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Old 02-26-2016, 11:51 PM   #1
Jisen Aiki
Dojo: Isoyama American Aikido Academy
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Repetitions scheme

Do you ever depart from the standard amount of repetitions??? My impression is that 8 repetitions as TORI is common. Or perhaps 4 repetitions each. Or perhaps if the partners are about the same rank, they will perform 2 reps each before switching roles as UKE/TORI...
Do you ever change the rep scheme to 1 and 1?
Also on the subject of reps, how many reps before the next technique?
Or perhaps do your students have to execute the practice for a specific amount of time before the next technique is taught/practiced?
Of course since I have asked this question it should known that I'm dying to divulge how many reps the students in my classes do
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Old 02-26-2016, 11:56 PM   #2
Jisen Aiki
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Also I'll add that I prefer for the students to TEACH themselves through the repetitions. I don't prefer to be asked questions during this time.
And maybe that's ultimately what I wanted to say here.
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Old 02-27-2016, 06:19 AM   #3
rugwithlegs
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Re: Repetitions scheme

It's all about the practice. Sensei often recommended reps of 100 for solo exercises, and he would leave us training for a long time but several times on tests: "One chance, your best technique."

Doing tanto, jo, or tachidori I often just have the person who takes the weapon attacks next (1:1). I want to practice the technique, not the ettiquette.

How many reps at a time really doesn't matter quite as much as the result. Not the destination but the journey I guess - I try to get better each time as opposed to forcing 1000 sword cuts a day but sucking at most of the individual cuts.
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Old 02-27-2016, 06:03 PM   #4
Janet Rosen
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Personally on partner practice in aikido, I don't like the common left side, right side, left side, right side, switch roles. I learn better if I can do more reps on one side and more reps overall, and if really working on solving a problem or working something out would much prefer left side 4 times, right side 4 times, then switch. OTOH, if I am the senior partner and working on basics with a junior, while I think there is value there too on staying on one side for more turns, I feel it is beneficial for me to stay in the uke role longer and I might do nage once on each side then switch roles and let them stay on nage role for quite a while.

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Old 02-27-2016, 08:37 PM   #5
Jisen Aiki
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Personally on partner practice in aikido, I don't like the common left side, right side, left side, right side, switch roles. I learn better if I can do more reps on one side and more reps overall, and if really working on solving a problem or working something out would much prefer left side 4 times, right side 4 times, then switch. OTOH, if I am the senior partner and working on basics with a junior, while I think there is value there too on staying on one side for more turns, I feel it is beneficial for me to stay in the uke role longer and I might do nage once on each side then switch roles and let them stay on nage role for quite a while.
Thanks Janet, I have had my eye on being right side dominate for awhile. I had personal success with that method in other arts...in Aikido I like my Left side Irimi Nage as my primary go to, where as on my right side I'll often use ikkyo or kotegaeshi.
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Old 02-28-2016, 12:26 PM   #6
Janet Rosen
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Matthew Vanderlip wrote: View Post
Thanks Janet, I have had my eye on being right side dominate for awhile. I had personal success with that method in other arts...in Aikido I like my Left side Irimi Nage as my primary go to, where as on my right side I'll often use ikkyo or kotegaeshi.
Oh I see now that my language was not clear so allow me to clarify: I did not mean I liked to train just or primarily on one side. I meant that I prefer to do a bunch of repetitions on one side and then switch and do the same number on the other (for instance LLLL, RRRR rather than LRLR).

Janet Rosen
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Old 02-28-2016, 05:52 PM   #7
Jisen Aiki
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Oh I see now that my language was not clear so allow me to clarify: I did not mean I liked to train just or primarily on one side. I meant that I prefer to do a bunch of repetitions on one side and then switch and do the same number on the other (for instance LLLL, RRRR rather than LRLR).
Ahhh ok. Also you mentioned your work as Uke. Whereupon you would take more reps as Uke, if the partner is junior. That's a good way to make friends. "Janet is so nice and pleasant,"juniors should say
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Old 02-29-2016, 08:07 AM   #8
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Re: Repetitions scheme

We usually go four and four, but really. why is this a thing?
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Old 02-29-2016, 09:05 AM   #9
Janet Rosen
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
We usually go four and four, but really. why is this a thing?
Um...because how we teach should reflect how we learn, which in turn should reflect what we know about neurology and learning? Why should we NOT start a conversation about pedagogy in aikido in a forum on teaching aikido?

