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Old 05-29-2011, 08:40 AM   #26
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

Quote:
Szczepan Janczuk wrote: View Post
When you can successfully execute the techniques against actively resisting and countering attacker, it means you are ready for the test.
Maybe in the style you train in. In other styles that would be crap. Saying general things like that can hurt a student if he or she is training in style that Ki development is the focus. Focusing on the other person is a distraction from developing one's self. Staying soft and connecting with your partner is much more important than throwing hard and looking good.
Mary
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Old 05-29-2011, 02:33 PM   #27
Basia Halliop
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
Maybe in the style you train in. In other styles that would be crap. Saying general things like that can hurt a student if he or she is training in style that Ki development is the focus. Focusing on the other person is a distraction from developing one's self. Staying soft and connecting with your partner is much more important than throwing hard and looking good.
Mary
I don't see the connection between 'throwing hard' and working with someone who will show you the mistakes and openings in your techniques. You can (usually easily) throw an over-cooperative, over-helpful uke very very hard, and on the other hand you can control someone and take their balance and throw them gently.

Looking good is so subjective that it means something different to every person so I won't comment on that.

Even if your biggest goal is staying soft and connecting with your partner, then wouldn't that mean that that is part of what 'success' would mean in your style? Are you not meant to learn to stay soft and connect with your partner when your partner isn't doing the same? Perhaps not, as I know very little about lines of training that focus on ki development, but that's what I always thought part of the point was.

Last edited by Basia Halliop : 05-29-2011 at 02:35 PM.
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Old 05-29-2011, 04:53 PM   #28
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

Good points all, Basia.
I was cranky.
Mary
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Old 06-05-2011, 12:37 PM   #29
Adam Huss
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

This is a good topic of discussion, often debated throughout many martial arts organizations. Of course, no responsible teacher should allow a student to test if they are only going to embarrass themselves. I also feel it beneficial for students to understand they must actually work, prepare, and execute to a certain standard for their shinsa. Putting people 'on the spot' and making them perform are key elements that develop one of the more practical benefits aikido has to offer its students...one's self.

If a student is freaking out about testing to the point where s/he can not function during the test and asks the teacher, or is given, a private testing (or the well-known 'secret test during class'), I find that does the student a serious disservice. If a teacher is putting students, with some level of consistency, in difficult situations and forcing them to deal, then that student can potentially let that aspect of their aikido bleed into their real life (where we all live most of the time). I feel testing is a great opportunity to employ this concept. Additionally, it acts as a level of quality control for that particular school, organization, and art. I've found schools where students can actually 'fail' a test often produce some of the best technicians, as well as students who actively apply lessons learned in the dojo, off the mat (I'm talking daily living, not self defense).

cheers,
A

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Old 06-05-2011, 03:54 PM   #30
mrlizard123
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

This is an easy question to answer; you should be ready to demonstrate the techniques/principles/etc that you are expected to for the level you are grading for at the proficiency expected at your dojo. If this doesn't meet your own expectations it is something to discuss with your instructor(s)...

It might be a silly answer in some ways but it can't be wrong.

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Old 06-05-2011, 07:28 PM   #31
SmilingNage
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

Going thru the ranks, we were always told to be ready not only for the current test material but some stuff from the next test as well.

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Old 06-07-2011, 01:39 PM   #32
Adam Huss
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

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William Oakes wrote: View Post
Going thru the ranks, we were always told to be ready not only for the current test material but some stuff from the next test as well.
I would also emphasize the opposite! So often we get caught up with the test itself, and focus on that particular test's requirements. We often like to throw a wrench in the cog and make people perform techniques from previous tests. This ensures retention, sets a standard, and messes with people's confidence (its important to put people on the spot and see how they react). Often, the teacher will choose some super abscure or basic concept, like a basic roll or tai sabaki type movement (we do kihon dosa...a little differenct, but idea is the same). The teacher wants to see several things by doing this; do you remember this stuff, are you constantly practicing, can you actually teach it, and has techniques you haven't been required to 'display' on a test in years been progressing along with the newer, fancier, techqniues required at your level. But, in practice, and in the kyu levels my dojo typically adds a thing or two from higher ranks that are not in the approved national and international curriculum. But it will always be something students should be prepared for and have seen before.

again, sorry about spelling....spell checker no workie.

