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Old 10-15-2005, 05:35 AM   #51
PeterR
 
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Dojo: Shodokan Honbu (Osaka)
Location: Himeji, Japan
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Re: unfair belt rankings

As an aside there is an effort made at Shodokan Honbu dojo to make clear the relationship between what we call "student" grades and "adult" grades. When children are moved to the adult class they actually start right at the bottom but tend to move up quickly especially those that were quite advanced to begin with. The kids understand what to expect. From re-reading the first post perhaps Paige's sensei failed in this regard.

More than once I have seen the opposite effect. An adult at their first grading (and I am specifically thinking about a few of my students that had not been to Honbu prior to grading) totally depressed by the difference in their performance with a 12 year old. No no you don't understand - he's already been doing Aikido for 6 years.

Peter Rehse Shodokan Aikido
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Old 10-15-2005, 07:25 AM   #52
mathewjgano
 
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Paige Frazier wrote:
Thanks for your concern.
I started this thread a long time ago, and my views on belt rankings have changed somewhat since then. I still feel like there should be only one belt system for adults and kids no matter what... it would just be easier for everyone. But i guess its not my dojo.
I am still 4th kyu. It seems a bit degrading even now that i havent had a test or advanced in almost 3 years. I know im growing in aikido and i learn everytime i go to class. But it seems like im the only one who recognizes my progress...and that alone can be disappointing whether i have "skill without merit" or not. But i understand what everyone has told me. I have grown mentally because i started another MA in the past year and im really gaining confidence because im told all the time that im best in the class (not bragging but compliments feel good). And thats just in one year.
The whole "belt ranking" thing doesnt get to me as much as it used to. I guess thats something u gain with age and experience. Right now aikido is just kind of acting as a '' side-kick" to my other MA (shaolin , in case your wondering) I know thats kind of a wrong way to look at aikido but i cant help it... shaolin is moving so fast and im really more into it right now, i have a tourney in 17 days and honestly i havent been to aikido in about 3 weeks but i still remember everything like i was there yesterday. Oh well... i guess in the end it will all work out okay. I'll move at the pace that i want to and everyone else will have to deal with that whether they think im progressing or not... Showing up at aikido at an average of about twice a month is okay with me right now.
-Paige
To repeat many others: rank ultimately means very little. Consider that in one dojo, a shodan is another's dojo's 1st kyu. It's all relative. At my home dojo we only use the colored belts for the children's classes because it's a motivational device. In the adult class, beyond 5th kyu (our first test) there is absolutely no way of telling what rank someone is unless you can feel the difference or ask them. In my opinion you should never compare yourself to others except as a way of learning something from them. One student who began around the time I did was very good at remembering techniques and making them work better than me. I, however, was better at ukemi and would often get called on by Sensei to demonstrate a technique. My good ukemi made me able to find the holes in his technique later on. Who's "better"? No one. While it's true we each progress in a somewhat linear way, each of us has different strengths and weaknesses. Personally i could care less if I remain a 5th kyu and everyone reaches shodan. That I am learning sincerely for the sake of learning is all that matters. Besides, i find i have learned more quickly with that attitude than worrying (even slightly) about when I'll get that next number to describe my "official" progress. There's a valid point to grading, but it's trivial compared to training itself.
Gambatte!
Matt

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 10-15-2005, 09:12 AM   #53
aikigirl10
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Matthew Gano wrote:
To repeat many others: rank ultimately means very little. Consider that in one dojo, a shodan is another's dojo's 1st kyu. It's all relative. At my home dojo we only use the colored belts for the children's classes because it's a motivational device. In the adult class, beyond 5th kyu (our first test) there is absolutely no way of telling what rank someone is unless you can feel the difference or ask them. In my opinion you should never compare yourself to others except as a way of learning something from them. One student who began around the time I did was very good at remembering techniques and making them work better than me. I, however, was better at ukemi and would often get called on by Sensei to demonstrate a technique. My good ukemi made me able to find the holes in his technique later on. Who's "better"? No one. While it's true we each progress in a somewhat linear way, each of us has different strengths and weaknesses. Personally i could care less if I remain a 5th kyu and everyone reaches shodan. That I am learning sincerely for the sake of learning is all that matters. Besides, i find i have learned more quickly with that attitude than worrying (even slightly) about when I'll get that next number to describe my "official" progress. There's a valid point to grading, but it's trivial compared to training itself.
Gambatte!
Matt
Like i've said before... the only reason i'm even worried about the rank is b/c it seems like no one recognizes my progress but me. And that makes me think that after 7 years maybe im really not progressing, and thats disappointing. It really has nothing to do with the other students.

