ego. As good as intention coming form these men and/or woman it isn't good.

Realize that handling difficulty and diversity will be a part of adulthood. You will be happier and healthier if you find that silver lining in each cloud, and see each person individually.

Let go of the duality of the sexes. You will not eliminate conflict in your life with males, or even females. There are men who are not respectful, just as there are woman.

Control your violent nature, Aikido will help. Like you said you wanted to assault the guy you are having problems with. If you think it, you have do it. Find peace and harmony within yourself under any situation. As a result, you will find you will find better solutions and be clear of mind to find those solutions.

Most of all, start seriously adhering to the way of Osensei earnestly. Until then it won't matter what rank you are, or how good your skill is because you will not be doing Aikido. You will be missing the point of Aikido. Then you will be no better then him, or any other person who doesn't get it.

I hope my sincere and heart felt words will help you.

Speical apperance
10-26-2005, 02:21 PM
I know I am long winded, please tolerate me for one last post.

What you a guy do in this young woman's situation. Let us say it was a guy who wrote the post. What would we expect of him? How would we see him? Would there be so many posts telling him to go to the sensei? Is there a double standard.

Many of us men deal with the same egomanics, jerks, and bullies woman do. These guys treat both men and woman who they can and think they can dominate the same. They see men either weak and on the same level as woman, their goal is to dominate both. They are not that sophisticated to differenciate, and thus don't treat men differently then woman when it comes to domination. Society treats and dicates us men who have to suffer from such other men differently then woman. We also react differently. Never the less, we suffer the same, and maybe longer, and more intensly based on our actions from the offender and society. This is why I say if it was a young man posting he may not get the same heart-felt concern as this young lady.

The point here is don't we need to address this concern for both sexes, and not just for the females. I call upon many posters to address the situation without the consideration of the sexes. Point in case, is so many telling her to go to the Sensei which would not usually be the case for men, as there is a male stigma to doing so.

Lorien Lowe
10-26-2005, 02:50 PM
Hi Special-
Were you being groped on the mat by the women in question? Have you ever been groped on the mat by 'sexist women'? If not, try not to assume that your experience is the same as what women encounter.

-LK

Mark Gibbons
10-26-2005, 03:53 PM
Special,

If you train at a place with a stigma attached to reporting abuse, may you never experience it. Not sure where you got that the reactions to aiki-G were based on her gender, age, size. Seems like good advice generally. I hope she has already talked to her Sensei. I've talked with sempai about fellow students that were too rough, a couple of times. The sempai talked to Sensei about one of the cases. Didn't seem like a big deal then or now.

Speaking as a very large guy, if by any chance I was hurting someone as seriously as described by aiki-G, I'd sure like to know. I'd even like Sensei to know.

As for the condescending comments about growing up to being an angry woman. Those did not seem to apply. I'm not sure how you can refer to previous posts from someone posting anonymously with any degree of accuracy.

Mark

Aiki-G
10-26-2005, 04:36 PM
Hello again.
Thankyou for all your support; it's very considerate and has been a real help to get me to talk to the sensei. I'm not inclined to say where it is that I train (thus being anon.), thought I can say it's none of the places mentioned.
To Special Apperance; I hope you don't think I'm some angry man-hating person who would ultimately become like the sexist females you have encountered. I can assure you that my post and problem had nothing to do with him being male; rather that it was him being an aggresive/sexist male. I train mostly with the guys at our dojo and I absolutely do not have a problem with them. I would never see 'all males as the enemy' and I regret that my post gave you that impression; I never see the dojo as a competition grounds between the sexes. Furthermore, yes, I think it can be seen as an important factor that I am young and female because in all honesty us young females are probably much more vunerable and open esspecially to this kind of violation. I'm sorry for the bias that those women held against you, but to be frank my situation was quite different because this could have possibly resulted in serious injury. I think the advice given would be very helpful to both men and women; I don't think that there should be different rules for when a man should go to the sensei for help as opposed to a woman. It just isn't an issue, or at least it shouldn't be. For my final point, I'm sorry to hear you think I have a 'violent nature', but I think I did a pretty good job to keep that in check since I never caused him any physical harm.
I spoke with the sensei and the matter has been dealt with accordingly; the guy was talked to both before and after the lesson by sensei and was more frequently partnered up with the sempai's rather than the lower grades. To answer a few questions, the reason that the sensei wasn't aware wasn't because of bad teaching. He is a very good instructor, it's just he is the type to train with all the students (he's 2nd dan so he's training for his next grading); he can't really see everything (plus he puts a lot of faith in the sempais reporting bad behaviour, but since there's only been one of the 1st kyu's about it's still fairly easy to go unnoticed). Also, the guy in question doesn't say his comments in a loud voice, instead it was very discreet since he knew he shoudn't be saying it; since there are only 3 regular women at our dojo only we 3 experianced his comments (I doubt he would say anything like that to the male students...) I don't think the majority of the students knew he did this.
His being rough was noticed though, and apparantly he was reminded several times and warned once by the sempai. But now, he's been warned by the sensei and thats seriously got his act together. I'm still training with him every now and then but he is much more gentle and doesn't say anything (at least thats what its been like the past 2 lessons).

