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Old 11-13-2007, 06:40 AM   #1
"aiki commuter"
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Is it ok?

Is it ok to be a member of two Aikido dojos at the same time and train at both several times a week? Is it considered disrespectful to one or both teachers? I only ask because there's a dojo very close to my house and the one I go to is farther away. I like my dojo and want to stay but maybe get a few days in with the closer one too.
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Old 11-13-2007, 09:33 AM   #2
John Bernhard
Dojo: Aikido of East Alabama
Location: Auburn, AL
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Re: Is it ok?

The answer is both yes and no. Yes it is okey if you have "asked" permission from your sensei and all parties are happy/fine with the arrangement. No, if you are trying to do it behind your Sensei's back and willingly not telling him.

Now with that said. I would be concerned with a Sensei that would not allow you to train at another dojo. I believe that it is important to get as many different view points and ideas as possible and then take what works for you. Obviously the hard part will be doing what you are taught in each of the dojos at that dojo and not stepping on your Sensei's toes by saying well I learned to do it this way over there.

Otherwise, have fun and happy training.
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Old 11-13-2007, 11:43 AM   #3
NagaBaba
 
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Re: Is it ok?

Do both dojo belong to the same style? If not, you will have additional difficulty to manage separately two different kihon.

Other thing to consider it the quality of instruction. Are you able to distinguish a good instruction from a bad one?

Nagababa

ask for divine protection Ame no Murakumo Kuki Samuhara no Ryuo
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Old 11-13-2007, 11:45 AM   #4
Amir Krause
Dojo: Shirokan Dojo / Tel Aviv Israel
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Re: Is it ok?

I agree with most of the things John said, yet would like to add a few finer issues:

Quote:
John Bernhard wrote: View Post
The answer is both yes and no. Yes it is okey if you have "asked" permission from your sensei and all parties are happy/fine with the arrangement. No, if you are trying to do it behind your Sensei's back and willingly not telling him.
Exactly as he said.
Be aware that in some cases (very traditional Sensei), the Sensei agreement is achieved in silence (neither Sensei will endorse your idea, but both will accept it without commenting about it).

Quote:
John Bernhard wrote: View Post
Now with that said. I would be concerned with a Sensei that would not allow you to train at another dojo. I believe that it is important to get as many different view points and ideas as possible and then take what works for you.
I am not sure the answer here applies to all. For a beginner, learning from several different teachers may be confusing (I went to help a friend and his studet complained each of us gave different answers, though we both agreed with each other).

Quote:
John Bernhard wrote: View Post
Obviously the hard part will be doing what you are taught in each of the dojos at that dojo and not stepping on your Sensei's toes by saying well I learned to do it this way over there.
If you can not do this - stay with one place.

Amir
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Old 11-13-2007, 01:57 PM   #5
gregstec
Dojo: Aiki Kurabu
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Re: Is it ok?

Sure is - I have done this in the past when the opportunity arose. The important thing to remember is that each dojo will have different views on how things are done; even within the same organization. When on the mat, the current Sensei is always right; regardless of what you learned elsewhere.

Greg Steckel
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Old 11-13-2007, 03:34 PM   #6
kironin
 
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Re: Is it ok?

If their McDojos, and there is no relationship with the teachers other than a commercial one, sure.

If practicing aikido is like going to the local gym and pumping some weights or running around a track. Totally interchangeable. sure.

otherwise, honesty is the best policy.

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Old 11-13-2007, 07:00 PM   #7
mickeygelum
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Re: Is it ok?

Absolutely!

Are you paying, they better be teaching....Aikido is Aikido.

Aikikai or Shodokan, Fugakukai or Shin ShinToitsu....all are considered Aikido. I trained Shodokan and Aikikai concurrently...you can do whatever you want. The old way of "You cannot serve two masters " is gone..ancient history, unless they are in conflict, then one or both may make you the choose.

Just my opinion.

Mickey
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:24 PM   #8
Mark Uttech
Dojo: Yoshin-ji Aikido of Marshall
Location: Wisconsin
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Re: Is it ok?

I am surprised at all the posts thus far. Although one can train at more than one dojo, there is something called a 'home dojo', and it is better to be a member of one dojo, a visitor of another. Simply said, you must choose.

In gassho,

Mark

- Right combination works wonders -
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:49 PM   #9
Keith Larman
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Re: Is it ok?

