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Old 03-18-2009, 03:25 PM   #1
Churchill92
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Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Long time lurker, first time poster.

Now for the longest time I've been a fan of Aikido, yet I didn't know it. Coming from my old Greco-Roman wrestling days of HS and college I wanted something similar to what I was doing but with a more edge toward self-defense, with a focus on DEFENSE. I wanted to defend myself and those around me and not be some jumping around like bruce lee punching everything in sight. No, I wanted it where they came onto me and I just caused them enough pain to make them go away without resorting to spinning roundhouse kicks. My 6'1 200lb frame just doesn't do well like that.

Which led me to Purple dragon Don Jitsu.

http://www.purple-dragon.com/

It's a Trinidad/carribean based martial arts that blends Judo, Aikido, Jiu Jitsu all into one overall fighting system. It's a mostly Jiu Jitsu program with Judo grapple/throws and Aikido locks/holds/bars

Now I'm in an Aikido program there, have been for over a year. Stricltly just the Aikido side of the program, I don't punch or kick allot. I have to learn a bit, never know when it's needed but the same basics of holds, bars, break falls, all apply.

The techniques I'm learning are numbered differently, tested differently, but the moves are very very close to what I've seen in videos, demonstrations, seminars. I don't think I could walk into a room, you tell me the name of the move and me do it. I would shrug and watch as you do something and then I say "Ahh it's technique 12!"

Belts are traditional White, yellow, orange, etc->Black/Hakama. I asked my Sensei about this and told him Aikido doesn't do belts and his response was "It's mostly to show where you are in the teachings when/if another instructor comes they will know how proficient you are just by looking at the color of your belt and where you stand in rank order in class." I was one of those that wanted to wear white forever, a pride thing I know, but when he said that I figured what the heck and put on my new belts.

Now after reading these boards for a long time I've come up with a few questions.

1. Anyone else practice this style?
2. Is this Aikido in one form, style, or another?
3. Is this an Accredited transferable style? i.e. take my skills from one school to another.
4. Anyone have any thoughts on it?

After reading on here and doing searches I think 1 is probably a no. 2 I feel is yes but curious. 3. I think is a no, but interested.

If anyone has any questions about it feel free to ask. I go down next week to train at the main campus in Port of Spain, Trinidad. The Professor asked for me personally to come down and train at their main HQ when he saw me during testing (he has to approve our belts personally so he travels to every dojo twice a year). Out of 100 students I was the only one asked. I'll be Uke for the black belts if he feels I can handle it when they do their testing on Sat/Sunday as it's a 48hr testing period. Great learning experience and worth the trip even though getting a pass port was a nightmare.

Looking forward to responses Good/Bad/Other
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Old 03-18-2009, 05:04 PM   #2
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pseHAeR69qQ Is this what you practice?

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Old 03-18-2009, 05:55 PM   #3
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
Yes. That's Professor Don Jacob's demonstrating some of the myriad of techniques we do. We being the proverbial Aikido students of which I'm the only one that goes to this particular dojo. Noone else wants to practice Aikido here as we've had 3 students come and go with the Aikido program and none lasted. Of course we've had triple that through the jiujitsu program too, but that's normal over a year to have that many come and go. Shame, I hate it when people don't come anymore. Seems like losing family.

Kicks of course aren't all Aikido, he blends allot of stuff together, the man has hands made of granite. While demonstrating with me he grabbed my wrist and showed me one of the moves I was practicing, had a big purple bruise just from his wrist lock for a few days. Unholy, if i could get like that at his age (55 or so) I'll be set.
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Old 03-18-2009, 06:54 PM   #4
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Be safe kid.
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:11 PM   #5
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
Ricky Wood wrote: View Post
Be safe kid.
I really don't think being 30+ puts me in the kid bracket, but hey if it feels good getting carded every now and then.

Care to elaborate your statement?

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post

Yes, yes it is.That's the professor demonstrating some of the material we learn.

