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#415423 - 02/03/09 09:27 AM Aikido Styles Question
TheKen Offline
Member

Registered: 04/11/06
Posts: 45
Still in the Dojo window shopping phase. I was wondering if someone could enlighten me in the general differences one could expect between:

Ki Aikido
Aiki Aikido
and a school that says they are part of the American Aikido Association (If that tells anything of style)

Of course the instructor's style makes a difference. Just looking for a 1000 foot view of what one might see different in general training practices between the styles. I got an idea of the history from Wikipedia if that says anything.

Ken

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#415424 - 02/03/09 11:13 AM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: TheKen]
iaibear Offline
Veteran

Registered: 08/24/05
Posts: 1304
Loc: upstate New York
Attend a free introductory class. If the teacher demonstrates a set of moves and then says, "Practice", be prepared to do a lot of guessing if you are not a close observer.

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#415425 - 02/03/09 11:31 AM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: iaibear]
TheKen Offline
Member

Registered: 04/11/06
Posts: 45
Quote:

Attend a free introductory class. If the teacher demonstrates a set of moves and then says, "Practice", be prepared to do a lot of guessing if you are not a close observer.




I am afraid I don't see where your answer answered my actual questions in anyway. Perhaps you could clarify?

Ken

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#415426 - 02/03/09 12:57 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: TheKen]
Ames Offline
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Registered: 05/29/05
Posts: 1117
iaibear is actually right on here, and he is talking about teaching styles. Some teachers teach the 'old way' where you have to 'steal the technique', meaning they demonstrate and then you break off into partners and figure out how to make it work. Others just show the damn technique and actually help you figure it out.

As for your question, I will do my best:

Shin Shin Toitsu Aikido, aka 'Ki Aikido', aka Ki Society, is one of the 'softer' forms of Aikido. If you were to look at the spectrum of styles Yoshinkan would be the 'hardest' and Ki society the 'softest'. Of course this is a general statement, and as such keep in mind that there are always variables.

Ki Aikido was formed by Koichi Tohei after his split from the Hombu (headquarters). Koichi Tohei was one of the only Aikidoka to be given the 10th dan by O'sensei, and he was for a time before the split, the cheif instructor at Hombu.

Tohei felt that Ki should be directly taught and devised methods of teaching it (often referred to as 'ki tricks'). Apparently this did not sit well with Kishomaru Ueshiba (the founders son) who felt that Tohei was teaching methods that did some come from the founder. Apprently Tohei's method of teaching these skills owes as much to his Zen training and Japanese Yoga training as to Morihei Ueshiba. Either way, this caused an eventual split from Hombu, with Tohei creating his own organizations.

Today the style has seperate ranking for ki skills and Aikido techniques, although you practice both in the same class. At this point, many techniques have been omitted from the syllabus, or altered. Keep in mind that most people alter techniques to suit their bodies though. On the pro-side, I think Ki society is a great method for a foundation study in internal body skills, and a relatively easy method to learn these foundational skills. The art is taught on a more directly 'principle' basis, as opposed to the 'technique' method of other styles.

As for the cons, well there aren't a heck of a lot of dojos around (not as many as Aikikai) so if you move and there is only Aikikai, then you will have to start at square one again.

I think by "Aiki Aikido" you are talking about 'Aikikai.' Aikikai really runs the gamut between 'hard' Aikido, with atemi and pressure points, to very soft, more flowing and circular Aikido. As such, it is hard to define an 'Aikikai style' and it is better to look at it as an 'organisation'. The organisation is headed by the Ueshiba family.

The nice thing about Aikikai is the amount of differing approaches to Aikido you will find under its umbrella. As I said, there are a wide variety of teachning styles. The benefit of this kind of thing is that, as long as the technique holds to its principle, then it can be executed in differing ways. Aikikai is all over the world, and your rank should carry from dojo to dojo.

I don't really know anything about the 'American Aikido Association', so maybe someone else could help you out with that.

The last thing is, that although 'style' can play a valid role in your decision on what to study, of far more importance is how you mesh with a particular teacher.

Also, in this day and age of so much information, it is easy to bombard yourself with overload and start learning too much theory before you actually practice. It's nice to have so much info availible, but it can also lead to too many preconceived notions of what the art should be. I have seen, and myself experianced, this holding back your progress in the art. The best advice I can give you is to pick three dojos and go try a class in each.

--Chris
_________________________
"Seek not to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought."
--Basho

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#415427 - 02/03/09 01:27 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: Ames]
TheKen Offline
Member

Registered: 04/11/06
Posts: 45
Ok thank you, iaibear sorry if I seemed abstruse!

Right now I have two schools, one aikikai the other ki society that I am looking at. I have spoken over email with the instructor at the former and am trying to set up a time to go visit there.

Ken

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#415428 - 02/03/09 01:38 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: TheKen]
Ames Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/29/05
Posts: 1117
If you like, do a school review after you meet with them and let us know how it goes.

--Chris
_________________________
"Seek not to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought."
--Basho

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#415429 - 02/03/09 03:38 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: Ames]
TheKen Offline
Member

Registered: 04/11/06
Posts: 45
It may not be the most informed review though. I mean I have been to plenty of dojos, but this technically my first visit to an Aikido dojo of any form. I can speak in generalities I guess.

Ken

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#415430 - 02/03/09 04:49 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: TheKen]
Ames Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/29/05
Posts: 1117
First impressions can say a lot, though, you're right it would be general, but that's okay. And you might have questions after your first time.

--Chris
_________________________
"Seek not to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought."
--Basho

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#415431 - 02/03/09 05:04 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: Ames]
TheKen Offline
Member

Registered: 04/11/06
Posts: 45
Well it looks like I am going to go there on my lunch hour tomorrow, weather depending as when it snows in the Carolinas everything shuts down.

Anyway it is rather convenient they have noon classes and are so close to my work. That makes it extremely convenient.

We shall see.

Ken

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#415432 - 02/04/09 01:38 PM Re: Aikido Styles Question [Re: TheKen]
Richard_Norris Offline
Member

Registered: 05/11/06
Posts: 43
Quote:

...the American Aikido Association





That'd be the organization started by the late Toyoda-sensei (as in, student of and instructor in Japan under Tohei-sensei, moved to Chicago at behest of Tohei-s). There's Ki no Kenyukai (Ki Society) lineage there, of course, though his experience teaching in the US clearly led Toyoda-s to a distinctive attention to teaching methods particularly suited, perhaps, to folks who didn't grow up in Japan doing martial arts. Nice curriculum and explicit attention to instructor development, very important. Not so explicitly KnK in instruction now, not unlike that of Kobayashi-sensei (Seidokan, another Aikido style that developed from KnK roots in North America).



R

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