When i set out to do something i always do my best, whether its guitar, the drums, softball, school , whatever. And for once it seems like my best isnt good enough. That kills me. I know it sounds like im a perfectionist.. but im far from it, i just have certain expectations of myself.

And then here lately there has been alot of distraction during class, which creates a negative atmosphere which keeps me from wanting to go back as often as i should. Theres that one guy who just started and thinks he can teach me everything. He'll actually make up stuff that i was doing wrong just so he can show the teacher how he corrected me. God i just want to side kick him in face. And then theres the fact the sensei has been absent alot due to work.. allowing the sempais to teach. This fricken sucks because the sempais treat me like a 5 yr old girl. They wont even let me take a hard fall, and they ask me every 5 seconds if im ok. I've been doing this since i was 8!! Sensei is the only person that has ever treated me how i should be treated. I want to be thrown as hard as the guys and i dont want to be held back in any way. And i have great respect for my sensei for this reason. But again... hes never there.

As u can see aikido for me right now is just a shithole and i think its better if i focus on shaolin for a while. Thanks for all your advice tho. Keep em coming if you want.

-Paige
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Old 10-15-2005, 09:16 AM   #54
aikigirl10
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Patrick Crane wrote:
If you still have your old white belt, go back to wearing it. Wear it proudly but say nothing.
If anyone asks, tell them it's none of their business.
If your sensei asks, tell him it's simply the belt you prefer to wear until you rate a black one and leave it at that.

If your main focus is shaolin and the competitive aspects that come with it, let your aikido training goals center around developing your ma-ai and your "sixth sense" of feeling how your opponent is shifting his weight and when he's about to move.
This is a good idea about the white belt i would do it if my white belt fit me ... i had it when i was 8. But if i can find my shaolin white belt then i may just start doing this.
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Old 10-15-2005, 09:58 AM   #55
thoss
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Why worry about belt rank ?

skill and knowlage are all thats important .
your still being taught ?
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Old 10-15-2005, 10:31 AM   #56
aikigirl10
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Re: unfair belt rankings

read some of my above posts
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Old 10-15-2005, 03:00 PM   #57
Patrick Crane
Dojo: Dojo Chattanooga
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Re: unfair belt rankings

"it seems like no one recognizes my progress but me."

Beautiful, keep it that way, for as long as you can.
A rattle snake will stay in that coiled up position til the last instant before striking, so it's prey can't judge how long of a striking range it may have.
"Never let them see you coming" - Al Pacino to Keanu Reeves in "Devil's Own"



"after 7 years maybe im really not progressing"

After 7 years you're progressing in ways that can't be identified, especially by some annoying newbie, as simply/objectively as knowing this or that technique.
At this point, there are no "secret" techniques your sensei knows that you don't know.
If he were attacked by some road-raging loony with a tire iron, you could watch and identify by name every technique he would apply.
So what is the difference between his Dan-ranked aikido and your Kyu-ranked aikido if you both know all the same techniques?
Ki.....ma-ai.....zenshin....etc.etc.
Those are the areas in which your progress will be measured from now on.
Ironically, those are also the things that will enable you to decisively dominate all your shaolin opponents.




"Theres that one guy who just started and thinks he can teach me everything. He'll actually make up stuff that i was doing wrong just so he can show the teacher how he corrected me. God i just want to side kick him in face."

Hmmmm, is he near your age?........he might have a crush on you, lol, lucky you.
Actually, this is an annoyance you will have to deal with more and more, especially once you're 18.
Maybe some of the women here can give some advice on how to deal with dudes who think the dojo is a matchmaking service.
If he' an older, adult guy, especially as a newbie, he may just be very intimidated in general. People act out in strange ways when they're intimidated.




"This fricken sucks because the sempais treat me like a 5 yr old girl. They wont even let me take a hard fall, and they ask me every 5 seconds if im ok."

Lol, it sounds like it.
In their defense, they're probably just trying not to get sued.
My sensei likes to say: "....this won't kill you; but if it does, you signed a waiver."



"aikido for me right now is just a shithole and i think its better if i focus on shaolin for a while."

