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Old 03-04-2002, 07:07 AM   #1
Richard Archer
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 1
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Question Want to learn Aikido

Hi My name is Richard , I'm trying to find out about Aikido and wondering if someone can help me out with some questions.

1.How long in average would it take for me to study Aikido and then be able to defend myself?

2.Is Aikido street effective?

I am thinking of joining an Aikido club.

Waiting eagerly for replies.

Thankyou.
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Old 03-04-2002, 08:37 AM   #2
Chuck.Gordon
Location: Frederick, MD
Join Date: Sep 2000
Posts: 509
United_States
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Re: Want to learn Aikido

Quote:
Originally posted by Richard Archer
1.How long in average would it take for me to study Aikido and then be able to defend myself?
2.Is Aikido street effective?
The answers are:

It depends and it depends.

There is no average and there is no real and satisfactory definition of either 'self defense' or 'street effectiveness'.

And there's your own physical condition and attitudes to factor in.

If what you're asking is: Will aikido make me the a better fighter? The answer is, probably not. If you want to learn to fight, you can learn effective brawling skills faster in a boxing gym or something similar.

If you want to learn something that will teach you a lot about your own limits and possibilities, learn something about Japanese history and culture, learn something about human interaction AND learn some things that will serve very well in (a) helping keep you out of situations wherein you might need to defend yourself and (b) give you some valuable tools with which TO defend yourself should you ever need to, then aikido might be for you.

However, there are many styles of aikido, some very practical, some very esoteric.

Your milage, as the saying goes, may vary.

Good luck.

Chuck

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Old 03-04-2002, 08:39 AM   #3
ChrisDuSCAMB
Dojo: SCAMB/Beausset
Location: Castellet (Var-France)
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 38
Offline
Re: Want to learn Aikido

Quote:
Originally posted by Richard Archer
Hi My name is Richard , I'm trying to find out about Aikido and wondering if someone can help me out with some questions.

1.How long in average would it take for me to study Aikido and then be able to defend myself?

2.Is Aikido street effective?

I am thinking of joining an Aikido club.

Waiting eagerly for replies.

Thankyou.
Hi Richard,

If your main goal is to learn how defend yourself in the street, Aikido is not the good choice.
To be effective with Aikido technics needs a lot of hard work and times. The Aikido way is a long road.

I advice you to see and try Aikido training and also discuss with trainees on the mats about the Aikido philosophy (Aikido is not only a set of technics, it is also a way of life...).

Bye,

Chris
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Old 03-05-2002, 11:12 AM   #4
MaylandL
Location: Western Australia
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 241
Offline
Hello Richard

Its a very valid question to ask whether you can use a martial art to defend yourself. I started martial arts as a way for self defense and did a variety of styles (wing chun kung fu, karate, jujitsu and numerous self defence courses).

Having trained in martial arts for about 20 years, I learnt something very important. The more you know the less you want to fight and the more aware you are of not putting yourself in situations where you have to fight. I guess in this way its an effective self defence.

Training in a dojo is totally different to a fight situation. A dojo training session is very controlled even if you have free sparring. For example, padding is sometimes worn, we dont always attack at full speed or with the fury and intensity you might see in a stand up fight, strikes are pulled and a whole lot of other things as well. Its so we can continue to train - not to mention the legal aspects.

In a fight situation, there are so many variables that you can control like whether weapons are carried, the surroundings, how many people are involved, martial skill of the attacker, are you tired and sleepy, did you expect the attack or were you ambushed, amongst other things. Anything can and does happen. Its not as predictable as in a dojo training session.

I think hollywood, the media and courts have a lot to answer for in terms what a black belt means and what being a martial arts expert is. Having this training doesnt make you invincible and you are still very vulnerable. Irrespective of the level of training you've had, there's still an element of risk that you will be hurt and possibly seriously.

If your goal is quickly learning to be able to defend yourself then I think you would be better off taking self defence courses. The really good self defence courses I've done have focussed on personal safety and situation avoidance strategies - not putting yourself in situations where you might have to fight or defend yourself.

Martial arts is more focussed on self development and growth and providing you with a sense of purpose in the world. The ability to defend yourself with your chosen martial art is a long term byproduct and not necessarily why people continue to study martial arts in the long term.

Having said all that, I would wholeheartly agree with the comments made by Chuck and ChrisDuSCAMB.

Also I have been in a situation where I've had to use my training to avoid getting the living buhjeesus thumped out of me. I wont bore everyone with the details but the attacker ran away as a conequence of my actions and no one was hurt. I was very lucky that the person didnt carry a weapon and I saw the person leap at me at the very last minute. I'm not sure that it was solely aikido. I think it was also a whole lot other martial arts training I've taken over the 20 years or so.

What I'm getting at is I am not convinced that any martial art will provide a quick method to allow you to defend yourself in any situation where its necessary. Self defence courses may give you some strategies but they're not foolproof.

With the amount of training that I've had could I defend myself in an all out brawl or riot? I dont know. I hope I am never in a situation where I have to find out. I may have started doing martial arts for self defence, but its more than that now. What that is I'm still trying to figure out.

I hope that you will give aikido a try to see if its suited to what you want you want to achieve. Whatever your choice in martial arts discipline, I hope that gain full enjoyment from it. All the best for your search.

Mayland
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Old 03-05-2002, 01:38 PM   #5
Arianah
Dojo: Aikido of Norwalk
Location: CT
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 205
Offline
Quote:
Originally posted by Richard Archer
1.How long in average would it take for me to study Aikido and then be able to defend myself?
A martial arts student went to his teacher and said earnestly, "I am devoted to studying your martial system. How long will it take me to master it." The teacher's reply was casual, "Ten years." Impatiently, the student answered, "But I want to master it faster than that. I will work very hard. I will practice everyday, ten or more hours a day if I have to. How long will it take then?" The teacher thought for a moment, "20 years." The student impatiently asked how this could be and the teacher said, "If you always keep one eye on the goal, you can only have one eye on the path."

Be patient and things will fall into place.

Sarah

P.S. I'm not trying to be a self-righteous wise ass--I love these kinds of stories and think that everyone can learn from them.
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