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Old 11-01-2010, 11:39 AM   #201
MM
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Ryan Szesny wrote: View Post
READ THE WHOLE THREAD.
Actually, I have. And I'd guess that I'm not the only one who thinks that you and Maggie are coming across poorly.
I had hoped that you would review the thread and choose a more appropriate direction for your interaction with Mary.
Up to you ...

Mark
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:05 PM   #202
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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"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."

Ok

dps
Look, to do Aikido with some level of "aiki", which I would hope would be someone's goal, from a technical perspective at least, entails re-programming the body and the mind to act differently than it is naturally programmed to do. There is a certain "critical mass" in terms of training time for this to take place. If you don't reach that, the skills do not "sink in ", they don't ever become your default setting. If "years in" was any kind of important factor, there would be a lot of excellent Aikido out there because there are a lot of folks who have been training in the manner you are talking about and have been doing so for decades.

Barring some sort of scientific study that could verify this over time with a large sample, I am stuck with my own observations from 35 years of Aikido. I haven't seen it done. I have seen people training more than we are talking about and not be very good at all. Some of that's effort, some is talent related and some is the quality of the instruction. What I am saying here is, given high level instruction and an average athletic ability, one could be good at this art with three times a week or more. Perhaps, my standard is different. I see many folks, even whole dojos in which folks seem quite content with the world. But they don't have any idea what I am doing or what my teachers are doing. It is the same in outward form only.

Aikido is about altering our fundamental reactions to threat and conflict. It is about learning to relax rather than kick into fight or flight. It is about teaching ones body that relaxing can make it safe rather than tensing up. It is about learning an entirely different way of using the body. Your brain takes a huge amount of practice and assurance that there is something other than pushing and pulling that is effective. It takes a huge amount of proper and intense practice to convince the body / mind that accepting the energy of an attack rather than defending or retreating is the way to be survive.

This is difficult stuff, even if you are training every day. I just don't get why folks think this can be done at all with a time commitment that is less than what most people spend on their commute to work each week. This isn't just about a set of motor skills. I get the impression that some folks think it's about knowing techniques. If that were the case, then sure, you can put ten years in twice a week and know a bunch of techniques. You can't actually do any of them, but you have tones of stuff you can reproduce. The problem is that it's the "aiki" not the techniques that's important in Aikido (once again , my opinion). I mean, it's the name of the art! "Aiki - do". Aikido with no aiki is simply an "Aikido-like substance" with little or no nutrient value.

I told me wife, who is a former national championship fencer and a beginner in Aikido about this thread and she just laughed... Basically she said, "why would anyone think that they could become any good at an art like Aikido putting less time and effort into the training than a bunch of little girls put into their ballet class?" Take any kind of lesson you can think of and the teacher is going to tell you to practice every day. The fact that we need partners and a mat to do most of what we do is unfortunate but a fact. So we can't carry our Aikido "violin" home with us, nor do most of us have that Aikido "piano" in our living room. So we are stuck with an are that requires that we go elsewhere to have our partners and our mat space.

There is actually stuff one can work on at home. It will make your practice better and certainly stronger. The internal power development work is fantastic fro that standpoint. You can add a whole new dimension to your training without adding any more classes at the dojo. But if you aren't already training enough to reach that "critical momentum" in that re-programming of your body / mind, solo internal power work will just make your ineffective technique stronger.

This is why I "care" so much about this... You can see right on the forum that folks have a desire to do good Aikido... they don't want to be told that what they are doing isn't enough, they will ignore all evidence to the contrary, in order to tell themselves that what they can put in will be enough. If the majority of folks in the art are telling themselves this story, pretty soon there is a collective belief that it's true. Eventually, in order to make that view square with reality, the definition of "enough" will be changed. What used to be a mediocre Shodan would now be be an acceptable San Dan. I have seen this with my own eyes. I have seen teachers whose San Dan tests I saw many years ago, now presiding over tests from students that are not even in the ball park with what they had done at the same rank. Not even in the same universe. And no one seemed to recognize this fact. The teacher even seemed rather proud of the student's performance. This is how reality gets distorted to fit the stories we tell ourselves.

