Do you ever get handouts at MA seminars?

girlbug2

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I enjoy attending special seminars at my school, they are always fun and informative, however my mind doesn't usually hold onto the info past 1 week, or even one night! Maybe it's an age thing, but when I don't get a lot of repetition, I tend to forget easily. By their nature, seminars are one time events, so there's no repetition to speak of.

I've forgotten a lot of knowledge this way, most of it paid for dearly above and beyond school fees.

Everybody learns differently, some do best with verbal, some with hands on, some with visual. It would be a great help to us visual learners to have something to take home and refer to, covering the main points of a seminar. However, this has never been the case at MA seminars I've attended.

Thoughts?
 

Aikikitty

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Every seminar I usually learn at least a few new things or perhaps have that one epiphany. The problem is it's often information overload and I nearly always forget 85% of what happened. I wish someone could video record the seminar and make copies so I could look back....

Robyn
 
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girlbug2

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I like that idea, video record the event! It would be fairly easy to do. In fact I think a video recording would be of even more help to us visual learners than a handout.
 

jks9199

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Don't like video. It misses too many details. And the camera is a one eyed idiot...

Handouts are useful. I use them when I teach -- but the handout isn't a substitute for being there and paying attention.

Take notes. If there aren't breaks during the seminar, use the time immediately afterwards. Review them, add to them, and rewrite them over the next days and weeks.
 

Ken Morgan

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When we hold our big seminar every May, the visiting Sensei encourage us to take video of them, because we only get to see them once a year.

After the seminar we take our next two or three classes to go over any changes or anything new we may have learned. We'll systematically go through everyone from our club who were there and pick their brains.

Personally, I'm happy to come out of a seminar with one or two positive changes to what it is I do.
 

Supra Vijai

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With my school, we get a handout when we attend special workshops etc. The handout will list the techniques covered in that workshop, have a step by step set of instructions and also show how it was written in the scrolls. You can only receive the handout if you attend the special class and even then you really need to have been present to get the full training. The handouts serve just as a reminder if you are going through the techniques later at home and forget certain elements. On top of this, we record our workshops and have photos taken during the class by someone who is not training and that gets posted on the school's Facebook page
 

Blindside

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I videotape my seminars and have edited versions available as a reference tool for my students. They only get the ones they attended personally.
 

altc

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I have always found writing down my own points that I have particularly found helpful for me is useful. For many many years I would maintain a training journal of things I learnt or key experiences I enjoyed and things of that nature.

I just found it useful to take things that work for me and write those down and ignore the rest or file it in my memory archives.

This applies just as well to normal routine training as it does to seminars. Re reading it in the future is sometimes very rewarding and interesting.
 

KenpoVzla

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Not to the seminars I've been to. I think some seminars tend to be taught like a long class and that's it. Something like giving handouts will definitely mark the difference.
 

ArmorOfGod

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I just did a seminar held by Dan Insosanto and I took notes while he spoke, then hopped up to do the techniques. I went with a friend and we combined our notes the next day and ended up with a pretty good thing for future reference.
BTW, videotaping was not allowed at that one.

AoG
 
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girlbug2

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I'm wondering if handouts aren't the norm simply because it's not a traditional way to teach MA?

Or,

if it's because the MA instructors themselves are a self-selecting breed, i.e., not visual learners themselves, and so they tend to teach the way they learned best?

Are the Martial Arts traditional styles of teaching, merely reinforcing the unintended consequence of training up kinesthetic learners and subtly discouraging visual learners?
 

Supra Vijai

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I'm wondering if handouts aren't the norm simply because it's not a traditional way to teach MA?

Or,

if it's because the MA instructors themselves are a self-selecting breed, i.e., not visual learners themselves, and so they tend to teach the way they learned best?

Are the Martial Arts traditional styles of teaching, merely reinforcing the unintended consequence of training up kinesthetic learners and subtly discouraging visual learners?

No we actually questioned our Sensei on this and he mentioned the reason that hand outs aren't so popular is because out of 10 students, only a couple will even open the handout again in future for a flick through. The majority will lock it away in a drawer or a folder somewhere and never train it till it came up in class. Therefore there is no point giving everyone a handout every time. Our Sensei still does to those who attend the classes but again what each student does is up to them. As for visual, as I mentioned, are workshops are filmed/photographed and edited versions are put up on the facebook page with the attendees having access to more on request (to make sure people who didn't attend can't just learn off the videos as that's just unfair).
 

