Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 12-20-2004, 05:54 PM   #1
Ryan Bigelow
Dojo: Kenyoin
Location: Japan
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 21
United_States
Offline
Re: Aikido Frauds

Quote:
Charles Hill wrote:

This guy has seventh dan from the Aikikai Honbu dojo where he trained for a period of less than 10 years. I'm not so sure that "legitimate" ranks are all they are cracked up to be.

Charles Hill
I agree with this post. Look at the Honbu homepage, aikido academy? I practice for for two days a week for 10 months and Im a shodan? A year and a half for nidan? Of course you could practice for hours and hours everyday at hombu, but that extra practice isnt listed as a requirement. I hope that Im terribly mistaken about the whole thing, but it sounds like belts for sale to me.
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 06:06 PM   #2
Kent Enfield
 
Kent Enfield's Avatar
Location: Oregon, USA
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 224
United_States
Offline
Re: Aikido Frauds

Quote:
Ryan Bigelow wrote:
Look at the Honbu homepage, aikido academy? I practice for for two days a week for 10 months and Im a shodan? A year and a half for nidan?
Why is that a problem, if "shodan" = "beginner," and nidan is just the next rank after that?

Kentokuseisei
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 06:37 PM   #3
akiy
 
akiy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 5,851
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Thread split from original thread.

For those wishing for more information on the Aikido Academy at Aikikai Hombu dojo, you can find it here:

http://www.aikikai.or.jp/Eng/hombu/Academy.htm

-- Jun

Please help support AikiWeb -- become an AikiWeb Contributing Member!
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 07:46 PM   #4
GLWeeks
Dojo: Aikido Society of Memphis
Location: Memphis, TN
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 65
United_States
Offline
Re: Aikido Frauds

Quote:
Kent Enfield wrote:
Why is that a problem, if "shodan" = "beginner," and nidan is just the next rank after that?

Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight....
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 08:03 PM   #5
Charles Hill
Dojo: Numazu Aikikai/Aikikai Honbu Dojo
Location: Three Lakes WI/ Mishima Japan
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 837
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

I may get roasted for this but....,

In my experience Japanese students are more willing to shut up and submit to the training process at the beginning levels. In general, they advance from the beginner level to the intermediate level, what John Stevens Sensei has called "knowing your right foot from your left" faster than your average westerner. If we think "shu ha ri" it is at the "ha" level where most Japanese get stuck.

Charles Hill
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 09:25 PM   #6
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Just to keep Charles company in the pot I concur. Many Westerners also try to run through the three levels and talk Ri when they would best be served at Shu.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 09:50 PM   #7
DCP
 
DCP's Avatar
Dojo: Inaka Dojo
Location: Land of Lincoln
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 135
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

What's the big deal? I've heard from a highly-respected sensei that has practiced in Japan, that Shodan is a "throw away" rank in Japan without a great deal of meaning. Doesn't Shodan translate to "first level?"

I've heard from many people that in Japan, shodan can be earned in 1-2 years. Most credible associations in the U.S. grant shodan in 6-10 years of consistant training.

I would love to do the program. I doubt it's a "gimmee rank" program. It's a great chance to practice consistantly with a Hombu instructor. That's a bad thing?

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety.
- Aesop
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 10:16 PM   #8
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Daniel Pierson wrote:
What's the big deal? I've heard from a highly-respected sensei that has practiced in Japan, that Shodan is a "throw away" rank in Japan without a great deal of meaning. Doesn't Shodan translate to "first level?"
Depends on the organization. But 6-10 years is just silly for Shodan.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 10:29 PM   #9
maikerus
Dojo: Roppongi Yoshinkan Aikido / Roppongi, Tokyo, Japan
Location: Tokyo
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 571
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
Depends on the organization. But 6-10 years is just silly for Shodan.
It took me 9 years (albeit with 2 dojo changes) in Canada. And that was practicing 3-6 times per week depending on the year.

And I have no qualms with the time taken. Every moment was important. Of course, then I had to learn it all over again when I came to Japan <sigh>

I do feel that shodan can be achieved faster in Japan (at least in Yoshinkan) and I think the reason for that is that there seem to be different "Aikido tracks" where the person is either a hobbiest (ippon), a serious student (kenshusei) or in the instructor track (uchideshi/senshusei).

The first one is pretty much a "throw away black belts" but the other two are more serious, but the amount of training is also much different for each track.

I would say that the Aikido I practiced in Canada basically only had a single track and that was somewhere between the kenshu and instructor-like track. Maybe not as serious as uchideshi, but the goals were similar and therefor the time taken was longer than here (although actual mat time might be similar).

My few yen,

--Michael

Hiriki no yosei 3 - The kihon that makes your head ache instead of your legs
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 10:40 PM   #10
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Hi Michael;

It took my four years but the first year was a loss. I moved to Honbu and got tossed right to the bottom.

