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Old 12-10-2004, 12:42 PM   #1
IP Hash: 878a7348
Anonymous User
Hands off the Uchideshi?

I think* the uchideshi at the dojo has been flirting with me lately and seems to take an interest in me outside of class. And, personally, I'd like to get to know him better, but doesn't the role of uchideshi prohibit him/her from most non-dojo related interests?

I certainly don't want to cross a line here that ought not be crossed. I have complete respect for the dojo and those that call it home.

Any thoughts or insights on this?

*I say "think" because my picking-up-on-flirting radar can be a little touchy sometimes, but he's been fairly clear - I think.
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Old 12-11-2004, 08:31 PM   #2
IP Hash: 71974b74
Anonymous User
Re: Hands off the Uchideshi?

This seems to fall into the general category of "dating in the dojo" - I don't know whether you are a beginner or not, but would probably best be thought of as having the same pitfalls as dating a student severak levels senior to you (main pitfall is if things go badly, you will be more likely to leave than they will). Sorta like office romances, really.
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Old 12-12-2004, 03:19 AM   #3
Johan Nielsen
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 20
Faroe Islands
Re: Hands off the Uchideshi?

Well, what is your dojo status in relation to him. If your are just another student I could't see a problem. Aikido isn't everything. Falling in love is a greater think I would say, but the best for you is of course a combination. In my dojo, which is not an aikido dojo and therefore not as traditional/strict there are many relationships and nobody has a problem whit that. The only situation with could be a bit problematic is when one of the lovers is the instructor of the other. In an aikido plus uchi-deshi situation I really don't know the traditional aikido thinking of this. As I see it it is the uchi-deshi that could compromize his situation with a enjoyable love relationship with another person at the same dojo. So if someone else can explain the aikido thinking of this first, you two have then to decide whether you think dating is ok or not in your aikido environment. Then if you care about the rules or if you should have a go at it anyway. Then if you should start dating or something, if you should wait or if you should just forget about it. Many "ifs"but I think you get my point. Good luck and may dojo love prosper.
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Old 12-12-2004, 07:46 AM   #4
IP Hash: 24a4bc8b
Anonymous User
Re: Hands off the Uchideshi?

As a former uchideshi to an old time now dead Shihan, I would tread lightly. Uchideshi are "family" to the Sensei, like children. If you date someone, your sensei is obligated to have a relationship to this person as well, and if it is someone that he does not like, then you could be in for some trouble. I have direct knowledge of a Shihan telling his uchideshi to break it off with someone because the person his Uchideshi was dating was also an aikido student of one of his "enemies" in the aikido world, and he did not want to be obligated to have a relationship with a student of his "enemy". Right or wrong, this is how it works. Also, as a full-time uchideshi, he is expected to devote his full energies to the craft and his sensei, not dating. And in the dojo, uchideshi are prohbitied to bringing in "guests". If you are caught, then he may be out. I would wait until he is done.
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Old 12-12-2004, 07:56 AM   #5
Greg Jennings
Dojo: S&G BJJ
Location: Springboro, OH
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 1,125
Re: Hands off the Uchideshi?

Put yourself in a different scene that is familiar, e.g., the workplace.

Ask yourself if seeing them romantically would be appropriate in that situation. Are they married? Are they seeing someone? Are they from across the country and will move back soon? Would both of you be able to handle being together daily if you broke up? Will you guys being together cause problems for others? Etc. Etc.

After that, if you, in your own heart, think that it's OK, then give it a go.


Greg Jennings
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Old 12-12-2004, 09:52 AM   #6
Tom Kaluzynski
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 15
Re: Hands off the Uchideshi?

I would say that this is comparable to flirting with someone in the military, not just work. Right now his focus is training. Of course, you are both human. But you may get hurt if at some point, he breaks it off if there is a choice between training and you. Like the military, his job is one where there isnt alot of personal choice right now. So I would say, go ahead and flirt, flirting is fun, but also be careful. Just know what you are getting into, if you do. Maybe wait until he is finished with this stage of his life. If it is real, it will all work out.
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Old 12-12-2004, 09:29 PM   #7
IP Hash: 50087e2c
Anonymous User
Re: Hands off the Uchideshi?

Thanks for the insights offered, especially those of the former uchideshi. I knew there was a certain (for lack of a better word) intensity to this role, but this sheds even more light on it.

Your caveats are noted: I will tread lightly!
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