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Old 06-26-2004, 11:06 PM   #1
Valen
Location: Chiba
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Advice please

Hello, may I ask for some advice? I live in Japan (and will be here for around 4 more years) and would like to start a Japanese martial art. I have a few choices, Hakkoryu Jujutsu, Iwama Aikido, and Yoshinkan Aikido. All of which are wonderful martial arts but my preference is Hakkoryu because of the pressure points. The Iwama Ryu Aikido is also very tempting because they also train in Jo and Ken. I know some people would say "try each one and see which you prefer" but I have gone to each dojo and looked at each class and they all have great teachers. The only thing which concerns me is Hakkoryu is not taught in the country I will be moving to - London UK. So my questions are, if I studied Hakkoryu for 4 years, would I be able to advance faster in Aikido in London when I start Aikido? Also, are there any differences in techniques between Iwama, Aikikai and Yoshinkan? Would I have to start from the beginning if I started Aikido in Japan? One of my co-workers was sandan in Aikikai Aikido in Spain, but when he came to Japan he had to start from the beginning.

Many Thanks in advance,

Valentine
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Old 06-26-2004, 11:17 PM   #2
Paul Sanderson-Cimino
Dojo: Yoshokai; looking into judo
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Re: Advice please

Try looking a little more carefully at the schools. What do you think of the students there? The atmosphere? The kinds of things the sensei focuses on? The level of conditioning/physical activity?

My instinct is that Yoshinkan would be the most easily translatable, because if it's anything like Yoshokai, it has a standardized syllabus and is relatively centralized. I personally think Yoshokai is an excellent style, especially for beginners, and I believe Yoshokai and Yoshinkai are still very similar. Yoshokai has a great deal of weapons work in the curriculum, and the links between the basic movements, techniques, and weapon techniques (e.g. shumatsu-dosa ichi, katatemochi taihenko shihonage, shumatsu dosa ichi with bokken) are emphasized. You'll also learn some really cool ukemi.

But it sounds like you have the good fortune to be faced by many good options. ^_^ Best of luck, though you probably won't need it...
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Old 06-27-2004, 01:01 AM   #3
Bronson
 
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Re: Advice please

I guess I would look at it a little differently. Were I in your situation...all the prospective dojo being "equal"... I would probably go for the one that wasn't taught in my home country because I may never have the chance to experience it again.

Bronson

"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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Old 06-27-2004, 03:18 AM   #4
Valen
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Re: Advice please

Thankyou both for your replies. Regarding Pauls reply. The Yoshinkan does not teach weapons (at the least the dojo I looked at) the sensei is very good, atmosphere is great also. A good range of students also.

Bronson, I also thought that - I should go for Hakkoryu because it is not taught elsewhere and ofcourse I could use this in the future to compliment my training. The truth is, I want to start something which I can complete - Japan is such an awesome place to learn a martial art and the idea of learning a good solid foundation here is very tempting.
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Old 06-28-2004, 04:03 AM   #5
Bronson
 
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Re: Advice please

Quote:
Valentine Logan wrote:
I want to start something which I can complete
Don't start aikido...there is no end (I know what you meant I was just poking fun)

Quote:
Valentine Logan wrote:
the idea of learning a good solid foundation here is very tempting.
I'd say four years of dedicated study in most any art would give you a decent foundation to start with.

Bronson

"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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Old 06-28-2004, 04:28 AM   #6
JJF
 
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Re: Advice please

Maybe if you practice hard you will become so good a Hakkoryu that you can introduce it in your home country. Fast track to advancement and enless pain and trouble

- Jørgen Jakob Friis

Inspiration - Aspiration - Perspiration
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Old 06-28-2004, 05:24 AM   #7
Valen
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Re: Advice please

I should have said - start the journey which I can continue....
Part of me would love to do Hakkoryu - it looks awesome - the class is VERY small - only 4 students so my learning curve would be good. But even if I were good enough to get to an advanced level - I would have noone to learn from in London. I could then start Aikido and use the skills from Hakkoryu to compliment my Aikido (that is another option)...... Ideally, I would love to find another Jujutsu in London which has links to Hakkoryu.
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Old 07-07-2004, 09:59 AM   #8
Lyle Laizure
 
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Re: Advice please

Choose the one that intices you more. Regardless of what you choose you may have to start over where you go. Rank does not transfer between arts even if you are switching from one style of aikido to another style of aikido. Though some arts are more similar than others just train because you love training.

