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Old 08-11-2003, 03:58 PM   #51
Aristeia
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You may be right Erik that people are using sparring and competition interchangeably. It's a natural progression though, once you start sparring it's a small step to make it competitively. Hell, I've never entered a BJJ competition but when I'm sparring I'm damn well competing. (or not so well as the case may be) And again I'm not saying competition in Aikido is necessarily a bad thing, but you can see why people equate sparring with competition.

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 08-11-2003, 04:22 PM   #52
paw
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Michael,
Quote:
Because it's not what this thread was about, and I really don't want to get into a discussion about whether aikido is effective for self defence.
It's not about aikido's effectiveness, it's about honesty and measurement. Hear me out....

If I had a friend that came to me wanting to be able to shoot a firearm, specifically, a shotgun, there are hundreds of people and places I could point out. If they mentioned they wanted to go hunting with their shotgun, there are dozens of places I could point out. If, after many months of demonstrated performance with sporting clays, my friend told me they were effective for using a shotgun for self-defense, I'd call out "nonsense"!

Why? Not because firearms aren't effective for self-defense (clearly, they are), but because their demonstrated performance is so greatly different from self-defense that there's very little skill transfer. (Sporting clays, no matter how stressful, don't seek cover, return fire, or attack without warning) For use of a shotgun in self-defense, I'd recommend they investigate a handful of places I've heard of, none of which are located in the state I live.

This is the same reasoning and argument I'd make to any martial artist who only engages in kata training, regardless of style, disciple, or experience in their art.

My point is simply this: a rank exam in aikido differs significantly that one's performance during one cannot be an accurate indication of one's performance in a self-defense situation. In short, a rank exam doesn't measure that. It's not about aikido's effectiveness --- of which I have no doubt provided it is properly trained.

Does that help you see where I'm coming from?

Oh, and dodging bullets! Can't forget about that!
Quote:
Why is a 'completely uncooperative uke' a competitive uke? Why is sparring competitive? Neither of those are inherently competitive acts or states. Even a contest can be used as a measure of one's ability rather than as a competitive act. They can be, and they often are, but they don't have to be.
Exactly. I complete agree.

As I mentioned previously, with the great variation in aikido ranking exams I honestly, sincerely, have no idea what a rank exam objectively measures. I therefore, have no problem with however aikido rank is assigned (or not) by those empowered to do so.

Regards,

Paul
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Old 08-11-2003, 04:45 PM   #53
Aristeia
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Paul,

I know exactly where you're coming from, and don't disagree. I think we have to be very careful how we portray what we do. Anyone claiming that an Aikdido blackbelt will automatically be an ass kicking machine is being misleading. I'm careful not to send that message.

I think most people (I hope) are pretty clear that performance in a grading is seperate to performance in a self defence scenario. In fact we often hear the words "do this in the grading, it's kihon, on the street you may want to consider this variation..." and train both.

"When your only tool is a hammer every problem starts to look like a nail"
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Old 08-11-2003, 07:46 PM   #54
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I'll chime in being one of the Shodokan people which does have shiai.

Our kyu grades - it's all kata and I do think there is a place for testing in the progression in the system. Like Paul I am not nervous when I test - I did find it offensive that someone would suggest that somehow the test was lacking. Until randori is introduced (see below) testing is putting it on the line. The lack of nervousness is more of a can do attitude which is fostered and learnt. In other words - you should be progressively less nervous as you move up the kyu ranks. Sure you could fail (I have) but at the moment you do the business.

I think for most people regular training (in a non-compeptive environment) which is what it is for our kyu grades you need an external reference - the test.

In Judo where it was essentially all randori and shiai performance - there is no need for testing.

With respect to Shodokan beyond kyu grades.

Shodan - tanto kakarigeiko and tanto hikitategeiko are introduced. The former is like juyuwaza. The former has only some resistance (ie. if the technique is reasonable uke will go down).

Nidan and above - tanto randori (the full resistance stuff). But the thing is there is an out. Age, infirmity, even sex (hey its Japan-but even so I've never seen a young women opt out) have other options.

How good you perform in shiai has nothing to do with rank although top level shiai players are often very good at kata and are the source of Nariyama's deshi. These guys tend to be pretty young yondans when they finish their tenure.