Anyway, thank you so much for all your support and advice. I suppose I should have gone to the sensei earlier (feel a bit silly for not going earlier actually...), but I'm glad to have gone. I don't think I'll be switching dojo's any time soon, but it's good to know I have that option open to me.
Aiki-G

MaryKaye
10-26-2005, 07:28 PM
I would certainly advise a male student who was being consistently hurt by a specific partner to go to his sensei right away, same as a woman. It's not acceptable in our dojo and sensei needs to hear about it. I don't see any gender double standard. We are particularly touchy about the intimidation of smaller, weaker, young or old students, but those can be males as well as females. I am currently training a lot with a male novice whom I could easily hurt--he is smaller than me and his ukemi are stiff--and if I hurt him, I'd want to hear about it. And if I ignored the fact I was hurting him, sensei should bloody well hear about it.

If there is a double standard in your dojo, stifling female complaints is stupid. Work on empowering male complaints instead. No one should be bullied.

Mary Kaye

Lorien Lowe
10-26-2005, 07:38 PM
Aiki-G-
sounds like you handled things perfectly well. Enjoy your future training, and thanks for letting the forum know how things have gone.

-LK

Special Appearance
10-27-2005, 02:04 PM
Hi Special-
Were you being groped on the mat by the women in question? Have you ever been groped on the mat by 'sexist women'? If not, try not to assume that your experience is the same as what women encounter.

-LK

Well I am happy that this problem that has seemingly been an issue for over a year that included groping, sexist remarks, and injury to say the least is finally found closure, after going to the Sensei. It is such a good thing that the board members pointed this young lady in the right direction after such a long period of time. I hope that do learns to instruct it's new student to go to the Sensei immediately so people don't have to feel more comfortable on the net asking advice from helpful strangers other then dojo mates. I am glad this is resolved.

To answer the question above, I feel such a question and how it is phrased diminishes my experiences with relation to the opposite sex. I personally feel very uncomfortable being asked such a question in a public arena, much less privately. We all have experiences, and some are very private and personal. The question which I could take strong offense too as it being very degrading and disrespectful. I feel the question is far too personal for me to answer, and it makes me uncomfortable that you ask it. Therefore, with respect, I must refrain from an answer.

I do agree that people should not be bullied. But it happens. I have been bullied many times by egoistical men and woman on the mat in various dojos. I have too been injured by carelessness and poor training, supervised by an incompetent Sensei. People are people and you get good times and you get bad times, and you move on. As I look at it, when given lemons make lemon aide. Learn from both the bad and good equally, and life may be a bit happier.

In respect.

special guest
10-27-2005, 03:24 PM
If there is a double standard in your dojo, stifling female complaints is stupid. Work on empowering male complaints instead. No one should be bullied.

Mary Kaye

I personally don't support that females should be stifled.

Let me bring your attention to the female poster's initial comments where she described her dojo mates bolster her up by saying she may double her rank among other things. I think some dojo members where catering to her specifically because for one, she is young, and two a female. This special attention isn't always awarded to the opposite sex. In society men have different expectations in their behavior. Mostly, to be tough, and take it. Yet, in reality very few of us really embrace toughness. We as men are defined as such by how tough or strong we are. Not every man is a brute, or jock, or tough guy. In fact, most men aren't this way. Therefore, we are expected and told to handle things differently by society, by other men and woman. Woman have expectations of men's behaviors too, and shun men if they are not up to their expectations. Very much the same as woman experience. Yet, woman have more freedoms and avenues to deal with bullies, then men.


