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Old 09-03-2001, 12:10 AM   #20
Irony
Dojo: Aikido Center of Atlanta
Location: Atlanta, GA
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 47
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Just look at the question: Why haven't any Aikidoka competed in NHB events?

So obviously none have. Why? I doubt the Gracies or whoever would deny any artist the right to compete; they're all to eager to exhibit their style's "dominance." So we must assume that none have competed because A) none wanted to, or B) they did not pass whatever qualifying rounds or whatnot that NHB competitions must require. I'll assume "A", because of course Aikido rules too much for "B"...

So no high-ranking aikidoka wish to participate in such an event. I think Aikido is a unique art in one way because by the time your Aikido becomes "perfect" you're probably as old as O'Sensei grew to be, and too wise to bother with such foolishness. Yes, a successful demonstration of Aikido may bolster the art's image in the eyes of people who watch NHB, but all you'll end up getting a lot of mixed martial art styles guys who come in to the dojo wanting to fight and maybe learn "that cool flip thing that guy did."

It seemed to me that O'Sensei, from what I read, accepted those challenges less out of egotistical "demonstration" than refinement of this new art he'd created. I could be wrong on that; I haven't read too terribly much about him. Though I do remember that bullet-dodging incident...

Still at the end, Aikido is a very personal art. If it behooves your Aikido to participate in such an event, I wish you good luck. But you'd better make very, very sure your Aikido is up to par. It may be good to take into consideration that while surely many Aikidoka have had or do have the opportunity to do these things, very few, or even none have.

Chris Pasley
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