Definitely discuss this with your sensei next time you can get ahold of him. After all, you're not just a student, you're a customer. No business wants a good customer to go away dissatisfied.
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Old 10-15-2005, 03:08 PM   #58
Patrick Crane
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Re: unfair belt rankings

"Never let them see you coming" - Al Pacino to Keanu Reeves in "Devil's Own"


Ooops, sorry, that should be Devil's Advocate.
Devil's Own had Harrison Ford and Brad Pitt.
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Old 10-15-2005, 04:36 PM   #59
aikigirl10
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Patrick Crane wrote:

Hmmmm, is he near your age?........he might have a crush on you, lol, lucky you.
Actually, this is an annoyance you will have to deal with more and more, especially once you're 18.
Maybe some of the women here can give some advice on how to deal with dudes who think the dojo is a matchmaking service.
If he' an older, adult guy, especially as a newbie, he may just be very intimidated in general. People act out in strange ways when they're intimidated.
Lol no hes not near my age. Hes probably in his mid 20's and hes married so i dont think its anything to do with a crush. I think hes the kind of person that would do anything to make himself look better than everyone else. He reminds me of some kind of rodent. Hes only like 5'4" and his heads to big for his body. He has that "small dog" attitude where he thinks hes bigger than he really is. Hell, he has to crane his neck just to look me in the eyes so i can definitely see how he would be intimidated.

He wouldnt bother me so much, if he didnt intentionally try to make me look bad, and correct things that i wasnt even doing wrong. He just makes coming to aikido something that i dread. If he keeps it up i probably will talk to my sensei, because hes not my teacher, hes far from it.
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Old 10-15-2005, 05:05 PM   #60
giriasis
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Re: unfair belt rankings

As far as someone new correcting you, it comes with the territory of being more advanced. There is always those one or two day-one or week-one newbies who always seem to want to correct your technique. It happens to me and I'm 35 and they're in their early 20s. I see them as young upstarts who think they know better than me. Just ignore those kind of things, and if ignoring them doesn't work go over to your sensei for "help" . After they get to know you their attitudes will change overtime. Also, double check yourself to make sure they might be right, as that happens sometimes. And if asking sensei doesn't help you can just let them flail on their own. That usually gets the point across that they don't know what their doing or talking about. A little eeeeviiill, yes, but it works. But becareful and don't allow things to turn into a contest of wills. Give them regular ukemi you always do, but just don't "help" them. Or you can tell them that you prefer to work on the technique on your own, but while they might make a valid point that is not what you are working on the moment. (which is a nice way to say "shut the Heck up.")

You're going through a plateau right now and that's not a bad thing. In someways when you don't think you're learning you actually are. I just tested for my 1st kyu and have been practicing aikido for almost 6.5 years now. You've already learned all those big hurdles you have to go through. That was my point a while back to start making other things your goals because to me it sounded like you have already learned THE basics. So what you need to work on are those things you "always work on," you know what I mean? It's about making those things BETTER. Take those things another level. It may not seem like it but if you keep at it they will improve. It's just not as obvious as, "Great! You figured out shihonage!" or "Great! You did a great breakfall!" Those things are probably already great in you sensei's eyes so he doesn't need to correct them anymore. Take the time you have to explore you techniques to find those minute details that really make your techniques work.

Regarding the assistant instructors not throwing you hard enough, tell them that they can throw you. But realize, normally most people when they don't know someone they start easy then once they get to know you they start throwing harder OR they just throw everyone hard or everyone soft. When they ask if you are alright take it is a compliment that they don't want to hurt you, but turn it around and tell them that they can throw you even harder. Tell them you like to be throw hard and that you like getting air time. We have few teens in our dojo and they are all very capable of being thrown hard. It's just that these adults who are not used to training with you need to get as comfortable throwing you into breakfalls as you sensei is.

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 10-15-2005, 06:10 PM   #61
aikigirl10
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote:
As far as someone new correcting you, it comes with the territory of being more advanced. There is always those one or two day-one or week-one newbies who always seem to want to correct your technique. It happens to me and I'm 35 and they're in their early 20s. I see them as young upstarts who think they know better than me. Just ignore those kind of things, and if ignoring them doesn't work go over to your sensei for "help" . After they get to know you their attitudes will change overtime. Also, double check yourself to make sure they might be right, as that happens sometimes. And if asking sensei doesn't help you can just let them flail on their own. That usually gets the point across that they don't know what their doing or talking about. A little eeeeviiill, yes, but it works. But becareful and don't allow things to turn into a contest of wills. Give them regular ukemi you always do, but just don't "help" them. Or you can tell them that you prefer to work on the technique on your own, but while they might make a valid point that is not what you are working on the moment. (which is a nice way to say "shut the Heck up.")

