Mark Freeman wrote:
I'm really not a fan of insruction within this medium as I think it is an increadibly poor way to convey something that has to be physically understood, however, for me one of the breakthoughs in my aikido movement came when I realised that my arms were used to put my hands in a certain place in space, and very little else!
Well, you realize, of course, that I was only making a general comment about something yours had reminded me of... no comment about you personally.
Often I encounter people who practice doing certain things "with their center", more or less. With a strange crowd, at workshops, I'll usually start by asking everyone to put their 2 hands on my chest and push me away. I can tell as they do it who has really trained in the ability to use their middle and the ground as opposed to who uses normal strength as their standard operating mode.
Later in the workshop I'll suddenly have everyone do the same thing and voila' 90% percent of them are able to mend their ways and push with the middle and ground. But almost invariably, as they begin to do the simple things and they 'get them', a few guys will start assuring me that they do stuff like this in their class all the time or their teacher talks about it all the time, etc..... forgetting that I checked everyone out at the start of the workshop and that if they'd had any skills beyond the rudiments I'd have noted it and congratulated them.
I never say anything, but it's those people who think they're already "been there, done that" who are slitting their own throat. For the rest of us, it tends to be a "wow, there's a myriad of things we can do with these skills" start to an exciting and fun new world. I just hate to see people miss a fun trip for the wrong reasons or I wouldn't have said anything.
All the Best