Facing the mountain

O'Malley

Black Belt
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
562
Reaction score
449
Hello everyone!

I'm not an a簿kidoka, I've tried a簿kido classes but as I wanted to learn how to protect myself as quickly as possible I ended up learning another martial art. As I can't train in my former style anymore because of bad logistics, I'm considering taking up a簿kido.

I'm willing to commit and train even outside the dojo but I am kind of off-put by the way practicioners describe the learning curve, it makes it sound like progress in a簿kido is awfully slow and that I won't be able to do anything close to a簿kido until after years of training. Please don't get me wrong: if I like the art I would be happy to be a lifetime student. Actually, what I felt when I practiced other arts was that I was making a lot of progress but that there were always new ways of improving and I liked it. However, I still needed to feel that I was making progress, that I could take my training outside the dojo and that every time I trained I was actually becoming a better martial artist.

Aikidokas seem to say that you won't be able to use a簿kido in a self-defense situation unless you've been training for years, which makes me picture myself after just one year of training, still struggling to make a technique work like the first day.

Do you have any feedback on this? How was your progress like after, say, one year of training? Were you satisfied? Would you have been able to use something like ikkyo in a self-defense situation? (I've actually arleady used an armlock that looks like ikkyo in a SD situation even though I can't possibly understand all the subtleties of that move)

Other question, as my primary objectives in martial arts training are, in decreasing order of importance:

1) To be able to protect myself and the ones I care for (I'm already confident that I could "handle" the average untrained jackass, I'd like to progressively implement a簿kido principles to my modest skills)

2) To sharpen myself as a martial artist, to learn how to use my body more efficiently (that's why I'm interested in a簿ki)

3) To grow spiritually.

... would a簿kido be the right martial art to study?

Thank you for your answers!

O'Malley
 

ks - learning to fly

Senior Master
Joined
Mar 25, 2012
Messages
3,916
Reaction score
630
Location
Minnesota USA
As I train in Tae Kwon Do and know nothing about aikido - I'm not sure how
much help I'll be - but here goes.. :) - and - this is only my opinion:

My school is traditional Tae Kwon Do (mind, body and spirit) - one of the
biggest benefits to me is that - through training - not only have I become
more physically fit but I have also improved my flexibility and coordination..
ie. using my body more efficiently. In addition, my confidence had grown
tremendously reinforcing my belief that I could - if necessary - protect
myself and/or my family. While - after a year - I felt very good about my
progress..Now, after 6 years - I feel even better about my progress - and
every day, there's always something new to learn.

Although I don't know where you live - I would recommend exploring
different schools before you make your decision. If you decide that one
environment of a school and the Instructor's teaching style is one you'd
prefer - you're more likely to apply yourself more.

Good Luck! :)
 

hoshin1600

Senior Master
Joined
May 16, 2014
Messages
3,096
Reaction score
1,609
One problem you may encounter, is the way aikido is trained. So your self defense progress may in part be determined by what school you go to. Different schools will have a different approach.... to a certain degree. How fast someone learns aikido is really no different than any other style. But there is a difference between learning the "style" and learning to use that style. When trying to apply a style to street defense progress is in the mind of the beholder. You may think you were progressing quickly when in reality you may not have and likewise you may not feel any better but in fact you may have made leaps forward and just don't feel it. It is very subjective unless you actually get in a fight on a regular basis which I would not recommend.
 
OP
O

O'Malley

Black Belt
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
562
Reaction score
449
@ks: thanks for your answer! I'm already browsing the different schools. And I'm glad you've found an art that you enjoy ^^

One problem you may encounter, is the way aikido is trained. So your self defense progress may in part be determined by what school you go to. Different schools will have a different approach.... to a certain degree. How fast someone learns aikido is really no different than any other style. But there is a difference between learning the "style" and learning to use that style. When trying to apply a style to street defense progress is in the mind of the beholder. You may think you were progressing quickly when in reality you may not have and likewise you may not feel any better but in fact you may have made leaps forward and just don't feel it. It is very subjective unless you actually get in a fight on a regular basis which I would not recommend.

I think that the sensei studied under F. Tissier, if that can be of any help to know whether they focus more on the SD aspects.

Well, I undersand that applying a簿kido on the street wouldn't look at all like what's done in the dojo. However, I was hoping that after one year of regular aikido training I would have an idea of the basic principles like good balance, managing distance, entering/turning and the way some joints work and that I could use them to avoid getting my booty handed to me :p
 

hoshin1600

Senior Master
Joined
May 16, 2014
Messages
3,096
Reaction score
1,609
You may know that it is going to look different but without a clear understanding of what it actually will look like you will not be able to see how the pieces fit together.
This is a major problem in aikido but also in other arts as well.
There is no rule that says once you start something you have to remain there for life. Just train.. if you find that your not getting what you want out of it, move on.
 
Last edited:

Xue Sheng

All weight is underside
Joined
Jan 8, 2006
Messages
33,793
Reaction score
8,767
Location
North American Tectonic Plate
O'Malley

What exactly are you after? Self-Defense, or doing things like you see long time Aikidoka doing.

My youngest has been Aikido for a few years, after one year she was able to defend herself from a bully simply by using tenkan. Could she apply Irimi-Nage? well no, but all she needed was Tenkon.

Would I think, that after her time in Aikido that she has mastered Irimi-nage and can apply it flawlessly when needed? nope, but she is darn good a Tenchi-nage.

Aikido takes time that is all and to really learn how to apply all the different techniques you have to get into Randori. But you have to train and learn a few things before you get into Randori.
 

Spinedoc

Brown Belt
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
416
Reaction score
263
Location
Rochester, MN
Tissier Shihan is respected as one of the best, and most martial aikido teachers in the world. If your instructor trained under him, it would be regarded as a good thing.

Now, on to your other questions. YES...I've taken multiple martial arts, and Aikido is by far the most subtle, and difficult to master. The reason is that many of the movements are subtle. I would agree that it would take years to become competent enough in Aikido to use it in a real life encounter. At least 5, and that's training 3 days weekly. Maybe less if you train every day. The reason is very simple. Mushin. To really effectively use Aikido, you need to be able to respond without thinking, and to employ and use the energy your opponent gives you without thinking about it. Most of our paired exercises are in reality, a form of paired kata, where you attack with a proscripted strike or grab, and Nage executes a proscripted technique.

It doesn't work that way in the real world. Aikido takes time, and actually, that is probably the best thing about it. It's subtle.

I've been practicing for years, and I still have classes where I struggle to move someone, or find my technique isn't quite right...etc. We won't even let any of our students into randori for at least 2 years, and even then, it's more of a jiyu waza than a true randori, which they don't really start until 2nd kyu, which is around 5 years (3 x weekly).....

The differences between ranks, even at the yudansha level is crazy. I can usually move our shodan, and when demonstrating with him, can take very good ukemi, and find that I always am aware of what he is doing..... But, when I go to our parent dojo, and train with our godan, ****.....I can honestly say, that often, I don't even know what he did. I just know it hurt like hell, and I am on the floor. Very small circle stuff. He's also been practicing since 1976.

So, train Aikido if you want, but realize, that if you want it for a real, practical, street art...it will take years to get there.
 
Top