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Old 06-29-2000, 09:20 AM   #1
akiy
 
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Working the flip-side here...

What makes a good student?

What kind of qualities do you like seeing in a student of yours?

What kind of student keeps you coming back, as a teacher, day in and day out to the dojo?

-- Jun

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Old 06-29-2000, 09:34 AM   #2
Nick
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The qualities that make a good teacher are the same that make up a good student. Like Kensho Furuya said: "A good black belt is first a good white belt."

---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
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Old 06-29-2000, 09:38 AM   #3
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Nick,

I think you hit the nail on the head. The only thing I would add is... Don't give up!

Chuck Clark
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Old 06-29-2000, 05:21 PM   #4
George S. Ledyard
 
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Good Student

In my mind the crucial factor in making a good student is "hunger" to know more, to understand what is dificult to understand. That isn't to say that there aren't students whose training has a lot of value to them, who don't make a strong contribution to the dojo, etc. who aren't driven by this strong desire. But every person who has attained a really high level of skill has this burning desire to understand, to master, to really internalize the principles of their art.

I have students who live this stuff. They train consistently, very hard. They are interested in every aspect of the art ie. they've read every book published on the subject, they have at least seen if not own just about every video they could get their hands on. The hit every seminar that takes place within driving distance of the Seattle area (that represents about a ten hour drive radius) and travel for others. They work on the things I teach outside of class. They show up at class with questions generated by their out of class practice. They create variations on things I've taught them and come back and show me. They have notebooks that go far beyond the handbook I have developed. They are studying Japanese to help with their training. They are always available to help the junior stuents and constantly encourage them to train harder and raise their expectations of themselves.

These guys are going to be top notch instructors someday. I have no doubt that they will exceed me in understanding and ability. They embody all the traints that I would look for in a student that wishes to go the distance and be a teacher ine day.

Does this mean that anyone who doesn't embody these traits isa bad student? No! There are always a very small number of people who can make the commitment to train at this level. They represent the model not the norm. Every student can take that model and make the commitment that suits his or her dseires and lifestyle by only taking on as much of the model as fits for them. But it is useful I think for the students to see other people who do embody the model. It helps to keep people's expectations in line with their commitment.

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
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Aikido Eastside
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Old 06-30-2000, 02:49 PM   #5
Nick
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I also believe that technical skill has nothing to do with being a good student- it's their attitude. I have to believe that because my waza is crap , but still- if their technical skill is bad, it can be worked on. If their attitude is bad, nothing can be done by the senseis to fix it, and it slows down the progress of more than just that student...

Sorry for rambling,

-Nick

---
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"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
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Old 07-01-2000, 09:41 AM   #6
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Cool

I think a good student is someone who not only is hunger or a great tori or uke. but one who understands the concepts and the whole picture of aikido. It is so hard to remember sometimes the true value of aikido.I know i forget sometimes it is all about learning new throws and get promoted. But in reality good students dont think about that for it is competing with other people " I am going to be better than you" or " i know more throws than you" a good student looks at the big picture and trys to live by the true meaning of non compitition and body mind and spirit.

"the hurryer I go the behinder i get"
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Old 07-01-2000, 10:10 AM   #7
Nick
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Competitiveness is not Aikido, as stated by O-sensei, so thinking competitively does not make you a good student, because by those guidelines, you are no longer an aikidoka.

-Nick

---
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Old 07-02-2000, 01:33 AM   #8
dave
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Smile bad attitudes

Quote:
Nick wrote:
I also believe that technical skill has nothing to do with being a good student- it's their attitude. I have to believe that because my waza is crap , but still- if their technical skill is bad, it can be worked on. If their attitude is bad, nothing can be done by the senseis to fix it, and it slows down the progress of more than just that student...