Quote:
Craig Hocker wrote: View Post
If their McDojos, and there is no relationship with the teachers other than a commercial one, sure.

If practicing aikido is like going to the local gym and pumping some weights or running around a track. Totally interchangeable. sure.

otherwise, honesty is the best policy.
Amen.

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Old 11-14-2007, 01:12 AM   #10
Amir Krause
Dojo: Shirokan Dojo / Tel Aviv Israel
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Re: Is it ok?

Quote:
Michael Gelum wrote: View Post
Absolutely!
Are you paying, they better be teaching....Aikido is Aikido.
I strongly disagree with this approach - you are not a customer, and M.A. are not a comodity. Further, I have strong doubts considering the learning process with this approach.

Too much of M.A. learning relies on faith (You believe your teacher, thus, you are willing to try new things even if they do not seem intuitive to you, and apear less effective at first. You should be able to see the fruits of the process later on, but it may take a year and at times even more). This is true for most skills being learnt, unlike other types of learning.

Quote:
Michael Gelum wrote: View Post
Aikikai or Shodokan, Fugakukai or Shin ShinToitsu....all are considered Aikido. I trained Shodokan and Aikikai concurrently...you can do whatever you want. The old way of "You cannot serve two masters " is gone..ancient history, unless they are in conflict, then one or both may make you the choose.
The conflict might be in the methodical way of learning. In some cases, each teacher may try to teach you via opposing ways, and you might not progress.

Learning from multiple teachers is important for your progress, but only at the right levels, and with your teachers blessing.

Amir
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Old 11-14-2007, 02:02 AM   #11
"aiki commuter"
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Re: Is it ok?

The reason for asking is simple. The dojo I attend now is about thirty miles from my home. There is one about five miles from my home that is the same style and affiliation as the one I regularly attend but I don't want to leave the one I attend now. I just thought that on odd days or the days that I can't make it to class on time I can attend the closer dojo.

The two dojos hold collective training sessions several times a year by the way.
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Old 11-14-2007, 04:17 AM   #12
Pauliina Lievonen
 
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Re: Is it ok?

It sounds like in your case, the best thing to do would be to ask your teacher. Since it seems the two dojo are friendly anyway, I would expect that your teacher doesn't mind, but for the same reason, he would be sure to hear about it if you started visiting without letting him know. So I think the polite thing to do is to talk with him first, but I really don't see why it should be a problem.

kvaak
Pauliina
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Old 11-14-2007, 07:02 AM   #13
Karen Wolek
Dojo: Kingston Aikido
Location: New York
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Re: Is it ok?

I'm with Pauliina. I train 6 days a week at my home dojo, but we don't have classes on Sunday (yet), so if I want an extra class, I go to our "sister" dojo (my sensei's sensei's dojo). There is also another local affiliated dojo (another student of my sensei's sensei) where I can train whenever I want.

My dojo, while a 40 minute drive from my house, is the closest dojo and it has been my second home for over 5 years now, but it is nice to have options if my dojo is closed or I happen to be in the neighborhood of one of the others.

Talk to your sensei. I would never train somewhere else without discussing it with my teacher first. While it is indeed a free country, I think it's just respectful to do so. Plus, I trust his judgment.

Karen
"Try not. Do...or do not. There is no try." - Master Yoda
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Old 11-14-2007, 09:49 AM   #14
mickeygelum
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Re: Is it ok?

Disagree with what I believe, do not force me to conform to your opinion....as that is all I was expressing, my opinion.

If I want to be a dojo ballerina, I know which dojos to go to...
If I want to be a street warrior, I know which dojos to go to...
If I want to be an internet Shihan, I know who to laugh at...
But, if I want to be a well-rounded martial artist, emphasis on martial, I know what is efficient and what is not..and that was by accepting guidance from whoever, then making my decision based on my experiences.

What if the person you, too early, put your faith in is not capable of guiding on your journey....again, just my opinion.

Mickey
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Old 11-14-2007, 01:28 PM   #15
odudog
Dojo: Dale City Aikikai
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Re: Is it ok?

It's OK to train at both dojos, but, only be a member of one. Have the one that you are a member of be the location that you take all your tests from. It will be much easier on your pocket book and much easier on the senseis. You don't want both of them testing you and have the situation of one saying that you are not qualified for one grade yet the other says that you are.
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Old 11-14-2007, 05:16 PM   #16
Michael Hackett
Dojo: Kenshinkan Dojo (Aikido of North County) Vista, CA
Location: Oceanside, California
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Re: Is it ok?