We don't have formal tracks like you described but their are sort of informal ones. The dojo works both as a Honbu dojo and a neighborhood dojo. It contains everything from top-drawer athletes to 40 year old housewives deciding to do something completely different.

In the grand scheme of things the actual length of time is not important but 9 years???? Exactly how clumsy were you.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 10:51 PM   #11
maikerus
Dojo: Roppongi Yoshinkan Aikido / Roppongi, Tokyo, Japan
Location: Tokyo
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 571
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
In the grand scheme of things the actual length of time is not important but 9 years???? Exactly how clumsy were you.
Ha ha

Get on that shinkansen and come on up and find out <rubbing hands together fiendishly>

The dojo changes were a big deal. Politics is alive and kicking in Ontario, Canada <wry grin>

Talk to you later,

--Michael

Hiriki no yosei 3 - The kihon that makes your head ache instead of your legs
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-20-2004, 10:54 PM   #12
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Michael Stuempel wrote:
The dojo changes were a big deal. Politics is alive and kicking in Ontario, Canada <wry grin>
Ah they are infamous.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 02:49 AM   #13
batemanb
 
batemanb's Avatar
Dojo: Seibukan Aikido UK
Location: body in UK, heart still in Japan
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 1,029
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
Depends on the organization. But 6-10 years is just silly for Shodan.

It took me 11 years including a 2 year "sabatical" in Japan where I also got tossed to the bottom of the pile and started again .

But who cares how long it takes, my Aikido is what's important, not the rank, and my ability is reflective of what I invest.

regards

Bryan

A difficult problem is easily solved by asking yourself the question, "Just how would the Lone Ranger handle this?"
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 02:54 AM   #14
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Bryan Bateman wrote:
It took me 11 years including a 2 year "sabatical" in Japan where I also got tossed to the bottom of the pile and started again.
OK OK A reasonably healthy person, taking 6-10 years in a single dojo, with regular training of at least twice a week, is silly.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 03:12 AM   #15
kaishaku
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 74
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
OK OK A reasonably healthy person, taking 6-10 years in a single dojo, with regular training of at least twice a week, is silly.
I'm almost there and I'm nowhere near shodan
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 03:18 AM   #16
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

But you did take a break didn't you?

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 03:26 AM   #17
disabledaccount
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 50
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
OK OK A reasonably healthy person, taking 6-10 years in a single dojo, with regular training of at least twice a week, is silly.
Twice a week?!? Tell me that's a typo. That's like eight hours a month. It takes a minimum of six years to achieve Shodan with the USAF Western Region, and that's with closer to eight hours a WEEK of training. I guess we like our Shodan to be good.
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 03:37 AM   #18
PeterR
 
PeterR's Avatar
Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 3,054
Japan
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

I think about 400 practice days is about right. Any more than that Shodan is really not what it's name implies - beginning level.

I suppose you could give yourself kudos about how difficult your particular Shodan is but after that length of time it is essentially meaningless.

I also said at least twice a week and I assume that's a reasonably long class.

Last edited by PeterR : 12-21-2004 at 03:39 AM.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 04:18 AM   #19
philipsmith
Dojo: Ren Shin Kan
Location: Birmingham
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 312
United Kingdom
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Aikikai Hombu system allows you to obtain Shodan after about 350 days of practise; providing you acheive all kyu grades on time. So two classes per week its 2-3 years (allowing for holiday breaks).

In saying that took me 7 but that was partly due to age restrictions (I was Shodan at 17)
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 09:06 AM   #20
David Humm
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 269
United Kingdom
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

... And not withstanding the individual's ability to learn and the quality of the instruction given at dojo level.

I agree with Bryan, the grade is a recognition of a given standard (and that's an entirely different debate) but the grade isn't important, time and experience on the mat is.
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 09:08 AM   #21
Qatana
 
Qatana's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido of Petaluma, Petaluma,CA
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 834
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

I don't uinderstand Ryan's post. In his intro he says he has been training about a year in Japan and is about to take his first kyu.
I inferred this to mean, this is how long he has been training, but maybe he's been training for seven years in the states and only a year in Japan.
But first kyu in a year is just a little short of shodan in a year, in the "long run", isn't it?

When a dojo has regularly scheduled gradings and/or a set syllabus, its possible to advance much faster than a dojo that operates "holistically" in the sense that testing is scheduled when enough students are ready to test.
If I test once a year I will make shodan in six years. That will be four years from now.

Q
http://www.aikidopetaluma.com/
www.knot-working.com

"It is not wise to be incautious when confronting a little smiling bald man"'- Rule #1
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 09:23 AM   #22
Dazzler
Dojo: Templegate Dojo, bristol & Bristol North Aikido Dojo
Location: Bristol
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 638
England
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Bodhi Richards wrote:
Twice a week?!? Tell me that's a typo. That's like eight hours a month. It takes a minimum of six years to achieve Shodan with the USAF Western Region, and that's with closer to eight hours a WEEK of training. I guess we like our Shodan to be good.
And are those 8 hours a month in an open class...where grades range from 1st nighters to x dans?...

or in kyu level specific classes where everyone is on a par?.

