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Old 10-29-2010, 12:14 AM   #76
Richard Stevens
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Would you expect to get your Bachelor's degree while only making 2 out of the 24 classes your instructor teachers?Why should Aikido be any different? When you get an F in class you can't go to your teacher and say "Oh but I was reading the text book at home a WHOLE lot!!" The point is, you didn't make it to class enough to advance. Likewise, don't expect to advance in Aikido when you are absent from class."A" students show up to all their classes on time and complete the course work. Aikido is no different. It requires discipline, dedication and commitment. You have to give up time, money, other activities and some socialization to part-take seriously.
I think you may be overlooking the counter-argument that has been persisting in this thread. There is no denying that students should not be passed if they do not have the technical skills. However, utilizing your analogy, if I were to take that same class for for 12 years wouldn't I have developed the knowledge required to pass that class?

Is a person training twice a week for ten years going to be unable to attain the skill level of a person training three times a week for six years? I don't buy it. Yes, I agree that going once a week will make it harder for a student to remember what they've learned a present a major obstacle for most. However, I cannot accept that a focused and dedicated person attending classes twice a week would not be able to attain the same skill level as they would if training three or even four times a week. It would simply take them more "years" to put in the same hours to get there.

I am certainly not denying that going two times a week may not be enough for some students to make consistent progress. However, training four days a week may not be enough for someone else. Unless we are talking about a big gap between training sessions, I think it comes down to the individual.
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:20 AM   #77
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Niall Matthews wrote: View Post
George you're being judgemental. Didn't Saotome Sensei ever tell you that it's the journey, not the destination.
Actually, no Saotome Sensei never said anything like that... He did say that there was no final destination, that one never arrived. Yes, he did say that. But the majority of what he talked about was how we made the journey... The quality of the journey was and always is important. That's all I am talking about here.

All journeys are not equal. Some folks put so little into their journey that it's too much to be asked to cross the street. Others will journey so far from home that they reach uncharted territory. Sensei ALWAYS talked about O-Sensei and how strict he was, how uncompromising when it came to the training. His art was most definitely not a hobby... His journey had been long and hard but he never stopped on that road. The point is that O-Sensei, even teachers like some of the uchi deshi, went so far on their journeys that regular folks don't even try any more. They accord some special status to these teachers and then tell themselves that however far they themselves get on their journey is fine. There is no sense at all that they should be trying to go down that path as far as the folks who blazed the trail had done.

O-Sensei is gone, the uchi deshi are passing, soon there will be no one left alive who has even journeyed to those far off realms visited by these pioneers who went before; not unless we do it ourselves.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:56 AM   #78
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I've re-read this thread and I think I should clarify something. There seems to be general agreement that someone who cannot meet a standard, shouldn't pass a test. Where there is disagreement is the idea that one should require a certain commitment in order to qualify to even take that test.

Well, I should say here that I am not a believer in any kind of absolute standard for testing and rank. A student who starts when he or she is sixty simply isn't asked to perform the same way a twenty year old is. The physically stronger student isn't expected to perform the same as the smaller weaker student, especially at the beginning. The abuse victim has a whole different standard in my eyes than the student with long martial arts background. All sorts of issues come to play.

So, while the idea of meeting a standard is great, I know of no absolute standard that all students could be asked to meet and have the process make sense.

On the other hand, the one standard that everyone shares is time. Everyone has the same time. It's 24 hours. It's seven days a week. No one has more and no one has less. So, in asking for a set commitment, I believe I am being eminently fair.

You might have different physical capabilities, maybe more or less athletic talent, you might be male, you might be female. You might be young or you might be old. But asking for a minimum commitment of time from all the students is simply asking that they, at the minimum, place their Aikido training in some similar relative place of importance amongst their other concerns. If they choose not to give it that level of importance, then fine. That is the choice everyone makes.