Sorry for rambling,

-Nick
Im not sure nick, my very 1st sensi had a way of adjusting attitudes,and students generally wanted to learn or learned aikido was not for them,and also not as soft as they heard.1 student could not possibly hold another back,if they were lazy and insincere they just never made it past the 1st 6 weeks of ukemi. He was also very old world japanese,formal,we did not talk on the mat.maybe once or twice a week he would explain what he ment For about 30 seconds.my 2nd sensi much the same,so I have trouble with more americanized dojos/sensis.There is room for everyone and a teacher for all if they want to learn.well sorry for babling.

your Kindness IS your greatness
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Old 07-02-2000, 07:45 AM   #9
Nick
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well then- perhaps this is appropriate:

"What makes a good student?"

A good teacher.

-Nick

---
Nick Porter
"Do not fall into the trap of the artisan who boasts twenty years of experience, when in fact he has had only one year of experience-- twenty times."
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Old 07-03-2000, 10:35 PM   #10
Erik
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Quote:
Nick wrote:
Competitiveness is not Aikido, as stated by O-sensei, so thinking competitively does not make you a good student, because by those guidelines, you are no longer an aikidoka.

-Nick
I dunno about this. Lets say there was this guy, we'll call him Mr. Tomiki for instance. Let's say that Mr. Tomiki had interesting ideas and one of those interesting ideas was to introduce competition into Aikido. Now I would bet that some of his students would think competitively but were they then not doing Aikido? Kind of hard to say isn't it? It's even harder to say what Aikido is.

I don't think competition is inherently bad. In fact, I've seen good things come from it and I've also seen some not so good things. It depends a lot on the individual and the context of competition.

well then- perhaps this is appropriate:

"What makes a good student?"

A good teacher.


Not to pick you to death but another way this could read is

"What makes a good teacher?"

A good student.

Really you can't have one without the other. Take a look at sports and how we hype up coaches like Phil Jackson (Laker's coach). Sure he is good, damn good but give him the Clippers and see how many games he wins. You need both.
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Old 07-04-2000, 12:38 AM   #11
dave
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Smile just not aikido then

Quote:
Erik wrote:
Quote:
Nick wrote:
Competitiveness is not Aikido, as stated by O-sensei, so thinking competitively does not make you a good student, because by those guidelines, you are no longer an aikidoka.

-Nick
I dunno about this. Lets say there was this guy, we'll call him Mr. Tomiki for instance. Let's say that Mr. Tomiki had interesting ideas and one of those interesting ideas was to introduce competition into Aikido. Now I would bet that some of his students would think competitively but were they then not doing Aikido? Kind of hard to say isn't it? It's even harder to say what Aikido is.

I don't think competition is inherently bad. In fact, I've seen good things come from it and I've also seen some not so good things. It depends a lot on the individual and the context of competition.

well then- perhaps this is appropriate:

"What makes a good student?"

A good teacher.


Not to pick you to death but another way this could read is

"What makes a good teacher?"

A good student.

Really you can't have one without the other. Take a look at sports and how we hype up coaches like Phil Jackson (Laker's coach). Sure he is good, damn good but give him the Clippers and see how many games he wins. You need both.
sorry guy I cant tell if the post is erik or nick,I think it is erik though,This is really not just semmantics as fun as they can be.ITs simple and word games cant change it.many people are spiritual,many budo,many aikido,but one doesnt mean the other.Competative and or violent destructive energy,used to maim,kill,and permanently disable IS NOT aikido and people of every age,race,belief system in history have used every justificaction conceivable to hide behind Aikido will be no exception.Aikido is non-contention or the aikidoka has failed to put aikido into action we are human we will fail much but the fault is ours in execution or understanding the basis of aikido at all.So I also disagree with chuck on the woman in the alley scene.she has the choice to use aikido OR Kill them but if she had been using aikido she wouldnt be there at all.and as I have seen chuck post ther is no aikido in war,and Osensi taught there is no war/enemy in aikido.So erik its aikido or it is not non of us should justify our weakness,and fear,agrressive,violent untrained tendencies though and hide behind aikido.be sure if someone broke my door down and violently entered my home it would not be aikdo I used to stop them it would surely be somthing more primative and destructive but I could never justify that energy as aikido O'sensis teaching is clear enough to see that. semmantics are for endless philosophys and they are great for funcompatition but thats not aikido either.

