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Old 07-01-2007, 03:57 AM   #26
grumpingtons
Join Date: May 2007
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Hi, am having the same thoughts myself!

I have always been interested in martial arts but the first time I ever started was when I started doing kenpo about 4 years ago. I really enjoyed the class but decided to stop after a few months and try some other things. I eventually settled on aikido and have been doing it for about 6 months now.

I enjoy aikido but have my reservations about its effectiveness and also am not that keen on breakfalling so much. That said I like my current club and am making good progress.

However, I will move away from my home town in September for study and there are both kenpo and aikido clubs in the area. Whilst it is easy to find aikido clubs in most places, its quite hard to find kenpo clubs in the UK. So I am bascially wondering which one to do - as I only really have time to train twice a week and prefer to concentrate on one thing at a time.

I suppose my thinking is perhaps to give kenpo another shot for a year, after which I will probably end up moving again to find a job, and see what options are whereever I move to. As I will live in either the UK or move back to Japan, it seems aikido clubs may be much more common than kenpo ones though. I do feel however, a reluctance to (again) change martial arts, start more or less from the beginning again and maybe have to start again in aikido should I go back to it later on. I have ambitions to get on and feel that too much changing of martial arts is holding me back - in the last 4 years I have tried many things but not really got so far.

Style-wise, I also wonder if kenpo or aikido would suit me better. I am looking for a self defence style that works, and if possible has aspects that can be understood and used basically if needed without years of study. Aikido does seem to lack some practicability in self defence until studied for a number of years, and I am not keen on breakfalling! It also has a lot of formality, dojo rules and something of a language barrier - kenpo in contrast seems more modern and user friendly. However, kenpo also seems to have a large array of techniques and takes many years to master. Aikido also has the advantage of being something able to be used by anyone of any age and build to defend against anyone, ie smaller person can defend against a much bigger person.

Anyway, any more thoughts anyone - especially people who have practiced aikido and kenpo!
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:38 AM   #27
Mark Uttech
Dojo: Yoshin-ji Aikido of Marshall
Location: Wisconsin
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Just like a person with two watches is never sure what time it is, what you choose is not going to matter unless it is , and then you have to keep choosing, don't you? And that is what each person does: they choose; every day.

In gassho,

Mark
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Old 07-01-2007, 08:26 AM   #28
jennifer paige smith
 
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Dojo: Confluence Aiki-Dojo / Santa Cruz Sword Club
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Quote:
Matthew Basey wrote: View Post
Hi, am having the same thoughts myself!

I have always been interested in martial arts but the first time I ever started was when I started doing kenpo about 4 years ago. I really enjoyed the class but decided to stop after a few months and try some other things. I eventually settled on aikido and have been doing it for about 6 months now.

I enjoy aikido but have my reservations about its effectiveness and also am not that keen on breakfalling so much. That said I like my current club and am making good progress.

However, I will move away from my home town in September for study and there are both kenpo and aikido clubs in the area. Whilst it is easy to find aikido clubs in most places, its quite hard to find kenpo clubs in the UK. So I am bascially wondering which one to do - as I only really have time to train twice a week and prefer to concentrate on one thing at a time.

I suppose my thinking is perhaps to give kenpo another shot for a year, after which I will probably end up moving again to find a job, and see what options are whereever I move to. As I will live in either the UK or move back to Japan, it seems aikido clubs may be much more common than kenpo ones though. I do feel however, a reluctance to (again) change martial arts, start more or less from the beginning again and maybe have to start again in aikido should I go back to it later on. I have ambitions to get on and feel that too much changing of martial arts is holding me back - in the last 4 years I have tried many things but not really got so far.

Style-wise, I also wonder if kenpo or aikido would suit me better. I am looking for a self defence style that works, and if possible has aspects that can be understood and used basically if needed without years of study. Aikido does seem to lack some practicability in self defence until studied for a number of years, and I am not keen on breakfalling! It also has a lot of formality, dojo rules and something of a language barrier - kenpo in contrast seems more modern and user friendly. However, kenpo also seems to have a large array of techniques and takes many years to master. Aikido also has the advantage of being something able to be used by anyone of any age and build to defend against anyone, ie smaller person can defend against a much bigger person.