Some folks will put their Aikido first, above all their other concerns. That's fine too. But everyone has the same "currency" to spend... their 24 hours each day. They spend it as they feel they must or as they wish. So "commitment" is something that can be made by anyone, any age, any sex, any ability, any experience. It is the one standard that can be applied fairly to just about everyone.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 10-29-2010, 03:36 AM   #79
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

George Sensei,

thanks so much for the last couple of posts, that really clarified a lot that had been unclear to me as to what you think, and gave me a lot of stuff to ponder. It's great to see you writing more again!

Nicholas

Last edited by Nicholas Eschenbruch : 10-29-2010 at 03:37 AM. Reason: grammar
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Old 10-29-2010, 05:07 AM   #80
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

So reading this thread, and after some talk on aikiweb about Malcolm Gladwell’s „Outliers“ and the 10 000 hours minimum requirement for becoming really good, I felt inspired to sit down and make an excel-based rough estimate: If i am honest with myself, where am I in regard to those 10 000 hours, and when did I do how much of my training? It was really interesting, and while it produced only a few real suprises, it underlined some points that I think are relevant to this thread.

So I find as, as a very passionate hobbyist who has been blessed with quite flexible working hours, good travel opportunites to seminars in driving range, a partner who does aikido, too, and an o.k. salary to base it all on, if I calculate realistically, I have been able to put about 4600 hours into 16 years so far, counting just aikido on the mat, and about 6000 hours if I include cross-training in other arts, body work and meditation relevant to aikido.

(These hours are rough estimates, in no way objective and absolute, so relations are stronger conclusions here than numbers!)

Random observations:

Glorification of past training hours: When asked casually, I would have maintained previously that there were about five years where I trained, in the dojo, five times a week on average. Well, looking at old diaries, that was in fact true for an ideal week back then, but considering all the „non-ideal“ weeks, travel, illness, work, injuries, holidays, etc., there were fewer ideal weeks than I would have thought in retrospect. So one tends to glorify past training intensity, I guess.

Place and intensity: Over all, 60% of my training was on the aikido mat in my home dojo, 20% on courses of some sort, 20% cross-training and supplementary training etc.. Especially in years where I trained a lot, the bulk of the training, that which made the difference in terms of hours, was on the mat in my home dojo. I trained most hours in the years before and after my shodan, and, just counting hours, I have also passed George Sensei’s three times a week criterion any year after my 3rd kyu – often by a lot, sometimes just about. So steady traing in my home dojo was the crucial factor for my over-all hours.

Seminars & events: Even when I went to many seminars, they did not make such a difference in terms of hours, really, unless there was a huge lot of them in one year. And though I went to a lot of summer schools, they hardly matter in terms of hours, either. It’s funny to see, however, that in one month as uchideshi I once did, I trained a lot more than in my whole one-training-a-week first year of aikido. So outside events only seem to matter here when the intensity of the outside event is that of an uchideshi period, or a sesshin for that matter. See below, "money"...

Years for grade: I put in most hours on the aikido mat for shodan, three quarters of that number for nidan and sandan each. Considering that I did not know my left hand from my right when I started, which got better with time, that sort of makes sense as a linear development. Also, the cross-training and supplementary training really got started after nidan with almost 1000 additional hours until sandan. My federation does not count all that, but it was interesting to see.

Money: I will not put sums on the internet, but I was absolutely stunned to find that I probably spent double of what I thought I had on my training – and my initial guess had not been a low figure. Wow. Courses were about 60% of that sum. Some supplementary training (body work etc.) was also really expensive. Considering that I learned some very important stuff on body and mind, with immediate relevance to aikido, on intensive meditation retreats, they turned out to be quite cheap when calculated per hour.

All this, and here we come back to some of George’s points, stresses the importance of (a) the best teacher you can find for the daily training (b) a dojo that offers a lot of training opportunities per week.

In addition, after a certain point, seminars only seem to make sense when they really provide A LOT of new insight and inspiration. I feel vindicated in my recent tendency not to go to seminars that only go through kihon type technical training, even when they are done by some famous teacher.