Blindside

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I'm wondering if handouts aren't the norm simply because it's not a traditional way to teach MA?

Or,

if it's because the MA instructors themselves are a self-selecting breed, i.e., not visual learners themselves, and so they tend to teach the way they learned best?

Are the Martial Arts traditional styles of teaching, merely reinforcing the unintended consequence of training up kinesthetic learners and subtly discouraging visual learners?

I actually find it extremely helpful to force students to do their own note taking, it forces them to "reload" the material mentally when doing the writing and that aids in retention. That said I have found that I have come up with some truly wrong interpretations of my own notes, which is one of the reasons I often provide short video references.
 

Chris Parker

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To begin with, as stated here already by one of my students, I tend to give handouts for each of my workshops, although my Instructor has stopped doing that himself. I then also have a friend help out and take photos and some video, although that realistically is just to put on our facebook page as a form of marketing (letting students who were there re-live the experience, those that weren't get a glimpse of what they missed out on, and people who aren't part of the school might see something they appreciate and visit).

I'm wondering if handouts aren't the norm simply because it's not a traditional way to teach MA?

Actually, it could be argued that they are more traditional, at least from a traditional Japanese perspective. When you have achieved a level of skill and expertise in a particular area (to a particular level in the school) you are presented with a few things, including a licence (Menkyo), and often Densho (scroll, which details what you have achieved the licence in).

Now, I'm certainly not suggesting that taking part in a workshop is the equivalent of achieving even the most basic Menkyo in any school, but a bit of the Japanese "flavour" can be achieved by presenting those who attended with their own personal copy of the training exercises they have been training in. And, true to that, such handouts rarely give all the details... actual training is required for the handout to be worth anything.

Or,

if it's because the MA instructors themselves are a self-selecting breed, i.e., not visual learners themselves, and so they tend to teach the way they learned best?

Actually, my Instructor taught me that the best way to teach is to incorporate all three aspects of learning in your teaching methods. As everyone learns differently, a good teacher will always do what they can to reach every student, something I try to apply.

Are the Martial Arts traditional styles of teaching, merely reinforcing the unintended consequence of training up kinesthetic learners and subtly discouraging visual learners?

Again, dealing with Japanese sources, scrolls are a big part of the transmission of the arts, whether detailed or written in a vague manner.
 

ap Oweyn

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Meh. I found I enjoyed the idea of seminars a lot more once I reframed their purpose in my own mind. I've been to a couple of Guro Dan Inosanto's seminars. And the man is simply a volcano of knowledge. "Capturing" it all is not only very difficult, but also something of a waste in my view. I saw people furiously scribbling away in notebooks (myself included) and started thinking, "here I am, in a room with one of the greatest martial arts teachers of my lifetime, and I've got my head buried in a notebook."

Now, I view seminars more as sources of inspiration and motivation than actual knowledge. Sure, I retain some of the information and make some changes to my technique. But mostly, I view seminars as a way to reaffirm my desire to practice, rather than primarily as a form of practice itself.

With that pressure out of the way, I enjoy the experience a lot more. Anything that inspires me that much is going to prompt me to go out and do the additional research anyway, so I can capture that information later.


Stuart
 

Mark Lynn

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I enjoy attending special seminars at my school, they are always fun and informative, however my mind doesn't usually hold onto the info past 1 week, or even one night! Maybe it's an age thing, but when I don't get a lot of repetition, I tend to forget easily. By their nature, seminars are one time events, so there's no repetition to speak of.

My first seminar was with Guro Inosanto in 1982 and I have been attending seminars since then for martial arts training in a variety of styles. It was through reading Guro Inosanto material that inspired me to start taking notes about what I was learning in class and then at seminars.

I totally understand where you are coming from. It's not really an age thing about forgetting the materail rather it is not putting it fore front in your mind, so that you really spend time thinking about it (even a single technique) and soon you just remember that you had either a positive experience or not at the event.