Lyle Laizure
www.hinodedojo.com
Deru kugi wa uta reru
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Old 07-08-2004, 01:18 AM   #9
batemanb
 
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Re: Advice please

I know nowt about Hakkoryu, so sticking with the Aikido front. When I moved to Japan I also "started again" because my UK dojo was not affiliated to the AIkikai. Basically this meant dropping my grades and starting back as a mudansha, it was suggested that I put everything I had learnt over the previous 9 years into a locked room and begin again. When I unlocked the rooom at a later unspecified point I would be a much stronger aikidoka. Whilst happy to do that, nine years worth of training is not easy to forget/ ignore, and will give you a good grounding in the basics anyways, so progress is more rapid second time round.

There is a great dojo in Chiba, I used to have a pen friend there many moons back and visited a couple of times. If I remember correctly, it is run by Yamashita Sensei, he was very kind to me. I can't remember the address of the dojo I'm afraid, but I do remember that it was a 5 minute walk from Funabashi Eki, in a large 3 story local budokan. Unfortunately, I am now back in the UK, otherwise I could take you there. I recommend that you try and find it, there probably aren't that many budokan's close to Funabashi station.

rgds

Bryan

A difficult problem is easily solved by asking yourself the question, "Just how would the Lone Ranger handle this?"
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Old 07-08-2004, 02:03 AM   #10
PeterR
 
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Re: Advice please

Personally speaking I would do both and just keep quiet about it.

If you are one day forced to make a choice it will be informed.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-08-2004, 11:30 AM   #11
leefr
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Re: Advice please

I did a google search and there seems to be a school called Dentokan teaching Hakko ryu in Britain.

To be sure, it seems to have broken off from the 'main' line of Hakko ryu, so you might not be able to transfer your grade from one to the other, but if you're not too hung up on grading, this might not be a problem. Hope this helps.
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Old 07-11-2004, 02:42 AM   #12
Valen
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Re: Advice please

Quote:
Frederick Lee wrote:
I did a google search and there seems to be a school called Dentokan teaching Hakko ryu in Britain.

To be sure, it seems to have broken off from the 'main' line of Hakko ryu, so you might not be able to transfer your grade from one to the other, but if you're not too hung up on grading, this might not be a problem. Hope this helps.
Federick, many thanks for the reply - actually I found this one and already contacted the Sensei - it is over 50 miles away from where I will live in london

Sorry - just checked there is a new dojo in London! Thx!! The only concern is - Hakkoryu gradings go up to 4th dan - the sensei in London is 5th dan.i

Last edited by Valen : 07-11-2004 at 02:44 AM.
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Old 07-12-2004, 11:20 AM   #13
JonathanPhillips
 
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Re: Advice please

Gentlemen,

I have enjoyed reading this thread. Now I seek advice. My son and I are currently studying Taekwondo. It is demanding (I'm woefully out of shape) but well worth the physical effort. I question my motives here. I'm in Taekwondo because it means alot to my son for me to be there, yet it's Akido that draws me. Just two blocks away from my dojang there is an Aikido dojo. It seems that everyone there wants to be there. They are learning. The Sensei takes great pains to make everyone feel welcome. The beauty of Aikdo astounds me, yet what I see comes through years of hard work. My question is this: Can I effectively study both Aikido and Taekwondo?

Jonathan
Cincinnati, Ohio
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Old 07-12-2004, 11:42 AM   #14
Mel Barker
Dojo: University of Louisville Aikido Club
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Re: Advice please

Life's far to short to not do what you what. Esp. if it's easily within your reach.

Go for it!

Mel Barker

P.S. Look for me at the Aikido of Cincinnati seminars.
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Old 07-12-2004, 12:21 PM   #15
JamesC
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Re: Advice please

I am studying Tae Kwon Do and Aikido at the same time.

It can be rather confusing to say the least, but after a while, you learn to shut one off when learning the other. But you also have to remember to get in a lot of sparring and make yourself blend the two together when the situation calls for it.

Though if you become very skilled in Aikido, you will hopefully not have to use either one.
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Old 07-12-2004, 12:41 PM   #16
aikidocapecod
Dojo: Shobu Aikido Cape Cod
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Re: Advice please

My sensei, William Gleason Sensei, feels that jo and bokken training are essential basics to learning and understanding proper Aikido movement. I know that this is not a new thought. Many feel this way. I find that when Sensei teaches us how to move with jo or bokken, I have a much better undersanding of the basics of a particular Aikido movement/technique.

If I were going to choose a new dojo, I would make certain the sensei uses jo and bokken in class.

Just my opinion......

