Leave Ki Society for MMA?
I'm a former Judoka and current Aikidoka, and had moved to a new city and started out in the only Aikido dojo in town, a Ki Society dojo, a couple of months ago. Before that I had been training in an unaffiliated Aikikai-meets-Yoshinkan dojo, and hold a mid-kyu grade there.
I'm learning lots in my new dojo, but it's small and ill-attended, and the instructor puts far more focus on Ki training than Aikido. What I mean by that specifically is that the instructor seems to have much less enthusiasm for Aikido than Ki training: in a two hour training session (which is supposed to be two, one hour slots), we spend a full hour on Ki training, and only 35-45 minutes on Aikido. Invariably he gives us a long "break" or returns voice mail calls between classes which seriously eats into our Aikido time.
Here's the rub: the Ki Society is costing me quite a bit per month. My wife has just joined the local YMCA, which has a thriving "Budokai" dojo, which teaches MMA: Aikido, Judo, and Karate concurrently. Tuition would cost me about 1/3 of what the Ki Society costs, and I'd be able to train 3 days a week instead of 2.
I'm obviously going to go work out with the Budokai people to see what I think, and that will most likely make up my mind for me. (I think I just answered the main part of my own question. hehe).
One thing that was a bit irritating about my old dojo was that my rank was only good in that one school: my rank isn't recognized anywhere else, so I'm starting over. I'll be in this city for a while, so I'm not terribly concerned about rank anyway, but I've no idea how a "Budokai" does ranking/testing, etc. They are affiliated with Jujitsu America and a national Judo organization, though (ironically) not the USJA, where my Judo ranks are registered.
So here's the real question: Does anyone have any experience with these dojos? How does the learning progress? What's the training like? Can I expect weapons work?
Any responses are much appreciated. I'd never heard of a Budokai until recently. . .