We all have our "stories", all of us. I was lucky in that I formed my "story" training with Saotome Sensei. So my "picture" of what a 6th Dan should look like and what he should know was formed very early on. If anything, my view has gotten more difficult to attain, not simpler and easier. I'm ok with my rank but in my own mind I am not even close to where I want to be, merely good enough to not have to apologize. Being aware of ones "stories" and trying to separate what's really true about them and what's just fiction that makes us feel good is a serious part of our training. On this thread, I hope folks have been given a better context in which to view their own stories. That's the point of discussions like this.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:14 PM   #203
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Actually, I have. And I'd guess that I'm not the only one who thinks that you and Maggie are coming across poorly.
I had hoped that you would review the thread and choose a more appropriate direction for your interaction with Mary.
Up to you ...

Mark
Actually, I have to say that I found it a bit refreshing to have some of the women here "mixing it up".. usually it's just the boys getting their knickers in a twist. When Mary and Maggie were going at it, no disrespect intended at all, all I could think of was Dan and Mike... I guess I have no real problem with folks getting a bit edgy when they know what they are talking about. And I really appreciate the women when they decide to go toe to toe with anyone because so often they don't stand up for themselves. It's why so few women post on-line. But I've always liked "in your face women anyway". You should see my wife when she gets irked, it's like the wrath of God and I run for cover. Wouldn't have it any other way.

George S. Ledyard
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:16 PM   #204
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Mark Murray wrote: View Post
Actually, I have. And I'd guess that I'm not the only one who thinks that you and Maggie are coming across poorly.
I had hoped that you would review the thread and choose a more appropriate direction for your interaction with Mary.
Up to you ...

Mark
+1

This was an interesting thread before ....

Last edited by Nicholas Eschenbruch : 11-01-2010 at 12:18 PM. Reason: to tone done potential insults.... :-)
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:30 PM   #205
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I miss those guys. What happened?
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:32 PM   #206
Pauliina Lievonen
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I feel a bit guilty about introducing the idea of an 8th dan in one of the posts...

It seems like in aikido we're trying to do something that is really very difficult to do, namely try to make sure the art is passed on, not by training a few individuals to a high level to be the professional teachers of the next generation, but by trying to get a bigger group of people with other priorities and obligations to take on that role.

Pauliina
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:48 PM   #207
Basia Halliop
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Getting back to the discussion on technical skill level, I don't think anyone suggests that someone training less frequently will likely progress at the same rate or, given the same lifespan, reach the same level of skill (at least I don't suggest that). All other things being equal (which of course they usually aren't, but for a start), someone training half as often should theoretically progress at half the pace. And given the finite nature of human lifespans, they would only get half as far at maximum. But it seems what's being suggested is something different than that statement, something much more specific.

I.e., the suggestion I'm hearing, if I understand right, is that with too large time gaps between classes, people will not significantly progress at all -- not just much more slowly, but not at all. That even if they train for several hundreds of hours and concentrate fully during class, they will not improve significantly if they leave too many days between classes. I assume the idea is that the brain (or body?) tends to keep forgetting everything learned between classes, such that the person tends to just keep relearning what they know, rather than continuing to progress?

This is actually quite an interesting suggestion and I think worth thinking of in terms of how people learn.

It doesn't fully correspond to my own experience with people I've seen train with lower frequency -- to me many of them do seem to progress when I look at them last year vs this year. And the people who got the same rank quickly vs the ones that got the same rank slowly don't always seem to me to be totally different in skill or anything... But then it's not like I've trained with THAT many people, or for that many years, or am that experienced that I'd always be able to judge. And when I think about it, even people who train relatively less often tend to increase the frequency for bursts every now and then. So it's actually an interesting comment to hear...

Last edited by Basia Halliop : 11-01-2010 at 12:52 PM.
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Old 11-01-2010, 12:59 PM   #208
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
I.e., the suggestion I'm hearing, if I understand right, is that with too large time gaps between classes, people will not significantly progress at all -- not just much more slowly, but not at all. That even if they train for several hundreds of hours, they will not improve significantly if they leave too many days between classes. I assume the idea is that the brain (or body?) tends to keep forgetting everything learned between classes, such that the person tends to just keep relearning what they know, rather than continuing to progress?
I think that's generally true. I think it depends on the individual's prior training, though. Someone who trains five days a week for a period of years and then drops back to two days a week when life interferes is going to be in a much different place than a beginner who only trains for two days a week from the very beginning. You need some kind of foundation in order to make progress, and I don't think beginners can build that foundation in two classes a week.

