Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 10-15-2010, 10:40 AM   #26
Janet Rosen
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
 
Janet Rosen's Avatar
Location: Left Coast
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 3,939
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

If one is, as most of us are in most dojos, essentially a serious hobbyist for whom aikido is part of a balanced and busy life, 2-3 times a week is ample on-the-mat time to make continual progress.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2010, 10:54 AM   #27
Andrew Macdonald
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 126
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

no matter how many times a week you train, if you want to progress you need to work when you are away from the dojo.

once a week is ok, but make sure you work out at home
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2010, 11:33 AM   #28
henry brown
 
henry brown's Avatar
Dojo: Soseikan, Worth IL
Location: Chicago suburbs
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 46
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

It takes 10,000 hours to mastery, according to Gladwell
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outliers_(book)

The math:
At 2 times per week = 4 hours per week x 50 weeks = 200 hours per year.

Being generous, at 4 X week = 10 hours/week = 500 hours per year, it would take 20 years to 'master' aikido. I figure that would be about 5th dan level....seems about right to me.

You need to decide what you want for yourself.
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2010, 12:38 PM   #29
Amassus
 
Amassus's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Musubi Ryu/ Yoshin Wadokan
Location: Hamilton
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 305
New Zealand
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I'm going to agree with those posters that said that as long as you are training with full intent each time, you will progress at two days a week. However, I think back to my beginning days as a single man with time to burn and I pushed it up to 4 x a week because I could. So my fire burned brightly.
Nowadays with a young family and fuller work commitments my fire is smoldering at training one day a week and teaching one day a week. This fits my lifestyle and maintains my skill level.

I think the OP is answering his own question. "Is two days enough?" You are frustrated so I would suggest it isn't but you can find another outlet for training a third day. A similar martial art or solo training are options others have mentioned.

I'll echo the over-training thing as well. This can happen in any physical endeavor so be careful not to burn so brightly that you burn out.

I wish you all the best.

Dean.

"flows like water, reflects like a mirror, and responds like an echo." Chaung-tse
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2010, 08:40 AM   #30
shakou
 
shakou's Avatar
Dojo: Ronin Aikido Association
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 43
England
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I see nothing wrong with only 2 classes per week. This is the amount I go for and have progressed fine. Yes it is a given that people learn at a different pace and may need more. It would also boil down the the level of instruction as in most things you are only as good as the person teaching.
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 11:47 AM   #31
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,637
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I know that everyone always wants to be validated for whatever effort they are currently prepared to put in. But let's be realistic here...

Say your child is taking music lessons... what does the teacher say about that? You need to practice "every day". Your child shows up for his or her lesson having practiced once or twice that week and the teacher knows immediately, and usually comments on it.

Your child is engaged in youth sports... how often do they practice? During the season, usually EVERY day. Try going up to the coach and telling him you think your child should practice just a couple of times a week and see how long the child is on that team...

What is "enough"? Enough for what? Once a week is fine to have a good time. It will never be enough to be any good. In my experience, twice a week allows someone who already trains to keep up his or her skills but doesn't move them "forward". I require that anyone training for Yudansha testing be training at least three times a week. There's no way they can perform at what I think the standard should be without three times a week as the Minimum attendance.

Everyone I know who is really accomplished at this art spent some extended period during which they trained 6 or 7 days a week, often multiple classes each day. The uchi deshi we strive to learn from were on the mat every day, 6 - 8 hours a day every day for years. Back in the day, we trained six or seven days a week and held jobs too. Now, a SERIOUS student at my dojo trains three times a week.

Now I happen to think I have shortened the learning curve for my students by developing better explanations and more targeted training exercises than what I did when young. So these folks are doing pretty well. There are actually several who, if they stay with it, will be better than I am. But they are still working at what I consider to be the minimum required to be excellent.

Folks are welcome to come train at any commitment level they wish. Frankly, the dabblers support the training for the serious folks; it's always been that way. But I am not going to pretend with them that they are doing something they are not. They can train any way they want but if they want to move up the Dan ranks, they have to commit and train three days a week or more.

