Thread: bukiwasa
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Old 10-13-2002, 06:32 AM   #11
Peter Goldsbury
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Dojo: Hiroshima Kokusai Dojo
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The initiator of this thread started it in connection with a comment I made in another, unconnected, post. This might have given the impression that I have unusual methods of weapons training.

I myself began to use the bokken and jo about six months after beginning aikido. During the 30+ years I have been training I have moved around quite a lot, but have always trained with weapons. I think some weapons training is fundamental to understanding aikido as a martial art.

However, I do not believe in teaching weapons at too early a stage and would not even consider teaching Aiki-ken kumi-tachi or kumi-jo till at least shodan. There is no point in teaching kumi-tachi or kumi-jo until students can do suburi properly. Saito Sensei wrote that it took two years to learn how to do suburi correctly, but perhaps he had in mind the special conditions in Iwama.

And this is just in relation to Aiki-ken. I think Shoji Nishio Sensei's weapons system is more interesting in many ways than Aiki-ken, but it is also more difficult to learn.

I think a fundamental aim in teaching beginners is to teach body awareness, e.g., where your head, arms and legs are, when you do ukemi. Weapons training can help this process, but can also hinder it, if it is done too early.

Finally, verbal explanations on web sites are always liable to be misunderstood or exploited. If you really want to know how I train and teach weapons, you need to come to my dojo and train.

Yours sincerely,

P A Goldsbury
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