You're going through a plateau right now and that's not a bad thing. In someways when you don't think you're learning you actually are. I just tested for my 1st kyu and have been practicing aikido for almost 6.5 years now. You've already learned all those big hurdles you have to go through. That was my point a while back to start making other things your goals because to me it sounded like you have already learned THE basics. So what you need to work on are those things you "always work on," you know what I mean? It's about making those things BETTER. Take those things another level. It may not seem like it but if you keep at it they will improve. It's just not as obvious as, "Great! You figured out shihonage!" or "Great! You did a great breakfall!" Those things are probably already great in you sensei's eyes so he doesn't need to correct them anymore. Take the time you have to explore you techniques to find those minute details that really make your techniques work.

Regarding the assistant instructors not throwing you hard enough, tell them that they can throw you. But realize, normally most people when they don't know someone they start easy then once they get to know you they start throwing harder OR they just throw everyone hard or everyone soft. When they ask if you are alright take it is a compliment that they don't want to hurt you, but turn it around and tell them that they can throw you even harder. Tell them you like to be throw hard and that you like getting air time. We have few teens in our dojo and they are all very capable of being thrown hard. It's just that these adults who are not used to training with you need to get as comfortable throwing you into breakfalls as you sensei is.
Nice post. It seems like everytime i read your posts i feel like getting back in there and training. You have a thing for motivation.
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Old 10-15-2005, 06:13 PM   #62
aikigirl10
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Re: unfair belt rankings

^^ and that wasnt meant to be sarcastic or anything i really meant it ^^
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Old 10-15-2005, 08:10 PM   #63
rob_liberti
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Re: unfair belt rankings

In my opinion, if it isn't painfully obvious that you are senior to someone the moment they touch you, then you probably aren't all that senior to them.

Belt ranking will never be fair. I was recently told that although my teacher recommended that I should be considered for promotion to yondan that this was rejected because I haven't been to any *special* seminars with the head of the organization. I can't even attempt to fix the problem any time soon. The special seminars started about two years ago, and I have a two year old boy - and my wife has been injured. Also my job became remarkably more demanding in the past two years. In a few years, I'll be better and I'll have a bit more time, and it will be resolved. For now, I'll save the hundreds of dollars it costs to get a new "number".

Rob
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Old 10-15-2005, 10:35 PM   #64
mathewjgano
 
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
it seems like no one recognizes my progress but me. And that makes me think that after 7 years maybe im really not progressing, and thats disappointing.
I can imagine.

Quote:
When i set out to do something i always do my best, ...And for once it seems like my best isnt good enough. That kills me. I know it sounds like im a perfectionist.. but im far from it, i just have certain expectations of myself.
Without knowing what those certain expectations are it's hard for me to remark with validity, but one thing I have had to overcome is my tendancy to expect great things from myself. Expectations in general are troublesome in that they are essentially presumptions.

Quote:
Theres that one guy who just started and thinks he can teach me everything. He'll actually make up stuff that i was doing wrong just so he can show the teacher how he corrected me. God i just want to side kick him in face
You certainly don't paint a pretty picture of the guy. In this dojo are people allowed to counter technique to display an opening? Maybe you should illustrate via this method if possible. I remember a few times where well-intentioned beginners would try and tell me I was doing a technique wrong (I didn't train regularly, so not recognizing me, they thought I was new). In some of these times I remember being able to show them how this was not the case, whether they were changing their attack mid-action, or they were skipping a crucial step where I would simply regain my center and counter their movement. It can be a touchy subject for some, and you should make sure they know you're teaching something sincerely, but often the best way to show someone is to make them feel it first-hand.

Quote:
This fricken sucks because the sempais treat me like a 5 yr old girl. They wont even let me take a hard fall, and they ask me every 5 seconds if im ok
It seems like this has reached a point where it's quite annoying to you. In my opinion it's always best to handle a situation like this right away so it doesn't eat at you and create that negative atmosphere you mentioned. Email or call your sensei and discuss your frustrations. These kinds of issues, in a way, are the real crux to Aikido. How does one take a situation that is even slightly negative (let alone very negative) and make it a win-win situation?