Therefore I have found the best way for me was to take notes at the seminar and then spend my breaks and lunches at work expanding my notes and writing in as much detail as I could the techniques that I learned. This helped me to visualize the technique, mull it over really think about it and writing it down helped me to be able to hold onto it years later.

I've forgotten a lot of knowledge this way, most of it paid for dearly above and beyond school fees.

Absolutely, seminars aren't cheap. Now consider if you had hotel expenses, meals, airfare etc. etc. on top of that. Then you are paying dearly for the experience of just being there. If I travel to a seminar and I go by myself, I don't spend the evening chatting it up with the buds that I met at the seminar, I'm at my computer writing it all down, till the wee hours of the morning. Ready to get up and start all over again.

Everybody learns differently, some do best with verbal, some with hands on, some with visual. It would be a great help to us visual learners to have something to take home and refer to, covering the main points of a seminar. However, this has never been the case at MA seminars I've attended.

Thoughts?

Here again is why I got use to tasking notes. But you ask why don't instructors give out handouts?
1) Money- videoing a seminar can cost the instructor or the owner of a school money. Many of the instructors use the seminars to earn extra money, they sell VTs (in the old days), now DVDs,

If the seminar is filmed and then put out on UTUBE or passed around then who needs to go see the seminar in the future right? I'll just spend $40.00 get the seminar DVD and have a visual reference I can use any time. So when a big name instructor comes to town it is not a big thing because I've seen him so many times on my DVD player.

2) Handouts - Hock Hochheim use to give out handouts at his monthly seminars in the early -mid 90's. These were invaluable to me, I snatched up everyone of them and still have them to this day. They really helped support my note taking. Later he stopped, it was a lot of work to put out the material and they were not really used I think like he wanted. (I asked him about it and I believe that was the reason.)

Anyway I started doing the same thing, for my classes and I have since stopped as well. Most people don't care, they crumble them up and throw them in their training bag to be forgotten. It takes a lot of time and effort to put together something, then cost to print (today I know it is easier, but years ago it meant trips to the copy store) and to have them not being used or of value to but a select few, Who cares?

Also when teaching a seminar you might have in mind teaching drills A, B C, etc. etc and get there and people can't put it together so you deviate teach say drills A, F, G, and then the people really got it so you show XYZ and so on. But you hand out was written for ABCDEF. So again wasted time on your (the teacher's part).

In closing; personally, if I have students who want a handout on a subject I'm teaching I'll dig the material out of my notes and write it up and send it to them. But I tell everyone the real way to remember and have the material down is to write it down and take ownership of it in your mind.

Mark
 

jks9199

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Meh. I found I enjoyed the idea of seminars a lot more once I reframed their purpose in my own mind. I've been to a couple of Guro Dan Inosanto's seminars. And the man is simply a volcano of knowledge. "Capturing" it all is not only very difficult, but also something of a waste in my view. I saw people furiously scribbling away in notebooks (myself included) and started thinking, "here I am, in a room with one of the greatest martial arts teachers of my lifetime, and I've got my head buried in a notebook."

Now, I view seminars more as sources of inspiration and motivation than actual knowledge. Sure, I retain some of the information and make some changes to my technique. But mostly, I view seminars as a way to reaffirm my desire to practice, rather than primarily as a form of practice itself.

With that pressure out of the way, I enjoy the experience a lot more. Anything that inspires me that much is going to prompt me to go out and do the additional research anyway, so I can capture that information later.


Stuart
It depends on the seminar, for me. Sometimes, a seminar is just an experience. It's a chance to go and to play with something, maybe that I won't ever train again... For those, my notes get done after the seminar.

But other seminars are for me to learn. There, I take notes as the opportunity presents itself, because my goal is actually acquire that material. This isn't to say that the emphasis is writing everything down... it's learning it. That's actually another reason I'm not a fan of video: I've seen too many people so obsessed with videotaping the seminar that they aren't paying attention to what's going on -- or, even more annoyingly -- they want me to move out of the way of the camera while I' actually trying to learn!
 

l_uk3y

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When our Grandmaster flys to Australia to do a seminar with us he usually brings out a sachet of instant coffee to hand out to the group..

Something different and I quite like it.

Luke
 
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