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Old 06-14-2008, 11:03 AM   #26
Janet Rosen
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
Anything short of saying all women are victimized by oppressing all men who are insensitive evil sexist monsters with equally sized egos will get negative response from these individuals. If you don't agree with them, you are the enemy.
I'm still trying to figure out where anybody in this thread said any of what you are saying above. The women you cited, and I, were very clearly NOT saying that.
If you are choosing to read through a filter of your own preconceptions and expectations, I suppose you can find aggression or victimization anywhere.

Janet Rosen
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Old 06-14-2008, 11:11 AM   #27
Keith Larman
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

I was surprised to see this thread originated by you ("Buck") after the strength thread to be honest. I would have thought that you couldn't help but think this is an even more dubious position to take. Pure physical strength is a fairly easy thing to quantify hence compare. Emotional responses are complex, wide, varied things among and between the genders. Much more difficult to quantify and compare. And with significant overlapping this is a muddy path at best...

Honestly I'd say these sorts of generalizations about emotional responses is even less of an issue than strength differences when someone steps out onto the mat. And you seemt to be reading things into responses that I for the life of me don't see.

Everyone comes into Aikido for a very unique variety of reasons. Everyone's motivations are rich and varied and to simplify it down to such small aspects such as venting aggression seems silly to me. Heck, I didn't get into this stuff to learn to vent aggression at all and I'm one of those big neanderthal males... And "Hell hath no fury...?" Ugly behavior of that sort is not limited to the female gender by any stretch. Passive aggressive weenies, obsessional behavior, etc. all cross gender lines. We're talking about some serious overlap here and it makes the discussion of differences in physical strength pale in comparison.

I think Janet has a point -- you seem to viewing both these issues through "rose colored lenses".

Last edited by Keith Larman : 06-14-2008 at 11:15 AM. Reason: clarification and Janet is too fast for me...

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Old 06-14-2008, 11:24 AM   #28
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

I re-read it a few times and I seem to see the same words as Janet does. I'm starting to wonder if you guys are finding secret messages in the posts. Is there a secret decoder ring or something?

This thread really has nothing to do with aikido other than to display how completely differently aikidoka can take people's words. No wonder people are still arguing about what Osensei did and what he was talking about. I assume it would go something like this today.

Osensei - do ikkyo like this
Phil - Oh so we should hate women?
Osensei - look how these principles I'm expressing with my body match these ancient principles I've been reading about
Phil - So you hate women too?

There is a disconnect from what is being said and how it is being taken. I think you have to build that bridge for the rest of us who don't get the deeper meanings you seem to be getting out of their words.

Rob
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Old 06-14-2008, 11:46 AM   #29
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Here is what every one seems to be looking for,

WOMEN DON'T BELONG IN THE DOJO! THEY AIN'T AS GOOD AS MEN IN THE DOJO! MEN ARE BETTER AIKIDOKA THEN WOMEN EVER WILL BE. WOMEN HAVE NO BUSINESS TAKING AIKIDO. WOMEN ARE THE INFERIOR WEAKER SEX, WOMEN CAN'T BE AS GOOD AS MEN!

Have at it folks this one's on me, enjoy! head in hands shaking in disbelief
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Old 06-14-2008, 11:54 AM   #30
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Confused Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Janet read my post as it was intended. Where did saying that I have had slight experience with sexism in aikido and that the super-great majority of men (99%) that I train with treat me with respect some how convey to you Buck that I am acting out based on victimization? I only said that the whole "women issue" is a non-issue for me as a woman and I asked you to please not take the the whole "women issue" out of perspective - which unfortunately often happens when this "issue" is discussed and which has happened again in this thread.

I did try to address what I thought was the point of the study you pointed out -- that women tend to me more personal. I think in some ways there is a tendency for some women to be more personal in their training by seeking out social connections with other members of the dojo. I, however, disagree, that we are personal in the way we act out aggression and that is some how the motivation in practicing or not practicing aikido. Yes, I do take offense to being compared to a female gangbanger. I'm sorry if my objection to your post upset you Buck, but you are on an internet discussion board and people will disagree with you.

I was hoping that the conversation about a woman's motivation for practicing aikido would have evolved out of this and perhaps some women would speak up and say "yes, I like more personal connections on the mat" or say, "no, I do feel like that at all." Maybe some sensei would speak and say that in their dojo they see that more women tend to be the ones to organized social events or that they don't see the whole aggression thing either.

