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Old 05-27-2007, 06:32 AM   #1
john_jordan
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Another art first?

Hi folks,

Let me start by saying I've not practised Aikido, in a class, for a few years though it still holds great interest for me.
The question I'd like to ask is...

Do you think to truly apply Aikido you need a thorough grounding-not necessarily a rank/belt-in another art?
My view is based on the fact that O'sensei only developed Aikido after the study of other arts, eg DRJ.
I love Aikido but to see a lot of schools/styles teaching watered down stuff, no atemi, no explanation of distance and awareness, and students thinking that because something works in class with a compliant uke it will work "in the street" is scarey!

Any thoughts?
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Old 05-27-2007, 10:28 AM   #2
RoyK
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Re: Another art first?

If the first art you learned is good enough "in the street", and you have fun learning it, then why quit it in favor of Aikido?
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Old 05-27-2007, 10:47 AM   #3
jennifer paige smith
 
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
John Jordan wrote: View Post
Hi folks,

Let me start by saying I've not practised Aikido, in a class, for a few years though it still holds great interest for me.
The question I'd like to ask is...

Do you think to truly apply Aikido you need a thorough grounding-not necessarily a rank/belt-in another art?
My view is based on the fact that O'sensei only developed Aikido after the study of other arts, eg DRJ.
I love Aikido but to see a lot of schools/styles teaching watered down stuff, no atemi, no explanation of distance and awareness, and students thinking that because something works in class with a compliant uke it will work "in the street" is scarey!

Any thoughts?
I know that I did not need to have a background in another martial art to practice and apply aikido. But from me, and inevitabley from others, the queston arises; Apply it to what? Are you in the street everyday( or often enough) seeeking engagement on a physical level? Is aggression following you and you need to defend against it? And if those people who are practicing 'watered-down' aikido are never confronted with street situations, why would they use that as a focal point for training? And subsequently why would it then be called be called' watered down'' rather than viewing what benefits it is bringing those people in the 'application' of their lives.

Also, one may be suprised what really comes up in a street situation. Different situations elicit different instincts. Aikido is a training of instinct and is capable of embracing any situation. The onus is upon the practicioner to create a 'fit' for their own lives and practice in diligent inquiry to meet that life.

No easy task while focusing on 'others'.

Domo!

jen

Last edited by jennifer paige smith : 05-27-2007 at 10:49 AM.

Jennifer Paige Smith
Confluence Aikido Systems
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Old 05-27-2007, 10:56 AM   #4
Aikibu
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
John Jordan wrote: View Post
Hi folks,

Let me start by saying I've not practised Aikido, in a class, for a few years though it still holds great interest for me.
The question I'd like to ask is...

Do you think to truly apply Aikido you need a thorough grounding-not necessarily a rank/belt-in another art?
My view is based on the fact that O'sensei only developed Aikido after the study of other arts, eg DRJ.
I love Aikido but to see a lot of schools/styles teaching watered down stuff, no atemi, no explanation of distance and awareness, and students thinking that because something works in class with a compliant uke it will work "in the street" is scarey!

Any thoughts?
You're right...So...What are you going to do about it...Surely there much be some Aikido Sensei's in your neck of the woods who teach it with "Street Cred" Otherwise this "concern" has been addressed here Ad Infinitum...

Good Luck with your search...

William Hazen

P.S. On the street I have found that being armed to the teeth usually wins most "street encounters" And if you have a radio you can even call in Arty and Air Strikes!!!

Aikido is not about "Street Fighting"
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Old 05-27-2007, 01:03 PM   #5
mwible
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Re: Another art first?

my school is very martial, we work alot on continuous awareness and being able to actually execute the technique in a real self-defense situation. so, i probably wouldnt have needed other martial background before studying aikido. i did have some other expereince beforehand, but i dont think i would have needed it. especially since i have used my aikido in real fight situations and know it to be highly effetive.

-morgan
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Old 05-27-2007, 04:56 PM   #6
Janet Rosen
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Re: Another art first?

Depends on what you want. If you want to learn aikido, and have no other formal m.a. experience, seems kind of silly to spend time in another art INSTEAD of aikido. Like signing up for ballet when you are interesting in tango, or surfing when you want to ski.

Janet Rosen
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"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 05-27-2007, 05:45 PM   #7
DonMagee
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Re: Another art first?

I think having a prior martial arts background can help or hinder aikido training. It depends on the kind of person you are. If you are unwilling to let go of some of the ideas of your previous art (you have a case of the old "My sensei says" then you will find previous training a hinder to your training in aikido. But if you are open minded and willing to try it, you will find your old training gives you an insight and advantage to learning aikido that people without previous training simply will not have.

