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Old 08-28-2005, 02:13 PM   #1
Location: swansea wales
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 250
United Kingdom
two instructors

How would you fare learning aikido from two different instructors
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Old 08-28-2005, 03:40 PM   #2
Jill N
Dojo: K-W Ki Aikido (Kitchener, Ont)
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 119
Re: two instructors

I always think it is useful to get more than one take on the same technique. We are all different weights, heights, shapes, and think differently. What will be an "aha" moment for one will be a "huh?" moment for someone else.
e ya later
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Old 08-29-2005, 02:40 AM   #3
Tim Ruijs
Tim Ruijs's Avatar
Dojo: Makato/Netherlands
Location: Netherlands - Leusden
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 463
Re: two instructors

Pretty important question!

It is good to train with different teachers when you start out practicing Aikido. This way you can shop around and find the teacher that fits you best (This period takes at most one year).
Once you have selected 'your' teacher, stick with him and if you wish to (regularly) attend a seminar of other teachers consult with him.
Obviously it is no problem to attend a seminar of some (most likely highly-ranked) teacher out of curiosity , however, check with your teacher.
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Old 08-29-2005, 03:22 AM   #4
David Yap
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 561
Re: two instructors

Justin Thomas wrote:
How would you fare learning aikido from two different instructors
Hi Justin,

For a beginner learning aikido from two different instructors who themselves shared a common teacher and system, IMHO, is not a problem - assuming that both instructors are qualified to teach from their teacher/system.

It may take some level of maturity and understanding of core basics for someone to learn from different instructors who do not share teacher(s), or worst still - the system of teaching, without getting confused.

In my dojo, we used to learn from three instructors whose ranks are 3rd dan, 4th dan & 7th dan respectively. The 3rd dan would always show and remind us the techniques taught by the 7th dan but the 4th dan would always criticize the techniques taught by 7th dan including the warming up techniques. For the senior students, we could pin it down to egoism and being rebellious but for the newer students it would be puzzling.

My two sen...

David Y
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Old 08-30-2005, 07:24 AM   #5
p00kiethebear's Avatar
Dojo: Tonbo Dojo
Location: Bainbridge Island WA
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 374
Re: two instructors

So much goes into this question.

Ultimately, a person cannot have two masters.

When push comes to shove you may be asked where your loyalties lie.

Martial art politics can get messy. Be careful.

"Fighting for peace is like screwing for virginity"
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Old 08-30-2005, 08:45 AM   #6
Jorge Garcia
Dojo: Shudokan School of Aikido
Location: Houston
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 608
Re: two instructors

When I started in Aikido, our dojo had two instructors. They each had a different style. For a beginner, it was too confusing and difficult to memorize the techniques while going to both of their classes. The senior students went back and forth between the classes and did fine. I don't recommend two instructors for someone who is starting. If both instructors are under the same teacher though, that's different because you will get a core of techniques that have a common foundation with only some variance. We have 4 assistant instructors in my dojo helping me to teach the classes. I teach the majority of the classes. The others cover the rest. They provide variation and many things they learned elsewhere and I feel that is good for all the students but we do teach a core of techniques that are the same.

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 08-30-2005, 09:15 AM   #7
MikeE's Avatar
Dojo: Midwest Center For Movement & Aikido Bukou Dojos
Location: Hudson, WI
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 407
Re: two instructors

I tell my students very sincerely that I don't know everything. In fact, what I do know is easily subject to change. I've trained with as many instructors from as many places as possibe, and all its done is help me. Aikido is very cerebral, your state of mind and how you think of things has a definite impact on how you perform. Different instructors often offer different insights in how they think about waza, and therefore how the waza is impacted. My instructors have always encouraged me to visit other teachers (mostly on a seminar basis), and often asked if I learned anything interesting. Go to seminars, learn one new thing, consider it a win.

Mike Ellefson
Midwest Center
For Movement &
Aikido Bukou
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Old 08-30-2005, 09:39 AM   #8
Jorge Garcia
Dojo: Shudokan School of Aikido
Location: Houston
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 608
Re: two instructors

I wanted to clarify that my previous comments were made for the context of a beginning student who is in a particular organization and is planning to test with that group.If that is you, then what I said would be relevant because Aikido techniques are not a conglomeration of different movements. Most "styles" of Aikido have coherence with their own system. That's why one Shihan will tell you to cut down on iriminage and another will say that's wrong. It's that when someone says that something you do is wrong, it is wrong within his system for various reasons that wouldn't make it wrong within another system. It took me a long time to understand that. This applies especially to things like kamae (stance) and weapons. You move very differently out of a frontal stance than out of a triangular stance. Both are great to learn but if you are new, you won't be able to appreciate the distinctions and may come come back with a "contradicting" set of movements for the same techniques your instructor is using. Experienced students can see through all that and training with different people is very beneficial for them.
Having said that, I do allow my students to train with whom they want and I am bringing in a teacher with a totally different style from ours in September and all my students will be there. I do want them to be appreciative of the diversity that is within the art.

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 08-30-2005, 02:26 PM   #9
Dojo: Aikido Verein Esslingen
Location: Stuttgart
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 27
Re: two instructors

On one hand, it is said that a dog cannot serve two masters.

On the other hand, we are not dogs.
(Our loss: I suspect both dogs and cats of being cleverer than us)

Personally, I think it is a personal matter involving your attitude and approach.

I'll learn from anyone who'll teach me, regardless of whether they are 6th kyu or 6th dan. I'm not looking for someone to follow but someone to help me find Aikido. Luckily the German Aikido federation (DAB) has become considerably more tolerant about Aikidoka investigating other styles. In the few months since I started I've had the joy of participating in lessons from no less than 5 different instructors from three different styles who have visited our dojo.

Takemusu introduced me to the wonderful world of weapons.
Ki-Aikido introduced me to the wonderful world of ... *surprise!* ..Ki.

At the end of the day, I believe some people may profit from different instructors, whereas others may not.
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Old 08-30-2005, 04:13 PM   #10
Aiki LV
Location: Las Vegas/Henderson
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 73
Re: two instructors

As far as I'm concerned having more than one Sensei teaching you aikido is a good thing. You get to see the art from different perspectives. This is very good for people's development in Aikido. You learn to respect people's differences and know it's okay if one Sensei does something a little different than the other. I think if people were trained by a few different Sensei it might bring Aikidoka together a lot more. It would prevent a lot of the this person's style is more legitimate or better than that person's style type of crap. If you learn from more than one Sensei at the very beginning you learn that differences are a positive thing. It is a lot easier to learn and accept this early on rather than later. We are all different people and should not move the same way. (Unless of course your goal is to be an aiki-robot and in that case Domo arigato Mr. Roboto )
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