I am truly surprised as to the response to my post Buck. I do not think I could have worded it any more thoughtfully or reasonably. I define "knee jerk response" as a reactive rather than proactive impression from your post. My first paragraph described that. After that, I utilized transitional language to describe a proactive response rather than a reactive one. I anticipated that you would have followed that transition and realized that I was no longer being reactive. Especially with the use of the smiley: I did not use this smiley: So where did you get the idea I was angry and emotional? confused smiley:

I think your post raises some thought points as to a woman's motivation for training in aikido. I really would hate to see this thread degrade into another "gender war" thread. Let's really discuss your post without the offense and insults, okay?

Thank You.

Anne Marie Giri
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Old 06-14-2008, 12:59 PM   #31
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
Here is what every one seems to be looking for,

WOMEN DON'T BELONG IN THE DOJO! THEY AIN'T AS GOOD AS MEN IN THE DOJO! MEN ARE BETTER AIKIDOKA THEN WOMEN EVER WILL BE. WOMEN HAVE NO BUSINESS TAKING AIKIDO. WOMEN ARE THE INFERIOR WEAKER SEX, WOMEN CAN'T BE AS GOOD AS MEN!

Have at it folks this one's on me, enjoy! head in hands shaking in disbelief
Wow.

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Old 06-14-2008, 01:01 PM   #32
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Oh my gosh! So I take it the secret de-corder ring is radioactive?
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Old 06-14-2008, 01:19 PM   #33
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Whenever a so called expert says something I have this need to question it.

I started Aikido because it looked like fun, the guys were cute, and I like to sweat. I had no idea that It was exactly what I needed to heal from a lifetime of alcohol abuse and victimy behavior aound men.

Aikido training has helped me learn to accept each uke as they come and blend with their motion in that moment of time.
Now I know any time I am looking to blame someone else for my reaction I am choosing to be a victim. A healthier way to look at circumstances for me is to examine my motives and reactions and relax some more.
See ya on the mat,
Mary

Last edited by Mary Eastland : 06-14-2008 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 06-14-2008, 02:49 PM   #34
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote: View Post
I think your post raises some thought points as to a woman's motivation for training in aikido. I really would hate to see this thread degrade into another "gender war" thread. Let's really discuss your post without the offense and insults, okay?

Thank You.
Cool. I don't want that either. I too think understanding what motivates and what doesn't motivate women, not assuming it is the same for men, is a way to communicate better in so many different ways in the dojo. The great benefit is that it broadens the Aikido experience for both men and women. I personally like to see women training in Aikido.

I would really like to hear your thoughts and input on the whole dynamic that women need a personal issue, in this instance, is it a big factor or not. For the sake of discussion, say using Aikido to defend themselves. Like getting over the reservation of hurting someone that prevents them to complete the technique. Or how ever you see it.
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Old 06-14-2008, 03:01 PM   #35
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Everybody just run. And try to pretend this thread never happened.
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Old 06-14-2008, 03:57 PM   #36
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote:
I think your post raises some thought points as to a woman's motivation for training in aikido. I really would hate to see this thread degrade into another "gender war" thread. Let's really discuss your post without the offense and insults, okay?

Thank You.

Cool. I don't want that either. I too think understanding what motivates and what doesn't motivate women, not assuming it is the same for men, is a way to communicate better in so many different ways in the dojo. The great benefit is that it broadens the Aikido experience for both men and women. I personally like to see women training in Aikido.
Golf Clap for Anne and Phillip, good job. As I said before, you had a fine intention, but it was broached a little rough.

I understood your original post, I understood your frustrated sarcasm, and sarcasm has a way of getting lost in the written word, but I had the context. Without putting our words and actions in the context of the audience, we run the risk of garnering unexpected reactions.

Imagine someone walking briskly toward you without sign of slowing. Sure, their intent was to simply shake your hand, but well, you read it wrong, and now they're on the ground.

Etiquette, words, self defense tactics, they are all contextual, and certain criteria need to be met before any and all interactions may proceed without hiccups. What followed your first post was just one of those hiccups. No harm no foul though. I believe you dig the ladies as well as they deserve. Dig meaning respect.

michael.

If way to the better there be, it exacts a full look at the worst.

