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Old 08-03-2004, 08:23 AM   #1
aikidoc
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Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

I would like to state up front, I don't have any concrete positions on these issues but mainly thoughts and questions. Several threads have danced around some of the issues and I wanted to put them in one place. The issues are primarily organizations, splinter groups, promotions, technical proficiency, and politics. I feel these are critical issues for the future of aikido given the dwindling numbers of O'Sensei's deshi.

Observations:
1. A key emerging set of issues involves maintaining technical proficiency, imagination and commitment to the art of aikido.
2. There appear to be an ever growing number of splinter groups from the aikikai and other organizations (Iwama Ryu, etc.).
3. Larger organizations generally become less flexible over time resulting in senior students and sometimes less senior students breaking away and setting up their own "styles". Some good and some bad. Some with realistic grades and some with ego inflated grades and sokeships.
4. There is an ongoing need to maintain the technical skill levels while promoting originality and creativity within larger organizations.
5. There is a need to develop and certify instructors for the future.
6. Power or political issues frequently influence the stability of organizations.

Questions:
1. How do we or can we prevent the deterioration of larger organizations and the development of splinter groups from eroding the technical skills of future aikidokas and instructors. I think this comes from several factors: lack of larger organization flexibility; egos (organizational/individual); promotional inconsistencies within organizations; lack of instructor training in some organizations; lack of individual dojo support with growth; politics within the organization. The result is splinter groups and evolving sokeships claiming to have "discovered" their own aikido and promoting themselves to lofty ranks.
2. Is there an optimal size before an organization becomes stagnant or deteriorates into inflexibility, political infighting, stagnation, and ultimately starts driving out its future instructors and leaders?
3. How do we maintain technical proficiency and quality while maintaining flexibility, promoting commitment to the art and providing opportunity for imagination and growth?
4. Other than bashing them on forums, how do we or can we deal with the proliferation of so called "styles" and sokeships which are frequently repackaging of aikido techniques integrated with smatterings of other arts? It definitely creates some potential issues: fraud, lofty titles (doctors, sokes, extremely high dan grades not earned), erosion of technical quality, and erosion of our image as an art.

Just looking for thoughts and other observations/ideas.
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Old 08-03-2004, 11:28 AM   #2
Jorge Garcia
Dojo: Shudokan School of Aikido
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
John Riggs wrote:
1. How do we or can we prevent the deterioration of larger organizations and the development of splinter groups from eroding the technical skills of future aikidokas and instructors. I think this comes from several factors: lack of larger organization flexibility; egos (organizational/individual); promotional inconsistencies within organizations; lack of instructor training in some organizations; lack of individual dojo support with growth; politics within the organization. The result is splinter groups and evolving sokeships claiming to have "discovered" their own aikido and promoting themselves to lofty ranks.
2. Is there an optimal size before an organization becomes stagnant or deteriorates into inflexibility, political infighting, stagnation, and ultimately starts driving out its future instructors and leaders?
.
In my studies on hierarchy in organizationalism, I have found that there is a natural pathology that occurs as an organization is built and begins to grow. That has already been referenced before. I think though that if you set up a power based organization, then a certain amount of internal corruption may be inevitable. The only thing that I know of that can hold that back is if you set up the political structure to allow diversity, and creativity. That means in organizational terms-freedom. Whenever diversity and creativity are lacking, you actually have a lack of freedom. These organizations have problems because they are not really what they advertise. They say they are there to promote the art and maintain standards but the real nature of an organization accomplishing anything is authority and jurisdiction. Authority can quickly devolve into authoritarianism and jurisdiction goes beyond boundaries and they become instead jurisdictions of authority. In other words, everything becomes about maintaining authority or control. Then freedom is discouraged because it is freedom that challenges (not authority but) jurisdiction. It took me a long time to understand that the American denominational churches are not a reflection of different interpretations of the Bible but rather, they are manifestations of different jurisdictions of authority. Its all about who's in charge. The so called mission is then secondary. The same goes for any human organization if you think about it. That's why cross training and visiting other groups is really discouraged in aikido by the "authorities" that be.
When political structures are decentralized, they do better from a freedom point of view. Again, I reference denominations because that is my area of expertise. In the centralized churches, untold corruption occurs because the hierarchical levels are sealed and protected by the bureaucrats in them. This soon leads to corruption, stagnation and loss of the original vision. The organization will then fail due to internal corruption (called implosion). The independent and decentralized churches have flourished because they have only one level, the local one, and corruption is kept local and can be dealt with more easily because they are closer to their constituents. The free and independent groups grow by proselytizing new folks while the big organizations grow by absorbing smaller organizations. One is organic and free, the other is programed and controlled or regulated. Organizations like our government can have organizational reform but the history of mankind has not shown this to be successful but only to put off the inevitable. It tends to happen over and over again because humans tend to have the same faults, no matter who is in charge.
The final page then is that people begin to flee seeking freedom and they create splinter groups-some legitimate and others not. Some with quality and some without. Those who gain favor or are undisturbed in their organization remain but somewhere out there, the problem still exists and we have the situation that we are developing today.

