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Old 10-25-2010, 11:57 AM   #26
thisisnotreal
 
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
People realize that if they stay they will change and they don't really want to change.
May I ask what you had in mind, about this part?
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Old 10-25-2010, 11:58 AM   #27
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Anyway, it's different now for the young student. There are several generations of practitioners ahead of them. None feels any special responsibility to be a crucial part of the transmission... there seems to be lots of other folks doing that. I really think that is what is missing for folks now that wasn't true in your day or even mine... we knew there was no one else. It motivated us and made us feel "special". No one we knew was doing anything like what we were doing... It's a time gone by now and the young Aikido students will never have the same experience.
sensei, i think you need to develop a Wii aikido program. i mean they got wii yoga and stuffs, why not aikido?
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Old 10-25-2010, 12:13 PM   #28
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Josh Philipson wrote: View Post
May I ask what you had in mind, about this part?
Aside from that portion of the Aikido community which does the art, mistakenly, I think (as I am on record as stating any number of times), strictly for self defense purposes, I think most folks start Aikido or some other form of training looking to balance out some conscious or even unconscious feeling of weakness or lack of confidence.

Folks generally like the idea of personal transformation, empowerment, losing weight, being more confident, etc. The problem is that if you train and train hard enough to stay with it and meet the standard we set, at least at my own dojo, you will indeed find yourself changing as a person. Most people, although they say they like the idea of change, they really do not. Who would you be if you weren't who you are now. Many people choose to stay with the old dysfunctions rather than go forward into the unknown.

This is precisely why it is so difficult to get folks to do counseling, even when they are desperately unhappy. They would rather stay with what they know than risk becoming else and not knowing where that would lead. Pema Chodren wrote about exactly this subject in one of her books. She said that just when the student has done enough preliminary training that they get to the point at which the real work starts, that's when they bail. For us that is somewhere around Brown Belt.

Also, it has been a long standing joke amongst many of us teachers that when a new student comes up to you and tells you how fantastic the dojo is, how great a teacher you are, that Aikido is changing their lives... they'll be gone in less than three weeks. In 25 years of teaching I have seen this so many times I've lost count. The key phrase was "changing my life". They like the idea but not the reality, it's just too scary.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
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Old 10-25-2010, 12:25 PM   #29
Hellis
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Smile Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Hi Henry,
The pioneers trained differently... I was one of Saotome Sensei's original students at the Washington DC dojo when he opened back in 1975. Actually I started when it had been open under six months so it was 1976 for me.

Sensei stated right from day one that he was training future professionals. It didn't occur to me that I wouldn't be teaching some day or that I wouldn't always be in it. We didn't have quite the retention in the art that you experienced but it was way higher than the average today... We trained 6 or 7 days a week, a couple classes a night. Of the original five instructors, one is still at the DC dojo and the other is Raso Hultgren Sensei who runs the dojo in Missoula, MT. Of the original eight students who all took shodan together, there are two of us left, myself, and Charlie Page Sensei who is co-Chief Instructor at the ASU dojo in Baltimore along with Chuck Weber Sensei, who had come to DC a bit after my group started. Also, in that first year we had folks pass through for shorter stays, including Linda Holiday Sensei, now a Chief Instructor in Santa Cruz, and Dave Hurley, who teaches at Two Cranes Aikido here in Seattle.

Anyway, my point is that the folks who were in that first and second generation really felt like they were doing something special. When I started there were very few people ahead of me and we knew all their names. The senior Non-Japanese Americans in Aikido were 4th Dans when I started. Klickstein, Doran, Witt, Nadeau, Dobson, Heiny... So we were it as far as knowing that we were going to be the next generation of teachers. I always knew that it was up to us to pass on the amazing stuff we were given by Saotome Sensei. There simply weren't others (in any significant numbers) to do it. In those days if you asked one of us what we did, we told them Aikido. Not our job, but our training. That's how we thought about what we were doing... Our jobs were just to support the training.