- Thomas Hardy
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Old 06-14-2008, 05:36 PM   #37
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
Cool. I don't want that either. I too think understanding what motivates and what doesn't motivate women, not assuming it is the same for men, is a way to communicate better in so many different ways in the dojo. The great benefit is that it broadens the Aikido experience for both men and women. I personally like to see women training in Aikido.

I would really like to hear your thoughts and input on the whole dynamic that women need a personal issue, in this instance, is it a big factor or not. For the sake of discussion, say using Aikido to defend themselves. Like getting over the reservation of hurting someone that prevents them to complete the technique. Or how ever you see it.
I think it would be better to say that we, more often than men need a personal connection with the people we train with rather than having a personal issue. I have noticed that not all women are like this and men need a personal connection, too. I think some women would like to just see more women in a dojo because they can look and see that another woman has become accomplished in aikido. I'm fortunate to train in a dojo with a high ranking dan ranked woman and a few other dan ranked woman. Not all dojos are as fortunate, or just simply big enough, to have this representation. It doesn't mean we don't look up to men in our dojo. My "sempai" (meaning the senior black belt who took me in under his wing) is male. He has worked with me from 5th kyu through shodan.

I'm not so certain that it's personal when we train to learn to defend ourselves. It's more like they way we have to defend ourselves as opposed to most men more often will be different. For example, as a woman I am not concerned about defending myself in a bar fight or in a match fight. Grabs are realistic attacks. I know this based upon my own personal experience. However, I don't think learning to defend myself is personal, at least on an emotional level. It's more like, "like hell are you going to rape/beat/hit me." I think a key to learning a martial art is to learn to stay calm while defending onself and not falling into a rage type response which can get a person into trouble in a self-defense situation. Allowing myself to get "personal" would be counter-productive. But, wouldn't this be the same for men? If not, how so? Some one insulting a person's manhood isn't personal? Just asking...

The concern about women not wanting to hurt people is culturally based, I believe. Women, in general, are raised not to offend or to hurt. Which in self-defense situations may lead us into being victims because we don't want to "offend" the attacker. We, in general, tend to be nurturers and don't want to hurt. However, men often times do not want to hurt women on the mat for a different cultural reason -- they were taught not to hit/hurt a woman. This results on male partners "going too easy" on their skilled female partners. I've had a couple interesting situations where a couple of my male partners were barely applying the technique. I'd tell them to throw me harder and they insist otherwise. I'd just keep throwing them harder until they started to actually apply the technique appropriately. Resultantly, he'd say "there!" and be really p.o.'d. I'd get up and say "good throw! now, keep throwing me that way." IHowever, I don't know how this can be identified as being "personal." I don't think you mean it by "taking things personally" or "always emotional" either.

I think what you are wanting to say that the motivation to learning aikido might based on personal reasons like we were once assaulted or abused? I'm not certian because a lot of women I train with have not been assaulted or abused or they train in aikido just because they are as aikiaddicted as the next guy. So, I am not certain how valid that assumption is.

Maybe you should tell me why you train as a man. And how do you think it is different from the women you have trained with? Is your motivation for learning self-defense based in a barroom brawl type situation or a matched fight?

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 06-14-2008, 11:44 PM   #38
Jennifer Yabut
 
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote: View Post
I think it would be better to say that we, more often than men need a personal connection with the people we train with rather than having a personal issue. I have noticed that not all women are like this and men need a personal connection, too.
Speaking just for myself, that was one of the reasons why I took up Aikido. The primary reason was to supplement my Iaido training (i.e., to learn empty-hand techniques to complement the sword work). I'm one of the three women in my Iaido group - and often the only female on the mat. I took an Aikido college course back in my undergrad days, so I was *vaguely* familiar with it (though I remembered squat in terms of actual technique). I also knew that it attracts more women than most other martial arts, which was another reason why I joined. The personal connection (which I was *not* getting from the guys in Iaido) was also important to me.

So, no...I wasn't motivated by anger, or some other personal issue. I wasn't even motivated by the self-defense factor; I had previous training in TKD and was fairly confident in my abilities to reasonably defend myself. And I was NOT - and still NOT - looking for a boyfriend, soulmate, etc. Making friends along the way (both male and female) was an added bonus, but my motivation from Day One was to simply TRAIN.