In the first scenario progress is bound to be hampered by continually having to ensure the newbies can practice safetly.

This whole issue is complicated by how a shodan is measured. What defines a shodan? Ability to win a fight? Ability to perform x techniques? ability to demonstrate self defence via techniques? ability to show an appreciation of base and a competence to start practicing it?

My feeling is that within all organisations they like their shodans to be good - Its just that what one group emphasises is good may disagree with what another group endorses.

At the end of the day its reallly really important but just as milestone.

Once you've earned it then its all about practicing

D
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 09:30 AM   #23
Fred Little
Dojo: NJIT Budokai
Location: State Line NJ/NY
Join Date: Apr 2001
Posts: 613
United_States
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
OK OK A reasonably healthy person, taking 6-10 years in a single dojo, with regular training of at least twice a week, is silly.
Peter:

By that standard, it looks like most of North America is a pretty silly place, at least those areas which have USAF or ASU dojo.

But I would echo the observation that the SHU aspect is something that seems to be much more carefully observed by beginners in Japan than here in the US, which is one factor that goes into the increased time requirements.

I've also observed that US dojo tend to maintain fairly tight correlations between seniority and dan ranking, which sometimes makes for a bit of a glass ceiling for individuals here who are diligent about SHU and thus make quick technical progress. My view is that this is a misconstrual of the sempai/kohai construct, but it is also a social reality in many US dojo.

I also think that the comparatively longer time to shodan in the US is related to the greater tendency among US students to misconstrue the coveted black belt as something more than a "first step" and the caution of Japanese Shihan and their senior students about fostering a situation in which underqualified individuals might run out and start their own dojo.

Lastly, it also appears to me that even where there's no question of the new shodan running out and immediately opening up a dojo, more than a few instructors ask themselves whether or not a given individual is likely to continue training after shodan. If the answer is not clear, getting instructor approval for a test date may be difficult in many dojo.

I have mixed feelings about all of this, but for the most part, it seems to me that without these tendencies and patterns, there would be many, many more complaints about the quality of instruction and grading standards in the US than there are at present, although I've also seen some cases in which first-rate practitioners have walked away from the art entirely because of overly-tight linkages between dan gradings and seniority.

My two cents, for what it's worth.

Fred Little
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 09:53 AM   #24
jebel
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2
United_States
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

There is no inherent formula of time spent in Aikido to calculate when a student will or should achieve Shodan or any other rank. Each individual, regardless of national origin, will take as long as he/she takes to reach any given level. There is nothing good or bad about this - it just is.
  Reply With Quote
Old 12-21-2004, 10:02 AM   #25
kironin
 
kironin's Avatar
Dojo: Houston Ki Aikido
Location: Houston,TX
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 1,033
United_States
Offline
Re: Aikikai Aikido Academy

Quote:
Peter Rehse wrote:
I think about 400 practice days is about right. Any more than that Shodan is really not what it's name implies - beginning level.

I suppose you could give yourself kudos about how difficult your particular Shodan is but after that length of time it is essentially meaningless.
meaningless,
Really ?

I took 6.25 years to shodan and given my frequency of practice up to then, something approaching 2000 practice days. I hardly felt it was essentially meaningless. Minimum time to shodan for my organization was 5 years determined by my shihan. He had a two year minimum as ikkyu which is why I didn't test earlier.

Someone doing a shodan in 10 months by training twice a week is a pretty meaningless black belt in my book. I would hardly call someone in my dojo training twice a week for less than a year a "serious beginner who has mastered the basics". Outside of Japan that practice would certainly qualify as a belt factory. However it's not exactly news that fastest way to get promoted in aikido organizations is to go to Japan.

should there be such a dramatic bias against those not being taught in Japan ?
well doesn't have to be, for my iaido organization that is based in Japan, a shodan is typically 2-3 years regardless of whether you train at a school in Japan or outside of Japan. However, all yudansha test outside of Japan are videotaped and sent to Japan for review and approval of advancement even though a shihan is doing the testing.

  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Handmade Aikido Gifts - Handmade functional ceramic art with aikido themes



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
K. Tohei vs Aikikai Gwion General 64 12-13-2010 11:40 AM
Women and Everybody Else in Aikido George S. Ledyard Teaching 113 03-16-2008 07:27 PM
British 8th dan? Demetrio Cereijo General 70 06-22-2006 11:19 AM
Article: Aikido Now in Brunei AikiWeb System AikiWeb System 3 09-20-2005 06:22 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:43 PM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate