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Old 01-24-2014, 07:48 PM   #26
JoelLM
Location: Northern of 60
Join Date: Jan 2014
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Canada
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Yes, that flamingly obvious truism managed to penetrate even my thick skull.
I could be wrong but I don't think that's what he ment, I dont think he was trying to attack you and your views personally.

Lets try it keep this on track .

Mary, if you came across a student who insisted he knew what Aikido was both fundamentally and practically, how would you approach him? What would you tell him?

In your opinion Mary and from your experience what is Aikido all about?
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:25 PM   #27
hughrbeyer
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Boston
Location: Peterborough, NH
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 653
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
So you don't think anyone should "burst the bubble" of a brand new newbie who thinks that they know what aikido is all about? And you think that's somehow helpful to them? And that being introduced to the idea that they don't know and that it is OK not to know is somehow harmful to them? OK, whatever. Nothing more to discuss here. My experience of not knowing, and knowing that I didn't know, has apparently been very different from yours and the students you've observed...not nearly so threatening and damaging.
But we're not talking about the know-it-all who thinks they understand everything already. If you'll look up-thread, we're talking about the newbie who claims to have fallen in love with the art on the first day. And yeah, though we with our vast experience and deep knowledge may realize that most of these folks will be gone within the week, or the month, or the year, I don't think we do them any favors to burst their bubble, excuse me, give them the benefit of our perspective. Rather than try to gift them with my experience, better to enjoy their enjoyment of theirs. Even if they do stick with it, that starry-eyed, falling-in-love phase doesn't last long and it does no one any harm. Make the most of it while it lasts.

Even the know-it-all does no one much harm in a physically based art. If he sticks with it, he'll find out how much he doesn't know.

Evolution doesn't prove God doesn't exist, any more than hammers prove carpenters don't exist.
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Old 01-24-2014, 10:16 PM   #28
robin_jet_alt
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 523
Australia
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Joel Martel wrote: View Post
It's not that I do not like or enjoy aikido but I do come from a sports derived MA so there are a few principles that I grew up with that aikido dose not support, such as no pressure testing. This makes certain aspects of Aikido hard for me to digest, that being said im looking for a long term commitment, something I can start while im still young and continue in my old age. You do not have this with a lot of sports derived MA because of the higher risk of injury.
Okay, I didn't really have anything to add until I saw this, but now....

Biggest mistake: No pressure testing. Of course there should be pressure testing. At good dojos, there is always pressure testing among seniors. Of course beginners are not encouraged to engage in this sort of activity because a) their technique is not yet good enough for them to be able to handle it, so it is counterproductive, and b) if they decide to test a more senior person, they are often not able to receive the considerably more difficult fall that is coming.

A case in point is a beginner that we had train with us a few weeks ago. I was trying to guide him into the right position to throw me, but he was being stubborn and saw that as resistance.He was young and gung ho and decided to test me when he was uke. In retrospect, I should have stopped and had a word to him about the danger he was putting himself in, but as you know, that often elicits the response, "you're just saying that because aikido is crap and you can't throw me." So anyway, I just threw him, and he ended up with some very sore ribs. There was no lasting damage (as far as I know), but it is a tricky situation.
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Old 01-25-2014, 10:19 AM   #29
Krystal Locke
Location: Phoenix, Oregon
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 385
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Re: I just want to talk.

This is what I reflexively responded with upon only reading up to a point in the thread. Clearly, I got to the party late, but I am going to let my post stand due to its amusingly retroactive propheticness. And with no further ado, I give you.........

Quote:
Joel Martel wrote: View Post
Dave and Mary thank you for contributing to conversation, im curious about one of your answers Mary.

This seems odd to me, is this like joining Aikido for the wrong reasons or people practicing aikido who don't appreciate or understand the principals Aikido was founded on?
I'd argue that someone who just starts aikido because they appreciate and understand the principles of aikido really does not appreciate and understand the principles of aikido. The whole point of training in aikido (or anything else) is that you're training in aikido (or that anything else).

Want a truly wild, burning down the house randori of discussion? Put on the Nomex gi and tell us what you think aikido is, what it and its practice necessarily entails, and what it is good for.

Last edited by Krystal Locke : 01-25-2014 at 10:24 AM. Reason: Never mind. Someone else said it.
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Old 01-25-2014, 10:29 AM   #30
Cady Goldfield
Join Date: Oct 2006
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
Did I know my wife at first sight? Not in my head... but my heart begs to differ. Do those who fall in love with Aikido on the first day know Aikido? Certainly not--for some. For others, don't be too quick to burst their bubble. Whatever their relationship to Aikido is, it's their relationship--not for anyone else to fix or improve.
Nicely said.
I do believe that there are some cues and triggers that people give, that others have the sensitivity to pick up on and automatically "click" with (or be repelled by). IOW, it's all in the heart of the beholder. People have different natures, some optimistic and open and others cynical or skeptical. Each finds his or her way according that nature.

Also, in regards with falling in love with an art at first experience, what's wrong with a honeymoon? Aren't we entitled to experience that rush, before the drudgery of the actual sweat work sets in?
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Old 01-26-2014, 10:38 AM   #31
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Joel Martel wrote: View Post
Mary, if you came across a student who insisted he knew what Aikido was both fundamentally and practically, how would you approach him? What would you tell him?
I wouldn't tell him anything. I'd shrug and go my own way. You can't tell anything to people who are convinced they are right.

Quote:
Joel Martel wrote: View Post
In your opinion Mary and from your experience what is Aikido all about?
I'm not so arrogant as to think I know the answer to that question.
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Old 01-26-2014, 10:41 AM   #32
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Hugh Beyer wrote: View Post
But we're not talking about the know-it-all who thinks they understand everything already. If you'll look up-thread, we're talking about the newbie who claims to have fallen in love with the art on the first day. And yeah, though we with our vast experience and deep knowledge may realize that most of these folks will be gone within the week, or the month, or the year, I don't think we do them any favors to burst their bubble, excuse me, give them the benefit of our perspective. Rather than try to gift them with my experience, better to enjoy their enjoyment of theirs. Even if they do stick with it, that starry-eyed, falling-in-love phase doesn't last long and it does no one any harm. Make the most of it while it lasts.
Fair enough, and certainly you can't talk someone down from this kind of high. What do you do with this person when the high evaporates, though? When they get the "I thought it was gonna be super special ALL THE TIME" blues, and start thinking there's something wrong (with them, with the art, with both) because they don't feel that special feeling all the time? Do you think it's wrong or dangerous to tell a newbie that it WON'T be super special all the time, and that that's OK?
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Old 01-26-2014, 10:06 PM   #33
hughrbeyer
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Boston
Location: Peterborough, NH
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
What do you do with this person when the high evaporates, though?
Take them out for a beer.

Evolution doesn't prove God doesn't exist, any more than hammers prove carpenters don't exist.
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Old 01-26-2014, 10:46 PM   #34
dps
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Joel Martel wrote: View Post
Once a student has a basic understanding of the basics, is it posible to practice on their own? Or should you always practice under or with a more advanced practitioner?
While I was attending a dojo I practiced on my own.
Now that I don't attend a dojo I still practice on my own.
I practice for strength, flexibility and to keep my muscle memory fresh.
Since I stand at work all day I practice unsuko, aiki -taiso and other basics.
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Old 01-27-2014, 06:02 AM   #35
Malicat
Dojo: Sei-Ryo, Flat Rock, NC
Location: Hendersonville, NC
Join Date: Dec 2011
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Re: I just want to talk.

Quote:
Krystal Locke wrote: View Post
I'd argue that someone who just starts aikido because they appreciate and understand the principles of aikido really does not appreciate and understand the principles of aikido. The whole point of training in aikido (or anything else) is that you're training in aikido (or that anything else).

Want a truly wild, burning down the house randori of discussion? Put on the Nomex gi and tell us what you think aikido is, what it and its practice necessarily entails, and what it is good for.
It still works Krystal. And I took Aikido because it was free, college club dojo, and because I quit doing karate many years previously due to bad personal circumstances. I kept showing up because instructor was patient, interesting, and an excellent teacher. I fell in love with it much later when I realized I would be moving and had to make the decision to commit to my dojo for a 2 hour one way drive to train, or switch styles. That was a year and some change past my initial start date, and my love for Aikido wasn't tested until I had to make a mor difficult commitment.

And... Nomex gi!?!? Where on earth are you doing your gi shopping!??!?!! The tie-dye was bad enough!

--Ashley
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Old 01-27-2014, 11:33 AM   #36
kfa4303
Dojo: North Florida School of Aikido (ASU)
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Join Date: Mar 2012
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Re: I just want to talk.

1. MOVE YOUR FEET!!!!!!!! ALL techniques start form the ground up whether you're doing karate, fencing, boxing or ballet. If you're feet are "stuck in the mud", or you act like a "deer caught in headlights" you will get destroyed. You can do all the arm flailing you want, but none of it will be as effective as simply moving out of the way. A seemingly simple concept that is extremely difficult for many people to grasp for reasons, I've never fully understood myself. I suppose it's a learned response to fear to simply freeze and hope for the best, which of course never works.

"Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee." -Muhammad Ali
"If you can't dance, you can't fight." -Bruce Lee

2.) New students always expect way too much way too early. I see it with my guitar students all the time. They think they can just pick up an instrument, start strumming and they'll be Jimi Hendrix in a month. It looks easy on TV, right? Once they realize how difficult it is to make even a single chord sound passable, most of them quit.
I try to tell them it's like learning a new language. It's going to take YEARS just to get the basics, and even then you'll have a funny accent. Sadly, our society expects perfection without practice, so if results don't come quick, cheap and easily enough we give, and often when we're just starting to make head way.
Biggest waste of time by far and without exception are anything having to do with "ki" and/or "you had to be there" anecdotal experiences. They're an utter waste of time and help no one. It's like saying "you should've seen Beethoven play in his prime." DUHHHHHHH, but what good does that do me now? Let me guess, he was really, really good. Am I right?
Also, If you have access to "magical life energy, ki, spiritual insight, etc...." then go to you local hospital and help a kid with cancer. Stop rolling around on a mat in a man-skirt. Better yet, come to my hospital. I have a whole floor of cancer kids that would love to benefit your your "spiritual" expertise. After all Osensei could see bullets in mid flight, right? So a little stationary tumor should be no problem. Maybe you can try the Mr. Miyagi hand rubbing trick while your at it.

4. 2 month techniques: irimi, tenkan (i.e. move your feet), nikkyo,

5. Patience is the key to all arts. It's gonna take time........that's the point.

6. In the US there definitely seem to be East and West coast schools/styles/approaches with further "cliques" within them. In terms of "modern" Aikido, I'd say guys like Yamada, Saotome, Doran, Ledyard are all active and influential. If you go a little broader, or further back I'd say guys like Tissier in Europe, Kanai sensei on the East Coast of the US and Furuya sensei on the West Coast were/are all well know and well regarded. Of course, we all have our favorite teachers, but these are names you'll see pop up time and time again.
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Old 01-27-2014, 01:04 PM   #37
JoelLM
Location: Northern of 60
Join Date: Jan 2014
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Canada
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Re: I just want to talk.

Karl, I like it, im not sure when the magic ki stuff came in but im glad you got that off your chest .
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