Good Luck in your search
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Old 07-12-2004, 07:06 PM   #17
PeterR
 
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Re: Advice please

Quote:
Jonathan Phillips wrote:
I have enjoyed reading this thread. Now I seek advice. My son and I are currently studying Taekwondo. It is demanding (I'm woefully out of shape) but well worth the physical effort. I question my motives here. I'm in Taekwondo because it means alot to my son for me to be there, yet it's Akido that draws me. Just two blocks away from my dojang there is an Aikido dojo. It seems that everyone there wants to be there. They are learning. The Sensei takes great pains to make everyone feel welcome. The beauty of Aikdo astounds me, yet what I see comes through years of hard work. My question is this: Can I effectively study both Aikido and Taekwondo?
Absolutely. Just make a conscious effort to only train in whatever class you are attending.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 07-14-2004, 04:22 AM   #18
Valen
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Re: Advice please

I am seriously considering studying both Hakkoryu (for the pressure points and shiatsu) and Aikido (Iwama). My question is, how similar are these? Is it worth studying both? I have a limited time here in Japan so I would not want to waste this chance.
Regarding the dojo in Funabashi - do you know what style? I found one Iwama dojo in the UK so at least I know I can continue my AIkido.
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Old 07-14-2004, 04:46 AM   #19
happysod
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Re: Advice please

Quote:
I have a limited time here in Japan so I would not want to waste this chance.
OK, now I'm getting confused. I thought from your initial post you had four years in Japan prior to moving? This is hardly a truly "limited time" (4 months yes...) I mean I know people talk about 20 year techniques (sniggers), but seriously 4 years should be enough to get competent.

Right, advice - assuming you have 4 years, do the Hakkoryu no matter what as this chance will not be available once you move. Regarding training in aikido at the same time - try it, if you find it interferes with the Hakkoryu, drop it and come back to it later once the Hakkoryu is no-longer available.

As regards aikido styles - just forget this rubbish. Aikido, when taught correctly, looks remarkably like aikido, no matter what the style. Main thing you want is bouncing without hurty, so any dojo should do (even Judo )
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Old 07-14-2004, 05:16 AM   #20
Valen
Location: Chiba
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Re: Advice please

Quote:
Ian Hurst wrote:
OK, now I'm getting confused. I thought from your initial post you had four years in Japan prior to moving? This is hardly a truly "limited time" (4 months yes...) I mean I know people talk about 20 year techniques (sniggers), but seriously 4 years should be enough to get competent.

Right, advice - assuming you have 4 years, do the Hakkoryu no matter what as this chance will not be available once you move. Regarding training in aikido at the same time - try it, if you find it interferes with the Hakkoryu, drop it and come back to it later once the Hakkoryu is no-longer available.

As regards aikido styles - just forget this rubbish. Aikido, when taught correctly, looks remarkably like aikido, no matter what the style. Main thing you want is bouncing without hurty, so any dojo should do (even Judo )

Sorry for the confusion - 4 years is short for me!
Maybe you are right about doing Hakkoryu - this has been on mind also.

Regarding Iwama - I am not saying this is better then any other type of Aikido, I just like the fact they train with Jo and Ken. What I would like to know is the differences between Hakkoryu and Aikido - if they are indeed similar - then may I should focus all my attention on Aikido.
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Old 07-14-2004, 05:58 AM   #21
Valen
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Re: Advice please

Oh Ian, just to clarify about the style of Aikido - I have heard of people studying one particular style and then moving to another country and having to start from scratch. Apart from the example by Bryan, one of my co-workers studied in Spain for X amount of years - got to sandan, moved to Tokyo - started from the beginning. But he did progress very quickly up the ranks though in Tokyo.
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Old 07-14-2004, 06:26 AM   #22
happysod
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Re: Advice please

Aah, aikido query makes more sense now - generally if you get a dan grade from a recognised assoc, most other assocs will give you credit for that grade. What may happen if you don't end up in the same assoc/affiliated assoc - even if the style is the same - is that you may have to retake your dan grade to show you know their syllabus. If they give you no credit for previous training, advise them to go forth and multiply and find another dojo.

If you've only got a kyu grade, I wouldn't sweat it, just start again as necessary. I'm a proud owner of 4 3rd kyu's thanks to moving about and it hasn't affected me unduly (well, a couple of twitches and an irrational hatred of certain styles and teachers but...)

Caveat - I don't know how tomiki/shodokan would view an aikikai/Iwama dan grading as randori competition is so much part of their ethos - but we do have experts on board to answer that possibility.
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Old 07-14-2004, 07:39 AM   #23
Valen
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Re: Advice please

Ian thank for the reply - I am going to start next week and if time permits maybe also Hakkoryu.
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