- Don
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough" - Albert Einstein
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Old 05-27-2007, 06:17 PM   #8
Mark Uttech
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Re: Another art first?

I came to aikido from yoga, from carrying water and chopping wood. From gardening, from raising goats, chickens, ducks, and geese. These are all life arts, as is aikido.

In gassho,

Mark
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Old 05-27-2007, 08:48 PM   #9
Edward
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Re: Another art first?

I believe every aikidoka should start with judo first untill the knees are so worn out one can barely walk, then switch to aikido.
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Old 05-27-2007, 09:03 PM   #10
raul rodrigo
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
Edward Karaa wrote: View Post
I believe every aikidoka should start with judo first untill the knees are so worn out one can barely walk, then switch to aikido.
at which point suwari waza will introduce him to a new level of suffering.
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Old 05-27-2007, 10:25 PM   #11
Edward
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
Raul Rodrigo wrote: View Post
at which point suwari waza will introduce him to a new level of suffering.
LOL
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Old 05-27-2007, 11:05 PM   #12
Eddie Heinzelman
 
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Re: Another art first?

I actually believe the reverse: Learn Aikido first in order to improve your movement and flow of techniques. Then if you pursue another art, you'll be more fluid. A lot of times, people who have studied other arts like karate are very rigid in their movements and have to retrain or untrain so to speak.
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Old 05-29-2007, 12:08 AM   #13
CNYMike
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
John Jordan wrote: View Post
.... Do you think to truly apply Aikido you need a thorough grounding-not necessarily a rank/belt-in another art?....
One word: Damifino. I did Seidokan Aikido in the 80's when I'd been doing karate for a year and a half and kept doing both; and I'vereturned to Aikido after years of training in other arts, many of which I still do. So I've never been a "pure" Aikidoist, who can tell you how someone who's never done anything but will react outside the dojo. But if someone who's never done anything but Aikido swears by it based on personal experience in self defense --- and such testimonials are out there -- then the answer may be "maybe not."
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Old 05-29-2007, 01:07 AM   #14
PeterR
 
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Re: Another art first?

The most important step is to begin. It does not matter if you find Aikido in your first stumble into the martial arts or after a number of years exploring the wider world. If you find a perfect fit the first time out you are exceedingly lucky but in any case well taught aikido should give you all the grounding you need.

The biggest danger in any martial arts is isolating yourself or growing blinkers. To avoid that you absolutely need to explore a little. Doing that before you started Aikido is one way, engaging in a bit of cross-training after some time is another. Either way is good.

This does not mean that Aikido does not have everything you need but the experience gained outside will allow you to see all the possiblities Aikido can offer not to mention providing a little bit of a reality check.

Personally I have done quite a bit of other arts prior to Aikido and feel that they were quite important to my understanding of Aikido both in the physical and intellectual sense. However, I don't think they contributed more than the arts I cross-trained since and were not necessary to start Aikido with.

Last edited by PeterR : 05-29-2007 at 01:18 AM.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 05-29-2007, 01:27 AM   #15
Edward
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Re: Another art first?

Agree with Peter here, however, it is noteworthy that Osensei's deshi who were most known for their strength were ex-judoka, like Shioda and Tohei. Also most of the aikido teachers I personally know have all started with Judo. Myself have done the same. But it could be that it is a natural transition of Judoka who get older or look for an art that truly utilises the principles of Judo.
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Old 05-29-2007, 01:50 AM   #16
PeterR
 
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
Edward Karaa wrote: View Post
Agree with Peter here, however, it is noteworthy that Osensei's deshi who were most known for their strength were ex-judoka, like Shioda and Tohei. Also most of the aikido teachers I personally know have all started with Judo. Myself have done the same. But it could be that it is a natural transition of Judoka who get older or look for an art that truly utilises the principles of Judo.
Similar observations and I laughed when you said

Quote:
Edward Karaa wrote: View Post
I believe every aikidoka should start with judo first untill the knees are so worn out one can barely walk, then switch to aikido.
There is a lot to be said of the physcial and mental toughness that Judo training develops which is missed (I'll even say consiously avoided) by many of those that enter directly into Aikido.

Tomiki of course tried to address this in one particular way, I think the Yoshinkan course was Shioda's answer to the same problem. In both cases they were not addressing a particular skill set necessary to learn Aikido but something that had to be experienced either before, within, or as cross-training.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 05-29-2007, 02:25 AM   #17
Edward
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Re: Another art first?