Anyway, any more thoughts anyone - especially people who have practiced aikido and kenpo!
I've been exposed to Kenpo and Aikido together in enough of a respect to comment. I would point out to you that in the traditional methods of teaching aikido and kenpo they both take a long time to master for 'effectivenes'. Depending on yourself, your usual chosen environment, and your specific level of training on any particular day; which one of these arts matches you best is purely subjective to you. I don't believe you will lose much ground if you switch up right now because you are in a way still 'on the fence' about your convicton to training. If you had been fastened to the fence by either one of these arts you would know it by now. So, it sems to me that you are still looking for something, just as in before the beginning. Like Sensei Uttech said, you will begin when you begin and then you will need to re-apply yourself on a regular basis. The art you choose frames the world you live in. Does the world of aikido sound like a good match to your lifestyle or does kenpo? And then does the teacher you encounter match your lifestyle and does the dojo? It is a process. A good process.

Jennifer Paige Smith
Confluence Aikido Systems
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Old 07-02-2007, 08:35 AM   #29
Paul Sanderson-Cimino
Dojo: Yoshokai; looking into judo
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

I'm not sure that kenpo is considered a very good self-defense art either.

So far, the list I usually hear as being the most efficient for empty-hand fighting is (in no particular ranking): BJJ, Judo, Sambo, Wrestling, Kyokushin Karate, Muay Thai. The last two, KK and MT, are mostly striking, while the others are grappling.

I'm not presently aware of anyone being successful (or even contending seriously) in an open-style tournament with Kenpo.
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Old 07-07-2007, 04:22 AM   #30
grumpingtons
Join Date: May 2007
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Thanks for the replies - I like the quote about wearing two watches! Thats sums up my whole life

Kenpo also might not be great for self defence I suppose. I think self defence can cover many aspects though. I have done some BJJ and Judo and whilst BJJ might be good one on one its not really that practical, in my opinion, in many situations where ground fighting isnt a good idea.

In addition, Im not sure about Judo because it seems quite reliant on the gi and its difficult to throw much bigger people. I suppose whatever works though for that person in the situation they may face and all martial arts have their pros and cons.

I have heard people like Geoff Thompson (love him or hate him)argue a combination of wrestling and boxing are good in most situations.

The thing I do like about aikido is that as a smaller person (about 130 pounds/60kgs) it is possible to execute a technique on a much bigger person without needed to exert as much strength as in some other martial arts.

Anyway thanks for the replies!
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Old 07-07-2007, 08:31 AM   #31
David Yap
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 561
Malaysia
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Quote:
Matthew Basey wrote: View Post
Thanks for the replies - I like the quote about wearing two watches! Thats sums up my whole life

Kenpo also might not be great for self defence I suppose. I think self defence can cover many aspects though. I have done some BJJ and Judo and whilst BJJ might be good one on one its not really that practical, in my opinion, in many situations where ground fighting isnt a good idea.

In addition, Im not sure about Judo because it seems quite reliant on the gi and its difficult to throw much bigger people. I suppose whatever works though for that person in the situation they may face and all martial arts have their pros and cons.

I have heard people like Geoff Thompson (love him or hate him)argue a combination of wrestling and boxing are good in most situations.

The thing I do like about aikido is that as a smaller person (about 130 pounds/60kgs) it is possible to execute a technique on a much bigger person without needed to exert as much strength as in some other martial arts.

Anyway thanks for the replies!
Hi Matthew,

Most MA teachings are beyond techniques. Our dojo here offers aikido, karate and shorinji kempo. The objective of karate is to teach one to avoid a conflict all together. Aikido teaches us to address a conflict and most times, we find that it is always better to avoid a conflict by not reacting at all. The latter, imho, is still the best self-defense. As to whether aikido is technically an effective art for SD, it depends on the methodology of instructions and your personal skills. Avoid any schools that have no systematic instructions and techniques that you would have a hard time following, figuring and requiring some amount of brute strength. If you have only one year to try out, go for something simple.

My two sen.

Regards

David Y
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Old 07-08-2007, 04:47 AM   #32
grumpingtons
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

David: thanks for your comment too. I may have given the wrong idea, when I said about having one year. I basically intend to train as long as I am able to physcially, so I hope that will be for a long time yet!

The one year refers to the time I will spend doing graduate studies, after which Im hoping to move on and stay in one place a while. I havent stayed in one place for a long time, and the moving about I think is one factor that can hinder progress.

As its hard to find kenpo in the UK and i have the chance to get some 1-1 instruction from a brown belt (which is pretty high up in kepo) it seems like a good chance to explore it a bit more, and after a year continue or come back to aikido.

I really like my current dojo that trains in yoshinkan style - the sensei and other students are really great to train with. The dojo in the place I will move to is aikikai, so I wonder what differences there may be.

There are many things I like about aikido I have said before, but also some I dont like so much! My reasons for training are self defence and fitness so Im not so keen on so much dojo formality, wearing a gi and fuss about correct belt tying, shouting of osu and bowing that I have come across in yoshinkan. And whilst aikido has many techniques I like, Im not keen on things like shikko, and other techniques that seem a bit redundant these days. Admittedly Im just a beginner, but so far most attacks have been shomen uchi or a form of kata te mochi.

I suppose one thing my friend at the brazilian Jujitsu said hit home about aikido, "well you grab my hand and Ill cartwheel off in the other direction". Its a very crude point of course, but sometimes it seems hard to seperate the parts of aikido that can be used effectively in self defence.

Anyway, just my thoughts.
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Old 07-08-2007, 08:26 AM   #33
DonMagee
Location: Indiana
Join Date: May 2006
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Quote:
Matthew Basey wrote: View Post
David: thanks for your comment too. I may have given the wrong idea, when I said about having one year. I basically intend to train as long as I am able to physcially, so I hope that will be for a long time yet!

The one year refers to the time I will spend doing graduate studies, after which Im hoping to move on and stay in one place a while. I havent stayed in one place for a long time, and the moving about I think is one factor that can hinder progress.

As its hard to find kenpo in the UK and i have the chance to get some 1-1 instruction from a brown belt (which is pretty high up in kepo) it seems like a good chance to explore it a bit more, and after a year continue or come back to aikido.

I really like my current dojo that trains in yoshinkan style - the sensei and other students are really great to train with. The dojo in the place I will move to is aikikai, so I wonder what differences there may be.

There are many things I like about aikido I have said before, but also some I dont like so much! My reasons for training are self defence and fitness so Im not so keen on so much dojo formality, wearing a gi and fuss about correct belt tying, shouting of osu and bowing that I have come across in yoshinkan. And whilst aikido has many techniques I like, Im not keen on things like shikko, and other techniques that seem a bit redundant these days. Admittedly Im just a beginner, but so far most attacks have been shomen uchi or a form of kata te mochi.

I suppose one thing my friend at the brazilian Jujitsu said hit home about aikido, "well you grab my hand and Ill cartwheel off in the other direction". Its a very crude point of course, but sometimes it seems hard to seperate the parts of aikido that can be used effectively in self defence.

Anyway, just my thoughts.
Sounds like you are looking for a mixed martial arts club.

As for judo and being reliant on a gi, trust me, that is not the case. Any throw done with a gi can be done with a underhooks and overhooks from the clinch.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 07-08-2007, 09:07 AM   #34
grumpingtons
Join Date: May 2007
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Quote:
Don Magee wrote: View Post
Sounds like you are looking for a mixed martial arts club.

As for judo and being reliant on a gi, trust me, that is not the case. Any throw done with a gi can be done with a underhooks and overhooks from the clinch.
I take your points about judo and the gi.

Actually Im not really keen on mma. Im not that keen on boxing/kickboxing, and mma seems to go too far the other way in terms of being a sport rather than a martial art.

Maybe I want to have my cake and eat it, but Id like something thats part way between a sport and part way between a martial art.
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Old 07-08-2007, 11:34 AM   #35
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

There is a time for 'wanting'.
And then there is a time for doing.

Jennifer Paige Smith
Confluence Aikido Systems
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Old 07-09-2007, 05:35 AM   #36
DonMagee
Location: Indiana
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Re: Aikido or Kenpo (trying to decide)

Quote:
Jennifer Smith wrote: View Post
There is a time for 'wanting'.
And then there is a time for doing.
I couldn't agree more.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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