Guidelines for Practice
The following six points are adapted from a set of guidelines defined by the founder of Aikido, Morihei Uyeshiba. They are intended to promote safe, enjoyable, and respectful practice and they are valid in any style. Keep these reminders in the forefront of your mind and you can’t go too far wrong.
- A martial art can decide between life and death in an instant, therefore students must carefully follow the teacher’s instructions and must not compete to see who is the strongest.
- A martial art teaches how to deal with multiple attackers. Students must train themselves to be alert, not just to the front but to all sides and the back. You must also maintain a healthy level of tension.
- Training should always be conducted in a pleasant and joyful atmosphere.
- The instructor teaches only one small aspect of the art and gives hints to guide you. The versatile applications of the art must be discovered by each student through incessant practice and training. Do not be satisfied with what has been taught at the dojo. Digest, experiment with, and develop what has been learned. Improve the art. Do not engage in a futile effort to learn a great number of techniques but rather study the techniques one by one and make each one your own.
- In daily practice first begin with sufficient warm up exercises and then progress to more intense practice. Never force anything unnaturally or unreasonably; work within your limits. If this rule is followed, then anyone can train in a pleasant and joyful atmosphere and not be injured.
- The purpose of a martial art is to train the mind and body and to produce sincere, honest people who will improve the world. Do not randomly reveal techniques to others, for this might lead to the techniques being misused.