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 08-03-2004, 11:47 AM   #3
aikidoc
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Good comments.
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Old 08-03-2004, 12:14 PM   #4
Jorge Garcia
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Thanks John,
If we really want to get crazy, think of this. Why do we even need big organizations? Why can't we just relate to outside high ranking teachers personally? If you have a decentralized, independent dojo, we all know that they have access to the same Shihans as anyone else because attendance at seminars is usually open. The problem is that they won't test you and give you rank if you are not in their organization. You can't get lower level high ranking people to come to your school because their organizations won't let them do that. They can only work within their group. The independent group then lacks technical input directly from acknowledged masters and they lack the ability to get legal and certified credibility that rank from the acknowledged group can give. They can get the training by attending seminars but not the direct input or feedback. The certification is unattainable unless they give it to themselves. The key for the independent dojo is to actively seek an organization that will give them freedom or to just remain independent and seek the technical input from seminars (for their members) and then do their own ranking internally. It will save money and a lot of hassle but they would have to be extremely secure in their self identity. Also, there is the issue of accountability. They have to have an internal dojo structure that is self policing with some outside auditing. It would also be wise for such a group to informally seek the friendship of nearby instructors that they can glean help and advice from. On the organizational side, I would hope that someday, someone will have the vision to create an organization that is for the members instead of being for the leaders. That's a radical idea and would require an ethic and value not unlike that of a Mother Teresa where you do good for free and trust that it will come back to you somehow. Unfortunately, in all the corruption we talked about, the need for finances usually runs most organizations and while many shihans have sacrificed much for their groups in untold ways, things usually find a way to get messed up anyway and we have to work harder to figure out a way to be fair to our leaders and take care of them properly with out creating the organizational Frankensteins that everyone wants to get away from.
Best wishes,

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 08-03-2004, 12:32 PM   #5
aikidoc
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

So an ideal situation would be a shihan willing to work with independent groups to help them attain quality rank certification without the excessive controls. I doubt that is very easy to find. There seems to be a continuum but that would be pretty far to the end for most.

A concept work considering also would be solidy ranked aikikai instructors willing to work with independents to help them maintain quality standards by sitting of promotion boards, helping them develop aikikai level test standards and providing instruction through yudansha practice, mini-seminars, actual seminars or mentoring relationships. This would involve serving as a mentor or guide for the independents to draw upon so as to maintain standards and prevent inbreeding deterioration of technical quality.
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Old 08-03-2004, 12:53 PM   #6
Jorge Garcia
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
John Riggs wrote:
So an ideal situation would be a shihan willing to work with independent groups to help them attain quality rank certification without the excessive controls. I doubt that is very easy to find. There seems to be a continuum but that would be pretty far to the end for most.

A concept work considering also would be solidly ranked aikikai instructors willing to work with independents to help them maintain quality standards by sitting of promotion boards, helping them develop aikikai level test standards and providing instruction through yudansha practice, mini-seminars, actual seminars or mentoring relationships. This would involve serving as a mentor or guide for the independents to draw upon so as to maintain standards and prevent inbreeding deterioration of technical quality.
I think that would be an admirable and benevolent thing for an organization to do for the art itself. It would be akin to a lawyer that does pro-bono work. The large organizations have the manpower and financial ability to do that if they only would! What an Aiki spirit that would be. Like we were all one family!

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 08-03-2004, 12:54 PM   #7
Jorge Garcia
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Referring to the previous post, maybe Aikikai instructors could just do that on their own as well.

"It is the philosophy that gives meaning to the method of training."
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Old 08-03-2004, 01:19 PM   #8
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Why just aikikai?

