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Old 09-07-2009, 01:45 PM   #6
aikishihan
Dojo: aikido academy/alhambra,california
Location: Los Angeles, California
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 369
United_States
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Re: Non-Harmful Techniques

In my dojo, and at training venues where I am privileged to appear in, I introduce and maintain a mantra of NH, or "No Harm" This is the first part of an equation of NH/SH. which is intended to focus attention on an important aspect of safe training during class.

No Harm may be achieved when all participants of training, monitored by the instructors and seniors, commit to preserving an atmosphere of safe, stimulating and productive training.

The UKE agrees to allow the NAGE every opportunity to execute the movement or technique without undue obstruction or interference, while learning and perfecting the move.

The NAGE agrees to allow the UKE, every opportunity to follow the movements, and to take appropriate ukemi to safeguard themselves and not be harmed by the application of the technique.

And of course, there is SH. Shit Happens whenever an individual is unfamiliar with the movements being shown, is too absorbed with executing the movement without proper regard for his partner, or takes for granted that the UKE "should be able to" handle the rigors of the technique and of the training itself.

SH may be greatly minimized by instructors and senior members who are constantly on the watch for questionable pairings of partners, unsure or hasty execution of movements, or the subtle (or not so subtle) signs of distress being shown by one of the training partners during the movement itself.

A major point of self preservation to make is that each person must be empowered to be responsible for monitoring his or her own safety. At any time, if the lesson appears too complicated, the pace too fast, or the vibes from the other partner appear to be unsettling or possibly dangerous, that partner must retain, and exercise the right to sit that portion of practice out for the duration.

No instructor, or well meaning training partner can or should be allowed to over ride this most important option of self defense by the student. This right must be respected at all times, monitored by all members during training, and demonstrated, through example, by the justly concerned instructors at hand.

When commitment to "No Harm" becomes a dojo policy, and is consistently reinforced by the instructors and senior students, the incidence of injury or unintended abuse should lessen significantly over time.

This will then allow, over time, for more appropriate as well as highly intensive training to develop at all levels, raising the proficiency levels as high as the dojo members choose to, knowing that safety, respect and trust remain the foundation for the training benefit for all concerned.

Please remember, it is not the techniques that are harmful, but the manner, and intent, in which they are applied.

In Oneness,

Last edited by aikishihan : 09-07-2009 at 01:48 PM.
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