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Old 02-29-2016, 11:41 AM   #10
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
Um...because how we teach should reflect how we learn, which in turn should reflect what we know about neurology and learning? Why should we NOT start a conversation about pedagogy in aikido in a forum on teaching aikido?
Perhaps I was insufficiently clear, Janet. Let me try again. "Why is this a thing" means simply "Why is this something to be concerned about", and the question mark at the end means that it is a question. As for "what we know about neurology and learning", this is the first mention of neurology in this thread. If this truly is a "neurology" thing, I'd be interested to hear more -- otherwise, it really seems like purely a matter of personal preference to me (and it's pretty hard to distinguish preference from functional advantage).
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Old 02-29-2016, 11:44 AM   #11
rugwithlegs
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Matthew Vanderlip wrote: View Post
Thanks Janet, I have had my eye on being right side dominate for awhile. I had personal success with that method in other arts...in Aikido I like my Left side Irimi Nage as my primary go to, where as on my right side I'll often use ikkyo or kotegaeshi.
I've heard some karate styles will focus on one hand more than the other in their kata. Most people are right handed, so the theory for some is train the strongest side much moreso to play to your strengths. Some want to create ambidextrous people, so the left side is trained twice as much as the right to correct a right dominant body. I prefer to be equally trained.

Also, as Uke I prefer to have equal bumps and bruises - I consider Kotegaeshi breakfalls to only one arm repeated impact to one hip and leg and lots of stretching to only one wrist and shoulder with no stretch or impact on the opposite side a recipe for injury for uke, for example.

Senior versus junior - usually I go first, especially if the junior as no idea what we are doing. I might be the one who has no idea, so I defer. Or, the beginner only started to get a feel after a few reps, so I let them go several more. Or, the teacher gives a correction to someone I let them go for a few times to work on the correction. Someone is testing and I've passed the test already, I'll let them throw much more often than me. I don't "pull rank" for katatedori dori Tenkan over someone who has trained for a year or so.

I did train in a school that liked to throw left, then right, then stop and talk, then your partner's turn, then walk around the room looking for someone else to do exactly once a side techniques with. I prefer to do more reps than that.

Really, the goal is to be healthy and to learn, so I don't let some arbitrary ettiquette get in the way of that.
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Old 02-29-2016, 01:51 PM   #12
Janet Rosen
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Perhaps I was insufficiently clear, Janet. Let me try again. "Why is this a thing" means simply "Why is this something to be concerned about", and the question mark at the end means that it is a question. As for "what we know about neurology and learning", this is the first mention of neurology in this thread. If this truly is a "neurology" thing, I'd be interested to hear more -- otherwise, it really seems like purely a matter of personal preference to me (and it's pretty hard to distinguish preference from functional advantage).
Mary, it was perfectly clear it was a question and I provided what I thought was an answer.

We know that the mind/body builds what for convenience we call "muscle memory" based on repetition. Yet the common "L-R-L-R, then switch roles" does not really provide repetition regardless of how many times one goes through the sequence.

Janet Rosen
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Old 02-29-2016, 02:45 PM   #13
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
We know that the mind/body builds what for convenience we call "muscle memory" based on repetition. Yet the common "L-R-L-R, then switch roles" does not really provide repetition regardless of how many times one goes through the sequence.
So...how does it not "provide repetition"? Does that phrase mean something other than the obvious, plain-English meaning? Is it not repetition because there's a change, albeit a minor one, each time? To be "repetition", must it be a sequence of the exact same thing?
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Old 03-01-2016, 01:06 AM   #14
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
We know that the mind/body builds what for convenience we call "muscle memory" based on repetition.
To my mind building "muscle memory" is what we do only in the very first beginning of practice. Maybe the first one or maybe two years. I think, it is only needed to be able to reproduce the external picture of kata to a certain degree.

But after that I think practice should be about feeling inside to connect the body of tori internally. And also about feeling outwardly to connect the body to aite.

So it is my experience that the image of building "muscle memory" is limited to the very beginning of practice.

Anyway.
Quote:
Yet the common "L-R-L-R, then switch roles" does not really provide repetition regardless of how many times one goes through the sequence.
Why do you think this pattern does not provide repetition?

Besides that: I'm not a neurologist but whenever I had to learn something by repetion, be dancing, calligraphy, piano, singing , ... whatever ... the teachers told me that my body or brain actually was learning during the pauses. Not while repeating.
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Old 03-01-2016, 12:33 PM   #15
Janet Rosen
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Carsten Möllering wrote: View Post
To my mind building "muscle memory" is what we do only in the very first beginning of practice. Maybe the first one or maybe two years. I think, it is only needed to be able to reproduce the external picture of kata to a certain degree.
I don't disagree. My interest is in exploring the best ways (note plural...) to work with beginners during those critical first months and years and not rely on "tradition" just because "it's done that way."

Janet Rosen
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Old 03-01-2016, 10:31 PM   #16
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Janet Rosen wrote: View Post
I don't disagree. My interest is in exploring the best ways (note plural...) to work with beginners during those critical first months and years and not rely on "tradition" just because "it's done that way."
Koryu jujutsu schools tend to only practice on one side anyway. At some point that was probably how it was done in Aikido anyway!
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Old 03-02-2016, 11:36 AM   #17
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Likely true. Taiji forms are usually one sided too, but then at one point you are expected to move in reverse.

