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Old 08-16-2010, 07:40 PM   #101
mathewjgano
 
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
I know what you're saying; but what i'm talking about is when there is no 'whole-body interaction', and in lieu of it, uke is pretending it's there, and pseudo-receiving your technique.
If that happens every time, then i'm never going to change and actually learn the correct technique/way to harmonise with someone; hence such a method of practice is not aikido (although as I previously stated: I think for beginners it's a necessity).
By "pseudo-receiving" do you mean that as uke he basically moves into the position he wants you be able to put him in? I remember doing something similar, but that was more as an aid toward learning the basic form. If you haven't done so already, I'd definately ask him what his take is on it.

Quote:
This is the thing: asking a training partner to change something...I find it's an awkward situation to be in - especially when the other person is a dan grade, and i'm only 5th kyu: I don't want to come across as being a dick - especially when i'm pointing out that they're doing something wrong (Note: this is not referring to the present issue under discussion - it's other things).
The particular training partner I refer to: I know that he's letting me off easy, and I know why - he isn't injured; it's more like he thinks this is the way to treat me in order for me to improve - which did not, has not, and will not, happen.
Well certainly if it's his teaching method (which I presume comes from his teacher(s)) it's not likely to change any time soon. That said, if he's "letting [you] off easy" it seems to beg the question as to how he came to be in the position to be able to do so.
THAT being said, I still think talking to him about it is the quickest way to getting it sorted out. Or discretely ask another sempai or the sensei from a pedogogical standpoint, why do it that way? ...Or, more to the point, why not do it the way you think it ought be done?

Last edited by mathewjgano : 08-16-2010 at 07:47 PM.

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Old 08-16-2010, 10:36 PM   #102
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

I'm not entirely sure how anyone in Aikido expects anyone in the Martial Arts world to take Aikido seriously, especially when there are Aikidoka who don't take Aikido seriously. If Aikidoka are not convinced in the practicality of Aikido, they can't expect anyone else to either.
http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showthread.php?t=32213

MM
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Old 08-17-2010, 12:00 AM   #103
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
I'm not entirely sure how anyone in Aikido expects anyone in the Martial Arts world to take Aikido seriously, especially when there are Aikidoka who don't take Aikido seriously. If Aikidoka are not convinced in the practicality of Aikido, they can't expect anyone else to either.
http://www.bullshido.net/forums/showthread.php?t=32213
Not all Aikido is the same, and some versions are definately more "practical" than others for attaining any given goal. Bullshido loves to "playah-hate."

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Old 08-17-2010, 05:41 AM   #104
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
Matthew, Rob, Cherie:

This is the thing: asking a training partner to change something...I find it's an awkward situation to be in - especially when the other person is a dan grade, and i'm only 5th kyu: I don't want to come across as being a dick - especially when i'm pointing out that they're doing something wrong (Note: this is not referring to the present issue under discussion - it's other things).
The particular training partner I refer to: I know that he's letting me off easy, and I know why - he isn't injured; it's more like he thinks this is the way to treat me in order for me to improve - which did not, has not, and will not, happen.
Well don't put it as you are pointing out that he is doing something wrong. He's really not. I have never had a problem asking any training partner, including a dan grade, to adjust their attack for me. You just have to put in terms of," hey I'm trying to work on this aspect of training could you please give me a little more energy?"

That or I start attacking them with the amount of energy I want back. They tend to feed off of me and if I want a stronger attack I give them one, they rarely fail to just follow along. Of course this can backfire a bit because once they know you like to train hard you get it all the time and then you have to go the other way and slow them down when you need to work at a slower speed.

Quote:
RED I'm not entirely sure how anyone in Aikido expects anyone in the Martial Arts world to take Aikido seriously, especially when there are Aikidoka who don't take Aikido seriously. If Aikidoka are not convinced in the practicality of Aikido, they can't expect anyone else to either.
I really don't care if other people in MA take aikido seriously or not. I take it seriously and that's good enough for me. Honestly it is such a waste of energy worrying about what other people think. What matters is what you get out of it. If you are not getting anything or not getting what you want then something needs to be adjusted in you, not in aikido.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:30 AM   #105
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

1. I have never seen good aikido NOT work in a functional scenario.
2. I have never seen good aikido people NOT alter their interaction with uke to solicit a desired technique.

I believe classical aikido contains functional combat strategy and tactics. If you are training correctly, your aikido will demonstrate good strategy and tactics and those principles (and techniques) can be modified to accommodate more (or less) real situations. I think many of us choose to limit our exposure to that aikido because it makes us squimish (for personal reasons), we do not devote the necessary time or effort, or we are training in a dojo that cannot disseminate that education.