This art is supposed to be "Budo". It is a "Way", a "Path", an art that was intended to be a way of life, not just a "hobby". To pretend that all training is good, which is the approach some folks take, is to cheapen the art. I really do not see any value in mediocre Aikido for its own sake. Lack of real commitment yields pseudo spirituality and a skill level that is really nothing more than Aikido-lite. If folks don't want to make enough commitment to really understand the principles of the art, in body and mind, what's the point? Find something else you can be passionate about and master that...

This art was Founded by one of the great martial and spiritual geniuses of the 20th century. It was handed down to a group of teachers who spent their entire adult lives trying to master and understand what they were given while passing it all on to another generation. These folks made enormous sacrifices to spread Aikido around the world. And still, even the most accomplished would say that they only got a portion of what they Founder tried to teach them. So at what point do we admit that a couple times a week, for 1 1/2 to 2 hours each time, simply isn't enough to do an Aikido that has anything of real depth at all?

The more folks pretend that real commitment isn't actually required to do this art, the more we try to make it accessible to everyone, regardless of whether they want to do the real work involved, the closer we get to not even knowing what great Aikido is any more. I sat in the stands at the Aiki Expo and watched a few people with really big numbers after their names do absolutely wretched Aikido, a total embarrassment to the art, and yet some folks didn't even seem to be aware just how bad the Aikido they were seeing actually was... It was like the Emperor's New Clothes and I felt like yelling, "Excuse me, but that Sensei has no clothes on..."

This is an absolutely amazing art! The more I do it the more I see in it. This art deserves to be, even demands that it be, more than just a "hobby". L0ook at what has happened to our culture... We have the astounding wealth that historically only the very top of any society achieved. Time not devoted to survival issues is crucial for all great art and cultural achievement. We have this amazing opportunity to do, not just Aikido, but virtually any Path we wish.

So what have we done with that? We as Americans get less vacation time than any industrialized nation in the world and we don't use up what we get! We have allowed our lives, our own sense of self worth to be defined by our jobs. Our whole function as human beings, with all the tremendous potential this time and place in history affords us, is to work at jobs that, in the end, serve to make a very small group of folks at the top of our society more and more rich and powerful. And then we are told we need to buy more to keep the machine running. Well, if you are going to buy more, then working more is a given. So your life is consumed by the need to put increasingly more and more effort in to "work", even though we already have far more than survival requires. Then we turn around and tell ourselves that we don't have time for those very things that we could be doing, probably should be doing, to support ourselves as human beings. So folks are always telling me that they don't have time to train... That they can't afford to do some seminar... Well, time wise, they have exactly the same amount of time that every other Aikido practitioner has. 24 hours each day, seven days a week, 12 months a year. No one gets more, and some folks pass before it seems they should have.

So do we keep telling ourselves that twice a week is enough for this amazing art? Or do we admit that it takes far more to even realize what depth is available? Maybe we should question the whole foundation of this illusion that we don't have the time or money for a practice that is so unique and amazing while feeling obligated to perfecting our roles as consumers in the consumer society. There seems to be almost no awareness that, throughout history, the "merchant class" was always considered to be on the lower rungs of the societal hierarchy. Not in the least the group that supplied the spiritual and moral values a society needed to be great.

So now we are a society in which the merchant class has attained dominance and strives to define our values accordingly. We spend our lives doing jobs at a stress level that we know is killing us, requiring more and better pain killers every year, sustaining ourselves on foods with little real nutrient value... and the tell ourselves that we don't have time for the things that really represent "spiritual sustenance". It's not just Aikido, it's everything that we have developed over thousands of years of civilization that has depth and the potential to elevate the human spirit. For the first time in history we have enough wealth to free up the time for the majority of the people in society to have enough time not devoted to pure survival issues, that we could actually do some amazing things with our lives. And instead, we let ourselves get sucked into the vortex of work in order to consume, necessitating more work...

