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#131980 - 07/17/02 02:58 PM Finding a legitimate school
NAUMatt Offline
Member

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 68
Loc: Flagstaff, AZ, USA
Hello all. I have been searching for some time now for a new dojo, as my previous (and wonderful) sensei graduated from my university and took off again for ALASKA, of all the unfollowable places in the world. [IMG]http://www.fightingarts.com/forums/ubb/wink.gif[/IMG] The problem is that I cannot seem to find one instructor half as decent as my last. I always enter a new dojo with no pessimism, but one long list of questions, most regarding discipline within the dojo. I always get the speech about how "training is very serious here," etc. etc., and as I sit in on a class it always is... for that day.
As time goes by, however, it always seems as though talking in class becomes less and less of a problem, kata is no longer taken as seriously, improper technique is not corrected, and so on. The end result is my training suffers. I am tired of bouncing from here to there, studying for short whiles with amazing fighters and poor martial artists.

Does anyone have any advice for seeing through the BS to the heart of a dojo? That, simply, is what I am looking for: heart; someone who will share my open mind, honesty, loyalty, and is willing to teach as much as I am willing to learn. Granted that may be high expectations, as when I walk into a dojo I do as an empty vase not waiting to be filled, but EXPECTING to be filled. However, I found one such person, and know there are many others out there.

I still train on my own for roughly 5 hours a week, but am starting to desperately feel the need for guidance in my art again. I have gotten to the point of debating moving to SoCal for the simple opportunity to train at my home dojo, where I know I will get the training I desire. While it would be an experience, I am not sure if I'm ready for a move just now.

So, can anyone loan me their BS x-ray goggles?

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#131981 - 07/18/02 08:43 AM Re: Finding a legitimate school
Sandifer Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/21/02
Posts: 22
Loc: Shelton, WA USA
First, it might help if you let us know where you live. That way someone might be able to point you to a local dojo.

Second, it takes discipline to be the example you want in others. If the teacher is right for you but the general class structure degrades over time then I would seek private lessons. I would say that if you are in class for a work out you are wasting your time. While I stay fit through martial training sets it is mostly done on my own outside of class as is the expectation of most the students. That way in a class session we can keep focused on a deeper examination of Karate and not simply mindless exercises. Though we do have our traditional conditioning type of work that in it self is a no brainer.

Sandifer

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#131982 - 07/18/02 11:09 AM Re: Finding a legitimate school
NAUMatt Offline
Member

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 68
Loc: Flagstaff, AZ, USA
I'm in Flagstaff, AZ. I am definately not trying to find a school for a "workout," but I'm definately not afraid of one. I do my cardio/strength training on my own. That's what I was saying in my first post: a "workout" is often what the classes I've seen degrade to, along with meaningless practice of unclean technique. It's at that point that I quickly loose interest. I need a dojo that will cultivate my mind as well as my body. While I still practice the proper focus, technique, etc. that I was taught originally (and taught well), I am disheartened when I catch myself consistently improperly executing a move and the sensei supposedly critiquing me says nothing about it. I understand that in a new style where I am wearing a white belt again, some instructors may not feel it necessary to correct some of the nuances I am talking about, but I make it known to them before-hand that I have studied rather extensively before under high expectations, and that I am very comfortable with being told exactly what I am doing wrong and how to correct it.

Private lessons with any number of the instructors I've trained under would be supurb, because most of them are very skilled in their art, just maybe not the best in the classroom setting. I am used to training with no more than 2 other people, so I guess I am kind of spoiled in that aspect anyway. Unfortunately, anywhere I've seen, private lessons means paying the monthly club fees PLUS at least $15 a lesson; for a poor college student, that just isn't possible.

If there ARE any instructors in Flag on the BBoards, and you want a very serious, dedicated student, please let me know!

Peace and Love

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#131983 - 07/18/02 10:28 PM Re: Finding a legitimate school
joesixpack Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/04/02
Posts: 2282
Loc: Australia
You say

"As time goes by, however, it always seems as though talking in class becomes less and less of a problem, kata is no longer taken as seriously, improper technique is not corrected, and so on. The end result is my training suffers. I am tired of bouncing from here to there, studying for short whiles with amazing fighters and poor martial artists."

What do you want? Boot camp? Seriously, being quiet and concentrating when practiscing something can be valuble, but the instructor also may not want to try to fix every imperfection of technique immediately, it will probably fail, and when you train in smaller groups (which is better than alone or big groups) you talk anyway, except when you do kata or fight. Of course you shouldn't be rude, but discussion of techniques, free flow of conversation seems not out of place... Amazing fighters and poor martial artists? Poor fighter and good martial artist don't go together, unless you have just begun. Good fighters are good martial artists. The struggle to become that proficient, fast, tough, smart or fit is personal and a tough road.

"Does anyone have any advice for seeing through the BS to the heart of a dojo? That, simply, is what I am looking for: heart; someone who will share my open mind, honesty, loyalty, and is willing to teach as much as I am willing to learn. Granted that may be high expectations, as when I walk into a dojo I do as an empty vase not waiting to be filled, but EXPECTING to be filled. However, I found one such person, and know there are many others out there."

Good treachers will teach you as much as they can, as fast as you can learn it, but you have to begin to teach yourself, develop your own ideas, and not be spoonfed, notwithstanding you are not a master level intsructor and you may be fortuneate enough to have one as your teacher.

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