It's different now. Maybe because the Hippie days are over and alternative today means having a Naturopath... any way, the young people today actually seem to feel that they should have real incomes and money for their kids educations and retirement... what a concept! Can't fault them but it's different than most of us... Joseph Campbell was telling us to "follow our bliss" and many of us did just that. It's far harder to find folks now who will train anything like how we trained. I have talked to other teachers and they seem to agree. A serious student at my dojo trains three times a week. Hardly any of my students and none of my seniors train every day. Maybe this is because I am out in the suburbs and this is where folks come to have careers and families... it might be different in the city.

Anyway, it's different now for the young student. There are several generations of practitioners ahead of them. None feels any special responsibility to be a crucial part of the transmission... there seems to be lots of other folks doing that. I really think that is what is missing for folks now that wasn't true in your day or even mine... we knew there was no one else. It motivated us and made us feel "special". No one we knew was doing anything like what we were doing... It's a time gone by now and the young Aikido students will never have the same experience.
Hi George

I agree, it was very different then, maybe because we did not have TV . The now famous Hut Dojo was a Judo dojo, I saw the first Aikido class and joined, doing both Judo and Aikido, we were now the only students in the UK for Aikido, Ken Williams Sensei said several times " One day we will all be teaching professionally " . I really did enjoy my Aikido but I did not share Williams Sensei's vision..I really never imagined the adventure we were embarking on.
I do recognise some of the early names you mention.
You may be interested to know that there were Americans doing Aikido in Britain in the 1950s. We had two large USAF bases within a short distance of the Hut Dojo, we had quiet a lot of American students in those early days. I have a film taken of a demonstration we did at the European USAF Judo Championships at West Drayton near London in 1963. The film is to my knowledge the first UK Aikido film ?? the old 8mm is not too clear but worth a look on http://aikidoellisvideo.magnify.net/
Many good memories.

Henry Ellis
http://aikidoarticles.blogspot.com/
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Old 10-25-2010, 12:47 PM   #30
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Henry Ellis wrote: View Post
Hi George

I agree, it was very different then, maybe because we did not have TV . The now famous Hut Dojo was a Judo dojo, I saw the first Aikido class and joined, doing both Judo and Aikido, we were now the only students in the UK for Aikido, Ken Williams Sensei said several times " One day we will all be teaching professionally " . I really did enjoy my Aikido but I did not share Williams Sensei's vision..I really never imagined the adventure we were embarking on.
I do recognise some of the early names you mention.
You may be interested to know that there were Americans doing Aikido in Britain in the 1950s. We had two large USAF bases within a short distance of the Hut Dojo, we had quiet a lot of American students in those early days. I have a film taken of a demonstration we did at the European USAF Judo Championships at West Drayton near London in 1963. The film is to my knowledge the first UK Aikido film ?? the old 8mm is not too clear but worth a look on http://aikidoellisvideo.magnify.net/
Many good memories.

Henry Ellis
http://aikidoarticles.blogspot.com/
Thanks Henry... great video. Looked like a lot of old Tohei in that Aikido.
- George

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
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Old 10-28-2010, 07:50 AM   #31
HarlieG
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Tongue Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Phi Truong wrote: View Post

so, if you make it to sandan, then there were 100,000 folks never made it.
Thanks! Taking my Sandan test next week....let's hope I don't become one of the 100,000! :-)

DG
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Old 10-28-2010, 10:12 AM   #32
crbateman
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Thanks Henry... great video. Looked like a lot of old Tohei in that Aikido.
- George
I do hope that old Tohei doesn't read this...
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Old 11-01-2010, 07:06 AM   #33
Randy Sexton
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

George,
Thanks for your thoughts. I came into Aikido to find what was missing in my Taekwondo training. I was always told the philosophy and deeper things were always one belt above. It was at Black Belt then 2nd Dan then 3rd Dan and one day my grandmaster told me finally that what I was looking for was not to be found in Taekwondo. It is a great art and one that I still practice but I found what I have been looking for as a martial artist in Aikido. It just keeps getting deeper. I have learned over the years to enjoy the plateaus and stay on the path. It is a journey not a destination and the change within occurs over a lifetime. Saotome sensei has been a great inspiration and his depth of understanding and philosophy is what I have searched for. Teachers like you are an inspiration to continue to evolve and grow.

