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Old 03-22-2005, 01:31 PM   #276
akiy
 
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Re: Equitable?

Hi folks,

Can you please take your personal arguments off of the public forums and into private messages and/or e-mail -- regardless of "who started it"?

Let's try to stick on-topic of this thread, please. Thanks.

-- Jun

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Old 03-22-2005, 01:59 PM   #277
akiy
 
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Re: Equitable?

The posts on "Atemi and Irimi" have been relocated here:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7769

The non-constructive posts have been removed.

We now take you back to the topic at hand -- gender inequalities in aikido.

-- Jun

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Old 03-23-2005, 02:22 PM   #278
Jane Woodcock
 
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Re: Equitable?

I must admit I have never reallt thought about gender in aikido. I have always been told there is not gender and that is how I view it. I have never felt that I am treated any differently to the males that I train with and vice versa. In fact the only problem I have is reminding them that I have a diff chest to them and to ask them to be careful when kneeling and applying the finishes to koshinage for instance. that can get a bit sore.
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Old 03-23-2005, 04:27 PM   #279
mj
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Jane Woodcock wrote:
... In fact the only problem I have is reminding them that I have a diff chest to them and to ask them to be careful when kneeling....
God, I have actually done this. I can tell you I felt extremely embarrassed. And it looked extremely painful.

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Old 03-26-2005, 02:01 PM   #280
Paul
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Venus and Mars

Perhaps we should accept this fact and realise that because of this there will always be a lack of equality within the martial arts. I believe that because aikido is Japanese it is male biased. I believe this will change when the last of the original uchi deshi pass away and with them their mind set. Before anyone jumps on this, yes I am saying that all of the Japanese instructors I have trained with are sexist, from our western frame of reference. Woman instructors are coming through and this with time, a lot of time, will address the balance.

I read a very good book, on this very subject when I was wrestling with it as an instructor, the name of the author escapes me. She, the authors, premise was that men are visual learners and woman are auditory learners. Regardless of the science, which she went into in great depth, this rang true with me and certainly went a long way to helping me nuture female students. Any woman out there care to comment on whether they agree with the visual auditory thing. I think that because aikido is taught by men, mainly, that it is automatically biased towards us.

The next question is does it matter? Yes it does. Enough for a string this long. Absolutely no! There are much more pressing issues and much more personal issue to be solved in aikido.

Regards Paul.

P.S. Is everyone aware that Yamada sensei is coming to Edinburgh in October. The only reason I say is that this kind of discussion is better discussed over a pint.

Regards Paul Finn
Edinburgh
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Old 03-26-2005, 05:05 PM   #281
Lorien Lowe
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Re: Venus and Mars

Quote:
Paul Finn wrote:
Perhaps we should accept this fact and realise that because of this there will always be a lack of equality within the martial arts.
I wouldn't mind a lack of equality if I could be sure that it was only because women just aren't attracted to martial arts as much as men - which I think is probably true to some degree - and not because they face discouragement from a negative dojo atmosphere. Which, unfortunately, I think also does happen.

-LK
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Old 03-27-2005, 11:34 AM   #282
Janet Rosen
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Re: Venus and Mars

Quote:
Paul Finn wrote:
She, the authors, premise was that men are visual learners and woman are auditory learners.
Paul, I know you are just passing this along, so I'm not criticising you...but I'm not aware of any studies that support this, I and many women I know are NOT at all auditory learners (its the LEAST usefal path for me) and what about us kinesthetic learners: are we asexual or hermaphrodite?

Janet Rosen
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"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 03-27-2005, 10:35 PM   #283
Karen King
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[quote=Paul Finn]Perhaps we should accept this fact and realise that because of this there will always be a lack of equality within the martial arts. I believe that because aikido is Japanese it is male biased. I believe this will change when the last of the original uchi deshi pass away and with them their mind set. Before anyone jumps on this, yes I am saying that all of the Japanese instructors I have trained with are sexist, from our western frame of reference. ]

I am not seeking to undermine or question your experience, but my sensei is a high ranking Japanese male who has been very supportive of women in our dojo. By supportive I mean if you train vigorously and often he will give as much as you give to your training, male or female, he uses just as many women for ukemi as men and so on.

Also, from everything I've seen and heard, having been to a number of seminars with Chiba Sensei and students of Chiba Sensei, and looking at the number of high ranking and really superb female senseis that have studied with him, I don't think its quite right to say that all the uchideshi of O'Sensei are sexist. In fact, just looking at the number of high ranking, really kick butt women in Western Region would put that to rest.

Just speaking from my own experience, I have found for the most part that if I trained hard and put myself out there, my instructors have recognized that. I think if that were not the case, I would have found myself a new dojo a long time ago.
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Old 03-29-2005, 02:20 AM   #284
Natasha Bradley
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Re: Equitable?

I have no statistics, but from my own observance, I think generally women just don't do martial arts for social reasons. In the town where I live, the council subsidize a scheme where the children have a choice in following introductory courses in all sorts of sports, such figure skating and horse riding. As far as I know, every child at a primary school in this town receives a list of the possibilities. My daughter enrolled in the judo. Of the 18 children, on the course, only 4 are girls. On the other hand, the ballet classes my daughters follow have long waiting lists and I think there are only one or two boys in the junior classes. And talking to my female friends (those not into Aikido) they seem to frightened of the physical aspects of martial arts, of getting hurt. So they don't even get as far as going to a dojo, let alone ever knowing whether males dominate there or not. However, I think this attitude might change slowly if there enough female role models. Perhaps some one ought to make a movie with a female aikidoka who kicks ass but retains her femininity, like Micheline Tissier-Valliant Sensei. After all, however good Steven Seagal's aikido is, most girls don't actually want to be like him.

Natasha.
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Old 03-29-2005, 12:03 PM   #285
giriasis
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Re: Equitable?

I've felt the same way for the reason we don't see as many women as men walking into a dojo as it's more related to social/ cultural reasons. Once we step in the dojo, my impression from this thread is that they (we) are treated in an equitable manner -- for the most part. What I have begun to notice is that, at least where I train, of the number of women who are registered in the dojo a larger percentage of them practice more regularly. For example, my dojo is about 18% female but we often make up 25-33% of the people on the mat on most nights. And some nights we can make up close to 40% on the mat. But there are days when I'm the only woman on the mat. I don't despair that though as I, at times, like being the only woman on the mat.

In regards to the theory on learning patterns. I'm quite the visual and kinesthetic learner. I need to see something down and feel it done before I really get it. Although it helps that I have verbal instruction when confused but in the end I don't really learn it until I see what I'm doing wrong and then do the right thing.

Just a note: Molly Hale is teaching at the AikiExpo: http://www.aikidojournal.com/?id=613

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 03-29-2005, 12:45 PM   #286
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: Equitable?

Cool...that sounds like it will be a very cool class.

We did part of class on Sunday sitting crosslegged as nage. It was pretty intense and very fun.
Mary
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Old 03-29-2005, 01:50 PM   #287
Meggy Gurova
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote:
For example, my dojo is about 18% female but we often make up 25-33% of the people on the mat on most nights. And some nights we can make up close to 40% on the mat. But there are days when I'm the only woman on the mat. I don't despair that though as I, at times, like being the only woman on the mat.
Cool! It's exactly the same in our dojo! And I've noticed that the few woman that train are more interested in aikido then most of the men. In our dojo women come and try aikido and if they don't like it they leave after their 6 kyu and if they make it to 4 kyu they usually stay for a long time. And it feels like the men in our dojo are there for other reasons like "I'm expected as a male to do martial arts, but actually I'm more interested in playing piano (or whatever)".
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Old 03-29-2005, 01:55 PM   #288
Meggy Gurova
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Hmmmmm... not in a fight, she's not. We're talking about martial arts (or at least I and a few others are). What high-level woman martial artist do you want to put up against a high-level male martial artist? Give me a name.
Mike Sigman
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Now the nature has made us lighter and shorter, but don't forget there are strong heavy women and very thin and short men!
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Old 03-29-2005, 02:04 PM   #289
rob_liberti
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Re: Equitable?

"I'm expected as a male to do martial arts, but actually I'm more interested in playing piano (or whatever)"

Really? I have never had the feeling that I was expected to do martial arts because I am a male. I have so many friends who are male that cannot imagine why I do aikido. Most think, why don't you just get a gun, or he mnust not like like watching TV...

I admit that if I could play the piano, I would be a lot more interested, but I would only be willing to play if I could learn to play in like 10 minutes or so! - as opposed to martial arts. I suppose for me, I am pretty good at solving problems, and what attracts me to aikido is that it is a multifaceted problems that keeps having more and more difficult (and interesting to me) things to solve. I wonder if that type of problem-solving is one of those things that more men typically prefer - I have no idea!

Rob

Last edited by rob_liberti : 03-29-2005 at 02:14 PM.
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Old 03-29-2005, 02:21 PM   #290
Mike Sigman
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Meggy Gurova wrote:
Any woman that is heavier than the man in front of her, that's for sure!
Now the nature has made us lighter and shorter, but don't forget there are strong heavy women and very thin and short men!
I understand and agree, Meggy. However, the question I asked, just in order to avoid what you're saying, was: What high-level woman martial artist do you want to put up against a high-level male martial artist? .

Although many people in Aikido try to emasculate it, Aikido is still basically a physical martial art... who would honestly expect women to equal men statistically in this sort of thing? I am reminded of the old Irish saying: God grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Surely we can recognize what cannot be changed in this instance? Natasha basically pointed out the problem when she said, "After all, however good Steven Seagal's aikido is, most girls don't actually want to be like him." Women are not necessarily driven by the same things men are... and aren't we glad of that in so many cases?

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 03-29-2005, 10:00 PM   #291
rob_liberti
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Re: Equitable?

We should at least wait until there is a level playing field until we make such comparisons. At this point, it is too early to just jump to a conclusion based on the current situation. Of course I can't think of any extremely well trained females which are at the level of the extremely well trained males - but I think that might just be because those males started training a long time before any of the females. Until the generation of extremely well trained males with no female counterparts dies off, we just don't have the right information to draw the gender based conclusions being alluded to.