I know a yoshinkan instructor that pretty much does as you describe, sponsoring small dojo that were non-existant or independant and helping them to grow and develop. Some of the dojo involved weren't even always yoshinkan. Why draw such a major organizational line, given the topic at hand?

Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
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Old 08-03-2004, 02:09 PM   #9
aikidoc
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Although I'm not that senior, I am trying to do just that with some regional independents. One is very interested, another is content with its current situation.
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Old 08-03-2004, 02:27 PM   #10
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Craig H., you've already described a process you went through with a local dojo in another thread, right? Any contributions here?
Thanks,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
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Old 08-03-2004, 02:35 PM   #11
otto
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

But what if this "godfather" passes away-retires from teaching?

How wil those hypothetical dojos get a line of development?

"Perfection is a Process"
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Old 08-03-2004, 02:53 PM   #12
aikidoc
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Succession planning needs to be done in any organization Ottoniel. Unfortunately, that does not always happen and power struggles occur. If an instructor is volunteering his/her services to help an independent group, hopefully others will be available to asist in such an event. Other than participation in seminars being available to all I don't think too many of those relationships exist. Perhaps there needs to be a proactive rather than a passive approach, i.e., interested and qualified instructors letting independent groups know about the availability of non-intrusive assistance to improve the quality of aikido. Just a thought-as Jorge said "what an Aiki spirit".
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Old 08-03-2004, 02:56 PM   #13
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

There could be several ways...

1) a senior student or someone from japan may come in to take over the organization...and things continue more or less as they are.

2) the independent dojo decides to affiliate to the hombu organization in question directly

3) they find another 'godfather'...

or even some combination of the above. It really depends on the strength of the relationship...

RT

Ron Tisdale
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Old 08-03-2004, 03:39 PM   #14
kironin
 
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
Ron Tisdale wrote:
Craig H., you've already described a process you went through with a local dojo in another thread, right? Any contributions here?
Thanks,
Ron

nope.




that was pretty delicate and it took a lot of patience and listening.
and then just being there and being an example of what could be.
and then having students who under the surface were not happy campers
any way. Probably had partly to do with I was in no rush to take on running a school. If I had come in with obvious agenda and ambition, probably the wagons would have been circled, because the senior students did consider their teacher their very good friend no matter what dissatisfaction they may have been feeling. Direct criticism would have been counterproductive. Me being very accomodating to him initially allowed the students to get to know me and then to trust and respect me. Eventually, I was not the one that voiced the problem, the students were the source of change.

what John Riggs said he is doing is all you really can do, just be very open and above board. If you act with integrity and openess, students worth having will respond. You represent your organization.

I now realize how much my teacher and his teacher shielded me from the negative aspects of our organization. That allowed me to develop a strong love for the art. Now I return the favor to my students. I do not confide the crazy stuff or gossip with my students. That is part of my job as sensei.
To let students concentrate on learning Aikido with only a dim awareness that an organization actually exists. To have experience of the best first.
To not be filled up with my jaded opinions reflecting my own dissappointing experiences because they haven't also had those wonderful moments and uniquely wonderful people who counterbalance the darker side of organizations.

You see it in any organization. Some parts grow rapidly because of the people leading that part. Other parts don't grow at all or shrivel or break off because of certain individuals practices. It's really almost impossible to avoid I think. If groups grow large enough, it becomes very hard not to have the demand on some indivduals time require a full time position. Shortly thereafter, a bureacracy is born and the need to feed it grows as the student population grows. Humans being who they, the issues in
coming up in this thread grow.

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Old 08-03-2004, 03:45 PM   #15
David Humm
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Hey fellas,

From what I'm lead to understand from previous dialogue with members of this board, is that there isn't any regulation governing Aikido generally within the United States, is this correct guys ?

If this is the case given the size of the U.S. I can appreciate that 'independent' dojo and organisations could be a common entity. Would you guys say that there is a lot (in relation) of bad aikido as a result of Aikidoists not affiliated to a respective Hombu or senior accredited Shihan ?

From my perspective, the issues raised in this thread are not uncommon with those here in the UK, it is my personal opinion Aikido in my country is on a slow but continual devolutionary process in some quarters.

Of course my opinion may be controversial (no change there then) but within the UK we have a small hand full of Hombu affiliated organisations that make up a minority within the majority of Aikidoists. At my last count there were 5 organisations (Aikikai only) there are of course affiliations to Yoshinkan, Iwama, Tomiki and Ki which increase the number to roughly 8 but, in contrast to the number of unaffiliated organisations, aprox 40, you can see that most are not responsible to anyone outside their own Principal Instructor.

