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Old 06-18-2011, 06:55 PM   #38
Mario Tobias
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 261
Re: Injury and Responsibility

Lots of people mistake an aikido dojo as a safe place to train. Well, its not. It's one of the most dangerous places IMHO. It's much akin to driving a car, you feel safe inside a car until you experience a bad accident. It is a similar environment. The road is a very dangerous place. You need to be fully aware all around. The road code is also applicable to the dojo IMHO. There needs to be rules to prevent accidents from happening.
1.) You need to be fully aware of what going on around AT ALL TIMES, while in the dojo whether you are uke or nage, or doing nothing at all.
2.) know who your partners are. there are warning signs given by some people that they are accident/injury prone. avoid these people at all cost.
3.) when your nage is doing something you cannot handle and your gut tells you it may lead to an injury, IT IS NOT RUDE to ask the person to tone it down a bit. It is your body and he is just borrowing it so they can polish their technique. They need to respect it. It is not embarrassing to admit that you cant take it. If they don't want to partner with you later, that's fine've solved your problem.
4.) the most dangerous times injuries happen...these are just examples. Pre-grading practices supervised by sensei, being uke for an examinee, partnering up with a visitor, people who throw without looking, taking exams (one shodan nominee had his eye poked by a tanto during tanto-dori, the grading was cut short as he needed to get medical attention)...etc

I've never been injured and never injured an uke for 21 years, except once. I was uke and my nage (dan level) poked me in the eye during shomenuchi ikkyo as he jerked the technique, got a corneal tear. looking at his hands, I told him that's why you cut your nails short!!! Never practiced with him again, months later a 4th dan he was training with had a bloodied mouth so I made the right decision.

You shouldn't live with the life-long consequences of somebody else's negligence. The thing is the warning signs are already there. You just need best to interpret them and act even on gut feeling that is why I probably avoided accidents all these decades. Life long regret can happen even with a momentary lapse in judgment.

Last edited by Mario Tobias : 06-18-2011 at 07:02 PM.
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