People are doing randori from the moment they feel comfortable with it - some much quicker than others. Shiai is usually reserved for yudansha although we have mechanisms in place for mudansha to partake.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 08-11-2003, 08:13 PM   #55
Chuck Clark
 
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I'd like to add something small to this discussion.

Properly done, no one should "give grades".

When merited, kyu classes and dan grades should be recognized and awarded for what the person has achieved. Nothing should be "given." This may seem to be splitting semantic hairs, but there's a difference.

Thanks,

Chuck Clark
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Old 08-12-2003, 02:38 AM   #56
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Jun, "Personally, I believe my "rank" was earned through the results of my daily practice -- not through the results of my last "exam"...

I'd be surprised if this wasn't the case. However, you were probably awarded the rank through a test and you would only have been "worthy" of taking that test through your daily practice.

One of the areas we look for in our grading "exams" is how well the person reacts under stress. Do they keep centred? Are they still attempting to act in a clam and controlled manner with full respect for their ukes? etc.

While it's normal to engender these areas in everyday practice, the grading should take this one stage further. If you have a very able, combat trained student, you take this into account with their testing requirements. After all, most people are happy with the idea you work round injuries and disabilities within the grading framework, why not extend that to those with excess ability? Increase the precision required for the techniques, reduce the area they have to perform the technique. No matter who is grading, they must have a chance at failing if they don't put their all into it.

Final point on the grading/award - grading keeps things not only clean, but seen to be clean in terms of who has what grade, which is normally important to those going for kyu grades. This can become especially important in larger associations where disparity in awarding/grading can lead to underlying resentment.
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Old 08-12-2003, 04:48 AM   #57
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Ian,
Quote:
While it's normal to engender these areas in everyday practice, the grading should take this one stage further. If you have a very able, combat trained student, you take this into account with their testing requirements. After all, most people are happy with the idea you work round injuries and disabilities within the grading framework, why not extend that to those with excess ability?
So, you're suggesting that those with more ability be given more demanding exams?

Would that not mean that not all X kyus are created equal? Would that not decisively prove that rank is subjective and relative? What ever happened to "fair"? How would this not cause resentment?

I really hope I misunderstood.

Regards,

Paul
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Old 08-12-2003, 05:15 AM   #58
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Paul, no you didn't misunderstand, but then I've never been a fan of making things fair. To me, a grading should test the person taking the grading. Now in the case your making regarding all X kyu grades being the same, no, I agree they're not. Even if you don't modify the grading exam, you're going to get some people scraping through, others passing with flying colours.

I believe the gradings should reflect two areas. Firstly, a simple threshold for the association as a whole in that it should test technical ability and knowlege. The test should also be aimed at the individual to show them their own personal development. For this you have to take into account the persons abilities or lack thereof. With someone very capabale, we'd probably just miss some of the intermediate Kyu grades to ensure they are tested.

Your favoured approach seems to be testing via combat. I agree, this is the only real system for sorting out your combat capabilities, but often unworkable/undesireable for many at the lower grades. Instead, I'd prefer to tweak the grading system so that it is always a test as I do want to see how they handle pressure. If the grading doesn't cause pressure, how do you assess this?

Does this approach cause resentment? Haven't met this so far, but we do explain what we're doing and why, so a harder test has normally been seen as a "merit badge" rather than a cause for resentment. However, I haven't hit a real outlier, so I'd have to get back to you if I do.
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Old 08-12-2003, 06:37 AM   #59
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Ian,
Quote:
Your favoured approach seems to be testing via combat.
Actually it isn't, necessarily. First, one would have to determine what "rank" measures. Then one could devise a manner of testing it. I strongly believe that any dynamic method with an uncooperative opponent (randori, shiai) is better indication of ability than a contextual demonstration with a cooperative uke. But that that doesn't mean that I favor rank via combat.
Quote:
If the grading doesn't cause pressure, how do you assess this?
I'm not sure it's possible to easily measure pressure or duress of someone in this situation (imagine trying to perform technique with a myriad of wires attached to one's body....) So, I'm inclined to suggest not even to try.
Quote:
Does this approach cause resentment?
It would for me, and I don't believe I care much about rank. If I, because of my age, atheticism and familiarity with other arts have a more demanding exam than someone else, and we both receive the same grade....yeah, that would be a problem.

