Aikido FAQ For Noobs - Ask questions here

Discussion in 'Aikido' started by aikiwolfie, Apr 1, 2004.

  1. OwlMAtt

    OwlMAtt Armed and Scrupulous

    Hasn't Iwama rejoined the Aikikai Federation?
     
  2. aikiwolfie

    aikiwolfie ... Supporter

  3. aikiMac

    aikiMac boxing is fun Moderator Supporter

    :dunno: Meh. Doesn't matter. That same wiki says, "Nonetheless Aikikai is often described as a style for comparison with separate aikido organisations."

    I think the OP lives in the USA. The Aikikai organization in the USA is the "United States Aikido Federation," commonly called "Federation Aikido" or just "Federation." Yamada, in New York, is the president of and an original member/founder of the USAF. (O'Sensei sent him to New York.) All Federation dojos are supposed to follow the testing curriculum on the USAF webpage.

    Many non-Federation groups are connected to the Ueshiba hombu dojo, too, but they might not be Aikikai. My dojo has a direct connection to Tokyo because the group to which we belong was founded by a 15-year student of O'Sensei, but my dojo is not an "Aikikai" school, and we have stylistic differences compared to the local Federation school.

    Doesn't matter. All aikido is good, and politics is bad.
     
  4. OwlMAtt

    OwlMAtt Armed and Scrupulous

    Mac, are you ASU?
     
  5. luckybreak91

    luckybreak91 Valued Member

    So on Tuesday I am going to start learning Aikido and I have a question. If you work out too you are going to injure yourself. Will anything similar happen with Aikido? The place I am going to go to has multiple classes a day so I am going to try to get to as many as I can. Is that a bad idea? Should I take it slow at first? Are there any common mistakes that I should look out for? Thank you for your help.
     
  6. Anth

    Anth Daft. Supporter

    I wouldn't go to too many sessions straight away, possibly train every other day. That way your body will get used to moving in directions it isn't designed to and you'll reduce the risk of injury. One other tip is to go in with an open mind. I've seen people try aikido thinking it's going to be this and that then fall away when they realise it's not what they expected/anticipated.
     
  7. OwlMAtt

    OwlMAtt Armed and Scrupulous

    Any time you're doing something you've never done before, if you throw yourself at it like a maniac, you're going to hurt yourself. At my club, there are night classes and morning classes, and some morning classes come the day after night classes. I wouldn't recommend two classes back-to-back like that to a newbie, but other than something extreme like that, there's nothing wrong with doing as much training as you can.

    One mistake I made was being too much of hero about seiza (the kneeling with your feet underneath you). If it starts to hurt, take a break; don't try to be a macho man. I tried to be a macho man and caused myself months of ankle and calf pain.
     
  8. luckybreak91

    luckybreak91 Valued Member

    Basically take it slow and don't push myself to hard. Also, if it begins to hurt, take a break. Thanks. I have a history with getting completely carried away when I start something so I figured it would be a good idea to ask for advice before hand. I learned a long time ago that you can stop yourself from making a lot of mistakes if you take a second to ask someone for help.
     
  9. aikiMac

    aikiMac boxing is fun Moderator Supporter

    Yes, "Aikido Schools of Ueshiba," headed by Mitsugi Saotome and Hiroshi Ikeda, or something close to that spelling. But my dojo (and this makes me very happy) has a great rapport with non-ASU dojos in Arizona and California.
     
  10. selonimes

    selonimes Valued Member

    New to Martial Arts

    First time posting here been lurking for a while now.

    I have been taking a look on the forums here and I have been very impressed. I wanted to ask a few questions as I am having a bit of a hard time narrowing things down. I have never taken a formal martial arts class, and plan to start early next month. My plan currently is to attend a few classes in various arts to get a better understanding and insight into what they are about, and more importantly finding a teacher that I feel will teach me the way. I know that there are teachers that sometimes are amazing at their art or job whichever the case may be, yet when it comes to communicating that to a student they have a hard time.

    What I have narrowed my choices down to all seem to have similarities, considering tradition, yet I can't seem to know what will be "best" in the long run. I have narrowed the schools down to: Aikido, Bujinkan, and Seido Karate. Being in South Florida I have a wise variety of styles available to me. What draws me to these is both the physicality but the mental and spiritual side of the art. Other popular arts down here such as Brazilian jujitsu are not my style. All of the ones I am interested in though seem to embody things that are appealing to me yet I wonder having never taken classes, will there be much difference.

    Could anyone shed light on these arts and would could be the main differences? There seems to be similarities with Aikido and Bijinkan, especially when it comes to unarmed defense and some weaponry, but after that it seems to split further. Seido Karate seems to have a good spiritual side much like the other two.

    When it comes to the art, which will serve me better: The Art Form, or the Teacher?
    Is it advisable to cross train any of these arts starting out? I read a few threads suggestion that Aikido is a great compliment to other arts, as well as an amazing art just by itself.

    Once I start in a school how many days of training too much? I have the opportunity this summer to invest much of my time as I will have plenty of it.