"The ultimate aim of martial arts is not having to use them." - Miyamoto Musashi
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Old 06-15-2008, 04:59 AM   #39
Dieter Haffner
 
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
[...] which sex is better [...]
I believe that any sex, where all people involved are happy, is good.
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Old 06-15-2008, 10:35 AM   #40
Buck
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote: View Post
I'm not so certain that it's personal when we train to learn to defend ourselves. I don't think learning to defend myself is personal, at least on an emotional level. It's more like, "like hell are you going to rape/beat/hit me." I think a key to learning a martial art is to learn to stay calm while defending onself and not falling into a rage type response which can get a person into trouble in a self-defense situation. Allowing myself to get "personal" would be counter-productive. But, wouldn't this be the same for men? If not, how so? Some one insulting a person's manhood isn't personal? Just asking...
Your brough up some good points. Let me start from the top, having a personal issue isn't bad. I don't think I ever said that, so I want everyone to know that is not something I want to focus upon.

A personal issue (what ever it be) turns the timid 90 lbs mother into a super heroine to lift a life a car off her child, for example. Or an otherwise non-physical woman defeats an attacker who threatens her child. On the other hand, I have been told by women when it comes to themselves they are hesitant to protect themselves-for a whole lot of different reasons-and feel more comfortable protecting loved one. Is this because of being cultured, yea to a point. What is culture is the idea women will protect others first before themselves.

How do you break that? I thought the key might be to give or allow women to get in touch with something personal.

You want more women to try Aikido. How do you get women interested, what do you say to get their interest that they other wise may not have an interest. You may relate to them with personal issues.

Look, I belong to this activity. It is targeted at males, us wimpy insecure, bullied guys that makes us feel like Rambos. After reading their last newsletter realize something I didn't realize before. After that program I watched about women acting on personal issues I noticed the newsletter, and activity and the activity leader/motivator all communicated directly at touching upon personal issues to get us wimpy timid guys motivated to take action- it includes action of simulated violence in a self-defense mock situations- much like Aikido does with randori.

Then when I thought about it more, it came to mind and that was in the movie where Mel Gibson played Wallace and he (like so many alike movies including Joan of Arch) stands in front of an army of soldiers before an epic battle giving a speech that is targeted to act on personal issues, so they will fight hard (emotionally).

Examining, being aware of, dealing with or applying the idea of personal issues in the dojo for women could provide positive results with other issues facing women in the dojo.

Quote:
We, in general, tend to be nurturers and don't want to hurt. I'd tell them to throw me harder and they insist otherwise. I'd just keep throwing them harder until they started to actually apply the technique appropriately. Resultantly, he'd say "there!" and be really p.o.'d. I'd get up and say "good throw! now, keep throwing me that way." However, I don't know how this can be identified as being "personal." I don't think you mean it by "taking things personally" or "always emotional" either.
Off hand example would possibly be talking to her and finding out what personal issue would triggering her to block all other unimportant thoughts that are causing her to hesitate before doing the waza. Then tell her to use a personal issue as tool to help her to throw. In this way her mind isn't interfering and she is focused. Having her throw with emotional focus as a result of a personal issue which does block out all other interfering thoughts that cause her hesitation. This might solve problems providing confidence.

With most men you don't have to give them a reason on the level of practice. I want to say this isn't a men vs. women thing. It is just a difference, and understanding that difference and not applying a one-size-fits-all in the dojo, for example.
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Old 06-15-2008, 11:24 AM   #41
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote: View Post
Maybe you should tell me why you train as a man. And how do you think it is different from the women you have trained with? Is your motivation for learning self-defense based in a barroom brawl type situation or a matched fight?
"Self defense" is a common answer for women when asked why they train in martial arts. IMO, as the sex that's had the brunt of responsibility for building and maintaining the order of society (historically speaking) just "defense" is a better description for men.

Generally, as a man, you build your personal environment as well as your society's environment and I think there's a duty built into that to protect it. You protect your home, your wife and kids, and when a situation arises where someone is breaking the established societal rules you may also feel a duty to do something about it. "Any man who would do less" the saying goes, "is less than a man."

Many women, my wife included, think it's stupid and a throwback to an unenlightened time in our evolution. But I suspect she and most women wouldn't really have it differently. That's why I train.
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Old 06-15-2008, 08:36 PM   #42
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

How would you use your aikido to protect your wife and kids? Someone is in grabbing your kid in the mall or say someone is mugging your wife in the parking lot and you come running up. What aikido technique are you planning to use? What principle(s)? The attacker is not attacking you. What energy are you planning to use against the attacker. What's the battle plan?