The future: To be clear, I dont do aikido for fantasies of mastery nowadays, but still I want to give it the very best I can and aim high. So in terms of the 10 000 hours one could come to quite bleak conclusions: if my body gets less resilient and needs more regeneration, which it has started to do, and my professional obligations get more, which they are likely to, how am I going to do the remaining 4000? Which, again, are arguably just the minimum. Not even mentioning possibilities like kids, dependent senior family members, serious injury or illness, etc... I could easily be 60 to even reach the 10 000 hours threshold – which is fine for me personally, but in terms of transmission of the art, there would then maybe just be ten years in which I would have full potential as a teacher.

So if you are younger, I guess I do recommend the couple of places that have intensive and yet personal and humane uchideshi programs, like Kayla Sensei’s which was mentioned. I only got to know about them at 35.

Much food for thought – I recommend the exercise, retrospective or prospective! Excel is juts a blast for maths averse people like me...

Last edited by Nicholas Eschenbruch : 10-29-2010 at 05:20 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 10-29-2010, 07:06 AM   #81
Greg Jennings
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I'll go out on a limb here -

Anyone that puts aikido first in their life is either a professional instructor with no family, or they have their priorities askew.

FWIW,

Greg Jennings
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Old 10-29-2010, 07:39 AM   #82
Rabih Shanshiry
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
I can pretty much guarantee that someone training two days a week at the dojo and doing all sorts of solo training at home, will only be marginally, if at all better at his paired practice than the person who just trains twice a week and watches TV at home.
For someone familiar with the amount of solo training that developing internal skills requires, I am really surprised by this statement.

Developing an aiki body aside, I firmly believe that time spent on general cardio training, practicing solo footwork/movements, visualization, and even studying books or videos can have a measurable impact on one's aikido.

Is it a substitue for paired pratice, especially under the supervision of an instructor? Clearly not. But it has to be far and away better than spending the equivalent time watching TV.
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Old 10-29-2010, 07:52 AM   #83
Rabih Shanshiry
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Well, I should say here that I am not a believer in any kind of absolute standard for testing and rank. A student who starts when he or she is sixty simply isn't asked to perform the same way a twenty year old is.... On the other hand, the one standard that everyone shares is time. Everyone has the same time. It's 24 hours. It's seven days a week. No one has more and no one has less. So, in asking for a set commitment, I believe I am being eminently fair.
Without any absolute standards for testing, you are back to simply another form of rank for time served. Only difference is that it is based on frequency of training rather than duration.

Certainly, not everyone is capable of attaining the same level of skill due to a number of factors but why make allowances for that when it comes to testing and rank? Isn't that the problem that got us into this mess in the first place?

I think ultimately the answer is a business one. Without rank progression, the average student loses a significant motivator to keep them in the dojo and paying dues. Testing fees dont hurt either.
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:44 AM   #84
MM
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

George,
It would be great to have this conversation in person. The internet is never great for communication.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
So, yes, Kisshomaru and Tohei, Arikawa, and Osawa, and later Yamaguchi were the folks that taught frequently. Kuroiwa Sensei was important as well. Each one had trained with the Founder extensively. I mean, if O-Sensei didn't really teach in Tokyo much after the war. And the Tokyo guys didn't train much in Iwama, as Saito would maintain, then where did a generation of post war instructors come from? They didn't spontaneously generate.

There are teachers I learned from who changed my Aikido entirely. Yet, if one did an analysis like the one you did, you'd see that I had a total of a few hours of exposure to them over all. Yet the things they showed me or told me were so central to foundational principles that two classes with them changed my Aikido entirely. O-Sensei was a catalyst more than a teacher. He had worked out the basic form of post war Aikido with Saito in Iwama. Somehow that magically got passed on to a generation of teachers in Tokyo who supposedly didn't have much exposure to the Founder. Not sure how this happened but if you look at what everyone was doing, there was a generally agreed upon set of movements and techniques that constituted modern Aikido.
If we look at several accounts of what the deshi did, we find that there were 4 training sessions a day. The only training session that Morihei Ueshiba taught was the early morning one. When we look at how often Morihei Ueshiba actually taught, we find that it was not often. Until at least the early 1950s, he was mostly in Iwama and even there he didn't teach often.

When he did show up to teach in Tokyo, he either spent most of the time talking about stuff that no one understood or he was interrupted by guests or he would just pop in to show/demonstrate something and then disappear. We know from his students that he traveled. There are numerous interviews about that.

If we look at just how the training was usually set up, we can read and watch the videos to see that Ueshiba typically demonstrated with one uke and then the class practiced with each other. In fact, one interview with Tamura Sensei states it took one to two years to "distinguish techniques a little."

Overall, the actual hands on training time with Morihei Ueshiba, whether Tokyo, Iwama, post-war, or pre-war was very little. The statements made, and repeated, that the deshi trained extensively with the founder is not true. It wasn't extensive. Nothing I've found has yet to support that. Everything, so far, actually supports the opposite. That they had very little direct, hands on training with Morihei Ueshiba.

That isn't to say that there was no training or that these students didn't learn anything from the founder. Nor is it saying that the students of Morihei Ueshiba were lacking in any way. If anything, I think they were exemplary in their quest to learn aiki from the founder. They had hands on time with him as an uke so they felt (IHTBF) the power, the softness, the electric, the ghostiness of the founder and it was phenomenally different than anything else in the martial arts world. There was no lack of enthusiasm or trying on the parts of those students. Heck, just look at some of the interviews on what they had to do, for example clean the toilets. This in post war Japan. Not something commonly done at that time period.

Which brings up your very good question, if the founder wasn't really teaching, then who was? "Where did a generation of post war instructors come from"?

I look at Kisshomaru's words

Aiki News Issue 056

"The dojo was entrusted to me around 1942. That is because my father left for Ibaraki with the rest of the family."

"After the war, I began to practice seriously because I thought it was my duty."

"I have come to hold the belief that the most important task for Aikido since the war has been to conform our way of thinking, teaching and philosophy to the trends of the time. It was around 1937 or 1938 that I began to practice Aikido seriously. I had already learned techniques by then. One can learn techniques in two or three years."

"I started practicing seriously in 1949."

One can learn techniques in two or three years? From Doshu, no less. He started practicing seriously in 1949, which means he was trained in techniques enough by the early 1950s to teach the new students.

Then we look at this:

Aiki News Issue 060
Editor: When you began practicing Aikido [around 1951], was O-Sensei living in Tokyo?
Nishio Sensei: No. He rarely came down from Iwama. It was half a year after I joined the dojo that I saw his face for the first time. Until then, I only knew about him by hearsay.

Editor: When you entered the dojo, there weren't many students, were there?
Nishio Sensei: No, there were only a total of seven or eight. Some days no one was there and I swung the sword by myself and went home. The present Doshu and Mr. Tohei were the teachers. Everybody was at about the same level.

Kisshomaru and Tohei were the primary teachers.

Backed up by this:

Aiki News Issue 066
Aiki News: Who was teaching at that time? [1953 or 54]
Tamura Sensei: Since the present Doshu was head of the dojo then, he usually taught classes. We used to call him "Wakasensei" (young sensei) in those days. Of course, we called Morihei Sensei, O-Sensei. At that time, these two were the only instructors at Hombu dojo so I thought they were the only teachers of Aikido.

Aiki News: Did O-Sensei come to the dojo every day?
Tamura Sensei: As I said earlier, since his house was attached to the dojo, he would pop in when the present Doshu was teaching and show 2 or 3 techniques and then disappear like the wind. He sometimes taught the entire class but on occasion he would talk for more than half of the practice time.

Which is confirmed by Black Belt 1966 Vol 4 No 5:

If the uchideshi isn't helping out at this time, he may have a private class of his own with Tohei or Waka sensei or some of the other instructors.

And then we find out from Black Belt 1968 Vol 6 No 5, that because of the shortage of instructors, Kisshomaru has a battery of promotion examinations.