At the other extreme, we have shihans who are almost exclusively teaching other people -- most of whom are vastly less skillful -- and who still continue to learn and improve. I think it's safe to say that such people have internalized the art to such a degree that they are their own best teachers. "Mat time" is irrelevant, because their whole life is their practice.

I think it's safe to say that most people in most dojos are closer to the untrained beginner than the shihan end of things.

Katherine
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:25 PM   #209
MM
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Actually, I have to say that I found it a bit refreshing to have some of the women here "mixing it up".. usually it's just the boys getting their knickers in a twist. When Mary and Maggie were going at it, no disrespect intended at all, all I could think of was Dan and Mike...
LOL! Not an analogy I had thought of. Thanks for putting that in my head.

Mark
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:38 PM   #210
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Pauliina Lievonen wrote: View Post
I feel a bit guilty about introducing the idea of an 8th dan in one of the posts...

It seems like in aikido we're trying to do something that is really very difficult to do, namely try to make sure the art is passed on, not by training a few individuals to a high level to be the professional teachers of the next generation, but by trying to get a bigger group of people with other priorities and obligations to take on that role.

Pauliina
Hi Pauliina,
Yes, I think that is precisely the issue. And I think the jury is out on whether it can be done. O-Sensei had to be persuaded to open up the art to the general populace to train. Before that it was basically private. You had to be "accepted" as a student and if you didn't measure up, you went away. But of course you didn't want to fail because someone had provided an introduction to O-Sensei for you and you'd never dream of embarrassing them by not stepping up.

Hombu has the idea right... There does need to be a professional training program to make sure that we have top notch instructors for the future. I think they correctly recognize that this can't be done adequately by folks simply training the way most folks do.

The problem I have wit what they are doing is that unlike the training that was provided to the uchi deshi of Saotome Sensei's generation, in which the deshi were given training well beyond what they were expected to teach to the genera; student populace, the current program seems to be nothing more than a teaching college to train deshi to teach a certain curriculum. It's teaching to the syllabus. So, while it ensures quality instructors of kihon waza, it is not attempting any kind of transmission of much of what was really deep about Aikido when the Founder was alive.

So, I think that if you look at the history of the art, the uchi deshi went forth and spread Aikido all over the world. Whatever you might think of their abilities relative to the old generation of thirties deshi, I see little sign that there is anyone in the Hombu pipeline of that caliber. So, these folks went all over the world and did their level best to pass on the Aikido that was taught to them. Now that Aikido isn't even being taught back at headquarters. So the transmission is down to us. As a senior student of one of these uchi deshi, the only way for the transmission to remain unbroken is for me to step up and master what I have been taught and pass it on again.

There is no professional training program here. I have no facilities for an uchi deshi live-in program. I don't have enough students to support taking prime time classes away from the general membership to devote to Professional training. So everyone trains together and the seniors are limited by the efforts of their juniors. That's why I stipulated a certain level of effort to even get promoted. If I filled the membership with a huge number of folks training once or twice a week, I wouldn't be able to get the training to a level at which someone who did really want to train could ever become excellent. At that point I wouldn't be doing my job, which is to ensure the transmission.

I laugh sometimes... Saotome Sensei was once giving me advice on how to make my dojo more "user friendly" so I could have more students and the place would be ore successful on a business basis. I told him that I hadn't really gotten in to it for that reason... I had always used our old DC dojo where I started Aikido with him as the model for what I was trying to reproduce with my own dojo. He looked wistful, sighed deeply, and said,"Probably can't do, not on West Coast."

While that is probably unfairly maligning some folks on the West Coast and letting other folks off the hook... he is right that I can't duplicate what I had with him back in the seventies. There simply aren't enough people who want to train that way. So I find myself trying to do the impossible in passing on what I learned training six or seven days a week for 35 years to a bunch of very good students who train half that. I have yet to figure out exactly how to do this task. I am always trying some new strategy or syllabus. While happy with how people are coming along, I am afraid that I will never be able to pass on all of what I have been taught. So I decide what is central, what is important, and focus on that.

So, why would I even be tempted to give any credence whatever to the idea that less training than what my folks are asked to do would ever be "enough"? Some folks have stated that they don't actually care of they get good at the art. Iwould say that training just because you find it enjoyable but having no investment in whether you get any better and not putting in the time that would allow you to do so, is a waste of time. And in the case of my dojo would act as a drag on the folks that I am really trying to train. There is no uchi deshi program that I can send them to that will teach them what I need to pass on. So, my little dojo is it. It happens there or it doesn't happen. I think this is true all over the country. So many folks sit back and just assume that someone else will do it. They don't see that they actually have any part in supporting the process, accept financially perhaps. But it is the mass of practitioners that are the sea in which the up and coming teachers swim. If that environment is poisoned by mediocrity and trivializing of the art, then that environment will not support the transmission of the depth and breadth of the art

Everyone is responsible for the transmission. That's the only way for this to work. People cannot get good training with people who are not. Dojos can't exist with out a certain number of students but I absolutely resist the notion that the rank and file are there just to support the training of the folks who are doing the "real" work, which is essentially what the folks who say they don't care if they get good are maintaining.

The generation of the uchi deshi is passing away as we have this discussion. Their work is virtually over. They've passed on what they could and time is running out to pass on much more. They will be gone soon and then its totally up to us. I have done my level best to figure out what was taught to me and I continue to train and change all the time. I look around and wonder where the next generation of teachers will come from when so many say they can't find even the minimum amount of time to train. What I have learned will be lost or perhaps pass on to so few that it can't have any larger impact. I cannot pass on what I know to folks who won't take on the job of learning. Simple as that. We are about to be in a time, for the very first time, of having no one left who trained with the Founder. Many martial arts never survived this stage. Perhaps they manged to exist for a time but no one was produced who was of the quality of the original teacher and his students. Perhaps the folks that don't care about whether they get better, will not care if Aikido loses its heart. They weren't going to get it anyway... But I have to care. It is my profession, my mission, and my duty to pass it on. When I see that folks generally aren't interested, I find it hard not to despair about the art. There are enough interested folks around to support me professionally... it's not my problem... it's that I don't see enough around who want to do the work that they are the ones who define the art. Instead I see increasingly, that it's the hobbyists who are defining the art. If that doesn't change, Aikido will end up with no more depth than the TKD taking place in your local shopping center.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:41 PM   #211
dps
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post
Actually, I have to say that I found it a bit refreshing to have some of the women here "mixing it up".. usually it's just the boys getting their knickers in a twist. When Mary and Maggie were going at it, no disrespect intended at all, all I could think of was Dan and Mike...
LOL, which one is Dan and which one is Mike?

dps
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Old 11-01-2010, 02:40 PM   #212
RED
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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George S. Ledyard wrote: View Post

This is why I "care" so much about this... You can see right on the forum that folks have a desire to do good Aikido... they don't want to be told that what they are doing isn't enough, they will ignore all evidence to the contrary, in order to tell themselves that what they can put in will be enough. If the majority of folks in the art are telling themselves this story, pretty soon there is a collective belief that it's true. Eventually, in order to make that view square with reality, the definition of "enough" will be changed. What used to be a mediocre Shodan would now be be an acceptable San Dan..
This exert is exactly why I'm feeling a bit passionate over the issue. There just comes a point where people stop realizing what quality Aikido it.
I've been a student of classical music most of my life. As in any fine art, the answer to "what is enough" is, its never enough. The work never ends. The route to genius is obsession with any fine art.
I'm driven mad by the argument that 3 hours a week is considered outrageous to a practicing Aikidoka. I don't think there is something wrong with training twice, once a week, or even once a month, so long as you call a spade a spade.
Some one who trains once a week might be a great person, great mother, great employee...but great student of Aikido? Like I said I did classical music the better part of my life, with a commitment of once or twice a week I'd be considered a VERY BAD student! A recreational musician at best.
In music we do not call the guy that plays the recorder(even honestly with joy)a few times a week a student of music...we call the man that practices daily in the apprenticeship of his better a student of music.

Why is people's self worth so wrapped into Aikido, to the point of anger, when they only devote an hour or two to it a week? They haven't devoted enough of their time to even begin to become defensive. IMO It just simply doesn't mean what it means to the people who do reroute their lives, jobs, and home-lives to devote to the study of this art.

I accept the argument of "I'm injured" or "i have a family tragedy" when some one trains too little. But there are some arguments I find to be excuses. They are inconvenienced by long drives, or having to wake up early, or having to eat a late dinner, or rearrange their social/family routines. My biggest pet peeve in life is people who do not take personal responsibility for where they are in any area of life. People can do anything with enough work and devotion IMO.


A hobbyist who appreciates the art can devote 1 or 2 hours a week or less. But at the point where you are claiming to be a devoted student of Aikido, to perform at such a low level is intellectual dishonesty. IMO You can be a good hobbyist with 2 hours a week on average. But you are a bad student IMO with 2 or less hours a week on average.
I don't respect the delusion that we can be great Aikidoka with such a casual commitment. That might offend some, but I think they are dishonest with what Aikido is in their lives. Nothing wrong with the honest casual practitioner. I just hate to see the casual practitioner argue that what they do is enough to be considered disciplined students.

In the end it is my belief that Aikido, like all fine art, is an apprentice program. You have to find the highest skilled Aikidoka you can, whenever you can, and train at the highest level you can(health permitting), whenever you can...like any other discipline. only the quality of Aikido suffers when the casual hobbyist starts calling themselves Martial Artists.

This is what my teachers, Shidoin and Shihan have taught me about what is expected from a student in order to practice quality art with a heart receptive to instruction.

Last edited by RED : 11-01-2010 at 02:47 PM.

MM
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Old 11-01-2010, 02:41 PM   #213
ChrisMoses
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Hi folks, remember me?

I'll do my best to stay on topic, but since this thread has wandered far and back again, I'm afraid I'll be wandering a bit. This will also be more of an "op-ed" type post and less of investigative journalism. I'm expressing my own opinions, not arguing before a jury.

Topic One: Training two days a week.

I agree with George on this one. Training two days a week is enough to get your interest peaked, or to *barely* maintain what you have learned *if you really put in the work beforehand*. It is not enough to reach what I would call "competence in aiki". That's my way of sidestepping the issue of rank, since that's it's own separate issue. I think three very active days a week is the minimum to actually make progress in the art. If you're only going to be able to get to the dojo three days a week, you will need to be doing work on your own. Now that supposes that you are being offered something useful to do on your own time and given a paradigm to self check (I'm going to leave that can of worms closed for now).

I am also reminded of something Andy Dale said a while back (paraphrasing), "Train as hard and as often as you can when you are young because you will need to lean on that training when you get older and life gets in the way." Like George, I wonder where the fanatics have gone, probably all at MMA gyms. (please read in your best curmudgeon voice )When I started Aikido, I trained 5-7 days a week two hours a day. I kept that up for the better part of 10 years barring injury. When I had to travel for work, I took my gi and trained in whatever city I found myself. Was that actually the best use of my time? Probably not, but it's what I did. I know there are still folks out there like that, but it seems that the average age has gone up a lot, and those of us who aren't single and 20 years old have a lot less disposable time on our hands. Particularly in the last two years I've trained less than ever, mostly because now I have two young children and have a lot of critical responsibility at my work. Despite that, I'm trying to get to the dojo three days a week again and it is definitely a hardship to make that happen, both for me and my spouse and children. At two days a week (for me) I come very close to the point where it doesn't even feel like training, and I have had to very seriously consider accepting that and stepping completely away from the dojo.

Topic Two: Aikido and Aikido-lite plus (at no extra charge!) pre/post war Aikido.

Before reading on, please remind yourself that I am sharing my own views and opinions, not trying to debate anyone here. George, I also have no doubt that you will disagree with this statement, you may even (rightfully) take offense. In my mind, Aikido IS Aikdio-lite. The awesome art we all think of in association with Ueshiba Morihei happened before 1942. When O-Sensei retired and handed over Aikido to his son (and Tohei Sensei), Aikido (and Aikido-lite) was born. Before that, I see one man's flavor of Daito Ryu aiki-budo. I believe Doshu simplified the curriculum to the point that it was possible to do without using any "aiki" as I currently understand the term. Unfortunately it was that iteration of the art that has spread worldwide and is what most folks practice today. I really appreciate Mark Murray's lengthy and well researched quotes, they very much echo my own view of what being a post-war uchideshi meant and what specific contact those people had with O-Sensei or his immediate teaching. Being and uchideshi meant sleeping at the dojo and training very hard every single day. It did not mean that you were a personal student of O-Sensei who followed him every where 24/7 365. Well over 90% of the Aikido I see today is simply very cooperative jujutsu. It can be a great workout and a source of real and profound joy, but I do not see or feel any aiki in it.

I think for a long time I was bitter at Aikido because I wanted to believe all the things I had read about it in books, and I felt that in so many ways Aikido was letting me down by not being that thing. I actually enjoy Aikido a lot more now that I don't hold it up to that standard. I now try to do my aikido with what little aiki I have, but I also don't fault it for what it is. I can play in Aikido because I have other venues to try to study aiki in, and different tools than ikkyo to learn it from. It's either ironic or telling that I feel I learned almost everything (I think) I know about aiki from outside of Aikido.

Last edited by ChrisMoses : 11-01-2010 at 02:48 PM.

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Old 11-01-2010, 03:03 PM   #214
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

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Katherine Derbyshire wrote: View Post
I think we all can name shihans with complex personal lives. But then, we can probably name professional athletes, writers, and musicians with equally complex lives. And we can all name people in all those categories who are good parents, devoted to their spouses, and generally exceptional human beings.

Based on my own experience, though, if your marriage will fall apart because you do something you love three times a week instead of two, there are probably other issues there that have nothing to do with aikido.

Katherine
I appreciate your statement. It respects the contribution of personal responsibility in a person's own life. I think this is a soft-life skill that is important for being successful in any area of your life.

MM
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:11 PM   #215
RED
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
You tell yourself whatever stories you want to, Maggie. You have been all along, and you will continue to do so, no matter what I say. You tell yourself whatever stories gratify whatever need it is you have, and you tell yourself that they're true. You keep right on doing that. I, however, don't have to listen to them.
You already said something similar to me above. It didn't bare repeating.

Respectfully, I got your message, respect the fact you choose to leave the conversation. I got it You don't care or believe what I say, I don't respect everything(some however) of what you say. It's okay, not everyone has to agree or even appreciate each other's contribution. lol That's cool, our discussion on the topic is done.

MM
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:11 PM   #216
kewms
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Is two days a week a maximum, or a minimum?

For some people, two days a week is what they do when the roof falls in at work, and the hot water heater leaks, and a relative gets sick. For others, it's what they manage only when everything goes right, and traffic isn't too terrible, and the kids are in school.

Clearly those two individuals represent very different levels of commitment, will get different things out of their two classes, and will have different long term histories in the art.

Katherine
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:18 PM   #217
Nicholas Eschenbruch
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

I think some straw men have been put up here recently - did anybody really argue two times a week was enough for mastery? In this thread? All that I myself asked for was some respect for the committment of those who cannot make it more often.

Quote:
Why is people's self worth so wrapped into Aikido, to the point of anger, when they only devote an hour or two to it a week? They haven't devoted enough of their time to even begin to become defensive.
Who exactly are you referring to here? Anybody on this thread?

Personally, I would find it a lot more credible if you could accompany this statement and all the judgements you have been making with another one as to how long you yourself have been doing aikido. Overzealous newbies come and go. They bring all sorts of issues and take them with them when they leave. I hope you are not one of them.

Last edited by Nicholas Eschenbruch : 11-01-2010 at 03:31 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:27 PM   #218
Basia Halliop
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
I think some straw men have been put up here recently - did anybody really argue two times a week was enough for mastery? In this thread? All that I myself asked for was some respect for the committment of those who cannot.
I've been wondering the same thing. It's a long thread, so maybe I just missed those comments? But I don't recall reading anyone make that claim either.

I've read some arguments over whether or not one can improve at all over one's current level at two times a week, LOTS of arguments over the psychology and motivations of people who train two times a week, some arguments over whether and how these people harm or help the art as a whole...

But no claim that I can find or recall that one can eventually, e.g., meet or exceed the level of the current highest practitioners training two days a week? Is it there somewhere and I missed it?
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:33 PM   #219
RED
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
I've been wondering the same thing. It's a long thread, so maybe I just missed those comments? But I don't recall reading anyone make that claim either.

I've read some arguments over whether or not one can improve at all over one's current level at two times a week, LOTS of arguments over the psychology and motivations of people who train two times a week, some arguments over whether and how these people harm or help the art as a whole...

But no claim that I can find or recall that one can eventually, e.g., meet or exceed the level of the current highest practitioners training two days a week? Is it there somewhere and I missed it?
I never said that people are claiming that they can master it with two days a week. I've constantly affirmed that more than two days a week is required to gradually get better. And that a teacher has the right to demand a minimum amount of hours from his students.

MM
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Old 11-01-2010, 04:10 PM   #220
C. David Henderson
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Why is people's self worth so wrapped into Aikido, to the point of anger, when they only devote an hour or two to it a week? They haven't devoted enough of their time to even begin to become defensive.