To recall one episode, I was pounced on once by new student when I was a "green" shodan. The new student studied wrestling. I was getting up from a technique this new student and I was working on. As I was getting up he pounced on me then put a "sleeper" choke/hold to put me out. A very dangerous maneuver to be on the receiving end. I struggled to remove myself from it the best way I could, and failed. I passed out. He was told by the Sensei that was horse play and was not allow on the mat. The Sensei saw the whole thing. I then became ( to put it in the modern slang) "his bitch." His attitude was of dominance and humiliation to make himself feel better. He was a constant antagonist to me every time I walked on the mat. He would still pull crap on me, but ever so subtle. He was a trained wrestler, his sport was not my element. I had to prove myself to his illusionary need to feel better then the "pussy looking black belt that ain't nothing". It lasted for a long time, until he left the class. Point is I had more problems with bullies challenging after I got my shodan. I had to prove myself to every new jerk that walked on the mat. I will add that I started training because I looked wimpy and got beat up allot when I was a kid. Or should I say it more succinctly, I faced daily threats of battery and assault for years. I experienced brutal attacks of violence where I was pushed into toilets, attacked and assaulted while going to the bathroom, made to drink my own urine, pushed into lockers, and other type tortures that often suffered from sever injury. I had knives pulled on me, bats swinging at me and hitting my legs. All because I looked like a "fag" and I couldn't fight back. That was then, but now that is child's play to having guns pulled on you and/or forced ( beat )into gangs because you are perceived as being a weak male, that can be controlled and manipulated. That is before you are 18 years of age. As a men you have to face verbal and perceptual assaults, but bullies who are your boss or a new Aikidoka -male- who is going to test you, because he sees you as a challenge, simply because you are another male, a threat.

Now most men don't bring this stuff up, and there is a social reason for that, we are socialized not to. It is a "fight club" type of thing that society has for men. Many of us have no choice or say in the matter. Therefore, ladies, of the board, if a man is giving you problems he is also giving many more other men the same grief. You may be groped, where a man is demasculinized. It is a problem that has and will effect more men than woman. This could be the reason why many of us men are so understanding of these kinds of situations that cause you angst. We have simliar experiences too, it's just people don't see it as a problem. It is a group dynamic and social movement.

That is all I am saying. Ladies you are not alone.

Janet Rosen
10-27-2005, 04:53 PM
That is all I am saying. Ladies you are not alone.
Fine.
While we are trying to address the problem raised by one young woman in one dojo, you have managed to alternate between hectoring her and long posts about your own problems and issues. Perhaps you could jsut start a separate thread.

James Davis
10-27-2005, 05:22 PM
Fine.
While we are trying to address the problem raised by one young woman in one dojo, you have managed to alternate between hectoring her and long posts about your own problems and issues. Perhaps you could jsut start a separate thread.
He's just saying he's had bad things done to him too, Janet. I know they're not entirely the same, but let us not lose track of the fact that, male or female, we're all human.


I would NOT allow anybody to be groped on our mat. In my opinion, matters like that need to be corrected immediately. If, in my dojo, my sensei had somehow missed this kind of behavior, I would definitely bring it to his attention. If it happened during the class that I teach, he would be all-time uke (if allowed to stay at all).

Call me old fashioned, but I think it's the role of sempai (elder brother) to look out for kohai of either sex. Heck, even off the mat stop means freakin' stop right?! When you see this stuff happening, step up! :mad:

No matter how small or young you are, it's still your job to look out for other people. :straightf

<deep breath> Thanks for reading my post. Sorry about the attitude. :straightf

Janet Rosen
10-27-2005, 06:33 PM
James, I am in complete agreement with what you wrote. If you read my post that was NOT my beef with the poster in question. Please do not project into my words that which is not there. It is precisely projection that I am objecting to.

Charles Hill
10-27-2005, 08:14 PM
My opinion is that senior students should also be talking to the teacher when they see other senior students practicing too hard with newer people. I see this situation all the time in all the dojo I have ever trained at. I am tired of having beginners pairing up with me after having trained with a bruiser. They are almost always stiff and move in a way too timid way. People come to the dojo to learn to be stronger and have more confidence, in my opinion. All too often, they become weaker and even less self confident after a few months of practice with bullies. This leads to weak practice for everyone, the bruiser, the newbie, and me.

