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Old 11-13-2012, 07:02 AM   #26
Richard Stevens
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Ewen Ebsworth wrote: View Post
what Aikido needs is a good Samurai film. Look at Ridley Scot's love affair with antiquity and the middle ages - films about arcane forms of warfare are very popular. Historical dramas have become very popular as a way of making social observations. People like drawing lessons about the present from the past. Take the success of the Last Samurai with Tom Cruise, it's one of my favourite films despite the anachronisms. If someone like Ridley Scot or another big name director made a film about Feudal Japan with a healthy dose of battle scenes and Aikido/Jujutsu techniques in certain scenes, it would spark peoples interest in all things martial arts again. It's a more subtle way of promoting the art as it would be looking at it from an authentic historical viewpoint. But people would be drawn to that part of our history that has been lost and with the right sort of message or tone it will encourage people to rediscover that element of our humanity.
The Last Samurai was well done (disregarding the plethora of historical/technical inaccuracies) and I'm guessing Iaido/Kenjutsu schools didn't see a big influx of new interest. Honesty, I highly doubt that any well done film that features Aikido or any other traditional Japanese art in a significant way is going to spur an influx of new interest.

All you are going to see in big budget Hollywood movies that aren't period pieces are fight scenes that use the ever so popular Krav Maga/Silat/Kali/MMA fusion. The Chinese film industry can put out some great movies (Ip Man, Shaolin) and Indonesia recently had the Raid Redemption, but I'm doubting Japan is going to put out anything at that sort of level that is heavily features Aikido or Jujutsu.

In terms of big budget Hollywood films that feature traditional Japanese arts I'm guessing 47 Ronin is going to be the closest you are going to get for a long time. Who knows how those fight scenes are going to turn out? If Sanada wasn't one of the leads I'd be very worried.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:05 AM   #27
JJF
 
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

My first sensei taught Aikido for more than 30 years. He was against advertising since it only brought more 'casual memebers' through the door. He used to say that 'If they really want to train with us - then they will find us'. It's against my nature NOT to advertise a bit, but I see his point. Eventually those who are likely to enjoy aikido will probably find out about it and find a dojo.

Being visible and being 'loud' is two different things.. and I believe the types of movies Mr. Seagal makes are quite loud.

- Jørgen Jakob Friis

Inspiration - Aspiration - Perspiration
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:37 AM   #28
philipsmith
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

I'm interested and somewhat appalled (but not suprised) at the amount of snobbery displayed in this thread.

Comments such advertising only brings casual members and I'd rather have 2 or three honest members than lower the standard deny the reality of having to run a dojo.
we all have to pay rent, energy bills etc. if the dojo is to survive and maybe these casual members will help to do that.

One further point is that the more people who are exposed to Aikido the more honest members we will have. Some of the best (in all senses) Aikidoka I know started as casual members who liked a bit of a rumble.

Lets not get too precious about what we do for the vast majority of people it's just a hobby not a lifestyle choice. very few individuals want to commit to serious life-long training - but IMHO that's fine.
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Old 11-13-2012, 09:59 AM   #29
Krystal Locke
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
And if, along with that one percent, you get a larger quantity of obnoxious buttmunches who degrade the experience for everyone else? Is it still a net win?
In the current (ANY) climate, anyone in the door is good for my dojo and is totally welcome. We have maybe 15 regulars, none show up for the same class, about a third are mudansha 4th kyu and better, all the rest are yudansha and most of them sandan and up. We can deal with an obnoxious buttmunch were one to show up. Nobody who wants to try a class is an obnoxious buttmunch. Some aren't a good match, but that becomes clear to all pretty quickly, and they are free to train anywhere they'd like.

But we also apparently intimidate the hell out of noobs that are somehow more legitimate. No kids have come up from the kids classes and stayed in the adult class for more than a couple months. The ones who try and quit say that they are intimidated because there are no new people in the class but them. There are two people in the beginner's class, I hope they stick, I hope they transition, I hope I am doing right by training with them in their class, but I am one of those awful, intimidating black belts.

