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Old 06-22-2011, 09:26 PM   #1
Location: Arlington
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 2
New to aikido and need some tips please

Hello everyone . I have just started taking aikido and loving it.I been trying to study aikido for 5 years now but work, school and a family I have had to put aikido on hold until now.
So I was wondering if most dojos have the new students and advance students train at the same time? Don't get me wrong I like it but I do get lost in some of the technique they do. I don't even know how to fall and they always tell me it's ok you will learn. So I have started to read book and watch videos to help me out when I'm not at the dojo. But it's hard to do some moves when you don't have anyone to do them with. So if there are any tips that anyone can send my way it would be nice.
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:35 PM   #2
Michael Hackett
Dojo: Kenshinkan Dojo (Aikido of North County) Vista, CA
Location: Oceanside, California
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 1,233
Re: New to aikido and need some tips please

Some schools do a beginner's class and others bring the new student into the regular classes. There are advantages to both ways, but since you school does the latter, just keep showing up and your seniors will help you learn all the crazy stuff that you don't understand or can't do today. Everyone was in the same boat to start, so try not to get frustrated. Just show up and try. It will come to you.

"Leave the gun. Bring the cannoli."
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Old 06-22-2011, 10:32 PM   #3
Janet Rosen
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Location: Left Coast
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 4,342
Re: New to aikido and need some tips please

Welcome to aikido and Aikiweb! What Michael says is true... I remember the first couple of yrs training I'd say "I feel like a happy idiot in the dojo...I love it so I'm happy...but I feel like an idiot!"

Reading is good - for some of us it helps allay anxiety to get a sense of The Bigger Picture that way - but really, don't feel like you need to learn each thing about each attack or technique the firstnor fifth or tenth time it is presented; heck you don't even have to remember it's name right away...just show up ready to do whatever your best is for each class, smile and be polite and have fun

Janet Rosen
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 06-23-2011, 12:49 AM   #4
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 428
Re: New to aikido and need some tips please

Hello Jose,
We are all together in our class, sometimes it comes a beginner and anyone of us practices with him. It is normal to feel clumsy and to think you're not getting anything at all, but in a few month you will enjoy it very much!
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:04 AM   #5
Rolf Granlund
Dojo: Shinsuikan/Genoa, Ohio
Location: Toledo, OH
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 32
Re: New to aikido and need some tips please

The dojo I train at also combines beginners and more advanced students. And the senior students take very seriously their responsibility to help out the beginners....or those asking their help. Over the years I too have had occassion to feel completely lost when working on techniques that seemed so far beyond me. The teacher always made a point though to make sure that the less experienced students knew that it was more than okay if they had trouble. A common phrase used is "Just sit back and enjoy the ride."

I've had my shodan now for a little over a year and it feels like I'm right back at the beginning again. So I kind of feel the same way as you do, Jose. I'm a beginner once again. I just plan on sitting back and enjoying the ride.

With Respect,
Rolf Granlund
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Old 06-23-2011, 06:48 AM   #6
Location: Arlington
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 2
Re: New to aikido and need some tips please

Thanks for the tips everyone and thank you for welcoming me.
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Old 06-23-2011, 06:57 AM   #7
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,181
Re: New to aikido and need some tips please

When I started, I had that t "I don't know what we just did" feeling after every class, and that lasted for a long time. That's normal. Aikido is complex -- if for no other reason than, as my sensei says, you've got two different nervous systems involved. Books and videos may be helpful, but then again, they may just confuse you more. They're depicting yet another two nervous systems, which will behave differently than the ones you've seen in the dojo. They may be doing a technique whose name you recognize, but they're doing it differently -- there are several different ways to do shomenichi iriminage, for example. So, if you look at a book or a video, it may show you something that seems quite different from what your sensei showed you, and if you try to learn that movement so you can do it when your sensei says "shomenuchi iriminage", you'll be missing the main point and quite likely learning the wrong thing.

So don't worry about it. Learn and practice in the dojo. Outside the dojo, if you want to do something that will help your practice, work on your basic fitness: core strength and aerobic conditioning.
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