Style and Affiliation
I'm looking into Aikido, and have a few dojo near me to choose from. The thing is that they all belong to different affiliations, or are different styles. For example, one is Aikido Association of America, and another is Aikikai and so on. My question is, do these differences really matter? Also, could an association be considered a style? Meaning, are pretty much all AAA dojo alike, or can there be style differences from dojo to dojo; does the association itself practice a certain style, or have one all its own? I hope that made sense.
The question come up a lot around here. The best advice is to go along to a class or two at each dojo and see which class you like the most.
The Dojo that I train at has three Aikido styles and the one I pratice I really like because it is a good effective form of Aikido, and also (very important) the class is laid back and all the ppl are really friendly and good fun to train with.
Generally speaking, dojos within the same organization will train in the same style of Aikido. For example, dojos within the Aikido Association of America organization tend to focus on the Aikikai style of Aikido.
My advice is to visit the dojos in your area and see wich one you like best. Don't just watch, participate. You will learn more about how the techniques are performed if you participate.
I agree with all of the above.
You need to just check out and see what style you like better. Some people like a more flexible, flowing style, others like the short movements, others like a rougher style...
It is important not just to look but participate in a class or two (at least). Seeing is very different than feeling in Aikido. If you're still not sure, go back to places you visited, since there is so much to learn and classes can be affected by the sensei's mood (so once it's a more relaxed flowing lesson and one is a fast moving hard training lesson).
There is just about everything to fit ones likes.
Hope you enjoy it and welcome to the Aikido family! :)
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