Regards,

Paul
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Old 08-12-2003, 07:38 AM   #60
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Paul, "But that that doesn't mean that I favor rank via combat", apologies, I seem to have misinterpreted you, thanks for the clarification. Agree totally about uncooperative ukes and randori - an area I'm still arguing about with some of our higher grades.

Not engendering pressure? Think on this one we'll have to agree to disagree as I do think a test should cause pressure. If it doesn't, I'll happily join you in the "just award the damn thing" camp. You'd be more of a toughy as you don't have much emotional investment in rank (partly through your other ma experiences I presume).

Resentment? Tricky one, how well you did in your last grading will also affect time between gradings, so this is a factor. Also, as I said previously, we would look at skipping grades. Some couldn't be skipped as part of the reason behind the grading is to know our syllabus, but normally we'd try to work something out. However, I still have difficulty fully seeing the problem. I've seen gradings modified to take account of injuries and disabilities before - would you resent them? Possibly one bit of info which I didn't explicitly mention would help - if we are going to modify any grading (up or down) this is discussed with the person going for the grade prior to doing it - not imposed by fiat, we don't work that way.
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Old 08-12-2003, 10:10 AM   #61
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so a harder test has normally been seen as a "merit badge" rather than a cause for resentment.
As far as I can tell (I'm not on the testing board) this is pretty much how it goes on our tests. What's the point of comparing anyway? you've trained with these people for years in most cases; you probably know where you are in relation to them.

Another of my sempai is(was) OPD, ranked in other arts, instructed officers there in unarmed combat (currently visitng the middle east courtesy of the USAF).

Life being as it is , I tested 1kyu a week before he did, though when I started he was a couple of ranks ahead of me. ( let's see; he'd got married, had a child in between , had been sent out to the previous trouble in Afghanistan, etc etc).

I would be a fool to say that we're equals in ability, or that I'm similarly talented or worse. Fact is, I'm walking on my own road, making my own milestones at my own pace. I'm honored to be ablet o train with this person when he's around, that's about it.

should it happen that I grade before him again, do you think he'll care?

FWIW, both his and my tests ended with us exhausted; difference it took about 20 more minutes in his test, and he was still going strong on his randori at 5 uke (i think 6 was enough).

And yes, I saw sensei coming up with more and more stuff just to get him tired. somehow he was still happy after that test even though he must have noticed that mine was "easier"

Alfonso Adriasola
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Old 08-12-2003, 02:33 PM   #62
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Ian, Alfonso,

If a seminar was being given by a 5th dan at the same time as a seminar being given by a 5th kyu which would be more heavily attended, assuming the cost, distance to the seminar, facility, etc... were identical?

I'm willing to say the 5th dan's seminar. There is an assumption that higher rank = higher skill, a better instructor, or both.

I think it's fair to say from the responses on this and other ranking threads, that there is some correlation for most people between ability in something and someone's rank.
Quote:
I've seen gradings modified to take account of injuries and disabilities before - would you resent them?
Possibly. If rank is an indication of ability, then, yes I would --- baring no other distinctions. Does that mean that not everyone can achieve a certain rank? It very well may, and I'm ok with that. Let's be honest....at some point gradings stop and rank is awarded by other considerations, so there is a limit for most of us, regardless of how skilled we may be.
Quote:
What's the point of comparing anyway? you've trained with these people for years in most cases; you probably know where you are in relation to them.
Then why have rank? What does it measure and what purpose does it serve?

How does any measurement that divides a group of individuals help reconcile a world?

Regards,

Paul
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Old 08-12-2003, 03:05 PM   #63
jxa127
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paul watt (paw) wrote:
Then why have rank? What does it measure and what purpose does it serve?

How does any measurement that divides a group of individuals help reconcile a world?
Hi Paul,

I realize that this was not directed at me, but I hope you're being sarcastic.

"Reconciling the world," or "bringing harmony out of discord," or any of the metaphors that we use have nothing to do with getting rid of the differences among people! Rank doesn't divide people, their time spent training and overall ability divides them. Rank is a recognition of those differences.

