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Guillaume Erard 11-26-2012 06:01 PM

Reflecting on the teaching of Aikido
Aikido is more of an art than a sport: it solicits the mind more than the body. Those who want to teach this art have two ways at their disposal to do so: through words and through demonstration. But Aikido originally comes from Japan, and thus, its teaching here in the West is hindered by the language barrier. However, this issue, although significant, is not insurmountable. Indeed, words are actually not the best tools to use in this situation. Why is that? Because the "Master" has to convey his way of thinking to his "disciple." This transmission requires two intermediate between master and disciple: words and reason. If we examine closely the mechanism of transmission of thought through speech, we find that it requires a double operation. As a first step, it is for the teacher to choose the words that he considers most suitable to suggest the ideas that he wants to convey, and as a second step, he must organize these words into sentences so that their meaning can be deciphered by the disciple's reasoning.

(Original blog post may be found here.)

sakumeikan 11-27-2012 04:46 AM

Re: Reflecting on the teaching of Aikido
Dear Readers,
Aikido transmission I feel his basically a communication 'heart to heart 'between the teacher and the student, much like an old type of apprenticeship where an apprentice was teamed up with a tradesman and acquired skills by working alongside the tradesman.This was the traditional methods used in my early working career.Nowadays its all about NVQs, college study etc.A totally different environment.
When I first met my own teacher he rarely gave explanations.We simply practiced.Sometimes i wondered what Aikido /my teacher was trying to convey.I did however understand the message later.
Nowadays the class structure has changed , less time spent doing more time spent talking.A bit like me writing on this forum, I guess.Rather than exercise my index finger on the keyboard, maybe belting out a thousand suburi would be better?Cheer, Joe.

Guillaume Erard 12-06-2012 01:43 AM

Re: Reflecting on the teaching of Aikido
Thanks Joe for sharing your point of view. I am always amazed by the average level of background noise in dojos when I return to France. Luckily in Japan, we are still doing 99% practice and 1% talking and I hope it stays like this!

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