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Old 02-13-2005, 10:29 PM   #33
xuzen's Avatar
Dojo: None at the moment - on hiatus
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 965
Re: Competition in Aikido

To compete or not to compete, that is the eternal question eh?

Dear fellow practitioners,

The above question will never be fully answered simply because there are just so many of us with varied opinions and reason for doing aikido.

Having said that... you wanna compete? Do Yoseikan or Shodokan.

You wanna do it as a health giving stress reliever? Do Ki Aikido.

You want some practical stuff that even some elite cops are learning as part of their curriculum? Do Yoshinkan. But then if you only know what sort of hellish training they go through to be effective...the price to pay in order to be effective. Even these guys don't compete, and they are sure hell of tough guys and probably they know it too without competing; furthermore their chosen profession may demand such skills.

Having said that...pls bear with me for my opinion.

I come from Yoshinkan background and competition is never part of our syllabus. Let me put it this way... For example in Medical school, students learn the skills of medicine to do a job/vocation. They learn how to perform surgery, how to diagnose a illness or what prescription to give out for a illness. I doubt there is ever any medical competition that says:
"Look here kiddo, we are judging your capability by having you compete with all your classmates on how fast you can stitch this dummy corpse".

You simply learn how to do a specific job (technique), then proceed to be graded by your professor (sensei). Competition may denote play and games which if taken as it is, it is fine, but to equate competition as a measure of effectiveness may be myopic.

I learn a technique, understand its fundamental then its purpose (riai). Then I repeat this learning process again until I am good enough to do it without using my conscious mind. How do I know if I am good and effective? When I grin with delight after throwing and immobilize someone 50 percent heavier, someone 50 percent taller than me in jiyu waza.


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