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Old 09-24-2006, 05:12 PM   #26
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Lol


Mike..... quite a while ago you called me a "dojo momma" at a "politically correct dojo"....you probably are right about this.

I don't think you were coming from a place of love when you said it....but who cares..... it is just your opinion. and you are welcome to it.

I do agree with you that people can set their own goals and practice for their own purposes.

At our dojo men and women practice harmoniously together regularly. It makes a difference in my world.

Mary


.
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Old 09-24-2006, 05:18 PM   #27
Kevin Wilbanks
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Mike,

I am not the one who reasons or writes sloppily. You on the other hand, are piling on the contradictions and obfuscations at a rate that exceeds my willingness to untangle them.

Sticking to this post, you reiterated what I said in the first quote, so there is no need for further citation. No one has a right to post any opinion without being criticized for it, however you characterize the criticism or the crowd. No one has suggested that the original poster be censored, so arguing against that is nonsense. Even if they did, and he actually were, no one has a right to post anything here. It's a private publication. Even if it weren't, criticism of an opinion is also an opinion, and the same protections would apply. Despite your repeatedly asserting it with increasing emphasis, there is no right to not be criticized.

As far as the charge of prejudice goes, perhaps you should look the word up. This is not name-calling, it is an accurate description. You are speaking in favor of pre-judging the fitness of training partners for certain types of training based on their sex, as opposed to judging them based upon their exhibited training capabilities regardless of what their sex might be. The former is prejudicial sex-discrimination, the latter is not.

Finally, with this last paragraph of yours, you are straying into the territory of throwing a tantrum, so I am done responding to you at this time. I doubt that you honestly believe what you are saying or are that illiterate - it's just emotional rhetorical flourish, and I'm not interested in that game.
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Old 09-24-2006, 06:27 PM   #28
Mike Sigman
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote:
Mike..... quite a while ago you called me a "dojo momma" at a "politically correct dojo"....you probably are right about this.
Who would doubt it?
Quote:
I don't think you were coming from a place of love when you said it....but who cares..... it is just your opinion. and you are welcome to it.
Absolutely. And you have your opinions, too. To each his own. It is only if I try to define your world for you or you try to define my world for me that it becomes objectionable. I work out fine with men and with women, to whatever degree each person wants to work out. As a general rule, if it's rough play the women are out of it, but then too, so are a lot of men. I know a lot of men that simply want to do a martial art for the martial art and "harmony" has got little to do with it, so they don't particularly want to work out with women (or some men) just because it introduces extraneous topics into the martial arts that they don't want to deal with. I just shrug.... it's their choice and I don't see why they should be berated about "harmony" or some form of "correct thinking".

In the same vein, I know women who simply want to do their version of martial arts and they don't want to work out with men. Again... it's their choice and I don't have any judgemental reaction about it. I was simply speaking to the point of people being judgemental about what others choose to do.

Insofar as "sex discrimination", it's there. The world cup women's soccer team doesn't have any men on it. That's life. I thought we'd gotten beyond the stage of thinking that women were just men who weren't given toy guns to play with when they were toddlers (interestingly, I have a friend who used to swear that was true, but now that that's been totally disproven, he swears he never believed it).

But I think I made my point: there is no self-righteous position that is so morally superior it gives the speaker the authority to tell someone they should "conform" to some trendy beliefs about "gender discrimination". Certainly not in the name of "Aikido", unless someone has a quote handy?

Regards,

Mike
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Old 09-24-2006, 06:28 PM   #29
Mike Sigman
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
Mike,

I am not the one who reasons or writes sloppily. [[snip]]
Whatever, Kevin. I don't want to get into these consistently prickly conversations with you.

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 09-24-2006, 08:34 PM   #30
dps
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
I know a lot of men that simply want to do a martial art for the martial art and "harmony" has got little to do with it,Mike
Are these men practicing Aikido?