And then we ask the question whether the small time we can squeeze out of our daily life is enough to give to this complex and sophisticated art that has so much potential to provide real richness to ones life. Two times a week enough? That's less than most folks watch TV in a day. We need to get real here.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 03:01 PM   #32
Pauliina Lievonen
 
Pauliina Lievonen's Avatar
Dojo: Jiki Shin Kan Utrecht
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 560
Netherlands
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

<appaluse> I once tried to write a column about the difference between hobbyists and professionals, but really what I would have liked to say was what Ledyard sensei just wrote.

Going to go do some solo exercises now...

kvaak
Pauliina
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 03:43 PM   #33
Rob Watson
Location: CA
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 698
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
on the mat every day, 6 - 8 hours a day every day for years.
How many dojos can one find this level of instruction? Where I train there is offered 12.5 hours of instruction per week plus some 5 hours kids/teen classes. Compared to many others it is quite a full schedule (one instructor for all). Previously I trained where there were ~19 hours per week of adult instruction. Besides Hombu and the Yoshinkan I have not heard of anyplace that offers anywhere near 40 hours per week of instruction. I'm not saying there aren't any but they are few and far between.

Granted, serious students make the effort to get themselves to where the instruction is to be had but the rest of us would still rather train than not so we get the best we are able. Does aikido suffer because of us 'slackers'? Maybe we do not make a direct positive contribution (besides the support to the serious as mentioned) but I like to think we do no more harm.

I guess the real question needs to be is two days a week enough for what the OP wants to get out of aikido. If they want to be better than Mr. Ledyard than no but if they want to be help support their instructor and a few serious students along the way then the answer is yes. Just so long as one is honest with themselves and others about what they are doing then two days may well be plenty.

Just to be selfish I'll mention that if I'm able to get 5 hours a week I feel I'm barely treading water. Even with that meager schedule my family suffers due to my selfishness. They may think I'm a serious student but I know I'm not... by a long shot. Even at my most 'prolific' moments I can barely sustain an 8 hour weekly rate. Got no family and are under 30 then get it while you can because life has a way of getting in the way of the way.

"In my opinion, the time of spreading aikido to the world is finished; now we have to focus on quality." Yamada Yoshimitsu

Ultracrepidarianism ... don't.
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 05:55 PM   #34
Chris Li
 
Chris Li's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,078
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Robert M Watson Jr wrote: View Post
How many dojos can one find this level of instruction? Where I train there is offered 12.5 hours of instruction per week plus some 5 hours kids/teen classes. Compared to many others it is quite a full schedule (one instructor for all). Previously I trained where there were ~19 hours per week of adult instruction. Besides Hombu and the Yoshinkan I have not heard of anyplace that offers anywhere near 40 hours per week of instruction. I'm not saying there aren't any but they are few and far between.
Generally, you have to go to more than one place, or train on your own. There's quite a lot you can do with solo training, and you don't have that dead time spent traveling to and from the dojo, hanging out before and after class, and so forth.

I don't get 6-8 hours a day, but I do get something going every day.

Best,

Chris

  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 06:11 PM   #35
RED
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 903
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Robert M Watson Jr wrote: View Post
How many dojos can one find this level of instruction? \
New York Aikikai is one place. If the uchi deshi life style is something some one is serious about, they tend to move to dojo like New York Aikikai for extensive training and apprenticeships.

6 hours a day isn't something most dojo offer.
I wouldn't attend a dojo offering less than 10 hours a week, because that's my personal minimum training requirements that I have for myself. My dojo exceeds my personal minimum exponentially, which I am blessed for.

I think a commitment of 10-12 hours a week is a minimum requirement.(if this many classes are not offered at your dojo, then a serious student I'd think would take every class they do offer, whenever possible.)

I train 10-12 a week... but in all seriousness the uchi deshi who train like a full time job, they are more serious than many of us are. And we should never disrespect them by pretending we are on the same level of commitment. I've heard of people giving up jobs, family and friends to move to New York or Japan to train seriously. Everyone really is a hobbyist in comparison. They deserve that much respect.
However, 3 hours a week is the very least I believe some one needs to make gradual progress as a 6th kyu. I get sad when I see new students only coming for 1or 2 classes a week or less. They have more potential than that. But if it is a hobby and they are enjoying themselves, whatever.
But, I think that if you have hopes for yudansha that a training minimum of more than 3 hours is to be at least considered.