your Kindness IS your greatness
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Old 07-04-2000, 11:06 AM   #12
Erik
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Re: just not aikido then

[quote]dave wrote:
Quote:
ITs simple and word games cant change it.many people are spiritual,many budo,many aikido,but one doesnt mean the other.Competative and or violent destructive energy,used to maim,kill,and permanently disable IS NOT aikido and people of every age,race,belief system in history have used every justificaction conceivable to hide behind Aikido will be no exception.Aikido is non-contention or the aikidoka has failed to put aikido into action we are human we will fail much but the fault is ours in execution or understanding the basis of aikido at all.So I also disagree with chuck on the woman in the alley scene.she has the choice to use aikido OR Kill them but if she had been using aikido she wouldnt be there at all.and as I have seen chuck post ther is no aikido in war,and Osensi taught there is no war/enemy in aikido.So erik its aikido or it is not non of us should justify our weakness,and fear,agrressive,violent untrained tendencies though and hide behind aikido.be sure if someone broke my door down and violently entered my home it would not be aikdo I used to stop them it would surely be somthing more primative and destructive but I could never justify that energy as aikido O'sensis teaching is clear enough to see that. semmantics are for endless philosophys and they are great for funcompatition but thats not aikido either.
I guess we should post warning notices at the post office which say, "warning, Tomiki school nearby, strong potential for raping, maiming, pillaging and other general mayhem by non-aikidoka hiding as aikidoka. It hasn't happened yet but they're strong advocates of death and destruction and don't practice Aikido the way we think they should. Because of this we are certain of what's really in their mind, it's not Aikido, so keep the shelter stocked and prepare for the worst."

If you hunt down one of Chuck's posts on Tomiki you would read his comments that the style was created so that younger students might become interested in the art on one level (competition) and through that interest be introduced to deeper levels in the art. I don't know if that's Aikido or not but by your definition there's only one way to do and think Aikido, so I guess it isn't Aikido.

If O'Sensei's teachings were so full of crystal clarity and astounding perfection why is it that there is so much disagreement on exactly what Aikido is? Why do so many people do it differently? Maybe you were there with O'Sensei and learned the truth from him and you alone grasped the infinite meaning of his truth. That's good because no one else seems to have.

And dude isn't it a long jump from competition to maiming, killing and permanently disabling people? It's funny but this happens to me a lot in discussions about this art. Incredible knee jerk reactions to things into bizarre and strange assertions. All usually because I don't pull out my Aikido bible and answer appropriately.

First I'm shallow and I hate fat sensei (of course, there's never been a fat, lazy or lousy Aikido sensei) and now I'm one of the 4 horsemen. Sheesh.


[Edited by Erik on July 4, 2000 at 08:04pm]
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Old 07-04-2000, 05:48 PM   #13
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There's a saying: "Good teachers have good students."

This can be interpreted a number of (compatible) ways. It could mean that the abilities (both in respect of skill and in respect of pedagogy) rub off on the students. A teacher who can't identify a mistake can't correct one, and a teacher who can't recognize a strength can't encourage/develop it in a student.

It could also mean that the reason someone is recognized as a good teacher is by the quality of the students the teacher produces. It has been said that if a teacher can't produce a student that exceeds his/her own abilities, s/he isn't a good teacher. It could also mean that having good students drives the teacher's own improvements. A teacher who doesn't improve along with his/her students either lacks good students, or is lacking himself/herself.

Sometimes the teacher drives the students, and sometimes the student drives the teacher. Sometimes the teacher is the student, and sometimes the student is the teacher. Sometimes maybe there is neither teacher nor student.


