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Old 02-22-2006, 07:03 PM   #3
Mark Freeman
Dojo: Dartington
Location: Devon
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,220
United Kingdom
Re: Physical Handicaps & Aikido

Just because we are handicapped in some way and cant pull off excellent technique, we dont love Aikido any less than others.
Absolutely, I couln't agree more. I believe aikido is for everyone, as long as you can get on the mat you deserve to learn.
I'm sure some teachers are more able / willing to work with different physical types. My own experience was learning with a teacher who himself had a physical problem. from a very young age he had a muscle wasting disease ( polio I think) that left him with very little muscle on either leg, also some early surgery had fused some of his ankle bones which left his feet a bit crooked. He has very little lower body strength, but this in no way held back his progress in aikido, in fact in some ways I'm sure it has led him to the very powerfull ki based style that he now has, ( I used to be his uke and can vouch for that! ). He swears that it is only the co-ordination that he has learned from the practice of aikido that keeps him out of a wheelchair, ( some in the medical proffession dont think he should be able to walk with the condition he has )
So keep at it Dave you have as much right as anyone to train, If your current teacher is unsympathetic, maybe there is someone not to far away that would be? Sorry I can't suggest any books or places to go. I see Lynn has , that must be worth a follow up.
At the end of the day, there are no prizes for having 'perfect technique' whatever that is, surely what matters is how what we do in aikido affects as as people. I would rather be around a genuinely good person with bad technique, than with an a##hole with perfect technique.


Success is having what you want. Happiness is wanting what you have.
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