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Old 03-13-2001, 12:31 PM   #41
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 168
darin wrote:

Personally I think aikido should have more competition. Its done good things for almost all martial arts.
How wholeheartedly can I disagree with this statement...? Wholeheartedly. If cotton-candy dojos and egos the size of texas, sensei's looking to turn a buck with black-belt contracts, and the core of an art sacrificed because it doesn't fit into the acceptable (safe) techniques of a tournament are all good things, then I guess I'd agree with you.

I'm not saying that tomiki aikido suffers from these things, but that broadly these problems have crept into the martial arts world and owe a great deal of their existence to competition.

My stand on competition in aikido is that it is counter-intuitive. I don't seek to win in my aikido, I seek to harmonize and resolve a situation. So if I am asked to show my skills against an opponent, I can show aikido. If I am asked to show them against an opponent who is honestly trying to hit me and take me down, fine, I can show aikido. If I am in either of these situations and I am being given points based on my performance, I'm no longer showing aikido. I'm showing how well I can play the tournament game.

Besides, everything positive that I have heard about the tomiki style competition I can get simply by asking any of my sempai (and several kohai) of mine to be more realistic in their attack; to really try to hit me as they might outside of the basic front punch, shomen strike, or yoko. Calling something competition does not make it any more 'real' - at least, not by definition. Making something real results in making that thing real. I have read this entire thread, and though I feel that the everyone seems to be training (in competition or not) very sincerely, I see two contrasting arguments made in defense of Tomiki aikido:
1) That it makes the attack more realistic.
2) That it is not realistic because: "There are too many limitations for tanto-randori to be considered 'true' sparring. As my sensei told me, 'Tanto randori is a game; it has rules.'"

Honestly, no sarcasm, can someone clear that up for me?

Hmmm, maybe the question shouldn't be about competition, but why those positive things being discussed and credited to competition (committed attack, technique tested in realistic circumstance, technique applied against an unwilling target, etc.) aren't present in our regular training?

It's a sad irony: In U's satori, he forgot every technique he ever knew; since then, generations of doka have spent their whole careers trying to remember.
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