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Old 09-30-2000, 08:25 AM   #25
JO
Dojo: Aikikai de l'Université Laval
Location: Sainte-Catherine-de-la-J.-C., Québec
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 292
Canada
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When I first started I couldn't judge relative ability beyong knowing those that were ahead of myself (nearly everyone) and a general feeling that those in hakama (yudansha only at my dojo) seemed to know more than anybody else.
Now I think I can judge relative ability a bit better using my year and a half of experience. But the truth is that I trust the judgement of my senseis and shihans (those handing out the ranks and the right to wear hakama) more than my own when it comes to judging aikido ability.
However I am not that strongly in faver of signs of rank because one of the things I like about aikido is that everybody practices the same techniques together independently of rank.

Jonathan Olson
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