View Full Version : Poll: Have you ever questioned why you are training in aikido?

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01-08-2006, 12:30 AM
AikiWeb Poll for the week of January 8, 2006:

Have you ever questioned why you are training in aikido?

I don't do aikido

Here are the current results (http://www.aikiweb.com/polls/results.html?poll_id=306).

01-08-2006, 09:42 AM
Yes. The answer is always the same. I train in Aikido because I don't golf. I don't golf because I never conquered my fear of windmills and clown faces.

Is the question, have I ever questioned why or why do I train? I evolved into it from the harder bashing arts. Seemed like a natural evolution.

Or is this a Zen koan? Then simply bow and train on.

Mark Uttech
01-08-2006, 03:04 PM
I am amazed at how many in the poll answered "yes"... I have never questioned why I do aikido, why I train in it. I took to it like a duck to water from the get go. There was no question, never a doubt. I have always believed that a lot of folks felt that way. Or maybe I am not understanding this poll, or I am looking at the question wrong? Hmmmmmmmmmmm... In gassho

Janet Rosen
01-08-2006, 05:52 PM
I question pretty much everything under the sun, including whatever I do--not in the sense of "second guessing;" rather in the sense of scrutinizing motives, desires, etc in the name of living consciously.

Often in the process of living I simply make a gut decision based on intuition or on what "feels right" but it is nice to be able to go back, with hindsight, and review the process and outcome.

Also, esp. with long term stuff like aikido or relationships, the "reasons" change over time, and without examination (which may be as much checking in re feelings as it is rational thought) once can find oneself operating by rote, quite detrimentally.

Lorien Lowe
01-08-2006, 06:02 PM
Hi Mark -
I also took to aikido hook, line, and sinker, from day one - but I still don't know why. I love it, but why I do aikido rather than, say, gymnastics or karate I don't know.

01-08-2006, 07:06 PM
Just like Lorien...when I first heard "that there was a martial art called aikido that...." I was hooked. I answered an insecurity but became much much more. But it is only a part of what it reflects...

01-08-2006, 11:46 PM
I regularly question everything.

01-09-2006, 07:56 AM
I question. Too easy to become in love with 'the road' and not really learning.

My wife, the school teacher, was trained to 'reflect' - evaluate how she is doing in her process of becoming an educator. Seems her teachers felt it was part of the learning process.

Oh, and I have issues with authority, so I question in the surly snotty juvenile fashion too - hard to tell them apart sometimes!



01-09-2006, 10:16 AM
Definitely I question why I train in aikido. Moreso when I reach a difficult patch in training, or when I feel like I'm not getting anywhere. :D

But I also question where I want my training to take me. And what goals I'm trying to reach in training. Now that I'm getting closer to black belt, I'm questioning what it will mean to have an explicit teaching status in aikido.

I agree with Janet in that questioning where I am and what I'm doing keeps me from loosing my enthusiasm, keeps my training going forward instead of just being rote body movement.

01-09-2006, 02:46 PM
I always question even the obvious things.

James Smithe
01-10-2006, 06:10 AM
I always wonder "what is the point of my sacrifice?"

Robert Jackson
01-10-2006, 08:53 AM
No.. I train because I enjoy it... what else is there?

Rolf Granlund
01-11-2006, 02:36 AM
I ask myself why I train from time to time, especially when I've hit a plateau. The answer usually comes back that there is something that I am accomplishing by training, whether I feel like I am making progress or not. I don't think that the "something" has a definite end.

And I agree with Janet Rosen that questioning from time to time helps things from becoming mere activities in repetition.

01-11-2006, 08:50 AM
It looks like this question is being approached in a couple of different ways:

In regards to my Aikido training, no, I have never had any doubt at all about whether or not I should be training.

But yes, as I am an introspective person, I certainly have questioned the reasons why I do it (as well as the reasons behind why I do anything, for that matter). Those reasons have generally been the same since the beginning of my training, though my feelings about them have only grown stronger over time. They include a desire to push my limits --- not only towards self-mastery but towards as much of a mastery of the art as I may be capable of. In other words, I wish to take my training as far as it can possibly go. I love the art itself very much: the feeling of the movements, the philosophy behind them and as the opportunity that training gives me to push myself both mentally and physically.

01-12-2006, 09:20 AM
I feel that developing the non-physical aspects of Aikido requires you to develop an understanding of yourself. You go to class to understand the techniques, but you practice always to understand your mind, body, and spirit. It's all part of the spiritual and philosophical teachings of O' Sensei.

For that reasons of course I question why I train in Aikido. I agree with the comments I've read about it being "like a duck to water" and just plain enjoyable. But to further my Aikido studies I feel it is necessary to understand the deeper meanings behind why I study. Why is it so natural and why is it so fun? Answering these questions will help me understand my mind and spirit. Once they are understood, they can be used as tools to enhance the techniques.

Russell Robinson
01-12-2006, 05:07 PM
I generally only question why I train Aikido when my wife gives me a hard time for going and training...

01-12-2006, 05:17 PM
Yes. I've come to the conclusion it's good for my mental health and left it at that.

Leon Aman
01-13-2006, 01:56 AM
I dont know if my understanding to the question is the same as the intended meaning as it is wants to convey or there is some subjectivity behind it.

But No, I chose to train aikido to experience Aikido.

01-20-2006, 10:28 PM
I have never really questioned why I train, but I will admit to having to remind myself why from time to time. I don't think it's the same as questioning, because there is no doubt in my mind of the benefits.