Last edited by RED : 10-17-2010 at 06:25 PM.

MM
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 07:46 PM   #36
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 2,800
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
I wouldn't attend a dojo offering less than 10 hours a week, because that's my personal minimum training requirements that I have for myself. My dojo exceeds my personal minimum exponentially, which I am blessed for.
I doubt it exceeds it exponentially, but I take your meaning: it's well above your personal minimum. If it didn't, would you move to another city? If your dojo had to cut back on hours, would you leave?
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 08:23 PM   #37
RED
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 903
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I doubt it exceeds it exponentially, but I take your meaning: it's well above your personal minimum. If it didn't, would you move to another city? If your dojo had to cut back on hours, would you leave?
I don't foresee this ever happening, because my dojo is strong.

However if I was in that situation, I'd have to start taking trips to the nearest local Dojo in my federation to fill in gaps.

But if it wasn't livable to travel, I'd likely move.

Last edited by RED : 10-17-2010 at 08:30 PM.

MM
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 08:37 PM   #38
RED
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 903
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I doubt it exceeds it exponentially,
I love when my browser fixes my spelling mistakes by replacing it with what "it thinks" I meant to spell.

MM
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2010, 05:23 PM   #39
Lyle Bogin
Dojo: Shin Budo Kai
Location: Manhattan
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 588
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

"training everyday" does not mean "being on the mat everyday" or even "doing martial arts techniques everyday." Eventually the martial arts lifestyle leads to the consideration of all tasks as training.

"The martial arts progress from the complex to the simple."
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2010, 07:57 AM   #40
Mark Uttech
Dojo: Yoshin-ji Aikido of Marshall
Location: Wisconsin
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 1,218
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Onegaishimasu. Training once a week will keep you busy enough in the beginning. It becomes "once a week, no matter what". Next thing you know, you have a practice that keeps building and growing itself, all based on that simple foundation of: "once a week, no matter what."

In gassho,

Mark

- Right combination works wonders -
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2010, 01:27 PM   #41
Ryan Seznee
Dojo: Does it matter?
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 102
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Lyle Bogin wrote: View Post
"training everyday" does not mean "being on the mat everyday" or even "doing martial arts techniques everyday." Eventually the martial arts lifestyle leads to the consideration of all tasks as training.
I think "training everyday" does in fact mean to log some hours on the mat... unless you train on the grass or sand (which is fun). I usually train 6 to 12 hours a week in my dojo, and I consider myself a hobbyist. I just don't think it is a realistic attitude to take to say that martial arts is my life if I am only training for 2 to 3 hours a week, regardless of how I view other tasks.
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2010, 01:52 PM   #42
RED
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 903
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I believe that training in a martial art in much respect is an act of apprenticing yourself to the highest ranked/skilled instruction you can find. While doing foot work and bokken kata in your livingroom can be helpful, I wouldn't ever go as far to say I am training when I do this. Practicing what my instructor already taught me maybe, but not training.
As a martial art, I believe in putting your time in as an apprenticeship to the highest level instruction you can find, whenever you can find it.

Last edited by RED : 10-25-2010 at 01:55 PM.

MM
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2010, 02:10 PM   #43
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,637
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Mark Uttech wrote: View Post
Onegaishimasu. Training once a week will keep you busy enough in the beginning. It becomes "once a week, no matter what". Next thing you know, you have a practice that keeps building and growing itself, all based on that simple foundation of: "once a week, no matter what."

In gassho,

Mark
Mark,
This sounds great but, in my opinion is just another for of "it's all ok, it's all good". No one is going to become any good this way. Period. Except maybe the person who is training once a week but doing three different arts... like many of the koryu folks did when they lived in Japan. They trained every day, just not in the same art necessarily.