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Old 06-07-2011, 02:03 PM   #33
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

The point was, you should already "be" at that level before testing for that rank. It was reminder to not to rush to test and learn the lessons that needed to be learned.

But yeah, throwing a monkey wrench into testing was a delight of my old teacher. Woe to those who weren't ready for it.

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Old 06-08-2011, 07:39 AM   #34
Adam Huss
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

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William Oakes wrote: View Post
The point was, you should already "be" at that level before testing for that rank. It was reminder to not to rush to test and learn the lessons that needed to be learned.

But yeah, throwing a monkey wrench into testing was a delight of my old teacher. Woe to those who weren't ready for it.
I agree too, William. Didn't mean to come off as an opposing view....
I like both aspects of being ready, whether its a future req or a past.

cheers
A

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Old 06-10-2011, 06:55 AM   #35
Lyle Laizure
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

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Adam Huss wrote: View Post
Of course, no responsible teacher should allow a student to test if they are only going to embarrass themselves.
While I would agree with this as a general statement I would have to say that under certain circumstances this should be allowed. It shouldn't be necessary but there are times that a student can get an overinflated idea of who they are and where their capabilities reside. This certainly isn't a first course of action but if other counseling doesn't suffice a little embarassment is sometimes just the right medicine.

Last edited by Lyle Laizure : 06-10-2011 at 06:55 AM. Reason: spelling

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Old 06-10-2011, 06:57 AM   #36
Ketsan
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

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Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
Maybe in the style you train in. In other styles that would be crap. Saying general things like that can hurt a student if he or she is training in style that Ki development is the focus. Focusing on the other person is a distraction from developing one's self. Staying soft and connecting with your partner is much more important than throwing hard and looking good.
Mary
Is this not a contradiction?
Quote:
Focusing on the other person is a distraction from developing one's self. Staying soft and connecting with your partner is much more important than throwing hard and looking good.
Surely developing a connection is as much about focusing on the other person as much as focusing on yourself, and so developing yourself means learning to connect to someone else.

That's what dealing with a resisting opponent is all about, staying connected to someone that doesn't want to be connected or is using the connection to unbalance and throw you.

There's no reason why you can't stay soft AND deal with a resisting opponent and it's not about throwing them hard. It's about really being able to form a connection under all circumstances so that you can throw them under all circumstances.

If you can really form a connection you can collapse someones posture without even needing to throw them.

Last edited by Ketsan : 06-10-2011 at 07:02 AM.
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Old 06-10-2011, 11:00 AM   #37
Adam Huss
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

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Lyle Laizure wrote: View Post
While I would agree with this as a general statement I would have to say that under certain circumstances this should be allowed. It shouldn't be necessary but there are times that a student can get an overinflated idea of who they are and where their capabilities reside. This certainly isn't a first course of action but if other counseling doesn't suffice a little embarassment is sometimes just the right medicine.
Yeah, I didn't want to really say that because I thought it would start a controversy and bickering....plus its definitely not the norm. But we've done it before, in our group. Not necessarily with the stated intent of humiliation, but when someone who doesn't put forth the effort of their fellow testing candidates, but constantly insist and ask about testing, sometimes its good to see if they notice the difference between themselves and the other people they test with. Its a fine, and debatable, line that I didn't want to get into. With that, I agree that is a course to take, albeit carefully considered.

cheers,
A

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Old 06-13-2011, 08:00 AM   #38
Lyle Laizure
 
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

Quote:
Adam Huss wrote: View Post
Yeah, I didn't want to really say that because I thought it would start a controversy and bickering....plus its definitely not the norm. But we've done it before, in our group. Not necessarily with the stated intent of humiliation, but when someone who doesn't put forth the effort of their fellow testing candidates, but constantly insist and ask about testing, sometimes its good to see if they notice the difference between themselves and the other people they test with. Its a fine, and debatable, line that I didn't want to get into. With that, I agree that is a course to take, albeit carefully considered.

cheers,
A
Agreed.

Lyle Laizure
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Old 06-13-2011, 10:10 AM   #39
Carl Simard
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Re: How ready should you be for a test?

Unless you're some kind of reincarnation of O'Sensei,mistakes are part of the test. And a good tester will make sure to push you up to the point you start making some...

The thing is that these acceptable mistakes will not be the same depending on which grade you're testing for. What may be acceptable of a 5th kyu exam may not be for your shodan exam, and what may be acceptable for your shodan may not be for your 3rd and so on...
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