The issue of gradings, particularly those held and gained by the Principal Instructors of unaffiliated organisations is unregulated and in *some* cases down right out of control.

Within the UK we have a number of "Shihan" "8th Dan" and " XX Dan Budo Grades" which seem to stem either directly within that person's own organisation or bizarrely, from outside organisations which have little to do with Aikido directly, and seem to be 'awarded' by a committee decision.

I posted recently a comment on another Aikido forum...

"I wonder when we'll see the first British 9th Dan ?" ... And I'm positive, that as soon as one Principal is 'promoted' we'll see others follow suit.

As an observation of Aikido generally here in the UK, through regular participation in annual and general seminars of various organisations, it would be fair to say that aikido appears to be a healthy entity however, if one looks a little deeper and explores beneath the surface, one will find organisations that don't teach suwari waza, buki waza, or techniques that *some* instructors no longer feel "appropriate".

I attended a dojo not a million miles away from my own to be shown a technique called Ikkyo. I can assure anyone reading this, that "ikkyo" was nothing like anything taught to me, it lacked almost every principle known to aikido. Of course one might argue this was down purely to the individual instructor but, I was reliable assured (when I politely challenged it) "this is HOW it's done" This all under the banner of "Traditional Aikido" according to the organisation's website, the Principal having trained in Aikikai Aikido in Japan in the 1960's.

Whilst I don't have much of an issue with people exploring technique or either expanding upon them perhaps with the intent of making Aikido more relevant to modern day society aka "street wise" however, I do have a very large problem with instructors/organisations doing this under the banner of "Traditional" or "Aikikai" aikido (or any other formal style for that matter)

Unfortunately politics is an evil that has widened the gap between organisations; I won't even go into the political debate purely because I try to avoid this issue as much as humanly possible.

I will however go so far as to say that, although being independent does not mean poor quality (quite the opposite sometimes) it does obviously mean a limited knowledge base. IE One Principal Instructor rather than a whole organisation to draw upon however, it is unfortunate there are some organisations far from mainstream aikido because there is no direct influence from anyone other than a principal instructor. Over a continued period of time, sometimes decades, 'things' are lost and inevitably never regained hence a process of devolution.
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Old 08-03-2004, 05:03 PM   #16
aikidoc
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

"From what I'm lead to understand from previous dialogue with members of this board, is that there isn't any regulation governing Aikido generally within the United States, is this correct guys ?" You've got it. We have no controls-you can pretty much claim anything you want here.

One of your comments is a particular bug of mine: Claiming to teach hombu or aikikai style aikido. I have seen this a lot and it sticks in my craw so to speak. If you make such a claim, at least have the decency to grab a tape or book of doshu doing the technique and to the best of your ability model it. To do otherwise makes you look real bad when a hombu instructor or yudansha visits you passing through and can't figure out what the heck you are doing. All hombu instructors may not be exact but they are in the ball park in their interpretation of a technique. I once had an independent instructor tell me what I was doing was not a hombu version of a technique. Now I had to bite the old tongue on that one. I take a lot of pride in trying real hard getting as close as I can. Having attended about 40 seminars with hombu instructors over the years it's hard to take that criticism from someone who probably had not trained under a hombu instructor in 40 years. I know-tell us how your really feel John.
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Old 08-03-2004, 05:59 PM   #17
David Humm
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
John Riggs wrote:
"
One of your comments is a particular bug of mine: Claiming to teach Hombu or Aikikai style aikido. I have seen this a lot and it sticks in my craw so to speak.
I've seen a couple of instances where an 'instructor' has taken instruction from Hombu Shihan, then claims to be "Aikikai" WTF !! (lol)

What can you do ? Fek all really because it's an uphill battle without an authority responsible for the conduct of Aikidoists.

We have a "Governing Body" in the UK - The British Aikido Board. Now, I'm responsible for a very large share of critique of this organisation. I make no secret of that however, I must accept they do, do an awful lot of good for British Aikido, unfortunately they lack either the drive or spirit to grip the issues described here.

Yes I can understand why they don't wish to get into issuing of grades or in fact a national curriculum (something I support) suggested not so long back at a BAB meeting, they are more of a service provider than a body that "governs" the discipline, the misunderstanding in the name I believe stems from the generalised title of "Governing Body" issued by Sport England for sports within the UK. Not that its wrong, merely that we don't have any regulatory control over very important issues relating to grades for independent Principal Instructors.