Charles

Qatana
10-27-2005, 08:27 PM
Roosevelt my point is that it is not only seniors who abuse juniors.

Steve Mullen
10-28-2005, 05:52 AM
Why do we train in a dojo? in my oppinion it's so we can learn in comfort and safety, if not then why don't we all sit around in a pub, have sensei talk us through a technique or two an then try and beat up on a few people. So to say to someone, who is suffering from the kind of things that were going on, that she should look for the silver lining and stop moaning about it is very counter-productive.

Aiki-G mentioned that she felt like she would have loved to (to use my own words) open up a can of whup-ass on the guy. To me this behaviour is a result of putting up with this treatment for so long in silence (personally i don't know how you refrained from matching him at his own game) and id like to congratulate you on not doing so, as this would only serve to justify his behaviour to you.

Had this been happening in our dojo then I (as a fairly senior student) would personally feel ashamed of myself and feel like i had failed my kohai, male or female. This kind of thing has less place in Aikido than the afore mentioned moaning and ego stroking. That brings me on to my next point, how can 'special apperance' justify his decision that, reffering to aiki-g doubling her grade, was ego massage from the sempai when the fact may be that she is that damn good and she will progress that damn quickly and the so called "ego massaging" is simply encouragement.

I honestly feel for Special Apperance, your experiences at the hands of these women was plain not right, but i feel that (as you warned to aiki-G in your own post) that this has become generalised to all women.

Finally id like to say a massive well done to Aiki-g for having to courage to step up and tell her sensei that this was happening, it seems like the other females in your class didn't have the confidence to do this, and i have met several people both male and female, aikidoka or non-aikidoka who have felt that they too couldn't tell someone of this type of behaviour.

(man that's more than i write in most of my university essays ;p)

Special Appearance
10-28-2005, 01:02 PM
I am glad that there are some people out there that see what I am saying. I am a bit concerned that others are so objective.

When I gave short statements they really where misread and understood. As a result, I don't do that anymore.

I will say that this young high school girl's issues and the way she felt is do to her youth and lack of experiences in these matters. For one, she wanted to strike back physically a.k.a assult ( which I prefer to use as it eliminates key strokes) the male she felt had treated her unfairly. Second, there is a danger of stroking her young and developing ego by her sempai. I assume it was good intention because she was female, and young. On the other hand, I don't think a male student in her shoes would get the same treatment. Because like I pointed men are looked at differently even when we too are bullied, we are human we hurt and it leaves deep scares that effect us for the rest of our lives, thus we suffer in silence too. All too often our situation is over-looked, we are blamed, our voices ignored by all, people (men and woman) turn away. No one benefits from bullies, thus, finally society at last, in the last odd number of years recognizes bulling as a problem and is acting on it in the schools, sady only after so many needless killing and generations of young boys and men's lives that where and are greatly effected.

Why is this not a concern Ms. Rosen? Why must you down play the violence and humiliation that is suffered by countless young males and boys. Why are we not allow to finally say, woman we suffer too, we know what it is like, here is what we go through. Why do you denign this of us? Don't we deserve a voice that can echo your concerns, or are we to just shut up and take it, and that we can't experience what you feel simply because we don't our breasts or buttoms gouped. No, we simply have our genitlia assulted by men and targeted by woman as an attack point. I have had my share of experiences of having testicals being abused then mocked, and thus, disrespected.

In regard to the young woman's treatment by the Sempai, boys or young men are not protected in the same way. If sexism is a part of the issue, i.e. she said, she was being groped, then the coddling and ego stroking of a young woman is equally as sexist, and offensive. She is not being treated respectfully. Though being young she may have accepted the ego stroking as parental or adult type praise, and acceptance into the group, thus, failing to realize that she is being treated in an offensive way ( probably unintentionally and with good intent, but still wrongfully so). She may come to recognize this social act as unjust latter in life, thus politely voiced a concern. But the flatterly, effected her and in youth she didn't identify the act properly. Therefore, another problem existed and was over-looked, a problem that should have been addressed as well to help also, This was my point.

If those Sempai paying special attention to this young lady and telling her she might do some rank jumping, then they should have be aware of the situation in which she felt wronged. I think this situation this young lady brought to our attention was going on for over a year. If so, someone should have stopped it immedately in the intitial stages, right?