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
And Kisshomaru and Tohei didn't change things as much as everyone says.
That's a very serious topic for another time. I don't think the aikido world is ready for it. The very short answer, IMO, is that the change was actually much greater than everyone thinks. That isn't to say it was necessarily a bad, or wrong, change.

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
There is no question that, at some point, much of the internal power solo work dropped out of post war Aikido. Some teachers, like Shirata never dropped it out. I was told by one of his students that EVERY class had a portion devoted to these exercises. I think the deshi, when with the Founder, did everything he did. From what Saotome Sensei has said I have been lead to conclude that much of what Sensei has in terms of internal structure he developed doing some of these exercises but was perhaps unaware of it. O-Sensei didn't explain it certainly. So, at 135 pounds Sensei can drop me where I stand effortlessly and, even in my much reduced state, I still have 100 pounds on him. That cane from somewhere but it was never presented to us in any systematic form nor was there explanation of why these exercises existed or that they should be done daily to develop the body for internal power.

Anyway, I can and do go on and on about this... so I will conclude by saying that , the fundamental assumption in these discussions is that post war Aikido wasn't as good as pre-war and that it was all the fault of changes made by Kisshomaryu and Tohei.
No, I don't think that. Post war actually had some of the very same problems pre-war did in regards to Ueshiba and teaching. I also think Ueshiba changed after the war and that change was amplified by his son. But, at one level, yes, Kisshomaru and Tohei did create changes that directly led to Modern Aikido. As I said above, that isn't to say they were necessarily bad, or wrong, changes.

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Well, my take on this is quite different. I believe that post war Aikido became much more the practice that O-Sensei intended it to be as a transformative, personal practice. I see no evidence whatever that it bothered O-Sensei that it was less effective from a fighting standpoint. He virtually NEVER talked about that. To the extent that he was dissatisfied, I am convinced it was because the folks training kept focusing on physical technique and he wanted them to understand how technique was merely an expression of large, much deeper spiritual principles.
In a way, I think you're right. There is an interview where he is quoted as stating that he was a martial artist and not a religious person. That if he had decided to go into the religious field, he would have done great, but he didn't. His was a budo. While spirituality intertwined with his martial effectiveness, it can be seen that when he was lecturing on spiritual matters, he was also directly trying to inform people of the martial effectiveness. As seen in things like this:

Black Belt 1984 Vol 22 No 10
Article by Gaku Homma
Regarding Ueshiba

In the dojo, after greeting a few students, he would lecture on the essence of aikido in Omotokyo teachings, which few students could understand completely. After a short, puzzling moment, he would continue by saying, "What I meant was " or "For example " In one class, he called the instructor to the front and placed the teacher's hands on his hip, commanding the man to push him over. "My body is joined with the universe and nobody can move me," the founder said. The young instructor tried to push him but couldn't.

And there's an interview where he states ai is love. There are interviews where students say his post war was more circular and flowing. Where his post war view of aikido as a spiritual endeavor wasn't all that changed from his pre-war attitude.

So, did it bother him in regards to how effective his aikido was at fighting? I agree with you that it didn't. It was self victory where there was no opponent ... using aiki principles.

Then again, I leave you with quotes from Mochizuki Sensei (bold is my addition):

Black Belt 1980 Vol 18 No 4
Article by David Orange Jr about Mochizuki.

Mochizuki remembers the younger Morihei Uyeshiba and his teaching ways much differently than most modern aikido practitioners who only saw the older man. "Uyeshiba was thinking, as he got older, how to make aikido simpler so people could take it as an exercise." But Mochizuki warns, "Uyeshiba's way of aikido is quite okay for Uyeshiba, but in our case, we are common humans, and nobody will get his power by aping him."

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
I do not think there is a single shred of evidence, and quite a bit to the contrary, that O-Sensei's oft quoted "no one is doing my Aikido" had anything whatever to do with the lack of internal power training in post war Aikido. Rather it was the focus on technique to the exclusion of the spiritual that bothered him.