Topheavy dojos seem to have a hard time getting new people to land. I dont know why we developed such a mudansha gap, I was off the mat for a decade. The upper rank folks are a wide variety of personalities, reasons for training, body types, genders, sexualities. We dont have much of a racial mix, but neither does our area.

If only one percent sticks, it seems to be in my best interest to start sorting. That sort of sorting is never a waste of my time and resources. I need something to sort, even if it is a less than perfect pool of new folks.

Last edited by Krystal Locke : 11-13-2012 at 10:02 AM.
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Old 11-13-2012, 10:31 AM   #30
Krystal Locke
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Philip Smith wrote: View Post
I'm interested and somewhat appalled (but not suprised) at the amount of snobbery displayed in this thread.

Comments such advertising only brings casual members and I'd rather have 2 or three honest members than lower the standard deny the reality of having to run a dojo.
we all have to pay rent, energy bills etc. if the dojo is to survive and maybe these casual members will help to do that.

One further point is that the more people who are exposed to Aikido the more honest members we will have. Some of the best (in all senses) Aikidoka I know started as casual members who liked a bit of a rumble.

Lets not get too precious about what we do for the vast majority of people it's just a hobby not a lifestyle choice. very few individuals want to commit to serious life-long training - but IMHO that's fine.
It isn't even about making the rent for me. My dojo is sofa king topheavy, we're not getting any younger, I am afraid the dojo will just kind of retire and class will be us sitting by the pool talking about how we used to do aikido before everything hurt. The lack of influx of new people is really damning, in my mind.

Sure, Seagal wasn't a "perfect" face for the art, but he was a willing face for the art. Movies do a LOT for martial arts. I didn't start aikido because of Hard to Kill, but I have had a lifelong interest in martial arts in general because of Hard to Kill, Out for Justice, Game of Death, Chinese Connection, Armor of God, Super Cop, Heroic Trio (!!!), Wing Chun, Karate Kid, even Big Trouble in Little China.

Martial arts movies are the finger pointing to the moon, and I am certain that just about everybody who is enjoying those movies is wise enough to understand that and just go check out a dojo or two.

Besides, if I bug my friends about checking out class any more than I do, I'm likely to have to use my aikido to defend myself from them.
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Old 11-15-2012, 04:33 PM   #31
Chonin
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

To the American public, I think the general perception is Seagal and Aikido is all about throwing bad guys through plate glass windows of liquor stores. That was the price paid to fill those theater seats. Mind you, I respect the man, I respect the rank and I can't imagine the sweat equity paid. I just dont think I'll ever see the Jo staffs on the wall be replaced with plastic Colt 1911's to drill tactical hallway sweeps.To me that's standard Seagal.

What I believe would work is an indie movie about Ueshiba. That would do to Aikido what IP Man and IP Man 2did for Wing Chung a few years back. That was a great film. It showed great humanity and perseverance

On the flip side, I watched Geitotsu Aikido Gobi(The Power of Aikido). Great trailer, disapointing film.
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Old 11-16-2012, 05:00 AM   #32
aiki-jujutsuka
 
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

[quote=Charles Edwards;319200]To the American public, I think the general perception is Seagal and Aikido is all about throwing bad guys through plate glass windows of liquor stores. QUOTE]

How about people taking ukemi as they're thrown through plate glass windows of liquor stores, wouldn't that make it real Aikido?
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:00 AM   #33
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Great PR never hurts, I personally do not believe we need "another" Steven Seagal. Does it need to be in the form of cheesy action movies where the stunts and "wire" fight scenes are choreographed. It is a double edge sword and we would become what MMA is to martial arts, played out.
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Old 11-17-2012, 02:17 PM   #34
BEleanor
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Tai chi is a very "successful" martial art; possibly the most successful. I doubt "Pushing Hands" (great movie) had a lot to do with it, though. I think it is crossing over to appeal to people who aren't interested in martial prowess as much as spiritual growth or good health is what does it.