    My goal is learn the art and walk that path of the warrior spirit, so I am invested in the long term, not the oh I can go break someones hand off.

    Anyway thank you for taking a moment to help the newb. Looking forward to learning more and finding my path.
     
  11. aikiMac

    aikiMac boxing is fun Moderator Supporter

    The teacher.

    Karate versus aikido? Get on YouTube and watch them. For me there's no comparison. I can't do karate. It's too rigid. I need the aikido flow. But, you know, there are thousands of people who say just the opposite.

    The "taijutsu" unarmed combat side of ninja training has a lot of similarities with aikido, yes, but it ends there. Watch YouTube clips. Do you like how they move? Do you like what they do?

    Do not cross-train until shodan. You have to figure out the one art before trying to learn the other.
     
  12. selonimes

    selonimes Valued Member

    Thanks for the help.

    I wasn't implying the arts were the same but more of some of the spiritual sides of the art. One thing that was interesting about the Seido Karate was the element of the art itself and working on a non religion based Zen. I am sure the schools share much of that element as well.

    As far as the teacher is concerned: Have some of you had better results in a group setting or one on one? It seems like both would be very productive in terms of learning capacity.
     
  13. aikiMac

    aikiMac boxing is fun Moderator Supporter

    First, get on the mat.
    Second, stay there for three months.

    You're like the newbies asking whether they bought the best gear for their new sport (skateboarding, surfing, climbing, biking, baseball, whatever) but without having actually played the sport. I totally understand and love your enthusiasm. I'm there too, but, you have to ride what you have first. It doesn't matter what you buy if you're not even using it. Get on the mat first. Nothing else matters if you're not on the mat.
     
  14. aikiwolfie

    aikiwolfie ... Supporter

    In my opinion group learning is always better. You must learn to be adaptive and be able to deal with different opponents of varying ability. Only a group setting can offer that sort of training in any meaningful way.
     
  15. selonimes

    selonimes Valued Member

    The reason I was asking really has to do with what I see as to learning types for the schools I am interested in. Here in South Florida, most of the aikido schools seem to have a larger classes, and bujikan have 1-4 students depending on the day. I can't tell if that is just a lack of good teachers, popularity, good marketing, or sketchy teachings etc.
     
  16. aikiMac

    aikiMac boxing is fun Moderator Supporter

    What are the specific schools that you're looking at? That might help. There's a good chance that people on MAP are familiar with those specific organizations, if not the actual instructors.
     
  17. dentoiwamaryu

    dentoiwamaryu Valued Member

    Forget about how many are on the mat it means nothing, alot of busy dojos are busy due to the fact they are made easy to learn rather than MARTIAL. You can only truly judge it by your own experience. If you are interested in good MARTIAL Traditional Aikido then make sure you visit Stephanie Yap sensei in fort lauderdale. She has spent many years living and training in the birth place of Traditional Aikido , Iwama.
     
  18. aikiwolfie

    aikiwolfie ... Supporter

    Ah right. Sorry didn't notice you were in the USA. Martial arts in America from what I can tell is often little more than a business. The teachers need to pack in the students to make money or charge stupidly high prices. Of course most other places don't seem to be much different.

    In my experience a group of around five people minimum tends to be just right. But don't discount a class because there are a lot of people there. A lot of those people will likely be experienced students unless it's a really new club.

    As a last point I'd say the number of people in the class is no indication as to how good the teacher is. You'll only figure that out by checking the club out and putting in some practice.
     
  19. selonimes

    selonimes Valued Member

    The Aikido schools are Florida Aikikai- http://www.floridaaikikai.com/adults.php It is headed by Peter Bernath.

    http://www.aikidoofboca.com/our%20dojo.htm Headed by Randall Smith


    The Ninjutsu schools in my area, South Floida, are all Bujinkan and seem to be made up of several small individual schools. Teachers in the area are Juan Hernandez, Luis Acosta(student of Juan Hernandez), Palm Beach Bujinkan Dojo with Shidoshi Paul Fisher, his student at Palm Beach Bujinkan Dojo Pembroke Pines- Instructor Alex Valhuerdi, Shinobi Bujinkan Dojo -Shihan Robert Hamilton, 15th Dan, Leopoldo Rodriguez
    Shidoshi at Bujinkan Satoru Dojo Miami, and Bujinkan Miami Dojo
    Instructor:Felix Diaz, 14th Dan.

    Both of the Aikido schools seem to have larger classes and schools where as the Bujinkan schools seem to have smaller numbers. This weekend I will be attending the advanced and basic classes at the Florida Aikikai school. No word though if I can participate on some level.
     
  20. aikiMac

    aikiMac boxing is fun Moderator Supporter

    Both of the aikido schools are USAF. You can't go wrong with that. Teachers are humans and humans are each unique, so the precise softness versus hardness, and degree of combative mindset, will vary from one instructor to the next, but when it comes to mechanics and technical proficiency, USAF is fine. It is "blessed" by the Doshu in Japan. Pick the school you subjectively like better, because on paper they are equal.
     

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