Rob
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Old 06-15-2008, 09:29 PM   #43
Bill Danosky
 
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

I'm going to throw everything I have at him. I am not just an Aikidoka and off the tatami I do not restrict myself to only Aikido techniques. As I've stated elsewhere on Aikiweb, I have studied Japanese, Okinawan, Chinese and Korean martial arts for more than twenty years.

However, there are many Aikido waza that might come into play, like variations of shomen/sokumen irimi nage and hiji shime if the situation favored it. You never know what you did until it's over anyway.
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Old 06-15-2008, 10:39 PM   #44
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Since the thread has wondered, thanks Rob, I thought while everyone is getting their thoughts together it might be interesting to watch this. It touches on what Anne Marie Giri was saying about culture and women. This women is pretty tough Aikidoka. There is a randori sequence that is fast and tires me out just watching it. Overall she is pretty powerful as well as intense in her technique. You can be the judge, but I liked her. She ain't seeking a man to protect her, I am looking for her to protect me!

watch her here on the 1st link and and here on 2nd link and I just found a 3rd Kudos! She also may be well known to many I realize.

Last edited by Buck : 06-15-2008 at 10:50 PM.
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Old 06-15-2008, 11:17 PM   #45
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

"Real Aikido"... ???

Chuck Clark
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Old 06-16-2008, 12:06 AM   #46
Buck
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

I have list 3 quotes from 3 women senseis that are Aikido stars- well known senseis. I am pointing to with these interviews of recognized senseis is a peek at personal issues; motivation, and inspiration. I thought reading over these quotes would stimulate more discussion.

Penny Bernath Sensei is first, I included a quote from a very good interview. Much of the interview and the quote has to do with this discussion.
It is a good interview, it is worth reading the full interview.

Question: How did you first start practicing Aikido?

Sensei: I started Aikido in 1973. I was 20 years old. I wanted to be able to protect myself so I was interested in taking a martial art. I visited a couple of karate dojos, but they were practicing exactly what I wanted to avoid, direct physical confrontation. I wanted to be able to protect myself without a confrontation. Then I saw an Aikido demonstration in a park. It was energetic and intriguing. It looked like a powerful dance. I signed up, telling myself -- I'm going to take this just one month at a time. Aikido was much more complicated than I expected. But, I'm still going, just taking one month at a time.
--- Penny Bernath Sensei Read interview in full.

Next insight to women is Britton Sensei

"I'm still interested in going to aikido every night because of the challenge, the physical challenge of it. I especially like to work out aerobically very hard. So at the end of class I like to be pouring sweat and totally exhausted and then I feel that that's a good day." --- Barbara Britton Sensei

Here is a great quote from DiAnne Sensei which using personal issues could play a role in achieving this.

"When you take ukemi for somebody, you have to attack them for real. And when you attack somebody, you give your life. It's like you forget about holding back anything, it's just about you and your giving." --- Lorraine DiAnne Sensei
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Old 06-16-2008, 07:44 AM   #47
Cady Goldfield
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Protect herself "without physical confrontation"? "...avoid direct physical confrontation"?

I hope (and reckon) that Ms. Bernath has simply avoided environments where violent and aggressive people dwell, because otherwise I doubt she would have attained her above-stated aims.
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Old 06-16-2008, 09:21 AM   #48
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Umm, okay. I can bridge what I was saying directly.

Do any women in aikido train for the personal reason of protecting their children from being abducted right in front of them in the mall parking lot? If so, assuming they are not training other martial arts as well, what's the plan?

I have yet to meet a mother who didn't consider self-defense also applying to the protection of her children.

If I'm totally off base, then sorry for the interruption.

Rob
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:15 AM   #49
giriasis
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Philip Burgess wrote: View Post
I have list 3 quotes from 3 women senseis that are Aikido stars- well known senseis. I am pointing to with these interviews of recognized senseis is a peek at personal issues; motivation, and inspiration. I thought reading over these quotes would stimulate more discussion.

Penny Bernath Sensei is first, I included a quote from a very good interview. Much of the interview and the quote has to do with this discussion.
It is a good interview, it is worth reading the full interview.

Question: How did you first start practicing Aikido?

