Sunday, April 24, 2011
In all the days that we've trained in the dojo. When was the last time you tried to improve your tenkan? Or even your kamae? When was the last time you honestly believed that your ikkyo is capable of putting your opponent down in any given situation. Has there been any urgency in your training?
With boxers, fights can occur every two months or so. Each time both fighters will study the other fighter's videos and look for their strengths and weaknesses. They then concentrate on either improving their own standing weapons or develop an arsenal to counteract and exploit the other's weaknesses. For a boxer that continues to build himself up like this cumulatively and gradually, his strength will grow from fight to fight. For another who only builds himself to match his opponent, his career will be shortlived.
Yet, in both cases, those boxers have 'improved' themselves from their baseline. But its different for us Aikidokas. We who do not have competition and matches, we who do not have rivals, where comes our drive and where resides our goals?
Its easy to say, a belt ranking or a generalised 'improve everything' but are we really getting better? Or are we just going to the dojo, doing the same thing again and again without a thought to its development. Are our uke's testing us for weaknesses each time?
I wondered at one time not long ago, whether a technique could later become a skill. I guess it could, if we only develop it to become one. Irrespective if there's a partner to help us or not, we need to train like we are fighting the greatest threat of our lives. After all, this is not a game. There are no comfort zones, there's only death if we are slow and too sure of ourselves.