Eric Sotnak
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Would a country run by the media be a "mediocracy"?
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Old 07-04-2000, 11:12 PM   #14
dave
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Smile Re: Re: just not aikido then

[quote]Erik wrote:
Quote:
dave wrote:
Quote:
ITs simple and word games cant change it.many people are spiritual,many budo,many aikido,but one doesnt mean the other.Competative and or violent destructive energy,used to maim,kill,and permanently disable IS NOT aikido and people of every age,race,belief system in history have used every justificaction conceivable to hide behind Aikido will be no exception.Aikido is non-contention or the aikidoka has failed to put aikido into action we are human we will fail much but the fault is ours in execution or understanding the basis of aikido at all.So I also disagree with chuck on the woman in the alley scene.she has the choice to use aikido OR Kill them but if she had been using aikido she wouldnt be there at all.and as I have seen chuck post ther is no aikido in war,and Osensi taught there is no war/enemy in aikido.So erik its aikido or it is not non of us should justify our weakness,and fear,agrressive,violent untrained tendencies though and hide behind aikido.be sure if someone broke my door down and violently entered my home it would not be aikdo I used to stop them it would surely be somthing more primative and destructive but I could never justify that energy as aikido O'sensis teaching is clear enough to see that. semmantics are for endless philosophys and they are great for funcompatition but thats not aikido either.
I guess we should post warning notices at the post office which say, "warning, Tomiki school nearby, strong potential for raping, maiming, pillaging and other general mayhem by non-aikidoka hiding as aikidoka. It hasn't happened yet but they're strong advocates of death and destruction and don't practice Aikido the way we think they should. Because of this we are certain of what's really in their mind, it's not Aikido, so keep the shelter stocked and prepare for the worst."

If you hunt down one of Chuck's posts on Tomiki you would read his comments that the style was created so that younger students might become interested in the art on one level (competition) and through that interest be introduced to deeper levels in the art. I don't know if that's Aikido or not but by your definition there's only one way to do and think Aikido, so I guess it isn't Aikido.

If O'Sensei's teachings were so full of crystal clarity and astounding perfection why is it that there is so much disagreement on exactly what Aikido is? Why do so many people do it differently? Maybe you were there with O'Sensei and learned the truth from him and you alone grasped the infinite meaning of his truth. That's good because no one else seems to have.

And dude isn't it a long jump from competition to maiming, killing and permanently disabling people? It's funny but this happens to me a lot in discussions about this art. Incredible knee jerk reactions to things into bizarre and strange assertions. All usually because I don't pull out my Aikido bible and answer appropriately.

First I'm shallow and I hate fat sensei (of course, there's never been a fat, lazy or lousy Aikido sensei) and now I'm one of the 4 horsemen. Sheesh.


[Edited by Erik on July 4, 2000 at 08:04pm]
horsemen NO! condesending,yes! you still wish to compeate with arugment and semmantics so I am very sorry I added fule to your fire,I respect your choice to enjoy competative sports,and wish you the best.

your Kindness IS your greatness
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Old 07-05-2000, 12:25 AM   #15
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Mr. Dave (?)

I respect and will always defend your right to disagree.

On this subject, and I suspect more, we'll have to agree to disagree.

Sincerely,

Chuck Clark
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Old 07-05-2000, 12:53 AM   #16
Erik
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Re: Re: Re: just not aikido then

dave wrote:
Quote:
horsemen NO! condesending,yes! you still wish to compeate with arugment and semmantics so I am very sorry I added fule to your fire,I respect your choice to enjoy competative sports,and wish you the best.
Actually I was trying to make a point and it wasn't semantics. Your response was so vituperative (I just wanted to use the word) that I didn't see another option.

Anyways, good look in doing your Aikido and I'll keep doing my Aikido, just as soon as I figure out what mine is.

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Old 07-05-2000, 11:50 AM   #17
dave
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In agreemaent

Quote:
Chuck Clark wrote:
Mr. Dave (?)

I respect and will always defend your right to disagree.

On this subject, and I suspect more, we'll have to agree to disagree.

Sincerely,
I am in full agreement,as you say aikiBUDO,this indicates a different idea.erik would do better to say tomikibudo.thanks chuck,I appreciate your comments.

your Kindness IS your greatness
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Old 07-05-2000, 02:14 PM   #18
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Re: In agreemaent

Quote:
dave wrote:
I am in full agreement,as you say aikiBUDO,this indicates a different idea.erik would do better to say tomikibudo.
Quick question -- are you saying that Tomiki aikido is not aikido?