I was Uke for a guy who practiced Aikido and Kenjutsu who only practiced Tanto dori against someone holding in their right hand. I hadn't trained that way, and stabbed holding with my left after my right wrist got torqued. During his test, with Sensei watching. Scratched him with the wooden knife, decided I wasn't a fan of that training. Sensei told him he should have trained harder.
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Old 03-02-2016, 12:08 PM   #18
Amir Krause
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Don't keep any pattern, adjust depending on partner, technique, mood etc.

Amir
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Old 03-02-2016, 02:12 PM   #19
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Re: Repetitions scheme

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John Hillson wrote: View Post
Likely true. Taiji forms are usually one sided too, but then at one point you are expected to move in reverse.

I was Uke for a guy who practiced Aikido and Kenjutsu who only practiced Tanto dori against someone holding in their right hand. I hadn't trained that way, and stabbed holding with my left after my right wrist got torqued. During his test, with Sensei watching. Scratched him with the wooden knife, decided I wasn't a fan of that training. Sensei told him he should have trained harder.
Which is an interesting thing about training on one side - you only get one arm cranked on. And its the arm that makes a bigger movement when swinging a weapon.
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Old 03-02-2016, 04:03 PM   #20
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Re: Repetitions scheme

After a certain amount of training is under one's belt variation in reps, directions and partners are good.

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Old 03-02-2016, 06:54 PM   #21
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Re: Repetitions scheme

The 4 reps then switch scheme is a convenient default, but I don't have any objections to changing it if the circumstances dictate.

I'll often prefer to do just two reps in seminars, especially if the instructor is switching techniques frequently. That way both partners are more likely to get a chance.

When I'm teaching, I might have students do more like 8-10 reps without switching to help them find a rhythm. Or I might experiment with non-standard groups: lines, groups of three, etc.

I don't have strict criteria for how long I'll go between bits of instruction. If I see that everyone is confused or making the same mistakes, then I'll stop the group to clarify pretty quickly. If there's a wide range, I might visit each group individually to provide individual suggestions as needed, which does tend to take more time. It also depends on the overall level of the group, with more senior people more able to self-correct.

Katherine
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:30 AM   #22
Jisen Aiki
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
John Hillson wrote: View Post
I've heard some karate styles will focus on one hand more than the other in their kata. Most people are right handed, so the theory for some is train the strongest side much moreso to play to your strengths. Some want to create ambidextrous people, so the left side is trained twice as much as the right to correct a right dominant body. I prefer to be equally trained.

Also, as Uke I prefer to have equal bumps and bruises - I consider Kotegaeshi breakfalls to only one arm repeated impact to one hip and leg and lots of stretching to only one wrist and shoulder with no stretch or impact on the opposite side a recipe for injury for uke, for example.

Senior versus junior - usually I go first, especially if the junior as no idea what we are doing. I might be the one who has no idea, so I defer. Or, the beginner only started to get a feel after a few reps, so I let them go several more. Or, the teacher gives a correction to someone I let them go for a few times to work on the correction. Someone is testing and I've passed the test already, I'll let them throw much more often than me. I don't "pull rank" for katatedori dori Tenkan over someone who has trained for a year or so.

I did train in a school that liked to throw left, then right, then stop and talk, then your partner's turn, then walk around the room looking for someone else to do exactly once a side techniques with. I prefer to do more reps than that.

Really, the goal is to be healthy and to learn, so I don't let some arbitrary ettiquette get in the way of that.
John thanks for your input. Especially your preference as Uke. Taking falls on one side is an exercise in mild torture...maybe.
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Old 03-03-2016, 02:33 PM   #23
Michael Hackett
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Our normal practice is for the senior student to perform the demonstrated technique first, twice on each side and then switch to the junior student and continue doing four and switch until the instructor stops the process. If I am senior, I prefer to do the technique once on each side to ensure the junior student gets a chance since sometimes things move pretty quickly.

After class, all that stuff goes out the window and perhaps Nage may do the technique on his weakest side ten or fifteen times in a row or something like that. The bottom line there is getting things correctly and doing lots of repetitions.

Michael
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Old 03-03-2016, 04:24 PM   #24
rugwithlegs
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Re: Repetitions scheme

Quote:
Matthew Vanderlip wrote: View Post
John thanks for your input. Especially your preference as Uke. Taking falls on one side is an exercise in mild torture...maybe.
I've actually came to this realization after injuries. I would get a sprained wrist, I would treat that side very gently. I would take all my falls one one side, then wonder why I developed hip and neck pain. Wondered why I had so much uneven muscle tension after taking a hundred breakfalls on my right side and none on my left.

I don't even recommend this practice to injured students anymore. If they need to modify on one side, I recommend even modifications unless they are very senior and not as likely to take uneven trauma.

Interesting to me that Koryu forms are one sided, but the main Judo forms like Nage no Kata are ambidextrous.

"Of course since I have asked this question it should known that I'm dying to divulge how many reps the students in my classes do"

What are you working on now? I am interested to hear it.

Last edited by rugwithlegs : 03-03-2016 at 04:26 PM. Reason: Addition
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