Anyway, thanks for the input. It's always interesting to see how folks can look at exactly the same information and draw different conclusions.
I think this is another topic best left for another day. Too much information overload at this point.

And it's nice to have a discussion where we can agree, disagree, and read other opinions in a constructive manner. My thanks for that.

Mark
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:28 AM   #85
RED
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Richard Stevens wrote: View Post
I think you may be overlooking the counter-argument that has been persisting in this thread. There is no denying that students should not be passed if they do not have the technical skills. However, utilizing your analogy, if I were to take that same class for for 12 years wouldn't I have developed the knowledge required to pass that class?

Is a person training twice a week for ten years going to be unable to attain the skill level of a person training three times a week for six years? I don't buy it. Yes, I agree that going once a week will make it harder for a student to remember what they've learned a present a major obstacle for most. However, I cannot accept that a focused and dedicated person attending classes twice a week would not be able to attain the same skill level as they would if training three or even four times a week. It would simply take them more "years" to put in the same hours to get there.

I am certainly not denying that going two times a week may not be enough for some students to make consistent progress. However, training four days a week may not be enough for someone else. Unless we are talking about a big gap between training sessions, I think it comes down to the individual.
I'm not sure personally. I've never heard a student with that lack of commitment last more than 2 years.

The attitude is what I dislike at least. Say a guy had a girl friend and he wined her and dined her every day. Then a buddy comes over and says "You don't have to do that, I bought her a pack of gum and cheeseburger twice a week, and she totally puts out!" I sort of feel like the boyfriend in this situation. Some times people say things that make me feel like you're calling my girl easy! Like she isn't important enough to commit to.
If I don't believe my girl Aikido to be "easy", thus it annoys me if I hear people say that they only need to commit 2 or 1 days a week to get her to "put out". In other words they think they can get good with a limited level of commitment.
You might get your hours in in 12 years, but are you at the same level as some one who can commit a great amount of time to Aikido?

As a woman, we call the man that commits everyday a husband, we call the guy who can give his time twice a week the pool boy. lol

Last edited by RED : 10-29-2010 at 10:39 AM.

MM
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:35 AM   #86
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
I'm not sure personally. I've never heard a student with that lack of commitment last more than 2 years.

.
I have friends with that type of committment who have outlasted many burning enthusiasts, one has trained like that for many years, because of family, work and a long drive to training, and I admire him for that. Another one has had three kids and I admire her even more.

So unless you have been there yourself for a long time, I think it's risky to say others "lack" committment.

By that I dont mean to say one gets far with once a week, but if that is their committment, it covers the ground they stand on. I have learned not to judge committment until a person has been around for at least ten years. Probably more would make sense.

Last edited by Nicholas Eschenbruch : 10-29-2010 at 10:36 AM. Reason: grammar and last sentence
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:51 AM   #87
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Nicholas Eschenbruch wrote: View Post
I have friends with that type of committment who have outlasted many burning enthusiasts, one has trained like that for many years, because of family, work and a long drive to training, and I admire him for that. Another one has had three kids and I admire her even more.

So unless you have been there yourself for a long time, I think it's risky to say others "lack" committment.

By that I dont mean to say one gets far with once a week, but if that is their committment, it covers the ground they stand on. I have learned not to judge committment until a person has been around for at least ten years. Probably more would make sense.
It is a lack of commitment. It is a hobby to them. You say the hobbyist should be on the same level as the uchi deshi?
The uchi deshi obviously has more commitment to it than the hobbyist.
The guy who gives 12 hours a week commits more than the guy who gives 2 hours. It is a lacking of commitment.

There is nothing wrong with training 2 hours a week steadily. Just don't confuse it as the same as a guy who devotes many many hours. Aikido means some thing different to these people. It is in a different place in their life.

Last edited by RED : 10-29-2010 at 10:55 AM.