Agreed again.

I talk specifically about Judo here, as I have noticed that guys who did Judo prior to aikido are usually tougher physically and mentally and have more martial spirit.

But for me at least, I think that Judo then Aikido is probably the most beneficial combination-transition. I don't believe much in cross-training though. I think similarly to Osensei's experience, one has to toughen the body and mind with something like Judo first, then move to the more "sophisticated" or "softer" art later on in life.

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote: View Post
There is a lot to be said of the physcial and mental toughness that Judo training develops which is missed (I'll even say consiously avoided) by many of those that enter directly into Aikido.

Tomiki of course tried to address this in one particular way, I think the Yoshinkan course was Shioda's answer to the same problem. In both cases they were not addressing a particular skill set necessary to learn Aikido but something that had to be experienced either before, within, or as cross-training.
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Old 05-29-2007, 02:51 AM   #18
raul rodrigo
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
Edward Karaa wrote: View Post
Agreed again.

I talk specifically about Judo here, as I have noticed that guys who did Judo prior to aikido are usually tougher physically and mentally and have more martial spirit.

But for me at least, I think that Judo then Aikido is probably the most beneficial combination-transition. I don't believe much in cross-training though. I think similarly to Osensei's experience, one has to toughen the body and mind with something like Judo first, then move to the more "sophisticated" or "softer" art later on in life.
EDWARD:

Judo then aikido was my own path as well. Like you I too notice a difference both mentally and physically with aikidoka who have the benefit of judo training. (Now and then some young turk tries to flummox my nagewaza and take me to the ground, only to find that I know quite a few things in that area as well.) From judo you learn how to develop a martial spirit and to go all out. You also learn how to take a beating and still keep coming (or at least try to.) People who trained in judo don't become aikibunnies who can fall over at the slightest prompting. Either the tori can move you or he can't.
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Old 05-29-2007, 06:11 AM   #19
SeiserL
 
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Re: Another art first?

To the best of my limited knowledge, most of O'Sensei's students had rank in other arts first, so they did not need to include atemi practice, because it was already there.

In that regards, IMHO, there is some benefit form studying a striking art prior to Aikido. I can tell the people with previous training. They take Aikido up a notch in intensity and realism. Some schools do a really good job of adding striking to their curriculum, others don't.

While I knew about Aikido in the beginning, it was too big of a jump for me. I had to go hit and break something first. Slowly, I evolved and got here. Glad I did.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 05-29-2007, 07:40 AM   #20
Budd
 
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Re: Another art first?

I'm very glad that I was raised in the wrestling/judo world before starting aikido. Though nowadays I wouldn't trade anyplace for my aikido dojo, I still like to go occaisionally play with the bjjers - they're fun! But as has been said elsewhere, it really matters what your goals are for training as every art offers something different.

I go through periods where I just wanna get together with people, throw the gloves, mouthguard and cup on -- and bang around a bit -- sometimes getting hit, choked/tapped can be good "spiritual" development for its own sake in terms of reinforcing humility . .(though the *swagger* of MMA culture can get tiresome, I find that it exists in its own form in all martial sports/arts and have personally experienced very good sportsmen-like attitudes in this environment)

Last edited by Budd : 05-29-2007 at 07:41 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 05-29-2007, 07:45 AM   #21
Tony Wagstaffe
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Re: Another art first?

Quote:
John Jordan wrote: View Post
Hi folks,

Let me start by saying I've not practised Aikido, in a class, for a few years though it still holds great interest for me.
The question I'd like to ask is...

Do you think to truly apply Aikido you need a thorough grounding-not necessarily a rank/belt-in another art?
My view is based on the fact that O'sensei only developed Aikido after the study of other arts, eg DRJ.
I love Aikido but to see a lot of schools/styles teaching watered down stuff, no atemi, no explanation of distance and awareness, and students thinking that because something works in class with a compliant uke it will work "in the street" is scarey!

Any thoughts?
Then don't do the watered down stuff.... use your gut instinct and try not to "cop out" just 'cause its easier.... Down to you mate!
Tony
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Old 06-02-2007, 05:51 PM   #22
Lyle Bogin
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Re: Another art first?

I tried and hated aikido 3 times before I could see what it was. In that time I found that the ol' "fist-to-face/boot-to-neck" arts made much more sense.

Once I felt confident that could handle myself in a really aggressive context, aikido became like a safe haven.
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