It is unfortunate that this young lady came to this board for help about a problem that has existed for over a year, and progressed more urgent within that time. The only thing I feel for this young lady for is not telling an authority figure like the Sensei sooner. Because, it is a hard lesson to experience such terrible treatment and suffering for so long, without telling anyone, many of guys know this too. Yet our stories don't end so nice.

Maybe in time these two young people will develop a closer relationship and she will not have to experience it again, or have to bring it to a board for help.

In respect.

Sorry for the lack of grammar and spelling check, lunch time is up.

Aiki-G
10-28-2005, 03:22 PM
1. "I will say that this young high school girl's issues and the way she felt is do to her youth and lack of experiences in these matters. For one, she wanted to strike back physically a.k.a assult ( which I prefer to use as it eliminates key strokes) the male she felt had treated her unfairly."

2. "Second, there is a danger of stroking her young and developing ego by her sempai. I assume it was good intention because she was female, and young. On the other hand, I don't think a male student in her shoes would get the same treatment."

3. "Because like I pointed men are looked at differently even when we too are bullied, we are human we hurt and it leaves deep scares that effect us for the rest of our lives, thus we suffer in silence too. All too often our situation is over-looked, we are blamed, our voices ignored by all, people (men and woman) turn away. Why is this not a concern Ms. Rosen? Why must you down play the violence and humiliation that is suffered by countless young males and boys. Why are we not allow to finally say, woman we suffer too, we know what it is like, here is what we go through. Why do you denign this of us?"

4. "In regard to the young woman's treatment by the Sempai, boys or young men are not protected in the same way. If sexism is a part of the issue, i.e. she said, she was being groped, then the coddling and ego stroking of a young woman is equally as sexist, and offensive. She is not being treated respectfully. Though being young she may have accepted the ego stroking as parental or adult type praise, and acceptance into the group, thus, failing to realize that she is being treated in an offensive way."

5. "It is unfortunate that this young lady came to this board for help about a problem that has existed for over a year, and progressed more urgent within that time. The only thing I feel for this young lady for is not telling an authority figure like the Sensei sooner."

6. "Maybe in time these two young people will develop a closer relationship and she will not have to experience it again, or have to bring it to a board for help."


Hi again, I just wanted to clear up a few more things, and also address the points made by Special Apperance.

1. I agree that I am in a more vunerable position in matters such as these because of my youth, or inexperience as you call it. However, I don't think it's fair to be picking out the fact that I got frustrated and from time to time did feel like I wanted to lash out as an example of my being inexperienced. Is it immature to have these feelings and yet to hold back? I wouldn't have thought so. If you're going to tell me that everyone over the age of say 30 doesn't feel like that from time to time then sorry. I don't accept it.

2. I should have given more information here; there hasn't been a grading in my dojo for a long time and most of us haven't had the oppertunity to go to another club grading so there are about 4 of us who've never graded at all. Three of us four (including myself) have been told it's a possibilty that we might double grade. The other two are guys, one a similar age to me.

3. I think the point made by the other woman on the board was that the issue you brought up was quite different from what I had posted so it may have deserved it's own thread, but I think a reason it was said quite shortly is that your posts seemed very defensive and had a few generalisations themselves. Also, you don't know what it's like for women; like how women don't know what it's like for men... at least not completely (guys getting bullied to me seems like more of an ego thing which I agree is horrible). No-ones saying that guys don't have a lot to deal with in terms of bullying too; the thread wasn't saying this only happens to women.

4. Excuse me, but I don't think you have the right to make that judgement. I find your remarks condescending and insulting; I do have the respect of my sempai's, just like every single person in my dojo does. Since I was writing about my issues, I was hardly going to write 'but hey, there are 2 other guys who are also being told they could double grade!'. There is no 'ego-stroking'; it isn't layered on with applause and bowing, it's just a statement given to me by the sempai after demonstrating my technique. Just the same as it would be for anyone in our dojo. Sorry if your's doesn't have the same supportive atmosphere.

5. It hasn't existed over a year. I stated in my post that the guy was ok before and that it had only been in the past few months that things had gotten bad. I wouldn have brought it up sooner, but I only train once or twice a week.

6. Final point, the other guy wasn't a 'young person', at least not around my age; he's like... in his late 30's. I also don't see a problem with bringing it to a board; it's good to get an objective opinion.