I believe good fighters are knowledgeable in the strategies and tactics of multiple combat disciplines, if not skilled in those arts specifically. Those fighters who understand combat strategy and the pressures of real combat have a significant advantage over those of us who do not... This is an elevation of martial arts training most of us will never experience.

I think "realistic" needs to carries an expectation that accompanies our "real" training ethics. One time at a seminar I was talking to a senior student and he made an off-hand comment about refusing to train with another student because he wore the same gi two classes in a row. I was a little un-nerved by the comment since I respected the student and said, "why, does he stink?" "Nope. That's the problem. I don't want to train with some one who isn't working up a sweat...tells me he [ain't] trying. I got patience if you try, but not if you don't."

For all of the little things we do to train...you can't hide who you are on the mat. Those who have trained long enough always seem to know who you really are. So if you are trying your best and your partner is not cooperating. Keep trying because eventually you will show who you are and he will show who he is. You just have to train until eventually comes.
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Old 08-17-2010, 06:15 PM   #106
Gorgeous George
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote: View Post
By "pseudo-receiving" do you mean that as uke he basically moves into the position he wants you be able to put him in? I remember doing something similar, but that was more as an aid toward learning the basic form. If you haven't done so already, I'd definately ask him what his take is on it.

Well certainly if it's his teaching method (which I presume comes from his teacher(s)) it's not likely to change any time soon. That said, if he's "letting [you] off easy" it seems to beg the question as to how he came to be in the position to be able to do so.
THAT being said, I still think talking to him about it is the quickest way to getting it sorted out. Or discretely ask another sempai or the sensei from a pedogogical standpoint, why do it that way? ...Or, more to the point, why not do it the way you think it ought be done?
Yeah: whereas with some other sempai I train with, who will stop me if my technique is too sloppy, and point out my flaw, he will not - he will respond as though therre is no flaw.
As I say: he's a nice guy, and i'm really thankful to him for so many things, but i'm serious about wanting to become good at aikido, and this training methodology is not conducive to my end.

I think you're right: i'll just have to ask if i'm doing it right...
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Old 08-17-2010, 07:06 PM   #107
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

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Yeah: whereas with some other sempai I train with, who will stop me if my technique is too sloppy, and point out my flaw, he will not - he will respond as though therre is no flaw.
As I say: he's a nice guy, and i'm really thankful to him for so many things, but i'm serious about wanting to become good at aikido, and this training methodology is not conducive to my end.

I think you're right: i'll just have to ask if i'm doing it right...
Frankly, when you are working with some one of lower rank there is a lot of grace given. Typically most Sempai don't stop you and correct every little mistake. Most instructors and sempai in my experience are looking for a specific form, or movement or level of understanding from you, where you are. They forgive a lot of little mistakes for the sake of helping a student focus on an aspect of Aikido they consider important for that student. What an instructor or sempai considers important for you to know is completely subjective to where you are in your Aikido.

Example: I was working with a day one beginner yesterday on the mat. I forgave a lot of his muscling during an ikkyo, for the sake that I wanted him to focus on posture and positioning in regards to uke. Because I believed it to be more important at that level... fixing the muscling will be saved for another day.(many other days most likely)
While in contrast, I worked with another partner with the same technique who had a few months of practice under his belt where I did not ignore his muscling the ikkyo. ..however I ignored his bad posture, because I was more concerned with him learning to cut the ikkyo instead of grab it.
You pick your battles... eventually everything will be brushed upon in time, when the time is right, subjective to the student's ability to understand the principles, which is subjective to where they are at in Aikido.

MM
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Old 08-17-2010, 08:29 PM   #108
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
They forgive a lot of little mistakes for the sake of helping a student focus on an aspect of Aikido they consider important for that student. What an instructor or sempai considers important for you to know is completely subjective to where you are in your Aikido.
Yeah, I know what you're saying. But my frustration is that I was lacking a fundamental element of aikido, while the rest of my aikido had long since plateaued. Hence, there was nothing else being worked on, and I wasn't progressing - and I didn't know why.

I understand that there are those who do aikido who you know will never 'get it', but I am certainly not one of them - i'm very receptive to teaching - I just need to be told what to do, and i'll work my arse off on learning to do it - and am very dedicated to learning aikido. The reason why i've read so much on the subject is because if I can understand what i'm doing, it's method, purpose, etc., then I can learn to do it: the maxim 'Mind leads body' - which describes aikido's modus operandi - fits perfectly with how I function; i've always loved using both, and think I have a good connection between the two.