More importantly, rank carries with it a lot of responsibility. Lower ranked students are told to look up to the higher ranked students for guidance. The tests ensure that everyone who holds a certain rank has a minimum level of proficiency within the AAA curriculum (in the case of my dojo).

It seems to me that you're focusing on what the rank means or does not mean to you, but ignoring what it means in an organizational context. The way we look at it, the rank is not really for the person holding it, it's for the dojo as a whole.

Could we do without rank and testing? Sure. In fact, we only test once a year on average. We don't really emphasize it. But, even if we did away with ranks and testing, we would still have people with different levels of skill, and different levels of responsibility in the dojo. Why not recognize those differences?

I'm glad I'm at a dojo that tests. I feel they're a valuable part of my training. I have found them stressful, but not overly so. I also feel that I'm held to basically the same standard as everyone else. I've always felt after each test that there were some things I did better than others, and some things that I did worse and needed to work on.

Anyway, my main point is that harmony, reconciliation, etc. have nothing to do with making everyone the same. Divisions occur with every group, and I view aikido as a way of dealing with those divisions/conflicts, not a way of ignoring them.

Regards,

-Drew

Last edited by jxa127 : 08-12-2003 at 03:08 PM.

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Old 08-13-2003, 03:08 AM   #64
happysod
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Paul, I agree with the spirit of what you said in your last post (suprised?). However, I think you've extend the awarding rank and discussion on grading beyond what I was adressing in that I was specifically discussing Kyu grades, not shodan or above.

My own association "awards" rank after 3rd dan, many other associations I know do something similar. I have no problems with this, but I still feel testing for the kyu grades is needed for a number of reasons - many starting martial arts need milestones to motivate and aid in their training and appreciation of where they are within the wider context of the association (and aikido). However, kyu gradings should also address the individuals involved in taking the test and without going down the hideous "tag" system of some ma, changing the testing is one way of dealing with this issue.

Black belts and above? I'll go with Drew on this, the grades are mainly for the association rather than the person, so the award/grade issue is less clear. Why have rank at all? Sometimes I just don't know either (for this reason I ducked my last grading for over eight years - I couldn't see the point), but it does seem to work. The only time I had any contact with an association which went for the award rather than rank, they seemed to be more focussed on being noticed by those who could award rank than actually practicing the martial art.
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Old 08-13-2003, 05:11 AM   #65
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Drew, Ian,
Quote:
I realize that this was not directed at me, but I hope you're being sarcastic.
I was mostly trolling to set a hook. Namely, grading is needed for organizational reasons. I disagree for a couple of reasons.

1. The grading exam does not measure anything that indicates leadership potential, or leadership ability. Nor does it measure accounting skill, organizational skill, well...I think you get the picture. If there is some sort of connection between a grading exam and some type of necessarily ability needed to run an organization, I fail to see it.

2. There are alternative ways to run an organization that do not require rank. They may require some type of hierarchy, but rank is not needed for this.

Then there's this observation:
Quote:
Lower ranked students are told to look up to the higher ranked students for guidance.
They are aren't they. Hang around an aikido forum or talk to living breathing aikidoists and you'll hear a number of appeals to authority (ie "My sensei said", "My instructor's instructor said", "Doshu said", "O Sensei said/wrote"). Why is that? Hang around a bjj forum or talk to bjj'ers and that rarely occurs. The same is true of the boxers and wrestlers I've known. Is there something inherent in the way rank is viewed in aikido that results in aikidoists appealing to authority? Is such a tendency or attitude concerning?

Honestly, I don't know.

Finally, as for new students needing motivation. I find that increasingly harder to subscribe to, particularly in these United States. Ultimately, I feel we are all self-motivated. We either find some reason to commit to something, or we do not. I really do think it's that simple.

In the United States, I suspect we want the appearance without the performance. Performance is hard --- and it waxes and wanes. But appearance, especially that of mastery, this can be easy to get. See your local McDojo --- they have rank exams every two weeks and training 3 times a week, you'll be a shodan in two years. I can find a 1/2 dozen such places within biking distance from where I live, and they are packed with students. I'd happily glove up and spar with anyone in the school and not worry about it. Take me to boxing gym, and I won't spar with anyone training longer than 3 months (because they'll beat the stuffing out of me) The boxing gym awards no rank --- none, yet consistently produces better athletes and better fighters.