However, maybe you could try something like this:

http://wudang.chinadaily.com.cn/2012...t_15779087.htm

At Iwama perhaps?
This has me pretty depressed this week.

B
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Old 11-17-2012, 03:17 PM   #35
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

First, I really want to know what a butt munch is...I love the sound of it but what is it?

I think we need a Sara Seagal....there seems to be a trend of strong women in TV shows...how about a Temperance froms Bones like character in a movie or Zeva Davide from NCIS as an aikidoist? Or maybe Lucy Liu could train in Aikido on Elementary...so many possibilities.

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Old 11-17-2012, 08:23 PM   #36
Tom Verhoeven
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
First, I really want to know what a butt munch is...I love the sound of it but what is it?

Quote:
I think we need a Sara Seagal....there seems to be a trend of strong women in TV shows...how about a Temperance froms Bones like character in a movie or Zeva Davide from NCIS as an aikidoist? Or maybe Lucy Liu could train in Aikido on Elementary...so many possibilities.
Or someone like Tasha Yar (Denise Crosby) in Star Trek the next generation. She had a program running on the hollow-deck called Aikido 1.

Tom
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Old 11-17-2012, 11:55 PM   #37
Krystal Locke
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
First, I really want to know what a butt munch is...I love the sound of it but what is it?

I think we need a Sara Seagal....there seems to be a trend of strong women in TV shows...how about a Temperance froms Bones like character in a movie or Zeva Davide from NCIS as an aikidoist? Or maybe Lucy Liu could train in Aikido on Elementary...so many possibilities.
I'd be totally into a media character who was female and an aikidoka.I think aikido training would make a tasty side plot for a badass spy chick or sum'pin. A wise sensei who plays like he or she doesn't know our girl is a secret agent, but tailors lessons to the mission. We could get deliciously aiki-stereotypical.

Buttmunch is a fairly mild epithet, originally directed against gay men ("buttmunching faggot"....). It does have a certain euphony, but I struggle to get past the original homophobia imbedded in the term. I really like the term asshat right now, for the inevitable image it gives me. And the xkcd thing of moving the hyphen when "-ass" is used as an intensifier. "That's a fine-ass car, bro!" xkcd rocks a lot.

Last edited by Krystal Locke : 11-17-2012 at 11:59 PM.
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Old 11-18-2012, 01:28 AM   #38
Michael Varin
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Richard Stevens wrote: View Post
Is there anyone here who came to Aikido because of Seagal and is still training?
Yes. Me.

-Michael
"Through aiki we can feel the mind of the enemy who comes to attack and are thus able to respond immediately." - M. Mochizuki
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:34 AM   #39
ryback
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

As an answer to the original topic,in my opinion we need as many Seagals as we can get,not on the screen but on the mat instead!I did not begin my training because of him but he has always been a great inspiration to me and he still is.So i think that what aikido is lacking these days is not an on-screen persona to attract students but on-the-mat masters with high level to teach and demonstrate the practical application of aikido in the same way Seagal sensei has done on-screen and on the mats as well.But to be honest,personally...i don't want any new Steven Seagal.I just want the old one back!!!
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:45 AM   #40
lbb
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
First, I really want to know what a butt munch is...I love the sound of it but what is it?
There are many alternate meanings. Perhaps the one that best sums it up as "someone who would bite another human being on the butt out of the overriding desire to be a pain in the ass."
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:48 AM   #41
St Matt
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Yannis Mousoulis wrote: View Post
As an answer to the original topic,in my opinion we need as many Seagals as we can get,not on the screen but on the mat instead!I did not begin my training because of him but he has always been a great inspiration to me and he still is.So i think that what aikido is lacking these days is not an on-screen persona to attract students but on-the-mat masters with high level to teach and demonstrate the practical application of aikido in the same way Seagal sensei has done on-screen and on the mats as well.But to be honest,personally...i don't want any new Steven Seagal.I just want the old one back!!!
Agreed!
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:47 AM   #42
Neal Earhart
 
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Well....if a new Seagal is ever found...I hope he or she has better hair...
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:03 PM   #43
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Richard Stevens wrote: View Post
The Last Samurai was well done (disregarding the plethora of historical/technical inaccuracies)...
Please indulge my curiosity of the inaccuracies that claim were present.