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Old 10-29-2010, 10:58 AM   #88
Greg Jennings
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

A lot of this is covered by something my instructor told me early on "Shut up and train".

I believe Jun quoted Ikeda Sensei, apologies if it get it wrong, "Less talk, more train".

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Old 10-29-2010, 11:31 AM   #89
MM
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Greg Jennings wrote: View Post
A lot of this is covered by something my instructor told me early on "Shut up and train".

I believe Jun quoted Ikeda Sensei, apologies if it get it wrong, "Less talk, more train".
You have entered a discussion where there are multiple layers of nuance. I would take a moment to reread the thread for a better understanding of what is really going on. You words above seem more an insult than anything. I'm sure they weren't meant that way.

For instance, if Shioda and Tomiki took about 5 years to get really good at aikido, then why is it that 40+ years of training hasn't created more like them? So, the adage of "shut up and train" can be construed to just be a mindless sheep listening and learning from teachers who have yet to attain any appreciable level (compared to the Aikido Greats). "Eat more rice", "it's a 20 year technique", etc.

One of the nuances being discussed here is the Modern Aikido vs aiki approach. Another nuance is, as George stated in his post #71, is directed towards teachers. Another is historical.

"Shut up and train" is not, IMO, very constructive in regards to this thread. I'm sure you have some very good actual content that you could post and it would be refreshing to read it.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:33 AM   #90
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Define the standards. The ones delivering the goods got promoted. With clear standards this kind of issues don't happen

Last edited by Demetrio Cereijo : 10-29-2010 at 11:35 AM.

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Old 10-29-2010, 11:59 AM   #91
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
It is a lack of commitment.
Because you said so?

Again you are setting yourself up as the arbiter of standards, not to mention a mind-reader. You claim to know both what the standard of "commitment" is and also what is present in another person's mind. Surely you see that this is simply projecting your own attitudes, beliefs and experiences onto others.
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:05 PM   #92
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
You might have different physical capabilities, maybe more or less athletic talent, you might be male, you might be female. You might be young or you might be old. But asking for a minimum commitment of time from all the students is simply asking that they, at the minimum, place their Aikido training in some similar relative place of importance amongst their other concerns. If they choose not to give it that level of importance, then fine. That is the choice everyone makes.
It isn't always a choice. There are people whose bodies will simply not let them train two days in a row. I'm one of these people, temporarily I hope, but for others it's a permanent fact of life.

If you wish to say that without a certain frequency of training, one will never achieve mastery, I wouldn't disagree -- you'd know much more about that than I would. What I dislike is the repeated use of the term "commitment", a word that encompasses both attitude and action, as if it were a matter of simple volition. This is only true for those who are able-bodied and unencumbered with responsibility.
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:08 PM   #93
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Because you said so?

Again you are setting yourself up as the arbiter of standards, not to mention a mind-reader. You claim to know both what the standard of "commitment" is and also what is present in another person's mind. Surely you see that this is simply projecting your own attitudes, beliefs and experiences onto others.
Is some one who trains 2 hours a week committing as much time as some one who devotes 8-12-24 hours a week?

There's nothing wrong with committing 2 hours a week, it's people's need for validation I think that leads them to wanting their 2 hours a week to be considered as serious as some one who devotes the better part of their life to the art.

2 hours a week, it is a fun recreation for you. Nothing wrong with that.

MM
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:17 PM   #94
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Is some one who trains 2 hours a week committing as much time as some one who devotes 8-12-24 hours a week?

There's nothing wrong with committing 2 hours a week, it's people's need for validation I think that leads them to wanting their 2 hours a week to be considered as serious as some one who devotes the better part of their life to the art.

2 hours a week, it is a fun recreation for you. Nothing wrong with that.
When I visit my homeland every summer, I visit the local Dojo and train there. The sensei is 2nd Dan and IMO an excellent teacher. Most of his Aikido training to achieve dan grade involved a 2hr drive, each way, to get from his home to the nearest dojo, for a couple of hours training, once or twice a week.
That's commitment.
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:38 PM   #95
Rabih Shanshiry
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Maggie,

All your talk about commitment and sacrifice is really coming off wrong.