As for what Chuck calls his art, I wouldn't care if he called it Foobar-do. I've been fortunate enough to feel what he does, and it's good aikido to me.

-- Jun

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Old 07-05-2000, 02:45 PM   #19
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Actually, I think what we all practice is "aiki jitsu" and what we aspire to live is "aikiDO."

The physical taijitsu is efficient practice and refinement of our abilities to replicate principle in the form of techniques. Our spiritual intent and how it is actualized at all times can become aikido. It's about how we live and how we treat other beings. We call our practice aikido because it's what we aspire to.

Aikibudo is the prewar term that I choose as an overall description of the budo we practice in Jiyushinkai.




Chuck Clark
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Old 07-05-2000, 07:21 PM   #20
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Re: Re: In agreemaent

Quote:
akiy wrote:
Quote:
dave wrote:
I am in full agreement,as you say aikiBUDO,this indicates a different idea.erik would do better to say tomikibudo.
Quick question -- are you saying that Tomiki aikido is not aikido?

As for what Chuck calls his art, I wouldn't care if he called it Foobar-do. I've been fortunate enough to feel what he does, and it's good aikido to me.

-- Jun
I am greatful Chuck has clearified the post,and has explained the actual point I was trying to make.Please forgive me if anyone has misunderstood,I am in opposition to noones art or belief.I do not explain myself well and am sorry for my weakness in my ability to clearly communicate.Jun you say it well when you said you have felt his art.That is how we learn these dos not by language,well I dont anyway.

your Kindness IS your greatness
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Old 07-07-2000, 11:22 PM   #21
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Eric & Dave,
Just a suggestion, but when you choose to use a quote, it's possible to edit the quote down to just the relevant sentence(s) in the "Your Reply" window
by deleting the part that's not necessary.
There's so much scrolling to do that your point really gets lost,,,and makes everyone dizzy

May the force be with you!
AikiTom
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Old 07-08-2000, 11:20 AM   #22
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Cool aikiDO

Chuck,

I found your comment on aikiDO vs. aikiJITSU (I think it is spelled jutsu more commonly) to be quite thought-provoking. I link that comment to a paragraph in "Aikido and the Harmony of Nature" in which Saotome Sensei speaks of the limits of human abilities. In the book it goes something like this, "[One can never completely understand, only DO (aikiDO); one can never fully know, only learn...]"

I send this word of praise to everyone who had anything to do with the book "Aikido and the Harmony of Nature"......This is the most powerful, passionate, truest (most non-fiction) "Bible" I've ever glimpsed at, let alone read.

It is page after page of pure hope, and doesn't even have a guise of science fiction. Thank you to all who came together in writing and publishing this book, and to those who wrote other books which supplement it.

The best science fiction book I've ever read is Dune (I never read any of the other books in the "series"), and the single best nonfiction book I've read is this one, "Aikido and the Harmony of Nature."

Kiais of Rei, Hokori, Hikari, and Gratitude (Shihonage),

Drew

hara-kiri for the fear-mongers,
sushi-waza for the peace-makers.

--The great dream shared among my friends--

--Please see [u]Aikido and the Harmony of Nature[u] [i]illustration:[i] p. 125. Mitsugi-san, I taught you aikido in my former life, and no
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Old 07-08-2000, 03:40 PM   #23
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posting

Quote:
AikiTom wrote:
Eric & Dave,
Just a suggestion, but when you choose to use a quote, it's possible to edit the quote down to just the relevant sentence(s) in the "Your Reply" window
by deleting the part that's not necessary.
There's so much scrolling to do that your point really gets lost,,,and makes everyone dizzy
Tom thank you for that info I am new to the board and unsure how this works.thank you.

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Old 07-10-2000, 10:24 PM   #24
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I still dunno how to do quotes... oh well .

-Nick

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Old 07-13-2000, 11:00 AM   #25
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To quote a message, push the button at the top of the message that you wish to quote. I use it sparingly since, usually, the message I'm replying to is the one immediately previous to the one I'm writing or I'm replying to the entire thread...

-- Jun

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