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Old 08-07-2012, 11:55 AM   #28
Anthony Loeppert
Dojo: Aikido of Del Mar
Location: San Diego, CA
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 155
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Re: Dan Harden Returning to Orange County Aug 4-5th

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
I'm looking forward to your impressions, if you choose to share them! Dan is a very good teacher and has distilled some essential lessons on how to use the body in an interesting way. Like he said earlier, it's pretty cool how so many different groups are getting together to study this stuff. I think a community of learning is essential; to not only learning budo, but everything. It was this sense of community that stood out to me in the seminars at Ledyard sensei's dojo (...partly because I'm still pretty blind to the material being covered).
Glad you had a good time!
Take care,
Matt
To the tone of the seminar:
As the first day started we all gathered around at the designated time, Dan asks "Questions?"... silence for about 5-10 seconds... someone: "How old is that shirt?" I understood the urgency and relevance of the question, but I wouldn't be so presumptuous to ask myself.

Teaching method:
He opens himself to scrutiny and observation, allowing - even insisting - attendees to touch the various muscle groups as they fire when he's demonstrating something.
No lazy students! If you ask a question, you will get an answer. Then you WILL be requested to explain said explanation at a later time. If you can't you don't understand the idea well enough and he will explain it again... and you will be quizzed again. If you don't ask too many questions, don't worry he'll call on you.

If you have a difference of opinion, up you come front and center to explain. He will try hit/throw/whatever and you try the same. I don't think any attendee explanation ever bested Dan's.

If you prod and poke him a bit on the internet first, (I got the feeling) you get some special treatment on your first seminar! Leave any shoulder chips at home though, should you have any. Being able to laugh at yourself is required for attendance.

I'm a firm believer that the phrase "practice makes perfect" replaced with "perfect practice makes perfect". Dan constantly challenges all movement. What is the purpose, how is it supported, etc. If the answer doesn't pass the criteria then drop it like a bad habit because it probably is. He tries to equip attendees with this self critical eye because in the end (as he said many times), it is just you and yourself doing (or not) the work post seminar.

I have some ideas to incorporate the feelings and movements from the weekend into my continued exploration of the principals inherent in the Yoshinkan Kihon Dosa.

To those that haven't attended and are curious to the specifics, as I'm a total novice to Dan's methods, it would be folly for me to even attempt to describe or explain any of the specific exercises. I had a hard enough time repeating back what I had just heard the previous 5 minutes in the seminar.

I guess that is about all I have to say about that.
Anthony
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