Staying on the path,

Doc Sexton
aka Dr. Randy Sexton
Aikido of Lake Keowee

"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will"
Gandhi
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Old 11-01-2010, 07:57 AM   #34
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
While not exactly a scientific sample, this is basically my experience. Most folks are "gone" within weeks. They may dues for quite a while but they really aren't training. There is a serious loss of students at about 1st kyu. People realize that if they stay they will change and they don't really want to change. So they drop out before their Shodan tests. Then there is a large disappearance after Shodan because the "goal oriented" folks have attained that goal of getting a black belt. They realize that there's nothing but road ahead and to keep going take more effort not less and they are off to the next challenge.
Hello George,
My experience here in Hiroshima, equally unscientific, is different. The people who drop out here do so for overtly clear reasons: study, new jobs that require a move, pre-aikido injuries that are exacerbated with beginner training. Some never make it beyond the first class: for some Japanese the prospect of learning a Japanese martial at the hands of foreigners is too much to accept. We are a relatively small dojo, but I would put our drop-out rate at about 1 in 5, always in the lower kyu ranks. All the members who have come up through the ranks and become yudansha have stayed.
Personally, I think there are no reliable figures about drop-out rates in aikido worldwide. Similarly, there are no reliable figures about the aikido population overall worldwide. Doshu loves to cite figures, always a seven figure number and always increasing, as evidence of aikido's growing popularity. Of course, he is biased and I suspect that the drop-out rates in the one dojo where they are able to keep a tally (the Aikikai Hombu Dojo in Tokyo) are a closely guarded secret.

Best wishes,

PAG

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Old 11-01-2010, 11:50 AM   #35
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

I was gonna post a couple days ago but got side-tracked...

I think some of what I witness I contribute to the "commodity effect". Students buy 6 months of aikido, or a year, or whatever; they come to the dojo, they get their aikido and they leave. They try out aikido as an experience, much as they do joining a gym, taking a yoga class, etc. This is fine - I always tell new students to think about what they want before we talk money. I don't want some one in class who doesn't want to be there.

Personally, I do not think aikido is for everyone. I think we should try to expose as many people to the art, but at the end of the day attrition helps to preserve the integrity of the art.

I think a larger problem here in the US is that this consumption-oriented mindset breaks down within the dojo. We need senior students to fill the sempai role and help sensei disseminate her instruction. We are now seeing students of sempai rank who possess this consumptive mindset; these students are not undertaking some of the active [sempai] student roles because they believe that is not what they pay for...

I am not as concerned about the drop out rate of aikido as much as I am the participation rate of the students who stay in aikido. I believe that a key component of the transmission of aikido is fulfilled by the 2, 3 and 4 dan grades - to digest what the shihan say and reformat it for the clods like me who don't speak shihan. These individuals represent the future of aikido and it will be their responsibility to consume, analyze, reformat and disseminate what our shihan are saying today. I think I remember a post from Ledyard sensei that spoke to this issue. To that extent, we need enough of these students to undertake that responsibility, and they need to be committed to fulfilling that responsibility.
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:31 PM   #36
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
Peter A Goldsbury wrote: View Post
Hello George,
My experience here in Hiroshima, equally unscientific, is different. The people who drop out here do so for overtly clear reasons: study, new jobs that require a move, pre-aikido injuries that are exacerbated with beginner training. Some never make it beyond the first class: for some Japanese the prospect of learning a Japanese martial at the hands of foreigners is too much to accept. We are a relatively small dojo, but I would put our drop-out rate at about 1 in 5, always in the lower kyu ranks. All the members who have come up through the ranks and become yudansha have stayed.
Personally, I think there are no reliable figures about drop-out rates in aikido worldwide. Similarly, there are no reliable figures about the aikido population overall worldwide. Doshu loves to cite figures, always a seven figure number and always increasing, as evidence of aikido's growing popularity. Of course, he is biased and I suspect that the drop-out rates in the one dojo where they are able to keep a tally (the Aikikai Hombu Dojo in Tokyo) are a closely guarded secret.