I'm not naive by any stretch, I know why organisations don't want affiliation with their respective Hombu, I personally feel its too much work for some of them to be responsible to someone else, and meet their standards.

God forbid we were actually got into the realms of challenging the providence of a Dan grade issued outside the authority of a respective Hombu !!

Whilst each of us has the 'apparent' ability to set up on our own and print off nice looking Dan grade certification for our students, as far as I'm concerned that bit of paper is only truly valid within that organisation's dojo and no where else.

I joined a Hombu affiliated organisation because I want to train to standards recognised internationally, when I present my "credentials" IE my Yudansha card, I would expect (in respectful terms) those grades are recognised as valid where ever I go, purely because of where they were issued from. No one can deny they haven't heard of Aikido Hombu Dojo Japan or the Ueshiba family.

The same isn't true of course with non affiliated or independent dojo/organisations, one Dan grade in XX dojo could well be entirely different in terms of standards to xxx dojo.

In the same dojo I mentioned in my last post, not one of the three shodan present on the mat could take dynamic ukemi, all wanted to "encourage" me to allow them to do a basic backward breakfall from shiho nage. The same was true for Kote etc etc. The standards were truly pitiful.

I heard a peach on the mat from a 1st kyu...

"if it ain't painful it ain't on!"

Why is this the case ? The answer is simple it stems from bullshit taught through the lines of instructors leading right back to the principal without responsibility to anyone else.

Not so interestingly so, The problems only seem to come from some non affiliated organisations, you don't see these problems within the Komyokan organisation headed by Terry Ezra, the United Kingdom Aikikai headed by William Smith, the British Aikido Federation headed by Kanetsuka Sensei, the British Aikikai headed by Chiba Sensei or any other organisation affiliated to their Hombu.

The standards in these few organisations off the top of my head, are some of the highest in this country, probably the highest amongst all of them to be honest. Unfortunately however the membership of all our affiliated organisations totals less than half (I would hazard a good guess) of all within the UK. Maintaining standards therefore becomes a real issue.

Regards
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Old 08-03-2004, 09:32 PM   #18
Charles Hill
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

I don't see why anyone would care what another dojo is doing. I once heard that if the individual teacher /student relationship is strong, nothing else matters. That makes the most sense to me.

Charles Hill
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Old 08-04-2004, 01:32 AM   #19
David Humm
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
Charles Hill wrote:
I don't see why anyone would care what another dojo is doing. I once heard that if the individual teacher /student relationship is strong, nothing else matters. That makes the most sense to me.

Charles Hill
Charles, please forgive my directness but, your attitude typifies EXACTLY why we have problems highlighted in this thread.

Whilst I understand your sentiments and their intent which I'm sure is well meant, quality of what we do 'globally' is effected, as is our reputation, when people see aikido through the eyes of instructors who are very much from the Mickey Mouse school of Aiki. With trumped up over inflated, self awarded grades in everything and anything; what hope do the students of these schools,dojo have ?

Being independant isn't bad but it seems to lead to paths away from mainstream aikido. Sometimes very poor quality aikido at that.

Regards
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Old 08-04-2004, 01:49 AM   #20
happysod
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
With trumped up over inflated, self awarded grades in everything and anything; what hope do the students of these schools,dojo have ?
as opposed to the squeaky clean BAB appointed grades?

Sorry Dave, but while I agree with some of your points concerning dilution, I feel you're coming on a bit strong in favour of a group who you yourself have castigated quite severely for allowing self-promotion at the expense of truth?

Also, a good question to ask is why there's so many independents in the UK. Is it that we British just can't cope with a central authority outside the UK? Or could it the intransigence of certain senior members in the BAB has had an effect?

(Also, for those outside the UK, I must point out that while the BAB is indeed recognised by the govt. this is not the only way for aikido dojos in the UK to get official government recognition and outside input on their higher grades. Many independents prefer to go through the AMA and avoid the BAB and it's edicts altogether)
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Old 08-04-2004, 02:38 AM   #21
David Humm
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
Ian Hurst wrote:
as opposed to the squeaky clean BAB appointed grades?

Sorry Dave, but while I agree with some of your points concerning dilution, I feel you're coming on a bit strong in favour of a group who you yourself have castigated quite severely for allowing self-promotion at the expense of truth?

