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Old 10-27-2009, 06:50 PM   #1
Chantal
 
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Aikido Solo Practice

Good evening everyone. I have recently recovered from H1N1 and my first day back at work was yesterday. I was out with that "flu" for 9 days and relied on friends and family to get me through it. Without their help, I am not sure that I would be recovering as well as I am. With that said, I am going to take some time off from aikido to make sure my immune system does not take any more of a beating. My question is about other training. I was very close to doing my 6th kyu testing and would like to know if there is anything I could be doing at home so that I do not lose the skill set and knowledge I have thus acquired? The obvious would be to do my basic techniques at a level that is comfortable and manageable for me but does anyone have any other suggestions??

Thanks,

Chantal

The spiritual beauty, which is the deepest truth, sustains me!
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Old 10-27-2009, 07:18 PM   #2
Voitokas
 
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Re: H1N1 and Aikido

Watch lots of videos, have lots of daydreams about aikidoing the crap out of everyone you see...

Eat lots of soup, and I hope you recover soon!

I am not an expert
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Old 10-27-2009, 08:12 PM   #3
Janet Rosen
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Re: H1N1 and Aikido

You can slowly go through the nage role of every technique you are to be tested on, checking posture, extension, etc...then see if you can perform the uke side of it!

Janet Rosen
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Old 10-29-2009, 10:50 AM   #4
Lan Powers
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Re: H1N1 and Aikido

Mentally working through the techniques start to finish, as Janet said, is a wonderfull means of coming to "own" them.

Play nice, practice hard, but remember, this is a MARTIAL art!
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Old 10-29-2009, 11:47 AM   #5
Janet Rosen
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Actually, I'm suggesting even more than that: that she slowly move through the idealized form of the techniques in the privacy of her own home :-) Doing the uke side of the equation is a wonderful exercise - minus the rolls and falls if space or post-illness energy doesn't permit of course.

Janet Rosen
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Old 10-29-2009, 11:54 AM   #6
ChrisMoses
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

TNBBC'er John Connolly posted something that you might also find interesting on our blog.

Chris Moses
TNBBC, "Putting the ME in MEdiocre!"
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Old 10-30-2009, 06:16 PM   #7
Chantal
 
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

I am mentally rehearsing all my techniques .... also, looking through previous techniques as well. I am going to take the time I need to recover from this strain. I am afraid that i might be out a month before i return. This said, I will have a lot or "refreshing" to do when i return. i miss it already

Chantal

The spiritual beauty, which is the deepest truth, sustains me!
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Old 10-30-2009, 06:35 PM   #8
Janet Rosen
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Chantal, don't be hard on yourself! In the long run of training, this is but a short break. If you have the energy, you could go to the dojo and watch class once a week? This may help you feel more connected to the dojo and the training. Also, "eye waza" really can be a valuable learning tool!

Janet Rosen
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"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 10-31-2009, 10:21 AM   #9
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Chantal, don't be hard on yourself! In the long run of training, this is but a short break. If you have the energy, you could go to the dojo and watch class once a week? This may help you feel more connected to the dojo and the training. Also, "eye waza" really can be a valuable learning tool!
X2 on what Janet said.

Chantal, your recovery and your health comes first before Aikido.

"For The Secret That The Warrior Seeks: You Must Know That The Basic Principles Lie In The Study Of The Spirit." - Morihei Ueshiba
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Old 10-31-2009, 03:18 PM   #10
Kevin Karr
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Suburi. Do lots of bokken suburi. This won't necessarily help with the steps of individual techniques but what it does develop will make those techniques so much the better. Besides, suburi is the only "solo" way to practice Aikido of which I am aware.
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Old 10-31-2009, 07:10 PM   #11
mathewjgano
 
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Quote:
Kevin Karr wrote: View Post
Suburi. Do lots of bokken suburi. This won't necessarily help with the steps of individual techniques but what it does develop will make those techniques so much the better. Besides, suburi is the only "solo" way to practice Aikido of which I am aware.
I feel like suburi gave my technique a little extra kick too.
I also practice furitama, torifuneundo, and an abreviated version of Tsubaki Chinkon.

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 11-01-2009, 02:50 PM   #12
Chantal
 
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

thanks everyone ... I suppose that I am being a bit hard on myself. Part of me feels sooooo guilty that I can not train at the moment. Especially since my sensei was working so hard to get me ready for my 6th kyu testing. Yes, one month of not training, in retrospect, will not be a long time compared to my training in general. I have decided to take fitness (low level) swimming during the month of November to keep my cario somewhat still in the game. I need to keep moving but I also need to be able to go slow. That "flu" really hit me hard and i find myslef exhausted after a day at work ( i am a teacher) and ready for bed by 8pm. My energy level is still hindered. I do hope I make a quick recovery. haha ... and report card season is just a few weeks away :| oh goodness ...

Chantal

The spiritual beauty, which is the deepest truth, sustains me!
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Old 11-09-2009, 09:25 AM   #13
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

According to my psychology class, running through a coarse of action mentally once in great concentration, builds the same amount of muscle memory as running through something physically eight times lazily.
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Old 11-09-2009, 09:41 AM   #14
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

I had heard the same thing.