Best wishes,

PAG
Hi Peter.
Thank God I don't have to contend with the cultural issue issue if being a foreigner teaching a Japanese art to Japanese students! Although I suspect that, as a male, taking over a dojo from Mary Heiny Sensei that was predominantly women could have been somewhat analogous.

As we have discussed at length in other threads, Americans seem to have more "O-Sensei" injected into their Aikido than the Japanese. For most of us, I think, the whole spiritual / philosophical aspect as an important part of why we do Aikido and why we started in the first place. So that adds just another layer of complex expectations that can be disappointed when folks train. I think the thread on how much is enough training is relevant here as well. I had students tell me that they were quitting because they had realized that in order for the practice to fulfill the "promise" and deliver the goods in terms of being the transformational process they had read about, it was going to take more work than they had bargained for.

So when folks think it's just about a set of movement and motor skills, that's hard enough but when they really do buy in to the idea that it's about personal transformation, it starts to sink in what they've really jumped into. Some folks react by really throwing themselves in to it in a way that they hadn't before and others react by quitting. I have been unable to predict who would make which choice, even after all these years of teaching. I am still constantly surprised. More often than not, it has nothing to do with whether they were the ones who were technically the best, which I find very interesting.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
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Old 11-02-2010, 11:36 AM   #37
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
So when folks think it's just about a set of movement and motor skills, that's hard enough but when they really do buy in to the idea that it's about personal transformation, it starts to sink in what they've really jumped into. Some folks react by really throwing themselves in to it in a way that they hadn't before and others react by quitting. I have been unable to predict who would make which choice, even after all these years of teaching. I am still constantly surprised. More often than not, it has nothing to do with whether they were the ones who were technically the best, which I find very interesting.
The people who are not technically talented already expect aikido will be hard. The spiritual transformation is just another level of difficulty.

Katherine
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Old 11-02-2010, 12:14 PM   #38
Janet Rosen
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
The people who are not technically talented already expect aikido will be hard. The spiritual transformation is just another level of difficulty.
I resemble that remark!

Janet Rosen
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Old 11-02-2010, 01:14 PM   #39
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
The people who are not technically talented already expect aikido will be hard. The spiritual transformation is just another level of difficulty.
Or maybe a different kind of difficulty rather than a different level...and in some ways, one that they may be better suited for than a more "naturally" technically talented student.

I've had a lot of great conversations with my sensei, but I'll always remember this one. It was one of those days when I got a glimmer of something starting to come together. As we were leaving the dojo, I said to him, "You know, I'm really slow at learning physical skills."

He said, with utter sincerity, "I am too."

If you have to take the slow way through every obstacle, one more obstacle that takes some work is just not all that daunting.
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Old 11-04-2010, 10:03 AM   #40
sakumeikan
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Or maybe a different kind of difficulty rather than a different level...and in some ways, one that they may be better suited for than a more "naturally" technically talented student.

I've had a lot of great conversations with my sensei, but I'll always remember this one. It was one of those days when I got a glimmer of something starting to come together. As we were leaving the dojo, I said to him, "You know, I'm really slow at learning physical skills."

He said, with utter sincerity, "I am too."

If you have to take the slow way through every obstacle, one more obstacle that takes some work is just not all that daunting.
Hi All ,
As a long term student/teacher the question of drop out rates intrigue me.Like so many others I am intrigued how some people arrive at a dojo , take a couple of classes , say they like them then vanish like snow on a sunny day without a word or explanation.One minute you seem them the next they are gone.
I think that most of these guys who drop out lack patience.You tell them that they have to undergo a process whereby they have to acquire a basic foundation.Now basics can be boring but you must do this work.It takes time.I think we live in an instant society, nobody wants to spend time on repetitive , basic moves. I am of the opinion that Aikido requires a certain type of mindset not generally found in the average person in quantity.Of course modern day pressures do not help matters.
I for one led a rather spartan life when I was young , training everyday in the local Judo Club[ just like my old chum Henry Ellis Sensei].With little money and very few local facilities[coupled with a need for some physical activity to get rid of possible deep rooted feelings of anger?I needed this outlet for my feelings.No drugs/ booze or nubile young ladies
disturbed my training regime(sad to say].
Cheers, Joe.
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Old 11-04-2010, 10:50 AM   #41
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Exclamation Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Dave Plaza wrote: View Post
You can just tell when somebody is going to be a stayer. I think I always secretly evaluate newcomers to myself in the sense of if they are going to stick it or not.
I haven't seen this at all, in that I can't really say if someone will stick with it or not, unless they have already had some Aikido experience. Sure, hindsight is always 20/20 as they say, and looking back I remember a certain enthusiasm that certain students that stayed through to black belt had, on the other hand there could be a quality that others are picking up on and responding to that makes them feel more like coming to class. I think for every "rule" there is a student out there who ended up staying with Aikido even though they did not fit the "rule." the danger is the student who doesn't fit the "rule" picking up on it and not feeling as welcomed in the dojo because students have already somewhat written him/or her off. There is something internal going on and I just can't tell what someones commitment level is inside. It's important to stay in the here and now. I'm not sure either about the criteria. It is hard to evaluate not knowing what success is? Some people move, or go on with their life in some way, they may not have time to devote to Aikido, who knows? If someone's life has been enriched and the fabric of he dojo has been enriched for several years or even several days or just one day is that a failure anyhow? I think if a student were only to come for one day, that could be an important experience for that person that still enrich their life.
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Old 11-04-2010, 11:45 AM   #42
Chris Evans
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

I've barley started and I'm already having my doubts about Aikido for me now: I'm thinking I should focus more on Judo or BJJ where I burn more calories, learn to deal with more pain in more places, and get fit first.

Perhaps I ought wait on Aikido until I've gotten shodan in Judo (or brown blt in BJJ) first....

Last edited by Chris Evans : 11-04-2010 at 11:47 AM.

"The state that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting by fools."
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Old 11-04-2010, 08:05 PM   #43
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

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Chris Evans wrote: View Post
I've barley started and I'm already having my doubts about Aikido for me now: I'm thinking I should focus more on Judo or BJJ where I burn more calories, learn to deal with more pain in more places, and get fit first.

Perhaps I ought wait on Aikido until I've gotten shodan in Judo (or brown blt in BJJ) first....
Here we have an example that I have mentioned earlier - the new guy/potential aikido drop out.The usual type of student , one who comes along trains?for a few weeks then decides that aikido is either
1.Not physically demanding.
2.Too complex [another reason]
3.Cant get me fit/lose weight or some other reason.
Calories-Rather than burn calories[if that is the goal] why not simply limit the intake of hamburgers/ice cream and related junk food,go for a brisk walk or whatever.
Pain threshold: As for dealing with pain I experienced more pain in Aikido than in judo.The only pain I ever felt in my earlier Judo career was the pain from badly executed ankle throws.
Getting fit: If you train constantly and with sincerity and purpose
you certainly will get fit.
The maxim that you only get out what you put in in my opinion sums it up.If for example you simply sit back and do not put any
effort into the training what can anybody expect to get back in return?No pain -no gain.
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Old 11-05-2010, 12:42 AM   #44
Chris Evans
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Question Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
Joe Curran wrote: View Post
Here we have an example that I have mentioned earlier - the new guy/potential aikido drop out.The usual type of student , one who comes along trains?for a few weeks then decides that aikido is either
1.Not physically demanding.
2.Too complex [another reason]
3.Cant get me fit/lose weight or some other reason.
Calories-Rather than burn calories[if that is the goal] why not simply limit the intake of hamburgers/ice cream and related junk food,go for a brisk walk or whatever.
Pain threshold: As for dealing with pain I experienced more pain in Aikido than in judo.The only pain I ever felt in my earlier Judo career was the pain from badly executed ankle throws.
Getting fit: If you train constantly and with sincerity and purpose
you certainly will get fit.
The maxim that you only get out what you put in in my opinion sums it up.If for example you simply sit back and do not put any
effort into the training what can anybody expect to get back in return?No pain -no gain.
I was thinking Aikido might help my Karate practice, but doing more Jujitsu would better prepare me for MMA-style sparring. Doing Aikido twice a week means I'd drop a Jujitsu/Judo day: Once a week Aikido hardly seem worth it.