I'm sorry but getting to roll around in your pajamas 5x/week when you are a healthy, unemployed college student with no children and the finances to support that lifestyle does not make you any more passionate about or committed to aikido than someone who's life circumstances do not allow that frequency of training.

If you're still doing what you're doing after having a couple kids, struggling with medical issues, and working a full-time job, I'll be all ears.
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Old 10-29-2010, 01:04 PM   #96
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Rabih Shanshiry wrote: View Post
Maggie,

All your talk about commitment and sacrifice is really coming off wrong.

I'm sorry but getting to roll around in your pajamas 5x/week when you are a healthy, unemployed college student with no children and the finances to support that lifestyle does not make you any more passionate about or committed to aikido than someone who's life circumstances do not allow that frequency of training.

If you're still doing what you're doing after having a couple kids, struggling with medical issues, and working a full-time job, I'll be all ears.
That's unfair. Who told you anything about me?

I'm married, am a full time student, employed, with 3 cracked discs in my back.
I've worked my life's circumstances around to do what I prioritized as important...like we all do.

I've quit a job that I felt was putting to much strain on my body because it was taking me out of training. It is just because I prioritized one thing above the other.
All about priorities. I value my savings account more than spending money... so it isn't financial security, it is a series of wise finical decisions....again prioritizing.
People make too many excuses. If some thing is important to you, you work it in!


If something is important to you, hell fire can not stop you.
Many people, especially of my generation lack a sense of personal responsibility. Your success in anything is your own doing. If you want something, nothing is an obstacle to stop you.

There's nothing wrong if things in your life take priority over Aikido, just be honest that they do. There's nothing wrong with that. and there's nothing wrong if I prioritize training over other things. We all do it, we just need to be honest with what Aikido is on our lives.

Last edited by RED : 10-29-2010 at 01:18 PM.

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Old 10-29-2010, 01:18 PM   #97
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Is some one who trains 2 hours a week committing as much time as some one who devotes 8-12-24 hours a week?
Of course not but, does he/she meets the standards?

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Old 10-29-2010, 02:30 PM   #98
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
Is some one who trains 2 hours a week committing as much time as some one who devotes 8-12-24 hours a week?
Of course not. But note that "committing as much time" has a very different connotation than "have as much commitment".

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
There's nothing wrong with committing 2 hours a week, it's people's need for validation I think that leads them to wanting their 2 hours a week to be considered as serious as some one who devotes the better part of their life to the art.
This strikes me as a strawman argument. I can't think of anything said in this thread (or elsewhere, for this matter) in which anyone considered two hours of training a week to be equivalent as "the better part of [your] life". However, you're taking another sharp tack into the realm of subjectivity when you judge them based on their "serious"ness. Apples are not oranges.

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
2 hours a week, it is a fun recreation for you.
It really isn't for you to say what others' training is or isn't.

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
If something is important to you, hell fire can not stop you.
"hell fire"? So, you've died and been to hell and can tell us what "hell fire" is like?

Hyperbole may convince some. On me it has the opposite effect.
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Old 10-29-2010, 02:46 PM   #99
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I have noticed that people who train 2 times a week tend to stay longer than people who train 4 times a week right away. People who burn bright usually seem to burn fast, in my experience.
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Old 10-29-2010, 02:53 PM   #100
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
There's nothing wrong if things in your life take priority over Aikido, just be honest that they do. There's nothing wrong with that. and there's nothing wrong if I prioritize training over other things. We all do it, we just need to be honest with what Aikido is on our lives.
From what I'm gathering from what you've posted your position is that a person who trains only twice a week is less committed to Aikido than the person who trains three times a week? Even if, hypothetically, that person has a family that comes first and the other person has no outside commitments?

Have you considered the possibility that for some people training two days a week is far more difficult than it may be for another to train four or even five days a week? Doesn't that show greater commitment on their part?
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