Trust only movement. Life happens at the level of events not of words. Trust movement. --Alfred Adler
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:06 AM   #31
Esaemann
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Mike's quote:
<<there is no self-righteous position that is so morally superior it gives the speaker the authority to tell someone they should "conform" to some trendy beliefs >>

Sorry, off this topic but couldn't resist.

Mike,
Sure, every American has a right to that. E.g. If many people wouldn't ever defend themselves with a gun, than they have a right to tell you and me that we shouldn't either.

Eric
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:15 AM   #32
Mike Sigman
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Eric Saemann wrote:
Mike's quote:
<<there is no self-righteous position that is so morally superior it gives the speaker the authority to tell someone they should "conform" to some trendy beliefs >>

Sorry, off this topic but couldn't resist.

Mike,
Sure, every American has a right to that. E.g. If many people wouldn't ever defend themselves with a gun, than they have a right to tell you and me that we shouldn't either.
Fair enough, Eric.... "Freedom of Speech" gives people the right to say what they want, but I didn't argue that.

If you look at my statement, I said that no one is speaking from such a high moral ground over others that the high-moral ground vests the authority. I.e., there are some people that would pretend that they are doing things the "correct" way and that therefore others should be forced to conform to their way of thinking. What it boils down to is that there are some people in the martial arts who feel like their opinions are so important and so correct that others should follow them. People don't grow up; they just grow taller and grayer.

MIke
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:26 AM   #33
gdandscompserv
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
People don't grow up; they just grow taller and grayer.
Surprisingly Mike, some of us have actually grown up.
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:28 AM   #34
odudog
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Ai - as is written in the kanji for Aikido means to meet, to join, to fuse, to match. I looked it up in my wife's dictionaries some time ago.

The English translation of Aikido meaning "way of harmony" or "way of love" are incorrect. Ai does mean "love" in Japanese but the kanji is totally different that was used to write Aikido. Also, the English conotation of harmony that people are using means to sit in a cirlce, hold hands, and sing folk songs together. If you want to apply this meaning then you must use a different set of kanji and then the word would be in Japanese: danran - (n,vs) sitting together in a circle; happy circle; harmony
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Old 09-25-2006, 11:37 AM   #35
akiy
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Hi folks,

Let's get back to discussing the topic at hand rather than personal/political views, please...

-- Jun

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Old 09-25-2006, 12:26 PM   #36
Krista DeCoste
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Back to Mary's point.

My only choice for training is with men, and I am greatful for the opportunity.

-Krista
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Old 09-25-2006, 02:37 PM   #37
E.D. Gordon
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Ya'll lost me at Dive Bunnies. Texas girl here is a veteran of macho dojo, and I don't have much patience for them. I'm lucky that I had patience, and they had patience, and we all not only managed to get along, but also get very fond of one another.

Part of the irony of my "Putting Up With Men" essay is that the women in my early training path failed me (the one I went looking for had died of breast cancer 6 months before I hit the dojo -- certainly not her fault!). I got some nice support, but not a lot of concrete information. This happened later, especially while writing the paper under the support and badgering of Deborah Klens-Bigman.

The fact is that we are out there, we are training, and we aren't worried about what anyone thinks.

This Daito-Ryu dojo is turning out some beautiful technique and spirit:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1R4_x...elated&search=

Anyone know these folx?
Wow.
I can only aspire to her delicacy and control.

ED Gordon
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Old 09-25-2006, 02:47 PM   #38
E.D. Gordon
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

In the level of Middle School Training:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WfzAOtDHsQ

Enjoy.

ED Gordon
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Old 09-26-2006, 09:35 AM   #39
Brion Toss
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