I understand that you feel strongly about this, but you should know your posts are actually very condescending to me, and carry a bit of generalisation to those who've been very supportive in posting advice.

Ron Tisdale
10-28-2005, 03:34 PM
Aiki-G, I agree, the condescending nature of the post is a bit much. Suffice it to say you shouldn't be too insulted by an annonymous poster. Without a name, bits in the bit-stream...that's all it is. I think you've shown a great deal of maturity in handling not only your dojo situation, but the responses here as well. And yes, people over thirty sometimes want to smack someone...hopefully we just know better than to do it, just like you.

Best,
Ron

member DW
10-28-2005, 04:33 PM
I can't understand what is happening here. Why are people getting worked up and attacking each other? The title of the thread is "aggresive and arrogant aikidoka." No kidding. That is sure is plain as day. When do we scarfice the body to the gods?

I give Aiki-G props and Special A. props too. I don't think Special A. is attacking Aiki-G. I think there is a genuine concern there. Let's step back, take a deep breath, before we say things we may regret. I am sure this is all a misunderstanding.

I am very disappointed at the other members who are not being nice. There is no need for such rudeness, and uncivil conversation void of tolernace and understanding. Everyone has a right to their opinion, right? Or am I missing something? Shouldn't people respect the right or another's opinion if in disagreement? Should that disagreement be done respectfully? Do we need the cutting tongues, and gnashing teeth in place of respectful discourse. I can't muster any respect for those who can't be tolerate and give benefit of the doubt. Come on lets lighten up out there. There is no need for this. I am sure everyone would see eye to eye if we where face to face. Really, I don't see a cause for attacking someone, anyone, so out right as I have read here. Aiki-G had a problem many including Special A gave her advice. All the advice was respectful IMO. Opps....did I go too far, in saying the unpopular thing for some?

Let's be tolerant, and understanding of each other. Internet bullying is really annoying to read. There is no need to advocate smacking someone if you don't agree with them. That is uncalled for, and should not be tolerated. Aikido, like all Japanese martial arts, is about spiritual lessons. Budo is about character building. If we can't exercise discipline or display proper character then what is the value of our opinions.

From some of the posts I have read Aiki-G and Special A have something in common now. I hope group pressure or individual pressure from forum bullying doesn't intimidate others from posting their opinions. The goal is to help others with board information, I would think. I don't see how one circumstance, or a signal solution can help all those in similar positions as Aiki-G.

I just couldn't keep it inside anymore! My mistake.

Signed Anonymous- to escape from those are rude and who will not get it, because I said the unpopular thing for some. It's a dangerous place out there.

James Davis
10-28-2005, 04:58 PM
I know that some of us lend different amounts of weight to the words of others, depending on whether they truly understand the problems of others, or have been in comparable situations. While I personally can't entirely relate to the problem of the original poster, I do in fact CARE. Even if some of the things said here were not that helpfull, I think that everyone who posted here cares about her problem, at least to some extent. I'm glad that she had people to talk to about this, and I'm glad that she spoke to her sensei and rectifide the situation. :)

If I may, I'd like to lighten things up with a (slightly) related story.

One of my kohai was a "petite flower" when I first met her. She wouldn't hurt a fly, and was submissive when dealing with conflict. While it's not purely aiki, we've conditioned her to slap the dogcrap out of somebody who's out of line with her. After a special "not necessarily aikido" self defense class, I witnessed her use this technique effectively on a classmate who wasn't doing anything so awful as groping, just resisting her aiki techniques with his strength. He was kind of a smart-ass and did this fairly often. She glared at him :mad: , really mad at him, and he laughed at her. That, apparently, was the last straw for her. She pimp slapped and ikyoed him so fast he was face down on the floor before he knew what happened :eek: . He was laughing about it even before the finger marks on his face had faded, because he knew he deserved it. :p She had come to expect this behavior from him, and he wasn't expecting her reaction at all! :D :D

She's going to college out of town now, but we know that she'll take crap from nobody, not even us, the "brothers she never wanted" from the dojo. :D

P. S. The male student and I were talking after class, and the look on his face was hilarious when I said, "Yeah, we told her to do that." :eek:

Pedant42
10-28-2005, 06:43 PM
What an astonishing coincidence!
The last three fields Special A's and m DW's IP addresses are exactly the same.
The odds of that are a little less than 0.000006%.
That's amazing!

