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Old 01-10-2011, 01:50 PM   #3
George S. Ledyard
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Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,670
Re: What Is Your Responsibility in Training?

Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
I would hope that within an organization, each attending dojocho or instructor would return home prepared to change curriculum based on problems identified at a seminar.
Yes! Janet you have once again hit the nail on the head. When students look the way I described in a collective sense, that isn't an "ability" issue or even an example of individual lack of motivation. It is a widespread failure of the teachers to do their jobs.

Once on a way to a test, Saotome Sensei said to me "Student not do well on test, not student's fault, teacher's fault." So we are looking at an issue that has multiple problems. We have teachers who fail to take any serious responsibility for their students. If the students look good great, if they don't look good, well, I am sure they are trying , it's ok. Some of the folks Sensei was yelling at ARE teachers. They teach at their dojos, in fact some run dojos.

How many went home after that training and did two or three weeks of intensive sword classes? How many went back to their dojos and immediately invited a senior instructor to come in and work with the folks at the dojo on this material? Why should it take our teacher yelling at everyone to even get folks attention? Anyone looking around the room would know that folks drastically needed work. But when Sensei actually gets to the point at which he blows up over an issue, what kind of teacher would not immediately work to ensure that his own skills were adequate and then additionally make sure that none of his students ever went in front of Sensei looking like that again.

Pride is often looked at as a negative emotion. But it has a positive aspect. Pride in oneself is what causes one to have personal standards. As a teacher, I "pride" myself that my student never appear incompetent in front of my teacher. I would never encourage a student who I thought was substandard to travel for a seminar. It would reflect on me and the rest of the dojo. Why do these teachers seem not to have that same pride?

It's not that training doesn't reveal that a given student or teacher has problems to overcome. That's the point of training. But if one is really training, it should never be the same issues over and over. When it's the same stuff each year, then clearly the training is a joke. And that is the fault of the teacher, period.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
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