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Old 11-25-2013, 07:09 AM   #17
Location: Paris
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 62
Re: How to deal with irritating partner?

Eva Röben wrote: View Post
Dear original poster,

in my dojo and also when going to seminars and visiting other dojos, I observe pretty much the same, and it occurs again and again. Although I'm normally not at all a patient person and if the same happened in my area of work, would explose or say something with a cutting edge, in aikido I work on keeping calm and learn something from what happens. Why that? In my line of work, I'm an expert, I do it since 20 something years and generally don't make 25 blunders in 90 minutes. In aikido, though training since 7 years, I'm far from being an expert, and it may occur that I do every single action wrong in 90 minutes.

There are guys of different levels who have it as a principle to block my technique and provide not-asked-for advice. It's mostly, but not exclusively, guys, and of all levels. Motives are different. They vary from ignorance that what works for a guy of 80 kg doesn't always work for a woman of 60, to pissing contest or the observation that I'm just getting the technique unwittingly completely wrong.

So what? If they manage to block my technique, what does it mean?
=> my capacity is not good enough to do the technique intended by the teacher
=> I try to find out why or
=> I apply henka waza
If it still doesn't work, obviously the other person is not collaborating, but if my aikido was good, that wouldn't be a problem. So if I get angry, and I do, it's not at the would-be sensei but' more at the fact that after 7 years, my technique still sucks.

As to the advice, there are different options:
=> I try what the guy said, and it works => he was right
=> I try what the guy said and it doesn't work => a) he was wrong b) I didn't get it
=> he can launch another round of advice
=> go to 1

It may also happen that I differ and remain convinced that what the guy said is wrong or that he didn't get what the teacher said. Then we can try to find out what's the matter and why.

Or we can simply shut up and train.

In a nutshell, I don't see this sort of situation as annoying, I rather see it as a useful part of the training.

All the best,

Agree with almost everything you said, except maybe the patient one. The thing is, if you do what he/she says and it works, it does NOT mean that is the correct way. I've realized something really insidious about aikido training: sometimes people do a technique the wrong way, and they tell other people to do the same thing. To prove that they are right, they intentionally fall when I do it "their way", and apply a lot of blocking/resistance if I'm doing differently. Happens all the time with this girl and lotta other people. I wouldn't know if Sensei didn't point out to me.

And plus, just like you said, Aikido is about body synchronization. What works for this girl might not works for me.

There's no reason to train with some1 who doesn't help you learn in a productive way. Except for the personal reason I mentioned.

The sex/gender issue is a red herring, in my opinion. Precisely the same issue can arise if all the parties are male. My question concerns the instructor. In my own dojo I can immediately see how individual students do the waza and also how they generally interact with the other students in the dojo. In addition, the instructors actually practise with all the students, including ukemi. There is some discussion, but if I want to stop people talking too much, I tell them straight (you can do this very politely in Japanese). Does your instructor do this?
Mine is a little bit too nice and too soft to be honest, since we're an university club. Plus normally this shouldn't be a problem, since the dojo has plenty of other students to train with.
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