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Old 10-20-2006, 04:39 PM   #10
L. Camejo
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Dojo: Ontario Martial Arts
Location: Mississauga, Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,423
Re: Takemusu Aiki in Systematic Teaching?

Erick Mead wrote:
Aikido has a certain shape, in my mind, The question is how best to sketch it for the student. Some of that depends on the student, some on the teacher, and some on the art itself.
Apologies. I thought the question was:
I have wondered how much this systemization affects the development of, or the concept of, takemusu aiki -- the more improvisational aspect of aiki technique.

How is this aspect of aikido dealt with in more systematic approaches to teaching?
The prescribed forms of basic tai sabaki movement (such as tai no henko and others) were done in precisely the same order and manner in each Yoshinkan class that I attended. From what I have read, in addition, here and elsewhere, I gather the same degree of relative prescription in training methodology runs throughout the program. If my general perception in this regard is inaccurate, as opposed to merely less well-informed than your own, please correct me.
I think it's not a matter of how much information but of perception of that info. As you said, this is not about Yoshinkan but an approach to training. From wht I have seen the approach may be regimented in areas but this in no way precludes the development of spontaneous manifestation of technique, since the non-linear methods are also included even if not readily evident.

Neither, I nor any one else can just " make it up as we go along." We have to teach proper movement and technique.
This may apply to Aikido technique and philosophy itself, but maybe the teaching method, like the spontaneous application of Aiki itself, may need to adapt based on the situation presented. From my own teaching experience I've found that the best method of teaching, which uses communication as a medium to get its message across, is to present something in a manner that is understandable or at least identifiable to the other person or people involved in the exchange. The message (Aikido) should stay the same as what was given but the method of communicating its nature (teaching) should adapt to the environment imho. At least this may be one way to get the idea across without compromising the idea itself. I've found that my knowledge of other arts have been pivotal in being able to explain Aiki concepts to folks who have come from other martial backgrounds. This approach did not change what I taught but changed how it was packaged for the other to understand.

We must be true to the shape of the art handed to us. We must teach the art as it is, but the art as it is --- is takemusu, a spontaneous culmination of the moment of contact.
Exactly. But the thing is you cannot "teach" takemusu, it is an experiential manifestation in a moment of time. What you can teach however are the tools that can help you experience takemusu and manifest it in one's own expression of Aiki.


--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
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