I do a lot of that myself. Prior to my recent test I was going through techniques mentally several times a day not to mention in my sleep, as well as shadowing them physically in slow motion to get the foot work down ..... It definitely helped.

Last edited by Shadowfax : 11-09-2009 at 09:45 AM.
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Old 11-09-2009, 09:50 AM   #15
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Good point, slow motion helps. If you can do it flawlessly at 5mph, you can do it flawless t 100mph.

Fred Astaire once won a jitter bug dance contest by doing the jitter bug at 1/4 tempo.
Every other contestant went as fast possible to impress the judges. When asked why he did a snail pace jitter bug Fred replied, "So you can see how flawless my technique is. Speed is camouflage for poor dancers. "
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Old 11-09-2009, 10:40 AM   #16
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

I once heard of a study of two basketball groups. One group went out and shot from the free throw line countless times. The other group stayed in the locker room and mentally shot free throws countless times. Then they had a competition as to which could get the most free throws in a given amount of time. Turns out that the team who mentally practiced did better. They said that the mental practice group did better because they practiced perfect shots in their head every time, where the other group didn't have perfect shots every time.

I guess this would really only work if you had a good imagination and knew how to practice the technique in your head properly though. It would also give you time to analyze other areas of the throw.

~Look into the eyes of your opponent & steal his spirit.
~To be a good martial artist is to be good thief; if you want my knowledge, you must take it from me.
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Old 11-09-2009, 10:50 AM   #17
aikishihan
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Excellent suggestions and recommendations all!

If you would attempt them all using a full length mirror, your results should be significantly different.

A mirror never lies, or gives you faulty feedback.

Good Luck!
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Old 11-09-2009, 12:26 PM   #18
Abasan
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

That study was actually done using college players. 3 equal groups were created. 1 that did all the physical practice. 1 that did only mental practice. and a control group that didn't do anything. They found out that group 1 and 2 performed comparatively to each other, whilst the control group dipped in their performance.

Regardless of that, I would hesitate to think this would help in Aikido. Whereas in basketball in this test, its about you shooting the inanimate ball into the inanimate hoop; in Aikido you're affecting the partner who is very much alive. Thinking that you're doing magical aikido kinda leads to people who go around saying 'whoosh' when they do a twirling tenkan. They have this image of beautiful harmonious aikido in their mind, all the while neglecting to actually feel any feedback from their partner. Once you start thinking about yourself only, you'll definitely lose the harmonising aspect of what Aikido is all about.

IMHO at least.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 11-09-2009, 01:15 PM   #19
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Well certainly it's not a replacement for actual paired practice. No one here is saying it is. But give it a try before you say its useless. It does help in teaching you to move your body in specific patterns. And as the above study indicates its certainly far better than no practice at all.
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Old 11-09-2009, 07:47 PM   #20
Abasan
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

Well, there's no harm in trying. But I lean heavily towards doing aiki taiso instead. And to cultivate the 4 principles of centeredness, relaxation, extend ki and weight underside while doing those. In this manner, one would cultivate a unity of mind, body and spirit first and then when having the opportunity for paired practice, he can cultivate harmonising with a partner.

But I suppose it really boils down to what level of training you're in of course. If you're already comfortable with aiki genri, then I guess there's no reason not to visualise aiki waza on your own... I think that the reinforcing structure of Yoshinkan Kata's is what helps with the faster progress of their aikidokas as opposed to the almost laissez faire attitude of aikikai-esque method. So repetition in the mind would probably speed up the waza learning process.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:09 PM   #21
Janet Rosen
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

When I was postop from my ACL surgery and couldnt do ANY training other than sword cuts, it was incredibly valuable to 1. sit and watch class and let my muscles sort of twitch along and 2. do visualizations several times a day of idealized forms, both nage and uke. I don't know to what else I can ascribe the fact that after a full year off the mat I hadn't "lost" anything other than what could be ascribed to fear and/or deconditioning - the muscle memory was entirely intact AND I was able to pick up working on certain pieces of the aikido puzzle I'd been working on at the time of the injury. So yeah I'm a believer in visualization.

Janet Rosen
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Old 11-09-2009, 09:08 PM   #22
senorqueso
 
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

I'm not going to be able to practice regularly for another two or three months, mostly because of school and work. In addition to your "standard" workouts at the gym, I really lean towards aiki taiso as a way to "remind" my body what it should be doing before I can get to class.

Aside from that, though, I'm really big on reading. I try to read as much as I can get my hands on about aikido, not only to learn things I didn't know about the art, but to learn new ways of thinking about the art. I'm still very new to aikido, so I don't pretend to know any more than anyone else, but I find a lot of solace in the fact that any thoughts or opinions I have developed are at least well-informed. It also helps with my aiki taiso so I know what I'm doing right, and more importantly, what I'm doing wrong.

- Jeremy

" ...you have to look within yourself to save yourself from your other self. Only then will your true self reveal itself." -Zuko(as Iroh)
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Old 11-11-2009, 02:04 PM   #23
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Re: Aikido Solo Practice

when in doubt.. roll
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