Last edited by Churchill92 : 03-18-2009 at 07:13 PM.
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:26 PM   #6
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Again, I'm looking for just some feedback on if anyone has ever participated or competed against this style as I see a wide variety of styles on this board and in the blogs. Positive/Negative critique is welcome and anything that I can use to broaden my horizons within Aikido the better.

Thanks for your time.
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:57 PM   #7
raul rodrigo
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

It doesn't look like aikido to me. The ranks this school awards would not be transferrable to or accredited by the major aikido lineages.
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Old 03-18-2009, 08:45 PM   #8
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

At 0:29 he executed a nikkyo against uke's two-handed jacket grab, but instead of using the uke's arm to bring him down he moved into a choke hold.

But other than that, I have to agree with Raul - it doesn't look like aikido to me. Not that there's anything negative about that. It just doesn't look like what we practice in the dojo.

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Old 03-18-2009, 08:50 PM   #9
raul rodrigo
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Other Japanese martial arts have nikyo and kote gaeshi as well. I remember being shown both of them by my judo teacher many many years ago. She also taught me waki gatame, otherwise known as hijikime or rokkyo to aikidoka. It's not as much what you do as the context in which you do it and the intent of the practice.
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Old 03-18-2009, 09:16 PM   #10
Garth Jones
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

No, that's not aikido at all. That's not to say it isn't perfectly fine, just not aikido. Your sensei does use two or three joint locks that are similar to aikido techniques, but that's all I saw.

Except for Tomiki Aikido, we do not have matches or competitions so you will likely get few comments on that. If you would like to see aikido, there are a number of dojos in Tampa. Use the dojo search function on this site to find them.

There is a bunch of aikido on YouTube. Here is one of Saotome Sensei (head of the ASU) doing a demo with several of his senior students. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y4CqgzJcxow

Garth
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Old 03-18-2009, 09:46 PM   #11
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Mr. Weis,

Do you have any video of the strictly aikido program? This would be most helpful in my opinion.

I might be wrong, but overall any video you see of the doshu would be an excellent general guide to follow for transferability within the aikido world.

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Old 03-18-2009, 10:24 PM   #12
Dan Rubin
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

There is more than one martial art that calls itself "aikido." On your school's website it states that the aikido you practice was founded by Morihei Ueshiba. That's the martial art that the vast majority of people think of as "aikido," and it's the form of aikido practiced by most of the people who contribute to the forums on AikiWeb.

If you want to verify that that's the art you are being taught, ask your aikido teacher who his/her aikido teacher is, and who that teacher's teacher was. In short order, the list should go back to Morihei Ueshiba himself. For example, my teacher's teacher was a direct student of Morihei Ueshiba, so I know that the aikido I'm being taught is in Morihei Ueshiba's lineage.
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Old 03-19-2009, 05:52 AM   #13
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
It doesn't look like aikido to me. The ranks this school awards would not be transferrable to or accredited by the major aikido lineages.
This in and of itself doesn't bother me, shame, it would be nice to be able to transfer when I move. Everyone has to start from the beginning once in awhile, it's humbling and keeps you on your toes

Quote:
Nick Pittson wrote: View Post
Mr. Weis,

Do you have any video of the strictly aikido program? This would be most helpful in my opinion.

I might be wrong, but overall any video you see of the doshu would be an excellent general guide to follow for transferability within the aikido world.
The video that was posted above isn't all that I learn, some of it doesn't goto me, it goes in the Jiu Jitsu program.

One caveat if I may is that this video isn't the end all be all of what I do.

The Professor , founder and person in the video, knows many many martial arts and he blends them all together when he demonstrates in front of classes when he visits. You'll see judo throws combined with Aikido locks with Karate kicks please don't take this one representation as The Gospel. He's not my direct teacher but my teacher's teacher. Love to train under him, but I'd have to move from tampa to trinidad

Is there video of ONLY Aikido program? No. From what I gather the Aikido program is small here in the states, big overseas and not much goes up on youtube sans what people capture here. I plan on changing that.

They teach at this school the following:

Jiu-Jitsu
Aikido
Karate
Kick Boxing
Judo

Same as most modern dojo's who offer a wide variety of programs for kids and adults.