Regards,

Paul
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Old 08-13-2003, 05:51 AM   #66
happysod
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Hi Paul, I'm getting flashbacks from our last threads which was "why use rank", but I'll join in again until the rest of aikiweb tell us we're being boring.

1. Rank for association purposes: I don't think I ever claimed inherent teaching skills for higher ranks (some threads have implied the opposite). However, as a competative sparring system isn't normally used in aikido and once an organisation gets beyond a certain size, some sort of structure is needed, why not ranking? I'm in favour of gradings rather than awards as it reduces (note: not stops)the possibility of favoritism and keeps everyone singing more-or-less in tune. Ideally, it should accurately reflect your ability in that associations aikido (whether this includes sparring etc. etc., doesn't matter, as long as you're consistent). The only differences within rank should be caused by the practitioner's personal circumstances (grading shy wee nef like myself, time off for family etc.)

2. Self motivation: agree, this is needed for any martial artist, whatever the grade. However, most training systems have shown you also perform best with attainable goals, ideally in measurable time increments. Yes, some people may be better with a single golden chalice at the end of a long road, but intermediate grades often provide a much needed pat on the back.

3. Sensei says...: agree, this one's naff, don't like it either and should be ridiculed at the first opportunity - at least thats what my sensei ses... Seriously, I've been lucky to train with questioning cynics, so it's not been a big problem for me.

So, the rank question, agree, shouldn't need it. However, we're all individualist little beggers so we do end up needing it. My major reason for backing it is simple, it works. It can be abused, bent etc., but most times it does work.

Boxers? Take your word for it, certainly I'm always impressed by their sheer athleticism and ability to absorb punishment, but comparing like with like is always hard. I'll happily agree that they'd pound me in a boxing ring - come out best outside the ring, then it would be down to too many factors so I'll answer that one if I'm ever unlucky enough to be in that situation.
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Old 08-13-2003, 03:12 PM   #67
Alfonso
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Quote:
There is an assumption that higher rank = higher skill, a better instructor, or both.
and past a certain level, has better standing in that particular aikido community.
Quote:
The boxing gym awards no rank --- none, yet consistently produces better athletes and better fighters.
I noticed you didn't assume better athlete and better fighter in the assumption on our mythical 5dan. I'd guess that athletes/fighters are not the end product of Aikido, and if you join to become an athlete/fighter you'd also be kind of lonely (not having any competition/combat).

Pleae excuse my ignorance on boxing; it seems to me that they do award belts; and money as well. A big incentive; would aikido be better if you had to challenge the contender for 7th dan, and had a $100,000 prize for the winner? Do you think Mike Tyson is a better teacher or has more skill than other guys who may have spent their life in boxing , are of a slighter build, and don't chew ears for breakfast? Does Mohammed Ali teach boxing now and why not? I'm sure some of his contemporaries are highly ranked Aikido instructors at this point..



seems to me that avenue can also lead to

http://www.theday.com/eng/web/newsta...7-C414E6759C61

Last edited by Alfonso : 08-13-2003 at 03:22 PM.

Alfonso Adriasola
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Old 08-13-2003, 03:34 PM   #68
jxa127
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Hey Paul,

I tend to agree with most of your points, but you're taking a very dim view on the whole subject. So I end up agreeing that, yes, if the system becomes too important, or isn't handled well, then the disadvantages can outweigh the advantages.

But, you are so negative on this topic! I maybe should have been more explicit, but when I said that lower ranked students are supposed to look up to higher ranked students, I was talking about say a 7th kyu asking a 3rd kyu about a certain technique or attack. Not the 7th kyu asking the 3rd kyu about his view on life, the universe, and everything.

Of course the student can ask the sensei the same question, but if two students have questions, it's nice if two people can answer them. Part of the responsibility of having rank is being willing to clue new students in on dojo etiquette, help with technique, and to know one's own limits in knowledge so as to pass the question onto the instructor when one doesn't know the answer.

What's so bad about that?