1. Folks have gotten annoyed not because they are "defensive" but because they viewed some things said as "offensive." Too bad you can't see why, since its really pretty obvious, but it isn't about some shallow need to protect the ego. .

2. So, let me get this straight, while Ryan gets to be "extremely insulted" by a perceived slight to a third person, people who may have felt offended by something you (or he, let's be honest) have said have no cause for their feelings. Just like the annoymous guy you flamed who wanted to quit Aikido. Nice. Gotta have a license to have a reaction....

3. The sloppiness in the discussion began to creep in, in my view, when a technical question of the relationship between frequency of training and mastery drifted into a discussion about "commitment," with one side taking a one-size-fits-all yardstick.

And oh, when someone drops out of the conversation, are you the kind of person who feels the need to have the last word? If you do that, some things may get repeated that otherwise would have been left said once.

David Henderson
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Old 11-01-2010, 04:16 PM   #221
kewms
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Quote:
Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
But no claim that I can find or recall that one can eventually, e.g., meet or exceed the level of the current highest practitioners training two days a week? Is it there somewhere and I missed it?
At least one person argued that you can achieve black belt level with only two classes per week, and that Ledyard Sensei's requirement of three classes per week for yudansha candidates was therefore unreasonable.

I think that was page seven or so... that was the comment that inspired me to jump into the discussion.

Katherine
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Old 11-01-2010, 04:18 PM   #222
Janet Rosen
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Y'all have one hour classes?
Let's see...Monday night class is 2 hours. Wed night class is 2.5 hours. Thursday is the short one, 90 minutes.
I just wish we weren't bunched up like that - I miss having option of a wkend class (just do my weapons and ki exercises solo at home).

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 11-01-2010, 04:37 PM   #223
Mark Kruger
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

So where does someone like me fit in this picture?

Monday: Shinto Ryu Iai BattoJutsu, done as my "lunch hour". Pistol range session right after work. Muso Shinden Ryu Iaido, 1 hour in the evening.
Tuesday: Judo, 1 hour. Aikido, 45 minutes since my wife and I swap toddler watching duties during class.
Wednesday: Aikido, training during my "lunch hour" with my sensei, privately. Italian Longsword two hours.
Thursday: Judo, 1 hour. Aikido, 1.5 hours of me "teaching".
Friday: pistol range session right after work

Oh, and after dinner most nights... 10-30 minutes of dryfire with the pistol.

Weekends are quite varied. Last month: USPSA match, speed steel match, Doran sensei semiar, attending the dojo aikido exam, Tim Cartmell BJJ/MMA seminar. The month before that: USPSA match, Italian Longsword seminar in Wisconsin, IDPA match, carbine class with Larry Vickers.

Am I a dilettante who can't decide what to be an amateur in?
Am I looking at a much bigger picture than most folks?
With the limited time I'm spending on aikido will I actually learn and improve?

(I know what my answers are, I'm interested in seeing what other folks think.)

Respectfully,
Mark Kruger
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Old 11-01-2010, 06:11 PM   #224
Chris Evans
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Smile Re: Is two Days a week enough?

[/quote] With the limited time I'm spending on aikido will I actually
...nterested in seeing what other folks think. [/quote]

I think you have a plan and must have a rewarding array of interests, some which I'd consider for myself. Are you a peace officer (cop)?

I'd like to add "1911" practical course matches and "M1SA" metallic silloutte matches someday, but now i'm building a fitness base for MMA sparring and mt. bike riding, these willl keep me busy.

The most challenging aspect of my Budo training's mostly at home: Zazen sitting.

"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 11-01-2010, 08:19 PM   #225
barbaraknapp
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Re: Is two Days a week enough?

Greetings Mark Kruger !

I suspect I know what you think about your practice as well

Seriously, I can't give you any real opinion, because I have never done what you are doing. Sounds like you are really really good at pistol shooting, and you are in really good shape (ok, so I knew that already...) I know the tiny amount of cross training I have done has certainly informed my aikido. (So has accomplishing totally unrelated goals and having a daily meditation practice) However, I wouldn't expect training a bit in many arts to get me to the same level in aikido as would sustained, committed, daily practice in aikido. It might get me somewhere else well worth going, were that my path.

love to all at home - off to class.

Barbara
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