I don't know: perhaps it's just a difference of opinion as to the effectiveness of training methodologies - but I trained the same way for ages, making the same mistakes, and no matter how long I did that for, there was never going to be a time where I said 'Eureka! I've been training for long enough, I have made a breakthrough, and now I see how to do aikido.'.

Last edited by Gorgeous George : 08-17-2010 at 08:33 PM. Reason: Added the 'maxim' by way of explanation.
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Old 08-17-2010, 09:14 PM   #109
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
I understand that there are those who do aikido who you know will never 'get it', but I am certainly not one of them - i'm very receptive to teaching - I just need to be told what to do, and i'll work my arse off on learning to do it - and am very dedicated to learning aikido. The reason why i've read so much on the subject is because if I can understand what i'm doing, it's method, purpose, etc., then I can learn to do it: the maxim 'Mind leads body' - which describes aikido's modus operandi - fits perfectly with how I function; i've always loved using both, and think I have a good connection between the two.
you got good connection between mind and body? you must be shihan level. hell, i would be lucky if i got my body to do 50% of what my mind want it to do. if you need to be told what to do all the times, wouldn't the Eureka moments come from those who told you what to do, since they have already figured it out? or in another word or many other words, eureka only happens through self-discovery, i.e. opposite of being told what to do? you know the meaning of shoshin?

personally, i put myself in the "not getting it" group. it's more fun there, than in the "getting it" group. we would partying, drinking, carousing, and be a nuisance on aikiweb and get kick off by Jun.

oh ya. to the original question: would very much prefer effectiveness to the extent that i would walking around with full faculty and the other buggers, not. oh wait, aikido is about love and stuffs like that, right? damn! might need to take up under water basket weaving; at least i could use the basket to drown the bugger. wonder if i can wear my hakama underwater, because i feel naked without.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:10 AM   #110
Gorgeous George
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Phi Truong wrote: View Post
you got good connection between mind and body? you must be shihan level. hell, i would be lucky if i got my body to do 50% of what my mind want it to do. if you need to be told what to do all the times, wouldn't the Eureka moments come from those who told you what to do, since they have already figured it out? or in another word or many other words, eureka only happens through self-discovery, i.e. opposite of being told what to do? you know the meaning of shoshin?

personally, i put myself in the "not getting it" group. it's more fun there, than in the "getting it" group. we would partying, drinking, carousing, and be a nuisance on aikiweb and get kick off by Jun.

oh ya. to the original question: would very much prefer effectiveness to the extent that i would walking around with full faculty and the other buggers, not. oh wait, aikido is about love and stuffs like that, right? damn! might need to take up under water basket weaving; at least i could use the basket to drown the bugger. wonder if i can wear my hakama underwater, because i feel naked without.
Haha. If by '[i] think I have a good connection between the two [mind and body]' I intended the meaning that I am excellent at aikido, then yes: perhaps I would be asserting that I am 'shihan level'; however, as I have repeatedly said, and is the purpose of this thread: I don't see that as being the case. I see that I have the potential, and have put in the effort, but without what I think are due rewards.
Besides: aikido is also about co-ordination between your mind and body and somebody else's.
I hope that clears it up for you.

The point of teaching someone aikido is that you already possess the knowledge - hence, you've already had the 'eureka' moments. If I could discover aikido on my own - if we all could, and that was thus the way to discover it - then why attend classes? Why did anyone ever train with o'sensei? Or Gozo Shioda, Morihiro Saito, or any other teacher?
The purpose of a teacher in any discipline is to give the student the benefit of their insights, and help in attaining them for themselves.
I've been shown things by teachers which are examples of aikido, and experienced a massive realisation about what i'm striving for - as opposed to things which i've come up with myself, which are not.
As your argument implies: the teachers have had the 'eureka' moments, and they are trying to put their students on the path towards them.

'personally, i put myself in the "not getting it" group...'

Again: you've taken me to mean something that I do not; you should clarify things before attributing a position to someone.
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:14 AM   #111
RED
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
Yeah, I know what you're saying. But my frustration is that I was lacking a fundamental element of aikido, while the rest of my aikido had long since plateaued. Hence, there was nothing else being worked on, and I wasn't progressing - and I didn't know why.

I understand that there are those who do aikido who you know will never 'get it', but I am certainly not one of them - i'm very receptive to teaching - I just need to be told what to do, and i'll work my arse off on learning to do it - and am very dedicated to learning aikido. The reason why i've read so much on the subject is because if I can understand what i'm doing, it's method, purpose, etc., then I can learn to do it: the maxim 'Mind leads body' - which describes aikido's modus operandi - fits perfectly with how I function; i've always loved using both, and think I have a good connection between the two.

I don't know: perhaps it's just a difference of opinion as to the effectiveness of training methodologies - but I trained the same way for ages, making the same mistakes, and no matter how long I did that for, there was never going to be a time where I said 'Eureka! I've been training for long enough, I have made a breakthrough, and now I see how to do aikido.'.
For me personally, and for a lot of people I know and have met, there are weird peeks in your Aikido where you are developing very quickly... which is always followed by an inevitable plateau period, where you aren't getting better in your own mind.
With that said, if there is something absolutely wrong with what you are doing, there should be some one more experienced than you to help point you in the right direction.
Yamada Sensei in an interview once refereed to students as blind men. You are trying to help lead them down a road. You don't bother telling the blind man about all the pitfalls on the road, it'll only freak him out,, you just help them get to point A to point B in a technique. Eventually the blind man will start to see and see the pitfalls for himself, and he'll be able to fall back on the direction his teacher gave him previously so he can navigate those pitfalls.

MM
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Old 08-18-2010, 10:22 AM   #112
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post

The point of teaching someone aikido is that you already possess the knowledge - hence, you've already had the 'eureka' moments. If
I view things a little differently. lol
I think the teacher's job is to posses the knowledge, so there I agree with you. However, I don't think he necessarily has any obligation to express to share that knowledge to his students.

The teacher is not the servant of the student. Therefore the teacher has no obligation to go out of his way to serve he student and give up information to anyone. I think a good teacher is responsive to a student that seeks the help of the teacher. When a student approaches a teacher with a sense of need and gratitude then that's when I think a teacher is most responsive to sharing their knowledge and experience.

The teacher's job is to know what they are doing, and the student's job is to sucker that information out of him.

MM
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:09 AM   #113
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
The teacher's job is to know what they are doing, and the student's job is to sucker that information out of him.
I've heard of this approach, yes: trying to 'steal the technique' of the teacher, etc.
But I think this perspective is ultimately trumped by the one that you need others to practice aikido with/on - and the better somebody is, the more effectively/powerfully you can practice; having a load of pupils who aren't very good doesn't aid you.
So I think you can possibly regard the most effective way for a teacher to be selfish as in this way, as it benefits them the most.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:10 AM   #114
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
With that said, if there is something absolutely wrong with what you are doing, there should be some one more experienced than you to help point you in the right direction.
....and that's exactly the situation i've been describing.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:52 AM   #115
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post
The teacher's job is to know what they are doing, and the student's job is to sucker that information out of him.
nonsense.
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Old 08-18-2010, 11:58 AM   #116
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
I've been shown things by teachers which are examples of aikido, and experienced a massive realisation about what i'm striving for - as opposed to things which i've come up with myself, which are not.
As your argument implies: the teachers have had the 'eureka' moments, and they are trying to put their students on the path towards them.
.
my statement simply said that the teachers already had their moments. it's the student that needs those eureka things. in another word, the student needs to discover those things, often times, without teachers. in another another words, stop waiting to be fed and go find your own foods. an old asian saying that goes something along the line: the teacher responsible to show you 1, the student responsible to figure out 10.

i was chauffeuring Hiroshi Ikeda sensei at a recent seminar. the man analyzes and teaches himself constantly, not to mention learning from any sources that he can get his hands on. btw, his knowledge in coffee is quite extensive as well. btw btw, whoever been showing him systema stuffs, please stop it. his strike hurts like the mother of pain.
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Old 08-18-2010, 01:45 PM   #117
Walter Martindale
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Maggie Schill wrote: View Post

The teacher's job is to know what they are doing, and the student's job is to sucker that information out of him.
OTOH, I recall a session with an elderly gent who was teaching Aikido who's idea (paraphrased) was - "I'm getting old, I'm not going to take this information with me, it's time to give it all away to my students."

Walter
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Old 08-18-2010, 03:19 PM   #118
Russ Q
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
he teacher is not the servant of the student. Therefore the teacher has no obligation to go out of his way to serve he student and give up information to anyone. I think a good teacher is responsive to a student that seeks the help of the teacher. When a student approaches a teacher with a sense of need and gratitude then that's when I think a teacher is most responsive to sharing their knowledge and experience.

The teacher's job is to know what they are doing, and the student's job is to sucker that information out of him.
Wow! This is a very narrow cultural view of what it means to be a teacher, even within the equally narrow context of teaching martial arts and aikido in particular. Clearly this is how it's done in your dojo but I would posit that the teacher is as much a servant to their students as they are a leader and (for lack of a better term) authority figure. I know of one particular teacher who seeks out and collaberates with others to find new ways of imparting information to his students (and other interested folks) so they can "get it" without having to put in 30 - 35 yrs to be where that teacher is....this is dedication, selfless and epitomizes the idea/spirit of teaching martial arts. Making ones students "sucker" information out of you is, IMO, an outmoded teaching paradigm. Sorry for the thread drift but had to comment.

Last edited by Russ Q : 08-18-2010 at 03:25 PM. Reason: had more to add
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Old 08-19-2010, 07:13 AM   #119
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Toward the original question:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...696#post262696

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...242#post263242

David M. Valadez
Visit our web site for articles and videos. Senshin Center - A Place for Traditional Martial Arts in Santa Barbara.
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Old 08-19-2010, 11:20 AM   #120
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

The article linked to above is excellent. I recently read an article by an aiki jujitsu sensei who said that at first jujitsu is taught and, when through hard physical effort dicipline has been learnt, aiki may be introduced. We are often in danger within aikido of looking to shortcut straight to aiki. This can't be valid unless we are better people than them or they are wrong. I don't believe they are, or that we are better. Martial effectiveness requires a different dicipline than sport and I belive it is necessary to achieve the same understanding of aiki that O'Sensei had.
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Old 08-19-2010, 02:07 PM   #121
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Quote:
Russ Qureshi wrote: View Post
Wow! This is a very narrow cultural view of what it means to be a teacher, even within the equally narrow context of teaching martial arts and aikido in particular. Clearly this is how it's done in your dojo but I would posit that the teacher is as much a servant to their students as they are a leader and (for lack of a better term) authority figure. I know of one particular teacher who seeks out and collaberates with others to find new ways of imparting information to his students (and other interested folks) so they can "get it" without having to put in 30 - 35 yrs to be where that teacher is....this is dedication, selfless and epitomizes the idea/spirit of teaching martial arts. Making ones students "sucker" information out of you is, IMO, an outmoded teaching paradigm. Sorry for the thread drift but had to comment.
I would think it is the responsibility of the student to take control of their education if we are talking about adults. Regardless of how good or poor the teacher is at teaching, it is the student's job to receive it. In larger classes you might not get any one on one time with a black belt, let alone an instructor, so one must actively seek out any desired knowledge, even if that must me done between classes, early or late to one. Your technique grows as fast as you let it in my experience.
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Old 08-19-2010, 02:11 PM   #122
Russ Q
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Hi Ryan,

Yes, I agree with everything you have said.

Cheers,

Russ
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Old 08-19-2010, 02:17 PM   #123
Janet Rosen
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

I agree it is the responsibility of the adult student to oversee his own education - but this is not an excuse, ever, for just plain poor teaching (and I'm not implying anybody said it was) OR for staying in a teaching situation unsuited to one's own learning modes: Recognizing there are many models for teaching and pathways for learning, part of the responsibility includes selecting the instructor whose default mode best matches one's learning style.

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"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 08-19-2010, 02:25 PM   #124
RED
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

My point is not that poor instruction is forgivable, I believe in the opposite. My point is that I've been seeing an odd trend of entitlement among students. People are so far caught into the Mcdojo mind set, that they believe they have the right to pay their money, receive a class, be rude to teachers, disrespectful to instructors, not listen to sempai, openly think poorly of their upper classmen and instructors, show little self motivation, etc etc...and then still expect that the teacher should just expel their knowledge upon the adult brats. In my opinion your money that you pay to the school is paid out of appreciation for the instruction you've received. I do not view it as a bartering: money traded for good and services. I believe you pay that money for the betterment of the school, and as a student you are obligated to maintain the upkeep of that school.

I wonder sometimes if this entitlement stems back from when we were in school. The law requires you to get an education, thus you can be as big of a bastard to your public school teacher as you please, as disrespectful, non-responsive and lazy as you please, and the teacher is legally obligated to still expel knowledge to you.

I don't think Aikido works this way. When you train under a high level instructor it is a privilege!

Last edited by RED : 08-19-2010 at 02:29 PM.

MM
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Old 08-19-2010, 03:20 PM   #125
Russ Q
Dojo: Shohei Juku Aikido Gibsons
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Re: To What Extent is Martial Effectiveness Necessary...

Hi Maggie,

I also agree with everything you said in your last post. I believe there is a huge sense of entitlement among many in my generation and the following one.....These kinds of students tend to weed themselves out over time.

Janet...absolutely. Choosing the right teacher is the biggest responsibility of a new student. It is one thing that most folks coming to any learning situation aren't even aware of.....I wasn't when I started but I got lucky. When I tell prospective students to visit around and find the right teacher they tend to give me a "That's a weird thing to say...I just wanna learn aikido" kind of look.....

Cheers,

Russ
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