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Old 10-07-2011, 11:15 AM   #11
azrielg
Dojo: Shobu of Boston
Location: Cambridge, MA
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 14
United_States
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Re: Focal points for solo training

Quote:
Ernesto Lemke wrote: View Post

I apologize if my reply discouraged any further exchange. I have great sympathy for your attempt but in a sense you opened up a possible can of worms. I think this may be the first time anyone attempted to describe some of the exercises Dan offers on a public forum. Seeing as he is reluctant, dare I say adamant, in not offering any online "how to's" with those unfamiliar with his approach, you may find very few people may respond other then maybe per PM.
Yes--a testament to my naivete, I was unaware of the can of worms which I was opening. I did not mean to open a discussion of what Dan does or does not teach, I was trying to get people exchange notes on what they personally do, and how they think about body mechanics. But now I can see the can, as well as the worms.

Quote:
Ernesto Lemke wrote: View Post

So from what I understand, there is one class that exclusively focuses on IT, and then a ‘regular' aikido class that highlights, features those same IT elements within, I guess, aikido waza.
We have one class a week called "Aiki basics" in which we get feedback on our solo work, do paired exercises, and look at some applications to aikido. Gleason sensei frequently reminds us that solo exercises must be done regularly on our own to see any benefits. Later, in normal aikido classes, it is apparent to those who attend the aiki basics class that he is applying the material in the aikido waza. Those that are not into the IS training simply miss out.

In general, it is my personal impression that Gleason sensei emphasizes PRINCIPLES of movement, power, etc. He recognizes that proper technique is important, but points out that we must never lose sight of the underlying message. We are frequently prompted to ask our selves "why" not just "how".

Quote:
Ernesto Lemke wrote: View Post

If you don't mind me asking, is taking the IT classes considered obligatory? I am sure Gleason Sensei considers IT fundamental but one only needs to take a look at the types of discussions on Aikiweb over the years when it comes to the topic of IT/IS/IP/Aiki etc. to see how little consensus there actually is. From believers to non-believers and everything in between. I can see how folks with no innate desire to want to pursue IT will find it difficult to see how others consider IT so fundamental.
No, it is not obligatory at all. Those that want to work on this stuff are given the opportunity to reap the benefits. Those that are not interested... do not.

I guess I fall into the camp of "once you feel it, its hard to deny it". As I said, I came into aikido + IS training from day 1, so I find it difficult to understand how people could not be interested in IS training. They only stand to benefit from it. But thats me. To each, their own.

Quote:
Ernesto Lemke wrote: View Post

Gleason Sensei's choice seems to be having two distinct types of classes (though of course in reality they feed eachother). Others, like myself, are currently working almost exclusively on IT, but my goal is to find some balance during class. Whether that means starting with IT exercises and then work on waza I have yet to find out.
To be clear, I do not want to give the impression that I am speaking for my dojo or my sensei.

It is my personal impression that my sensei's choice is to give his students the opportunity to engage in different types of training all aimed towards the same "big picture" goal of developing strong aiki feeling and free, expressive martial movement. We have separate classes so that those that want to delve deeper can do so without imposing this training on others in the dojo that are not so concerned. The IS material is far more implicit in the normal aikido classes--its obvious to those who care, and invisible to those that don't.

As we make personal progress with our IS training, we who are interested get to reap the benefits in our technique and and more general development.
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