. I do the Shikko much like y'all do, bows are done standing up instead of kneeling down. Sitting is the same, breakfalls virtually the same, Hands held open chest height the same. Hand locks, wrist throws, elbow pressure points, been there got that gold star. Randori? Done it with 2 attackers from different directions at the same time. They call it Randori as well.

It looks, feels, smells, touches like Aikido but with a different...flavour to it. Watching Aikido videos and reading books I see what I'm doing is the same as another technique but we use numbers instead of names. I recognize the application for what it is. We don't use the Japanese moniker for everything, mostly formality.

Quote:
If you would like to see aikido, there are a number of dojos in Tampa
I chose this one as it was close to work, had people I know that went there, some have been going for 10+ years and now teach there. Figured I'd give it a shot. I knew zippo about Aikido besides what I read on the web and videos that I saw, first few months were nothing but learning how to fall, roll, hold your hands, foot work. At that point I scoured the net, downloaded videos, bought several books on the subject and devoured all I could about Aikido.

I looked up schools around my area and saw video of what the different Kyu's were, surprisingly it wasn't far off from what I was doing, just in a bit different order. At that point I just said "Give it a grading, see what happens" and I liked what I saw and felt, so I stuck with it. Year in and no complaints so far except the speed at which I train, but what hungry Uke hasn't complained about demanding more knowledge (Johnny5 NEED MORE INPUT!)?

Quote:

If you want to verify that that's the art you are being taught, ask your aikido teacher who his/her aikido teacher is, and who that teacher's teacher was. In short order, the list should go back to Morihei Ueshiba himself. For example, my teacher's teacher was a direct student of Morihei Ueshiba, so I know that the aikido I'm being taught is in Morihei Ueshiba's lineage
Good call on that one. I'll have to ask the Sensei's when I see them at the Kendo/Aikido dojo next week.

Thanks for the comments and questions. I'm not here to defend what I do, go on a crusade, or any other such silly thing like that. You've posted comments, I've responded, I wish I had more video, drawings, or saying X goes with Y, but I don't so it makes it difficult to articulate my point. Pictures speak louder than words as it may and this school is very UnWebSavvy.

This message board is friendly, critical, and informative, so that's why I posted my questions asking for comments (RFC if you will ).

Last edited by Churchill92 : 03-19-2009 at 05:56 AM.
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Old 03-19-2009, 06:09 AM   #14
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Previously discussed on e-budo ( http://www.e-budo.com/forum/showthre...ight=don+jitsu ) and bullshido ( http://www.google.co.uk/search?as_q=....bullshido.net ). E-budo may require a (free) registration.

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Old 03-19-2009, 06:31 AM   #15
Dazzler
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
Jonathan Weis wrote: View Post
It's a Trinidad/carribean based martial arts that blends Judo, Aikido, Jiu Jitsu all into one overall fighting system. It's a mostly Jiu Jitsu program with Judo grapple/throws and Aikido locks/holds/bars

Now I'm in an Aikido program there, have been for over a year. Stricltly just the Aikido side of the program, I don't punch or kick allot. I have to learn a bit, never know when it's needed but the same basics of holds, bars, break falls, all apply.

The techniques I'm learning are numbered differently, tested differently, but the moves are very very close to what I've seen in videos, demonstrations, seminars. I don't think I could walk into a room, you tell me the name of the move and me do it. I would shrug and watch as you do something and then I say "Ahh it's technique 12!"
Hi

This draws me back to the Aikido v Aikido Trademark thread that is buried somewhere in the archives.

The crux Jonathon is that for some doing 'aikido' techniques is 'doing aikido' but for others this is not enough.

The stance taken by these people (of which I am one) is that it is only really "Aikido" if those techniques are used to practice principles (what they are is a further discussion which I have no wish to become embroiled in) ...I'll limit myself to offer use of centre, balancing energies and creating a form that uses ki to overcome uke.

Others can pick up the mantle of arguing over those definitions so to re-iterate...just using similar techniques does not for me make it Aikido.