One thing to consider is that all the discussions of rank in this thread seem to be missing the cultural context of how the whole system got started. I'm no expert, but my understanding is that kyu and dan grades were introduced with modern judo by Jigoro Kano. Now, he's also the guy who also pushed judo as a sport (with competitions, of course), so the claim that judo doesn't need rank tests because they have competitions puzzles me a bit. I'm not sure what his motivation was for introducing belt ranks, but I suspect he thought it would be a valuable teaching tool. Remember, this was a relatively new idea for martial arts in Kano's time.

Prior to an established rank system, most of the Japanese martial arts had a certificate system [my term, not the official one], where a student would learn a certain amount, and get a certificate stating that fact. Most arts had three (I think) levels of certification with the highest level being a certificate of full transmission of the art. You don't hear about those in the modern arts like kendo or judo where the idea is one of a path and even highly ranked practitioners are considered to be students.

Implicit in all these systems is the sempai/kohei relationship. Newer students were taken under the wing of student who'd been studying for a while. Sometimes this was done in a brutal manner (as in hazing), sometimes not. Either way, the sempai/kohei thing is an integral part of Japanese culture. While there is not a direct correlation between belt rank and one's status as sempai or kohei, there's enough of one that the two concepts often become interrelated. In my opinion, this is not a bad thing. I know I appreciated learning the concept of the sempai/kohei relationship by thinking of those ranked higher than me as sempai.

So, here's aikido; an art that evolved from an old school art with a certificate system into something like kendo or judo in that it is a "do" with belt ranks. Yet, the training is heavily kata-based and the art was intended to not have competition. That is our heritage, and that's what has become institutionalized in the majority of aikido organizations.

My dojo is associated with just such an organization; one that has belt ranks and tests but no competitions. Regardless of what I think personally, I'm expected to know and do certain thing and be tested on them periodically -- just like everyone else in the organization. That's what I mean about rank being more for the organization than the individual. I know about where I'm at skills wise, as do my instructor and the people I train with. But, I can go into any AAA dojo, or go to a AAA camp or seminar, and everyone else will be able to expect at least a certain minimum level of skill from me.

I think that's a good thing.

Regards,

-Drew

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Old 08-13-2003, 03:37 PM   #69
PhilJ
 
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I like practicing aikido over boxing because it doesn't kill me.

Ian, let me be the first: this is boring. (Just kidding)

Isn't this a pretty subjective topic? What will be the outcome?

*Phil

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Old 08-13-2003, 04:11 PM   #70
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boring! that's why hyperbole exists!

Alfonso Adriasola
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Old 08-14-2003, 05:06 AM   #71
paw
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Alfonso,
Quote:
I noticed you didn't assume better athlete and better fighter in the assumption on our mythical 5dan.
I can do so now, if you like. In my experience, boxing, wrestling, judo, bjj, sambo and other arts/systems that are often maligned as "martial sports" consistently have superior athletes than martial arts that have no dynamic method given the same amount of training time.
Quote:
I'd guess that athletes/fighters are not the end product of Aikido
If you're not being sarcastic, then I pose the same question I did earlier: is it ethical or honest to make any combative claims about aikido then?
Quote:
Pleae excuse my ignorance on boxing; it seems to me that they do award belts; and money as well.
You're excused. Boxing has competitions where belts and money may be awarded as prizes on the professional level. Boxing also has amateur tournaments, and it's fair to say most boxers never compete in a formal tournament or match. I don't see how that is analogous to rank in aikido.

As for the rest, I'm afraid I'm not sure of your point. I'm unable to read the article, but I presume that it speaks of a serious injury or death of a boxer in the ring. To which I again wonder what the point is. Boxing's brutal. So are most contact sports.

Drew,
Quote:
But, you are so negative on this topic!
Hey! I'm negative on a number of topics, thank you very much!
Quote:
Now, he's also the guy who also pushed judo as a sport (with competitions, of course), so the claim that judo doesn't need rank tests because they have competitions puzzles me a bit.
Judo was not an Olympic Sport until after Kano's death. There are also a number of times that Kano publically wrote that he opposed the "sportification" of judo.
Quote:
I'm not sure what his motivation was for introducing belt ranks, but I suspect he thought it would be a valuable teaching tool.
It was. Kano was an educator. By having a curriculum and a ranking system, it allowed Kano (or any judo instructor) to have a good idea of what to teach what would otherwise be a mismashed crew of students.
Quote:
I know about where I'm at skills wise, as do my instructor and the people I train with.
Drew.... That's just too easy. You know very well that I'm going to ask how that is possible in a kata-based environment. Don't make me talk about "aliveness", because I will go there.