Special Appearance
10-29-2005, 02:28 PM
"What an astonishing coincidence!
The last three fields Special A's and m DW's IP addresses are exactly the same.
The odds of that are a little less than 0.000006%.
That's amazing!"
____________________________________________________
Boy, am I itching to really reply in sarcasm equalling both Groucho Marx, and Walt Whitman. Instead I will resist and tone it down.

It is astonishing isn't, that two people can share a computer, which results in the same IP address! Wow! What marvel technology really is. It's the ninth wonder of the world. Who knew Watson would figure it out before Holmes! Thank God for artificial intelligence making our lives that much more easier. We truely are..... not alone, Scully.

Avery Jenkins
10-29-2005, 04:00 PM
special W, it ain't aikido you need, it's therapy. . .

But as a troll, you aren't half bad.

Avery

bogglefreak20
10-29-2005, 04:06 PM
My dears, let us not ourselves become "aggresive and arrogant aikidoka". ;)

Lorien Lowe
10-29-2005, 05:31 PM
Why must you down play the violence and humiliation that is suffered by countless young males and boys. Why are we not allow to finally say, woman we suffer too, we know what it is like, here is what we go through. Why do you denign this of us?

If you want to talk about this - and it's a valid topic - start your own thread rather than hijaking the thread of someone else who was asking for advice on a specific problem. I think you'll find the responses much more receptive.

-LK

Special Appearance
10-31-2005, 02:30 PM
I think the original poster telling her story, though specific to her, does voice a problem that is just not an isolated one. This problem is recognized and discussed by others as a broader problem, here in this thread and in related threads. It is bullying, I don't think to discuss the topic we have to be gender, age specific, or person specific, do we?.

Bullying, a.k.a. aggressive and arrogant behavior happens in many dojos just not the one in Canada. It doesn't happen to just woman and it isn't done just by newbie students to other newbie students.

I am glad to see others have posted their own related stories relating to the situation of the original poster. The problem of bullying isn't a cookie cutter issue. Therefore, there are probably other people out there who are are in a very similar situation and need advice beyond the solution posted by the original poster.

Arrogance and aggressiveness is, in my IMO, is very much a standard of martial arts. Aikido being a martial art in part does attract those who have arrogant and aggressive personalities. Thankfully, Aikido practice over time, leads people to a more harmonious and peaceful path. Of course, there is no guarantee as people are people, where some get it and some don't.

I would think the intelligent discussion would become broader and more encompassing. Especially, when there is a sufficient amount (and repetitive) recommendations to solve the individual problem. I would think at that point the discussion would move on to a boarder scope. I hope the title of this thread really doesn't reflect the average Aikidoka.

I might be erring that I assume that Aikidoka are at top of the intellectual martial artists chain. I find more professionals, and more educated people in Aikido overall than the other arts I have come across, and other martial art style boards I have read. I hope, I have not assumed incorrectly. Regardless of the similar low brow patterns of cheapening the discussion of late that mirror other lesser boards, I can say many Aikidoka have demonstrated a higher standard. I hope we can continue the discussion at a higher standard, and not deteriorate this thread any further, for at least of those looking for answers, and needing to talk.

Speical Appearance
10-31-2005, 02:42 PM
With that said, let me apologize for my friend sticking up for me, in his way. Let apologize for any thing I said that was too brief and may have caused any misunderstandings initially. I do care about the young lady, who now has the problem resolved, and I will bet and hope in time the young woman and young man will become friends, now that the misunderstanding is resolved.

Steve Mullen
11-01-2005, 04:42 AM
:p i love happy endings :p

Ed Shockley
11-19-2005, 08:52 AM
Many clear voices have said talk to your Sensei or a Sempi. Often these problems can be solved by an authority figure stepping in. However, there is an etiquette in my dojos and many others that allows one to bow out of practice with someone perceived as dangerous and join another team to practice or sit seiza facing the shomen meditating until the next technique provides a more amenable partner. This also alerts the instructor that there is an interpersonal problem on the mat without disrupting the class. This, I was told, is to be sure that someone wasn't injured before they had an opportunity to talk to the instructor. It sounds like you have tried to ask the gentleman to train slower or softer with you and he refuses. I realize that your situation is exacerbated by the Sensei calling you up as a pair on occasion but ultimately you must make choices that keep you safe. The alternate is too unthinkable. Good luck