It has been a been a big month for grading’s at Aikido Republic this month. A lot of of preparation for all those concerned and a long time coming for some like Jason. As Aran Sensei noted on Tuesday night, grading is an essential part of the aikido dojo process. While new age people may dispute the belt system and some dojo’s may take the opportunity to make a little extra money at these times. Aikido Republic takes a very traditional view and only asks students to grade when they have proved that they are ready for it.
The passage upto Shodan is a one where the student has passed once asked to grade, the reality is that the grading is a display of the students talent as per the syllabus.
You don’t get to do it again, so these times are precious and stay with each person for ever more. The pressure comes from within yourself at these times and is in fact more difficult than if you had the luxury of “doing it again”, like a so many other tests in life.
Some are thrust into it a little faster than they expect like Chris, but come out the other end showing a consummate display. Our two newest members Frank and Paul showed great promise and vastly improved structure than when they first visited not that long ago. Linda and Michael both gave a great display in the difficult 3rd kyu test. They now have moved into the senior ranks and have a competent background to refer to.
For the graduates, all had near flawless grading and it was a pleasure to preside over. All those who are asked more often than not think they are not ready, the reality is that it is akin to re-potting a plant into the next container, the plant may not realize how it needs to grow but the gardener has the expertise to know when is the right time.
For Aran Sensei and myself it is very encouraging to see students adopt structure and whole body movement as well as the defined kata, so a great celebration time for the dojo in general. Of course all ukes and other club members help make this possible so a big thank you to them also.
Well done to all.
Just back from Sydney and an enlightened seminar with Sensei Bill Gleason. He has gone another level from the 2014 series of teachings. The pure forms are there but generated so much more now utilizing Aiki. The introduction of rotation, how and when to use it, coupled with elbow power, are a have to be felt proposition. But worth every second you can get in contact with Sensei Gleason.
Some things over the week I won’t forget about Sydney,one being the traffic, I thought being held up for 20 minutes in Brisbane was cause for outrage but that is possibly the time it takes just to enter the slow sleepy snake that is Sydney traffic. It is a car park most of the time. This fact is well known to the population but does not get them down they are generous and warm to any visiting Aikidoka. The other notable event was watching North Queensland score 5 tries in 10 minutes to devastate the Parrammatta Eels, I actually felt sorry for my host as this unfolded. This scoring rate throws my theory of a point a minute out the window, it seems now possible to score at the rate of 2.8 points per minute!!
This exponential scoring rate increase is similar to progress Bill Gleason Sensei has made in the last twelve months, he has had great skill for a long while now but more recently it has exploded with the help of an ongoing mastery of intent driven power.
They say a good test for whether or not to join a dojo is to see if the participants are smiling while they are on the mat. Have a look at the faces in the shot below. Yes we are having a hoot, learing the art of Aiki.
Your last chance for a taste of this sort of practice and clear concise explanations of how to get Aiki back into your Aikido is this weekend in Brisbane.
Come join in and smile too !!
We are having our first Great Ocean Aikido seminar for 2015 at Brisbane Aikido Republic. We are holding a combined mini-seminar and grading on the April the 25th. This will include instruction from Jim Nichols Sensei and Andrew Sunter Sensei followed by a 2nd Kyu grading for Meaghan and a Shodan grading for Susan.
The seminar will run from 2pm with instruction from both Jim and Andrew Sensei.
For those that haven’t met either Jim or Andrew previously here is a brief description of their backgrounds in Aikido:
Jim Nichols Sensei
Our leader in building open and inclusive communities that work for the benefit and empowerment of others, Jim holds dan grades from three styles of Aikido and has organised numerous seminars for the last 20 years and was the outgoing head instructor for Goshinkan in Byron Bay.
Jim was awarded a 7th dan in Aikido by Koretoshi Maruyama.
Andrew Sunter Sensei
Andrew Sunter began training in Aikido in 1989. He holds dan ranks in several schools of Aikido and received 6th dan from Koretoshi Maruyama Sensei, who he often accompanied to seminars nationally and internationally.
Having trained in both hard and soft styles of Aikido, Andrew today offers instruction in Aiki, encompassing the totality of these. He provides individualised instruction appropriate to each stage of the journey. He uses, but is not bound by, the framework of syllabus through the vehicles of kata (technique), weapons, internal training and modern science.
All we are asking is $20 for three hours of training. If you want to come and support Susan or Meaghan for there grading but are unable to make the seminar there is no charge.
We are going to have some time after the seminar and grading to relax after the grading to help Susan and Meaghan to celebrate. We will announce a location for the celebrations closer to the date.
Aikidoka from all styles and dojos are welcome, and we look forward to seeing new friends and old.
Do not miss this opportunity to train with an accomplished master of the aikido arts, his depth of knowledge is undeniable and he delivers it it in plain English !
Here is what Sensei Steve Seymour (6 th Dan Kenkyukai Aikido Sydney Balmain) has to say and he is hosting Bill Gleason, 7th dan, again this year over the June long weekend at Terrey Hills dojo. Classes start at midday on Saturday 6th June and go through until 1pm Monday 8th June.
The following weekend 13/14th June, Bill will be teaching a seminar in Brisbane so people can back up for seconds.
Last year Bill attracted people from 17 dojo & 9 different aikido groups. He is truly one of the clearest instructors of “aiki” in the Aikido world today and is acknowledged as such in the USA. His explanations, understanding and skill are exceptional. It isn’t something that is common in the aikido world.
The ability to demonstrate effortless, unsourceable, unstoppable power ( aiki ) and to describe what one needs to do, to manifest it, is unique and it has been a product of Bill’s years with Yamaguchi and most recently his association with Dan Harden. A man whose skill is unbelievable. A number of AKI Aust practitioners as well as other denominations, have attended Dan’s seminars and can attest to his remarkable skill.
A quote from an Aikido 7th Dan in USA ” Dan is the most advanced Aiki practioner alive today ” ! The skill is derived also from Sokaku Takeda, via a different lineage to O’Sensei.
This will be Bill’s 4th visit down under and last year he was light years ahead of the Bill Gleason of the year before. Dan has really increased his ability exponentially.
For me, the most important classes I can attend ! <Steve Seymour>
Dropbox link below for detailed flyer for Brisbane Seminar with Bill Gleason