Quote:
As u can see aikido for me right now is just a shithole and i think its better if i focus on shaolin for a while.
Perhaps so. Only you can answer that of course. It's hard to choose between two great methods of training and sometimes perhaps it's best to experience a different style to increase your over-all perspective. Still, if you find Aikido to be something you want to continue to study, you should make that a reality. I have often in the past drifted from training because one thing or another was unpleasant, but nothing ever got solved that way. In the end, what usually needed changing was me. I'm not trying to imply your situation is the same as mine in this regard. Just reflecting aloud with what has come to mind after thinking about some of the things we've discussed. Thanks for the opportunity to do so.
Take care,
Matt

Gambarimashyo!
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Old 10-15-2005, 11:34 PM   #65
giriasis
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Paige Frazier wrote:
Nice post. It seems like everytime i read your posts i feel like getting back in there and training. You have a thing for motivation.
I'm glad you appreciate it. I just can hear the frustration in your words. Just don't give up and keep going at it. And I agree with the previous poster have sit down talk with your sensei. Let him know how your feeling and the frustrations that you are going through. (He needs feedback from you, too.) I did, and it helped me, a lot, to get over it.

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 10-16-2005, 08:33 AM   #66
aikigirl10
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Re: unfair belt rankings

I think i eventually will have to have a talk with my sensei because i think thats the only way i'll feel better about coming to aikido again. Thanks everyone for the advice.
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Old 10-23-2005, 02:32 AM   #67
O-Ren
 
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Re: unfair belt rankings

I just wonted to say I truly enjoyed reading this thread. Every one did a great job in guiding this young lady in a positive direction. I guess thats aikiakins for you. Paige I do hope everything works out for you, I couldn't imagine not looking forward to doing to class. Also, I do hope you stay with Aikido as well.
Best of luck to you, and happy training.
O-ren
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Old 10-23-2005, 09:45 AM   #68
3girls
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Paige as a fellow aikidoka and as a father I will give you the same advice as I give my own daughters (all 3). It is very difficult to see others receive,get,win,or be promoted in what we perceive to be unjustified; right or wrong this is our perception. This will only lead you to anger and resentment on your part, whether you admit it or not you are already expressing those emotions...This is a NORMAL reaction remember that. What you must learn to do is not worry about what others may win, receive or when they get promoted when you think they are not ready, do not concern your self these kinds of thoughts they will only cause you grief. Learn to be happy for others and more understanding you will be much happier you and those around you will benefit. I know it is easier said than done and these thought will always be there but it is your choice whether or not you give them life. One last thing the BELT does NOT make the AIKIDOKA.

Good luck
BK
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Old 10-23-2005, 05:14 PM   #69
aikigirl10
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Good luck to you! Let us know if you win your tournament!
Well everyone, i think it was this thread i said i was gonna keep you updated with shaolin. And good news, i won my tournament! It was awesome 1st in the intermediate womens sparring it was great and i look forward to competing more often now. Thanks for all of your posts, and advice.

Just a little news
-Paige

Last edited by aikigirl10 : 10-23-2005 at 05:17 PM. Reason: add
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Old 10-23-2005, 08:33 PM   #70
Melissa Fischer
Dojo: Tenzan Aikido/Seattle Holistic Center
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Congrats, Paige! I think you're awesome!

I am a small, lightweight woman and here's my anecdote. All through out my training career there have been people, usually guys, both my senior and junior in terms of ranking who like to correct and criticize. If I am throwing, they correct my throws, if I am taking Ukemi, they correct my Ukemi and this has been since day one of training for me. So, I said to myself back then through metaphorically gritted teeth " OK, I'm working on me and you're working on me...who stands to gain in this situation? Let's just wait and see." So, I patiently applied the corrections, except those which I recognized as wrong and which Sensei would fix as he walked by to my secret glee. My throws and falls got better. Now, I'm a black belt and they are still where they were. It's pretend humility on my part, but it's what I do with those obnoxious types.

As to them not throwing you hard enough, some schools just do not throw women like they throw men. But, try throwing them harder, much harder. Then be ready to fly!

Wish you were here!

Melissa
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Old 10-23-2005, 09:31 PM   #71
alcantur
Dojo: Kokyuho Dojo (La Paz), Aikcruz (Santa Cruz)
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Re: unfair belt rankings

my 2 cents on this topic:
belt ranking is no big deal, I've met a sensei that allowed only 3 belt colors for adults (above 15yo): white, brown and black, and some students were still white after 4 years of practicing without complaining, cause they were sure they were growing, and their technique were improving. There was even a girl (around 19yo) that was quite good, but got so nervous everytime she took the tests, that never got a grade further than 4th kyu. I'm sure she was as good as a yudansha when not in a testing situation, but nerves always betrayed her.
That sensei also made kids start all over the grading system when reached 15yo, because the teachings to kids were not as detailed and exhaustive as for adult students, but kids always need to be encouraged in some way to progress, so they got kyu grades as kids, and new kyu grades onde they pass to adult classes.
So don't worry about belts and ranking, if you are growing and you notice it, it's Ok it's the aiki way.
greetings
Rodrigo
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Old 10-25-2005, 12:50 PM   #72
LostBoyJim
Dojo: Nashville Aikikai
Location: Nashville, TN
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Paige,