You and I are part of the same organization... you know what our requirements are... The time in grade requirements for qualifying for being eligible for taking the next test are based on three to four times a week. Someone training once a week would take over ten years to do a Shodan. Since Shodan represents the point at which you can really start to train, in other words, a serious beginner, you are talking about taking over ten years just to get to the point at which it is worth the time of a teacher like Saotome Sensei to speak to you.

I just don't see any point at all in dabbling. If it's not important enough for you to make a larger commitment, then quit and find something that is. When you don't make an effort, you are far more likely to get hurt, you take up a lot of time and effort on the part of the seniors helping you with the same things over and over because you never train enough to master anything. Sure it's great to have folks who help pay the bills, but since none of us got into this because of the money (that would have been a grave error), I'd rather have a serious student who is unemployed and on a scholarship program than someone dinking around but paying dues. Now if someone really wants to support the dojo, and I have several people like this, then they can pay dues and not train. These folks can be a real help in paying the bills and I REALLY appreciate the fact that, even though they cannot train right now, they want the dojo to be there when they come back, so they pay dues each month.

But someone who doesn't think the practice is important enough to give it absolute minimum twice a week... why would they bother and why would I? As I said, anyone testing for 3rd kyu and up, can't test at my dojo unless he or she is training at least three times a week. Period.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2010, 03:25 PM   #44
Linda Eskin
 
Linda Eskin's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of San Diego, San Diego, California
Location: San Diego County, California
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 326
United_States
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I would say if you like that dojo, if the teacher is a good match for you, if it's convenient for you, etc., at least start there for the 2 days a week they are open. See how it goes. Since everyone will be training at that same rate, you all should be progressing at relatively the same rate (unique abilities aside). And as others have said, some of your training can be off the mat, too. If you find you are yearning for more, perhaps (if enough others are, too) you could ask for an additional class or open practice time. Worst case, you could look for a new (or additional) dojo.

When I started I only went one evening per week. That expanded to the point where now I am very happily training 4-5x/week. I'm just very lucky that my dojo offers so many classes.

Linda Eskin - Facebook | My AikiBlog

"Heaven is right where you are standing, and that is the place to train." - Morihei Ueshiba
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2010, 02:42 AM   #45
amoeba
Dojo: Aikido Netzwerk
Location: Düsseldorf, NRW
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 80
Germany
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I just have the feeling that if you overdo it in the beginning, you might quit again. Once you've trained for a while, in my opinion, you'll start coming more often by yourself if you like it. But your body will also not be used to it, so imho I'd start a little more slowly... maybe 2-3 times a week. And if I understand correctly, for the advanced people there will be more classes anyway? Then I'd just wait until I'm allowed to go there...

Btw: Most really good people I know train about 3-4 times a week. Thats probably about 5-8 hrs. Of course, before gradings or in holiday time or whatever, they come more often. But I don't believe it's necessary to train every day to become "any good"... of course it's nice if one has the time. At the moment, I'm also training 10-12 hrs a week. But that's about the maximum I can fit into my schedule if I want to have a little bit of my life left...
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2010, 10:55 PM   #46
George S. Ledyard
 
George S. Ledyard's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Eastside
Location: Bellevue, WA
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,637
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Alissa Götzinger wrote: View Post
But I don't believe it's necessary to train every day to become "any good"... of course it's nice if one has the time.
It all depends on what your goals are. Everything you said is true... but who are the models for our training? Is it about what we want to or feel we can put in? Or are our teachers the model? If our teachers, who paved the way for us, represent the model we are striving for (and I am not saying that it is for most, or even many, practitioners) then we need to look at what they did to get to where they are.

Without exception, every senior teacher of Aikido with whom I am familiar spent some significant period of time during which they trained virtually every day, often more than one class each day. Ikeda Sensei told me that, remembering Mary Heiny Sensei when she was at Hombu Dojo, she not only trained every day, she trained in every class every day. Hardly anyone trains in all the classes... they start in the early am and go til the late evening. So, if Mary Heiny Sensei is someone we are striving to model our training after, does anyone think they can become as good as that by training a fraction of the amount she trained? One could make the same argument about virtually any of our teachers.

Everyone wants to feel good about what they are doing. Everyone makes the commitment he or she feels fits into their life as they currently live it. But what must it be like to be a teacher looking out at the student population knowing that very few of them are even trying to be excellent at the art, much less master what that teacher is capable of passing on.

Every year I go to big events at which my own teacher is instructing. This man trained with the Founder and the other post war giants of Aikido for 15 years. I watch as he tries to teach something more advanced and cannot because so many of the people are simply not training hard enough to come back each year better than the year before. So each year he tells them the same things are wrong and they go home and come back the next year with the same things wrong. So he can't teach what he'd like to teach because the majority of the folks aren't ready for it. And they won't be ready for it the way they are training.

So, what happens is that the art begins to adjust to the capacities of the folks doing it. Rather than have a standard that is too high for most people, which would certainly be demoralizing and cause large numbers to quit, the standard changes so that folks can get a win, feel included, pay the rent on the dojo, etc. This changes the whole culture of Aikido. If the standard is now set by the hobbyist, rather than the seriously committed student, then you end up with lots of dojos but none at which one could become excellent. I travel a lot and see lots of dojos around with all sorts of folks. But at very few would I honestly say one could become really excellent at the art.

The fact of the matter is that, if they decided that they really wanted the standard to be excellence, if they were to insist that the dojo be geared towards taking people to a true high level of skills in the art, there would be so few people willing to train that way that the dojo would probably close.

So, we end up with "market forces" determining the character of the art which started as an amazing, complex, and deep practice. It becomes not an art that is hard to comprehend, that is pursued by practitioners who strive each day for mastery but one that the average person understands and can do, with the kind of commitment that average person is willing to make. You end up with the larger dojo paradigm making it impossible for that small number of people who would and could do more to actually do so. You see students who could be great and want to train towards that goal held back by the fact that the majority won't or can't.

I am not really quite sure what the answer is to this quandary. I am fairly sure that most folks, if you asked them, wouldn't wish to believe that what they are spending so much time and effort on is just "Aikido-lite" yet without a critical mass of really serious students striving to match their own teachers, that's what the art becomes.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 03:08 AM   #47
Maarten De Queecker
Dojo: Aikikai Gent, Brugse Aikido Vereniging
Location: Bruges
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 139
Belgium
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Lyle Bogin wrote: View Post
"training everyday" does not mean "being on the mat everyday" or even "doing martial arts techniques everyday." Eventually the martial arts lifestyle leads to the consideration of all tasks as training.
This, to me, is one of those typical, pseudo-deep answers some aikidoists tend to give (no offense meant).

It's also dead wrong.

If you want to become good or even just decent at something, you have to create a routine. Developing a routine means training as much as you can. In case of aikido: being on the mat as often as your personal life, job etc. allow you to.

By the way: a martial arts lifestyle is the lifestyle of a contemporary soldier. They train multiple hours per day, every day. A martial art lifestyle means rigorous training and mental and physical exhaustion, with the sole purpose of pushing the limits of what you body can take. Martial means "Of War". Martial art, in turn, means "Art of War". War is not doing tea ceremonies, or anything like that.

TL;DR: a martial lifestyle means training each day, every day, for hours at an end.
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 04:02 AM   #48
Nicholas Eschenbruch
Dojo: TV Denzlingen
Location: Freiburg
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 308
Germany
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Maarten De Queecker wrote: View Post
This, to me, is one of those typical, pseudo-deep answers some aikidoists tend to give (no offense meant).

It's also dead wrong.
This, to me, is one of those typical, pseudo-tough answers some aikidoists tend to give (no offense meant).