1. Sometimes women and men are better off in each other's company, and sometimes not. The tricky part is knowing when. Throughout history, and in all cultures, peoples have attempted to formalize gender mixing and separation, with varying results. It is not an easy question, and one that every individual — and group of people — might want to devote serious attention to. A significantly useful answer is not going to be revealed while motorcycling around in Korea. If you are truly interested in the question, perhaps a little research and contemplation is in order.
2. In 1969, I actually heard someone use the term "politically correct" as an approbation, meaning that the topic at hand would further equality, justice, and a redress of historical wrongs. It seemed like an arrogant, stuck-up position to take then, and it does now. In all the years since then, I have only heard the term used as a means to shut people up, as in, "Oh you're just being politically correct." In this sense, it provides a means of avoiding or dismissing uncomfortable topics, much as the still popular "whatever" does. In reading through this thread, I have found a variety of responses to the original question, but, at least to my eyes, no evidence of a "correct crowd". Disagreeing with someone is not the same thing as forcing something on them.
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Old 09-26-2006, 10:05 AM   #40
Mike Sigman
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Brion, "politically correct" certainly has negative connotations, but the many people who have attempted to force societal changes through various means have done too many things bordering on the absurd in the name of "compassion" and "doing what's right". Some things have been good changes.... but then it got into micro-managing and telling people what they should do that was "correct". So yes, you can find "politically correct" being used in a way that has an implied negative connotation. But then again, if you want to go back and read ALL the posts, you will find that there are a number of other terms that were used with a negative connotation.

My position is simply that if someone isn't comfortable or doesn't want to work out with women, fine, go somewhere and work out with men. Or if some women don't want to work out with men, fine, go to an all-female dojo. Each to his own. I'm not going to lecture some woman on how she should view and get along with men (think of the outrage that would provoke from the people who like to view women as "downtrodden"!!) and on the other hand, someone lecturing men about how they should or should not view women should raise a similar warning flag.

The stronger worry is really in relation to the idea that a certain attitude should indirectly be forced on anyone "because that's the correct Aikido view". Once someone begins to represent that they are an authority on Aikido's dicta for trans-gender relationships, we're getting out of simple opinions and beginning to get into that ever-bothersome idea of deliberate misrepresentation of Ueshiba's art. It's a misrepresentation that borders on fraud. Ueshiba said nothing about gender relationships in the martial arts. His ideas about "harmony with the universe", which are very standard comments on cosmology in a number of Asian martial arts (the idea that his "harmony" stuff is unique to Aikido shows the level of ignorance within the Aikido community), were never meant to be applied to behavioural situations of the trendy sort.

Women in dojos are fine. They should be treated exactly the same as the men, more or less (I would add that qualifier because in the cosmological sense, women are not the same as men and are treated differently because they have a different position in life). But women who don't want to work out with men, or vice versa, that's their business. People who attempt to make other people conform to "politically correct" ideas should certainly express their opinions, but in Aikido dojos I've seen too many pc ideas foisted off as "this is the proper way according to good Aikido". That's a fraudulent statement, unfortunately, and I think it's led to a lot of harm and has done much to sully the reputation of Aikido.

My opinion.

Mike Sigman
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Old 09-26-2006, 10:45 AM   #41
Robert Rumpf
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Did O'Sensei allow women to train in his dojo?

Rob
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Old 09-26-2006, 10:58 AM   #42
hapkidoike
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Brion Toss wrote:
1. Sometimes women and men are better off in each other's company, and sometimes not. The tricky part is knowing when. Throughout history, and in all cultures, peoples have attempted to formalize gender mixing and separation, with varying results. It is not an easy question, and one that every individual — and group of people — might want to devote serious attention to. A significantly useful answer is not going to be revealed while motorcycling around in Korea. If you are truly interested in the question, perhaps a little research and contemplation is in order.
.
First of all, to reduce my experience in Korea to "motorcycling around Korea" is offensive. Sure, I drive my motorcycle around Korea, I like to drive it fast around sharp corners, it is good fun, but if all I was looking for was driving a motorcycle fast around sharp corners I would probably still be in the States somewhere. Also I have been here a year and a half, so the coolness that is motorcycling around Korea started to wear thin a while ago, and I figure I will be here when riding my motorcycle around Korea has worn completly through.
Also, I dont give a damn about the question of when and where women and men should and should not be segragated if you are suggesting it as some sort of philosophical exercise. If you are suggesting it as an exercise in personal choice, then I would say I dont need to do anymore research, nor do I need to contemplate on it. I have done all the research and contemplation that I am prepared to do, I have made my choice and I stick by it. As a matter of course (and there have been exceptions) I do not enjoy training with women. I am not trying to say men and women should not train together, and I am not saying that I will not train with women, people ought to be able to train in the manner they want and in a manner in which they are comfortable. I am sure that there will be situations the future where I will have to choose either: (1) train with women or (2) not train at all. I will most likely choose to train with women.
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Old 09-26-2006, 10:58 AM   #43
CitoMaramba
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Robert Rumpf wrote:
Did O'Sensei allow women to train in his dojo?

