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Old 03-12-2002, 01:07 PM   #1
Kathy Park
Dojo: Dreampower Aikikai
Location: Jaroso, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 4
Talking bizzare training aids

As a teacher, I am always interested in finding new ways, sometimes bizarre ways, to help students get into their bodies, learn to move from their hips, and become more present. Here are two I've found very useful: Industrial size hula hoops!! They're 16 feet in circumference made from one inch diameter irrigation pipe and decorated with colorful duct tape. What a way to learn how to move your hips! Try tenkan with the hoop. Try shikko walking. Try two, then three at a time. We're up to five. You really have to lower your center in order to stabilize five, especially when they go into chaos. Try playing catch while hula-hooping!
That leads me to my second training aid - a soccer sized rubber ball. I'm tired of telling my students to keep their backs straight and their eyes in the room, so instead, after demonstrating a technique, I walk around the mat throwing the ball to each nage at the completion of their throw. A good nage catches the ball!!
What are your bizarre training aids and techniques?
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