Sensei: I started Aikido in 1973. I was 20 years old. I wanted to be able to protect myself so I was interested in taking a martial art. I visited a couple of karate dojos, but they were practicing exactly what I wanted to avoid, direct physical confrontation. I wanted to be able to protect myself without a confrontation. Then I saw an Aikido demonstration in a park. It was energetic and intriguing. It looked like a powerful dance. I signed up, telling myself -- I'm going to take this just one month at a time. Aikido was much more complicated than I expected. But, I'm still going, just taking one month at a time.
--- Penny Bernath Sensei Read interview in full.

Next insight to women is Britton Sensei

"I'm still interested in going to aikido every night because of the challenge, the physical challenge of it. I especially like to work out aerobically very hard. So at the end of class I like to be pouring sweat and totally exhausted and then I feel that that's a good day." --- Barbara Britton Sensei

Here is a great quote from DiAnne Sensei which using personal issues could play a role in achieving this.

"When you take ukemi for somebody, you have to attack them for real. And when you attack somebody, you give your life. It's like you forget about holding back anything, it's just about you and your giving." --- Lorraine DiAnne Sensei
I just do not think any of your above referenced reasons are reasons exclusively because they are women. I believe all three of these women would say that they do not think that their experience as women in aikido is that different from a man's.

Ummm...considering I train with Penny Bernath Sensei...She was the high ranking dan female to whom I was referring. She liked the beauty in aikido, but I'm sure there are men on this board and in aikido who appreciate the beauty in aikido and was drawn to it because of it. And Cady, Penny has had to use her aikido in a real world situation. Two attackers at once and all she needed to do was tenkan. And the area she was in was not a safe area either.

Regarding Barbara's comment, our most demanding as most attended class is Penny's class on Saturday morning. It is also very "aerobic" but it is jam packed with technique. The emphasis is variations and movement and doing a technique spontaneously. Her "aerobic" classes draw many of the men in our dojo, too. But then again Peter Bernath Sensei's classes at the dojo can be pretty dynamic and aerobically intense, too. And the men attend his classes, too.

Regarding Lorraine DiAnne, her background is at Hombu Dojo and training with Chiba Sensei. Chiba Sensei is known for his hard training and he puts both men and women through it. I have a feeling a lot of Chiba Sensei's students, men and women, can say the same thing she did.

Like I said before the best way to keep women in the dojo is to treat us with respect and not patronize us. It also means not dumbing down aikido to get more women to join. Think about if you have four women join in a year and one sticks around to shodan that's a 25% retention rate, pretty darned good when you consider that in the overall long term the retention rate is about 10%. I've seen many men come and leave after their first day of class. It's just that you have more men joining than women so it's more noticable when the one woman who joined the dojo leaves.

I think there are different personal reasons for men, too -- wanting to defend one's family, a small guy not wanting to get beat up again, a big guy sick of being fat and wanting to lose weight, a big guy wanting to learn to defend himself knowing there's always a bigger guy out there, etc.

The only exclusive pesonal issues for women might be not wanting to get raped again or be victimized by their spouse/boyfriend again. If a woman wants aerobics with a martial feel, she is smart enough to find an aerobic kickboxing class. If she wants a real martial art she will chose a real martial art.

Perhaps there are personal reasons or issues that might, in general, be different. But the one thing we share in common is aikido. We all enter the dojo to learn aikido. When we all enter, teach aikido and just make sure you teach it well, because if you don't, no matter what you do people will leave. Why not just focus on teaching good aikido and raising up everyone's aikido? Women would be included in that mix and they would stick around because of it.

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 06-16-2008, 12:05 PM   #50
reisler
Dojo: Aikido Bozankan
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Re: Hell Hath No Fury Like A Woman Scorned: Threads About Women In Aikido

Quote:
Bill Danosky wrote: View Post
"
Many women, my wife included, think it's stupid and a throwback to an unenlightened time in our evolution. But I suspect she and most women wouldn't really have it differently. That's why I train.
I wouldn't want it any different.... I really appreciate guys that are big stong protectors. It makes me feel safe.
Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
I have yet to meet a mother who didn't consider self-defense also applying to the protection of her children.
Rob
How about protection from her children???? my boys love to attack me and carry me around the house.

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote: View Post
Perhaps there are personal reasons or issues that might, in general, be different. But the one thing we share in common is aikido. We all enter the dojo to learn aikido.
I am learning Aikido because it makes me fit, happy, strong, energetic, fulfulled, cared for........

Roberta
Aikido - a kinder, gentler can o' Whoop Ass.
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