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Old 12-08-2003, 06:47 AM   #1
Michael Karmon
Dojo: Aikido Jerusalem
Location: Jerusalem Israel
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 56
How to judge your own test?

Last night I did my 3rd Kyu test. Every one, including Sensei congratulated me for a very good, clean test.

But I feel that I performed miserably. I got my Kihon-wasa confused, I nearly lost balance every now and then, I did not do half the Gi-Wasa techniques I prepared, I did not engage Uke properly etc.

So, did such thing happened to you?
What should be my attitude towards the disonance between my feeling and the feedback from my dojo mates?

Eat, Sleep, Exercise and watch out for cars
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Old 12-08-2003, 07:26 AM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 768
But I feel that I performed miserably.
Sometimes you're the windshield and sometimes you're the bug. In other words, performance isn't static, it varies from day to day and moment to moment. Over time your "lows" will be not fall as much from your "normal performance and your "highs" will soar higher, but that doesn't mean that somedays you simply will not perform well.
What should be my attitude towards the disonance between my feeling and the feedback from my dojo mates?
Recognize the difference and then let it go. You can't go back and time and change how you did, you can only prepare for the future.

As to the future, you need to determine if your training is on track. That is, will your routine, as it is right now, solve the problems? (If so, then you had a less-than-stellar day, and don't worry about it). If your routine will not correct the problems you need to change your routine or add supplemental training.


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Old 12-08-2003, 08:01 AM   #3
Dojo: Aikido of Midland
Location: Midland Texas
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,652
Sometimes video taping yourself helps you see where you are. Although I find one tends to be more critical of their performance than the instructor or other viewers.

We all have a model in our mind of where we want to be. When we are nervous during a test or see ourselves on tape, we don't feel we live up to that model. Time will usually cure that but don't be too hard on yourself. Your sensei sets the standard and measures your performance against it. If he/she is happy so should you be.
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Old 12-08-2003, 09:31 AM   #4
DCP's Avatar
Dojo: Inaka Dojo
Location: Land of Lincoln
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 135
I don't know you and I wasn't at your test, but I can say with confidence that your test was/is good. The reason I say this is that you were able to find areas where you need to improve.

Tests themselves are nothing but milestones. Where have you been, where are you going, and how are you going to get there? Those are the important things.

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety.
- Aesop
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Old 12-09-2003, 06:53 AM   #5
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 768

Long story short....

Did you overtrain for your test?

Glance through this article and see if anything seems familiar


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Old 12-09-2003, 09:28 AM   #6
Dojo: Shobu Aikido Cape Cod
Location: Cape Cod, Massachusetts
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 152
I am sure each dojo has its own set of rules or guidelines determining when one is "prepared" to test.

But most Sensei I know are caring people. They would not allow a student to test if that student has not demonstrated in class that she/he is "prepared". Sensei does not want her/his students to fail.

One of the basic attitudes I have found in every dojo I have visited is one of harmony and helpfulness. A good Sensei would not knowingly allow a student to test if the student has not shown in class that she/he can meet the mental and physical requirements.

Each day, we perform at different levels in any task we are involved in. Some days in class we feel like a gentle spring breeze on a sunny cloudless day. Then, other days in class, like a leaf caught in a hurricane being blown with no control or direction.

Sensei knows our ability and areas that we are lacking. So, if on "test day" we feel we could have done better.....that feeling is perhaps true...probably true....but we could have done not as good also.

Use the feelings as a book from which to learn..
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Old 12-09-2003, 01:33 PM   #7
Derek Dunham
Dojo: Aikido of Albany
Location: Albany, Oregon
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 6
I know exactly how you feel. Train hard in the things you feel you messed up is my advice. Also: Your Sensei almost definatly decided you were ready for your new rank before you tested. Also: think of a rank like a belt, some will be in the middle when they test, some will be at either end. If you feel you are at the begining, then you have all the time until your next test to grow into your rank. Just advice from a lowly 5th kyu, though, so take it for what it is.
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Old 12-09-2003, 07:22 PM   #8
Pretoriano's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Santa Fe
Location: Aragua Venezuela
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 130
Post You know

Something is Wrong here dont you think Karmon?

Does it make sense that you perfomed miserable, noted all that mistakes on your performance, but was told it was a good clean test?

Enjoy your 3rd Kyu!, or honestly aproach to it soon.

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Old 12-10-2003, 05:41 AM   #9
SeiserL's Avatar
Location: Florida Gulf coast
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 3,902
I too am much more critical of myself then others. They see the outside, I feel the technqiues and know what I missed. This internal monitoring can tell you were you can improve, and always keep improving.

You may not have done well by your standards, but well enough by your teacher's to pass the test. Now take their feedback, and our own, and get back to training.

Congratulations on passing.

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 12-12-2003, 02:08 AM   #10
Bronson's Avatar
Dojo: Seiwa Dojo and Southside Dojo
Location: Battle Creek & Kalamazoo, MI
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 1,677
I don't know your sensei or what his focus is but I can relate what my sensei is looking for on tests. My sensei wants us to make mistakes. He knows our ability to do the techniques from watching us in class. He wants us to make mistakes to see how we handle it. He's looking to see if we can keep our mental center. Did you make a mistake and think "oops, gotta fix that next time" and move on, or did you dwell on it and let it affect everything that followed? By the fact that you passed I'd say it was more the former than the latter.


"A pacifist is not really a pacifist if he is unable to make a choice between violence and non-violence. A true pacifist is able to kill or maim in the blink of an eye, but at the moment of impending destruction of the enemy he chooses non-violence."
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