Emasculate aikido? I guess I just don't think that aikido had balls to castrate in the first place.

Rob
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Old 03-30-2005, 12:36 AM   #292
Meggy Gurova
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Re: Equitable?

[quote=Mike Sigman]I understand and agree, Meggy. However, the question I asked, just in order to avoid what you're saying, was: What high-level woman martial artist do you want to put up against a high-level male martial artist? .
I got that all wrong

Rob about the piano playing I just have the feeling is like that in Our dojo. Maybe because the men are not there as often as the few women that train, and because of the young age of the men training and the testosterone in the air. I hope I'm wrong, but still I think it's easy to see from how people train, if that's their lifestyle or if they are there because the other alternative for them is sit at home and watch TV (witch they try to avoid).
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Old 03-30-2005, 02:46 AM   #293
ruthmc
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
Although many people in Aikido try to emasculate it, Aikido is still basically a physical martial art...
What on earth do you mean by this Mike? Women are just as physical as men when it comes to sports! (Have you ever seen a mixed hockey game? The guys are often backing off from the girls as they thunder down the pitch, sticks swinging ) Equating physicality with masculinity is a non-starter in the 21st Century!

Ruth
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Old 03-30-2005, 05:51 AM   #294
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Ruth McWilliam wrote:
Women are just as physical as men when it comes to sports!
In that case women and men play on the same teams in the UK? The Rugby and Footy teams, say Manchester United, have professional women athletes? The league teams mix men and women because "women are just as physical as men when it comes to sport"? I can see that realism isn't going to be popular all-around in this discussion.

What I wonder is that there hasn't been a large movement by people who believe as you do that women and men should compete in the same events in the Olympics. I personally think that would be fair. Do you?

Regards,

Mike Sigman
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:02 AM   #295
Mike Sigman
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
We should at least wait until there is a level playing field until we make such comparisons. At this point, it is too early to just jump to a conclusion based on the current situation. Of course I can't think of any extremely well trained females which are at the level of the extremely well trained males - but I think that might just be because those males started training a long time before any of the females. Until the generation of extremely well trained males with no female counterparts dies off, we just don't have the right information to draw the gender based conclusions being alluded to.
So, Rob.... are you then one of the "nurturists" that believes women would be just like men, particularly in sports, if they'd just been raised like men (the ultimate "playing field")? I don't know if you follow social anthropology and archeology the way I do (it's a hobby), but you need to understand that even in the most liberal colleges of today they're freely admitting that there are gender differences all over the place... something they refused to do in the 70's. Those days are over, Rob. We're just animals with survival strategies that involve having 2 genders with slightly different responsibilities and statistically demonstrable physical traits. I wish it were more exalting than that, but let's work with what we've got and not make it more or less than it is. Women as not (statistically) as good in everything that men are (statistically) good in; men are not (statistically) as good in everything that women are (statistically) good in. It's a survival strategy that worked, happily, for us all. Let's recognize that and be happy with all that we've got.

Mike
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:29 AM   #296
rob_liberti
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Mike Sigman wrote:
So, Rob.... are you then one of the "nurturists" that believes women would be just like men, particularly in sports, if they'd just been raised like men (the ultimate "playing field")?
What is this?! Are you taking a discussion to a personal level?!!! I'm shocked and amused! [recovering] Well, okay, good; I'm glad that's settled; moving on...

I certainly do not believe that women would be just like men. I do believe that people can be trained to have the martial judgment to move to the right place at the right time and do the right thing regardless of gender. I find it odd, that you do not.

Rob
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:43 AM   #297
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
What is this?! Are you taking a discussion to a personal level?!!! I'm shocked and amused! [recovering] Well, okay, good; I'm glad that's settled; moving on...

I certainly do not believe that women would be just like men. I do believe that people can be trained to have the martial judgment to move to the right place at the right time and do the right thing regardless of gender. I find it odd, that you do not.

Rob
There is the rub, Rob.......some men consider men people and women objects......

Mary
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:49 AM   #298
rob_liberti
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Re: Equitable?

I'm sorry that you were rubbed the wrong way... (I couldn't resist.)
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:54 AM   #299
Mike Sigman
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote:
What is this?! Are you taking a discussion to a personal level?!!! I'm shocked and amused! [recovering] Well, okay, good; I'm glad that's settled; moving on...
It failed as a joke or an implication because asking you about your position is not a personal attack, Rob.
Quote:
I certainly do not believe that women would be just like men. I do believe that people can be trained to have the martial judgment to move to the right place at the right time and do the right thing regardless of gender. I find it odd, that you do not.
You're not clarifying anything at all, Rob. You just said that you do not believe that women would be *just like men* and then you go on to indicate that all "people", "regardless of gender" can be trained to "do the right thing". You need to clarify because that statement essentially leaves it that women are just as good at doing the "right thing" in martial arts as men; i.e., they're equal in martial arts. Is that a correct assessment of what you're saying or do you want to qualify it?

Mike Sigman
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:55 AM   #300
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Re: Equitable?

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote:
There is the rub, Rob.......some men consider men people and women objects......
Which men are those, Mary?
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