Re: Crosstraining Aikidoka: A Survey
1. 12 Years give or take.
2. Silat and Arnis.
3. 2 and less than 1.
4. Formal practice. Silat:arnis:aikido 1:1:4
5. Learning something new opened my eyes.
Silat was an opportunity for me given the teacher's reluctance to teach for years. I was his first student in the last 2 decades. At that point, I had deficient ability in Aikido to defend myself against a solid silat exponent. Practice in it showed me aspects of Aikido I never before realised. Its kind of like, you inherited something and overlook its meaning and function. Takes a fresh perspective to give you a better understanding.
Arnis I just did to improve weapon knowledge against knives and fast strikers. We rarely do this in Aikido classes where one usually over commits on his strikes. In arnis, with multiple rapid strikes and weaves, it will help with reflex, pattern analysis and confidence. Kuzushi, maai and etc is already there in Aikido and helps tremendously with Arnis.
7. These arts have different intents behind them. In silat and arnis, there's no mercy. When you're training for Aiki, you have to open yourself. In silat and arnis, your focus is to come out on top. They are on opposite ends of the spectrum.