In our dojo we are encouraged by our Sensei to experience other teachers at seminars and dojo visits. If we attend a seminar we are expected to bring something back and share it at home. Similarly, visitors are always welcome to train with us when in the area. He has one really hard and fast rule though, if you are another teacher's student, from our organization (AAA), you may not become a member of our dojo without your current teacher's permission. Absent your present teacher's permission, then you may not permanently train with us for one year. By contrast, we are free to leave at any time without acrimony. This hard and fast rule isn't cast in stone in cases where the individual has relocated from another area however. Works for us.

When several of us attended the last AikiExpo, Sensei looked over the list of instructors and suggested individually that we take instruction from particular teachers at the seminar. A different menu for each of us, based on where we were in our training and what they might offer us for our own growth. As a result, it was a great experience for each of us.

Michael
"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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Old 11-15-2007, 11:50 AM   #17
Jon Shickel
Dojo: Elkton Ki-Aikido
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Re: Is it ok?

Yes -- with agreement by both Sensei's.
It's what I do because of my work schedule.

I disagree with "Aikido is Aikido". Even though the two dojos
I train in are the same style, the instructors do
things slightly different. Don't say, "But X said to
do it this way." Share if they ask, but otherwise just train as they are teaching.
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Old 11-15-2007, 09:33 PM   #18
dps
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Re: Is it ok?

I have five years of Aikido training in Aikikai and am currently training in
Shodokan. The Aikido is the same it is the terminology and methodology of the training that is different.

David
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Old 11-25-2007, 03:38 PM   #19
Aiki LV
Dojo: VEGAS VALLEY AIKIDO
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Re: Is it ok?

Every teacher feels a bit differently about a situation like this. Talk to both Sensei about what you want to do. Most people are going to be perfectly okay with it. Having exposure to many different people and prospectives is a good experience. In my dojo I have one student who studies with myself and two other teachers in town in order to work around his schedule. I haven't experienced any problems with it thus far. He is a great student and we all enjoy it when he is able to come by. The main thing to remember is respect the Sensei who is teaching and what they are teaching. Good Luck & Happy Training! -Mindy-
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Old 11-26-2007, 01:14 AM   #20
Nikopol
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Re: Is it ok?

You have had some good answers here and perhaps don't need mine, but I agree that you should clear it with your instructors, and above all decide with whom you will do your testing... your home dojo.

Now draw a line. When in Rome, do as the Romans do and you must resist the temptation when in one dojo of trying to show off or introduce something that is done in the other dojo.

As Amir said: "If you can not do this - stay with one place."
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Old 11-26-2007, 03:39 AM   #21
"jeep"
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Re: Is it ok?

Quote:
Now draw a line. When in Rome, do as the Romans do and you must resist the temptation when in one dojo of trying to show off or introduce something that is done in the other dojo.
I think this also depends on your grade, as senior grades normally have some poetic license when it comes to performing the techniques as shown. i.e. more freedom to incorporate variations.

I don't believe that you will have any problem training at both clubs since they are the same style & affiliation, probably they are using the same syllabus too. You should pick one as your home dojo for grading purposes though.

good luck
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Old 12-08-2007, 07:47 AM   #22
"FredL"
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Re: Is it ok?

I've recently started doing the same thing. So far, it has been a great experience, although I am having a lot of trouble adapting to a different style at the second school.

My approach has been total honesty with everyone involved, and directly asking the two sensei's if they have any problems with what I am doing. I do feel that my original sensei and dojo are my "home" base, but I have felt welcomed and invloved by my other sensei and his students. I feel "off" at the second school since i haven't learned their style yet, but everyone accepts that and corrects me in a very positive way. Overall, I am enjoying the experience, and learning a lot. I guess that I'm assuming that, if I am up front with them, my sensei's will be frank with me if anything comes up that they find troubling...

I do think that it would be wrong, however, to attend the second school with the attitiude that you aren't going to try to learn their style. You really do need to try to participate fully at both schools for this to work. If you do, I think that you'll find that your aikido improves, your sensei's will appreciate that you are just trying to learn, and people will not be offended...

Fred
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