Also, a good question to ask is why there's so many independents in the UK. Is it that we British just can't cope with a central authority outside the UK? Or could it the intransigence of certain senior members in the BAB has had an effect?

(Also, for those outside the UK, I must point out that while the BAB is indeed recognised by the govt. this is not the only way for aikido dojos in the UK to get official government recognition and outside input on their higher grades. Many independents prefer to go through the AMA and avoid the BAB and it's edicts altogether)
Lets clear up any misunderstanding, The BAB have in my eyes a LONG way to go to illustrate they are improving as an organisation.

I don't however feel that the reason (or in part) for the many organisations here in the UK is because of the BAB themselves, quite the opposite IMHO, I think these independent organisations actually seek some form of "recognition" and whom better to be seen to gain that from the "Governing Body"

Yes I fully agree with your comments about being able to gain membership of other organisations you mention, but I have a problem when an instructor gains a Dan Grade in aikido from a grading panel or committee consisting of (For instance) Ju jitsu/Karate/Judo and this has happened on a number of occasions within the UK.

Whilst I mentioned the BAB as an organisation which could be responsible for the issuing of "senior" Yudansha grades, I was only talking about that in principle. I strongly doubt that would ever get off the ground.
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Old 08-04-2004, 06:24 AM   #22
philipsmith
Dojo: Ren Shin Kan
Location: Birmingham
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 312
United Kingdom
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

I sincerely hope that the BAB does not award grades ever.
Their purpose as a governing body is to ensure that Aikido is practised (and taught) safely in the UK. To that end they are not a setter of technical standards but a vetting body.
An analogy would be the MOT test for motor vehicles. It ensures a car is safe to be on the road but does not regulate its top speed etc.

One possible way forward would be for the BAB to only recognise (not award) grades given by the various Hombu dojos (Aikikai, Yoshinkan et al.). That way people can call themselves what they like in their own association but that may well be different from the recognised standard grade.
If they were to try to introduce a standard curriculum or syllabus who is going to devise it? Would everyone have to do some Tomiki Aikido? and so on.

Freedom is the best course provided there is a "Gold Standard" available so that people can measure themselves against it.
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Old 08-04-2004, 07:17 AM   #23
ruthmc
Dojo: Wokingham Aikido
Location: Reading, UK
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 393
United Kingdom
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

I agree with Philip. The BAB is there to promote safety and standards in teaching. If our instructors have recognised coaching qualifications and have to be at a certain standard to obtain them, I think this will improve the standard of Aikido being taught in the UK.

Your Aikikai Hombu yudansha card would not be automatically accepted in a Ki dojo, as the testing that they do requires different skills to other styles. I have a feeling that this may also be the case in Tomiki dojos. The other styles vary from dojo to dojo about what they will recognise in terms of your grade. Therefore I think that it is a good idea for the organisations to police themselves when it comes to awarding grades, and the BAB to provide insurance and coaching skills accreditation.

Ruth
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Old 08-04-2004, 08:57 PM   #24
Charles Hill
Dojo: Numazu Aikikai/Aikikai Honbu Dojo
Location: Three Lakes WI/ Mishima Japan
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 837
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Quote:
Dave Humm wrote:
quality of what we do 'globally' is effected, as is our reputation,
Hi Dave,

I just don't see it. It is my belief that my training is very personal, a relationship between my teacher and me. I'm sure you're a nice guy and probably your aikido is very good, but that has nothing to do with my personal development. I think that there is nothing wrong with organizations. However, it is my sneaking suspicion that when there is any kind of trouble in terms of an organization, it is due to a breakdown in the teacher/student relationship. My question to those concerned with bad organizations, independents, and the like is, are you training with a particular teacher, one that you totally believe in and intend to follow?

Charles Hill
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Old 08-05-2004, 07:51 AM   #25
Nick Simpson
Dojo: White Rose Aikido - Durham University
Location: Gateshead
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 916
United Kingdom
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Re: Organizations, Sokes, Independents oh my

Im in an Independant organisation, it has links to many other uk instructors and the hong kong aikikai (to the best of my knowledge), I am very very happy and proud to be a member of this organisation and I totally believe in, respect immensely and intend to follow (in aikido) the people that I call Sensei, especially our head instructor, who unfortuantely I have limited access to due to distance, but I am always willing to travel the 200 or so mile round trip to attend one of his classes whenever I can.

They're all screaming about the rock n roll, but I would say that it's getting old. - REFUSED.
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