No judgement though on anything else as I haven't watched the vid as I am unable to at this time.

Regards

D
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Old 03-19-2009, 07:13 AM   #16
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
Previously discussed on e-budo ( http://www.e-budo.com/forum/showthre...ight=don+jitsu ) and bullshido ( http://www.google.co.uk/search?as_q=....bullshido.net ). E-budo may require a (free) registration.
I read the E-budo one, and allot of it is true. Prof Don Jacobs did win a tournament, awards, a bunch of other stuff, it's all listed on the page with the history of the dojo.

T/T people love the flashy ways of doing things, not going to kid myself about that. Kata's for jiujitsu can be like that, 15, 20 steps long, but in practice they work for the Jiu Jitsu side.

In my Aikido program, there is no flash, no pomp, no crazy KIAs, katas. It's all about flow of energy, draw it in, push it out. The Jiu Jitsu folks are spouting off like mad, my battle cry is a simple whoosh of air from the lungs. I prefer it that way almost.

Quote:
This school has been notorious for beginners being beat up by over-ranked and immature instructors who follow their misinformed leader with the fervour of a martial arts cult.
This one is true, but probably not just for this school alone. Happens all over the place. T/T is a rough place, it's not paradise like here in the states. kids have to grow up being hard as there isn't much hope for work or life after school besides a factory job, working in the fields, touristy stuff, or moving to another country. They are raised hard, trained hard, and instilled to pass that down, we forget that we got it very very easy in our First and Second world countries. Sometimes a few bad apples make it into the bushel, doesn't mean they are all bad *shrug*

I've seen the kids that they bring from T/T to America. Astounding demons that make your head spin. Amazing what these kids can do at a young age and perform at. Makes us americans looks slow and lazy

I'll toss out the "I kicked this dudes butt therefore I'm better" out the window. Every dojo has good students and bad students in competition. We've won some, lost some, not everyone is perfect.

My teacher Sensei Gary doesn't claim to be anything more than a humble practioner, teacher, and student to us all. He's relearning his teachings in Aikido as much as I am taking them in. My giving feedback saying "I've seen it done this way, how does this work?" or "Why is it done this way?" as he didn't have any Aikido students for years and I was the first to walk through the door especially asking about learning Aikido specifically.

There was a guy here at work who has studied Aikido, Joe Ogelsby for 30+yrs teaches at the USAF base and at the local college. He left work to pursue other opportunities, I wish I could've attended his classes as he was a heckuva guy.

Quote:

The crux Jonathan is that for some doing 'aikido' techniques is 'doing aikido' but for others this is not enough.

I'll limit myself to offer use of centre, balancing energies and creating a form that uses ki to overcome uke.

Others can pick up the mantle of arguing over those definitions so to re-iterate...just using similar techniques does not for me make it Aikido.
If that, by your definition, is what Aikido is then I feel I'm on the right track. Transfer of power from attacker to defender, the movement of hips, the flow of energy from one to the other. I understand these are core principles that The Harmonious Way demands of it's practioners I'm starting to realize that during the Randori's where you get into an almost Zen like trance of letting the energy move through you as the Uke's come at you grasping, holding, punching, stabbing.

Good postings and links. I've been looking for stuff like this and scoured the intarwebs and haven't found anything on the negative aspects of PD or any of the other programs. I like to stay informed and y'all are helping me in my pursuit of knowledge.
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Old 03-19-2009, 07:41 AM   #17
nekobaka
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

I feel very strongly that this is not aikido. Too many reasons to go into.

However, if you feel like you are learning something of value and it is useful to you, then I don't see anything wrong with it. Just remember, this is not the aikido that most people here are talking about. aikido being a new martial art lineage is important, and it's very easy to trace most 6,7,8th dans to Ueshiba Morihei. in 50 years, maybe that won't be important anymore. Osensei died in the 70's, not that long ago.

It doesn't matter what people call it, if you like it that's what's important.
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Old 03-19-2009, 08:46 AM   #18
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
Jonathan Weis wrote: View Post
I really don't think being 30+ puts me in the kid bracket, but hey if it feels good getting carded every now and then.