Rob
Takako Kunigoshi is one of the few women who trained at O-Sensei's pre-war Kobukan dojo in Ushigome. She did the illustrations for O-Sensei's book, Budo Renshu. She was interviewed by Stan Pranin for Aikido Journal. You can read the interview here .
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:01 AM   #44
gdandscompserv
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Too much testosterone is bad for you.
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:07 AM   #45
Kevin Wilbanks
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

I believe Mary Heiny trained under O'Sensei, and along with his top students immediately following his death.
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:15 AM   #46
CitoMaramba
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

In the postwar period, I remember reading about Mariye Takahashi and Virginia Mayhew as training at Aikikai Hombu Dojo before the passing of O-Sensei. I'm sure there were others.
Also I think there was no separate women's section, unlike the Kodokan, which had a Joshi Bu.

Last edited by CitoMaramba : 09-26-2006 at 11:19 AM.
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:19 AM   #47
James Davis
 
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
I believe Mary Heiny trained under O'Sensei.
Yup, she said so. She also said that she wasn't treated any different from the other students.

"The only difference between Congress and drunken sailors is that drunken sailors spend their own money." -Tom Feeney, representative from Florida
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:24 AM   #48
Mike Sigman
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Cito Maramba wrote:
Takako Kunigoshi is one of the few women who trained at O-Sensei's pre-war Kobukan dojo in Ushigome. She did the illustrations for O-Sensei's book, Budo Renshu. She was interviewed by Stan Pranin for Aikido Journal. You can read the interview here .
There is a very beautiful passage at the end of the interview:

I spend most of my time with the tea ceremony but when I am holding the water dipper it is just like holding a sword. I have the same feeling and I remember the things I was told by Sensei. Whether you do tea or flowers, there are common points with Aikido, because the whole world (tenchi) is made up of movement and calm, light and shadow. If everything only moved and moved then there would be complete chaos, right?

Editor: Those ideas came from China didn't they?

Yes, from China, but I think that the idea that the heavens and the earth arose from the in and the YŁ (yin and yan) (or the Positive and Negative principles) is not limited to China alone. Although the words of course are different, it's simply a matter of differences in expression. All the world's nations have the same truth, I think. Whenever the sun is shining there must be shadows, too. I believe we can say that the same thing applies to budo as well, don't you?
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Old 09-26-2006, 11:58 AM   #49
Robert Rumpf
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Well, if O'Sensei allowed women to train in his dojo, and every other Aikido instructor that I personally have ever met or heard of in America or Japan has allowed it, than I see that choice as a very deliberate representation of Ueshiba's art. Ueshiba said nothing about gender relationships in the martial arts, but the nonverbal message speaks loud and clear.

Besides, any person on the mat gets segregated training all the time - whenever they have a partner who is the same sex. The fact that there are other genders (or people) on the mat doesn't affect how you train with your partner.

Rob
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Old 09-26-2006, 12:20 PM   #50
ChrisMoses
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Re: Men and Women Training Together

Quote:
Kevin Wilbanks wrote:
I believe Mary Heiny trained under O'Sensei, and along with his top students immediately following his death.
She was a student at hombu dojo right around the time of his death (1968-1973). OSensei was not teaching much (particularly at hombu) at that time however, so while she was deeply moved by OSensei, it would be more correct to say that she studied with OSensei's direct students before returning to the States to teach. She most definitely did experience him in person and has talked about his remarkable presence on several occasions.
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