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Sara Aoyama

Beginner's Mind
By Sara Aoyama

As a beginner in the martial arts I try to hold on to the freshness that is so natural to me now.

Beginner's Mind: Starting Training
By Sara Aoyama

Regardless of why I initially started training, I find all kinds of reasons for training and all kinds of benefits that I would have never thought of before I started.

Beginner's Mind: Listen to Your Body
By Sara Aoyama

In order to listen to your body, you first have to know your body.

Beginner's Mind: Auto-pilot
By Sara Aoyama

I decided to operate on auto-pilot which means that unless I am ill, or unless there is an event that I absolutely must attend, that I go to the dojo if it is a training time.

Beginner's Mind: Paying Attention
By Sara Aoyama

Beginner in the martial arts we are often told we should not ask questions, but that doesn't mean we should just accept what is said to us without trying to understand it further.

Beginner's Mind - George's Cat
By Sara Aoyama

A question came up recently, on how one honors one?s Sensei.

Beginner's Mind: Pushups
By Sara Aoyama

Doing push ups was one of the first physical challenges I came up against in the dojo. I couldn't do very many of them and the ones I did were really cheaty looking.

Beginner's Mind: Etiquette
By Sara Aoyama

Last spring I left my little town in Vermont to take a trip to New York City. This is always an eye opener for me, as I rarely leave Vermont. But this time the most interesting thing I saw was just half an hour down the highway where we stopped for lunch.

Beginner's Mind: Dojo Family
By Sara Aoyama

The idea that the dojo should function as a kind of extended family was one of the easier ideas in martial arts for me to buy into.

Beginner's Mind: What is a Master?
By Sara Aoyama

I know this defining of a Master is a popular subject of debate, but it seems to also be a very individual thing, be it by rank, organization, etc.

The Beginner?s Mind: Fast Track
By Sara Aoyama

One reason why Japanese students are promoted to black belt faster than those in the West is that their beginner?s mind may not be our beginner?s mind.

Beginner?s Mind: Sinking Your Teeth Into Training
By Sara Aoyama

As with karate, there?s something to be learned from practicing my tai chi form in a variety of ways and places.

Cooking Osechi Ryori
By Sara Aoyama

My last twelve years of preparing the Japanese traditional New Year?s food assortment, osechi ryori, can be seen as a paradigm for the study of any traditional Japanese art.

Understanding Japanese 1 - Jiko Shoukai
By Sara Aoyama

Although my study of Japanese began as an impulsive choice, the decision changed my life.

Understanding Japanese 2 - Pronunciation Part 1
By Sara Aoyama

Pronunciation of the Japanese language is one of the easiest aspects of learning the language, but it?s important to get it right from day one, before bad habits set in.

Understanding Japanese 3 - Pronunciation Part 2
By Sara Aoyama

Here we add a few more consonants to your Japanese alphabet.

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