Improving my relaxation and flow would benefit my Karate, that I've been doing for years. Aikido classes would not conflict with Karate classes.

I'm fit enough for semi-contact Karate sparring to keep my people "interested," but not fit enough for the full contact MMA: after a minute I run out of "gas" and get vulnerable to take-downs. I'm nearly clueless on the ground.

"The state that separates its scholars from its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting by fools."
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Old 11-05-2010, 05:06 AM   #45
Dieter Haffner
 
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

I think off every newcomer that she/he will not last for 6 months.
Yet I try to train with every newcomer as if she/he will be my newest best aiki buddy.
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Old 11-05-2010, 07:43 AM   #46
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
Chris Evans wrote: View Post
I was thinking Aikido might help my Karate practice, but doing more Jujitsu would better prepare me for MMA-style sparring. Doing Aikido twice a week means I'd drop a Jujitsu/Judo day: Once a week Aikido hardly seem worth it.

Improving my relaxation and flow would benefit my Karate, that I've been doing for years. Aikido classes would not conflict with Karate classes.

I'm fit enough for semi-contact Karate sparring to keep my people "interested," but not fit enough for the full contact MMA: after a minute I run out of "gas" and get vulnerable to take-downs. I'm nearly clueless on the ground.
I may just be too far into my "get off my lawn" years, but whenever I see someone who starts aikido because they think it will help them with some other thing over there -- whether the other thing is another martial art, or a problem in your head, or a perceived physical deficiency, or whatever -- I am pretty sure it's not going to last. And you know what? The same is true of karate, or of any other martial art. A martial art resists being put to use in that way, like it was some kind of inert tool, a roll of duct tape or a screwdriver. A martial art is almost like a sentient being: it has history, it has a kind of self-awareness, and a reason for being that is sufficient unto itself. If you try to cherrypick the things you want from a martial art ("reduce my stress", "tone my abs", whatever), it will resist you subtly and sometimes not so subtly. People who come to aikido with the cherrypicking approach generally leave, and those who stay, do so only if they've managed to discard this approach and move into an open-minded, "take it as it is" attitude. But this requires a lot of patience. You can't really have goals in the same way -- you have to accept the turnings of the path as you come to them, and they may not be going in the way that you really wanted to be going right that moment. It's a helluva nice stroll, but you have to get your agenda out of the way in order to take it.
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Old 11-05-2010, 08:54 AM   #47
guest1234567
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 428
Spain
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
Dieter Haffner wrote: View Post
I think off every newcomer that she/he will not last for 6 months.
Yet I try to train with every newcomer as if she/he will be my newest best aiki buddy.
Very wise, I surely would enjoy starting to train with you.
That is the secret in our dojo, very simple, good training without ego, nobody is better than the other, it doesn't matter if he is a 5th Dan or a newby, if he is a great scholar or if he just can write his name, and the class is newer boring, every day our teacher makes a special class and we really enjoy it, we learn,sweat and after class always we have something to laugh
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Old 11-05-2010, 09:03 AM   #48
Randy Sexton
Dojo: Aikido of Lake Keowee
Location: South Carolina
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