Last edited by akiy : 11-19-2012 at 11:30 PM. Reason: Fixed quote tag
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Old 11-19-2012, 05:53 PM   #44
miso
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Most arts have the problem of influx. I'm not sure there's an answer for aikido, my own experiences have been quite alienating although I still like it. (That's a positive comment)

The life-blood of any art is surely the young coming up through the ranks but there doesn't seem to be much to attract a young person to aikido. Shodokan has randori, young people love randori.
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Old 11-28-2012, 11:50 AM   #45
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

I think Seagal is a little strange and it may have brought a lot of knucklehead type students but at least they came ans were exposed to this great art. He did help make Aikido a little more popular and as someone who would like to help spread Aikido ... that is a good thing. S in that sense another Steven Seagal may not be a bad thing.
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:36 PM   #46
Richard Stevens
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Mike Braxton wrote: View Post
Please indulge my curiosity of the inaccuracies that claim were present.
I'm guessing you're joking? If not, try Google. There are plenty.
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Old 11-28-2012, 02:33 PM   #47
Mert Gambito
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Well, this thread has mentioned Seagal, MMA and Anderson Silva.

Did any aikidoka reading this see even a modest uptick in interest when videos of Silva training with Seagal went viral a few years ago?

Given that MMA is the in thing, and Silva is one of the most successful and high-profile fighters, if he ever expressly credits aikido for a winning tactic or technique, or for being integral to his training regimen, that would most likely bring in the younger lookie-loo's. In the meantime, Silva does continue to associate and train with Seagal, but it's Seagal who's doing the talk and taking the credit for what he's doing for Silva, and the young bucks ain't buying into it just yet.
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:38 AM   #48
Richard Stevens
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

Quote:
Mert Gambito wrote: View Post
Well, this thread has mentioned Seagal, MMA and Anderson Silva.

Did any aikidoka reading this see even a modest uptick in interest when videos of Silva training with Seagal went viral a few years ago?

Given that MMA is the in thing, and Silva is one of the most successful and high-profile fighters, if he ever expressly credits aikido for a winning tactic or technique, or for being integral to his training regimen, that would most likely bring in the younger lookie-loo's. In the meantime, Silva does continue to associate and train with Seagal, but it's Seagal who's doing the talk and taking the credit for what he's doing for Silva, and the young bucks ain't buying into it just yet.
There is a vast spectrum of opinions related to Seagal within the MMA "fan" community. If you did a search on Seagal on the Underground forum you'd see everything from "Seagal is full of $%^&" to "he is an Aikido grandmaster and could get in the ring and kill any of these fighters with his deadly stuff".

There is an interesting thread about wristlocks in MMA that was recently started where the Seagal training with Silva video was mentioned. I've watched it a couple of times, but I thought it seemed more like Silva humoring Seagal for PR purposes (and his future B movie career) more than actually viewing him as a coach.
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Old 11-29-2012, 10:02 AM   #49
BAP
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

When I was first deciding on which martial art to get into and researched aikido the fact that it was the same art Steven Seagal practiced was relevant. His practical application of the art in general was impressive, not just the jazzed up movie moves. I still enjoy his earlier movies. I would say Mr. Seagal's overall impact on aikido has been much more positive than negative.

The other actor which did some version aikido on a consistent basis was Jeffrey Donovan on Burn Notice the first season or two of the series. Last couple of seasons there really hasn't been much you could point to as being aikido. I read somewhere he's became more involved in the BJJ side of things, the last few years.

Blair Presson
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Old 11-29-2012, 11:19 AM   #50
Mert Gambito
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Re: Do we need another Steven Seagal?

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. . . it seemed more like Silva humoring Seagal for PR purposes (and his future B movie career) more than actually viewing him as a coach.
Agreed. Look for Anderson Silva to do tai-no-henko in one of Seagal's B movies.

Mert
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