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Old 01-24-2013, 05:25 AM   #26
Belt_Up
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Daniel Wilson wrote: View Post
I tend to think that the aikido demonstrations and the aikido video clips posted on the internet are having the opposite affect to that intended. They need to be more realistic with committed realistic attacks with uke resisting and not just falling over so easily or jumping. People just don't think these demonstrations and video clip performances are plausible, and that leads to them thinking aikido is not plausible. If there were more realistic video clips available or demonstrations done which show how effective aikido can be against an unco-operative committed attacker, then there may be greater interest in aikido. Note that I fully understand that in training uke needs to be co-operative otherwise he/she will get injured.
Taking YouTube as an example, it wouldn't matter. Every aikido video I've seen has the same set of interchangeable idiots commenting underneath it; aikido sucks, MMA/BJJ rules. It has nothing to do with the content of the video, it's just because it's aikido. You could show footage of aikidoka punching attackers so hard they explode, under the video you'd find someone dribbling about how aikido doesn't work/is for noobs, etc.

Aikido's image is firmly fixed. To change it now would require a unified public relations effort, which isn't going to happen.
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Old 01-24-2013, 07:52 AM   #27
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Daniel Wilson wrote: View Post
I tend to think that the aikido demonstrations and the aikido video clips posted on the internet are having the opposite affect to that intended. They need to be more realistic with committed realistic attacks with uke resisting and not just falling over so easily or jumping. People just don't think these demonstrations and video clip performances are plausible, and that leads to them thinking aikido is not plausible. If there were more realistic video clips available or demonstrations done which show how effective aikido can be against an unco-operative committed attacker, then there may be greater interest in aikido. Note that I fully understand that in training uke needs to be co-operative otherwise he/she will get injured.
Your last sentence kind of makes the rest of your paragraph impossible, doesn't it? "Realistic" = attacker gets seriously injured. Act otherwise and to the untrained eye, it's going to look like it's not "realistic", like they''re "just falling over" or "jumping". There's no getting around that, so why try? Do you think having the attacker scowl and grimace and bellow is going to make it more convincing? Why not have them throw a few gang signs while you're at it?
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Old 01-24-2013, 10:59 AM   #28
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

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Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Your last sentence kind of makes the rest of your paragraph impossible, doesn't it? "Realistic" = attacker gets seriously injured. Act otherwise and to the untrained eye, it's going to look like it's not "realistic", like they''re "just falling over" or "jumping". There's no getting around that, so why try? Do you think having the attacker scowl and grimace and bellow is going to make it more convincing? Why not have them throw a few gang signs while you're at it?
There's no valid reason why the attacks in these demonstrations and videos could not be more realistic. In terms of the excessively co-operative uke, perhaps some middle ground needs to be reached between resisting the technique and excessive co-operation, for the purposes of the demonstration or video. I know the demonstration or video would be less spectacular, but it would be more realistic. When a potential student is contemplating doing a martial art, one of the first things they often do these days is get on the internet and research it, which includes watching these you tube videos.
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:23 AM   #29
Aikeway
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Perhaps a similar example relating to myself - in the 70's and 80's I was slightly interested in Kung Fu. Now real Kung Fu is very good, but the Kung Fu movies were so unrealistic and fake in their fight scenes that it completely turned me off doing Kung Fu. It took many years before I started to gain a favourable impression of Kung Fu. However, I never ended up doing it.
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:59 AM   #30
Demetrio Cereijo
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
"Realistic" = attacker gets seriously injured.
Not really.

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Old 01-24-2013, 01:32 PM   #31
Jonathan
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

I've been running Aikido classes in street clothes for several years now. Not all the time, but regularly. And I've been adapting the longer, sweeping classical forms of Aikido to more common and contemporary types of attacks. Some people like it. Some people don't. Depends on what the person's goals in training are. Responses to the clips I've posted on YouTube have been generally favorable, though there are always the idiots who just want to make assinine comments. My ukes don't fling themselves around and make my technique look beautiful, so I'm not usually accused of overly collusive performance of technique. Regardless, there are always people who want you to know they think you suck. Ah, well. You can please some of the people some of the time, but you can't please all of the people all of the time. That's okay with me.

"Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend."
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:51 AM   #32
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Daniel Wilson wrote: View Post
There's no valid reason why the attacks in these demonstrations and videos could not be more realistic. In terms of the excessively co-operative uke, perhaps some middle ground needs to be reached between resisting the technique and excessive co-operation, for the purposes of the demonstration or video. I know the demonstration or video would be less spectacular, but it would be more realistic. When a potential student is contemplating doing a martial art, one of the first things they often do these days is get on the internet and research it, which includes watching these you tube videos.
Not having been a potential student of martial arts for a while now, I can't really state definitively what most of them are doing these days However, I do know that there's a danger in making assumptions about how other people's minds work. For example, you say that demonstration attacks could be "more realistic". But to an uneducated person who isn't a brawler, what does that mean? A person without experience or knowledge will not have an informed judgment about what's "realistic". They might be able to differentiate between "resisting the technique" and "excessive co-operation" at the extremes, perhaps...but again, there's that pesky "realistic" thing (how "realistic" is an extreme, almost caricatured situation?). So do you show them what they think is "realistic"...or what you think they think is "realistic"...or what?

It's not a new problem and it's not unique to aikido.
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Old 01-25-2013, 01:24 PM   #33
Aikeway
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Not having been a potential student of martial arts for a while now, I can't really state definitively what most of them are doing these days However, I do know that there's a danger in making assumptions about how other people's minds work. For example, you say that demonstration attacks could be "more realistic". But to an uneducated person who isn't a brawler, what does that mean? A person without experience or knowledge will not have an informed judgment about what's "realistic". They might be able to differentiate between "resisting the technique" and "excessive co-operation" at the extremes, perhaps...but again, there's that pesky "realistic" thing (how "realistic" is an extreme, almost caricatured situation?). So do you show them what they think is "realistic"...or what you think they think is "realistic"...or what?

It's not a new problem and it's not unique to aikido.
I think you would show them what you think is a realistic attack.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:30 PM   #34
Basia Halliop
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
However that might not have so much to do with martial arts specifically, and more to do with the idea that in general physical education is for children. A friend of mine (32) went to a large gymnastics school to enquire about their schedule and rates. They asked him "what age", when he told them that it was for him, apparently they were quite surprised and told him that they didn't have classes for anyone his age.
I think this is really true... people seem to divide up different kinds of physical activity in their minds as being 'for kids' or 'for adults' and often gendered as well (e.g. strength training = adult and male, aerobics = adult and female, yoga = adult and female, gymnastics = little girls, jogging = adults of both sexes, skiing = adults and kids of both sexes, etc) Not necessarily that people will give you a hard time if you don't fit the expected age and gender, but they'll be a little surprised.

Traditional martial arts, with the gis and foreign language, seem to be seen as mainstream IF it's for kids and much more niche if it's for adults. Something about that whole mantra about 'martial arts teach discipline and build character' that we often hear seems to translate as 'it's good for kids' to many people and make it seem vaguely incongruous or eccentric for adults. Not to the point of weird or anything, but it's an 'interesting' activity rather than an obvious expected one (like 'going to the gym' or jogging would be).

I also notice that it's more common to see kids with very regular predictable attendance than adults... Adults will make sure their kids show up at their scheduled activities regularly more strictly than they'll do the same themselves.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:32 PM   #35
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
I think this is really true... people seem to divide up different kinds of physical activity in their minds as being 'for kids' or 'for adults' and often gendered as well (e.g. strength training = adult and male, aerobics = adult and female, yoga = adult and female, gymnastics = little girls, jogging = adults of both sexes, skiing = adults and kids of both sexes, etc) Not necessarily that people will give you a hard time if you don't fit the expected age and gender, but they'll be a little surprised.

Traditional martial arts, with the gis and foreign language, seem to be seen as mainstream IF it's for kids and much more niche if it's for adults. Something about that whole mantra about 'martial arts teach discipline and build character' that we often hear seems to translate as 'it's good for kids' to many people and make it seem vaguely incongruous or eccentric for adults. Not to the point of weird or anything, but it's an 'interesting' activity rather than an obvious expected one (like 'going to the gym' or jogging would be).

I also notice that it's more common to see kids with very regular predictable attendance than adults... Adults will make sure their kids show up at their scheduled activities regularly more strictly than they'll do the same themselves.
I think this is pretty spot on.

There was a time when movie tough guys- Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee, Steven Seagal, and many other grown up tough guys were doing traditional martial arts. So to the American public, this seemed like something Adult males would/could do. Now that image is fading, and so is interest in traditional martial arts for young active adults.

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Old 01-29-2013, 04:35 PM   #36
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Should Aikido be promoting itself as a martial art?
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:54 PM   #37
sakumeikan
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Mark Johnston wrote: View Post
Should Aikido be promoting itself as a martial art?
Dear Mark,
Yes , if it is martial.The guys battling in the Gallowgate on a Sat. night might be more martial than some aikido dojos.Cheers Joe.Ps I lived in the Gorbals/Bridgeton inm my misspent youth.Where do you train??
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:07 PM   #38
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

As I see it, just now, promotion of a martial art seems to be of a kill or be killed variety, mma and ufc etc have defined what is martial to those who don't use or promote weapons (that it, it wins in a fight...which if you think of it is pretty fair enough). And for weapons enthusiasts there are many adept places as well.