As I have stated before, I got into Aikido almost 4 years ago for the philosophy/spiritual aspect that I was missing in my Taekwondo training. My Sensei is an excellent teacher, a powerful martial artist making our Aikido powerful with soft movements with a very strong awareness of the martial aspects including knowing the options of powerful strikes and throws to devastate our attackers if needed but to use great control and discretion when to be gentle and when to put him out of commission.
The deeper things I find through our discussions with Semsei and attending summer camp and seminars with great people like Saotome Sensei and Ikedo Sensei and exposure to wonderful teachers such as George Ledyard and Dennis Hooker.
I enjoy our conversations and columns offered in the website and am very grateful for it. I also supplement that with a lot of reading and meditation.
To me Aikido has what most of us as martial artists are looking but as a unpolished diamond we must be patient and polish it over the years without be so goal minded and rank minded. It is a path for developing great physical ability and spiritual strength. If a person is looking for that training to be a cage fighter then Aikido may not be the path for them. But I think it is misleading to think that the majority of martial artists care for that type of training. I have seen several people come to our dojo and tell us they want to be a great fighter and leave when what they see is not the typical rough and tumble of kicking and hitting and ground battle they think they are looking for. If it is then God bless them and keep moving down the road. I spent many years learning to kick and block and hit with great force but not a lot of options to do otherwise. Aikido gives me those options to be as gentle as a parent controlling an irate out of control child to being devastating to eliminate the threat to my life in a few moments.
I used to keep a list of new students to remember their names but I stopped due to the number of people who started and went on a different path. People who come I welcome but know they may be only "visiting."
I read that OSensei welcomed "guests" but knew that only a few would grow into mature martial artists. To my understanding all would benefit from Aikido but as in all paths they must find the one path for them. If they do come and go then maybe we should welcome them to the dojo and thank for visiting; and if they stay we embrace them as fellow martial artists who have found what they need in Aikido

Doc Sexton

"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will"
Gandhi
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Old 11-05-2010, 04:23 PM   #49
sakumeikan
Dojo: Sakumeikan N.E. Aikkai .Newcastle upon Tyne.
Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1,266
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Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
Chris Evans wrote: View Post
I was thinking Aikido might help my Karate practice, but doing more Jujitsu would better prepare me for MMA-style sparring. Doing Aikido twice a week means I'd drop a Jujitsu/Judo day: Once a week Aikido hardly seem worth it.

Improving my relaxation and flow would benefit my Karate, that I've been doing for years. Aikido classes would not conflict with Karate classes.

I'm fit enough for semi-contact Karate sparring to keep my people "interested," but not fit enough for the full contact MMA: after a minute I run out of "gas" and get vulnerable to take-downs. I'm nearly clueless on the ground.
Hi Chris,
The situation you have is not about doubting Aikido per se.What you are trying to do is to train in various arts within limited time frames.
My own opinion here is that there is a fair possibiltty that you will
be a jack of all trades and a master of none.
This of course is a personal choice and you have every right to choose your own path.Having said that even if you only train
diligently in aikido once per week I believe you could get benefit from this training.
Good luck ,Joe.
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Old 11-05-2010, 05:49 PM   #50
Hellis
Dojo: Ellis Schools of Traditional Aikido
Location: Bracknell
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 634
England
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Smile Re: Aikido drop out rate?

Quote:
Chris Evans wrote: View Post
I was thinking Aikido might help my Karate practice, but doing more Jujitsu would better prepare me for MMA-style sparring. Doing Aikido twice a week means I'd drop a Jujitsu/Judo day: Once a week Aikido hardly seem worth it.

Improving my relaxation and flow would benefit my Karate, that I've been doing for years. Aikido classes would not conflict with Karate classes.

I'm fit enough for semi-contact Karate sparring to keep my people "interested," but not fit enough for the full contact MMA: after a minute I run out of "gas" and get vulnerable to take-downs. I'm nearly clueless on the ground.
Aikido is very effective if you are able to ``adapt`` your technique.
My son ``Rik Ellis Aikido / MMA`` is a professional MMA / cage fighter who finds many Aikido techniques very effective, some of the purists think it is not Aikido because he does not wear a hakama in the cage ..........
Henry Ellis
http://kenshiroabbe.blogspot.com/
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