Thread: "Competition"
View Single Post
Old 06-28-2013, 04:12 PM   #41
Gerardo Torres
Location: SF Bay Area
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 197
Re: Competition

Eddy Wolput wrote: View Post
Is this also for Kendo, Iaido, Jodo, Judo.....?
When you enter a shiai with 100persons, only 1 will be champion (? ) all the rest are losers. I don't think most of the competitors are joining a competition to become a champ, they join the competition to understand their own level under pressure. A competition can learn you a lot about yourself. Once Kenji Tomiki ( and also his assisten Hideo Ohba) said randori/shiai is painting in the eye of the dragon.
In Tomiki Aikido, the competition is only a small part of the training. It is not the ultimate gaol.

My thoughts,
My sentiments echo Eddy's comments. I train in Aikikai aikido, but I think any kind of aikido or martial art would greatly benefit from some sort of competition. I also train classical weapons arts and we engage in all sorts of tests and competitions among ourselves, but it's not about one-upmanship and defining winners and losers, but about self discovery, pressure testing and serious study. So far I have not seen people being crushed spiritually or fostering wrong personality traits from engaging in competitions; on the contrary I see it bringing people together, becoming better friends and training harder (as a good competitive outcome will clearly and unequivocally identify areas for improvement). I think some form of standardized testing and/or competition would greatly help aikido with the issues of delusions of skill, hero-worship, and passive-aggressive BS.

Eddy's mention of iaido among other arts (that include matches/competitions) makes a good point: can anybody say that iaido practitioners (or Kendo, jodo, etc.) are not doing "true Budo"? Furthermore Ueshiba didn't become so famous by just talking... he had to test his skills against a most likely hostile and demanding crowd didn't he? And what if he did really mean to prohibit matches and competitions in Aikido? Is it possible he might have been wrong and matches and competitions are actually good for Budo? Shouldn't we at least try it?

  Reply With Quote