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Old 09-19-2010, 12:56 PM   #51
RED
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 903
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Re: Testing before minimums???

Schools with larger attendance need to test more regularly. Other wise it would take an entire weekend just to get through the 5th kyu if you tested once year.

I wouldn't mind being over for testing. I was over by 60 days for one of my tests once. That's no problem for me. The problem comes in on the organizational level.
As Aikidoka we need to not only think of how rules effect our own personal development. You need to think of how things effect your school, your fellow students and everyone's coherency on the organizational level.
It's not an issue of training at that point anymore. A dojo is a community. Belonging to a dojo isn't the same as owning a gym membership. Students are typically VERY invested in the success and future of their school and Sensei.

Last edited by RED : 09-19-2010 at 12:58 PM.

MM
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Old 09-19-2010, 01:08 PM   #52
Basia Halliop
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 711
Canada
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Re: Testing before minimums???

I had WAY over the minimum amount of days for 5th kyu - but what stopped me from testing was that I just didn't know the stuff on the test. I had a slow learning curve. In that kind of case I'm glad I took longer. I'm all in favour of taking longer to make tests stronger or more consistent... but it's nice from an organizational point of view if there's some kind of approximate correspondence between skill and formal level. In my experience the ranks seem to be more useful and less political that way.
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Old 09-19-2010, 02:04 PM   #53
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
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Re: Testing before minimums???

Basia, good point -- now that I think about it, quality control/standardization really is the #1 benefit of testing, as I see it. And, yeah, I see your point about organizing knowledge...but I also see that breaking down pretty early too (early in terms of rank, not necessarily in terms of time). The test criteria I'm familiar with are all expressed as lists of techniques. That was helpful for my first test test, confusing for my second test, and has been somewhere between useless and counterproductive ever since. There are principles on which the knowledge is based, but they are not anything that can be expressed as a list of techniques.
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Old 09-19-2010, 02:15 PM   #54
Basia Halliop
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Re: Testing before minimums???

Yeah, when I think of 'test standards' I don't really mean what's written, because as you point out, that's just a list of techniques. But there is a standard still (at least within my dojo there is, with rising expectations for each rank), it's just that it's not necessarily formally written down, perhaps in part because it's much harder to express clearly in writing in unambiguous words? That's much harder to maintain consistent between different dojos, and it really has to be clearly and firmly in the instructor's head. I guess that's maybe one of the reasons you do see unprepared students at seminars being recommended to test sometimes.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:22 PM   #55
chillzATL
Location: ATL
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Re: Testing before minimums???

Quote:
Basia Halliop wrote: View Post
Yeah, when I think of 'test standards' I don't really mean what's written, because as you point out, that's just a list of techniques. But there is a standard still (at least within my dojo there is, with rising expectations for each rank), it's just that it's not necessarily formally written down, perhaps in part because it's much harder to express clearly in writing in unambiguous words? That's much harder to maintain consistent between different dojos, and it really has to be clearly and firmly in the instructor's head. I guess that's maybe one of the reasons you do see unprepared students at seminars being recommended to test sometimes.
For us, the hour requirement is there because that's when they think that you should be able to do what is expected of you, which happens to coincide with the rank. It's not just a number that when you reach it, you're asked to test. Someone could come randomly for two years before hitting 100 hours and still not be invited to test.
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:03 PM   #56
Lan Powers
Dojo: Aikido of Midland, Midland TX
Location: Midland Tx
Join Date: Oct 2002
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Re: Testing before minimums???

"Sensei, When do I test?"
When you can pass.....(make the hour requirements, and have the skills)
The hours are , after-all, just a minimum. The real question is do you have the skills you need for the level you test for?

but next week it will be..."Sensei, when do I test?"

Play nice, practice hard, but remember, this is a MARTIAL art!
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Old 09-24-2010, 11:29 PM   #57
Amassus
 
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Dojo: Aikido Musubi Ryu/ Yoshin Wadokan
Location: Hamilton
Join Date: Aug 2003
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New Zealand
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Re: Testing before minimums???

I have said this many times but...

Belts and ranks are simply a side effect of training. Concentrate on the joys of training and the grades come.

Easier said than done, quite often.


"flows like water, reflects like a mirror, and responds like an echo." Chaung-tse
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Old 05-07-2011, 06:15 AM   #58
Mario Tobias
Join Date: Aug 2006
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Philippines
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Re: Testing before minimums???

I've been essentially a 6th kyu white belt for 17 years (changing dojos many times because of situations beyond my control). Don't get me wrong, testing is important. I've only started testing the last 3 years after finding my "home dojo".

The real test is if you can hang in there for the long haul and continue training despite the doubts, difficult questions, dissapointments, life changing events and frustrations that I am sure you will encounter in your journey.

The journey is the test.
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:32 PM   #59
Lyle Laizure
 
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Dojo: Hinode Dojo LLC
Location: Omaha, Nebraska
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Re: Testing before minimums???

Minimums are there for a reason. Any time I have seen a dojo's testing requirements it has been stated as this is the minimum requirement. Just because one has the hours doesn't mean one should test. Attitude is more important than technique. Granted if you can't perform the required techniques you won't pass but if your attitude is not good then you won't even get an opportunity to test. That being said the chief instructor may choose to test someone prior to that person reaching the minimum requirement. The chief instructor can do what he/she wants becaue it is the chief instructor. The real test is showing up and simply training.

Lyle Laizure
www.hinodedojo.com
Deru kugi wa uta reru
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