Phillip,
Quote:
Isn't this a pretty subjective topic? What will be the outcome?
Probably about 100 more posts....



Regards,

Paul
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Old 08-14-2003, 06:00 AM   #72
PhilJ
 
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LOL Paul

...and that's why I love practicing aikido. The End.

*Phil

Phillip Johnson
Enso Aikido Dojo, Burnsville, MN
An Aikido Bukou Dojo
http://www.aikidobukou.com
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Old 08-14-2003, 07:30 AM   #73
jxa127
Dojo: Itten Dojo -- Mechanicsburg, PA
Location: Harrisburg, PA
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Paul,

Kano was involved with the IOC before his death. He introduced both belt ranks and competition to Japanese martial arts. Given those two things, I have a hard time believing that he'd be opposed to seeing Judo in the Olympics.

Regarding how I can gauge my progress against my dojo mates, the answer is simple. Am I doing the kata as well, better, or worse than the other Students? Remember, the koryu arts generally relied heavily on kata as their training method, and they had certificates of achievement. It is silly to postulate that it is impossible to measure your progress in kata training.

I'll open your question up a bit: can we make any legitimate combative claims for any martial art? They all pretty much pale in comparison to real combat, much of which invovles guns.

Anyway, thanks for sharing your views. I don't agree with many of them, and others have made me think. I do feel that you've missed my point that ranking is more about the organization than the individual, but maybe I've missed some of your points too.

Warm regards,

-Drew

Last edited by jxa127 : 08-14-2003 at 07:39 AM.

----
-Drew Ames
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Old 08-14-2003, 08:06 AM   #74
happysod
Dojo: Kiburn, London, UK
Location: London
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 899
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post 101

Phil, thanks, being boring is just one of my many skills...

Paul, it's no good, I think we're just retrenching - so I'll just bow out with good grace (while of course smugly considering myself totally right without any thought of concession ). I want a new topic to disagree with you over, any ideas?

Drew, I'm impressed, I'd have thrown at least one profanity by now...
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Old 08-14-2003, 09:14 AM   #75
paw
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 768
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Drew,
Quote:
Kano was involved with the IOC before his death. He introduced both belt ranks and competition to Japanese martial arts. Given those two things, I have a hard time believing that he'd be opposed to seeing Judo in the Olympics.
In another forum this was discussed in horid detail. Mark Tripp provided the most compelling evidence which was Kano's writings, where Kano was opposed to seeing Judo as sport. I'm certain I have this thread saved on my pc at home and would happily provide the details if you would like. In the event I don't have the details saved, I'll happily contact Tripp for them.
Quote:
Am I doing the kata as well, better, or worse than the other Students?
Which is subjective, is it not? I work the kata with my partner. The first time through, we look aweful. The second time, we look fantastic. Was this due to my effort, my partner's, both?

How do I and my partner compare with Sue and her partner? I think we were better the first time than they were, but they were better the second than we. So we call it even? I suppose we could, but it's too subjective for me.
Quote:
I'll open your question up a bit: can we make any legitimate combative claims for any martial art? They all pretty much pale in comparison to real combat, much of which invovles guns.
Who's making the claims of combat for any MA? I haven't done so. If I wanted to, I would develop a dynamic method that pits various MAs against various people who have firearms --- using real firearms and simunition. I think that would be a good starting point, at least.
Quote:
I do feel that you've missed my point that ranking is more about the organization than the individual, but maybe I've missed some of your points too.
Possibly. I feel your point would be stronger if there were an established cirriculum and a visible sign of rank (like colored belts). My experience is that there are a number of organizations that have no cirriculum --- any class may be instructed in any technique, not only the techniques required for X Kyu or Y Dan. And if the instructor tailored the lessons to the group that happened to be present for class. Which is, as I understand things, what Kano did.

Ian,
Quote:
I want a new topic to disagree with you over, any ideas?
Oh, I don't know.... I'm sure something will come up. I am evil after all.

Bowing Out as well....

Regards,

Paul
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