Care to elaborate your statement?
You will be in a foreign country with very different laws, rules, and regulations.
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:03 AM   #19
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
Ricky Wood wrote: View Post
You will be in a foreign country with very different laws, rules, and regulations.
I've traveled overseas on business and pleasure. One country is the same as another as long as you work within their laws, understand their culture, and respect the people. Certain things you do and certain things you don't. A siesta in Colombia is normal, in Vietnam it's a luxury. Different strokes for different folks.
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:34 AM   #20
Marc Abrams
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Jonathan:

The thread on e-budo was started by me. I had intended on relocating to Grand Cayman Island but Hurricane Ivan threw a monkey wrench into those plans. I will likely "retire" there in around five years and open up an Aikido dojo on that Island.

As to your questions, I think that you need to start with that founder's history of Purple Dragon. It takes a person a "life time" to truly master one art and precious few master several arts in the course of a lifetime. Too many people have "reinvented" the wheel by combining their "mastery" in a myriad of arts to create a "complete" "fighting style", "art", etc..... These people, who have not spent enough time studying an art, believe that they perceive "holes" in that particular art. Rather than accept responsibility for the holes in their execution of the art, it is externalized to the art itself. These people then find the "solutions" through a limited understanding of some aspect within another art. The simple fact is clearly seen in the execution of that "system", "style", ..... In this case, what I had and have observed was a relatively crude, hodgepodge of "this and that." Nothing that this person does even remotely resembles the true artistry and mastery of people within the arts that he claims to know and use.

That being said, "if it floats your boat, then all is well and I wish you smooth sailing." Spend time training at a dojo with a genuine master of Aikido, or Judo, or Karate, or Jujutsu.... and you will experience what I am talking about. Life is short, so it is important to choose wisely in how we spend our time. I will leave you with a comment from Kenji Ushiro Sensei (Karate master) who taught at an ASU (Saotome Sensei's organization) summer camp (AWESOME TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES AT THIS CAMP) and said the following to some people at that camp: "It is better to spend three years searching for a true teacher to study with, than spend three years studying with a teacher."

Regards,

Marc Abrams
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:42 AM   #21
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Thanks for the bit of Advice Marc when I'm down there to watch everything carefully and compare/contrast to what I've learned seperately through this site and other information portals.

If in the end the school does not suit me, then I will move on with information at hand.

I enjoy the fluidity of the style with some of the applications, how it translates into traditional aikido principles is another story. I still plan on attending an Aikido seminar that's local to here to see how everything pairs up, as long as I could say be competent enough to do everything in the entry Kyus I will be OK.
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:48 AM   #22
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

have you attend seminars hosted by other aikido schools that are not part of your organization? might expand your horizon and make some friends.
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Old 03-19-2009, 09:57 AM   #23
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
Jonathan Weis wrote: View Post
I've traveled overseas on business and pleasure. One country is the same as another as long as you work within their laws, understand their culture, and respect the people. Certain things you do and certain things you don't. A siesta in Colombia is normal, in Vietnam it's a luxury. Different strokes for different folks.
Okey-dokey.
Have fun!
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Old 03-19-2009, 10:55 AM   #24
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Krotty with some Wally Jay small circle stuff and a bit of Moses Powell thrown in. Not a bad foundation, but not Aikido in even broad terms.

Chris Moses
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Old 03-19-2009, 11:18 AM   #25
Churchill92
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Re: Is this Aikido? Purple Dragon Style

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
have you attend seminars hosted by other aikido schools that are not part of your organization? might expand your horizon and make some friends.
No. I plan on doing that right after I get back from my trip overseas. At this point I'm going to start branching out to other schools and senseis and seeing what else is out there. Marcs last bit of advice really hit home after my workout at lunch. Should I waste my time seeking instruction in a school that doesn't hold true to certain fundamentals or should I spend said time looking for what I feel is a good fit for both education and instruction.

Overall I have allot of questions to ask people when I travel. This is a good thing.
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