Re: Cycles in training
One thing to maybe look into is the structure of your training itself. Do you have specific measurable and achievable goals? Do you have a road map of the various necessary and fundamental components of performance, how to improve on them, and how to assemble them all together in the end to form the goal?
Techniques are very complicated things, and depend on so many factors, that in retrospect, it's a wonder we're expected to improve by just doing them, when there are so many things underlying them that we don't really separate and ensure we're doing adequately, and even beyond adequately, exceptionally.
I was at the same point as you very recently. Just going along and waiting for inspiration to come to me or my seniors to provide an answer did not help - neither happened. The only thing that has helped me to break out of it, is to really go back and break out all those factors that I glossed over in my training - never even learned to pay attention to - and specifically try to measure them and improve on them. And once I had ways of measuring them, in absolute terms, I realized - my god, I totally suck at these things, no wonder I can't do any techniques well anymore - I never could really do them intentionally to begin with - I was just showing up and praying for accidental miracles! There were, in fact, objective markers of performance, not just subjective and personal-style specific issues, at which I was really bad, I just never knew how I could look at them or focus on them before.
The structure of aikido does not make this very easy - as a lot of tools are thrown at you, and you have to decide the significance of them in retrospect, without much nuts and bolts instruction or even a lot of conflicting information that makes it hard to sort out how to really train anything at all. I had to look at other things outside of aikido - where it seemed people knew what they were doing and were getting results - and even that required sorting through a lot of junk to find the gems in it, but at least I knew what I wasn't looking for during that time. Once I used that to reveal the true extent of my awfulness, and in what specific things, the way forward became much clearer - as I had to lock onto those specific things and improve them.
Last edited by Lee Salzman : 06-10-2009 at 12:59 PM.