I don't think Aikido falls into either of those places. It can certainly enhance them but that's different.
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Old 02-06-2013, 05:01 AM   #39
sorokod
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Some numbers

http://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=aikido&cmpt=q

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Old 02-06-2013, 06:35 AM   #40
ryback
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

I've chosen Martial Arts and specifically Aikido to be my way of life long time ago.Trying to live always in the way of harmony on the mats as well as off the mats i always try to find the common ground between myself and other people.So to me,a person who whould do anything in his training differently would still be a fellow Martial Artist in my eyes.
Still,every now and then i'm thinking that there are some lines that if crossed,what one does cannot qualify as Aikido anymore.
When i first started my training i used to be in pain trying to sit in Seiza.But this pain was a path to discipline,even if i didn't know it back then.
I also used to have problems with the use of weapons,but those problems were the path to correct technique and posture.
Kokyu was very hard for me as i had the habit of using muscle strength,but working on it was the path to Ki developement and effective waza.
The list can go on and on with dressing,ettiquette,technique names,nutrition habits,weight loss all things that looked like a huge mountain i had to climb.
Aikido the way i see it, is a spherical training in order to develope simultaneously the physical,mental and spiritual self,a way of life as well as self defense.One must not choose the easy and comfortable way,but the way Aikido is.Trends,fashions,action movie icons all come and go.But the principles and teachings of a traditional Martial Art are always there.
The student must not choose but face the Art as a complete set of training.The teacher must not regard the students as customers,and waste his time trying to find a way to gather more of them.He is responsible for the next generation of Aikidoka and he must rise to the importance of that role or the Art will fade away.
In Martial Arts trends, tides and mass comunication have no place,for it is a deeply personal choice of self discovery and developement.And at the end of each day,one should be in harmony with himself.The harvest of Aikido is always according to one's own seeding.
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Old 02-06-2013, 09:39 AM   #41
Rob Watson
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
Same general trend as 'martial arts'
http://www.google.com/trends/explore...%20arts&cmpt=q

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

Ultracrepidarianism ... don't.
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Old 02-06-2013, 09:56 AM   #42
sorokod
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

True, but there are nuances:

http://www.google.com/trends/explore...%20Judo&cmpt=q and even more so if you limit the data to USA:

http://www.google.com/trends/explore...&geo=US&cmpt=q

By the way, on the Aikido graph, there is a peak every September. Does anyone know what may account for that?

Last edited by sorokod : 02-06-2013 at 10:01 AM.

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Old 02-06-2013, 12:14 PM   #43
Dave de Vos
 
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
By the way, on the Aikido graph, there is a peak every September. Does anyone know what may account for that?
Yes, a dip in July and a peak in September. People go on holiday in July. In September lots of people are considering taking up a new hobby. It's the start of a new hobby season.
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Old 02-06-2013, 02:39 PM   #44
ChrisHein
 
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
This is a useful resource that I've never seen before. It shows the sad decline of Aikido in popularity. Also the word martial arts, is not so popular any more, but MMA and UFC are on the rise.

I guess it's just what's in the media, it's a big factor.

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Old 02-06-2013, 03:00 PM   #45
Krystal Locke
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
David Soroko wrote: View Post
True, but there are nuances:

http://www.google.com/trends/explore...%20Judo&cmpt=q and even more so if you limit the data to USA:

http://www.google.com/trends/explore...&geo=US&cmpt=q

By the way, on the Aikido graph, there is a peak every September. Does anyone know what may account for that?
College classes start. Lots of aikido schools offer outreach or club classes to colleges.
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Old 02-06-2013, 04:04 PM   #46
Krystal Locke
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

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Krystal Locke wrote: View Post
College classes start. Lots of aikido schools offer outreach or club classes to colleges.
Huh, looked a little deeper. The college class hypothesis does not hold up unless European schools start academic years in Sept. and more European students are looking up stuff to take. Another weird thing, judo seems to do the same in August. I am thinking an artefact caused by the survey methodology? Huh.
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Old 02-06-2013, 04:31 PM   #47
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Chris Hein wrote: View Post
This is a useful resource that I've never seen before. It shows the sad decline of Aikido in popularity. Also the word martial arts, is not so popular any more, but MMA and UFC are on the rise.

I guess it's just what's in the media, it's a big factor.
wow aikido + UFC = 100% on the trend graphs ('cept its normalised scale so not really true)

Some might say Aikido is an early MMA, being a gendai sogobujutsu, just need to get ourselves a cage and rebadge

dan

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Old 02-06-2013, 04:35 PM   #48
Krystal Locke
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

There are minor local maxima on Januarys. New Year's resolutions?
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Old 02-07-2013, 12:06 PM   #49
Dan Richards
 
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Yannis Mousoulis wrote: View Post
The student must not choose but face the Art as a complete set of training.
Why? M. Ueshiba and all of his top students all trained in multiple disciplines and even belief systems. It's absolutely up to the student. Even by the time my teacher, Shoji Nishio, started training, no one in the dojo really knew anything about swordmanship. He had to go "outside."

Quote:
In Martial Arts trends, tides and mass comunication have no place....
Really? Why? "Aikido," as many know it, wasn't even founded until after WWII, and it was under the direction of the Japanese government - as were all the other martial "ways." There were big changes from prewar Aikibudo through post-war Aikido, all based on "trends and tides..." M. Ueshiba had mostly retired by the early 40's when the name Aikido was adopted.

Mass communication has become an integral aspect of aikido, and everything else. And there's an interesting irony that you would post - on an internet forum - that it has "no place."

Trying to put aikido into some sort of static box that can be sold as a definitive product is precisely the problem for many. And that's true of those already in the aikido world as well as those outside who are considering joining it. And there is a lot of what's branded as aikido that is nothing but pure baloney - and people can see it. They can smell something isn't right. If we're selling baloney, then let's just call it baloney. But don't try and call it filet mignon.

Aikido, and other aiki-based arts, are actually in a really great place for further evolution.

What's passed off as Aikido, in many cases, these days is nothing more than Multi Level Marketing. A few at the top appear to have the wealth - and often don't - and there are people drawn into the bottom layers and are purposely held down to keep up the top of the pyramid.

Aiki, and all these types of arts, have been in existence for a very long time. As long as people have had two arms and two legs - and a neocortex . M. Ueshiba didn't start it. He was a flower growing on a vine that still very much exists today. And it's growing - as it always has - close to the ground - and under the ground - quietly and slowly - away from the limelight and hierarchical structures. And the MLM pyramid has already begun to collapse.

My 2.

Last edited by Dan Richards : 02-07-2013 at 12:09 PM.
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Old 02-07-2013, 12:59 PM   #50
ryback
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Re: Perhaps the tide is changing.

Quote:
Dan Richards wrote: View Post
Why? M. Ueshiba and all of his top students all trained in multiple disciplines and even belief systems. It's absolutely up to the student. Even by the time my teacher, Shoji Nishio, started training, no one in the dojo really knew anything about swordmanship. He had to go "outside."

Really? Why? "Aikido," as many know it, wasn't even founded until after WWII, and it was under the direction of the Japanese government - as were all the other martial "ways." There were big changes from prewar Aikibudo through post-war Aikido, all based on "trends and tides..." M. Ueshiba had mostly retired by the early 40's when the name Aikido was adopted.

Mass communication has become an integral aspect of aikido, and everything else. And there's an interesting irony that you would post - on an internet forum - that it has "no place."

Trying to put aikido into some sort of static box that can be sold as a definitive product is precisely the problem for many. And that's true of those already in the aikido world as well as those outside who are considering joining it. And there is a lot of what's branded as aikido that is nothing but pure baloney - and people can see it. They can smell something isn't right. If we're selling baloney, then let's just call it baloney. But don't try and call it filet mignon.

Aikido, and other aiki-based arts, are actually in a really great place for further evolution.

What's passed off as Aikido, in many cases, these days is nothing more than Multi Level Marketing. A few at the top appear to have the wealth - and often don't - and there are people drawn into the bottom layers and are purposely held down to keep up the top of the pyramid.

Aiki, and all these types of arts, have been in existence for a very long time. As long as people have had two arms and two legs - and a neocortex . M. Ueshiba didn't start it. He was a flower growing on a vine that still very much exists today. And it's growing - as it always has - close to the ground - and under the ground - quietly and slowly - away from the limelight and hierarchical structures. And the MLM pyramid has already begun to collapse.

My 2.
Well,to be honest i agree with many of your points,speciffically the one about putting Aikido in a box and stop it from developing.

But you see,the point that i was trying to make is that we should not strip aikido of its essence in the favour of comfort.We cannot make it appealing to everybody just for the sake of gathering more students.

Yes aikido must evolve but not for the masses.It must evolve through the personal challenge of every individual aikidoka of taking himself a step further technically through constant practice and applying what o'sensei said:learn one technique and create twenty.Changing the dressing, the protocol or any other aspect that is essential part of aikido training only to be obedient to the latest trends sounds more like the choice of pop stars than Martial Artists, the way i see it!
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