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Old 05-18-2006, 11:43 PM   #1
kocakb
Dojo: Burhan Felek Sport Center-Istanbul
Location: Istanbul
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 110
Turkey
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training, instructors and > shodan

Hi everybody,

This question is more for the instructors and people having dan grade(s). When do the instructors train ? How do they work to improve their skills ? I mean, for example we have 3 times training per week, our inst. shows us the technique and walks in the class to correct our mistakes and it goes on like this. He does one -two jiu-waza and the training ends... I would like to know, what about you? Do you have different trainings, do you traing other days, etc? Is it enough to improve your aikido ?

And for dan people - non instr; I realized that they are more focused on being nage - instead of being uke in class. If there were people around, who are "good" ukes (flexible, artistic, perfect ukemiable ) and you would be always the nage- allowed to throw them, would your aikido be better than now or would you have any losts!!! I think you have understand what I mean
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Old 05-19-2006, 01:01 AM   #2
eyrie
 
eyrie's Avatar
Location: Summerholm, Queensland
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 1,126
Australia
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

Irrespective of whether one is a dan grade, instructor, or just a student. Training should be a daily, every waking moment thing. Class training is merely an opportunity to do paired practice and partnered training.

Ignatius
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Old 05-19-2006, 01:45 AM   #3
Dazzler
Dojo: Templegate Dojo, bristol & Bristol North Aikido Dojo
Location: Bristol
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 638
England
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

Quote:
Bülent Koçak wrote:
Hi everybody,

This question is more for the instructors and people having dan grade(s). When do the instructors train ? How do they work to improve their skills ? I mean, for example we have 3 times training per week, our inst. shows us the technique and walks in the class to correct our mistakes and it goes on like this. He does one -two jiu-waza and the training ends... I would like to know, what about you? Do you have different trainings, do you traing other days, etc? Is it enough to improve your aikido ?
Its a very pertinent question. I think its easy to slip into the mindset of being the instructor and it can become very comfortable when students get programmed to go with the instructors technique.

While one can think Aikido every waking hour - when translating that into practice a lot of Instructors find that they can become very rusty indeed.....and very out of condition.

In my own experience I've been unable to attend my instructors class since my daughter arrived. Fortunately I have a colleague with similar experience and we've taken turns in teaching to help keep the physical side of practice in tune with the mental.

Prior to sharing the teaching of my 2nd class it was quite frustrating watching a class full of our dan grades operating at full speed.

While I got the joy of throwing them around ...due to the stop start nature of teaching it was quite risky in terms of injury to get overly involved with the free practice in class since they were fully warmed up and I may not always be.

In addition to sharing teaching - I've also adjusted my training to ensure I keep my conditioning up off the mat so I'm working on the physical side of things.

Finally - I'll take every opportunity to attend weekend courses/ summer schools etc with senior instructors and explore other avenues to take technical input.

I'll add that recognisinig this instructor trap and choosing to take action about it are down to the instructor - I've met some excellent technical teachers who weren't in great physical shape but could still pass on knowledge. This is probably more and more the case with older teachers. Being a fitness instructor is not what these guys are about but I don't think it lessens their Aikido.

Personally I don't like to ask my students to do things I can't do myself ...so am more comfortable when I'm able to match them in the physical sense as well as passing on any knowledge I've gained. I'm sure it will get harder as I get older though.


Cheers

D

Last edited by Dazzler : 05-19-2006 at 01:47 AM.
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Old 05-19-2006, 04:11 AM   #4
SmilingNage
Location: NJ
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 241
United_States
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

Teaching in of itself is training. Having to find ways to teach/transmit what you know so others may follow your lead, is a true test of your character. You may know what you are doing, but now, you have to find ways to communicate that knowledge to the students. Alot of understanding comes from teaching. Often times flaws in your own technique or your understanding principles of technique, even flaws in your footwork and body posture/attitude will be found when your up on the "stage." For me atleast, teaching is humbling and the ultimate expression of training.

While teaching doesnt offer the stamina building aspect of training, it does help clear up foundamentals in your presentation of technique. In order to get my throws in, I may keep uke up abit longer. Sometimes a student steps off the mat briefly and I will jump in to fill as a partner for a few exchanges or maybe workout ideas for the next technique.

You want a nerve wracking experiencing, try teaching while your sensei or other shihans are in the room. Especially when you can hear a pin drop and all are focused on you.
Grace under pressure.

As for senior students only wanting to throw, that to me, seems abit off fundamentally. You have to have both sides of the coin to get a full coin. Ukemi teaches alot about what is going on in technique. Ukemi trains how to receive the technique and you get a 1st hand look at the mechanics of the technique. Personally, Ukemi is by far the more important aspect of Aikido in respects to of the roles of Nage and Uke. Its been my experience, that most good ukes, are on the path to better Aikido.

Dont make me, make you, grab my wrist.
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Old 05-19-2006, 05:58 AM   #5
grondahl
Dojo: Stockholms Aikidoklubb
Location: Stockholm
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 550
Sweden
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

I think that the ultimate thing is to both train and teach. Teaching forces you to re-evaluate and structure the material that you have accumulated and questions from students helps you to find new perspectives on keiko.
But it´s only a nice add-on, to progress you have to train, with an instructor that gives you honest feedback.

My experience is that I have different mindsets during teaching or training.
I think of it as "teaching confirms my prejudice about waza, good training forces me correct my flaws and to re-learn things that I thought I knew"
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Old 05-19-2006, 09:46 AM   #6
Eric Webber
Dojo: Aikido West Reading
Location: Reading, Pa
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 261
United_States
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

I will comment on the happenings in my home dojo, where I and two other instructors teach the regularly scheduled classes. Instructors take each other's classes, and I periodically have my cohai teach a class I am in to see how they are developing and to let me train as one of the regular schmos on the mat. I believe that one must remain a student at heart, and in practice as well, in order to truly progress.
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Old 05-19-2006, 11:31 AM   #7
Raptus
Dojo: Dinamicna sfera (Realni aikido)
Location: Belgrade
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 11
Serbia
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

I've talked with several instructors some time ago, and among other things, this very one came to our attention. The truth is, when instructors devote themselves mostly to training others, their own skills do degrade over time. It is true that passing knowledge on to others helps you correct your own mistakes, makes you find solutions to different problems that arise, but your speed and precision do fade.
As it should be, dan grades should have their own separate trainings, where they can work on their own improvement, if possible, with a senior dan watching over them, as some details can only be seen from side. Without this, your own aikido degrades.
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Old 05-19-2006, 11:48 AM   #8
Jorge Garcia
Dojo: Shudokan School of Aikido
Location: Houston
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 608
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

I have a night called "Everything you do is right night". That means that I will show a technique and then have everyone do it as fast as they can, no corrections and no instruction. Whatever you do is right. I then start at one end of the dojo doing the technique and taking the ukemi for every student. When I have been through the group, I show another one and repeat the same sequence. Everyone is soaking wet with sweat and exhausted when we are done. That's one way I train. Another is that I attend the class of my assistants twice a week and train in it as a student. I also take Iaido for myself and I practice Aikijujutsu on the side. These related arts help me understand my Aikido from a different perspective.

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 05-19-2006, 04:23 PM   #9
Mark Uttech
Dojo: Yoshin-ji Aikido of Marshall
Location: Wisconsin
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 1,211
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Re: training, instructors and > shodan

An instructor should take ukemi from his/her students from time to time, as well as attend seminars, workshops, and camps for his/her own training. Training is actually up to each individual, whether teacher or student. In gassho
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