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Old 07-25-2005, 02:43 PM   #1
IP Hash: 06d051ca
Anonymous User
Unhappy Aggressive aikidoka

I have been training for a little over three months. I have some physical-cognitive issues that the chief instructor at our dojo and I discussed a bit before I began training. We did not discuss them too much because sensei (rightly) didn't want me or anyone else focusing on what the 'rest of the world' considers my disabilities. Sensei's and my other teachers' and sempai's support in my learning process and, everybody's, is truly amazing and I'm very moved by it.

Because of the extra issues I'm dealing with, sensei has recommended a different focus for me than "standard", i.e., "form" rather than "speed.", at least for now. Sometimes he will break techniques up into half-parts or quarter-parts for me, until I can put them together properly. When I am training opposite *most* people at the dojo, I can ask them to slow down their attacks as uke and counters as nage -- as my reactions/reflexes are still building up, and they will happily do so.

There are a few training partners who will start out at a speed I can't handle -- after one throw, I'll gently ask them to slow down so I can take ukemi at a speed I can manage, and they *mostly* do.

However, there is one aikidoka who, no matter how many times I ask them, will still attack me at full speed when they are nage, hit me rather hard when we are doing techniques requiring atemi (NOT the way sensei trains us!), and force me to take hard-and-fast falls when I am uke for this person.

I have read some other advice on here about situations dealing with aggressive people inside the dojo, and have applied it to some success with this person.

My problem is that this person also frequently attacks me *outside* of the dojo, when he sees me, with an attack that I'm "supposed" to counter with aikido. Recently they has done so with a frying pan and a knife, at different times. I told the person after the frying pan incident that I did not want to train with them unless a) we were in class or b) I was in keikogi *and* we had *both* agreed to it. A week later (this week) the person used a bread knife like a bokken and swung it at me, again outside class, when I'd asked them not to. I have not been training long enough to know tanto dori, and in any case could not have done it -- did not know what I could have done in the position I was in. When I called them on it, they said "it was just a *joke*, they can't stand people with no sense of humor."

I discussed earlier, similar problems with sensei obliquely...he said that if someone needed to be aggressive/wanted to be aggressive, and/or rough, it's their problem not mine, it was ok to bow out and switch partners at the change and/or not train with the person. I do that as much as I can. Especially since twice in the last two weeks this aikidoka has done techniques on me with sufficent force ('Oh, that's not right...*this* is what sensei showed *me*...) to injure me enough that I had to sit out for the rest of the class, and the next class too.

I have been "hired" to carpool with this person to practice...that is where they are getting opportunity for these "attacks", as I come to their house to pick them up.

I am trying not to be a "wimp", since I'm also older than this perosn it seems like I 'should" know how to handle myself with them or something.

I guess what I'm wondering is, should I tell sensei about this person's behavior -- in the hope that sensei can give me some ideas on how to deal with it outside class? I'm starting to have nightmares about it and it's really bothering me.

Could really use some help here. I can't break the contract I signed to do transport and it won't be over for until December.

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Old 08-03-2005, 12:19 AM   #2
Location: Visalia, California
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 105
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

I must first admit that I am a bit concerned that not one member of this forum has responded to your post. I must confess that I fear my newness to these forums may mean that I have missed a troll. If so, I apologize to the forum members. If not, I am very sorry that no one has responded more quickly to your post.

Immediately tell your sensei of the attacks outside of class. This is not the normal behavior of an aikidoka. In fact, it is not the normal behavior of someone relatively new to a given martial art.

Every practitioner of the art has had the unlucky encounter with a fellow student who uses too much force, forces technique past the tapping out, or throws the uke beyond the uke's ability (whether through ignorance or a lack of blending.) Usually, this is the student you try to gently correct, or eventually simply learn to avoid.

This is not your situation.

You stated that "Recently they [attacked me outside of the dojo] with a frying pan and a knife, at different times."

This is not the normal behavior of a student of aikido. This is not normal behavior period.

You explained that you did not wish to "practice" unless on the mat or in a keiko gi. This is your right and he should respect that.

Thereafter, he attacked you with a bread knife outside of class. Again, this is not the act of student of aikido.

Given your newness to aikido and your explanation of other circumstances. The actions of this man are completely unacceptable.

One of the main tenets of aikido is to never train beyond the uke's level. This extends beyond the mat. This guy's complete unwillingness to recognize your desires and training levels is so beyond the acceptable as to be unreasonable.

I have no physical impairments (other than excess weight and age) and yet my fellow students accept my request not to take ukemi simply because I know body cannot. No one ever questions why, or tries to exhort me into doing what I believe I cannot.

Again, tell your instructor immediately about these events off the mat. From your post, it would seem that you did not explain about the events off the mat. If you have, and that was your instructor's response, I suggest you find a new dojo.

There is no reason for you to tolerate such behavior.
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Old 08-03-2005, 12:44 AM   #3
IP Hash: d825ec61
Anonymous User
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Within the dojo report this directly to your sensei and do NOT train with this person.

If you have been threatened with assault / assaulted outside of the dojo report this person to the police.
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Old 08-03-2005, 01:03 AM   #4
xuzen's Avatar
Dojo: None at the moment - on hiatus
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 965
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Within the dojo report this directly to your sensei and do NOT train with this person.

If you have been threatened with assault / assaulted outside of the dojo report this person to the police.
Sounds like bullying. Yes, report to the police, even if you do not yet receive any injury, a report can be used later as supporting evidence that the said person has previously threatened you before. It will help in your case, should you press charges under the penal law or taking a civil law suit against him in the future. Good luck.

SHOMEN-ATE (TM), the solution to 90% of aikido and life's problems.
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Old 08-03-2005, 01:57 AM   #5
Nick Simpson
Dojo: White Rose Aikido - Durham University
Location: Gateshead
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 916
United Kingdom
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

' Thereafter, he attacked you with a bread knife outside of class. Again, this is not the act of student of aikido. '

I think the frying pan thing is quite funny, but obviously if he's attacking you with a kitchen knife then it needs to stop before his joke gets out of hand. Tell sensei.

They're all screaming about the rock n roll, but I would say that it's getting old. - REFUSED.
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Old 08-03-2005, 02:22 AM   #6
senshincenter's Avatar
Dojo: Senshin Center
Location: Dojo Address: 193 Turnpike Rd. Santa Barbara, CA.
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,474
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Tell the sensei, AND ALSO, you should never allow yourself to feel that you "cannot break the contract to carpool (so that you have to keep seeing this person outside of the dojo)." Of course you can break the contract - and you should too, in my opinion.

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 08-03-2005, 02:27 AM   #7
Charlie's Avatar
Location: Elgin, IL
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 165
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Once...possible a joke.

Twice after requesting it to stop = assault.

Nothing in any contract binds you to the possibility of undue harm. If this is enough of a problem that makes it necessary for you to want to remove yourself from the situation (which makes sense), then see what can be done. Talking to someone about this is highly warranted.

Charles Burmeister
Aikido Yoshinkan Yoseikai

"Calmness is trust in action"
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Old 08-03-2005, 02:29 AM   #8
Dojo: Kiburn, London, UK
Location: London
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 899
United Kingdom
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

am trying not to be a "wimp", since I'm also older than this perosn it seems like I 'should" know how to handle myself with them or something
No - this person is plain and simply being an immature, bullying arsehole who must have serious problems with their own self-image and frankly deserves a good kicking - stop the car pooling, mention the incidents to your instructor and inform the pratt that if he attacks you again in this manner he can explain to the police how attacking someone with a knife is a "joke". Don't allow this person to dictate how your life should be led.
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Old 08-03-2005, 02:44 AM   #9
Kerry Monument
Location: Grimsby
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 8
United Kingdom
Thumbs down Re: Aggressive aikidoka

To all that have replied to this posting. Thankyou I spoke to the poster in the chatroom on these issues, a week or so ago. You have basically backed up every word I said to them on that occasion. So Thankyou all because you sometimes worry about giving advice and if its correct or not.
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Old 08-03-2005, 03:04 AM   #10
eyrie's Avatar
Location: Summerholm, Queensland
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,126
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

OTOH, perhaps they "sense" something "different" about you but can't put their finger on it. "Baiting" you may just be their (unsophisticated) way at getting at an explanation. Perhaps you could be honest about your condition and tell them how it affects your training. Perhaps all they need is to understand that "attacking" you is not communicating with you on "equal footing", given your condition.


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Old 08-03-2005, 10:16 AM   #11
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,615
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Don't train with them, don't pick them up, stay away from them. I can't believe your instructor would want you to tolerate such behavior.

I didn't see this post before, otherwise I would have said the same thing.

Ron (what an IDIOT that guy is)

Ron Tisdale
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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Old 08-04-2005, 05:20 AM   #12
batemanb's Avatar
Dojo: Seibukan Aikido UK
Location: body in UK, heart still in Japan
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 1,031
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Me too missed the original post.

Contract or not, there's no way I'd be car pooling with a person like this, just don't pick him up anymore, or don't go to him for a lift.

The person in question obviously has issues, you need help in resolving your situation, nothing wimpy about explaining this to your sensei and asking for help, espcially since you have only come into contact with this person through the dojo.

If they persist in this manner, go to the police.



A difficult problem is easily solved by asking yourself the question, "Just how would the Lone Ranger handle this?"
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Old 08-04-2005, 04:11 PM   #13
Dojo: Zanshin Kai
Location: Birmingham
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 865
United Kingdom
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

He sounds a bit daft to me. I mean he wants you to do Aikido techniques on him without there even being a mat or anyone to supervise. Sounds like a very dangerous idea to me, someone could get very badly hurt.
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Old 08-07-2005, 01:59 PM   #14
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 395
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Here is a thread i started that deals with uke being unreasonably uncooperative. Its called "BS in fellow aikidoka". Alot of good advice was given to me in this thread. Check it out.
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Old 08-08-2005, 03:20 AM   #15
Conan Pieter Arnold
Dojo: ki-aikido rotterdam
Location: Rotterdam
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 4
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

mr. wondering...

I ' ve read your text. and..
You know.. to be honest with you..
You must not tolerant this!

Why is your sensei letting this bully train at your DOJO!!

I know you want to be friendy.. but... you must draw the line somewhere....

You must know AIKIDO is teaching us, not only how to be friendy and respectful towards other people.. But also where to DRAW THE LINE when you life is in danger..

And that thing about that you are sign up till december to transport Him, FORGET IT!!!!!!! You don't have to do this!!!
You already have put you live in danger too many times

Well.. I think I have tell enough... I hope you think about this...
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Old 08-08-2005, 04:41 AM   #16
Dirk Hanss
Dirk Hanss's Avatar
Dojo: Aikidoschule Trier
Location: Merzkirchen
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 470
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Please all,
don't be too draconic on the poor boy. You haven't seen his view. I guess, I can understand him. Having seen those Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan and Steven Seagal movies (and all the others), now studying such a martial art, he wants to play around a show want he can do.

Nevertheless there is no excuse for not stopping after being asked for. And especially playing with a bread knife is very dangerous, even more than the frying pan. Twice I nearly cut off the top of my forefinger.

And do not forget most dojo have rules that it is strictly forbidden to practice or demonstrate techniques outside the dojo without self defence need or prior permission.

Very important: do never respond to his attacks. He might see it as an invitation to continue. Just stay totally immobilised.
Tell him again that you prefer training in the dojo, and what he is doing is not any fun to you. He can do on his buddies as they agree to, but if they want to be taken to the dojo they should not include you anyhow and it doesn't matter if they like it (or you) or not.

If that does not help, do the other things proposed. Tell the instructor. he might even get excluded from practicing in the dojo, stop the contract - actually he cancelled it then and mybe refuse him as partner in dojo.

Then there is no more contact and everything should be fine for you. If he really still comes for you, yes then the police might be the ultimate solution.

Again that behaviour is quite normal for young boys (from 13 to 30). Maybe not for all as I see from the posts, but for many of them.

They just have to learn their limits to get back to reason in time. Otherwise they just learn it later. You see,my father (only sometimes) even bullied me and my brother with his ju jutsu tricks from his youth and lone fighter training, until my younger brother, then 17 years old, replied with a low mawashi geri and broke my father's little finger. he was some 48 years at this point and obviously nobody stopped him before. But then it was finished. I just do not propose to give anybody a similar lesson unless you are good enough to be sure, it will not end up in a fight.

Regards Dirk
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Old 08-09-2005, 11:41 AM   #17
Anat Amitay
Dojo: Nes- Ziona, "the red house"
Location: Israel
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 137
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Sorry for the late posting and I admit not reading all the replies, so I'm sorry if I'm rewriting things.
As I did see- you should talk with your sensei, and it is right that assulting you outside the dojo is an offence, and if it consists- you can and I think- should- report him/them to the police. (if they think it's a joke, tell them that calling the police seemed like a joke and guess who's laughing now- maybe that will put some sense into them.
Second of all- if that person acts as they do- WHY do you continue picking them up for practice??? you owe them nothing! you're helping them and that's how they treat you??? I would tell them to look for some other "sucker" (sorry) and not take them anymore.
Apart from that, in class, I would not train with them. If they bow to me, I would quietly say that they constantly hurt me and I refuse to train with them. If everyone else is already partnered, I will sit quietly or join into a triple training, better than getting hurt and not training at all.
Hope this works out, please let us know what's happening.
Enjoy training!!!!
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Old 08-12-2005, 01:33 PM   #18
"It's Better Now"
IP Hash: 4ed82175
Anonymous User
Thumbs down Re: Aggressive aikidoka


Thanks for your advice. I did speak w/ a couple of you about it, and I did talk to sensei that evening, after which he said he was aware of a similar problem, and would deal with it, and did.

The other yudansha in the dojo are also aware of it as well, and doing their best to help me not have to train with the other person. So thankfully I haven't had a problem since.

Thank you all for your kind words and advice. I appreciate all the suggestions.

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Old 08-13-2005, 12:37 AM   #19
Location: Visalia, California
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 105
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Glad to hear it!

Best of luck in your aikido training...may it bring you confidence and joy :-)
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Old 08-30-2005, 09:05 AM   #20
"After hurrican katrina"
IP Hash: 61d3bd2a
Anonymous User
Re: Aggressive aikidoka

Hey, I was wondering how you made out with this aggressive behavior?

Did it get resolved, is it in progress to get resolved, or has there been put into place safeguards to deal with your problems as well as the problems for the person who thinks attacking in a mock practice is a joke outside the dojo and a joke when they ignore you disability's?

I have some serious balance problems that are making my efforts to practice a danger to myself an others, but I have been in martial arts long enough to deal with most people and most attacks, and I am not skinny looking guy that people want to attack. It is as much an attitude as it is a knowledge of know when to take steps to deal with people whose behavior is not socially acceptable or a danger to you ... or others?

From what I have read, these mock attacks are not just a physical danger, but they border on mental cruelty, which there are laws to protect people when such behavior occurs if simple talks and verbal warnings go on being ignored.

I am curious to see if it was resolved, and what methods were used to resolve this situation? We used to say that everything finds it's place at sea, especially after a big storm and a storage locker looked like some big giant had shaken everything up into a big mixed up pile ... what kind of resolution came from what kind of measures were used to resolve the problem?
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