I started training back in the early 90s, and after 3 years of daily training I quit (injury+work+burnout). For 10 years. Finially I have started back, and while my new Sensei has graciously allowed me to assume my old rank (of ikkyu), I'm not there yet. I'm working on it, but not there yet. I just learned that a fellow deshi at my old dojo is now Sandan and run the dojo. Heh, I remember his 5th Kyu test And 4th. And 3rd. And 2nd. And 1st. Very humbling to learn what he has become. I'm hoping that I may start approaching Shodon by the time I reach 40, but it's just a hope right now.

I would definitely encourage you to talk to your Sensei directly about this. Trust me, being honest about "ego" stuff is hard...."Why haven't I been promoted lately?" is an ego question, and of course you don't want your Sensei to think you are just belt-grabbing. But it's bugging you, so it's time to face it head-on.

Quote:
In my opinion, if it isn't painfully obvious that you are senior to someone the moment they touch you, then you probably aren't all that senior to them.
I'm going to disagree here. Remember that Paige is 14...there is nothing that young adult men like better than correcting women or those younger than themselves. When did actual knowledge play a part in the correction? Besides, often the only way to "prove" your technique on such a bull is to crush 'em. I'd rather just accept the criticism and wait for them to advance a couple kyu ranks and reach some self-realization. I'm at the point that my ego can take the ukime (um, sometimes, at least).

jim
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Old 10-25-2005, 03:32 PM   #73
aikigirl10
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
Join Date: May 2005
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Quote:
Jim Summers wrote:
Remember that Paige is 14..
Im actually 15 now... this thread was started a while back.
But thanks for the post i agree with the second part.
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Old 10-26-2005, 08:48 PM   #74
aikigirl10
Dojo: Aikido of Ashland
Join Date: May 2005
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Re: unfair belt rankings

Ok everyone... tonight a big coincidence happened... or maybe it wasnt a coincidence....

We're driving down the road to go aikido tonight... im dreading it the whole way there (because of the annoying beginner... thinking the sempais might be teaching etc... if you read this thread u know the story)

But it turns out i get an absolute best-case scenario. I get there and theres nobody there. Im like "yes! maybe its canceled tonight" (yes thats how much i usually dread it for the above ^^ reasons) But no... Sensei pulls up!

This is good news now im thinking "well at least now i know sensei will be teaching" So this is even better. Then, he comes up to our car and says "Well i guess tonight it will be just me and paige. Everyone else has said they wont be here tonight.."

At this point im soooo happy. This has made my day.. some one-on-one tiem with my instructor.

So we get inside. We get on the mat after getting changed and everything... and he walks into the closet and he says "Paige... i know you havent really tested but you're one of my senior students, and i've really noticed you progressing lately so im gonna go ahead and advance you to 3rd kyu"

At this point im ecstatic! I could not believe how good aikido had turned out tonight. It was like someone read my mind! Or....
Did they read a website??

Hmmmm.... now im thinking about this all during class... the whole situation seemed a little too good to be true. I never confronted my sensei or asked him if he read the site. Sadly i also never talked to him about that beginner thats always "teaching" me or the sempais. In other words he still doesnt know the real reason that i've been missing aikido.

And i felt like since i didnt talk to him about those issues that if he has been reading the website ... he really will think i only care about the belt and thats not the case at all.

Im still very happy with the way tonight went, dont get me wrong it was better than i ever could've imagined... It just seems a little too good to be true and it makes me think that either my teacher has been readign this or someone in my dojo has... in which case i want to say this:

Tom, if you or someone in my dojo is reading this... i want to say i really do love aikido, and tonight made me realize that.

Its not about the belt, its about knowing that im progressing. Its about knowing that someone cares that i even show up, and Tom definitely expressed that to me tonight. I wanna say thank you Tom because you are an excellent sensei and i wouldnt pick anyone else over you.

If you or someone in my dojo is reading these forums... please let me know, it would make it sooo much easier on me. Thank you.

-Paige
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Old 10-26-2005, 08:55 PM   #75
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,614
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Re: unfair belt rankings



Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
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