It's also dead wrong.
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 04:10 AM   #49
Pauliina Lievonen
 
Pauliina Lievonen's Avatar
Dojo: Jiki Shin Kan Utrecht
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 560
Netherlands
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
But what must it be like to be a teacher looking out at the student population knowing that very few of them are even trying to be excellent at the art, much less master what that teacher is capable of passing on.
In the two other arts I practice, music and Alexander Technique, there's a clear difference between amateurs/hobbyists and professionals. There's also a clear difference between teaching amateurs and future professionals. I'm only doing the former and not kidding myself about doing the latter. The people who come for Alexander Technique lessons with me aren't planning to teach the technique themselves. The adults I teach recorder playing to aren't planning to become professional musicians. The only exception to this might be the occasional talented child - we'll see what they end up doing.

As far as I can tell they aren't telling themselves that they are as good as anybody. There seems to be a clear idea of the difference between someone who's had the professional training and put in the hours and who hasn't.

Especially in the AT lessons I'm explaining the very basics over and over again. Most people barely lean the basics, which is usually enough to solve the problem or question they came with. Then they stop having lessons. I get to feel satisfied that I helped someone solve a problem they had. If I want to enjoy talking about the finer points of the Technique, I go visit the teacher training course where I trained and work with the students there. They are busy studying the Alexander Technique every day.

If someone would come to me asking for recorder lessons with the goal of passing an entrance exam for the conservatory for example, that would be a different situation altogether. In that case I would demand much more from the student.

In aikido the situation is much more unclear because the professional training courses aren't there really. It's easy to start training at a dojo and imagine that what one's doing is the same as what the seniors did when they started, because where else could they have learned this? Especially if the seniors themselves are effectively amateurs as well, which seems to be the case in some dojo. I mean, I could start a dojo now and be a bad example to a new generation, and who would know any better?

kvaak
Pauliina
  Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 04:50 AM   #50
Nicholas Eschenbruch
Dojo: TV Denzlingen
Location: Freiburg
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 308
Germany
Offline
Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Pauliina Lievonen wrote: View Post
In the two other arts I practice, music and Alexander Technique, there's a clear difference between amateurs/hobbyists and professionals. There's also a clear difference between teaching amateurs and future professionals. I'm only doing the former and not kidding myself about doing the latter. The people who come for Alexander Technique lessons with me aren't planning to teach the technique themselves. The adults I teach recorder playing to aren't planning to become professional musicians. The only exception to this might be the occasional talented child - we'll see what they end up doing.

As far as I can tell they aren't telling themselves that they are as good as anybody. There seems to be a clear idea of the difference between someone who's had the professional training and put in the hours and who hasn't.

Especially in the AT lessons I'm explaining the very basics over and over again. Most people barely lean the basics, which is usually enough to solve the problem or question they came with. Then they stop having lessons. I get to feel satisfied that I helped someone solve a problem they had. If I want to enjoy talking about the finer points of the Technique, I go visit the teacher training course where I trained and work with the students there. They are busy studying the Alexander Technique every day.

If someone would come to me asking for recorder lessons with the goal of passing an entrance exam for the conservatory for example, that would be a different situation altogether. In that case I would demand much more from the student.

In aikido the situation is much more unclear because the professional training courses aren't there really. It's easy to start training at a dojo and imagine that what one's doing is the same as what the seniors did when they started, because where else could they have learned this? Especially if the seniors themselves are effectively amateurs as well, which seems to be the case in some dojo. I mean, I could start a dojo now and be a bad example to a new generation, and who would know any better?

kvaak
Pauliina
Very interesting analogy, thanks! That is food for thought.
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Handmade Aikido Gifts - Handmade functional ceramic art with aikido themes



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Aiki Peace Week Quentin Cooke Websites 2 08-22-2010 09:34 AM
064) Bar Room Waza: Week of December 13, 2009 Marc Abrams External Aikido Blog Posts 6 12-15-2009 08:50 AM
049) The Triangle- The Human Body: Week of 8/16/2009 Marc Abrams External Aikido Blog Posts 2 08-17-2009 03:45 PM
Beginner Qs - Seminars, # Days for Testing templemed General 12 08-11-2008 08:32 AM
How many days a week ? grasshopper73 General 20 06-03-2004 11:15 AM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:19 AM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate